My Anthem

Monday, October 31, 2005

The Sound of Silence & Moonlighting

The Sound of Silence

- Lyrics by Paul Simon -

Hello darkness, my old friend,
I've come to talk with you again,
Because a vision softly creeping,
Left its seeds while I was sleeping,
And the vision that was planted in my brain
Still remains
Within the sound of silence.

In restless dreams I walked alone
Narrow streets of cobblestone,
'Neath the halo of a street lamp,
I turned my collar to the cold and damp
When my eyes were stabbed by the flash of a neon light
That split the night
And touched the sound of silence.

And in the naked light I saw
Ten thousand people, maybe more.
People talking without speaking,
People hearing without listening,
People writing songs that voices never shared
And no one dared
Disturb the sound of silence.......

Just in the last SE&EN days, I have been recalling some memorable lyrics from THE GRADUATE -- first Scarborough Fair, and now,in the stealthy hours of just past midnight on Monday morn, I tread slowly to break the Sound of Silence so that I can see through my mind:

People, faces
Scenes, places
Laughter, tears
that sometimes dare to disturb
the transquility that echoes within
Sound of Silence

I want to be able to capture all these images one day in a written form, and hopefully followed by visual medium too, and that desire led me to a trail to learn from some willing experts who dedicated themselves to lead some I.Cows up the Hollywood garden-lined-with-silver-lilies pavement. Well if it finally turns out to be "narrow streets of cobblestone" so what, at least we can savour the sound of silence, yet there were people writing songs that voices never shared, no one dared ...
At least some 20 Malaysians DARED TO DISTRUB The Sound of Silence echoing in Hollywood.

That explains why last Saturday Desi joined a group of about 20 souls -- in bravery or bravado -- who dared to set their eyes beyond the shores of Malaysia towards HOLLYWOOD, hoping to make it the final destination of their creative efforts. We must and can dreAm, can't we?

I did intimate to my XsteamedReaders a li'l I'll be penning some thoughts on film-scripting -- hence this first post spelling out his pre-adventure on which he invested eight enjoyable hours from 0900hrs October 29, 2005 at Colonade Hotel in Jalan Walter Grenier hidden behind Salem's Lot (10) downtown the big bad wolfish city lights of koala lumpuh.

ScreenAsia provided the call.
Several like-minded ambitious, maybe foolhardy, but with a devil-may-care attitude, Malaysians answered ScreenAsia's Call to Adventure.

Each of us invested RM268 each for a full-day interaction with some film practitioners led by Australian film school-trained DANIEL CHAN, with a Film Producer named ANTHONY FU, trained in Hollywood with many international film credits up his sleeves, to learn:


"****Malaysia imported over 2,000 films and television programs from North America in 2001, against the 14 films produced locally (according to data from FINAS). The naked truth is, we prefer to watch Hollywood movies than locally produced films. It doesn’t take a genius to figure out that writing scripts for Hollywood has a higher chance of the public seeing your story, and getting paid at lucrative Hollywood’s rates too.

Out of 100 scripts written locally, 99 are never produced simply because there are limited opportunities in the local film industry. In addition, poor scriptwriting skills and story telling skills hamper the enthusiasm of any potential producers. Frankly, there aren’t that many producers locally to start with. The obvious solution is to write for Hollywood.

ScreenAsia's Exposition:

“Human beings have traditionally used stories to describe or explain things they could not explain otherwise.”

"The myriad experiences of ordinary individuals are instruments to understanding the human condition. These describe the identity and culture of a people, and should therefore be suitably packaged in some medium if we were to engage in dialogue amongst ourselves and the rest of the world.

ScreenAsia aims to lead this enterprise in the creation of Asian content at the level of writing stories for film and television. All other activity of production follows.

The Singapore-based company, avows in its website ( this Vision:

To give birth to a new breed of Asian storytellers and establish them as a team of ScreenAsia Associates to bring their stories to screens in the world.

Its Mission:

To develop, coach and mentor 300 writers from the Asian region by end of 2006.
To provide a safe space for writers to focus completely on their craft by looking after their intellectual property and other business issues.
To represent ScreenAsia Associates in a global market, as well as create opportunities for future creative works.***"

DESIDERATA has always been a movie fan, also a gobbler of well-scripted humour TV serious, outstanding and favourite of which was MOONLIGHTING, that dishes out lots of humour, sexual innuendoes, yet elegant and tasteful, with some thriller-detection work woven into its story plots.

The star attractions of beautiful, intelligent and curvaseous CYBILL SHEPHERD, and an engaging heart-stealer in BRUCE WILLIS portraying the MADDIE HAYES-DAVID ADDISON madcap A team of detectives gives the motivation for Desi to want to one-day make a li'l mark on the same hallowed halls as the celluloid world that Cybill and Bruce tread.

A typical scene in Moonlighting contains funny and fast remarks, sexual innuendos between Maddie and David who definitely have feelings for each other, yet there is tension, and sometimes like sibling rivalry, no, more akin to romance between two highly individualistic professionals sold to their calling. Hence the "love" in the air is suggestive, and doesn't overwhelm the show's storyline to diminish the entertaining value.

The success of the show is anchored on every episode's script being of exquisite quality and standard -- and a convincing and thriller-ending of the detection. Of course it's fairy-tale that does not occur in a run-of-the-mill detective agency, but the chemistry and riveting acting on the two protagonists carry the show effortlessly, every time. Behind the success of the series, always remember there is the WRITER! And Desi learns that each script can garner the author several hundred thousand dollars! Desi could do with that sort of moolah-lah, remember I still want to transfer to spiritedestination if Hollywood is beyong the horizon. Well,with ScreenAsia's help, Desi would be proud to be able, ONE DAY SOON, Insya-Allah, to be able to produce just one episode of a story of that league.

Well, if I can't achieve the equivalent of a Moonlighting script, I'd settle for the one that won young DUSTIN HOFFMAN an Oscar nomination, and this movie essentially launched him into Hollywood stardom. May even fantasise about reprising Dustin's role with a contemporary virginal maiden to Anne Bancroft, eh?

Hence, do you think the RM268 investment was value for money? Worth every 2 sen (about SG1 sen-lah!) of it, in Desi's laughing opinion.He's not laffing his way to the bank -- to 'ollywood.

The Howling (M)


No, the screen script for the Hollywood version of The Howling (M) is not ready, but I'll tell you more about scripting next week, Insya-Allah. I have been saying a lot of "God Willing" nowadays because in My Country, a lot of people have resigned their fates to the God/Almighty/gods, whatever, shaking their heads, saying "I give up!"

Meanwhile, dishing you not a CON BF (sorry, I could not invite you for one this morn, I had it outstation in Petaling Jaya...)some serious HOWLERS!
One at NewsWorld.
At one AcademicaWorld.
And the nation's reputation is at stake.


From Yesterday's ChallengiA:

"***Plot to oust mayor

KUALA LUMPUR: Sex and graft. These are the two powerful weapons used by conspirators to topple the Mayor.

City police said the plotters included several senior officials of Kuala Lumpur City Hall (DBKL).

Yesterday, police arrested three men, including a DBKL department director and assistant director, in connection with the publication and distribution of the book Skandal Seks & Rasuah Ruslin.

They also confiscated 702 books, manuscript and printing materials.


As Desiderata is on the run, you need to tell me after reading the rest of the story if there is an "A" Star Howler somewhere...***"


First paragraph as it stands means the mayor had been toppled!

But the rest of the story shows no, RUSLIN is STILL THE MAYOR!

The Star has made a serious Error, a fatal one in Desi's classification.
There is a BIG WORLD OF DIFFERENCE in a sucessful overthrow of the mayor, and
an attempt to topple him which had not been brought to a successful achievemnet of the mission.

Hence, the first para RE-WRITE to mean what the truth of what the real story's about:

KUALA LUMPUR: Sex and graft. These are the two powerful weapons used by conspirators in a failed attempt/bid/move to topple the Mayor.


At the heArt of the matter, it's a core element that MEDIOCRITY rules in many sectors of Malaysia, including two high profile ones like Academia and English-language Print Media, especially of interest to desiderata.english in the rapidly falling standards of the English language.

Speaking from experience, I know for a fact that the Howling 1 case cited as an example shows how "fatal" this state of affairs has deteriorated into. "Fatal" in my mind because that news item featured on Saturday frontpage of The Star would have gone throught at least FOUR STATIONS, and yet none detected the flaw, unforgivable for the highest-circulating English daily which features a regular Mind Your Language column:

(1) from reporter to Desk Officer (can be a senior journalist, usually of Asst News Editor rank)

(2) from the news desk to a Sub-Editor

(3) from the Sub-editor to Chief Sub-editor

(4) final review by a team,which applies for the FrontPage news, comprising the Chief News Editor, maybe even including the Group Editor-in-Chief or his Deputy.

SO, do you see what a world of difference by adding that phrase 'in a failed attempt' ??????? Yes, SE7EN question marks so if you have the time, bring it to the attention of the four, plus another three, stations the reporter's copy had to travel through before the story saw the light of day I referred to!


From the SundayStar page 2 October 30, 2005

Pak Lah wants UM to find out why ranking dropped

KEPALA BATAS: The Prime Minister wants Universiti Malaya (UM) to study why its ranking among the world’s top 200 universities slid from 89th position last year to 169th this year.

Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi said he was sad to hear of the drastic drop for the country’s oldest university.

“I hope UM will take the necessary action to rectify it,” he said after opening the national-level Welfare and Community Development Council (Mayang) at Rumah Kanak-Kanak Taman Bakti here yesterday.

The list was recently published in The Times newspaper’s Higher Education Supplement 2005 in London.

The rankings were based on the results of a survey of 2,375 academics worldwide.UM, however, ranked 45th in two other categories – Rest of the World’s Top 50 Universities and Arts and Humanities Top 50 Universities.

Abdullah said sometimes the criteria used in the ranking system might differ from country to country.

“We must compare our own criteria to see if it matches the one used by the international body,'' he added.

Pak Lah, it's no use trying to see whether the "criteria" is the root cause of the problem. It's the MEDIOCRITY that has beset the whole system, starting from the school system.

So now you understand why a Secondary Three student johnleemk' s writings, including one chapter of a Book he's writing, made Desi go wow, Wow and WoW as in gasps of Awesome" surprise. YoungLeemk would put many of these so-called journalists, many graduates too, to shame. Now you can understand why our academia rankings have continued to fall, fall and fall, through the years. Wasn't it very clear when you can have a case of a LECTURER who could not even string one or two sentences in an Examnination Paper without entertaining -- okay, some cringe, really, like the complainant who publicised the matter -- the students with some HOWLERS?

And the questions in MULTI-CHOICE FORMAT at University?

Pak Lah, you don't have to ask too many people why the University of Malaya's rankings have dropped and dropped...
Just check some samples of the Lecturers' work ... or interview some of the Young&Articulate students like leemk and others I have the privilege of highlighting here ...

Maybe just ask your Press Officers about the local English language standards ... in tandem with the local universities' standards, as far as English language proficiency standards are concerned. Surely you can extrapolate a relation between the two Worlds of Academia and Media somewhere ... nothing exists in a vacuum.

My dear Readers, who wanna join Desi in making THE HOWLING (M)?

Only triers (tryers) to the following will be considered for a shortlist:


(a)Name the university where the referred lecturer came from -- the one who couldn't string a sentence or two in proper English (ie without committing an error which Desi calls a HOWLER).

(b)Title of the Chapter that johnleemk had written which made Desi go WoW, 3X.
John, you need to answer (a), not (b) if you are inclined to take part.

This is an Easy Challengia because you lazy I.Cowws don't need to give a RAT-tionale!

DEADLINE: Tomorrow 8AM?

PRIZE: You get a mention in the blockbustier THE HOWLING (M) Desi's planning, for HOLLYWOOD, here I come!

Saturday, October 29, 2005

ChallengiA - A Star Howler

Yesterday, all my troubles seemed so far away, when the country's highest circulating English newspaper page 1 had this staring at Desi at
the breakfast table (hope my copy is not diferent from yours!):

Plot to oust mayor

KUALA LUMPUR: Sex and graft. These are the two powerful weapons used by conspirators to topple the Mayor.

City police said the plotters included several senior officials of Kuala Lumpur City Hall (DBKL).

Yesterday, police arrested three men, including a DBKL department director and assistant director, in connection with the publication and distribution of the book Skandal Seks & Rasuah Ruslin.

They also confiscated 702 books, manuscript and printing materials.


As Desiderata is on the run, you need to tell me after reading the rest of the story if there is an "A" Star Howler somewhere...

DEADLINE: by 2300hours today before Desi comes back with a closing answer just after 2400hours satIREday.

PRIZE: A platefool of flied lice with clickets from Sweets' OzLand -- for the most satirical RAT-tionale, no mousey-one no-can!

PS: A journalist on the run can sometimes be guilty of typing wrongly, like today being typed as satIREday ... hence the contents must follow accordion(g)ly, as in musically:

Take the best medicine of all for what ails you
-- laughter:

"A person without a sense of humor is like a wagon
without springs--jolted by every pebble in the road."

~Henry Ward Beecher

"Laughter is a tranquilizer with no side effects."

--Arnold Glasow

"Laughter is by definition healthy."

--Doris Lessing

"If somebody makes me laugh, I'm his slave for life." --Bette Midler

"The human race has one really effective weapon,
and that is laughter."
--Mark Twain

"What soap is to the body, laughter is to the soul."-- Yiddish Proverb

"Laughter is an instant vacation."
-- Milton Berle

"Laughter is the shortest distance between two people."-- Victor Borge

FYI of I.Cowws, A* HOWLER is a mistake in English that makes someone's voice box hit the roof after a lembu steps on SV's foot!(c) desid*ERRATA*

Friday, October 28, 2005

Wordplay Runaway Pays a Hi-price!

So in the (in)famous words of PCK,

I know it's ThankGodIt'sFriday
When BIg boys like thee are young&gay
Behaving like every month's May.

One mGf's PC is called Primpy
I just named mine Matey
Now should they engage in wordplay
I caution my knotty one
Don't do so in the sun
Cos when you engage just in foreplay
The local PCs may getya for being gay

What this IN(X)pired nonsense pOme comes from my friend
Is from a guru from Ad land
He thought some words might be funny
It landed him hi-and-dry, without the BIG 'oney

If I.Cowws steal don't guess what Desi meAns
I don't blame you
I once gave some Gorgeous one a fly kiss
When (s)he with flowing hair, turned
My face turned red, RedIndian red, like lobster burned
That (s)heila 'as NOT a miss

Ad Guru Resigns Over Comments About Women

Sun Oct 23, 6:17 AM ET

LONDON - One of the world's most flamboyant advertising gurus has left his job after reportedly telling an audience that women made poor executives because motherhood made them "wimp out."

Marketing giant WPP Group PLC said Friday it had accepted the resignation of Neil French — a one-time debt collector, trainee matador and rock-band agent who served as the group's worldwide creative director.

The firm, which is based in London and New York, told Britain's Press Association news agency that French had offered his resignation, and it had been accepted.

French made the contentious remarks during an industry discussion in Toronto on Oct. 6. According to a report in the city's Globe and Mail newspaper, French said women did not make it to the top because "they're crap."

Nancy Vonk, a Toronto-based creative director at WPP subsidiary Ogilvy & Mather who attended the event, said French described women as "a group that will inevitably wimp out and go 'suckle something.'"

The comments sparked outrage among many women in the advertising industry.

Vonk wrote on the advertising industry Web site — sponsor of the Oct. 6 event — that "my jaded jaw hit the floor" at French's comments.

"If our greatest leaders are busy quietly persuading girls they're just not cut out for this gig, how far is this group going to get — the brave ones who soldier on in spite of the discouragement?" she wrote.

British-born French, 61, known for his ever-present cigar, worked as a debt collector, trained as a matador and was agent to the heavy metal band Judas Priest before going into advertising.

He was among a generation of innovative admen — including future film director Ridley Scott and brothers Maurice and Charles Saatchi — who made a mark on British advertising in the 1970s and 80s.

Many of French's print ads are considered classics. One of the most famous shows a bottle of Chivas Regal whisky without a label, and the tag line, "If you don't recognize it, you're probably not ready for it."

Singapore-based French — who during the Toronto event was served drinks onstage by a woman in a French maid's uniform — was unrepentant.

In an interview with the Globe and Mail published Friday, French said there were few female creative directors "because you can't commit yourself to the job."

"You can't be a great creative director and have a baby and keep spending time off every time your kids are ill," he was quoted as saying. -- AP

In another AP reportlater spotted in The Star October 25, 2005 (World page 38),
'French denied saying women were "crap", according to a report in Singapore's The New Paper on Sunday.

"I just said that if you can't commit to the job, you're crap." it quoted the British-born French as saying.

"It was a tiny thing and I think it has been blown out of proportion."

French said he did not regret his comments, despite the outrage they sparked among many woemen in the advertising industry.'


This is my advice
If you arent ready for wordplay
Don't play with dice
Cos one fe-mail classmate did say
When caught by the PCs in room with mail
She boldyly asnwered, though frail

"I'm o'lady into adultery
So don't say we can't do it."
The mata-mata's English was good
The burly teenage gal was not misunderstood
It's she herself wanting to say
As one looking so young&gay

She's entered into adulthood.


Hi bruda Imran sisda kyels
Join Desi in word pray pray
Just don wanna be knotty
Or I'll knock thee out
At the end of the day
You may find your mind's goovy
But yet donno wat's all about

Desi's ChAllengia on TGIFrightday
Only Comments in Verse aloud my way
Be it in fun, pun, Light or Terse
I'll censor all prose, pray, play -- only in Verse

Thursday, October 27, 2005

Young&Articulate ... Part 5 (Post-Final)


More SPECIFICALLY through the eyes of a University student abroad:The Malaysian Student Dilemma


Recent events led me to think that being a student abroad, there are many things we come across that made us who we are today, and perhaps with hope that we will be the future leaders of the country?

It’s the time of the year where future graduates are out job hunting. They are frantic on trying to secure a decent job interview. They searched high and low for an appropriate referee. They get news from the referee that the future employer called them up and asked them about their opinion towards this future employee.

I looked at them and can’t help wondering where I will end up next year, same time round.

Some of you will say that I am just worrying about nothing. Dentists shouldn’t have a problem with getting a job. Yet I hear some people who still haven’t got a job at the moment.

As for my Malaysian counterparts? They are definitely NOT going back to Malaysia. Most of them end up in New Zealand, some are ‘lucky’ enough to go to Queensland, Australia.

I have stressed many times in the past on why the Malaysian students here are not going back to serve the country. Google my name and you can find the entries at desiderata and Jeff Ooi.

As for me, I think I will be following the league of my seniors and would hope to land a job either here or Australia. My patients will ask: “Why?! Why not go home?” I often smiled at them nonchalantly and said: “It’s a long..long..story…”

They still looked at me with a puzzled look but were respectful enough to not question about my rationale behind it.

Patriotism is to support your country all the time and your government when it deserves it.”Mark Twain

I copied that phrase from Desiderata on his post (yesterday...I highly suggest one should go read it as it’s about Institutionalised Racism, written by John Ling who originally had this written for Think Magazine.)

For days, months and years my head kept coming back to the question of why am I not patriotic. I have often had comments like:

“Oh you really should come back and serve the country...the country needs you...”

Does it really need me? Then why do I keep feeling that the people who run the country are using all their might to prevent me along with my other colleagues from coming back?

“You should come back because your parents are here, you being the only child, really should come back and look after them...don’t be so selfish...”

My parents urged that I don’t come back. They don’t mind me not being there with them, as long as my future generations and I have a better life (not in monetary terms). They would rather come and visit me more often. Perhaps someday they’ll retire with me over here.

“ Don’t you miss home? Why are you so anti- Malaysian? Surely we are much better off than many people around the world..take Uganda, Etopia for example...”

First of all, I am not anti Malaysia. I love Malaysia a lot. In fact I am very sentimental towards it. It was the place where at least, I got a decent primary and secondary education. It was the place that taught me my roots, many thanks to the still strong surviving Chinese public schools in Penang. It was the place where my parents were born and bred, and they taught me everything that they know to make me who I am today.

Yet on the same level, I feel that Malaysia has soooo much potential to be a much better country. No, we shouldn’t benchmark ourselves against lesser/poorer countries, if anything we should strive to be like our better counterparts, eg Australia, NZ (and we don’t even need to look far for that).

Am I not being patriotic? Well when Mark Twain said the phrase above, he was in United States of America. That, is the land of freedom...the land where dreams can come true...

Can you tell me that this is also the case for Malaysia?
The way I see it is that at least I care about Malaysia enough to try to echo the sentiments of the young. At least I want to know what is going on with Malaysia, and voice out certain concerns if something doesn’t seem right.

Many of Malaysia’s residents and citizens don’t even own a newspaper. They litter rubbish on the ground (especially Penang). They discharge bodily fluids without discretion. Aren’t these actions of un-patriotism?

I have always admired the Scandinavian countries for their wonderful social benefits and governance. Sure, they pay high taxes, but at least their tax is fully utilised.
Many of the research projects in the health field come from the Scandinavian countries.
Whenever I read on research projects like these, I can’t help but let out a big sigh and just dream that someday Malaysia will be like this:

1) their citizens get dental check ups ( every 6 mths, on the government)
2) they get regular scaling (mechanical removal of plaque and tartar from tooth surfaces) from the government, and often a dental hygienist would be their first port of call
3) if you want to extract a tooth, they will do with all their might to prevent that from happening
4) each citizen is guaranteed having a house by age 21, be it you purchased it or you obtained loan from the government.

These are just a slight insight on how they run their government.
I have never seen any issues like AP, NEP or whatever P in the Scandinavian politics so far.

Yet people say that I am being too pessimistic towards the hope of Malaysia. Am I? Or am I just being realistic?

If I am being pessimistic, why am I not the only one who shares the same sentiments?
Why are there millions of other Malaysians around the world,that are fearful to go back?

Once again, I give up..

DESIDERATA: I won't re-introduce Sabrina Tan, except to say that she must rank as the first "awesome" YOUNG&ARTICULATE who caught Desi's eye in blogosphere, and it was my greAt privilege and pleasure to have her all the way from New Zealand ... (landscaping so familiar when you saw The Lord of the Rings...?) as the Maiden Guest Blogger here. This post fits in so well with all the previous FOUR PARTS in the same-named SERIES I had to re-open the runway, walkway, or writeway for this shAring ...For more on the dentist-to-be -- Desi has teAsed her she can always have Journalism as her fallback career option!-- please visit Sab's Place at

AND I do strongly urge my EsteemedReaderers to ENGAGE Sabrina (hey, Sab, you play host today, play goalkeeper for a change, I'll help Haridas with the tehtarik!) in her tjoughts frankly put, even challenge her maybe, rebut any controversial claims even, but don't get personal, for we want a platform for civil discourse. You can use sarcasm, innuendoes, wordplay, fore- or post- Desi won't care, just be careful you don't make Desi call in THE BOMBA!

IN CLOSING, as Tuesday night waltzes into Wednesday morn, this writer by destiny's walk hears the strains of Moon River whispering from Breakfast at Tiffany's recalling another "Sabrina", transported into another era of KATE & LEOPOLD's olde world of a duke and his bridal-duchess, and I wandereth/wondereth into Life's strange twists and turns, seeking the meaning of meandering threads in Blogosphere.

Then I understand why ... please if you don't know what Desi's talking about, it's another Challengia to which Desi's not aloud to give an answer ... yet, from the stars that lead some one here, she yet finds a soulmate at the end of a rainbow always comes after a storm. Desiderata like a DJ caught in a midnight reverie, dedicates this Mark Twainesque drift to mGf:

"Moon River"

music by Henry Mancini,
lyrics by Johnny Mercer
Hear Audrey Hepburn sing:

Moon River, wider than a mile,
I'm crossing you in style some day.
Oh, dream maker, you heart breaker,
wherever you're going I'm going your way.
Two drifters off to see the world.
There's such a lot of world to see.
We're after the same rainbow's end--
waiting 'round the bend,
my huckleberry friend,

Moon River and me.

Wednesday, October 26, 2005

Young&Articulate ... Part 4 (Final)



I first sighted John Ling's writings when he appeared as GUEST BLOGGER at in conjunction with a marathon bogging event to raise funds for charity. Then I learnt he's a published writer with strong interests in ethnopolitics and peacekeeping. You can find out more about him and his work at Desi had the pleasure of ENJOYING his two-part narrative THE ASCENSION as part of the INTEGRITY SERIES recently hosted at It's a small, small world they say, as today I host yet another awesome Young&Articulate, and following in first GuestBlogger Sabrina's footsteps here, John Ling and Sabrina hail from a campus somewhere reminding Desi of the trilogy of Lord Of the Rings as Christmas approaches.

I thank the Young&Articulate John for reprising his Essay on Institutionalised Racism, a subject I believe has its domestic reference points, and would surely attract some debate, among Malaysians, be you home-based, or presently studying or working abroad. Desi feels RACISM is something throbbing at our daily heartbeats everyday, whether you like it or not.

Without fail, you can easily spot the DIFFERENTIATED PRICES on that huge billboard advertising the new housing scheme in your neighbourhood, don't you?The faster that such a landscape disappears from the Malaysian horizon, the faster will nation-building start or progress ...Desi's constant take here.

So here comes an international perspective with its local reverberations of a core problem within THE MALAYSIAN DILEMMA (the emphasis in BOLD is Desi's...):

******* You are enjoying a stroll down a sidewalk in some foreign country. The approaching hum of an engine fills your ears. You turn just in time to see a face lean out from a passing car.
“Hey, chink. Go home! We don’t want you here stealing our jobs!”
You are stunned. Frozen. Then, the anger hits.
“I am a student, you idiot!”

The car’s engine accelerates into a roar, tires screeching. It rockets around the corner and disappears. The person who had just insulted you is gone. You are not sure whether he even heard your retort.
Later, you complain to a friend about your brush with racial discrimination. She smiles knowingly and corrects you.
“That’s not discrimination. That is merely prejudice.”
You scratch your head and wonder what the difference is.

Racism has been a feature of humanity since the dawn of history. A Jew is regarded as manipulative. A Chinese is greedy. A white man is a redneck. A black man is dishonest.
We unconsciously fear what we do not understand. Our fear gives birth to prejudice. Prejudice gives birth to stereotype.
And we are all guilty of stereotyping. Each time we disapprove of our offspring dating someone of another race. Each time we crack a joke about a Malay colleague taking excessive sick leave. Each time we use the term ‘diaper head’ when referring to practising Sikhs.

The United Nations characterises racial discrimination as:
Any distinction, exclusion, restriction or preference based on race, colour, descent, or national or ethnic origin which has the purpose or effect of nullifying or impairing the recognition, enjoyment or exercise, on an equal footing, of human rights and fundamental freedoms in the political, economic, social, cultural or any other field of public life.
Which leads us to one expression of discrimination: institutionalised racism.


Also known as affirmative action or positive discrimination, institutionalised racism gives institutions such as government divisions, universities and corporations the power to grant or withhold rights based on race.
It first emerged as a product of colonialism. Non-European cultures were seen as barbaric and immature, and as part of the white man’s burden, Westerners believed they had a responsibility to rule and guide the development of non-Europeans. While benevolent in theory, it was malevolent in practice. The apartheid system in South Africa is a classic example of visible, unproductive discrimination against blacks in favour of whites.

From a socioeconomic standpoint, colonialism could not be sustained. It was impossible to continually hijack the productive resources of a country while shutting out talented and capable people based on race from participation.

As such, the collapse of colonialism over the last half-century led to the rise of race-based policies. It was argued that races that were previously oppressed under colonialism should be given preferential access to jobs and schooling. By changing the distribution of economic and educational opportunities, an egalitarian society with greater social welfare would be possible. Former American President Lyndon B. Johnson once said in defense of affirmative action for blacks, "You do not take a person who, for years, has been hobbled by chains and liberate him, bring him up to the starting line in a race and then say, 'you are free to compete with all the others', and still justly believe that you have been completely fair."
Sounds good. But is affirmative action all that it is cracked up to be? Or is it simply a sugarcoated version of racism?


It has been known for some time that affirmative action creates a condition known as moral hazard.
For example, a person with insurance is far more likely to ski recklessly down a mountainside than a person without any. In the same way, those with preferential access to economic and educational opportunities are susceptible to abusing them in two ways. The first is to use preferential access as a safety net to avoid the risks associated with competition. The second is to use it to illicitly enrich oneself.
Take a government project that is given to a contractor with preferential access. Instead of working exclusively on it, he keeps it as a backup, while he ventures into riskier, costlier projects. He knows that even if these fail, he can comfortably fall back to the safety of the government project that was allocated to him.

This is done at the expense of taxpayers, and leads to enormous wastage and inefficiency. Countries that practise institutionalised racism have a lower GDP per capita than progressive countries that do not.

Furthermore, institutionalised racism has brought about some serious consequences for the fabric of society. Racial prejudice does not lead to racial discrimination, but racial discrimination, in contrast, leads to racial prejudice. Preferential access on the basis of race, rather than true neediness, reinforces stereotypes and erases individuality. At birth, the future potential of each citizen is already mapped out by the law. A person is lumped into a fixed category, and preconceptions about racial superiority and inferiority are thereby cemented.

The surest sign of patriotism is the willingness of citizens to sacrifice for the sake of improving a country. But if entrepreneurs, innovators and scientists are given the shorter end of the stick based solely on race, then a nation may end up back where it started. Talented and capable people are shut out from participation. By choice, they may be unwilling to go the extra mile for a system that discriminates against them.*******"

PS to johnling: You are the Ho(R)st holding court here for the fulltime 24-hour play while I act as the Water-Boy answering to those thirsty individual, not institutionalised, actors. OK, add also 'actresses', lest some accuse Desi of discriminasi, and I do need to jaga my rice-bowl, don't I?
So feel free to kick the ball into John's court. No penalty shots, right!

"Patriotism is to support your country all the time and your government when it deserves it." -- Mark Twain

Tuesday, October 25, 2005

Some questions, will I get an answer, I wonder...

The headline below flagging off an item which may escape many Malaysian eyes catches my eyes -- and what comes into Desiderata's mind immediately is that THE SINGAPORE GOVERNMENT KNOWS HOW TO DANGLE CARROTS to attract THE YOUNGONES from its neighbours.

How many YoungMalaysians have crossed the Causeway on Singapore's Government Scholarships? I wonder...

And does our Government even bother? That's the question.

Okay, the arresting item...

She's studying bio-science at NTU... and she's only 15

Oct 23, 2005
The Straits Times

AT 15, Renee Athina Publico is the youngest student at Nanyang Technological University (NTU).

A first-year undergraduate, the Filipino whiz-kid is doing a four-year biological sciences degree that requires her to tackle such subjects as biology, chemistry and genetics.

'I had initially wanted to be an engineer like my father, but in secondary school, I did a lot of work in the lab and found that I liked it,' she said, adding that her ambition is to be a research scientist.

Here on a Singapore Government scholarship, the young teen has a focus that is atypical. She has a strict timetable that she has followed unwaveringly since the age of eight. Five hours each day are spent on studying her university subjects. When that is done, another learning curve starts.

She is teaching herself Latin, Japanese and Italian from phrase books and dictionaries.

The only time she is not buried in books is on Friday night, when she plays table-tennis.

Her relentless approach to her studies sometimes frustrates her friends such as Derek Yao, 22, who is also from the Philippines.

Said the final-year engineering student: 'It is impossible to get her out for supper. You really have to coerce her.'

However, her hostel roommate, 20-year-old chemistry student Tan Li Huey, appreciates her dedication. 'For the subjects we have in common, she provides a lot of answers for me. She is really good.'

Though Renee is least five years younger than most of her course mates, most are not aware she is so young. 'I don't really like to go out. And I know I'm not popular with the boys. But I think I'd rather do well in my studies than be popular with boys,' she said.

Her chemistry lecturer, Assistant Professor Rupert Charles Wilmouth, said: 'If you didn't know her age, it would be hard to tell that she is so much younger than the other girls in the class.'

And Renee does not see any need to correct those who assume she is older. 'I don't want to tell them because they might treat me differently.'

Being the youngest in her class is not new to her. She started reading at three, skipped kindergarten and went into a primary school in Luzon one year early, at age six. She topped her class each year, and was given a double promotion from Primary 2 to Primary 4.

At the end of secondary school, she applied for the Singapore Government scholarship to study in NTU and arrived here in July. And though it is her first time away from home, she says she doesn't get homesick. 'My parents call me about once a week. That's enough,' she said.

Her father, a civil engineer and mother, a clerk, live in the Philippines but do not fret about their daughter being away from home - and alone.

Said Mr Rene Publico, 45: 'We've never had to worry about Renee. She has always been very independent.'

Now, they are hoping their other daughter will follow in her footsteps. The 10-year-old has skipped a year in primary school. 'I hope she can follow her sister and go to Singapore,' said Mr Publico.

DESIDERATA: Singapore has been awarding a number of ASEAN Scholarships every year to attract Young Persons who excel in both academic and extra-curricular fields. I've read such advertisements and they really stress MERIT. And there are always more applicants that the number of scholarships offered, based on Secondary Three and Five public examinations results and their school extra-mural activities records.

This is a long-term investment by a smart government who believes in hunting down the best from all corners of the world, so it's no surprise that many Young Malaysians have been LOST to its southern neighbours. I used that bold-ed word as last night I saw another episode of a thought-provoking episode, especially a wheel-chair bound plane crash victim survived with a blessing -- he could raise himself up to walk again!"Sorry" for side-tracking -- so, s-kay, it's OK here, acceptable because we feel LOST some times...)

I wish these youths now guests of the Singapore Government the best of everything in their endeavours.
I just wonder sometimes, had it not been for such opportunities -- like what the 15-year-old RENEE ATHINA PUBLICO has just garnered through her scholarship, what would have been their destiny in life?

I sometimes wonder, and can't map out even an educated guess. Maybe I can turn to the Kementerian Pelajaran Malaysia for an answer?
Will Desi can an answer if I write in to them? I wonder.

A TUN who is also a former DPM asked for an appointment from some MBs and still did not get an answer in months.
He got an answer for an appointment with the Kelantan MB though -- Nik Aziz, a true WAKIL RAKYAT! --within 48 hours.

Mayhaps I can seek an answer from the Jabatan Pelajaran Negeri Kelantan on the number of Kelantanese students who were given such Asean Scholarships. I may just try. Will I get an answer, I wonder.


If you were in Renee's shoes, on graduation, which country you would work for in order of priorites, from the following options:

(a) THe Philippines

(b) Singapore

(c) Further Land

TASK: Number your priorities as 1, 2, 3 with 1 as the TOP CHOICE,
Hey, give me thy RAT-ionale!

DEADLINE: one or two days hence.

PRIZE: Ain't Desi's efforts in rocking thy brain -- helping you in crtitical cum rational thinking, PRIZE enough?
Okya-lah, thee TehTariks for getting the three options coinciding with Desi's. Remember, it's termed a FUN chalengia not for nothin'!




It has been an “engaging” session with conversationists centred around Young&Articulate johnleemk’s comments which visited Desi’s Place two Saturdays ago and the ho®st had initially described as an “awesome surprise” … in the context of john being one who had just sat for PMR (14- 15-year-old...?), yet quite astute in certain political observations, and thoughts,which Desi finds rare and beyond most teenagers' worldview at tis tender age. On the otrher hand, these "mature" views were counter-balanced by some points I (only I, please beg to differ, with that RATionale, OK!) deem theoretical, sometimes a wee bit exaggerated as wont of dramatics? -- in raising national issues of current interest here, not facing realpolitik.

Realpolitik dicates we on this earth deal with the ART OF THE POSSIBLE under the sensesurrounds of Malaysia's push-and-push factors and players at centre stage of its domocratic, or guided one, political stage. All citizens can be potential actors and actresses, many choose to be spectators, some choose to run away to foreign shores. It's an individual's CHOICE, really, and the destiny of Malaysia is the sum outcome of its 25 million citizens' individual choices.

I agree with a key point put forward succinctly that Malaysian Opposition parties since Independence have failed the Rakyat miserably,leemksaid, hence driving those who did not see hope in the ruling coalition government into a state of “despair” – both Sabrina and a few oter YoungOnes have echoed similar sentiments in the summary verdict “Hopeless".

For those whose report card reads "RED" or in negative territory on the sole Government they had known for these long almost five decades – from the budding Alliance led by Founding Father Tunku Abdul Rahman in the racially-compartmentalised UMNO, MCA and MIC, representing the three major ethnic groups in independing Malaya from 1957, DESIDERATA is urging them: Stay the fight.

Later, this compartmentalised arrangement, which might have been expedient and had tus now run its useful course within its first decade, metamorphosed into the present 14-component Barisan Nasional which we are all familiar with, incorporating other “minority groups” such as Kadazan, Iban, etc, from Sabah/Sarawak, of of course splinter from the three main components like Gerakan and what you don’t want in UMNO, MCA and MIC.

Like most of my EsteemedReaders, we are trying to search
g for ALTERNATIVES to the present “Seemingly” hopeless situation.

I urge that we look at the BIG PICTURE and not get derailed by the smaller issues, though important but not ranking as priorites in overcoming THE MALAYSIAN DILEMMA. Matters like potholes, LRT stations lacking, highway fiends, encroachment into green fields by housing developers -- these are local government and other enforcement agency issues, best left to the state assemblymen -- maybe push for municipal council elections? -- and consumers associations and other non-government organisations' schemes of things. Even on moral issues, my take is that it's best left to the various followers' religious bodies and their chiefs, as I strongly oppose politicians playing MORAL GUARDIANS. Remember the infamous Malacca's Squad Skodeng under its innovative CM? --Thank God we have had a sensible decision by the Cabinet, no doubt under the guidance of Pak Lah, the God-Fearing PM -- putting an instant stop to it, demonstration a wise decision in line with (Separation of State and Religion, that's another issue another time mahaps?...

Have faith that with concerted and united efforts, by Young and Idealistic Malaysaisn, we can make a difference. Desiderata wishes to push our state of affairs from Negative into Positive territory, hence a more optimistic stance. Term it writer's passion, call me "masochistic", LET IT BE. But Desiderata2000 will LIVE ON with this focused quest, even for one mite gallant reader who stays the fight with Desi!

I said “seemingly" hopeless not for anything BUT TWO FAVOURABLE INCIDENTS, but of course other indicators are also there, but it’s beyond today’s discourse or Desi will be writing 10 boring chapers, with a 11th on boringer digression, and a 12th on the boringest conclusion, and we don't want that, do you? Masochism catchin' on?

A long-serving Deputy Prime Minister and Finance Minister Suadara ANWAR IBRAHIM has come back from the cold. If anyone can say he had tasted the “injustice” of Malaysia’s delivery systems – mainly legislature and judiciary – this is the man, who went into the darkest tunnels of a human’s journey deemed “quite impossible “ in our dear “friendly” land of a 1,000 smiles (no, this description is not from Desi’s wilde imagination, it was one of the catch phrases from Tourism Malaysia…

Well-travlled, suave, sophisticated and an engaging speaker at international forums, a friend of officials in high places in the US of A, the Arab countries, and yes, neighbour Indonesia – Anwar came crashing down on his mentor’s charges of “sodomist” and “corrupt” offences. The nation saw a chain of events Desi had described in another prior article as episodes from “Alice in Wonderland” –- IT GETS CURIOUSERR AND CURIOUSER.

Thousand people-marches in the city of Koala Lumpuh, storm-tropper-like detention of just sacked DPM at his Damansara residence; the “Black Eye” which could have been “self inflicted” as initial theories intimated; the charade of the court trials, with “dates” of events amended a few times –- “to suit the elements?” came to Desi’s mind. The trial would have been a likely Shakespearean ascription had it been in the Roman halls of justice in the halcyon days of Julius Caesar replacing the high-flying days when YoungMalaysians could apply for SpecialLicence (like APs) to become instant millionaires –- one in fact in 1997 became an instant billionaire -– you don’t know who? Hey, get out of here!


In the run-up to all the four GENERAL ELECTIONS prior to March 2004, the BN used the FEAR FACTOR with constant bombardment of PRESS ADVERTISEMENTS, with artistic graphics from one stupid agency who wasted God’s gifted talents as accomplices to the crime – reminding Malaysians of the May 13, 1969 incident. The BN forecast gloom and “Doom” (ya, go see the movie showing at the big screen nearest your hi-fi set or Cineplex!) of murder and mayhem on the streets if the people voted for the Opposition, that’s clearly the message of FEAR. Had it been the Opposition, or any hardy journalist doing it, they would have been doing time within the four grey walls of Pudu Prison then. The Fourt Estate played along with the Establishment committing offences as accesories to the act.

BUT in the March 2004 General Elections, for the first time helmed by the newly-groomed Prime Minsster Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi (My God Bless Him, A Truly God-Fearing Leader, Abundantly…Amen), this hitting-below-the-belt tactic was ABANDONED. No such audio and visual messages with graphic cartoons and caricatures and even ‘seditious” catch phrases appeared in the mainstream papers or on TV anymore. For this, the Rakyat must join Desi in saluting Pak Lah.

That’s why, Desiderata says there is HOPE, yet.

For these two very significant developments, mGf of Youthful Age and THINKING, don’t just give up on OUR COUNTRY, not just, and not just yet.

Okay, now back to leemk, and relevant responses from compatriot Readers:


My premise in life is that: All mainsream religions preach noble universal values. Deviants will always come and go -- I'll post something on this example TOMORROW, or at the first opportunity available, as I'll really be ON THE BEAT for the next few days eArniong B&B, with some kaya thrown in -- God-willing.
I re-quote from a re-visit to Mother Teresa (featuring Olivia Hussey ...version)recently, when she was confronted by a mob of (Hindus) protesting her converting a temple into a hospice: "I am not here to concvert anybody. If thou be a Hindu, be a good Hindu. If thou profess to be a Christian, Buddhist or Muslim -- be a good Christian, Buddhist, or Muslim respectively."

Do unto others what you wish others do unto you ......
Is this fundamental law in civil human behaviour so difficult to understand?

This sub-topic is important in the context of a hot debate between brothers Imran and leemk, with Desi trying to act as a sort of "referee" (in formal debates, this is a rapporteur, whose role is important to try to keep the peAce within...)

I was mighty happy to get a first person account from s-kay after I closed Desi's comments last night. Please be patient as it will be reprised here later...


Desiderata has always been an Opposition advocate in Malaysian politics because I wish to steer away from outdated politics based on RACE. I urge that Malaysian nation-building be allowed to bud, bloom and flower in the springs to come when we leave the politics of RACE behnind. The challenge is in the hands of the YOUNGONES, because there is too much vested interested in maintaining the status quo of compartmentalised race divisons to esnure their survival from GE to the next GE for the Barisan Nasional (also collecting the spoils afterwards, with one sapu-ing the cake, and leaving the ikan-bilis to the rest ...?)
Doomsday will surely follow if this RACISM is not arrested and finally, hOpefully stopped altogether. I spied an interesting Essay on JohnLing's site on this TOPIC, may wish to borrow it for the coming days...Thinking allowed here, and hoping another Young&Articulate one is reading this...:)


There was much compaparision between Malaysia and other countries like South Korea, Singapore and Japan (as better advanced models to emulate, which to Desi's mind, is good -- those who benchmark against those more advanced than us is good, in the fields of economic planning, law enforcement and cultural and linguistic developments...).Many of these spheres of activities are easier to tackle when the society is homogeneous - such as SKorea, Japan ... but extraneous burdens are placed on less than homogeneous societies like Malaysia, where a constant energy-sapping factor called RACE always rears its ugly head, even in everyday life, but when used by the politicians as a weapon (remember the keris wayang or sandiwara or iopera ...whatever the BN components like to stage to entertain us on PWTC stage, or the MCA stage, or the MIC wat stage?...Do I digress?

So in realpolitik, a homogeneous country has one advantage, it doesn't have to grapple with the dilemma of RACE, as we have been bewitched with since August 31, 1957 when the ruling elites that's the way to go ...
Pak Lah, be an ICONIC MODEL to the YoungOnes to start dismantling this old, colonial divide-and-rule monster?BAN ALL RACE-BASED POLITICAL PARTIES, my dear most esteemed Prime Minister, think about it? Desi's Challengia, and to ALL MY YOUTHFUL READERS, make this your number one prioroty in your political struggle, homebased, or rom abroad.

I answered the question myself in stating our present PM has got the spiritually in him to go forward, but in the realpolitik that's UMNO land, I feel he's on Reluctant Territory.


I've deliberately kept partisan politics out of Desi's Place as much as possible, but I agree with a lot of leemk's comments, and I leave it at that for the moment unless he wishes to pursue certain points with me via Email. (Other Readers are also welcome to Email:

Just two main points I share:

In my engagement both as a journalist as well as a card-carrying member of an Opposition party at certain periods when I was allowed to too (not restricted by my profession's requirements...), DESIDERATA would say this:

(a) To leemk's appeal to adopt the strategy to "spoil the vote", I've thought hard and deep on this one, I would urge may this be right at the bolttom at the list of options. It is equivalent to "surrrendering the sacred vote" to the Devel and the deep blue sea.
So you get your 15 minutes of media fame. So what?
You know what these nimcompoops in the Dewan Rakyat with 49 perccent of supporting votes, 21% Opposition votes, and 30% "spoilt votes, which is miraculously oiptimistic, even I allow for that to happen!

The handpicked idiotic box in charge of Parliament Affairs willl tell you rakyat, iuncluding the vote-spoilers:
'We have another mandate for the next five years. We'd listen to those who voted for us. Those who support the Opposition like pAS in Kelantan, Terenmgganu (again in 2008...I hope!) -- we'll hold back federal grants and Oil Royalties some more ...
because "YOU A(r)S(e)KED FOR IT!"'

(b) The mindset of many Opposition politicians is similar -- or worse -- that the BN politikus whom they often criticise with a vengeance.


*One Opposition state assembly in my hometown FU RONG who started off as a driver in the dying days of his political carer was given a State fiundation scholarship to study law in UK. The politics involved I leave to your imagine-nation, some which surpasses this bloody puur church mouse of a writer who has nothin better to do but sit in front of his Da PC-cat ... being a beesy-body in other peoiple's matters.
One weeping for 'is Opposition party.

*TWO opposition state assemblymen jumped ship to Da Other Side and became "Eat, Drink and Be Merry" disciples over=night. How conveniently their fiery TIGER lambasts of their former enemies-now-comrades-in-arms ...
Second weeping for 'is Oppostion party...

NB: Just before selling out, one of the duo involved was sued by another BN politician for a considerable sum of money and lost the case, so owed the debt which must be paid off. So the devil-workshop worked pretty smooth and smart in Eat, Drink and Be Merryland.
YoungOnes, I weep for thee!


I had teAsed YoungKyels (along with SabrinaTan, Imran and Dangerous Variable): consider forming a YOUNGPEOPLES'S PARTY as an alternative. No, don't be fence -sitters.

Go for desiderata.idealism, youth and reformation. That leads to CHANGE IN MINDSET and HOPEFULLY, TOWARDS OUR BETTER FUTURE.
Now rope in johnleemk, s-kay, et all who are of SIMILAR IDEALISTIC MINDSET? GAME?

Desi can only provide a compass. My belief, with its weight in gold? Hence, my poem that went along with the two pieces -- THE HORIZON YONDER, and REFORMING ONSELF ...and another today...

In temporary conclusion, ('temporary' because this topic is too important to end here ...) may I seek thy indulgence to extract a little,from my comment responses late last night to some hot exchanges between Imran and leemk (Please visit Saturday's post COMMENTS...):

"**desiderata said...

brothers Imran and leemk:

I urge both brethren here to be "very objective" in separating FACTS from OPINIONS.

What I'm trying to do is strive for a United Malaysia, based on the promotion of a CivilSociety and the Five Pillars of the Rukunegara.

Imran is not totally right in advising that Islamic matters be not subject to debate by non-Muslims, just equally it's not right for Christinas to urge Buddhists to lay off discussing Christianity.

What I urge Conversationists here do is be mutually respectful of the others' opinions. When it comes to facts, I urge both parties to do research properly and thoroughly before making claims what they state as FACTS.

At this juncture, I'd urge both brothers Imran & Leemk (we are Malaysian brodthers aren't we -- because we all love OUR COUNTRY equally, I don't doubt anyone here otherwise -- that's my starting point premise, otherwsie any discourse becomes meaningless...

When I say 2 plus 2 equals 4, that's conventional "fact".

When I say the bas sekolah man charging RM30 per child per month is too expensive compared with last year's RM15, it's just my opinion.

Just 1 concrete example follows: Kyels may think Chua (Jui Meng) a "man of integrity" and which Desi must add: I don't doubt he is... yet lost the MCA presidency contest (against incumbent Ong Ka Ting).

(i) first part of Chua being a 'man of integrity' is Kyels' assessment -- this which desi or for that matter any other readers, may agree or not agree, it's just an opinion;
(ii) he lost the contest -- this is a fact, an political event with a definite outcome at a certain point in time in MCA's history. Period. No one can contest this fact.**" (ends extracts)

It's important, that's why Desi always has impressed on my Readers to use their rational mind.:)You state your opinion, please follow with the RAT-ionale, a mousey-one also-can, I've often teAsed!:) But today I'm SERIOUS.:(

So relating to fear of PAS theocratic government, let's hear it from another Young&Articulate Voice.
And may I now serve you a highly edible, warm and pretty insightful dish that came as another surprise, MIDNIGHT VOICES springoff mayhaps?

"***S-Kay said...

Whoosh...what a debate about religion. Haven't read all the comments in full yet but Imran's first comment here sorta said it all. Will come back in full soon when I am done with my marketing assignment.

John, as a non-muslim and as a young girl who have frequent and have practically spent her childhood holidays (till now) in Kelantan (which is ruled under PAS), here's my thought again from my entry about Malaysian - It's Meaning.

"Kelantanese, for example (those who're still living there) represent what being a Malaysian is all about. Forget politics, just look at the people. They live harmoniously side by side as neighbours. They do not look at other races or religion differently or judge them by their skin color. If one man from that kampung gets whacked up for no reason, the whole kampung would back him up and help him out (Malay, Chinese, Indian..they're all the same). Walk around town and you'll bump into friendly makciks greeting you with a smile. They do not compare but live each day the best they can. Earn an honest living out of what they have. Yeah, sure, the media & the government made PAS look so bad that not many wants to visit the state. Trust me, go there, walk around and you'll wish that the people here can be half of what the people there are"

The point I was trying to make was, despite being ruled under PAS, the people there (of all races) are not affected at all by it. No, don't say that most of the ones there are all old hags who have nowhere else to go because there are so many young ones still living there and there are so many city folks whom I know who have left Kelantan not because it is being ruled by PAS but it was because they had nowhere else to seek a better living. And my friend, the development of Kelantan was impede by the government themselves as they found no need to help an opposition (that much).

I think that was irrelevant =P but heck, it's quite unfair to look at PAS that way sometimes.

Hey Imran,

I was know sometimes when there are certain laws of conduct made by some ulamas, they're not directly from the Q'uran rite? (I mean of course the basis to why they made the law was from the Q'uran). Because I was curious..the world is evolving and people are interpreting the Q'uran so differently now (eg: Those who kill others in the name of Islam. That was a crazy interpretation of Jihad by them. What were they thinking?)

Desi dear, sorry to have sidetracked so much from the topic =) Will come back with more...soon..I hope ****"
No, you aren't off-track, s-kay, you are right on track, because Desi wishes to add:

Between the Devil you know at federal-level Government, and the dark blue sea at State-level government, voters and voters-to-bemhave to pick a choice, engaging realpolitik under the present scenarios or making a fundamental change in the parliamentary process. NEVER, EVER COP-OUT!

Otherwise, be prepared to make do with that Terror of a Minister who advised you roadusers to go back to using the bullock-cart to travel KL-Penang; or that MITI minister who thinks the parliamentarians must wait on her appearance as Queen AP; and have you forgotten so soon the mocking of that BIG "J" that he represents Parliament affairs so well he had to sabe his neck on retreating with a small "j" if you spoilers carry on with opting out! ...Ah, digression is my 3rd name in Blogsworld.

Just in closing, DESIDERATA has this spcial message to the YOUNGONES and those YOUNG-at-heArt:

* Say "Adieu to Pessimism", see that glimmer of hOpe at the end of that tunnel with me?

with a li'l help from mGf,
Sir Cliff Richard

The young ones,
Darling we’re the young ones,
And young ones shouldn’t be afraid.

To live, love
While the flame is strong,
For we won’t be the young ones very long.

Why wait till tomorrow,
Tomorrow sometimes never comes.
Love, me,
There’s a song to be sung
And the best time is to sing while we’re young.

Once in every lifetime
Comes a love like this.
I need you and you need me.
Oh my darling can’t you see.
Young dreams
Should be dreamed together,
Young hearts shouldn’t be afraid.
And some day when the years have flown
Darling, this will teach the young ones of our own.

The young ones
Darling, we’re the young ones
The young ones
Darling, we’re the young ones.

Sunday, October 23, 2005

Till Death Do Us Part......


On the day after, these were the words from our beloved Prime Minister:
"When we lose a member of the family, we have to submit to God and be patient."
I leArn from a God-feAring Man. My Towring Malaysian of a leAder.

The nation joined Pak Lah and loved ones in mourning the demise of Datin Seri ENDON MAHMOOD on Thursday October 20, 2005; many shed tears, and even the heavens opened up with darks skies, in recognition of the loss of a LIFE WELL LIVED, OF A FRIST LADY WHO HAD WON TH HEARTS OF ALL CARING MALAYSIANS. Most of all, we salute her for having loved her significant other, OUR ESTEEMED PRIME MINISTER DATUK SERI ABDUAALH AHMAD BADAWI, WITH A HEART THAT BEAT AS ONE WITH PAK LAK. We know, it shows.

Desiderata is not one good at writing about One Subject – dealing with Life and Death, and God – this is where the writer treads with trepidation for he’s not adequately equipped to write about such “things” with clear and unquestioning convictions. Man finds it difficult to cope with death, especially of a loved one when Death visits too early. So I normally turn to MY MASTERS in such challenging times -- they never fail me.

Emily Dickinson captured the “mood and atmosphere” of a death by describing the flurry of activities surrounding the deceased’s house in a neighbourhood, with three of six stanzas following:

There’s been a death in the opposite house
As lately as today.
I know it by the numb look
Such houses have alway.

The neighbours rustle in and out,
The doctor drives away.
A window opens like a pod,
Abrupt, mechanically;
Somebody flings a mattress out –
The children hurry by;
They wonder if it died on that –
I used to when a boy.

And from the evergreen poet, Dickinson, who will always be around us with her discerning observations of all aspects of human living.

The Chariot

Because I could not stop for Death,
He kindly stopped for me;
The carriage held but just ourselves
And Immortality.
We slowly drove, he knew no haste,
And I had put away
My labor, and my leisure too,
For his civility. We passed the school where children played,
Their lessons scarcely done;
We passed the fields of gazing grain,
We passed the setting sun.
We paused before a house that seemed
A swelling of the ground;
The roof was scarcely visible,
The cornice but a mound.
Since then 't is centuries; but each
Feels shorter than the day
I first surmised the horses' heads
Were toward eternity.

And from Robert Louis Stevenson comes this short poem, whose last two lines have been, and continue to be, quoted so often it clearly demonstrates the impact this great poem has had on generation after generation.


Under the wide and starry sky
Dig the grave and let me lie:
Glad did I live and gladly die,
And I laid me down with a will.
This be the verse you grave for me:
Here he lies where he long’d to be;
Home is the sailor, home from sea,
And the hunter home from the hill.

Sometimes I am visited by night “landscapes or moonscapes, or is it mental-escapes?” which could not be properly framed by words or fathomed completely for their message;
somehow, there’s an approximation to this surreal world of God, Faith and Death in "Midnight Voices" which I am particularly proud of, here reprised, for those who missed it on first apparition.

Familiar voices
With faint messages
Half communicated

They descend in my sleep
Beckoning welcome
To their bosomy fireplace
But I wasn't given directions
Just urges rising in my breast
And my restless soul striving to touch base

Will these authors of midnight voices
Please give me the complete signals
That I may truly hear and arrive?
I long to join your abode
And temporarily escape this insanity
As earthlings sleep
While my heart beats
In answer to half-perceived

midnight voices



Subtitle of Post:

Today I’m engaging head on with JOHN LEEMK who wrote some thought-provoking comments (the emphasis in BOLD that follows is mine), and this engagement is in the spirit of the credo promoted by VOLTAIRE:“I may not agree with what you say but I will defend, to the death, your right to say it.”

“*******johnleemk said...

“*I am quite close to giving up hope on Malaysia. …the only glimmer of hope I've seen is in some isolated forums where the young and liberal (often living overseas) and dissasociated with any party congregate.

The government is hopeless. The country is being run by incompetent nincompoops. My water is worse than teh tarik quality. The potholes in the main road near my school and a major shopping centre are atrocious. At the confluence of half a dozen shopping centres in Damansara with an empty field right in the middle between them, nobody has thought of building an LRT station. Middle class folk have to hire private guards to avoid being robbed (not that these guards are you know, working or anything). Our schools are churning out brainless idiots.”

DESI: sdr leemk, some of those are astute observations, but you too must look at the positive sides.

It’s good at your age to look at non-partisan sources of discourse; indded, before you can plunge fully into any reigistered political parties, whether BN or opposition, I urge the YoungOnes, to weigh the pros- and cons-, as leemk has ddone.

I agree there are many nincompooks in Government, but all is not hopeless, if the Voters and voters-to-be, use your barins and sacred votes wisely. I am afraid at the end of the day (or pointedly, at the end of EACH GENERAL ELECTIONS, the people get the government they deserve. I had noted, not without sarcasm, many Malaysians suffer from masochism, where they sometimes get a high from self=flagellation … leemk, don’t you think so? For putting 90percent of BN MPs in Parliament, then whine, whine whine … I suggest it’s better to join those who WINE, WINE, WINE because it means you have arrived, despite everything… And Readers, don’t flame Desi preaching this-lah, certain times, things said are often IN CONTEXT, and this bloody writer has some Oscar wilde-ness in him, yet.

You exaggerate more than a little bit about the “water quality” and other subsidiary points because none of my Seremban folks and friends in Subang Jaya (where I Freelance parttime…)have lamented the same. On the infrastructure and malls, leemk, many have acknowledged Malaysia boasts quite high standard infrastructure, on par with First World (Petronas Twin Towers still ranks as tallest such buildings in the world, remember…) – the yardstick is, has the neighbourhood facilities improved over the years, as compared with your parenst’ era?

Let’s be very honest with ourselves, your neighbourhood is right up there in middle-class, or even upper middle-class – think a little of the Jinjang New Village, or Rasah New Village from where I first hailed? Still have a relative staying at the upgraded half-cement half-wooden house where I spent my childhood and teenage years. I must honstly say I've upgraded my lifestyle and stndard of living compared with my parents; and I have hopes yet that my children's lifestyles and starndards would surpass mine...

Just as I defended Sabrina Tan and brudder Imran their comparisions with Australia, New Zealand and even Singapore to model our economic mapping and planning,(benchmarking against the better off, not pattingour backs as compared with Ghana, Cambodia, or the neighbourhoods of Mombasa, Acheh, Timbuktwo?... So also I urge we must also look at our Malaysian poorer brethren and their environs, does that justify one's dismissal that “it’s completely hopeless, useless”?

Brainless idiots – some maybe. But generally, okay-lah, there's still room for improvement. I find some of the students I interact with – I have a brood of nephews and nieces and distant relatives to make up two footbrawl teams, you know, ah Digresser is my third name…

Some are good (like thee), even getting a British government scholarship to do Masters after a basic degree at local uni, most went on to University, again mostly home-based … so you do exaggerate…”brainless”, nah, half-used brains because of spoon-feeding mayhaps, some "lazY" because of pampering or subsidy mentality, yes .... But they are also many adults walking around with under-utilised brains, ask brudder Imran – they give the cops RM100 to get away from a speeding ticket, then yell ”blue murder” when they received a summons by post some months later?

Some “professionals” singing battle cries of meeting the police force for Corruption and Abuse, then scurry off like little mouse-sey just on the first sign of trouble? Ooops, I now recall the comparision I used was -- like a doggie going off into the sunset with his tail behind his two hind legs …

leemk: But ask yourself, is the opposition any better? They claim to champion such causes, but their most public writings and speeches, particularly in parliament, tend to focus on things only the rich or at least well off can relate to. The man in the kampung or the guy who has to ride a bus to work everyday probably doesn't care about APs, the ISA or OSA. He cares about being able to continue his way of life and/or have enough money and time to drop by one of those malls in Damansara to hang out.

DESI: hey, I agree with your criticism about the MPs, both BN and Opposition – I have termed the goings-on in that august House as a circus, or a Zoo, but that would be running down some of my animal friends, who are “incapable” of betraying the people’s trust.

I beg to disagree a mite lots with thee on the kampong folks not concerned with APs, ISA and OSA. Maybe they are too beesy trying to put three meals on the square table (unless Desi, of middle class like you, I hazard a guess…leemk, ok?), those issues are better left to those with time, resources and higher on their priorities to face and tackle. It’s a matter of principles -- ALL MALAYSIANS IN ADVANCING THE V2020 TO BE CONCERNED. The AP issue goes into the very root of corruption, cronyism and in some cases, nepotism.

Oh, ISA and OSA are precisely the impediments of a more eduacted, informed and critical-thinking public – maybe the BN government wants the citizenry to be kept in the dark? – hence we see the legislature cowed, and the Fourth Estate selling out. I did somewhere in passing urge some mGf not to join Journalism as a first career option unless, like Desi, they harbour some sense of nigh-madcap’s fervour (not even close to those answering the calling to be true missionaries of the soul…), ah, ‘nuff said for now.

On the point of POLITICS, I plan to do a 3rd parter …as that would not exactly answering the point you wrote, hence I’ll separately do another dish next Monday. (Tomorrow it’s politics-free Sundaes; Also an excuse for Desi to R&R, for normally I resort to Cut&Paste for desiderata.english, only some mGf know this, especially YAN (visit her at , she's Da ReAson I worked till thieves' hours to eArn DA CON BF tomorrow...-– please keep this secret!

leemk: The only party with enough ties to the grassroots to recognise this, PAS, is hell-bent on establishing an Islamic theocracy, a concept more Muslim Indonesia has largely abandoned. So ask yourself - can anyone effect meaningful and successful change in our country? Oh, sure, a new opposition party might be able to capitalise on the common man's discontent with his daily life. But unless this party has the bling-bling and money to finance its operations, it won't have the support and workforce it needs to get the word out. And unfortunately, those holding the pursestrings either have vested interests in the government, an Islamic state, or some off-beat cause like overturning the ISA.


I salute thee for an astute and IMHO, well justified observation about PAS, its grassroots support, and its Islamic theocracy which won’t win them enough friends or supporters to form the “federal government”, at present. But they did make headways at certain states! I’ll elaborate on this point again on Monday, but suffice to say now that Desiderata thinks a cleaner government (as seen in Kelantan) under PAS serves the people’s interests than money-grabbing politikus (I’ve used the term ROBBER BARONS in politics and their business cronies…please refer Essay Series LOSING OUR COUNRRY…?). I’d rather deal or place my trust in the Menteri Besar Nik Aziz who granted an appointment to former DPM Tun Ghafar Baba with one day’s notice … hey, that’s what the literal and spirit-filled meaning of the wonderful word called WAKIL RAKYAT!...

Ghafar had told the media that even after a few months, some other MBs had not gotten back to him on his request for a humble appointment. That’s another Money-EYED-MB looking at thee: dear Voters, for you stoopid idiots gave your mandate to me, term after term, decade after decade – how MASOCHISTIC can the voters get?

An aside from Desi, can or knot?
See, a former MB of my home-state was found guilty of Money Politics, and all the punishment he got after dragging for short, shorter months .. they were trying to sight the rising sun on the Western horizon, eh? ...was mere SUSPENSION FROM PARY MEMBERSHIP, and the mini loss of A CABINET POST. Wow, the ACA has no bloody business in such million-dollar buyouts of people’s souls?...Like Sabrina, I too sometimes shake my head, sigh “I give up”, yet after a short hiatus, I return, but what to do, I go on with my writ(H)ings, I’m a writer with MayDay! MayDay!2, MayHaps3, that Maso – wat? Streak…!

leemk: The conclusion I have come to is that only the voters can make a difference, and not by voting the opposition in or the government out, but by casting a spoilt vote. A spoilt vote means discontent. It means "I'm fed up". It means "I think you're both bloody crazy". And like it or not, there's nothing anyone can do about, oh, say, a rate of 40% spoilt votes. The global media institutions will be all over it. And both sides of the political divide will have to ask themselves: Where did we go wrong?

The way I see it, that's the only hope we have now for effecting change. It's crazy, and it probably won't affect the composition of parliament much. But hey, it'll make the world headlines, and wouldn't that be much greater than just placing a lousy opposition in office? It'll be something new for the Malaysia Book of Records - Malaysia, the first country in the world with a rate of 50% spoiled votes.

(Hey, you're never going to get those apathetic unregistered voters to vote for the opposition, so wouldn't it be worth a shot asking them to spoil their votes?) *******”


I agree partially with your conclusion – that VOTERS CAN MAKE THE WORLD OF DIFFERENCE.

But on the strategy of “casting a spoilt vote” – man, that’s something I would not advise as initial options. There’s just very limited and short term effects, I can tell you based on my humble journalistic experience. Now going a little back back to history, THE THEN STRONG OPPOSITION PARTY “SOCIALIST FRONT” boycotted the 1969 (?) General Elections, and after that, it DIED A SWIFT – I add, NATURAL – DEATH.

By casting that as spoilt vote, you only make the Barisan Nsional nimcompoops laugh their way to the bank – and it’s a fast-emptying national coffers, I add, you would NOT want to hasten the process to see a completely empty mine, do you?

Desi will think more on this point, and take up more meat for Monday’s dish to chew on. Meanwhile, a BIG terima kasih with a bucket of Haridas' tehtarik, plus susu lembu2 if the cowws found their way home, to leemk for feeding us the dishes so far, we’ll look at DESserts, eh?

On the international media raising a ruckus and putting Malaysia on the world’s map for scrutiny, my XXperience again as a media man tells me the adage: today’s news is tomorrow’s history, always applies.
This episode of 40perecnt spoilt votes in a faraway land called Malaysia (they may even spell it as Malaysiah or Melaysia…and still fugure we are part of Singapura or they are steal a part of us …last digress,I promise, for todie…)will just be a blip on their radar-screens for 24 hours, and the following day, those leaders and media people would be looking at the welloils in Iraq and Iran, and whereelse, then counting the War-Dead usually not their kithORkin by suicide bombers... I wonder if this makes sense to you?

Ah, my 3sen’s worth with respect to leemk’s the concluding point, but I urge this articulate&awesome lad, and his friends, please come back to continue the dialogue, conversations, whatever, even decibels-raised debate, What The Hell! – I can do even with some Xpl…… no-lah, not XXpletives,just some XXplosives-man, can. Seya!;););););););) for Thy Patience, which must be your SE7EN-th nick if you plan on coming regularly to Desi’s Place.

REQUEST TO ALL READERS: I appeal to my EstemedReaders to think over what younger than YoungKyels johnleemk – for he’s just sat for his PMR (as disclosed in another near post commento, go find out…) – and what DESIDERATA had taken a long time to ponder over and come back with my hopefully sen(S)e-making responses.

Please do engage leemk, or Desi, it does not matter who you field your views or questions to, we will find the time to exchange views on issues that remain part of THE (PRESENT AND FUTURE) MALAYSIAN DILEMMA, won't we?

Saturday, October 22, 2005



Subtitle of Post:

I quote from my own, a funny way, second time a-sinning, to start:

Oh Yan, today is one rare day you beAt me to the starting line
Now thou Challengeth me to wine, women and song sublime?

Oh yan you teAsed with such startling line'
you say twas some Browning who's on thy mind
Desi suspects there's more than suspecting
mayeth it be Me she's alluding?

Desi's mind nowadays wandereth
And sometimes to ex-Catsville saudereth
with intimations of Death like sunset visiting
common folks like me, not thee, are found wanting

i dedicate my thoughts to near immortals like Shakespeare
and some soul ...a-man?
that a nigh Truth I seem to see at hand

I need to be a child again to ponder
Unmasked, unpainted, untainted
I whispered Don't Colour Me
Let it be,

But thou honoureth me that I discern
oh Yan, from Sibu, mGf I leArn
there's none so lost than poets and writer-aspirants be
none so lost, as a small dot like Desi

When DESIDERATA started blogging on the Ides of March, 2005, one of the stated main objectives is to promote a CIVIL SOCIETY, as this is surely leading among the young nation’s VISION 2020 goals on the 15-years-to-go horizon. I had lamented – though not the way mGf at has done in her Laments of a Broken-Hearted Silhouette, but more on looking from a writer’s eyelens of some 30 years as a functioning journalist, and a little astigmatism has set in. (Well, I tried my best to be functional, though many in the Fourth Estate have been accused of, and could indeed be guilty of merely shaking legs on another 8-to-5 job, or worse, functioning like zombies mouthing the official line …am I digressing?)

Today’s rumination is a li’l LATE, at the opening poem written on a Challenge intimates why. Because I wandereth to mGf for some wisdom and INspiration; it never fails me. This discussion is pretty long, even by the “long” digresser’s standards, so if you are sleepy, or can’t stand what I believe a worthy conversation with the YOUNG ONES will still engage thee with some nuggets of wisdom, even sprinkltes of foolery, then Fare Thee Well, visit Desi’s Place on a more leisurely day when you have a better life, when one has the time to stand and stare. (If thou steal don’t know where this nuggetline is stolen from, then you don’t know Desiderata at all, and DO NOT COLOUR ME. (those numbering 1 to 20 on my two hands' fingers and two feet's toes may know what I'm hinting at, at first time imitating some mGf bloggers *wink, wink*...

This article is long because the subject is of utmost importance is my present scheme of things. Too often we have heard the line “The youth of today are the leaders of tomorrow”, in a cliché-sort of way, stated in “by the way” by adults, many of them national leaders, but they didn’t even pause to think about the highways, byways, nooks and crannies, and the funny ways of youth traversed by the YoungOnes in this journey called LIFE.

Today Desiderata tries, because he cares, he dares.
But feel free to come back at him maybe with thy verbal atttacks, or affirmations perhaps, which I’ll persuade with a Tehtarik! (running out…, even sarcasm or wise cracks, mayhaps, but REMEMBER, though it’s no more September, with that thing I keep reminding my EsteemedReaders, RATionale alright, even mousey-one will do.

And because the title says it focuses on YHE YOUNG ONES (hey, where is Sir Cliff Richard, sing us thatone!), I’m going to quote some of the sub-class of the species named Homo sapiens who I think fit the description “awesome”.

As I began this rambling wandering at 6.24AM, I was listening to light&easy and I reprise partially the atmospherics:

“Are you going to Scarborough Fair?
Parsley, sage, rosemary and thyme
Remember me to one who lives there
For once she was a true love of mine…”

***MINI-CHAALENGIA: the main purpose is to rock thy beautiful Mind, and to train my I.Cowws, though not so insignificant or ignorant, to use critical thinking, and a rational mind, when discussing any BIG national issues, which I believe THE MALAYSIAN DILEMMA clearly is one.

The lyrics were featured in a movie – NAME that movie, who composed the song and why do you think Desi extracted a stanza to be part of today’s ramblings, IgnorantCows?

DEADLINE: 6AM tomorrow October 22, 2005.

PRIZE: ah, a surprise which may yet surpass Desi’s standards, provided you give a youthful and vibrant, and uplifting RATIONALE!

Back to the subject under scrutiny, I thank one YoungHun for his patience who left a footprint at my post last Saturday “The State of Affairs of Malaysia” NegaraKu, oh dear it means My Country, but actually I wanted to mean, Your Country2, OUR COUNTRY.
Ne’er mind, as I’m in heightened spirits, for this is what JOHNLEEMK wrote (the emphasis in BOLD is mine) , and I gave him a SE7EN Star rating::

I am quite close to giving up hope on Malaysia. Having explored much of the blogosphere and alternative media channels for the past few months, the only glimmer of hope I've seen is in some isolated forums where the young and liberal (often living overseas) and dissasociated with any party congregate.

The government is hopeless.
The country is being run by incompetent nincompoops. My water is worse than teh tarik quality. The potholes in the main road near my school and a major shopping centre are atrocious. At the confluence of half a dozen shopping centres in Damansara with an empty field right in the middle between them, nobody has thought of building an LRT station. Middle class folk have to hire private guards to avoid being robbed (not that these guards are you know, working or anything). Our schools are churning out brainless idiots.

But ask yourself, is the opposition any better? They claim to champion such causes, but their most public writings and speeches, particularly in parliament, tend to focus on things only the rich or at least well off can relate to. The man in the kampung or the guy who has to ride a bus to work everyday probably doesn't care about APs, the ISA or OSA. He cares about being able to continue his way of life and/or have enough money and time to drop by one of those malls in Damansara to hang out.

The only party with enough ties to the grassroots to recognise this, PAS, is hell-bent on establishing an Islamic theocracy, a concept more Muslim Indonesia has largely abandoned. So ask yourself - can anyone effect meaningful and successful change in our country? Oh, sure, a new opposition party might be able to capitalise on the common man's discontent with his daily life. But unless this party has the bling-bling and money to finance its operations, it won't have the support and workforce it needs to get the word out. And unfortunately, those holding the pursestrings either have vested interests in the government, an Islamic state, or some off-beat cause like overturning the ISA.

The conclusion I have come to is that only the voters can make a difference, and not by voting the opposition in or the government out, but by casting a spoilt vote. A spoilt vote means discontent. It means "I'm fed up". It means "I think you're both bloody crazy". And like it or not, there's nothing anyone can do about, oh, say, a rate of 40% spoilt votes. The global media institutions will be all over it. And both sides of the political divide will have to ask themselves: Where did we go wrong?

The way I see it, that's the only hope we have now for effecting change. It's crazy, and it probably won't affect the composition of parliament much. But hey, it'll make the world headlines, and wouldn't that be much greater than just placing a lousy opposition in office? It'll be something new for the Malaysia Book of Records - Malaysia, the first country in the world with a rate of 50% spoiled votes.

(Hey, you're never going to get those apathetic unregistered voters to vote for the opposition, so wouldn't it be worth a shot asking them to spoil their votes?) *******”

DESIDERATA is reprising some extracts from his answer, advised as “initial” as I promised LeeMK a more thorough engagement (delayed a few days, hence to do penance, this LONG post…, and being engaging, and I mean to make it thus, I’m giving a second helping TOMORROW, along with that ANSWER to the Challengia. See, I don’t have much to do but sit around the stupid looking PC, but I enjoy it, cos when I get angry, I slap the stupid-lurking PC and he does not flame me back. But foremost, I eArn my B&B from my deArie PC, so treat it nice, OK! Flame me, don't flame my PC! I’m grateful, please just don’t run away with the lembu-lembu … still waiting after several weeks for them to come home, so I can entertain some picky visitors here with TT with susu-lembu… some even want to tambah Ha-Lia!:) which I traditional welcome my Readers on "maiden" calls (I almost used "virgin", but that's inappropraite...:(

“*Hi, dear john:

this is not a Dear John letter (see Desi has sum humour stored in him yet, despite John’s pessimistic opening line … BAD habit, digressing, but hey, this is my blog, and digressing is Desi’s 3rd name! I told Sabrina that our common second is TRUEGRIT, we don’t “give up” so eAsily!:)

, as you appear like a SoaringSpirit out of THE HORIZON YONDER, just this YoungVoice lifts Desi's spirit to fight another year.(Yes, I promise I’ll be around to haunt thee (Imran?) come 2006 at least. You are happy, aren’t you, with the haunting…I had written that some Malaysians suffer from a thingy called masochism. If you don’t know what this is, please refer to Dat Chambers ‘ick! Mama mia, some1 is crying: Des’s proFUNity!

This peace is writ like a film-script, you know why? That’s for the moment a Rhetorical Question, it will be un-rhetorical-ised come November 1. Patience like John, eh!

SO NOW go back to my reference post and re-read John’s comments!

To continue the extracts:

“In my frontpage I said it's in the YoungOnes I place my HOPES, thy surprise visit out of the blue vindicates my anchoring on you YoungOnes, not so ignorant or insignificant, I have "humourously" said before.

johnleemk: You plunged into the chase early, I like that, but do not despair so easily:

You said...
I am quite close to giving up hope on Malaysia. Having explored much of the blogosphere and alternative media channels for the past few months, the only glimmer of hope I've seen is in some isolated forums where the young and liberal (often living overseas) and dissasociated with any party congregate."

(Desi's response)I discern you are Young, but you are very articulate, of strong convictions well expressed -- one after Desi's heArt like some Mentees I've garnered before thee. I think I can engage meAningfully with another YoungMind here, who knows well what he wants. Fires of idealism. I admire that.
It's with people like thee, ganging up with YoungKyels, Sab and Imran and several others who todaye have not joined these lively convversations here...I place my bet for ABETTERMALAYSIA.

I'm NOT going to engage thee at the moment -- just as I did not enage Sabrina, Kyels & Imran in yesterday's Comments in detail as I deem thy visit today is worthy of another FRONTPAGE treatment….*”

Another "older" Malaysian studying Dentistry in New Zealand, Sabrina Tan, was almost equally pessimistic, and dismissive2, as John, right from the staring line: said:

”*Malaysia will NOT improve. This is because if we are willing to improve, Malaysians must be ready for a political upheaval, and at the moment we are too comfortable with that and we won't be willing to do it.
Malaysians are driven by fear. Politicians are willing to play the race card every now and then, which further exacerbates the political instability. *”

Indeed, Sabrina added that Malaysia is heavily corrupted. "No, don't tell me that we are better off than countries like India, etc. We shouldn't compare with the worse countries, but instead strive to be as clean as the other countries like Singapore, New Zealand."

Her strong conviction is that Malaysia is NOT going to improve, unless there is some "divine intervention".

So here goes the current thoughts of DESIDERATA on a Brand Nu(de…) Day in this wonderful land called Malaysia, NegaraKu, My country, your country, OUR COUNTRY.

I ask of YoungOnes like Leemk, Sabrina:
Why are you so pessimistic at this young age in thy life? You are seeing the dawning of ye bright glimmering, and sometimes shining, rays of the Sunrise on a Primeday’s morn, not witnessing the eveningor twilight grey and blackishstreaks of the sunset.

The Horizon Yonder appears bright, the rays of sunrise are always warm in streaks of red, orange and yellow, and BLUE too, my fav colour.

And while ideas may allowed to have the paler shades of grey, as implied by Chiaroscuro, as Life is never painted in Black or White, the XXtremes, we need a whole spectrum of ideas to run through one’s life span to truly XXperience the challenges ahead.

Try to remember, I always remind my readers, especially the YoungOnes, the Rainbow always will appear after a Storm.

In teenage and youthful years, and MINDS too, and I stress this, you may be entering your 50s, 60s, or 70s, or even 80s like Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad and Dr Yang Chen Ning (a mini Challengia for you to discover who he is…), or Rupert Murdoch, THE MALYSIAN DILEMMA present, and ahead, calls for New Thinking, Idealistic Thinking, Reformation Thinking.

I won’t use the word "Revolutionary", for it scAres the Hell out of some Malaysians, no, not just the old (as in AGE) folks, but the less informed, the most prone to conform, the first to cry Blue Murder, then quickly RetreAt like a Doggie wagging its tail between its hind legs. (Sorry, dog lovers out there like Mr S H Tan, it’s just metaphorical!) Also, some Idiot may just use that LABEL on us writers and we'll just have to close shop, and we don't want that to happen, do we?

I normally go back to My Masters like William Shakespeare, Robert Frost, Socrates, Lao Tze and several Others to reinforce or emphasis my points, so I’ll end temporarily with, from that Errr-wat?-man, so figurerrth:

Reforming oneself

It has been raining again. I have been
indoors, meditating on the short-
comings of life.
I wish there were more kindly persons
in the world. Our competitive life
develops selfishness and unkindness.
I am determined to do something about it.
I cannot hope to convert many
To convert one person, I
shall do well.
I will begin with the person I know best –

When it rains and one is much indoors,
one is likely to meditate on the
shortcomings of life.
Let me think – how shall I make myself
kind, gentle and considerate?
I do believe it has stopped raining.
I can go out now. I’ll go and shoot on
the archery ranch.
I’ll not bother to reform myself today.
Perhaps tomorrow – if it is raining,
and I must stay indoors, and meditate
on the shortcomings of life.

See you, folks -- The film script–writing continues to morrow; Insya-llah.