Pakatan proves it isn’t ready for Putrajaya, yet

Pakatan proves it isn’t ready for Putrajaya, yet

By Hafidz Baharom

It seems that the pro-PH gang would go so far as libel and slander rather than actually contribute to intellectual discourse. At the end of February, things took a head when “someone” decided it was necessary to accuse me by name of taking funds from the Prime Minister’s Office, to join in the #UndiRosak campaign.

Wow.

While there have been accusations made of those telling people of the choice on Election Day to spoil their votes, these accusations have been generally nameless – because mostly, detractors would understand that naming someone would open themselves to lawsuits.

“Someone” didn’t get the memo. And so, defamation proceedings will proceed.

That being said, I know why people are doing this – it is simply out of fear. And that fear is that Pakatan Harapan will not win the next general election. The reason for this fear, is the lawmakers in Pakatan themselves making non-sensical statements that trigger this reaction.

There have been accusations that the country will go “bankrupt” if Pakatan loses, that this is the “last election”, that “corruption will be so bad that we will never recover”, and even going so far as to say “we will become Zimbabwe”!

I love that last one, mostly because if you look at the latest press freedom index by Reporters Without Borders in 2017, Zimbabwe (ranked 128) is already ahead of Malaysia (ranked 144) in the ranking. Yet, we are still better than Singapore (ranked 151).

I’ll say it again – PH is cultivating a culture of fear. And while fear works wonders in terms of political propaganda, there is a huge problem when you ask them a very, very pointed question. And that question is this:

What exactly will PH do to fix these issues?

Now, watch the embolism pops as no forthcoming answer appears. Then, all you have to do is keep asking for more details.

How long would these changes take? 100 days? A year? One term in office? Two terms? 60 plus years, equal to BN rule?

And this is where PH just sinks like an undone soufflé.

There is a very visible reason why they cannot even suggest solutions jointly as one entity being Pakatan Harapan. And that is because, they really have no idea. And they have no idea, because they have no unity.

A recent survey showed that Pakatan Harapan supporter were better educated than those supporting Barisan Nasional. So, why would their side, being one of more brainpower than the other, have a problem with solutions?

It’s simple – while they all have the brains, they don’t have the trust among themselves to actually put one person in charge of policies for a certain sector or lead a team. Or in the case of any legit two party system, to even propose members of a Shadow Cabinet to do so.

Thus, the reason PH politicians use culture of fear, rather than try to instil hope in Malaysians of actually having better policies, be able to project unity, and even be able to give hope that they will “save Malaysia” – all of the above without bothering with the details – is because this is the only card they can play.

And while dogmatic faith in political parties are not new among their supporters akin to brand loyalty, the newer trend in politics among the youth is that policies must be inspirational, out of the box, achievable and relevant.

Thus, when you suggest policies in your Shadow Budget riddled with immature name calling of “MO1” and saying you want to control BR1M to exclude cigarettes and alcohol, or even wanting to tax capital gains without excluding the EPF which will impact everyone’s retirement fund – did you really think the youth and even adults were stupid enough to just kowtow and accept it?

Subsequently, when you promise to deport migrant workers, without acknowledging tax breaks for technological innovation in automating processes to reduce dependence on foreign labour in lieu of local vocational school graduates, obviously you didn’t think far enough.

Rather sad when you think about just how many non-government organisations and research institutions they have in their midst, as well as professionals from all fields as their candidates in the next general election who could have seen through some of their own policy shortfalls, but decided to remain mum.

Thus, when their manifesto with “60 promises” was announced as delayed by Dr Mahathir Mohamed due to fear that “the government would have spent more” to the point that a PH government would be unable to keep their promises, it just goes to show that their proposals were unrealistic to begin with.

For myself personally, there was one opportunity that they failed to take advantage of on Monday, on the first day of the Dewan Rakyat – they could have shown unity and trust among themselves by actually forming a Shadow Cabinet.

Their failure to even achieve that when it costs nothing, a symbolic gesture of trust and unity, on the last session for this term, just goes to show one thing – Pakatan Harapan is not ready to govern Malaysia.

But that being said, they’ve announced that their manifesto will be launched on March 8, titled as “10 Promises, 100 Days”. Catchy, but if any of the idiotic proposals from their last shadow budget and youth manifesto turn up yet again, it’ll be really depressing.

But I’ll read through anyway. And I’ll still back them even if I spoil my vote for this upcoming General Election.

Even if it takes them 5 years or a decade to mature and come together to actually be a viable government in waiting, so be it. I will wait.

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From plastic bags to quinoa, is #undirosak still the immature and brain damaged ones?

From plastic bags to quinoa, is #undirosak still the immature and brain damaged ones?

By Hafidz Baharom

In the last two weeks, this has been the campaigns leading up to the 14th General Election. It was initially to call us using the #undirosak hashtag as “immature, brain damaged, treasonous” and even going so far as “committing suicide”.

Since then, we have learned that our largest apolitical critic being the chief of the Coalition of Free and Fair Elections (Bersih) is joining politics under the PKR banner and allegedly offered a “safe seat”.

Thus, the clean is now clearly about to get muddy.

Continue reading “From plastic bags to quinoa, is #undirosak still the immature and brain damaged ones?”

Did BN really meet 97.6 percent of their 2013 manifesto?

A very interesting article in Utusan today. Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak told a crowd that Barisan Nasional met “97.6 percent” of their 2013 Manifesto – the Janji Ditepati document from 5 years ago.

I’ll do a point by point analysis and update this soon. However, I do hope that the prime minister made the claim from a proper analysis and not just another lie. Hopefully, the Barisan Nasional media machinery will go into detail on this claim.

For those who don’t remember the 2013 Manifesto, you can look it up on The Star to remember. Continue reading “Did BN really meet 97.6 percent of their 2013 manifesto?”

Time to say “No”!

Reading Naomi Klein’s “No Is Not Enough” is an eye opener to just why we need to move on to a policy battleground rather than just the acceptable “mud wrestling” spectacle that is Malaysian politics.

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The book. Currently being placed on a very messy table

Klein points out something that is similar to Malaysia in what happened to Hillary Clinton – while she did win the majority vote, Donald Trump won 2,600 of the 3,000 counties in America.

Sounds familiar, doesn’t it? Continue reading “Time to say “No”!”

Is “confusion” a good excuse to ban books? And where does it lead?

Is “confusion” a good excuse to ban books? And where does it lead?

by Hafidz Baharom

This question still lingers, since the whole “Ultraman” ban in 2014 by our authorities here in Malaysia. Apparently because someone wrongly translated a character in the comic as “the Allah’s of Ultraman“, it got banned.

And this use of one word to describe God has led to yet another charge of how using such a word, and defining it, will somehow lead to “confusion”.

In today’s case, the people from the Selangor Religious Department (JAIS) testified that Ezra Zaid’s translation of Irshad Manji’s book titled “Allah, Liberty and Love” into Bahasa Malaysia, was “confusing” and wrongly describing God, therefore the cause to take him to court.

He is facing a maximum RM3,000 fine, a 2-year prison sentence, or both. Continue reading “Is “confusion” a good excuse to ban books? And where does it lead?”

Us and Israel, a love hate relationship

Us and Israel, a love hate relationship

By Hafidz Baharom

We have been against Israel since Tunku Abdul Rahman declared them persona non grata in 1965. However, we have been on and off again trying to establish relations with Israel since the 1990s, dependent on whatever happens in their relationship with Palestine.

Thus, having Israelis come to Malaysia, even to attend a United Nations (UN) conference will earn you brickbats when you are the government. In the most recent case, an Israeli delegation made its way into Kuala Lumpur for the UN World Urban Forum (WUF9) which was held two weeks ago.

Thus, what has somehow become a matter taken advantage of by Pakatan Harapan, is truly after the fact that it had happened. It really is an easy target to whack anyone about voicing an anti-Israeli stance. I would know, I have done it before for a column on a now defunct online portal in February 2012.

Continue reading “Us and Israel, a love hate relationship”

Why Pakatan is freaking out over #UndiRosak

Why Pakatan is freaking out over #UndiRosak

By Hafidz Baharom

There have been so many parables over Pakatan Harapan and Barisan Nasional that I have pretty much lost track of which one actually tells the tale properly.

Initially, it was a mere story of Pepsi versus Coke, and both of hem might trigger diabetes and make you lose your leg. And from there it has moved on to fruits A versus B, Bakery A versus Bakery B and even McDonald’s versus Ramli burger selling stalls and food trucks.

To myself personally, I’d rather look at it now and see Pakatan Harapan and Barisan Nasional more akin to Samsung and Apple – and I’m sure tech enthusiasts might see this and experience a lightbulb effect.

The parable is simple, Apple runs on Samsung chips. And both models using the same batch of chips burst into flames due to a defect. Both have sued each other for copyright infringement, both openly mock each other in ads, and both evolve over time. Continue reading “Why Pakatan is freaking out over #UndiRosak”

Letter to the Media – Analysis or propaganda?

Letter to the Media – Analysis or propaganda?

By Hafidz Baharom

I read the letter from Liew Chin Tong lambasting analysts as being biased and justifying a Barisan Nasional victory with a main question – who is he trying to convince?

He is correct by saying that if Pakatan Harapan should win over 50 percent of the Malay vote, they would win the next general election. Yet, herein lies the problem – Pakatan Harapan does not have that vote.

And here is something he is perhaps less keen to admit, his side lost a lot of Malay votes when it dumped PAS, while their replacements PPBM and Amanah are not yet gelled together nor gained the momentum of membership to take on both PAS and Umno. Continue reading “Letter to the Media – Analysis or propaganda?”