Radio talk on a fair and equal society

Two weeks ago, I was  the guest for a internet radio interview. The radio station is none other than durian fm, started by Jamal, the Chinese speaking DJ who was asked to quit last year from a political-party-owned radio station.

The interview was in English, and the moderator was my friend Khoo Kay Peng. The session lasted 2 hours, over which many topics were discussed.

I said that there is a universal value accepted by all and which is enshrined in Article 1 of the Human Rights Declaration:  that all men are born equal.

I said that it is also a universal value for people to help the poor, and not the rich. You donate to charity, not to millionaires.

I also said that within every ethnic group, there is the clever and mighty and there is the poor and downtrodden. the clever and mighty will do well without any help, but the poor and downtrodden will need cructches for them to stand up.

Take  a nation which has 3 races, let’s name them A, B, and C.  Let’s  say that in A, 50% are poor and needs help. In B, 20 % are poor and needs help, in C 30%.

All these people need what we call affirmative action to stand up and get out of poverty.

I am all for affirmative action, but i feel that this should be given according to social strata and not to be identified with race.

If we have a policy favouring A more than B or C, it is human nature that B and C would not feel happy. If we have a policy favouring B , A and C would not be happy. If we have a policy favouring C, then again A and B would not be happy. This is because if affirmative action is race-based,  even the rich within the preferred group would get help, whereas the poor in the non-preferred group would not get any help, and this perceived biase would lead to discontent.

There will be non-stop squabblings and all the energy will be wasted on this, instead of concentrating on nation building and economic development. There are many examples of these in the world, the worse would be the Rwanda case where actual genocide was carried out.

If affirmative action is carried out according to social strata , like in some of the Socialist democratic nations of Europe, the 50% of poor A, the 20% of poor B and the 30% of poor C will all get help. All the poor will be given help to enable them to compete on a more level fields against the better endowed and richer counterparts. The races would not have any more squabblings because help is now given not according to colour but instead it is given based on needs.

That is what the ideology of a fair and equal society is about.

There is no such case of  ” better be ruled over than walked over”, as alleged by a racist group, since this form of socially based action is only to help the poor, which is a universally accepted value.


In the radio talk, I also mentioned about the printing of the holy books by various religions.

The logic is actually very simple. In Japan, holy scriptures of various religions are printed in Japanese, in Korea Korean.   Buddhist scripts in China are printed in Chinese, even though it was originally in Sanskrit.Bibles in China is also printed in CHinese.

The reason is simple. The medium of instruction in Japan is Japanese, in China Chinese, in Korea Korean.  In Indonesia, all holy books are printed in Indonesian, because it is the medium of instruction there.

So if the medium of instruction in Malaysia is Bahasa Malaysia, then there is really nothing wrong for any holy books to be printed in Bahasa, since in the spirits of Article 11 of the Constitution, people have a right to practice their own religions and that means their holy books need to be in a language that they understand.



20 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Foo Khee Kuan
    Mar 29, 2011 @ 11:30:07

    It’s very nice radio talk, Dr. Hsu. It’s very true, but how about nepotism and cronysm in certain professional fields. Sometimes we can see that is not fair at all. The concept of “all men are born equal” does not exist. It takes very deep and solemn dignity and intergrity to realize that. This can only be achieve through long on-going education which is probably not taught in school nowadays.


  2. Dr Hsu
    Mar 29, 2011 @ 12:00:54

    In any system, there will be personal bias, but as long as the rules within each system is not bias, there will always be a chance for equal or better treatment. Persons come and go, but as long as the bias is not institutionalised, there is a hope for a fairer treatment even though your present boss may be biased against you.

    So when i am talking about a fair and equal society, I am looking at the rules of the games, not so much of the players . In any race, there will be personal prejudice. In every country, you can encounter personal prejudice which may even be racist in nature. But these are the players, not the rules… If even the rules are biased, then there will never be hope for a fairer society..

    When we say that all men are born equal, we are actually asking all powers that be to institute rules of equality… When the rules are not biased, after a prolonged period, personal prejudice will be lessened.

    That is what ideology is about, whether it is capitalism, socialism or communism, it is aimed at the system, not so much at personal level


  3. Kenny
    Mar 29, 2011 @ 14:25:43

    Good talk, Dr. Hsu. Unfortunately in Malaysia the Umno controlled ruling party will never follow the concept of fair distribution of affirmative action based on need not race.

    The reason is simple. Umno’s political power rest on special treatment of Malays. The Malays are threatened with losing their special rights if Umno is voted out. If all races are treated equally Umno believes it will lose its hold on the Malays.

    Hence under BN 1Malaysia will always remain an empty concept. For this to change there must be political change first.


  4. Dr Hsu
    Mar 29, 2011 @ 15:08:41

    That is why when I failed to convince Gerakan to move out of BN, i resign since it is really futile to try to change from within.

    I was the most vocal person in meetings, and even ktk acknowledged that, but by labelling me a idealist, he is indirectly saying that i am a dreamer…

    I think we need to change the mindsets of the younger generations of Malaysians to achieve change…


  5. Nick
    Mar 29, 2011 @ 15:32:41

    You are certainly a dreamer but so is Obama or Nelson Mendela and so was Martin Luther King and so many others who have done so much good for this world. Stay true to your dreams and hopefully more Malaysians can catch the spirit of your dreams for a better Malaysia. Your illustrations are simple and apt, I find it so easy to understand. But how come the dungus out there keep voting these corrupt creatures back in GE after GE. I am really stupefied for words.


  6. monsterball
    Mar 29, 2011 @ 15:38:04

    The only way to change the mindsets is to change the government.
    For 3 years hundreds of good souls like Dr. Hsu keep trying hard to part universal values and great advises.
    All fell into deaf years and having Koh Tsu Koon indirectly telling Doc he is a dreamer…shows Gerakan under KTK is nothing but a puppet on the strings to Najib’s whims and fancies.
    And all know UMNO B encourages corruptions and double standards…to divide and rule…to the extreme and extend to buy up souls and loyalties with stolen money to rule forever….and KTK is the dreamer..not Doc.


  7. Kenny
    Mar 29, 2011 @ 15:47:53

    Dr. Hsu,
    Yes, you have to be an idealist and a dreamer to effect change. You may not achieve all you dream but it’s the first step to to achieve what you can. Who knows, you may even achieve more your dreams.

    I’m afraid ktk is displaying his most practical side in hobnobbing with Umno. This is a man who has lost all shred of idealism in him, he is bereft of any dreams of social justice. What has replaced it is nothing more than the bare-knuckle struggle for personal progress.


  8. mf
    Mar 30, 2011 @ 12:26:00

    Dear Dr Hsu

    I would like to ask your opinion with regards to the following comments available from this website?

    Personally, I believe the nuclear crisis in Japan is going to be very critical to the world as well. That is my personal gut feeling for now. That is the reason for the great skepticism of our minister recent statement that no radiation has been detected in Sabah as reported by Bernama.


  9. Dr Hsu
    Mar 30, 2011 @ 13:57:36


    There is no such thing as a safe dose for radiation, though above certain level, it can cause acute symptoms including death..

    even low dose radiation is cumulative and prolonged exposure to low dose radiation can be harmful..

    Compared to a few decades ago, there are now more cancer cases among the population. There are many causes for this, including the fact that people are living longer, diagnosis is now better ( previously there are many undiagnosed cases.. I do not however rule out that increased repetitive exposure to low dose radiation can be a cause.

    When you take a flight, you are exposed to higher than normal radiation.. When you take the ruotine chest x rays, you are exposed to low dose radiation. When you walk through those full body scanners, you are again exposed to low dose radiation.

    But because no one can really quantify how much cumulative radiation a person is exposed yearly, it is difficult to have evidence -based proof that the cancer that person suffers can be due to his or her exposure to repetative low dose radiation..

    There is a good article in Vancouver Sun on this:


  10. wisely
    Mar 30, 2011 @ 19:42:01


    I totally agree with you about these two points you mention!

    The first point I can’t agree more with you.

    The second, however I want to add a little. Since I came from a church that already translated the whole Bible into BM (not Indonesia Bible), a hymn and many spiritual publications, I can understand the govt and some of the malay concern. There are 2 reasons why we did the translation – first is for all Christians who can’t read English or chinese – esp Sabahan and sarawakian native christians. Second – I guest you know why.

    Christian like islam are very agressive in preaching and history have proven that. That’s why I can understand their concern. However pls don’t get me wrong I am all for BM or Indonesia Bible to be used by all malaysians. Just religiuos issues are very sensitive issues, not only in Malaysia but in the whole world.


  11. wisely
    Mar 30, 2011 @ 20:29:44


    If PR are fair to all, why the Indians vote return to BN up to 80% in the last 2 by-elections according to Malaysiakini political analyst Ong Kian Ming? And Hindraf also have severe tie with PR and their support were way down compare to a few years ago. An recently over 100 Hindu priests in Kedah jump out of PKR? Were these Sami also took BN money? They too make a police report against Anwar…

    Malay votes return to BN consistently around 5 % since 308 and Chinese around 2-10% the last 2 by-elections.

    The recent NKRA reports, would you say it is a lie?

    The huge MACC crackdown yesterday on money loundery…

    Are these not all improvements on BN side but again we will still feel it is not enough!


  12. Li Li Fa
    Mar 31, 2011 @ 15:47:29

    Dr. Hsu,

    1. I believe that the Christian holy book was written in Hebrew and translated into various languages for readers around the world. These languages , among others include English, Chinese and BM and these translations are done to the closest of meaning to the original text. Since it is a book, it can be read by any reader who knows and understands the language. So the language is the channel of communication and knowledge for people who want to know the holy book. It is a human right to be able to know and read one’s holy book in the language that one chooses.

    2. As to the Durianfm, when will your interview with Jamal be aired? If it had been aired, is there an archive folio that I can retrieve this interview for my listening pleasure? Many thanks!


  13. monsterball
    Apr 01, 2011 @ 18:15:41

    Bottom line…our government is afraid Muslims reading Holy Bible and like to be converted to be Christians.
    In Malaysia…all Malays have no freedom of religions.
    But in Indonesia freedom of choosing a religion is there.
    In Malaysia…without race and religion politics…UMNO B cannot steal and is dead.
    China invested printing and ink…and first holy book is ‘ The JATAKA”..or stories of Buddha’s former births…printed in Sanskrit language…followed by “The Teachings of Buddha”…..both printed more than 2000 years ago.
    To me..all religions teaches only good…to tame and control the monkey mind.
    Why is UMNO B so afraid of the Bible being read by Muslims?
    Come on…Bibles in Bahasa are found so easy in hotels ..all over Indonesia.
    I am sure thousands upon thousands are taken back…as they are free for anyone to take home.
    I recall at the Missionary School I was educated…my fanatic religious teacher told me I will burn in hell…if I am not converted to be a Christian…and anytime I give my opinions of Buddha’s teachings…my teacher will shout out I am committing blasphemy against Jesus..but I do love Jesus as much as I love Buddha.
    No ..cannot…must choose only one.
    And so…this old ..out dated missionary teaching is applied and used by UMNO B fanatics.


  14. monsterball
    Apr 01, 2011 @ 18:29:12

    I read the Koran and have prayed at the Blue Mosque.
    The Koran is a beautiful holy book and the blue mosque makes you feel God is with you.
    If the government free all to choose what religion they wish to believe and have faith in…I believe many Malaysians will love to be Muslims.
    The point is..UMNO B is afraid Malays choosing other religions.
    As you can see…UMNO B is controlling and fooling his own race.
    And they steal hundreds of billions and throw back some.. to help chosen Malays…making Muslims in Malaysia…the haves..have none and many are fighting against this devilish government…..making Muslims.. divided into three distinctive groups….yet PM talk of “1Malaysia”??


  15. petestop
    Apr 01, 2011 @ 19:18:30

    Read news that the “Fukushima 50” are willing to die to protect Japan, in order to resolve the nuclear disaster, and that they most likely already received lethal dose of radiation.

    I just wonder what if such a nuclear disaster were to happen in Malaysia,
    will the politicians willing to die to project the rest of Malaysia from lethal radiation ?

    I guess is that they will be the first to cabut to their overseas mansion.


  16. CYC
    Apr 02, 2011 @ 12:00:02

    NKRA is just a compilation of tales to justify BN’s existence. Crime rate dropped by 15 to 30% as claimed by Home Minister, then why people still struggling to pay exorbitant security fee to maintain gated and guarded community even to extend of fighting with the local authority? Only wise man can comprehend. The govt of the day is on free float mode whereby the outcome of our economic performance is not within controlled navigation of political captains. The economic model has not gone through any structural transformation except facelifts here and there. More importantly, the foundation of a sustainable and progressive economy, i.e quality education which emphasize on competency is not addressed but keep declining.

    Equality is an dream in Malaysia. Hindraf has disintegrated since the days its “leaders” were released from ISA. Indian community has broken up beyond recognition by BN’s divide and rule tactic. So sad. They will continue to vote according to needs to fulfill their daily survival, not because of their love of BN. On the other hand, PR did not performed up to expectation in certain states.

    Though we will not have an ideal society but the existence of idealist like Dr Hsu is a must to transform or at least safeguard the little freedom still in place. Thanks Doc.


  17. monsterball
    Apr 02, 2011 @ 23:09:41

    Sarawak State Election on soon.
    I wish Doc will put out posts on Sarawak with so many points to discuss and argued…starting with CM Tiab…accused to be most corrupted with so much details told out.
    Last but not least…what is his final opinions on opposition denying BN 2/3 majority.
    But I think after the Sibu Miracle….a Sarawak Miracle is coming.


  18. Chauncey Gardener
    Apr 03, 2011 @ 00:03:02


    You are not a dreamer but a visionary. KTK is wrong !

    To the best of my knowledge, there are only 2 countries in the world which practices affirmative action for the benefit of the majority – Malaysia & South Africa.

    The case for S Africa is clear – the black majority had been suppressed by the white minority. In the same vein, it is difficult to comprehend that the Malays in Malaysia have been suppressed !!! And why are discriminatory practices still ongoing after 40 years ? That is generally 2 generations of people.


  19. free robux
    Nov 07, 2013 @ 03:07:31

    I was wondering if you ever considered changing the page layout
    of your site? Its very well written; I love what youve got to say.
    But maybe you could a little more in the way of content so people could connect with
    it better. Youve got an awful lot of text for only having 1 or 2 images.

    Maybe you could space it out better?


  20. Dr Hsu
    Nov 13, 2013 @ 10:42:15

    free robux,
    will try to do it when i have more leisure time. These few months, I am helping to look after my 2 grand children and thus am occupied almost every minute after work.Work too is very busy…


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