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Thread: THE RAT RACE PART VI – MALAYSIA: HOW DID UMNO STAY IN POWER FOR SO LONG?

   
   
       
  1. #111
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    Re: THE RAT RACE PART VI – MALAYSIA: UMNO has violated the Spirit ...

    UMNO has violated the Spirit of the Constitution set up in 1957 on the wreckage of a string of broken promises and betrayal of the people.

    They have lost the moral mandate to rule and have to be sacked if they do not leave willingly and peacefully.

    Understand our history so that we will not be cheated again.


    The Jakarta Post
    Sat, 01/30/2010 12:52 PM

    The typical Malaysian problem
    Anand Krishna , Jakarta

    As pointed out by Azmi Sharom of University of Malaya in his
    dissertation (www.projectmalaysia.org), "at the crux of the problem
    facing plurality in Malaysia" are the twin issues of race and
    religion.

    And its roots are found in the very constitution of Malaysia, which,
    in Azmi's words, "was and is a strange creature that combines liberal
    democratic ideals and what can only be described as racially based
    preferential treatment".

    The Malaysian constitution stipulates that "Islam is the religion of
    the federation; but other religions may be practiced in peace and
    harmony in any part of the federation."

    Prior to Malaysia's independence in 1957, it was the Alliance Party
    (later Barisan Nasional) - consisting of the United Malay National
    Organization (UMNO), the Malayan Indian Congress (MIC) and the Malayan
    Chinese Association (MCA) - that had suggested the inclusion of this
    article.

    It was, obviously, a shrewd political maneuver by UMNO to gain support
    from the Islamic groups, and blessed by its two partners.

    Such a move, however, did not make Malaysia an Islamic state. The
    Alliance assured the Reid Commission, responsible for drafting the
    Malaysian constitution, that "The observance of this principle . shall
    not imply that the state is not a secular state."

    UMNO was aware that without the support of the two other parties, it
    was in no position to singularly represent the diverse Malayan
    federation and the multiracial and pluralistic Malaysian society.

    The Reid Commission was further assured by the trio that, "Making
    Islam the official religion of the federation is primarily for
    ceremonial purposes, for instance to enable prayers to be offered in
    the Islamic way on official occasions, such as the installation of the
    Yang di-Pertuan Agong *King*, Merdeka Day *Independence Day* and
    similar occasions."

    Tunku Abdul Rahman, one of the founding fathers of the Malaysian
    state, was more blunt in saying that, "I would like to make it clear
    that this country is not an Islamic state, as it is generally
    understood; we merely provide that Islam shall be the official
    religion of the state."

    The Malay rulers were a step ahead in asking the commission to ensure
    that "in an independent Malaya all nationals should be accorded equal
    rights, privileges and opportunities, and there must not be
    discrimination on grounds of race and creed". They were not in favor
    of any special preferential treatment for the Bumiputra, or the
    indigenous Malays.

    The Alliance, however, saw the large chunk of indigenous Malays as its
    potential vote-bank, and was eager to impress them by appearing as a
    hero. Thus, special quotas for entry into the civil service, public
    scholarships and public education were proposed.

    The commission was left with no choice but to accept the proposal,
    granting the King of Malaysia responsibility for safeguarding the
    special position of the indigenous peoples.

    The provisions, however, were temporary in nature. The Reid Commission
    suggested that 15 years after independence, such provisions should be
    reconsidered, and that the "legislature should then determine either
    to retain or to reduce any quota or to discontinue it entirely".

    Tun Dr. Ismail, one of the nation's founding fathers, likened the
    special privileges of the Malays to a golf handicap, only to be used
    until the time comes that such a crutch is no longer needed (The
    Reluctant Politician).

    The article was, thus, due for review in 1972. Unfortunately, this
    never happened. During the 1969 elections, thanks to the ambitious
    politicians playing with the religious and racial sentiments of the
    masses to gain votes, the foundation of the Malaysian state suffered
    its first crack. The riots of May 13 that year were the outcome of
    broken promises and broken hearts.

    Less than 15 years after its independence, Malaysian society was
    already divided between the indigenous and the non-indigenous.
    Malaysia was no longer united. Insensitive to this, the Malaysian
    government introduced economic and development policies that widened
    the gap, rather than build bridges.

    To worsen the situation, following a wrong trait of nationalism, being
    Malay became identical with being a Muslim. Azmi cites the success of
    the Iranian revolution for the "growing Islamization of Malaysia",
    resulting in the "personal changes, in dress, manner of speech and
    shifting value systems".

    But that was not the only reason. The 1980s and 1990s were also the
    decades of petrodollar supremacy. Money from Saudi Arabia and other
    affluent Middle Eastern countries flowed in freely, causing more
    division and more harm to Malaysian society.

    The situation was such that non-Muslim Malaysians were compelled to
    reinstate their pre-independence identities. They were, once again,
    Chinese or Indian.. For they would not be considered Malays if they
    were not Muslim.

    Meanwhile, the Islamic parties gained ground, which made then prime
    minister Mahathir Mohammad feel threatened. In a desperate attempt to
    secure his position, he brought Anwar Ibrahim, popular among
    Malaysia's Islamists, into his fold. That way, the shrewd senior
    politician thought, UMNO would have their support.

    The rapport between the two leaders, however, did not last long.
    Anwar's popularity also became the cause of his downfall, when
    Mahathir finally sacked him in 1998.

    Without Anwar on his side, and still eager for the support of Islamist
    groups, Mahathir made another major political blunder in 2001: he
    declared Malaysia an Islamic state. His opponents knew it was a
    political gimmick. However, as Lim Kit Siang, a veteran opposition
    leader believes, it "opened the way for the Islamists".

    That was the final blow to the promises made by the nation's founding
    fathers and rulers. In a country where political parties have always
    been race- and community-based, the blow caused almost irreparable
    damage.

    Malaysia, our neighbor, our younger brother, begins this year with
    attacks on churches. Shameful. It tarnishes the image of peace-loving
    Malays. What is the solution? Remain Malay. Follow the religion of
    your heart, but keep to your own culture. Shun the Middle Eastern,
    Indian and Chinese identities, norms, lifestyles, cultures and values
    - you are Malay. We are siblings. Your problems, your pains, are our
    problems and our pains. God protect you!

    The writer is a spiritual activist and author of more than 130 books
    (www.anandkrishna.org).

    http://www.thejakartapost.com
    py

  2. #112
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    Re: THE RAT RACE PART VI – MALAYSIA: The long and winding road called the NEP

    The long and winding road called the NEP
    THE CORRIDORS OF POWER

    Saturday, 13 March 2010 Super Admin

    This is a longer article than usual but it is still a short piece for what I need to say. I actually could write a whole book on this issue but instead I have summarised what we had to go through over 40 years since 1970 with regards to the New Economic Policy or NEP. There are many things that Malays may not be aware of and which they should know.

    THE CORRIDORS OF POWER

    Raja Petra Kamarudin

    There are a few good pieces about the New Economic Policy written by Suflan Shamsuddin, Datuk Zaid Ibrahim and Khoo Kay Peng, which have been posted on Malaysia Today. These are very good pieces and I really do not need to add anything more to those points raised by these writers. Nevertheless, you know me. I just can’t leave things alone without also giving my two cents worth.

    I do not wish to contradict or rebut what these writers say. Instead, I wish to reiterate their points and add a bit more on what they had probably missed. You see, being much older than these writers (I will be 60 this September), and the fact that I was involved with the Malay Chamber of Commerce and was a central committee member for a number of years, I am privy to some information that they may not have.

    I was already involved with what I would call ‘the struggle’, for want of a better word, since way back in the 1970s, when some of these writers were still in school. Much was done in the ‘backrooms’ and hidden from the public eye. So not all of what transpired is public knowledge. Maybe I can reveal some of these things so that the picture becomes clearer.

    I read what those 20-year old and 30-year old Umno ‘activists’ have to say about me -- in that I am a traitor to the Malay race because I uphold the concept of a multi-racial Malaysia and am opposed to Malay rights and privileges plus the NEP. These people were born in the late 1970s (some only in the 1980s) and did not ‘enter the market’ until the late 1990s or thereabouts. By then the NEP was supposed to have been officially over. It was supposed to have ended in 1970.

    So what do they know about ‘our struggle’? They were not even born yet then. And even if they were they were mere toddlers or primary school children. We were already on the battleground and fighting in the trenches long before they even realised that such a thing called the NEP existed, or what it meant. And let me tell you that we fought tooth and nail against the powers-that-be, resulting in many of us falling victim to government retaliation. Many of us lost our businesses because the government was determined to bring us down as punishment for being too outspoken and too ‘militant’.

    Those of my generation would probably remember the Umno Youth convention in Kemaman, Terengganu, back in early 1990. In this convention my name was mentioned and the Menteri Besar, Wan Mokhtar Ahmad, told Umno Youth that I must be brought down. Eventually, Umno Youth infiltrated the Terengganu branch of the Malay Chamber of Commerce and ousted me, and those they considered my ‘cronies’, from the Chamber. (Anwar Ibrahim can confirm this because Wan Mokhtar spoke to him about it).

    During one Chamber committee meeting in Kuala Terengganu, some Umno Youth members gate-crashed the meeting with the aim of starting a fight. It did end up in a fight when I chased three Umno Youth members out of the meeting room and we came to blows. (Yeap, me alone chasing three Umno Youth chaps who ran away in fear). This incident was reported by the Malay mainstream newspapers -- and it was also brought to the attention of the Menteri Besar.

    I was then confronted by an Umno Terengganu Member of Parliament who told me to get out of Terengganu. I am not welcome in Terengganu, he told me. Go back to where you came from! I faced so many problems with Umno Terengganu so in 1994 I left the state after spending 20 years of my life there. And that ended my ‘career’ as a ‘fighter’ for Malay interests. I then decided to look at the bigger picture, the fight for a better Malaysia.

    Anyway, I am digressing too much so allow me to come back to the issue of the day, the fight to improve the implementation of the NEP.

    Yes, you read it right: the fight to improve the implementation of the NEP. That was what our fight was all about -- to correct the implementation of the NEP that had gone wrong.

    The NEP was an ill-conceived idea that was conjured in a hurry and out of desperation to appease the Malays in the aftermath of the 13 May 1969 race riots. It was an idea agreed by Umno, MCA and MIC, basically the members of the Alliance Party. So it was something that was agreed by the Chinese and Indians as well.

    But the NEP was just an aspiration (hasrat). It was not a law. And it was never passed by Parliament. For that matter, it even violated the Federal Constitution of Malaysia. So in that sense it was illegal. But it was done anyway. And MCA and MIC agreed to go along with this ‘illegal’ aspiration for the sake of appeasing the very disturbed Malays and to prevent further race riots. It was a sort of necessary evil that the Chinese and Indians tolerated for the sake of racial stability.

    But the NEP was supposed to run for only 20 years. By 1990 the NEP would end. It was not an open-ended policy that would run forever. And even the Prime Minister then, Tun Dr Mahathir Mohammad, agreed with this and he reminded the Malays so.

    Soon after Dr Mahathir took over as Prime Minister, he invited the members of the Malay and Chinese Chambers of Commerce for dinner at the Equatorial Hotel in Kuala Lumpur. In his speech Dr Mahathir told the Malays that the NEP has less than ten years more to run. Dr Mahathir made it clear that the NEP would end in 1990 as agreed. It will not be extended beyond 1990.

    So the Malays had better get their act together, warned Dr Mahathir. Don’t grumble and complain when the government terminates the NEP in 1990. The government is giving the Malays ample warning. Get ready. The NEP will end in 1990. So prepare yourselves for it.

    It was agreed that the NEP would run for just 20 years, reminded Dr Mahathir. The Chinese and Indians agreed to the NEP because it was not going to be a never-ending policy but something that would be in force for just 20 years. So in 1990 it must end, as agreed. It would be unfair to the Chinese and Indians if it was extended beyond 1990.

    The Chinese, in turn, were told that they should work with the Malays and help them in their businesses. Don’t just leave it to the government, said Dr Mahathir. It is better that the Chinese and Malays work together rather than the government is forced to introduce measures like the NEP.

    It is to the interest of the Chinese that the Malays are successful, argued Dr Mahathir. If the Malays were successful then they would not be jealous of the Chinese. But if the Chinese grab all the wealth of this country while the Malays were left behind then the Malays would become militant and would try to grab what belongs to the Chinese.

    This, basically, was Dr Mahathir’s message to the Malays and Chinese. To the Malays it was get ready to see the end of the NEP in 1990. To the Chinese it was work with the Malays and take them as your partners. If not they would become your enemies.

    It was a good message. Whether it was workable or not is another matter and I do not wish to analyse Dr Mahathir’s logic. Sometimes, some things look good in theory but may be hell to put into practice.

    A couple of years later, around 1985, the Malay Chamber organised a two-day seminar at the Shangrila Hotel in Kuala Lumpur. Dr Mahathir officiated the opening and the Deputy Prime Minister, Tun Gafar Baba, officiated the closing. The purpose of this seminar was to discuss the failure of the NEP and the reasons for its failure -- government inefficiency, corruption, unfair competition from GLCs and Umnoputeras, etc.

    At the end of the NEP in 1990, the Third Bumiputera Economic Convention was organised in the PWTC, also in Kuala Lumpur. This Convention was organised together with the government and with the participation of the non-Malays and all the political parties. The purpose of this Convention was to explore what to do now that the NEP had ended. What should replace the NEP? Where do we go from here (1990)?

    If I were to go into detail as to what transpired from 1985 to 1990 I would need to write a book. Suffice to say I was involved in the Malay Chamber of Commerce since the 1970s, not long after the implementation of the NEP and even before Dr Mahathir became Prime Minister. Then, soon after Dr Mahathir became Prime Minister and when he warned us that the NEP was going to end in 1990, we sat down to look at what to do. Then, in 1990, after the NEP had officially ended, we again sat down, but this time in a bigger forum over many days, and in ‘joint-venture’ with the government, the non-Malays and the political parties, to seek a solution to the problems of the Malays.

    To summarise what we concluded over those many years, the NEP is not just about the Malays. It is a multi-prong attack (serampang dua mata) to reduce the gap between the haves and the haves-not (regardless of race), to make the distribution of wealth more equitable, and to reduce the disparity between the different races. This was what the NEP was all about. However, along the way, the Malays forgot about this multi-prong attack and thought that the NEP was just about the Malays.

    Furthermore, the NEP is not just about business, tenders, contracts and permits. It is also about the racial quotas in the civil service. And it is also about education. Banks were created to help the Malays. But banks were also created to help those who needed help but could not get it from the foreign owned banks whether they are Malays or otherwise. Various funds were also set up to assist businessmen who needed start-up or venture capital, research and development grants, and whatnot. They could even be given marketing grants and grants to travel overseas to open up new markets or participate in trade fairs and what have you. And this was, again, not just for the Malays but for all those who needed help.

    So, in short, the NEP was an entire program. It was not just about business. And it was not about just the Malays. It was a total restructuring of society and to help businessmen become more competitive against the onslaught of the global market.

    In theory, the NEP is good. Everyone agreed with that. But in practice, it failed. And the Malays became confused and thought that the NEP was just about them. So where did we go wrong?

    Many issues were identified. One was the change of direction that was introduced by Dr Mahathir that worked outside of and opposite to the NEP. In short, the NEP was derailed and hijacked.

    Dr Mahathir realised that it was impossible to help 15 million (at that time) Malays to become rich. So abandon that idea, which was partly, and I repeat partly, what the NEP was about. Instead, make a few Malays rich. Create a handful of, say, 100 Malay billionaires. Then get these billionaire Malays to hep the rest of the Malays.

    That was a noble plan indeed. So Dr Mahathir went and created the super-rich Daim, Tajuddin Ramli, Halim Saad, Shamsuddin Abu Hassan, Ahmad Sebi Abu Bakar, Wan Azmi, and many, many more. These people would be turned into billionaires so that they could then help the other Malays.

    That did happen, of course. We did see these new billionaires emerge. But they did not help the other Malays. Instead, they worked with the Chinese and new Chinese billionaires were created because of it. Many Chinese became rich because of their partnership with the Umno cronies or Umnoputeras.

    Then there were the GLCs or government-linked companies. What happened was that these GLCs competed with the Malays and it was unfair competition. The GLCs ‘stole’ all the businesses meant for the Malays. It was not the Chinese and Indians who were the problem. The Chinese and Indians were not killing the Malay businessmen. It was the GLCs that were killing off the Malays.

    We in the Malay Chamber coined that new word, Umnoputeras. The Chinese and Indians were not the enemy. The Umnoputeras were. And so were the GLCs. And we told the government this.

    In fact, in one seminar in the Ministry of Trade, hosted by the then Minister, Tengku Razaleigh Hamzah, we in the Malay Chamber told the government that we do not need the NEP. We do not need so-called government help. What we need is for the government to stop the Umnoputeras and GLCs from competing with the Malays and from killing off the Malays.

    In 1970, when the NEP was first launched, the Malay share of the economic 'pie' was just 1.5%. By 1985, 15 years later, it was still just 3%. The target was 30% by 1990. How can the Malays catch up in a mere five years when in 15 years it grew from just 1.5% to 3%?

    This was the concern we expressed. And we knew it would remain at 3% till 1990 and beyond. There was no way it could reach the target of 30%.

    But who is to be blamed? Is it the Chinese and Indians? No! It is the government with their GLCs and Umno with their Umnoputeras. And we told the government this.

    Today, it is still 3% as what we predicted 25 years ago in 1985. Of course, if you include the GLCs and ‘trust agencies’ it will be about 19%. But GLCs and trust agencies do not belong to the Malays. They belong to the nation. They belong to the taxpayers. What belongs to the Malays is what is in their pockets. And that is only 3%.

    The Minister of Trade, Rafidah Aziz, blamed the Malays for this. We gave the Malays so much, Rafidah said, but they sold everything and spent all the money. If the Malays had kept what the government gave them then we could have achieved the target of 30%, maybe even exceed it.

    You Malays waste what the government gave you, lamented Rafidah. Then you complain when you have finished the money and then you accuse the government of not helping you. How can the government keep giving you forever? The government has done what it is supposed to do. But the Malays are not doing what they are supposed to do. The Malays prefer to buy expensive cars and marry many wives when they get rich. And when they become poor again they go running to the government and expect more help from the government.

    Undeniably, the NEP has failed. We in the Malay Chamber of Commerce already said it has failed 25 years ago back in 1985. And the government too said it has failed and that it has failed not because of the Chinese and Indians but because of the Malays themselves. The Malays, however, blame the GLCs and Unmoputeras for that failure. Whatever it may be, both the government and the Malays admit the failure of the NEP though each points to the other as the reason for the failure.

    Okay, that may be as far as the corporate scene is concerned. That is only part of what the NEP is about. What about the other sectors?

    Malays are not denied an education. If the Malays are capable and qualified they can get to go to university, many to overseas universities on top of that. The heads of the government departments are mostly Malays. The heads of the government agencies, the various branches of the armed forces, police, etc., are all Malays. The Ministers in key ministries are all Malays (finance, trade, etc.). The majority of civil servants are Malays (97%-98% of the voters in Putrajaya are Malays). And so on and so forth.

    Malay fishermen and farmers are given aid. They were given free fishing boats, marine engines, fishing nets, fertilizers, tractors, etc. Their fuel is subsidised. In fact, even Chinese fishermen in Penang, Perak, Selangor, Johor, etc., received aid. So it is across the board and not only for the Malays although the majority were Malays -- since there are more Malays than non-Malays in the agriculture and fisheries sector.

    The land settlers are all Malays. And many have become millionaires when they sold their land decades later. There are no land settlements for Chinese and Indians.

    So where is it that the Malays are left out? Is it because the Malay share of the economic ‘pie’ is just 3% instead of 30% that you say the Malays are left out?

    You must understand, the 30% was calculated in 1970, 40 years ago. Going by 1970 standards the Malays have reached the target of 30%, in fact, even more. But the ‘pie’ did not remain static. The pie was only 1KG in 1970 and the Malay target was to get 30% of 1KG. But the ‘pie’ grew over 40 years. Today, the ‘pie’ is 50KG. So, today, the 3% Malay share of 50KG is much bigger than the target of 30% of 1KG, 40 years ago.

    It is a moving target. It is not a static target. So, as the target grows bigger your share in percentage may be small but in absolute terms is so much larger.

    The Malays did take one step forward as what was planned in 1970. In that sense the NEP has succeeded. But the world took 50 steps forward since 1970. And the Malays are just not able to keep up with the pace that the world is moving. So the Malays are behind not because they stepped backwards or they stopped moving but because everyone is moving at a much more rapid pace, which the Malays just can’t keep up with.

    Let’s not just talk about percentages. If one person was unemployed last year and, today, it is two people who are unemployed, can we say that unemployment has increased 100%? Two Malaysians unemployed from just one last year is not bad. But in percentage it looks bad. It is an increase of 100%.

    How many Malays lived in middle-class homes in 1969? How many Malays lived in upmarket homes in 1969? How many Malays went to university in 1969? How many Malays received an overseas education in 1969? How many Malays were employed by the government in 1969? How many Malays drove Mercedes Benzes, BMWs, Ferraris and Porches in 1969? How many Malays could afford RM100,000 motorcycles in 1969? And so on and so forth.

    Don’t just look at the 3% (or 19% if GLCs and trust agencies are included). Look at what your grandfather was doing in 1969. And look at where you are now 40 years later. That is what the NEP has done for you.

    So, yes, in some ways the NEP has failed (although the government blames the Malays themselves for this failure). But in many more ways the NEP has succeeded. And you Malays reading this piece is proof it has succeeded. If not you will be back in the kampong planting padi or following your father to catch fish instead of reading Malaysia Today.

    To the Malays, this is my message. Malays are Muslims. So use your ‘Islamic head’ to think. Islam asks us to shukur (show gratitude to God) for the nikmat (blessings) we receive from Allah. If we do not shukur then we are considered kufur nikmat. And kufur comes for the word kafir or infidel. Yes, Islam asks us to not question what we do not have but to shukur for what we do have. And doing otherwise makes us kufur nikmat.

    To say that the Malays still need the NEP is an admission that the Malays are weak. Where is your Malay pride and dignity? You look at what the Chinese and Indians have and complain because you too do not have the same. But you forgot that the Indians and Chinese agreed to give the Malays 20 years to catch up. Is it their fault if you did not?

    And we did catch up. The only problem is the Chinese are Indians did not stand still to wait for the Malays to catch up. They too increased their wealth. And the Malays also increased their wealth. But now we are comparing what the Chinese and Indians have to what we have and we are not happy. We used to take a bus to go to town 40 years ago. Today, we are driving expensive cars. But we have only three cars while the Chinese and Indians have ten. And that is why we are not happy.

    Tak malu ke Melayu sungut macam ini? Malaysiatoday....
    py

  3. #113
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    Re: THE RAT RACE PART VI – MALAYSIA: Dump the NEP!

    Dump the NEP

    Suflan Shamsuddin qualified as a barrister at law from Middle Temple and has been called to the Malaysian Bar. He is currently working in a Fortune 500 company as a senior counsel and is based in London. He is also author of the book “RESET: Rethinking the Malaysian Political Paradigm”.

    In 1970, Bumiputras held 1.5 per cent of the country’s wealth. Today they hold 19 per cent, out of which 16 per cent is held by trust institutions and funds.

    This means that over the life of the NEP, despite everything, individual Bumiputra wealth has grown from 1.5 to 3 per cent. Hardly anything to be proud of.

    And what has been the costs of this meagre achievement?


    Well there is of course the actual cost of making all of these opportunities available in the first place, whether in relation to business and entrepreneurship, education and scholarships, concessions, discounts, pink-slips, property ownership, etc. But that is not all.

    Think of the cost to the country for retaining a feudalistic patronage based system that enlarges the socio-economic divide between rich and poor, because the former are the ones who mostly profit from this arrangement.

    Think of the sickening and crippling effect that Ketuanan Melayu has had on the mentality and attitudes of many Malays who are conditioned to be dependent on crutches and to embrace short-termism, and who now struggle with issues of self-confidence and self-reliance in a challenging global market place.

    What about the cost of having countless businessmen (many of whom were Malays, I might add) who have been wiped out, not by non-Malay
    competition, but by other Malay businessmen who so happens to have the right ‘connections’ to those in power and pedigree. What about the costs associated with having hundreds of thousands of Malay graduates who have a degree but can’t get good jobs because their qualifications have no market or industry value.

    All of these things have a cost to the Malays and everyone in Malaysia.

    Let’s not forget the costs associated with the fact that millions of poor and needy non-Malay Malaysians have had no effective social welfare net to rely on so that they remain in squalor.

    Think also of the costs associated with how disunited we as are, by splitting society into those who are ‘princes of the soil’, and those who aren’t.

    We would need to add to this, the costs of having weakened and ineffective institutions of government, across all of its branches, whether it is the legislature, the judiciary or the executive.

    That would of course include the costs of a bloated and inefficient government beauracracy which has had to absorb countless numbers of Malay graduates that might not find employment elsewhere.

    We would also need to take account of the substandard education that our children are getting, and the cost that propaganda and brainwashing has had on making Malays inept to take on the challenges to survive in a meritocratic environment.

    The total costs of the NEP would also need to include the very high cost of bailouts and fixing things that have gone wrong because of misused
    opportunities.

    What about the cost of market distortions from lost productivity and competitiveness when competing for business, talent and foreign direct investment and the consequential cost (including for example, brain drain) that follows?

    And what of the cost of corruption, that is a necessary bi-product of maintaining a system that lives off of patronage? All these costs must be computed and added to the total NEP bill.

    If you try to monetize the aggregate cost of the NEP (or whatever its current incarnation is called), it must run into the hundreds of billions of ringgits, if not more.

    The NEP has cost the country a mountain of money, and its achievements are at best shoddy and patchy, especially for the Malays themselves.

    On top of that, it has created a warped sense of values that are totally inconsistent with universal and Islamic values. With depleted financial resources not being replaced, the socio-economic landscape not changing in the way it was intended, and value systems remaining warped, it is only a matter of time before we become like Zimbabwe. And there are those who have the audacity to ask that it remains in place?

    It’s time to dump the NEP.

    But that’s not to say that we no longer need affirmative action programmes. We do. But we need these programmes to undergo a ‘game-changing’ re-design to become much more effective. For the sake of the Malays and everyone else. And to do this we need to take some bold changes.

    Firstly, affirmative action programmes must be designed to benefit those who need such support across all races. By definition this means that those who can now stand on their own two feet to realise the opportunity being offered, regardless of what race they are, must be excluded.

    But determining who needs what support must however take account, not just of how smart, how financially needy, and how hard working the person seeking such support is, but his/her background and social circumstances.

    The more such a person is unaccustomed to the rigours of operating in a free market, the more deserving should he be of the programme.
    The more that help offered to him is likely to have a major positive impact on him and those around him, the more deserving should he be of the program.


    Secondly, the programme cannot be limited to giving opportunities alone. It needs to deliver a life-transforming behavioural change.
    It needs the beneficiary to come away from having being given this opportunity with the willingness to embrace the challenges of an open and competitive society. This is true whether it relates to opening or building a new business, furthering his education, or sharpening his professional skills.


    Finally such programmes must be run professionally, independently and free from political interference. The programmes must not be run by those who are beholden to any set of political beliefs or party system. This is because that would create an irreconcilable conflict of interest as a result of which the program will suffer from the ill effects of poor governance, as has been the case with the NEP.


    By developing colour-blind affirmative action programmes along this philosophy, you immediately remove the notion that opportunities are associated with the race to which you belong, even though the bulk of the beneficiaries, given the demographics and their social condition, are likely to still be Malays anyway.

    A beneficiary is given this break, not because it is his right, but because he is proven to have a need, and society desires to help him meet that need, both for his own sake and for the sake of society itself.

    And because of this, the beneficiary is less likely to abuse this gift.

    In addition, you remove from the potential list of beneficiaries, anyone that ought to be able to get on without any crutches.

    By having these programmes run independently and professionally, you also stop rewarding those who are linked to a party or a leader with opportunities.

    It is this group that is the biggest strain on the system.
    It is this group’s greed that keeps elitism and cronyism alive and kicking.
    We need to stop letting this lot drain the system.
    By doing so, all the wanton wastage can be put to better use where it is really needed.



    Focus on those that are disadvantaged, and leave those who have their own means to get on to compete on their own two feet.
    With such a shift in emphasis, we are more likely to sustain such effective social engineering programmes over a much longer time horizon, focus on alleviating the conditions of those who are in the most need for help (the bulk of whom, as I said, will remain the Malays), whilst creating a society that is built on the sharing of common universal values of integrity, hard work, respect, tolerance, and compassion.

    The only thing that is preventing the above approach from being supported and succeeding is the middle-class Malay’s fear of failure, and the voices of the ultra-Malays.

    To the latter I say, we must quell them for being criminally or recklessly irresponsible and ignorant. They are the ones who are causing the Malays to remain backward.

    To the former I can only quote FDR’s saying, ‘The only thing we have to fear is Fear itself’.

    If we can overcome this fear, then God-willing, we can deliver our own salvation and turn this country around to fulfil all of its promises, for everyone.

    If you wish to contribute your ideas on how we can help develop a Malay mindset that is built on universal and Islamic values, without having to rely on any concept of Malay supremacy or dominance, or Ketuanan Melayu, or you support this objective, please join and participate in the Facebook Group Tabung Idea Mengukuh Martabat Melayu ~ http://www.facebook.com/group.php?gid=343275199202
    py

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    Re: THE RAT RACE PART VI – MALAYSIA: Batsman's analysis - Lessons from History

    Interesting analysis by Batsman.

    Lessons from History
    LETTERS/SURAT

    Thursday, 25 March 2010 admin-s

    The target is not religion, different racial groups or even feudal power. ... So drop the Islamophobia and racial profiling while targeting corruption, injustice, discrimination, abuse, greed, lust, cowardice and hypocrisy.

    By batsman

    The fight against corruption and abuse of power in Malaysia may have reached a stage where people start to ask deeper and more penetrating questions. In order not to suffer too many questions and not enough answers – hence leading to demoralization, it may be good to review lessons of history.

    And since we are trying to change society for the better, the pertinent questions surround reforms and revolutions, in particular the history of capitalist and socialist revolutions.

    As far as feudal revolutions go (against slavery), there does not seem to be too much literature on the matter. We may take it as an unconscious and deterministic development of the historical dialectic. The feudal economy was more democratic as well as more efficient and productive compared to the slave economy so smart people everywhere sided with the feudal lords.

    The capitalist system offered even better efficiency and productivity, so when feudal power became too concentrated in too few hands, feudalism declined and smart people everywhere sided with the more democratic capitalists. This statement assumes that capitalist power was already well developed within the feudal order – at least powerful enough to challenge the feudal aristocracy militarily in the battlefield as well as financially in the raising and supplying of armies.

    When the capitalist economy became too concentrated in too few hands, it started to decline. Capitalism could no longer cater to the needs of millions of hungry and dispossessed. The only class who could challenge the capitalists was the working class. The problem was workers are not owners. Their power is not expressed in terms of money or productive assets but in terms of discipline and organization. This made the working class dependent on the capitalist class in a way that the capitalists were never dependent on the feudal lords.

    When Marx came up with his classic study of capital, he recognized this limitation of workers. He therefore predicted that working class revolutions could only succeed in the most advanced and mature capitalist countries. This did not come about.

    Instead it succeeded in Russia, a backward agricultural semi-feudal country with only a small proportion of workers in its population. Lenin argued that since Marxist theory already armed the workers with foresight, they knew what was about to happen. They therefore need not wait for the capitalists to develop Russia into an advanced industrialised country. Instead they could seize political power and used the power of the state to push the workers’ revolution to its final successful conclusion, or at least they tried while the traditional Marxists eventually were absorbed into the capitalist establishment.

    Even though the workers revolution occurred in the semi-feudal Tsarist state collapsing under its own weight in obvious contradiction to Marx’s prediction, Leninism was recognized as the creative extension to Marxist theory. This was because Lenin was able to guide the workers through every twist and turn as well as every difficulty and uncertainty in the immensely complex revolutionary process using Marxist methods of analysis.

    When it came to semi-feudal and semi-colonial China, the situation was even more backward than in Russia. Mao himself never personally organized revolutionary activities in Chinese cities although other Chinese revolutionists tried to. The Chinese revolution was an almost purely peasant affair using only nominal working class Marxist theory as a guide to revolutionary tactics and strategy. In fact Mao even saw the small Chinese capitalists as his allies. That is why only the Chinese and their allies recognize the Chinese revolution as a Marxist revolution and Maoism as the creative extension of Leninism. Things were beginning to develop beyond their logical limitations.

    When it came to fully colonial Vietnam, the Vietnamese revolutionists avoided calling their fight a revolution. They called it an anti-colonialist and later an anti-imperialist fight for Vietnamese independence. Like Mao during the Sino-Japanese war, the Vietnamese knew better than to provoke a revolutionary civil war when they had their hands full with fighting an entrenched militarily powerful colonial power and later a meddling genocidal military superpower. That would be committing the mistake of fighting on 2 fronts as RPK himself cautions against.

    When it came to Malaya, the thinking and analysis turned murky. In his book the ex-communist chief honcho Chin Peng admitted that communications between the various guerilla units was a major problem and never satisfactorily solved. Some communists probably saw their struggle as an anti-feudal anti-colonial revolution. This meant fighting a revolutionary civil war against feudal forces as well as an anti-colonial war against an entrenched colonial power. The end result was a deepening split in Malaysian society based on race and religion engineered by divide and rule tactics of the colonial government and the isolation and neutralization of the communists.

    What subsequently occurred in Russia, China, Vietnam and Malaya are the concerns of different studies with more lessons that may be drawn. For this purpose, it is sufficient to realize that it is fatal both to get stuck on traditional theories as well as allowing the analysis to get murky. It is necessary to be absolutely clear about the realities on the ground, what can and needed to be achieved and how to go about it.

    In the current struggle, the fight is about getting rid of corruption and abuse of power. It is about fighting racism and narrowing the racial divide not opening it up even more. It is about building an effective system of checks and balances. It is about each and every Malaysian pulling his own weight as a minimum. It is a reformist platform not a revolutionary one. We do not need a civil war especially a racially tinged one even if the struggle is violent, painful and bloody for some individuals who have been targeted by corrupt and vicious persons in power. As things go, it is not reform in a peaceful and sporting environment, but reform under violent suppression and vicious dirty tricks.

    The target is not religion, different racial groups or even feudal power. It is corrupt persons in power who abuse their authority and the greedy backward sycophantic mindset and lack of strong ethics and value systems as well as lack of strong independent and democratic institutions that allow this to happen.

    So drop the Islamophobia and racial profiling while targeting corruption, injustice, discrimination, abuse, greed, lust, cowardice and hypocrisy.

    Having talked about leaders in history and the successful policies they came up with, it may be worthwhile to discuss the relationship between leaders and their followers. It is said that revolutions tend to consume their leaders.

    There are 2 types of leadership situations – that where leaders are the source of power and wealth for their followers (UMNO style) and that where followers are independently motivated by their own ideals and seek only leading-edge guidance and policies from their leaders.

    Revolutionary (as well as religious) leaders tend to belong to the second type. There are plenty of shades of grey, but essentially followers of religious and revolutionary leaders tend to be so because their leaders express the leading edge ideas and the hard core ideals and sentiments that they themselves possess to a lesser degree. Unfortunately when things are pushed to the extreme and the followers realize that they cannot keep up with their leaders both in idealism and fanaticism even if they try their best to follow every twist and turn blindly, they tend to pull back. If this elicits a negative response from the leaders, the followers start to feel threatened by their own leaders. This is when leaders get consumed by the revolutions they have led.

    It makes sense for revolutionary leaders to sometimes get more in touch with their followers rather than abandon their followers in preference to idealistic approaches especially ones that involve extreme violence or extreme sacrifice. They need to realize that in general most followers have a practical bent to seek effective solutions to difficult problems and do not wish to go too far. It is only a dangerous minority who are even more fanatical than their own leaders. Still, these are difficult decisions and only a few great men (and women) are able to make such decisions successfully.

    Leaders of reform movements tend to mix idealism with practical matters. Their followers tend to be more of a mixed batch. There is a tendency for opportunists and frogs to thrive more successfully in reform movements, but the same case of followers lagging behind their leaders also apply. This is when reform movements run out of steam.

    Needless to say, these tendencies tend to exist both in UMNO and PR. Wealth and power tend to get more and more concentrated in a few UMNO hands. The rest of the people find it more and more difficult to survive day to day. UMNO now has real difficulty trying to cater to the needs of ordinary Malaysians. It therefore tries to stir up racial insecurities in order to keep the support of ordinary Malaysians for corrupt, sinful and self-serving leaders. Such dirty tactics seem to have run its course and people not longer respond urgently to them, so they have to resort to other dirty tricks.

    Unfortunately a few chauvinists are fond of spreading their poison in internet forums. This activity actually helps UMNO because it makes UMNO look like it is telling the truth when it warns Malays about the danger from non-Malays thus keeping the myths alive. It is difficult to understand these people – either they are completely dense or they are actually working for UMNO as provocateurs.

    In the PR, the existence of too many frogs has caused concern while habits of patronage and cronyism have started to manifest. Old techniques of the purge and re-motivation which some MCA leaders have tried without good results may be needed in the PR to try and keep the steam up.

    MCA leaders have moved on to other tricks and tactics to try and keep the MCA and hence their own power alive. The PR seems to be moving more slowly and cautiously. Perhaps it can afford to do so since its followers comprise a higher percentage of idealistic young men and women. Still, it is a good thing if the lessons of history are learnt quickly, the situation seen clearly and the creative juices pumping more vigorously to show the way forward with good clear cut policies and tactics of struggle including all the do’s and don’t of politics. Malaysiatoday....
    py

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    Re: THE RAT RACE PART VI – MALAYSIA: UMNO War Machine Breaking Up

    The UMNO War Machine is failing. When people lose faith in government institutions, they become relevant. The last stage is to throw out the corrupt regime. Articles below are from Malaysiakini by subscription. Please support them by being a subscriber.


    Hisham: No action against Norizan's shooters.

    Hazlan Zakaria
    Mar 25, 10
    8:03pm

    The government has reiterated its refusal to take action against the police for mistakenly shooting 30-year-old single mother Norizan Salleh five times.

    Home Minister Hishammuddin Hussein told the Dewan Rakyat that the Attorney-General's Chambers found no reason to pursue the matter.

    "The case has been investigated under Section 307 of the Penal Code, for attempted murder. The investigation papers have been sent to the deputy public prosecutor, who decided not to take any further action over the case."

    Judiciary courting repudiation.

    Terence Netto
    Mar 26, 10
    8:14am

    comment The appellate courts are in danger of taking self-parody to farcical lengths.

    The latest demonstration of this distressing trend is yesterday's unanimous decision of a three-member panel of the Court of Appeal's to overturn an award of RM2.5 million in damages to ex-ISA detainee Abdul Malek Hussein (right) by the High Court in 2007.

    In a perverse twist, costs of RM50,000 were awarded against the respondent.

    This decision represents the second time this year an appellate panel has unanimously overturned a decision of the High Court, the first was when the Federal Court, with stupefying 5-0 unanimity, affirmed the Court of Appeal's decision to upend a High Court decision last year affirming Pakatan Rakyat's Mohd Nizar Jamaluddin as menteri besar of Perak.

    That decision of the apex court was a grotesquery because it ignored the jurisprudential tradition of stare decisis, which is that judges adhere to the legal principle established in analogous cases in the past, unless of course the case posits a unique fact situation.
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    Re: THE RAT RACE PART VI – DR M, THE FATHER OF RE-COLONISATION Mahathir forgets

    DR M, THE FATHER OF RE-COLONISATION Mahathir forgets easily (I)
    LETTERS/SURAT

    Tuesday, 30 March 2010 admin-s

    Dr M and his cohorts who once detested the oppressive laws of the British, brandished a gamut of harsh executive powers during his reign which were deeply and undeniably derivative of authoritarian colonialism.

    Many laws left behind by the British were amended and made even more draconian to contain, cripple and crush legitimate dissent by citizens and the Opposition.

    By Martin Jalleh

    Recently, Dr Mahathir (Dr M) reminded the younger generation, who will one day lead the nation, not to be taken in by the subtle tactics of foreigners who want to bring about neo-colonialism in the country.

    He said that “foreign forces would take advantage on the basis of globalisation and liberalisation to fulfil their agenda. We are now “faced with various challenges from abroad ...(and) threats from blog sites”.

    He was speaking at the Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad Statesman Discussion organised by the Special Affairs Department (Jasa) of the Ministry of Information Communication and Culture (Bernama, 27.03.10).

    It was one amongst the many of Dr M’s anti-re-colonisation rhetoric. Once when he was in power (in reality, he still is!) he declared that the rakyat must ensure that the BN “is returned to power with a big majority in the next general election so that the nation will be ruled by a strong Government capable of standing against any attempt by foreign powers to re-colonise the country”.

    Alas, Dr M forgets very easily these days. Re-colonisation had in fact taken place in 1981 when he became PM. He had donned the mantle of British supremacy and with his Executive supremacy even outdid the white colonial master in many ways during the 22 years that followed! Malaysiatoday....
    py

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    Re: THE RAT RACE PART VI – MALAYSIA: NEM - Kicking the Can down the Road

    52 years of UMNO nonsense is enough. The cycle of change is due. Let's try something else for 5 years come GE 13. What more have we got to lose?

    In 1990, Mahathir kicked the can 30 years down the road - Wawasan 2020, thinking that it is far enough into the future. It is now coming due.

    In 2004, Badawi came out with his hare-brained scheme of new Islamic civilization. It is now completely forgotten.

    Now Najib wants us to believe his 1Malaysia under the thumb of UMNO.

    The trends tell us that we are headed for Myanmar. So all his gimmicks about achieving developed nation status by 2020 is nonsense. And if anyone is foolish enough to believe his promises, look at UMNO's track record on their promises and agreements:

    Just one simple example: The Agreement between the CPM and the Government of Malaysia in 1988 promising to allow all the communists the right of return. After more than 20 years, Chin Peng is still stuck in Thailand, not allowed to return. This is an internationally-witnessed agreement, mind you.


    Highlights of New Economic Model

    Mar 30, 10 11:22am

    Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak today unveiled a raft of economic measures that he said would propel Malaysia to developed nation status by 2020.

    Following are some of the highlights of what he announced:

    State investor Khazanah to sell 32 percent stake in Pos Malaysia.

    To list stakes in two Petronas units.

    Facilitate foreign direct and domestic direct investments in emerging industries/sectors.

    Remove distortions in regulation and licensing, including replacement of Approved Permit system with a negative list of imports.

    Reduce direct state participation in the economy.

    Divest GLCs in industries where the private sector is operating effectively.

    Strengthen the competitive environment by introducting fair trade legislation.

    Set up an Equal Opportunity Commission to cover discriminatory and unfair practices.

    Review remaining entry restrictions in products and services sectors.

    Phase out price controls and subsidies that distort markets for goods and services.

    Apply government savings to a wider social safety net for the bottom 40 percent of households, prior to subsidy removal.

    Have zero tolerance for corruption.

    Create a transformation fund to assist distressed firms during the refom period.

    Easing entry and exit of firms as well as high skilled workers.

    Simplify bankruptcy laws pertaining to companies and individuals to promoteo vibrant entrepreneurship.

    Improve access to specialised skills.

    Use appropriate pricing, regulatory and strategic policies to manage non-renewable resources sustainably.

    Develop a comprehensive energy policy.

    Develop banking capacity to assess credit approvals for green investment using non-collateral based criteria.

    Liberalise entry of foreign experts specialising in financial analysis of viability of green technology projects.

    Reduce wastage and avoid cost overrun by better controlling expenditure.

    Establish open, efficient and transparent government procurement process.

    Adopt international best practices on fiscal transparency. Malaysiakini. Subscription required.

    Full report: http://www.neac.gov.my/sites/default...20Part%20I.pdf
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    Re: THE RAT RACE PART VI – MALAYSIA: HOW DID UMNO STAY IN POWER FOR SO LONG?

    Raja Petra explains how the Emergency allows UMNO to impose contradictions in the Constitution to take away our rights. This is an issue not well-understood by the people. So it bears careful study. By now, after 52 years of Merdeka, we have had more than 650 amendments to the Constitution. Contrast that with the US, a nation 233 years old, with only 27 amendments.

    That is why we have to go back to basics - back to the original Constitution of 1957 and 1963 (formation of Malaysia) to start afresh.

    http://tindakmalaysia.com/tm_forums2...1.new.html#new
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    Re: THE RAT RACE PART VI – MALAYSIA: HOW DID UMNO STAY IN POWER - MCA helped!

    After 60 years of existence, all the MCA has achieved is to help to entrench UMNO's hold on power and to share in the spoils. This is a carry-over of the British rule.

    History will judge them. Not kindly, I am afraid unless they can find the guts to stand up and walk out of the BN!

    The politics of issues and the issue of politicising

    Tue, 13 Apr 2010 16:59

    By Stanley Koh

    COMMENT Politicians seldom forget what a tongue is for. And MCA president Dr Chua Soi Lek proved that he was no exception when newsmen pressed him to respond to Lim Guan Eng’s recent message to Chinese guilds and associations.

    The Penang Chief Minister had reminded the associations of their self-proclaimed independence and integrity, saying they should not accept the MCA invitation to a meeting of its presidential council.

    Chua retorted with sound bites worthy of a politician: “We are not in the politics of politicising issues; we are in the politics of solving issues.”

    But why would such a dispassionate reminder be so irritating and unwelcoming to MCA? It is not as if it has never indulged in the politics of politicising issues. Indeed, the party’s history tells us otherwise.

    Of course, MCA cannot survive without Chinese support, and it must do all it can to harvest goodwill. This is only politically expedient. The show must go on, especially in wooing influential associations, whose membership can be pervasive, embracing all types of trades, clans and walks of life.

    Dialogues between MCA and the Chinese associations have never been blindingly successful. They have not resulted in changes to economic policies detrimental to non-Malay communities or even managed to bring about a meaningful correction of deviant implementation of policies. Nevertheless, there is a consensus that the party must continue to play what role it can with its limited voice in the Cabinet.

    But why a sudden change from open dialogues—as practised under previous presidents—to private discussions in an internal party council?

    MCA would have pulled off this sort of a political move in the good old days, when the Malaysian political landscape was still a happy fairy tale of justice, good governance and fair play. (At least that is what it would seem like when contrasted against present realities.)

    Furthermore, that kind of old-school politics is becoming passé as the nation witnesses the emergence of a two-party system, with the parliamentary opposition even ruling some states.

    In need of breakthrough ideas

    Yes, times are changing; yet there are desperate quarters engaged in bizarre and pathetic ways of trying to divert the nation’s attention from the changes taking place in Malaysian politics.


    Dialogues with Chinese associations and guilds have all along shown that MCA does it fire fighting on an ad hoc basis when reacting to complaints about economic policies and implementation.

    Under the present political circumstances, wisdom demands that Chinese associations maintain their independence, integrity and non-partisan approaches in cooperating with political parties.

    They must especially avoid being mistaken for sham organisations that are prey to a political party dancing to tunes played by another political party.

    This point is particularly pertinent to the relationship between MCA and the Chinese guilds and associations as well as between MCA and Dong Jaio Zhong (Chinese educationist movements).

    Conscientious Malaysians generally seem to agree that a more uncertain economic picture only heightens the need for a new deal under a revolutionary economic development plan that would stop the backward slide of our economy and boost the wellbeing of all Malaysians. It is important to meet social needs and to fight poverty on a non-racial ticket.

    MCA is in sore need of breakthrough ideas and the moral courage to oppose injustice and discriminative policies.

    Can it overcome these weaknesses by working with Chinese associations?

    What seems to have escaped many is history.

    MCA leaders used to have a towkay image. In the early days—between 1949 and 1965—about half of the Central Working Committee (CWC) members held posts in the guilds and the chambers of commerce.

    According to Prof Chan Heng Chee, author of 'The Malayan Chinese Association', “at no time were there fewer than 30 percent of the MCA’s CWC members overlapping with either the chambers of commerce or the Chinese guilds.”

    MCA was built upon the Chinese chambers of commerce and guilds. Typically, a state leader was also an office bearer in the chamber of commerce of his state.

    “The fact that Chinese association leaders were the founders and promoters of the MCA resulted in the party being physically accommodated on the premises of Chinese associations, most notably the chambers of commerce,” Prof Heng Pek Koon writes in her book, 'Chinese Politics in Malaysia: The MCA'.

    “The administration of party affairs was often attended to by employees of Chinese chambers of commerce or huay kuan, which accommodated the party branch.”

    The party also had closely-knit links with the Chinese education movements, the United Chinese School Teachers Association (Jiao Zhong) and the United Chinese School Management Committee (Dong Zhong). But this is no longer true.

    Prof Chan writes: “Between 1949 and 1964, the MCA shifted from the position of an insistent spokesman for Chinese rights to that of a comprising negotiator. In 1961, Tan Siew Sin told the (Chinese) association members plainly that two choices lay before the MCA.

    “It could choose to submit to the jingoistic minority and retain a short-lived popularity, or it could continue on the road that had served it well: being race friendly and tolerant.

    “The more communal elements in the party complained that the Chinese were expected to sacrifice their hard work to appease the Malay Mammon.”

    Prof Heng writes: “Even from as early as the 1959 debacle, the MCA has never again regained the same level of support it had earlier commanded from the Chinese community.”

    Ad hoc fire-fighting


    At the end of the day, after more than 50 years, these economic plans have failed to bring our country forward to where it should be. Now the nation is at a crossroads again.

    Today, Chinese politics and MCA are continuing to move to the periphery in an atmosphere of one-race dominance and discriminative-based politics, fanned by the chauvinistic support of dubious organizations.

    Part of the blame should go to MCA’s accommodationist role in the past.

    However, what is important now is for Chinese associations to provide a conscientious third channel of articulation towards a multiracial integrationist approach in handling economic and social issues.

    Dialogues with Chinese associations and guilds have all along shown that MCA does it fire fighting on an ad hoc basis when reacting to complaints about economic policies and implementation.

    The record shows that MCA leaders have been prone to heaping praise on the prevailing system, fully supporting economic plans whose contents were often decorated with beautiful rhetoric composed by the Barisan Nasional government.

    This was despite maladministration, implementation deviations, corruption, power abuses and the shenanigans of little Napoleons. The party seems powerless to act against race-based policies.

    At the end of the day, after more than 50 years, these economic plans have failed to bring our country forward to where it should be. Now the nation is at a crossroads again.

    Malaysians need to be constantly reminded that the New Economic Model is supposed to be need-based and not race-based. If it fails, we will recall the quip that a British MP once made about a baker saying, “I’m really sorry I poisoned your daughter with that cream horn. No manslaughter was intended, but it was merely a result of bad baking.”

    Perhaps, Malaysians must decide not to hold their tongues.

    Fortunately, in defiance of our submissive culture, Malaysians are gradually waking up. And they should be wagging their tongues, calling for a change under a two-party system.

    Yes, it is time that Malaysians should actively engage in the politics of politicising issues and not leave the job to politicians alone. It is time for the people to lead the government because we have had enough of the government leading us nowhere.

    Stanley Koh is a FreeMalaysiaToday contributor. FreeMalaysiaToday....
    py

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    Re: THE RAT RACE PART VI – MALAYSIA: UMNO STAY IN POWER - Control the natives

    One of the strategies of all Ruling Classes throughout the world is to control the natives who live off the land. Such people are anathema to every Ruler - they can't be taxed, they occupy state resource (land being seen as belonging to the State, which the Ruler controls). Another way is to drive them off the land into the workforce, where they become a source of cheap labour (Sarawak NCR land issue).

    Read below how UMNO is going to amend the Orang Asli Bill to tighten their control over these people. Such obnoxious attitudes of the UMNO minister smacks of arrogance, racism and colonialism. This is the attitude of a Master over a Slave.


    This is the background leading to the demonstration by the Orang Aslis - New govt land policy shortchanges Orang Asli.

    More Jeffrey to campaign for Zaid in Hulu Selangor. - "In my assessment, the Orang Asli community has not been given due recognition. They have been marginalised on many fronts.

    “No doubt, some assistance has been given but it has only made them overly dependent on the government, which the ruling elite loves to perpetuate," said Jeffrey Kitingan.

    Clarify laws on Orang Asli.
    .

    How Ketuanan Melayu has dispossessed the Orang Asli.

    the ministry was taking steps to amend the Orang Asli Act 1954 to ensure the Orang Asli community's welfareHow Ketuanan Melayu has dispossessed the Orang Asli.

    Angry Orang Asli demand public apology from Shafie

    Wed, 14 Apr 2010 14:39

    By FMT Staff

    TERMERLOH: Rural and Regional Development Minister Shafie Apdal has got himself into a pickle with the Orang Asli community for trivialising their presence in Putrajaya last month.

    The affronted Orang Aslis are now demanding that Shafie issue a public apology for his comments which they claimed were “insulting and derisive”.

    Speaking on behalf of the 27,841 Orang Asli families in Peninsular Malaysia, Pahang Orang Asli community spokesman Yusri Ahon said Shafie’s description of their gathering in Putrajaya last month was hurtful.

    We are upset with his comment. He has insulted us by saying that when we gathered in Putrajaya it was like a holiday visit and without purpose.

    “This is not true... we were there for a purpose, which was to voice our objections to an unfair land policy and to forward a memorandum on our rights.

    “We want him to openly apologise to the Orang Asli community
    ,” said Yusri, alluding to a historic protest by 1,000 Orang Aslis against a recently passed land policy which they claimed is unfair to them.

    On March 18, 13 busloads of Orang Asli arrived in Putrajaya to show their unhappiness toward a policy which ignored the fundamental rights of indigenous people.

    A delegation of five Orang Asli, representing the protesters, handed over two memorandums, signed by 9,000 Orang Aslis, to Shafie.

    'No one instigating'

    The first memorandum was to protest the land policy passed by the National Land Council last December, while the second was for a new senator in Dewan Negara to replace the present “Umno proxy”.

    Yusri has also taken Shafie to task over his allegations that the Orang Asli community’s gathering in Putrajaya was instigated by certain groups.

    “No one is instigating us. We are aware of our rights because many among us are educated.

    “To say that our presence in Putrajaya was instigated or influenced by others is even more insulting to us.

    “There are now many clever Orang Asli. Some of our people have even become professors, doctors and other professionals... So the issue of instigation does not arise,” he said.

    Shafie had said in the current Parliament sitting that outsiders were trying to interfere and take advantage of the Orang Asli land issue.

    He said that to avoid such interference, the ministry was taking steps to amend the Orang Asli Act 1954 to ensure the Orang Asli community's welfare. FreeMalaysiaToday....
    py

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Hold on power: How did UMNO remain in power for so long

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