Earlier this year, I posted a blog post
on the Mises blog commenting on a BBC News story
about how affirmative action in Malaysia have created a entitlement culture among the ethnic Malay majority of Malaysia. Malaysia's business community, like that of nearly all East Asian countries except Japan and Korea, is dominated by ethnic Chinese and this have created envy and ethnic tensions in the countries where the Chinese are a minority of the population yet is a majority of business leaders. In some countries like Indonesia this have provoced occassional anti-Chinese pogroms while in Malaysia the Malay majority have given themselves preferences in various ways. Including quotas in universities and companies and even a requirement that companies must distribute a certain proportion of their shares to Malays.
In a letter to The Economist
, Ron Davidson, Fulbright scholar in Singapore, now reports how this have aside from making Malays lazier also created strong discontent among the Chinese. Many are now trying to emigrate to majority-Chinese Singapore and other places where they wont be discriminated. This braindrain will of course hurt Malaysia's economy.