This Christmas season is leaving independent journalist Anil Netto with a severe hangover. Not from the bubbly but because his poor head is simply spinning from the dizzying pace of ‘development’ projects taking place in his Penang hometown. Cukup pening bah.
And if he were alive today, Nobel laureate Rabindranath Tagore would pengsan terus at “the manifest greed on display in Penang”, complains Anil. “Pure, unadulterated greed”. Sad.
Sad that the greedy bastards are grinding down chirpy Anil — the word ‘anil’ அணில் btw means (bright-eyed and bushy-tailed) squirrel in Tamil.
Dapsters getting the greedy developers they voted for
… courtesy of the Developers Arselicker Party they elected.
“For the next couple of decades, much of Penang Island – and even its surrounding waters – would be turned into a massive construction site. The scale of ‘development’ – or rather degradation – is simply mind-boggling. And the haste – it is as if there is no tomorrow,” Anil grumbled in his blog on Dec 23.
Pakistan Harapan is giving Penangites several expensive Christmas presents which some of their own voters like Anil are not that happy about receiving, to wit:
• A mystery gift that could possibly be island No.4 located – refer green circle on Penang Structure Plan map – in the southeast of the state
The creation of artificial islands Nos.1-3 is already causing eco warriors to tear their hair worrying about environmental degradation resulting from the mega project (below). The three islands planned on reclaimed land, combined, will be bigger than Forest City in Johor.
Penangites the most brainwashed population in M’sia
“Some might think all these projects are for ‘development’ ,” Anil wrote. “In reality, these projects are mainly about property development and construction contracts that would reap enormous profits and dividends for the boys.”
[Helen’s comment: And Penang – where the most avid and rabid DAP fans reside – actually voted in GE12, GE13 and GE14 against their economic self-interest and wellbeing. Must be something in the Penang water that addles their brain.]
And there are more Christmas glad tidings:
• Plan for yet another 300 acres of reclamation – err, for luxury seaside hotels (?) – not far from the Tanjung Bungah floating mosque
• A housing complex in Batu Maung which Anil hears could be cramming thousands – even as many as 18 in each unit – migrant workers into 800 square foot flats
• RM100 million cable car going up to boring-really-nothing-to-do Penang Hill; there is already the funicular train that left 900 passengers stranded when its service broke down Saturday night (see news report above). The Agong who was on a short holiday in Penang also weighed in on the incident.
[Helen: Why build a new cable car when you can’t even properly maintain the existing funicular railway?]
• RM55 million underpass at Mount Erskine “just to move the traffic jam one kilometre down the road” (the words in quotes uttered last month by Consumers Association of Penang president Mohideen Abdul Kader)
Making hay all the way to 2030 ‘Shared Prosperity’ day
“What we have here, folks, is greed. Pure unadulterated greed. Much of this $$$ will be generated by ursurping and monetising the Commons (that rightfully belongs to the public – the hills, the seas and the fish therein) for private gain,” Anil groused.
The poet Tagore “had a deep insight into the human predisposition for greed almost a century ago when he gazed at Penang,” Anil continued. “The kind of greed that Penangite Jho Low would have imbibed as he grew up”.
A same kind of greed is prompting developers who are keen to build high end housing on Penang’s soon-to-be reclaimed islets. Penang could see an influx of hundreds of thousands of new residents in the near future.
“Where are those 446,000 people on the three artificial islands (and tens of thousands more in the other reclamation projects) coming from?” asked Anil. “Well-heeled buyers from China, Hong Kong and Singapore?”
BELOW: Chinese antifa are now wearing reindeer horns … weird
Lim Guan Eng — the best friend a developer could have
Even on Christmas eve the born again clansmen of our Penang evangelistas are kicking up street rallies in Hong Kong. While other people are out shopping, the Honkies are out clashing with police.
These Hallelujah-singing people obviously need a new stomping ground. But wait! … Remember the luxury property overhang in Penang?
Do you recall the beloved Finance Minister recently announcing that foreigners will be able to buy the glut of condos at a floor price of only RM600,000? A Budget to delight developers, indeed.
Now the well-heeled emigres from Hong Kong can easily come to Penang and buy all ‘em empty condos. Welcome cousins.
And merry Christmas and a greedy new year to the rest of you folks!
4 thoughts on “The kind of greed that Jho Low grew up on”
Penang is my home town. Except for 2004 general election, I have voted for BN since then.
Penangites keep on complaining about the development taking place in the state but why still voting in DAP every general election since 2008?
Thank you Helen for a great read to see off the end of annus horribilis 2019. Oh my heart bleeds for Pulau Pinang’s radical son, that great crusader for human rights, the environment and anti-BN evangelist.
As for Jho Low and other ‘enterprising Penangites’, their agenda can be traced as far back as Dr Lee Tiang Keng ( recall his unctuous deference to Queen Elizabeth II on her coronation in 1953!).
He had planned a secession of Pulau Pinag from the Persekutaun Tanah Melayu to join forces with Temasek.
Now that Pulau Pinang cannot join Temasek, they can attract property-hungry and land-hungry Sinchiaporeans to migrate to Pulau Pinang. Throw in bagsful of “economic refugees” from Hong Kong and China and “Let millions of Tong Pao bloom”.
Jho Low is small fry compared to the agenda from centuries ago, from since Francis Light in 1789 shot off loads of dollar-coins from an English cannon into the forests of Pulau Pinang as the only way to get the natives and ‘budding entrepreneurs’ to clear the jungle.
Any difference today? Pile them high and sell them cheap – a wonderful tactic for economic enterprise and .development. Come on you “lazy, unreliable” Malays, especially the rather more liberal Malay-Muslims (or Muslim-Malays) of Pulau Pinang, haven’t you learned or absorbed any of that Midas touch from your fellow- Penangites?. Or perhaps make an attempt to analyze the “pekong di dada Pulau Pinang”.
But please refrain from hand-wringing whingeing like Anil Netto. It’s so passez. You reap what you sow! But perhaps die-hard liberals do not subscribe to that ideology.
Roll on 2019 and 2020 and 2021 and let the money flow.
Nice one Helen.
Perhaps Penang Lang are like the flagellants of old who used to go around whipping and mutilating themselves.
However, the former BN/Gerakan government also allowed developers to rape Penang but to a lesser extent.
My aunt’s grandson and his wife visited her over the Christmas and New Year period and they booked an Air B&B in the super high-rise Pinnacle in Petaling Jaya and they told me that they were surprised at how vacant the place was.
I told them that we are undergoing a building craze over here, even when there already is a property overhang.
Oh yes! Next up is Bandar Malaysia, which is supposed to create thousands of jobs:-
“He (Lim Guan Eng) said that with an expected gross development value of RM140 billion over the next 20 years, this mixed-use, transited-oriented development in Kuala Lumpur would bring substantive economic value to the nation and create thousands of jobs, particularly in the construction, knowledge, entrepreneurial and technology sectors.”
I’ve hear that kind of talk related to the Multimedia Super Corridor (MSC Malaysia) too many times that I can count in the 20 over years during which I wrote about the ICT industry in Malaysia.
Well now according to our Ministry of Higher Education, 50% of our graduates are unemployed and of ICT graduates, 60% are unemployed.
Well maybe thousands of jobe, mostly driving e-hailing taxis and motorbike taxis to ferry those extra close to half a million Penang residents around.
Perhaps the liberal Pakatan government should also legalise prostitution and have the prostituted professionally certified free of sexual diseases by the Ministry of Health each time after they have entertained a client, similar to those toilet bowls in 5-Star hotels which have a paper seal after being cleaned and sanitised.
Prostitution, after all is a services industry and perhaps the oldest services industry.
Malaysia can then be proud that we have moved away from “sunset” industries such as manufacturing to “sunrise” industries such as prostitution.
Oh yes! I forgot to add. Legalise pot (marijuana, ganja, etc) in Penang and sell SIRM and Ministry of Health certified Ganja and Ganja-related products, which can be smoked through hookahs at licensed outlets, consumed in cakes and so forth in First World quality cafes, with taxation like alchhol and tobacco are.
Penangsterdam will become an attraction for pot smokers worldwide, including billionaire pot smokers and the revenue from taxes will really benefit Penang’s economy.
Also, pot farmers, especially on mainland Penang will stand to benefit from growing various kinds of ganja, including organically grown, hydroponic grown, etc ganja and produce related ganja products, whilst craftspeople could produce ganja smoking utensils and accessories which they can sell.
Also, the stalks of the hemp plant can be turned into fibre to make hemp clothing, bags and other items.
This will be a great boost for Penangsterdam’s ganja-related agricultural, craft and services economy and industry to replace the manufacturing industries which are leaving for neighbouring countries.
Also, some Latin American countries allow legal ayahuasca consumption centres, where clients can consume the psychedelic drug under professional guidance of a shaman and assistants and it’s become a growing business and tourist attraction, especially of tourists from the west who wish to attain “enlightenment”.
My first AYAHUASCA experience (stronger than shrooms)
AYAHUASCA BREAKTHROUGH (different dimension)
Penangsterdam can send Malaysians to train as ayahuasca shamans and assistants in Latin America, as well as how to prepare the brew, whilst farmers can grow the ingredients. Another boost for Penang’s economy.
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