Thursday, September 30, 2010

UN 'to appoint a Malaysian as first space ambassador to greet alien visitors'.What a joke?

Hantu Laut

What a joke! Is this for real?

What resources the UN has to be in the front line of this terrifying idea of receiving extraterrestrial visitors to our planet that could likely be not in peace but probably want a piece of our planet.

Wouldn't the Pentagon and other powerful nations be better equipped to deal with the aliens?

I hope they wouldn't incinerate Mazlan when they first saw her.

"Take me to your leader" If they come sooner than expected where would Mazlan take the aliens to, Obama, Najib or the useless Ban Ki-moon?

It must be an honour to accept such job.

A space ambassador could be appointed by the United Nations to act as the first point of contact for aliens trying to communicate with Earth.

Mazlan Othman, a Malaysian astrophysicist, is set to be tasked with co-ordinating humanity’s response if and when extraterrestrials make contact.

Aliens who landed on earth and asked: “Take me to your leader” would be directed to Mrs Othman.

She will set out the details of her proposed new role at a Royal Society conference in Buckinghamshire next week.

The 58-year-old is expected to tell delegates that the proposal has been prompted by the recent discovery of hundreds of planets orbiting other starts, which is thought to make the discovery of extraterrestrial life more probable than ever before.

Mrs Othman is currently head of the UN’s little known Office for Outer Space Affairs (Unoosa).

In a recent talk to fellow scientists, she said: “The continued search for extraterrestrial communication, by several entities, sustains the hope that some day human kind will received signals from extraterrestrials.

“When we do, we should have in place a coordinated response that takes into account all the sensitivities related to the subject. The UN is a ready-made mechanism for such coordination.”

Professor Richard Crowther, an expert in space law at the UK space agency who leads delegations to the UN, said: “Othman is absolutely the nearest thing we have to a ‘take me to your leader’ person”.

The plan to make Unoosa the co-ordinating body for dealing with alien encounters will be debated by UN scientific advisory committees and should eventually reach the body’s general assembly.

Opinion is divided about how future extraterrestrial visitors should be greeted. Under the Outer Space Treaty on 1967, which Unoosa oversees, UN members agreed to protect Earth against contamination by alien species by “sterilising” them.

Mrs Othman is understood to support a more tolerant approach.

But Professor Stephen Hawking has warned that alien interlopers should be treated with caution.

He said: “I imagine they might exist in massive ships, having used up all the resources from their home planet. The outcome for us would be much as when Christopher Columbus first landed in America, which didn’t turn out very well for the Native Americans.”

The Telegraph

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

The Politics of Skullduggery and...?

Hantu Laut

We need not tempt ourselves to such prolix and discursive explanation of what happened in PKR elections.We are not dealing with children or people with lack of education.These are grown-ups and mostly educated people.

As adults, we expect maturity,discipline and self-restraint.There is no need to send squad of enforcers to oversee proper conduct of the elections.You do not expect mass hysteria of bad and disrespectful behaviour in adults

When greed takes over everything else take a back seat.What happened in PKR is nothing less than the epitome of greed.

The thuggery for positions in PKR were nothing less the dream of Putrajaya's bounty, the El Dorado, the money on the brain.For all that matters, it may as well be an elusive dream.

Save Malaysia Today have found what went wrong in PKR and, as usual, at the end of the day, blame the culture of skullduggery, thuggery and violence as inheritance from UMNO. The writer, presumably, either younger in age than UMNO and did not know better or a greying adult with short memory, UMNO wasn't like that in its infancy years. If it came from UMNO, than did they not learn it from the grand master who refused to be the elected leader but yet still want to hold the whip.

In UMNO, the less than sanctimonious behaviour started less than three decades ago when cronyism and nepotism created the monster called 'corruptions'. It happened during Mahathir's time.Although, without any doubt I think Mahathir himself is not involved in personal corruption, he chose to close his eyes and ears to its existence in his pursuit of greater progress.

I am not sure whether I can agree with this and not sure what to call it, an editorial or an opinion, didn't say what it was nor a name to it if it was an opinion.

The full article below:

The ugly side of PKR

PKR took great pride in holding its first direct election for party posts, a practice never seen in other political parties. But it turned out to be a shameful show of democracy turned topsy-turvy. In several divisions, the elections descended into rowdy scenes, which do not bode well for a party aiming to capture the heartbeat of the nation in the next general election. Vandalism, verbal abuse and balloting irregularities were the order of the day, causing some divisions to postpone their AGMs and division polls. What went wrong?

In large measure, the blame can be pinned on poor preparations. PKR was all heady when it spoke about its transparent democratic voting process but gave little thought to the reality on the ground. The party should have realised that with 400,000 members in its fold, it would not be an easy walk in the park to carry out direct elections without encountering daunting hurdles along the way. But perhaps blinded by over-confidence and creeping hubris, the top leaders did not see the need to sort out the nitty-gritty of an electoral process, especially when the nationwide operation involved massive infrastructural and logistical problems. Perhaps, PKR assumed that its right-thinking members will do a mature job or that all's well that ends well.

PKR should have mobilised an army of workers from both camps – contenders and incumbents – to oversee the smooth running of the operation. But shockingly it failed to do so. Unsupervised, the field was left wide open to gross abuse: voters were intimidated, ballot boxes were switched or broken, phantom voters were brought in, votes were rigged, names had gone missing, bankrupts had been allowed to jump into the ring. Worse still, violence erupted in several divisions: in one incident, a candidate vying for the chief post was beaten up by a well-known medical doctor although it was denied. In another division, groups of men wreaked havoc when they smashed the ballot boxes, chairs and tables in a thuggery attempt to disrupt the meeting. It also defies logic when only one election official was sent to collect election fees from thousands of eligible voters. As a result, many were left out of the democratic loop because they could not produce the official receipts to cast their votes.

If PKR had done its homework properly, it would have ensured that things would have proceeded smoothly. Election fees could have been collected and receipts issued well in advance of polling day. The list of candidates could have been vetted thoroughly and kept safe in some strong vaults of the PKR headquarters. Bigger halls could have been rented to accommodate the large crowds. Volunteers or even the police could have been roped in to keep out mischief makers and disqualified candidates and keep in eligible voters. The grassroots members should have been left in peace to perform their democratic duty. Sadly, PKR missed the golden opportunity to prove that the party can conduct free and fair elections.

The fingers must also be pointed at seasoned politicians like Anwar Ibrahim who have created an unhealthy climate with their partisan politics. The whole world knows that Anwar is all for Azmin Ali in the latter's quest for the number two spot in the party hierarchy. And the whole world knows that Zaid Ibrahim, the other title chaser, is out in the cold and the target of character assassination. It is an open secret that the intense rivalry between these two political pugilists has spilled into the divisional contests and fuelled the squabbles between the followers of the two factions. When the ballot box is defiled, democracy is thrown out of the window.

PKR is in the dock in this “show trial”. How it performs is crucial to its chances of forming the next federal government. But the party which took the national stage by storm in 2008 is showing all the classic symptoms of the Umno malady – internal spats, political skullduggery, factionalism, smear campaigns, back-stabbing, unrestrained greed for power and glory. This is not a promising development for Anwar's “child” for the child is already becoming wayward and ill-mannered. Suddenly, the scales have dropped and people are seeing the true colours of PKR. If the party cannot put its own house in order, it cannot claim the right to put the whole country into better shape.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Team Lotus, Who's Telling The Truth?

Hantu Laut

Read this and make you own assumption whom you think would win the case.

Of heart and mind, one using the heart and the other the head.

Question No.1 why would Tony Fernandez buy Team Lotus Ventures if there was nothing tangible in it and if there was no legal tie up with Lotus to provide its racing expertise?

If there was actually an agreement, than, maybe, the boys at Proton do not know how to read and interpret legal agreement.Fernandez was quite right to take the case to the British court to clear the air.

You can't run a business if you are ruled by your heart and you can't terminate an agreement unilaterally unless there is default.

Monday, September 27, 2010

Was I Wrong About Anwar And PKR?

Hantu Laut

The implosion of PKR is only a matter of time.I have said this many times in the past.

Just look at the going-ons in the current party elections and what do you see? Aren't they the same or even worse than what they accused UMNO of.The backstabbing and dirty political maneuvering was nothing less than the epitome of greed. Dirty polls rear its ugly head every where.

As a leader, Anwar is irresolute,insincere and inconsistent, reason he regularly loses his friends.

The members and leaders in PKR should take stock and ask themselves do they still want this man to lead the party as de facto leader when he had the opportunity to stand as their true leader? Why did he not want to stand? Has he got guilty conscience?

Zaid Ibrahim, the new kid on the block, running for deputy president,is running into a brick wall, clandestinely put up by Anwar and his blue-eyed boy Azmin Ali who is a contender for the same post. Dealing with Anwar is like dealing with ebb and flow of the tide, you don't know whether you are going or coming.

Below is an article I picked (without his permission) from my friend Zorro Unmasked who exasperatedly expressed his concern.

Zorro is openly supporting Zaid, whom I believe would be a better leader and a threat to Anwar if he wins the deputy post.

Anwar is no more the factor, the unifying force or the glue, if you like, in keeping Pakatan together.Silently, he is seen as the cause of disunity in the party but no one would want to tell him in his face. When there are troubles in the party he tried to divert attention to UMNO and blame UMNO as the contagion of PKR's problems.This time a Trojan horse without name.Haris Ibrahim's innuendo here.

My stand as far as Pakatan Rakyat is concerned is that I will support any means to change the Government, BUT NOT THRU DIRTY TRICKS AND DEVIOUS ,MACHINATIONS,(HERE), that we are witnessing now in the PKR elections.

We have always faulted BN for every conceivable evil in the book and it is unmistakable that PKR has taken chapters out of this book and applying them without impunity. It’s a REAL SHAME.

How will PKR answer to their coalition partners, PAS and DAP for such blatant transgressions? If they can play Brutus with their own party members, what is there to prevent them to do likewise to PAS and DAP.

Two things need to be done if PKR wants to redeem itself:

First, Anwar and Syed Husin Ali must apologise to their coalition partners for bringing Pakatan Rakyat into disrepute by their obvious backing of Azmin.

Second, Zaid Ibrahim must march up to the Election Committee and PUBLICLY demand for some semblance of integrity of this seemingly decaying body. Read more.

You see, it's not about conviction, it's not about dedication,it's not about patriotism,it's not about serving the people and nation, Malaysian politicians and politics is all about money, money and money.

Don't fool yourself that they are going to be any better.

Friday, September 24, 2010

1 Malaysia,But Many Peoples

Malaysia Watcher

Malaysia is a study in apparent contradictions. While the mainland boasts the famous Petronas Towers in the highly developed capitol at Kuala Lumpur, the Borneon states of Sabah and Sarawak are still home to hunter-gatherer clans. Though the nation’s sizeable Muslim population is subject to shari’a law, its non-Muslims are not. Malaysians of many different races and religions have lived side by side with relatively little conflict for decades. This remarkable accomplishment should make other nations take note—and in the West at least, it has. An absence of conflict does not equal unity, however, and Malaysia faces real problems as it seeks to bestow upon its citizens a sense of national identity.

Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak has the unenviable task of uniting Malaysia’s disparate societies, and of communicating to them all his vision of a peaceful, progressive Muslim-majority nation. Fortunately for the United States, and much to the chagrin of his political opponents, he’s up to the challenge and has just extended his efforts to make more allowance than ever for religious diversity.

Najib’s endorsement on Sunday of the Inter-faith Relations Working Committee’s mission is just one indication of his commitment to Malaysia’s unity. It’s also a sign that he’s not willing to sacrifice Malaysia’s unique cultural and religious diversity in order to reach that goal; instead he will do the harder work of continuing to unify a disparate group while allowing for maximum diversity:

Goodwill and understanding among races and religions are the core foundation of building a strong, prosperous and harmonious Malaysia, as envisioned in the Government Transformation Programme (GTP) and the Economic Transformation Programme (ETP), Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak said.

The Prime Minister said the country would not be able to grow and develop if there was lack of understanding among its citizens of diverse ethnic and religious backgrounds.

“The Government cannot transform (the country) and achieve what is planned under GTP and ETP if there is no unity and harmony.

“These two points are the essence of this nation and we must work hard, not only to preserve this but also to bring unity and harmony among races to a new level.”

This is exciting news for both Malaysia and for Western leaders who are eager to work with a progressive Muslim nation, but not everyone is pleased. Najib’s own Deputy Prime Minister rebuked the committee earlier this year, before its work had even begun:

“They are just small fry, a small role played within the Prime Minister’s department,” he said.

Muhyiddin also said the committee will not touch on Islamic matters, although he later denied using the term “small fry” and said he had referred to the group as a “minor committee.”

Najib’s endorsement of the Inter-faith Relations Working Committee, combined with his upcoming visit to the United States, signal his growing eagerness to do what it takes to make Malaysia both a better place to live, and an attractive prospective for foreign leaders and investors.Read more.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

How To Raise A Business Owner-A Lesson For The Bumiputra

Hantu Laut

There are few successful bumiputra businessman but there are many rich bumiputras.How that can be?

The answer lies in the NEP.

The NEP makes some bumiputras rich but does not make them true businessmen let alone give them the entrepreneurial spirit.

I came from a business family.My father and three uncles have been successful businessman in their own ways, running their own separate business.Out of the four brothers, three are mere businessmen but one stands out as a true entrepreneur.You can throw him in darkest continent he will survive and raise a business.

In the past, I have commented on how the Chinese become successful in business. Most Chinese businesses had humble beginning and a steep learning curve for the owners. There is only 1 per cent chance you are gifted, most successful businessmen are nurtured, that's why the Chinese have greater chance of success in business than most bumiputras, who, unfortunately, did not have the privilege of coming from a business culture background.

Most Chinese businesses start small, hard work and grow as the owner gain more and more experience and learn new tricks in a tricky environment.

If you are a bumiputra with strong political connection but no business experience and were given RM200 million project, what would you do? You either become a rich bumiputra by selling your contract and do no business, or a failed bumiputra businessman because of no experience or a total failure because you would soon go on spending spree and lose all your windfall.

Take time to read the simple story below.There is no short-cut to success.

How to Raise a Business Owner

On Labor Day weekend my husband and I – the only small-business owners at a gathering of family and friends – were asked repeatedly how our business was doing. We were honest and said that it’s a very difficult environment for small business right now and that we feel fortunate to be hanging in there.

One nameless relation stopped clearing the dishes and piped up with the following statement: “If it doesn’t work out, you two can just go out and get jobs like the rest of us.”

There’s one in every crowd, isn’t there?

Yet another relative at a different holiday gathering said more or less the opposite: “At least you guys are out there trying to do something, rather than expecting someone to hand you a paycheck every two weeks.”

As a small-business owner, I’ve become accustomed to encountering both points of view. But it made me wonder how I instill the latter mindset – that you can make your own way in the world and don’t necessarily need to rely on someone else to provide you with an income – in my own children.

People love to argue about whether entrepreneurs are born or made, with many feeling that success in small business is somehow genetic. My husband has five siblings. An entrepreneur raised all six kids, yet only one became a small-business owner. I had no exposure to business growing up, yet here I am on my second venture. Rather than calling it genetics, I think it has more to do with children of entrepreneurs being the beneficiaries of an early education in business.

My 6-year-old is starting to figure out how the world works, and where we all fit in. He knows that his mom and dad run a business together, but I can see that it doesn’t always add up in his mind. Other parents have jobs. They work for somebody, or sometimes one parent works and the other stays home. He doesn’t meet many kids with parents like his. I guess we’re not the norm, which is something children pick up on at a young age.

As my children get older and begin their elementary school education, I keep an eye out for where business literacy emerges as part of the curriculum. So far, I don’t see much, although the basics of personal finance – bills and coinage, and how to count them – begins in kindergarten.

In fact, I’m not sure that we have a real grooming system for raising entrepreneurs and business owners in this country. The ethos is built into our culture – you can do anything with hard work – but it seems business education doesn’t begin in earnest until you choose a major in college. The “land of opportunity” and the “American dream” are synonymous with the entrepreneurial spirit. Yet if you were to stop people on the street and ask them how to start a business, I’ll bet the common response would be something like a) get a friend or relative to loan you some money, and b) try it, see what happens and hope for the best. It’s no wonder that entrepreneurs are perceived as risk-takers and failure rates for start-ups are so dismal.

Certainly a business degree is no guarantee of success. Which brings me back to early education at home. Here are a few qualities that I try to instill in my kids – for success in both life and entrepreneurship:

1. Ability to solve problems creatively.
2. Desire to learn and expand knowledge.
3. Ability to analyze a situation and make good decisions.
4. Self-motivation and belief in your own abilities.
5. Persistence, tenacity and resilience.

I’m always listening for potential opportunities to illustrate general business principles and create awareness of the business behind everyday things. For example, we drove by a construction site the other day. My youngest pointed out the window at an excavator and said, “I want to drive one of those some day.”

“Maybe some day you’ll own a business that helps people build things,” I replied. There was silence in the back seat. I figured what I said either made no sense whatsoever, or perhaps got him thinking about the world in a different way – if only for a moment.

Barbara Taylor is co-owner of a business brokerage, Synergy Business Services, in Bentonville, Ark. Here is her guide to selling a business.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Anwar! Can You Do Sabahans A Favour ?

Hantu Laut

I read with great interest Anwar overly concern for Sabahans here.

A full-pledge casino should not be worse than what we already have scattered all over Sabah including in smaller towns. Slot machines under the guises of membership clubs that steal millions from poor Sabahans who can ill afford to gamble.

So, Anwar before you start shouting about something you are not sure of why don't you do us Sabahans a favour by pressuring the Federal government to close down all the slot machine clubs in Sabah, or have you forgotten that these licences were issued during your tenure as Minister of Finance.

I understand these clubs are operated by the same people who was supposed to get the sport betting licence.They are racking in millions of ringgit everyday from machines that are not properly regulated by the authorities.

You would do Sabahans a great favour if you can take the issue to Parliament and show your sincerity that you not only talk tongue in cheek.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Do You Think Najib Needs A New Mandate?

Hantu Laut

Never trust the economists, one day it's over, next day it's not.

I believe the global economy has started its recovery from middle of last year.A few months ago our Prime Minister warned of a slowdown in economic activities for the 2nd half of this year. That should not be the case as the global economy would have attained a good momentum the rest of the year.

UK declared it has come out of the recession beginning this year and the US as this article mentioned has emerged out of the recession middle of last year.One should not discount a 'double dip' recession as the the recovery is still fragile.

While the Western economies are showing recovery the East Asian economy may see a slowdown particularly China which I believe is overheated and unsustainable in the short term.

China over indulgence in supply more than demand would eventually weaken its export.China's export showed substantial decline in 2009 and would continue to do so.China defy the global slowdown because of the massive government stimulus package of more than $1 trillion.

Malaysia economic slowdown may come about not because of a global slowdown but of its political upheaval. Both foreign and domestic investors are taking a wait and see attitude and holding tight on to their wallets.

Malaysia's political instability is not superficial, it's real, and a real cause for concern for investors. It is not seen as politically matured in sustainable policies as in countries like Japan, US and Western Europe where there would be continuation of policies even if the government changed.

Investors biggest fear is witch hunting which is common in many developing countries when government changed hand and Malaysia is not seen as an exception.The current political atmosphere is not conducive to a stable economy. The opposition would continue to chide the government and expose its wrongdoings, which, unfortunately, were not all untrue.

The scale of the scandals at PKFZ, Felda and now Sime Darby is mind boggling and many other unexposed corruptions and breach of fiduciary duties would come on the pipeline as the oppositions with the help of whistle blowers continue to expose wrongdoings of the government.

Najib's ambiguous and ambivalent relationship with Perkasa does not help either."You are either with us, or against us" should be the stand. Najib needs to be specific, he is with Perkasa or not? No two ways about it.

Prime Minister Najib may need to call for an earlier general elections to put an end to the political embroglio.

In everything we do, we win some,we lose some, you can't win all the times.

Monday, September 20, 2010

Kit Siang:The 'Malaysian First' Bullshit Artiste

Hantu Laut

Jebat Must Die hits the nail on the head.

YES! LIM KIT SIANG, THE MALAYSIAN FIRST BULLSHIT ARTISTE, would you support the 'ONE SCHOOL' system.Close down all vernacular schools so we can all be truly 'MALAYSIAN FIRST' and Malay,Chinese and Indian never.

To show your patriotism and nationalism you should also stop speaking other languages and speak only in the national language.Even the prime minister and deputy prime minister are not Malaysians first, they are Malays first.At least they have the balls to be honest enough to admit it.

Since you are the first truly 'MALAYSIAN FIRST' I urge you take up the challenge and show your deep patriotism to this nation and be the first one to go to parliament to bring a motion to close down all vernacular schools.

Read Jebat Must Die challenge to Kit Siang here.

Now The Dogs Got Murdered

Hantu Laut

I can't believe when I read this piece of news.

Instead of feeding the animals or call a dog trainer to save the dogs, why bother, just kill them.

Inilah 'Malaysia Boleh', usah pakai otak.

Even the most timid dog would become aggressive when they are hungary.All you need to do is get somebody who knows how to handle the animals, to feed them and resettle the animals elsewhere.

We have 5 dogs and we treat our dogs with respect, fed with the best foods and their medical bills is more than what my wife and I incurred in a year.

BANTING: Nine pedigree dogs, belonging to the lawyer brothers from here, were put to sleep by Kuala Langat District Council officers yesterday.

Six Rottweilers, two Dalmations and a bulldog were put down by lethal tranquilisers at the poultry farm in Sungai Gadung, believed to the scene of a quadruple murder.

The officers were seen entering the farm at 8.15am and left about two hours later with the carcasses in a pick-up lorry.

According to sources, since the murders were uncovered, the hungry dogs which were left unattended became aggressive and attacked other animals in the farm, such as goats, ducks and chickens.

The source said police had told the district council to catch the dogs but the team despatched to the area decided to put the dogs down as they were aggressive.

The carcasses were taken to the Sungai Sedu landfill in Telok Datuk, near here, to be buried.

Meanwhile, scores of local and foreign tourists on their way to a nearby longan farm and curious onlookers tried to get into the farm where the murders allegedly took place.

They were, however, turned away by policemen.

Longan farm owner Lim Soon Beng, 40, said he had lost thousands of ringgit since the entrance to his 6ha farm was sealed to give way to police investigations.

"I have been losing between RM2,000 and RM3,000 a day as my produce could not be transported out and tourists were stopped from entering the farm."

The two lawyer brothers, aged 41 and 38, from here, and five others were detained to facilitate investigations into the murders of Datuk Sosilawati Lawiya, 47, her driver Kamaruddin Shansudin, 44, banker Noorhisham Mohammad, 38, and lawyer Ahmad Kamil Abdul Karim, 32.

The four were killed and burnt and their ashes scattered in rivers.

Police have found bone fragments, a cricket bat and a knife after searching the rivers.

The bone fragments have been sent to the Chemistry Department for DNA analysis and the results are expected this week.

Sosilawati, the founder of the Nouvelles Visages beauty line, and her three aides were believed to have met one of the lawyers before they disappeared on Aug 30.

They were allegedly murdered at the farm belonging to the lawyer. The farm has, among others, a clubhouse, chalet and an office.

Two teams are carrying out the investigations, one on the quadruple murder and the other on the disappearance of three people and the murder of a housewife.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Sosilawati Murders:Blame The Police?

Hantu Laut

I am not sure whether this piece deserved a space or even a mention.Obviously, Malaysiakini and Lim Kit Siang think it is a masterpiece.

Should we expect the police force to police every square foot of land and monitor every person in this country? The writer's deep obsession for the impossible is just thoughtless mind of the herd's instinct.If someone says it is black than it must be black.Attacking and slandering the police have become an obsession for some people.

I can quote thousand of cases of serial killings in the West from Jeffrey Dahmer who killed for sexual gratification to husband and wife partner Fred and Rosemary West who killed a dozen of young girls in their "House Of Horrors" right next to their neighbours, without, let alone the police, their next door neighbours knowing their homicidal nature.

The writer's brevity with his accusations against the police is most unfair. The offending preamble to his story below:

"These murders could have been avoided if our police force had been more professional. Clearly the police took a tidak apa attitude or were ‘in it’ in all previous deaths/disappearances. The number of ‘missing persons’ reports all linked to these lawyers emerging all of a sudden out of the blue is testimony to this".

Well, sometimes, some people, get the high not just from taking drugs, you can get high even from writing, the reason, some writers get sued for libel.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Anwar Called For Restoration Of State Rights Under True Federalism

True definition of a federation:

A federation (Latin: foedus, foederis, 'covenant'), also known as afederal state, is a type of sovereign state characterized by a union of partially self-governing states or regions united by a central (federal) government. In a federation, the self-governing status of the component states is typically constitutionally entrenched and may not be altered by a unilateral decision of the central government.Read more.

KUALA LUMPUR, Sept 16 — Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim sounded out a rallying cry today to restore the spirit of federalism, which he says has been abused by the ruling elite to remain in power to the detriment of the nation’s global progress.

“There is no longer any restraint on the centralisation of power to the federal government. The understanding of federalism, the rule of law and the spirit of federalism is being set aside for the sake of keeping the elite in power,” the opposition leader said in his Malaysia Day statement today.

He noted that the spirit of federalism — the system of sharing power between member states and a central administration — was one of the mainstays when Malaysia was formed in 1963 and was once upheld in the Federal Constitution, but stressed it was being eroded daily.

The Permatang Pauh MP pointed out that power had been channelled unchecked towards the federal government over the years, leading to discrimination in the development of the states, with some states remaining backward while others enjoy the fruits of their natural resources.

“It’s no wonder we see states like Kelantan, Sarawak and Sabah denied their rights even despite being endowed with natural resources,” the economist said.

“Sweet promises are being scattered throughout Sabah and Sarawak, for example, where they are regarded as a ‘deposit’ for victory in the elections,” the PKR advisor added in a thinly-veiled reference to the ruling Barisan Nasional (BN) alliance.

Anwar’s concern over the matter was likely triggered by widespread speculation that the Najib administration will call for snap polls in the next six months.

The next general election is due only in 2013, but Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak and his political colleagues have been stepping up their interaction with the grassroots in a nationwide tour to drum up greater support for the BN, which lost its traditional two-thirds control in the Dewan Rakyat for the first time in 53 years during Election 2008.

Anwar noted the citizens of those “oppressed” states had become “indifferent and pessimistic to the desire to strengthen the federation” as a result of suffering unfair treatment over the years.

“Clearly we cannot blame them and should work harder to generate energy, thinking and aspire to eradicate discrimination.

“It would be unfortunate for the nation if its government acts to exclude and deny the rights of its own people because of differences in politics, race and culture,” said the 63-year-old whose ambitions to become the next prime minister are well known.

He vowed that his party and the opposition Pakatan Rakyat (PR) will work hard to ensure justice to all the states in the federation, in bid to swing support, especially in the two East Malaysia states, to his side.

“On this day, September 16, 2010 let us together make a commitment to continue to aspire and fight to restore the spirit of federalism… to achieve the status of a sovereign and independent nation on a level position with other nations in the world,” he said.

The Spirit Of Independence 47 Years Too Late

Declaration of independence 16th Sept 1963
by Donald Stephens (Tun Fuad Stephens)
witnessed by Tun Mustapha Harun and Tun Abdul Razak

Hantu Laut

I was only 14 years old when I had to go to the town padang to witness what I was told the making of a new nation which I haven't got a clue about. Why would we need a new nation?

As student I am still blur about the going ons, the celebration and the festive mood everybody seemed to be in.

That unforgettable day was 16th Sept 1963.

Why in the first place we have to count Malaysia come to being a nation from 31st August 1957 instead of from 16th Sept 1963? There was no Malaysia prior to 1963 so how could we have existed for 53 years?

Remember George Santayana's "Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it" and I say those who twiddle history should be condemned and ridiculed.

We can learn from our mistake but it seems we had no wish to.We still celebrate 31st August as independence day when we should have completely scrapped that for 16th Sept which is the true day in history Malaysia was formed.

Would the people or the nation lose anything by rectifying mistake made by over-zealous leaders of the past who manufactured history to satisfy their whims and fancies.

I hope Prime Minister Najib would be taking the first step before the giant leap to correct the history book and not fool our younger and future generations that Malaysia is 6 years older than it actually is.

Today, for the first time in 47 years the people of Sabah and Sarawak can relate to a true independence day. The day the Union Jack came down to mark the end of colonialism and the hoisting of a new flag and the dawn of a new nation...Malaysia.

The last governor Sir William Goode bidding farewell to Harris Salleh

Lest, those federationists forget, we are a state in a federation, not a colony nor a province.Lest, they do not know the meaning of the word "federation" read the definition below:

A federation (Latin: foedus, foederis, 'covenant'), also known as a federal state, is a type of sovereign state characterized by a union of partially self-governing states or regions united by a central (federal) government. In a federation, the self-governing status of the component states is typically constitutionally entrenched and may not be altered by a unilateral decision of the central government.Read more.

Today, for the first time, is a national holiday, and a big celebration to be held at Kota Kinabalu.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Big Fish In A Small Pond ?

Hantu Laut

This is the man that took a tiny crime-stricken tropical backwater island to become the most successful modern nation and an economic miracle no less in less than four decades of his regime.

Despite lack of natural resources Singapore became a financial and industrial powerhouse.A success story, a feat, that many world leaders could only dream about.

I have read almost every book written on Lee Kuan Yew, from the obscured James Minchin's "No Man Is An Island" to his two-volume memoirs and the latest book written on him by American columnist Tom Plate.

"One of the asymmetries of history" wrote Henry Kissinger of him. Kissinger's one time boss Richard Nixon was even more flattering and said had Lee lived in another time and another place, he might had attained the stature of a Churchill,Disraeli or a Gladstone.

Profoundly true but water under the bridge now.Few leaders could have attained what Lee had with a tiny nation that had no natural resources except the richness and diversity of its human capital.

In 1965 Singapore ranked the same economically with Chile, Argentina and Mexico, today its per capita GDP is 6 times more than those countries.Even more amazing the per capita GDP is higher than its former colonial master and richer than the purportedly richest nation on earth.The per capita is higher than Britain and the United States.

Talk about the success story of Singapore many Malaysians would not wonder in amazement . "Oh! It's a small country, easier to manage" some would say.True in a way but untrue in many ways.

Smallness will not guarantee success if you have rotten leadership, bad governance and run-away corruptions.That's where Singapore succeed and where other more resourceful countries failed.It persisted in zero tolerance for anomalies.

Obviously, Lee is a big fish in a small pond and he is not letting go of his lost opportunity to govern a bigger land mass......being kicked out of Malaysia as reflected in his regret and disappointment here.

Lee, no doubt is an accomplished leader, a great statesman, an intellectual with achievements unequalled in this modern era.All those do not necessary help smarten his views of hindsight.

His lamentation that Malaysia, if had been kept intact, would have benefited from what Singapore had achieved today in term of racial harmony and equality is just his pipe dream.

As Mahathir said in sarcasm of him as being "A big frog in a small pond" in Tom Plate's "Conversation With Lee Kuan Yew" comments by world leaders.

Keeping Singapore and hard-nosed Lee in Malaysia would have been genocidal and ended in unimaginable disaster. It would be Singapore wanting to leave Malaysia then when the Malays refused to concede political powers to the Chinese whom would have been same in numbers or in the majority. It's a sure recipe for disaster and Tungku Abdul Rahman was wise when he took the decision to expel Singapore to save the nation from ending up in violence and bloodshed. There would not be any Malaysia.There would not be a bigger pond for Lee to swim in. Sabah and Sarawak would have joined Singapore in breaking up the nation.

That's what the most probable scenario would have been.

Of course, I do not expect everyone to agree with my hypothesis.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Where No Man Is An Island

Days of Reflection for Man Who Defined Singapore

New York Times

Published: September 10, 2010

“SO, when is the last leaf falling?” asked Lee Kuan Yew, the man who made Singapore in his own stern and unsentimental image, nearing his 87th birthday and contemplating age, infirmity and loss.

“I can feel the gradual decline of energy and vitality,” said Mr. Lee, whose “Singapore model” of economic growth and tight social control made him one of the most influential political figures of Asia. “And I mean generally, every year, when you know you are not on the same level as last year. But that’s life.”

In a long, unusually reflective interview last week, he talked about the aches and pains of age and the solace of meditation, about his struggle to build a thriving nation on this resource-poor island, and his concern that the next generation might take his achievements for granted and let them slip away.

He was dressed informally in a windbreaker and running shoes in his big, bright office, still sharp of mind but visibly older and a little stooped, no longer in day-to-day control but, for as long as he lives, the dominant figure of the nation he created.

But in these final years, he said, his life has been darkened by the illness of his wife and companion of 61 years, bedridden and mute after a series of strokes.

“I try to busy myself,” he said, “but from time to time in idle moments, my mind goes back to the happy days we were up and about together.” Agnostic and pragmatic in his approach to life, he spoke with something like envy of people who find strength and solace in religion. “How do I comfort myself?” he asked. “Well, I say, ‘Life is just like that.’ ”

“What is next, I do not know,” he said. “Nobody has ever come back.”

The prime minister of Singapore from its founding in 1965 until he stepped aside in 1990, Mr. Lee built what he called “a first-world oasis in a third-world region” — praised for the efficiency and incorruptibility of his rule but accused by human rights groups of limiting political freedoms and intimidating opponents through libel suits.

His title now is minister mentor, a powerful presence within the current government led by his son, Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong. The question that hovers over Singapore today is how long and in what form his model may endure once he is gone.

Always physically vigorous, Mr. Lee combats the decline of age with a regimen of swimming, cycling and massage and, perhaps more important, an hour-by-hour daily schedule of meetings, speeches and conferences both in Singapore and overseas. “I know if I rest, I’ll slide downhill fast,” he said. When, after an hour, talk shifted from introspection to geopolitics, the years seemed to slip away and he grew vigorous and forceful, his worldview still wide ranging, detailed and commanding.

And yet, he said, he sometimes takes an oblique look at these struggles against age and sees what he calls “the absurdity of it.”

“I’m reaching 87, trying to keep fit, presenting a vigorous figure, and it’s an effort, and is it worth the effort?” he said. “I laugh at myself trying to keep a bold front. It’s become my habit. I just carry on.”

HIS most difficult moments come at the end of each day, he said, as he sits by the bedside of his wife, Kwa Geok Choo, 89, who has been unable to move or speak for more than two years. She had been by his side, a confidante and counselor, since they were law students in London.

“She understands when I talk to her, which I do every night,” he said. “She keeps awake for me; I tell her about my day’s work, read her favorite poems.” He opened a big spreadsheet to show his reading list, books by Jane Austen, Rudyard Kipling and Lewis Carroll as well as the sonnets of Shakespeare.

Lately, he said, he had been looking at Christian marriage vows and was drawn to the words: “To love, to hold and to cherish, in sickness and in health, for better or for worse till death do us part.”

“I told her, ‘I would try and keep you company for as long as I can.’ That’s life. She understood.” But he also said: “I’m not sure who’s going first, whether she or me.”

At night, hearing the sounds of his wife’s discomfort in the next room, he said, he calms himself with 20 minutes of meditation, reciting a mantra he was taught by a Christian friend: “Ma-Ra-Na-Tha.”

The phrase, which is Aramaic, comes at the end of St. Paul’s First Epistle to the Corinthians, and can be translated in several ways. Mr. Lee said that he was told it means “Come to me, O Lord Jesus,” and that although he is not a believer, he finds the sounds soothing.

“The problem is to keep the monkey mind from running off into all kinds of thoughts,” he said. “A certain tranquillity settles over you. The day’s pressures and worries are pushed out. Then there’s less problem sleeping.”

He brushed aside the words of a prominent Singaporean writer and social critic, Catherine Lim, who described him as having “an authoritarian, no-nonsense manner that has little use for sentiment.”

“She’s a novelist!” he cried. “Therefore, she simplifies a person’s character,” making what he called a “graphic caricature of me.” “But is anybody that simple or simplistic?”

The stress of his wife’s illness is constant, he said, harder on him than stresses he faced for years in the political arena. But repeatedly, in looking back over his life, he returns to his moment of greatest anguish, the expulsion of Singapore from Malaysia in 1965, when he wept in public.

That trauma presented him with the challenge that has defined his life, the creation and development of a stable and prosperous nation, always on guard against conflict within its mixed population of Chinese, Malays and Indians. Read more.

This article has been revised to reflect the following correction:

Correction: September 11, 2010

An earlier version of this article contained a picture caption that misspelled Mr. Lee's name. He is Lee Kuan Yew, not Lee Kuan Kew.