Politics is all about HOPE

People on the street, the simple folks like you and me (the rakyat or RenMin), have actually few expectations of the ruling class.

As long as the people  have  enough food to eat, live comfortably and peacefully, with their children’s welfare and education needs taken care of, they would not want drastic changes.

However, when governance becomes so bad that corruption and abuse of power have made life difficult for the people on the street, then whoever gives them hope of change will be hailed as saviour .

Throughout history, there are many instances of such. One example is of course the Tai Ping Tian Guo revolution of China which I have written an article on last year. For those who miss the article, they can read it here.

Politics is about giving people HOPE. Especially when people are feeling uncertain about future; when there is a sense of hopelessness about future.

The US people felt that way 2 years ago. And so when Obama came forward and gave them Hope for change – a change for a better life-many people voted for him. But when the expectation runs so high and whatever promises have not been  delivered , hope changes  to despair and despair changes to anger and displeasure. To be fair, perhaps 2 years maybe too short  a time to show results in whatever reform, but when people loses hope that the promised change can be delivered, they become impatient and thus sentiment changes and the mid-term US results showed that.

In 2004, people in Malaysia, so fed up with corruption and cronyism and nepotism ,  were so full of expectation for change that they overwhelmingly gave Pak Lah the Mr “Clean’  a mandate never seen before in the history of Malaysia. But because expectations were so high, and things that were promised were not delivered, expectations changed to despair  and anger, which culminated in the tsunami of 308. Pak Lah with such huge mandate could have taken drastic steps to revamp his party and remove the warlords, and change Malaysia, but he did not live up to the expectations.

Recently, I had a conversation with a well known Chinese community leader about politics in Malaysia. He opined that people had hope for a 2 party system to take shape after 308, and after 308,  people generally had very high hope for PKR.  It gave people then a hope to do away with racism, corruption and abuses.

However, with the infighting inside the party, people started to have some doubts . Whatever hope that was given to the people, if that hope cannot even be translated to fair and just  practices inside the party, how could the party fight for fairness and justice for all Malaysians? If the party cannot even practice good governance inside the party , how can people expect it to do so outside the party..If only the loyalists are being rewarded and capable and liberal leaders like Zaid sidelined just because he is not a yes man,, is this not another form of cronyism? If the party cannot even rid cronyism inside the party, how is it going to rid cronyism when it comes into power?

Tun Dr Lim Chong Eu had once said that he would never promise anything that cannot be delivered. I think that is a very good advice, for politicians of both divides.  For Hope given and not delivered will be the sure way to court defeat and this axiom applies to  the ruling as well as the opposition parties.

For Malaysia to move forward and we the people to get better life, both sides have to buck up. Revamping is difficult but however difficult , it is a task that both sides must undertake.


22 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Rhan
    Nov 09, 2010 @ 13:59:59

    I can’t imagine politic without ‘infighting’ and I am not too sure if contest for party position amounting to ‘infighting’. I just hope that the people and the member of any political party would construe any ‘infighting’ as healthy competition between leaders, and an opportunity to acknowledge the political aspiration from each contester. Perhaps some party do it badly the first time but at least they are willing to take the challenge to make the first move to become more democratic, relatively speaking. Mindset may take a while to transform, but it is anytime better than the father to son or you help me I help you type of politic. On PKR, I am curious why Zaid don’t go for the top post?


  2. sammy
    Nov 09, 2010 @ 14:55:54

    And what is your response about your party’s leader? Is he fit to carry on or should new blood be brought in? How much money has he tucked under his wife’s company and personal secretary’s company in the name of development…is it still not enough? People of Pg are tired of him and he can never hope to return!


  3. Dr Hsu
    Nov 09, 2010 @ 15:46:45

    contest is not infighting. Contest is healthy but if there are frauds and misuse of party machinery to canvass for votes for loyalists, then it is not healthy..
    What i meant by infighting is factional/personal fights, and after a faction/person loses, the other faction/person starts to marginalise the losing faction/person. the losing faction also may just boycott all activities organised by the winning side.. these are all instances of infighting and this weakens whatever organisation. Contest should be followed by a closing of ranks, the losing side support the winning side and the winning side does not chop off the losing side..

    In Malaysia, in every party including my own this is not done. Perhaps this is human nature. But look at President Lincoln. He appointed all his political opponents into his cabinets (those who ran against him) because he believed in meritocracy and those who contested against him were the best and the cream..


    Nov 09, 2010 @ 15:48:10



  5. CYC
    Nov 09, 2010 @ 16:04:40

    What hope does Gerakan could offer to the rakyats in 2, 5, 10 and 50 years ? Nothing !

    KTK justified Gerakan’s relevance by accepting frogs and deemed it as HOPE of the party. Faked Tai Chi man talking fake principles !

    Dr Hsu, how could a party of hope endorse a hopeless leader?


  6. agerakanmember
    Nov 09, 2010 @ 16:14:20

    KTK’s days are numbered… Discontent is everywhere. He knew it and he has promised he would not hold the post for more than 2 terms, maybe 1 term .


  7. CYC
    Nov 09, 2010 @ 16:54:02

    BN is UNITED in abusing the system and condoning corruption but PR is split in arriving at consensus on many issues. So, see the difference and gauge what is best for u in short and long term respectively. What do u want ? An infant struggling to learn and perfecting its survival skills or a mature adult equipped with a mind solely to rob and steal ? U deserves the govt u choose.


  8. pilocarpine
    Nov 09, 2010 @ 17:57:39

  9. petestop
    Nov 09, 2010 @ 19:34:11

    One thing Anwar is getting shafted (pun unintended) again and again by his close “friends”.

    It is either he is total poor judge of characters, or he is just too naive. However, being so long in politics, I would believe the former.

    His 916 fiasco further undermines his credibility and Karpal Singh is absolutely correct to take a stance against Anwar trying to engineer the 916 defection, that it will only produce a weak and unstable govt. Not help by more PKR “frogs” jumping causing them to lose one state and the Opposition majority in Parliament.

    Therefore, it falls back to the two more mature parties as in PAS and DAP to prop up Pakatan,
    despite PKR big talk of being the “gel” that holds Pakatan together.

    Until there is a healthy 2-party systems to check-n-balance the ruling govt, unfortunately we still have to prop up Pakatan until the time they become a much more credible force.

    From the way things looks, may not happen in next GE, but may happen in the one after the next after Pakatan needing much more seasoning to be tasteful enough.

    One thing I really like to ask Pakatan, where is the “shadow” govt ? How are you guys going to prepare to rule, when you can’t even set up a “shadow” govt to present your alternatives ?

    Don’t keep talking about taking PutraJaya, show us the plan how you will govern !!!


  10. Dr Hsu
    Nov 09, 2010 @ 20:05:20

    I totally agree with your view that they should have come out with a shadow cabinet. But i think the reason why such a thing was not done is because it is really difficult for them to divide the portfolio; ambitious characters within the three parties would fight toe to nail to get a share of the portfolio and if not handle properly, it may even lead to a breakup of the coalition.

    BUt no matter how difficult it is, the three parties should have sat down and discuss. Put the best person to be in charge of a portfolio, like Tony for Finance, Karpal for law etc.


  11. A true Malaysian
    Nov 09, 2010 @ 20:18:39

    Again and again I commented, with Umno around,

    (a) there is no level playing field

    (b) there is no rule in a game, what they say is rules

    (c) there will not be a 2-party system

    However inefficient, inmature Pakatan may be, so long as they are less corruptible, more conscience in them, less smarter but more honest than Umno / BN, my bet is still with Pakatan.

    Petestop, you are right, Pakatan needs to tell us who will be PM, DPM, Finance Minister, Home Minister, Education Minister…… I don’t see why they cannot come up with the list. Please let us have the list that is derived based on merit of each proposed appointee, and not on race and religion.

    Don’t under-estimate the Malays, they too like to see appointees with calibre, integrity, honesty that can administer the country with due professional care, not on skin color, race and religion.


  12. kingkong
    Nov 09, 2010 @ 21:16:41

    BN even the basic cannot deliver. They divide the nation using religion and race. They give rakayat RM10 but pocket RM1000.

    People are too demanding. Those in PR are first timers in high post. This time in their life they are managers and exco and directors of public organisation because under UMNO they truelly practise discrimination against opposition. They give no facilities or aid to opposition and train they to shout. UMNO train the public to be arm chair critics. But those in UMNO has undergone training such as parliamentary secretary, deputy minister etc


  13. cilipadi
    Nov 09, 2010 @ 21:20:08

    I propose Dr. Hsu Dar Ren as the Health Minister.

    Any seconder?

    Dr. Hsu makan cili, Health Minister rasa pedas


  14. disgusted
    Nov 09, 2010 @ 22:16:05


    Malaysia’s Health (Hell) Minister is a jinx post, maybe cursed. History of all ex-Hell Ministers went something like this:

    Chan Siang Sun dropped dead after playing badminton. Lee Kim Sai got kicked out by Ling. Chua Jui Meng lost his post. Dr Chua performed in DVD. Now we are watching Liow and his mosquito species going to make love in Bentong jungle.

    No, Dr better be Home minister to “take good care” of potential corrupted ministers.


  15. cilipadi
    Nov 09, 2010 @ 23:03:20

    I never know you believe in jinx.

    Any how, Dr. Hsu is suitable for any post. I have no doubt in him.

    Go, Dr. Hsu go for it.

    On serious note, brains drained out will flow back to your country if Pakatan rules.

    siapa makan cili, dia rasa pedas


  16. petestop
    Nov 10, 2010 @ 09:44:12

    It takes a brave leader in order for Pakatan to be able to come up with a shadow govt.
    One who can wade through the many opportunist and the more extreme individuals and come up with aa acceptable list of candidate for shadow govt based on merits, not on race.
    Also one who can withstand the attack by BN, especially this shadow govt list will become additional fodder for them.

    Unfortunately Anwar is found wanting, not helped by him being distracted with his many legal cases. Zaid was appointed as the Pakatan coordinator, but after the initial huh-hah, there is not much news. He talked a lot, even wrote a book, but not much action.

    Frankly speaking, all these ex-UMNO rejects are really found wanting. It would be best that someone from DAP or PAS becomes the coordinator. Someone with more moderate stance like Khalid Samad, Nizar Jamaludin, Tony Pua, etc, who can bridge the political divide.

    If Doc Hsu were in my constituency, I will definitely vote him based on merits and I sincerely believe he will make a fine Health Minister.

    Although he would be better if able to be part, if not lead the development of policies for a new govt. One based on merits, equality and respect for all, while not forgetting to help our poorer and disadvantage neighbours find their own two feet.
    Human development is much more important than
    just economic development.


  17. CYC
    Nov 10, 2010 @ 10:54:07

    Dr Hsu will not become an ideal Health Minister even under a PR led federal govt. It is sheer naive for anyone to think a good man will naturally able to discharge his duties well. Politics is not solely about principles and honesty. There are many more complex issues involved. U need ideas, charisma to draw in support, PR skill to balance up supporters and critics, ability to defuse enemy’s dirty tactics, … etc. Lone ranger within a party or coalition will not survive.

    Dr Hsu will be best remain as what he is doing now.


  18. wisely
    Nov 10, 2010 @ 18:39:37

    Dr. Hsu,

    I see u have a lot of supporters and admirers here and that’s good.

    PKR direct party election has bring more bad publicity and exposure than good and i sincerely don’t believe in any result that percentage of voters turnout is just 10% and today i heard that Anwar’s phone calls to some party leaders in Sabah asking them to back Azmin Ali are even recorded and Zaid has copies! What a joke!


  19. wisely
    Nov 10, 2010 @ 18:48:14

    HOPE – a great word. Everyone living on this earth needs hope but what about false hope?

    I heard from some party leaders that at one time, while Anwar visited some estate rubber tappers sometimes ago, he asked them how many years have they work there, one says over 20 years and another over 30 years and earning just a few hundred a month. I was shocked to hear how anwar give them hope – just vote us into Putrajaya and all of u will be the land owners. The tappers cheer and were so happy, is this the hope we give to the rakyat in return for their votes? Tell them what they want to hear despite knowing it will never come true and look at KG Buah Pala, actually is Anwar and not LGE who promised them. To me, this is scary!


  20. petestop
    Nov 10, 2010 @ 18:49:33

    CYC, I respectfully disagree.

    We need good honest man in government.

    Not a wheeler and dealer who acts more like businessman (more like scoundrel), which is the reason we want to kick out BN in the first place.


  21. disgusted
    Nov 10, 2010 @ 21:19:17

    Dr, ha, ha, don’t go for anything, I wish you a very long and healthy life. Good honest man in a corrupted government don’t last long. Just like the corrupted cops in entire Hong Kong in the 60s, good cops either got knocked off or disappeared into thin air.

    Enjoy your little pleasures as an ordinary citizen or as retiree. Nobody can save us from this stink and politics can never resolve or save this world. Believe me.


  22. CYC
    Nov 11, 2010 @ 11:19:03

    Petestop, honesty without being political savvy will only invite disaster in politics. This is a fact though we may not like it.

    Just check where is DPP Sallehuddin who was in charge of Altantuya case ? Why was he been dropped ? Being too honest or not political savvy enough ? Then why most ex Auditor General not appointed into any GLCs board where their counterpart from other departments got multiple appointments ? U got knocked off or retire as a forgotten man as disgusted said – This is the reality. We should not be dreamer though it is good to dream sometimes.


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