MP for Kluang • Political Education Director, Democratic Action Party
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Category Archives: My Views

Year End Reflections: My 2016 Recap

Recap #1. Bell’s Palsy In December 2015, I planned a packed schedule for the first three months of 2016. But when I woke up on 7th January, my left face was numb and the muscles could not move. I was diagnosed with Bell’s palsy, a temporary facial nerve paralysis. I couldn’t talk or smile. All… Read More

How economic disparity fueled Trump’s rise, and what this means for Malaysia

The election of Donald Trump as the 45th President of the United States is probably the most important watershed event globally since the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989. What lessons we draw from this election matters. Did Trump win by stroking racial sentiments and being a populist? Or there are deeper causes of… Read More

DAP@50 – the struggle continues

There was very little prospect of winning elections, not to mention running government, when Dr. Chen Man Hin and the first generation leaders formed the DAP, with Lim Kit Siang as the party’s sole full-time staff, on 18th March 1966. As Lim Kit Siang puts it, the DAP had “no icon, no money (resources) and… Read More

Detik-detik akhir, gempa politik dan formula iPhone

Walau kedengaran klise, zaman sekarang sesungguhnya zaman yang terbaik dan terburuk sekaligus. Dan, pada zaman yang mengelirukan, kejelasan amat terbatas. Ada tiga perkara yang mungkin dapat membantu memahami keadaan semasa politik Malaysia: bahawa ‘kiraan terakhir’ akan segera berlaku; bahawa berlaku gempa bumi, geseran plat tektonik dan penyelarasan semula kuasa politik di Malaysia; juga pengundi sedang… Read More

The final countdown, earthquakes and iPhone

On political realignment, Part 3 (This is the final piece in the three-part series. Read Part 1 and Part 2.) ——————————————————————————————– Much as it sounds cliché, our time is indeed both the best of times and the worst of times. In such a confusing time, clarity is in short supply. Three things may help us… Read More

At least 1% of the population attended BERSIH 4

The mainstream media is burdened with the discussion about the racial composition of BERSIH 4 to a nauseating level. I hope to provide some other perspectives. I have attended most of the mass rallies in this country since 20th September 1998 -the day Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim was arrested. I recall that after every rally… Read More

Local Democracy: More Politics or Less?

There are two sets of contradictory ideas when it comes to the discussion of local democracy in Malaysia. While many call for local elections, there are also some activists who call for “less politics, more professional appointments” to the local councils. At a conference on decentralisation in Penang in September 2014, social activist and local… Read More

Keris waving: a decade later

A decade ago on 20th July 2005, the then UMNO Youth Chief Hishammudin Hussein gave his infamous keris-wielding speech during the UMNO Youth General Assembly, in a gesture that has come to symbolise UMNO’s turn to right-wing politics since then. His act of Keris waving is arguably the image that defined the last decade of… Read More

GST: Ahmad Maslan doesn’t understand economics at all

Let me say it again, that Deputy Finance Minister Ahmad Maslan should be removed from the Finance Ministry as he doesn’t understand economics at all. Ahmad Maslan came out guns blazing in Pematang Pauh yesterday against his critics, even including “Kesian orang tua tu” (pity the old man) in reference to Tun Dr. Mahathir Mohamad…. Read More

The Malay leadership vacuum

If both Datuk Seri Najib Razak and Tuan Guru Datuk Seri Hadi Awang remain as the presidents of UMNO and PAS respectively, the sense of being leaderless will continue in the Malay community. The status quo is therefore not a stable situation, and we are bound to see new contenders coming into the field to… Read More