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Sakmongkol ak 47

Saturday, 1 August 2009

Stephen Doss- its no Enigma

Stephen Doss, is a blogger who is supportive of KJ. He blogs under his post Renovatio. I too am supportive of the ideas that KJ represent and the idea behind KJ. I have argued about this many times especially during the ketua pemuda elections. I am not going to repeat my arguments which of course have been refuted; sadly I should say less by reasoned analyses and more by gutter arguments. The later came mostly from the wakakaka and muahahaha crowd. They know who they are. These are people who can't argue ideas with ideas and finding themselves losing an argument will go for the throat and accused opponents as lapdogs and paid hirelings. In the course of my arguing for KJ the last time, I had no problems reading counter arguments from bloggers like A Voice or the cerebral JMD. For instance when I wrote about KJ giving a speech to Pemuda demonstrators in Perak, JMD put up a very believable riposte.

Speaking about a speech, I am going to write about a speech which KJ gave which should answer S. Doss's uneasiness about KJ being an enigma. It's no enigma, Mr Doss. KJ will continue to be an enigma only as long as the mainstream media refuses to accord him a deserving place as a Ketua Pemuda of UMNO. He will remain an enigma as long as the UMNO ultra conservatives remain fearful of the unfolding forces besieging UMNO to change. KJ represents the idea of change.

The debate has become clearer. On one side are the ultra conservatives. These are the people insisting things are all right and so must remain as they are. All that was necessary was to throw out the sleeping on the job PM. That has been accomplished. Unfortunately for the conservatives, i.e. those romanticising the good old days, during the good old times where the elite get richer, the cronies were singled out as saviours of the race etc, the remaining thorn is KJ.

I can't predict the future. Maybe KJ will be around or he may be forced out. He remains a threat to UMNO conservatives because of his ideas on change and his articulation about these ideas. The majority of UMNO conservatives are silent and dumbfounded by the ideas leading me to question whether they actually understand what this young man is saying. The MSM appears intimidated to debate his ideas probably out of misreading the sensitivities of the UMNO leadership. I say to them- give the Ketua Pemuda UMNO his media space and given the libertarian views of the PM, what KJ says will be tolerated. Its not like he is calling for the toppling of the leadership is he?

I am not unaware of the accusations of corruption against KJ which were bandied around and continue to be stoked presently. This must come to a closure and the UMNO president must apply his leadership on this issue. Either exonerate KJ or punish him. The UMNO disciplinary committee has punished him and meted out a judgement which proved to be insufficient to convince the Pemuda delegates that KJ is not good for them. Like it or not, KJ IS the ketua Pemuda.

Now, the more I think about this- I think the whole wish to make the accusations about corruption stick to KJ is all politically motivated. They are prompted by a general rage and anger that a man so young can beat UMNO old hands at their own game!

Now,let us read the speech given by KJ to the audience at the Banker's Club in KL. It was made on the 16th of June 2009. It was titled POLITICS OF EMPHATY.

I have yet to come across a coherent analysis of what 1 Malaysia stands for. KJ is at least an initiator for further glosses over this concept. I don't understand it yet. TDM says he doesn't know what the heck OneMalaysia stands for. Of course listening to Rais Yatim's pathetic pronouncement is a definite turnoff. I think listening to the singer Roy's rendition of the song SATU MALAYSIA makes the concept easier to understand. OneMalaysia stands for Rukunnegara and loyalty. At least RUKUNEGARA and SETIA are repeated over and over in that song.

1Malaysia is the story about the Malaysia to be unfolded. The Malaysian story as KJ rightfully stated is at a juncture where inspirational ideas and inspirational figures may decide if it takes a path towards fulfilling the promise so apparent during different points in our journey. And in a nutshell, inspiration is what 1Malaysia hopes to achieve.

Hence the question before us, how do we define 1Malaysia in the absence of a comprehensive definition which in itself is elusive? Maybe the starting point as KJ said
some level of personalisation of the concept isn't all that bad –1Malaysia, as a state of mind, can mean slightly different things to different people, without us having to fear that it wouldn't work, or that social foundations will crumble. I am much more interested to speak about the context under which, and the reason why, 1Malaysia is gaining traction, even if its precise trajectory is yet uncertain, and for us to take hold of.

1Malaysia encapsulates the idea of change. I can only deduce the silent treatment from UMNO ultra conservatives on the idea of change signifies their fear about change. The most significance change that is taking place now is that in the world of change, people engage one inother through the contest of ideas, visions, reasoned arguments and so forth. KJ spoke of:-

Malaysia as a land of contestations – a land where different visions of the country were, and continue to be, played out in the battleground of ideas, charting the course of history. Malaysia's diversity lends itself to these different narratives. Malaysia's diversity has encouraged the charting of different paths with different signposts. We have been serenaded by ideologies and thoughts that appeal to our ethnicity, our religion, our income, and all the different things that make us different.

We have different ideas and ideological inclinations, but how do we reconcile these and if possible how do we synthesise these? KJ's solution is to offer the idea of a political approach, a new politics within the overarching and loose framework of 1Malaysia. I call this new politics the politics of empathy, which has immense potential to inspire and rally all Malaysians through a new narrative of mutual understanding, appreciation and respect. This is the change I am promoting.

The UMNO conservatives and the conservatives in the other political parties travel along the more common trodden road. This is the road most commonly travelled- the familiar and the unchanged. They use the same language about race and religion, leaning more towards the natural differences rather that forging ahead on common grounds.

The credo of the conservatives:-

As a multi-ethnic and multi-religious society, we have for far too long, failed to properly address this identity impasse. Specifically, the reconciliation of ethno-religious identities with the national
character that all Malaysians share hasn't been pursued with adequate vigour. In articulating our ideas for Malaysia's future, many ascribe ourselves either an ethno-centric perspective, or relegate ethnicity to the sphere of irrelevance, often for political expediency. We either pursue a narrative that divides us by our faiths and culture or appeal to a notion that our respective heritage is not important and we must create something confusing like a Malaysian Malaysia.

Some may not like KJ for a variety of reasons and some haven't gotten over the fact that he won the ketua Pemuda post. But intellectual honesty demands us to acknowledge that this young man has got something relevant to say about Malaysian politics. In a world of flux and change where ideas dominate, it is very difficult to discount such a person without acknowledging a place for such in a future Malaysia.

So Mr Stephen Doss, look at the ideas. No enigma there.


Anonymous,  1 August 2009 at 17:12  

Hi Dato,
Great post, and I would like to add my thoughts on the 1 Malaysia campaign. I want to talk about it from the point of view of an Advertising or Marketing Exec, not a political animal. But alas, as usual some will twist and turn. Let it be.

My honest thoughts is that the idea was thrown out there, and then when there was no follow thru, it became a subject of ridicule. At first it was the Opposition with their 1 Black Malaysia counter riposte. Now I hear that a very influential UMNO titan is beginning to take aim.

I wont debate on the virtues or what 1 Malaysia stands or does not stand for. I want to talk about the implementation of a campaign strategy, because thats what it is. There is no harm in that, after all for the last 3 decades we seem to have a penchant for campaigns.

To me, the 1 Malaysia campaign should have not been aggressively marketed until certain progress was made in either the economy or the crime scenario. Then go full swing, as people get the feel good factor. Right now, the issue is that 1 Malaysia is being promoted heavily on the Government functions and the brown nosers. The rakyat sees through this, they are not stupid.

We need sophistication when dealing with people. Subject matter must be deep, and that is what engages peoples attention. But a message needs to be multi faceted to add the depth needed to convince the face sitters. Dont be swayed by the sweet talk of the "muhahaha" and the "wakkakaka" crowd, they lack the sophistication required to push a message.

Most people are unlike them. They are the silent majority who will give you 1 minute a day, every day. It is those the PM needs to convince.

IMHO, the Unit Officer in charge of 1 Malaysia needs to recognize this. If he/ she thinks that the people will lap up a sub-standard campaign implementation, he/she will be proven wrong.

The only way for 1 Malaysia to succeed is as you say for it to be driven not by the 40 or 50 year olds but by the 20 - 30 year olds.

How best to do that? I think the answer is obvious, and is in your post.

walla 1 August 2009 at 20:36  

A: '(chuckles) Somehow i get the impression the problem is with the lords and not with the serfs. All along the assumption was that the serfs cannot empathise with one another because the ethnocentric battle line had been drawn for them by the lords.

Well, GE12 sunk that assumption. The rakyat showed they empathized with one another so much so they could even vote for other parties in ways beyond the expectation of the lords.'

B: 'Maybe it has to do with Adam Smith's invisible hand.'

A: 'Now i'm intrigued. How so, my dear chap?'

B: 'Well, in his Wealth of Nations, Smith portrayed man as acting from self-interest. He then argued that since no person is able to satisfy his own self-interest unless he can satisfy the interest of others in exchanges, each must thus appeal to the interest of others in order to satisfy his own interest so that in this way the interests of all are met. Ergo, the general good as a fortuitous consequence of the self-interested exchange of goods, services and labor.'

A: 'Indeed, that seems to be the tactical arrangement of BN. To each race his own ethnocentric component party acting out of self-interest for the respective community. Adam Smith's invisible hand in full play of specialization in the belief that to each his own will end up with general benefit to all as one.'

B: 'Ah, but Adam Smith had also propounded a SECOND invisible hand.'

A: 'He did? I thought he meant one invisible hand only, and as a metaphor at that.'

B: 'I would draw your kind attention, my dear A, to the fact that Adam Smith had issued an earlier work before his famous Wealth of Nations. That work was called The Theory of Moral Sentiments. In that earlier work, he took pains to stress the role of sympathetic and benevolent inclinations in human psychology.

He acknowledged that people do in fact take an interest in the welfare of others and not act just out of self-interest only. He pointed to feelings of sympathy that naturally arise when we put ourselves in the shoes of someone less fortunate, which in turn enables our self-interests to be viewed from without by projecting our own selves out as impartial spectators using the inner conscience called judges within. In other words, the plights and dilemmas of others act as mirrors for us to see ourselves, thereby providing the counterbalance to pure self-interest.'

walla 1 August 2009 at 20:36  

A: 'So you're saying.....'

B: 'I'm saying that this new politics of empathy is one way of addressing that need for a counterbalance within the rubric of our multiracial society. Two invisible hands for each community. One to reflect its own heritage and cultural needs and, the second to resonate with the dilemmas and needs of other communities, thereby providing the natural balance within for mutual coexistence, what more inter-racial harmony.'

A: 'That's a tingling thought, B. But do you think it's too utopian to expect that this will be achieved?'

B: 'Not really, A. Look, the earlier generations have had to struggle because during their time the place was underdeveloped and means were limited. But as they struggled to develop the land, returns grew so that the younger generations of today are in place to enjoy the fruits of labor of the older generation. Now while one has to admit some of the young ones take progress for granted, i do believe there is a majority amongst them who can resonate to this inner essence of empathy. That's why you have our famous heart-springing charity, our green movement, our nurturing and valuing of our environment, our sense of justice and indignation against callous behavior and excesses, our caring for the weak, needy and even love of animals, and our genuine no-hang'up communication across racial lines.'

A: 'How do you see that translated as a new deal?'

B: 'When we stop counting too much for ourselves using the wrong invisible hand, when we start caring for one another as common siblings, when we walk an extra mile for a brother or sister. Because she ain't heavy.'

A: 'Hehe. That's cute, B. I hate to break it to you but your Miss Kedah has become a fearsome fifty-kilo PAS firebrand. She'll have you for breakfast.'

B: 'Alamak! I'm cooked, finished. It's over for me...sob'

A: 'Don't worry, my old friend. You have my empathies.'

B: 'Why you so cruel one, A?'

Sobotka,  2 August 2009 at 15:50  

Very nice article Dato'. We're slowly seeing what KJ is all about. Or shall I say, what we knew in our hearts about KJ is finally being revealed bit by bit, now that he is his own man and KP PPUM in his own right.

And i mean the distinctively progressive, moderate yet still idealistic KJ.

The statesman-in-the-making. This boy can do it for this country. But he needs more supporters to speak up me thinks.

Anonymous,  2 August 2009 at 19:31  

Somehow a guy named Parpukari, who claims to be a pure Malay, does not think highly of this piece by you.

(Some doubt that this fellow is not what he claims to be - as in , but that is another story)

He interprets that you are moaning at not being given a chance to stand for the general elections last year.

How do you reconcile such fellows with your vision?

Abd Aziz,  2 August 2009 at 20:16  

Good observation and well thought out Dato Sak. the blogsphere is slowly getting polluted by non value adding bloggers. Worst, some are paid hacks whom extort politicians. Some are just trying to be relevant without putting out good researched out postings. Some are even raving sociopaths.

I like this article simply your article is well researched and thoughts that prove those with any interest to politics and KJ.

Personally, i think KJ has a long way to go, and this greying out by the mainstream media will only make him stronger. I have noticed that he has been the 1st to market on twitter and any new media on offer. He exposes himself better like this, because he has to work triple hard without the mainstream media giving any airtime.

I wish him well as i did at 1st have my reservations about him, but after listening to him on the Royal commission, driving the wedge between PAS and PR and lately his centrist view on policies like the ISA, i firmly believe he means well.

Plus he did trounce Husam in Lundang KB a PAS stronghold. In Kelantan, even the PAS Youth and professionals respect him.
All the best Dato Sak.

Hubris,  2 August 2009 at 20:27  

Enlightening view on KJ and 1Malaysia. I like to see KJ and Pemuda do it. Better than that rotten Ex-Selangor MB.

Malaysian,  2 August 2009 at 20:49  

To CheDet, Malaysia Boleh and 1Malaysia were initiated based on different challenges, times, aspirations and contexts.

Think bold and wisely CheDet. People are getting fed up with your obsession to your family and legacy. Enough of that.

Observer,  2 August 2009 at 20:53  

KJ's explanation is always the one that people wait for and in the case of 1Malaysia, I agree with you Sak that his thoughts on the subject is the best thus far.

Pemuda Lumut Perak,  2 August 2009 at 20:55  

Extracts of Perutusan KJ as KP dalam buku mesyuarat pemuda UMNO bahagian:

"... misi dan gerak kerja kita haruslah berpaksikan kepada lima rukun iaitu Bersatu, Berprinsip, Inkusif, Relevan, dan Proaktif.
Sebagai penjelasannya, BERSATU bermaksud bahawa asas kekuatan kita adalah perpaduan dan gerak kerja berpasukan semua ahli Pemuda UMNO di dalam saf perjuangan yang kukuh. BERPRINSIP pula bermakna bahawa Pemuda UMNO tetap berpegang teguh kepada perjuangan asas UMNO bagi menegak, mempertahan dan memartabatkan agama, bangsa dan tanah air, sejajar dengan Perlembagaan Persekutuan, Rukun Negara, kontrak sosial dan formula perkongsian kuasa di dalam Barisan Nasional. INKLUSIF pula bermakna aktiviti dan program kita harus bersifat inklusif dan menjangkau parti dan batas agama dan bangsa. RELEVAN membawa maksud bahawa segala program, medium penyampaian, gaya bahasa, masa, jenis aktiviti dan sebagainya hendaklah relevan dan menepati citarasa golongan yang disasarkan. Akhir sekali, PROAKTIF pula merupakan piawai budaya kerja di mana segala perancangan dan tindakan hendaklah di buat tanpa menunggu-menunggu arahan terutama dalam hal ehwal kebajikan rakyat sebelum ia menjadi kronik dan ditawan pembangkang sebagai isu perjuangan mereka.

Kesemua elemen tadi bukan sahaja menjadi nadi dan paksi kepada pendekatan Pemuda UMNO di dalam gerak kerjanya malahan konsisten dan menepati kesemua ciri-ciri 1Malaysia yang diperkenalkan oleh Presiden parti dan juga Perdana Menteri Malaysia, YAB Dato’ Seri Mohd Najib Tun Razak.

Henry Chan,  2 August 2009 at 20:59  

I attended the Bankers'c Club talk and was very pleased with Khairy's speech for its content, especially on the vision and his articulation and analysis of current political scenarios. The only part he needs to improve was on his speed.

He performed superbly well during the question and answer and won over those who asked him, including a bloke who opposed Khairy's opinions and stands.

Pak Cik Hussein,  2 August 2009 at 21:01  

Pendirian KJ senantiasa terkehadapan. Sebagai contoh, pemikirannya mengenai ISA yang melangkaui common binary stands of agree-disagree.

Buah Kelapa,  2 August 2009 at 21:03  

Hebat Dato' Sak! Please continue to provide and entertain us with you objective and in-depth analysis.

Hang Hebat,  2 August 2009 at 21:06  

Pemuda di bawah KJ memang hebat. Petang tadi, pasukan Ragbi Pemuda Samurai yang baru ditubuhkan telah menjuarai Pahang 10.

Hebat Tu.... siap kalahkan Pasukan Elit Jurutera Tentera 10-0 sungguhpun pasukan elit itu merupakan antara top 5 nation wide.

Inilah antara kehebatan Pemuda di bawah Khairy.

Hebak Muh

Tarmac Road,  2 August 2009 at 21:09  

Bagus la Dato' Sak kasi Doss ni buka mata sikit. He is a very simple minded person who is trying hard to utter the obvious (and lamely historical) in a newer version, and hoping ,hard as well, to be branded as intelligent, by doing so.

Jimmy,  2 August 2009 at 21:14  

As described by Joceline Tan, Khairy is always a man that is a cut above the rest

Anonymous,  2 August 2009 at 21:16  

KJ is truly a political icon in M'sia. its sad to see UMNO still hasnt gotten over the cantas young turks fever. KJ needs to flood likeminded people, esp professionals, educators, academics, media and young ulamaks into Pemuda UMNO.

Keep 'em coming.


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