By: Wu Wei Qiang (translated name)

Kwong Wah, 18-08-2014

The PR supporters said to me that the revolution is not done yet as PR has just ruled Penang and Selangor for two terms so it must not give up! It is true that the Selangor issue is indeed the biggest test for PR after the commotion of Perak. However, what people are worried of is actually the credibility of PAS as a party ally. First it was Hudud and now it again goes against the opinions of the leaders of PR on the issue of Selangor Menteri Besar. Is PAS a party ally or a political “friend”?

“Revolution is not done yet” is a famous quote by Sun Yat-sen to motivate his comrades. A political “friend” is like what we have always heard about, that there is neither permanent enemy nor friend. Regardless of whether the final decision of PAS would or would not be another Hudud, it has actually sent a very clear message to the PR allies – its devotion towards religion is always stronger than its loyalty towards PR!

Who has the most influence among the three parties of PR? Anwar? Lim Guan Eng? Hadi Awang? They should be sharing their political power based on the philosophy of the three parties. Nevertheless, the sharing of political power is only useful when they are fighting for the throne. One that they have glimpsed into the light of victory and hope, the voters’ view and leaders’ perspectives have also changed. Today, PAS is a partner of PR and a friend but how about tomorrow? Would it join BN or choose to cooperate with BN?

The older Malays say not to worry because Nik Aziz have been taken advantage of by BN so he would not trust BN. As long as Nik Aziz is still here, even if Hadi Awang has many ambitions, he would not dare to offend this spiritual leader. If this is the case then why did PAS differ so much with its party allies on the issue of Menteri Besar? This can only be said to be related to political benefit. PAS is using this chance to tell the leaders of PKR, especially Anwar, that they do not run things around PR.

Surely, the Rakyat will not easily give up the hope on PR. Just like my Facebook friends said, PR has not yet ruled the central government so do not let a small matter destroys the big picture. On the other hand, you PR people have to stand up for yourself and improve the coordination between leaders, do not act as if physiology treatment is necessary everyday in order to adjust the coordination. Even the philosophies of each differ but should their political opinions be the same?

Voters gave up on BN in certain constituencies due to the policies of BN which “force” voters to turn away from them and support PR. Recently, the infighting of PR keeps happening so would the voters be “forced” to return and support BN? If there is no difference between BN and PR so what is the difference between voting for PR and believing in BN? The leaders of PR should not always be deflated in front of people or else they would really “force” the voters away.

There is a person who sells fruits by the roadside said to me that his morale towards PR is getting lower and lower. He still could not see the chance of PR ruling the central government in the coming general election. Nonetheless, he is already not thinking of changing the central government; he merely wants the current Penang government to be preserved.

Original Source: 不要逼我,我爱民联!

Price

Posted: August 19, 2014 in Article

By: Ding Yuzhen

Kwong Wah, Aug 18, 2014

Selangor Menteri Besar Khalid was adamant in refusing to step down all because of PAS’ support, with the backing of 12 Umno members. Because of this, he was able to report to the Selangor Sultan that he had the majority support and keep his post for the time being.

Can we keep an individual who fell out with his party and betrayed a principle which he upheld for the past six years all because he wanted to safeguard his position and personal interests? Can the people still give him the trust and support? Without the 2008 and 2013 general elections, there wouldn’t be Khalid for the past six year. Without voters supporting Pakatan, there wouldn’t be Khalid the Menteri Besar.

He was frustrated in Umno then and only had the chance to be the Menteri Besar after joining Keadilan. Because Anwar favoured him that he was able to sit on the throne for six years, enjoying the power, prestige and a remarkable political career.

However, the clean image built up tediously over the past six years all vanished because of his sudden change. The deep sense of comradeship turned into animosity. Not only he refuses to budge, he makes counter attacks, ignoring party interest and public welfare, showing the true colour of a ruthless politician.

The Kajang Move had clear objectives. It is to change the Menteri Besar and a march to Putrajaya. The outcome of the polls was that voters in Kajang still gave Pakatan the support and they voted in Dr Wan Azizah.

The election result did not go well with Khalid’s thinking that Selangor couldn’t do without him. On the contrary, it indicated that they did not care much whether Khalid would be replaced or not, they voted for Dr Wan Azizah. In other words, they supported Keadilan’s idea of replacing the Menteri Besar.

If it is said that the Selangor government does not come under Pakatan, is it under Barisan Nasional then? People gave their votes to Pakatan because they support Pakatan’s philosophy and not because they support a particular candidate.

After being sacked by Keadilan, Khalid has lost the trust and support of his party. Therefore, when he refused to go, he betrayed not only the party but also the voters. When a person loses his political morality, is he still qualified to hold the post entrusted to him by the party and still refuses to budge?

Khalid insisted that he had the majority support of the state assemblymen; does he know the sacrifices people made when they voted for him despite all the obstacles? It looks like he may insist on dissolving the state assembly. A state by-election will cost RM50 million. It is not a small sum. If we can use it wisely, it will benefit the people in a big way.

Nobody wants to see a state by-election. If only Khalid steps down with dignity, the whole issue can be solved immediately and there is no need for a wasteful by-election.

A man has to make choices continuously during his lifetime. Whether it is the right choice or the wrong one, it relates to his success or failure, honour or humiliation. An impulsive move may destroy his image and his achievement over a lifetime. If that happens, it will be too late to regret. Khalid refuses to budge and Pas refuses to move in line with Pakatan. They are betraying the voters. In such a case, will Pas still enjoy Chinese support? As a Selangor voter, my answer is a no!

The ultimate object of Khalid’s refusal to step down will mean a total destruction of everything. He does not even care about his own reputation and dignity. The sacrifice is the welfare of the Selangor people, the price is too high. History will judge him on his foolhardiness. Why must he still do it?

Original Source: 代价

By: Fu Ce Qin

Sin Chew Daily, Aug 18, 2014

This story is widely circulated on the internet. The loyal driver of Li Ka Shing has driven Li for more than 30 years. When he left, Li wrote him a 2 million dollar cheque for him to retire. The driver said it was not necessary as he has the savings of 10 to 20 million dollars.

Li was surprised. He asked: “Your monthly salary is only a few thousand dollars, how do you managed to save this much!”

The driver replied: “When I drove, you were talking on the phone discussing about buying land or stock. I followed to buy some. Now I have the asset of 10 to 20 million dollars!”

After reading this, I was deeply convinced by the driver’s wisdom and thoughtfulness. From here we do not need to identify whether the story is true or false. It only tells us a simple theory – who are you is not important. But who are you with is extremely important!

When I am on official duty to Taiwan and China, hotel staff handling hotel check out in Taiwan would ask me: “Sir, do you need a receipt?” In China, a hotel staff would also ask: “Sir, do you need value added tax invoice?”

I normally answer: “Yes!” In Taiwan, the staff would ask: “Then your company’s serial number is….?” “I have no answer for this. I would say: “Then it is ok. Give me a general receipt will do.” In China it is better. The staff would tear an official invoice issued by China’s tax department.

From shopping centres in London to Paris, we see many Chinese tourists lining up to claim for refund of value added tax (VAT). This is how I begin to know about VAT or known as GST in Malaysia.

Of the 160 countries adopting such system, let us takes a glance of some of their implementation, its tax rate and ratio of its individual tax.

In England, it started in 1973, VAT is 20% and individual tax is 45%. Michigan in United States, 1975, 11% and 55%, Indonesia, 1984, 10% and 30%., Singapore 1986, 7% and 20%, New Zealand 1986, 15% and 33%, Canada 1991, 5% and 50%, Thailand 1992, 7% and 35%, China, 1994, 17% and 45%, Australia 2000, 10% and 40%, India 2005, 5% and 33%, Taiwan, amended in 2011, 5% and 6-40%, Malaysia, 2015, 6% and 26%.

Being misled, Malaysian citizens oppose and hate GST.

Misleading point No 1: Individual tax rates in foreign countries are lower, so GST in Malaysia should implement a lower individual tax rate.

Looking at the ratio of VAT and individual tax rates of various countries, the two tax rates in Malaysia are not the highest. Both are moderate when compared to developed country and developing country.

Misleading point 2 – it is not time for GST yet. This is 2014. While 160 countries have implemented VAT, on what basis Malaysia has to say it is still not time yet to replace current tax system with loopholes for businesses to evade tax?

Misleading point No. 3 – politicians raise the alarm of paying tax while drinking teh tarik. In future, one would have to pay 6% of GST for having a cup of teh Tarik. This brings enormous inflationary pressure, a method to incite the feelings of other races. They should do their homework to find out the tax rate of red tea leaves in teh tarik. (Customs code HS Code 0902.40.000) Currently the existing SST sales tax rate is 10%. If GST of 6% is implemented, price of teh tarik should be 4% lower. In addition, teh tarik hawkers have not reached the annual sales volume of RM500,000 and they are not required to pay for 6% of GST!

Among consumer goods many have included the SST sales tax of 5% to 10% such as 5% for wooden doors and 10% for T-shirts. By 2015, all SST sales tax of 5 % to 10% would be completely abolished to be replaced by 6% of GST. Under the simple arithmetic rule of 5% to 10% and 6%, a total of 689 goods would be imposing GST tax and only 10% of goods would see price increase while price for 48% of goods remain unchanged and price for 42% of goods would reduce. On theory, it should not be a scenario of inflationary phenomenon!

Misleading point No. 4 – Politicians would continue to find ways to paint a bleak picture of graft practices in tax money. “It is not that GST is no good. We do not need to take the trouble to change a tax system, even a better one, for those corrupt ones to commit more public wastage.”

If this is true, then this is akin to give up on a comprehensive coverage scheme in insurance just because of some insurance agents who are without credibility!

As a citizen or consumer one should be thorough in detail and wise like Li’s driver. It is not important who you are. Who you are with is more important for the type of message that you receive. Do not be misled by your ignorance!

Original Source: 符策勤‧從李嘉誠看消費稅

The non-liberal choice of democracy

Posted: August 19, 2014 in Article

By: Li Hui Yi (translated name)

Nanyang Siang Pau, August 15, 2014

From the general elections in 2008 to 2013, Pakatan Rakyat’s biggest weakness is that whoever is in power goes against intellectualism; whoever is without power goes against governing.

Right now, all differences in opinion, estrangement and let-down are caused by the battle on the menteri besar position.

In a democratic society, those in power are capable of following the people’s will; those without power will be serving the people in the name of “having justice served”.

Fine line between saviour and destroyer

The people of Malaysia have been hoping for a “saviour”. Pakatan did play its role as a “saviour” in the past few years and portray themselves as the symbol of “democracy”. However, there is a fine line between “saviour” and “destroyer”.

In the ancient philosophy of liberalism, “liberalism” and “democracy” are distinctive ideas serving different purposes. Therefore, people in 18th and 19th century had never combined the two ideas. “Liberalism” is an “anti-patriarchal” language and concept that is doubtful of any patriarchal idea such as state, government, church and any other obligatory social mechanism.

Therefore, liberalism advocates constitutional and development of political culture to safeguard people’s rights to freedom. “Democracy” is a process of participation in which election is the most important component, followed by other public procedures.

Different concepts of democracy

However, due to the lack of understanding on democracy and liberalism, people with all kinds of imagination could not understand the unexpected situations that exceeded their imagination have become furious, aggressive and extreme. At last, they choose to give up.

Each person has a value system that they choose to believe in. But the people with such belief that trusted the value system in defending the true spirit of democracy has actually forgotten about the different concepts of democracy, democracy is actually lack of subjectivity.

At this moment, we should consider that value system is not only a political stance, and find out what have we learnt from the non-liberal democracy. Should we irrationally ban the social media pages to vent our emotion? Most importantly, we should review and think about whether the value system that we believe in is still worthy of our support with all factors and conditions considered.

Original Source: 意犹未尽:不自由的民主抉择‧李慧易

PR must have a supreme leader

Posted: August 19, 2014 in Article

Nanyang Siang Pau, Editorial, August 15, 2014

The Selangor menteri besar crisis has become intensified, it seems that there is no way to save the situation unless the PAS central committee meeting on August 17th agreed on to replace Tan Sri Khalid’s menteri besar post, or else the Selangor state assembly or even the state executive council will lead to a gridlock for a long period.

It seems PAS is quite adamant not to support Datuk Seri Wan Azizah as menteri besar, will PKR de facto leader Datuk Seri Anwar succumb to the situation and accept PAS’s counter-proposal on the menteri besar’s candidate is something ought to be seen, and perhaps Anwar’s next step could be the crucial factor which will affect PAS’s ultimate decision on the matter in its coming central committee meeting.

The present situation clearly demonstrates that Anwar has left with little political capital to insist on for his wife Wan Azizah to become the menteri besar. To Anwar, the only way out is to compromise for PKR to nominate another candidate, this is at least better than for Khalid to maintain the menteri besar post or to allow the helm to be fallen into PAS’s hands.

PAS spiritual leader Datuk Nik Aziz and its party president Datuk Seri Hadi Awang refused to accept the resolution passed by the Selangor state Pakatan Rakyat leaderships to replace the Selangor menteri besar, the reason being PKR had failed to prove the guilt of Khalid, but they did not offer any concrete reason why they had objected against Wan Azizah to be the menteri besar.

Sometimes politics just doesn’t need to have any reason.

After sized up the situation, PAS had forced Anwar and PKR to give in, the move it made is precise and ruthless, but nothing is absolute, in the end even if the three allied parties in Pakatan have reached consensus on the candidacy of menteri besar, whether PAS will reconcile with its friendly parties and bring the relationship back to normal is very hard to predict.

Nevertheless, following the blow by blow experience in the Selangor menteri besar debacle, if at last the three allied parties of Pakatan are able to bury the hatchet, they would be more mature in their approach when dealing with similar incident in the future.

No matter how, everything must be back to normal.

The biggest function of Politics is the management of public affairs, presently Khalid who is still the menteri besar and the three allied parties of Pakatan are going on their own way, the biggest victim will be the Selangor people who are innocent.

Pakatan never missed out any chance to criticize Barisan Nasional, Umno’s dominance in BN has especially been the target for Pakatan to strongly condemn at. Pakatan has always emphasized on equal footing for its three component parties; however, the political ideal has obviously gone haywire. “A snake without its head” is the political predicament facing by the Pakatan.

If Pakatan is able to continue with its political struggle in the alliance, it is imperative for the party to elect a supreme leader without any further delay. At present, a mere menteri besar post is enough to cause a big disturbance to the alliance, how is Pakatan going to convince us that if one day it manages to take over Putrajaya, there won’t be an outbreak of another even bigger disturbance?

If the two-party system in the political arena which doesn’t come easy is jeopardized by the Selangor menteri besar crisis, the friends of Pakatan will naturally be saddened and the foes be gladdened. And if Pakatan dare not face up to the issue of electing a supreme leader, eventually it will become an opposition alliance that is like the chicken ribs which is of little value.

Original Source: 南洋社论:民联须有第一号人物

Sin Chew Daily, Editorial, Aug 18, 2014

Pakatan Leadership Council and PAS Central Committee had their own meetings within the same day and managed to defuse the crisis on the replacement of Selangor Menteri Besar and save Pakatan from crumbling.

PAS Central Committee adopted three resolutions which by and large made some concessions to Pakatan partners and gave Pakatan the lifeline.

PAS’ first resolution is to remain in Pakatan. It declared that it would not withdraw from Pakatan because of the row over the Menteri Besar. The decision also overturned the earlier decision taken by the PAS Syura Council, as well as the support given by Nik Aziz and Hadi Awang.

It showed that PAS had dropped Khalid in order to reach a consensus within Pakatan and thus defused the crisis. It was a victory of the liberal camp.

PAS Central Committee recommended Dr Wan Azizah and Azmin as the alternatives to Khalid, which differs from the stand taken by PKR and DAP. It also indicated that PAS has certain reservations as PKR and DAP have already made it clear that its sole candidate is Dr Wan Azizah. Azmin is not included in their list.

However, Azmin later declared his support for Dr Azizah as the Menteri Besar to avoid a PKR split which eventually resulted in PAS’ acceptance of Dr Azizah as the sole candidate. As of now, the time is ripe for the replacement of Khalid and without the resistance from PAS; Pakatan can kick off the procedure to change the Menteri Besar.

Pakatan can submit to the Sultan that Dr Wan Azizah had the majority support for his approval to become the next Menteri Besar. Or the four PAS Exco members who supported Khalid can withdraw from the Exco to force Khalid to step down. Otherwise, it will wait until November for the state assembly to convene and table a vote of no confidence on Khalid.

Whichever way, the end result is to replace Khalid and the remaining question is whether the Sultan will approve Dr Wan Azizah’s appointment. If Pakatan has only one candidate, it is in control. However, if there are two candidates, then the sultan will be in control and the final choice may not be Dr Wan Azizah.

If that happens and PKR and DAP still insist on Dr Wan Azizah, it will trigger another crisis and it may not be able to rally the support of PAS anymore. The conservative faction of PAS has lost face because they dropped Khalid. The next time around, they may not be willing to give way so easily.

Right from the launching of the Kajang Move, PKR has only two objectives. First is to topple Khalid and second to replace him with Anwar. However, Anwar faces many hurdles because of his conviction, and thus Dr Wan Azizah is the non-replaceable candidate.

As of now, all Anwar needs is just one more step and he can achieve his goal. The next step is seeking approval from the Sultan which is dicey and may be the biggest challenge.

Original Source: 民聯共識解除分裂危機

How an angel turned into a devil

Posted: August 19, 2014 in Article

By: Lim Lip Suan

Sin Chew Daily, August 15, 2014

Famous Russian writer Tolstoy wrote a short story that tells the story about a Chief Devil who is trying to corrupt the people who are becoming more and more kind in order to secure the status of the devils.

The Chief Devil sent the first little devil to disturb a farmer because he saw how the farmer were happy with his life even though he only made a small amount of money despite working very hard every day.

The first little devil toughened the soil of the farmer’s land, hoping that he would give up farming. The farmer was working extra hard and putting in even more effort on his farm, he did not complain at all.

Upon seeing his plan failed, the first little devil had no choice but to go back to the Chief Devil.

The Chief Devil sent the second little devil.

The second little devil stole the farmer’s lunch. He thought, the farmer worked so hard yet his lunch was stolen, he will definitely be devastated!

When the farmer got really hungry and thirsty, he discovered that his lunch was gone when he was ready to have his lunch. He murmured to himself, “The person who stole my lunch surely needs it more than I do, it would be a good deed if his hungry stomach can be fed.”

The second little devil failed.

The Chief Devil was reluctant to give up; he sent the third little devil.

The third little devil tried to befriend the farmer, the farmer gladly accepted him as a friend.

By using his special power, the little devil knew drought will happen next year, he then advised the farmer to plant his seeds near the water source, the farmer did as told.

The second year when the others were suffering terrible lost; the farmer grew a great surplus and started living a wealthy life.

The little devil taught the farmer to distil his rice into wine to make more money. After a while, the farmer stopped working, he was able to earn more by selling his products.

The little devil reported to the Chief Devil, “The farmer now has the blood of a beast.” The farmer hosted a dinner and invited many rich friends to try a sumptuous feast of wine and food. At the dinner, a servant who was serving wine slipped and fell.

The farmer started scolding the servant, “Look how careless you are!”

The servant replied, “Master, we haven’t eaten anything for the whole day!”

The farmer got even angrier, “How could you eat when you didn’t get your job done properly?”

Upon seeing this, the Chief Devil happily asked the little devil, “How did you achieve this?”

The little devil said, “I did it by giving him more than what he needed.”

Although the story was just a fiction, Selangor Pakatan between the past two general elections does bear some resemblance to the farmer in the story.

In fact, Christian and Islam believe that devils are angels that have fallen and become devils because of arrogance and corruption. Moreover, after the general election in 2008, some politician openly mentioned, “instead of befriending unfamiliar angels, it is better to stay with devil friends.” Do we not feel the creepiness when we compare his remark with the situation now taking place within Selangor Pakatan? Absolute power corrupts absolutely is a cliché. But what is happening on Selangor Pakatan is telling us that absolute power will turn an angel into a devil!

Before the Chinese hungry ghost festival ends this year, the Selangor Pakatan saga is showing us that an ordinary person will become even more evil than a devil when fighting for his personal interests. It is also making us believe that devils were really the transformation of corrupted angels. Karpal Singh had only left us three months ago. His famous quote “If one Karpal is put down, 100 Karpals will rise,” was mentioned many times during his memorial service. Many DAP members have promised they will become one of the Karpals. At this critical moment faced by Selangor Pakatan, DAP members should stand up and do your part; otherwise more angels will be turned into devils.

Original Source: 林立選‧天使是如何變成魔鬼