Articles, Opinions & Views: The emergency is a circuit breaker for toxic politics - Commander S THAYAPARAN (Retired) Royal Malaysian Navy

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Hindu King
No Atheists
In A Foxhole
“When you're left wounded on

Afganistan's plains and

the women come out to cut up what remains,

Just roll to your rifle

and blow out your brains,

And go to your God like a soldier”

“We are not retreating. We are advancing in another direction.”

“It is fatal to enter any war without the will to win it.”

“Old soldiers never die; they just fade away.

“The soldier, above all other people, prays for peace,

for he must suffer and be the deepest wounds and scars of war.”

“May God have mercy upon my enemies, because I won't .”
“The object of war is not to die for your country but to make the other bastard die for his.

“Nobody ever defended anything successfully, there is only attack and attack and attack some more.

“Fixed fortifications are a monument to the stupidity of man."
“It is foolish and wrong to mourn the men who died.
Rather we should thank God that such men lived.

The Soldier stood and faced God

Which must always come to pass

He hoped his shoes were shining

Just as bright as his brass

"Step forward you Soldier,

How shall I deal with you?

Have you always turned the other cheek?

To My Church have you been true?"

"No, Lord, I guess I ain't

Because those of us who carry guns

Can't always be a saint."

I've had to work on Sundays

And at times my talk was tough,

And sometimes I've been violent,

Because the world is awfully rough.

But, I never took a penny

That wasn't mine to keep.

Though I worked a lot of overtime

When the bills got just too steep,

The Soldier squared his shoulders and said

And I never passed a cry for help

Though at times I shook with fear,

And sometimes, God forgive me,

I've wept unmanly tears.

I know I don't deserve a place

Among the people here.

They never wanted me around

Except to calm their fears.

If you've a place for me here,

Lord, It needn't be so grand,

I never expected or had too much,

But if you don't, I'll understand."

There was silence all around the throne

Where the saints had often trod

As the Soldier waited quietly,

For the judgment of his God.

"Step forward now, you Soldier,

You've borne your burden well.

Walk peacefully on Heaven's streets,

You've done your time in Hell."

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The emergency is a circuit breaker for toxic politics - Commander S THAYAPARAN (Retired) Royal Malaysian Navy
Wednesday, January 13, 2021

Malaysiakini : "It's painful to believe that the would-be 'public servants' you're forced to choose between are all phonies whose only real concern is their own care and feeding and who will lie so outrageously and with such a straight face that you know they've just got to believe you're an idiot." - David Foster Wallace

COMMENT I have no idea why some political operatives were taken by surprise by this emergency declaration.

My sources had told me that an emergency was in the works, and it really did not bother me at all. No doubt, Defence Minister Ismail Sabri Yaakob will make some sort of statement about standard operating procedures (SOPs) or whatever else this incompetent regime can think of to make this "emergency" seem like a serious endeavour by the government and to impress upon the rakyat how grave the Covid situation in this country is.

I have no doubt that the pandemic situation is bad, very bad, which was exacerbated by this kakistocracy but the rakyat have to share the blame too. The rakyat, especially those privileged with a little bit more income than the rest of their brethren and who constantly fret about the pandemic on social media, have not taken the individual responsibility to ensure that SOPs are followed or curtailed their lifestyle so as to curb the spread of the virus. Malaysians generally went about their business as if the pandemic was just a figment of Trumpian imagination.

It is so much easier to continue to blame the Perikatan Nasional (PN) government and rabble rouse than to question ourselves as to the role we played in this third wave. This is not the kind of emergency that older Malaysian will remember. This is a kind of "emergency lite" that is just a political stunt to buy time. 

The very fact that life still goes on as normal, even more normal than the first lockdown, should tell us something about this "emergency". I, for one, think as far as bad ideas go, it is a pretty good bad idea. Keep in mind that the political establishment is saying that there will be no curfew and life – as it is under the movement control order (MCO) – should go on as normal. I said as much at the last failed attempt of an emergency here:

"All the rakyat really have to understand is this. One, this is not the kind of emergency that you think it is, the kind where there will be armed forces on the streets with possible shoot-to-kill orders and with movements restricted when the country shuts down because the state restricts economic and social norms."

Also keep in mind that the Agong wants some sort of consultative council made up of government MPs, the opposition and various experts to advise when the emergency could be lifted. I, for one, am waiting for the unintended laughs when a group of incompetent politicians get together and attempt to sort out the problem that they helped engineer.

Do not get me wrong, I think this is an ideal moment for bipartisanship, but I have no idea if our political operatives are mature enough to handle something like this without resorting to the business as usual of partisan politics no doubt egged on by their respective bases.

Slime ball politicians

Of course, the big plus for the PN regime when it comes to this is the suspension of Parliament and elections, especially the upcoming Sarawak elections. I happen to think that this is a good thing for the rakyat.

I sincerely believe that political operatives are such slime balls that they would risk an election just to attempt to grab power back from other slime ball politicians and damn the rakyat to Covid-19 in the process. As it is, we see politicians fleeing the PN government and numerous sordid political operatives taking advantage of the strife in the Malay establishment.

I just shrug at all this talk of Parliament being suspended. Honestly, can anyone tell me what goes in the Malaysian Parliament that has any benefit to the rakyat? Has the political class done anything in Parliament that would make a difference in the lives of the average rakyat?

The majority of Malaysians, regardless of race or religion, have no idea what goes on in Parliament, and every time the progressive elements in society think that Parliament is going to come through for them, they have been sorely disappointed.

I mean if there was some sort of suspension of the media, then I would be worried. At least in the media, the rakyat has some sort of say. After all, most political operatives use the media to spin, lie and shape narratives, all the while wheeling and dealing behind the scenes while shovelling high-minded rhetoric at the rakyat.

When in Parliament, they suddenly lose their cajones and attempt to blame each other for strategic mistakes and the total abandonment of what they promised to their voters.

Saying this to some of my friends has always gotten me into a lot of trouble, but so long as the opposition has got the media, then really whatever business they are doing in Parliament could be shelved for a couple of months.

If they (the opposition) were doing some good there, this emergency would become an issue, but the reality is that politicians are just trying to find a way to grab or retain power and Parliament is the brothel in which the rakyat is played.

Breathing room for PN

At least now the threat of snap elections, which is to grab power, is off the table. Political operatives can go about their business of being so incredibly incompetent without the possibility of throwing us all under the bus for a snap election, which is, in reality, is a super-spreader event.

Of course, this gives the PN regime breathing room to secure its position, but when you think of how political operatives are jumping all over the place, the way how the old maverick is fermenting dissent in the opposition and the establishment and of course, the actions of saboteurs of the deep Islamic state, this idea that there are "good guys" who are going to be hampered by this emergency is just pure horse manure. Forget about the pandemic but really this emergency - uncalled for that it is - acts as a circuit breaker for unscrupulous political operatives including the PN state.

Beyond the political aspect of this emergency, there is really no need for it. In specific states, the MCO order gives the state political and security apparatus all it needs to maintain control of the rakyat. The fact is that the police, for the most part, have demonstrated that it can effectively maintain control and impose order on the rakyat during the last MCO.

For the most part, the rakyat have demonstrated that it can function under an MCO and follow orders with minimal disruption. The reality is that the government cannot afford to have a lockdown indefinitely because the economic stakes are just too high.

Continued disruptions of political and social norms like the MCO would adversely affect the fragile economic ecosystems and would necessitate more control by the state to maintain the breakdown of law and order that comes with an economic crisis.

If anyone thinks that this emergency would drag on unnecessarily, he or she has drunk too much of the Kool-Aid. The establishment, always hungry for lucre which comes from a somewhat stable economy, would never allow it to go too far.

The only thing I worry about is that agents of the deep Islamic state will redouble their efforts to achieve their agendas, but since most political operatives would not stand in their way, there is very little we can do about that.

Starting the year with an emergency breaks the toxic politics for the moment.

Even though I think it is unnecessary, the reality is that it provides breathing room for everyone to get their acts together without threatening measures that would worsen the pandemic for the average Malaysian.

posted by Major D Swami (Retired) @ 6:05 PM  
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