Thursday, January 05, 2006

Action against China Press boomerangs ...

The characteristically power-crazy, too-smart-by-half and vindictive security authorities in this country is notoriously well-known for over-kills that boomerang. The latest case of two China Press top editors having to 'resign' over the Squatgate scandal under the pressure of the Internal Security Ministry is classic.

Already, people in coffeeshops and pubs have started to raise more questions which may be politically damaging to parties and leaders of the National Front, like:

1. Is it fair to punish the editors so severely while the Deputy Minister for Internal Security Noh Omar was given only a relatively mild reprimand for his far more damaging statement asking foreigners (that include not only Chinese nationals, but also all Asians, Europeans, Americans, Latin Americans, Africans and Middle Easterners) to go home if they thought the Malaysian Police was cruel?

2. If the owner of China Press, namely MCA is powerless to protect its property and managers of its property, how can its members, supporters and Chinese Malaysians expect it to protect the legitimate interests of the community?

Of course, these two questions further open up more questions like:

3. If Umno's Noh Omar was only given a relatively mild reprimand for his 'foreigners-go-home' statement, is it fair for the Umno-dominated Cabinet to suspend MIC's secretary-general S. Sothinathan from holding government position for 3 months for making conscientious statement (allowed under Standing Orders of the British Parliament) in the Umno-dominated Parliament that was said to be "against government policy"?

4. Umno's MP for Jerai Badruddin Amiruldin is on public record for using racist word against the Indian community and yet he has never been punished or even officially reprimanded by Umno, BN or the Prime Minister. Is it fair?

Certainly, one of the original Squatgate scandal questions is still in circulation in coffeeshops and warung-warung:

5. If the Government could apologise to China for mistreating the latter's national, why can it also apologise to the people of our own country now that the victim is said to be a fellow Malaysian?

Well, as these are all moral-reasoning arguments that do not involve facts, figures and legalistic fine points, everyone can talk about it aloud in coffeeshops over breakfast or pubs during Happy Hours. And, you know, China Press's loyal supporters are taxi drivers, barber girls, butchers, shop keepers, hawkers, retirees and housewives who have plenty of times to chat and talk everyday in towns and villages all over the country without feeling restrained by Akujanji.