Democracy by far is the most respectable way a society can govern itself. That, however, does not mean that democracy has no weaknesses at all. As Winston Churchill is often quoted, “democracy is the worst form of government except all the others that have been tried.” It is the best that we have after thousands […]

A currency war is inevitable in the era of quantitative easing (QE). While the long-standing assertion by major central banks that the exchange rate is not a policy tool is pretty much true, there is a well-understood link between monetary policy and the strength of a currency. It is no mystery that the market expects […]

The state — or in common parlance, the government — is the guardian of public resource. These resources are ones that we own collectively, like petroleum, or of interest in the past few weeks in Malaysia, telecommunication spectrum. It is the responsibility of the government to manage and use the resources efficiently. If it cannot, […]

I am partial to an education system which has the English language as its medium of instruction. That is because I am most comfortable where English is the primary and the common language. While the Malay language is my mother tongue, I mostly use English to run both my private and professional life. For a […]

It is always nice to watch Malaysians from across the spectrum uniting and cheering behind a Malaysian athlete or team in competitive sports at the international level. That more or less happened when the number one national badminton player Lee Chong Wei was up against Lin Dan of China at the London Olympics. He failed […]

Anna Schwartz is not a name too familiar with too many Malaysians. That is a shame because her works as an economist wield great influence in this era of economic uncertainty. Read up major financial newspapers, magazines, financial news channels or leading economic blogs and one will come up an idea which she—together with the […]

I have been accused as a purist when it comes to defining the term liberal. I subscribe to a specific definition of the term liberal that will disqualify many other self-proclaimed liberals quickly. By specific, I am referring to libertarianism. Others prefer the term classical liberals and I find it hard to really differentiate the […]

In our modern Malaysia, one can hope that government policy comes about through the general will of the people peacefully through democratic means. One can further hope that this mean not merely crass majoritarianism but that which is respectful of individual rights. After all, the government and the state derive its legitimacy from the people, […]

[2435] Oh the fickle markets

The stock markets all around the world are on a rollercoaster ride. It is yet another proof of the interconnectedness of our world and in a time like this, such interconnectedness can be a bane. The slightest news of little relevance—never mind the more substantial developments—from the other side of the world can rally or […]

Last Monday, the Sun published a report on food stamp. They interviewed me for that report. The authors of the report quoted me as “a member of the Institute for Democracy and Economic Affairs (IDEAS) and is responsible for its economic studies arm.”[1] While I spoke to one of the authors on behalf of IDEAS, I […]