Najib's walk about ... some thoughts and whims

KUALA LUMPUR, April 25 — Three weeks after Datuk Seri Najib Razak went down to the ground to visit three localities in the heart of the city, the prime minister today sprung another surprise when he had a walkabout at the bustling Jalan Tuanku Abdul Rahman (Jalan TAR) and Puduraya here.

However, he was not happy with the congestion and the inefficiency of the public facilities during his one-hour inspection, according to Federal Territory Minister Datuk Raja Nong Chik Raja Zainal Abidin.

Najib, who was dressed casually in a brown shirt and beige pants, arrived at Jalan TAR, near Semua House at 3.20 pm, accompanied by Raja Nong Chik, his deputy Datuk M. Saravanan and Kuala Lumpur city mayor Datuk Ahmad Fuad Ismail

Aiyoyo.... Plaza Rakyat, traffic jam, lack of parking space .... these existed since the previous century. Are we suppose to feel "terhutang budi" for our PM to walk about in places where a million of us converge daily?

Better late than never but this is a damning evidence of DBKL's dismal failure. Have you ever seen the American President or the British Prime Minister doing the same thing in Washington D.C. or London? Where is the tangible return on my assessment, quit rent and parking fees?

We have been having longkang MPs and now we have a traffic jam PM! Malaysia have a bunch of civil servants that can be argued as unpatriotic as their failure to do what they are paid to do is making Kuala Lumpur a miserable capital city to dwell and work in. Let our MPs and DUNS focus on what they are suppose to do and not to become a mandur (supervisor of manual labour) unless these civil servants take it literally that they are kaki tangan only. I suppose their canteen should make otak-otak a staple dish.

Also, can the DBKL look into the vandalism as well as litterbugs and spitters? KL is disgraceful compared to Phuket. That little piece of land of wonderful sinners have very clean and tidy walkways - no litter, no damaged tiles and wonderfully lit.

I am all for huge fines, jail time or forced community service on these disgusting people. I once got into an argument with an old man who discharged a huge load of saliva onto the walk way of Pasar Seni. He enquired about the well being of my mother and egging for a fight until I indicated to him that he might not have the physical advantage and at his age, he should consider presenting himself as a right example. He walked away knowing he lost a fight (still concerning for the well being of my mother)...well fighting for the cleanliness of your country is also a form of patriotism, eh?

Telco dishes in TBR

Taman Bunga Raya (TBR) is within spitting distance from Tunku Abdul Rahman College (ok, I may be a bit loose with my choice of words but those in the know understand what I am trying to say). It has a single row of shop houses and thick with rows of terrace houses which provide accommodation to house owners and students alike.

According to a shop owner, a certain Mr. L, several telco dishes have been erracted on top of some shop houses for the past few years. A lawyer whose practice was in that row of shops had, for the past few years, did much research and provided strong and wonderfully compiled evidence that these dishes, given their proximity to residents in TBR, represent significant health risk. The lawyer provided the ultimate proof, perhaps, as according to Mr. L, because the gentleman died of cancer while his series of appeal to a number of very very important people went unattended for the past few years.

YB. Wee Choo Keong, the Member of Parliament for Wangsa Maju, has been alerted by Mr. L pertaining to the above matter. I am reliably informed that YB. Wee has written to DBKL to look into this matter a couple of months ago and also followed up with a reminder letter this April.

I hope DBKL can quickly provide the correct response and action swiftly before more harm is done.

The dishes on top of the shop houses and note the proximity of the residential terrace houses.

We have to be consistent

I am all for the right of people to make known and advocate their stand in a civilised manner. Through proper dissemination of what they are passionate about, they can broadcast to and educate others what they believe in with the hope to make the society they live in will become better. Good examples are advocates of women's right, animals' right and environmental issues among others.

I also admire people who shows consistency, committment and dedication to their cause and belief, provided all done in a civilised manner.

Albeit I felt uncomfortable with the self-appointed defenders of faith to demonstrate in front of the BAR Council last year and the actions of certain committed defenders of their race's rights in Penang shortly after the results of the GE was known on 8 March, I believe it is their right to voice their opinion and make their stand. It is only the alternative in which they have chosen to show their feelings that is subject to questioning and control.

So how does the ardent, avid and committed of the above react to the 2 developments below?

KUALA LUMPUR (Reuters) – Malaysia has banned the forced conversion of children to Islam to quell unease among religious minorities in the mainly Muslim nation, the country's Legal Affairs Minister said on Thursday.
The decision follows the highly publicized case of Indira Gandhi, a 34-year-old ethnic Indian Hindu woman whose estranged husband embraced Islam and then converted their children to the religion as...

KUALA LUMPUR, April 24 — Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak yesterday defended the removal of the 30 per cent Malay equity quota in several sectors, and said that Malay businesses would not lose out despite any increased competition.

The above development is a test of Dato Seri's Najib mettle and the swift development suggest a certain firmess & firmness in his administration hence make make Badawi's administration look in less favourable light.

You deserve what you get

I was at the launch of Mr. Ooi Kee Beng's book entitled "Arrested Reform: The Undoing of Abdullah Badawi". The discussion from the floor with the speakers (the author himself, YM Tunku Abdul Aziz and Dato' Zaid Ibrahim) was lively and engrossing.

There was a participant who mentioned that one of her concern was come next GE, the economy will be at a good cycle and BN can win with minimal effort. Later after the talk she also expressed to me her concern that with the recent swing back of Malay votes back to BN in Bukit Gantang, a little effort on the Malay voters would guarantee victory for BN.

I suppose she has her point but for me, the following thoughts popped up.

1) No matter how "good" our economy was, are and will be under BN; we always have to i) pay more than the intrinsic value ii) put up with unfair distribution of income

Yes, when the share market is good, a very little minority with capital, knowledge and means will prosper from this legalised betting den.

An Indian gentleman correctly mention that it is about class struggle and not a matter of race. Poverty does not recognise race. Nor does disease and illness.

For those who have, the question is - is your earning power a proper reflection of your purchasing power parity with countries with lower corruption rate?

For those who have not, the question is - what did you really benefit from the good economic times? A factory worker might earn a bit more overtime here and there but where does the bulk of the hot money goes to?

The economic model adopted by BN - concerntration of economic opportunities via direct negotiations, cronyism, restrictive capital requirements, leakages in contracts awarded to select few have curtailed proper and free flow of distribution of the nation's wealth.

2) As for the worrying about Malay votes going back to BN. Well, everybody has a right to vote for whoever they want. Just vote for the right reasons. You reap what you sow and what you vote is what you'll get.

But, if you are concerned, then DO something. Don't sit down and worrying about it in a mamak stall. A person I got to know from facebook told me about the effort that person made and making to get young people to register and vote & also advise them about the reality that is going on.

A little effort by everyone will accumulate into a grand effort. Not everybody can be a successful politician but hey, accumulation of everybody's effort is part of People's Power.
Make your stand and do whatever you can for a better Malaysia

Leave the poor tree alone-lah

I read in today's Sunday Star(19 April page N6) that ..."Ipoh City Council planted 19 young tree around the Democracy Tree to deter people from using it for unknown religious purposes..." per Datuk Bandar Roshidi Hashim.

Just what are they afraid afraid of?

if it is unknown, how sure the City Council know it is for religious purposes? Whether it is religious in nature or not, should it not be a mufti, ustaz, monk, priest or Jabatan Islam to determine that? Since when the Majlis Perbandaran is an expert in religious matter? Leaving a trident I am not sure but using the tree for 4D number is definitely NOT a religious purpose.

By the way, isn't freedom of religion part of the foundation of Malaysia's famed social contract or way of life? How come we can let a body financed by rate payers' fund to decide for the rate payers whether they can pray/held religious function or not around the tree?

By the way, planting 19 trees so close to each other suggest lousy town planing execution. Who wants to have a man-made secondary forest near the state assembly hall? Haven for khalwating couples, pissing dogs, scared cats, hidden snakes, lazy snails, marauding mosquitoes or desperate gentleman who can't find a toilet nearby?

Also, this is maltreatment of trees. By clustering 20 of them together, the land might not hold enough nutrients for them.

Raising the standard of debating in Parliament

We have come across too many instances whereby things said in the august house are an insult to the rakyats' intelligence and hard earned money as well as preventing the nation to achieve developed status; the waste of money range from stupid commentary on MAS air stewardess' uniform, to bocor, as well as the endless supply of secondary school intellectual level sort of answers provided by ministers and their deputy ministers whenever they have to tend to questions from their fellow MPs.

I put forward 3 approach to raise the standard of exchange in the august house since this concerns the livelihood of the rakyat and proper use of tax payer's money.

1) Let's have a dedicated channel for live & delayed telecast of parliament and state assembly sessions. Since all the parliament and state assemblies do not go through sitting the entire year, we can re-broad cast these sessions through out the year so that people who are interested or have a vested interest can observe the performance of their wakil rakyat.

2) Let's also broadcast snippets of selected other countries' sessions. Let's have a look at our MPs and DUNs' counterparts' performance in Singapore, Hong Kong and United Kingdom.

3) Instilling debating as part of school curriculum, say 10% of the examination marks of our language subjects are from debating. Our children will be trained to think, analyze, articulate their thoughts and listening & respecting opposing views.

The current structure of controlled MSMs and rigid education system are stifling or even murdering our intellectual capacity. We need more issue and solution base politicians and voters, rather than relying on deciding our democratic results base on irrational and emotional gamemanship because ultimately, it is the livelihood of yours and mine that are at stake.

Najib's era - Re-emergence of Mahatirism or Pak Lah-ism?

Barely a week after Najib's rousing "1 Malaysia, People First, Performance Now", we have his uncontested deputy giving a brilliant interview with Mingguan Malaysia.

This is what Muhyiddin said:

Q - Tetapi bukankah setiap kali pilihan raya kecil, permintaan kaum bukan Melayu dipenuhi, malah di Bukit Gantang walaupun peruntukan RM1juta diberikan tetapi kaum Cina tidak juga menyokong BN?

MUHYIDDIN: Ya, kadang-kadang kita berasa terpedaya juga kerana zahirnya nampak macam ‘ok’, sambutan dengan tepukan gemuruh tetapi mungkin sudah ada tertanam dalam hati iaitu sesuatu tidak mudah hendak berubah, pokoknya masalah isu Perak terutamanya di kalangan masyarakat Cina yang mungkin telah dipengaruhi dengan sentimen simpati kepada Datuk Seri Ir.Mohamad Nizar Jamaluddin, kononnya dia ‘dijatuhkan’, lepas itu kononnya dasar memberi pegangan tanah selama 99 tahun dilihat dasar yang menguntungkan.

Ini yang mungkin menyebabkan sukar BN mendapat sokongan walaupun kita fikir bila mereka hendak sekolah Cina dibantu, kita bantu, sepatutnya mereka membalas budi. Pada waktu itu, kita pun tidak berharap sokongan kaum Cina akan meningkat 40 peratus dan sebagainya cuma kita berharap ada peningkatan sedikit tetapi apa yang berlaku ia mencatatkan penurunan, macam tidak ada penghargaan terhadap apa yang kita lakukan.

Calling Chinese ungrateful is uncalled for. The Wakil Rakyat assuming the Education Minister post should bear in mind that his official perks come from tax payers' money and he has a fiduciary duty to administer and allocate the money well for the benefit of ALL Malaysians. There is no "budi" involved as the money did not come from his own kocek. It is a job, a noble one. If you can't stand the heat, get out of the kitchen (and leave the cookie jar too).

Some people wonder if with Najib, Mahathirism would re-emerge but we are starting off this era with Pak Lah-ism - the top man says nice things while the subordinates run around voicing otherwise. Najib would do well to ensure consistency throught out his team.

Please-lah, DPM, Malay voters like humble politicans, so do Chinese. In order to win back their support, sit down and find out. They are a sensible lot and quite clear with what they want.

Ong Tee Keat is fine with that interview however, I was told.

Muhyiddin: Two years to regain people's trust and confidence

"....leadership at all levels understood the new direction of the party and took measures to revive the party’s image and improve the people’s perception of it..."

Perception? Is that the right word? If it is about perception then mere window dressing would be adequate.
The more proper word should be "conclusion" or "opinion" as only substantive and tangible results can result in conclusions and opinions.

Utusan Malaysia carried the same report but included the statement " ...meningkatkan keyakinan dan kepercayaan, bukan sahaja di kalangan orang-orang Melayu, tetapi masyarakat umum..."

Why must the DPM mention "not only Malays but everybody else..."? Why can't he just say "semua rakyat Malaysia?" Is there still a "them" and "us" mentality? Subconscious at work? Wither "1 Malaysia"?

Some numbers about the cabinet

39 (56%) Malay
17 (24%) Chinese
5 (7%) Indians
9 (13%) dll, mainly East Malaysians

62 (89%) men; 8 (11%) women

If we look from pure statistics, the racial composition may reflect Malaysia's racial make up. However, the juicy/critical portfolios, namely finance, defense, education, international trade & industry are held by Malays.

Therefore, there is no need to worry about the notion of Malay special rights/positions are under threat.

MCA wanted Deputy PM post; denied. Then they tried for Finance Minister's post; also denied. They end up with the usual mickey mouse portfolio - health, transport, tourism, housing and local government.

The Indians used to have the public works ministry under their redoubtable, toll-promoting, god-fearing S Vellu. Now they are just left with 1 minister looking after human resource.

East Malaysians do have some interesting portfolio which reflect the opportunities that may resent themselves in plantation, natural resources, environment etc.

It is though, a big let down on the female participation. Perhaps there is too few "available ladies" available. There are many capable ladies in the Parliament but Najib hasn't got them on his side.

My first impression of the Cabinet

This is written without thinking much ... first impression or love at first sight, call it whatever you will.

Ministers in Prime Minister’s Department
Unity and Performance Management: Tan Sri Dr Koh Tsu Koon
Law and Parliament: Datuk Seri Mohamed Nazri Aziz

The minister in charge of Unity showed terrific composure when his photo was torn by a supporter of UMNO Bukit Bendera Division Chief who got a little bit excited over some R-related matters. By the way, what and whose performance the good Dr. is measuring?

The same guy is still in charge of Law and Parliament - there was once a lengthy article somewhere listing down things that he said that did not go well with a lot of people...there is hope for Pakatan!

Energy, Green Technology & Water
Datuk Peter Chin Fah Kui
Deputy: Noriah Kasnon

Plantation Industries and Commodities
Tan Sri Bernard Dompok
Deputy: Datuk Hamzah Zainuddin

Science, Technology and Innovation
Datuk Dr Maximus Ongkili
Deputy: Fadillah Yusof

Natural Resources and Environment
Datuk Douglas Uggah Embas
Deputy: Tan Sri Joseph Kurup

Do you see any BIG posts for East Malaysians? Anyway, plantation, timber concessions, Bakun Damn, Penans are important issues over there...

Of course, inevitably.....

Najib is the Finance Minister.... I always wonder what financial and economic experience he has. Sorry MCA, Tan Siew Sin was the last of the Mohicans.

Funny way of showing support

According to Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein, "kekalahan Barisan Nasional dalam pilihan raya kecil Parlimen Bukit Gantang dan Dewan Undangan Negeri Bukit Selambau tidak boleh dianggap sebagai tanda rakyat menolak kepimpinan Datuk Seri Najib Abdul Razak"

If that's the case, we Malaysians certainly have a funny way of showing our love and support. Perhaps the Education & Keris Minister can explain what we mere mortals and tax payers cannot comprehend.

Whatever nice things that Barisan Nasional comes out now, like review of ISA, visiting Chinatown, releasing some ISA detainees selectively, revocation of a unnecessarily ban on Suara KeAdilan and Harakah to begin with, bear in mind that

1) whatever BN does and will be doing, they are doing it with our money; this is what they should be doing anyway if they are getting paid

2) if there was no Pakatan Rakyat and 8 March Tsunami which comes from People's Power, there would not have been such a different tone of voices fron BN; try to picture the same people before and after 8 March.

So happy I was wrong!

I predicted that Pakatan can only win in Bukit Gantang but the voters in Bukit Selambu....I salute you!

I was worried when Mahathir made an appearance and judging by the number of hits in Che, the old chap seems to have plenty of support ... now I wonder how many of the million hits is made by the same person.

As for Batang Ai....sigh, too much head hunting might not do your thinking power any favours, eh?

Time for Pakatan to invest in Sarawak and Sabah. It needs more than 2 years to drum sense into these people.
resident. wangsaMaju: Najib reacting to the poll results today. Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin, BN's director for the by-elections- '...maybe the feelgood factor of the new power transition as yet to sink in on the voters...'

April 7 By-Elections in Batang Ai, Bukit Gantang and Bukit Selambau

Not many words in this post, just the video 'I Dreamt of Change' a blurry flashback from my video archives on the March 8 General Elections last year. Recut and remastered with A.R. Rahman and Suzzane's haunting score, Latika's Theme, from Slumdog Millionaire thrown in. Dedicated to the coming triple by-elections in Batang Ai, Bukit Gantang and Bukit Selambau on April 7 2009.

I was there when the Wangsa Maju election results were announced and Wangsa Maju MP Wee Choo Keong won by a margin of 150 votes. I think this is the only election results in Malaysian history where the postal votes worked in favor of the Opposition rather than BN.

Najib hit the ground running, great!

Najib has been impressive on his first day in office, I mean really.

1) he freed 13 ISA detainees immediately.If the ISA detainees can be released so quickly, why were they in there in the first place? What about the 100+ plus more? What about the act itself. Cheering-picking 13 out of the 100+, is that not equivalent to selective non-persecution?

2) He canceled the ban on Harakah and Suara KeAdilan- they should never been banned in the first place. Was it Syed Hamid or whoever could not give the reason for banning when queried? With hindsight, would he or should he or could he just shrugged and say,"oh this will be made look good in a few days, just sabar".....NOT

3) Giving some money to Tamil schools, heck, we always get something before by-elections. Nice new roads, new lamp post, Samy Vellu used to swagger by and order thousand and one things repaired, nice angpows for previously deprived SRJK....try to have a structured and systematic allocation process for vernacular schools without echos of helping 1 race is depriving of the other for a change.

4) What a nice sentence, “In our national discourse and in pursuing our national agenda, we must never leave anyone behind,”....remember "work with me and not for me"?

Let's hope my sceptism is wrong

What the Press doesn't tell you about Malaysia Airlines' 'World's Best Cabin Staff' Award

 Flying into the sunset: The tip of an Airbus A-330 wing against the crimson sun
SkyTrax, a UK-based research-consultancy company on commercial airlines, has awarded Malaysia Airlines the 'World's Best Cabin Staff' Award for 2009. MAS is winning this the sixth time since 2001 and in my personal books I have no doubt on the service quality of MAS cabin crew. My complain on MAS is mainly is MAS chief Idris Jala's target to reduce operating costs by RM700m to RM1b in 2009. It's eating into my flight experience with the following points:
- Size of meals on return flights have been reduced by half. Satay-rice is being normally served, the rice portion halved and mini satay sticks cram in to the other half of the cheapo lunch box. Busy business travelers mostly have to hit the ground running to attend to a busy schedule upon landing- the only time they have is on board the plane. Hence that onboard meal is a very important meal indeed.
- Meal quality has also dropped. Items served are more sweet, I mean sometimes they are really, really sweet. This includes cheap fruitcakes, chocolates, jam, biscuits, etc. Buns are as hard as rock at most times.
- My Enrich points have not been updated in the MAS system since September 2008. I do round trips overseas from 1 to 3 times per month, hence can you imagine the amount of flight miles I've collected.
- I called in several times to the Enrich phone number regarding my Enrich points but each time I'm transferred to a line which is not answered at all.
- I try to redeem my Enrich points but each time it is '...sorry sir, we are fully booked..' at any given time of the year. My points normally end up expired as a result of this.
- If you are flying to a destination below two hours' duration, MAS uses its small and old aircraft (the aging Boeing B-737s or Airbus A-330s). Aircraft are old and have this musty smell. I try to avoid this airline but because of aviation rules, short flights normally have transits if you are flying foreign airlines making the flight longer than it is.
A quick check on Skytrax's website shows the following results for its World Airline Awards 2009:

Now, MAS is not very high up for the best airline contest isn't it.
It's correct MAS has the 'best' airline crew, but it is probably  these aircrew who are saving the day, compensating for the lack of quality in other aspects of its customers' flight experience. MAS talks publicly about freezing staff recruitment and so on, but MAS is still hiring- hiring more process re-engineering people such as Six Sigma and Lean practicioners.
I just hope these people know what they are doing.

Now I know my roots, thanks Zahid!

According to Zahid, sexy women dancing and singing the latest hottest numbers are part of Chinese culture. Sorry mate, that's global entertainment trend.
I have nothing against the 3 babes, in fact, I like'em. However, calling them Chinese culture is an insult to Chinese culture. Chinese culture include, amongst other things, lantern festival, hungry ghost festival etc.
I suppose there is a belief that Chinese can trade a few STPM top scorers being rejected to enroll in their preferred choices in local universities or denied scholarships for a nice meal & a few dancing girls.
Up to the Chinese to articulate their view point then. Anyway, I won't bother to scream until I foam to defend my culture and race and religion to death. I am off to see some nice Ah-Mei music video now.