Sunday, January 19, 2020

Why Dookun-Luchoomun Must Allow 3 Credits to Go Through This Time


Because she doesn’t want to make a massive blunder like Nando Bodha did in early 2015 when he scrapped the point system without assessing its effectiveness and replaced it with a more ‘user-friendly’ alternative. As the chart shows road fatalities for the past five years have never been lower than the level they reached in 2014. Unlike in Singapore (in green) where they’ve fallen in every one of those years save 2018 when they increased by two. In fact if we had managed to have their cumulative number of fatalities over that period – which is setting the bar too low given that they have four-and-a-half times more people than us – we would have saved 75 lives between 2015 and 2019. Mr. Bodha has also been working hard to make the traffic Frankenstein meaner and road-users have already noticed that his tram which he calls a metro didn’t solve anything as expected. 

Instead, Ms. Luchoomun should rather want to take 2020 to properly assess the life and academic trajectories of those thousands of citizens that were allowed in Lower Six with three credits for a number of years and to compare them with those of their friends that had a few more credits. This will provide her with the hard facts of the matter, essential ingredients for good decision-making. My hunch is that there will not be a big difference between the two groups. Definitely not large enough to take the kind of risk the Minister is currently assuming. Too much is at stake here. The more so that we may currently have the worst substance abuse problem in our history and our old industrial education system that relies too much on rote-learning is not adequate anymore for a hyper connected world. Besides Cambridge has computed that 70.93% of the most recent SC-takers have passed their exams – these overlapped an election campaign. That’s 13,235, not 5,518, and therefore means that the British examiner has deemed that even 2,129 of the 3,092 who got 1 credit have passed. Government should in fact allow everyone who took these exams to either have a place in Lower Six or in a polytechnic and to move ahead – Jony Ive isn’t going to be there forever.

Ms. Luchoomun will also want to contact the OECD fast so we participate in PISA 2021 and find out if we have improved from the 56th place we clocked in Maths in PISA 2009, the only time we ever participated in this serious survey. As for the 5 credits needed by the PSC they can be kept but arrangements must definitely be made so that SC exams are available every three months or better still online. The blah blah blah about the necessity of shutting out any student without five credits otherwise we’ll end up with a stupid elite will die out rapidly if we consider two facts. The first one is that our savings culture was killed by someone who did very well in his HSC Economics exam and then proceeded to the LSE on a special scholarship when one Kher Jagatsingh was Minister of Education. The other is that a Minister who has a first degree in law wanted to literally sell our clouds because he didn’t like the CWA hotline.

Worried parents should of course get in touch with their MPs and Ms. Luchoomun. Because we don’t have recall elections yet. 

Friday, January 3, 2020

Flat Tax to Cause Rs78bn Hole in Treasury This Year


Because we’re definitely not getting the 8% growth rate promised to justify maintaining the destructive 15% uniform rate. Which would explain why we’ve hit a new low in the exercise of our sovereignty. And things will get worse every year with the shortfall rapidly rising to Rs136bn by the time we vote again in 2024. This means a cumulative shortfall of Rs528bn for the next five years bringing the total since this folly started in 2006 to Rs882bn. 

This leaves very little time for Mr. Padayachy, the new Finance Minister, to bring back our public finances on a more sustainable track. A new budget this month would help prevent his political career from going into free fall. 

Tuesday, December 31, 2019

2019: The Year in Review

Q1: Our parliament is too big. 5 reasons the LP/MMM alliance lost in 2014. Rekin dir non a simagri elektoral. Corporations should not fund political parties. TJC was set up against regressive backdrop. How Sweden became a safety champ. What makes Singapore wealthier than Japan. ICJ thinks UK should end occupation of Chagos. Piti depas papa.

Q2: Sithanen flat tax fuels more street protests. Voting on the roof of Europe begins. PJ against more women in parliament. Amritsar massacre turns 100. Fond du Sac learns compulsory acquisitions come in different flavours. For a vibrant democracy have these 5 ingredients. Perspective on flat tax damageTax policies should go in affidavitsSithanen toohrooh could rise by Rs338bn by year-end. Norway bigger football powerhouse than Brazil.

Q3: Long wait over as Mauritius wins first IOIG. Pope to spend day with victim of trickle-down economics. Trees in Beau-Vallon have something in common with our saving culture. Toxic bean-counter self-praises himself. Why Bizlall should run in the general election? One Lord Mayor remembers another.

Q4: Did you enjoy Ramgoolam’s fourth term? Why dumping Gini coefficient is a good idea. Decomposing the 2014 defeat. Why Navin didn’t lose in 2010. Ramgoolam ena en nuvo palab. SSR has the best road-safety record. Intense cyclones didn’t destroy our resilience. Unproductive FDI doesn’t make up for collapse in savings. 10 narrowest general elections. Sugar has no future. Subron tries to fool us again. Who to vote for? Bérenger believes he’s the real miracle-man? God bless our FPTP system. Mauritius slides dangerously towards autocracy. Why SSR left a strong legacy. Fact-checking is oxygen of democracy. Let’s roll back drug use

Wednesday, November 6, 2019

Can’t Find Referendum in Electoral Manifestos

Searched for the word in the manifestos of the three main political blocks but didn’t find it. It’s not in the 15 key measures of the MSM/ML alliance although it was there in the social contract of the Lepep Alliance in 2014 when there were only 12 key measures. That’s a pretty bad sign when you add surveillance state and the flat tax.

What was not difficult to find was the French word for sugar. It popped up fast at least a few times in each one of them. So these three parties will keep us mired in a low-growth trap for the next few years if we vote for them. We don’t have to.