“A fascist is one whose lust for money or power is combined with such an intensity of intolerance toward those of other races, parties, classes, religions, cultures, regions or nations as to make him ruthless in his use of deceit or violence to attain his ends.”
- Henry A Wallace
COMMENT | Communications and Multimedia Minister Salleh Said Keruak claimed “the opposition coalition can never match BN, which has a track record of cooperation between the different ethnic groups and tolerance between its leaders, without compromising party principles”. This brings us to the question of what exactly are Umno’s principles.
We know from the National Civics Bureau (Biro Tatanegara, BTN) courses that Umno’s principles are an unholy brew of racial supremacy, religious bigotry and corporatism that was endorsed by a compliant Malaysian polity, resulting in a cascade of religious and racial issues that compromised every facet of government. With the ouster of the charismatic, jailed political prisoner – Anwar Ibrahim – from the Umno fold, the contemporary Umno narrative is one of loss of power and influence by attrition.polity, resulting in a cascade of religious and racial issues that compromised every facet of government. With the ouster of the charismatic, jailed political prisoner – Anwar Ibrahim – from the Umno fold, the contemporary Umno narrative is one of loss of power and influence by attrition.
The Malay vote is the most important vote to Umno. I wrote about how the dialectic in the Malay community is a threat to Umno hegemony, which is the real reason behind the racial and religious sabre-rattling. This is the existential threat Umno is facing – “what would happen if a majority of Muslims in this country decide that they have had enough with state religious authorities intruding into their lives?
They have had enough with money going into religious organisations while essential services that benefit their community are underfunded and mired in bureaucratic corruption. What would happen if they grew tired of the hypocrisy of the state where Muslim elites were immune from the harsh glare of Islam but the rest of the polity was not?”
While the non-Malay component parties of Barisan National scramble to discover their relevance in a post-Pakatan era, the reality is that their days of being handmaidens to Umno warlords are over. Most non-Malay opposition supporters have realised that it is better to have no representation in an Umno Parliament than the compliant non-Malay representation that the traditional mainstream component parties represent.
Just a couple of articles ago, I asked what can the MCA do for Umno – “the answer to that is MCA obviously cannot do anything much for the ruling BN coalition anymore. How do you remain relevant when you have lost your voting base? Umno does not need MCA to win elections. The dodgy meme that the current Umno prime minister is a “minority” prime minister is as fallacious as the so-called 'Chinese tsunami'...