Dr M – teller of tall tales and his waning audience
From Clement Stanley
Malaysia was known at one time for putting up the tallest building. The country has also probably produced the world’s best squash player of all time.
It is known for many other achievements, although some of these will probably be overtaken or have already been overtaken.
But I believe Malaysia will never be overtaken when it comes to producing the world’s biggest storyteller in the form of Dr Mahathir Mohamad.
Mahathir recently said he wanted Anwar Ibrahim as prime minister but claims it was undone by Muhyiddin Yassin, our present prime minister. Really?
The Brothers Grimm were magnificent storytellers, but the yarn Mahathir is now spinning far outweighs any stories they have come up with.
While I am no admirer of Anwar, I do sympathise with him.
Anwar has been duped by Mahathir so many times you almost need a calculator to work it out.
And while great storytellers can pull you into their universe and make you believe in the fantastic, Mahathir’s latest would beat it all if it was said a long, long time ago, in a galaxy far away.
But the readers/audience of today cannot be fooled that easily. Like it or not, technology has helped your audience become more learned, more logical and definitely more discerning. Gone are the days when you could hoodwink your people. No one is going to be eating out of the palm of your hand, which they might have done once upon a time. So get real please, Tun. This is 2021 after all.
You played out Anwar. You played out Pakatan Harapan. You played out the people who put their hopes, dreams and trust in you.
You know you never wanted Anwar to be PM. You have insulted and mocked him in the past. You have painted him as incompetent and untrustworthy. You even went out of your way to push for Azmin Ali, his deputy not so long ago.
Why? Because you did not believe Anwar was the right man to succeed you. Be honest. Just look again at your past statements and you will see what we all saw. A man hell-bent on denying Anwar the opportunity to succeed you.
And now you say you wanted Anwar to be the prime minister? If this is your script for a fairy tale, you couldn’t have written it better.
Except that this time, nobody will be listening to your fairy tale. I used to read bedtime stories to my children so that they would fall soundly asleep. But the story you are now telling will not give me any sleep. More of an unforgettable nightmare really.
When Michael Ende wrote the Never Ending Story, he must have had you in mind, Tun.
Because, quite simply, this is how I view the stories you tell. They are Never Ending!