Man may not solve man-made problems

I have taken the liberty to copy from the letter Remove the “national security” straightjacket! by Azly Rahman which appears in this blog, in particular the summary of the nine challenges called “The Way Forward-Vision” spoken about by TDM. That was said to be a culmination of TDM work throughout his tenure. I like to make some comments on some of the nine challenges summarized by Azly Rahman.

1. Establishing a united Malaysian nation with a sense of common and shared destiny

Any nation where the citizens enjoy equal rights would automatically wish for the well beings of the country which would determine their own destiny. Unless the government acts contrary to the equal rights expectation of the citizens, that the nationals have a common and shared destiny is given. However, when the government chooses to implement its divide and rule policies, the nationals would not share a sense of common destiny for the nation. TDM was the main actor in highlighting the differences among different ethnic groups in the country. Whatever intentions he harboured in the name of making his race dominate in political and economic life, he has set the people who benefited from his reign on the path of get-rich quick, and grounded with the mindset of entitlement and supremacy. He would not be able to return the genie into the bottle, however hard he tried, if he was sincere in seeing a united Malaysian nation with a sense of common shared destiny.

Modern science and technological developments make easy changes to mountains and streams, but it is almost impossible to set right human thoughts which have gone haywire. It takes decades to develop cultured human beings who internalize the noble quality of modesty, politeness, righteousness, reasonableness, fair play and justice. These noble values are set aside when morally wrong actions are legalized, for the powerful and connected, and even for beneficiaries of state institutionalized corrupt and unfair practices, in the name of affirmative actions. The belief that moral values could be temporarily suspended to be returned later, to experiment with some social engineering work for leveling playing fields, proved futile. The temporary indulgences turned out to be permanently temporary, where the all powerful emperor TDM was not able to end NEP in 1990. Or did he choose to be politically correct, or worse, pretended that the 30% equity target were yet to be achieved. The lesser ruler PM AAB is simply gutless to examine whether the ASLI’s calculations truly confirm that the targets had already been achieved. He promised to reveal the methodology a year ago. The methodology adopted by EPU only tells half the story, the other half relates to what have and have not been correctly included in the computation of the single most important economic figures, when the results of which should have been acted upon to end the most important obstacle to returning to Malaysia a future where the people share a sense of united and common destiny.

It is the government’s active social engineering experiments which have now made the country deviating from the path where the people automatically share a sense of united and common destiny.

2. Creating a psychologically liberated, secure, and developed Malaysian society with faith and confidence in itself, justifiably proud of what it is, of what it has accomplished, robust enough to face all manner of adversity

Malays are led to believe that they have no place under Malaysian sun unless they support the racist policies of UMNO. Malays are psychology insecure as to their ability to survive without government crutches, so declared UMNO as savior of Malays. The insecurity could turn into riots if the concessions do not continue, as uttered by delegates to the UMNO general assembly, displaying a report and reminding the nation of May 13. Until UMNO stopped using race differences to collect votes, the challenges have no solution. In fact it is doubtful whether a solution was indeed desired as claimed.

3. Fostering and developing a mature democratic society, practising a form of mature consensual, community-oriented Malaysian democracy that can be a model for many developing countries

The government has the control of the development, or more correctly the curtailment of democracy in the country. The community-based political parties were convenient to satisfy the demand of the British for obtaining independence for the country. Had the UMNO leadership the vision and desire to forgo the community oriented political parties, the society would not have been as polarized like it is today. A community-oriented democracy is against the basic requirement of fair play for all its citizens, and the set-up of race based political parties cannot foster a mature democratic society.

4. Establishing a fully moral and ethical society whose citizens are strong in religious and spiritual values and with the highest ethical standards

The community based political parties do not provide the environment for the stated objective.

5. Establishing a mature, liberal and tolerant society in which Malaysians of all colours and creed are free to practise and profess their customs, cultures and religious beliefs and yet feeling that they belong to one nation

The political set up of the country works against the objective.

6. Establishing a scientific and progressive society, a society that is innovative and forward-looking, one that is not only a consumer of technology but also a contributor to the scientific and technological civilisation of the future

That can only come about when the society practices meritocracy. But the powers-that-be chooses to operate a pseudo meritocratic system such as equating the results of matriculation to STPM for evaluating university admission, while reserving 90% of the examination candidates to one race, the dream can continue.

7. Establishing a fully caring society and caring culture, a social system in which society will come before the self, in which welfare of the people will revolve not around the state or the individual but around a strong and resilient family system

All the good ingredients for developing into the society were destroyed when the state thought it proper to bribe the entire community for electoral votes. Half the population more were made to be dependent on the state from cradle to grave. NEP made the undesirable effects irreversible.

8. Ensuring an economically just society… in which there is a fair and equitable distribution of the wealth of the nation, in which there is full partnership in economic progress

That is the thought of a man who thinks that he is more capable than God. The society would have justice at the macro level when the people practices justice and fair play at the lower level. To a person at his and his family level, besides health, wealth was important. They get the leisure time to count their money when they have been able to earn a decent means of living. For him, any assistance to lighten his load in earning his keep is appreciated. This is true for all races. The surplus one has can go to finance how a person looks goods, and to feel proud of his achievements. The invisible hands make the economy ticks, and the same hands direct how economic decisions are made. The statistics on cumulative wealth remains a statistics, and serves no useful purpose in terms of the success of the individuals. Politicians certainly could make use of the statistics, and most importantly, they distorted figures to serve the route to political success. If the powers-that-be truly believes that cumulative wealth of a community is a basis for them to keep peace, then he has created a following to chase after something nebulous.

9. Establishing a prosperous society with an economy that is fully competitive, dynamic, robust and resilient

As the nation moves in tandem with social and economic developments of its neighbouring countries and the world, and the government observes proper governance of a civil, fair and democratic society with freedom for the people to alert the government to its wrong policies or implementation, the society should attain the aims as desired by the rest of the world. The requirement must be that the government should be made up of people who intend to serve the nations rather than taking the official positions to enrich themselves. They should then be happy to allow others to serve the nation, and be modest to accept that there are other capable hands which are honest to serve the public. A fair and clean election allows regular renewal of talents. For a start, the race-based parties which have outlived it usefulness should cease to exist. Government policies and regulations should respect no race, and be equal for all. Religion should be a matter between the persons and his god. People should not make use of political position to create religious merit.


The preamble of the text of the United States declaration of Independence has the following sentence: (from Wikipedia).
We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.

The original Article 153 of the Constitution of Malaya was to be reviewed after 15 years from 1957. That article is not equal to the concept of ‘all men are created equal’. Though USA cannot be considered a perfect country, except for item3, it has at least overcome eight of the nine challenges listed above. There may not be great thinkers in USA who set up specific vision to accomplish, and yet it is the country that attracts people who are capable to work in the pursuit of happiness.

The nine challenges would remain insurmountable because the nation does not accept the concept that all men are created equal. In particular challenge 3. Fostering and developing a mature democratic society, practising a form of mature consensual, community-oriented Malaysian democracy that can be a model for many developing countries implies a continuation of the race-based political parties in the country. The leaders of the more powerful race-based party would not forgo the decade-old tested ‘kampong champion’ strategy to win political power, and hence they would be embroiled in racial politics rather than endeavoring the charting of common destiny for the people.
The first step towards establishing a united Malaysian nation with a sense of common and shared destiny begins with accepting that all men are created equal, and they are so treated by the government, the institutions, and the public at large. Until that first step is taken, the vision remains a dream.

(Note: I wish to acknowledge that the questions quoted in my letter in this blog: “Something that has no comparison anywhere else in the world” was from the translation by Darkhorse, also from this blog. I am unable to make comments directly in the blog, because of peculiar ‘virus’ problems.)

  1. #1 by DarkHorse on Wednesday, 26 December 2007 - 6:37 am

    Duly noted. Thank you. I’m sure the omission was not deliberate but was an oversight.

  2. #2 by Ed on Wednesday, 26 December 2007 - 6:53 am

    Ignorance of Young Malaysians!— we need to address this urgentlt!!

    Yay I am registered and I can comment. I am a young internet savvy Malaysian and I have only come to know about MP Lim’s blog like for only 6 months. Shameful isn’t it?

    I roughly know about Malaysian politics , the dire situation we are in and we are still spiralling in to the unknown. I have no idea how I will end up when I am forty. I worry even more about the future of any children that I might have.

    I read about the leaders and the things they say mostly from newspapers and I know they are government controlled. I know the name of prominent figures and I have been appalled many times at what these people say and do. And these are just what are reported in the dailies. God knows what else they do— now i know thru’ blogs like this. I know the names of most of the ministers.

    That was just a background of me, having roughly a vague idea about Malaysian politics and that is about as much as i know about it. Now for the worrying bit—– amongst my peers, I know I am the ‘most experienced’ person in Malaysian politics.

    I have dropped names of ministers and in return I get blank stares. My peers have no inkling about the situation in their own backyard. A friend of mine who is a doctor did not know Dr. Chua Soi Lek is the Heath Minister.

    I have had arguments with friends who felt that Malaysia is doing fine and great. They are happy with the situation in Malaysia, comparing Malaysia with Cambodia and Myammar. Frankly I would rather compare this country with Singapore. They think Malaysia is a developed country. A friend of mine does not want Malaysia to trade with the US.

    I share with them my worries, about religious issues, about opportunities for non-Malays , about income. I once told a friend that I sincerely worry about a certain uprising not-elected-as- MP-yet man [ i named him ] might do when he comes into power. She ,i am sure to no surprise of readers of this blog by now, asked me who was he.

    And how do charge 31 people with attempted murder?!?!? What was the bloody motive?? Was the whole rally a facade to murder that ONE policeman!?

    The sad reality is that no one seems to know. KBSM is producing very naive students to be further influenced in local universities. It is not cool to discuss politics. It makes u sound like a smart-aleck. Yet they complain about the quotas and other discrimination.

    I have a feeling that young Malaysians do care and will act if they are informed, because I am doing my part, albeit a small one . I will be registering to vote!

    I hope I can make a small difference by highlighting this to the adults reading this blog. Something must be done to address the ignorance of the Y & Z generation of Malaysia.

    My suggestion—Parents tell their children. Use Facebook. Use youtube. Give seminars—i don;t think that is allowed. Sigh the choices are limited tho’.


    P:S Are there any of u Y-gen people out there like me?

  3. #3 by Bigjoe on Wednesday, 26 December 2007 - 6:56 am

    I have to agree with the view that it takes decades to correct a mindset that is wrong. In particular, the Singapore experience is very telling.

    Anyone who has worked in Singapore know of LKY’s social engineering and based on many observation, none of them have been particularly successful. The social cohesion or mindset change achieved in Singapore has been incidental rather than from the direct consequences all the messaging, campaigning and harsh laws created.

    For example, speak Mandarin campaign floundered for decades until the rise of China made Mandarin absolutely necessary. All the courtesy campaigns over the years have not really made Singaporean any nicer or polite.

    By all accounts that I have heard, the national service in Singapore has been the single most successful program for creating social cohesion in Singapore but its not because they have been led to believe in the importance of arm defense of their country but because 2-years of national service forced them to interact with each other and share commonalities. One of this commonalities is, strangely, their common complain against the government. I have always thought that the Singapore government could best encourage more marriages and higher birth rate, if they include women in the national service but that is another debate.

    The success of Singapore in building a national identity with national service is the basis of our own program but the problem is like many things copied from Singapore, its not going to work because 1) the basis for the programs are not there and 2) the program itself is highly flawed.

    Firstly Singapore did not set out to create national cohesion with national service – its a necessary civil defense program. So the first ingredient needed in a national cohesion program is a real common need. Our national service does not serve a real common need except to program the youth. Without common purpose, its nothing more than cover up of problems and issue rather than building anything real.

    Secondly, Singapore program is two-years – a long time but necessary because of the shortage of manpower. The long time create the common bond if nothing else then their complain of waste of time. The program is largely superficial, there are some minor hardship shared but not quite boot-camp as every Singaporean male goes through. Why well, national service in Singapore is real, ours is not.

    All we have in Malaysia to bond us now is a common goal to build material wealth for ourselves. We don’t agree on religion, individual rights etc. John Nash in his theory of equilibrium points out that even in a game of free choice, this is NOT the optimal system and COULD lead to all members losing in the game. Furthermore, in such a game that is not of free choice as ours, the consequences is it will definitely not be optimal and disorder is eventual.

    There can only be real national unity with equal rights. There can only be excuses for it without equal rights. And the time for historical excuses is over in this country. Most people know it, we and particularly our leaders, just don’t have the courage to leave it behind and move forward.

  4. #4 by sj on Wednesday, 26 December 2007 - 7:26 am

    To be able to implement these noble ideas, we must get rid of those who undermine and corrupts the country. As the saying goes, kill the weed before you plant the crops. Do that in the next general election then we can have a better tomorrow to set plans into motion to create a better nation. So long as those weeds are around, your crops will not be bountiful and the people will starve for more. So KILL THE WEEDS.

  5. #5 by Jimm on Wednesday, 26 December 2007 - 8:13 am

    This country was turned around since TDM came out with the policies to enrich the land owners and build up our country currency reserve and value. Through these action, corruption level have to be brought in to increase the stake.
    In general record, our country natural wealth have been the main pillar of contribution which again stake-up the highest level of corruptions. Most of them involved also smartly get those land owners as their guarantors and the people backing them up.
    Look at all the state level developments, if not for the national programs that took placed, where can these state churned in so much financial funds to create development.
    True, and that the facts that our country are growing up more corrupted civil servants than any countries in this region.
    All because the land owners wanted to be richer than before.
    All because the government have a grand master plan to help the nation.
    All because there are enough greed to jumped into the band wagon.
    All because our leaders and land owners wanted to see changes to take place in their time and along these, their growing wealth are their aim goals.
    All because they all thought that with wealth of such, they can build their country and dream world.
    All because they wanted to put Malaysia into the world map.
    All because they think they are doing the right thing for Malaysian.
    And after getting to where we are today, aren’t they are the most unreasonable fools.
    They cannot even spelled out the stakes that will take placed for all their actions.

  6. #6 by stk on Wednesday, 26 December 2007 - 8:43 am

    A very sad thing happens during the flood disaster and these umno ba5tards ripping of the needy of food,

  7. #7 by Libra2 on Wednesday, 26 December 2007 - 9:00 am

    If and when this country goes down the drain (it’s already on its way) the mass media will have to take a major part of the blame. There are many intellectual Malaysians serving in this industry who are propping up a corrupt and immoral regime, a Frankenstein, in exchange for some temporal perks of office.
    When the mass media gives up its moral conscience then the society is domed.
    This Frankenstein will eventually destroy them and their children’s future. What good will all the wealth they have accumulated be worth then?

  8. #8 by Saint on Wednesday, 26 December 2007 - 9:45 am

    Kit – I salute you for this article. One said with concern father then contempt. Just like you, all of us need to keep on struggling, till the goal is reached, however frustrating it may be. It is messages like this that maintains our sprits. Thanks.

  9. #9 by Saint on Wednesday, 26 December 2007 - 9:48 am

    spelling error ” concern father” should read “concern rather” – sorry for the typo.

  10. #10 by Jonny on Wednesday, 26 December 2007 - 10:26 am

    ED, you’re right, all X,Y&Z-gen. and also irregardless from which gen – we have to do what we could.

    Make our voices be heard loud and clear.

    Tun M no matter how I look up high on him. He is not the saint. Nor is he the devil. Certain routes taken by him to strengthen his stronghold as inadvertently released pandora out of the box.

    And we’re heading down the cliff towards a path of no-return unless drastic measures are taken to reverse the decline.

  11. #11 by greenacre on Wednesday, 26 December 2007 - 11:07 am

    I am pessimistic about Malaysia changing for the better. Based on my personal experience I can vouch for this. In 1973 I joined the armed forces as a recruit and on the first day with a food tray I was Queuing up. Despite the fact that I told them that I am a Hindu,the food handlers wanted to serve beef. A Punjabi guy saved the day. I left army soon after. In 1980 again I joined and this time as volunteer (PSTD). I was sent for training. Similar food situation arose and I told them as a Hindu I do not consume beef. The food handlers got very angry and showed his face. I stood my ground and somehow he found chicken instead. While I was taking the meal a sergeant major came over to me and asked why I cannot take beef.(the food handler reported to him) I told him that I am a Hindu. He showed his bloody face again and asked me, what if I am in the jungle and there is no other food but beef. I kept quite and was thinking then ‘what will happen this Malay Muslim officer if there was no other food except wild boar/pig’. He went away after lecturing me. I reported this to a Chinese Major who retorted to me ” this fellows simply never learn”nothing further was done. I volunteered five years of my time to this nation. (there was hardly any money to be earned being a volunteer, so I was not there for money, just loved it and the uniform) The rest I leave it you, dear readers.

  12. #12 by iweepformalaysia on Wednesday, 26 December 2007 - 11:11 am

    greenacre, i think i can understand that.

    It’s always in my mind why we have to sacrifice ourselves for them while they don’t even have a simple sense towards us. Why is it that at all functions, beef was served but not pork? Why are we pampering them so much and let them take things for granted?

    Muslims are not thought to have empathy. Or maybe just Mala(y)s.

  13. #13 by Jimm on Wednesday, 26 December 2007 - 11:26 am

    We have been tolerencing ourselves to save this country future ..
    That’s priceless ..

  14. #14 by k1980 on Wednesday, 26 December 2007 - 11:58 am

    Democracy is a man-made problem too. Far too many crooks are being voted into power by foul means
    “Policemen are being used to rig the elections … They were issued each with 1,000 pre-marked ballot papers to be stuffed by them,”

  15. #15 by Daniel Quah on Wednesday, 26 December 2007 - 12:01 pm

    greenacre..i do agreed with you..sometimes..they ask us to respect their religion practise..but in reality do they respect our religion as well? Not only Hindu dont eat beef..most of chinese also prefer not to eat beef…but sadly..they dont care about our feeling….

    I was once buying a burger in a Malays stall…he cook the beef burger then cook the chicken burger for me in the same time..well..i simply dont care as long as i dont consume the beef but the will be ok..IF a pork burger was cook together with a beef burger…hell what will we know how those guy react..

  16. #16 by csl on Wednesday, 26 December 2007 - 1:45 pm

    Those with religion that saying they cannot eat meat, then whole camp eat vege? Come on, respect the majority. If you felt uncomfortable for the food, why not just get yourselves back home and ask your mama to cook for you? Please grow up a bit.

    Back to the topic.

    I just believe 1 thing, that, no way we can put the western standards into our multi cultures society. Plenty countries had failed. We need our own thing. The ISA is the very last resolve for some big society crisis. I don’t want them choose to shoot on those front line people who were being brain washed by some groups of people. Did you all study the American’s history before? If yes, you should wondering how the gov can achieve todays result without sacrifice so many innocent life. I never study in a University or college. But I had been work with so many kind of people, including white man (most of the time).

    Everything has its bright and dark side. When you get something, you lost something. All depends on if you can see what you are getting and what you are loosing. How far you can see? Better than those think tank behind the PM’s chair?

  17. #17 by cancan on Wednesday, 26 December 2007 - 7:35 pm

    The day the Umnoputras know how to govern the country with dignity is the day the sun rises from the west and Malaysia will be at its best.

    We are in a very dangerous state of disunity which is created by the Umnoputras.

    The more they divide us,the more we must unite as true Malaysians politically to displace them.
    We must do it this election before the world of globalization gobbled us up.

    And I believe we can and we will.

  18. #18 by U32 on Wednesday, 26 December 2007 - 10:56 pm

    I am more interested in the line ” man may not solve man made problems “. Again we have to go back to the roots of the problems. We thought problems will not arise. But they do. So where did we go wrong ? The one who creates the problems should be the one to uncreate them. If he fails to do so, he has to remove himself. The problems still exist. But the new man who takes over will start everything fresh like as if the problems never existed. This is the human way of doing things. However if one believes in divinity, one should know that nothing is impossible.

    How do you balance goodness and evil ? How do you exchange one thing for another ? How do you manoeuvre yourself in a human game of politics so that all Malaysians get to feel good more often than feel bad ? Remember this is a real world than we are living in. What are the internal and external factors that can cause Malaysia to behave in an acceptable manner so to speak ? I am sure you all out there can give your own answers which could be similar to mine.

  19. #19 by EARNEST on Thursday, 27 December 2007 - 12:28 am

    So KILL THE WEEDS. – sj.

    There are 3 groups of weedkillers, viz.,
    1. Contact weedkiller kills very fast, within 2 hours, tissues untouched, especially the roots will re-grow very fast. e.g. Paraquat

    2. Systemic weedkiller takes longer time to kill. It is absorbed by the roots, and the killed weeds will not re-grow. e.g Glyhosate

    3. Pre-emergent weedkiller kills weeds prior to emergence from soil. e.g. Oxadiazon.

    Weed scientists refer to Paraquat and Glyphosate as Abortion, Oxadiazon as Condom.

    To sack corrupted government officials is like applying Paraquat or Glyphosate. The sacked corrupted officials will be replaced by other officials who will soon become corrupted. This is because the fundamentals are wrong as propounded by YB Lim above.

    Meeting the nine challenges called “The Way Forward-Vision” positively and rectifying the fundamentals is like applying Oxadiazon. Certainly, it is wiser to use the condom than to go for an abortion.

  20. #20 by laifoong on Friday, 28 December 2007 - 9:11 am

    …..i wanna buy some weed.

  21. #21 by Jeffrey on Sunday, 30 December 2007 - 4:21 pm

    ///The preamble of the text of the United States Declaration of Independence has the following sentence: (from Wikipedia)…We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal…///

    From the premise of men being created equal, it is deduced that “they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness”.

    You have but to ask the first question whether the premise is really the true – that all men created equal ? Don’t just say it is just a belief. Prove to me empirically that they are….

    With due respect to Thomas Jefferson and the preamble of United States Declaration of Independence, everywhere the contrary appears the self evident truth – that they are neither created or born equal.

    In fact I would say very unequal, whether in genetic qualities, intellect, physical attributes or health, economic and social station and circumstances in life and at birth! :)

  22. #22 by Loh on Sunday, 30 December 2007 - 7:06 pm

    ///In fact I would say very unequal, whether in genetic qualities, intellect, physical attributes or health, economic and social station and circumstances in life and at birth! ///—Jeffrey

    The equality begins after birth. It is quite unlike free speech in Malaysia, one may not be free after speech.

    Even God could not, or was it God’s intention to see diversity, ensure equality at birth, but UMNO politicians thought that they could correct God’s ‘negligence’ for not ensuring equality at birth, and could create level playing, so they claimed. We know now that that was just an excuse, and that might is right!

  23. #23 by Jeffrey on Sunday, 30 December 2007 - 9:44 pm

    Actually the statement that “all men are created equal” is not intended to mean that men (by which generic expression includes women) are actually born equal in terms of genetic, intellectual and physical or health attributes or social and economic station in life or circumstances – in these respects they are all born unequal –what it means and is intended to mean is that, ideally, the very fact of birth entitles all men born (no matter what their differences in the attributes stated above) to be treated and deemed as equal without discrimination – not for everything – but the very least in three respects: “Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness”.

    So in that sense, yes, as what Loh says, the equality begins after birth….

    Where UMNO comes from, and what it says is that it is not stopping anyone of us from our pursuit of Life, Liberty and Happiness, save and except for the first two objects they are qualified to the extent permissible by laws including ISA or Sedition Act and in the case of pursuit of Happiness (which necessarily includes the access to equal educational and economic opportunities) to the extent qualified by Special Bumi Privileges and NEP sanctified and protected also by law.

    According to ex UMNO president TDM, the moral justification for the Special Bumi Privileges and NEP is that pursuit of Life, Liberty and Happiness cannot be equally pursued if one group that happens to be the majority group suffers from cultural deficit in not being able to compete on level playing ground with the more aggressive migrant races. The legal justification for Special Bumi Privileges and NEP (with particular regard to the open extension of it beyond 15 year review) is that the Majority race is not yet ready, a determination that is given effect by virtue of their majority determination in election and in Parliament via their representatives who are able to change the constitution with their 2/3 majority – all in line with the practice of Democracy where majority decision counts.

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