Monday, April 28, 2008


Umno General Assembly 2007 (from The Star)

I had a good laugh reading this report in Malaysiakini. All these belligerent and blustering Umno warlords clamoring for Abdullah Badawi's resignation seem to believe the present PM bears all the blame for Umno's fatal injuries in the recent elections.

The truth is that a vast majority of Malaysians across the racial and cultural spectrum voted against the dead-end feudal mindset in which these Umno diehards are trapped. To them, replacing Dollah with someone "ferocious" (read "intimidating") and prepared to re-establish Umno's dominance by every means available - including authoritarian rule - will salvage the wreckage of Umno's pride. They forget that the original Umno effectively died in February 1988 during the battle of two Umno titans - Mahathir and Ku Li - and that the current Umno (Baru) was a hastily slapped-together sham of a political party that has no agenda, ideology or vision apart from serving to enrich its leaders at the public expense.

These dinosaurian and parochial Umno minds only understand a world that's already passing - a neo-feudal paradigm in which the elite feed parasitically off docile and ignorant serfs who applaud their every emptyheaded utterance.

3D Map of the WorldWideWeb

Too late lah. The rest of us have already shifted into the digital age which mimics the fractal, self-replicating nature of the internet - a technological quantum jump that, more effectively than any form of indoctrination, democratizes virtual reality... and then actual reality itself. In cyberspace the center is nowhere and everywhere and decentralization is how memes spread at lightspeed along optic-fibre networks - the same way thought travels through neural circuits within us and modifies our behaviors and perceptions.

When Rehman Rashid (left) of the NST ranted against the rising tide of uncouth and "unqualified" bloggers - whom he despises for their ability to reach a worldwide readership despite shortcomings like a semi-literate command of English or outright naïvety, gaucheness and even immaturity - he was really lamenting the transition from traditional hierarchies to an embryonic egalitarianism wherein somebody like Lilian Chan with strong personal opinions - but whose writing style marks her as the woman-in-the-street - can blog about whatever she damn well pleases and attract a massive cult following.

Take the legendary blogger Jeff Ooi (right) for example: even with his less-than-elegant command of English, Ooi not only succeeded in making a career out of blogging but actually used the publicity generated by NST's lawsuit against him to launch his new career as a Pakatan Rakyat MP. That's kungfu for you!

In any case, such myopic and noisome outbursts from the remnants of Umno - apart from their entertainment value as slapstick political comedy - can only strengthen the Pakatan Rakyat government-in-waiting by making their vision of a de-ethnicized and democratized management style all the more appealing. So let's have more of it, please.