Economist Alan Greenspan who has worked with Nixon, Jimmy Carter, Reagan, George Bush senior, Bill CLinton and Bush Junior in his long span of public service, singles out Bill clinton and Richard Nixon as 2 of the most intelligent presidents.
When Bill Clinton took over the presidency in 1992, US economy was in a fairly bad shape. He managed to turn it around and presided over the longest period of continuous growth in US history.
I was fortunate to get a seat to listen to his lecture yesterday.
The central theme of his lecture is that the world is now more interdependent than any other period in history. People have to live with one another , and “divorce” is not an option, according to him. Success can no longer be measured by winners and losers.
He urged people to move towards removing their differences. He mentioned that scientists involved in genome mapping is debating whether the genetic makeup in human is 99.5% or 99.9% similar. To him, the distinctive features that diffferentiate individuals are due to less than one tenth of a percentage point of our genetic makeup; so in essence, humans are all alike.
He quoted Koran Bible, Buddhism to stress that we should discard our differences and instead care for the poor and downtrodden.
With half the world population living under US$2 a day, the world will not be sustainable if help is ot extended to this group of people. The world will not be sustainable if nothing is done to help the millions of HIV sufferers.
He was very touched by 2 Muslim ladies who came up to greet him while he was visiting our Aviary . He said , and I quote, “if only everyone could look another person in their eye and welcome them to their common space, what a difference world we would have.”
I hope everyone of us can learn something from his message, which is so full of wisdom.
Are we able to do that, Malaysians? Can we look into the eyes of one another and welcome them into our common space, and stress more on what we have in common rather than our differences?
If we can welcome each other into our common space, then it would not matter anymore that we have differences in skin colour , cultural upbringing, educational background; least of all, the form of exercise we perform .
This blog has always been trying to preach that we must be liberal minded, colourblind, and that human beings are basically the same except for small differences because of the prolonged exposure of our ancestors to our respective habitat. (pls read my article: Can Malaysians live that dream too?” )
California, a State formerly dominated by White people, is now so cosmopolitan that there is no more majority race there. United States, in decades to come , would be a country without a majority race. If the whites can accept this diversity, why are we Malaysians still arguing about race and “supremacy”?
Why are politicans still stressing on our differences instead of asking people to welcome each other into their common space?
I ask all Malaysians to ponder about what Bill CLinton has said. The world is not going to be sustainable if we still treat each other as different species.
I ask those holding the realms of power, or those aspiring to be one holding it, to ponder about what Bill Clinton said about welcoming each other into our common space.
If these political heavyweights can put into practice these words of wisdom , then perhaps, Malaysia will be a better place for everyone .