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There is so much talk about voting BN (National Front) out in the next general election. As it is now the Chinese appear to be solidly behind the opposition ( what with the latest news on the charging of MCA past President Ling Liong Sik on PKFZ multi-billion ringgit scandal!), the Indians seem to be sitting on the fence and the Malays are somewhat divided. No wonder there has been many attempts by UMNO (United Malay National Organisatiopn) to cooperate with PAS ( Islamic party) for the sake of, ostensibly Malay unity and perhaps also for the sake of their personal interests as Malaysia is a resource-rich country. There is so much wealth in this country that those in power would be very reluctant to call it quit.

For one desperate moment though I would like to believe that PR (Peoples’ Front) could make the difference but I doubt it; yet if we did not give them the chance to govern how would we know?

I have deep reservations against PAS, to be honest. Their religion-based party principles just do not gel with me and I am not confident of their ability to harmonize with the 21st century liberalism and scientific advancements. They are technology users but not technology research-friendly. In fact they have no policy on science and technology. They are more concerned with forms, ritualism and spiritualism.

So changing government is not for the faint-hearted. Unless sufficiently inspired and motivated, most people would rather be with the devil that they know rather than the angel that they don’t.

This is human nature. You need critical mass to make the change and to revolutionize thinking. With the fear tactics employed by the prophets of doom and the scuttling of the masses from gaining knowledge at the global level ( less focus on the English language in our schools ), we are a long way from a drastic new world.

And that, folks, is the sad truth. Having said that the current government should not under estimate the power of the people. We may not be as homogeneous as the Philippines or the Indonesians (if we were, those hereditary lineages would be long gone and now earning their own upkeep!), but the ballot box is a powerful reminder that people can express their dissatisfaction in a nonchalant manner, voting against the current government if the anger against political excesses and corruption has reached its limit.

If that happened, it is incumbent upon the police and the army to remain neutral and for those heads politically appointed by the defeated party to withdraw gracefully for the sake of the country. The world community will respect us for it. And we need a Mandela-like leader to reunite the people and save the country from a “political bloodbath” which will benefit no one.

I don’t fancy Anwar Ibrahim as the new PM because of his reported vengeful statements that he would chase those who framed him for sodomy1 to the worm’s hole (lubang cacing) should he be in power. That vengeance would be detrimental to the process of reconciliation.

Do we have a Mandela?

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