Hike in fuel price; the woes of a fresh grad...

I've been keeping silent since the hike in fuel price on Thursday, mainly because I started out with my first 'real' job on Wednesday, 4th June 2008 and i've been struggling with calculations on how to cut back now.

I was pretty happy that morning, I have a proper job right after my exams, even before I am officially a degree holder and the starting salary of a fresh grad. It's a meager 2k a month job, but I figured when took it, hey, everybody's got to start somewhere right?

I calculated my cost, RM10 a day for petrol, RM10 a day for parking and RM10 a day for lunch. So i spend RM30 a day, time 22 days a week, so that's RM660 a month. Minus that from my salary, give or take some extras, I'll probably have about RM1200 left. Then after paying installment for my car, that's about RM400, I have RM800 left. Not too shabby I thought...until the end of the first day when a friend rang me up and said,"hey you might want to stop by the petrol pump on your way home, they're hiking the oil price up to RM2.70!"

Well there goes my calculations flying out of the window! So where does my 'glamarous' pay leave me at after the hike? Well strike out my RM10 a day for petrol, increase it to RM15 and multiply that by 22, I have to pay an extra RM110 a month just to get me to and from work! Let's not forget, the hike will also entail rise in food prices, that means I'll probably have to spend an extra RM100 eventually on food! So, it seems that I'm left with a little over RM400 a month to survive on.

And who am I to complain? Most people I know start with a pay of RM1500, what will they be left with? If according to my expenditure, they'd be left with a negative balance! So, it seems a prudent way would be for me to take public transportation right? Yes, I did consider it. The problem is this; how do I get to Damansara Heights from Wangsa Maju?

Well, lets set out the options;

The bus

This would entail a route of taking the bus from Wangsa Maju to maybe a central stop in Kl. Then wait of another bus en route to PJ, which may not be directly to Damansara Heights, which means another switch of buses once in PJ. That makes 3 different buses for an area 15 kilometres away! My usual 20-30 minute drive, would end up in a 3-hour ride!


Well, I could take the Putra LRT from Wangsa Maju up to perhaps Bangsar and either

a) take a bus or

b) take a cab

to my work place, and do the same when leaving for home. Again, no direct route and requiring at least 1-2 hours travel.

If I recall, that would be the time it takes for me to reach Seremban!

So much for a degree, looks like life is going to be crap as usual! Sigh, I guess this means taking up a second job just to make ends meet, plus going for classes once they decide CLP or CBC. I might just consider moving to Vanuatu, but then I remembered, they're probably having a food crisis and I just might starve to death.

The question that boggles the mind is this. If we are one of the biggest net exporters of petroleum in Asia, why is the hike in oil price affecting us? Has Brunei or Saudi Arabia announced a hike in their local consumer's price? If we sell oil, and the price of oil goes up doesn't that mean we should be earning more? Hey, I'm no economist or math genius, but isn't this common sense? Ok, so if we're not making enough, who decides?

Why do I have to take the word of a bunch of apes running the revenue of the country? I want to see figures, published accounts, expert INDEPENDANT opinions, then I'll decide if the rise is justified. Right now, all I know is a bunch of dumb low IQ animals are running the country and honestly, I don't buy the shit they're forcing up my throat!

Since Bodohwi's administration took over in 2002, the rise in petrol price has more than 100%. In 2002-2003, the price of a litre was about RM 1.33, then it went up to RM1.92 which by then the stupid Govt machinery had already plastered up billboards to remind us how kind they are by sucking in their belts and showing us the subsidised price against the non-subsidised price, reminding us how 'generous' they are. Now, 6 years later, it's up to 2.70 a litre...that's more than double the increase since 2002. And these are the prices in other oil-exporting countries;

Iran — RM0.29 per liter.
UAE — RM1.19 per liter
Venezuela — RM0.16 per liter
Nigeria — RM0.32 per liter
Arab Saudi — RM0.38 per liter
Mesir — RM1.03 per liter
Kuwait — RM0.67 per liter
Brunei — RM2.03 per liter
Malaysia — RM2.70 per liter
When we study corporate governance, we have learned that huge multi-billion corporations such as Enron and Worldcom can fall in the hands of a few key people. The reason was mainly lack of accountability, transparency and of course the source of all evil; greed, corruption and fraud. These few people in position have the power to siphon off money and cover up their deeds from public scrutiny leading a profiting company to its downfall. To me, a government is just like a huge corporation, and a government not checked will have the ability to bring a nation to its ruin.

If this style of closed door accounts and 'secret profits' is not checked, it is us stakeholders in the company who will be left to suffer. If previously, the rakyat has not felt the urgent need for a change because no one really cared whether they had a right to freedom of speech or good governance, perhaps now they will care because they feel a burn in their pocket!

If nothing changes soon, I'm packing my bags and leaving to a place which appreciates me more for my education and capability, and not the colour of my skin. I hope the stupid govt. then doesn't start to blame us grads for being ungrateful and not returning to contribute to the country! Honestly, can you really blame them?

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