Fear of clowns revisited in Umno circus by RK Anand
Saturday, December 07, 2013
From Malaysiakini : "I remain just one thing, and one thing only, and that is a clown. It places me on a far higher plane than any politician." - Charlie Chaplin
Whenever the Klan holds its annual congregation, it will revive the
hitherto dormant coulrophobia in me. And when I confided in a colleague
hoping that she will lend a sympathetic ear, she asked, much to my
dismay, if it meant that I despised cauliflowers.
has nothing to do with cauliflowers, I retorted. Or any other vegetable
for that matter. Coulrophobia refers to the fear of clowns. And
where else can one find an army of clowns assembling under a single
roof other than in the Putra World Trade Centre where Umno members from
far and wide crawl out of the woodwork for their annual pilgrimage to
When this dreaded circus takes place, I cower with
trepidation under the blanket and observe from a safe distance the
numerous mind-numbing and incendiary antics that unravel.
any self-respecting racist bigot will be proud of what is served, for
the rest of us, it leaves a bitter aftertaste in the mouth.
Every year, Umno delegates, without fail, will trek the extra mile to
drive home the point that Malaysia is still trapped in a Jurassic
They will paint a bleak picture that if the party
is voted out of power, the non-Malays, especially the Chinese, will run
circles around the Malays.
So in order for the continued
survival of the Malay race and the preservation of their special rights,
they must never, ever, vote for the opposition.
Never mind the
fact that the opposition consists mostly of Malays themselves, for they
are after all, marionettes in the hands of the Chinese DAP puppet
masters. And the Malays in DAP? Treacherous creatures!
more disturbing is that among the ranks of Umno are numerous bright
individuals who have no qualms dimming themselves for the sole purpose
of political elevation. A worthwhile gamble
Umno annual meets are also a nail-biting experience for the likes of
MCA, MIC and Gerakan, whose leaders must later squirm uncomfortably in
their seats, scanning each crevice in their brains in vain for a
plausible excuse to defend the indefensible.
In the aftermath of
such meetings, these leaders will struggle to explain the reasons for
their respective parties continued affiliation with Umno.
leaders and members still appear unable or just refuse to grasp the
simple logic behind the overwhelming support for the opposition as
witnessed in the two previous general elections. It
is not because of love for the opposition, but rather their loathe for
the ruling coalition that motivates non-Malay/Muslims to back
Malay/Muslim candidates from the Islamic PAS, and Malay/Muslims to back
non-Muslim Chinese and Indian candidates from the secular DAP.
The opposition simply surfs on the tsunami of discontent.
On many occasions, such as in the recent astronomical salary hike
in Selangor, the opposition has shown that it is not infallible and nor
are its leaders heaven-despatched messiahs to liberate Malaysia from
the throes of tyranny as portrayed by their demagogues.
discerning voter is aware that the opposition coalition is a fragile
pact between parties with diametrically opposed ideologies, which are
ever suspicious of each other. And giving them the opportunity to rule
can have severe repercussions.
But when confronted with the arrogant and racist outbursts from Umno, that gamble appears to be a risk worth wagering on.
For example, one veteran Penang delegate, whose physical appearance
betrays his Indian roots, suggested that 1Malaysia be changed to 1Melayu
because non-Malays did not back Umno.
And instead of
reprimanding him over his callous statement, the Kedah menteri besar,
who also has Indian roots on the paternal side, defended him. Jet-setting Rosmah
Then there was the Kedah delegate, who deserves a lashing from Indiana
Jones' whip, for his warped argument that gazetting the Lembah Bujang
historical site will cause Umno to lose votes.
the majority and not prioritise the minorities, he argued, completely
oblivious to the priceless value of such archaeological treasures.
Not to be outdone, another not-so-bright spark magnanimously remarked that he has forgiven the Chinese for turning their backs on the ruling coalition in the last polls.
that he resides in a democratic nation, he failed to realise that
forgiveness is not required for a citizen who exercises his or her right
to choose the party of his or her choice.
unintelligible and belligerent statements are hardly surprising when it
comes from Umno, whose president himself suffered from post-election
1Malaysia amnesia, and lashed out at Chinese voters, while his deputy
publicly proclaimed that he is Malay first, and Malaysian second. However,
the top prize for absurdity must definitely be awarded to the Federal
Territories delegate who defended Rosmah Mansor's private jet-setting on
a heartstrings-tugging romantic note.
He has taken the art of apple-polishing to a record high altitude.
Having lost the support of the more informed voters, Umno, with
unsavoury characters like this in its midst, seems destined to fall down
and break its crown, and MCA, MIC and Gerakan will come tumbling after.
And after reading the words of that great entertainer Charlie Chaplin,
perhaps it is an injustice to clowns to put them on the same platform as
these politicians. Perhaps it is not coulrophobia that I suffer from
but rather politicophobia, or at least the Umno brand of it.