Bananachinese’s Weblog

July 28, 2008

Unprecedented reform by Barisan Nasional?

Filed under: Citizenry, Government, Media, news, Politics — Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , — bananachinese @ 11:56 am

All the component parties’ head honchos were gathered for the press conference. The party presidents from UMNO, MCA, MIC, Gerakan, SNAP, SAPP, and all the great parties from Sabah and Sarawak made the joint announcement:

We have published in full the expenses claimed by all our Front Bench MPs for the last three months.

This comes as part of our political party’s continued efforts to bring greater openness to the issue of MPs’ expenses and allowances.

The information published includes a comprehensive list of staff and their positions, an indication of any family members employed, and a breakdown of office running costs and expenditure incurred by staying away from their main home.

The Party President said:

“Politicians need to do everything they can to regain the trust of the Malaysian people, and transparency has a key part to play in that process. We must show that we’re spending taxpayers money sensibly and correctly.”

And he stressed:

“We are the first party to demand this information from our members, and our MPs are voluntarily revealing a much more detailed breakdown of their expenses than official rules require them to. I’m glad that we’re leading the way.”

**

Response from ga-ga rakyat:

Wow! How the new political landscape has shifted. Such new standards of accountability! Worthy of a standing ovation!

We are floored… its unprecendented! Who’s this guy leading such change we’ve been waiting for?

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July 12, 2008

The analysis on MCA that Malaysiakini didn’t have

Such an interesting article I found published here. Much more titillating than Malaysiakini’s analysis because it has the potential to go into Part II, III, etc – if this MCA insider zooms the microscope to tell us about the problem ‘makers’.

Tell us who caused MCA to tumble big time, Mary! Are they the Division people? Are they the Division/State chairmen or committees? What are these people’s modus operandi? Pretty please?

This is what Mary wrote (reproduced below). I suspect its the Part I of more to come:

It’s no secret that MCA’s young and bright members are being courted by Pakatan Rakyat (PR). PR needs talents to help its political future.

For purpose of this discussion, I shall use the term ‘Faiths’ to describe the young and bright members of MCA and use the term ‘Comfortables’ for those already installed comfortably in the MCA central, state or division committees. Most, if not all of the Comfortables have been there for some terms already, some since 1970s.

Faiths are those neglected 3rd liners, members who have the fire in their belly. They think as Malaysians, not ‘Chinese’ Malaysians. They are exposed to global ideas and understand the demands of shifting political, economics and social environment worldwide. These young men and women, below the age of 40, have been exposed to progressive systems and ethics through their working experiences with MNCs or GLCs. They speak Malay and English fluently, perhaps some Mandarin. They are aware of the conversations that is going on in the cyberspace and probably operates a blog or more. They have faith in the party’s constitution but lack faith in the unresponsive political style of party old guards. But most of all, Faiths hunger for a system of leadership progression.

Faiths watch how elected representatives perform and cringe in despair over the Comfortables lack in lawmaking.

Comfortables prefer to focus on NGO activities – providing ‘service’ to help people fill out forms, apply permits/approvals, attending to family disputes, pointing their fingers at clogged drains, dirty river, etc. Comfortables were not known to initiate amendment or change to archaic laws or by-laws. Most unfortunately, Comfortables were not heard voicing out ideas or even to engage the rakyat’s input meaningfully in efforts to resolve policies. There was no move or initiatives by the Comfortables to systematically or substantively groom new and current members as party’s future leaders.

Young members know the ‘fact’ that these towkays have not shaken off ‘top-down’ propagandist methodologies to shove, oops, promote their viewpoints. Towkay Comfortables operate with outdated one-way communication in this age of engagement. It is very difficult, nay, nearly impossible to get Comfortables to engage in debates without relegating it into a propaganda session. Ask thinking members, how very difficult it is to try to get them to address policy issues. Most of the time, inquisitive members were treated to the usual ‘tai chi’ avoidance maneuvers.

Sad fact, but it is perceived as true by most members and the public that Comfortables lack ideas and strategy to deal with the changed political landscape. Some may dispute this by saying that the Comfortables have organized many, many activities. Sure. But how these activities contribute to the
political survival of the Party is lost on me. Look at the often used one off publicity gimmicks such as giving away gifts to the poor, organizing dinners or exhibitions. All promoted in the name of service. Most people suspect that free publicity was the ultimate objective for some organizers.

The important question of how do such techniques result in a long term return for the Party were never addressed. I haven’t heard the Comfortables fighting for a leadership bureau to train all members up as future Obama. For me, if a political party has no plan to make leaders out of its members, it has no dream. It has no place in the political arena.

Back to the problem of the Faiths. Although disadvantaged as ‘servicemen’, Faiths know they have a distinct advantage over the installed Comfortables. Faiths are articulate, curious for discourse and solutions to progressive politics, policies and brave enough to participate in addressing hard issues such as Article 121(A). Faiths are not afraid to engage in discussion on national politics with opposition parties. And Faiths keep on banging their heads against the great wall system designed by the Comfortables to keep them out.

One clear message from the 2008 General Election is that Malaysians want progressive lawmakers. Election candidates with strong service background were rejected in the political tsunami along with ‘ineffective’ MPs who were unable/failed to speak up on issues or demonstrated inability to articulate policies.

I say again, MCA is in the business of politics. Therefore it cannot run away from meeting the higher demands and standards of the electorate. The electorate market has indicated a future demand for lawmakers.

Good news is, supply is not short within the party membership. MCA just need to legitimize an internal system to churn up the Faiths, separate the servicemen from lawmakers.

The era of the Comfortables as lawmakers has ended. MCA can still use them by re-designating them to concentrate their specialty as Local Councillors. But for immediate action, just unleash talents of the Faiths to take on the role of lawmakers.

Party members! This party election, make a conscientious decision in casting your vote. Allegiance to Comfortables is less important than saving the party. It is indeed a troublesome choice, but unleashing Faith is the best bet to steer MCA through the uncharted political seas ahead. The leadership better take heed.

Hell, boy. Am back…

Filed under: Life, Media — Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , — bananachinese @ 11:26 am

You know I can’t smile without you… I can’t smile without you…

I can’t laugh… I can’t sing…

I’m finding it hard to do anything…

Hellboy reacting to Malaysia’s politicians.

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