Tuesday, April 29, 2008

I apologise...

I know. I may have offended you. Although I have no clue why. Are you a moron? Or ultra sensitive? I thought I was just exercising my right by doing what I did. What is wrong with that? I mean, it is a symbol you know? It is a symbol of my virility. And as with any other man and his dog, it is within my right to flash it here and there. Even wave it. I mean, if I get excited, surely I have the right to do that, no? Why are you being so sensitive? Have I scared you in any way? It was so innocuous what. So harmless. Why would you be scared? I never intended to scare you what? Are you a pervert or something? I mean, who else would think like you did when I did that? Only perves would do that. You must be a perve la... I think so. You tell me. What is so wrong with me flashing it and waving it in public? Tell me la ..... I don't think there is anything wrong. That's why I did it a few times. And the people surrounding me clapped. My side kick had also done it. After me. And then they clapped some more. They were very impressed with how glistening it was. And the size and length of it all. Everybody was. In fact they all carried it for me. Such was the magnitude of it all. I was just showing how proud I was of it. As I said, it was a symbol of my virility. Why can't or shouldn't I do what I did? It was a private function some more. Ya la, it was shown live over the TV. But I did not ask them to show it live. That was their decision, not mine. I have no control over the media. But who would want to miss that kind of spectacle? You tell me.

But I am a good man. A good man with a good symbol of virility is sensitive to other people's feelings you know. I heard you did not like what I did. So I had some soul searching done. Although I did it thrice in 3 years, I searched my soul a full one a half month mind you. And after doing so, I realised that I may have offended you. I don't know whether you are or not. And if you did, I do not know why. You are probably a moron, a perve for taking what I did the wrong way, an ultra sensitive pre-menopausal woman/man/spinster/widower/divorcee/good-for-nothing self righteous Nazis or just plain difficult Neanderthals with half a pea brain! You have nothing better to do than to criticise me and my symbol of virility. In other words, you are an asshole! Anyway, I digress. Sorry.

As I was saying, there was nothing wrong in what I did. But if, just if, and that means in case la ..... just in case ..... or in the event that ..... okay ..... if, or in case or whatever, but this is hypothetical only you know, this is meant to be purely hypothetical, paham tak? Hypothetical, that's whay I say "if". Okay? So. If lah, in case lah, I had offended you by my action, which I did 3 times, and although I find nothing wrong in what I did, absolutely, and I still feel the same way now, I felt the same way when I did it, and I will feel the same way in the future, although it is like that, I am sorry okay? Okay? You okay with that? Don't be angry anymore okay? Stop sulking okay? Smile a bit. Gimme a pat on the shoulder or something. Read my lip. I am sorry. But I don't promise not to do it again you know. But hypothetically, if it is going to make you scared again, although I do not know why you should feel like that, and I think you are a moron/monkey/beruk/monyet hilang anak for feeling so, I might just not do it again la next time. If la. "IF "okay. You understand or not. "IF".

Now, if you could excuse me ...

Saturday, April 19, 2008

ey, u wan dlive fuss one ah?

U wan dlive fuss one ah, u must eat fuss one wor becaw ah, u eat fuss one ah, u get more the power one, more better one your car, vely fuss one your car go. U cum behing the posheay ah, the bugger tekan n tekan n tekan u kno, but u oso tekan n tekan one, your go leally fuss one, den ah, u tekan sumore ah, your car jes fry pass the porshey wor, if u eat dis one la. Dis one ah, u leally must eat one. It not flom maraysia one, flom flance sumore. I hear ah, even det char kuey zey oso eat did one woh...det y ah he can mally that nice blooney...coz ar, he eat dis ah, he got more better power wor...rong rive flance...



Friday, April 11, 2008

ineptitude galore!

The Star today reports the Prime Minister's announcement of a decision requiring people who would want to convert to Islam to inform their family beforehand. Any person who wishes to convert must now fill a form or letter declaring that his or her family has been told of the decision to convert and has understood the decision. This requirement apparently is made to prevent problems of families disputing the conversion when the convert dies.

I am just amazed at the lack of understanding of the real problems behind the conversion by the Prime Minister and his government. First of all, lets all of us assume that the problem is as what is said by the PM, namely, the families disputing the conversion upon the convert's death. If that was the problem, would the production of a form or letter signed by the convert stating that his or her family has been informed of the conversion and that the family has understood the decision solve the problem? Would it prevent in any way a dispute by the family of the conversion? What if the family say that it has never been informed despite the letter or form?

This half-baked "solution" is again reflective of the Prime Minister's and his government's inability (or refusal?) to grasp the whole dynamic of the problem at hand, analyse the same and come out with a holistic solution to the problem. The so called solution is not by any stretch of imagination a  solution at all. It is just another attempt at problem solving through bureaucratic  process, which at the end of the day, is just a waste of time and not to mention, paper and ink!

What is the real problem Mr Prime Minister? Let me tell you if you or your advisors do not know. The problems relating to a person's conversion to Islam manifest itself into several legal issues which affect not only the converting person but also his or her family. Generally, if the person is a married man, the following issues arise:

  • what would happen to his marriage;
  • what would happen to his wife's rights to the assets accumulated during the marriage if the marriage is automatically dissolved by virtue of his conversion bearing in mind that his wife would, under ordinary circumstances, be entitled to the assets under the civil family law in the event of a divorce or dissolution of marriage (as opposed to Islamic rule that a Muslim's assets cannot be divided among non-Muslims);
  • who would get custody of the children;
  • what would be the status of the children's religion
  • these issues may also arise in a case of a married woman who is converting
  • if the person is not married, the only issue which may arise is the right to his or her assets upon his or her death. Under civil law, his or her immediate family is entitled to distribution of the assets in accordance with civil family law as opposed to Islamic rule that the assets cannot be distributed among non-Muslims.

Those listed above are only the first part of the real problems. The second part is even more problematic and serious. And that is the issue of re-conversion by the convert to his or her former or other religion. IN the event of a re-conversion, all the issues listed above will recur in relation to his or her Muslim marriage, spouse and children. The other obvious and very contentious issue, which this government and civil courts have done its very best to ignore is, WHETHER A MALAYSIAN HAS THE CONSTITUTIONAL RIGHT, REGARDLESS OF HIS FAITH OR RELIGION, TO CHANGE HIS FAITH OR RELIGION? The answer to this issue, to me and to many other people, is obvious but for various socio-politico reasons, this issue has been ignored by the present government. The failure to tackle this issue - and to engage the people on this issue - is a massive display of the present administration's  inability to provide a working blueprint for inter-faith and inter-race relations.

The signs of discontent over all these issues are there for all to see. The number of cases being brought to the Syariah and civil courts and the off-hand attitude being displayed by the judicial officers when faced with these issues are glaring. And this discourse has not even begun to look at the issue from the wider cultural, societal and personal emotions perspective.

All these issues cannot be solved by filling forms. If the Prime Minister and his government is not yet aware of that, than what hope is there left for all Malaysians? Are we going to wait for these issues to blow up in our face with disastrous consequences before we would act on them? These issues cannot be solved under the present legal system and set of laws. They need legal reform. There must be a strong political will to confront these issues and do what is necessary to solve them, once and for all.

Frankly, at the risk of being immodest, I do have some legal ideas of how to deal with the issues and solve them. But I don't think anybody would want to listen...

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Quack Quack Rice: Ducky Star (Ah Beng Style Review)

Hey ma-hai! You looking eat nice ducks misters? Haha, I know where you can find damn nice duck. And when I say duck one I don't mean the duck to fuck one ho. This proper duck can eat eat properry after roast one. I know, I know you looking long time to find good duck. I oso. Semua tempat I go cari one. But then usually ha the duck in Malaysia is like tiu nei ama ga chow hai ah. Not like the Four Season at Bayswater at London where Ah Fatt and Ah Wong work as waiter last time when they go there irregarry but then kena deported after they got caught for irrega woking. Fleshy and tender like the white woman in Engrand, but also taste good like young Chinese virgin that no yet poke one.

Most of time duck in Malaysia is my friend Ah Kong say fuck luck duck cos it suck suck. Most of time the fuck luck duck suck suck always scrawning, salty and fuckers here also no know how roast one. One time I eat, so salty my mouth until suck inside wor. Tiu nei ama. Lucky that time I eat, Ah Meng not there. He big tai-kor. If you serve him fuck luck duck suck cock he wew crush the uncer's balls if serve that kind of fuck luck duck. So many place I go alleady, all chinky chinky one also no find. Klang also no have nice one! Wah lan ney.

Then one day my Malayu friend call me go eat runch ror. She said really this the best duck in whow wide word one, rike internet! She say so good that is rike fuck duck luck. So good meh I say. She said, if I not like she buy me chicken to eat, but actuarry not eat one chicken eat one lor. He he. You know what I mean lah ha. So I said if like that okay lor. So you know where we go ah? Posh hotel oh. Impewal Hotel on Jalan Sultan Ismail there got one China restaurant calls Celestial Cork. Damn posh one lah. The China waitress wear nice clothes and the slit not up to the waist one and no 'specia' order one. She order some dim sum first lah but I focus on the duck only lah cos that what I go there for what. Whaffor eat eat so much other thing.

So anyway duck come. Wah lan neh, then I also feel like want cum. She order one duck for us to eat and we whack lor. Whack whack whack until cannot eat. But really lah the duck is like fuck duck luck one wor. The duck so fleshy, and kau kau tasty one. And then cooking also quite kan cheong ah, he know how to roast so the skin also crisp with a bit of fat cringing to it... wah damn syiok. The duck so nice and tender until you thanking you ducky star wor. Ha Ha. Rike Mad donna. So if you want to eat good duck rice, I suggesting you come here. Damn nice. After I eat already felt so tired and sleepy cannot go KTV also after that. Can lah, not say cannot go but then waste money only lor. So if want eat fuck duck luck duck rice, you come Celestrial Cock. Sure no lie one. Quack Quack. Ha ha ha.

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

You No Watch Christian Movie Mister!

The other day I was just browsing through the movies being sold at Speedy Video at Atria, Damansara Jaya and came across a biblical series of movies. I was particularly attracted to the Samson & Delilah movie because, as you can see from the picture, it was the movie that which showed the most skin on the cover. Samson has that saucy look as he stands bare chested and looks into the camera as if to say, I'm getting it so good and you're not; while Delilah whose shoulders are clearly exposed, and thus sexually provocative in the local repressed culture and clinging to his pectorals for dear life appears either about to or has just completed a rousing bout of mutual pleasuring with Samson. If the content was anything like the cover, I was game.

With that, I was about to pick up the VCD when suddenly what felt like an electric jolt coursed through my body and open a closer inspection of the label on the cover I understood why.

The VCD was for non-muslims only! It is no wonder I felt that jolt when I tried to pick it up. It was then that I was so thankful to either the Ministry of Information or whichever agency whose responsibility it was to watch movies and judiciously assign them these highly important stickers. Who knows what would have happened if I watched that movie without heeding that warning! I may have watched it and become a Christian even before the opening credits finish and be declared an apostate (even though Christians and Muslims are 'People of the Book' according to the Quran and find their source from the same Abrahamic tradition). I may have been a proselytizer before I finished the movie and converted any animals that sat next to me from animal or plan worship to singing hymns to Jesus (Yessah!). I may have been singing Hallelujah all gospel style at full blast when the ending movie credits role. I would have abandon my faith after 2 hours of potent visual Christian imagery.

We should all be so thankful that we have our other Muslim bretheren looking out for us and taking great care and using government resources to keep the ummah together. We need lots of protection because we are very vulnerable Muslims. The slightest whisper of other religions would result in our immediate and fanatical conversion to the new faith and we wouldn't want that cos like Islam rocks and like we sure go to heaven if we're Muslim no matter how awful we are. Don't ask me where I got that, some Uztad told me that 3 years ago while he was drunk and am sure he was and is right.

God Bless Malaysian Government is Making Muslims Many Many Happy!

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

as yet untitled...

17022008

Islamisation in Malaysia is typified by the Iranian approach to drinking beers. We want to drink beers but beers contain alcohol. So we have non-alcoholic beers. That's it. The Islamisation of beers!

Last week, no less than the Institute of Islamic Understanding (Institiut Kefahaman Islam Malaysia or IKIM in short) had a brainstorming session. You know, sometimes these people would converge and talk about how big their LCD televisions are and how many horse power their office air conditioners have. And they would make nice glossy posters and call their meeting a conference, seminar, summit or whatever. Like the one in Perak previously where the ulamaks met and decreed that it was wrong for Muslims to celebrate non-Muslims festivities. Yes. That kinda thing. And so, IKIM had a conference last week.

And so what did they discuss? I mean apart from the size of their LCD sets and stuffs. Well, there's a hell lot they could have discussed and resolved on. The killing of the Muslims in Sudan. The suicide bombings in Pakistan by seemingly young and powerless Muslims. Maybe they could issue an edict on what really constitutes martyrdom in Islam. The Islamisation of the banking industry in Malaysia and the entire world. They could look into the various loan transactions being done by the banks under the Islamic loan banner and determine whether those loans are really Islamic in nature or are they just normal commercial loans with interests disguised and hidden as profits which are allowed by Islam. Or what about the independence of Kosovo? Yea, Kosovo after all is a country full of Muslims. The Muslims there were subject to genocide not a long time ago. And now they have declared independence, albeit unilaterally. The USofA has supported the independent declaration for whatever reason. Indonesia, the most populous Muslim country has objected, also for whatever reason. Malaysia has kept quiet -not for whatever reason- probably because nobody within our leadership, especially our PM, has noticed the significance of that event. What was even more astonishing is the fact that the Organisation Of Islamic Countries, of which our PM is the Chairman, did not even move a finger to support the Kosovo independence! As to what actually the OIC is interested in, nobody would ever know. Non alcoholic beers, may be. Elsewhere, Muslims continue to be outcast by westerners. Islam, the religion of peace and harmony, is now viewed by westerners, especially, - wrongly but somehow almost justifiably - as a religion which is anti-women, supports extremism and terrorism, promotes suicide bombings, primitive, medieval, intolerant of other religions, racist and anything but good. What could be done to put right this misconception? What could be done to tell the world that Islam is a religion which promotes harmony and peace. That Islam respects other religions. That Christians and the Old Testament followers are in fact "people of the books" who share the same origin as that of the Muslims. What could be done to promote a healthier and more acceptable views of Islam in the whole world especially. Hell, what could be done to promote Islam as a peace loving and tolerant religion in Malaysia? Haven't we realised that inter religious relations in Malaysia is at an all time low? What can be done?

And so IKIM met. I mean they conferred. The top guns of the Malaysian Muslims met and conferred. I would at least expect them to tackle the inter religious issues in Malaysia if not the world. I mean, these are the top guns we are talking about, no? Yeah. The met. They conferred. So, what did they talk about? KHALWAT! That was what they talked and make loud noise about! Awesome! Like totally awesome! Now they want the khalwators to be punished by strokes of the rotans. And not only that, the non-Muslims khalwatees must also be punished in the civil courts! That's what the wanted. How could a non-Muslim, who is doing nothing wrong under his or her religion, be punished just escaped their teeny weeny mind! Oh not only that. The also want beer drinkers to be get strokes of the rotan as well. Great! Cane them all. Just imagine. The gliterratis of the Malaysian Muslims met, conferred and came out with this. IKIM. Institiut Kefahaman Islam Malaysia or the Institute of Islamic UNDERSTANDING. Wonderful. Brilliant. I am sure, after the conference last week, many non-Muslims in Malaysia and the world at large, have now understood Islam better and are all to ready to embrace Islam or be more tolerant to Muslim ideas. Thank you IKIM.

I tell you what IKIM. I am going to Islamise a piglet for you. I am going to buy a piglet. Make it wear a green robe and grow beards. Then I am going to put a ketayap on its head. What do you think?

Meanwhile, the PM is still struggling with his cabinet. Not the one in the Sri Perdana's kitchen. I mean, the Malaysian cabinet! Bloody hell. This guy. He dropped Rafidah Aziz and then realised that the Wanita UMNO does not have a minister. So at the last minute he appointed Shahrizat as a special adviser with ministerial powers. That is like appointing another minister la Pak Lah! Then some of the deputy ministers rejected their appointments. And some who accepted later resigned. What the hell is happening la? And today it is reported that Sabah and Sarawak are now happy that the PM says they will get more people in the cabinet as Ministers. Jeez. You blinking klumptzoid!

I want to ask the PM. Do you read? Do you know the very purpose of the parliament and the government? If I may quote Edmund Birke. He says:

Parliament is not a congress of ambassadors from different and hostile interests, which interests each must maintain, as an agent and advocate, against other agents and advocates; but Parliament is a deliberative assembly of one nation, with one interest, that of the whole-where not local purposes, not local prejudices, ought to guide, but the general good, resulting from the general reason of the whole. (as quoted in Birch 1972, page 39)

You see Mr Prime Minister, the Parliament, and a fortiori, your cabinet, is supposed to work for the country as a whole. It is not a place where interests, whether based on geographical localities, or religions, or races, or whatever, are supposed to be represented and protected. It is supposed to represent the whole country. The whole people. Race and religion regardless! So, I don't for the life of me understand why it is so difficult for you to appoint people to be in your cabinet. It is not a matter of whether there should be a Wanita UMNO gal in your cabinet, or Puteri UMNO, or a guy from Sabah or Sarawak in your cabinet. Just select the best people. I mean, if all the best people who could propel this nation towards greatness happen to be in Perlis, then appoint them la. What is so freaking difficult? The problem is that you, and BN, all these while, are blinkered in this power sharing thing. You and your ilk seem to think that power sharing means that the ministerial powers are supposed to be shared by people from the parties within the BN. That would mean, if a party within the BN consists of klumptzoits, than you have no choice but to appoint a klumptzoit as a minister, just to suit your "power sharing" agenda. The country as a whole can be damned! Now, that is just not on! That is plain stupid. And unfair to the people. But then again, what do you all care about the people and their ideals? If you all care about the people, then your Minister, like Azalina, would not be canceling tourism contracts in the 5 states which are controlled by the opposition parties. God, that is so shallow.

So, what is next? Non alcoholic beers at UMNO general assembly?

Sunday, April 6, 2008

Kaya! Kaya! Haiya!

Two slices of that light brittle bread slapped on with a generous spread of kaya and crushing a thick slab of buttery goodness between its loving embrace is a typical kopi tiam fair. The quality and type of the bread is particularly important to nail that old style kopi tiam feel which adds considerably to the environment to an establishment. The bread must be of the lightest weight and toasted just so that the whiteness of the bread is maintained and doesn't turn a delicate brown (although discolouration around the bread can be countenanced). The toaster (be it man or machine) should also ensure that the bread white is toasted to reach a vulnerable firmness and does not turn hard. Toasting it just right would result in the bits of the bread being brittle which then spills around your plate if not of it. It's messy but it's cool cos it's retro, you know!

And then there is the kaya itself. Though the colour of kaya is not terribly important because even if it looks like some half digested faeces, do not be surprised if it still tastes kajagoogood. However, I think kaya should be a dark, deep brown or at worst like caramel, because it looks best with that colour. I have often been inspired to polish off a bottle of kaya simply because the colour looked so attractive (and okay, okay, the damn thing was pretty good too). I find that if the colour is right, the taste usually follows suit. Slapping green kaya on your bread is just not on. Grass is green. Kaya is a sexy sensual brown. If' anybody finds a pink kaya maker please exterminate them. They are a gross affront to our culture.

As for the butter, you cannot go wrong with this. Butter is fattening and unhealthy, which means it is going to be as tasty as it is bad for us. Which is why you must cut a slice so thick you will grow man tits just after having one serving. Cos if it don't hurt, it ain't good. Using margerine or any other low fat substitute used to be punishable by death in the more ancient though civilized Persian cities though that law has since been abandoned not so much due to disuse but because the Persian cities ran out of low fat substitutes.

This snack/meal (if you eat many enough) is best eaten on Sunday morning with a teh tarik and eaten while reading the local newspaper (if you don't throw up while reading its drivel). You may eat it on Monday, but then everybody will know you are a sad pathetic bastard with no life if you did. And you don't want that. Kaya! Kaya! Haiyaaaaa!

Saturday, April 5, 2008

Lucy in the Sea of Pink

Kajang, Selangor
December 2007

Friday, April 4, 2008

Feature on Toilets in the Malaysian Courts

High Court of Malaya at Johor Bahru
Ground Floor, February 2008

The toilet in the ground floor of the High Court of Malaya at Johor Bahru is an excellent example of the sort of toilets one has to become accustomed to in the Courts of Malaysia. One will notice the narrowness of the toilet which is deliberate to ensure that networking and sociability are promoted in the toilet (but not amongst the homosexual because then they will have sex in there. Toilets are not for homosexual sexual encounters although heterosexual ones are encouraged especially to be filmed and thereafter uploaded for everybody else's amusement and collection).

It is also mandatory for most toilets not to have any tissue paper for one's convenience such as wiping one's hand or on occasion one's arse (because most people in Malaysia use water only ... Note: We at Navel Gazing encourage the use of tissue whether or not you use water or acid on your monkey ass). Do not be fooled by the toilet tissue dispenser - it's there to make up the budget only. The plastic stick that keeps the tissue there is never supplied even after certificate of fitness is issued for the building.

There are also no plastic seats for you to sit on the toilet, which means that whether you get a squat toilet or the sitting one, if you're doing the big one, you still have to squat on either. Navel Gazing however cautions that only those with an excellent sense of balance to squat on the sitting toilet and strongly suggests that if you have to lose balance to do so only before or after the expelling of the faeces takes place. Otherwise it can be very messy and... smelly. So rubber soled shoes are strongly recommended.

You will notice a black hose on the left wall of the toilets. If you are lucky, water will issue forth for you to clean yourself up after answering nature's call. However, if you are lucky and intend to wash your arse with it, Navel Gazing strongly recommends you do not put it too close to your arse because when you do that, the probabilities that the force of water will be very strong and hence painful would shoot up exponentially (pun intended). Please use toilets in the Malaysian courts. They are a cultural institution of the Malaysian courts that is not often discussed in the reported (and unreported) cases which is surprising since there is a lot of faecal matter reported in the local legal journals.

Finally, there is no air conditioning in the toilet and the sole source of ventilation is the crack between the door entrance to the toilet door and the floor which is about 10 cm. Sniffing before entering the toilet is therefore strongly encouraged. If you cannot take the faecal smells and heat then get out of the toilet. You don't deserve to be there.

Thursday, April 3, 2008

Jack O' Blowfish

Mersing, Johor
August 2006

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

If I Were You, Minister Zaid ...

“As virtue is the business of all men, the first principles of it are written in their hearts, in characters so legible, that no man can pretend ignorance of them, or of his obligation to practice them.” : Thomas Reid

DrM is notably going around nowadays to push for independence of judiciary, abolishment of the 30% nomination rule in the UMNO constitution and greater accountability in the government. He is even espousing the role of the Rulers under the Constitution in particular respecting their functions in appointing Menteris Besar. Hell, he is even questioning cronyism and nepotism nowadays.

Frankly, I don’t give two freaking hoots about what that old man says. He is plain NOT CREDIBLE to me. He is not credible because of at least two factors. Firstly, his real intention(s) for his sudden love affair with real democracy is not known. Is he really pushing for all those things as part of societal and governmental reforms or because of some other agendas? Is he honest and sincere in his push for reform or is it just because it suits him to do so nowadays? Is it just political expediency? Or is he just pissed off when the present administration cancelled many of his pet projects thereby affecting him and/or his cronies? I really don’t know. But after 22 years of his totalitarianism approach, I am not willing to give him the benefit of the doubt. I have had enough of him.

Secondly, he is not credible because he had just done exactly the opposite of what he is saying now when he was in power. He was the one who molested, raped and sodomised the judiciary. He was the one who clipped the Rulers via a constitutional amendment in the 80’s (if I am not mistaken). Listening and being gentle to the people? Well, he was the PM when Ibrahim Libya together with about 10 villagers – old women included – were shot by combat police. He later claimed that he was abroad while that happened! And remember Operasi Lalang? The nerve of it all!! Allowing dissenting views and opposition? Huh? What’s that? He was the one who amended the UMNO constitution requiring any potential challenger to have nomination by at least 30% of the divisions after the 1988 UMNO “black Friday”! Not only that, he also changed the constitution to say that for every nomination the challenger gets, the incumbent would get 10 automatic “free” votes. What a klumptz! You can challenge Mao Tze Tong in the Chinese Communist Party more easily! And what did he do to Anwar Ibrahim? There is no love lost between me and Anwar Ibrahim as I don’t trust the guy a tiny wee bit. But what happened to him was unacceptable by any standard. Independent judiciary? I would not even waste my time writing about what had happened. Correct? More transparency and accountability to combat nepotism, cronyism and corruption? What about the one sided IPP contracts? Or Renong and UEM? Or the Perkapalan/MISC/Petronas deal? What about the toll roads and highways? What about that great white elephant they call Putrajaya and MSC? The Forex losses? The BBMB saga? The Proton deals? Gosh…DrM, have you forgotten all these? I have not. And I am sure fellow Malaysians have not too.

And now DrM is shouting and screaming about those very things he was responsible for as a PM. Why? What is his motivation? What motivates him to suddenly don this social justice cape and trail blazing his way towards reforms? Truthfully, I just wish he would keep quiet and enjoy whatever remaining days he has in his bakery or whatever while reminiscing about the good old days he had. I just wish he lives long enough though. Long enough to see and observe in silence consternation at the crumbling of his burlesque – not to mention, grotesque - empire (thank you Bob Dylan, for that album, Empire Burlesque).

Zaid Ibrahim. Good for you. You are now the Minister in the PM’s Department in charge of the law. And your first call is to propose that the government apologises to Tun Salleh Abas. I applaud your intention although deep down inside I know that it is just the not-so-great- BN or UMNO spinning machine rotating in full blast. Let me say this firstly. Tun Salleh Abas is not the victim! He started the judicial rot by his decision in UEM v Lim Kit Siang. But I will save that for another occasion.

Apologising to Tun Salleh Abas and the other 5 Judges would be an act mired in shallow and simple mindedness. The judiciary has been raped! The victim is the judiciary. And the ultimate stakeholders of the judiciary is THE PEOPLE OF MALAYSIA. WE ARE THE VICTIM. Tun Salleh Abas and the other Judges were just occupant of the seats. Fine. Apologise to them. But the party who really suffered all these while and till this day is the people. Apologise to the people too!

Assuming your move is correct, may I also remind you – just as DrM and some other parties have reminded you – that you once supported the tribunal and the sacking of the Judges. In light of that, you also suffer from the same fate and judgement as that of DrM. That is you lack credibility. And your proposal therefore reeks of, again, political expediency.

You tried to explain your position in answer to the remarks made by DrM. But your approach is, with respect, wrong. You tried spinning it by saying that you supported the proceedings but not the sacking. Well, Minister Zaid, the people are tired of the BN spinning machine. It is another matter if you spin it well but a bad spin would just make you fall flat on your face. Isn’t the sacking a result of the proceedings? Wasn’t it (the sacking) the ultimate purpose of the proceedings? How could you therefore divorce yourself from the result – the very fruit – of the proceedings if you had admittedly supported the proceedings? You asked the whole Bar Council to resign because they were against the proceedings? Why didn’t you then blast the tribunal for making their recommendation to sack Tun Salleh Abas if you had so disapproved the sacking?

If I were you, it would be just so simple. I would go on national television. After all, the national television are all pro BN. I would refer to all my statements made in 1988 supporting the tribunal and the sacking and whatever. Then I would say I had wise up since then. I have wise up after I had seen the debilitating effect of the molestation of the judiciary. I would say I have wise up after I have seen the state of our judiciary ever since. I now realise my folly. I was wrong in my support for the government in that respect then. I have learnt my lesson. The judiciary is an integral part of a just and fair society and administration. And after having seen the wrong that has been done all these while, I am now possessed with the mandate to correct the situation and put it right. I want to try to do so. Give me a chance. It comes from the bottom of my heart.

If I were you Minister Zaid, I would do that. I would do that because I am a decent man who is not afraid to admit that I was once wrong. Because I am a man who is not afraid to make mistake and admit that it was a mistake. Because I am a man who learns from his mistake and would do anything to correct it.

Yes. I would do that. If I were you!

Art Harun

2/4/08

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Demanding the Apology

You may sometimes read in the news about how A said something or implied something not so n nice about B, who then predictably gets quite upset, exaggerate his 'hurt' and then lashes out with demands for an apology. If none is immediately forthcoming, then for days the media will focus on the issue of whether an apology will be tendered. If there is a swell of public agreement which finds genuine expression in the local media, an 'apology' will finally be issued. I use inverted commas because that 'apology' is really a 'I'm sorry you feel that way' apology which always seems to imbue the user with the sense of cleverness, as if they managed to get away with something. It seems all rather predictable when one is on the other end of it and the officious bystander. And usually the manner in which it is delivered hints at no internal acceptance of his culpability and regret, its' insincerity is complete. Usually A and B are politicians and equally detestable. And the issue in question tends to be quite trivial. A complete and utter waste of everybody's time.

In that whole scenario, what I wish to hone in on is our national obsession for apologies. I am trying to understand why most of our politicians are so obsessed with this. Let's use a scenario. A says, 'B is silly.' B claims hurt and immediately demands an apology. This is the crucial point. What does B claim to get now that he demands an apology? Any apology now no matter how heartfelt and eloquently expressed will seem insincere because the demand has already been made. There is no closure without sincerity from A and acceptance by B. So what purpose could it serve? I really don't know. The other issue I wonder about is why B makes an immediate demand. I think it rather counterproductive because no time and space is given to A to reflect and perhaps come to genuinely regret his actions and expresses so. And surely the latter is the sort of apology that is preferred.

And a genuine apology must have sincerity in action not in words. That means there is two components to the apology - the words itself and then supported by the action or inaction (or abiding by the inaction) as the case maybe. There cannot be a genuine apology unless both are present.