Tuesday, November 18, 2008

‘New Blood’? More Like Contaminated Blood!

I must admit when I hear the expression, ‘new blood,’ VKK Teagarajan for the deputy president of MIC is not only the last image that comes to mind, frankly, the image does not even register in my mind.

Therefore, you can imagine my sheer amusement, bewilderment, and shook to read that Teagarajan has presumably offered himself up for the aforementioned post and cast himself as ‘new blood’ for the MIC. Now I’m no genius but I will admit I’ve also been around enough to know when someone is pandering for one’s self-interest. Maybe Teagarajan’s groupies might be thrilled and tickled pink that he might become the deputy president of the infamous MIC, which is notorious for being the servant of the Umnoputeras. But to call his own candidacy one that would represent ‘new blood’ into the inept MIC? Give me a break!

This coming from someone who has been a party insider for years and whose record, I would suggest, reflects ‘more of the same,’ rather than ‘new blood.’ I’m not sure about you, but when I think of ‘new blood,’ I don’t visualise individuals with a longstanding ‘insider’ status. Further, this is someone who, while as president of the Malaysian Associated Indian Chamber of Commerce, accomplished nothing of significance for that organisation.

Of course, it is no surprise that sooner or later, and one way or another, the often incomprehensible Samy Vellu will depart as MIC president. [After all, even Mahathir did move on and, someday, so will other dinosaurs, including Robert Mugabe in Zimbabwe. After all, even dictators don’t live forever.] Sometimes some people have enough brain cells to think and will decide to leave. And all this will mean the day has to come when someone will have to succeed the man who has kept his stranglehold on the party for decades.

The unfortunate reality is that Samy Vellu’s ‘longevity’ and insatiable desire to remain president all these years has meant that the party hierarchy has been frozen and been relatively static for sometime. Sure, we did see, after what was a rather protracted dysfunctional ‘marriage’ between Surbramaniam and Samy, the departure of the former a few years ago. Further, we also saw some ‘housecleaning’ and musical chairs at the level of party vice presidents and such other inner-circle posts, which predictably, reflected Samy’s agenda. Not much ‘new blood’, and certainly not much by way of innovative ideas, dynamism, energy, and vision. So, we’ve essentially had more of the same. Precisely because of this political imperative within the MIC, there has been minimal, if any, new blood to speak of.

But alas, for Teagarajan to be describing himself as ‘new blood’ is, for me, going way too far. If you’re susceptible to buying the notion that Teagarajan would be ‘new blood,’ for the MIC, then you probably also agree with the notion that Badawi has been brilliant at reforming the judiciary, and Samy Vellu is a charismatic and a visionary leader who made sure Malaysian Indians did not become marginalized by his BN supported apartheid-like policies. But you won’t get me drinking this spiked chendol!

So, please, Teagarajan, we’ve already had politicians like you, many times before, doing this ‘rebranding’ ploy by pathetically wrapping yourselves around dreary, trite, and stale metaphors such as: ‘new blood.’

For me, this self-promotion by Teagarajan is about as healthy for the MIC, as trying to give a dying patient blood transfusion using contaminated blood. [Now that, Teagarajan, is a metaphor that’s catchy and original!]

G. Krishnan