The most successful Charlie Chaplin performance! (and the he’s no longer ‘silenced’)
President of France said the Burqa should be banned in the country and called it a form of oppression against females.
It has drawn fire from all directions, Muslims and non-Muslims. Then, out of somewhere, someone asked this,
If non Muslim women who entered Muslim countries are required to obey the local custom and cover up, why is it wrong now to demand foreigners coming to France to obey the ban?
The world is balanced on the tip of a needle. The trick is to maintain balance. And that requires a lot of respect, tolerance and common sense.
Malaysia is in dire need of new generations of leaders. After decades of degeneration under the dictatorship of a single man, Malaysia today is a broken country. Almost none of the machineries of governance is working properly and the cabinets are filled with immoral personalities with dubious characters, politicking instead of serving the people.
This country can learn from history, if only the people open up their minds and hearts to the events happening around the world. The people have to realise if something is not done NOW, we will end up just like one of the post-colonial failed states in Africa continent, like Zimbabwe.
Do we want to have our children seeking refuge in other nations like we see today with many middle eastern countries? Take Iran for example. They are scattered all over the world because they cannot live under the regime anymore. Laws do not protect individuals and businesses in Iran. People rather keep their money under their pillow instead of banks. A well connected corrupt politician can get away with millions while a suspected petty theif can be hanged. Do we want to go that way?
Tunku Abd Aziz is right. Corruption is humanity’s greatest curse. Malaysia has plenty of it unchecked. Mahathir has developed a system where politicians and their cronies can act like there is no laws at all. More frightening is many in Malaysia look up to a career in politics as a fast track to richness. Take Hee for example. 25 millions in pocket just like that. All she needed to do was win election and look for an offer. It was rumored that businessman Vincent Tan forked out the money for the buyover. What kind of message are we sending to the people? How can we tolerate this? Look at the level of corruption in all the government machineries. From the police to the customs to your local council. Just tell me which one is clean? How do we clean up this mess?
The majority Malays now think it is their birth right to be spoon-fed. Everything in Malaysia has to first be filtered through the color of the skin. Business licenses, scholarships, government contracts, jobs, you name it. In the path of achieving his ‘Ketuanan Melayu’ dream, Mahathir and his cronies have essentially created a monster out of the people. One that cannot survive without racist policies like NEP. This is also precisely how Mahathir wanted to keep the voting block on his side. Sadly, the same behaviour is rampant in PAS. After winning the state of Kedah, they slapped a 50% quota on the housing projects for Bumiputera. Fortunately today, we see a glimpse of hope in Malays such as Tunku Abd Aziz and Zaid Ibrahim. But sadly, majority of the Malays still do not think like them. How do we clean up this mess?
As though the current constitution and laws are not enough, the Muslims in Malaysia are dreaming of an Iranian-like Islamic Revolution. Worse than that, some even dream of going the Taliban way of living. Out of their hatred of everything Western and modern, they dream of recreating a world at the times of the prophets. And if anything is unique about that time, it’s all the wars and bloodshed. Zulkifli Nordin, a PAS MP in PKR, urged Malaysian to form a coalition of Islamic armies to interefere in Southern Thai. Basically, this law maker is asking for a war in Southern Thai so a chunk of the kingdom/country can be sliced out to form a pure Islamic nation. If religion is not enough to fish for support for such a crazy and dangerous idea, he spiced it up with racism by stating that the people in Southern Thai are Malays. If we can have a highly educated law maker sitting in Parliament saying such things, I shudder to think what is in the minds of the majority Muslims. How to clean up this mess?
What is moral? Many in Malaysia think it’s about covering up your hair, your thighs, your face. Some think it is about banning the sale of alcohol, condoms and rock concerts. Some think it is about eating only properly slaughtered animals. Those are what Malaysian use to measure morality. But these same people who talked about being moral, they propagate racism, hatred, corruption and all sorts of criminal activities. Despite the strict ban imposed on alcohol and sexuality, we see increasing case of rape, murder, incest, unwanted newborn, drugs and what have you. Meanwhile, moral police are sent to catch couples holding hands in public places. When non-Malay school kids are being taught of ‘nilai-nilai murni’, the Malay kids are told to beware of ‘pendatangs’ and their hidden agendas. So what is moral and what is not? Is it right to measure the morality of a people by how many times they pray, how well covered they are and how much they abhorred other’s ways of life? How do we clean up this mess?
Malaysia is a broken country. Not many give two hoots about the importance of unity and identity of the nation. When they are overseas, they don’t feel proud that they are Malaysian. Even if they want to, there is nothing much to be proud of. In fact, our passport may even invite curious stares and full body search. Such is the value of our national brand. But the people are busy with their own life, with their own racist and political agenda. All they care about is how much money they make, what’s the shortest path to riches, how to get government contracts, how to check on the ‘pendatangs’, how to live the Taliban way, how to maintain ‘Ketuanan Melayu’, how to hate all things Western. Malaysia is relatively an ‘unknown’ country. If you have travelled much, you will find yourself having to explain to people abroad that it is the chunk of land in between Thailand and Singapore. You do it so often that you explain even without being asked. Chinese and Indians are being viewed as ‘pendatang’, nevermind the fact that they have absolutely nothing to do with China or India. Malays on the other hand start to think that they originated from Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and that going there is akin to going home. The Arabs and Palestinians are more Malaysian than the ‘pendatangs’ born and bred in Malaysia. So what is Malaysia? It’s the chunk of land in between Thailand and Singapore with the tallest twin towers in the world. Ask any Malaysian if they are proud of their country, you’ll get a funny stare or answers like “What is there to be proud of?” How do we clean up this mess?
If the Altantuya scandal was not bad enough, the latest development on Manohara’s case put Najib yet in another woman-related mess.
Being reactive is bad enough. Knee-jerk spins executed without proper thought is simply disastrous – much like how Najib found the urge to swear twice at mosques to unlink himself from Altantuya.
Not too long ago, Najib’s spin boys at Utusan reacted with a piece titled “Manohara Odelia Bahagia“. As usual, Malaysian reads it as a desperate cover-up executed hastily to answer the allegations from media across the straits.
MalaysianInsider reported that the 17 year-old model had flee to Indonesia and claimed to be sexually abused by the Kelantan prince husband (psst: what is the legal age to tie the knot in Malaysia I wonder).
Najib should fire his teams of Utusan spinners. Seems like in the course of making themselves irrelevant, Utusan spinners have put the UMNO Prime Minister in really bad light and made the whole Malaysia a laughing stock.
Mahathir asks ‘Why Mahathirism and not Badawism?’. Politics is all about perception. What you truly are does not matter much. History and the world will judge you by what they perceive you are and how their life was impacted by your actions. I am not interested in what you eat or how you sleep. I am only interested in what you do because your actions affect my life and that of my future generations.
So why people prefer to talk about Mahathirism instead of Badawism? The answer must be in the sorry state of messy affairs that Malaysians find themselves in today as a result of the few decades under Mahathir’s rule.
Is it fair to blame everything on Mahathir? What’s fair and what’s not? You reap what you sow, you are what you eat. Mahathir chose to rule with iron fist until the very end. Naturally, all the blame falls on him. Had he revived democracy, put in a system that will benefit the nation in the long run, he would not end up having to defend himself today.
Unfortunately, the taste of absolute power is too addictive. Once you have it, it’s difficult to let go. In the end, Mahathir created a system that entrapped himself in it – lose the power and you lose everything; your legacy, your white elephants.
Lets look at Taiwan. Despite the chair-throwing, hair-pulling and fist-fighting in their parliament, the country continue to thrive as one of the strongest economy of Asia. If you ask a Taiwanese about their presidents, you will get frowns and bad words hurled out to describe their leaders.
So is there any leader of the republic that they like at all? There is, and he is not generalismo Chiang Kai-Shek. It is the son, Chiang Ching-Kuo. When Chiang Ching-Kuo assumed office from his father, the republic was under authoritarian rule. It was still a military government. Chiang Ching-Kuo had the taste of absolute power. He could rule like Kim Jong Il. Instead, towards the end of his rule, he freed up the press and allowed opposition voices to put a check and balance on the power of KuoMinTang(KMT)’s leadership.
He knew at that time, KMT was already entangled in a mess of corruption and triad activities. Warlords were everywhere. So bad that KMT was famous for the term ‘Black Gold’ for a long period after the democratic reform was put in place. It was a term that describes the influence of triads in governance, level of corruption and money politics. In fact, KMT itself started as an underground society and is viewed as the mother of all Chinese triads. It was started by Dr Sun and was called revolution back then, with different objectives than today’s triads.
Today, Malaysia is in the messy state of affairs similar to Taiwan back then. Corruption is rampant, judiciary is in shambles, police is playing politics. UMNO has become the old KMT, with powerful warlords and criminals who have no respect for laws and democracy. Elections are manipulated to ensure UMNO’s grip on power.
Mahathir could have learned from Chian Ching-Kuo. In fact, many were putting hope to see him taking a similar path before he stepped down. He didn’t. Maybe he had no time as he was rushed to IJN. The people turned to Badawi to fix the rot with hope to put the nation back on the right path.
At this old age, Mahathir should be living his retirement in peace and writing his biography like Lee Kuan Yew. Unfortunately, the so-called ‘perfect system’ he put in could not prevent the undoing of his legacies. One can argue that it’s the nature of politicians to be exerting his rule and creating their legacies when they assume power. But it is the people who will decide what is good and bad for them.
Mahathir’s GLCs like Proton were managed as though public money will flow uninterrupted into their pockets. Those are nothing but white elephants. They cannot survive without the OldMan in power.
So, why Mahathir need to talk about Badawism now? How convenient it is to compare your wrong doings with other people’s mistakes to justify yours. Why you complained Badawi shut you up back then and now you talk about the need for internet censorship?
It’s damage control time. It’s all about power, about image, about perception.
The OldMan knows this better than anyone else. It explains his strong grip on the media when he was in power. Press freedom was almost non-existent. No space was given to air disapproval of Mahathir’s actions and policies. Nobody can question Mahathir. It was almost the Saddam Hussein type of crackdown on political dissidents save from putting bullets through heads.
It may not be in textbooks, but the people know what Operasi Lalang was. They know how Mahathir sacked the judges and established his control on the judiciary.
Mahathir does not need Badawism to justify his autoritarian rule. What he has done and is doing is enough to give life to the monster called Mahathirism. No, it’s not a foreign media spin. Try to ‘feel’ the ground in Malaysia and stop blaming everything on foreign media and Jews.
Yes, Badawi had his Badawism too. Which politicians do not wish to have a term coined after his name? What’s more important is what people make out of the label. Malaysians don’t give much attention to Badawism not because Kali did a better spin for him than Rocky boy. It’s not an interesting term. In the eyes of the people, Badawism simply means ‘failure’, an opportunity lost, an era of sleepiness, flip-flops and a case of political suicide – which explains why Badawism doesn’t hold much space in the hearts and minds of the people.
But Mahathirism is a devil very much alive, powerful and kicking. And this is why it deserves more attention. For example, how do you explain a Mukhriz Mahathir in the cabinet?
In Bahasa UMNO:
When we do not want to be involved we, will ensure that we are not involved directly or indirectly
Translated to Bahasa Rakyat:
When we (say we) do not want to be involved, we will ensure (we will lie) that we are not involved directly or indirectly