BN’s racial politics still work, but not for long

Jun 2, 2014

YOURSAY ‘A lesson to learn is that changes come in baby steps, not giant strides.’

Delving into DAP’s shock defeat

Fair Play: For DAP, a lesson to learn in the Teluk Intan by-election is that changes come in baby steps, not giant strides. The road ahead is often fraught with uncertainties, obstacles and frustrations and takes a pathway of ‘one step forward, two steps backward’ approach.

A good start would be to identify young and qualified right-thinking Muslim Malaysians as political secretaries to key DAP politicians and train them as future leaders. Do not forget young and qualified Indian Malaysians too.

DAP has to break the political mold (perception) that it is a Chinese Malaysian political party. For almost all Malaysians, perception (how they see thing) is reality.

Examples like Dyana Sofya Mohd Daud is a good start, but need more fine-tuning and adaptation. Be patient and plan for the long haul. If there is hope, there is a future.

Basically: I am not sure if DAP was shocked by the results. They took a huge gamble and I believe they would have calculated the risks. That they took such a risk shows many things, but above all, the difference between DAP and BN.

DAP took the chance to test the waters, prove a point, and give a young candidate a chance to shine and get her feet wet, and to strengthen the party for the future.

Losing is not a big disaster, but the experience gained is invaluable on many fronts – gauging voter sentiment, proving Dyana’s calibre as a future leader, testing voters’ response to DAP’s various pitches.

Meanwhile in contrast, Umno-BN showed it has not changed but has regressed, still sticking to an old tired warhorse for the same old reasons, and using the same old tricks, but taken to even uglier heights.

It has also revealed Gerakan to be a completely subservient puppet who stood by while ‘taiko’ Umno did all the heavy punching, while they shrugged and looked the other way. Mah Siew Keong’s campaign shows his ministership and being in Parliament will just be another token to PM Najib Razak’s fake multiracial team.

In fact he said it himself: with BN in power in Perak since mid-2008, in charge of Teluk Intan’s local council for the past six years, and with him being past minister and MP before, Teluk Intan is still backward and had lousy facilities.

And he’s asking to be voted in to change that? It shows BN’s tactic of deception still works, by ensuring the voter remains ignorant, dependent on handouts and easily fooled that they did not see this as an admission of failure, but instead bought the trick answer.

A revival for Gerakan? I hardly think so. Umno-BN went all out to ensure they won this one after ditching Bukit Gelugor, as a face-saving victory.

Anonymous_1371880345: I think we need not over-analyse the reasons for this very close defeat. It could have turned either way and the analysts would have written very differently.

What DAP need to do now is to continue to pursue its non-racial ideals and work hard. Light will always triumph over darkness eventually.

One small setback in a battle lost in no way changes the tidal course of history for the morally upright determined to see the final victory in its war against the morally corrupt.

Man On The Street: The people of Teluk Intan still loves the government that plunders the nation, practices corruption, abuses power and very much liked to be ruled under the racial politics.

Even the poor and illiterate people of India knows how to vote for their future. We are so backward in thinking and fail to understand the needs our future generation, the system of education and quality of life. Indeed, a very sad day for many of us.

Kawak: Yes, I agree with Man On The Street’s comments. The Indians in India are smarter voters in their recently held general election. They voted out the Congress Party which had ruled the country for so many years. They voted out a party which has become corrupted.

In Malaysia, the voters consistently voting in a corrupted regime which holds on power by playing racial and religious sentiments. This type government will only collapse when the country goes bankrupt and everyone suffers.

Headhunter: If anything, this by-election has proven yet again that bread-and-butter issues are key to winning over voters especially those in Teluk Intan, which is semi-rural.

DAP’s loss should not be considered a total loss because there are many pluses to be taken into account. The choice of candidate is very bold and in spite of the BN usual cheating and bribing of voters, Dyana did a tremendous job.

The election also prove that groundwork is much more effective than rhetoric as what Gerakan had done. DAP should consider it a great learning experience and re-look at their strategy for future elections.

Abasir: DAP supremo Lim Kit Siang should be lauded for the courage he displayed and risk he took in fielding Dyana – a move which clearly rattled Umno and its hangers-on.

If she had won, it would have nailed the lies spewed by Umno about the DAP and more importantly, have sent a clear signal that the people will no longer be duped by the ‘Malays for Malays, Chinese for Chinese and Indians for Indians’ line of a rotting regime.

The fact that the young lady came within a hair’s breadth of victory ought to mean something – especially considering the fact that Umno and its self-serving sycophants threw everything into the fray including tangible and intangible bribes, threats, racial slurs, thugs and a parade of ‘ministers’ to secure a mere 238 votes more than the indefatigable Dyana.

Proarte: I cannot help feeling that DAP contributed to its own shock defeat notwithstanding the fact that many outstation DAP supporters did not return to vote. DAP was in a situation of double jeopardy because it adopted the Anwar Ibrahim modus operandi of being ‘all things to all men’.

Ultimately it was a question of trust and commitment to principle which I think the Teluk Intan folk felt Pakatan had strayed from. Only a year ago, Pakatan presented ‘a common manifesto’ where hudud did not feature.

A year later, PAS betrays the manifesto and is in discussion with Umno to facilitate the introduction of hudud in Kelantan. Surely DAP should know that its core supporters are anti-hudud, let alone the fact that it is unconstitutional.

Dyana’s initial denial of her mother’s involvement and membership of Perkasa only served to further undermine trust in her. If the Teluk Intan folk had voted for Dyana, it would be because they felt she represented a paradigm shift in the way political representation is organised and would be willing to give her a chance.

However, because of her apparent lack of integrity and DAP skirting of the hudud issue made the voters of Teluk Intan feel they could not trust DAP totally and would stand to benefit more from Mah if he was appointed a minister as he would be in a position to help Teluk Intan materially due to BN largesse.

Durian Tunggal: Dear Lim Kit Siang, you did your best for the people of Malaysia. I wonder whether you can carry on with the disappointment as you have reached the peak of your life. Please take care of your health.

The people of Malaysia do not deserve your concern. You fought for them and the future of their children and grandchildren but in vain. You sacrificed your entire life for them yet this is the ungratefulness you get.

In all my life, you put the welfare before your comfort. Generations to come, I wonder whether they will ever remember you. The coming generation will be most likely be your last. I wonder whether you will ever see a change of government.

The people of Malaysia are not people like Thailand where they are willing to sacrifice their lives. One day I would like to meet you and give you a nice hug although I am just a nobody. But I can feel your warmth and the goodness in your heart.

Anonymous #23456263: Again it boils down to money, machinery and media. BN has made so many offers that are hard for voters to decline. After all, the goodies will be helpful, and besides, it makes no difference at the federal level even if DAP loses.

The Shrimp Warrior: Yes, change can only come from the young. And this time, they did not deliver. Sad.

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  1. #1 by boh-liao on Tuesday, 3 June 2014 - 12:14 am

    “BN’s racial politics still work, but not for long”
    R U sure?
    Voters in M’sia NOT as smart as voters in India

  2. #2 by Noble House on Tuesday, 3 June 2014 - 3:18 am

    In English we have a saying “you may win the battle, but you’ll lose the war”. It means that you may get what you want in the short-term, but you won’t in the long-term. In short, what is a short-term gains for Teluk Intan can also be a failure to see what goes on beyond that of Dyana Sofya.

    Tony Pua had it right with his prognosis of the by-election. I was there a week before the nomination day on a short visit after some 20 years away from this town where I spent my childhood years. I still have some relatives and friends living there today. I see no significant changes in terms of the infrastructures, and the basic and social amenities are sorely missing. When asked about their opinions on the likely outcome of this by-election, most said that BN may win this time out. The reasons, as Tony Pua said, are the “ministerial benefits” and to a certain extent – the issue of “Hudud” itself. While some can understand the squeeze in federal funding for the opposition, some don’t.

    The DAP was right in fielding Dyana Sofya – no question about that. Whether this should be the right battleground for the strategic move is the question! That said, the tireless efforts put in by the PR components have, in no small way, reduced the odds against them, but still not enough to see Dyana through.

    There were some who still argued that having the “right” candidate is a sure win for the DAP. My answer to all the naysayers is “come close that you can smell the flowers”.

  3. #3 by Jeffrey on Tuesday, 3 June 2014 - 4:31 am

    Fair Play commented that lesson to DAP in the Teluk Intan by-election is that changes come in baby steps, not (overambitious) giant strides. I’m not sure Dyana is not itself a baby stride! The TI’s constituents expect their MP to serve them. (Serve them means help in improving local facilities, bring development where having patronage of UMNO via ministerial position helps. They are of course disillusioned with ruling BN (why else they gave late LP Seah a 7000 majority in GE13?) But still the local Devil you know is better than out of state Angel unknown.

  4. #4 by Jeffrey on Tuesday, 3 June 2014 - 4:32 am

    The problem is that DAP had parachuted top-down a non local to showcase its multi racial credentials and turn politics away from BN’s race yardstick: however when you field a non local someone (perceived unfamiliar with local problems & needs) – and you do so not because of merits of knowledge of local conditions but primarily he/she’s a non Chinese willing to support “multiracial” DAP – you also race bait – in the reverse!

  5. #5 by Jeffrey on Tuesday, 3 June 2014 - 4:33 am

    DAP has to recruit more non Chinese at all levels, grass root up than top down . A few swallows (blogger Sakmongkol AK47, Tengku Zulpuri Shah Raja Puji & Zairil Khir Johari and Dyana included don’t make a Summer, mindful that one (Tunku Abdul Aziz) actually flew away. After 60 years of race induced mindset its easier said than done to recruit more Non Chinese to join rank & file DAP stereotyped as Chinese chauvinistic so that they could be fielded as a local aware of local problems/conditions. Hopefully Dyana’s high profile contest in Teluk Intan paves the way for more (esp younger set) to join, and in this sense she’s more “a baby step”.

  6. #6 by bruno on Tuesday, 3 June 2014 - 8:11 am

    Carrots and threats sure do work.

  7. #7 by boh-liao on Tuesday, 3 June 2014 - 9:32 am

    Let’s C WHAT d horsey Gelakan president, soon 2 b a YES Minister n absolutely un-ingrate pendatang 2 Perkosa-UmnopB, CAN deliver in d next few years 2 TI residents

    Voters there hv declared: Gua oredi kasih Lu lah, now Lu kasih Gua

  8. #8 by Bigjoe on Tuesday, 3 June 2014 - 9:56 am

    If Mah Siew Kong thinks all he need to do is implement projects, keep drains unclogged in Teluk Intan to keep his seat he will find out exactly why its just luck.

    The best thing Mah can do to keep his seat, is simply to tell Najib his “plan” is not working. It never did, Najib was just lucky and machinery is not going to help come next GE in Teluk Intan. HE is the President of Gerakan, supposedly the conscience of BN, either he does what they are suppose to stand for or might as well never have ran for the seat. EVERYTHING on his manifesto won’t amount to a hills of beans come the next-GE..

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