Monday, 30 March 2009

What’s in a name? The Cultural Indoctrination.


 

Malays seem to have a fixation with the esoteric myth behind RAHMAN. They confer upon it mystical significance such that, one only needs to look for people whose name fits the alphabet to become the leader for this country.

What then is the cultural difference between choosing a leader, someone who is anointed by a white elephant, or someone who emerges from bovine vomit or one who was born inside the Betong bamboo?

It just means, Malays haven't freed themselves from the tyranny of cultural imprisonment and by extension, cultural subjugation. This must be the first cultural agenda of the new PM and his team.

Those who subscribed to this form of mental and cultural bondage fail to understand that the act of choosing a leader is a deliberate and active process. Never mind that Najib's name fits into the alphabet N. We cannot undo what has become history, but we can determine the outcome of future events. Choosing a leader must be a deliberate act on our part.

One particular expect I hope Malays would adopt is to free themselves from being bonded to a broader fixation with all things short cut. That would mean for instance freeing themselves from relying on fortuitous outcome of certain events which imply an extreme form of passivity on the part of Malays. It can also mean freeing themselves from being dependant on gratuitous succour instead of actively mastering their external environment.

Unfree from these forms of cultural and mental bondage, Malays resort to the esoteric and mystical, relying on happenstance and chance. We have given an example of this kind of mentality, in the way Malays choose their leader- by looking out for people whose names jive with some alphabet. I shall be lost to explain how for instance do we choose the first enabling name?

Would it be, after Najib, it is MUhyiddin? Then every child who is born with their calling names conforming to each of the alphabet in Muhyiddin's name is a potential PM later? We shall have a situation, where every aspiring Malay wants to be named by an alphabet in the name of a current PM.

Malays are always looking to cut corners kah? We boost our intelligence by consuming copious amounts of raisins (kismis). We become intelligent without doing the skunk work? We drink holy water hoping our deficiency in hard work will be miraculously compensated? Malays are relying on miracles to sort out their problems.

A lizard with two tails is kept for good luck. Freaks of nature in the form of oddly shaped bananas are preserved to be turned into a cure all panacea.

The short cut answer to everything can often lead to laughable propositions. Hence to sort out Malay economic backwardness somebody says all the GLC heads must be UMNO loyalists. Does that mean UMNO members? He is chosen, even if he is mentally challenged? Do we ignore talent in favour of the short cut solution as long as he is UMNO?

Is being Malay and UMNO the solution to Malay economic woes? Let me put it bluntly to you so that you may be aware of this reality. In Malaysia you don't have to be Malay to be rich. Look around you- who are the ones richer and economically stronger? In the list of the super rich in Malaysia, how many are Malays?

So, being Malay is not a guarantee you can be rich. If that is so, then putting an UMNOnik at the helm of a GLC guarantees what? It only gives effect to the fact that we hold the levers of power. We come back again then to the easy solution of legislate everything to make Malays better off. Hello people, you can't legislate intelligence. You can't legislate a want to work. You can't legislate eminence.

Is the Malay fixation to the converted acronym RAHMAN symptomatic of a more basic instinct of Malays falling back on happenstance and mystical signs to choosing leadership?

Often, this fixation spills over to liberal interpretations of mundane things. Hence, the off chance remarks by Najib that UMNO members must dare to change was read as a sign that Najib wants MM. That must be a desperate stretch of logic or hopes.

The choice of a leader and leadership must be a deliberate process. It is a purposeful search for leaders who have qualities when applied, bring most benefits to society. Intelligence is a must. We don't want a leader to whom everything must be explained repeatedly to him. He must have the imagination to think of possibilities and if the possibilities imagined are farfetched, he must have a sense of realism to serve as a check on his exuberance.

We must begin by freeing ourselves from cultural bondage.

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Sunday, 29 March 2009

Framing the Questions.


 

How to defend UMNO among the electorate when the party accepts as Ketua Pemuda, a person who was found guilty by the UMNO Disciplinary Board? How do we defend UMNO when its DB is not consistent? In the case of Isa Samad, he was stripped as member for 3 years and had to resign as MB. In the case of Ali Rustam, he was only barred from contesting the Deputy President's post? And he gets to keep the CM's post.

The answers to these questions will depend on how the questions are asked and who is doing the asking. If you were to ask Tan Sri Sanusi Junid whose son failed to secure a place and Pemuda exco, he will phrase the question so as to get the answers he wanted. He wants answers that fortify his own misgivings on the credibility of the UMNO disciplinary board.

The board has certain facts submitted before them. It decides the issues before them based on facts. Hence, the outcome of their findings is distinguished on account of the facts before them. It cannot decide the outcome based on extraneous factors not convertible to facts. The facts surrounding Isa Samad must have been different from Ali Rustam.

As to KJ being the ketua Pemuda, why should the question be framed in such a manner? If one is sincere, he can always answer the question by saying that UMNO is ready and willing to submit its own members to an exhaustive assessment of his/her credibility. The fact is that KJ has been found guilty and PUNISHED by being given a warning. Yet despite the blight on his character, he managed to win. That is the fact now.

The punishment in the form of a warning is merited on the ground of the facts surrounding the allegations about him. It was based on some claims (before he announced his candidacy) that KJ has been instrumental in giving people funds and projects.

Why do we need to continue defending KJ? The need arises because the unrepentant jury is still out there to lynch him. The need arises also because a victory over doubters must be won over and over again.

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Not All Things to All People


I am now thinking maybe, the Pemuda UMNO contest is a beauty pageant contest. It's just like the Miss World contest. The two runner ups are wishing for some dirt to be brought to surface to disqualify the actual winner. Maybe she has posed nude in the past or acted in a soft porn movie or somewhat. What they couldn't win on merits and personal strengths they hope to be given by way of some cooked up stories.

We watched with chuckled bemusement at the way Khir Toyo ran frantically on stage to raise the hand of Pak Lah who was raising the hand of TDM who was raising the hand of Najib who was raising the hand of Muhyiddin. It's like the Japanese cabinet linking up and shouting Banzai!

It was one big happy family. I am sure Khir must be thinking that if KJ is stripped of the title, he would be the first claimant. But, that would also mean, MM still does not get the coveted post of ketua Pemuda. It shall go to the tempe man.

I haven't seen any statements from either MUkhriz or Khir Toyo to ask their supporters to stop and desist. Now UMNO must be united. Let's not start a scorched earth battle tactic.

There are talks going around that just because MM did not win, the ketua Pemuda does not need to be given a cabinet post. If we remember, the idea of declining a cabinet post if he should win comes from Mukhriz alone. His idea wasn't shared by the other ketua pemuda aspirants then.

By doing so, Mukhrz has shown his leadership immaturity couched in terms of hiding behind a showy moral higher ground. He was planning to show that he wasn't after any post.

What is leadership without application? So let's leave him alone. The is therefore a stronger argument to say, if he was not interested in having a cabinet appointment even if he had won the KP, then, all the more, he shouldn't be considered at all now that he has lost.

The ketua pemuda must be given a cabinet post to allow application of his leadership skills and to provide input from the emerging voices of the young. DS Najib must recognise this. In doing so, he needs to jettison much of the advice given by his 'advisers' who are mostly half past six insufficiently trained apparatchiks.

DS Najib must insulate himself from the deafening shrills of the hecklers on the sidelines. He does not have to please everyone. I have said this many times to him personally, he needs to command only 70% of the votes to win. He can't be everything to everyman. The most dangerous thing is to accept what's volubly articulated by the few as representing what is generally felt by the whole.

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UMNO cannot win as an army divided!

Does UMNO want to go into the battle field as an army divided?

It has just completed a gruelling UMNO General Assembly (UGA). The hotly contested post of Ketua Pemuda was won by Khairy Jamaludin, the former deputy head of UMNO youth. Seen from one context, the election of KJ is a reaffirmation of tradition where the number 2 is expected to succeed the number one.

The Ketua Puteri post was even more closely contested. But people seem to ignore this. Rosnah Sherlin was the number two. There was no money politics there? If there is none, this must be record. It's a rarity. The wanita ketua post was keenly fought for and we saw Rafidah Aziz was soundly beaten. Shahrizat was the number two. As for Rafidah, she is almost forgotten now. The iron lady has melted away.

But the fire that raged during the Pemuda contest has not simmered down. It hasn't been doused yet. Indeed, irresponsible people are still throwing fuel material at it hoping to achieve undemocratically what they couldn't through the democratic process.

After all, the election of KJ as is with the election of other office bearers across the board is a democratic process. Having made the bed, one must now lie on it. Do not blame the floor if you are an awkward dancer.

Unfortunately, this is what the virulent die hard anti KJ people are doing. I read that KJ has been accused as chickening out in discharging his responsibilities to head the UMNO youth in the 2 coming by-elections. These are to be held next week in Bukit Selambau and Bukit Gantang.

So people ask with undisguised cynicism, why is KJ chickening out from heading the PEMUDA team in these 2 bukits?

So when it comes to KJ, he has to do the extra mile to prove his worthiness right? In accusations of money politics, KJ has to prove his innocence beyond any reasonable/beyond any shadow of doubt but for others, they only need to measure up to a balance of probabilities. KJ has to go the extra mile to prove he is angelic.

This is hypocrisy on the part of so called UMNO true blue and supporters. The winners and losers in the recent UGA were selected through the same democratic process. The SAME. So how come when it boils down to winners we don't approve of, we are quick to accuse them of winning the post the evil way?

We can argue this matter until we are blue in the face. We conveniently forget that in all by elections, the director of operations is the number 2 in the organisation. It will be Muhyiddin Yassin, it will be Razali from Pemuda and the number 2 in Wanita and Puteri. In the case of Puteri, the leader has always liked to be in the forefront.

I can therefore ask the same question in the same manner by those who wish bad for UMNO.

  • Has Najib chicken out by assigning Muhyiddin?
  • Has Shahrizat chicken out by assigning Kamila?
  • Why won't Muhyiddin use these by elections to justify the explicit endorsement given him by our beloved TDM?
  • Why won't Najib use these 2 by-elections as an opportunity to vindicate himself?
  • Why won't Mukhriz prove that he is a loyal UMNO man.

UMNO seems to be catching the Arab Disease- they quarrel among themselves and bring their quarrels out in the battle fields. UMNO hasn't learnt from the Israelis. They quarrel vehemently among themselves, but when it comes to facing a common enemy, they go as a unified army.

Our common enemies are out there in Bukit Selambau and Bukit Gantang. I don't see UMNO there as the enemy. I don't see Pemuda UMNO as the unwanted bastard child. Do you?


 


 


 

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Saturday, 28 March 2009

The way forward.

I thought we would have moved on after KJ won the ketua Pemuda. We would be looking at how to re-engineer Pemuda UMNO. We look forward to infusing Pemuda with new work culture, values and purpose and commonality in aim.

But the long knives are still out there, looking for blood. I suspect the antagonists are mostly supporters of Mukhriz.

Their loyalty to the defeated Mukriz is laudable. But please be reminded that Mukhriz was also beaten by Khir Toyo too. If it were a straight fight between KT and MM, Khir Toyo may have also defeated Mukhriz. So the Mukriz supporters must also assign blame to Khir Toyo and indeed more so, because IT is KT who siphoned off support for MM.

Having been defeated at the UMNO polls the Mukhriz supporters are looking for a convenient avenue by which to blame KJ. Hence they are eagerly looking forward to the 2 by-elections at Bukit Selembau and Bukit Gantang. Unfortunately, they are wishing for the worse. They are hoping to see UMNO lose so that the blame can be assigned to KJ.

Is KJ bigger than DS Najib and Muhyiddin Yassin? The director of operations for by-elections will be the Deputy President of UMNO. That will be Muhyiddin. It is Muhyiddin who will be directly in charge of the 2 by-elections.

Hence, the person primarily responsible for the fortunes of UMNO in the 2 by-elections will be the newly anointed Deputy President. All the wings- wanita, Pemuda and Puteri will be assisting Muhyiddin to ensure UMNO wins in the two by-elections.

It doesn't stretch our imagination then to conclude the following. If the sabotaging mentality still persists and they do mostly in the horror-struck minds of Mukriz's supporters, then it is reasonable for us to link UMNO's possible defeats to the work of saboteurs within UMNO. Can we then link those prospects to Mukhriz Mahathir? The answer is No, right?

But I get these kind of snide asides from sneering and sarcastic commentators. One particular obnoxious commentator said:-

  1. it will be interesting to see how u defend UMNO this next few days with KJ as the corrupt UMNO youth in charge. How can u defend and tell the voters out there and make UMNO more attractive as compared to PR?
  2. That be an interesting read that must be! Ur job doesn't stop when KJ becomes youth chief. Even now u r still defending him instead of defending UMNO against opportunistics opposition.
  3. See how difficult life is now? The voters (incl. UMNO members) are disgusted when someone who is guilty but allowed to contest due to his FIL's influence and position.Stop looking for scapegoat for this predicament of yours.
  4. Look outward for a second and see, read, hear the wrath of common people against the folly of the delegates, the Lembaga Disiplin and pro KJ bloggers.

My answers:-

The first point links KJ directly to the expected defeat of UMNO. KJ is only a cog in the bigger UMNO wheel. DS Najib is now at the helm and Muhyiddin is the deputy. Then there are the Wanita,and Puteri leaders. They are collectively responsible for the prospects of UMNO. If one is blameworthy, then all should.

The misfortunes that have befallen UMNO since the 12th General Elections cannot be attributed to KJ at all. To do that would subvert any sense of fairplay. UMNO has fallen from grace simply because of several factors which I have written as well as others who have done so more thoroughly. UMNO as a whole, the entire leadership, the entre party are responsible for its own fate. To assign blame to KJ is to force us to accept that KJ is as big as UMNO. Not fair.

The issue shall not be the defence of KJ. Why should that be the issue when confronting the opposition? We are putting our own on trial before a hostile pakatan court? That is a mentally unbalance thing to do.

For that matter, even if you place Najib and Muhyiddin before them, both these people are already condemned. The issue shall be to offer UMNO as a whole, under a new leadership as a political party that is more viable than the Pakatan party. That will take a lot of convincing and reasoning by committed party members. That is the issue. It would be the height of idiocy and inanity to offer the defence of KJ as THE issue. That would be a stupid thing to do.

Point number three has been answered several times over. I find it incredible for people who have condemned Pak Lah as the ineffectual and lacklustre PM and UMNO president would, on the same breath put it to us that Pak Lah wields considerable influence to determine the outcome of the Pemuda contest and the findings of the UMNO Disciplinary board. What kind of argument is this? KJ was orphaned as soon as Pak Lah announced his agreement to hand over power to Najib.

As to point number 4, may I suggest the commentator to recognise that more people are warming up to KJ than the disgruntled sore losers?

Now, let us engage the Mukhriz supporters. They would have liked it more had Mukhriz won the Ketua Pemuda post. That means to them, Mukhriz has the winnable quality that can endear him and by extension, UMNO to the rakyat. Of course we can argue Mukhriz lost because he paid allegedly only RM2000 instead of the alleged RM5000 to Pemuda delegate. This is not my point.

My point is since Mukhriz has the winnable quality that can endear him to the rakyat, why doesn't he campaign alongside KJ to ensure UMNO wins Bukit Selembau and Bukit Gantang? I am sure Mukriz does not need to be a Ketua Pemuda to offer us his undivided support and services. How often have we heard that if we want to contribute to the struggle of the party, we can do it even without holding to a position? Let's see Mukriz walks this talk.

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Carpe diem, Dato Seri Najib!

The new UMNO president and his new party cabinet will have to work hard at re-engineering UMNO. This is a golden opportunity for DS Najib to do what previous UMNO presidents failed to do.

The new president must ignore those who blamed the dance floor when their dance steps are at fault. Suddenly those who failed in their bids to secure office say, investigate this and that. This is nonsensical for it assumes, the moral benchmarks in UMNO reside in their persons. Therefore, if they lose, then it behoves us to accept that the moral fibre in UMNO has also vanquished along with them?

Therefore I read with bemusement the statement of Rais Yatim about investigating the new line up. He is not alone though in being disgusted seeing men of political straw (nothing of significance resides in them) being voted into position. People like Azeez Raheem for example and people who have never soiled their feet on the muddy grounds of politics. Investigate for example the academic credentials of Azeez which sounds fishy to me.

But as to the inference that Rais stands on a higher moral ground and therefore possess of unimpeachable political morals, that's another issue. He has no monopoly over moral scruples. Those who got into the system with nothing but greasing palms will be finished off later. Their own emptiness will be their own undoing.

DS Najib can mitigate our fears of ascribing over importance to the office bearers in the new line up by refusing to mandatorily appoint those who won, to public office. This is in line with what Tengku Razaleigh suggested in his proposals- make it known that those who hold MKT/political positions are not necessarily automatic candidates for high public office. That will certainly diffuse some enthusiasm from office seekers.

Then, if DS Najib has the courage to do this( he has been speaking of being brave to change lately) he can replicate what Tun Razak did during the Tun's time. Look for leadership talent beyond the confines of MKT.

He must carry out the surgery fast. In order to stamp out money politics, he must study how to implement the one member one vote system. This is election directly by the 3 over million members. Direct election makes it impossible for any one man, however deep his pockets are, to keep paying his way into position.

But please also consider the scrapping of the quota system. That makes direct election a mockery, if eligibility is based on one getting an artificial quota meant not to keep busybodies out, but to lock put potential rivals. The concept of democracy is to allow members freedom of widest possible choices.

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What is vs. what would

Many have analysed the outcome of the Pemuda contest. The results were as follows:-

  1. KJ            304
  2. Khir Toyo        254
  3. Mukhriz Mahathir    232

Those who could not accept that KJ has won said that it was because KJ paid the voters. Well, if he did, the others did too. Never mind the findings of the UMNO disciplinary board. Every candidate pays in some form of the other.

Then, there are the born again mathematicians. They reason out the number of votes not secured by KH is greater that the votes he obtained at 304. If KT and MM had made a pact, they would have gotten rid of KJ. Of course they are assuming that KT and MM are malleable and can merge into a commonality of aim. That is wishful thinking quite against the cold logic of a mathematician.

How many votes separate KT and MM? Only 20 votes separate them. What does this suggest? This clearly suggests that as between KT and MM there are is no substantial differentiation. This in turn suggests that if the contest had been one to one, either MM or KT would receive not more than what each individually received now. The possibility of that being highly certain, KJ would have emerged the winner still.

We live in a world of what is and not what would. Joan of Arc would have lived, if only she recanted and say she accept Catholicism. Thomas Moore would have lived if he endorsed the marriage of the amorous king of England, King Henry VIII to Anne Boleyn.

Here, MM would have won, only if the Javanese had agreed to a pact. Only dreamers live in the world of what would.

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The Pahang MB- honourable in defeat


One certain day, the 5 of us sat with the Mb of Pahang. It was 1 pm. We were in a free talking mood. We talked about a wide range of things. Mostly politics and life in general

He was in a relaxed mood. To further enhance the mood, the MB whisked out his usual after dinner accompaniment- the cigar. It was a Davidoff, I think.

We soon got to talking about his impending MKT contest. He said he has not gone to the ground to campaign. Even for the introduction of contestants in Kota Bharu the previous day, he couldn't make it. He just sent his greetings through some people. Just a greeting of solidarity- not the filled handshake, that is becoming the customary arrangement in UMNO.

I am out to prove a point. If I lose I can explain the loss simply to the fact that I don't play money politics. If I win, I can still say, there is hope for money free politics in UMNO. The outcome of the contest therefore, is no longer material to me.

If I have to spend say RM3million to delegates, I might as well give that amount to the 5 of you.

Alighting from his seat he went into the house. After having just spoken about money, was he going into the house, we were thinking aloud, to fetch money to distribute around? Haha.

After a good few minutes, he came out. In his hands were a few packets of....nasi lemak bungkus.

He went over to the front portion of the porch under which we were sitting, made a few whistled calls and out came running 5 or 6 cats. Damnn- he was feeding the cats with the nasi lemak bungkus.

That's Dato Seri Adnan Yaakob for you. Down to earth, what you see is what you get kind of man. The outside totally reflects what's inside the man. Unpretentious, forthright and in the-face kind of put–it- to- you person.

In the end he secured the 29th place out of the 25 MKT seats contested. Will DS Najib bring him into the MKT? Yes is the unqualified answer. He is an MB. More importantly, in times of pervasive hypocrisy and pretentiousness, DS Najib needs a voice that represents a reality check.

My friend, Smalltalk will not go into private legal practice just yet.

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Friday, 27 March 2009

The Housefly who has gone to the heavens.

I took umbrage when one commentator to my blog article on KJ being the next KP, said he smelled a conspiracy. If not, he asked- how is possible for me (sakmongkol) to predict correctly, who is the winner?

The insinuation is I am part of a conspiracy to ensure KJ wins. Why, people ask, it took so long to count 790 votes? There was no mystery. Votes for the EXCO contestants were counted first. I heard that the agents for the contestants disputed the use of electronic/digitised counting. They wanted to have the votes counted manually and each voting slip be shown to the contestant's agent. So imagine how long it took to count by that method. The contestants themselves asked the votes to be counted that way.

Votes for the top post were counted only at 9.30pm. In half an hour, the counting was completed. There is nothing strange about this. There was no conspiracy to manipulate the voting slips.

So, how can I explain to this fellow? I didn't know who will win. I am not a clairvoyant. I merely made deductions based on my observations.

But I am sure many people such as this particular commentator will reject my explanation. Then there is nothing I can do. He and his like-minded friends reminded me of the story about the housefly who boarded a 747 plane. The story goes like this.

A housefly accidentally boarded a 747 plane and arrived at a strange place. He saw wonderful things there. He saw many unimaginable things. He re-boarded the plane and landed in his hometown. His friends who had given him up for dead, were jubilant and they celebrated by feasting on the city's daily accumulated garbage. After the feast, he was called upon to give a speech.

Friends, he said: I have travelled to a faraway place, on a flying metal contraption. I have gone up to the heavens and return safely. Upon hearing this story, his fellow flies consisting of the naysayers and the sceptics, laughed and ridiculed him. How can the housefly explain?

The housefly has indeed narrated only the truth- but can the other houseflies believe him? After all, they have the brain of a fly!

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Thursday, 26 March 2009

On Responsibility

As professor Godbole says, it is written in the stars. The professor is a character played by Alec Guinness in E.M. Forster's A Passage to India.

I have written what needed to be written about the Ketua Pemuda Race. There is nothing more than I can do. Whoever wins, will be the undisputed Ketua Pemuda. He has to work hard on the promises made and actualise his agenda. More importantly, whoever wins must be accepted as the Ketua Pemuda for the next 3 years.

Whoever wins, I offer my congratulations.

Just as I finished the above sentence, word came that KJ has won. Well, let me join the others in offering him my salutations. His people have been working very hard. Bloggers such as the urchin-like Bengkel Waziboy formerly known as Mr. Padedoh has been a real pillar of support warding off the derisive comments that came into my blog. I am afraid, if I were left to my own devices, I couldn't have the time to counter all of them.

Luckily, I have been able to count on his dedication and perseverance to deflect the attacks and take away the sting of the pain. I have also been pleasantly surprised by the stand taken by the blogger Mat Cendana for coming out strongly FOR KJ.

Now, my recent blog has attracted a lot of comments. Indeed this is the largest number of comments I have received thus far. That however is no excuse to be happy about. For, I am not sure if the majority of the commentators have the mental discipline to argue with reason. Many gave derisive shot and sometimes personally abusive comments.

Take for instance one particularly virulent commentator insinuating that I am taking this particular stand for KJ because I received my datoship later and that KJ has skewered (sula) me with money and projects.

This one is a real coward. Hey, I hear a shot from an AK47 has an eerily devastating effect. When fired, the bullet makes a clean entry, but the force of the bullet after entry makes a burrowing effect such that the hole that appears on the opposite side becomes a crater. This vermin who came up with this kind of comment deserves this treatment.

But then I take comfort in something Lee Kuan Yew said or that which can be attributed to him. That which is not seriously written is not taken seriously. Or on the reverse, that which is lightly written is adopted only by 'light' people.

I welcome dissenting views, provided they are made with good reasoning. That is the basic idea to have this uncensored blog. Readers are aware that I do not censor or moderate the comments that come here. First, because I believe that commentators will apply self censorship and intellectual discipline. Second, because I believe in the self cancelling effect of numbers. For those who hurl verbal abuses, there will be an equal number who reject them.

KJ has won, yes. He was given and he accepted a responsibility to lead. Let us help him. Yes, responsibility is the key word here.

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Wednesday, 25 March 2009

KJ-The New Ketua Pemuda.

Today, the 25th of March 2008, pemuda delegates will elect its leadership. We have heard all the unlikely admonitions about saving UMNO by preserving the status quo. We have heard the distended arguments of choosing certain leaders. In desperation, certain quarters even attempted to read their own agenda into the speech given by DS Najib. DS Najib officiated the opening o the Pemuda, Wanita and Puteri Conventions. They are nothing more that fearful voices.

There was one which imputes the message of dare to change in DS Najib's speech, which is of course the battle cry of sun setting Mukhriz Mahathir. That is of course nonsensical for there is none. What we heard was unmistakably a humbled awareness for UMNO to conduct structural changes . That is not the same with the superficial and at times farcical calls by Mukhriz Mahathir. We actually heard calls to appreciate intelligence which is getting scarce in UMNO.

Examine the exhortations built around the rallying call of Mukhriz Mahathir. What are they? They are nothing more than a disguise for a return to less democracy and more autocracy. It is an attempt to bring back the unquestioned principle of choosing a leader because of who they are.

Think about this. Think of KJ representing the opening of doors for people like you and I (in my case my sons) who don't have that pedigree background to offer. What is KJ representing? He is representing the opportunities opened to ordinary Joes without having to resort to which family we belonged to, what office we held before or which group we identify with. We offer our own merits.

The Pemuda delegates are voting for a desire for total change. Your votes must install a leadership dedicated for revolutionary changes to help UMNO.

Can change come by mere declaration? You very well know that change will never come by way of cosmetic and superficial re-arrangements. It will not come by way of mere declaration that you dare to change. The change that is ushered or intended only by way of changing one or two people will never be sufficient.

It is the culture and system that needs attacking. In order to usher in a desire for genuine change, you must elect a leadership that is determined, courageous, wilful, able to bond with you, can articulate your fears and aspirations, and who are serious about wanting to change.

The journey to change UMNO and save UMNO must begin in the hearts of the Pemuda today. You must identify who the leader who best represents the spirit of Pemuda.

Right now, the man with the plan is KJ. What is the message you get from MM? Some mumbo jumbo and marbles-in-the-mouth speech about dare to change. Change to Mukhriz is represented by one thing only- kicking out Pak Lah. We have already punished Pak Lah sufficiently. We don't go around kicking a dead horse.

UMNO's eroded credibility is travelling further south despite Pak Lah and not because of Pak Lah. Its credibility is so because UMNO itself is self-inducing paralysis.

Asking Pak Lah to go- well, that's about the most earth shaking thing that has issued forth from the sun that is setting.

It is the UMNO culture that needs addressing of. And right now, it is the UMNO culture that must be thought about by the Ketua Pemuda. Everyone can talk about wanting to bring change but they have not defined what kind of change they want to bring. Consider these.

The idea of liberalising the way we elect and choose UMNO leadership is a fundamental change. Allowing direct election of leaders, dismantling the archaic and undemocratic quota system is a fundamental change; re-structuring the work ethics of the Pemuda is a fundamental change. Insisting on quality values is a fundamental change.

Asking for the removal of one or two fellows is not a change. Returning to the old business as usual system is not the change we are looking for. Reinforcing rogue nationalism which is nothing but fearful admission of our own deep-seated vulnerabilities and collective insecurity is not the change we are after. Indeed, the verbal pronouncements of people like Mukhriz and Khir Toyo indicate they don't know what changes the Pemuda must take. What does encouraging dissent in UMNO means? Do they mean the structural changes we actually want?

Let us first begin with the very basic and fundamental step. Move away from evaluating our leaders based on who they are. Abandon the idea that leadership is reserved for certain people. Insist on the idea that we evaluate people on the basis of what they can do to the movement. The fundamental changes we want are moves that liberate us from feudal, personality cult-based politics.

So far, we hear only one person personifying the real willingness to change. That's Khairy Jamaludin. So today, you Pemuda delegates, honour the ideas that he represents by voting in Khairy Jamaluddin. Accepting any other is an unmitigated disaster.

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Monday, 23 March 2009

Factoring in TDM(2)

I thought I made it clear at the outset, in my first paragraph, how I feel about TDM. That cardinal point seemed to have been sidelined. It has been conveniently ignored. That is the usual strategy employed when attention is meant to be directed elsewhere.

Instead what I get are paranoid and xenophobic responses defending TDM. TDM does not need any defending. His record of 22 years is testimony of both his political longevity and deftness. I have said that Malaysia is what she is because of TDM.

Our deference for TDM however becomes converted into the linchpin to make unreasonable extrapolations. This rabbit out of the hat trick must be resisted. Our deference to TDM does not demand absolute and total acquiescence in what TDM says. Our respect of him is not diminished on account of a difference in opinions.

Hopefully this will be the new way, the new administration factors in TDM. The mistake by Pak Lah's Media Mafia last time, was to sideline and demonise TDM. He can't be stopped. He has his own blog which makes a more interesting reading than down-the- throat pushing style of Messrs Kalimulah and company.

The new way is to engage TDM's formidable intellect. One respects his opinions not by total acceptance but honour his thoughts by debating them. He is included into our scheme of things, recognised and respected.

No the father is not blamed for the sun son who sets. The father becomes the ultimate leverage. The father steps in where the son is a wimp. Pity then we the unfortunate ones who have no big fathers.

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Factoring in Tun Mahathir.

I am loath to find fault with our great Tun Dr Mahathir. In the final analysis, he will be judged by the court of public opinion. Simply put, his 22 years have stamped an indelible mark on our country's history. Malaysia is what it is today, as a result of one man's determined vision. There was a time in my own personal life, if I dreamt of insulting TDM, I felt compelled to wake up and apologise to him.

He has undeniably earned the right to be cranky. He can, like a character alluded to by Lord Blackadder in the Blackadder series, sit on the payment and make catcalls to passing females. Who can ever talk back to TDM? He is after all a father figure to all of us.

TDM has had 22 years of his rule. He has done a lot more great things. But he has also done a lot of costly mistakes for this country. The MEC city in my hometown of Kuantan near Gambang was a monumental error of judgement. TDM was suckered by a glib-tongued trickster of a businessman. The many IPPs that he sanctioned are placing great costs to the country. Malaysia is still burdened by the cost of certain highways that lead to nowhere.

TDM is not infallible. TDM's latest self appointed role is as the guardian of our nation's soul. Shortened into abbreviation, that spells GOONS.

He must let go. Allow others the chance to do their job; the water level will rise to its natural mark. When Tun became PM, there was no one who can talk down to Tun. Tun Hussein did not for it would have gone against the principles of the man himself. Tun Razak had been dead. In short, TDM has had more or less unbridled latitude to do whatever he pleased.

There will never be anyone who will come close to his own measure of a leader. That is simply because TDM is the singularly unique measure of what a leader is. We have already seen what the measure has reduced Pak Lah to.

There is no one who can censure TDM. Imagine the tremulousness of anyone younger and following after TDM, summoning the courage to do that. That would be equivalent to either Jiang Zemin or Li Peng investigating Deng Xiaoping. (Adapted from Francis Seow's Beyond Suspicion.

Now TDM has turned his attentions to Dato Seri Najib. The man has not even sat in the chair; he has already been prejudged and pre-measured. Out with the corrupt! thundered TDM. Yes yes of course. DS Najib will do it in the same manner as TDM did to corruption in his 22 years.

Just like TDM, Dato Najib will address the issue of corruption based on the facts and not mere suspicions. He will not be forced to do so, simply because TDM says so. DS Najib must politely decline TDM's invitations however forceful and earful those are.

The new administration under DS Najib will encounter difficulties if it does not factor in the influence of Tun Dr Mahathir but it will also be dismissed as ineffectual and lacking fortitude if it allows itself to be nose-thumped by the blistering thunders of TDM.

The greatest disservice that TDM is doing to this country is to arrogate himself the position as the final arbiter of things here in Malaysia. Sorry Tun.

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Sunday, 22 March 2009

The Tyranny of status quo

Mukhriz is enjoying the advantage of having TDM as his campaigner. TDM has not missed any opportunity to make pronouncements on Malaysian politics. He is after all the accomplished master of unsolicited counsel.

So, the Pemuda delegates must examine carefully, who actually has the advantage?

I have written a number of articles on perception. Perceptions are illusory and are dependent on personal and private motives. They are unstable to be used as criteria for the selection of leaders. Tuan Guru Nik Aziz at one point in time, perceived Abu Hassan Omar the former MB of Selangor as a good person. Abu Hassan turned out to be a rogue. TDM himself paid for his mistakes on misperceptions. The names of Anwar Ibrahim, Musa Hitam and even Pak Lah come immediately to mind. Why should we now believe he has got it right this time?

The 794 delegates must differentiate between perception and reality. Perception is a tricky variable, subject to manipulations and subterfuge. Reality is obtainable via direct interaction. I am sure that those 98% of the 794 delegates who have met up with KJ are wiser to identify the differences.

When I was serving as a wakil rakyat, even when a person's chicken is run over by a car, the wakil rakyat is faulted. The main reason for that is because it is convenient to blame someone who has authority. It is also practical. Why blame the motorist who has scooted off? Nor can the owner of the dead fowl blame his neighbours. The next proximate person is the wakil rakyat. He can be a convenient scapegoat. Blame him for all the ills, sons and daughters failing to meet academic grades, houses catching fire, burst dams and drains.

KJ is the convenient scapegoat. However remote that political calamity, it is practical to lay blame on someone. It's now time, for those who assigned blame to KJ for all the misfortunes that have befallen them to pay KJ for his services for being the punching bag.

As we near the date of reckoning, KJ will be judged by many quarters including professional writers. They are motivated by various motives. Some writers are into the game because of economic necessity. They have bills to pay, medical expenses for children, funds for business. One of the most recent books that came to my attention is the one written by Yahya Ismail. The book is entitled Tuah dan Sial Khairy Jamaludin. It is essentially a re-spin of what Yahya Ismail has already written many times before. Being the literary luminary that he is, the book transports you to the world of battles among warriors battling it out in the ring arena. It is a melodramatic rendition of the alleged wrongdoings of KJ woven by Yahya's competence of the Malay language. The integrity of the message that Yahya wishes to convey is eclipsed by his penchant for verbosity.

Sad to say, there is nothing new. Its juts a regurgitation of tiresome stories about KJ's ill-gotten wealth, abuse of position, son in law status, the link between KJ and UMNO's future. It even questions whether KJ is Malay enough to be the Ketua Pemuda.

This is precisely my point. If KJ has been painted in the vilest of terms, why should his presence strikes fear among his opponents? Yahya Ismail beckons us to go back to the old system of business as usual. It is the system within which the mantle of leadership is parcelled out among the chosen few. And Yahya Ismail has patronised the delegates by pre-selecting Mukhriz for you without adducing any cogent reasoning except for tired old clichés.

Most of the rebuttals to the issues raised were already answered by my various articles. The issue of KJ being the SIL has already been answered many times.

Then there is of course the issue of linking KJ to the loss of BN in the recent general elections. Commentators seem to be missing the point. The ills of UMNO can never be attributable to one person. The problem is with UMNO which is mired and infested with incompetent leadership. It is the height of incredulity to assign blame for UMNO's defeat to one person. UMNO was defeated because of many reasons. The leadership has become arrogant and incompetent. The UMNO leadership has alienated the people. The policies the UMNO led government has failed to benefit the majority of people. UMNO suffers the disease of political dystrophy which requires total restructuring of the political machinery. UMNO would have lost IN SPITE of KJ and not BECAUSE of KJ. If we want to assign blame, the entire leadership of UMNO must do the honourable thing. Everyone should resign en bloc.

The calls for us to reject KJ and usher in Mukhriz even if they come from the respected TDM belittle and insult our intelligence. By painting KJ as the bogeyman, it is just another slick political move to infer that only one particular person schooled in one particular system is fit to become the Ketua Pemuda.

We must decline and resist such calls. UMNO is on the brink of ushering revolutionary changes. The Pemuda can decide that NOW it wants to free itself from the tyranny of the status quo. The Malay world is no longer dominated by new princes and princesses and the stage is no longer the pseudo palaces of the new aristocracy.

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Squeezing Blood from the UMNO Disciplinary Board.

Latine loqui coactus sum( you can't squeeze blood from stone in Latin)

Many people are livid about the judgements given by the UMNO's DB. They say the DB is doing a shoddy work. It is not serious about wanting to stamp out corruption. I think such accusations are misplaced.

The UMNO DB makes it decisions based on facts. They are guided by the principle that justice rushed is justice buried. They must be absolutely certain before arriving at a decision. The chairman of the Board, Tengku Ahmad Rithaudeen is of course aware of the saying by the English jurist, William Blackstone. "Better that ten guilty persons escape than that one innocent suffer,"

The litmus test of not a Kangaroo Court is to arrive at a decision based on facts. It cannot based its decision on hearsay or impute meanings on perceptions. If the basis of deciding is perceptions, then it is foreseeable that the entire group of people offering themselves for UMNO posts be barred. Everyone is tainted in one way or another.

Consider for instance the situation of Khir Toyo. The general perception is that KT is waist deep or even neck deep in money politics. But the facts ascertaining that perception were never strong enough to nail him. Without facts, the Board is never able to provide the flesh to the bones of perception.

Hence even though we despise the outcome of the Board's findings as regards to KT, the facts were just not there. The outcome of the findings of the board does not free KT from taint. What it has proven is that KT is one step ahead of the Board. He has proven himself an accomplished master in the art of Machiavellian skulduggery.

The seriousness by which UMNO wants to stamp out money politics is not measurable by the judgements and punishments of the UMNO DB. If UMNO is serious about wanting to eliminate money politics, the new PM will need to overhaul completely the UMNO elections system. He needs to look into election by the entire membership of UMNO. Perhaps he may want to consider the slew of reforms proffered by Tengku Razaleigh Hamzah.

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Saturday, 21 March 2009

Justice Rushed is Justice Buried!

Saya baru habis membaca sebuah buku yang di tulis oleh seorang peguam jinayah Singapura. Nama peguam tersebut ialah Subhas Anandan. Judul buku tersebut ialah The Best I Could. Buku nya amat menarik sehingga saya bersemangat untuk habis membaca nya dalam satu hari.

Saya amat tertarik dengan satu falsafah mengenai perundangan yang di pegang oleh peguam ini. Falsafah tersebut berbunyi: Justice Delayed Is Justice Denied; Justice Rushed Is Justice Buried.

Dalam bahasa Melayu, falsafah ini bermaksud: keadilan yang di lambatkan adalah keadilan yang di mungkirkan; keadilan yang di segerakan, adalah keadilan yang di kebumikan.

Lembaga Disiplin UMNO telah pun membuat keputusan mengenai kes kes yang di bawa kepada nya. LD UMNO membuat keputusan berdasarkan fakta fakta serta penyelidikan yang di buat nya. Tentulah sesuatu keputusan yang di ambil telah pun melalui penghalusan dan penghujjahan sesama sendiri. Tentulah juga, ini semua di lakukan diatas kesedaran bahawa sesuatu keputusan yang di ambil oleh LD akan di skrutini oleh pelbagai pihak.

Apabila keputusan di buat tentulah ada yang tidak berasa puas hati. Namun, bagaimana kita mahu membuat sesuatu keputusan melainkan ianya bersandar kepada fakta yang ada dan penalaran/reasoning yang di buat? Membuat keputusan atas dasar yang lain daripada ini, akan memusnahkan integriti keputusan itu sendiri.

Kalau LD UMNO melambatkan pengadilan nya, tentu sekali ini akan memberi gambaran bahawa LD UMNO tidak serius dalam tugasan yang di berikan kepada mereka. Kerja kerja untuk menapis dan mengesahkan kesasihan mana mana aduan salah laku dan korapsi adalah kerja yang rumit. Orang awam tidak tahu bagaimana LD UMNO beroperasi dan kita juga tidak tahu sumber yang mereka ada untuk menjalankan risikan mereka. Kita percaya, LD mempunyai rangkaian bantuan dari ejensi ejensi kerajaan dalam usaha mereka tersebut.

Oleh kerana sesuatu keputusan mempuyai ramifikasi yang amat meluas, ia terpaksa di lakukan dengan cermat dan tertib. Keputusan tidak boleh di lakukan bersandarkan kepada perasaan dan persepsi. Jika pengadilan di buat atas dasar perasaan dan persepsi, tentulah semua pihak yang di adukan kepada LD akan di dapati bersalah.

Adakah keputusan yang di buat oleh LD UMNO mensucikan misalnya Khir Toyo? Semua orang merasa hairan bin ajaib bila mendapati bahawa Khir Toyo dari segi fakta nya, bebas dari semua aduan salah laku. Dari segi persepsi moral Khir Toyo tetap di anggap melakukan pelbagai salah laku.

Akan tetapi oleh kerana LD hanya boleh membuat pengadilan berasaskan fakta, dan fakta yang ada dalam tangan mereka tidak mencukupi, maka Khir Toyo bersih dari apa apa kesalahan.

Kenapa pengadilan keatas Khir Toyo tidak menimbulkan apa apa kesangsian, tapi kesalahan yang di lakukan oleh Khairy Jamaludin di persoalkan? Bersikap demikian adalah subversion of the idea of justice.

Hujjah saya ialah jika kita dapat menerima bahawa KT bersih dari salah laku, maka KJ juga harus diberi layanan keadilan yang serupa. Yakni, LD tidak boleh di paksa untuk menyampaikan suatu keputusan yang kita suka berdasarkan persepsi kita.

Hakikatnya, fakta fakta untuk menthabitkan KJ kepada kesalahan yang lebih besar tidak ada. Maka pengadilan yang di lakukan oleh LD UMNO terhadap KJ adalah suatu pengadilan yang bersandarkan fakta. Untuk subvert keadilan semata mata untuk memuaskan perasaan, akan mencabuli integriti pengadilan tersebut.

Saya percaya, LD UMNO pun berpegang kepada prinsip justice rushed is justice buried.

Jadi, saudara saudara perwakilan- ikutlah panduan LD UMNO. Buatlah keputusan berdasarkan FAKTA bukan PERSEPSI!

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Son –in-law vs. Son-in-fact.

Let us remind ourselves, the KP contest is among people of the same party. Although, each one seeks victory, one does not humiliate one's opponents. Our opponents bring out the best in us. We therefore honour our opponents. The acrimony stops as soon as the contest is over.

I am glad KJ has the presence of mind to publicly state this unspoken ethics among gladiators. That was what he said at an interview with MM, Mingguan Malaysia( not Mukhriz Mahathir).

The 794 Pemuda delegates must cut through the chaff. When they sit in the Dewan at PWTC this 25th March, they must banish all perceptions and spins that have been manufactured and fabricated. That rule applies even to my writings. If the delegates think that what I have written have been sufficient to raise the level of reasonableness about how we look at KJ, then he deserves our approval. We select him as our KP.

And please remember, this time you are voting in secret. No one big brother is watching you. I see one stupid commentator says the grassroots have spoken overwhelmingly in favour of Mukhriz. How? By the show of hands? Perhaps this fellow has never been a Pemuda or even attended a grassroots UMNO meeting.

He is therefore ignorant about the interplay of human emotions during a cawangan meeting. The Malays are very reluctant to dishonour someone out in the open. Dia orang malu muka. Perhaps the ketua cawangan, ketua bahagian or representatives of the candidates were there. On account of outward show of respect, they nominated Mukhriz.

I wouldn't pay too much attention to the number of nominations. Remember in 1987? Tengku Razaleigh Hamzah received far less nominations than Tun Mahathir, yet nearly came close to beating TDM. And Mukhriz is certainly no Mahathir.

I have already debunked the unreasonableness about the spin of KJ being the SIL. We are not looking at a contest to decide who is or is not the SIL of the PM. Let us be clear. The question of death and marriage are in God's hands. Mati dan jodoh adalah urusan Tuhan. Accordingly it is unreasonable to diminish KJ because he is in fact, the SIL of the PM.

What advantages has KJ gotten by being the SIL? Businesswise? These are the same advantages obtainable by anyone if he is (a) the son of a PM or a former PM or (b) he was an MB. Mukhriz is certainly not a vegetable when it comes to business interests. So those who want to argue on the basis of insisting that by being a SIL of the sitting PM confers undue advantages must accord fair treatment to everyone. MUkhriz has the advantage of being the son of the larger than life figure of Tun Dr Mahathir who by the way, all and sundry unshakeably regard as unmatched in all aspects. TDM easily eclipses Pak Lah on whatever levels. It would follow then, whosoever is associated with Pak Lah, in fact suffers disadvantages.

In fact being the SIL of a sitting PM is almost a liability to KJ. On the other hand being a son in fact of a former PM has the added advantage of feeding of a hankering of those halcyon days. Mukhriz enjoys the advantage of people romanticising the past and enjoying the nostalgia of the Mahathir days. So don't overplay the issue of SIL.

From the moment Pak Lah agrees to hand over power to DS Najib, the long knives were out. If even the name Pak Lah is being abused, there is more reason to expect a name of a KJ who is just a young punk, being defiled. If being Pak Lah confers no advantages, so how does the assertion that the name of KJ who is only a derivative of the Pak Lah name, enjoys any? The name of Pak Lah is not even strong enough to resist calls for him to resign. How can we accept then, being the SIL of a weakened name, confers advantage? If being the SIL of law confers advantage, KJ wouldn't be hauled up before the UMNO DB right?

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Friday, 20 March 2009

The Merchants of Venice in UMNO


The merchants of Venice in UMNO are demanding more than their pound of flesh. In KJ's case, they are asking for his blood too. They are questioning the apparent inconsistency in the decision taken by the LD of UMNO. They were not happy that KJ was found guilty but yet let off the hook. The blood they were after is the exclusion of KJ from the Pemuda race.

Yet they accept absolutely the incredible verdict on Khir Toyo. In a sense, that is an affirmation that Khir Toyo isn't as much a threat to the outcome of the Pemuda race as is KJ. Why should KJ be made to answer the stand taken by the UMNO LD?

KJ has already been punished. The punishment is in the form of the warning issued. That should in theory, diminished his chances of the Ketua Pemuda post. The anti KJ people should be happy on this account- because whoever they support is given a handicap. If I belonged to the group which is anti KJ, I would savour the diminishing chances of my opponent.

Unless...unless what? Unless even by having a taint on his person, KJ remains the only formidable opponent in the KP race. That is the only logical explanation for their rabid vitriolic directed at Tengku Ahmad Rithaudeen and his team.

KJ is not a perfect candidate. I am sure he has all the freckles and warts and all. But it is not my duty to elaborate on them. My duty is to defend my thinking as to why KJ is the more suitable of the 3 candidates to be Ketua Pemuda UMNO. If I were a defence lawyer, why should I do the job of the prosecutor? I am not responsible for their ineptness.

But even more incredulous is the concerted attempts by many people to link the fortunes of UMNO to the ascendency or fall of KJ. Hello-KJ is not going after the presidents posts. Pemuda UMNO has never been the linchpin in UMNO's cause. The parent organisation calls the shots and on that account, it is the leadership content of the parent body that is more important than KP.

UMNO is dismembering itself not because of KJ. The reasons for the cancer that is spreading within UMNO are many. These have been analysed by many people. They include the quality of leadership within UMNO, UMNO's leadership arrogance; alienation of the people, the policies of the UMNO led government and so forth.

People! We are no longer men, women and children belonging to ancient tribes. When they faced catastrophes, they would bring forth a black goat and rubbed their hands on the body of the goat believing that all the ills that have befallen upon them, will be transferred to the black goat. Hence, the term scapegoat.

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Ah…those halcyon days.


I read two interesting piece of news:-

  1. Delegates from Kelantan to the UMNO General Assembly next week may table a resolution for the party to appoint Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad as UMNO Adviser and Tun Daim Zainuddin as the National Economic Advisor to help us weather the global economic meltdown.
  2. TDM on perception: - He also commented on perception that Najib was corrupt.
    "I'm not talking about what people believe. A lot of people believe about something but there is no legal stand taken on whether Najib is corrupt or not."


As to the first piece of news, my reaction was: are we Malaysians masochists? These refer to people who liked to inflict pain upon themselves. It is also a sign of immaturity. Hence placed in a political context- the resolution said to be thought of by some delegates from Kelantan (?)Impute the following; UMNO people like to self inflict pain believing the suffering is a form of self gratification and be we UMNO people are actually politically immature.

The period in Malaysian politics under the watch of TDM and TDZ is arguably the golden age of Malaysian politics and economics. I say arguably, because people can still point to the many business excesses associated with TDZ and by reason of linkages, TDM. Perhaps those business and corporate excesses benefited from lack of forensic scrutiny as is presently prevalent. Then, that would of course imply, the period associated with TDM and TDZ was less open than it is now.

The pain I am referring to is however not of the above paragraph. The pain I am talking of is about our inability and political immaturity to rise to the occasion and believing in our ability and capacity that we can manage this on our own. It takes leadership, resolve, dedication and hard work. Our present social and political meltdown now can never be solved by sub-contracting it to others. The pain I am referring is our indulgence to subsist on political subsidy, an over indulgence which has led to our own all round impotence. Because of this self defeatist attitude, we think we need a political Viagra in the form of TDM and TDZ.

Apa sudah jadi to the Malay spirit? Faced with a calamity, we seem to have lost our wits and presence of mind. We want the easy way out by asking other people do the job for us. That is an attitude of a people living on subsidy and opting to remain as freeloaders for the rest of our lives. I am saddened by the attitude of this particular Kelantan delegate for not having faith in our present leadership's ability to deal with our situation.

That was why; I have advocated that we break from the political vicious cycle and the mental claptrap, mind bondage and straightjacket to usher in an UMNO leadership that is not overwhelmed by conservative thinking.

For that is what the subconscious wish which the Kelantan delegate represents. It is a proposition that blindly accepts that those who are able to this particular task of leadership must necessarily be from a select and elite group. This is a classic call for the return of ascriptive norms in our thinking.

That people continue to be evaluated in terms of who they are, that certain tasks such as leadership are only able to be carried out by particular team of people. My point is, if TDM and TDZ were able to do what they did without having to fall back to ascribed status kind of thinking, we CAN also do it.

As to the second piece of news, in the matter of perception, as the say in legal terms, res ipsa loquitur. It is indeed personal to holder.

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Thursday, 19 March 2009

Are Perceptions Everything?

Consider the following.

We have heard this many times. In politics, perception is everything. Well, not everything it seems.

There is so much negative perception of DS Najib. He is abused for being allegedly involved in the murder of a Mongolian, mired in corruption mostly through deals while serving as Defense minister, a weak leader and spineless shine-less one to boot, faulted for marrying one woman etc.

But DESPITE this negative perception, we are told to believe in him. He is the saviour for Malaysians. He will be a good leader.

There is so much negative perception surrounding KJ. He is accused for being arrogant, involved in shady and corrupt deals involving millions, faulted for marrying the PM's daughter and probably blamed for NOT allegedly murdering anyone.

BECAUSE of all these, he must be spurned. He will destroy UMNO. He is grim reaper with the scythe.

I am not a student of philosophy. I have a problem in reconciling these two cases. One negative perception recommends TWO courses of action. The first, DESPITE the negative perception, we must accept. The second, BECAUSE of the negative perception, we must reject.

So how Schopenhauer? How Bertrand Russell, how you GB Shaws? You Immanuel Kants?

Perception is therefore personal to holder. It all depends on one's personal motives. In Dato Najib's case, if one is driven by an overriding personal motive to believe in him, whatever negative perception abounds, one rejects. In KJ's case, if one is driven by personal abhorrence and revulsion, the negative perception is a god send.

This proves that perception, other than being a personalised feeling is ephemeral. It has no stable properties to be used as a guiding principle to choose a leader.

But I better stop here. Because there is a perception that this is another fanciful defense of KJ, not worthy of consideration.

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Wednesday, 18 March 2009

Poor UMNO Disciplinary Board.

That Ali Rustam was barred from contesting wasn't the news that some people were waiting. They wanted to hear that KJ is excluded from contesting. He is the son of a gun. He is the MAN.

Ali Rustam is big news to his supporters only. It is KJ these people want to have pinned down.

By the way, before Muhyiddin's people uncork their Dom Perignon to celebrate, please take note of the following:-

From the 15 people hauled up and punished are 4 serving wakil rakyats from Paya Besar , Kuantan, Pahang. These people were campaigning for Ali Rustam. The group is led by Dato Manan Ismail who is a dyed in the wool DS Najib's supporter. If we were to cut him into 18 pieces, the blood dripping on the ground will spell N-A-J-I-B. They coordinate their operations with JJ. So go figure, which candidate DS Najib actually prefers as his Deputy President?

As to KJ, I hear things like these at my blog and elsewhere.

KJ is guilty but allowed to contest. What is your opinion on that, Sir?

To UMNO Youth members reading this and who will be voting for their new president this coming Tuesday, reject KJ or forever hold your fucking piece! The way I see it only Mukhriz Mahathir has that semblance of a new echelon Malay leader who is free from all sorts of allegations. Have you heard Mukhriz being implicated in any scandals or bad rumours?

"KJ BECOMES UMNO YOUTH CHIEF DESPITE BEING GUILTY OF MONEY POLITICS"

And I also saw this:-

KJ is corrupt and he is contesting... He is contesting for the highest position in Pemuda UMNO. The BIG question here is... will UMNO and its Pemuda allow KJ 'the corrupt' to win this contest?

This will be a big blow to UMNO... Till the next UMNO election... you will be carrying on your shoulder KJ 'the corrupt' chief. Will you guys allow that?

Which all serve to fortify my conviction and belief that KJ will win this contest, God willing.

We have many other broadsides lamenting that no sterner action was taken against KJ.

Let me try to answer the most common accusation being bandied around. The UMNO D-Board is practicing double standard. KJ is the PM's son in law that is why he is being treated lightly.

My answer is if the board does indeed practice double standard, than the likeliest approach is to NOT call KJ at all or if called, exonerate him completely and absolutely. The fact that KJ is called before the board proves that the board does not practice double standard.

Indeed, the board can be said to operate beyond external influence when it exonerates Khir Toyo. The fact that KT got scot -free does not mean he does not engage in money politics. I am surprised he got away. The fact remains however, the board operates on facts available before them.

Further, the fact that only KJ and Ali Rustam were the big fish hauled up and punished goes to show that people are working overtime volunteering to submit the facts against them.

This argument that KJ is the son in law of the PM is overused and it is tired of being treated as the scapegoat. KJ was practically a loner immediately after Pak Lah announced his willingness to step down and hand over powers to DS Najib. The long knives were already out and if anyone cares to remember, people were asking, could KJ ever get sufficient nominations? He did and because he was able to, people quickly assumed that this must be the spill over for being the PM's son in law. Since then, the fact remains KJ has to work his butts out to secure nominations and win delegates over.

People seem to forget that once Pak Lah agreed to relinquish power all semblance of loyalty towards him became fluid commodity tradable in the UMNO market. The loyalty moves to the highest bidder and the new powers to be. That being the case, how is it possible for KJ to even get a small morsel of support from those who are migrating en masse towards Pekan?

My point is: don't insult our intelligence by using this old, tired and worn out factor of Pak Lah's residual influence. It has all but emigrated to Najibland.

We then have the jackpot of a question. Have anyone heard of Mukriz being tainted? Therefore Mukhriz must be the only one qualified to be the Ketua Pemuda.

Mukhriz is not tainted simply means his adversaries aren't working round the clock to do him in. He is not tainted simply because Anas the ATM machine is standing in for him. He is also not tainted because he does nothing.

I have been hearing this joke being replayed quite often recently. Why is the Malay brain more expensive that brains of others? Answer: because it is hardly used. It seems to apply aptly of Mukhriz.

Question: why is Mukhriz not tainted?

Answer: because he hardly does anything of significance.

If anyone were to be stranded in Mukhrizland- he would say, Mr Scotty- beam me up, no sign of life down here.

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UMNO- The Day After

Before I comment on the verdict by the disciplinary board on KJ, I shall say a few things on what has happened to Ali Rustam. I was travelling just now and wasn't able to catch up with the latest news. Accordingly I can give no more than a cursory view of the proceedings.

4 years ago, to borrow the expression given by a commentator at my blog, Ali crashed the red lights. But he wasn't caught. Isa Samad, the man who told everyone who got his money but did not vote him, that they shall be held accountable at Padang Mahshar, wasn't that lucky. He was stopped by the traffic policemen in the form of Tengku Ahmad Rithaudeen.

Today, Ali Rustam got his comeuppance. The last time he wasn't caught, he grew emboldened. He thinks he can do anything and he is untouchable. He thought he had the Tameng Sari keris with him. Well today, the D Board has caught up with him. The traffic policeman may have aged by 4 years, but is still up and about.

Isa Samad, the man who was severely punished 4 years ago, must be a puzzled man. He went on TV saying that UMNO shouldn't have any more money politics. If he was the only one caught and punished and that he represented the sum total of all corrupt practices and that he has been severed, UMNO should by definition, be pristine. It must be wholesome.

But it is not. If UMNO is not cleansed, it can only mean one thing. UMNO ITSELF should be dismembered. It is the one that is corrupt. It seems I am not the only one coming to this conclusion.

Unbeknownst to me, I am only repeating what Tun Mahathir said this afternoon. "Today the problem with UMNO is that people see it as a corrupt party and it has no credibility and they really look down on UMNO as being irrelevant."

By banning Ali Rustam from contesting, the board clears the way for Muhyidin Yassin and M2Taib. Odds are that, MY will win hands down.

But wait, Tan Sri. If it was true that, DS Najib made appeals to Tan Sri Tengku Ahmad Rithaudeen to be restrained on Ali Rustam, that is something you must carefully ponder. You may not have it plain sailing after all. It may not be a walk in the woods for you. Here is my take.

  • By telling everyone that Najib needs a strong deputy, you are arrogating upon yourself that quality. You are saying, you are the chosen one for Najib.
  • Your rivals, both M2 Taib and Ali Rustam the vanquished, will say they are not exactly chopped liver. What is it that you can do, they cannot and wouldn't do? Conferring upon you that attribute may only make that attribute an overrated one. One becomes strong with the office one holds.
  • Musa Hitam was strong. Anwar Ibrahim was strong. But they didn't last with Tun Mahathir proving that the PM does not need a strong deputy. It is an essential attribute but not determining one.
  • By saying that Najib needs a strong deputy, you are indirectly suggesting that Najib is a weak leader. The message that goes down the line with UMNO people is, that MY will dominate. That kind of message will not be well received.

Unlike KJ who is being made to pay dearly for saying he wants to be PM by 40, Muhyiddin is a real contender for Najib's post. He does not exactly fit well in the mould of Tun Dr Ismail. TDI was a strong deputy in the pattern that Muhyiddin wishes himself to be in. But TDI had the discipline to play a complimentary role to Tun Razak. Muhyiddin on the other hand, is sending mixed signals. All his talks about Najib needing a strong deputy suggest a desire to play a dominant role.

The more essential attribute at this level of the playing field is compatibility. The question people will evaluate is, is Muhyiddin compatible with Najib?

They will evaluate the significance of Najib's attempts to intercede for Ali Rustam. What is the significance of Najib's attempts to intercede on behalf of Ali Rustam? That action, despite appearing desperate, strongly suggests that Ali Rustam is the preferred candidate as Najib's deputy. Najib's willingness to take the risk of appearing bias, would fortify this proposition.

Only the strong will of the self respecting Tunku Ahmad Rithaudeen prevented a reversal of the board's decision.

Ali will not be enamoured with Muhyiddin's patronising request for him to accept the decision of the board with an open heart. Indeed Ali will be crying foul. It will not be unexpected if Ali decides to turn his support for M2 Taib. Right now, Ali has his bazookas aimed at Muhyiddin.


 

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Tuesday, 17 March 2009

Judging the Judges


You know I have been meaning to write a short comment on this TV9 program which interviewed TS Isa Samad and Dr Zahid Hamidi. The interviewer was the rapid talking Dr Agus Salim.

In my opinion, Zahid Hamidi was outgunned and overshadowed by Isa Samad. That proves Isa Samad hasn't lost his sharpness and skilful repartee. If the choice of UMNO VP is based on this performance, I would choose Isa Samad over Zahid Hamidi any time. And he doesn't have to pay me and I will not have to account for myself at Padang Mahshar.

Isa Samad on Money Politics.

The most interesting thing that Isa Samad said that night was about money politics in UMNO. The UMNO Disciplinary Committee must take cognizance of this.

When Agus Salim asked Isa Samad, about money politics, the answer by Isa Samad was very telling.

As far as I am concerned there's no more money politics. That's why I was the only one caught out.

The sardonic implications of what he said were very obvious to UMNO watchers. During the period when money politics was said to be most rampant and Isa Smad was very much implicated in it, it was the height of incredulity that only Isa Samad was caught out.

If the UMNO Disciplinary Board had done its duties diligently and truthfully, that would have meant more people than just Isa Samad ALONE would have been found guilty.

If Isa Samad alone was found guilty, that would have meant:-

  1. Isa Samad was the ONLY one guilty of money politics.
  2. The rest of them were ANGELIC.
  3. So, when Isa Samad was suspended, by definition, money politics in UMNO must have stopped.

Now, if the UMNO D-Board still has its hands full with money politics and the alleged perpetrators were also the same ones who did the same thing during Isa Samad's time, this would mean the UMNO D-Board was practising selective persecution.

Therefore, today when the chairman of the Board comes out with his list of the guilty, why should we not think, the whole thing is just another exercise in selective persecution?

My prediction? No one of substance will be punished. Only Norza bites the dust.

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