Monday, November 27, 2006

An island cursed & it's not Langkawi!

This is a real classic, of the Malaysian art of political bodek-spinning, a nifty game to evade answering or be responsive to the concerns of your own constituency while continuing to apple-polish your 'master' who had evoked your constituency's concerns in the first place.

Even though there’s not much to split between bodek-spinning and bodek-ing per se, the master of bodek-spinning is normally also the master of bodek-ing, and would be accorded the title of Raja Bodek.

Once held for years by a master from Penang, it was recently wrestled away from him by another slimy unctuous character during the UMNO general assembly where, the dubious talents of tok ampus (brown nosers) were discovered in droves.

But never one to lie down with a mere common bodek-ing status, the former Raja is making a fight-back for the lowest possible spot in the pit of revolting sycophancy. Here is an example of his bodek-spinning.

OK first, the scenario: a Taoist temple, despite being on its own land for more than 20 years, was scheduled for demolition - because its building was without the proper approved building plans. 

Since it was not a mansion or a palace owned by an UMNO bloke, the demolition was naturally inevitable, well at least until two state assembly blokes won a temporary reprieve for it from the State exco, to hold the demolition in abeyance until the issue could be discussed further.

You know, there was no promise of cancelling the demolition. The temporary suspension of the demolition was perhaps to enable more detailed discussion, maybe on a proposed scheduled removal of some items such as the sacred icons, possibly even motivational or mitigatory compensation, or an offer to review any belated submission of building plans, in the same way UMNO Port Klang councillor Zakaria Deros was provided with a 3-months extension to submit a proper planning permit for his illegally constructed palatial mansion.

We would never know, because two days before the State exco could get together to review the case, the deputy Chief Minister of the State, egged on by an UMNO Youth leader, borrowed a leaf out of the Israeli Air Force book and ordered a pre-emptive demolition of the temple in total defiance and insubordination of the State exco's 'stay' order.

There was much trauma caused to temple devotees, and not unlike the demolishing of a Hindu temple in KL where DBKL enforcement unit viciously and maliciously smashed sacred icons of the temple, the demolition of said Taoist temple was conducted in a similar vicious, brutal and malicious fashion, without due regards for inter-religious respect or community sensitivities.

The sneak demolition in total insubordination of the State exco’s 'stay' order
is of course not touched upon by the state’s Chief Minister, because that act of insubordination was by his ‘boss’.

Ah hah, stop there – I know what you’re about to ask – please don’t be confused by the 'Deputy' Chief Minister being described as the boss of the 'Chief' Minister because in this country (no, it’s not in the southern hemisphere), particular situations could render a certain ‘Chief‘ Minister subordinate and subservient to his ‘Deputy’.

Stop there again, and don’t challenge the oxymoronic ‘Chief Subordinate Minister’ or 'subservient Chief Minister'.

The DAP demand for an independent inquiry was of course ignored, but a … er … I suppose we should call it … er ... ‘dependent’ inquiry, conducted by the Chief Subordinate Minister’s office cleared the equally insubordinate Seberang Prai Municipal Council (MPSP) of any wrong doing.

To save you readers from vomiting at the foul odour of the Chief Subordinate Minister’s cartload of bovine ordure, the said office came out with a statement to the effect that the demolition of the Taoist temple had been a planning issue, mind you, a 20-years old one, relating to structures constructed without approval and ... of course ... probably the more relevant reason, the conflict between a developer and the temple.

Oh BTW, just keep your eye on the term ‘developer’ for as I mentioned in my previous posting a certain politician was the VIP who launched the same development project next to the temple, and thus in the public eyes suffered from a ‘conflict of interest’, not that the universal concept of governing propriety mattered - well for a start, the term carries six daunting whole syllables.

I suppose we may assume then that the temple structures became a planning issue coincidentally with the development of the project, which I’ll be more than pleased to be told my assumptions have been in error.

The released statements by the C(Subordinate)M office said the findings by you-know-who had been based on reports received from said malicious destructive MPSP, the gun-firing police (whose sergeant was reported as saying he couldn’t care two stuff if any of the protesters defending the temple died) and two State Executive Councillors - all totally independent sources of course!

The statement said “although the state government, through its Special Committee for the Coordination of Non-Muslim Places of Worship and the MPSP in 2000 had imposed a condition on the developer to provide a site within their land to relocate the temple, the developer did not respond and comply.”

Dear readers, the above report was from Star Online, but please note with care what it said – that the government in 2000 had imposed a condition on the developer, yes, on the developer, not the temple authorities - to provide a site within their land to relocate the temple, the developer did not respond and comply.

So, if the developer didn’t respond or comply with a State government’s condition, what action would you Penangite voters expect from your government?

You guess wrong – the Star Online news revealed that the C(Subordinate)M’s office as saying “This had resulted in the planning application being cancelled by MPSP in 2002.”

Please tell me if I have read it wrongly, or I am as confused as I had confused you readers earlier about a ‘Deputy’ being superior to his ‘Chief’ and therefore can be insubordinate because then a superior is never insubordinate, whilst a ‘Chief’ is subordinate to his ‘Deputy’ and therefore …….. OK, you work out the Bukit Mertajam logic (and I’m not insulting people from Bukit Mertajam because hey, I’m a Teochew nang too!)

OK, back to where we left off to momentarily pontificate on the BM logic, an exercise that would have astounded the ancient Hellenistic schools of logic. So, when the developer reneged on a State government’s imposed condition to provide a site within their land to relocate the temple, the temple gets punished.

Eat your heart out President Bush, you thought you had creamed this BM logic by invading Iraq to punish Iraqis for an al Qaeda (Saudi/Egyptian) attack on New York’s Twin Towers. Well, we Malaysians don’t have a national motto of Malaysia Boleh for nothing!

Then the issued statement by the office of the former Raja Bodek concluded by saying what we all already know, that after receiving many complaints over the last three years (in fact, some allegedly from Chinese too), the MPSP finally decided to demolish the structures. Oh, they just happened to forget the ‘stay’ order from the State exco - not that the former Raja Bodek dared raise this inconvenient embarrassing issue up.

Not one word about the insubordination or snubbing of the State exco’s orders; not one word about the over the top extremely mean (and certainly malicious) refusal by MPSP people to allow temple authorities to recover the sacred icons from within the temple prior to the demolition; not one word about the dictatorial lawlessness of the unelected unrepresentative MPSP president; not one word about the superior ‘Deputy’ failing a conflict of interest test.

No, not one teensy weensy squeek!

For the former Raja Bodek, 'twas a case of:

Eight bells and all is well
Accountability's truly dead
The temple can go to hell
So long I get a pat on my head

I say, restore his royal (un)right title – he deserves it more than any tok ampus.

[1st stats trivia - I deleted 12 F-words from the above posting - mate said I was too emotional. Me? C'mon!]

[2nd stats trivia - Like Langkawi, Penang has been cursed for 7 generations (counting from 1969 plus 7 x 5 per GE = 2004 which was last GE). Does this mean we could be free of our Mahsuri-ish curse, brought about by a certain Raja?]

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