Saturday, September 29, 2007

Standing with the brave in Palestine

Josef Roy Benedict send a letter to Malaysiakini titled Standing with the brave in Burma.

He said:
“As we Malaysians view pictures of the violent crackdown of pro-democracy demonstrations occurring in Burma, we are once again reminded about the brutality of the military junta which has denied democracy to its people and continues to detain at least 1,200 political prisoners for engaging in peaceful political activities and non-violent exercise of the right to freedom of expression and association.”

I agree and support Josef’s call, but I observe that his words (except for "to its people" - substitute that "to the people of its occupied territories") above would apply equally, if not more, to the Palestinian situation in Gaza and the West Bank.

The Palestinians have to suffer the ignominity and horrors of such brutal suppression in their own land by an occupying power, Israel, who has been robbing the Palestinians of their land through fabricated justifications of security, while conveniently pretending they are one of the most brutal colonial regimes, one of those many sanctioned and protected by the USA.

Another of his paragraphs went:
“The government sent troops to brutally suppress the protests. No official investigation has ever taken place, but the best estimates suggest that approximately 3,000 people were killed as the demonstrations were crushed in September 1988. As many as 10,000 people were killed nationwide between March and September of that year.”

Other than the relevant dates and statistics, the same applies to the Israeli suppression of the Palestinians.

“We must also call on China who has funded and armed the regime to play a crucial role in ending this crisis. China cannot wish to hosts next year’s Olympic Games as the defender of such a despicable regime and we must urge the country to use its influence with the regime to exercise restraint and move towards dialogue. Other countries who have economic and military ties with Burma such as India and Russia must be shown that there will increasing economic problems and political instability as long as the regime defies the will of the people. They should back the democracy movement if it wants a stable, peaceful and prosperous Burma.”

Make a guess as to what I would be saying with regards to the Israeli oppression of the Palestinians in the latter’s own land – just a hint, substitute ‘China’ with Western country!

But no, don’t just guess - why don’t you instead adopt it as your political support for the oppressed Palestinians in the same manner you are passionately expressing for the Burmese.

Friday, September 28, 2007

Lingam tape - Why was it recorded?

The Malaysiakini headline asked about the Lingam tape, Is the tape authentic? That's the panel's job.

Many Malaysians believe they already have the answer, so why bother to ask anymore or even have an investigating panel?

Then, some aren’t interested in nor will accept what the panel will discover, unless of course by some delightful miracle, the panel's findings fit their already set-in-concrete belief about the tape.

Their attitude would be influenced by a mix of (1) distrust in any government’s appointed panels (call it ‘independent’ with a capital ‘I’ or whatever, and the public would still be pretty much unmoved, (2) a frustrated public’s eager willingness to believe in anything against the integrity or conduct of the establishment, and lastly but not least, especially for the PKR crowd, (3) the silver bullet to bringing Anwar Ibrahim back in legitimate running for the general election through overturning his corruption conviction, by proving through the tape that he was 'fixed' by a dodgy judiciary.

Bakri Musa, a columnist for Malaysiakini, wrote of the authenticity of the tape:

"The quality of the recording is such that it is unlikely to be a fake. With today’s forensic capabilities, it would be foolish for anyone to even attempt this. The lawyer concerned was speaking on his cell phone, meaning, there will be the inerasable digital trail. My monthly cell phone bill details my outgoing and incoming calls. Because of the quality, the video could not be shot surreptitiously as with a cell phone a la the earlier “nude ear squat” episode. Besides, such a device was probably unavailable back in 2002."

OK, that means that more dated equipment was used to record it, probably something quite bulky, unlike the modern palm-size slim-line cell phone camera. Bakri asked what some of us did – though many couldn’t be bothered as it’s a heaven-send-come gift for Anwar Ibrahim, so why look a gift horse in the mouth - yes, some of us share Bakri’s intriguing question on why the taping was made in the first place. Indeed, why?

He reckons that if we ignore the most common and obvious reason – stupidity – and kaytee believes we still shouldn’t dismiss that - he offered a few possibilities:

1) Vanity. He said that when man (or woman) have passed the thrill of bragging about their accumulated monetary wealth, he (or she) would seek some other 'trophies' (a good word from Dr Bakri) – Bakri offered some typical example,“like an embellished royal title or additional wives (for Muslims). If you already have those, or cannot acquire them, then the next intoxicating fantasy would be to be a kingmaker, or fancying yourself as one.”

Indeed – hmmm, my mind leaps to Abraham Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs. I wonder on which level of the pyramidical hierarchy would a Malaccan (RM250,000, unless you're a VVIP's wife) 'Latuk Seli' sits?

Bakri reckons this possibility for a lawyer would be for him to brag, in later years, that he had judges in his pocket, a sort of kingmaker in the world of the Malaysian judiciary. Bakri said: “Years later in your old age, your skeptical grandchildren might attribute your boasts to nothing more than the rambling of a senile mind, unless of course you have the video to prove it!”

2) Arrogance. Bakri explained that “Humility is when you could manipulate the nation’s judiciary and have the quiet satisfaction; arrogance is when you flaunt it.”

Maybe the recording was associated with an arrogant need to flaunt it, perhaps within a closed circle, which as the Chinese have warned us way beore ‘osmosis’ was scientifically proven by Western scientists: “Even water can get into an egg!” or was it the other way around?

3) The third possibility that Bakri offers actually questioned the authenticity of the tape despite his earlier assertion that it’s likely to be authentic.

He said: “I do not put it below this shyster to put on this monologue with an imagined targeted senior judge at the other end, a la Lat’s old cartoon, and then purposely ‘leaked’ the tape out. It would certainly be a headline grabber. As for a motive, rogues are known to do this to each other when they have a falling out. There is one quick way to check this: examine the tape to determine when it was manufactured.”

Er ... “examine the tape to determine when it was manufactured”? Hmmm ......

Now, how would that confirm whether it was a monologue, because the videotape wouldn't be able to show evidence that there was no one at the other end? Even Lingam’s phone bill details wouldn’t confirm that unless there is a date-time stamp on the videotape for the association to be made between ‘real calls’ (to that judge) at that time, to disprove a monologue.

Then we may imagine the next step would be to prove the authenticity of the date-time stamp on the tape ... alas, with the proving process going on ad infinitum.

4) Bakri said that of course there is a last possibility, which incidentally was my suspicion right from Day 1, that it was an insider’s job, by someone close to and trusted by the lawyer.

Bakri reckoned it could be an employee’s scheme to get even with his or her boss just in case he [the lawyer boss] would get nasty in future. He declared that knowing how law firms’ employees are treated in Malaysia, this is a real possibility.

Kaytee believes we also mustn't also discount the tape being surreptitiously made by a close friend or relative of the lawyer.

Some years ago, there was a scandal involving an Indian politician, a rising star in a Malaysian political party. He liked to tape his salacious romps with the ladies for subsequent viewing, maybe to admire his own conquests or to wank off during a lean spell.

He was said to have consensual you-know-what with the wife of another Indian. His nephew removed one of those tapes and allowed that to reach public viewing. Unfortunately it was the one involving the other person's wife. Unable to face the shame, she committed suicide. He plummeted like a falling comet.

Ah well, you choose which possibility is most plausible for the making of the Lingam tape.

Next, I will examine the issue from the Anwar Ibrahim’s side.

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Lim Kit Siang - question mark over 'Lingam Tape Investigation Panel'

A fundamental advice to conveners intending to hold an inquiry, no matter whether it carries a Royal Commission or otherwise, is that they should know beforehand what the findings would be.

If that cannot be 100% assured, limit the terms of reference to ensure desired finding, and if that outcome is still doubtful, well, don’t convene any inquiry but provide some excuse like a police investigation should be adequate.

Where doubts exist at all, don’t ever ever have a Royal Commission which has extraordinary powers – extraordinary powers that may lead to unforeseen independent actions/findings by the members.

Well, following the brouhaha over the Lingam videotape, DPM Najib has succumbed to pressure (probably to relieve any untoward bad publicity on the nearing general election) and has convened an ‘independent’ panel to investigate the authenticity of the tapes.

Just a little digression here – who could the owner of that tape, holding it for years until now when he probably grew dissatisfied with a number of ‘things’ to finally present it to Anwar Ibrahim?

But two days ago Malaysiakini reported that Opposition Leader Lim Kit Siang criticized the limited terms of reference of the ‘independent’ panel of investigation. He said:

“In restricting the panel to the question of the authenticity of the Lingam tape instead of allowing full investigations into all aspects of the allegations of perversion of the course of justice and the compromising of judicial independence, impartiality and integrity raised by the video clip, the government is avoiding the imperative issue of the long-standing rot in the judiciary and the urgent need to restore national and international confidence in the system of justice with a truly independent judiciary and a just rule of law.”

Lim has a certain verbosity that challenges our limited vocabulary. In plain street talk, Lim had said “Bullsh*t to just look into whether the tape was genuine or not. What about the more important issue, the recorded events showing a lawyer discussing appointments of judges with the current No 1 Judge? HTF are we gonna trust any judge again?”

Then the next day, Lim again attacked the ‘independent’ panel of investigation. Malaysiakini reported that Lim called for a member of the panel, former Chief Judge of Malaya Haidar Mohd Noor, to either decline or withdraw as chairperson of the three-man panel.

Lim said Haidar was involved in the 1988 judicial crisis which saw the unprecedented sacking of Salleh Abas, then Lord President, George Seah and the late Wan Suleiman Pawan Teh who were Supreme Court judges. Yes, I can see why Lim perceived Haidar's appointment as rather inappropriate.

Lim said that was the ‘mother of all judicial crises’ - hmmm, if the late dictator Saddam Hussein had patented the use of the phrase ‘mother of .....’, he would have been a very rich dead man by now – everyone seems to be using his rather unique and succinct phraselogical creation.

But Lim was fair in that he urged Haidar to clarify his role in the crisis, and that he (Haidar) must explain that ‘arbitrary and unconstitutional’ sacking of before taking any role connected with restoring national and international confidence in the judiciary.

See what I mean by Lim's challenging style of talking! But look, Haidar now has an opportunity to defend his role, a privilege that Abbas didn't enjoy.

Lim didn’t spare his former fellow DAP pollie as well, asking poor Lee Lam Thye to decline the appointment or withdraw.

But I do wonder which three independent personalities could be recruited for this investigation – the opposition of course aren’t exactly independent as they are out for blood.

Gosh, after 50 years of national independence, it has become even more difficult to find just three independently minded persons to fill such a panel, limited as the terms of reference may be.

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

PAC on KJ's ECM-Libra case - why was DAP member silent?

This is rather interesting.

Malaysiakini reported JB UMNO MP Shahrir Samad, chair of the Parliamentary Public Accounts Committee (PAC), touching on the Libra-ECM merger involving the world’s most famous SIL. Before I comment on further, let’s refresh ourselves with the story of ECM-Libra.

In an earlier posting 'Lucky' Khairy Jamaluddin I blogged on how Dr Mahathir
questioned the PM’s 31-year old son-in-law, Khairy Jamaluddin, amassing his millions to purchase shares worth RM 9.2 million in the financial advisory company ECM-Libra.

Mahathir said that only a person with money would have been allowed to borrow more money from a bank.

I also said:
“Aha, which explains why my application for a bank loan was turned down, despite years of keeping an account with that bank. And mind you, I didn’t even ask for one million, let alone 9. But I must admit my account figures before the decimal point are too pathetic and embarrassing to even mention here.”

Then in a following posting Khairy Jamaluddin - Questions on his Loans I discussed how AAB defended Khairy’s business dealings. He said iof his SIL: “He applied for loans to buy some small amount of shares in ECM-Libra.”

But AAB, like Khairy, didn’t explain how in the world did a company, ECM-Libra, merely loan out RM 9.2 millions to a 31-year old bloke to buy the shares of the same company?

Additionally, the approved merger of ECM Libra with Avenue Capital Resources Berhad, a Finance Ministry-linked company, has, as Malaysiakini reported, raised many eyebrows.

A Malaysiakini reader BOLH wrote in to the online newspaper to query the means by which Khairy had, as he [Khairy] himself confessed, ‘luckily’ obtained a loan from ECM-Libra. BOLH wants to know what collateral Khairy had offered. He asked:

“Khairy said that he borrowed money from certain parties to finance his acquisition of a substantial stake in ECM-Libra. We must not forget that Khairy is linked to the prime minister and he must come clean.”

“Who are these people who financed him? If these parties truly had financed him, surely there must be some form of collateral to back this loan and such collateral must be greater than or equal to the sum loaned to Khairy. Nobody gives out money for nothing even if you are the son-in-law of the prime minister.”

“If there is such a collateral, what is it and where did it originate from? If it is from Khairy, then how did he come by with such a collateral of such great amount?”

Another Malaysiakini reader, Ibnu Hakeem, also wrote in and asked:

"Khairy has been a director of ECM-Libra since July 2004, not long after his father-in-law, Abdullah Ahmad Badawi, succeeded Dr Mahathir Mohamad as prime minister."

"According to Section 131 of the Companies Act, it is illegal for a company to make a loan to anyone (especially a director) to buy its own shares. In this case, ECM Libra is also a financial institution (a so-called investment bank) which means it is also under the purview of the Bafia (Banking and Financial Institutions Act). The Bafia has a few more restrictions than the Companies Act."

"Since Khairy has made a public confession, the attorney-general and Bank Negara should investigate if there is any breach of either the Companies Act, the Bafia, or both."

Anyway, according to Shahrir Samad, the PAC investigations on the ECM-Libra hit an unexpected snag, because when Second Finance Minister Nor Mohamed Yakcop came before PAC to answer the committee’s questions, no PAC member asked any question.

While one can understand BN members of PAC maintaining elegant silence, what happened to those opposition parliamentarians like DAP’s Tan who is also a PAC member?

Shahrir complained:
“I guided everybody to a point that anyone could have picked up from where the minutes left off but... nobody did. Why do I always have to do the work?”

We need to ask, was Tan there or PAC had held that hearing minus him? If he was present maybe he can explain why he asked no question.

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

UPM VC should resign for misleading public!

On Thursday I posted VC of University of Great Shame at it again at BolehTalk, my other blog.

I laughed at how a mere undergraduate Yee Yang Yang could upstage the UPM university VC, by proving the latter’s nonsensical accusations about Yee having pornographic material on his laptop.

The pathetic dumbo had provided that fabrication as the excuse to illegally seizing Yee’s laptop. Maybe he was provided the lie but as a university VC he was nonetheless responsible for his statement.

Indeed as a leader of an academic institution one would have expected him to verify the fact or at least acted neutral instead of assuming a hostile attitude towards Yee.

His disgraceful action forced Yee to write a memorandum to the Bar Council human rights committee yesterday, in which he highlighted the UPM VC’s falsehood.

Prior to all these, Yee was also threatened by a security guard with blackmailing action if he (Yee) didn’t ‘behave’, whatever ‘behave’ had meant.

Malaysiakini informs us that this morning, a group of 50 headed by a 10-men delegation went to UPM and after handing over a protest note to corporate communication officer Abdullah Arshad, the rep of the missing VC, met up with security unit head Othman Jailani to discuss the issue.

To Othman’s credit, he conceded that the confiscation procedure was flawed, meaning the seizure of Yee’s laptop had been illegal -

He said in humility (and probably in humiliation):
“We admit that there were flaws in the confiscation process and we will look into the matter. We welcome the suggestions made by everyone here.”

In other words, he virtually confirmed that there was no pornographic material as claimed by the VC. What does that make the VC then?

Othman also promised that he would amend the procedural flaws and check on the officers involved in the Sept 15 raid on Yee’s room, to determine if they had acted properly.

Othman would do everyone a favour if he would also check on the credibility of the university VC. If that VC has any iota of honour left he should resign immediately.

Monday, September 24, 2007

Law Minister drove Lim Kit Siang into making a joke

I take back what I have said previously about the DAP and its leader, Lim Kit Siang. Several months ago I posted DAP - where sex romp is like snowflakes in hell regarding doctored photographs showing several Perak DAP leaders engaged in sexual acts.

Obviously the alleged pornographic photos were mischievously achieved by superimposing the faces of some DAP leaders on those of actual tiger men and/or tigress women.

I pooh-pooh-ed the very idea of DAP politicians being engaged in such salacious acts. Then I had commented:

Frankly, if anyone had asked, I would have told him/her that DAP members (at least those real dedicated ones) won't indulge in such salacious acts. They aren't the people with that kind of attitude or inclination.

I even suspect that one of the criteria for joining the DAP, or more exactly, to become a DAP leader, would be for one to be completely serious, minus humour, or the sort of easy humour that you and I would normally possess.

When one is without humour, it would usually be more likely that one would be a prude as well - characteristics that may well resemble those of early fundamentalist Protestant values.

As I had once remarked when the DAP 'retreated' recently to Cameron Highlands for their strategic planning (for the next general election) they were unlikely to be playing mahjong or pa' kau. Yes, they are like that.

I imagine everyone there was dead serious, and the only thrill or excitement they might have been driven to would probably be, just as a KTemoc imagined example ;-), when they discovered a missing comma on the text of the distributed agenda.

But I have been wrong because Lim Kit Siang actually made a joke – yes, a JOKE - as reported by Malaysiakini.

This happened after Law Minister Nazri told the media that still-in-hibernation CJ Ahmad Fairuz had contacted him to deny that he was the other party in the Lingam video-taped telephone conversation.

Lim said he was not prepared to believe Nazri’s
denial on behalf of the embittered bunkered-down CJ. Lim asked where’s the proof that the CJ had actually denied that he was the person lawyer Lingam was talking to in the controversial tape.

Lim reminded us that a mere 24 hours earlier the CJ, Ahmad Fairuz, had in ‘black-and-white’ written to Malaysiakini to give, in keeping with the 'Fairuzian' economy policy on judicial written judgement (like no written judgement at all( even in cases involving capital punishment), a two-paragraph ‘No comment’ response.

Being Lim KS, Lim didn’t actually said the next few words in exactly the way I have written them, but kaytee extemporizes on his behalf:
“Nazri, stop bullsh*ting!”

Then, this was where Lim Kit Siang actually made his joke ;-).

Lim asked:
“How is Nazri sure that it was Ahmad Fairuz who had spoken to him by phone and not an impersonator?”

;-) I love it!

It seems that while Nazri drove the final nail into coffin of judiciary's independence he has at the same driven Lim Kit Siang into the even more unimaginable, cracking a joke.

Keep it up, Lim Kit Siang, you're at last putting some humour into your humourless party.

Nazri drove final nail into coffin of judiciary's independence

From Malaysiakini:

De facto Law Minister Mohd Nazri Abdul Aziz said he issued a denial on behalf of the chief justice in relation to the explosive ‘Lingam tape’ revelations because “I am his minister”.

“I am his minister. I am the minister in charge of legal affairs. He is clever enough to know that the reporters will ask me for a response,” Nazri explained when contacted today to explain his intervention in the matter.

Of course the de facto law minister wasn’t too happy with the de facto leader of PKR, because the latter’s
release of the video recording has sent the media into what the former described as ‘rumour-mongering’ and unnecessary widespread publicity.

But forget about the de facto issue – let’s consider the de jure issue.

Delightful and charmingly-gentle blogger what a lulu in her latest post Maybe Lulu Watch Too Many Foreign Movies did a fantastic Tai Chi movement which martial art enthusiasts would term as Jing Ji Du Li or Golden Rooster Stands On One Leg – she kicked someone (in fact, a couple simultaneously) right in the groin!
And it was an accurate aim at both the Law Minister's and CJ’s balls.

What a lulu with sweet sarcasm wondered about how the Minister’s comments “I am his minister” regarding Chief Justice Ahmad Fairuz Sheikh Abdul Halim would impact on the so-called independence of the judiciary.

Nazri has been too clever by half in defending a CJ who has gone into elegant hibernation in the tsunami-c wake of the Lingam tape.

Incidentally the word ‘lingam’ stems from Hinduism, meaning, according to the online free dictionary as the Hindu phallic symbol of Siva.

Well, it’s appropriate to introduce a phallic symbol because the lingam tape has right royally shafted the myth of judiciary independence. That so-called independence was already scorned at (with apologies to some rare solid Yang Ariffs who have been doing the right thing) and the tape has 99.9% confirmed that, but Nazri’s arrogant and too clever by far comment in defending the CJ has driven the final nail into the coffin of a dead independent judiciary.

Well satirize, what a lulu ;-)

Sunday, September 23, 2007

Rulers no 'Silver Bullet'

When I posted Defeat the new Triad, I was flattered that Raja Petra Kamarudin of Malaysia-Today picked it up for a place in his blog’s section on ‘From Around the Blogs’.

Mind you, selection by Raja doesn’t mean my posting was good, but merely that it was ‘good’ for controversial dissection by his visitors ;-) and by golly, did they dissect!

I have always enjoyed the range of opinions, most of which are in hard hitting no-holds-barred style. I gather from there that my advice against recruiting the Rulers in our struggle against the non-accountable, non-transparent and non-sensical BN, a move that I likened as akin to leaping from the frying pan into the fire, has been thoroughly rejected.

Raja wrote an erudite piece in
Yes, we are embroiled in a Constitutional Crisis in his very popular column ‘Corridors of Power’. In his usual inimitable style, he spiced up an interesting presentation on a near (but not totally) ambiguous constitutional area with tales of sizzling paced high adventure a la ‘The Bourne Ultimatum’.

The thing I love about Raja is his highly entertaining article which of course he stamped with his usual authoritative style. But it doesn’t mean I agree with him on every aspect ;-)

I am no constitutional lawyer but I have difficulty in accepting every one of his arguments. For example, I have doubts about his argumentative acrobatics with the word ‘advise’. He wrote (just an extract):

Even those who are aware of the Constitution point out that Article 43 of the Constitution forbids The Agong from interfering in the running of the government. The Agong, they argue, can only act on the advice of the Prime Minister. Actually, that is not quite true.

Article 43 (1) says: The Yang di-Pertuan Agong shall appoint a Jemaah Menteri (Cabinet of Ministers) to advise him in the exercise of his functions.

Note that it says the Cabinet is ‘to advise him in the exercise of his functions’. It says ‘advise’ and this is the one word that has been wrongly interpreted as The Agong receives instructions from the Cabinet. If they had meant for The Agong to receive instructions from the Cabinet then Article 43 (1) would have used the word ‘instruct’ and not ‘advise’.

I would like the opinion of a constitutional lawyer quickly because I believe Raja has not only been incorrect in his arguments (on that aspect) but has strayed into highly dangerous grounds.

As I mentioned before, most of the Rulers have been the problem rather than what has been touted, that they'll be the solution to sorting out a democratically elected government but one who fails repetitively to practice good process of governance, transparency and accountability.

The problem confronting us is just that, a democratically elected government but one who fails repetitively to practice good process of governance, transparency and accountability (even one who indulges in gerrymandering naughtiness and questionable creativity in elections), and not a constitutional problem.

On the other hand, enlisting the Rulers into our struggle for democractic reforms would in fact give rise to precisely that, a constitutional crisis.

There’s no denying that as we read of tales of woe by the AAB government every day in Malaysiakini, the Chinese Press and, on those odd occasions when it suits the MCA after UMNO had squeezed or kicked the party right in its testicles, The Star, we become desperate, and as some readers said, desperate times call for desperate measures, even unto recruiting the Rulers.

I wrote that our struggles must be via the ballot box though there may be some parties who have been and may still be fond of a 3rd alternative, taking to the streets to demonstrating their demand by a show of violence a la 1969, 1987, 1998 etc.

But back to our topic - There is no silver bullet to be found in the Rulers, which was why I wrote:

I cannot support any change in constitutional arrangement from our current constitutional monarchy, where those rulers have (correctly so) only a minor role in rule making or ruling.

It shall and must be the rakyat (people) who rule, through the ballot box! Let us not step back into the Middle Ages. I know many are enamoured with Raja Nazrin but let me quote a saying - one swallow doesn't a summer make.

If you have a look at Dr Darren Hsu’s posting
Rakyat Itu Raja! (The people are supreme), he quoted an article by Dr Farish A Noor.

Farish Noor talked about the Thai people’s reliance on his Thai Majesty who eventually let them down, most abysmally. His concluding paragraphs were:

Thus in 1976 the King turned a blind eye when a vicious and barbaric counter-coup was launched by the army, police, Buddhist conservatives and right-wing middle-class; leading to the storming of the campuses of Chulalongkorn and Thammasat universities and the massacre of students there.

There were even reports of student leaders being executed and having their heads chopped off and mounted on the gates of the universities by right-wing thugs. Where was the benevolent King of Thailand then, whom many had applauded as the hero and saviour of democracy in 1973?

If there is a lesson to be found in all this, it is that a democratic reform process can only begin from below, and never above. Kings and Monarchs do not good democrats make, for they are the first who need to be taught the value of citizenship and civic responsibility. Furthermore any democratic reform must take into account the will of the demos- the people themselves- and give voice to the masses and not the elite.

And so it is with this painful lesson in mind that we take the recent calls for royal intervention with a bucketful of salt. Facing a government as inept, incompetent and clueless as we have at the moment is a task in itself; but it need not be made even more difficult by replacing one regime with another. In the end, the only maxim we ought to adhere to today is the clarion call of the 1940s, when Malaysians cried out: Raja itu Rakyat, Rakyat itu Raja! (The King is a citizen, And the citizens are King!)

And we have the historical notoriety of some of our dear Rulers too.

I have also blogged in
50 posts to Independence, where I wrote:

Democracy – definitely far from being practiced at 100%, indeed very much far from that aspired state.

Yet ….. yes, yet in the well-known obscenity of the pork barrelling and dodgy government tactics in various recent by-elections, I detect in these underhanded conduct, through corrupt pecuniary influence, the desire to win an election via the ballot box.

Leaving the unfair conduct aside for a sec, I see the ballot box still a sacred cow where only the campaigning had been bull-poo-ish-ly dodgy. And if the pork barreling had been over the top, it demonstrated in a perverse way the ruling party had been scared of the ballot box and therefore worried of losing.

On that I dare say, with a ballot box still respected, we haven’t yet deteriorated into an Idi Amin-ish state.

Pork barrelling per se is quite common in western democracies as well – currently Australian PM John Howard has been doing the porky rounds. except that in western democracies, they pretend it’s finely developed policies. Additionally they are of course less crude, but then in Malaysia, refined subtle pork barrelling may escape the target recipients' notice. It's a function of voters’ preference, so suck on that if you want to win – via the ballot box of course and not through another Memali.

But what I have been annoyed with has been the unfair obstructions placed in the way of the opposition and the mainstream press’ obedient and obsequious toeing of the party line.

But I say we still have hope for democracy.

Thus I stand by my views that the BN’s Triad must be neutralized through the ballot box.

Dangerous euphoria over 'political' royalty

Saturday, September 22, 2007

Lingam video - AAB tap dancing

From Malaysiakini - PM AAB emphatically said NO to any royal commission of inquiry to probe into the ‘Lingam video’ controversy.

He wanted the Police to verify the authenticity of the video clip first. Then he contradicted his rejection of the call for a Royal Commission when he declared that the police would speed up their investigation on this matter as the video clip could cause public anger and create distrust against the judiciary.

Hellooooooo – the people also don’t trust the police! So you get one of your troops to investigate another, just like the ACA investigating into the IGP’s alleged corruption and the Police investigating into the former boss of the ACA’s corruption - all very cozy - and just how would that convince the people you have done the right thing.

It’s like me asking my favourite uncle to give me a reference for a job.

Then AAB's real message came through - he warned that action would be taken against those who reported the video clip if allegations made against persons involved in the clip were untrue.

Bet you the video clip will be found to be untrue, or best case scenario, too circumstantial. Then there'll be a police investigation into the person who provided the video clip to Anwar Ibrahim.

Friday, September 21, 2007

Remembering Nurin Jazlin Jazimin

Malaysiakini photo - Nurin Jazlin Jazimin

I am only eight years old
Just five years from my teens
Which I will now never see
And it’s more than just that
For I won’t see too the sun
Nor the moon nor the rain
Nor feel the soft pitter patter
Of warm raindrops gathering
In my tresses, running gently
Down to my once warm body

I am only eight years old
Denied my youth, cut down
With no dignity, with no one
I love besides me, to hold me
As I trembled from violence
Inexplicable cruelty, no pity
No chance to say goodbye
To emak and ayah and pals
Why, no one can tell me now
Too late, I'm part of the dark

I am only eight years old
Will you remember me as
You do Altantuyaa Shariibuu
Not a glamorous beauty
No high profile case in me
Just a neighborhood kid
I have never been abroad
To France or European cities
Just local Wangsa Maju
An innocent child, no more

I am only eight years old
So why do they say it’s all
God’s Will, dear wonderful
God who loves us all, why
Blame Him, for it was Evil
Who stalked me as a prey
Be like the Chinese and bury
Me in red clothing, armed
With scissors in my hands
To set me off as Rhamnousia

Defeat the new Triad

Param Cumaraswamy, a former Transparency International Malaysia president revealed that he received an anonymous letter about a dodgy court case two months ago, which he had forwarded it to Chief Justice Ahmad Fairuz calling for an investigation, but in keeping with national policy, there was only elegant silence from the CJ.

Param said: “Among the several allegations in the anonymous letter was one that the CJ had discussions with a High Court judge recently over a decision in a suit where VK Lingam was counsel for one of the parties.”

“The judgment eventually was delivered in favour of the party represented by Lingam.”

So it was hardly surprising that there’s a current call to all lawyers to snub (or boycott) cases in which Chief Justice Ahmad Fairuz Sheikh Abdul Halim presides at the Federal Court, as reported in Malaysiakini.

My uncle said this was exactly what happened after Tun Abbas was sabo* real good, when the Lord President was ‘stabbed’ in the back. Lawyers then attempted to ‘cold shoulder’ his over ambitious Brutus during court cases.

* sabotaged

But the only people hurt were the lawyers’ own clients! Unnecessary collateral damage.

These shameless people had been put in positions in which they didn’t deserve to hold if merit had been a consideration, and they were and probably still are so thick-skin that subtle and not-so-subtle insults would fall off them like water off the back of a duck. They don’t have any conscience or shame at all.

Our national problem lies in three areas, in the Triad threatening us – no, not those Chinese samsengs* but namely: the Police, Judiciary and the Electoral Commission.

* gangsters

But what worries me has been recent letters to Malaysiakini and bloggers’ postings calling out to the Rulers for help.

Let me remind people that, save for shining examples such as Raja Nazrin and a rare few, those Rulers are as much trouble as the politicians, so let’s not leap from the fire into the frying pan.

I don’t believe our problems can be solved through the Rulers.

There’s a current letter to Malaysiakini so effusive in praise of Raja Nazrin. The author wrote:

Reading Raja Nazrin’s recent speeches, he brings to mind King Cyrus the Great of Persia (present day Iran). In 539 BC, after Cyrus conquered Babylon (now called Iraq), he declared the very first Human Rights Charter at his coronation as the King of Babylon.

Even if Raja Nazrin metamorphoses into Cyrus the Great or our political messiah, he’s only one man and he won’t be around forever. We may be confronted by a future less wise and less benign royalty. I am sorry but I cannot support any change in constitutional arrangement from our current constitutional monarchy, where those rulers have (correctly so) only a minor role in rule making or ruling.

It shall and must be the rakyat (people) who rule, through the ballot box! Let us not step back into the Middle Ages. I know many are enamoured with Raja Nazrin but let me quote a saying - one swallow doesn't a summer make.

I believe we need to start off by a loose association among the opposition – forget about an alliance because that’s not possible. The aim of the loose association is what DAP Lim Kit Siang has aspired to, deny the BN its 2/3 majority. It’s a humble but realistic step and the final objective of true democracy is something to be achieved only in the long run.

The BN’s Triad must be neutralized through the ballot box, and not as some hotheads suggest, down in the streets, or worse, through the Rulers.

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Beast of PJ

I was tempted to blog on the judiciary tsunami that has swept away what little vestiges of propriety were left of the Malaysian justice system, as revealed by Malaysiakini.

Much as we already know of the shonky state of affairs in the Malaysian courts (with apologies to some Yang Ariff or Your Honour’s who remain still ‘honorable’) the revelation still infuriates us – our senses aren’t that dulled, yet.

But I was far more shocked of the Beast of Petaling Jaya in his or her savage murder of a little girl, 8-year old Nurin Jazlin Jazimin.

I have rearranged the 2 news items as reported by The Star Online for easy perusal, as follows:

On Monday, an employee found the bag at the bottom of the staircase of a shoplot in PJS1/48 and brought it into her workplace, thinking that it belonged to her boss. Her boss later opened the bag and found the naked body of a girl in a foetal position.
Police found bruise marks on her neck, suggesting strangulation, and a brinjal and a cucumber inserted in her private parts.

The mutherfucker (sorry if I express my rage in obscene but passionate form) had to sexually desecrate her body.

The bag was left at the place as early as 2 pm on Sunday because there was CCTV footage of a woman in jeans and a red top walking about in the area at that time and the bag could be seen then. The woman, estimated to be in her 20s, later entered a Silver Kenari.

In the brand new sports bag which was sent to the police forensic unit for fingerprinting, investigators found strands of hair that did not belong to the girl.

Police DNA check has identified the dead girl as Nurin. Words of sympathies aren't enough to console the shocked and despairing parents.

It was reported that Nurin was seen putting up a resistance as she was being pulled into a van near a night market in Wangsa Maju on the night she disappeared.

Police are also checking whether the murder was linked to two cases in the past three months, where two girls aged five and six were abducted and molested in the Kampung Baru area in separate incidents.

There is one mutherfucking sick predatory beast prowling around. He or she must be apprended swiftly and locked away for good.

Sorry, but kaytee doesn't believe in capital punishment as that would only diminish our human dignity and bring us down to the level of such human beasts.

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Incest in the dark, inbreeding effect now in the open?

Many societies, particularly the Chinese, considered incest as one of its most forbidden taboos. Until very recently the Chinese have taken the taboo to extreme measures where people with the same surname did not marry, even though the couple were known not to have family relationships for several generations back. Mind you, this taboo is less observed nowadays provided a check that there is no immediate, close or even tenuous relationship between the couple can be ascertained.

In fact, until a decade ago, three Chinese families with the different surnames of Liu, Guan and Zhang (surnames in Mandarin; could be different in Malaysia) would not inter-marry as they considered themselves to be related. And that was because their ancestors made an oath to be blood brothers in circa AD 200, in a historical age of chivalry known as the Three Kingdoms.

In Moss Robert's translation of the Romance of the 3 Kingdoms, those three blokes made their oath of brotherhood in a peach garden by swearing:

We three, Liu Bei, Guan Yu, and Zhang Fei, though of separate birth, now bind ourselves in brotherhood, combining our strength and purpose to relieve the present crisis. Thus we may fulfill our duty to home and country and defend the common folk of the land. We could not help our separate births, but on the self same day we mean to die! Shining imperial Heaven, fruitful Queen Earth, witness our determination, and may god and man jointly scourge whichever of us fails his duty or forgets his obligation.

That’s how serious the Chinese had viewed brotherhood and incest, which in the above case, had no biological justification; ‘twas only to honour their ancestors' oath that for nearly 20 centuries, the brotherhood and the associated taboo of incest were taken seriously.

I am not sure why incest for some societies started off as a taboo, but I was once informed that perhaps the ancient ones knew incest led to the practice of inbreeding and the biological weakening of a family, producing (physically and mentally) weak progenies.

Well, yesterday I posted
Our bureaucracy & incestuous rape. Perhaps I was in a rush because much later I though a more appropriate title would have been ‘Our incestuous bureaucracy & the rape of our nation’.

My post was about the institutionalized monopoly for 4 (originally 3) very favoured companies to corner the supply of electrical light fittings for government needs.

The official Treasury reason or rather the blooming excuse for such an unjustified monopoly was that other manufacturing companies, including bumiputera ones as well, were not supplying locally made goods. It claimed that this practice could be stopped with the appointment of the four companies.

Our good old malaysiakini did its usual bit of consumer investigation and learnt through allegations by the other manufacturers, and some critics of the monopoly include the Malay Contractors Association of Malaysia (PKMM), Malay Electrical and Mechanical Association of Malaysia (Perkem), Electrical and Electronics Association of Malaysia (TEEAM) and Coalition of Malay Economic Bodies (Gabem), that those 4 favoured companies have been procuring imported products.

Well .........

According to malaysiakini, they accused the four companies of ‘giving the license’ to importers to sell imported products for government projects via the former’s respective marketing companies when there are adequate locally manufactured products.

They alleged: “The justification of the monopoly was to ensure that suppliers use local products but it turns out to be encouraging them to import foreign products.”

On top of that unfulfilled Treasury claim (and I ask you, what does that make the Treasury?), one of the most powerful criticisms was that those companies continue to enjoy their benefits as mere vendors with no progress made to become credible manufacturers, basically rent collectors. And of course by allowing these favoured few to monopolise te ebusiness, the government has actually stifled the manufature of electrical lighting in Malaysia.

Please read the rest of malaysiakini article titled
Monopoly dims future of lighting industry below:

Under the government's Bumiputera Manufacturing Vendor Scheme, TNB, the nation's largest lighting purchaser, was required to allocate 30 percent of the business to bumiputera manufacturers for a period of five years.

However, the memorandum claimed that TNB did not comply with the above criteria and instead allowed the three companies to monopolise its lighting procurement until now.

Amat Sinar, Permintex Electronic and Muarlite Industries were appointed as TNB’s vendors in 1995, 1996 and 2000 respectively.

“These companies have enjoyed government assistance for nearly 10 years or more and until now they have not graduated (from the vendor scheme),” said a manufacturer.

“If this is the case, how can other bumiputera companies get business opportunities?” he asked.

The manufacturer also wondered if there was a glitch in the assistance provided by the government to bumiputera companies.

“If the policy is effective, the three companies should have graduated from the vendor scheme by now and pave the way for other companies to enjoy the privilege,” he added.

A check with Permintex Holdings’ website revealed that the company, which was established in 1986, had received plenty of business opportunities from government agencies and government-linked companies.

Permintex Holdings is the parent company of Permintex Electronic.

Meanwhile, the Treasury, in a second circular issued in May 2006, required all panel suppliers to obtain Sirim certification for their products.

According to the manufacturers’ memorandum, Muarlite Industries and Permintex Electronic have not fulfilled the above condition.

As I said at the start, incest leads to inbreeding which gives birth to weak progenies.

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Our bureaucracy & incestuous rape

Every day we faced revelation of another case of cronyism by the ruling party (UMNO to be more precise). Today it’s the story of 'light', or the government’s directive to award contracts for electrical fittings to only 4 companies. malaysiakini headlined the monopoly as Lighting monopoly casts a dark shadow.

This electrical monopolistic contract isn’t new as I had blogged on it in December 2005 under the title Malaysia - Let there be no light!.

Then, out of 10 bumiputra and 18 non-bumiputra companies involved in the manufacturing of electrical/electronic lights and accessories in Malaysia, the government through a Treasury circular decreed that only three – Amat Sinar Sdn Bhd, Permintex Electronic Sdn Bhd and Muarlite Industries Sdn Bhd – could provide the items to government contractors.

We are informed by malaysiakini that since then, a
second circular was issued in May 2006 and another company - Maxlane Sdn Bhd - was included.

malaysiakini did a little probing and found that – yawnnnnnnnnn - one of the four companies listed is owned by an UMNO politician, Mohd Ismail Mohd Shah. He is also the UMNO state assemblyperson of Maharani in Johor.

Why should we be surprised as yesterday in my posting Express buses - who's regulating whom? we hear of the CVLB and Road Safety Department complaining of unfairness when an insurance company warned errant bus companies that they would be held equally liable if any of the following safety conditions were not met, namely:

> Full compliance with permit provisions,
> Having Puspakom roadworthiness certificates,
> That drivers are not drug addicts and alcoholics,
> That drivers have valid licences and are free of traffic warrants
> That drivers are physically and mentally fit.

As I said, these are fundamental safety issues that MUST be met by all bus companies. The insurance company would only require equal liability if the bus companies fail to meet the above conditiosn.

By criticizing the insurance company’s conditions as unfair and unnecessarily wielding the big stick, the top executives of the CVLB and RSD are seen as admitting that the bus companies would likely be violating these basic safety requirements, with the inevitable (probably unavoidable) accident, and it will be unfair for the poor bus companies to be made liable in any passenger’s death, injuries or damage to property.

Can you beat that? Or, can you interpret their moans and groans any other way?

Incest is being perpetuated in every nook and corner of our bureaucracy as government regulators prefer to protect the commercial providers (those supposed to be regulated) rather than the public (those supposed to be protected), while favoured contractors are pampered over others, even those who are bumiputeras (and so what hope would there be for a non-bumiputera?).

The incestuous rape of our nation continues.

Monday, September 17, 2007

Express buses - who's regulating whom?

Last month I posted Too little, too late, for 22!, commenting on a malaysiakini news article that told us the tragic deaths of 21 passengers on a bus when the driver fell asleep on the wheel and allowed the vehicle to hit a road barrier while on a downhill road. It skidded off the highway, overturned and fell into a ditch.

As if that was not bad enough, we found out that the driver of a bus, 28 year old Rohizan Abu Bakar, had two outstanding arrest warrants for reckless driving, apart from 13 summonses from police.

Yet he continued to drive ... his passengers to their deaths, or shall I put it more correctly, that because the responsible party or parties failed to stop him from driving which it/they should, he was thus allowed to kill those poor passengers.

So I wasn’t surprised when Kurnia Insurans chief executive office Kong Shu Yin said new conditions would apply to (only) express buses because of their very poor safety record lately.

The insurance company has decided to make bus firms partly liable for passenger deaths or injuries, and property damage if their drivers fail to comply with an additional set of conditions such as:

> Full compliance with permit provisions,
> Having Puspakom roadworthiness certificates,
> That drivers are not drug addicts and alcoholics,
> That drivers have valid licences and are free of traffic warrants
> That drivers are physically and mentally fit.

I cannot for the life of me see anything wrong with the conditions which should be rightfully and lawfully subscribed to all the time, for the safety of the passengers, other vehicles as well as pedestrians.

The bus companies must accept responsibility. Having an insurance policy doesn’t mean that they can simply ignore any of the above conditions.

The primary reason should be the safety of the passengers, and if it takes an insurance company to put the stick end to their butt to motivate those bus companies to accept responsibilities, I say bravo.

In the USA, while the FAA regulates flying, the insurance companies are the real force which actually drive air safety. If the airlines or smaller charter air companies or any of their pilots are negligent or not following correct safety procedures, the insurance would be after them in more than one way – increased premiums, refusal to pay out on claims, refusal to extend insurance, etc. And the system works for air safety.

So I say kudos to the insurance company, which insures the bulk of express buses on the road, to require (threaten) bus companies to pay up to RM5,000 for death or injuries, and RM10,000 for property damage claims if those conditions are not fulfilled.

I expect the moans and groans from the bus companies, but was I shocked when I read the bus companies have two sympathetic groaners and moaners as well in the CVLB and Road Safety Department, when these two government organizations should be making sure the bus companies observe those prudent safety conditions (even without the insurance company driving them).

Guess what CVLB chairman Markiman Kobiran said?

The move was unfair because it imposed unnecessary conditions on bus companies. Hey, what about the passengers?

He said enforcement had weeded out most of the unscrupulous drivers and bus companies were very aware that they had to improve safety conditions.


Then Road Safety Department director-general Suret Singh said the move would cause hardship to the bus companies. What about the passengers, Singh?

Singh said “It should not be the stick alone. The carrot and stick method should be used. They should be working with the Government and industry to reduce their risk.”

Bull to you too – the carrot obviously didn’t work, Now’s the time to wield the stick before more passengers are murdered.

The CVLB and Road Safety Department are equally responsible for the pathetic state of affairs as evident by the number of express bus accidents. Departmental heads should have rolled with the abysmal safety record of the bus companies, but alas, in BolehLand they are instead allowed to pontificate on useless motherhood statements with no likelihood for bus safety improvements.

Oooh, incidentally, both Markiman Kobiran and Suret Singh are ‘Datuks’.

Sunday, September 16, 2007

Hell hath no fury like a 'green hat'!

Hell hath no fury like … a husband cuckolded.

Not too long ago, a (Malay) husband returned home suddenly to check on his wife and caught her doing what he had been suspicious of, committing adultery with another man. He was so incensed that he bashed the wife’s lover with the motorcycle helmet he had in his hand. He killed the Casanova. I suppose he went to prison.

Another similar incident, years earlier, involved a Chinese husband. Like the first case, he was suspicious of his wife's infidelity and did the unexpected-return-home bit. He used a ladder to climb back into the house, to avoid knocking at or opening the door which might have alerted the lovers. He shafted his ball-bearing scrapper into the naked Don Juan. Bloke went to prison, and I wouldn’t be surprised if wife or former wife (If he had divorced her while in prison) got a new lover while he was eating government nasi kari.

Then there was another case in Hong Kong but in that incident the supposedly an-item couple wasn't married yet, Well. the story went that she slept with another man. The affair became known and unfortunately for the lover, the boyfriend was a gangster. He and his gang waylaid the Romeo, held him down, removed his pants and snipped off his manhood with a pair of scissors - ouch and Catastrophic Calamity! Being real meanies, they threw his thingy into a difficult-to-access drain to ensure no brilliant surgeon reattached the 'root' cause of the trouble.

Well, recently here we have a smarter bloke, according to a news item by malaysiakini.

Yahya (51 years old) suspected that his air stewardess wife (31 years old) was two-timing him since early last year. Lover is a 27-year-old electrician.

Yahya did the wise thing rather than allowed his rage to take over and propel him into foolish criminal violence, which might have provided him with momentary satisfaction of revenge but which would be followed by years and years of regret in prison for a woman not worth that sacrifice.

He coopted the Federal Territory Religious Department and led a religious posse to an apartment in Kuala Lumpur where they found his wife and her lover allegedly committing khalwat (close proximity).

... meaning they were caught in a naughty congregation ...

The raiding team having banged at the door for 20 minutes, decided to cut the lock at the entrance. Just as they started to do so the woman opened the door. I wonder whether those posse members fell inside the apartment on top of one another as she suddenly whipped the door wide open.

They found the man clad in shorts and T-shirt and the woman in a pair of pyjamas. I suppose 20 minutes would have been enough time to plan an exit strategy. In this they were better than George Bush and John Howard, though not by very much, because I would have expected the man by then to be dressed up in tradesmen working outfit complete with pliers and screwdriver (the real type), while the woman could have slipped into something more than just jammies. And they could have carried a couple of bulbs, wires and maybe even a condomenser.

Alas, they didn’t so they were brought to the religious department for questioning.

In ancient China, nay, in fact not too long ago - before the Communist took over and sex became a State controlled function or item, which was rationed out to those according to their needs, and contributed by those according to their ability - the female adulterer would be shoved into a pig’s cage, which would then be weighted down with rocks before being thrown into the nearest river. Unless she has gills she won’t be committing adultery anymore. The male culprit would be killed immediately if not castrated in the most painful manner first.

The Chinese would cruelly describe a cuckolded husband as “a man who wears a green hat”. It seems (I read somewhere) that during the Yuan Dynasty, the law required the male staff (pimps?) of brothels to wear green headscarves. Also, during the Ming Dynasty, the law also required singers, who were usually prostitutes, to wear green headscarves and green clothes. I suppose that explains the origin of the 'green hat'.

So, don’t give a Chinese man a green hat for a present or for him to wear one at a party, unless you intend to hint to him his wife has been cheating on him.

Saturday, September 15, 2007

US grubby hands in Pakistan

US Deputy-Secretary of State John Negroponte held talks with President Mushharaf in Islamabad on the worsening security situation in a number of Pakistani regions.

Hardly surprising when a poll this week showed that among Pakistanis, Osama bin Laden is more popular than President Pervez Musharraf. Then the poll also indicated something everyone already knew, that Pakistanis are becoming more hostile toward the US.

74% of Pakistanis felt outraged that the arrogrant US continuously threatens to launch military action against al-Qa'ida and the Taliban inside their country.

And to lend credence to Pakistani anger, Negroponte restated Washington's support for Musharraf’s three-pronged strategy of promoting security, dialogue and economic development in the tribal areas. The US pledged $US750million in US aid.

But bet you, where there is US (direct or indirect) involvement, it'll be more of 'security' which means trouble for the locals.

And true enough, right at the start of Holy month for Muslims, the Pakistan air force employed American supplied Cobra heli gunship to attack the territory where Osama bin Laden has his lair, killing more than 40.

photo - The Australian

Who the 40 victims were, no one knows except the Americans who would be claiming (for its domestic consumption and justification for supporting a dictator) that they were all terrorists, like Afghan and Iraqi little boys and girls - in exactly the same way that Israel had been claiming about its Palestinian and Lebanese kiddie victims.

In another scene, Imran Khan, once Pakistan’s cricket captain, a sports status almost equal in prestige to the country’s president, was barred by Pakistani authorities from entering Karachi. The provincial governor, an ally of the Pakistani President, had barred him from Karachi. He was sent back to Islamabad.

An angry Imran Khan said it was his right to visit any part of the country.

He said to reporters:
"It is a total violation of my fundamental rights guaranteed in the constitution."

"America must stop interference in Pakistan's internal affairs. We do not want made-in-Washington liberal democracy, especially when it includes a terrorist organisation like the MQM and a military dictator."

Well, there you have it – the world’s “greatest democracy” and so-called “leader of the free world” (whatever that means) has been shown to be doing what it does best, sleeping with terrorist organisations and a military dictator when these suits it.

And we know that, don’t we, for after all the USA was once buddy with the Taliban and Saddam Hussein. Today it is the Northern Alliance of Afghamistan (once an US' enemy) and Musharraf. Talking about terrorist organization, Israel is one Godzilla-ish terrorist state that the US has been sponsoring for years.

But Imran is right because malaysiakini also tells us (through a ST article) that the Pakistani people will be the big losers when Musharraf eventually succumbs to the US insistence he accept some form of US-conceived reforms in the return of Benazir Bhutto.

So, US boy Musharraf made a deal with Benazir Bhutto, where in exchange for allowing her to return to Pakistan, and possibly becoming prime minister again, she would support his re-election as president next month by a legislature packed with his supporters.

That will set the scene for a tussle among the judiciary, Nawaz Sharif (who was OK-ed by the courts to return to Pakistan but forced to leave by Musharraf), and the Musharraf-Bhutto alliance-of-convenience.

Just leave it to the dirty hands of the US to nurture dictators and terrorist organizations for American interests.

Friday, September 14, 2007

Law of jungle in Selayang?

I am not sure whether I was the first blogger to raise the issue of the Selayang bounty hunters for hounds. I posted that in A pig of a problem after Kean-Jin Lim, one of my Penang Lang, advised me of that silly and dangerous promotion by the Selayang Town Council.

I blogged that together with the issue of the Malacca State government’s created brouhaha over pig farms, where I pointed out that there seems to be a perception among non-Muslims that the authorities have been conducting an insensitive campaign against animals that are anathema to Muslims.

Cynical kaytee have no complaints about rounding up stray dogs for disposal but I did ask in that posting why stray cats weren't, when in fact, cats actually are more dangerous to human beings for the diseases they can pass on to us.

Mind you, kaytee has been one of the few Chinamen who supported the re-location of the Malacca pig farms. I wasn’t and am not racially blind, but I couldn't help agreeing with the sentiments against unnecessary bounty hunting for dogs, which would only invite mucho trouble in the likely form of rambo-ish aggravation against dog owners.

However, reading malaysiakini this evening I have been appalled by the thuggish behaviour of a Selayang resident committee representative (named Rashid) who allegedly lunged at Malaysian Animal Rights and Welfare Association president N Surendran, obviously to assault him.

A wheel-chair bound Anthony Thanasayan, who runs Malaysian Animal-Assisted Therapy for the Disabled and Elderly Association, was caught helplessly in the middle.

Anthony said: “I’m on a wheelchair. I can’t run. I cannot protect myself. I was very scared.”

Human rights lawyer P Uthayakumar who attended the press conference questioned the motive of the Selayang MPS inviting resident committee representatives to the meet.

He said: “The meeting was only to involve animal lovers and the MPS. Why were outsiders brought in? Were they brought in to neutralise the animal lovers?”

Then Lim Ann Nee, an animal lover who was taking video footage of the scene at the lobby, was allegedly hit on one arm several times with a booklet by Rashid who seemed to have thrown fundamental chivalry out of the window in assaulting a lady. If the allegation is true, then he has been an unmitigated scumbag, a grub, a slime slug!

Lim related: “I told him at least seven times ‘Don’t touch me!’. But he was chasing us away.”

The animal lobby group also said that several MPS and resident committee representatives hurled abuses at the NGO delegation.

If the above have been true, then Selayang Municipal Council (MPS) didn’t invite the NGOs in good faith, but with the intention to threaten them with physical violence, to intimidate them. The NGOs’ allegation revealed that the abuses and violence began just a mere 10 minutes into the meeting, which lends credence to the allegation of lack of good faith from MPS.

Is this the standard for our public bodies, one which is not even democratically elected, where the law of the jungle rules, where thuggish savagery and violence are norms for avoiding accountability or to suppress different views.

AAB and his cohorts have a lot to answer for.

Thursday, September 13, 2007

AAB should revive Mahathir's 'Look East' policy

Howsy of Senseintrovert dropped a damn big hint to guess-who by posting about the resignation of Japanese PM Shinzo Abe.

Though the news had Shinzo Abe resigning because he lacked the support from the opposition controlled Upper House to extend Japan’s naval logistic support for US warships in the Indian Ocean in operations against the Afghan Talibans, in reality Abe was severely affected by allegations of corruption within his cabinet.

Howsy correctly reminded us that Japan’s the country where its people know disgrace and place great store on seppuku – the honorable suicide.

On this subject I would recommend a novel by Alfred Coppel titled Burning Mountain. It’s about alternative history, a what-if the A-bomb wasn’t dropped. Plenty of seppuku in the story.

Well, taking about a country which knows what the significance of disgrace is, today’s news tell us that Shinzo Abe has just been admitted to hospital due to extreme fatigue caused by stress.

I think it’s called shame.

Our BolehLand politicians lack that obviously, best terribly exemplified by Cyclops and Yang BerBocor, and a PM in elegant silence.

If we read malaysiakini and the articles on PKFZ, the absolute lack of governance in the purchase of naval boats where the government keeps throwing good money after bad into the billions, the outrageous pilfering and misuse of tsunami funds to renovate the residence of fat cats, and the total absence of shame or honour among our leaders - yes, total absence when even among thieves and gangsters there is honour, we yearn for one of Dr Mahathir’s earlier policy.

And what’s that?

No, not ‘go West, young men’ but ‘Look East’!

Would it be ever possible to build the concept of honour among our leaders, and while we aren’t exactly asking them to commit seppuku (mind you, some more extreme friends of mine asked, why not?), we would like to see some basic decency and sense of honour (or at least a sense of some shame) in resignations.

Might as well ask, Is the Pope Protestant?

Tsunami funds renovated MBs' residence

In yesterday's near miss with another tsunami possibility, it's coincidental that the Good Olde Auditor-General (AG) has once again raised my blood pressure with his revelation that “aid agencies tasked to distribute fund for victims in the deadly 2004 tsunami have yet to return RM5.5 million in excess funds to the government’s coffer.”

Aiyo, it’s almost the end of 2007!

Beh Lih Yi’s article in malaysiakini titled A tsunami of excess funds not returned informed us that generous “Malaysians had donated over RM80 million to the National Disaster Relief Fund.”

But ... yes, as always in BolehLand, there’s big BUT whenever money gets into the hands of people who weren’t and still aren’t fit to handle public funds or public donations.

Apart from the money being released too late to people who needed it badly (in some cases, only 500 over days after they lost their possession in the tsunami) - I blogged on this in Tsunami Aid swept away by Invisible Tsunami? - there was disgraceful misuse, nay, criminal misuse of public donations.

Last year the AG revealed that the fund, involving an allocation of RM1.63 billion, was used for unrelated projects such as to renovate the official residence of menteris besar and buying equipment for private television station ntv7.

So you who donated, may I thank you on behalf of those menteris besar.

malaysiakini also reported the following:

The government promised that action would be taken on the report’s findings. There was also no mention on whether any action has been taken against those who abused a special fund channelled to several states to assist the poor, which was highlighted in last year's report.

My advice is the same one I made at the end of 2004, after the tsunami – please read Tsunami - Relief Funds - Donate Wisely!

Some people just can’t be trusted to handle money!

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Pigs: "Stop misusuing us for your sinister religious agenda!"

Chloe Ting wrote a letter to malaysiakini about our favourite topic ‘Pigs’, urging that we have sympathies for local residents.

I just love the name ‘Chloe’ – hmmm, so nice.

Anyway, Chloe berated DAP’s Ronnie Liu for being hypercritical of the MCA but without offering any practical solutions to the tricky problem at hand.

Welcome to the world of politics, my dear Chloe, the oppsoition’s job is to hammer the BN, though I admit at times it grates on my nerve too when the opposition just plays ‘silly bugger’.

Chloe accused Ronnie Liu of stirring up Chinese emotions but ignoring the concerns of the residents.

She challenged Liu:
“How would you like to sleep with an open pig farm next to your house, and listen to cries of pigs being slaughtered and the ‘aroma’ of the subsequent effluents emanating into your air space and wastes from the swine flowing down into your drain and then clogging it up?”

“I am quite certain Liu would object owing to environmental and health issues.”

Yes, Chloe, kaytee has been with you all the while – have a look at my previous piggy posts. The situation in Malacca is no longer about who is right or who is wrong – it’s about resolving an offensively smelly issue. The only thing I want to see is an equitable outcome for the unfortunate farmers, who shouldn’t be subjected to the stressful threat of their oink-ing assets being targeting for genocide.

However, on the other side of the fence, I have observed a very disturbing trend among some Muslim bloggers, where they have been playing a sinister game far worse than being ‘silly buggers’.

There is the constant harping about “piggies being far more fortunate than some Malay squatters” or “the police rather shoot a Malay or Muslim than a pig”.

One disgruntled former UMNO bloke started that, and hey presto, the religio-racist insinuations or accusations have become vogue, with many Muslim-Malay bloggers (I note one from PAS) jumping on that theme of sarcastic sinister seditious contrast and comparison.

From Malay squatters to Malay blokes being shot by the police, the reference to the 'luckier' pigs have become those bloggers' religio-racist leitmotiv.

Those bloggers have been unscrupulously stirring up such sensitivities – their posts have been meant to be provocative, instigating and agitating, all of course directed against the UMNO government, but indirectly channeling angry emotions against the Chinese as well.

There is no mention of legitimate occupancy versus non-legitimacy in the case of the pig farmers versus squatters. Yes, there were accusations of illegal pig farms but where’s the proof, and then even if there were some, those were in the minority, with the majority of pig farms being legitimate establishments.

On pigs versus blokes being shot by police, did the pigs surround the police and threaten those blokes in blue?

While I have advocated moving the pig farms away as the best outcome for all, provided compensation would be allocated for dislocating the farmers, the use of religio-racist themes is to be frown upon.

Kindly cease and desist, or you aren’t any better than the UMNO government that you condemn.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Malaysia - a nation divided

A sure sign that the nation is divided is witnessed by accusations coming from one side of the political fence, of police harassing the gathering in Kuala Terengganu which led to two people being shot, but thankfully not mortally.

malaysiakini reported, Anwar Ibrahim of course would express his ‘deep concern’ over the ‘new heights of police harassment’ that he said led to the shooting incident.

He said the use of water cannon and tear gas by the police in the Batu Buruk incident was evidence of “new heights in police harassment towards gatherings considered unfavourable to the government."

He was posturing of course. Use of water cannot or tear gas hasn’t exactly been ‘new’, regardless of whether those actions could be considered as ‘heights’ in forceful police action. But then, Anwar Ibrahim always has a way with words.

I didn’t expect him (or did I Lim KS) to say anything about the possibility of scary mob behaviour towards a solo police office in mufti caught amidst the angry crowd.

Those of you who haven’t been caught by a mob wouldn’t know what I mean – and mind you, even my own experiences, though frightening, were considerably light with one even having a humorous outcome. But some mobs can be and had been deadly serious and extremely nasty!

Trust Anwar again to resort to his pseudo-Renaissance nice-to-hear statements like ‘political power does not flow out of the barrel of a gun.’

He added: "The discharge of gunshots in the incident suggested that police harassment has reached new heights. This is cause for grave concern.”

The reality is that this stage we still don’t know what had happened. In my previous post
Shooting truth? - Truth shot? I did attempt to analyse what had occurred.

I considered one possibility of a mob terrifying a police officer, who might have lacked the cool and collected judgement and indeed disciplined training to refrain from being Rambo.

But at the end of the day, we lacked the correct information while possessing plenty of prejudice, but our actions against a supposedly neutral party (no, not the political type but the uniformed men and women in blue) speak volumes of our divided nation.

Leaving aside those opposition politicians whose jobs are to criticise the BN politicians ceaselessly (and that's their job), most anti-BN people would readily jump the gun (pun not intended) to blame the police, because the police (apart form its notoriety) is seen as UMNO's own Praetorian Guards and not the neutral trusted public service it ought to be - and we're talking about 'best case' scenario in this respect - the 'worst case' is of course the police are viewed as uniformed criminals.

Also, that DPM Najib said one shot when some alleged there were two drew accusations of him covering up for the police. The reality has been that Najib could only comment on what he was told by the police.

But of course everyone anti-BN expects that it's only normal for Chief Inspector Najib Tun Razak to be down in the field to carry out investigations as to whether one or two shots were fired before he as DPM made any comments on the shooting. - such has been our powers of reasoning clouded by prejudice of hatred.

Well, we've just learnt from malaysiakini that the police latest brief gave 4 shots being fired while the policeman who did it wasn't a FRU bloke but rather, just an ordinary General Duties mata-mata (policeman), who received several stitches following the mob attack and is currently on medical leave.

According to malaysiakini, the FRU bloke (not the mata-mata) is undergoing treatment for injuries sustained during Saturday’s clash between the police and opposition supporters. He was hurt when the angry crowd pelted police personnel with bottles, stones and other objects. In total, four police officers, including Wan and Azmi, were injured.

Yes, we have in the blue corner the BN and its ally, the Royal Malaysian Police, whilst in the red corner stand the main opposition parties (yes, political ones this time), namely PAS, PKR and DAP.

Of course in other cases, in one corner would be most Muslims against pig farms, whilst in the other were non-Muslims (not so much for pigs but more) for anything against Muslims and Islam.

I can think of one more situation where the blue-red corners get all sorts of bizarre combination – eg. re Malaysia being an Islamic nation, PAS would join DAP, MCA, MIC and Gerakan Party to say bull to the notion that UMNO has formed an Islamic State, while of course UMNO would be (alone in) saying Yes.

Where fragrant nutmegs grow

... inspired by a malaysiakini article titled 150-year-old village loses out to development ... it's also the story of David Brown ...

Gratefully he gave land to build a temple
For Chor Soo Kong, He who had appeared
In his dreams, having cured him of an ill
So was raised Penang's Temple of Snakes

Now the Temple survives, barely, as snakes
Gave way to highways and the diesel trucks
Big motorcycles of shattering decibels; their
Noxious fumes replace jasmine scented joss

He was a generous man, was David Brown
Bestowing too upon the people of the Island
Land for games, recreation & evening strolls
That’s the Padang in Jalan Dato Keramat

Now, unfinished laksa soup & lok-lok sauce
Poison the padang with pollutants of spices
Turning green lawns into dry brown patches
And his name passes unrecognised by most

Then there is Kampung Buah Pala, where
Gorgeous 20-metre high Myrista frangrans
Shade a 150-year old village in tranquillity
Where fragrant nutmegs would easily grow

A land bestowed by Brown to the Tamils
A gift for their toil, tears, sweat & hopes
For them to raise tambis and tangachis
Sweet youth with smiling dark doe eyes

Thaipusam with annual firewalks of piety
Deevapali where light triumphed over evil
Technicolour saris, luscious curries, apom’s
Not forgetting murukku's of myriad spices

All these marvels of Hindu Tamil culture
Will soon be gone, vanquished, stolen by
Avarice, an insult to David Brown’s legacy
An affront to lovers of heritage & decency