Tuesday, July 07, 2020

Status quo, for DAP, is Latin for "the mess we’re in" and maintaining


What are Harapan's 'progressive' values?

by S Thayaparan

"Status quo, you know, is Latin for ‘the mess we’re in’."

- Ronald Reagan

Umno Pas Coalition Frightens Mahathir

Imperator (Caesar): Veni, Vidi, Venom

Apologies to Malaysians as I picked Najib as 6th PM
I'll pick a better PM this time, namely, Mahathir Mafulat

When “progressive” political operatives talk about the middle ground, what exactly are they talking about? Honestly, I do not know what a “progressive” Malaysian political operative is.

What are the values that separate “progressives” from ethnoreligious ideologies sustained by cronyism and feudalism? I know where religion-focused PAS is coming from and we know that Umno and Bersatu will do anything to be the “centre” of whatever power-sharing formula they concoct. But what are these “progressive” values some people keep yapping about?

Dei Thaya Tambee, you listen carefully
Now you mustn't spook Mahathir and the Malays

The DAP has shown that they will grovel at the heels of any Malay power structure that would have them. To them, the “middle path” is anytime they can hold onto public office without being held accountable to whatever principles the party’s ideology is premised on.

Budget 2019 Malaysia for the Malaysian Millenials – Legally Malaysians

me and my Atuk

PKR has always been imploding, with its president Anwar Ibrahim unwilling or unable to control the narrative. “Malay rights” over the years has been a problem for this multi-racial party simply because the "reformasi" movement has been chipped away when the mandarins of the party who tasted political power realised that reforming the country would not be to their benefit.

When it comes to racial politics, it is painful to watch minorities squabbling for the political interests of majority stakeholders. At least the Malays from both sides of the political divide can sometimes meet halfway on those politically-designed issues of race and religion.

Anwar’s latest rejoinder of ditching race-based policies in favour of needs-based policies and his justifications of such is a return to the rhetoric that he has used in the past. And I say good for him. If everyone in PKR was committed to that instead of committed to the infighting that wrecked Pakatan Harapan, it is a good start.

Former deputy defence minister Liew Chin Tong says there is a need to define what this new Malaysia stands for. Liew says for him, it means that we all see ourselves as primarily Malaysian citizens. What does this even mean?

Everyone in Malaysia has always seen himself or herself as a Malaysian citizen - that is, if we are lucky enough to have our citizenship acknowledged by the state. The problem has always been that the state does not view us as equal citizens. Put simply, politics does not view us as equal citizens.

What exactly does the “middle ground” mean in this milieu? Most Malaysians, especially non-Malays and non-Muslims, define it as the middle ground between the religious and racial politics of the majority and the “rights” of minority communities.

Mahathir: “.. Orang asing berasa selesa dengan negara kita dan mereka ingin tinggal di sini. Nak tak nak pun, kita terpaksa terima, kalau tidak kita tidak akan mencapai kemerdekaan"

Translation: The foreigners (meaning non-Malays) felt comfortable in this country and wanted to stay. Like it or not, we were forced to accept or we would not have achieved independence

The middle ground has nothing to do with secular governance, nor does it have anything to do with egalitarian policy. Most of the time, it is political rhetoric. This is why we get all this aggravation when it comes to educational opportunities, for example. But the private sector thinks that it is free from racism and bigotry.

Now, of course with the Perikatan Nasional government running around like a headless chicken, even participants in a "Youth Digital Parliament" are intimidated by the police.

When it comes to political rhetoric, the middle ground normally means engaging in false equivalences and blaming others for certain problems, instead of attacking ethnocentric narratives and policies. Is hooking up with Bersatu the middle ground or is it just political strategy?

To Malay power structures, “moderation” is defined by acquiescence to the concerns of the minority communities. By how pliant their non-Malay counterparts are to their racial and religious agendas.

Maintaining hegemony in a multiracial and multireligious coalition is the only form of governance that Malaysians understand. This is why we got all these Bersatu members attacking the DAP and warning them not to trespass into rural enclaves or warning them not to disrespect the elite of their party.

Hence, the middle ground has always been defined, not by values or policies - which are predicated on not spooking the majority - but rather on compromising at the expense of oversight and accountability.

WTF for, hanya undi 'orang asing'

I am not even looking for vanguard progressive ideas but simply baseline ideas that everyone in Harapan can get behind. For example, take the vast religious bureaucracy. Instead of hounding “deviants", indoctrinating the majority to believe that their religion is under siege and issuing decrees banning the majority from engaging in ideas that the rest of the world are grappling with, did the Harapan regime attempt to change the narrative?

Why not spend the money on welfare work, on education in maths and science, and education into whatever language that would make the majority competitive in this ever-changing geopolitical landscape?

And for heaven’s sake, there must be some kind of strict parliamentary oversight, instead of retreating to the idea that some people cannot “interfere” in the religion of the state, which is why there have been so many corruption scandals involving religious agencies.

Three wise monkeys - Australian Care Alliance

Lim, Lim, Liew

Instead, what we got was a Harapan religious czar who was disgusted that LGBTQ elements had infiltrated a women’s march, sucked up to an alleged money launderer and fugitive, hyped the introduction of a syariah-compliant dress code, was content with the hounding of de-hijabing activists, and carried out a host of other religious issues that did nothing to alleviate the social-economic distress of the majority community. Nevertheless, we still get Harapan operatives lecturing us about “caring” for the plight of the urban Malay poor.

Harapan was not interested in creating a counter-narrative. A counter-narrative that Harapan's Islam was about promoting a first-class education for Muslims, weeding out corruption in the political and religious class, ensuring the healthcare system is one of the best in the region and ensuring a plurality of Islamic voices so that young people do not join extremist groups that pose a danger to the citizens of this country. You could, if you were smart, define this as a "Malay" right.

This is not a “progressive” idea. This is about reforming an institution that political operatives say the majority cannot do without. This is not some sort of radical reimagining of politics and religion in Malaysia but rather streamlining and reforming an entitlements programme.

The first step in solving a problem is recognising that there is one and Harapan should stop acting like it is not part of the problem.

Want bigger federal funding? Relinquish control of varsities, Guan ...

Lim GE to MCA: We are not going to stop you from running educational institutions. But how can public funds be used to support a politically controlled organisation? 

PM Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad has made it very clear that politics and education should be kept separate

But MARA & UiTM are different - don't spook the Malays 

S THAYAPARAN is Commander (Rtd) of the Royal Malaysian Navy. A retired barrister-at-law, he is one of the founding members of Persatuan Patriot Kebangsaan

More disgust coming Hanson's way

Guardian (Aus Ed):

Brooke Boney 'completely heartbroken' over Pauline Hanson's public housing comments

Australia's most lauded political idiot: The Resistance to Pauline ...

'Today' show reporter and Gamilaroi woman says she’s happy the One Nation leader had been dumped by Today and called her remarks ‘disgusting’

Channel Nine’s Today show host Brooke Boney told the Q+A audience she grew up in public housing and worried about the children who heard Pauline Hanson calling them ‘alcoholics and drug addicts’

Photograph: Channel 9/Today Show
Today show entertainment reporter Brooke Boney has said she was “completely heartbroken” by One Nation leader Pauline Hanson’s comments on the Today show about Melbourne residents in public housing put into lockdown.

Nine’s Today show dropped Hanson as a “regular contributor” on Monday, after she described residents of public housing in Melbourne who are locked down due to Covid-19 as “drug addicts” who “cannot speak English”.

Knobs Of The World - Nominate who is the BIGGEST KNOB IN THE WORLD

Boney, who is a Gamilaroi** woman, told ABC’s
Q+A program on Monday night that she was happy Hanson was dropped, noting Hanson had said hurtful comments about Aboriginal people in the past.

** kaytee notes: 'Gamilaroi = Aborogine

Boney said she grew up in public housing, and she was heartbroken to hear the comments.

“I felt completely heartbroken. I grew up in housing commission. To me, I was thinking about all of those kids sitting at home watching, all of those people trapped in their apartments, watching and thinking, ‘This is what Australia thinks of us. This is what the rest of our country thinks – is that we’re alcoholics and drug addicts.’

“And that’s disgusting.”

Leahy Cartoons on Twitter: "HANSON HATE SPEECH #PAULINE ...

Boney said a lot of people support Hanson, and those perspectives should be heard, but Hanson had crossed into vilifying a whole group of people.

Labor MP Terri Butler said it was a cop-out to suggest Hanson’s comments were something new for her.

“She’s a public racist since 1996. She used her first maiden speech to say that we were in danger of being ‘swamped by Asians’ and used her second speech saying we were in danger of being ‘swamped by Muslims’.

Turnbull, Islamic leaders slam Hanson's attack on Muslims

“We’re not talking about someone who just woke up this morning a racist. Shows have been platforming her. Free speech is one thing, elevating racism in the discourse is another.”

Have tea while Atuk 'macai' tok-kok

Malaysiakini (extracts):

Dr M's stalwart leaves Amanah, urges Harapan to reject Anwar


Khairuddin Abu Hassan, a stalwart of former premier Dr Mahathir Mohamad, has renounced his support for Pakatan Harapan, citing an unwillingness to accept PKR president Anwar Ibrahim as a prime minister candidate.

In a statement, Khairuddin (above) hit out at Anwar over the Harapan chairperson's alleged inability to lead PKR and Harapan, leading to the eventual split and fall from federal power.

"PKR is now facing problems and had fallen apart under Anwar's leadership," he claimed.

In the past, Khairuddin had claimed that Anwar is unworthy to lead the country and suggested that he may go on a campaign to block his rise

(1) Bloke is just one of the expendable 'macai' of Atuk, and hardly deserves the epithet of 'stalwart', wakakaka,

I hate that Anwar - he has somehow convinced those stupid DAP and Amanah to abandon me, the greatest 'Whatever' ever

(2) Who the hell cares about his opinion, of renouncing his support for Pakatan Harapan, or his unwillingness to accept Anwar as Harapan's PM candidate - the awful truth of all his pompous but totally meaningless diatribes would likely be just his mindless echoing (or re-channeling) of Atuk's wishes (remember, he's just a low class 'macai' of the Senile Old Man),

(3) Typically indicating he has been merely echoing Atuk's blameless self cum excuses, he sprouts nonsense on Anwar being responsible for Harapan's fall from federal power, when it has been Atuk's evil abrupt resignation as PM without even prior consultations with his Pakatan colleagues (and as we had suspected and can now confirm, with a sinister but thwarted intention to form his own Malay-only Dignity Coalition),

Eff those 'orang asing' 

(4) PKR has not fallen apart - au contraire, it remains as the only original PH component party which has the strength, guts and clarity of purpose to now ignore the most wicked man in Malaysian history.

PKR has also cleansed itself of ular2 tedung dalam selimut. Blockhead's wish to block Anwar's prime ministerial career is of course another further indication of his stupid echoing of Atuk's evil design.

IGP kerbau again


Police initiate probe on Al-Jazeera's documentary

Inspector-General of Police (IGP) Tan Sri Abdul Hamid Bador said the probe was launched following police reports lodged against the international news outlet

NST file pic

PUTRAJAYA: Police have initiated an investigation into a documentary by news agency Al-Jazeera, which was deemed as derogatory, in its reporting of the Malaysian government's allegedly poor treatment of illegal immigrants in curbing Covid-19.

Inspector-General of Police (IGP) Tan Sri Abdul Hamid Bador said the probe was launched following police reports lodged against the international news outlet.

"It is the responsibility of the police to investigate whether there were seditious elements or any offences committed (in the report). It is still under investigation.

"We will call (the media) for questioning in the near future. We would see the (scope) of investigation, whether to be carried out under the Penal Code and the Sedition Act, after calling them in," he told reporters after the launch of the 2020 Malaysian Population and Housing Census, here, today.

He said the federal police Criminal Investigation Department (CID) director Datuk Huzir Mohamed would provide further details on the investigation.

This IGP is hopeless - He isn't even aware his mata-mata have called up participants of the youth-led Parlimen Digital, who Opposition leaders claimed of government intimidation against the mock parliament event. Yet he's pretty much on-the-ball when it comes to anything Senior Defence Minister Ismail Sabri Yaakob complained about - that Al-Jazeera apologises to Malaysians for producing a documentary alleging racism and unequal treatment of illegal immigrants in its course of fighting the virus.

What's so important about the al Jazeera's kerbau which can be dealt with by both Wisma Putra and MCMC. Such a kerbau doesn't require police intervention.

Eff-er should retire with his 95-year old Boss.

Hong Kong’s Journey to the West


National security law: does Hong Kong’s Journey to the West have a happy ending?

Journey to the West (Literature) - TV Tropes

  • Like the rebellious Monkey King Sun Wukong, Hong Kong must come to terms with the limits set by its master

  • And like Tang Sanzang, Beijing should apply the ‘constrictive headband’ of its new law with caution if it wants Hong Kong to continue to thrive

Wang Xiangwei

Back in July last year when the anti-government and anti-Beijing mass protests in Hong Kong were at their peak and turning increasingly violent, George Yeo,
Singapore’s former foreign minister with a deep knowledge of China’s culture and politics, made an intriguing analogy between Hong Kong and the Monkey King Sun Wukong in the great Chinese classic Journey to the West.

George Yeo - Wikipedia

George Yeo

In the classical novel, the Monkey King is rebellious in nature and possesses magical powers, including the ability to travel tens of thousands of kilometres in one somersault. But in the end, he fails to escape the Buddha’s palm in an encounter.

“Hong Kong cannot leave the Buddha’s palm. If one day, the Buddha decides to put a ring around the forehead of the monkey, then the monkey will have to take note,” Yeo said in a talk, according to Singapore media reports.

Monkey king pp

According to the classic, Sun Wukong wore such a golden headband around his head which he could not take off. His master the Buddhist monk Tang Sanzang could recite a particular spell to constrict the band to cause searing pains to punish the monkey and bring him under control.

Alas, Yeo has proved prescient with his analogy.

The Monkey King, as depicted in the film Journey to the West 2: The Demons Strike Back

File photo

Nearly one year later, the constricting headband for Hong Kong came in the form of the national security law Beijing directly imposed on the city, just hours before July 1, the 23rd anniversary of Hong Kong’s return to Chinese rule.

Sun Wukong (the Monkey King) with Guanyin (the Boddhisatva of ...

Small correction to author's writeup

T'was Kuan Yin (Goddess of Mercy) and NOT Buddha who provided Tang Sanzang (Sam Cheong) with the headband to restrain and discipline Sun Wukong (Monkey)

All sides have agreed that the introduction of the law marks a turning point for Hong Kong as it is nearly halfway through the 50-year contract that allows the city to maintain its capitalist way of life under the “one country, two systems” formula.

For the pro-democracy people in Hong Kong and their supporters in Western countries, the city has taken a turn for the worse and the promulgation of the law means the advent of one country, one system.

Eff, how are we going to have our weekend arson, looting and vandalism?

For others in Hong Kong and officials in Beijing, the introduction of the law is a turn for the better, resulting in smoother implementation of the one country, two systems concept and freeing the city from political chaos and violent protests, which they believe have stunted its development and made it a base for Western countries to subvert the central government on the mainland.

Beijing’s promulgation of the law has certainly come fast and furious, and is much tougher than expected in terms of its scope and reach.

Crimes of secession, subversion, terrorism and collusion with foreign forces are punishable by a maximum penalty of life in prison.

Officials in Hong Kong and Beijing have argued that there is nothing wrong with the legislation, not only because all countries – including Western democracies – have such laws to protect national security, but also because it is a timely and necessary move to restore stability after six months of often-violent protests.

They say that most national security cases will be tried in Hong Kong’s own courts and the law will target only a very small number of people who endanger national security. Most people’s basic rights and freedoms will be safeguarded, they say.

But what has caused most worries are the provisions in the law that give Beijing a direct and strong hand in policing the city and upholding its authority.

The law empowers Beijing to set up its own national security apparatus in Hong Kong staffed by its own law enforcement personnel, none of which would come under the city’s local jurisdiction.

Moreover, the law effectively allows the mainland Chinese authorities to try “serious” or “complex” cases on the mainland.

This is one of the most worrying bits, given fears that Hong Kong people could be extradited to the mainland for trials under the now-withdrawn extradition bill which triggered last year’s mass protests in the first place.

The way the law was enacted and imposed on Hong Kong was regrettable but inevitable.

Ever since the city failed to legislate its own version of a national security law in 2003, as required by the
Basic Law, the city’s mini-constitution, missteps and mistrust by both the pro-democracy camp in Hong Kong and officials in Beijing have gradually but surely led to a point of no return.

On the one hand, many people in Hong Kong believe the central government has tried to tighten controls over the city while officials in Beijing think they are losing control of the city.

A ship in Victoria Harbour, Hong Kong, celebrates the 23rd anniversary of Hong Kong's return to Chinese sovereignty

Photo: Xinhua

Finally, the Chinese government hardened its resolve to impose the national security law on Hong Kong after last year’s demonstrations, which were initially against the extradition bill but soon morphed into an anti-Beijing political movement. In particular, the authorities were humiliated and incensed by a small band of rioters who not only went on a rampage for weeks wreaking havoc and destruction but also openly called for the independence of Hong Kong and begged US President Donald Trump to liberate the city.

From Beijing’s perspective, Hong Kong has become the first Chinese territory where Washington could compete with Beijing openly for influence and Beijing was not on the winning side.

There is no doubt that Beijing intends the tough law to instil fear and deter the kind of unrest that happened last year, making it crystal clear that one country takes priority over the two systems.

It has shown an immediate deterrent effect. Political activists, including Anson Chan, the city’s former chief secretary and a target of fierce attacks by the Chinese state media, have announced they are quitting politics, and some have fled overseas, fearing the repercussions of the law.

Still, just hours after the legislation took effect, thousands of people took to the streets on July 1 in open defiance and clashed with the police who arrested about 370 people, including 10 for breaching the new national security law.

Meanwhile, Beijing’s move has drawn condemnation from the United States and its Western allies. The US has already decided to remove its special trading privileges for Hong Kong and sanction Chinese officials responsible for the law while Britain and Australia have indicated they will offer qualified Hong Kong people the chance of settling in their countries. But those announcements will hardly have any impact on Beijing.

Perhaps a more important question for the people of Hong Kong and the international community is how frequently and how far the new law will be applied to the city.

Recent remarks from Chinese officials and legal experts seem to suggest the law will primarily serve as a deterrent and they have repeatedly stressed it will target only a very small group of people.

Zhang Xiaoming, deputy minister of the Hong Kong and Macau Affairs Office.

Photo: Simon Song

Zhang Xiaoming, deputy minister of the Hong Kong and Macau Affairs Office, has dismissed worries that the imposition of the law will mean Hong Kong ends up with one country, one system. If that were Beijing’s intention, he said, it would have been much easier for it to impose mainland Chinese laws directly on Hong Kong, instead of going through all the effort of tailor-making the law for the city.

Precisely because of the worries the new law has caused, it makes every sense for Beijing to help Hong Kong to continue to thrive as Asia’s premier financial and commercial centre, a status that is underpinned by the city’s capitalist system.

If that is indeed Beijing’s intention, then it needs to apply the constrictive headband to Hong Kong with extreme caution, just as Tang Sanzang did with Sun Wukong.

At least the Journey to the West has a happy ending, with the Monkey King overcoming trials and tribulations to complete his mission and ascend to Buddhahood.

The Great Way: Journey to the West

Monday, July 06, 2020

Pauline Hanson still ignorant, bigoted & divisive as ever

Guardian (Aus Ed):

'Today' show dumps Pauline Hanson for 'divisive' remarks about Melbourne public housing residents

Channel Nine initially promoted One Nation leader’s comments describing people locked down due to coronavirus as ‘drug addicts’ who ‘cannot speak English’

Pauline Hanson

For readers who don't know who Pauline Hanson is, read on:

Despite Hanson's repeated denials of charges of racism, her views on race, immigration and Islam have been discussed widely in Australia. In her maiden speech to Parliament in 1996, Hanson appealed to economically disadvantaged white Australians by expressing dissatisfaction with government policy on indigenous affairs.

Following Hanson's maiden speech her views received negative coverage across Asian news media in 1996, and Deputy Prime Minister and Trade Minister Tim Fischer criticised the race "debate" initiated by Hanson, saying it was putting Australian exports and jobs at risk Other ministers and state and territory leaders followed Fischer's lead in criticising Hanson.

In 1998, the resurgence of popularity of Hanson was met with disappointment in Asian media. Her resignation from politics in 2002 was met with support from academics, politicians and the press across Asia.

In 2004, Hanson appeared on the nationally televised ABC interview show Enough Rope where her views were challenged.

In her maiden speech, Hanson proposed a drastic reduction in immigration with particular reference to immigrants from Asia.

After Hanson was elected to Parliament in 1996, journalist Tracey Curro asked her on 60 Minutes whether she was xenophobic. Hanson replied, "Please explain?" This response became a much-parodied catchphrase within Australian culture and was included in the title of the 2016 SBS documentary film Pauline Hanson: Please Explain!.

Please Explain: Voting — UTS Society of Communications

In 2006, Hanson stated that African immigrants were bringing diseases into Australia and were of "no benefit to this country whatsoever". She also stated her opposition to Muslim immigration.

Ten years after her maiden speech, its effects were still being discussed within a racism framework, and were included in resources funded by the Queensland Government on "Combating racism in Queensland".

In 2007, Hanson publicly backed Kevin Andrews, then Minister for Immigration under John Howard, in his views about African migrants and crime.

Hey Pauline You Said Muslims Are Taking Over Our Suburbs Please ...

In 2015, Hanson claimed that Halal certification in Australia was funding terrorism. After the 2016 Orlando nightclub shooting, Hanson called for a ban on Muslim immigration to Australia. The same year, Hanson announced policies including a ban on building new mosques until a royal commission into whether Islam is a religion or a political ideology has been held, and installing CCTV cameras in all existing mosques. She has called for a "moratorium" on accepting Muslim immigrants into Australia.

Pauline Hanson told Aussies years ago Australia would be swamped ...

In Pauline Hanson's 2016 maiden speech in the Senate, she said that "We are in danger of being swamped by Muslims who bear a culture and ideology that is incompatible with our own," "go back to where you came from," and called for banning Muslim migration. The speech prompted a walk out by Senate members of the Australian Greens.

You Don't Have to Be a Moron to See Australia Is Being Mismanaged ...

Channel Nine’s Today show has dropped One Nation leader Pauline Hanson as a “regular contributor”, after she described residents of public housing in Melbourne who are locked down due to Covid-19 as “drug addicts” who “cannot speak English”.

In a statement, the channel described her comments as “ill-informed and divisive”, and said “she will no longer be appearing on our program as a regular contributor”.

Petition · Pauline hanson aplogise to the kids and people with ...

Hanson was given a regular Monday morning slot on the Today show last year, after she left competitor Sunrise. This came after she was criticised on air by Channel 7 host David Koch for her comments on the Christchurch massacre.

Despite condemning her comments, Today had earlier tweeted out a video of Hanson’s appearance, 30 minutes after she appeared, with a caption summarising her comments.