The vote counting is over. Time to count our blessings. There’s no genocides, no street violence. Apa lagi Anwar Ibrahim mau?
I have lost all faith in Pakatan Rakyat after knowing about the 100,000 strong crowd at Kelana Jaya. Is that a sign of “respecting the democratic process”? They cannot even see themselves for who they are even if a mirror was held up to them.
Do I sympathize with the sense of defeat and loss Pakatan Rakyat is reeling from? Yes, but why do they have to take it so personally.
Everyone is so focused on BN cheating but no one is focused on the fact that Pakatan Rakyat is not well organized and plays “not to lose” whereas BN has experience and strategy and a PLAY TO WIN attitude.
In the midst of all this blaming and accusations running wild I see a few sparks from mainstream media :
The Barisan Nasional has proven that it is a faithful friend to members of its coalition. In my earlier post “Apa Cina Mau” I played the Devil’s Advocate to ask BN to axe MCA out. The premise of that came from a conversation I had with a taxi driver UMNO supporter who picked me up from the Sungai Nibong bus station when I got back to Penang.
He had asked me (and this was the night before the Utusan Malaysia article), “Kenapa Cina tak suka MCA?” The tone of his voice made me realize that UMNO is a much more faithful friend to MCA than PRK will ever be, based on current sentiments, to DAP or even PKR to PAS. Rather than BLAME MCA for losing so much support and costing BN seats UMNO wondered how to salvage the credibility of its friend and save it from becoming obsolete.
I am actually rather surprised that UMNO-supporters view MCA favorably. If they view MCA favorably and they know that MCA is there as the voice of the Chinese then is it possible that they can also simultaneously be racists against the Chinese at the same time?
This question sat and percolated in my mind for one night until I saw the APA CINA MAU headlines the following day (and the uproar that ensued). I wrote my “Apa Cina Mau” post on Tuesday to see what would resonate with UMNO supporters who would look it up.
By Wednesday I saw this statement by Barisan Nasional secretary-general Datuk Seri Tengku Adnan Tengku Mansor :
“Tengku Adnan said that MCA is dismayed over the poor results in the recent general election and it could still be reeling from it.
He said this was what made the MCA leadership to reaffirm its earlier decision that it would not take up any offers to hold government posts.
“Perhaps they feel rejected because from the results it looked like the Chinese voter base has shifted their support to DAP.
“Honestly, MCA is a party with a structure and it has fought long and hard for the ethnic community.
What a faithful friend, I thought to myself. There I was on Monday night trying to instigate the UMNO taxi driver and saw that what I said did not trigger any sense of blame from him towards MCA. On Tuesday I wrote my “Apa Cina Mau” and though it ended up on the bottom of the first page on Google search for those words it elicited no negative reactions. On Wednesday I see UMNO coming out in the news to proclaim the loyalty to have MCA’s back.
I believe the affection is mutual. All this while MCA must have had UMNO’s back to deserve this mutual affection. In fact I think UMNO realizes that MCA has stood by UMNO at the expense of its party losing credibility and relevance to the Chinese community. MCA might suffer a sudden demise and see the end of its political legacy because of how it stuck its own neck out to defend UMNO and the BN coalition.
I was discussing with friends on Monday night about why I said what I said on my facebook that BN deserved to win. I related it back to the principles we are learning about business and life so that they are able to detach themselves from mass emotions and focus on lessons we can learn. In the end when I broke down the theories and details they saw what I saw that BN simply had a better strategy and a better strategy is only possible because of trust and mutual co-operation, something Pakatan Rakyat, their supporters themselves admit from time to time, sorely lacks.
Taking it to the streets and stadiums simply because one did not have a better strategy is simply not democratic. Taking it to the streets, to me, is an adopted culture. We are not Filipinos and we are not Westerners. We are Malaysians.
As I am writing this my comments I’m getting on my facebook posts are saying that black t-shirts have a right to vent their frustrations. I suppose to a certain extent I agree with it but I am concerned that grassroots UMNO and BN supporters who have yet to cool down themselves will see the Pakatan supporters as “kurang ajar”. Humans, being humans, a lot of things will be said and done in moments of anger and frustration that in time we all will regret how we let emotions over-rule us and upset our sense of balance. Ever been in a fight with your spouse / boyfriend / girlfriend? You know what I mean.
Rather than vent and throw tantrums and be frustrated can we take this all sitting down like mature people? Just accept that we played the game the best we could and we have lessons to learn from it. Losing is not personal. It’s a process. It’s a time for reflection.
When emotions over-rule logic Ego takes over. The need to be right will over-ride the need to be compassionate. The UMNO-led BN has admitted in mainstream media that all awhile they have been focused on the rural areas and now it’s time to understand the sentiments of the urban and the young up and coming who grew up in a world of niches and demassification of society ; meaning they as a generation reject anything mass per se.
So let’s work towards that. Personally, I don’t really care if an UMNO-led coalition stays in power for the next 500 years. But psychologically I care about the fact that “a body at rest will tend to stay at rest” and stagnation stumps all forms of growth and expansion.
I want change not because I take all BN’s silliness personally but I want change simply because things need to change. I don’t even believe that heterosexual monogamy works for more than 20% of people out there and 80% of people need “change” in their relationships as they develop and grow as individuals. I don’t even believe that one religion works for everyone and that a person can change from one perspective of religion to another without making the religion they grew up in wrong for everyone else. I don’t even believe that one should only stick to one’s mother tongue and not “change” as social and economic patterns change.
I worry about people who want change because they hate what they have. I want change because I love what I have always had and I am ready to expand and experience more.
If I have to make my final stand clear to everyone it is that I have a lot of respect for what DAP and Lim Guan Eng has achieved and done for Penang. I also have a lot of respect for UMNO for having the backs of their coalition members and understanding what rural people want. I believe, MCA, like Gerakan, has ceased to be relevant to the Chinese community.
I do not think the Chinese are essentially racist – they are simply more HUNGRY, more educated, more progressive, more competitive and their common denominator is that they want to ensure a future of vibrant social and economic reciprocity for their children in this country.
But the Chinese have alienated themselves, no thanks to Dong Zong, by not being able to speak Malay well and that gives them an imagined sense of alienation and a real sense of discrimination.
Everything in extremes is bad. The Chinese being efficient ensure that they almost always don’t waste whatever little resources that they have and will manage to make something out of nothing. But they are so efficient that they find that learning Bahasa Melayu is a waste of time and resources.
If the Malays were economically more progressive or advanced in areas of new pockets of wealth and growth the Chinese, with their utilitarian values, will not have the same arguments they have now justifying their resistance towards learning Malay. The Malay language is not a difficult language to learn and because Bahasa Jiwa Bangsa truly reflects reality the resistance towards “the rural jiwa” is the premise behind the resistance towards learning Malay.
This resistance towards the language took a life of its own when the generalization of the resistance transcended culture, identity, values, religion…..I believe the actual cause of Chinese resistance, and they may not realize this themselves, is not towards anything Malays or Islam stands for. The actual resistance is towards backwardness and a lack of vision towards continued prosperity and abundance – values that drive the ethnic Chinese, conditioning and modelling that gets passed down generation after generation.