Monday, May 5, 2008

Pak Lah Plays the Malays out.

The Council for Malay Solidarity said one thing actually. Pak Lah, you are not defending the Malays. Mahathirism has always beg the question of whether our weak PM is the President of Umno or Pakatan Rakyat? His focus in on non-Malay issues (which only gets to the point of mere sensational announcements anyway) at the expense of the poorer, less skilled and real second class citizens of this country -the Malays. If anything, the Chinese and to a lesser extent the Indians have better quality of lifes than the Malays.
PM wants to talk poverty? He is creating more poverty in a reduction of economic opportunitites and flip-flop policies.
Pak Lah has completely lost the political plot and Najib Razak will inherit a shell of Umno. Umno will be blasted into oblivion. Dont just take it from Mahathirism. Gapena President Tan Sri Ismail Hussein said the Council for Malay solidarity was necessary because Malay-based political parties were too busy running the country to concentrate exclusively on Malay issues.
The judgement is out on this one. Pak Lah has let down the Malays..

Friday, May 2, 2008

What Abdullah Badawi Doesnt Want You To See.

And so the live telecast of the Dewan Rakyat proceedings are on again but under threat to have the plug pulled by our weak PM through his custodian - Sabery Cheek. Its not because of big foot or big monkey that he wants to cancel the show, after all BN has been abusing opposition members as soon as Abdullah Badawi helmed Malaysia. The only reason is because , PM doesnt want you, the Rakyat to have any doubts about how weak his government really is. In fact, the opposition is so strong that they took the Speaker to task when he protected Abdullah Badawi from added questions. Fiery Karpal and Lim Kit Siang actually have no respect for this PM and cocked their guns to blow him away with loaded questions in Parliament. Abdullah Badawi knew it was coming..
Well Mr. PM. You still feel you have support? With your so-called marginally less than two-thirds majority?

The Ninth Malaysia plan was a non-starter to begin with. Best you can do is cling on to power and abuse Malaysia's Father of Modernisation.

Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Malaysia Implicitly Supports War In Iraq

So much for Islam Hadhari... Malaysia welcomes warmongers, ne0cons and US imperialism.. Who cares about the Iraqis, Palestinians and Iranians?

Halliburton involvement in Iskandar not an issue

Wednesday, 30 April 2008
KUWAIT: There is no ethical question (Mahathirism says- tell that to the Iraqis) involved in bringing Halliburton, the controversial US multinational, to invest in Malaysia, said the Iskandar Development Region Authority managing director Datuk Ikmal Hijaz Hashim.
“Halliburton is investing in oil and gas and we have are happy to have them there (Were sure you are) (in Iskandar Malaysia),” he told local reporters here.
Asked on concerns about the ethics of having a company like Halliburton in Iskandar, Ikmal said: “Whose ethics are you referring to? Which value judgement are you using? (Ethics of peace loving people and you will be judged by your Muslim bretheren) .
"If they bring in investment and create jobs, I don’t see any ethical questions on that. I am not too sure which yardstick you are using.” (Lets just close an eye to the war in Iraq)
He said Malaysia should be open. ( Yes, lets have the US, Singapore and Israel)
“We should invite investment as long as it bring benefits to the country. It may not bring good taste to other countries - (Good taste? Try murder) I am not too sure. But I would not like to be involved in that area (good taste or not),” he added.
In late March, American oil and gas company Halliburton opened an RM200mil manufacturing centre in Iskandar Malaysia (formerly known as Iskandar Development Region).
The 20,000 sq m facility in Johor Technology Park performs procurement and customer service activities as well as engineering, machining and product assembly primarily for customers in the Asia Pacific, Middle East, Africa and Europe Eurasia regions.
Halliburton is a US-based multinational corporation with operations in more than 120 countries including Iraq. Its main business is providing technical products and services for the oil and gas exploration and production.
It has also been in the news for turning in huge profits as well as a number of political controversies involving its work for the US Government, its political ties, and its corporate ethics.
Halliburton has close ties with US Vice-President Dick Cheney who used to be with the company until he assumed his present political post. Halliburton benefited greatly from the war in Iraq and got the bulk of oil and gas contracts there after the US invasion. ( You said it!)
There have been a number of complaints about Halliburton including unlawfully receiving special treatment for work in Iraq and abuse of contract, fraud and overcharging.
Some of these cases are still under FBI and Pentagon investigations
. (Again)

Friday, April 25, 2008

Mukhriz Mahathir To Lead Malaysia

Malaysia is in crisis. Mukhriz Mahathir is the chosen leader to restore Malaysia's Vision 2020. Mukhriz is known as an approachable leader, level-headed politician with goals to reform UMNO and the Malaysian system.. However, Mukhriz's efforts of reform are based on in-depth study, progressive improvements and effective follow through. Unlike our weak PM who concocts so- called reforms overnight that serves to put Malaysia at a standstill. Turning Malaysia into a either a Corridor or a Commission. It's no surprise that the Rakyat have no confidence in Pak Lah.

Here's a chance to meet with our PM in waiting :-


All supporters of Dato Mukhriz, let's listen & give ideas to our leader. All of you are most welcome to see him during his talk organized by Sekretariat Melayu Muda. All the details, please browse our group announcement Sekretariat Melayu Muda in Facebook.

TOPIC:"Malaysia Baru: Senario Politik Masakini"
DATE:30th April 2008 (Wednesday)
VENUE:Wisma Sejarah, Aras 2, Anjung Wisma Sejarah
230, Jalan Tun Razak, 50400, Kuala Lumpur

Thursday, April 24, 2008

Penang Follows Spore's Road to Secession

Abdullah Badawi's foreign policy is undoubtedly Pro-Singapore. Today Penang draws many parallels to Temasek leaving Semenanjung Tanah Melayu. For example Lim Guan Eng's sensational condemnation of the NEP. Then, Lee Kah Choon quits Gerakan without blinking an eye to take up high powered positions as Penang Development Corporation (PDC) Director and InvestPenang Executive Committee Chairman.He didn't have the time to entertain Abdullah Badawi's instructions. He blew our weak PM off.

On another note, Mahathirism received a comment as follows:-

Guan Eng's modus operandi in Penang is eaxactly like Lee Kuan Yew's strategy to win Malay support prior to the separation of Malaya. U could view this in a special documentary about Spore's road to independence- aired on ASTRO.

Bravo Pak Lah. U will always have a place in Spore!

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Tun Dr M Answers Hard on Hard Talk

Dr. M demonstrated his sincerity and statesmanship on Hard Talk with Stephen Sackur. Despite being interrupted countless times and lambasted, Malaysia's elder leader gave crisp answers that the host couldnt get around of. Whatever you have to say about Dr. M, love him or hate him, you have to say that he is indeed a great thinker and gives logical answers.

Not bad for an 84 year old political strongman to voluntarily put himself through such a verbally abusing interview.

Question is does Abdullah Badawi have what it takes to do the same? Even the articulate Anwar Ibrahim didn't quite survive his first attempt on the show. If you think our beleageured PM shud give it a go, click here:-

Saturday, April 19, 2008

Would you prefer a strong or weak leader?

Decide before its too late..

Democracy and the problem of a weak state

Sulfikar Amir , Singapore Fri, 04/18/2008 10:05 AM Opinion -Jakarta Post

After ten years have passed since Indonesia started democratization process following the breakdown of the New Order authoritarianism, a feeling of disappointment, dissatisfaction, and disillusion is widely shared among many Indonesians pertaining to the role of democracy in improving the condition of the nation.

Despite substantial changes in the political system that have allowed the people to voice their demands openly and expressively, the fact that multi socioeconomic problems such as poverty, lack of public security and safety, poor public services, and so forth are severely prevalent casts a conviction that the presence of democracy has not contributed to alleviating these vivid predicaments that have been around since the monetary crisis plunged the country into unending turmoil. Living in a despairing situation like this could evoke one to dismiss democracy.
From a sociological view, however, what we see in Indonesia today is not so much the failure of democratic system as many would suggest but rather the failure of the state to perform its duty of serving the public interests and needs. The malfunctioning of the state elements to provide minimum level of public services in various sectors and structures indicates the condition of weak state characterized by deteriorating organizational and institutional capacities.
Australian observer of Indonesia Harold Crouch argues that the weak condition of the post-Soeharto state is mostly caused by the abrupt disappearance of patrimonial structures that heavily underpinned Soeharto's power for three decades. Once the regime fell down, the state institution underwent unprecedented destabilization that consequently led to deformation of authority structures running from the central government in Jakarta all the way down to local bureaucracy.
Adding to Crouch's observation is a set of structural changes which unintendedly disrupt the system of authority held by the central state since democratic principles were materialized.
The first of these is the shift from one party to multiparty system in which the dominance of the ruling Golkar was challenged by the entry of other political parties previously suppressed during the New Order. This creates a fragmented politics marked by vigorous struggles over power of the state among different political groups bearing different ideologies and agendas.
As the operation of the state is controlled by more than one politically driven entities each of which has different, often contradictory, interests, it is difficult for the state apparatus to deliver public goods under coherent planning. Within such strife, effectively coordinated policies are difficult to achieve since policies are drawn towards mere interests of those seizing government agencies.

Producing similarly disruptive effects to the central state is the ongoing process of decentralization. Starting in 2002 with intention to empower provincial governments, decentralization appears only to reduce authority of the central government without significant development of capacity on the side of local governments.
The results, as many observers have lamented, have been paradoxical in which more financial and political resources transferred from Jakarta to local governments are used by local elites to fulfill their own material interests sometimes with stark demonstration to their own constituents.

The imposition of neoliberal agendas on a variety of development policies is another factor contributing to the downgrading process of the state's capacities. This has taken place ever since Indonesia was compelled to embrace a neoliberal paradigm brought in by international financial institutions, i.e. IMF and the World Bank.

The intervention of these institutions in a number of strategic public sectors such as mining, telecommunication, infrastructure, and education were meant to increase the efficiency of the government operation through the application of market mechanism in public management.
The outcome of this simplified approach is sadly the opposite as it reduces the opportunity for the state to enhance its capacities by giving away their jobs to the global market system dominated by multinational corporations. Thus instead of creating efficient management of public goods, neoliberal policies are inclined to create unintended crises in public sectors, widening the gap between the state and the people it is supposed to serve.
Yet, our observation is incomplete if we overlook the impact of corruption to the state, an enormous cost that cannot be underestimated. Underlining three aforementioned factors that instantly cause the state to weaken does not necessarily mean that corruption is less damaging. We certainly need to keep in mind that widespread corruption, particularly in all level of bureaucracy, no doubt has the most harmful effects on the state capacity.
The commitment of President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono to combat corruption must be appreciated and criticized as well. Most of the efforts to eradicate corruption cases are placed on high profiled cases involving officials in the executive and legislative bodies. It seems that these anti-corruption measures are undertaken with a view that neglects the "institutionalized systemic" corruption in bureaucratic organizations due to outdated culture of bureaucracy inherited from the New Order.

This renders the state inefficient, burdensome, and lack of innovation and creativity. From this point of view, corruption is actually the effect rather than the cause, and to overcome the problem requires a whole systemic reform of bureaucratic organization incorporating meritocracy, transparency, and professional norms.
On the last note is democracy. Except neoliberal agendas, all phenomena described above, i.e. fragmented politics and decentralized authority are a corollary of democratization process. They were in fact part of the reform agenda demanded by pro-reform activists from the outset. But we need not to blame democracy for what these structural changes have caused to the state.
Democracy is both process and product, and fragmentation and decentralization underway are the path to build a better democratic system that cannot be achieved overnight. Just because democratic transition has no beneficial effects yet to the betterment of people's lives does not mean that democracy has failed and that we need to go back to an authoritarian system.
The writer is an assistant professor in Division of Sociology, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore.