Band of Bloggers

Band of Bloggers is a loose grouping within those who subscribed to the Bloggers United movement, which has agreed to carry the same story / news from slightly different angles, perspective and/or flavour, to suit the widespread spectrum of political and satirical blog audience in the infinite world of blogosphere, which has taken a new place in the lives on internet savvy Malaysians, home and abroad.

Why? We have decided to work together on the common cause that we stood for. The parallel direction is to provide the readership with some degree of uniformity on the issue, principle and context of the major story, at hand. For example, this suit by NST and the Gang of Four against renowned fellow journo-blogger, Ahiruddin Attan and Malaysian political blog pioneer,Jeff Ooi.

The spectrum of this loose movement is really interesting. At one end there is pro-Keadilan online news provider Raja Petra Kamarudin, where as at the other end, former BN backbencher Chairman and former political secretary to the Deputy Prime Minister, Dato’ Ron Ahmad. Of course there is a stream of colourful blogosphere personalities, in between.

This is gaining more attention. By fellow bloggers, the internet savvy readership and not forgetting, the authorities.

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To the Men (& Women) of e (electronic) coy,

The Band of Bloggers is here! Come and make your opinion heard (through your keyboard tile)………….

 

 

*Graphics provided by Raja Petra uninc

Published in: on February 28, 2007 at 01:58  Comments (8)  

Oh No! I’ve been tagged….

I’ve been tagged. I dunno what that exactly that is but it seems by I’ve been infected by this “tagged” Bloggeris Unitedus dissease. These infections were made known by the micro organisms Rockyus Bruae, 3540 Jalanis Sudinae, Anotheris Brickus in the Wallus and Kickdefella highly infectious blog owner, Sheih whose recent visit to the “Maid of Putrajaya” and exposure to the Dollah Baju Batik could be the culprit.

Anyhow, I am wholesomely, weird.

I look weird, I sound weird, almost everything in life is weird.

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Okay, lets hear the details:

1. I have a ten year old daughter whom I greatly encourage to play BB guns with me! Yes, we shoot ball bearings against each other! (Oh, yes its bloody painful!) We each have a Glock with a lazer finder that dispense bb pellets at very high speed. We also have a “Super Soaker” water guns, each! Oh yes, we also have a set of battery operated lazer guns with the infra-red targetting receiver that makes this awfully horrid noise when fired upon and hit the bulls eye.

2. I am an addict of British comedy. I love ‘em all. My favourite is “Black Adder” series, “Yes, Prime Minister”, “My Family”, “The New Statesman”, “The Two Ronnies”, “Fawlty Towers”, “Thin Blue Line”, “Absolutely Fabulous”, “A Fish Called Wanda”, “Four Weddings & a Funeral”, “Johny English” and the more recent ones, “Love Actually” and “Keeping Mum”. I categorically love Rowan Atkinson, John Cleese, both Ronnies, Nigel Hawthorne, Rik Mayall, Ian Frazier, Hugh Laurie, Stephen Fry, Michael Palin, Hugh Grant, Tim McInnerny, Lenny Henry, Dawn French, Joanna Lumney, Jennifer Saunders, et al. I watch American comedies too but nothing like the Brits!

3. I have NEVER served the Armed Forces and yet I memorise all the names and pennant number of all the major RMN ships. I used to memorise the Captain’s name as well. Oh yes, to make it weirder, I also memorise Singaporean and Royal Bruneian, as well!

4. I have NEVER worked in MAS and yet I also memorised MAS’s departure time of most major flights, to and from abroad. I used to memorise all the B747-400s aircraft name (its named after the major cities in Malaysia)

5. I am NOT an engineer (infact, I studied professional accountancy; co-incidentally, I am so lousy at!) and yet I managed to convince the Science Adviser to the Prime Minister to do a national level convention on aerospace and aviation industry in 2001. I was the lead researcher for the convention and somehow rather, I was the focal point some of the leading and renowned players in the country, who presented papers. Weeks later, the man was flabbergasted when he learnt that I am not an engineer, actually listened and allowed me to do the major project. He was so pleased with the outcome that he made me present the summary paper at the second MDIC meeting in Lumut, Jan 2002.

6. I am an asthmatic Malaysian. My asthma is never triggered nor aggravated by cold (not even once in my years in England), however, my lungs are so responsive to humidity and heat. I also unable to tolerate the tiny winiest Durian! (Durian makes me so ill…….)

I think there’s many more but since I am ONLY required to furnish six, I shall end here.

I am tagging Husin Lempoyang, Ibnu Hakeem, Raja Petra Kamaruddin, Politikus, Amir Hafizi and Clark Gable of Pulau Duyong to list their weirdness here and bare all.

Published in: on February 26, 2007 at 23:38  Comments (13)  

Hello Mr. NST, that’s a bloody cheap shot!

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Click to read

 I was having late supper in the company of Rocky, Nuraina and A Voice @ the NPC when suddenly Rocky flipped through the “U Buy U Sell” edition for the day. There you have it! A full page in living colour.

What is this advertisement for? “What good are blogs anyway?”. A full page advertisement in colour, a day after Rocky tried to strike out NST & four others’ suit against him?

This is cheap, man! It’s really cheap. Don’t play this childish games lah, please. Tell us, really, what are you trying to achieve here, with this advertisement?

I can bet with all the King Midas’s gold that this will got go well with the Bloggers United people, now numbering in the high hundreds.

Anyone in the Bloggers United guild want to take up the challenge against the Big Dog. The stake is Maria Samad’s Kafe Fourteen mee rebus, taken only with Habhal kicap manis! Any takers? :)

P/S

NST Editors, don’t bother. We know you could be too “pre-o-ccu-pied”, taking instructions.

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Published in: on February 24, 2007 at 02:47  Comments (70)  

Tyranny, is it necessary?

Tyranny has been described by Meriam Webster as:

Etymology: Middle English tyrannie, from Middle French, from Medieval Latin tyrannia, from Latin tyrannus tyrant
1 : oppressive power ; especially : oppressive power exerted by government
2 a : a government in which absolute power is vested in a single ruler; especially : one characteristic of an ancient Greek city-state b : the office, authority, and administration of a tyrant
3 : a rigorous condition imposed by some outside agency or force

It is the sort of Boss one would coyly call, a “dictator”. It defies the concept of democracy. Somewhat liberty is compromised. Popularity is not a consideration. Vox populi is negligible. Basically, these sort of people want others to follow their ways, even it is involuntary.

Isn’t that supposed to be not good? Maybe. It has its arguments, moral and practical.

Then again the complexity of life has many times shown that what the heart says, it might not be the best for limbs. Society has too many facet that someone would eventually agree for “Tyranny”.

I, for one. At least, from a certain angle.

History has recorded some of the world’s society progressed because their leaders were Tyrants. Of course, its always about who’s opinion that is employed to interpret history and from which perspective. In this story, its about the achievements some society able to etch, on their colourful spread over their historical duvet.

Napolean Bonaparte was a tyrant. He managed to consolidate the sickly France into a European superpower, for a brief moment of time. Almost half of Europe was under him and in a way, Europe was united. Much like EU today. Bonaparte gave the simple peasants of France a lot of pride, nationalism and patriotism, especially a direction after the people’s revolution of July 1789. A tyrant took charge from a chaotic democracy. Yes, a power of the people which was short lived.

Winston Churchill was a tyrant, within a highly respected “First amongst equal” principled democracy, a system which became the fundamental blocks for 1/3 of the world’s government. He inherited the British Government from Neville Chamberlain, at a point where the Brits almost lost the war to the Germans and risk being invaded, just like much the rest of Europe. He led a resource choked Britain, under a very cruel blockade by Karl Doenitz’s notorious U Boat packs in the North Atlantic into a resilient force which managed to turn the table around and eventually co-organized in the Allied Forces expedition to liberate Europe. Of course as the Prime Minister, he had to make very hard decisions, which were very unpopular. He defied a lot of people. Churchill allowed Singapore, Britain‘s gem in the far east, to be overrun by the Japanese. He even sidestepped principles that the mighty House of Commons stood for, in awe. He took charge because Britain needed the leadership, even unwarranted.

Fidel Castro led a politburo of revolutionaries, to overthrow the Batista regime and turned the glitter and glamorous resort laissez faire Cuba into a communist-Marxist nation in the Carribeans. He nationalized all the American industries and reformed almost everything in Cuba. Western defined democracy and freedom disappeared, along with a poor human rights record (according to many red witch hunters across the Gulf). Being an ally of the Soviet Union, he was a thorn to the US. However he did wonders. Almost everyone had education opportunities, even to tertiary and despite the economic sanction, he developed an impeccable health program, including an advanced bio-medical field in an island left in the stagnation of time.

Of course, there is also Lee Kuan Yew. The expulsion from the federation of Malaysia 9 August 1965 left the city-state with only its trading hub economic position. He managed to transform the entreport economy of the tiny South East Asian nation state to a regional financial, ICT and electronics powerhouse and one of the most powerful economies in Asia. His policies imposed so many restrictions for Singaporeans, including a healthy democratic process. This further allowed him to have a free hand in designing and implementing a lot of programs, in a resourceless and yet highly dense island-city-state.

The good thing about tyrant leaders is that they managed to get things done, especially in situation if crisis. Like Churchill and Castro. Sure, they defied the concept of democracy. The people were not heard. But then again, there’s other pressing and major issues that the people should deal with, rather than endless bicker and grumble who-suppose-to-do-what-when-and-how-should-it-be-done. Too much free talk about being righteous is not actually the best thing to dwell into, especially when your house in on fire and there’s not much money in your wallet.

Two out of the examples chosen above are millitary leaders. Millitary leaders sometime makes the best tyrant, running a country which is much unsettled. Millitary leaders are trained in commanding so many units and move coherently. No questions asked, objectives must be met, mission must be fulfilled. That’s the milltary management success. This is true for Pakistan, under Gen. Zia Ul Haq and now, Gen. Pervez Musharaff. Also true for Gamel Abdul Nasser and Anwar Sadat, of Egypt. Marshall Josef Tito of Yugoslavia. Charles De Gaulle of France. Generalismo Chiang Kai Shek of Taiwan and Francisco Franco of Spain. In a way, Lord Protector Oliver Cromwell, the only personality to defy the closely treasured monarchy system successfully in England 1600s, is a tyrant too.

The luxury of democracy is something the people would want to have, some cherish, but only when every single aspect of survival is being fulfilled. Too much rhetorics actually fail to evaluate the mitigating circumstance of other people’s real issues at hand versus their much highlighted predicaments, especially by these sordidly selfish promoters of so-called universal values in the pretext of human rights, voice of the people, the theoretical academics, narrow minded clerics, et al.

When the situation is pressing and there is a crisis at hand or lurking round the corner, one would go for the tyrant, to set things right, for the many, who many times are aimless!

I would like to borrow the caption of Capt. Frank Ramsay, played by Gene Hackman in the movie, “Crimson Tide” when he sternly address the XO, Lt. Cdr. Ron Hunter, played by Denzel Washington. “We are here to preserve democracy, not to practice it!”.

Published in: on February 23, 2007 at 01:11  Comments (2)  

Blogger Ahirudin Not Decided To Withdraw Application

KUALA LUMPUR, Feb 22 (Bernama) — Blogger Ahirudin Attan has not decided whether to continue or withdraw his application to strike out the defamation suit brought by the New Straits Times Press (M) Berhad (NSTP) and four others against him.

Ahirudin’s counsel Edmund Bon said he needed time to discuss with his client.

Bon said he received one volume of affidavit-in-reply to strike out the application today and three volumes of amended statements of claim by NSTP and the four on Friday.

“We have to study the amended statements of claim and we need time to look into it whether to continue with the striking out of the application or to withdraw it,” he said.

Bon said High Court judge Datuk Mohd Hishamuddin Mohd Yunus fixed April 2 to hear the striking out application and if Ahirudin, better known as Rocky, wanted to withdraw the striking out application, he should inform the court before April 2.

The court had fixed Thursday to hear Ahirudin’s application to strike out the defamation suit by NSTP and the four.

On Jan 4, NSTP, its deputy chairman Datuk Kalimullah Hassan, chief executive officer Datuk Syed Faisal Albar, group editor-in-chief Datuk Hishamuddin Aun and former group editor Brendan Pereira filed a suit against Ahirudin for defamation and malicious falsehood.

The suit pertains to certain articles and postings that had been published or permitted to be published by Ahirudin on his weblog.

They claim that the articles referred to them and were defamatory.

The plaintiffs also applied for an inter-parte injunction to require Ahirudin, a former editor of the Malay Mail, to remove certain articles from his weblog and restrain him from further publishing articles defamatory to them.

However, on Jan 25, Ahirudin filed an application to strike out the defamation suit brought by the NSTP and the four others on the grounds that the suit was fatally deficient because it did not state the exact words in the publications.

– BERNAMA

Published in: on February 22, 2007 at 23:39  Comments (1)  

The Kuala Lumpur War Crimes Commission & War Crimes Tribunal

Posted in War & Peace by secretariat on the February 21st, 2007 (taken from the PGPO portal, http://www.perdana4peace.org/)

by Prof Dr Shad Saleem Faruqi (UiTM)

The recently constituted Kuala Lumpur War Crimes Commission (KLWCC) and the Kuala Lumpur War Crimes Tribunal (KLWCT) have been criticized as having no legal basis in domestic or international law and, therefore, lacking in jurisdiction to try anyone for any crime.

It is submitted that the KLWCC and the KLWCT have jurisdiction to investigate and adjudicate war crimes in Iraq and elsewhere for the following reasons:

1. The concept of law is not confined to enacted, formal law. Law is not just a heathen word for power. Law is not confined to lex (posited law). It covers jus (justice) and recht (right).The majestic concept of “law” includes a higher, supra-legal, supra-national, field of “natural law” derived from a superior source. While there is no agreement on what this superior source is, throughout the ages people have supplemented human law with transcendental principles derived from divine revelations, nature, reason or intuition. A great deal of law is found, not made.

This type of “natural law thinking” was and is the motivating force in all trials for crimes against humanity – whether at the Tokyo and Nuremberg trials or the more recent trials in former Yugoslavia, Sudan and Sierra Leone. In all these trials the guiding principle was that above and beyond the law of the state there is a higher law to which the victims can appeal to.

Throughout history this natural law thinking has inspired challenges to unjust laws and oppressive regimes. It was natural law that was the basis for the anti-apartheid struggle in South Africa, the civil rights movement in the USA, the anti-colonial wave in Asia and Africa and the conviction of Nazi criminals after World War II.

The world is facing a similarly tragic situation as before World War II. The strong are attacking the weak for their possessions. Pre-emptive and unilateral wars of aggression are being waged. Genocides are raging. New holocausts are being perpetrated. As before the rise of Nazism, there is no shortage of apologists in Malaysia and abroad who are prepared to appease mass murderers and mock those who raise their voice of protest against oppression.

2. Even if it is alleged that the KL proceedings have no legality, no one can deny that they have legitimacy. Their legitimacy is derived from the nobleness of the cause of peace and justice, the reverence for life and the abhorrence of war as a means of solving disputes.

3. The KL proceedings are inspired by the principle that wherever there is a right there must be a remedy. Ubi jus ibi remedium. The families of the 650,000 innocents slaughtered in Iraq in the last three years, the thousands more who have been tortured and the millions more who have been displaced have no remedy in national or international courts.

Their country is under a brutal occupation and it is inconceivable that any Iraqi court will prosecute members of the occupation force for war crimes.

American courts have no jurisdiction in Iraq and have even feigned helplessness in relation to torture and unlawful detentions in American controlled concentration camps in Guantanamo Bay and elsewhere.

The ICC has been approached by 240 complainants from Iraq. Its Chief Prosecutor has most amazingly ruled that the complaints do not have “sufficient gravity” to merit the initiation of a prosecution!

4. By far and large international law on genocide, crimes against humanity, war crimes and wars of aggression is applied selectively and in a racist and colonial fashion. Except for the mass murders in Nazi Germany and former Yugoslavia, no other crime perpetrated by Europeans and Americans has ever been prosecuted in international courts. European, American and Australian colonisers have committed genocide on four continents. The United States has bombed 28 countries since World War II. Europe and America are complicit in the genocide that is raging unhindered in Palestine, Gaza and Lebanon. No bells toll for the victims of mass murders in Hiroshima, Nagasaki, Vietnam, Kampuchea, Laos, Afghanistan, Palestine, Lebanon, Chechnya, Chile, Argentina and Nicaragua. No one has been prosecuted.

The KL War Crimes Commission and Tribunal will, on the other hand, provide a forum to all, irrespective of race, religion or nationality, who are victims of mass crimes to make their case before the Commission and the Tribunal.

5. The Rome Statute has a number of flaws that prevent horrendous war crimes, genocide, crimes against humanity and the crime of aggression from being prosecuted.

First, the US under George Bush de-recognised the Rome Statute. As such, Washington is not obliged to surrender any US politicians and Army Generals for trial before the International Criminal Court. Criminals in the UK and Australia belong to a ratifying state and as such are subject to the ICC’s jurisdiction. Unfortunately they are being shielded by the ICC prosecutor because in his opinion their crimes of complicity lack sufficient gravity!

Second, for a crime to be prosecuted before the ICC, it must be committed on the territories of a member state of the ICC. Iraq and Afghanistan are not parties to the ICC Statute and the bestialities committed there are, therefore, exempt from the ICC’s jurisdiction. Only if these countries were to sign the Statute (which is unlikely), the possibility of prosecution will open up.

Third, Article 98 of the Rome Statute provides that a country need not hand over a foreign national to the ICC if it is prohibited from doing so by an agreement with the national’s country. The American government has forced nearly 100 countries to sign such “Article 98 agreements” thereby making its war criminals immune from international prosecution.

Fourth, the UN Security Council has the power to refer crimes committed by a non-signatory to the ICC (as it did for Darfur). But due to its geo-politic, racial and religious bias, the UNSC will not refer wrong-doers in the US, UK, Poland, Italy or Australia to the ICC.

Fifth, the ICC can investigate a case only if national courts fail or are unable to investigate a case. The major offending states, the US and UK are putting up the charade of prosecuting low ranking soldiers but are ignoring compelling evidence that the massacre of civilians, tortures and other crimes against humanitarian law were authorized by top politicians.

Sixth, the US and its allies committed the undoubted crime of an illegal war of aggression in Iraq. But this crime, though mentioned in the Treaty, is not yet allowed to be prosecuted because no definition of a “crime of aggression” has been agreed upon.

Seventh, before mounting the Iraq invasion the US President had threatened use of nuclear weapons. During the war the US and the UK used many weapons of mass destruction that are banned in international law. But use of these WMDs is not a crime under the ICC Statute. India had asked for inclusion of nuclear weapons and WMDs as a crime against humanity. But the US disagreed and the matter was not pursued.

6. The KL proceedings are inspired by previous precedents of People’s Tribunals e.g. the Sir Bertrand Russell Tribunal in relation to America’s war crimes in Vietnam; the recent Tokyo Tribunal on Afghanistan; and the Turkish Tribunal in relation to Iraq.

7. Such people’s initiatives have basis in democratic theory, in human rights jurisprudence and in the Charter of the United Nations.

Democracy permits the powerless to organise against the powerful. Democracy permits NGOs to raise their voice of concern on issues of national and international concern. Only those without democratic impulses and with authoritarian and fascist tendencies will argue that citizens’ initiatives must proceed only with official and legal backing.

Our fidelity to human rights demands that we do not remain silent in the face of mass murders, the brutalization of a whole nation and the de-humanisation of a whole people. We cannot remain apathetic if atrocities continue to be committed and international institutions are comatose and content to be so.

The Charter of the United Nations permits NGO involvement in world affairs. The Charter begins with the words “We the peoples”. It provides for some UN agencies to consult with people’s organizations. In fact approximately 1,000 NGOs have official consultative status with UN agencies.

8. The fact that the KL War Crimes Tribunal cannot impose its judgment on the aggressors is not the heart of the matter. The point is to expose wrong-doing and to shame the criminals in the eyes of the world.

9. The fact that the KLWCC and the KLWCT may have to proceed without the presence of the accused is indeed troublesome. All accused will be notified and invited to be represented. But if the accused refuse to respond, then the trial will proceed in abstentia. This is not without precedent. After World War II many Nazi criminals were prosecuted in their absence.

10. Admittedly, the KLWCT suffers from many limitations. But many distinguished jurists from around the world believe that it can make a significant impact.

It can mobilise the conscience of the world community.

It can report its findings to the General Assembly of the United Nations with a view to a “Uniting for Peace Resolution”.

It can submit its findings to the ICC to enable the ICC to wake up from its stupor.

It can transmit the report of its deliberations to the 104 countries that have ratified the Rome statute. Some of these states like Germany and Belgium have laws that permit prosecutions for genocide and for crimes against humanity no matter where the offence was alleged to have been committed.

Finally, the KL War Crimes Tribunal can refer its findings to many peace loving groups in the USA and elsewhere and request them to exert democratic pressures on their leaders to end this senseless slaughter of the innocents.

Prof Dr Shad Saleem Faruqi (UiTM)

Published in: on February 21, 2007 at 23:04  Comments (5)  

Kisah kapalselam….

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Pihak KEMENTAH sudah bersedia untuk menamakan kedua dua kapalselam “Scorpene” yang ditempah dari DCNi, Perancis. Dijangka kapalselam ini akan mula beroperasi 2009. Kapalselam pertama, yang sedang dibina di limbungan DCNi Cherbourg, Perancis dijangkakan dinamakan “KD Tunku Abdul Rahman” manakala yang kedua, yang sedang dibina di limbungan Ixar Cartagena, Sepanyol, akan dinamakan “KD Tun Abdul Razak”.

Nama pilihan yang cukup bagus sekali, amat sesuai digunakan kepada alatan senjata strategik dengan memberi penghargaan mereka yang pernah berjasa mempertahankan Malaysia.

Mungkin dari ini, boleh dirumuskan fleet kapalselam TLDM hanya akan berjumlah empat sahaja. Ini kerana, jika ada lima, maka kapalselam kelima itu mungkin tidak berapa bagus. Inggeris sebut “jinx”.

Mula mula memang nampak macam ‘clean’ (bersih), tetapi kemudian mula bersarang. Nakhoda sering tertidur semasa bertugas, nakhodanya juga mungkin akan mengambil keputusan berbaik baik dan ‘bertepuk tepuk belakang’ sambil bermain golf dengan “musuh”, kapalselam itu terlalu kerap keluar negara, pegawai pegawai kananya akan mengaturkan rancangan sendiri (tanpa melibatkan markas) seperti menglibatkan diri dengan Monsoon Cup tahunan, anak anak kapal juga selalu mengunakan kapalselam untuk memancing dimalam hari, nakhodanya kerap bercuti (R & R) keluar negara juga dan paling leceh, kalau nakhoda benarkan anak/menantu kendali kapalselam, termasuk semasa operasi!

Motto kapalselam kelima itu mungkin “Submarine Hadhari”

Masalah tu!

Published in: on February 21, 2007 at 13:35  Comments (13)  

Hairy Maclary from Donaldson’s Dairy

Out of the gate
and off for a walk
went Hairy Maclary
from Donaldson’s Dairy

and Hercules Morse
as big as a horse
with Hairy Maclary
from Donaldson’s Dairy

Bottomley Potts
covered in spots,

Hercules Morse
as big as a horse
and Hairy Maclary
from Donaldson’s Dairy

Muffin McLay
like a bundle of hay,

Bottomley Potts
covered in spots,
Hercules Morse
as big as a horse
and Hairy Maclary
from Donaldson’s Dairy

Bitzer Maloney
all skinny and bony,

Muffin McLay
like a bundle of hay,
Bottomley Potts
covered in spots,
Hercules Morse
as big as a horse
and Hairy Maclary
from Donaldson’s Dairy

Schnitzel Von Krumm
with a very low tum,

Bitzer Maloney
all skinny and bony,
Muffin McLay
like a bundle of hay,
Bottomley Potts
covered in spots,
Hercules Morse
as big as a horse
and Hairy Maclary
from Donaldson’s Dairy

With tails in air
they trotted on down
past the shops and the park
to the far end of town.

They sniffed at the smells
and snooped at each door
when suddenly,
out of the shadows
they
saw….

SCARFACE CLAW
the toughest Tom
in
town.

“EEEEEOWWWFFTZ!”
said Scarface Claw.

Of with a yowl
a wail and a howl,
a scatter of paws
and a clatter of claws,
went Schnitzel Von Krumm
with a very low tum,
Bitzer Maloney
all skinny and bony,
Muffin McLay
like a bundle of hay,
Bottomley Potts
covered in spots,
Hercules Morse
as big as a horse
and Hairy Maclary
from Donaldson’s Dairy,
straight back home
to bed!

Dodd, L., Puffin Books

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We got our dear Girl-Girl this book when she was hardly four; March 2000, to be precise. I was made to read this book so often enough, I actually loved it! Its about a pack of typical English countryside dogs (Hey, I call myself BigDogDotCom, okay!) , trotting about doing their thingy. I am dedicating this poem for all the readers who have and treasure the little ones’ attention, that they share the special little precious moments by reading, together. :)

Published in: on February 21, 2007 at 01:41  Comments (2)  

Hurrah, we are on a roll!

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Today commemorate the month old Bloggers United informal and unstructured but yet highly effective movement. So far, its the silverlining that came from Rocky being sued by the NST and four others. On thursday, Rocky will face the judge again to hear the injuction that they tried to muzzle him. This attempt represent all those who fight against the media empire Dark Lord’s evil clutches, clawing in.

Best of luck, the alternative media Jedi, Rocky! May the force be with you, always…………..

Published in: on February 20, 2007 at 11:56  Comments (5)  

Tun Dr. Mahathir’s call for UMNO in Johor Bahru

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The New York Hotel in Wadihana, Johor Bahru was the venue. 10 February 2007, 1100 am at the Grand Ballroom, on the 25th floor. This was the first public speech (on local and domestic issues) besides the 3rd Perdana Peace Forum concluded three days earlier for the former Prime Minister and UMNO President, YABhg Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad.

The audience was eager as is the speaker. One could really feel the aura as the man walked towards the stage, despite under escort, hundreds were closing in and offering their hand to greet and photographers were non stop shooting. The last time he spoke at a rostrum was at Kijal, Terengganu on 22 September 2006. One can actually tell his eagerness to address the Johoreans, especially after the planned 11 Nov 2006 talk for him at the same venue by the same organisers, were postponed indefinitely then, due to his admission at IJN for the mild heart attack right after Dato’ Mukhriz’s openhouse at Seri Cahaya, Seri Kembangan, Selangor, 8 Nov 2006.

The organisers were an UMNO supporting political portal, MyKMU.net. The acronym KMU actually stands for Kumpulan Menyokong UMNO. However, the portal is very critical about the leadeships’ shortcomings, the UMNO Youth Vice Head (who also happens to be the son-in-law of the UMNO President and Prime Minister) and it portrays many voices from the UMNO grassroot who are internet savvy.

It was almost evidently clear that too many issues were hatching in Tun Dr Mahathir’s mind, illustrative in his smile carved to all the pleasantries, even unspoken as so many walked up infront near the stage just to catch a closer glimpse of a man who few days earlier dared calling Bush, Blair and Horward as war criminals. The cancellation of the double tracking system project, the cancellation of the Scenic Bridge, the issue about the proposal to sell one billion cubic metre of sand to Singapore (hence, is referred as “The Malaysian Proposal”), the SJER and Free Access Zone that will come with the Wilayah Pembangunan Iskandar and change of policies and attitude towards Singapore, particularly the PAP / ‘Lee dynasty’ regime is thought to be “burning” within the former Prime Minister, which across the strait Minister Mentor Lee Kuan Yew once described as an “Ultra Malay”.

The moment he grabs the rostrum and after a very short pleasantries to the organisers, Tun Dr Mahathir talks about how UMNO went through a series of changes, including leadership changes, for the betterment of the Malay political agenda, which eventually do good for the country as well.

He started by saying the UMNO founder Dato’ Onn Jaafar contributed a lot to the Malays when he managed to unite the Malays on 11 May 1946, coincidentally in Johor Bahru also, to voice a strong struggle against the Malayan Union. However Dato’ Onn’s idea to open UMNO to the non Malays was vehemently rejected by the UMNO members. As a result, Dato’ Onn left, with a very sore heart.

A happy-go-lucky Civil Servant who is one the Kedah Sultan’s prince was chosen to fill in the void Dato’ Onn left. Tunku Abdul Rahman Putra lead the Malays from 1951-1970. In the 1969 elections, the Malays showed their dismay on how the UMNO President neglected their development issues. UMNO suffered costly and that was a sign him being showed the door. Being a perfect gentleman, he left too, with much frustration, one would assume.

The point that Tun Dr Mahathir as the immediate past UMNO President tried to emphasis was, UMNO needed the change because the leader was unable to carry on the aspiration of the members, which represented the larger Malays. Tun Dr Mahathir strongly advocated that UMNO became stronger and evolved into something better for the Malays, after the ineffective leader left.

He said, UMNO was formed to struggle against Malayan Union. After Tunku took over, UMNO managed to change its struggle towards “Merdeka” (Independence), which was proven to be successful six years later. The leadership change also provided opportunity for UMNO to work together with the non Malays (MCA and MIC), in a power share formula which is later known as the “Alliance” and a spirit is still carried on till today.

Then when Tunku was sluggish in his Government’s development programs for the Malays, there was another leadership change again. This time, the leadership change brought about better deals for the Malays. His successor, Tun Razak Hussein, managed to launch the New Economic Policy (NEP) on July 1971, a structured socio-political and economic plan to alleviate the Malays. This plan was accepted by consensus by the other parties as well (except for DAP). Tun Razak also managed to consolidate the oppositions like Gerakan and PAS together into developing the country as a team and thus Barisan Nasional (BN) was formed in 1973, which is still strong till today.

Therefore, Tun Dr Mahathir reitirates that UMNO members shouldn’t be weary and skeptical about leadership change within UMNO, even if it’s pre-matured. Leadership changes in UMNO actually brought UMNO to greater heights. The talk about UMNO leadership challenge will weakened the party is really a lame excuse. With over 3.2 million members, UMNO is strong enough to weather any leadership changes crisis and move towards making the right decision, for the betterment of the Malays and thus, the nation.

UMNO actually went thru 3 major leadership challenges. The 1978 episode where UMNO Veteran Hj Sulaiman Palestin challenged Dato’ Hussein Onn, the 1987 episode where Tengku Tan Sri Razaleigh Hamzah challenged Dato’ Seri Dr Mahathir Mohamad and street mob style out-of-ring Anwar Ibrahim challenge after the UMNO Deputy President was sacked from the party 3 Sept 1998. Of course UMNO suffered a little dent here and there but in hindsight, UMNO actually came out stronger. So strong that in the 21 March 2004 12th national polls, UMNO managed to win 110 seats in the 219 seat Dewan Rakyat. For the first time, UMNO actually could form a Government without the BN coalition partners. One would expect an extremely a lot more than just a mere victory for UMNO, as the leading partner in BN to abandon the other 13 coalition partners.

Tun Dr Mahathir also strongly put the case where his attempts to talk, especially to UMNO members, were hindered. Pressures and artificial barriers were forced upon the organisers. He pointed out that 16 times invitations for him to speak were revoked by the organisers and some cancelled. He said that never happened before. When he was being challenged by Tengku Razaleigh in 1987, UMNO Team B people were completely free to organise rallies and campaigns. Its seems there’s a somewhat paranoia by the people who is serving the UMNO leadership today. Even media editors were constantly called and ‘adviced’ on stories to publish. Sometime which photos to be used! Tun Dr Mahathir commended the organisers of the Johor Bahru event the ability to weather pressures and willing to take risk. To him, today that’s a noble spirit.

Of course whilst in Johor Bahru, Tun Dr Mahathir raised and carefully dissected the issues that surrounds part of the 19 points which he raised in the four eyed meeting, two days before last year’s Hari Raya Aidil Fitri with the Prime Minister.

The Q & A that followed was equally interesting. Tun Dr Mahathir warns that UMNO is not for anyone in particular only but everyone has equal opportunity to become the Prime Minister. He itirates sternly that no one should create a dynasty within UMNO. One would strongly regard that particular point is about the Prime Minister actively plan for his son-in-law’s elevation in UMNO, whilst he is still very much in the executive seat.

It’s only obvious, that Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad, being a very responsible Malaysian and a God fearing man, wants to set things right, especially now he is approaching 82 and no longer as fit as he used to be. He simply wants to undo the mistake that he had done. He wants to make it good, this time. The immediate past UMNO President is advocating that UMNO do a leadership change soon, before it worsens and eventually, gravely and irrevocably affects the Malays.

And that was what Johor Bahru call was all about, last Saturday. Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad chose to openly make this call in Johor Bahru, of all the places. One would intelligently guess, because 500,000 UMNO members come from the State. One was there, so happy to capture the moment, three feet north west from Raja Petra’s four thousand Ringgit CCD digital camera!

Published in: on February 18, 2007 at 22:40  Comments (13)  
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