In the latest display of typically grimy gamesmanship by the Umno/BN regime team, Minister for Youth and Sports, Khairy Jamaluddin has arranged for Malaysiakini to be sent off for threatening to ask questions including whether some senior members of Sabah Umno Youth will be suspended pending their investigation for alleged foul play.
Never mind that fixing a political game so unfairly in your favour that you’re free to make up the rules as you go along, and to act as the referee to boot is, to coin a phrase, hardly cricket.
A fact that Khairy, of all members of the Umno/BN squad, should be well aware, having been educated at England’s elite Oxford University.
All he’s apparently done since, however, as far as I’ve been able to discern, is to demonstrate the accuracy of the old adage that you can take the boy out of the kampong, but you can’t take the kampong out of the boy.
Not that he can be excused by his boyishness any longer, given that he’s now 41 years old. In other words, he’s now as youthless as he’s proven to be useless in achieving the personal goal he publicly proclaimed back when he became the latest star recruit to the Umno/BN squad by marrying a daughter of then Prime Minister Abdullah Badawi, to himself achieve the premiership by the time he was 40.
But at least he can take heart from the fact that the former and veteran if not outright antique Umno/BN captain-coach Mahathir Mohamad is attempting to make a comeback at the age of 90-odd.
Odd being the operative word here, as in the decade since Mahathir (photo) hung up his boots, he has put a stop to the career of his first hand-picked successor, Badawi, and has been striving to repeat this feat against Badawi’s substitute, Najib Abdul Razak.
All for the sole purpose, apparently, of scoring the top job for the only one of his sons to employ the Mahathir name for the purpose of making it big in politics rather than business, Mukhriz.
However, Mahathir’s Machiavellian moves have seemingly put him so hopelessly offside with the rest of the regime team’s self-perceived major players as to have totally cruelled Mukhriz’s pitch.
And in any case, of course, Mahathir, along with fellow Umno/BN-team has-been Muhyiddin Yassin, has transferred to the opposition side, and in the process, as far as I can see, thrown the entire contest for the 14th General Election into chaos.
Meanwhile, in anticipation of the big match, the Umno/BN team under skipper Najib Abdul Razak has been frantically practicing its repertoire of professional fouls, deliberate dives, and cheap shots.
Like, to bring us back to where this column started, Khairy Jamaluddin’s summary dismissal of Malaysiakini from his press conference following his participation in an "ignition ceremony" celebrating the return of Malaysian volunteers from humanitarian missions to Sri Lanka and Bangladesh under the [email protected] Asia Programme.
And, as I’ve been reminded by a subsequent Malaysiakini report on the sending-off, while this was a first by the Ministry of Youth and Sports, it has long been the standard state of play at the Prime Minister’s Office, the Treasury, the Defence Ministry and MCA headquarters.
At first sight, this banning of Malaysiakini from interviewing Umno/BN regime stars about their team’s shocking record of own goals on behalf of Malaysia seems to make some kind of sense as both putting a stop to awkward questions and providing a sop to their one-eyed supporters.
But on second thought, it makes almost no sense at all, considering that "official" regime team propagandists like Bernama get a totally free run in reporting lots of absolutely shocking performances...