It’s that time of the year again when Chinese New Year predictions take centre stage.
And being part Chinese, one can’t help but grow up hearing stories about how important these predictions are: so that we know what to look out for and what to avoid.
My mom will personally make it a point to get a hold of every prediction made by most of the Feng Shui experts and astrologers.
Why? Firstly, she has deep interest in this subject which most of us find intriguing and secondly, so that she can forewarn us about ill luck and which time of the year that this will most likely happen.
And yet, am I perturbed by these warnings?
How many predictions actually come true?
In fact, even before the 15-day Chinese New Year celebration ends, not many remember the predictions made for their animal sign.
And by animal sign, I mean the 12 Chinese zodiac signs which are represented by 12 animals led by the rat and ends with the pig.
Hence the carefreeness of the Year of the Earth Pig 2019, since it marks the end of a complete rotation cycle of the twelve Chinese Zodiac animals, is also the signal to make a well-deserved break, and for everyone the opportunity to do the analysis of previous years, in order to be ready to project ourselves more serenely into the new cycle that begins the following year, with the Year of the Metal Rat 2020.
At this end of the Chinese calendar cycle, it is time to reflect on the past 11 years. A period of joy and relaxation, the benevolence of the sign of the Pig is being felt in many areas all along 2019. All good wills and motivations are renewed and strengthened.
The new year signifies wonderful opportunities and growth especially within the family and spiritual values.
Even though the predictions from a Feng Shui aspect are not great in 2019 and very special cures and enhancers must be placed, it is good to see that the forecast for the Chinese zodiac is more favourable and it is a year that brings in many changes all over the world.
For predictions, also check out:
- 2019 is the Year of the Pig
- Discover Your Opportunities, Challenges & Luck In The Year Of The Earth Boar
- What’s in Store For The Property Sector This Year of The Boar
Change of government
And change is definitely something that we experienced in the year of the Dog: a change in government, being the most obvious.
The newly-minted Pakatan Harapan government seized the reign of power from the once unbeatable Barisan Nasional coalition which has ruled the country for 61 years.
Since then, PH has been under close watch and public scrutiny.
According to The Straits Times Singapore, despite almost 9 months being in power, there is reason to believe that there is a lower approval for the government of Mahathir Mohamad now as compared to when his administration was first installed in 1981.
The recent Pakatan Harapan’s failure to wrest the parliamentary seat of Cameron Highlands from Barisan Nasional is also a blow to PH.
The ruling coalition had in November won a court decision declaring BN’s 567-vote victory in Cameron Highlands last year as unfair due to bribery.
On January 26, BN retained the parliamentary seat with a 3,238-vote majority.
Hence, a big morale booster for BN as this was its first victory in five by-elections since being toppled from power in last May’s general election.
This sends a strong signal that Umno remains overwhelmingly strong in rural constituencies and if their electoral pact with PAS to only run one candidate holds, they remain a force in these areas.
Akin to DAP that used the Chinese community to change the nation’s political landscape, Umno vice-president Khaled Nordin said the cooperation between Umno and PAS will result in a ‘Malay tsunami’ in the next general election that will be bigger than the ‘Chinese tsunami’ of the previous general election.
Although this was the fifth by-election since Prime Minister Mahathir returned to power, it was the first real bellwether for the government.
The first three were for state assembly seats in Selangor which was won handsomely by PH last May.
The fourth was the forced vote in Port Dickson allowing Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim to return to Parliament after receiving a royal pardon from a controversial sodomy conviction.
BN’s much-needed boost
For BN, the victory in Cameron Highlands is a much-needed boost having been in shambles since losing power.
There are only three of 13 parties remaining in the coalition while it continues to be stung by exposes of billion-ringgit scandals from when it was in power.
Then again, should PH be worried?
Should they start pressing the panic button?
Are they losing the support of the people?
One thing’s for sure: the PH government will have to up its game.
They will need to make good their election promises.
They will need to formulate and introduce policies which matter and can take this country forward.
No more u-turns.
No more excuses.
PH’s positives, errors & fumbles
According to Dr Chandra Muzaffar, Chairman of the Board of Trustees of Yayasan 1Malaysia:
Apart from baring the ugly face of corruption and its consequences, the PH government has also sought to address some of the woes of the people as expressed during the election campaign.
It has abolished the unpopular Goods and Services Tax (GST); stabilised the price of petrol and introduced targeted petrol subsidies; eliminated unnecessary debts imposed upon Felda settlers; and postponed the repayment of PTPTN loans for graduates whose salaries are below RM4,000 per month.
The government has also acted against two institutions related directly or indirectly to national unity. It has abolished the Biro Tata Negara (BTN) which many felt did not conduce towards the promotion of better ethnic relations.
And it has also dismantled the National Service Programme which earlier studies had shown made very limited contribution to the integration of young adults.
While these are among the many positive measures, one should not ignore the gross errors and outright fumbles committed by the new government and entities associated with it.
For a short while in July, Malaysia found itself in an embarrassing situation with two Chief Justices. It arose partly because in hastening a transition of authority in the Judiciary, respect for the independence and integrity of the institution was set aside.
In spite of this and other flaws, the PH government continues to enjoy the trust and confidence of the vast majority of the people as reflected in a number of surveys.
One hopes that heart-to-heart communication among them will lead to greater empathy across ethnic and religious boundaries.
It is such empathy – and such empathy alone – that will sustain PH in the years to come. ENDS
Excerpts of this article credits the following sources:
- BN crushes PH in closely-watched Cameron Highlands by-election
- Beyond 100 days: 7 challenges facing Pakatan Harapan – FMT
- Beyond 100 days: 7 challenges facing Pakatan Harapan – theSundaily
- Image by REUTERS via The Straits Times
- Image via Happy Friendship Day Status 2019, Malaysia National Day Images 2018
- Image by BERNAMA via The Straits Times