Tuesday, February 12, 2013

GE-13 - "May you find what you are looking for"

Our unofficial national clarion call, Malaysia Boleh, has become both an expression of proper pride in a Malaysian achievement as well as cynical criticism in a Malaysian act of dodgy-ness, the latter usually associated with officialdom or those approved, sponsored or backed by officialdom.

It would not be untrue to aver the Election Commission of Malaysia (EC) has a Malaysia Boleh stamp, not unlike a SIRIM trademark for Malaysian produced goods but certainly, in the opinion of the public, not like the standards SIRIM has set, or anywhere near that.

You too can decide which facet of Malaysia Boleh would be applicable for the EC.

In 2008 BN suffered a major setback in the March general and state elections where it lost its 36-year old two-third majority in federal parliament, and its rule in the states of Penang, Kedah, Selangor and Perak (Kelantan remains under PAS rule).

Though the BN's 140 seats in federal parliament in 2008 provides a handsome majority over Pakatan's 82, there was much wailing, renting of sack cloth and covering their selves in ashes in BN, as if the world had come to an end. The former UMNO MB of Perak went into deep shock and cried.

Worse, the loss of its richest and most iconic state of Selangor was much too much to bear for dear old UMNO. The losses were not only political but financial and party pride as well.

UMNO has had 5 years to plan to hold onto its 140 parliamentary seats if not add more and to win back Selangor and where possible Kedah and Perak as well.

Of late I have to admit I have been rather surprised by Najib's special focus on Penang, when the island state, if I may say so, is in general not considered vital to UMNO's pride.

Perhaps Najib wants to help his MCA and Gerakan mateys regain some footing, at least for BN's window dressing if nothing else.

And I suppose that possible wish to shore up MCA and Gerakan to some semblance of their respective former political lives and relevance would be due to Najib being a man who is terribly keen on form rather than substance, as he once demonstrated towards Ong Tee Keat - see my September 2006 post Corruption 'Fact' for DPM Najib & Hishamuddin

I believe Ah Jib Gor likes to see a BN with some Chinese presence - would that be a testament to his multiracial 1Malaysia credentials? wakakaka.

Okay, I've no doubt the EC has been tasked to ensure a favourable outcome for BN in GE-13, and let's not mince words as almost everyone including BN people knows the leadership in the EC, like those in the Police, Civil Service and Judiciary, are pro UMNO people, with some even considering themselves as UMNO employees.

But nonetheless, form (of democratic process) must still be preserved even as substance (of the desired outcome) is being worked at.

For example, gerrymandering is well and truly alive in our election system. The aim of gerrymandering is to advantage or disadvantage particular constituents, and don't we just know who and what will be advantaged and disadvantaged.

An example of gerrymandering techniques in Malaysia would be the compressed packing of opposition voters like sardines into seats unlikely to be won by BN such as Kapar. The aim is to reduce the representation of the voters who do not support BN while obscenely enlarging by disproportionate quantum those supporting UMNO.

The Kapar versus Putrajaya dichotomy has been a terribly blatant case of shameful gerrymandering, where the former (Kapar) a Pakatan stronghold has 120,000 voters in one federal constituency while the latter (Putrajaya), an UMNO stronghold by virtue of its predominately BTN-ized civil servant residents, has a mere 6,000 voters represented by also one member of parliament (MP), as for Kapar.

Ketuanan UMNO has been assured by as much as a 2,000 percentile guarantee. And no wonder Tengku Adnan recently thanked Najib profusely for the PM's gift of shoo-ing him in as the assured MP for PJ. Eat your heart out, Khairy, wakakaka.

If the EC as a supposedly independent organization possesses the unbiased integrity it should have, it would have an average of 60,000 (or up to 80,000) per federal constituency, so that each and very Malaysian voter would enjoy the same 'voice' in parliament.

Such a fair approach would have Kapar represented by 2 MPs while the residents of Putrajaya would have been registered voters in a federal constituency of, say, 60,000 and definitely not by it puny sized self. 

But as mentioned, the EC is neither independent nor unbiased.

In 2007 Malaysiakini reported in its EC 'helping' UMNO secure Penang that Danny Law Heng Kiang (DAP) alleged the EC was manipulating the electoral boundaries in Penang to increase Malay-winning state seats for UMNO's benefits.

Law claimed that the gerrymandering strategy was similar to UMNO tactics conducted in Sabah in recent years and Malacca about three decades ago. The two states have since been in the firm claws of UMNO.

According to him, we should expect changes in favour of UMNO even with the Chinese making up more than 70% of Penang’s estimated population of 1.3 million. He pointed out that only 22 state seats or 55 percent were Chinese-majority constituencies. But the Malays (meaning UMNO), who constituted less than 25% of the population, dominated 15 state constituencies or 40 percent of the state seats.

Well maybe as the demography has since changed or perhaps may not even have changed much, but trust the amazing EC to work out UMNO's winning ways.

Nonetheless, according to Law, seats with Chinese-majority had an average 20,000 voters while the Malay-dominated constituencies an average of 11,000 voters – for example, the Chinese-dominated Paya Terubong had been (based on 2007 figures) the biggest state seat with 23,490 voters while the largest Malay seat, Permatang Berangan had only 14,049 registered voters.

And if we were to compare Paya Terubong (23,490) to UMNO-controlled Teluk Bahang (10,791), the ratio of state representation would be 2 to 1 in favour of the latter. It seems in Penang, some people have two votes while the rest have only one.

Apart from gerrymandering, there have also been the covert variety where phantom voters consisted of the truly dead who could not only walk but vote, of course, for BN.

Additionally there were living voters who could walk from constituency to constituency to exercise the Malaysia Boleh-ness. Alas, Pakatan lost its chief exorcist of 'phantoms' when Gobalakrishnan left PKR with a huff and a puff, wakakaka - see my 2008 post regarding the Permatang Pauh by-election where I wrote:

in the uniform he once love wakakaka

Malaysiakini reported in 5 'phantom' buses stopped, MP and sons arrested that PKR leader Gobalakrishnan, MP for Padang Serai, and his two sons plus a supporter, adopted the PKR ‘core’ group’s habit of stopping buses, allegedly full of phantom voters.

We've of course heard of indelible ink but I wonder at its efficacy in our Malaysia Boleh context.

Postal voting by the police and military have been a sore point for the federal opposition, but I have personally not been against it for fear of disenfranchising legitimate voters who are in uniformed and/or essential services (armed forces, police, firemen, hospital and ambulance staff, etc).

It would be gross injustice to deny the people in uniformed and/or essential services the right to vote just because they in general have been pro BN. 

It's not wrong to be pro BN but it's definitely wrong to block out pro BN voters, in the way as it's wrong to sabotage pro Pakatan voters by shifting them around to new constituencies and worse by stealth, without informing or providing them with notification so that they may at least know where they are to vote, and if they wish, raise legitimate objections or challenges to the changes (where we have been shown examples that were unconstitutionally exercised by the EC).

Nonetheless in fairness, we need to mindful that it's universally not unusual for the majority of military postal voters to vote conservative, as have been the trends in Australia (pro Coalition Party), USA (pro Republican Party) and UK (pro Conservative Party). In Malaysia, UMNO is the conservative party. Perhaps 'tomorrow' PKR and PAS may well be as well. Thus military voters preferring conservative (right wing) parties have not been uncommon and should not be considered as sinister in itself.

But I draw a line against including (what I heard) military/police wives as postal voters as the ladies are not on essential services, unless of course the wives themselves are military or police uniformed members, or the military and their wives are stationed overseas or in a remote location. Minus these qualifications, I consider the inclusion of military/police wives and family members as gross abuse by the EC of a facility to ensure voters on essential duties would not be disenfranchised.

The above are all threats to fair and impartial elections that we are familiar with, though nothing beats the shameful and obscene Grand Canyon-ish gap of Kapar versus Putrajaya constituencies in their respective numbers of registered voters, where Putrajaya plays the role of the Jewish lil' David, a known unscrupulous scoundrel in the biblical tales.

Let me reiterate, the shameful case of Kapar versus Putrajaya would be the most OBSCENE case of cheating, and the chairperson of the EC should have be sacked for the blatant and unmitigated gerrymandering, not that it will happen under an UMNO government, which I suppose calls for another Malaysia Boleh exclamation.

But what then has this got to do with my title on what I sense as an upgrading of an old threat. Before I tuck into it, let's revisit a few statements by Dr Mahathir in recent weeks.

In my post Deepak, a Cesium Bomb and the Devil I wrote of Vell Paari (anak kepada Samy Vellu) ... lambasting of Dr Mahathir for calling upon Najib to relinquish the latter's prime ministerial post if he fails to secure a two-thirds majority for BN in GE-13. 

I'm not sure whether Vell was bersandiwar-ishly bodeking Najib (you know how MIC pollies have been wakakaka) or he was in fact upset by the words of the man referred to as the Devil (obviously the One you know, wakakaka).

But I knew Dr Mahathir was bersandiwara-ing, because in that same post I also wrote: 

But Dr Mahathir is not an easy or manmanlai man to read. He had virtually co-authored The Art of War with Sun Tzu, wakakaka, in which his favourite discipline is “All warfare is based on deception”, wakakaka again.

I suspect Vell Paari has fallen victim to Dr Mahathir's deceptive twist in voicing that unless Najib brings home the (2/3 majority) bacon (figuratively speaking of course, wakakaka), the son of Tun Razak must relinquish his prime ministerial position even if BN wins. [...]

Thus I am inclined to believe Dr Mahathir has been playing reverse psychology. [...]

Dr Mahathir knows that the Chinese would be aware that it will be a Herculean effort for Pakatan to win majority rule because of the remarkable EC, thus he slipped in a choice for them of having either Najib or Muhyiddin as PM. 

And he believes the Chinese will prefer Najib to Muhyiddin as PM, thus he teases them into voting for BN to ensure Najib remains as PM. Whether his reverse psychology will work in accordance with his plans remains to be seen but it's still a plan, and a very devious one.

Okay, follow that up with his more recent call to Amend constitution to strip Ambiga's citizenship. As reported by Malaysiakini, Dr Mahathir stated: 

"To strip a person's citizenship, you need to amend the constitution. And to amend the constitution you need two-thirds majority in Parliament. So, I ask that you give two-thirds majority to the BN government."

Many took umbrage at what would be considered as his seditious call to strip a Malaysian of her citizenship for no other reason than partisan political purpose. And while we should slap his wrist for raising such an issue, his real aim was more directed towards the BN (or UMNO) winning GE-13 by a two-third majority, rather than for the purpose of altering the Constitution to 'fix' Ambiga.

Yes, he is certainly pushing pushing pushing!

Really, it is not necessary for BN to win by a two-third majority to rule or for Najib to remain as PM, but by setting such a high target and campaigning for it through fear, hatred and self-interest driven stampede, he wants BN to have as reasonably comfortable a majority as possible even if it's not 2/3.  A win is still a win and hallelujah, UMNO will continue to be the driver of the Malaysian gravy train

While the part about the possibility of Najib being ousted by Muhyiddin has been directed at Chinese and Indian voters for them to choose the lesser disliked UMNO man to be PM, the latter about stripping Ambiga Sreenivesan of her Malaysian citizenship has been targeted at the Heartland to promote the 'idea' an UMNO-led government with a 2/3 majority can amend the Constitution to get rid of an irritating non-Malay, an aci.

He was just following up on the ugly butts act, one of inciting hatred for a non-Malay woman in order to rally the true believers to the UMNO banner

And it has to be the Heartland he has been targeting because commonsense tells us the urban areas (minus hardcore UMNO apparatchiks) are in the main very pro Ambiga, who's virtually a goddess to them.

Thus I believe, as well millions of Malaysians, that the remarkable EC is working hand in glove with many others (wakakaka) towards such a very comfortable win for UMNO-BN, but the question is, apart from old tricks, just what new tactics does it have to achieve that?

Okay, time for a wee bit of tng k'ooi (ch'ong hei) story.

Many years ago I read a horror story based on a Chinese saying that one should really be worried one's wish may just come true - strange, isn't that, but then the Chinese are such devious people - don't believe me? Go ask Dr Mahathir, wakakaka.

The tale went something like this (as far as I can recollect):

A couple had only one child, who grew up to be a wonderful lovely young man, the pride and joy of his parents. He was smart, intelligent, handsome and a loving son. One day he tragically died in a horrible car accident.

Now flash back a wee bit - the parents being the good folks they were, had once saved the life of a Taoist priest. The grateful priest, considered to be some sort of a sage or holy man, then informed them he would grant them a wish, but it was not a wish for material gains but one to help them in their moments of most dire need. At that time, they didn't pay much attention to it, thinking that was only the rambling of an old grateful priest.

So the story went that after the son was buried, they, being so devastated by their irreplaceable loss, remembered the Taoist boon and went to see him in desperation in order to draw upon the granted wish.

Even before they could tell the priest what they wanted, he advised them not to wish for what the Heavens would deem as forbidden, and if they insisted, they would dread their wish coming true. 

Of course no advice would have deterred them from making that one wish, for their son to come back to them. The priest sadly told them their wish would be granted. And that night the son returned ... but in a form they didn't expect ... in his horribly smashed up bloodied and corrupt (decomposing) form.

Thus the Chinese claim that the saying "May you find what you are looking for" is in reality a curse, in the same way as other innocuous sounding Chinese sayings are actually curses, such as "May you live in interesting times" and "May you come to the attention of important people". Hmmm, bloody polite but devious bastards, wakakaka.

"May you find what you are looking for" has been deemed as the most severe of the three subtle curses ...

... which now brings us to what we in Pakatan have been 'looking for' in terms of voting. Didn't we want our hundreds of thousands, if not millions of citizens living abroad to be able to vote at overseas location?

Haven't we lamented that only a select group, who we correctly suspect of likely to be pro UMNO people, have been permitted to vote at overseas centre?

Now, a limited form of overseas voting is allowed and which I must say, when I learnt of it, I shuddered because I knew exactly what would follow - for surely the EC would never ever do anything to threaten UMNO - au contraire, the opposite would be true.

As indicative of the EC's Boleh-ness, haven't we heard recently from Dr Ramasamy (Penang DCM II) that his daughter in UK has become a registered overseas voter even though she did NOT apply to be one?

Yes, overseas voting is not unlike postal voting, but with military/police postal votes, there's still a degree of accounting and tracing. However, with the so-called new overseas voters, how will Pakatan be able to trace their bono fides?

It'll be as bad as, if not worse than, the selling of citizenships for votes. Overseas voting is in fact the upgraded threat of postal voting, something we wanted but didn't allow for the remarkable EC's 'structuring'.

And hasn't it been ominous that Ahmad Zahid Hamidi has pre-warned Parties should remain rational if they lose, undoubtedly implying it's meant for Pakatan, because many opine that if UMNO expects to lose, it would not sound so gracious.

Zahid Hamidi has virtually informed us that UMNO will be winning big and I would not be surprised if UMNO regains rule in Selangor as it may achieve that through a 'surge' of support from overseas voting, wakakaka.

And while I don't expect Pakatan to lose Penang I again cannot dismiss the potential effect of the same overseas voting.

Should we accord the EC with another Malaysia Boleh for them wishing us "May you find what you are looking for"?


  1. I too have my doubts on "My Overseas Vote". The monitoring process of the postal votes delivery cannot be fully ascertain. The modus operandi of postal votes coming in late is a trend depending where the counting goes in the final stage. The rumour on 12th GE, is that there are not enough postal votes to distribute around to save some sorry ass.

    The only way to reduce fraud, is that counting for postal votes must be done first on the polling station or the designated center. There has to be a better way to count the votes first. Fraud is likely to happen during the storage time and the transportation period.

    There are an increase of postal votes which could help the double voting. The usage of indelible ink, was agreeable of late. This is an added advantage as postal votes are done days before polling day, that gives time for the "indelible" ink to be "wash" away. We would be using Malaysia Boleh "indelible" ink, wakakaka. Hence, postal voters gets at a double voting experience.

    It is very scary, fighting for every citizen right in My Overseas Vote is said to be "May you find what you are looking for". Digging our own grave?

    EC has not agree to many demands on Bersih 2.0, but out of sudden indelible ink boleh. It is a Malaysia Boleh's "indelible" ink. Maybe a secret detergent is being use. The EC chief has already given a BIG hint by saying "What detergent to use?"

    Have we forgotten?

  2. i think the pertinennt question is do those reside overseas have rights to vote or no, not whether the system is prone to cheat. i think bersih or whoever that advocate rights to vote have to be consistence. to solve the problem of cheating n gerrymandering, we must kick bn out and there is no other way. so even if a pas ulama that support stupid idea of non muslim decency dress code contest against a assume clean otk, i still give my vote to the pas ulama. bn must go no matter what, this is what we looking for in 2013.

  3. These Umno malay leaders are full of sh*t.....that is why the Penang youngsters at the CNY Gangnam concert don't buy their sh*tty "we are more democratic, we are fair, we are IMalaysia, we are the moderates" hypocrate talk. Padan muka to that biggest hypocrate when these young ones shouted back "NO" when he tried to politicize a new year do with a blatantly loaded question like " Are you with BN ?"....look who's accusing LGE of politicising this occasion ? Don't ever be taken in by their sandiwaras...their deviousness is worst than the most twisty of snakes.

    Cheating, stealing, lying, threatening, murdering, killing, double-talking, biadap-ing, kurang ajar-ing.....these are their standard 'stock in trade' to keep themselves in power forever in order to plunder the country dry.

    Expect GE13 to be the dirtiest of all.....these scoundrels are fighting for their lives....and they could not live easy knowing that there's still some gravy left to be siphoned off.

  4. I've yet to come across a fair assessment on our electoral system. I wish to add a few points which many fail to highlight.

    On every write on delineation, most fail to point out that since merdeka we have agreed that the population ratio between urban and rural is about 2:1. There were states interest to protect and in this we have agreed to such delineation principles since day 1. Is this fair that one vote is different according to places? The answer to this has always been yes in a federated nation. A case in point is US. Different states have different electoral votes. Historical negotiation requires for example New York which has huge population do not get dominant say over lesser populated states. This is a fact no matter how one wants to argue. The other principle to consider is the size of the area. For example It's unfair that Sarawak have so much less representation say than kl even though they have a size bigger than a combination of majority of states in Malaysia.

    Now a good unbiased and enlightening write should compare these principles with what we have and how its transgressed. My gut feel is that only certain seats don't follow this principle but I've not done this study. Its unfair to for me to make an assessment. But to have all people have similar voting weightage is to me unrealistic. Proportional representation like New Zealand will not work at this juncture in a federated states. There are states interest to consider. As we become more parochial I don't believe they will allow their votes to be watered down. I cannot imagine why Sabah and Sarawak would allow more populous state like selangor and ft have overwhelming say over their interest. It doesn't make sense. I think as governance is concern the balance is just not there. Then focus of attention and development will be in kl. US saw this too.

    So to me a fair and unbiased write would not only criticize but give a proposal on what the delianation principle would be. Proportional represention proposal is simply disconnected to me with the realities and history.

    1. Ellese, where is or was it that we ever had agreed on a ratio of 2:1 weightage for rural areas, and where in the world would Putrajaya fall in it, or elsewhere?

      There are two levels to consider in voting:

      firstly, at the citizen level, the principle of equal say/voice for each and every citizen who has registered as an legitimate voter, hence, for example in Australia, the constituencies are based on an average figure of, say, 60,000 per and not the blatant gerrymandering nonsense seen in the Putrajaya versus Kapar case, and

      secondly, at state level, the principle of adequate (can never be equal here) say/voice for each and every state in a federation, hence, for example again in Australia, the State of Tasmania is guaranteed a minimum of 5 federal seats despite its smaller population.

      Has Malaysia follow such principles of democracy?

      Malaysia's gerrymandering has been along racial lines to favour UMNO. Its partners such as MCA, MIC and Gerakan have to enjoy the UMNO-centric gerrymandering hence these parties always have to usually rely on UMNO's sarong (Malay-majority seats) to get into parliament.

      It has to be said that the advent of Pakatan has put paid to UMNO's dominance of the Malay-majority seats, thus we see PAS in a dilemma over its religious-ethnic proclivity versus its reliance on non-Muslim votes to win some of these seats which have sizeable non-Malay voters.

    2. I have replied earlier but did not appear. Hope it does this time around.

      Since 1957, our constitution has explicitly provided for the rural based bias. The commission wanted to have all votes to have similar weightage but we agreed to a negotiated position that the rural one vote has more weightage than the urban's. However I need to rectify my statement on the ratio numbers. It's 1:1.15 in 1957. The 1:2 ratio I believe is the current ratio. It's been a while I had this debate but if not mistaken that's the ratio I can recollect now.

      Please note however that Such provision has been repealed.

      Point is under our constitutional history we have never been on a proportional representation method. We have always been rural bias and thus the concept of equal weightage is alien. Personally I think the ratio of 1:2 its too skewered. But we need to decide what ratio that we want. The ratio will still be rural based biased as this is how the state balance of power is done. We didn't follow the Australian model you referred to.

  5. The other thing I want to touch is the electoral process.

    on the process my view is that we are regressing. I blame ambiga on this. A number of points I need to stress.

    First, I have no issue on our electoral process during polling day. It's transparent and provide room for objection. Room of objection is critical in any democratic plectoral process. Have seen this work first hand and am willing to defend the process. Thus Its wrong to stop a bus as this restricts freedom of movement. The objection should be in the polling station where its legal to object. Each party has been given all the list of names beforehand. They have a room to object first when its published and secondly at the polling station.

    Two, to allow all overseas to vote without qualification is wrong. The amendment for 30 days is a bit short for me. I prefer at least a longer period of 60/90 days for 3/5 years. Why? Coz every voter must have a stake in our country. Not a tourist. in US for example to vote, overseas voters must at least pay tax. This makes sense. Other countries like us went on a "stay" requirement. I'm willing to forgo the stay requirement in return for tax. This stake is important. They must show loyalty to the nation. Their decisions affect us here in Malaysia so they bloody well have a stake. Thus, if they have voted in another country they have lost their stake. Such act confirms that their stake is elsewhere. this is also in line with our constitution which makes it clear that if you vote elsewhere you're not entitled to citizenship.

    Two I'm more for postal voting. The argument you're against postal voting of the servicemen and agreeable to postal voting of overseas voters who have no stake, smacks utter hypocrisy and arrogance. Sorry for my rudeness but I have nothing but pure expletives for those morons championing this argument. Bodoh bukan main.
    Now coming back to point. I'm more for postal voting as this is very practical. If I don't want to vote on that day I should have the option to vote earlier by postal votes. I'm only entitled to vote once. What I do with my vote its up to me. If I give my pet to mark it so be it. What's more important is that I can only vote once and at my own time. I don't like queuing. Now this practice has already been a practice in the liberal democracies.
    Three, I'm for a balance fair and objective media in line with US SPJ standards. This applies to both MSM and AM.
    Four, I'm not for indellible ink. We should have used modern technology for identification rather than this method.

    I have a few more points as you raised too many issues but think i should stop for now.

    1. Every legitimate/legal citizen who has registered to vote is entitled to vote, regardless of where he/she resides. The onus would be on the EC to ensure every citizen, regardless of his/her location, gets to vote, either in advance (not necessarily postal only), at overseas centre (embassies, etc) or by postal vote.

      Setting all sorts of conditions (other than ensuring the voter is a legitimate citizen) would be tantamount to disenfranchising a citizen from his/her constitutional rights, and which the EC has been blatantly guilty of (both ways, barring legitimate citizens while enabling illegals).

      As I've posted above, I have personally NOT been against postal voting for fear of disenfranchising legitimate voters who are in uniformed and/or essential services (armed forces, police, firemen, hospital and ambulance staff, etc). But thr process must be accountable - unfortunately thr EC is not trusted to provide this accounting, hence the list of postal voters should and must be audited independently.

    2. Here again we greatly depart. I only agree that those who have a stake in this country will decide. Those who have migrated,voted, not been in malaysia for years and has pledged loyalty to another country should not be allowed to vote. No way they should be entitled to bote. What's wrong for us to follow the US model requiring them to pay tax? It's a good stake model.

    3. Those who pledged loyalty to another country are no longer citizens so they are irrelevant to this discussion, as Malaysia does NOT accept dual citizenship.

      Those who migrated for jobs, careers, marriages or education (teaching & learning) should not be necessarily considered as intending to take up or have taken up citizenship in the countries migrated to. So long as they have not taken up citizenship in the new country they remain Malaysian citizens and their interests are and must be looked after by institutions such as the embassies and high commissions, and indeed in elections, by the EC.

      But whoever is a citizen and has registered to be a voter must be allowed to vote. The job, indeed the responsibilities of the EC is to ensure they may fulfil their constitutional rights.

      Not every voter in Malaysia pays tax (in fact some sponge), so why the double standards.?

    4. Is it true that 80% of the majority race ( the malays) do not pay tax at all ? ( some sources mentioned 90% ? ) And those who pay, they prefer to pay via zakat, the use of it must be channeled back for the benefits of ONLY the malay muslims in the country ?

    5. I'm not sure you're aware of this, but do check article 24 of our constitution. Your argument of purely relying on citizenship cannot and should not stand.

      Under such provision which we have agreed to uphold that if one is overseas and vote in an election for an overseas leader, there is ground for citizenship to be revoked. It's a constitutional value that in order to show loyalty you don't vote elsewhere. Again this is a stake and loyalty argument.

      So this is where many who have migrated in the developed country though have not obtained pr recklessly voted in other countries coz to them the stake is no longer in Malaysia.

      The stake argument is essential to Malaysia. It's not about being disenfranchising the constitutional right of a citizen. In fact if you read carefully a stake is constitutional.

      On the tax, I think you're unfair. In the US they apply whatever applicable tax bracket to overseas citizens. We can do that as well. Our tax exemption bracket if not mistaken should be less than 1000USD which Is about 6.25usd per hour based on a five day week of eight hours. The US minimum wage is 7.25USD. Actually I don't see your issue at all on this tax.

      Let me conclude, a stake argument is not only constitutional worldwide, but it makes so much sense and fair to those whose life is directly affected by the election. This is lucid clear.

    6. I always find this sort of argument as racist. It's in the same line of this kind of questioning:

      Why in Malaysia most Malays can't afford to pay tax but inordinate amount of Chinese can afford to pay tax? Where did the Chinese get their money? Do they have superior right since they can afford to pay tax?

      So think before questioning. It's in the same inverse order. If you're open to this kind of debate I can go on.

    7. Ellese you keep bringing up a non issue of someone who voted overseas and thus is no longer a Malaysian citizen, thus your argument is completely irrelevant, and has no bearing on this discussion.

    8. additionally there is nothing in Article 24 of the Malaysian Constitution to prevent a Malaysian from voting regardless of his or her location.

      And there's no provision (other than an UMNO directive to its kunju the EC) for weighing in favour of rural (meaning UMNO) constituencies

    9. Article 24 is to rebut your argument that a Malaysian has a constitutional right to vote so long as he is a citizen of Malaysia.

      Art 24 in fact shows a constitutional value that though one is still de jure a citizen, we should not allow them to vote coz they fail the test of loyalty and stake when he/she has voted overseas before. We have agreed under 24 that citizenship can be revoked and thus EC should consider this as a stake argument before allowing overseas Malaysian to vote. If they have voted overseas they should not be allowed to vote even though they still hold Malaysian passport. And this is constitutional.

      You see there is no constitutional right to vote if you're an overseas Malaysian. The right to vote is not a fundamental liberty under our constitution. Article 120 enshrined the right to vote only if one is a resident in Malaysia. Now in order to expand this right the EC must consider the stake and loyalty argument. Those who have no stake should go and fly kite as far as I'm concerned.

      Now if you can accept the stake argument we can formulate what is a fair principle. I'm open to a dialectic discourse. We can start first questioning on the residence and article 24 argument or develop on any other basis that you think is relevant.

    10. You're wrong here. Though the ratio has been amended\repealed but the principle of rural weightage is still a constitutional principle we have agreed to since day one. See schedule 13 part 2 ( c) of our constitution. To argue that EC current position off 2:1 if not mistaken is skewed is fine and debatable. But we still need to consider a ratio which gives more weight to the rural area. This principle is enshrined and we must abide by it.

    11. The Article 24 which you keep referring to is very clear that it's about "Termination of Citizenship" thus you are flogging a very dead horse, just to mitigate against the EC's illegal denial of citizens (who have registered) of their constitutional rights to vote, regardless of where they may be located. I find your argument as grasping at straws which makes it no longer a valid debate, and I intend to end it here, full stop!

      On weightage for rural areas, that is related to ONLY the issue of difficulties in accessibility for voters such as constituencies in the Sarawak hinterland - in other words, the EC needn't spread the rural constituent boundaries until it embraces, say for a federal constituency, 60,000 voters (but certainly nothing obscenely low like Putrajaya which isn't even a rural constituency with accessibility problem, or any state constituency in Penang or any other states in peninsula - all boiling down to obscene gerrymandering by the EC.

      But the weightage is not about rural area per se but brought about and limited to only the issue of accessibility by voters. So don't get the idea that rural voters automatically have more rights or voice in parliament than urban ones. Any reasonable person would see only the Sarawak hinterland would deserved such considerations, and certainly not in Peninsula.

  6. Dear Ellese,

    Quote: What's wrong for us to follow the US model requiring them to pay tax?

    >> What is the standing for those who pay zakat but do not pay (or refuse pay) income tax?
    How about those whom do not need to pay income tax (lower income or unemployed)?

    Ellese, please give your input on it.

  7. ��. A question from coming from my erstwhislt friend? Strange. I know where you're getting at. If you had been sincere I would have taken a more dialectic approach.

    Nevertheless I will answer. Zakat is a form of recognizable tax. There's no issue if you pay zakat you don't pay tax or if you want to be technical income tax.

    On those who don't pay tax, you know why already. We have a different income tax bracket and most people don't qualify. We don't have social institution like in the west but to alleviate their hardship in rising cost of living, so in our country they are not qualified to pay tax. Why is this a problem to you? Do you prefer a more structured social welfare institution like the west?

    1. Dear Ellese,

      Why so sarcastic? Why everything to you ada udang di sebalik tempurung?

      So, you still have not answer how does it translate to be an eligible voter? Please state your case.

  8. KT,

    Did you receive my write and if so why was it not published?

  9. Yes I did. But as I mentioned I found your argument as going round and round the mulberry bush, grasping at straws which made it no longer a valid debate, and I intended to end it. And I did just that. Unless you have a fresh area to offer the discussion is closed.