Thursday, December 31, 2015

2016 ~ Extraordinary in every way!


Completing the Old for A New Beginning...

Thursday, December 24, 2015

A terribly Messy Kerismas for Umno (revisited)

Umno is still trying to pin the blame for the bloody 13 May 1969 episode on the DAP (in other words, the Chinese). Notwithstanding widespread reports that machete-wielding, black-clad berserkers donning red headbands were brought in and out of Selangor in army and police field force lorries, there is no doubt that the authorities could have ended the violence within 48 hours - instead of allowing the carnage and tension to drag on for weeks - if they had had the political will to do so...

A few years years ago a young friend shared with me his unease about the next general election. "I have a gut feeling Pakatan Rakyat will win and Umno will stir up trouble," he said.

If he was hoping to get some reassurance from me that nothing so horrific could possibly happen, he would have been disappointed. My response was that the signs were clear - Umno knows it has reached the end of the line, but it refuses to get off the gravy train.

Fat man in a red suit not always Santa Claus!
Ever since Razak Hussein took over the reins from Tunku Abdul Rahman in the grim aftermath of May 13, Umno has been gorging itself off the fat of the land, riding on the NEP and an outrageous array of Ketuanan Melayu (Malay Supremacy) policies.

No need to go over soggy, rank-smelling ground. Umno's sins are legion, and an inordinate proportion were obviously perpetrated under Mahathir Mohamad's 22-year-tenure. Umno should have died and been buried in February 1988 - but Mahathir was way too ruthless and nipped in the bud an attempt by two former prime ministers to establish an "Umno Malaysia" without him.

It was all about the money then - and even more so now. When so much money is involved, the worst traits tend to emerge. Umno in general - and Najib Razak in particular - are in dire straits. They can see the bold graffiti on the wall: the younger, street-savvier generation of Malays are no longer inclined to be whipped into a mindless frenzy by issues of race, religion and royalty. They are far more interested in freedom and social justice.

Umno's support base has been reduced to just a small band of rowdies and bullies - many of them moonlighting as policemen and goons-for-hire. Even its rural voter base of FELDA settlers can no longer be taken for granted - their children are beginning to wake up to the fact that they have been systematically robbed by smooth-talking Umno warlords who claim to have the Malays' interests at heart.

Is the army behind Umno? It's safe to say that the top brass are behind Najib. As defence minister for two terms, Najib had ample opportunity to line the pockets of high-ranking officers and make sure their retirement benefits were well taken care of. However, if the army is called out in the event of a national emergency, the rank-and-file troops may be disinclined to open fire on multiracial crowds for fear of injuring their own friends and relatives.

Alice slays the Jabberwocky of race-based politics
The Bersih 2.0 Rally for free and fair elections put to rest the specter of May 13.

That was its greatest achievement. After that pivotal date, Malaysians are uniting against corruption, social injustice, and demanding their civil liberties. While Umno and its fascist offshoots Perkasa, Isma, Pekida, (and a purulent plethora of ostensibly "Islamic" agencies like Jakim and Jais) remain mired in the ugly rhetoric of race, religion and royalty, everybody else has moved on.

So, even if Umno attempts to revive its May 13 scenario after it loses the next election, it can only send a few hundred rempit into the streets to create an atmosphere of tension. Nobody else will be provoked to join the fray. You can't start a full-scale "race riot" without participants. What can the rempit do except burn a few cars and overturn some trash cans?

Everyone who isn't still in a cultural trance or living beneath a coconut shell knows what sort of dirty tricks Umno is capable of and is unlikely to fall for any race-based sandiwara  it attempts to stage, post GE14. Even if Umno's armed thugs manage to inflict injury on a few hapless bystanders - the rest of the population will take cover and refrain from retaliating. How long can a bunch of mindless thugs roam the empty streets before they tire of their aimless rampage?

The SupremeTransformer, 1Nazjib
Sure, Najib can twist the Agong's arm and declare a national emergency... but such a desperate ploy can only backfire on his corrupt regime. No nation can maintain a state of emergency for more than a few weeks. And then what?

Without people going about their everyday business, everything grinds to a halt. This would be akin to a massive hartal (general strike) which some of us have been trying to organize - only this time the hartal would be thrust upon us by an evil and massively unpopular regime that has just lost an election. Well, if such a situation arises, it would only prove beyond any shadow of doubt that Umno/BN has lost its legitimacy - and even if it seizes this opportunity to arrest and imprison all Opposition leaders, activists and bloggers, it will only be signing its own death warrant.

So let's put it this way: should we continue voting Umno/BN just because we fear the dire consequences if we don't? Or should we pit our fearlessness against Umno/BN's fear? 

I'm willing to concede that we may have to embark on a national reconciliation exercise - the way it was done in South Africa during the tenure of F.W. de Klerk, when many police officers received formal pardons in exchange for their confessions and corrupt ministers were let off if they agreed to return a fair percentage of their ill-gotten gains to the national treasury.

Cartoon by Edward Koren/New York Times
[First posted 24 December 2011. Reposted 24 December 2013 & 24 December 2014]

Friday, December 18, 2015

Words of Wisdom for the Festive Season (reprise)

"Civilizations, like the penis, rise and fall, and when the towers and the battlements crumble into the earth, they return to the embrace of the Great Mother." ~ William Irwin Thompson

"I don't make jokes. I just watch the government and report the facts." - Will Rogers
"I remain one thing and one thing only - and that is a CLOWN. It places me on a far higher plane than any POLITICIAN." ~ Charles Chaplin


IN A HELL OF A FRIGHT." ~ Joyce Cary

I don't agree, Joyce. I believe the only acceptable government is SELF-GOVERNMENT. But for that to happen, the entire population must first derobotize itself. That will take a bit of time. As a stopgap measure, a less arrogant, more approachable and democratic Pakatan Rakyat government led by Anwar Ibrahim or Wan Azizah will serve us nicely! :-) ~ Antares

[From The Things They Say About Politicians, compiled by K. Das; illustrated by Antares, 1987. First published 18 September 2009, reposted 25 December 2011]

Sunday, November 22, 2015

Revealed: The Men Who Killed JFK (repost)

The Last Confession Of E. Howard Hunt - US government/CIA team murdered JFK

By Larry Chin
Online Journal Associate Editor
Rolling Stone

The April 5 issue of Rolling Stone features the deathbed confession of CIA operative and key Bay of Pigs/Watergate/Nixon administration figure E. Howard Hunt, The Last Confession of E. Howard Hunt by Erik Hedegaard. This piece is significant not only for its exploration of Hunt, but for breakthrough information that appears to thoroughly corroborate the work of key John F. Kennedy assassination researchers and historians.

Who killed JFK?

According to Hunt's confession, which was taken by his son, St. John ("Saint") Hunt, over the course of many personal and carefully planned father-son meetings, the following individuals were among the key participants:

Lyndon B. Johnson: LBJ, whose own career was assisted by JFK nemesis J. Edgar Hoover (FBI), gave the orders to a CIA-led hit team, and helped guide the Warren Commission/lone gunman cover-up.

Cord Meyer
: CIA agent, architect of the Operation Mockingbird disinformation apparatus, and husband of Mary Meyer (who had an affair with JFK).

David Atlee Philips
: CIA and Bay of Pigs veteran. Recruited William Harvey (CIA) and Cuban exile militant Antonio Veciana.

William Harvey: CIA and Bay of Pigs veteran. Connected to Mafia figures Santos Trafficante and Sam Giancana.

Antonio Veciana: Cuban exile, founder of CIA-backed Alpha 66.

Frank Sturgis: CIA operative, mercenary, Bay of Pigs veteran, and later Watergate figure.

David Morales: CIA hit man, Bay of Pigs veteran. Morales was also a figure involved with the assassination of Robert F. Kennedy.

Lucien Sarti: Corsican assassin and drug trafficker, possible "French gunman," Grassy Knoll (second) shooter.

Would Hunt continue to tell lies on his deathbed? Perhaps. Would Hunt tell a final tall story or two, to protect himself, or perhaps deal one final slap in the face to the US government (which made him a fall guy for Watergate)? Yes. Would Hunt hide the involvement of certain individuals to whom he remained loyal, including people who are still alive? Certainly. Anything from an operative like Hunt can only be accepted with caution and healthy skepticism.

Nevertheless, Hunt's scenario has the ring of truth.

Each of the named names are well-known CIA and CIA-linked players exposed by many researchers and historians who have detailed the enduring connection from the Bay of Pigs and the Dallas hit to Watergate and Iran-Contra.

The Hunt confession vindicates generations of historians, researchers and whistleblowers who have given their lives and careers to expose the truth about Dealey Plaza. While there are too many to name, they include, but are not limited to (and in no particular order): Jim Garrison, Mark Lane, Fletcher Prouty, Josiah Thompson, Carl Oglesby, Peter Dale Scott, Anthony Summers, Robert Groden, Victor Marchetti, David Lifton, Harrison Livingstone, Michael Canfield, A.J. Weberman, Sylvia Meagher, William Turner, Jim Marrs, Pete Brewton, John Newman, Philip Melanson, Hal Verb, Mae Brussell, Harold Weisberg, Oliver Stone, Mike Ruppert and Dan Hopsicker, Jim diEugenio and Linda Pease.

Meanwhile, the criminal deceptions of the US government and its corporate media, the Warren Commission, and the dirty work of cover-up specialists such as Gerald Posner and Mark Fuhrman, and the legions of JFK assassination revisionist/theorists, deserve a final rebuke, and eternal scorn.

Highlighting Hunt's role

Although the Rolling Stone piece does not address it, the Hunt confession directly corroborates two classic investigations that previously exposed the role of Hunt. They are Mark Lane's Plausible Denial and Michael Canfield/A.J. Weberman's Coup D'Etat in America. Lane's book details how he took Hunt to court, and won a libel suit, essentially proving that the CIA murdered JFK, and that Hunt lied about his whereabouts. The investigation of Canfield and Weberman identified Hunt and Frank Sturgis as two of the three "tramps" arrested at Dealey Plaza.

Time has only made these investigations more relevant. More than ever, their books, and those of the JFK historians and researchers above listed, deserve to be found, read and studied.

Hunt to Nixon to Bush

The Rolling Stone piece fails to go after the roles of Richard Nixon and George Herbert Walker Bush. But the Hunt confession, if accurate, leads directly to them, to their lifelong associates, and all the way to the present George W. Bush administration.

The Dallas-Watergate-Iran-Contra connection has been thoroughly documented by the key JFK researchers, and in particular, in the work of Peter Dale Scott, one of the very first to show the deep political continuity across three decades. Daniel Hopsicker's Barry and the Boys goes into even more detail on the players.

Consider the career of George H.W. Bush. He was a Texas oilman (Zapata Oil) and a CIA operative, involved with the Bay of Pigs. Bush's name was found in the papers of George DeMohrenschildt, one of Lee Harvey Oswald's CIA handlers. As documented by Pete Brewton, author of The Mafia, the CIA and George Bush, Bush was deeply connected with a small circle of Texas elites tied to the CIA and the Mafia, as well as the Florida-based CIA/anti-Casto Cuban exile/ Mafia milieu As Richard Nixon's hand-picked Republican National Committee chairman, and later as CIA director, Bush constantly covered-up and stonewalled for his boss about Watergate, which itself (by the admission of Frank Sturgis and others) was a cover-up of the JFK assassination.

Tracking any of the individual CIA operatives involved with the Bay of Pigs, it is impossible to ignore or deny direct connections to George H.W. Bush and his crime family, across the Kennedy assassinations, covert operations in Indochina and, later, Latin America.

Beyond any reasonable doubt, the US government murdered John F. Kennedy. There are people still alive today who were involved directly and indirectly implicated. Some are probably even serving in positions of high influence. Some still have never been identified or touched.

All of these individuals still need to be pursued, exposed, and brought to justice.

Copyright © 1998-2007 Online Journal

[Thanks to Dave Blackman, who forwarded the report!]

Two Members of the Bush Crime Family: George W and George H.W. (Grandpa Prescott Bush co-founded the infamous Skull & Bones Society and laundered Nazi money through his bank during WWII)

[First posted 6 April 2007]

Wednesday, November 4, 2015

Lost Words: Heavens to Murgatroyd! Anyone remember what this means?

We can have archaic and eat it, too.
By Richard Lederer

About a month ago, I illuminated some old expressions that have become obsolete because of the inexorable march of technology. These phrases included "Don't touch that dial," "Carbon copy," "You sound like a broken record" and "Hung out to dry." A bevy of readers have asked me to shine light on more faded words and expressions, and I am happy to oblige:

Back in the olden days we had a lot of moxie. We'd put on our best bib and tucker and straighten up and fly right. Hubba-hubba! We'd cut a rug in some juke joint and then go necking and petting and smooching and spooning and billing and cooing and pitching woo in hot rods and jalopies in some passion pit or lovers lane. Heavens to Betsy! Gee whillikers! Jumping Jehoshaphat! Holy moley! We were in like Flynn and living the life of Riley, and even a regular guy couldn't accuse us of being a knucklehead, a nincompoop or a pill. Not for all the tea in China!

Back in the olden days, life used to be swell, but when's the last time anything was swell? Swell has gone the way of beehives, pageboys and the D.A.; of spats, knickers, fedoras, poodle skirts, saddle shoes and pedal pushers. Oh, my aching back. Kilroy was here, but he isn't anymore.

Like Washington Irving's Rip Van Winkle and Kurt Vonnegut's Billy Pilgrim, we have become unstuck in time. We wake up from what surely has been just a short nap, and before we can say, I'll be a monkey's uncle! or This is a fine kettle of fish! we discover that the words we grew up with, the words that seemed omnipresent as oxygen, have vanished with scarcely a notice from our tongues and our pens and our keyboards.

Poof, poof, poof go the words of our youth, the words we've left behind. We blink, and they're gone, evanesced from the landscape and wordscape of our perception, like Mickey Mouse wristwatches, hula hoops, skate keys, candy cigarettes, little wax bottles of colored sugar water and an organ grinders monkey.

Where have all those phrases gone? Long time passing. Where have all those phrases gone? Long time ago: Pshaw. The milkman did it. Think about the starving Armenians. Bigger than a bread box. Banned in Boston. The very idea! It's your nickel. Don't forget to pull the chain. Knee high to a grasshopper. Turn-of-the-century. Iron curtain. Domino theory. Fail safe. Civil defense. Fiddlesticks! You look like the wreck of the Hesperus. Cooties. Going like sixty. I'll see you in the funny papers. Don't take any wooden nickels. Heavens to Murgatroyd! And awa-a-ay we go! Oh, my stars and garters!

It turns out there are more of these lost words and expressions than Carter had liver pills. This can be disturbing stuff, this winking out of the words of our youth, these words that lodge in our heart's deep core. But just as one never steps into the same river twice, one cannot step into the same language twice. Even as one enters, words are swept downstream into the past, forever making a different river.

We of a certain age have been blessed to live in changeful times. For a child each new word is like a shiny toy, a toy that has no age. We at the other end of the chronological arc have the advantage of remembering there are words that once did not exist and there were words that once strutted their hour upon the earthly stage and now are heard no more, except in our collective memory. It's one of the greatest advantages of aging. We can have archaic and eat it, too.

See ya later, alligator!

Richard Lederer is an American author, speaker, and teacher. He is best known for his books on the English language and on word play such as puns, oxymorons, and anagrams. 

[With thanks to Judy Mezen]

Monday, November 2, 2015

Camel or rope, still can't squeeze through! (revisited)

"And again I say to you, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle, than for a rich man to enter into the kingdom of God." ~ Matthew 19:24

This well-known quote from the New Testament attributed to the apostle Matthew has been the subject of endless debate over the centuries. Some scholars say that the Master Yeshua (called "Jesus" by modern-day Christians) wasn't referring to a camel but to a rope. One bible study site I stumbled upon while researching this subject has this to say:

Jesus and all the Jews spoke a language called Aramaic, and the word gamla meant either a camel or a large rope, just as we have words which are spelled the same, but have different meanings. And some of the earlier translators or copyists must have taken the wrong meaning here. For no one would ever talk about a camel going through a needle's eye. But every Jewish house had several large ropes, that were used to tie bundles on the backs of men and animals.

Even in Greek the camel-rope confusion persists. The Greek word for "thick rope" is kamilos; and "camel" is kamelos. But in wasting so much breath arguing about whether the Master meant "rope" or "camel" many theologians have completely missed the point.

And the point is the Eye of the Needle. Graphically, you can visualize it as a very narrow aperture that the thread absolutely has to squeeze through if you want to do any sewing with it.

I prefer to use "more scientific" terminology by calling it the Frequency Scanner. What, you may ask, is a "frequency scanner"? The secular definition is what radio buffs would be familiar with and it has to do with identifying the source of radio transmissions by means of a vast database of terrestrial radiowave frequencies.

As I'm not a radio buff I generally go with the "spiritual" definition wherein the Frequency Scanner is what measures an individual's auric purity and molecular integrity. All of us are born with hardwired frequency scanners which we may not necessarily be aware of. Those who unconsciously use their frequency scanners to suss other people might call it "intuition" or "instinct" or "following their gut feelings."

The Eye of the Needle, therefore, is a powerful metaphor for the perfectly natural process of self-selection whereby each soul determines its own onward evolution - or otherwise. Each of us must gather all the different threads of our genetic memories and converge them into a single point, in order to penetrate the most modest of apertures - the vulva of a vestal virgin, who represents the call of the Mother of all Goddesses, to return to our divine origins in her cosmic womb and be reborn anew.

I view the soul's pilgrimage through the fields of density and complexity as the method by which the Atman (Divine Self) gathers experiential data and then rearranges it to generate coherent patterns, which often take the forms of sacred geometry. If you imagine each life as a colored thread warping and woofing through the tapestry of eternity, it's almost inevitable that you will eventually begin to perceive the grand mandala of Life Itself and experience a glorious eureka moment.

Was the Master Yeshua a closet socialist? Why such a pronounced prejudice against rich folks? When he is quoted as saying there's no way a rich man can gain entry into "the kingdom of God" - does he mean this literally? Or was it just a bad hair day for Jesus that yielded this particular injunction?

My sons-in-law are all fairly rich guys. And I consider them decent and goodhearted souls. The only essential difference between us is that they are almost entirely focused on building their businesses and ensuring their families enjoy the very best that life can offer - while I'm almost entirely focused on freeing myself from any form of busyness.

Having spent more than 50 years researching what some may call the esoteric realm, I consider myself fairly well informed about the funky stuff that goes on within the Inner Planes. However, when it comes to subjects like sports or the stock market, my understanding of these worldly matters borders on the imbecilic.

So, from my personal perspective, what the Master Yeshua actually meant by his provocative statement was simply this: those who get overly caught up in external reality will find it a lot harder to attune to their own inner voice. If all one ever hears is the loud chattering of the marketplace, sportscasters and airheaded radio DJs, it's quite unlikely that one will ever acquire the necessary neural acumen to break free of the artificial holographic matrix wherein our anthropocentric games of buy-and-sell and win-or-lose are being played out.

No matter how much money you may have stashed away in some offshore account, you will still end up shitting your pants when you wake up one morning to discover that Wall Street no longer exists. The Jewish brokers made off with all your cash while you were fast asleep. What those silly scammers intend to do with all their worthless currency notes not even God knows.

They could use their $50 bills for rolling tobacco, just to remind themselves that they were once loyal subjects of Rex Mundi. Or they could pile up all the currency notes and make the most extravagant bonfire in history. Or wipe their bottoms with $10 bills just to prove they are no longer obsessed with "the bottom line."

In any case, you can rest assured that money distilled from the blood, sweat and tears of countless generations of semi-conscious and mentally enslaved humans will not be accepted as legal - or illegal - tender in the kingdom of God (I prefer to use the term "heaven").

All the fang-and-claw scenarios of dog-eat-dog politicians... the feeding frenzy of cocaine-crazed remisiers... the hustle and push of insurance and snake oil salesmen... the wheelers and the dealers... prime movers and shakers... the cigar-chomping moguls and ghoulish martini-swilling financiers behind the glitter and glamor of Hollywood, Bollywood and Follywood... I'm not letting them into heaven, no way!

Not unless they clear their emotional garbage and get their auric fields clear and fragrant.

God's love is both unconditional and conditional.

(If you happen to be a fan of Richard Dawkins and don't believe in God, that's fine. I don't need you to believe in me to be whatever and whoever I am, because the only God I accept as authentic is the one I see in the mirror, and in every pair of eyes looking back at me. In any case, God is actually an atheist, like Professor Dawkins.)

"Unconditional" - in the sense that even the ones who end up in a hell of their own making are still cherished and valued as souls and will always be offered another opportunity to clean up their acts and get out of their ruts.

"Conditional" - in the sense that if you misunderstand what Mastery is all about and go about enslaving and exploiting a whole lot of other lifeforms - human and more-than-human - because you erroneously believe that's what Masters do, then you've pretty much flunked this evolutionary semester.

Or if you vehemently deny that you've just shit your pants - when everyone else in the room is holding their noses and glaring at you and pointing to that gooey brown liquid oozing from your trouser leg and onto the plush carpet - well, then I suppose we shall just have to label you another "Hisham" or "Najib" and frogmarch you to the sanitization facility where, after a thorough cleansing, you'll be given all the emotional therapy you need to qualify for rebirth as a protozoon.

And it won't cost you a penny, don't worry.

Carl Jung was fond of recounting an old ecclesiastical joke that goes like this:

Student: There were men in the olden days who saw the face of God. Why don't they see it any more?

Rabbi: Because nowadays no one can stoop so low.

[First posted 4 December 2009 & reposted 9 December 2013]

AISODONOLAH ~ another Manglish poem by Antares

Aitelyu ah, every year laif getting harder,
Not like lastaim so seemple one.
You remember ornot dat taim we all in skool
Honda Cub five hundred dollar can buy.
Now how much oridi? Five tausend over!
Becos of INGFLATION wat, dey say…
So whatever happen to INFLASI SIFAR hah?
Dis mins debladigarmen’s kempen for “Zero Ingflation”
Only add up to NUTTING pulak…
But aisodonolah…

De udder day my son come home from skool,
Say he nid computer.
Defler form one only, man,
Oridi want to so high-teck!
He say, nowdays got standard six buggers
Using word plocessor – Oi! Mamasan 2020, yutingwat!
So like a bladifoo I take de rascal to the IT Expo
And buy him two tausend linggit computer,
Summore got "Intel Inside" one.
Now defler as soon as he back from tiewshun
Oridi sitting like hunchback wid new video game: Taa-taaaa-taaaaaaang! Zoop-zooooop!
Waaah, got STEREO sound one, pulak:
CIA, James Bond and Mossad versus Al-Qaeda and Al Gore!
Arfturds I go and see how de bladi ting work...
And de ungratefoo chap, ah,
He tell me to go away!
Never gif his old man chan to play…
Aiyoh, chewren dese days ah, watusay,

Hweeyoh, doan tok to me about TRAFFIC JAM, brudder,
See my blood pressure oridi shoot up!
Lemme arsk you ah: got so many so-call iconomicks expert,
How come dey kennot add up how much
Taim, petrol, energy and payshuns wasted
In de bladi name of Progress, hah?
And how come de Otorities seemply allow
Dose gawdam devilopers to build high-rice condo
Even where got only kampong road?
Tingking of da FUTURE, da tick-skin flers say.
WHOSE FUTURE, I arsk you? Their own lah!
Two, tree housing projek oridi can retire,
Get free condo summore…
Cheh! Aisodonolah…

You want to hear a good joke ah?
Why garmen awfis orways got Piles of Work?
Becos dose buggers sit on their fat backside all day long
Till dey all kena PILES pulak –
So dey say PILES OF WORK is Ockupayshunal Hazard lah, haha!

But now ah, I hear dey will be UPGRADED, man:
Every seevil servant will get computer and internet
Under da Smart Awfis Plan -
Mins da furniture smarter than deflers who work there lah!
Dat’s wat MULTIMEDIO SUPER CURRYPUFF is all about lah:
From Mediocracy to Mediacrazy – waffor, man?
We only arsk dem to bekum NICER HOOMIN BEANS –
No nid for all sorts of ackspensif e-kwipment lah.
Aiyoh, so many kampong steel got no paip water
Or letrickcity; nearly half da bladi pawpoolayshun
Kennot read or rait (nemmain their speling lah)…
Steel sumflers want to ackshun only,
Yuting we kennot awford ah?
Twenty million a month oso no ploblem, man!
But where de heck da money coming from?
Oso, where de fuck de money going?

Tok tok tok tokkok only!
ISO dis and ISO dat,
Aisodono wat.
Everywan and Kompeni going GREEN nowdays,
Mins wat? Learn to PLAY GOLF ah?
Including GREED.
Watudu, booshit is manure - and manure good for growth wat,
You better shurrup and main your own affairs.
Any ploblem call Gurmit or Karpal Singh lah!
But who will do our Dirty Work for us, hah,
Wen dose flers retire or die?
Oridi everyting PRIVATIZED and PIRATIZED,
Now no more Public Sektor lor!
Survival of the Fattest, yutingwat –
Dontch know your Charles Darwin ah, brudder?
“Aiyah, CARI MAKAN lah,” some say,
But ackchwurly ah, CURI MAKAN only.
Sneak around wid bags full of LOOT,
When caught REDHANDED wid pants down
Like dat oso never get de BOOT!
Ackshun spik lauder than words, dey say,
But in dis kiasu-kiasi so-sigh-ty ah,
You tok too laud you get DETAINED;
Kip quiet only, you bin DEBRAINED…
So waffor I tok to YOU ah?

[Written 29 January 1997; revised 4 March 2007 and 13 October 2011; doodles by Antares] 

Friday, October 23, 2015

5 Candidates for 7th Malaysian PM (updated but the list remains unchanged)

Here are my five personal choices for the next prime minister of Malaysia...

1. LATOK LAT @ Mohd Nor Khalid: With so many cartoon characters in the Cabinet, we really ought to have a master cartoonist as PM. Especially one listed among the World's Top 100 Cartoonists! I've known Lat for 45 years. He used to ride a noisy old Triumph motorcycle to work (he was on the crime desk at the NST in those days and the editors had no idea the kid could draw until they saw a feature on him in Asia Magazine). He was the only one who seemed impressed by the 450cc metallic purple 1948 BSA I owned (it had no rear shock absorbers so you can imagine how rattled I'd appear at the end of each ride).

We used to chill at a mutual friend's house in PJ, getting stoned and belting out a medley of Bob Dylan songs. A few years later some friends formed a bluegrass band called K.D. Possum & The Flying Fox and Lat joined us on lead guitar and bass (he was billed as "Nashville Slim" and he was damn good too, even crooned a couple of Johnny Cash songs occasionally).

So with Lat as PM I'd have little to worry about. I doubt he'd ever ISA or SOSMA me. The worst that could happen if I refuse to giggle at his jokes might be he'd revert to calling me by my discarded User ID. Lat has a knack of injecting so much empathy and warmth into his caricatures. Nobody is evil in Lat's world (he could even make Dr M come across as lovable). After all the badmouthing and mudslinging that's been raging in local politics, Lat as PM would bring about genuine muhibbah and transform us all into true Malaysians.

2. SUFIAH YUSOF: Now this sexy young lady might be just what we need to instill a bit of discipline into our law enforcement thugs and bottom-pinching, child-molesting ministers. I know Sufiah charges £130 an hour for her services - which works out to £31,200 a month (or RM204,672). But she'd be worth every penny if she could whip the entire Cabinet into shape and turn civil servants into fine, upstanding members of society.

A former child prodigy in mathematics, Sufiah would be outstanding as finance minister too. In fact, with her undisputed multi-tasking skills, she could take over all the ministerial portfolios, thereby freeing the other MPs from tedious routine and allowing them the opportunity to take up healthy, useful hobbies like cycling, earthworm-breeding and yoga. The National Fatwa Council would be abolished and replaced with the National Fat-Reducing Council, with a special mandate to monitor the weight of all top rank bureaucrats. All those prone to obesity would be nominated as contestants in state-sponsored marathon fuckfests - or summoned to the PM's office after hours to perform national service.

Another distinct advantage of having Sufiah Yusof as PM would be getting Hannah Tan (left) as deputy PM. I've only ever bumped into Hannah once at the Actors Studio foyer in Bangsar and she came across as an extremely friendly and enchanting person with heaps of undiscovered potential.

As deputy PM her official duties would include doing what she's already does so well - which is to reassure Malaysians that there's no place like home. As DPM Hannah would also serve as our roving ambassador-at-large, luring more foreign investors to embark on joint ventures and breed more irresistible Pan-Asian beauties.

3. NURUL IZZAH ANWAR: Izzah is only 34 (she turns 35 on 19 November) and has been an MP for just seven years, but judging by her effortless poise and magnetic personality (she has half-a-million likes on Facebook!) - not to mention her sparkling intelligence, maturity and dedication - she's already light years ahead of veteran politicos like Tengku Razaleigh - and every inch a natural-born Princess too. Put Nurul Izzah in a line-up with Rosmah Mansor, Rafidah Aziz, Shahrizat Abdul Jalil, Azalina Othman - and for good measure throw in the alluring Umno Princess Noraini Ahmad, the winsome Hannah Yeoh, and the indomitable Teresa Kok - and see just who the rakyat will nominate as prime ministerial candidate. Yup, Izzah is Daddy's Girl right down to her determination, her drive, her charismatic beauty and above all, her winning streak.

4. WAN AZIZAH ISMAIL: No other woman in Malaysia has done as much to demonstrate the quiet, gentle power of the Feminine Principle as former Opposition Leader Wan Azizah, fondly known as Kak Wan. She studied medicine at the Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland and was awarded gold medals in obstretics and gynecology, but opted to graduate as an ophthamologist instead. When her husband was sacked as deputy PM and finance minister in September 1998, Wan Azizah rose to the occasion and led the Reformasi  movement as president of Parti KeADILan Nasional (the National Justice Party, which later merged with Parti Rakyat Malaysia to form Parti Keadilan Rakyat or the People's Justice Party).

All through the difficult years when her husband was incarcerated and in grievous pain from an untreated spinal injury, Wan Azizah carried herself with courage, dignity and stoicism - and yet she had a warm smile and a kind word for everyone she met at ceramahs. The people of Malaysia not only hold Wan Azizah in the highest esteem, but wholeheartedly adore, respect, and trust her. Not given to raising her voice or using harsh words, this living embodiment of nobility and virtue is the complete antithesis of - and the perfect antidote to - the degeneracy, corruption and hypocrisy within Umno that crept in during the Mahathir administration (and which continues to block the way for truly inspiring leaders to take over). With Wan Azizah as PM this nation will experience a massive healing and be restored to its destined greatness. There's only one contentious issue with Wan Azizah's candidacy for prime ministership: she says she's sick and tired of politics and vows to retire as soon as humanly possible. Which leaves...

5. DATO' SERI ANWAR IBRAHIM: Is he the world's most successful failure? How come he's still the Opposition Leader and not PM? And why did he insist in September 2008 that he had "the numbers" for a bloodless takeover of the federal government? Will Saiful Bukhari's sodomy accusation be exposed as a vile conspiracy and the whole ridiculous case thrown out - or will Anwar find himself sucked into a rerun of the same nightmare, like a Prometheus chained to a rock and subject to having his reputation devoured by a vulture named Mahathir for all eternity?

Anwar Ibrahim is undeniably a man of extraordinary destiny, whose life reads like classic mythology, and whose trials and tribulations have been epic, perhaps even messianic. Feared, mistrusted, slandered, betrayed, unjustly accused, cruelly arrested, brutalized, constantly criticized, politically crucified and thrown in the dungeon for six long years - Anwar Ibrahim's resurrection and heroic return from the political wilderness is the very stuff of legends. Despite the jaw-dropping miracle he has wrought by pulling and holding together the diverse factions within the Pakatan Rakyat opposition coalition - facilitating the political tsunami of 8 March 2008 that swept away Umno/BN's hitherto unvanquished and behemoth monopoly on power - some Malaysians remain skeptical and continue to mock Anwar's publicly stated ambition to become PM.

I am certainly not one of them. Since 2 September 1998 - the day Anwar ceased to be DPM, finance minister and Umno bigwig - I have been observing the man closely and he has conducted himself impeccably as a spiritual warrior and visionary leader. From grudging admiration and growing respect, I have come to love the man as dearly as I love myself and my country. Yes, I believe and trust in Anwar Ibrahim and I have absolutely no qualms that he will prove the best prime minister for Malaysia at this juncture of our political evolution. And that's precisely why Najib Razak has conspired to consign Anwar back to jail by making a complete mockery of Malaysia's judicial system.

Now how do we get Anwar Ibrahim released from prison and restored to complete health and vitality? He may well be Malaysia's only hope!

[Originally posted 6 November 2008 & reposted 16 February 2014 & 25 September 2014]

Monday, October 19, 2015

Exclusive interview with the author of 'Murdered in Malaysia: The Altantuya Story'

Author  & blogger E.S. Shankar in his study

When did the idea of writing Murdered in Malaysia: The Altantuya Story first occur to you? How long did the process take till completion?

The idea was planted in my head by my cousin in June 2014. Like me, he was outraged that here was an open-and-shut case of a massive cover-up being so obviously orchestrated by the State, and no one was doing anything to expose it. People with no motive whatsoever were being convicted of murder. The entire machinery of justice – the police, AG, prosecutors, defence lawyers and the Judiciary – had been subverted and hopelessly undermined and compromised by Najib and his wife Rosmah, and yet the citizens seemed powerless to stop this travesty of justice.

I shot off the opening chapter the day following that conversation with my cousin. The outline of that chapter is pretty much as you see it now, relying on my memory, as I had been writing about the Altantuya murder at my blog for several years.

I completed the book in March 2015. I could have completed it earlier, but between October and December 2014, I had writer’s block and also got stuck on how to retrieve voluminous high court trial transcripts.

Were you able to gather any data directly from individuals linked to the drama or did you have to rely entirely on internet research?

No, I conducted no interviews, as I did not wish to alert anyone about this dangerous project, especially government authorities. Most of the material was gathered from internet research and blogs.

You mentioned at the start of the book that there were rumors of Altantuya Shaariibuu being a foreign agent, part of a honeytrap sting operation. Did you come across any further evidence that this may have been the case? Or do you believe she was merely misguided in the kind of company she kept?

The source of this possible foreign agent suspicion is from a certain Gopal Raj’s blog. Full details of this blog post is in Appendix 22 of MIM.

Altantuya Shaariibuu at a party
My gut feeling tells me that Altantuya meeting Abdul Razak Baginda was no coincidence or chance encounter. Given what had transpired with DCNS and the submarines scandals and murders in Taiwan and Pakistan, there is a strong possibility that someone in France recruited Altantuya with the intention of seducing Abdul Razak Baginda. After all, Abdul Razak Baginda was never a philandering husband or playboy before, did not have cash to burn and does not exactly have Hollywood or Bollywood looks, does he?

French investigators also found documents which incriminate Abdul Razak Baginda with leaking official secrets concerning the Navy’s procurement specifications and plans for which he was paid RM142 million.

So, it is not beyond the pale that DCNS once again recruited a femme fatale, this time Altantuya, to compromise Abdul Razak Baginda, as they did with Lily Liu in the Taiwan scandal.

The complication arises from PI Bala’s Statutory Declaration, where he claims Najib introduced Altantuya to Baginda. So, was Najib compromised in some way by the French as well? Scary thought, but interesting, isn’t it?

Did you have the opportunity to speak with P.I. Balasubramaniam before his suspiciously timed fatal heart attack a week before he was scheduled to go on the road with the Altantuya saga? If so, what did you learn from this personal contact?

No, I never met or spoken to PI Bala or his wife.

But, having read all the newspaper and online news portal articles, blogs and watched every single connected YouTube video, my honest opinion is that there was nothing suspicious about PI Bala’s heart attack and subsequent death.

Conspiracy theorists may beg to differ, but during that period he was constantly in the company of friends and family. The people linked to Altantuya’s murder may be at home with guns, bullets and C4 explosives. But crediting them with inducing remote-controlled coronary failures with or without chemicals and/or poison, would be far-fetched.

Of course in superstition-bound Malaysia, Deepak’s book about Rosmah’s witchcraft and bomoh sorties and escapades cannot be totally ignored!

There have been numerous U-turns made by various individuals linked to the case: first there was the dramatic withdrawal of P.I. Bala's incendiary statutory declaration of 1st July 2008, followed by a second statutory declaration on 4th July which glaringly omitted all references to Najib Razak. Then there was RPK's shocking appearance on TV3 in April 2011 where he backpedalled on his explosive 18 June 2008 statutory declaration naming Rosmah Mansor as an active party to the execution of the Mongolian woman. Following that we had Deepak Jaikishan's titillating series of media conferences wherein he revealed his own role in the dramatic damage control exercise following P.I. Bala's first SD, in the process implicating Najib Razak's brother Nazim, as well as Cecil Abraham, a senior legal counsel, in the cover-up. Shortly after Deepak's public confessions, there were reports of shady land deals involving Umno bigwigs who had attempted to shortchange Deepak, thereby prompting him to spill the beans. In the aftermath, Deepak Jaikishan abruptly vanished from public view, and even the Bar Council's disciplinary hearing on Cecil Abraham's alleged role in the cover-up eventually evaporated into thin air. Do you believe money was the common denominator in all these high-profile U-turns? Or might there have been ominous threats involved?

We have to look at each case separately.

PI Bala was certainly coerced into withdrawing SD1. His wife and children’s lives were also threatened. They were bundled out of Malaysia to Singapore, Thailand, and then India, within 24 hours of SD1. Who has the power to do that in Malaysia? Who has the power to alter immigration records, as testified to by Altantuya’s cousin?  No doubt PI Bala, finding himself in a Catch 22 situation, tried to make some money in the circumstances he was thrust into. But, his primary motivation in pointing the finger at Najib and others was never money.

RPK’s son Azman who was in prison on trumped-up charges of theft had claimed he was being tortured in prison and had attempted suicide. The relationship between father and long-lost son may have been tenuous. But, it would have taken a cold-hearted father of stone to ignore a son’s dire predicament in that situation. Whatever deal RPK made with Najib, the result was his son was freed and found his way to safety soon in London.

But everyone must remember that in RPK’s original SD, he clearly did not say what everyone thought he did. The opening sentence there clearly starts with “I have been reliably informed…” He was clearly saying he only had second-hand knowledge of the accusations against Najib and Rosmah. So, he can’t really be faulted for everyone’s presumption. Of course he could have clarified it later, instead of allowing the apparent misunderstanding to mushroom internationally, but did nothing to dampen opinions that Najib and Rosmah were guilty.

When he attempted to do so in the 2011 TV3 interview, he of course lost credibility and respect. Legions of his fans dumped him forever.

Deepak Jaikishan the carpet dealer
What we should now take seriously are Deepak’s numerous accusations implicating Najib and Rosmah in Altantuya’s murder and in coercing PI Bala to recant SD1.

Deepak belongs in that exclusive class of Malaysia’s amoral Alibaba fraudtrepreneurs. Money is his only credo. He was investigated by MACC and Bank Negara and came out with guns blazing that he was fronting for Najib and Rosmah.

But, so far he has not been sued by Najib or Rosmah for his accusatory YouTube videos, Black Rose 1.0, witchcraft book, etc. So, the public are entitled to assume that Najib and Rosmah are guilty.

We can also assume that Deepak has the real goods on Najib and Rosmah, for how else can he still be walking tall and free?

Deepak did not vanish. He got married in 2014 and probably needed some private time to think things out, given the additional family baggage and responsibility.

He also came out last year saying he was prepared to testify against Najib and Rosmah under oath if he were granted full immunity.

In recent days, it has emerged that Deepak has decided not to contest the civil case filed against him by PI Bala’s wife, represented by solicitor Americk Sidhu. This basically means that all that PI Bala had stated in SD1 is true and Deepak concurs that Najib and Rosmah were absolutely behind PI Bala’s disappearance and withdrawal of SD1.

As for the Bar Council's ongoing inquiry into Cecil Abraham’s possible misconduct – illegally drafting PI Bala’s SD2 - we are still waiting for a public announcement of its verdict. The delay is annoying, but no doubt they will come out with some statement like: “The wheels of justice turn slowly, but grind exceedingly fine” - or something boring like that.

There are hundreds of interwoven threads around the Altantuya murder case involving complexities within complexities. How were you able to gather these seemingly disparate threads and re-weave them into a coherent, readable narrative? Did you use index cards or special software to keep the data organized and accessible?

E.S. Shankar: encyclopedic erudition
No, it’s nothing special. I did it the old-fashioned way that has much to do with my UK (London) accountancy training as what in those days was referred to as an ‘articled clerk.’ I went about it methodically, downloaded and organized articles and links in folders in my Dell laptop, and made copious notes in an old diary. I then read and re-read them many, many times to gather and understand it all.

Fortunately, I have an analytical brain that can (no, I don’t have a photographic memory) accommodate and retain a vast array of information, recall and search out the threads, and often make connections, and write them out in a logical and fairly readable manner.

Please give us a brief summary of your career prior to your embarking on your current vocation as an author of controversial books?

I must first tell you that during my schooldays, Mokhtar Dahari, Malaysia’s greatest footballer, was in the same year in Victoria Institution as I was. We both played for the VI U/15 first eleven. We even used to cycle home together. This is something I have always been proud of and can never forget.

I am what is called a P/Q accountant (part qualified). I did not get through all my final Chartered Accountancy (ICAEW) exam papers way back in the 1980’s. On returning to Malaysia, I worked as the financial controller and later CEO in a leading private company. After stints at business development at two real estate Plcs, and a brief stint as a consultant at a Plc, I quit working in 2009, to embark on full-time writing.

Like so many, I was outraged by the kangaroo courts and crooked trials in the persecution of Anwar Ibrahim. I decided I had to do something to stop Malaysia from becoming a police state and embarked on satire and sopo blogging, as writing was my forte. The threads of my various blog posts led to Tiger Isle: A Government of Thieves published by Gerakbudaya Enterprise.

However, Tiger Isle was not my first book. In 2011 I collated all my blog posts from my VI blog (about my schooldays between 1966-1972) and self-published them as a hard-cover book titled Let Us Now With Thankfulness. Sales were surprisingly brisk.

I have a great interest in Malaysian history, and have written articles about Parameswara, Hang Li Po, etc., based on the Sejarah Melayu, and a short piece titled A Brief History of the Peoples of Malaya.

Besides that, I read everything I can get my hands on about cosmology, quantum theory and phenomena (so far I have understood perhaps about 30%, probably less, of what I’ve read). My other hobbies besides reading are cricket, football and music (very eclectic taste as in books).

Your debut novel, Tiger Isle: A Government of Thieves, was published in late 2012. It depicts a fictional kleptocracy broadly inspired by actual events and characters in Malaysia. Was the book well received by the public and did it result in any unwanted attention from the Malaysian secret police?

Yes, the initial print was well received and sold out. But, there have been no reprint orders, despite the fact that Tiger Isle won the 3rd prize for fiction in the STAR/Popular national literary awards. Booker prize winner Tan Twan Eng’s The Garden of Evening Mists was placed 2nd!!

As for unwanted attention from the Special Branch, no, I received none. I was told by some informed bloggers that the standard of English is so poor in Malaysia nowadays, that a satire/fiction novel in English would fly way below the radar of Najib’s thugs and goons.

Was Murdered in Malaysia written in Malaysia or when you were living abroad? Did you go into voluntary exile because you anticipated unpleasant consequences if you remained in the country? Or were you already planning to migrate anyway?

MIM was conceived and completed wholly in Malaysia.

I went overseas only in September of this year, as clearly, I feared for my safety and life once the book was published. I am no Mandela, and as someone recently said, you can’t do much fighting from the inside of a prison.

I have never contemplated emigrating. Malaysia has always been my home. If the coast was clear, I would return home in a flash.

Altantuya & son
From all the evidence already on hand it would appear that the only reasonable conclusion we can arrive at is that there has been a colossal cover-up to protect the most powerful couple in the nation. With the Attorney-General's Chambers and the Chief of Police actively collaborating to suppress a potential resurrection of the Altantuya case - and with the Scorpene investigation in France yielding no further results after several years - do you envisage any unforeseen breakthroughs that might lead to a final denouement in this gruesome drama?

No one must be allowed to get away with murder. No one. In the Altantuya killing, we also have the added spice of corruption involving the RM7.5 billion Scorpene submarines, treason and perversion of the course of justice by Najib and Rosmah. The Navy, police, AG and judiciary are all involved in this travesty of justice.

No, we must keep pressing till Najib is thrown out of office, and a truly independent Royal Commission of Inquiry is instituted to lift us out of the clutches of this government of murderers and thieves.

One of the convicted assassins is currently detained by Australian immigration, while the other is presumably still in prison pending execution. Do you feel there might be a possibility that either or both may decide to go public with their stories and tell all?

I doubt either will talk any more. Azilah has remained silent from day one. We can safely assume that whatever deal was struck between him and Najib/Rosmah, it has been honored and he will go to the gallows as his part of the bargain. Of course, there is talk (not to be discounted) that eventually, he will receive a royal pardon.

Sirul has now made the startling admission that it was Abduk Razak Baginda who pulled the trigger. Despite that, our worthless and political IGP insists that there is no new evidence to re-open the murder investigations. Should he not be hung by his goolies?

I also believe that Sirul is using his safe position in Australia to canvass for money from Najib. He has asked for A$15 million to keep his gap shut. No, he will never go public with so much money at stake.

In recent months another monumental scandal has erupted in the form of 1MDB. Do you feel this massive financial debacle has eclipsed the Altantuya murder? Many who seemed apathetic to seeing justice being done in the Mongolian murder case now appear to be galvanized into action by the prospect of being held liable to a public debt of unprecedented proportions. Does this suggest to you that money remains the bottom line - not ethics, morality, or justice?

No, the Altantuya murder has not been forgotten in Malaysia or in the rest of the world. Do remember that PI Bala’s civil case against PM Najib and his two brothers, Rosmah, etc, is not over. I would bet my bottom dollar that Americk Sidhu and his team will not let up even if our judges continue to place obstacles in their way.

Do not forget that the 101 East team from Al Jazeera is keeping close tabs on every development of the case - as is Sarawak Report, The Wall Street Journal, Asia Sentinel, The Economist, and one or two leading newspapers in Australia..

The 1MDB fraud and fiasco is godsent. It has furnished us firm, additional evidence that Najib is a serial liar and thief, and is unfit to be the prime minister of even a fourth world state. His statement that RM2.6 billion deposited in his personal bank account was a “donation from a friendly Arab party’ has provoked intense anger and outrage among Malaysians as never before.

The real problem in Malaysia is public apathy created by Najib and his minions with our descent into a police state. The well-off fear loss of their accumulated wealth and comforts. The silent majority have that ‘let that other guy fight for our rights’ attitude. If push comes to shove, they will sulk in silence or emigrate. So, ethics and morality are forced to take a back seat while the nation burns.

History tells us that a few good men and women will have to lead and make the sacrifices.

As a relatively young independent nation, we have a long way to go before ethics, justice, moral and human rights issues take precedence over money. You must remember that before the USA became what it is today, they had to fight a war of independence and go through a civil war, all within 100 years of 1775.

So, there is hope for Malaysia yet!

Najib and Rosmah remain in charge of the main levers of government, despite being the target of so much negative publicity. Yet the feeling on the ground is that their luck has almost run out and that they will soon be forced to step down, no matter whom they bribe. Do you think, when they are no longer in power, that the Altantuya saga will be revived and finally resolved?

The era of Najib/Rosmah’s villainy is a shameful period in Malaysian history. Our Constitution will have to be amended to ensure that never again shall so much power be allowed to be concentrated in one person’s hands.

The Altantuya murder MUST be one of the primary issues to be resolved post-Najib/Rosmah. The PEOPLE must be protected from such an incident ever again recurring.

What would be the ideal of scenario, in your view, if power changes hands in Malaysia? Under what circumstances would you feel comfortable enough to return to your homeland?

Power will definitely change hands for the better in Malaysia. It is only a question of when. Look at Japan, Taiwan, Korea, India and China and no one can doubt that the change WILL come.

Ideally, we should proscribe race or religion based political parties. Religion should be removed from the province of government funded or aided schools and institutions of higher learning, government offices and statutory bodies.

I will negotiate to return as soon as Najib is thrown out of office. I will ask for immunities from government prosecution and/or private criminal or civil law suits relating to MIM, and guarantees for my safety and that of my family.

This meticulously researched, honest and informative book is for you and for all those Malaysians who want to know the full truth about the disgraceful and barbaric murder of a Mongolian girl, who had the misfortune to associate herself with persons which led ultimately to her murder and the disintegration of her dead body, and perhaps her unborn child, by explosion.

E.S Shankar has produced a tour de force in terms of research and the comprehensive scope of his enquiries, leaving no stone unturned in his quest to bring to light facts that were disgracefully suppressed and covered up by one of the most shocking examples of interference in the judiciary that Malaysia has experienced in its history. The impact on the independence of Malaysia's law enforcement agencies has been far-reaching and malign.

Clare Rewcastle-Brown

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freedom of information and justice.