Malaysian General Elections 2013
By 2pm on 5th May, I was in the opinion that it is unlikely the Pakatan Rakyat [PR] would win a simple majority. I am not making this up. The reason I said so was by 2pm I saw a number of photos of votes being posted online. A quick glance and I saw 75% of these votes were going to Barisan Nasional [BN] (see below).
I agree that just a few votes like these doesn’t mean BN is winning. But what caught my attention was that these are more or less tech savvy people which means it is not all pro-PR on the Internet. It also reminded me that while I have seen a lot of anti-BN videos or postings on Facebook, they are predominantly in Chinese (or some Chinese dialects). In particular, I had seen only one in Malay, with English subtitles. In other words, is the PR reaching out enough to the Malay majority? It might not have been a “Chinese Tsunami” but clearly the main bulk of opposition vote must have been Chinese. With the Chinese population mostly for the PR, I am not surprised that it actually provoked a reaction from the Malays – at the very least by turning out to vote for BN. Would they not be concerned the status they enjoyed would be threatened, when there seems to me the PR had done very little to reach out to them, and to assure them otherwise?
Malaysia, unfortunately remain segregated along racial lines. One part of it is caused of national policy, and the others because of history, and racial prejudice. Sadly, the parts themselves are not mutually exclusive. I need not elaborate much about the 13 May incident in 1969, and the subsequent New Economic Policy [NEP] that came into effect in 1971 for the next 20 years.
The racial divide is deeply rooted even though the PR leaders may not want to admit it. I came to this conclusion from a friend’s account. Being Singaporean Peranakan, he easily mixed with both Malays and Chinese and had friends from both sides in Malaysia. He understood the aspirations of the young Malay professionals, and also how some of these capable ones are themselves unhappy with the NEP. While we would look up to any Malay person who had done well here in Singapore, the Chinese in Malaysia would be skeptical regardless how capable those Malays are on their own merits. Many Chinese in Malaysia would have believed they got to their positions as a result of nepotism or national policies. Thus, even some of these young Malay professionals are in the opinion that UMNO and its racial politics are dated and has to go.
When this was discussed with a female Chinese Malaysian, my friend suggested that perhaps the Chinese can reach out to these Malays and work together for a better Malaysia. To his shock, the response was very negative (and I am being polite here) because the Chinese person considered these Malays to be hypocritical. She even insisted that there is no reason to work with anyone who benefited from the policies. She isn’t an isolated case, because among my Malaysian Chinese friends, a number of them often spoke of the Malays derisively. I personally felt it is racist and unhealthy, but I doubt if I openly correct their views it would be taken amicably. Incidentally, that is why when Amy Cheong made those comments about the Malay Wedding, my first response was that she must have been a Malaysian-born Chinese.
I am sad to say that if both races in Malaysia cannot see beyond their own prejudices and work together, then the road to political change will be long and even painful. Thus, the outcome of this election was fairly predictable regardless of all the fraud allegations.
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Gang Rape is democracy in action?
A PAP MP quoted the following:
Since he has quoted it without any comment or input of his own, it is simply assumed he agreed (or even endorsed) whatever he has quoted. I am not surprised that denunciations and condemnation flew fast and furious there after, and he was ultimately forced to apologised for it. Whether he subsequently removed it from his Facebook account is immaterial because anyone who looked hard enough will still be able to find screen shots of it.
Zainudin Nordin hopes that netizens “will see the quote its in entirety”. And my question is, what is there to see?
Terry Goodkind “gang rape analogy” has no leg to stand on. First of all, it suggests to his readers that the plight of those who voted against the current government in power is caused by those who voted for it. It is nothing but divisive. Even if it maybe partially true that some people suffer because of the choices of the majority, it ignores that fact that political parties and politicians in a representative democracy can at times also have agenda of their own and take actions which may not be in line with the voters’ wishes. Thus, it might actually be a very small group of politicians screwing the people over. Let’s not forget political parties that wins simple majorities to form governments without winning the popular vote, or even governments that insists in pushing so-called “non-populist” policies “for the good of the most people”.
None of these is democracy in action. It is not much different from a monarchy, a feudal society or a dictatorship where everyone is raped by one or a collective leadership regardless they liked it or not. And it is of no wonder some Singaporeans often felt violated as well.
Talking about apologies, at times it is best for some people not to apologise at all if they do not already accept they are in the wrong. Maybe I am reading between the lines here but this says a lot about the earlier “apology” (see below).
It’s high time I read up on Freud and that bit about moral projection again.
And so… AIM good, FMSS bad?
I am more annoyed than surprised that instead of getting a detailed explanation on the entire AIM-gate matter, the ruling party tried to obfuscate and divert attention to other issues. A certain Teo Ho Pin made an issue out of the Workers’ Party [WP] awarding their management contract to FM Solutions and Services Pte Ltd [FMSS], and a whole lot of other matters as a result of that.
Teo Ho Pin isn’t exactly the paragon of virtue. I haven’t really forgotten his spectacular “fully answers” over the 8-month bonus received by one of the North West Community Development Council staff, and the losses Holland-Bukit Panjang Town Council suffered in their Lehman-linked investments. As far as I’m concerned, and even without considering the role he has in the sale of the Town Council Management System [TCMS] software to AIM, he’s the least qualified to raise the questions against the WP. For him to do so would be like a common prostitute questioning the chastity of the nun in the monastery. And that, would be an insult to prostitutes who are often forthright in declaring the price of their services instead of playing coy and act like a virgin.
From the release of Town Council Management Report [TCMR] to the whole lot of questions raised by
the $8 Cow Khaw Boon Wan and Teo Ho Pin, the whole agenda appears to be to create the impression that WP is incompetent and has mismanaged the towns under its charge. Some might be fooled but as far as I am concerned, what exactly is there to complain about when the town council isn’t dipping into the reserves or making the resident pay more to cover the cost, and that service standards have been maintained?
In other words, whether public interest has been served is not in how the WP answered the questions but in the accounts of the town council itself, and whether services have been provided in good order to the residents. I would have preferred Teo Ho Pin should simply shut up and sit down and not waste precious time in Parliament. After all, I personally remain unconvinced that the deal with AIM had in anyway served public interest at all!
But on second thoughts, it is good he raised it because I also loved to see how this so-called “elites” shoot themselves in the foot. The residents of Tampines are now questioning why their conservancy charges went up while management fees are down, and Kim Jong-Un expressed my sentiments perfectly.