Sunday, June 30, 2013

The Anwar-Najib contract

Today in my most lazy weekend, I read in 2 places very angry condemnations of former Indonesian VP Jusuf Kalla and his role as mediator in an Anwar Ibrahim-Najib Razak pre-election agreement or, as RPK puts it, 'contract'.

The first was in Malaysiakini in an article by S Thayaparan titled Jusuf Kalla's poisonous fairy tale while the second was in Malaysia-Today's Expressed and implied.

The second referred to Karpal Singh's criticisms of Kalla going beyond his role as mediator for the two principal protagonists in the recent Malaysian general election, and assuming a foreigner's interfering partisan stand for Najib and against Anwar. The former, by S Thayaparan, describes Kalla's pro-Najib partisanship in the same way as had Karpal, one which saw a series of alleged poisonous fabrications against Anwar Ibrahim.

Leaving aside Jusuf Kalla's alien intrusive interference in Malaysian politics (when his role was just as mediator and witness to an agreement for the loser of the Malaysian elections to accept the verdict of the voters in clean democratic fashion, and not an open cheque book for him to wander beyond that), there was indeed such an Anwar-Najib agreement, and most important of all, that Anwar was the initiator of the proposal.

On a matter of national pride, I have never supported Anwar Ibrahim's regular attempts to induct foreigners into roles within our election structure. On this silliness he was recently snubbed by Australia's foreign minister Bob Carr (who's incidentally married to a Malaysian). Bob Carr also gave a tick to the Malaysian election after its completion, perhaps as a second snub to Anwar's seeming impropriety to Malaysia's national sovereignty.

It's commonsense that no sovereign nation wants a foreigner to dictate terms or manage the nation's elections - Malaysia is no colony of Australia or any foreign nation. How shameful can that be. And conversely no foreign government wants to be involved, save those of its fringe elements like Australian Senator Nick Xenophon.

Incidentally, the more meaningful story of Malaysia's official acrimonious relationship with Nick Xenophon is not so much about his interference in Malaysian politics as was assumed when he was deported from Kuala Lumpur.

This man is anti palm oil, and thus is considered as a threat to one of Malaysia's most important primary produces. Florence Chong of Asia Today wrote in PALM OIL, NOT POLITICS – WHY MALAYSIA KICKED OUT AN AUSTRALIAN SENATOR (extracts):

Xenophon was briefly detained by Malaysian authorities and then deported last week because the Government considers him "an enemy of the State”.

Xenophon claims the only risk that he poses is an ability to embarrass the Malaysian Government because of his advocacy for clean elections in Malaysia.

The reality is that Malaysia probably started to regard Xenophon a persona non grata from 2009, when he started a vigorous campaign, with the support of the Australian Greens, to change the labelling of palm oil in processed food.

The South Australian Senator initiated "Truth in Labelling" legislation to require food manufacturers to stop classifying palm oil as a "vegetable oil", something which, under Australian law, is permitted.
Xenophon said then that, under existing legislation, Australian food manufacturers are allowed to put palm oil into 40% of food products sold in supermarkets.

Xenophon maintains that people have the right to know what goes into their food. Unlike vegetable oils, which have polyunsaturated fats, palm oil contains mostly saturated fat. Xenophon has argued that the average Australian consumes 10 kilograms of palm oil through processed food every year – and that these consumers deserve truth in labelling of the food they consume.

The proposed legislation was strongly opposed by the palm oil industry – not least by Malaysia - and by the Australian Food and Grocery Council. Xenophon failed to get the support of the Opposition to get the Bill passed, but it is not dead. He is looking at a way of resurrecting the legislation.

Xenophon shares the belief of environmentalists the world over that the rapid of expansion of the palm oil industry in Malaysia has eroded the natural habitat, especially that of the endangered primate, the orang utan. He says experts believe that, at the current rate, the orang utan population in the wild will be wiped out by 2013.

To the average Malaysian and particularly those involved in the palm oil sector, he is most unfriendly and a threat to Malaysian farming interests. So don't be too sympathetic with his deportation - in reality, he's no friend of Malaysia or Malaysians.

Anyway, back on track about alien intrusion in our politics.

UMNO has been so deeply embedded in Malaysian government rule (and thus power) because of its unchallenged position for more than half a century, that it had worried Pakatan prior to the election. The question was: would UMNO roll out the tanks if it lost the general election as it had on May 13, 1969, and then was just for the state of Selangor.

I suspect that was what motivated Anwar Ibrahim to cry out for help from Jusuf Kalla to negotiate an agreement with Najib for peaceful and democratic transfer of powers to Pakatan in general and to him in particular.

Anwar had wanted a powerful Malay Muslim who would be respected and believed when he spoke out, should Najib renege on a democratic handover of powers in the event Pakatan had won the general election. There was virtually no neutral and respected Malay Muslim in Malaysia so he must have turned towards his old friends in Indonesia, yes, old friends for whom he had Apcet II disrupted. Jusuf Kalla fitted the bill for him.

Alas, it all came to nought for Anwar because Najib's BN won the election.

Jusuf Kalla's sin was to go beyond his role as witness to the agreement but suffice to say, Anwar wasn't helpful by being cranky and a sore loser.

In the immortal words of Tian Chua BUT re-worded by kaytee more correctly: The people can wait another five years but Anwar Ibrahim just bloody can't.

Friday, June 28, 2013

The Jonker Walk Shame

The last time MCA and DAP got together in agreement on an issue was on 11 October 1987 at the Hainanese Association Building, beside the Thean Hou Temple in KL.

The temple that Mahathir thought was Shaolin, wakakaka

Mahathir who was then PM wasn't happy and remarked (words to that effect): "Those who are familiar with Chinese history would know what happened when Chinese gather together at a temple in opposition to the government."

Obviously he was either a Chinese kungfu movie fan wakakaka or his Chinese advisor(s) had told him about Shaolin Temple and the gathering of the Han martial artists there who were opposed to the Manchu rulers.

However, the issue in 1987 was not about Manchu rulers but UMNO rulers or one in particular, the Education Minister, wakakaka, who was suspected by the Chinese Malaysians of attempting to undermine a central pillar of Chinese culture, namely, Chinese vernacular education, in a sneaky manmanlai fashion, wakakaka.

The parents and teachers of students at vernacular schools were deeply disturbed when that particular Education Minister (wakakaka) appointed some 100 senior assistants and principals who were not Chinese (Mandarin) educated, to head Chinese schools.

There were deep deep deep anxious suspicions that the Education Minister was out to undermine the usage of the Mandarin language at Chinese schools, because with the appointment of those senior assistants and principals, students and parents would be forced to use English or Malay to communicate with them. The move was seen as attempting to limit the usage of Chinese in the schools.

The Chinese gathering involving the usual suspects (Dong Jiao Zong, DAP, etc) AND also MCA and Gerakan.

As usual under such a 'Chinese unity' situation, UMNO Youth responded with its bangsa (raja dan agama) threats, when we then saw Najib Razak as UMNO Youth boss issuing his notorious threat of bathing his keris with Chinese blood.

Most of those who convened at the temple to object to the Minister's naughty move were then rounded up by the police and without any trial, sent to Kem Kamunting under the draconian ISA to enjoy nasi kari kosong and the mosquitoes there, some for a few years like Lim Kit Siang who, it was said, earned his law degree there (by distance education).

Coincidentally, during the police Ops Lalang, MCA Deputy President Lee Kim Sai just happened to be on leave in Australia wakakaka, while young Najib walked around untouched as befitting his position among The Chosen Ones, and then smirking gleefully, succeeded in 'persuading' the late HRH Sultan Selangor to strip Lee KS of his datukship.

That was almost 30 years ago, Today, we read in Malaysiakini that both MCA and DAP 'defend' Jonker Walk.

Jonker Walk

It's always bad feng shui for MCA and DAP to agree on anything, and the bad feng shui is UMNO.

The politicization of Jonker Walk in Malacca has been a shameful 4th (not even 3rd) World act of arrogance and petulant revenge by UMNO against the Chinese. It has been a wilful alter ego to UMNO's condemnation of Chinese 'ingratitude' which I had previously blogged as Gratitude - an UMNO anachronism in a democracy.

But leaving UMNO's anachronistic and preposterous perception of 'ingratitude' aside, will Jonker Walk become another Thean Hou Temple, to once again annoy the most powerful man in Malaysia (Mahathir) with the consequence of Ops Lalang Mark II?

Perhaps not, because Gan Tian Loo, MCA Malacca Head, who is also the Jonker Walk committee deputy chairperson, as reported by MKINI, in supporting the Malacca CM's closure of the Walk to traffic, "... took a guarded approach, denying that he was leading the protest, adding that he was merely there to 'survey' the site after receiving several requests from the traders."

Additionally, new Tourism Minister Nazri Abdul Aziz, reminded Idris Haron, the Malacca CM that It is Jonker Walk, not Jonker Drive, implying the latter has been childishly wilful in opening the Walk to traffic to deliberately deny the mainly Chinese hawkers from plying their trade in the usually closed-to-traffic thoroughfare, an act seen as motivated by racist-political revenge.

Thus Gan will be reasonably safe as he has a bit of UMNO-rized Nazri-rized cover for his backside.

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Should Chinese Malaysians adopt indigenous surnames?

An old bone has been dug up in recent times, amidst the UMNO-instigated anger against the 'ungrateful' Chinese who had almost en bloc voted for Pakatan and against UMNO's crony, MCA.

The so-called 'bone' is the fact that, unique in Malaysia among other SE Asian countries, the Chinese citizens still (publicly/openly) retain their Chinese names and are allowed vernacular schools, as are the Indians.

This is an undeniable fact and thus, if a Chinese places much value on these two issues, that of being able to publicly/openly use his/her Chinese name and study at or have his/her child or children study at vernacular schools, then he/she is lucky to be born in Malaya/Malaysia.

One could even argue that in SE Asian countries, such a situation could be considered a rare privilege.

But should the Chinese be 'grateful' to the UMNO-led government for such privileges, as the 'bone' of contention aims to suggest?

In order to answer this complex and vexing question, let's examine and compare Malaya/Malaysia with two neighbouring countries, Thailand and Indonesia, where in both, almost every Chinese citizens have (let's call it) indigenous names or native names.

Take for example Indonesia - famous names like badminton legend Rudy Hartono and fellow badminton greats like Alan Budikusuma, Chandra Wijaya, Christian Hadinata, Ferry Sonneville, Hendra Setiawan, Hendrawan, Hermawan Susantro, Johan Wahjudi, Muljadi, Ronald Susilo, Susi Susanti, Tjun Tjun and Tony Gunawan are (were) all as Chinese as Liem Swie King*, Tan Joe Hok and Eng Hian.

Rudy Hartono Kurniawan
or Liang Hailiang (梁海量)

* I am not sure why Liem Swie King was so named as he was the only son of Ng Thian Poo and Oei See Moi which meant he ought to have the surname Ng.

At the age of 18, in order to be accepted in the national team and received government instructions (presumably coaching) he adopt the name of Guntur which still doesn't explain why he ended up as Liem Swie King, a name which doesn't reflect his sire's surname nor the mandatory practice of Indonesian Chinese to have indigenous names.

Strangely enough, both his sisters were named in typical Indonesian style as Megah Inawati and Megah Idawati. Both played for Indonesia in the 1965 Uber Cup.

The Liem Swie King mystery certainly bears further investigation, wakakaka.

Liem Swie King today
once the leaping 'Smash King' of badminton

The reason why Chinese Indonesians were (I think no longer 'are') required to have indigenous names was due to a Suharto anti-Chinese edict.

In 1965 Suharto, then a Major-General and a very powerful one as Panglima Kostrad (Strategic Command) because Kostrad held direct operational control of the army and special forces, used the excuse of Gestapu to seize power.

[Gestapu is an Indonesian acronym referring to the alleged Indonesian Communist Party (PKI) plot to seize power on Gerakan 30 September, one which started with the murder of 6 army generals and the dumping of their corpses into a well at a place called Lubang Buaya].

Many suspected and still suspect it was a CIA sponsored coup d'etat to prevent communist domination of Indonesia at a time during the Cold War, but the Indonesian Communist Party members were slaughtered in their hundreds of thousands, if not in the million. There is still lingering suspicion of who (other than the alleged PKI) had actually murdered the 6 military generals to provide Suharto with grounds to take power through a military move against not only PKI but also Sukarno.

USA's fave son in the 60's?

Anyway, when he became president his government implemented legislation which were viewed as anti-Chinese in Indonesia. One of these was the 127/U/Kep/12/1966 which mandated that ethnic Chinese living in Indonesia take up Indonesian-sounding names in place of their Chinese monikers. Chinese Indonesians as a minority were powerless to oppose Suharto's new law.

Suharto and his officials had also wrongly but deliberately accused Chinese Indonesians as supporters of PKI, the Indonesian Communist Party. Their sinister aim was to extort unofficial taxes from wealthy Chinese for the latter to be 'protected' from anti-Chinese pogroms.

Thirty one years later, when he was under political threat from a then-popular Megawati Sukarnoputri, riots broke out throughout Indonesia particularly in Medan, Jakarta etc which were targeted at the local Chinese, but blamed on Megawati's party. Naturally in the re-held elections, he won. His son-in-law Lieutenant General Prabowo Subianto was also Panglima Kostrad. Coincidence?

Prabowo Subianto
During the 1998 riots I saw him on Aus TV
stating he would look after 'our people'

So the Chinese Indonesians (in 1967) sucked on that and adopted western names as first names (eg. Hannah wakakaka, and Helen wakakaka) and Javanese or Sundanese names as surnames. However, all these didn't protect them in the 1998 nation-wide riots against the Chinese, where the riots were actually 'used' to discredit Megawati's political party.

Aiyah, when those Indon pribumis fought against each other, they used the Chinamen and Chinawomen as convenient surrogate targets to pass the message to Indons that the 'other party' was not reliable or credible. Sounds familiar?

Anyway, Chinese Indonesians have never dropped their Chinese names but (except for a few) kept them in secret. I know because when I was studying in Jakarta I knew many Chinese Indonesian sweeties who revealed their Chinese names to me but only after knowing I was a Chinese Malaysian.

Even when adopting Javanese or Sundanese surnames, the Chinese somehow squeezed in their Chinese surname, though in this practice, there was no standardization. For example those with the 3000+ year old surname of  or Lim (in Hokkien as most Chinese Indons were/are Hokkiens) or Lin (in Mandarin) or Lam (in Cantonese) would use Limanto or Halim, etc.

Some who were far more ingenious even used the old Javanese 'wana' (forest) to depict the Chinese 林 (also forest) and then added the male-suffix 'ndi' to come out with Wanandi. Imagine our Wanandi Kit Siang, wakakaka or to sound more native, Wanandi Siang ;-).

Bapak Wanandi Siang?

Pak bisa menjadi PM, ya?

Not to leave out the equally old and well-known Chinese surname of 陳 or Tan (in Hokkien), or Chen (in Mandarin) or Chan (in Cantonese), those Chinese Indonesians with that surname adopted Sutanto as their family name.

Another example of Chinese cultural ingenuity would be for the even older surname of or Teoh (in Hokkien) or Zhang (in Mandarin) or Cheung (in Cantonese), where its new Indon-styled surname would be Sutiono or Thiono. The Indons spelled Teoh (or Teo) as Tio, presumably in accordance with Dutch-European styled spelling.

Hmmm, come to think of it, I wonder whether Liem Swie King adopted his name as such because he wanted to incorporate his family surname of Ng, though it still doesn't explain why or how the Indonesian government permitted what has been basically a Chinese sounding name?

It was/is the same in Thailand when King Rama VI required the Chinese in Thailand who wished to be citizens to adopt a Thai surname. Mind, the Thai Chinese were subjected to the King's demand much earlier than the Indon Chinese were to Suharto's 1967 presidential edict, as King Rama VI reigned from 1910.

King Rama VI

King Rama VI's intention was to minimize racial tensions between native Thais and Chinese Thais. Thus he was far more noble, benevolent and successful in his intention than the Suharto regime's sinister objective, one of persecution against the Chinese which included extorting so-called 'taxes' from rich Chinese businessmen through threats of pogroms being inflicted upon them, but which didn't save the Chinese from such a 'special' anti-Chinese pogrom in 1998.

The Thai Chinese did (much earlier than) what their Indonesian counterparts did, that was, to either incorporate or disguise their Chinese surnames into their new Thai surnames.

A few even had their surnames conferred by the Thai monarch, as was the case for former PM Abhisit Vejjajiva's great grandfather whose Chinese surname was Yuan () and who was King Rama VI's Pubic Health Minister. The royal conferred surname of Vejjajiva means 'medical profession'. Abhisit's father was also a Public Health Minister in 1991 under the military junta which seized power in that year.

leng chai former Thai PM Abhisit Vejjajiva

Some Thai PMs with full or partial Chinese blood were/are:

  • Phraya Manopakorn Nititada
  • Phraya Phahon Phonphayuhasena
  • Plaek Phibunsongkhram
  • Pridi Banomyong
  • Thawal Thamrong Navaswadhi
  • Pote Sarasin
  • Tanin Kraivixien
  • Chatichai Choonhavan
  • Anand Panyarachun
  • Suchinda Kraprayoon
  • Chuan Leekpai
  • Banharn Silpa-archa
  • Chavalit Yongchaiyudh
  • Thaksin Shinawatra
  • Samak Sundaravej
  • Abhisit Vejjajiva
  • Yingluck Shinawatra

Yingluck Shinawatra

"A smile that could launch a thousand ships"
see how many know what my paraphrased description means?


But in the two cases of Thailand and Indonesia, the Chinese forced to adopt native or indigenous surnames experienced the following circumstances:

(a) royal demand or military-empowered presidential decree

(b) there was basically a lack of democratic process

(c) the Chinese were minorities - about 10 to now 14 % in Thailand (now 9 million which is more than Malaysia's 7 million) and around 2 to 3% in Indonesia

(d) most important of all, the indigenous names were not religiously linked or tied to a religion.

By contrast, in Malaya (then Malaysia) the Chinese were not compelled to take up indigenous surnames because:

(a) as part of Malaya gaining its independence from Britain, the British overlords extracted agreement from the Malay leaders some safeguards and rights for the non-Malays

(b) Malaya has a British-styled Constitution, Westminster parliamentary system and basically a legal system inherited from the British system, which would have prevented, nay, prohibited such cultural proselytization

(c) The Chinese were not minorities where the British viewed their participation in the independence of Malaya as vital and a pre-condition to British agreement to granting independence to Malaya

(d) without British colonialism, would there have been a nation called Malaya, let alone Malaysia? There certainly were a number of Malay Sultanates but no nation-state as we live in today.

(e) in Malaya, dare we say there was no indigenous name independent of the Arabic or Quranic names which the Malays have adopted, though subsequently with the formation of Malaysia, Sabahan and Sarawakian indigenous names became available.

My uncle who was a military officer told me of a forum in which the issue of Indonesian and Thai enforced surnames for their Chinese citizens was brought up. He cheekily said he was quite willing to adopt a Malaysian indigenous surname like, just as an example, Rudy Harmocko or even Johnny Ningkan, if there was such a royal edict requiring that of Malaysian Chinese.

The adjudicator for the forum (of about 15 participations in his group), a Malay army colonel, was astonished by his suggestion and asked him to truly confirm that he was willing to do so. My uncle replied he was, but (cheekily I suppose) stated he expected everyone in the forum to do likewise, that was, adopt a Malaysian indigenous surname which was not linked to a foreign language (he was insinuating Middle-Eastern names like the ones held by Mahathir).

He related that every Malay in the forum caught his message and most including the adjudicator smilingly admitted that was rather revealing, implying they hadn't thought of their own names as not indigenous.

Tan Sri Datuk Amar Stephen Kalong Nongkan
of mixed Chinese-Iban heritage
Chinese name is Mok Teck Boon
(same surname as kaytee's, wakakaka)

I wonder how many Malaysians including Malays would adopt Malaysian indigenous names of, say, Ningkan, Jugah, Kitingan, Dompok, Kedit, Ujai, Sailin, Sinoronggoh, Kurutok, Lontugi, Linggotu, Osong, Gampalid, Tupuloh, Derin, Ampalus?

Chinese have not been adverse to adopting non-Chinese names. I am not referring to Christians like Teresa Kok, Hannah Yeoh or Tony Pua. There are non-Christian Chinese who are Buddhists, Confucianists, Taoists or even atheists who have western personal names. I wonder whether Miss Muppet is Buddhist wakakaka.

Once I knew a Malacca sweetie, a very staunch Buddhist but who possesses (on her birth cert and IC) the rather English-Christian name of Abigail, wakakaka.

When I was growing up, my cousin, another staunch Buddhist, encouraged me to adopt a Buddhist first name, in the manner that Christian Penangites did with their Peter, John and Matthew. He offered me Ananda, Aniruddha or Sariputra. Alas, already infused with atheistic values I politely declined but today I have often wondered whether I should have adopted the last (Sariputra) as I might possibly pass myself off as a bumiputra, not for the NEP privileges but for 'improved friendship' with Malay sweeties, wakakaka.

But no Chinese can beat the Hong Kong Chinese for imagination in the adoption of unique first names. On a site which discussed western names Hongkies have adopted, I saw Hitler Wong, Gummy Choi, Winky Cheung, Milky Tam, Chlorine Shum, Power Lau, Natalis Chan, Tats Yeung, Bondy Chau, Solar Yim, Sicily Pang, Jelly Au.

What about a name like Sweetie or Munchie?

Wonder whether Mr Hitler Wong would be able to get a visa to visit Israel or the USA, wakakaka. But I sure love the 'Chlorine' that Shum had chosen, wakakaka.

I have personally come across Helium Lam, Bendix Lau, Xerox Chan, Neon Shiu, etc.

My hats off to them for breaking away from the influence of traditional British colonialism, wakakaka.

Before I end, do you know that the Thai King of the Thonburi Kingdom, Somdet Phra Chao Taksin (reigned 1767 - 1782) had a Chinese father with the surname of 鄭 or Teh (in Hokkien; spelt Tay in Singapore) or Zheng (in Mandarin).

He is today recognized for his warrior role in liberating Thailand from Burmese control, unifying Thailand and for his respectful care for his royal predecessors (which he himself wasn't to enjoy as we'll soon see), and given the title of 'The Great'.

He was also a great linguist and could speak fluently (apart from Thai) Chinese, Annamese (Vietnamese?) and several Indian languages.

King Taksin

Taksin was the only King of the Thonburi Kingdom because he was murdered by his childhood matey and military general, Phrabat Somdet Phra Buddha Yodfa Chuloke, who then seized the Thai throne, reigned as Rama I and founded the Chakri dynasty which lasted until today where the present King of Thailand is Rama IX.

King Rama I

The mother of Rama I was half-Chinese, thus he was like his murdered predecessor, King Taksin The Great, of mixed Thai-Chinese blood.

It seems to me that there could be a danger in forcing Chinese to drop their Chinese names for indigenous ones as the terrible Chinese may work their way up the ladder of power unnoticed, wakakaka.

Monday, June 24, 2013

Anwar Ibrahim and his twin Kevin Rudd?

Just a quick and very short note on observation of similarities and differences between Australia's Labour Party politics and Malaysia's PKR politics.

Many had been the times I wanted to say former Aussie PM Kevin Rudd is in so many ways similar to Anwar Ibrahim, but each of those times I hesitated because I fear Kevin Rudd might be offended, wakakaka.

However, on one issue, namely their kniasu obsession to be PM, they're very much alike, almost twins in mindset and their similar 'whatever-whichever-however-it-takes' determination to be the nation's No 1 political person.

Tra la la, I will always be the Prime Minister

Both Kevin Rudd and Anwar Ibrahim are both strangely (wakakaka) very popular with some segments of the voting public. In fact Kevin Rudd was once so popular he whacked the hell out of John Howard (Liberal Party PM) who was almost unbeatable.

Asia's Deputy Sheriff
of course deputy to the USA

But in Aus, when a politician manmanlai too much, his credibility and/or his popularity drops - thus had been the downfall of Kevin Rudd who was replaced by his former deputy PM, Julia Gillard.

However, the similarities between the two wannabes PM (bearing in mind Rudd had already been PM once, wakakaka) end when it comes to intra-party popularity. While Anwar Ibrahim continues to be a much revered, much adored figure within his party, well, at least among the majority of PKR members wakakaka, Kevin Rudd is highly detested by most of Labour Party members.

Currently, PM Julia Gillard and the Labour Party are experiencing very low popularity according to the polls. Some political observers suggested that the low popularity rating might have been due to (a) myths turned into 'facts' by conservative news media owned by currently pro-conservative Rubert Murdoch (who when its suits him can be pro-liberal as well) and (b) the undermining of her position (we Malaysians call it treacherous sabotage) by Kevin Rudd, whose party faction has spread the rumours that many Labour power-brokers wanted her out, naturally to be replaced by Kevin Rudd, wakakaka, which would then humongously raise Labour's popularity ratings.

However, each time following such rumours from sources, perhaps conveniently attributed to 'a Labour insider who preferred not to be named' (wakakaka), those Labour power-brokers allegedly in favour of Rudd would immediately come out to say "Bullshit" to deflate the hopes of Rudd's faction.

Because of Kevin Rudd's repetitive undermining of Julia Gillard, which unfortunately for Gillard is causing the Labour Party significant losses in public support (who wants to support a party which is experiencing internal strife?), he is deeply hated by many of his Labour Party colleagues for his alleged treachery, to such an extent that one (former) Labour Party political analyst claimed that most Labour Party MPs would prefer to lose their seats and allow the Labour Party to lose the election rather than support him as as party leader in place of Julia Gillard.

Anwar fortunately without such intra-party infighting is by comparison zillions of miles ahead of Kevin Rudd.

But then, Australian politics is far more mature than the Malaysian version, wakakaka.

In the next post I'll highlight my observation on similarities between Kevin Rudd and Ku Li wakakaka, but if you have similar observations as mine, then tell us in your comments ;-)

Saturday, June 22, 2013

The Chinaman's REAL dilemma

Alamak, hamisu lah?

RPK has published a letter in his Malaysia-Today titled The Chinaman's burden, which came up with lovely neat motherhood statements on what DAP as a political party should do in the light of virtually continuous anti-Chinese diatribes coming from UMNO sources, even down to childish nonsense that romanization of Bahasa Melayu was done as a favour for the 'ungrateful' Chinese but a claim which failed to mention the much earlier death of Jawi-script Malay newspapers.

Be that as it has been from a former judge who has lost his moral direction, we know that there'll be further 'incoming' for the Chinese - 'incoming' being an American military word for enemy artillery barrage which for the Chinese Malaysians would be UMNO sources and their politicized anti-Chinese rants.

Let me tell you what has been and is the real Chinaman's dilemma. But to do so, I need to step back a few decades in time, at least briefly.

Because Chinese like Jews all over the world have had pogroms against them from time to time, they (the Chinese, not the Jews) prefer to lie low amidst the political landscape of wherever they sought domicile.

Their political abstinence or if you prefer, political abstention, manifested in the notorious all-day-all-night long mahjung games on Malaysian election days wakakaka, is quite the opposite of what Indians do.

My Unc who studied in UK for some years told me at one time, around the 70's, there was strong anti Indian feelings among Britons just as there was recently in Melbourne, Australia, but relatively nothing much against the Chinese, both in Britain during the 70's and Melbourne, Australia at the time of the anti-Indian outbreaks.

Maybe it's because Indians have been and are very politically conscious and active (could this be linked to the preference and domination of Indians in the field of law?) that they brought themselves to public prominence which consequentially gained for them the full attention and force of local bigotry?

Incidentally, pogrom is a word of Yiddish-Russian origin, testifying to the regular and frequent persecution of the Jews in Europe, particularly in Russia, Poland, Germany, Austria that such a word worked itself into the English vocabulary.

Similarly the overseas Chinese, also a race frequently bashed around by the majority ethnic groups in various countries, have such a tragic word to describe the regular anti-Chinese pogroms. That word is p’ai-hua meaning ‘The Driven Out’, to wit, they were being 'driven out' but which unfortunately for them, did not exclude bloodshed or other atrocities.

where got lah?

Oh, now that we have mentioned p'ai hua, someone who was once in UMNO, wakakaka, was very vocal in telling his Heartland crowd that the Chinese should balik Tiong Sun (China).

Okay ... back to topic, Chinese Malaysians had politically been lying low for decades because of two factors: firstly, as mentioned they didn't want to bring the attention of the mainly Malay local authorities to themselves, and ...

... secondly, I believe there could be an atavistic belief among at least the older Chinese Malaysians that Malaya-Malaysia was/is not their homeland, a subconscious impression enforced through regular drilling into their barb-wire haired head by UMNO that they were/are pendatangs, despite sacrifices of Chinese soldiers and policemen, so why would/should they bother to participate in local politics. Aha, the allure of mahjung becomes more pronounced, wakakaka.

And if/when they had to vote, they would quietly work out a voting strategy of sending federal opposition parties like the Socialist Front and (since 1969) DAP and the latter's late 60's to early 70's allies (PPP, Gerakan, wakakaka) to federal parliament to 'make mucho noise' for Chinese interests, while voting Perikatan-BN into the state Assemblies to ensure continued federal-founded developments for their state.

The strategy had been employed for years except in the 1969 general elections, but which has ceased since 2008.

Prior to 2008, when push comes to shove, they preferred a BN-UMNO government, hence 1999 and 2004 saw Chinese tsunamis for (not against) BN-UMNO.

Here I have to say that someone saved by these Chinamen in 1999 has been terribly ungrateful, one Melayu yang mudah lupa wakakaka, while having the brazen thick-skinned face to condemn the Chinese today.

It's the same volte-face treachery practiced against the Malay rulers, who were slapped in their royal face in 1991 but Godzilla-ishly ampu today by the same group of treacherous traitors.

Anyway, I believe two principal reasons convince the Chinese Malaysians today to cease the strategy of 'making noise in the East while behaving with decorum in the West'.

The first came about during AAB's term as PM, when ironically due to his quite relaxed attitude towards the online media, the Chinese public saw with their own eyes on TV and read on both hardcopy and online media the vile vicious vitriolic ultra racism exhibited during the UMNO Party General Assembly as several wannnabe leaders showed off their credentials as defenders of bangsa, agama dan raja,and bloody f**k negara. They frightened the Chinese.

Yes, most Chinese were shocked at the unbelievable words and antics of those wannabe ethnic heroes. It was no longer the UMNO they had been comfortable with, a politically dominant UMNO which no doubt favoured UMNO Malays excessively but which was also an UMNO that was reasonable, rational and reachable (accessible).

The second factor was/is the generational change among the Chinese, where the younger Chinese, born as 3rd, 4th or even 5th and 6th generation Malaysians have different values to their elders.

They believe in and would vocally assert their Malaysian rights, and sometimes in their western cultured democratic practices appear as biadap to conservative and elderly Malays who haven't been exposed to the more robust style of democracy seen in Western countries like UK, Australia and New Zealand.

Thus the dilemma, the real dilemma of the older Chinamen was whether to join the younger Chinese in being more vocal in their opposition to BN and its less than admirable behaviour and practices, or to lie low as before and continue their 'making noise in the East while behaving with decorum in the West'.

I suspect what might have tilted them over to the former (see above paragraph) has been their conviction that the UMNO (and thus MCA, Gerakan etc) today is not the UMNO they had been comfortable with in the past.

They fear that by remaining politically equivocal or worse, silent, they will suffer more from increasing racist marginalization than they would by being vocal and bringing themselves to UMNO's nasty attention.

And then of course the very epitome of all this new UMNO viciousness was tragically perceived by Chinese in the untimely unwarranted and (arrogantly) unexplained death of Teoh Beng Hock, a man who was killed on the eve of his wedding day. The tragedy and more importantly its aftermath encapsulate all the worries of the Chinamen.

Friday, June 21, 2013

Political snippets (20)


Saifuddin Nasution, PKR (not Pakatan) sec-gen said PSM not welcome in Pakatan and daringly asserted that Pakatan will 'never' accept PSM into its fold.

Asia Hotel, KL, 1996 - APCET II forum
Look, who was that hoodlum among UMNO Youth out to wreck APCET II

But Anwar Ibrahim came out to say PSM can join if it endorses the Pakatan common policy framework, which is not only commonsense but a reasonable and fair statement.

But the point to observe is: can and will Pakatan as a now more-gelled coalition stop such ketuanan wannabes like Saifuddin Nasution and his 'inner coterie' dwarfish brethren from making unwarranted, un-Pakatan-supported and unacceptable ketuanan policy statements as if they have been or are acting on behalf of Pakatan the coalition when they're only officials of PKR the smallest party (wakakaka) within Pakatan.

See my post Selangor saga shows PKR's ketuanan mentality where I highlighted Saifuddin Nasution's role in the thuggish and violent disruption of an international forum (APCET II) in KL, until the forum had to be abandoned. Was he APCET-ing upsetting PSM?


Bernama via Malaysiakini - If needed, army will help police in Saturday rally

Hello there PDRM and ATM, the people who'll be participating in the rally are Malaysians, not foreign invaders, so WTF is the police calling in the army?

The usual f* police intimidation against Malaysians?

No constitutionally-minded army will ever act against the citizens of its own country.

Meanwhile, Pakatan (meaning Rafizi Ramli Strategic Director of PKR) rejects Merdeka Stadium offer, suggesting to kaytee that PKR is set to deliberately confront the authorities head on, perhaps a la Bersih 3?

Lawful civil disobedience should be about the right to hold a peaceful rally (which will be perfectly possible at Merdeka Stadium), and not about deliberate confrontational insistence on a specific venue.

'Nak cari pasal saja, yakah?

We also hear from Tian Chua of PKR (not Pakatan) that 'Anwar can wait five more years, but not the rakyat' wakakaka. 

That's Tian Chua's bull, when in fact the Malaysiakini article should be titled the other way, namely, 'The rakyat can wait 5 more years, but not Anwar Ibrahim'.


FMT - Haze issue: Jakarta snubs Malaysia, S’pore

Behaviour of a hopeless low class unneighbourly so-called ASEAN neighbour who only knows how to flex his gorilla muscles rather than his cultured civic-minded upbringing, if at all any.

Jakarta: Nah Nah Nah, we don't get any. F* you all

KL: Apa boleh buat, Abang Besar ma

Singapore: Wei Malaysia, you no more got any Hang Tuah aah? Wah-bout that hee-low Ahmad Zahid?