How should we judge a government?

In Malaysia, if you don't watch television or read newspapers, you are uninformed; but if you do, you are misinformed!

"If you're not careful, the newspapers will have you hating the people who are being oppressed, and loving the people who are doing the oppressing." - Malcolm X

Never argue with stupid people, they will drag you down to their level and then beat you with experience - Mark Twain

Why we should be against censorship in a court of law: Publicity is the very soul of justice … it keeps the judge himself, while trying, under trial. - Jeremy Bentham

"Our government is like a baby's alimentary canal, with a happy appetite at one end and no
responsibility at the other. " - Ronald Reagan

Government fed by the people

Government fed by the people

Career options

Career options
I suggest government... because nobody has ever been caught.

Corruption so prevalent it affects English language?

Corruption so prevalent it affects English language?
Corruption is so prevalent it affects English language?

When there's too much dirt...

When there's too much dirt...
We need better tools... to cover up mega corruptions.

Prevent bullying now!

Prevent bullying now!
If you're not going to speak up, how is the world supposed to know you exist? “Orang boleh pandai setinggi langit, tapi selama ia tidak menulis, ia akan hilang di dalam masyarakat dan dari sejarah.” - Ananta Prameodya Toer (Your intellect may soar to the sky but if you do not write, you will be lost from society and to history.)

Saturday, August 17, 2013

There is no such thing as a free lunch

Many people assume and often quoted this and attributed it to ex-PM of Singapore, Lee Kuan Yew. Others thought it was first said by Nobel Prize-winning economist, Milton Fried man. According to The Phrases Finder:

The economic theory, and also the lay opinion, that whatever goods and services are provided, they must be paid for by someone - that is, you don't get something for nothing. The phrase is also known by the acronym of 'there ain't no such thing as a free lunch' - tanstaafl.

Before discussing the origin of 'there's no such thing as a free lunch' it would be useful to go back to the days in which lunches were free. Free lunch was a commonplace term in the USA and, to a lesser extent in Britain, from the mid 19th century onward. It wasn't used to describe handouts of food to the poor and hungry though, it denoted the free food that American saloon keepers used to attract drinkers; for example, this advertisement for a Milwaukee saloon, in The Commercial Advertiser, June 1850:

At The Crescent...
Can be found the choicest of Segars, Wines and Liquors...
N. B. - A free lunch every day at 11 o'clock will be served up.'

I am sure most people are doubtful about Nazri's claim that his son is not on his Tourism Ministry's payroll but his own; that he is just an office boy to him; that his job is to engage the young in his Padang Rengas constituency (why then involve him in his ministry and attract unsavoury comments?); and so on, because just by giving him the title 'Special Officer', Nedim has the right to go in and out of Tourism Ministry and given VIP treatment by ministry officials. For example, who is going to question his use of official car and other amenities? Even the most basic item, like free lunch (and we don't expect him to be eating in the canteen) has to be paid by the ministry and ultimately, by taxpayers.

Therefore, I would take it with a pinch of salt when PM said he is okay with ministers hiring kin for no govt pay.

According to Malaysiakini quoting from Bernama:

Najib okay with ministers hiring kin for no gov't pay

'There is no problem with a minister or a member of the government administration recruiting a family member as his aide if it does not involve any payment of salary or allowance to the aide by the government, says Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak.'


That ultimately someone or some organization has to bear the cost is best shown in the following joke:

The phone bill was exceptionally high. Man called a family meeting to discuss.
Dad : This is unacceptable. I don't use home phone, I use my work phone.
Mum : Me too. I hardly use home phone. I use my companies phone.
Son : I use my office mobile, I never use the home phone.
All of them shocked and together look at the maid...who's patiently listening to them
Maid : "What ? So we all use our work phones. What's the Big deal?

We should not take it literally when parents tell their children that the total cost of real love is No Charge...


No comments: