Saturday, June 22, 2013

In these hazy days...

The flats, about 0.6 km away, lost in the haze

Woray ! Woray !
Da haze is back!
Woray ! Woray !
I yamback, yamback,
Yamback to rob and planda
In da kaver of da haze.
-Extract from the Songs of a Bandit
In these hazy days, I try to look for that sliver of light in our economy to cheer me up but this is what I see: a Myanmar teenager working as an apprentice mechanic in a motorbike shop; a young man from India selling newspapers in my neighborhood; Indonesian and Nepalese men and women manning foodstalls or working as waiters in coffee shops and restaurants; Bangladeshis peddling imitation branded clothing in Chinatown. For the last 30 years, our government has been doing the same thing, bringing in cheap unskilled labor from neighboring countries. Can these immigrants help propel our country towards Vision 2020 which is only seven years away? But then again, the man who hatched this vision doesn't even believe in it anymore. So, what does it matter? Just hatch a new vision and give ourselves another twenty years!