Archive for September, 2010
Would Najib dare to revamp his Cabinet to ensure that only Ministers who publicly declare undivided loyalty to the 1Malaysia concept to build a nation where every Malaysian regard himself/herself as Malaysian first race second have a place in government?
The weak-kneed Cabinet decision on the latest anti-1Malaysia offence of the Biro Tata Negara (BTN) is a great disappointment and shame and the greatest disservice to Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s 1Malaysia concept.
In the first place, why was the announcement of the Cabinet decision to ask the Chief Secretary to investigate the latest racist remarks of a Biro Tata Negara (BTN) official made by the MIC Minister for Human Resources Dr. S. Subramaniam and not by the Deputy Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin, who had chaired the Cabinet meeting during Najib’s absence?
Is it because the controversy over BTN’s latest offence against Najib’s 1Malaysia concept is regarded as a trivial matter not serious enough to warrant the personal attention and concern of the Deputy Prime Minister?
Secondly, the juxtaposition of the pronouncement by the Gerakan President and Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department, Tan Sri Dr. Koh Tsu Koon on the same day, warning against over-reaction in race disputes, seems to be a message on behalf of Umno leaders not to take too seriously the latest infraction of the BTN – serving only to undermine public confidence that much is to be expected of the Cabinet decision, especially bearing in mind the 48-day government inaction over the two school principals for their incendiary, racist and insensitive statements against students in school.
Read the rest of this entry »
Chapter 5: Understanding Globalization
Leveling Effects of Globalization
What critics in the West fear most about globalization is its leveling effect. It means that an uneducated American will fare as badly as an illiterate Indonesian, but at the same time, a skillful Indian programmer can compete equally with his American counterpart. The much coddled and highly unionized American workers panic when they discover that Mexicans earning a fraction of the wages can do the same work just as efficiently and skillfully. Consequently many major American manufacturers are moving their plants to Mexico. It is this aspect of globalization that is most feared by America’s Pat Buchanans and Ralph Naders.
Manufacturing jobs are not the only ones heading south. Typists in India do the transcriptions for many American hospitals. My medical dictation at the local hospital is digitized, encrypted, and then transmitted via Internet to India, where it is downloaded and transcribed, and then re-transmitted back to America, ready for my patients’ charts by the next morning. Many of these typists are Indian doctors who found that they could earn more as medical transcriptionists working for American companies than as practicing physicians paid by the Indian government. Looked at differently, American capitalists value these Indian physicians for their typing skills while the Indian government does not value their healing skills.
Read the rest of this entry »
by Thomas Lee
The Council of Churches Malaysia (CCM) should be commended for taking a firm stand against a so-called Christian preacher for attacking and insulting Islam in a series of videos posted on YouTube.
Certainly, there is no place for such a bigoted hostile attitude toward those of another faith from one’s own in our plural nation, with its multi-racial, multi-religious, multi-cultural and multi-lingual population.
As a Christian myself, I am very ashamed and disgusted with such intolerance, and the fanatical and uncompromising pursuit and propaganda of the Christian faith by the immature and uncouth preacher, who has brought shame to the name of the Lord Jesus Christ.
The CCM is right in clarifying that the so-called preacher had acted in his individual capacity representing his own views, but it is incorrect to say that there is an “official view of the churches in Malaysia”, as there is none, although generally the Christian community abhors and loathes such destructive religious zealotry.
The assault on the people of another faith is not in the teaching of the Lord Jesus. Such bigotry is judging and degrading the human persons created by God in his own image on the basis of preconceived and bias opinions, and that is evil. It is definitely wrong, even sinful, when we participate in thoughts and actions that are based on pre-judging and condemning people of other faiths. Read the rest of this entry »
Let Najib declare on his return from his “Rise, Moderates” speech in UN whether he is prepared to “galvanise” the moderates in Malaysia to draw the line against the rise in extremism, whether racial bigotry or religious intolerance, led by DPM Muhyiddin
The Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak in his just-completed foreign trip made a strong call for global moderation, not only making it the theme in his maiden address to the United Nations General Assembly but also publicly commending United States President Barack Obama for the latter’s “courageous public position” in dealing with Islamophobia in condemning the proposed burning of the Quran by a Florida pastor and urging Obama “to galvanise the moderates, bring in the non-governmental organizations and social movements so that more people could see the importance of taking a moderate stance”
He told Malaysian media at the end of his six-day visit to the United Nations and the United States that his proposal for a “Global Movement of the Moderates” aimed at rallying leaders and intellectuals of the Islamic world to come forward and state their stand openly and firmly against extremism had received positive response, enhancing Malaysia’s profile particularly in the West.
Najib should know that the question all Malaysians are asking is when he is going to walk the talk and provide leadership in the country to galvanise the moderates, NGOs and social movements in Malaysia to take a stand against the rise of extremism – both racial bigotry and religious extremism – in the past 18 months of his premiership.
What is most ironical is that the rise of extremism in Malaysia, both racial bigotry and religious intolerance, is under the patronage of his No. 2 in government, Deputy Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin.
This is why for 47 days, as DPM and Education Minister, there is not only government inaction against the two school principals who made incendiary, insensitive and racist statements against students in school, there is not a word of condemnation from Muhyiddin against such open challenge and contempt for Najib’s 1Malaysia concept.
This is also why there is a such a recrudescence of the worst form of racial bigotry and religious extremism from Biro Tata Negara which, instead of instilling national unity and integration, has been doing the opposite – fomenting inter-racial and inter-religious misunderstanding, distrust and division. Read the rest of this entry »
By Thomas Lee
While Datuk Seri Najib Razak was urging all nations of the world to “choose moderation over extremism” to promote international peace and harmony in his maiden speech at the United Nations General Assembly on Monday 27 September 2010, it is surely shocking that back in Malaysia at about the same time, a senior civil servant spewed out one of the most extremist and venomous speeches against the Chinese and Indian communities.
Federal Territory Biro Tata Negara (BTN) deputy director Hamim Husin referred to the Chinese and Indian communities as Si Mata Sepet and Si Botol when speaking at a Puter Umno function.
“The Si Mata Sepet who has never gone to a mosque or surau only has one vote. The Si Botol who only knows how to go up and down Batu Caves only has one vote,” Hamim was quoted as saying, when talking about getting votes from the non-Malay voters.
It surely is most malevolent and seditious for the senior BTN officer to use such a contemptuous, pejorative and derogatory terms of Si Mata Sepet (slit eyes) and Si Botol (alcoholic) to describe the Chinese and Indian citizens.
Read the rest of this entry »
By Dr. Chen Man Hin, DAP life advisor
International deluge of criticisms from the conspiracy to convict Anwar of sodomy 2
Suddenly there appears to be a deluge of international personalities criticising the Malaysian government for persecuting Anwar on trumped up charge of sodomy 2.
It started with ex US vice president Gore, and IMF chief Stiglitz, followed by Barry Wain former AWSJ correspondent as well as a former US ambassador to Malaysia John Croft
All of them unanimously condemned the conspiracy to paint Anwar as a sodomist and therefore not fit to be the Opposition Leader.
These are all distinguished members of the international community who are shocked in unison by this serious transgression of justice, democracy and the rule of law by the Malaysian government. UMNO, the power behind the prime minister, intends to perpetuate their power by trying Anwar on trumped up charges of sodomy, to convict and imprison him, thus denying him the opportunity to be the next Prime Minister.
Read the rest of this entry »
Cabinet tomorrow should dissolve BTN and institute action against BTN deputy director Hamin Husin to prove that Najib’s call for the triumph of moderation over extremism is not only meant for international consumption but also at home
The Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak yesterday made the sterling call in the United Nations, saying it was time for moderates to reclaim the agenda for peace and pragmatism.
In his maiden speech at the UN, the prime minister said there was a need to marginalise the extremists, and the “global movement of the moderates” of all faiths was needed to work together to make this a success.
Najib said these extremists had held the world hostage with their bigotry and bias, adding that “we must choose moderation over extremism.”
“We must, and I repeat, we must urgently reclaim the centre and the moral high ground that has been usurped from us.
“We must choose negotiations over confrontation. We must choose to work together and not against each other. And we must give this effort utmost priority, for time is not on our side.”
Malaysians fully endorse the Prime Minister’s call in the United Nations that moderates must win over extremists, except that Najib would have set a new record for Malaysian Prime Ministers addressing the United Nations in the past 53 years – evoking the least credibility and greatest cynicism among the Malaysian public although Malaysians fully agree with the sentiments expressed.
This is because Malaysians are seeing an almost daily breakdown of authority, credibility and legitimacy of Najib as Prime Minister, coming not from the national Opposition, the Pakatan Rakyat or the civil society, but from within his own camp in Umno and the government bureaucracy with its contingent of Big and Little Napoleons. Read the rest of this entry »
by Mariam Mokhtar
Sep 27, 2010
Former prime minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad’s warning that “Malays would lose power if Pakatan Rakyat were to come to power”, is not his first racist rant since his retirement.
He delights in taking pot-shots at Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak’s administration and excels at instigating unrest. Why would the Malays lose power under Pakatan? The Malays lost whatever power they had under 22 years of Mahathir’s rule.
Mahathir is racist, but Najib would not dare charge him with sedition. Mahathir certainly acts like he is the ‘co-premier’ and his flirtation with extremist NGOs like Perkasa, must embarrass the current administration.
At times, we can be forgiven for thinking that he must be the second most powerful person in the government. His ruthless desire to cling onto the reins of power and pretend to speak out for ordinary Malays must create chaos in government circles. He is great at divide-and-rule.
If he is the ‘Father of Modernisation’, then he is out of touch with the people of 21st century Malaysia. Most Malaysians would be open-minded and accepting of one another, but for the politicians. I would accept a non-Malay prime minister of either sex and sexual preference, provided that person is a strong and capable leader. Read the rest of this entry »
Is the real reason for the 46 days of government inaction against the two school principals for incendiary, racist and insensitive statements because they cannot be faulted as this was exactly the “official ideology” which BTN had been indoctrinating civil servants past two decades?
All Malaysians want to know whether the scandal of the 46-day inaction by the Najib administration against the two school principals who made incendiary, racist and insensitive statements against students in schools will be top on the agenda of Wednesday’s Cabinet meeting or whether Cabinet Ministers would be like the traditional three monkeys with eyes that see not, ears that hear not and mouths that speak not!
Noises are being made by MCA, Gerakan and MIC outside the Cabinet protesting against the Deputy Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin’s statement claiming that he is powerless to do anything against the two principals as this falls within the ambit and jurisdiction of the Public Services Department and the Chief Secretary – but all these are empty posturings by these political parties when their Ministers in Cabinet maintain a discreet and self-serving silence on this issue.
In fact, the question must be asked in Cabinet, Parliament and the country whether the real reason for the 46-day government inaction against the two school principals who publicly made a mockery of Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Raza’s 1Malaysia policy is because they could not be faulted because what they said was exactly the “official ideology” which Biro Tata Negara of the Prime Minister’s Department had been indoctrinating civil servants in the past two decades!
Is this the reason why Muhyiddin had been thunderously silent in not condemning the two school principals for their incendiary, racist and insensitive statements, telling Chinese students to go back to China and likening Hindu prayer bracelets to a dog leash, because such offensive remarks were quite in line with the poison which BTN had been dishing out to civil servants in the past two decades? Read the rest of this entry »
By Kee Thuan Chye in FMT
Sun, 26 Sep 2010
In just two days – Sept 23 and 24 – three developments summed up the sorry state of the ruling establishment. And caused sensible Malaysians to lose further faith in the government. In the first, the deputy prime minister played the role of Pontius Pilate by washing his hands of a responsibility the public had expected him to fulfil.
In the second, a former prime minister showed his racist true colours and desperation when he said Malays would lose power if Pakatan Rakyat took over the government.
In the third, the police arrested a cartoonist, just hours before the launch of his latest book. On what charge? Wait for the government to decide.
What we are witnessing is not surprising. These three events are manifestations of dinosaur thinking, which by now should be extinct. But those who adhere to them seem to think they’re still effective, which must mean they cannot be qualified to lead a progressive nation.
Muhyiddin Yassin may have some fine print in some rules of procedure to back him up in regard to the Kedah school principal who uttered racist remarks to his students. On Sept 23, he said any action against the principal can only be taken by the disciplinary board of the Public Services Department (PSD), headed by the director-general.
However, the public is asking: “But you are the education minister. And also the deputy prime minister. Surely, you have certain powers to act on something as heinous as racism, to send out a positive message to the people?” Read the rest of this entry »
The Mentri Besar of the usurper Barisan Nasional Perak state government, Datuk Seri Zambry Abdul Kadir has called on Barisan Nasional component parties to be prepared for snap polls and Barisan Nasional component parties are openly calling on their members to be ready for early general elections next year.
DAP and Pakatan Rakyat must be prepared for snap 13th general elections to be held in six months.
In his 18 months as Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak has launched three major initiatives – 1Malaysia policy; the New Economic Model and on Tuesday, the RM1.4 trillion Economic Transformation Programme (ETP) to achieve a high-income economy by 2020.
However, all these three Najib landmark measures have failed to take-off successfully as illustrated by the lukewarm response of the RM1.4 trillion ETP in the Kuala Lumpur stock market. Read the rest of this entry »
Deputy Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin has challenged me to show him the part of the Constitution or law where a deputy prime minister or education minister has the powers to take action against a senior civil servant with a permanent position.
Akin to the American political catchphrase, “It’s the economy, stupid”, I could have simply responded: “It’s the political will, stupid”.
But as a Malaysian, I will not do so. Muhyiddin accused me of ignorance as I have never been a government officer and worse, of being “100 per cent politician” but I will not reply by hurling the latter accusation back at him and say he is “120 per cent politician” and that he is not acting like a Deputy Prime Minister at all, let alone a 1Malaysia Deputy Prime Minister for all Malaysians.
Nobody suggested that Muhyiddin should personally take action against the two principals, one from Johore and another in Kedah, who uttered incendiary, racist and sensitive remarks to their students in school, as asking “the Chinese students to go back to China” and likened the Hindu prayer bracelets to a dog leash, but he must doubly bear responsibility as Deputy Prime Minister and Education Minister for a government which for 45 days has not been able to take action against such offensive, racist and sensitive remarks, especially occurring in the education sector with two principals as the culprits!
This is for two reasons: Read the rest of this entry »
Najib should first ensure religious tolerance is practised at home in Malaysia before offering advice on religious tolerance to President Obama
by Dr Chen Man Hin
In the first place, the Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak should not assume that Malaysia is a Muslim country. Malaysia is a multireligious society. while Malays who form 55% of the population are Muslims, the other 45 per cent are Buddhists, Hindus, Christians, Sikhs, animists, atheists, etc.
Religious tolerance – there is limited religious tolerance in Malaysia. Islam is favoured by the government and is regarded as the ‘big brother’ of religion.
There is a consultative council for religions but Islam is not a member – , although invited to join. Islamic leaders prefer to stay away.
Dialogue between Islam and other religions is limited. The attitude is that Islam is superior.
The word ‘ALLAH’ is regarded as sacred and is not allowed to be invoked or used by religions other than Islam. This is religious intolerance as the word Allah is freely used in the Middle East by all religions, which has been the practice even before the advent of Islam. Read the rest of this entry »
by Tunku Abdul Aziz
25th Sept 2010
The Government of Indonesia is absolutely right to ban their nationals from coming to work as domestic servants in Malaysia until our own government is prepared to guarantee the safety and well being of these women. This is the least the Government of Indonesia can do to protect their people from being routinely and savagely abused by Malaysian employers. The excesses that are reported in the pages of our newspapers are a shameful reminder of our ambivalent attitude to human cruelty and suffering.
Maid abuse is not a Malaysian invention; it has, however, become an ugly hallmark of our domestic employment culture. There have been far too many reported cases of inhuman physical treatment of foreign maids to ignore. The number of unreported cases of criminal abuse is staggeringly high. What sort of society have we allowed ourselves to be turned into? We shower our animals with love and affection, and yet we cannot bring ourselves to treat those who live, while in our service, under our protection, with a little kindness and dignity. We are dealing with human beings who work under conditions of slavery, out of dire necessity, not of choice. With its own abysmal human rights credentials, we cannot expect our government to be too concerned over such trivialities as foreign worker protection and their rights in a supposedly civilised country. If we do not give a damn about how our own citizens are abused by abusive laws, I should perhaps lower my expectations as far as our vulnerable foreign guest workers are concerned. Read the rest of this entry »
By Teoh El Sen
Free Malaysia Today
SAT, 25 SEP 2010
PETALING JAYA: In August 2009, philanthropist Koon Yew Yin offered to donate RM30 million to Universiti Tunku Abdul Rahman (Utar) to build hostels with recreational facilities at its Kampar campus in Perak.
But there has been no response from Utar to the generous gesture. Koon, 77, then withdrew his offer on Sept 12, this year.
However, on Sept 13, Utar’s board of trustees and council said it did not accept the RM30 million donation because of the “many conditions (imposed) such as setting up a foundation where he (Koon) will be chairman and be in full control over the spending of his money”.
Then on Sept 14, Utar issued a statement saying it did not turn down Koon’s offer but was still discussing it.
But Koon, who called for a press conference here yesterday, rubbished the claim he wanted to exercise full control over his money.
“Ever since I made my written RM30 million donation offer on Aug 18 last year, the Utar authorities have been using various means to delay accepting my offer. Now they have informed the public that the delay is because I want full control over the spending of my money,” said Koon.
“This is factually incorrect and misleading. Even if I had wanted control, common sense would dictate that I should have some control. But I did not say that,” he said. Read the rest of this entry »
Ismail Omar has got his priorities as new IGP all wrong with police arresting cartoonist Zunar, questioning Nurul for sedition and wanting to question Serdang MP Teoh Nie Ching for her surau visit
Tan Sri Ismail Omar has got his priorities as new Inspector-General of Police all wrong with the police arrest of cartoonist Zunar, questioning Pakatan Rakyat Lembah Pantai MP Nurrul Izzah for sedition and wanting to question Pakatan Rakyat Serdang MP Teoh Nie Ching for her surau visit.
It would appear that the new IGP has no understanding whatsoever of the concept of democratic policing and continue to regard the paramount duty of police as that of protector of the powers-that-be instead of being the protector of the rights of the citizenry.
A new IGP for Malaysia would only be meaningful if the Malaysian police is to start for the first time in 53 years of the country as an independent, sovereign parliamentary democracy to initiate a transformation and break from the colonial past mentality and embrace democratic policing to protect the people and not the regime in power.
The Commonwealth Human Rights Initiative (CHRI) 2005 report on “Police Accountability: Too Important to Neglect, Too Urgent to Delay” has rightly stressed:
“Democratic nations need democratic policing. Democratic policing is based on the idea the police are protectors of the rights of citizens and the rule of law, while ensuring the safety and security of all equally. It rejects any resemblance to the regime policing of colonial times. Colonial style policing was based on the idea of police as protectors of a government foreign to the people.”
The Malaysian Insider
Sept 21, 2010
These days it’s not easy for a person of good sense to avoid being accused of sedition.
Especially if you have a basic grasp of modern political history and the nation’s constitutional foundations.
Voicing well-known facts and trite legal principles can get you into real trouble.
You question Ketuanan Malayu, for example, and you are told by those of a “Perkasa-ish” inclination, or lectured by Dr. Ridhuan Tee Abdullah in Utusan, that Malay political dominance is an agreed and foundational national principle. That it is inscribed in the Constitution.
What is in the Constitution? Here the champions of Ketuanan Melayu invoke Article 153.
That is the peg on which they hang the claim that enduring Malay ascendancy, even absolute political domination, is constitutionally enshrined. That it is an integral part of the “social contract” that made the nation and its Constitution possible.
But Article 153 is a small and dubious peg for such a big, even extravagant, claim. It merely provides for, or allows the government in its good judgement to institute, certain defined kinds of preferential treatment for Malays in certain identified and circumscribed areas.
It does not provide for, enshrine or constitutionally entrench Malay ethnic supremacy, enduring political domination.
But if you say this, you are likely to be challenged, and hit with a volley of police reports accusing you of sedition.
Of a triple sedition: against legitimate Malay political entitlement, as enshrined in Article 153; against the rulers who are the constitutionally-designated protectors of the Malay stake in the country; and hence also against the Constitution itself and the nation whose sovereignty it embodies. Read the rest of this entry »
By Clara Chooi
The Malaysian Insider
September 35, 2010
KUALA LUMPUR, Sept 25 — Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad’s latest play at racial politics has earned him the wrath of his parliamentary foe Lim Kit Siang, who has now christened the former premier with a new nickname — “the number one racist in Malaysia”.
The DAP advisor slammed Dr Mahathir for playing the race card yet again when he claimed the Malays would lose power if Pakatan Rakyat (PR) defeats the Barisan Nasional (BN) in the next general election.
“Our beloved former Prime Ministrer Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad said that in the next general election, the Malays would lose power if the PR forms the government.
“Imagine, a former Prime Minister, who ruled us for 22 long years, returning to politics as the number one racist in Malaysia,” he boomed to a crowd of over 1,000 people at a fundraising dinner in Bandar Menjalara here last night, organised by the Segambut DAP division. Lim’s rhetoric earned him thunderous applause from the crowd, who yelled in disagreement at Dr Mahathir’s latest assertion.
He also accused Dr Mahathir of appearing on the stump for Umno by trying to frighten off the Malay voters from voting PR.
“He is trying to instil fear in the Malays by playing the race card on them. This is the height of Dr Mahathir’s irresponsibility. He is becoming an ultra again,” Lim said. Read the rest of this entry »
September 23, 2010
ONE of Australia’s key partners in Asia is struggling. Given the way its leaders have taunted Australia over the years, schadenfreude at its plight would be understandable. But this should be resisted, for if Malaysia stumbles, the effects may ripple across the region.
Erstwhile sponsor of the Carlton Football Club, a cash cow for the Australian education sector, Australia’s 10th largest trading partner and a champion of ”Asian values” – whatever they are – Malaysia seems to be brimming with sky-is-falling Chicken Littles. And their analyses are alarmist; ”failed state”, ”deep pit”, ”national decay”, ”ocean-going corruption”, ”useless mega-projects”.
While some of these could be used to describe the Delhi Commonwealth Games – a massive undertaking Malaysia successfully pulled off 12 years ago by the way – it is about a country oft-regarded as an Asian success, whose rampant economy inspired a cockiness among its leaders to take racially tinged potshots at the ”decadent and immoral” West, and at Australia in particular.
And then there was the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank to demonise, indeed anyone its mercurial then prime minister Mahathir Mohamad didn’t like on any given day. And there was 23 years of it, the Mahathir monopoly on Malaysian power.
So what’s prompted such painful hand-wringing from a tigerish economy that likes to boast how it ditched traditional models to virtually promise endless riches? The answer is some of the nastiest foreign direct investment (FDI) statistics an Asian economy has served up in a generation. Read the rest of this entry »
PR will move urgent motion on 1st day of Parliament Oct 11 if no satisfactory action taken against two school principals who made racist slurs against students in schools
Deputy Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin has again rubbished Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s slogan of “1Malaysia. People First. Performance Now” when he made the startling statement yesterday that he is completely powerless to act against the two school principals, one in Johore and the other in Kedah, who had made racist slurs against students in their schools.
The previous occasion when Muhyuiddin rubbished Najib’s “1Malaysia. People First. Performance Now” concept was when the Deputy Prime Minister declared that he is “Malay first, Malaysian second” – diametrically contrary to the 1Malaysia objective to create a Malaysia where every Malaysian would regard himself or herself as Malaysian first and race second.
Muhyiddin’s latest gaffe was made at the opening of the Anti-Corruption Initiative for Asia and the Pacific regional seminar on the Criminalisation of Bribery in Kuala Lumpur yesterday, substituting for Najib who has left for New York to address the 65th United Nations General Assembly.
Malaysians wonder whether Muhyiddin would declare that he is “Malay first Malaysian second” or “Malaysian first Malay second” when his turn comes to address the UN General Assembly in his capacity as Deputy Prime Minister of Malaysia! Read the rest of this entry »