Tag Archives: Politics

What would you do?

Found this on RPK’s website and couldn’t help but to share it here as I find it quite hilarious. But I guess you’ll have to be a Malaysian to appreciate the joke 🙂

I was stuck in a traffic jam on the PLUS Highway last week. Nothing moved for half an hour when suddenly a man knocked on my window. So I rolled down my window and asked, “What’s going on?””Terrorists down the road have kidnapped a few UMNO politicians. They’re asking for a ransom or they’re going to douse them with petrol and set them on fire. We are going from car to car, taking up a collection.”I then asked, “How much is everyone giving on average?””Most people are giving about a gallon.”

Recent thoughts on Malaysians

It’s been another very long silence for me, having not written a blog for many months, a year almost. Luckily C is keeping this blog site alive by writing every now and then. A lot had happened since. Firstly, I am now in Zurich, Switzerland and have been here for the past three months. I took up a job here hoping that this could be a nice change for C and me. Well, within a month of moving here, I just did not feel right at all. This place is too manicured, everything is overly organised, to the extent that it makes me feel claustrophobic. Not to mention that the city is absolutely boring and the supermarkets lack varieties.All these merely make me want to go home more each day. I love Malaysia, for what she is and whatever her flaws are, this is my home, yesterday, today and tomorrow. England was something that was more or less imposed on me, and yet I try to make the most out of it, I like her history, culture and I probably know more about England than I do about Malaysia at this point in time. Simply because you are surrounded by the news, the tv programmes and there is just too much information forced on you. If you are not brain dead, you will surely learn something, the society is generally more intellectual and the competitive side of me prevents me from being ignorant.The same cannot be said about living in Malaysia though. Information is suppressed, one could easily forget about politics or any intellectual arguments whatsoever. We are a nation that is obsessed with food and possibly a cup of ‘kopi’ with friends at the ‘mamak stall’ talking about nothing significant, it all revolves around food. In fact, that is the culture we breed and the products of such a culture is that even when abroad, many Malaysians do not have high awareness about social problems, politics and generally things that happen in their societies. When asked what they miss about Malaysia – food, family and friends. Take that away and there is nothing that stops a Malaysian from going abroad, and in fact, that is what has been happening. I can’t say on behalf of other races, but being Chinese by ethnic origin, some of my Malaysian friends abroad are driven by money and career prospects abroad. They go where their careers take them to. There is no allegiance to any country and Malaysia as a home can be substituted. Patriotism is not something that rings any bell to Malaysians, or perhaps Malaysian Chinese. They can’t wait to prove that they have done much better without the burden of being a Malaysian, they take pride in being not very Malaysian. They are different, they are the creme-de-la-creme that have made it on their own, they are successful. Or is it really? Is that how one defines success?It is extremely disappointing to know such Malaysians. There is no patriotism, there is no sense of wanting to contribute to the country. There was almost an element of hatred and distaste of their nationalities and the shame that the government has brought upon them. To such Malaysians, I can only express my distaste against them. I do not disagree that they may have some causes to be angry about the current state of Malaysia. However, I believe Malaysia can do without a few snobbish pseudo-Malaysians, in fact, I can’t wait for them to become non-Malaysians. They have no rights to claim to be a citizen to this beautiful country. One that does not appreciate the beauty of Malaysia does not deserve any claims to be linked to Malaysia. The country needs someone that cares, someone who cares enough about her to make a difference and tries to make a difference rather than being an aloof by-stander pointing fingers at others. My dream would be to see a united Malaysian community, all fighting for a better Malaysia, not for religious purposes, not for racial benefits, nor for any selfish reasons, but for every child of Malaysia for a better future for all. On that day, I will stand proudly on ‘tanah Malaysia’, the day when Malaysia is truly independent, from corruption and from domination by the elitists.

The infamous Internal Security Act (ISA) in action, once again

Initially it was Raja Petra, a blogger, who got detained by the draconian ISA this evening. Now a journalist and a politician are also detained. What kind of madness is this! Is the current administration trying to intimidate the opposition coalition, and to scare MPs from the ruling coalition from trying to cross-over to the opposition coalition! What a dire attempt to try and stay in power. What is even more ridiculous is in fact they have sent 49 MPs to Taiwan, on a study tour, in an attempt to stop the opposition from potentially seizing control of the government through the cross-over, as repeatedly taunted by the opposition leader Anwar for some months now to happen on the 16th September. Looking at all the sagas that are unfolding in Malaysia, I cannot help but to hope that the opposition coalition can really take control of the country from the 16th September onwards. There is no guarantee that the opposition will do better, but I really cannot see how they can do much worse than the current administration! Come on you people who are on the study tours in Taiwan!

Only God will remove me!

Save Zimbabwe from Mugabe

“Only God will remove me!”, declared Robert Mugabe. It’s sad to see what’s happening in Zimbabwe. What used to be a booming country is now a living hell. Inflation thousands percent, people living on food aid. The people of Zimbabwe want a change in regime, yet Mugabe still want to remain in power. He seems to still cling on to the idea that he has saved Zimbabwe from colonialism, from the British, and that he has given the land back to their own people. But doesn’t he know that he or his government has done an incredibly poor job since then, perhaps more harm than good to his country and his fellow countrymen? In fact I suspect that he has done so much evil that he’s afraid that he’ll face hell once he lost his power.If there is any chance that there will be a change in regime, it is the African leaders, most of all Thabo Mbeki, who hold the key. Even Mugabe cannot cling to power without their cooperation. Avaaz is launching an emergency campaign, petitioning these leaders to call an immediate summit, isolate Mugabe, and broker a legitimate government for Zimbabwe. The call will be published in big newspaper advertisements in South Africa, Tanzania, Angola, and Mozambique this week — click here to see the ads and endorse their message.Zimbabwe’s neighbours supply its electricity and goods, and control the borders. Many Southern African leaders are already calling for the postponement of the election — but there’s a real danger that they will end up accepting this charade. This would be a grave miscalculation: if Mugabe succeeds in his de facto coup, Zimbabwe’s implosion will accelerate, and chaos could spread throughout the region.The campaign will publicly name those African leaders who hold Mugabe’s last remaining lifeline. If these leaders step up strongly now, they can convince enough of Mugabe’s officials that change is coming one way or another — and set the stage for Morgan Tsvangirai to lead a unity government to pull Zimbabwe back together. Let’s give the people of Zimbabwe some much needed hope…

Blogger Mahathir

He’s probably the world’s first ex-Prime Minister to become a blogger. This is his blog, which is maintained of course not by him, but someone who is good in this business. Apparently his blog has just reached one million hits! Credit to him, I don’t think there are many bloggers, if any, who can get so many hits in less than a month by just plain blogging (no fancy videos, no flesh flashing pictures etc). Looks like he’s still relevant in Malaysian politics after years of stepping down as a Prime Minister. And he definitely has his agenda behind all this blogging, to bring down the existing PM. Is it in all Malaysian’s best interest that he does this? I doubt it. Mahathir of late is not his usual self. A lot of things he has done in the past when he was Malaysia’s fourth PM has come back to haunt him. In much the same way as Zimbabwe’s President Robert Mugabe who has done some great things when he came into power, remaining in power for too long has corrupted him. Both are now scared of being exposed and punished for what they have done wrong in the past, thus want to cling on to power for longer, albeit in different ways. For Mahathir’s case, he certainly wouldn’t want the opposition to get into power, as that means that Anwar will become PM, and he’s doomed, for what he has done to Anwar back in 1998, sending him to jail on grounds of sodomy.Malaysian politics is getting more and more interesting by the day. Follow it from here, it’s like a best-seller 🙂

If I don’t enter hell, who else?

Raja Petra escorted by police in handcuff

A picture tells a thousand words doesn’t it? Blogger for Malaysia Today, Raja Petra, was charged under Malaysian’s Sedition Act 1948 for the piece he wrote on Altantuya’s murder. For those who don’t know, Altantuya is a Mongolian lady who was murdered and with her body destroyed by C4 explosives. Rumour has it that Malaysia’s Deputy Prime Minister Najib was involved in the murder, but eluded justice through his political power.It is upsetting to see righteous person like Raja Petra being charged and sent to jail for upholding his belief in justice, something which is clearly lacking in Malaysia, for someone he doesn’t really know. He’s a true boddhisattva in my view, in Buddhist’s term. And a true Muslim who is doing his duties for the community, one of which is to oppose all forms of evil, as explained in his article “What is Islam“. Educated people, people with wisdom, don’t really buy into ritual practices that are quite often needless and which are passed on from generations ago. Submission to a greater figure/being like God or Buddha makes sense to me, to keep us humble, to maintain our well being etc. But if one becomes a follower of a religion, by way of practising just the ritual, to hedge against a difficult after life or what have you, then one is really missing the point.Anyway, Raja Petra knows he’s walking a fine line, and is prepared to accept the consequences. Hope we will see reform in Malaysia’s justice system in a not-too-distant future.

On efficiency of government services

The article on “A storm in a songkok” reminded me of a discussion with my English friend about the efficiency of government services, and whether it is really such a good idea to have a very efficient government. From the point of view of the consumers of the services, it is all very good as it saves them time, and quite often time means money, particularly for those services which are business related. However for most countries, the government is also a big employer. For a developing country like Malaysia, there are still many poor people who can barely make ends meet. Naturally people tend to look to the government for help, in the form of benefits, subsidies, employment, government projects etc. A good government will strive to bring people out of poverty, and reduce the wealth gap between the rich and the poor, as happiness of the unenlighted is often relative.Okay let us focus on wealth distribution in the form of employments provided by the government. If the government departments becomes very efficient, normally it means that less jobs will be required to provide the same services. Imagine that a lot of work can now be done using a computerised system, which is very common nowadays. So the point is there is also a good side to having a not-too-efficient government. At least for Malaysia, where there are still many poor people. So to hear that there is a possibility that the federal government might reduce funding to state governments that have fallen to the opposition coalition, which had happened before to Kelantan and Terengganu, is concerning. I know it is a cheap shot by the ruling government to try and regain these states by such means, but you can never under estimate how low these people can go. The state government may have no choice but to reduce the operational cost should this really happens, and show that states run by the opposition coalition are very efficient, but it is important that the opposition coalition make sure that they work very hard to get as much funding from the federal government first. On how we can squeeze money from the crooks I haven’t a clue. Perhaps by shouting very loud in the parliament? 🙂 And make more people aware of the importance of the funding? But whatever we think can help we should definitely try.

Democracy, is it too late for Malaysians?

It was a defining moment for most Malaysians last weekend. Even though 10,000 miles away, I was equally excited over the General Election and wouldn’t mind confining myself in front of C’s laptop refreshing the website every other minute to check out on the results of the election.I was a little sceptical at first over the outcome of the election. When C said that there will be more votes for the opposition this time round, I dismissed by saying that the ruling coalition will get no less than 65% majority in the Parliament. How wrong was I and for a rare occassion, I don’t mind being wrong. I am so proud of my fellow Malaysians that my eyes were almost filled with tears.The election committee had done everything in their power, whether legal or illegal to ensure that the ruling coalition always gets an upper hand when it comes to the General Election. The constituencies were drawn in such a way that the ruling coalition always get more seats in the Parliament. For a contrast, there are only about 6,000 voters in Putrajaya (which is a fairly newly created constituency ‘for the ruling coalition’) and Seputeh which is an opposition stronghold has a whopping 70,000 voters (estimates). How they draw the lines, I can never discern, but how Malaysians had put up with such blatant abuse of power, was more mysterious.The government had done everything in their power to suppress the media, be it tv, newspapers or radio. We could only hear of any negative news against the government if you know of any insider who had first hand knowledge. I had the opportunity to hear a first hand account from an ISA detainee who, for miraculous reasons, was not broken down having spent two years in ISA detention. I also had the privilege of attending several seminars about human rights abuse in Malaysia.I wished I could have done more for the people. I wished there was something that I could play a part in. But it was difficult not to feel that everything was too late and what could a small number of people did. But this General Election has shown that all is but too late. I would be more than surprised if the opposition had not won more than 50% of the votes of Malaysians in this General Election. If it wasn’t for the unjustifiable division of constituencies that favour the ruling coalition, we might well see a new government in 50 years of independence. This is only real democracy.I hope that the opposition will grab this chance and shine as I don’t know if they would have to wait another 50 years to have the second chance. Although not being able to form the federal government, they have done very well to secure 5 states to form the state governments.Although most people seem to think that the current PM is to take responsibility for the upset in this General Election and the current state of affairs in Malaysia. I still however think that he is a much better PM than Dr M. It is hardly convincing that his son is one of the 50 richest men in Malaysia and some of his cronies are the most successful businessmen in Malaysia with no lack of billionaires amongst them. At the same time, I am still unconvinced that Najib can ever be a PM given the extremely racist remark he made in 1987 during the Lalang Operation. But as we all know, with money comes power when it comes to Malaysian politics. I should only pray that more and more Malaysians will raise their awareness on such fundamental issues and take them to heart. It concerns their very own welfare and their home soil.

Opposition parties captured 5 states in Malaysia

This is monumental. The oppositions managed to capture even Perak from the ruling party Barisan Nasional (BN), on top of Penang, Kelantan, Kedah, and Selangor! It was close, 30 vs 29 seats to the Opposition coalition. As for Selangor, it’s almost like a landslide victory. This is major. You only need to look at the majority votes won by some of the opposition candidates. This election truly marks a new dawn for the political landscape of Malaysia. Every Malaysians should rejoice about this, for a stronger oppositon coalition is going to benefit all Malaysians (maybe less so monetary-wise for some crooks from BN). Let’s face it, even the Malays realise that the government is doing a bad job, and voted against the ruling party. And some of them even urge Chinese and Indians to vote for Democratic Action Party (DAP), a chinese-led opposition party. This is remarkable, don’t you think, although this is how it should be all along, all races in Malaysia living harmoniously. Often it is the ruling party and the national media, controlled by the ruling party, that are trying to paint a picture of potential racial divide to the people. Many people are no fool anymore. Look at the election results.This is just the beginning of a new Malaysia. All these could come to nothing if we do not make use of this opportunity given by the citizens of Malaysia. First of all, as promised by the politicians, we need to make sure that basic problems faced by the citizens are tackled – crime, inflation, among others. Corruptions are more deep rooted problem. It will take some time, but it can be done when there is a transparent government, a civil society, and an unshackled and independent media. So let’s make sure that we all are working towards this “ideals” given the opportunity!

DAP’s rally at SS2

Looking at the crowds, the support given to Ms Fong Po Kuan, and the speech given by her, slowly and clearly in Cantonese and English to reach all audience, I got a bit emotional. Malaysia really need someone like her, and we Malaysians should be thankful for having such a passionate fellow Malaysian who is willing to get her sleeves up and do the dirty work for the citizens.Election is today, Malaysia time…