Bridget Welsh: “Very Possible” That PAS Could Govern Malaysia One Day


Bridget Welsh is an independent American scholar who has lived in (and analysed) ASEAN and Malaysian social, political and economic developments for over three-and-a-half decades, writing books and advising companies and NGOs on how to navigate one of the world’s most important and exciting regions.

Welsh’s views on Malaysia’s- and ASEAN’s future are explosive and troubling. They are also truthful and nuanced. This could be one of the most important discussions anyone can consume in this era of great change, risk and opportunity.

Listen with an open heart and a constructive mind. It might yet help you navigate an uncertain future.


00:02:18 – Who’s Bridget Welsh?
00:04:08 – What Foreign Companies and Other Countries Want to Know About Malaysia
00:05:10 – What Welsh Tells Them
00:06:40 – ‘Unseen Forces’ and ‘Drivers of Change’: Explain
00:10:01 – How Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) Is Responding to these Forces
00:13:25 – How Anwar’s Govt Has Failed on Corruption, Reform and Inequality
00:16:20 – Are Coalition Politics to Blame for these Failures?
00:17:43 – The Link Between a Failed Govt and the Black Market
00:20:10 – What Most Malaysians Don’t Know About Malaysia
00:21:39 – What Drives Voting Behaviour in Malaysia? Including the So-Called ‘Green Wave’
00:24:50 – What and Why Are the Drivers Behind the Green Wave?
00:28:57 – The Green Wave Hit Penang Hard
00:31:04 – How Did DAP Lose So Much Ground In Penang?
00:32:55 – Who’s to Blame?
00:35:25 – What Happens Next in Penang? Will the LRT Alleviate the Wealth Divide?
00:40:26 – Secession: Possible for Johor? Penang? Sarawak? Sabah?
00:43:55 – The Tinder Box that is Malaysia .. KK Mart .. etc
00:49:20 – What Do Foreign Investors Do With Malaysia: Buy? Sell? Hold?
00:52:27 – Who’s the Most Effective of the Ten Prime Ministers Malaysia Has Had?
00:54:25 – Media Freedoms: Regression, Concern?
00:56:40 – Independent Thought and Racial Harmony: An Inconvenience to the Powers That Be?
00:58:09 – Transnational Crime and the Black Market (aka ‘Dark Economy’)
01:04:54 – Missing Aeroplanes, Murdered Bankers and Assassinated Brothers of Korean Dictators – Malaysia is a Daily Hollywood Script
01:12:01 – What Malaysia Looks Like in a Decade
01:14:05 – Political Stability As a First Key Theme in Malaysia, PAS as Malaysia’s Next Govt: Chances Out of 10? And in How Many Years?
01:15:02 – Are PAS More Honest and Responsible Than the Others?
01:18:25 – The Youth As a Second Key Theme in Malaysia
01:19:59 – Economic Restructuring As a Third Key Theme in Malaysia
01:21:06 – Racial & Religious Issues / Concerns As a Fourth Key Theme in Malaysia
01:22:06 – What Are the Chances of Another Race War?
01:22:56 – Were the 1969 Race Riots Planned?
01:26:03 – Where Malaysia and ASEAN Figure in the Greater Global Discussion
01:33:16 – Malaysia’s Stance on Palestine-Middle East: And Malaysia’s Choice of China over the US.: What They Both Mean.
01:36:43 – How Indonesia is Handling the Middle East Issue
01:40:31 – There Is a Serious Lack of Leadership and Statesmanship All Over the World
01:42:42 – What Are the US’ and China’s Appetite for Participation in a World War? Can Malaysia Stay Neutral?
01:44:25 – Unlike their Elders, Israel’s Younger Generation Don’t See the Value of Peace
01:47:10 – Simultaneously, there are Conflicts Simmering Elsewhere: Myanmar, Thailand are Examples ..
01:48:28 – Social Media Reinforces Hate and Discord
01:49:09 – What is the Possibility of a Third World War?
01:53:05 – ASEAN Has Been ‘Pathetic’ In Terms of Solving its Own Problems and Taking A Stand
01:54:01 – China. Taiwan. What’s Next? Escalation?
01:54:33 – US Elections. Foreign Policy. What’s Next?
01:57:30 – A Trump Win Will Result in an Escalation.
01:58:17 – Advice. To Navigate an Uncertain Future

(Many thanks to the Asia School of Business for their collaboration with The Do More Podcast, in whose studio this conversation was recorded. The Asia School of Business is a partnership between MIT’s Sloan School of Management and Bank Negara Malaysia).

X: @dririshsea
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Khoo Hsu Chuang

Khoo Hsu Chuang

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