Sunday, July 26, 2009

Castrated: MCA, MIC, and Gerakan

Umno considers the government machinery as a Malay vehicle. The government machinery -- whether it be the Election Commission (SPR), police, the anti-corruption agency (MACC), the Information Ministry (that controls the mainstream media and radio and television stations), institutions of learning (from kindergartens right up to universities), etc. -- are there to serve Malay interests. And make no mistake about this.

The above are the words of the man whose whereabouts remain a mystery to most people – including “the government machinery.” I happen to think he is absolutely correct in his observation. In the same article, he goes on to later say the following, which, I also find no reason to disagree with:

Let me make it clear, again. The Malaysian government is a Malay government. The government’s job is to serve the Malays and protect Malay interests. [T]he Deputy Prime Minister said so in case anyone may have forgotten this. And this will remain so as long as Barisan Nasional stays in office. Umno has promised the people this.

As a matter of fact, it’s hard for me to imagine exactly how there would be non-Malays – who without being dishonest with themselves – could not agree with the above. Frankly, it just boggles the mind. Yet, I suspect those in Gerakan, MCA, MIC and such parties in BN can put on a straight face and either dispute the above facts or find justifications that amount to nothing more than a smoke screen.

As we all know quite well, their central function in BN is to enable Umno to continue being, as the voice of our conscience quoted above said, “a Malay government.” Considering that the non-Malay parties seem to find it impossible to stop being enablers of the Umno controlled machinery, it seems only appropriate that they redefine themselves.

You see, nothing these non-Malay coalition members do seem to resemble the role of a political party. They have no impact on public policy, no impact on shaping the national agenda, no relevance – despite the odd and token ministerial post - to influencing the actual agenda of the Umno-government machinery.

Do you really believe otherwise? (I’ll assume your answer is no.)

So, in that case, in the spirit of what is often called ‘truth in advertising,’ these organisations ought to simply be reclassified as NGOs. You see, what they do is actually the kind of work NGOs are tailored to do! As I have established above, we already know what they cannot and don’t do. And if you examine what they actually do, I’m sure you can come up with a host of things, but I am confident it will be along the following lines:

For one, they’re good at begging. (No disrespect to NGOs, by the way.). The MCA, Gerakan, and MIC are good at begging for scholarships, they beg for allocation of funds for entrepreneurs in their respective communities, they beg for jobs in the Umno-Malay government, they beg for permanent residency and citizenship for the spouses of their members, and they beg…. (Well, you see my point, right?)

It’s also amazing that these so-called parties have been mute about the so-called unity government talks between Umno-PAS whereby the outcome would only further marginalise and make irrelevant these organisations of the non-Malays.

And when it comes to national controversies and crisis of confidence in the Umno-governing machinery (the police and MACC), these organisations of the non-Malays have been pathetic. Indeed, some NGOs have actually been more morally and politically credible in speaking out than have these entities. The Umno machinery (Cabinet) announces a supposed royal commission on the Teoh-MACC crisis that all know has been rigged due to the latitude given to the commission to investigate. And in case some have forgotten, Kugan’s death in the hands while in police custody has all but been stuffed. And what exactly have the Gerakan, MCA, and MIC offered its constituencies who want justice done?

For all we know, these so-called parties had also been inconsequential in the recent policy change regarding the teaching of science/maths in English. Was this decision made at the Umno Supreme Council? Did this just get presented to the cabinet, which merely rubber-stamped it? Is there any evidence to suggest otherwise – that the MCA, Gerakan, and MIC really had any significant role in shaping this major education policy change? I think you know the answer.

By the way, have you ever wondered exactly how many Chinese and Indian CEO's there are for Government-Linked Companies? Could it be that this is not because the government machinery is a Malay government, but because the Chinese and Indians are just too stupid to become CEOs? No? Chinese and Indians are not stupid? Then why, ah?

And what about our national team sports, ah? Where have the non-Malays in the nation's team sports gone? How come the Chinese and Indians can somehow compete in sports like badminton and golf but when it comes to team sports, they don’t seem to commonly get into national team, ah? You don’t think….? Maybe we should get MIC, MCA, and Gerakan to also beg for spots for non-Malays on national sports teams, la. After all, as we know, they specialise in begging, right?

You know, sometimes I wonder – even many NGOs actually aren’t as insignificant and irrelevant as these non-Malay parties.

At least, unlike the MCA, Gerakan, and MIC, most NGOs aren’t castrated.

G. Krishnan