Matters of opinion that enables me to understand or make some sense of my country- Malaysia

Posts tagged ‘mahathir mohamad’

Of Lee Kuan Yew and Dr Mahathir respective styles of premiership.

Despite both PMs having strong authoritarian tendencies in governing but  TDM’s  administration  basically institutionalised a system that entrenched rampant political corruption as the norm –  whilst LKY demonstrated what can be achieved by a goverment with a zero tolerance of corruption.That’s the underlying difference between the 2 PMs and their respective ideals of Governing a nation with a multi cultural identity.
For LKY it was all or nothing,and particularly  stern against money politics that drags many Goverments down.Self-less interests style of LKY ,everything was for the best interests of his nation state vs Selfish interests of TDM’s goverment, ,inverted priorities .!
And results today in SIngapore and Malaysia ,esp of the goverment machinery is a testimony to that.

If TDM had the foresight to recognize the rot of corruption and wanted to or chosed to confront and address corruption firmly and sternly when he was at the height of his powerful premiership,Malaysia may very well have been better off  ,and who knows ,perhaps even match or surpass the efficiency and success story Singapore is today.

Point being ,both PMs and their governing style is a reflection of their own mentalities/attitudes /convictions of what and how their perspectives of the immediate world around them are , and how they view their own societies and perhaps allows a sneak peek into a window of what their personal personalities may be  like -by  the paths they chose to thread in Governing their own nation and the collective society they think they understand .

Pragmatism vs Materialism in Game of Power and  Influence

LKY’s pragmatism and foresight in recognising the formula to efficient governing above all ,  is a clean goverment with no nonsense approach to corruption- whereby TDM opted to leverage corrupt practices to his advantage and hence a barely functional goverment machinery ,prioritized by greed and personal interests in accumulating wealth , as among the driving force formulas – was put into momentum, where practices  such as  “commisions ,percentages ,third party or under table etc etc”  are the standard – without which  things may not get done efficiently.

And that momentum has been sliding downhill ever since – casting aside Govermental Transparency/ Accountability .

Dubious questionable financial practices are allowed to slide because of influence or political connections ,as long as there is a “greasing of palms” , that almost every Malaysian or non Malaysian business entities or even the man on the street has acknowledged that it is the standard on how things are done – in many Malaysian business environments,particularly in dealings with Federal/National  entities.


Can “Kow Tim” perhaps in Malaysia but don’t even consider the notion in Singapore !

Just mull on what the word ” Kow Tim” means to Malaysians.Essentially in most Malaysian psyches,most will just good naturedly shrugged it off as how things “are” and always “have been” .  And nothing objectionable to the term.

Yet in SIngaporean mindsets,even a whiff of something similar can land one in hot soup and is an abhorrent thing to even suggest as an option to gain any advantage in commercial enterprises or extricate one from a bind with the authorities..
That is the stark difference in the societal mindsets of the 2 nations.

Malaysians visiting or working in Singapore will never dare to even hint at “Kow Tim” when dealing with Singaporean Authorities/Civil service/Ministries , knowing for a fact that its un-acceptable and not tolerated and definitely worsen things if they are already in trouble with the authorities.

But on the other hand , almost instinctively, “Kow Tim”  or “selesai ” or ” settle”  will be  amongst the open options , considered in the mindsets , if they are in a “situation” in Malaysia, in dealing with authority. Fact is that , the thought of perhaps  they can buy themselves out of a “tight spot” in whatever trouble they are in – does come to mind.

But in Singapore,that thought is banished and dare not be entertained as a reflex and rule. That’s the difference of the environment and societal psyches in Singapore and Malaysia.,where ,in the former ,- regardless of ethnicity /nationality or country of origin – All  in residence in the city state – acknowledge and respect and take the rule of law and clean governance very seriously .

Essence of LKY’s  non-corruptible governance

And that is the essence of LKY’s premiership that to his credit ,managed to inculcate into non-Singaporean residents ,a healthy respect for the laws of the city state  , forged a level of self-discipline into not only the average Singaporeans but also those who do public service for  their own Singaporean people – always having the collective best interests of the nation and sense of well being of the people  as the priority..

And in-place is a Govermental structure that is efficient and by and large  non-corruptible.The anchor formula or foundation pillar that supports all the policies and strategies which resulted in the Singaporean goverment’s economic success and prosperity..

The very formula that TDM chosed to ignore but instead selected govermental  patronage , by selectively enriching hand picked cronies , who through their collective accumulated wealth , can be translated into power and influence that can be leveraged to political advantage. And be used to stay the hold on power.  .

And transparency and accountability in Governance need to take a back seat in order to consolidate his power, through the purchasing of influence by keeping his stable of wealthy, powerful and hence influential circle of  supporters – well fed.

Inadvertently ,the wealth of the nation was unevenly distributed, and even those supposed to be  beneficiaries of  the Govermental affirmative action policies was invariably sidelined..

Simple equation of -Financial Clout equates to Political Power !

Perhaps Mahathir subscribed to the view that to be a powerful effective leader, first priority is to accumulate as much wealth as possible, wealth equals power – to buy influence – to have the financial  clout or resources to ward off challenges to his leadership and to fund his own political battles.

Perhaps TDM was convinced that everything/everyone  has a price..and thus,he wants to ensure He can afford it all ,whatever the price tag..


Also read : country-comparison-malaysia-versus-republic-of-singapore/


Dr. Mahathir, a poem

Dr. Mahathir , I wait for the day.!

FMT LETTER: Raken Marimuthu,

Tun, Do you I know how much I love you

I admire, adore and appreciate you Tun

You are my Nelson Mandela of the East

Statesmen, a great leader and a visionary

You are the Father of our Nation,

Not only for Muslims but for all human beings

A humanitarian above caste creed and color

Above politics and petty issues of rabbles

Above borders, religion, cult and sectarianism

A classic leader whom the whole world respects

I wait for the day you will say I love all my people

I wait for the day you will say this country is for all

I wait for the day you will say all races are equal

I wait for the day you will say all must have equal opportunities

I wait for the day you will say let us all be united as Malaysians

I wait for the day the whole country will celebrate you as our hero

sourced : freemalaysiatoday/dr-mahathir-i-wait-for-the-day/

And my Rambling Thots and say:

Right on bro, and we can all wait till the cows come home and the pigs start to climb trees and roosters lay eggs as hens crow every morning or chicken and ducks start talking to each other in BM. etc etc or Samy Velu comes out of retirement and declares ” demolish all toll booths immediately!” But reality creeps in and we still have to wake up every morning.

Hopeful that the Tun does suddenly decide to stay out of politics and borrow few pages from his friend..the venerable living saint MADIBA, Nelson Mandela..

Until this day , many Malaysians are still unsure as to the true nature of TDM and what is really in his heart , whether he is really racist to the core , as most Malaysians want to/or convincingly believe , or he just cannot let go of the political power play.

It is sad actually to think that at our honorable  Tun’s age and , his very stature still able to occupy and command a very influential position with the hearts and minds of Malaysians. He chooses to use that powerful influence in the political arena instead of using his venerated standing to help in mending the rifts in our Malaysian society- which he easily can if he chooses to do so – and promote or generate more goodwill, affection and acceptance amongst  each other in our diverse multi cultural back drop and just let the other younger Turks play the political power game.

Dear Tun M, i wonder whether you have any idea of the respect , reverence and affection that you have amongst a  generation plus of Malaysians that grew up under your governance and prospered , witnessing the progress and prosperity you created under your watch and also , to be fair , the hiccups .

But  it hurts much more to see you damaging that reverence and respect for you with the recent exhibitions of attitudes and statements from you which have made  many to be uncertain and insecure of their impression of the great TDM and have their faith in their dear Tun shaken to the core..

Age catches up with everyone and won’t it be great , dear Tun Mahathir  , if Malaysians can witness a  journey of the final chapters of the saga of the great Tun Dr. Mahathir Mohamad in a quest of  uniting hearts and minds, rather than attempt to forcefully dividing them with resentment , moulding into one singular force , collectively known as Malaysians !

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