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'Umno is shaking with fear'
Published:  Mar 25, 2009 3:13 AM
Updated: 5:32 AM

vox populi big thumbnail ‘This is what they resort to. Everyone has the right to hear a ceramah whether it is one by BN or the opposition. Who has the right to stop these ceramah ?'

On Tear gas fired Anwar's ceramah

John Johnson: This is definitely not the Malaysia I know. The police fired tear gas and used the water cannons on the rakyat of Malaysia. What is wrong with our leaders in this country?

Umno is shaking with fear and this is what they resort to. Everyone has the right to hear a ceramah whether it is one by BN or the opposition. Who has the right to stop these ceramah ?

I am totally disgusted and appalled to see the havoc that is being created by BN. But we will not be fooled again. We will persevere and be patient.

The reason our schools, our family lives and our government institutions have failed is because love was never at the center of everything.

Concern for the people was never the main priority of this government and for this very reason it will fall and wither away like dust.

On Batang Ai - a game of high stakes

Kenny Gan: I beg to differ with the writers that a defeat for PKR in Batang Ai will certainly put an end to the party's dream to capture the Sarawak state government two years down the road.

PKR is arrayed against the might of BN which has almost unlimited money and awesome machinery at their disposal including the use of state apparatus. In this unequal battle, it is certainly not a dishonour for PKR to lose and one should not read too much into it.

A by-election is a very focussed event where BN can channel all its mighty resources into it. A state wide election is far harder for BN to control.

Money politics is rife in Sarawak and BN will exploit this illegal practice to the hilt. But if there is a chance of changing the government, vote-buying becomes less effective because voters may take the money and vote for the opposition with less fear of being penalised.

Then again, two years is a long time in politics. PKR can use the time to strengthen its base and gain further inroads to the Dayak community.

Time is not on the side of any corrupt regime where more and more young, educated and connected voters who demand better governance join the electorate every year.

But although a loss for PKR is not a pointer to the future fortune of the party, a win by PKR in this David versus Goliath battle will certainly mean the sounding of the death knell for Taib Mahmud and his corrupt cohorts.

In this respect, Batang Ai is a supremely important battle for both sides. From the fields of Batang Ai, a new political consciousness may emerge to spread over the whole state with unstoppable momentum. It is a battle for the soul of Sarawak.

On Official: Malaysiakini not friendly to Umno

Peter Ooi: It is something new to me that a press can be ‘friendly' or ‘unfriendly'. Umno only regards a media as friendly if it were to paint glossy pictures of the leaders even though they are ugly.

Oh yes, this is the mentality of our leadership. They only want to read and hear reports praising them sky-high.

They may be outright poor performers and yet the media must project them to be super good.

Leaders who are scared to admit their shortcomings or failures can never be good ones.

I believe Malaysiakini is regarded as unfriendly because it only reports the truth and nothing but the truth. Umno and BN are the real enemies of the truth.

On Harakah, Suara Keadilan banned 3 months

Kit Lee: Freedom of the press and freedom speech are dead in Malaysia. But thank goodness for technology, as the message can still be passed on.

Let's keep it up until the bad guys are removed.

On Hisham bars Pakatan leaders from schools

The Healer: Oh well, whether or not Pakatan leaders are barred from schools, they can continue to contribute to education from the outside.

At least, they are not barred from donating to schools, or contributing by setting up learning centers for the weaker students.

The school authorities, on the other hand, at one glance, have two options. One , continue to invite Barisan leaders for official school functions or two, defy the directive.

But, I propose a third option: Don't invite anybody at all.

On Indian voters may boycott 'outsider' Manikumar

Lim BC: The people do not need this opportunists. A good leader would not ask for positions.

If Hindraf is so interested in politics and claims to have the Indian support, register as a political party and put up your own candidate.

Don't hide behind other parties and threaten to pull out whenever positions are not given to your people. PKR, please stay firm. We don't need these people as our representatives.

On Samy Vellu retains top post uncontested

Richard Teo: With the election of Samy Vellu as the MIC president for another term, the majority of the Indians who support him should not complain if they are further marginalised.

They have made their choice and they will have to live with it for the next three years.

And if the Indians are unhappy with Pakatan's selection of Manikumar as their candidate for Bukit Selambau then they should just vote for the MIC candidate Ganesan and let BN win the seat.

The Indians in Bukit Selambau should not resort to threats and blackmail in that they will not support the PKR candidate because he was not their choice.

If they really feel that the MIC has done a better job of looking after their interests, then they should just support the MIC candidate.

Those Indians who have vested interest in selecting their own candidate for Bukit Selambau should just leave PKR. If they cannot abide by the decision of the Pakatan leaders, then please leave the party.

Their attitude merely vindicates the suspicion that they are only after the exco position and not to serve the constituents. Such candidates if elected would not hesitate to party hop if given monetary rewards.

On Mahathir should examine his own heritage

Stephen Ng: In Bahasa Malaysia, the saying is: ‘ kacang lupakan kulit '. This is Mahathir.

If in India, he is a full-fledged Indian. If in China, he would claim that he was born in Malaya but inside he has Chinese blood from one of his ancestors.

Frankly, having lost all my respect for him since he started criticising Pak Lah, I think he will go down in history as the country's biggest agitator of race relations.

All for whose benefits but for his own and that of his sons? He picked Pak Lah as his predecessor today; tomorrow, he stabs him from behind.

He makes someone the prime minister, and when Pak Lah chose not to follow his wishes to build the crooked bridge, he pushes him off the stage.

He kept barking at the Americans when there was a war in Gaza, urging employees of Starbucks to quit their jobs! No wonder Al Gore walked out on him and Bob Hawke called him ‘recalcitrant'.

Relations with America and Australia immediately came back to normal during Pak Lah's leadership. With Singapore, there were also fewer issues during Pak Lah's time.

On Don't be naive, race-based politics here to stay

We'll Be Damned: Firstly, I agree in principle that race-based parties should have no place in our country if we want to see Malaysia grow and progress further.

Secondly, I believe that every citizen in this country deserves an equal chance (I did not say equal rights) to make a living.

I, for one, do not oppose help or assistance to anyone regardless of race or creed. I do not oppose help or assistance of any kind to the hardcore poor.

However, I do oppose handouts to the already rich who want to enrich themselves and their cronies further at the expense of the rakyat .

I do oppose any policy that is both oppressive and divisive such as when awarding contracts and tenders to enrich a few.

When the NEP was written and passed, it was meant to assist all citizens regardless of race or creed. For all it noble objectives, I fully support it.

However, along the way, some smart people decided to 're-invent' it and then abused it for their own gain - this I oppose and I am sure you would too.

But I agree there are certain policies in this country that should not be questioned. They are:

1. Rights of the Malays in Malaysia - No, these rights have not ever threatened my well-being in Malaysia unless used to oppress other races.

2. Rights of the royalty - certainly not questionable when the ruler is seen to be just.

I do, however, oppose oppressive and divisive policies meted out by any government of the day.

On Some blogs' reputations can't be challenged

Julian Hopkins: I'm not writing to propose another blog, but instead to tell your readers about a survey I've put online for my PhD research on blogs (I'm based at Monash University, Sunway campus).

I believe that it is relevant to your readers, and hope that you will consider publicising it in your publication in some manner.

Unfortunately, as an academic, non-profit project, I'm afraid my funds do not extend to an advertising budget.

The survey is aimed at understanding more about the possible effects of the monetisation of blogs - something that I hope that it will contribute to a greater understanding of blogging and bloggers as a whole.

Your readers can access it here and get more information here as well.

As a token of appreciation, there's a prize draw for participants - the top prizes are Platinum Movie Suite vouchers. The summarised results will be posted online once I have compiled them.

The more people, and the more different types of people who take part, the more valid the results will be.