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It doesn't need a political pundit to tell the nation that the New Economic Policy (NEP) is the legitimating ideology for Umno's hegemony and legitimacy - and that the party now has trouble weaning beneficiaries off it.

Paramount to Umno's consideration is the issue of 30 percent ownership of the corporate equity, as opposed to the twin-prong objectives of eradicating poverty and eliminating identification of race with economic activities.

It is the 30 percent rule for bumiputera participation that has ended in the 'affirmative action' being perceived, rightly or wrongly, as a 'zero-sum' policy that is working at the expense of other races.

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