Friday, May 30, 2008

BMC saga shows MCA totally irrelevant

Two days ago I posted Men in blue bashed youth till he was blue black and bloodied, and followed that up yesterday with Dep Police Minister clueless on police role?.

Today when I read Malaysiakini, though I was thrilled by its news article Cabinet wants BMC access road kept open, albeit only until the court case between toll company Grand Saga and Bandar Makhota Cheras developer Narajaya has reached a decision, I was more excited by its Vox Populi which screamed aloud 'Chor, you're unfit to represent us'.


More significant has been the fact that Malaysiakini devoted (unusually) the entire page of Vox Populi to the BMC affair.

What has riled many Malaysians was the unbelievable Chor Chee Heung, the Dep Home Affairs Minister defending the indefensible brutalities of the FRU – see Malaysiakini article
Chor justifies police action at BMC clash - a gang of whom bashed up a young man who so happened to be passing the infamous Grand Saga barricade.

Chor had the uncaring robotic callous or clueless nerve to claim that instead "… two police officers were hurt ….. after being knocked by the … car", allegedly that of the real victim, according to his worldviews formed in the comfort of his airconditioned ministerial officer.

He had the idiotic temerity to utter the unbelievable words "I did not receive any news or report about police using too much force but I assure you that the police will always act in accordance with the law."

And this with the availability of Malaysiakini video clip on the FRU bashing of a bloodied innocent bypasser, Chang Juin Haur - not forgetting the already well-known infamous notoriety of the FRU?

Malaysiakini photo

I was outraged and asked: Where the f* did this bloke pop up from?

Besides, minister, are you saying it’s OK for the FRU to bash, brutalize and beat up a man, even for one who allegedly knocked a couple of them down?

You should be ashamed of yourself – please resign immediately! You aren't fit to in Parliament, let alone being a minister.

Today’s Vox Populi echoed my demand for Chor Chee Heung to go, a man totally unfit to represent any Malaysian.

But I just wonder … this could be even more significant than a mere useless MCA deputy minister who was pushed forward (basically sacrificed but as a captive dumbo) by his Home Affairs Minister to take the heat and answer on behalf of the barbaric thugs in the FRU.

Yes, even more significant than the 30% swing of Chinese Malaysian voters over to the Pakatan in the last general election, this well documented and publicised fact of a completely useless MCA minister, unable to meaningfully represent Chinese Malaysians and their basic human rights, must surely and finally have rammed home to every Chinese Malaysians (including the families of those MCA members), yes, right down to the full length and depth of whatever the MCA and its BN partners had been shafting every Chinese Malaysians for the last several decades, that the MCA as a political party is no longer relevant.

And Ong Ka Ting, where the hell are you hiding - say some f* thing!

As one Vox Populi writer Baiyuensheng, as utterly outraged as I and many others have been and still are, wrote: All I can say is this - come the next election, MCA would go the same way as Gerakan. Irrelevant.

But it’s not just the useless MCA and the virtually non existent Gerakan (sorry, Darren) who have failed us – as one Cheras resident lamented, why has this affair taken so long to resolve when the road barrier has been built on Selangor State land which is already under the rule of a Pakatan State government?

The MCA is and will be dead, but the Pakatan hopefully won’t – so, Khalid Ibrahim, you better come up with some decent answers too!

Malaysiakin photo

The BMC affair, coupled with Chor’s demonstrated and complete inadequacy to represent Malaysians, has become the Hindraf of Chinese Malaysians.

Sadly, again, it has to take the dripping blood and screams of an innocent young man to wash our eyes fully open and wake up to how the MCA has utterly failed us.

Pulau Batu Puteh - adakah musuh dalam selimut?

Malaysiakini has published Gov't ready for 'tussle' over Sabah, in which it tells us that, according to Rais Yatim the new Foreign Minister, our government may face the possibility of another Philippines' claim on Sabah.

Rais Yatim had bravely declared that Malaysia is ready with all the documents, including those on the referendum conducted by the Cobbold Commission in April 1962 ... yadda yadda yadda ...

I am not sure whether Rais Yatim is scare-mongering, but undoubtedly this 'news' will find fertile grounds especially in the wake of our legal loss (note the adjective ‘legal’ – will discuss this shortly) of Pulau Batu Puteh to Singapore.

Well, a minor but important correction to the above sentence - the isle isn’t Pulau Batu Puteh anymore, now and forever more (unless we go to war with Singapore and win) – it’s Singapore’s Pedra Branca!

'… Singapore’s Pedra Branca …' – hurting, isn’t it, and we have to just suck on that humiliating and totally unnecessary loss!

'Scare-mongering' of course is a tactic (of bullsh*t patriotism) frequently adopted by parties (usually the government) to either divert attention from other 'embarrassing' issues or to marshal support around them, or both.

John Howard, former PM of Australia did it regularly when he was in charge – those who have been familiar with Australian affairs would have heard of 'SS Tampa', 'children overboard', 'Nauru' and his grandstanding statement to warm the cockles of the conservative elements of the Australian electorate, namely his gratuitous-defiant statement that 'We decide who comes to Australia', as if that wasn’t/isn’t ever the case.

There are other examples of such resorting to Samuel Jackson's 'patriotism is the last refuge of a scoundrel', but let’s return to the Malaysian issue of an allegedly possible rapacious Philippines’ claim for Sabah again.

In reality, the Filipino government hasn’t made such a move, as confessed by Rais Yatim himself. 'Twas only a the Moro National Liberation Front (MNLF) who said the Bangsamoro would try all legal avenues to settle the Sabah issue peacefully, and if necessary, refer Malaysia to the International Court of Justice (ICJ) over its claim to Sabah.

The MNLF is not even recognised as a sovereign power, so WTF has Rais Yatim been attempting to cook up?

Besides – and many may not realize this – one of the cornerstone of the ICJ’s respected jurisdiction is that it acts only on the basis of explicit consent of all the parties coming before it. There is no compulsory jurisdiction. Even a State like Malaysia being a party to the ICJ's Statute does not automatically give the Court jurisdiction over disputes involving Malaysia and another State like Singapore, Indonesia or the Philippines.

All these are reflected in its Statute's Article 36. The ICJ works on the basis that all the parties coming before it voluntarily have a true desire for the dispute to be resolved by the Court.

To summarise, the ICJ wouldn’t have been able to shaft the Pedra Branca decision down Malaysia’s throat. We went to the ICJ on this issue like a lamb knowing it would be sembilih (slaughtered), with the inevitability of our Batu Puteh going to Singapore.

Malaysiakini in its earlier report on our monumental ‘legal’ loss of real estate said that:

Malaysia claimed original title to Pulau Batu Puteh, while Singapore, which knows the islet as Pedra Branca argued that sovereignty had passed to it tacitly, having operated the Horsburgh Lighthouse on the island for more than 130 years without any protest from its neighbour.

The court found that the Malaysian sultanate-turned-province of Johor had held the original title but had taken ‘no action at all’ regarding the island for more than a century.

What 130 years of Singaporean operation of Horsburgh Lighthouse (pray tell?), when Singapore has only existed as a sovereign State for 43 years (since 1965)?

All those arguments had been based on the legacy of British colonialism, where the colonial power built and operated the lighthouse for the safe navigation of sea vessels into or out of its colony, once called Temasek and conned from the Johor Sultanate in 1819 by the British through its interfering/intervention in local politics, just as the Yanks are doing in Iraq for oil.

Singapore as a Crown colony had 'inherited' the lighthouse management (and by extension, the ownership) but only by default, when it was allowed by the Brits to join a new Malaysia in 1963.

Then, during a time when the world had no strategic interest in itsy bitsy puny little offshore useless pieces of rocks, when even the term Economic Exclusie Zone (EEZ) hasn’t yet been coined, a disinterested Johore official had written a letter declaring Johore had no interest in Pulau Batu Putih.

Regrettably our survey department received no ministerial policy on such issues, and had printed maps showing the isle as under Singapore’s domain. Can you ever imagine Chinese cartographers publishing maps that show Taiwan as an independent State?

No doubt (Malaya and) Malaysia had been sleeping or not far sighted enough. Yes, Singapore has had de facto ownership of the isle. But why did we have to take an already lost case to the ICJ where we are now bound by its verdict. Pulau Batu Putih is now LEGALLY Singapore’s. It has indisputable de jure ownership!

We could and should have let the de facto ownership dispute stew on in amicable fashion for years, even decades, until we have something that Singapore wants, when as quid pro quo, we could then demand joint management of the lighthouse and consequently joint ownership of what had been historically our land (except for a colonial bastardization of our rights).

But now, we need to know who gave 'advice' to the government to proceed to the ICJ on the issue of sovereignty of Pulau Batu Putih. Which musuh dalam selimut or Trojan Horse has sold away our birthrights to a foreign nation? We need to investigate whether there was any form of kow-tim-ness involved.

….. and is that why, at this juncture, the no-issue Sabah claim by a nonentity like the MNLF, has been raised?

Thursday, May 29, 2008

Dep Police Minister clueless on police role?

Yesterday, based on a Malaysiakini report, I posted Men in blue bashed youth till he was blue black and bloodied, in which I wrote that I was totally stunned by the reason a high-ranking police officer gave for his FRU men pulverising a 21-year old Chang Jiun Haur.

Malaysiakini photo

This officer asserted to Malaysiakini: "He asked for it. He ran over a policeman and he got what he deserved."

I had then wondered whether the police have taken to being judge, jury and executioner (none of which they are qualified to be) even if the allegations were true.

I asked how the police of Malaysia behaved like the Vigilante Corp of the early frontier days of the American West, and that 'injun' Chang should at least be thankful he wasn’t strung up on a tree or decapitated with a parang for his sins.

But Malaysiakini just reported in Chor justifies police action at BMC clash, that Deputy Home Minister Chor Chee Heung argued in defence of his uniformed thugs:

"Based on the report given to me from the police, two police officers were hurt - one on the hand and one on the thigh from falling down after being knocked by the said car."

"I did not receive any news or report about police using too much force but I assure you that the police will always act in accordance with the law."

'... the police will always act in accordance with the law ...'?

Where the f* did this bloke pop up from?

Besides, minister, are you saying it’s OK for the FRU to bash, brutalize and beat up a man, even for one who allegedly knocked a couple of them down?

You should be ashamed of yourself – please resign immediately! You aren't fit to in Parliament, let alone being a minister.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Men in blue bashed youth till he was blue black and bloodied

According to Malaysiakini, the Bandar Mahkota Cheras (BMC) saga has resulted in a 21 year old youth, Chang Jiun Haur being bashed by police until the victim was soaked in his own blood.

20 thugs FRU policemen whacked him with batons and kicked him as well.

Malaysiakini photo

Please read Malaysiakini BMC fracas: Police beat up youth for more details and photos of the gory scene.

The news article said that "Chang and his sister and two friends were driving away from the site of the barricade about 11.30 pm, when their car was surrounded by police personnel who had earlier dealt with a fracas involving BMC residents."

"… earlier dealt with …" – we know what that would mean, don’t we? If you still don’t, please read my post Police tear gas-ed Cheras residents - enabled barriers to be erected by toll company.

I think we should stop paying taxes to support these uniformed thugs. Let their 'bosses' pay them.

Much earlier, at around 7 pm, when residents attempted, again, to remove the illegal structure, they were set on by thugs (no doubt hired for the purpose by God-knows-who). Where were the f* police then?

But I was gobsmacked flabbergasted (yes, a double whammy) when a high-ranking police officer provided the reason for the FRU brutalization of Chang. This officer who was at the scene said the young laddie had run over a FRU personnel with his car.

He asserted to Malaysiakini: "He asked for it. He ran over a policeman and he got what he deserved."

So these are the police of Malaysia who behaved like the Vigilante Corp of the early frontier days of the American West – it’s a bloody miracle that Chang wasn’t strung up on a tree or decapitated with a parang for his sins. This officer had as much admitted to thuggerism.

It’s frightening we have such low brow Neathandrals instead of lawmen, who feel that they have a right to gang bashed a citizen.

But when Malaysiakini asked the officer to identify the person who was hit by the car, he had difficulty persuading the policeman to come forward, and when one finally front up, our investigative reporter, Syed Jaymal Zahiid, said he was unscathed.

Another police officer who took Chang to the Kajang Hospital said it was all bullsh*t, that no policeman had been hit by Chang’s car or any car – a UFO perhaps but definitely not a car.

Two years ago I posted a couple of poems on our men in blue at my other blog ktemoc komposes – I though it may be appropriate to air them again – see if you can recognise the related incidents:

Siapa Raja!
Don’t ever question, ya, me,
Limpeh, arm pai, aku, Saya.
Lu tremblingly bow to Wah,
don’t ever forget siapa Raja!

Aku puan & tuan, kau hamba
but with sexy voluptuous bum;
question not my lustful grope
because I want badly to cum!

Leer, ogle, probe, slap, grope
are but my usual lustful way;
what I, thy tuan choose to do,
you just have no f**king say!

Kau boleh protest, plead, cry.
They but fall on wax-filled ears
of your selected wakil raykat
for 5 more f**king long years.

If you can't remember the incident above, please read Police - Naked Squatting then, Groping Buttocks now!

And the following one which I am sure, we are more familiar with:

Proudly Beneath Sang Saka Biru
yes, down, up, down, up, down
and hang on to both your ears,
do continue till something falls
out, but not counting your tears

wriggle your bare hips gently
and swing your breasts to & fro,
then turn around for the
remember to smile & say hello

we are nothing less than the law,
so don't fret or blush my li'l dear,
our tradition that you be nude
we want to know when all's clear

we are here to serve and protect
proudly beneath
Sang Saka Biru,
yes, we serve our own interests
protect our own people too

We aren't even safe from our police - please read Most Dangerous Place in Malaysia!

Postscript - read the following comments in Malaysiakini Vox Populi

Fed-up: It has become clear as day why the police involved in the Cheras blockade took such obvious side with Grand Saga all this while. Zainal Abidin Ali, the executive director of Grand Saga, is non-other than the former police chief of Dang Wangi! My goodness! Isn’t it obvious now? I hope somebody takes action on this obvious connection.

Brian Fong: I have been wondering why the police and FRU are so quick in taking action against the residents and come out in full force with water cannons and tear gas as if there is a major riot on-going. Apparently Grand Saga's executive director Zainal Abidin Ali happens to be the former Dang Wangi police chief. Hmm ...

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Can we trust Anwar Ibrahim?

Malaysiakini headlined a second part of an article by Ong Kian Ming and Oon Yeoh a thought-provoking Can Anwar be trusted?

Of course they weren’t asking kaytee in particular - ha ha ha!

Malaysiakini published the earlier part yesterday, titled
Should Anwar apologise? Basically, Ong and Oon said "Anwar Ibrahim has not admitted to – and probably will never admit to – previous mistakes while he was part of the Barisan Nasional government. And as such, he would never apologise for them."

Yawnnn, I fell asleep after reading it, hence I didn’t blog at all last night, probably much to the relief of some - ke ke ke.

In today’s article – can we trust him? - Ong and Oon averred "Those who have observed Anwar over the years would probably agree to the following adjectives to describe him – slick, shrewd, cunning. These words do not necessarily have positive connotations and for good reason."

"Anwar has often been accused of being a political chameleon – capable of adjusting his messages depending on the audience he's addressing. He's great at massaging his messages in such a way that you feel he's telling you exactly what you want to hear. A smooth operator."

Yawnnn – c’mon, let’s hear something new!

Then the two authors asked about the so-called 'new' Anwar - "Is Anwar the Reformasi Man or the same political animal as the Anwar the deputy prime minister?"

On the basis that the poor bloke "… went from the pinnacle of political power to the depths of political humiliation …", and had 6 years in prison to reflect on his UMNO life, they believed he would have changed ..... and for the better.

Ong and Oon were saying (don’t mind me chaps, it's just that I am not very fond of Mr Reformasi) what every one of Anwar's supporters have been saying, so again there’s nothing new.

Their article ended up with a bit of tap dancing, but reckoned that regardless of what Anwar has become, whether he is to be trusted or not, the changes he will bring (as PM) will benefit all.

Pure PKR propaganda, not that I am suggesting Ong and Oon are PKR supporters but their conclusion has been essentially the same as PKR’s constant argument (or plea) on why we should support Anwar Ibrahim.

But my dear Ong and Oon, what if his six years in prison had filled him with nothing but bitterness and a thirst for revenge, with a vow to reclaim his ‘birthrights’, torn away from him on the eve of his ascendancy to the pinnacle of political power?

How bitter that must have been for him, considering Anwar is a man infatuated with power, as he had shown when he was minister and DPM. Did you see how, at the Bersih rally, he didn't even bother to walk with Pak Haji Nik Aziz or Lim KS, but instead arrived by vehicle at the conclusion of the walk to take over like a president or a monarch? That's Anwar Ibrahim for you!

Well, 6 years in prison means he certainly had sufficient time to plot out his comeback trail. Revenge for him would be sweet!

Now, ask yourself, knowing Anwar for what he had shown us he had been when he was an 'ugly' UMNO minister, do you think he has been politically ‘born again’ or that he would more likely be seeking revenge for his humiliation and sufferings?

Therefore the argument that he must have changed for the better hasn’t been supported by any logical extrapolation from known facts and factors, but rather a wishful hope, and probably wishful thinking.

Ok, I recall that a year ago I read an Aliran article (sorry, couldn’t find it and can’t recall who wrote it) which succinctly analyzed the general election which at that time we knew would come before April 2008.

The Aliran article stated that Anwar’s (and PKR's) support would have to come mainly from the non-Malays (I assume it must have meant the Chinese). This prediction or political analysis seems to be spot on for the following reasons:

We know in the recent election, the Malay voters swing was only 5% - as evidenced by UMNO as the BN component hanging on best after the people's verdict.

The Chinese swing was 30% - virtually everyone predicted that – and proof of that was the Gerakan Party being virtually annihilated, whilst the MCA limped on one engine into Kuala Lumpur International on a wing and a prayer.

The Chinese voters swing wasn't entirely unexpected as we saw Ong Ka Chuan humiliating (not humbling) himself and the MCA by begging the voters for crumbs.

The Hindraf galvanized awakening of the Indians was a bonus but nonetheless a significant tsunamic wave – the voters swing was 35%.

Thus my take on the so-called 'new' Anwar is as follows:

I may not like him but that doesn’t mean he was/is stupid – in fact he’s what Ong and Oon said of him, shrewd and cunning.

He knew which side of his political bread was going to be buttered. The trick was to tread carefully between showing the ‘nons’ of his ‘born-again’ credentials and showing the Malays he’s still their ethnic warrior. A new version of the NEP was promoted but without dismissing Article 153 – in other words, have his cake as well as eat it. This is just a quick example.

Anwar is not comfy with the Pakatan. All the boasts about frogs belie his fears of a Pakatan disagreement over his shameless undemocratic taunting of how he intends to win rule through promoting party hopping, a tactic he mastered when he was in UMNO. You can take the bloke out of UMNO but you can’t take UMNO out of the bloke.

His froggy scheme can be undone in just one fell hop swoop by an uncooperative bloke like Karpal Singh whom, I believe, won’t bloody tolerate the disgraceful nonsense of robbing power through backdoor non-democracy.

He wants UMNO to ask him ‘to come home’. Then he won’t need to depend on the DAP or PAS, but especially the DAP.

Look, his man Khalid Ibrahim had felt bloody awkward forming up the Selangor exco, avoiding the appointment of the deputy MB because of too many Chinese faces. It’s bad enough having the DAP full of ‘nons’ but the ethnic situation has been compounded by the PKR ‘nons’. Quite unlike an UMNO-MCA-MIC situation.

Perak was another case in point, where the Regent by unexpectedly appointing a PAS man as the MB, had even further reduced the PKR’s standing.

And Penang?!! Need I say more?

It’s not an image Anwar wants the heartland to see, and real power can only come from the support of the heartland.

No doubt Anwar had done his part to keep the Pakatan in a cohesive form during the election campaign (and no one can take that away from him) but it wasn’t just for altruistic reasons. His strategy was to reduce the BN-UMNO majority to less than 2/3, and then voila, to present his inner coterie as the component available (after an invitation) to restore UMNO’s 2/3, but AAB wasn’t biting for various reasons.

Hence he is piling the pressure on AAB daily with his froggie forecast. The subtext? Anwar wants back into UMNO ... or else!

Another worry for him which is also slowly sinking in for his supporters is that PKR was borne along in the election mainly by Chinese and Indian votes. Push comes to shove, should the DAP and PKR come to a head on, except for a minority among the younger more idealistic set, most Chinese and Indian voters would opt for the DAP, or worse, even return to the BN.

Anwar won’t have a dream of ever weaning away the PAS and UMNO hardcore supporters into his camp. It’ll be a far tougher fight in the next election. And just don't forget, his PKR's 31 seats aren't pure PKR, not with Dr Jeya and Wee and perhaps a couple more. This may explain his continuous and frantic claims of frogs.

There may of course be another way – what if PKR emerges as the only multi-ethnic party ........ but then what about the DAP and its Karpal Singh’s?

This is one of the reasons why, for the survival of PKR and Anwar having a continuing meaningful political role, the DAP has to be destroyed as a credible party. This is the reason why the DAP must be badmouthed and demon-ised – with the Goebbel-ish propaganda starting off among the younger set. In other words, provide DAP supporters with PKR as the logical successor of a (future disgraced and unpalatable) DAP.

Naturally he doesn't have to do this himself ... ;-)

Sunday, May 25, 2008

Walk for Media Freedom

Walk for Media Freedom

Date: 1 June 2008
Time: 9.00am
Place: Dataran Merdeka to National Press Club (NPC)

Democracy in Malaysia is evolving and maturing.

Growth means change and growth often calls for one to leave behind zones of comfort and venture into unknown places. While some changes are slower to materialise, other changes that we can observe already taking place are truly refreshing.

One of those changes which will profoundly and positively impact democratic growth is the move towards Information Freedom.

From 9 am on Sunday the 1st of June 2008, Malaysian journalists and their fellow citizens will, together, demonstrate their keen desire for Media Freedom by taking a symbolic Walk at Dataran Merdeka.

To avoid problems with security laws, there will be NO PUBLIC GATHERING. Instead, participants are being asked to arrive on their own in ones and twos, show their respect to the National Flag at the Dataran, and then proceed immediately to the National Press Club which is just around the corner (location map and suggested walking route to be provided).

Those who wish to do so are invited to wear something yellow, a reflection that this is a People's Activity.

Underlining the importance of this initiative, YB Datuk Zaid Ibrahim has kindly consented to deliver the keynote address, explaining his views about the road to Media Freedom. Datuk Zaid is a Minister in the PM's Department and the de facto Law Minister. From practically the first day of his appointment, he has said and done things that have pleased the people, especially the legal community, and has conveyed a very positive feeling about what he intends to accomplish.

Datuk Zaid has two requests - that journalists turn up in large numbers and that this program calls for ethics and accountability as much as it calls for freedom. Since this is the very thrust of this campaign and exactly what we are calling upon the writer community to deliver, it looks like we are very much in sync.

While we, the organisers, can direct the theme and thrust of the event, journalist participation will be determined by organisations such as the NUJ, the NPC and the various media groups. We look forward to strong support from them. This is an opportunity that they should not miss out on.

Please pass the word around and tell every journalist whom you know about this event.

As to ordinary citizens and bloggers, here is your opportunity to show that you desire Media Freedom. Come and take the Walk with your journalist brethren and show your solidarity with them. We, as a people, can help to move our nation forward on the road to civil liberties.

See you there on Sunday 1st June 2008

Benar blog:

Ezam anti Dr M, Jeff Ooi pro Dr M?

Josh Hong, one of the most readable columnists at Malaysiakini wrote a basically anti-Mahathir article in his Jump, 'ubah'

He actually sees light in Ezam Mohd Nor rejoining UMNO. Ezam was once the right hand man and reputed (but erstwhile) protégé of Anwar Ibrahim, and left the party together with his idol when the latter was expelled from UMNO.

Since then, Ezam has split up with his former mentor. He became so disgusted with Anwar that he publicly supported Nallakarupan, another former Anwar supporter and close friend similarly disenchanted with Anwar Ibrahim, when Nalla angrily left PKR. Both have publicly condemned Anwar for his less than democratic conduct in PKR.

Hong remembered how Ezam (like Nalla) was incarcerated for his association an friendship with Anwar Ibrahim, and blamed that not on the home minister then, a bloke by the name of Abdullah Ahmad Badawi, but on “… the calculative and insidious Mahathir who decided that some key instigators behind the frequent street protests be nabbed.”

Hong believed it’s time for Ezam “… to reconcile with the party that he once fought against.” Hong went as far as to speculate that Ezam’s return to UMNO could well be a long standing plan by AAB and Ezam. Hong expects (or rather hopes) Ezam will play a more prominent role in digging up dirt on or attacking the Big ‘M’.

His article reminded us that "In June last year, Ezam, as chairperson of the Movement for Democracy and Anti-Corruption (Gerak), handed a memorandum to the prime minister demanding an investigation into allegations of criminal breach of trust and misappropriation involving a ‘senior cabinet minister’."

"No action has been taken so far, and Ezam, for some reasons only known to Abdullah and himself, has ceased pursuing the case."

"Last month, Ezam echoed the calls for a probe into Mahathir’s alleged interference in the governance system, and blamed the former prime minister for the rot in our judiciary."

Was Hong implying that ‘senior cabinet minister’ alleged by Ezam of criminal breach of trust and misappropriation, meriting investigation, was none other than the Big ‘M’ himself?

Wow and double wows!

Has AAB been squirreling such political titbits for a rainy day … which could be now. But of course we are reading too much between the lines into Hong’s Malaysiakini column.

Anyway, Hong asked: “… will Ezam be assuming some significant role if such process (investigating into …) is initiated by the government?” In fact he would love to see Ezam “…land more blows to Mahathir.”

Hong commented on something which many people, including bloggers, have ignored, that “… by the standards of a mature democracy, winning 140 seats out of 222 in Parliament is already quite an achievement."

Despite this, both (some of) UMNO insiders and (most) PKR members have been piling the pressure on a daily basis on AAB as if he had just lost the election for UMNO.

So AAB is in a pseudo-crisis, as the propaganda tells us daily. Hong believes AAB obviously and badly needs someone with a clean image and integrity (by BN standards – what does Hong mean by this ;-) ?) to prop him up.

Hong dismissed the current leadership UMNO mob, and pinpointed Ezam as a relatively ‘clean, credible and competent’ (some are my words) to be the ideal running mate for KJ when the SIL makes a stab at the top UMNO post in December.

Aiyoyo, so it’s not for the national or party benefit but still for AAB’s family interests?

So, on the basis that Ezam is anti-Mahathir, he has Josh Hong’s ‘vote’ even if he returns to UMNO. On that same perception, Hong has insinuated Jeff Ooi (DAP) is either on Mahathir’s payroll or serving his agenda.

Wow and triple wows!

Hong asserted he hasn’t been kidding in making that allegation, because he has (and so have many thousands of us) read Jeff Ooi declaring his
admiration for Dr M, whom Hong described as the most authoritarian prime minister in Malaysian history!

Hong has been annoyed with Jeff Ooi for joining “… the chorus to call on Abdullah to come up with a retirement
plan!” just as my blogging mate Susan Loone has so posted in Jeff Ooi, Umno politics and Penang investors. Susan wrote:

“Now, Jeff joins Mahathir & Co. to ask Abdullah Ahmad Badawi to resign as prime minister, asking the latter to set a date (

“Many economists and financial analysts have predicted a downturn in foreign investments and an economic slump in the long run if the crisis continues unchecked. So Pak Lah must act by announcing his retirement plan. It will restore investors’ confidence in the long run,” the MP said, adding that investors would not want to invest in a politically unstable country. Since all investors come in for the long haul, they would not want to put their money in a country mired in political uncertainties”.

Then Susan went on to show that both a top Japanese investor, manufacturing company Ibiden (through its the company manager Yutaka Torimaru), and the (DAP) CM of Penang, Lim Guan Eng made statements which discredited Jeff Ooi’s take on the effect of UMNO intra party drama on foreign investments.

Susan quoted Ibiden that the invester has been unperturbed by the current political crisis in Malaysia because our country is far more secure and stable than many other countries in the region. Lim GE said the same thing.

… which begs the question as to why Jeff has taken up the cudgel together with the anti AAB camp, namely Dr M.

Hong lambasted Jeff Ooi for failing to recognize that AAB’s untimely departure would only bring about an UMNO government led by the Mahathir clique.

But does Josh Hong’s title for his article imply he advocates froggies?

The answer is indeed a ‘yes’ though Hong puts a caveat on his support, that Anwar and his allies must prove to us that they deserve the fruits of froggies, and are serious about the job.

Hong made several conditions for the Pakatan to achieve this, though he should have directed them to PKR rather than the Pakatan as the DAP has not shown any proclivity for such an undemocratic backdoor to power. I will list three as follows:

(i) Make transparent the entire lobbying of BN lawmakers, including all the new deals with Sabah and Sarawak,

(ii) Ensure that no money changed hands and be proactive in countering such allegation by the BN or other parties,

(iii) Sort out the differences within Pakatan, especially the Islamic state issue and the role of the Malay rulers.

I wonder how Josh Hong will be able to verify (i) and especially the first part of (ii), namely 'ensuring that no money changes hands' in enticing frogs, unless he possesses super-sleuth or supernatural facilities, or is super-naïve.

I have always like Josh Hong for his fine caring articles, but I have to ask whether Hong been so stricken by his dislike for Mahathir that to him, any other devil surely can’t be worse? In fact, that’s what he said, or words to the effect.

I have often remarked that extreme emotions, like those frequently demonstrated by Anwaristas and UMNO-istas (birds of …!), don’t provide stable platforms on which to formulate sound judgements.

Saturday, May 24, 2008

Selangor BN's scorched earth tactics

... in strait places gar keep all store,
And byrnen ye plainland them before,
That they shall pass away in haist
What that they find na thing but waist
....This is the counsel and intent
Of gud King Robert's testiment.

- Robert the Bruce, King of Scots

Malaysiakini reported the Selangor MB, Khalid Ibrahim, revealing in the State Assembly how the previous BN government went on a scorched earth tactic. Each of its previous assembly person, and even one who wasn’t, spent around RM500,000 to RM600,000 of the State allocation within a mere period of just two months prior to the election.

The new MB stated that the RM27m spent by BN reps in two months represented 90.6% of the total State allocations.

Khalid also disclosed a significant observation that many of the ADUNs from the previous BN government spent a common sum of either RM592,800 or RM492,800.

With all those 8’s, maybe the sum expended was on the advice of a Chinese feng shui master? And who can say that's not true - after all we have been informed that UMNO politicians and even PKR ones were known to go as far as Sumatra and Java to consult bomohs to ensure their political victories.

In my posting Religious Devotion of Malaysian Politicians 2 years ago, I wrote:

… in Indonesia, one of the most popular destinations for consulting a bomoh is Asahan in Sumatera. Some years ago there was a rumour that a member of the Malaysian royalty employed Sumateran black magic to keep her hubby under selective impotence – he couldn’t ‘rise to the occasion’ with any other woman. After she left for the happy hunting grounds, the widower demonstrated in no uncertain terms that he was ‘freed’ from her spell. […]

The prize in Malaysian politics is so attractive and undoubtedly immensely profitable that Malaysian politicians have even resorted to the supernatural to keep them in office or win top party posts. I posted this aspect yesterday in
Doctor is in - by appointment only! where I discussed a Malaysiakini article which revealed that those occult-inclined politicians have not only been ambitious people from UMNO but also from PKR and PAS, engaging in a sort of War of the OTHER Worlds.

I can understand PKR because it was just another 'branch' of UMNO, but how revealing to learn that PAS politicians have been taking extra 'insurance' as well.

The bomoh politik (shaman who specialises in political advantage for his politician clients) said that non-Malay politicians have also consulted him, and I did wonder who they could be – from MCA, MIC, Gerakan and PPP? I doubt it would be those prudish, prim and proper DAP.

Hmmm, I want the ones consulted by PKR. The UMNO ones are no longer sakti (magically potent).

But leaving aside the bomohs, the interesting conclusion we can gather from this mad midnight mauling of the State's financial allocations in a mere 2 months, immediately prior to the election, means the BN Selangor State government knew it was in a politically terminal stage - and this perhaps through courtesy of the bomohs - they could have informed UMNO pollies they were in for a drubbing in the election, like "... ta'ada jalan lagi Bapak; lebih beruntung kalau Bapak 'menguruskan' segala2nya sebelum malam keputusan."

If so, we can logically expect, apart from the scorched earth tactics, its stashing (or pre-positioning) of the political equivalent of arms, ammo and food 'dumps' to conduct guerilla warfare against the Pakatan government.

Khalid also revealed how government bureaucracy such as ROS or the Registrar of Societies is refusing to cooperate with the State’s Pakatan government.

Khalid wrote 3 times to ROS to inquire into the affairs and the dissolution of Balkis, but alas, with no joy.

Balkis is of course the so-called charitable organization headed by the wife of the State MB with members made up of wives of ADUNs from the State ruling government, just as Bunga Tanjung is for the wives of ADUNs from the Penang government.

Balkis also did a scorched earth tactic, just like its sister organization in Penang did under the (non housewife but professional) missus of Koh Tsu Koon.

Apart from indulging in tens of thousands of ringgit spent on stuff as souvenirs for 'VVIPs', dinner functions and festivals, including a humongous RM279,000 on sports clothing for Balkis members (did I say 'charitable' organization?), it ‘donated’ RM9.9 million to Bakti, its federal equivalent headed by Jeanne Abdullah. Bunga Tanjung made the same 'donation' of its funds to Bakti.

… perhaps to be held in trust until the BN reclaims Penang and Selangor?

Even an Emperor Napoleon invading Russia would have been aghast at the destructiveness of such a retreating ‘army’ including its ‘wives corp’, a scorched earth campaign far beyond what was advocated by Generalmajor Karl Ludwig von Phull.

But then, these have been the malicious tactics of the BN, with morals belonging more to medieval mean-spirited maurading feudal warlords than the people's elected governments of a democracy.

Bush endorsed Israel's 'memory-cide' of Palestinians

Lamis Andoni is an independent journalist who has been covering the Middle East for 20 years. She has reported for the Christian Science Monitor, the Financial Times and the main newspapers in Jordan. A professor at the Graduate School in UC Berkeley, she is also the Middle East consultant for al Jazeera.

She wrote the following article for al Jazeerra


US president George Bush's attempt, at the World Trade Economic Forum in Egypt, to ease Arab anger over his speech to the Knesset is too feeble and too late.

Bush had addressed the Israeli parliament, on Israel's 60th anniversary three days ago, saying the establishment of Israel had been "the redemption of an ancient promise given to Abraham and Moses and David - a homeland for the chosen people Eretz Yisrael".

By portraying the creation of Israel as a biblical fulfilment, he bestowed divine legitimacy on the process of its establishment and also cast the Palestinians' narrative, along with their rights, outside of the realm of history.

Not surprisingly, some right-wing Knesset members reacted by hailing Bush as being "more Zionist than Israeli prime minister Ehud Olmert".

From their viewpoint, while Olmert and other leaders are ready to cede parts of the 'promised land', Bush was vowing to support and preserve the Zionist dream.

'No honest broker'
Bush's words punctured a deep place in the Palestinian collective psyche on the day of remembrance of their own dispossession.

They also drew criticism that the US could not be realistically viewed as an 'honest broker' in the conflict between Israelis and Palestinians.

Bush's bias in favour of Israel is not new and did not come as a surprise to Arabs and Palestinians.

But it was his blatant denial of Palestinian history and his unquestioning endorsement of the Zionist vision and perspective that will resound for generations to come.

By exclusively acknowledging the Zionist narrative, and an extreme version at that, Bush has struck against the very essence of the Palestinians' struggle - the fight to reclaim their collective memory of that of their homeland.

It is this fight that preceded and fuelled the armed and political struggle that forged the contemporary Palestinian liberation movement.

It was, and remains the story of the Nakba, as Palestinians call the establishment of Israel, that is told and retold that form the basis of Palestinian memory.

Al Nakba - 'The Catastrophe', as the Palestinians refer to the loss of Palestine - was first used by Qonstantin Zreik, the eminent historian, and it resonated with Palestinians who felt the shattering blow of the calamity of loss and dispossession.

AFP photo - from al Jazeera

The creation of Israel meant a loss of life as they knew it as well as displacement and exile.

For those who left it meant estrangement, and for those who stayed, alienation.

When Bush, the leader of the world's reigning superpower, denied the Palestinians their loss he was also denying them their past and their future.

By not acknowledging their past, he reduced his promise to support a Palestinian state to a conditional act of charity that Israel could bestow upon the Palestinians when and how it sees fit.

'Vacuous promises'
More significantly, his denial of Palestinian history rendered his promises vacuous - not least because Bush is about to finish his term in the White House, and his speech showed no intention of curbing Israeli expansion into the land where a state is supposed to be established.

In his promise to honour the Zionist dream, Bush omitted the reality of the Israeli occupation, as he pronounced all the Palestinian territories part of the promised Eretz of Israel.

However, far and beyond the politics of a failed negotiations process, Bush has committed a more serious blunder.

His words are likely to provide a powerful catalyst for a new generation of Palestinians already mobilized by a desire to reclaim their memory, history and perspective.

What Bush does not realise is that this new generation, from around the world, will view his words as an extension of a long and systematic Israeli effort to wipe out Palestinian memory.

Israel's destruction of more than 500 Palestinian villages inside Israel - many of which were renamed after being transformed into parks and recreational facilities - as well as the continued destruction of lands and their replacement with Jewish settlements in East Jerusalem and the West Bank, are all part of what Israeli historian Illan Pape has named an act of 'memory-cide'.

With his words, Bush was endorsing this 'memorycide' committed by Israel.

Cultural resistance
But Bush's words will face resistance; not armed resistance, but a resistance borne out of the Palestinians' rejection of these attempts to wipe out their memory.

Ironically, this new wave of cultural resistance is a direct outcome not of the long Israeli occupation but of the failed so-called Middle East 'peace process'.

It was the 1993 signing of the Oslo accords and the agreements that followed that drove home to many Palestinians a realisation that the process was not only providing cover to a gradual disintegration of Palestinian lands, and consequently Palestinian statehood, but the fragmentation of the Palestinian people as around two thirds of them were left out of the deals.

The 50th anniversary of the Nakba a decade ago triggered another wave, unprecedented in its scope, to revive, record and preserve Palestinian memory.

Names of vanished villages were recalled and embroidered into tapestries that were exhibited around the world.

By 2000, movements advocating the right of return for Palestinian refugees were sprouting from inside refugee camps across the Middle East to as far as Boston, Massachusetts, in the United States.

'Enforced forgetfulness'
The exclusion of Palestinians, embodied in the Oslo accords and the process that followed, prompted them to rediscover and reassert their version of their history.

The recording of oral history, writings, literature, songs, film, and arts in all forms and languages by Palestinians, including the sons and daughters of immigrants in America and Europe who barely speak Arabic, became acts of resistance against enforced forgetfulness.

But it was the failed negotiations at Camp David in the US in 2000 that provided the impetus for a widening awareness of the importance of Palestinians preserving their history and collective memory as a form of resistance to what was seen as attempts to make them give away their rights.

The so-called 'generous offer' by then-Israeli prime minister Yehud Barak, supported by Bill Clinton, the US president at the time, was a turning point.

When Barak proposed fragmented entities in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip, devoid of real sovereignty, in return for forsaking Palestinian national historic rights, it became clear to the Palestinians that it would be a battle for their consciousness that would determine their future.

At the meeting, President Clinton supported the Israeli perspective, one that effectively accepted an Israeli prerogative to determine the amount of territories it cedes to the Palestinians without giving them ultimate control over their border, the sky above and the water underneath their feet.

In other words, Israel was not proposing to withdraw from portions of occupied land but just making 'territorial concessions'.

The realisation was a blow to Palestinian aspirations to exercising-self determination.

Many realised that it was a result of a process that threatened to deny them their identity and history.

But Bush went farther in his insult than his predecessor ever did.

As he celebrated the creation of Israel, he simultaneously denied the Palestinians their past - and even their present.

Friday, May 23, 2008

Ibrahim Ali said 50-year old women no longer fun

While our nation holds its breath as the international court decides on the ownership of Pulau Batu Puteh, and Param Cumaraswamy ( as reported by Malaysiakini) wants the government to Arrest Dr M under ISA for alleged racist incitement in a speech made in JB last week, and Malaysians ponder over issues such as national self sufficiency in rice production, and the Opposition was accusing the ACA of being unacceptably subordinate to UMNO chief head kicker, Mohd Nazri Abdul Aziz, etc etc etc ……..

…….. Malaysiakini reported that Ibrahim Ali, former UMNO member and currently an independent member of parliament for Kelantan's Pasir Mas, advised all and sundry that Old men still wanna have fun.

Hey man, we are all for fun but what fun did Ibrahim Ali have in mind, you may ask?

Well, Ibrahim declared:
“… there would be fewer marital problems and a lower divorce rate if Muslim women were taught to accept polygamy.”

Hah, polygamy!

Ibrahim was responding to Fuziah Salleh, an opposition lawmaker, who questioned the qualifications of Syariah Court counsellors. She revealed that whenever there were marital problems, the women were blamed and forced to take the blame.

She stated:
"They are not counselled but given 'advice'. And every time, they are told that the woman is to be blamed. If it is a family problem, they must be patient. If they are beaten up, they must also be patient."

I sympathized with Fuziah Salleh’s complaint of women getting the wrong end of the Syariah Courts' stick, because as I blogged in Battling wives in Kelantan? more than 1.5 years ago, a husband in Kelantan (like Ibrahim Ali) could resort to Section 128 (1) of the Kelantan Islamic Law Enactment 2002 against a wife.

What is this Section 128 (1) of the Kelantan Islamic Law Enactment 2002?

Well, in August of that year, Kelantan deputy mufti Datuk Mohamad Shukri Mohamad
told Berita Harian that wives would be deemed to be unjust and abusive if they couldn't satisfy their husbands' sexual needs ... what!!!

Then I naturally asked the same question that I posed in a previous posting
Wives not satisfying husbands are abusive, namely, how would a woman be deemed to be ‘abusive’ if she couldn’t satisfy her husband’s sexual needs?

The Mufti explained that in a marriage, it's not always the wives who were abused as it could also happen to the husbands. He advised that Islamic laws protect both women and men.

He warned:
“Thus wives who do not provide proper care for their husbands, including not fulfilling their sexual needs, can be considered as being unjust and abusive towards their husbands.”

“These women can be charged under Section 128 (1) of the Kelantan Islamic Law Enactment 2002.”

The wife could be subjected to a fine of RM 1,000 or jail of up to six months or both upon conviction. Sh*t, all these punishment if she couldn’t make him ‘cum’? Cum on lah, Pak Mufti.

But Ibrahim Ali, instead of brandishing the dreaded Section 128 (1) of the Kelantan Islamic Law Enactment 2002 (and I suppose we should be thankful for small mercies) felt obligated to explain to Fuziah Salleh. He said:
"Such problems happen because women cannot accept polygamy. From a preventive point of view, what about doing a big campaign so that women can accept polygamy?"

He elaborated that women don’t realize that the … er … fun stops for husbands when those women become pregnant or when they hit their 50s.

Aiyoh, yang berhormatny, 50 ta’boleh liao? Haven’t you heard of the saying “Many a fine tune has been played on an old fiddle”, and really, a woman of 50 isn’t old yet. Please read my Lustful fantasies.

So what do you want if you think 50 old women aren't no longer … er … fun? Young sweeties in white blouse?

I am going to blame Ibrahim Ali’s attitude on budu ;-)

And if you ask why I am taking it out (excuse the unintended pun) on the innocent delicious (but 'gatal sedikit' causing) budu, please read my 2-year old post Has Aphrodisiac Budu Been Responsible?

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Underestimating AAB

More than two years ago I posted The real Abdullah Ahmad Badawi, where I wrote:

I believe there’s an unjustified dismissal of Badawi as a weak and indecisive leader, one not in commanding control of UMNO. This is unfortunately an incorrect and dangerous perception of him, of which I too had been equally guilty of. Many merely consider him as an interim UMNO leader of limited tenure. I am not an expert on UMNO but as an interested observer I have since changed my mind about Badawi after some reflection. I now entertain an entirely different impression of him as PM [and UMNO No 1].

I went on to described AAB as a shrewd cunning person who says little but achieves much for himself. I wrote:

Rather than just dismiss his decision to remain in UMNO as typical of a passive bloke - instead of joining the disastrous Ku Li’s Semangat 46 - …….. one should actually consider that as due to his brilliant strategic assessment.

Sitting there patiently in unobtrusive manner he inched his way back into Mahathir’s favour and actually won one of UMNO’s Vice Presidency positions. That could only have come about as a result of his developing and consolidating a strong power base and factional alliances in UMNO. It must be all that more striking when we consider he achieved such a power base during a period of Anwar Ibrahim’s expanding influence and ascendancy in UMNO.

… it … highlighted … Badawi’s amazing political resurrection to become the Prime Minister of Malaysia, despite him being earlier on Team B, an astonishing party career achievement unattained by Ku Li, Musa Hitam, or Anwar Ibrahim. And Mahathir’s obligatory or obligated protégé, Najib Razak has to still wait in the wing, subordinated to Badawi.

Today as I read Malaysiakini, I see columnists Ong Kian Ming and Onn Yeoh probably making the same mistake as we had done 2 years ago, underestimating AAB. In their article
Why doesn't Pak Lah fight back? they wrote:

we have an embattled prime minister who has opted to remain in 'elegant silence' mode even as his nemesis goes all out to topple him. Yes, we are talking about Abdullah Ahmad Badawi and Dr Mahathir Mohamad, respectively. […]

It's hard to comprehend why he doesn't just come out swinging. It would not be too difficult for him as the prime minister to ask the Anti-Corruption Agency, which comes under his purview, to investigate the various alleged misdeeds of Mahathir during his 22 years in power. If Abdullah can't remember or is not aware of what those alleged misdeeds are, there are at least 82 members of parliament who would be more than happy to help compile a long laundry list for him.

Well, point No 1 (about using the ACA) – ever heard of the term ‘Omerta’? That’s why!

Additionally, there’s a Chinese saying about “Never sh*tting on your own doorstep.” And to cap it all off, the Mat Salleh advises
“People who live in glass houses janganlah buang batu.”

Point No 2 (about 82 KPCs or kay-poh-chnee’s) – surely Ong and Onn must be kidding - all the ‘elegant silence’ and survival skills of AAB wouldn’t save him if he resorts to such opposition help to destroy a former UMNO leader with a standing of 22 years leadership. He’ll be hated not only by die-hard UMNO-istas but also the greater Malay community for such treachery.

First of all, I reckon Ong and Onn in their analysis have used only western logic but failed to consider the important Malay factor. AAB is a man steeped in Malay tradition. I am inclined to think he’s the consummate Malay politician, quiet, courteous, and at times a wee condescending but a master of 'palace intrigues'. I wonder whether he's the type who will stick a keris into your side while reciting a pantun, something along this line:

Langit dah gelap, cuaca pun marah,
Angin bertiup kuat dan ganggu abu
Jangan khuatir saudara kalau basah

Bukan kerana hujan, hanya darahmu

Ong and Onn might have make the mistake of thinking AAB is too complacent, totally unaware that Anwar, Najib and a fiery Dr M all have a common aim, to remove him.

Well, so far he has outmanoeuvred each and every one of them, in the same quiet unobtrusive way that he has achieved what Ku Li, Musa Hitam, Anwar Ibrahim and Najib couldn’t, becoming PM.

He has kept Dr M on the outer since he became PM, much to the chagrin of the former PM, to such an extent that the latter, out of utter frustration, has resorted to an unthinkable resignation from UMNO as the ultimate ante ….. and which, if I may be so bold as to say, is fast fizzling out.

AAB is still PM, and Najib and Anwar each waits (maybe forever in vain) in the shade of each wing.

And post tsunamic election, AAB has made several gestures that even have his critics believing he could even be a closeted reformist ha ha ha - eat your heart out, Anwar Ibrahim! Some, unbelievably lawyers, have even praised him. I see him slowly doling out the lollies to the critics hungry for reformist crumbs.

Sometimes I get the feeling that AAB and not his SIL has been the master puppeteer, pretending and allowing the curses and blame to reach the 4th Floor, while he smile in elegant smugness, slyness and satisfaction while allowing the rowdy inelegant world to believe he is the ‘fool’ …

… when in reality he has fooled all of us … ;-)

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

3 M's - Mukhriz, Mahathir and Munirah

Yesterday I posted UMNO - the 'calm' before the storm, where I observed that the most vogue word currently for the movers and shakers in UMNO is ‘calm’ ;-).

As if hearing me (or perhaps he did ke ke ke), Hishamuddin has since uttered that word too. Hmmm, maybe he thought he had better registered himself as an UMNO mover and shaker.

In Malaysiakini, I read of him saying: "I urge members to remain calm and to stay strong. In the context of Umno Youth, we are one team. Mukhriz either understands this principle or pretends to not understand."

He was admonishing Mukhriz for demanding that AAB steps down as a condition for his (Mukhriz’s) continuing membership of UMNO.

In Hishammuddin 'stunned' by Mukhriz demand Malaysiakini reported Mukhriz saying: "My preference is that action will be taken (against president AAB) before the beginning of our branch meetings which is in July. Then I reserve the right to make a different stance on the matter."

Mukhriz’s dad, mum and brother Mokhzani have already resigned from UMNO.

Meanwhile we learn in Malaysiakini that Mukhriz attacks gov't in Parliament for allowing Halliburton, a top American oil and gas services company and defence contractor, to open a factory in Johor. He queried the AAB government for this political incongruity when it had professed to be against the war in Iraq.

Mukhriz said: "This corporation is involved in the murder of more than one million innocent Iraqi civilians and I want to know why our government has allowed it to open a factory in Johor."

Attacking AAB from another front, Mukhriz’s dad warned: "We have heard a lot about the possibility of BN members hopping into opposition parties. If 35 members join the opposition, BN will fall. The opposition will win and form the next government."

"What will happen to all the BN party hoppers? They won’t become PM because surely the Pakatan leader will become PM. Other Pakatan members will also become ministers and deputy ministers."

"How many of these posts remain available for BN hoppers? Surely not all of them will get a post. They will continue to be Pakatan followers ..."

Good tactic, Doc, ‘cause nothing motivates like greed. But yet at the same time he wanted BN MPs to leave BN … oh, I see ... only to pressure AAB to resign ... but this tactic doesn’t seem to work as AAB continues to enjoy the confidence of (whatever are left of) the BN people. Maybe they remember a bloke by the name of Ku Li?

But then no worries Doc, 'cause Nallakaruppan today claimed in Malaysiakini Nalla: Anwar lying on crossovers that his old tennis partner, PKR de facto leader Anwar Ibrahim, has not been telling the froggie truth.

Well, we better warn the Princess not to kiss the frog then, as according to Nalla, there won't be any Prince Charming, at least not a de jure one.

Nalla declared: "He is lying. I don't believe him, and I don't trust him."

Really? Now, who would have thought of Nalla not trusting his old tennis partner and (former) good buddy ;-)

Not to be left out of the furor over the vital future of Malay political dominance in Malaysia, National Islamic Students Association of Malaysia vice-president Munirah Bahari chipped in to contribute her perception on what has been the problem. She condemned the white blouse uniform worn by girls at government schools.

"The white blouse is too transparent for girls and it becomes a source of attraction. This could see them getting molested, having pre-marital sex and all sorts of things. It becomes a distraction to men, who are drawn to it, whether or not they like looking at it."

"All this leads to babies born out of wedlock and to an extent, even prostitution."

She not only said that it encouraged rape and pre-marital sex, but that (some of) the girls used the white blouse to lure men. Munirah asserted: "This is the source of the problem, where we can see that schoolgirls themselves are capable of using this to attract men to them."

Really? Oooooh, those Jezebels ;-) Now where is that close-one-eye bloke and his fellow bocor-ite when the occasion calls for their puerile remarks, or alternatively, where's the other bloke who could see all the way up a MAS stewardess skirt?

Wow, if we all adhere to Munirah’s prescription of 'covering up' according to Islamic precepts to fend off social ills including rape, sexual harassment and even premarital sex of teenage schoolgirls, then I reckon 'ketuanan Melayu' terjamin kukuh.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

UMNO - the 'calm' before the storm

So, what’s the most popular UMNO word since we heard that Dr Mahathir has resigned from UMNO?

Yesterday Malaysiakini published PM shocked by Dr M's decision where AAB called for ‘calm’ within the party.

Then in Star Online, we hear Najib in Egypt wanting to talk to ‘Uncle’ over his sudden resignation, where he (Najib) “I hope all Umno members will stay calm …”.

Today in Malaysiakini, we hear a 'Shocked' Muhyiddin calling for calm.


The dictionary defines ‘calm’ as ‘freedom from agitation, excitement, or passion; tranquillity; serenity’, giving an example of “He faced the possibility of political death with complete calm.”

OK, kaytee added the word 'political' ;-)

There are other examples, eg. “The calm before the storm”.

One of my favourite actors, Michael Caine, once said “Be like a duck. Calm on the surface, but always paddling like the dickens underneath.” ;-)

Then finally, American volleyball player, sexy Gabrielle Reece advised “Stay calm and aggressive.”

Gabrielle Reece

Monday, May 19, 2008

Dr Mahathir resigned from UMNO?

I am surpised Malaysiakini hasn't scooped this yet but the Star Online has informed us the ultimate news - today just after noon, Dr M has annouced his decision to quit UMNO, saying he has lost his confidence in the current UMNO leadership.

I wonder whether the 'final straw' is a strategic or tactical move, or a genuine sense of unrecoverable exasperation after his meeting with his favourite, Najib where he finally realised he has been outmanouvred every which way by Mr Elegant Silence. Err ... is this a case where 'silence is golden'?

However, Dr M advised those who intend to join him in resigning, not to join any other party (hmmm, I wonder who had in mind), but to wait for the correct time to rejoin UMNO.

Fuel subsidy - who really benefits?

Foong Wai Fong is the director of Megatrends Asia, best-selling author of ‘Megatrends Asia’ (with John Naistbitt), ‘The New Asian Way’, ‘Mr Prime Minister We Have to Talk’, and ‘Culture Is Good Business’.

He has just written for Malaysiakini an article titled Economy in jeopardy in which he pointed out in his analysis that the BN (basically UMNO) government's rather unique but predictale style of responding to various economic crises. Foong confirmed that the administration’s resolutions almost inevitably involved the spending of billions of ringgit.

Foong is being either polite or diplomatic as most Malaysians would see through their cynical eyes more sinister objectives in those multi-billion ringgit so-called 'resolutions'.

From those government 'solutions', one obtains the impression that Malaysia has very deep pockets, and that we have faith in buying our way out of our economic woes.

Foong tsk tsk-ed this approach, saying “Malaysia cannot afford this for too much longer.”

Indeed, one of our biggest earners has been our oil/gas products, which have been forecast to run out in 2014, just a frightening short 6 years away.

Basically Foong bemoaned that our leaders in reality don’t have any innovative solution to work towards ensuring our future economic well-being. Yes, our current handy cash can be used to provide temporary relief in a crisis but the strategic aim should be to invest to build capacity so as to yield recurring returns.

But our government seems only capable of throwing more money away, and in many cases, even good ones after the already-known bad ones.

Foong commented correctly that the Malaysian government spends its (currently still) plentiful money for political rather than long term economic returns.

I quote him (relevant extracts):

… the fuel subsidy of RM43 billion is three times the revenue derived from personal income tax of RM13.4 billion and over 20 percent more than the forecast corporate tax of RM34.8 billion. In total, the fuel subsidy is almost 50 percent of the estimated federal government revenue of RM102 billion.

The populist approach in Malaysia is to give out candy. It is easier for bureaucrats to do this than to think out real solutions. Unlike in business, bureaucrats spend money without demanding a return, businesses ask for a return before they disburse funds.

This view is best summed up by a foreign diplomat: “Malaysia manages its economy in the political way - talking and making slogans about things, dishing out money so all are relieved, but not asking tough questions and working hard to find solutions.”

OK, there is no doubt that the BN-UMNO economic management stinks.

Yet the government doesn’t have a monopoly on that woeful attitude. Yes, we have among us, outside the government, the ‘world’s most brilliant economist’ (mind you, he claims to have finance experience, where under his tenure, the Treasury amazingly introduced a new 2-sen, or was it 1-sen, coin - wow!).

Mr Brilliant had even flamboyantly promised us, if his party were to win the election, even lower fuel price, on top of and above what the current government is already and very painfully subsidizing.

As Foong has shockingly quantified for us above, the government’s current fuel expenditure (subsidy) is RM43 billion whilst the corresponding income is only RM 13.4 billion. Got it? Expenditure is more than 3 times the income, a state that even my old housewife mum would say "aiyoh, tua seepun loh, cheen chnea ch'arm lah". A shocking red entry in our national ledger and Mr World’s Best Economist still wants to add on to the RED.

This is an example of what Foong meant by the ‘populist approach of giving out candy’, basically making grandiose political promises which would be irresponsible and grossly damaging for sound economic management.

Furthermore this ‘world famous economic giant’ even promised to reduce the federal share of its oil/gas revenue by playing Father Christmas with a humongous 300% increase (from 5% to 20%) in oil/gas royalties for the producing States.

Take your pick – (1) he doesn’t know what he’s talking about, (2) he has been making only grandiose but unachievable promises (there’s a 3-letter word for such a 'promise'), or (3) he doesn’t care about the economic consequences so long as he realises, as a quid pro quo, his political ambition.

Would it be far amiss to say that, under those economically irresponsible and financially imprudent political promises, he’s far worse than the UMNO finance/economic ministers?

Foong said: "In the long run, subsidies kill an industry, as many developed nations have found out. Subsidies distort the real costs of production and services, and no government can afford to continuing absorbing costs over time. Besides, the subsidy lifeline only perpetuates inefficiencies."

As I mentioned in previous posts, the fuel subsidy must be removed.

The lower income group who uses small capacity vehicles such scooters and motorcycles won’t feel the impact of removing the fuel subsidies as much as those who use gas guzzlers. So why are we supporting a system which subsidizes the gas guzzlers, and which encourages cheating (Foong has politely termed this as 'inefficiencies') by big users, smuggling and the black market?

One way of compensating the low income group would be to remove, in its entirety, the road registration fees for small capacity motorcycles and scooters, and even vehicles, say those below 850 or even up to 1200 cc. The government could also look into the cost of vehicle insurance, perhaps even taking over the basic insurance - this is done successfully overseas.

And don’t forget those tolls which have been awarded ‘no-loss-&-big-profits-guaranteed’ contracts and clauses – it’s time to review them to see whether the government had abused its position in awarding those contracts to feather the nests of those towkays, and to demand re-negotiations.

In parallel to teh above remedial measures, the government needs to develop a reliable and efficient public transport system, and please for it to keep those people in the CVLB out completely.

And we certainly don't need the 'world's greatest economist' to muddle up the mess any further!

Sunday, May 18, 2008

PAS - a Malay nationalist rather than Islamic party

I wasn’t aware that yesterday Pak Haji Nik Aziz, the Kelantan MB, had urged the Malay Rulers to explain ‘ketuanan Melayu’ to the people because he’s annoyed with some individuals whom he claimed as “bold enough to question ‘ketuanan Melayu’”.

That was until I read Pak Haji Nik Aziz' regrettable words in Malaysiakini, which also reported his fellow Kelantanese Zaid Ibrahim, Minister in the Prime Minister's Department, advising that “all quarters must abide by the provisions in the Federal Constitution as they covered all aspects, including the rights of the Malays and other races in this country, adding that if they all demand for rights outside the constitution, it may cause tension and friction.”

I am not sure whether Pak Haji Nik Aziz had meant ‘Malay supremacy’ or as Prof Shamsul Amri Baharudin of UKM's Institute of Ethnic Studies (Kita) had attempted to spin it, ‘Malay sovereignty’.

But from his tone (eg. "… individual bold enough to question ‘ketuanan Melayu’") I would say Pak Haji Nik Aziz would be from the former traditional school which believe in ‘Malay supremacy’. In fact he went on to warn that if the Malay Rulers continue to be silent on this issue, the super (or should it be 'supreme'?) position of the Malays would continue to be questioned by people with an agenda.

But as reader Amor Patriae had said in his letter Social Contract Myth and Scholars' Respond: A Rejoinder, even Prof Shamsul, whom he averred as the engineer behind the new ethnic studies module (following the uproar from the earlier UPM ethnic module), needs to be challenged on that ‘sovereignty’ (instead of ‘supremacy’) assertion, because the professor many 'glaring statements' of ‘social contract’ in the module cast a completely different hue.

I posted in The Ham and Bull of 'Ketuanan Melayu', quoting Profs Azmi Sharom and James Chin, that the concept of 'Malay supremacy' has been a fallacy created by a former deputy minister, Abdullah Ahmad. Abdullah Ahmad's argument flowed on to the so-called 'social contract' that non-Malays, in return for their citizenship, have to acknowledge that the Malays are politically supreme and cannot be challenged, ever.

Prof James Chin said UMNO (and now also PAS in the person of Nik Aziz), in insisting on upholding this non-existent ‘social contract’ of racial supremacy (created by Abdullah Ahmad), have basically implied what the Crown Prince of Kelantan said openly - that non-Malays can never be considered equal citizens nor ask for equality as citizens – that's right, they can never be and won't be accepted as equal citizens to Malays.

It’s a damn shame that Pak Haji Nik Aziz as Kelantan's MB, instead of counselling the young prince on his correct royal duties to all his subjects, has instead added fuel to the flame.

It’s seems that in the final analysis, even for a man like Pak Haji Nik Aziz who has always been preaching about the fairness and compassion of Islam, Islamic fairness must give way to the worst form of Malay nationalism - and I am being very kind in ascribing that as '...the worst form of Malay nationalism' because the real sinister objective of 'ketuanan Melayu' is about exploiting that so-called nationalism for the actual 'feathering of some people's personal beds'.

Whatever, Nik Aziz wants ‘ketuanan Melayu’ to be upheld, and royalty to preach the word.

I wonder whether Pak Haji Nik Aziz realizes that he is actually supporting (directly or indirectly) the continuation of the unfairness and injustice that I posted in Social contract - a vigorously implemented 'fantasy'.


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