My Anthem

Saturday, January 28, 2006

The Mind in Flight

This is a special post for YOU - My EstemedReaders - if you deem it as occupying a special place in your Heart.

As the Year of the Dog dawns in a few hours, and you're not physically to be by your LovedOnes' abode to join in the celebration to wave another year GoodBye and say: HI! to Year of Man's Best Friend -- no wworries, travel just a w'ile with Desi. I'll bring thee to your Homey's DinnerTableSide.

Today I prepare for a Freedom Flight with mGf, Jonathan.

"Seagulls, as you know, never falter, never stall. To stall in the air

is for them disgrace and it is dishonor.

But Jonathan Livingston Seagull, unashamed, stretching his wings

again in that trembling hard curve - slowing, slowing, and stalling once

more - was no ordinary bird.

Most gulls don't bother to learn more than the simplest facts of

flight - how to get from shore to food and back again. For most gulls, it

is not flying that matters, but eating.
For this gull, though, it

was not eating that mattered, but flight. More than anything else. Jonathan

Livingston Seagull loved to fly.

So behave likee a bird for the next 24 hours, travel where your mind will take you as you will.

The extract from Richard Bach's flight of imagination with a seagull named Jonathan could have been part you, part that SpecialGalOrBoyNextDoor, if only you willed it to be. But you must rsie above the ordinary just a li'l. Last week I received an Email titled "JLS" which reminds Desi of some very dear friends now resident abroad -- maybe in England,, perhaps in Australia, some in nearby Singapore -- for among them, some chose to fly, beyond Malaysian shores -- like a seagull.

And if you can, go raid the video shoppes in the coming INTER-LUDE (Sundae remember?), catch JLS in alll his flight of fancy and beauty as he eXperimented with moves and turns -- pirouettes and Swan-lake spins? -- it's a visual feast to top up your "Loh-Sang" of SE7EN heavenly dishes. And you have the golden voice of Neil Diamond to soothe the flight.

Don't be bounded by the physical walls -- with a little flight of the mind, you can join JLS to reach any destination. Yes, even with your loved ones far away.

We don't have wings -- yet we deem we can fly.
And yes, why not?

In the mind of the Writer, in the Mind of the Creative,
Nothing is Impossible...

So what's at the end of an act that is just an quantum leap from the first halting, Baby step to walking, running, jumping, and diving from a board to the pool of water below, temporarily in flight -- then with another Leap of Human Faith, starts Man's Love Affair With Flying!

Yes, science through the ages has enabled Man to conquer many frontiers.

Hurdles, big and small, are crossed using MIND over BODY applications -- Imagination is the Key to Freedom.

Today I remember the book I read as a restless youth, and I'm always thrilled by the images of a Seagull who Dared to Think and Dream Differently from the Pack.It stirred my imagination so much I was moved to write -- first by Imitation, just as a li'l baby bird learning from his Mother, to fly,later via Experimentation, then as ultimate test of arrival, through Self-Exploration. Along the way, one breaks some rules and traditions, even wastes some "youth", mayhaps dices with danger -- but it's a fligght that pays dividends, hi, mighty and flighty.

"Most gulls don't bother to learn more than the simplest facts of flight--how to get from shore to food and back again," wrote Richard Bach. "For most gulls it is not flying that matters, but eating. For this gull, though, it was not eating that mattered, but flight."

And a lesson I learnt from JLS is that of "sharing". He returned mature from a bold solo outing to teach twwo young seagulls -- as a Mentor taking on two Mentees.
Yes, be selfless by teaching Others thy wisdom and skills -- and the rewards, Mr Coww tells me-- comes back to you SE7EN-times-SE7EN fold.......and that's sometimes too much to handle. When an individual rises above the ordinary and mundane, he attains a ddeper insight into understanding other fellow beings and himself. And perhaps, along the arduous jurney of life,, you meet a true-life Jonathan to share the meaning of love and kindness, and in the middle of the night, realises, what is, and who is, this transcendental Self.

As Desi takes a week-long INTER-LUDE to welcome the Year of the Dog, he wishes all Malaysians who believe in the Chinoserie customs and traditions:

Remember, you can indeed, fly
With a mind the world cannot deny
As high as where eternity begins
Let's take off, for this New Year of the Fire Dog:

Flying Without Wings

~ Westlife

Ev'rybody's looking for that something
One thing that makes it all complete
You'll find it in strange places
Places you never knew it could be

Some find it in the face of their children
Some find it in their lover's eyes
Who can deny the joy it brings
When you find that special thing?
You're flying without wings
Some find it sharing ev'ry morning
Some, in their solitary lives
You find it in the works of others
A simple line can make you laugh or cry

You find it in the deepest friendships
The kind you cherish all your life
And, when you know how much that means
You've found that special thing
You're flying without wings

So, impossible as it may seem
You've got to fight for every dream
'Cause who's to know
Which one you let go
Would have made you complete?

For the next SE7EN DAES,
Desi will go flying,
and If my EsteemedReaders'd,
Come Fly With Me!:)

Meanwhile, again,
Wishing EveryBody a Flying Start to
The Year of the Fire Dog:


Meanwhile, again,
Wishing EveryBody a Flying Start to
The Year of the Fire Dog:


Friday, January 27, 2006

Freedom of Information - Yeah! Yeah! Teah!

Desiderata is somewhat in buoyany Chinoserie Nu Year mood in anticipating that a new era of Freedom of Information is on the Doggie' horizon.
It may be a spin-off from the Famous -- or isit Notorious? -- METRAMAC SAGA...

On a GOoDFRidae January 27, 2006
from The Star frontpage:

Daim: It was Cabinet's decision

KUALA LUMPUR: It was a Cabinet decision to terminate the first concession of Syarikat Teratai KG, said Tun Daim Zainuddin, who has denied any wrongdoing in the Metramac Corporation case.

In a statement issued late yesterday, the former finance minister also denied that Datuk Anuar Othman and Tan Sri Halim Saad, the shareholders of Metro Juara Sdn Bhd, which bought over Teratai from Fawziah Holdings Sdn Bhd, enjoyed his patronage during his tenure with the Finance Ministry.

Daim also called for the Cabinet minutes concerning the Metramac deal to be declassified so that the truth could be ascertained.

This is the first lengthy explanation made by Daim since he was mentioned in a Court of Appeal judgment on Jan 12, which favoured Fawziah Holdings in its suit against Metramac.

Daim made specific denials on various points raised by Court of Appeal Justice Gopal Sri Ram in his written judgement, where Daim's name was mentioned.

“I did not decide in my capacity as the then Finance Minister as to whether there was a sum to be paid as compensation to Fawziah Holdings Sdn Bhd. It was a decision of the Cabinet that it was not feasible at that time to make any commitment to make such a payment.

“I categorically deny that Anuar Othman and/or Halim Saad had enjoyed my patronage when I was the then Finance Minister,” he said.

“I categorically deny that I oppressed the previous (Teratai) shareholders into parting with their shares.”

Daim stated that it was also the Cabinet’s decision not to pay any compensation to Teratai for the cancellation of the first concession.

He said that he did not have anything to do with the second concession between Metramac and Kuala Lumpur City Hall (DBKL) as it took place 11 months after he had resigned as finance minister.

In an 18-page statement, he also pointed out that he was not a party to the suit by Fawziah Holdings nor did the re-amended statement of claim say that he had committed any wrong.

“The written grounds of judgment of the High Court dated Oct 21, 2003 also makes no reference to me whatsoever,” he said.

Daim also revealed that Datuk Fawziah Abdul Karim, a shareholder and director of Fawziah Holdings and Teratai, had seen him several times and sought his help in mediating between her company and Metro Juara – which he did.

He claimed that Fawziah even wrote to him on Dec 14, 1990 to inform him that Teratai and Metro Juara had reached agreement on all terms of the sale and “requested my good office to speed up the signing of the sale and purchase agreement.”

DESIDERATA finds the many "twists and turns" in this ongoing METRAMAC SAGA would be well served if the Government takes a leaf from the esteemed former Finance Minister's call and accordingly oblige with his call -- good advice -- (as highlighted by Desi in the above news report, partially reproduced):)that the "Cabinet minutes concerning the Metramac deal to be declassified...". I would logically suggest that this the Government do so in sincerest respect to a long-standing Malaysian servant-leader's request as soon as possible by tabling a FREEDOM OF INFORMATION ACT in Parliament so that the Noble Cause of Accountability, Transparency and Good Government is well served.

Meanwhile, the lawyer representing METRAMAC might get a taste of doing jail time and feel the heat that comes along as "Occupational Hazard" for taking on high-profile (cum-politically-connected) court cases.

To wits, also page 1, also The Star:

Lawyer faces contempt
Complaint letter against appeals
judge lands
counsel in trouble

Friday January 27, 2006

PUTRAJAYA: Lawyer Datuk Muhammad Shafee Abdullah is facing the prospect of being sent to jail for contempt of court for sending a complaint letter alleging misconduct by Justice Gopal Sri Ram.

Muhammad Shafee, the counsel for highway concessionaire Metramac Corporation Sdn Bhd, was reprimanded earlier by the Court of Appeal judge, who said the letter was contemptuous and an attempt at muzzling a judge.

“You cannot muzzle a judge. I will not be the first judge and I will not be the last. This is very serious as we are here as servants of justice,” Justice Sri Ram said during a hearing of Metramac’s application for a stay of execution of a judgment concerning it.

The Jan 24 letter, addressed to Court of Appeal president Tan Sri Abdul Malek Ahmad, was over Justice Sri Ram’s remarks against former finance minister Tun Daim Zainuddin, businessman Tan Sri Halim Saad and his partner Datuk Anuar Othman.

This was in the course of hearing the appeal between construction company Fawziah Holdings Sdn Bhd and Metramac.

Muhammad Shafee had also sent a complaint letter to the Chief Justice over Justice Sri Ram’s conduct in that appeal.

On Jan 12, the Court of Appeal ordered Metramac, the concessionaire of the East-West Link Expressway and Sungai Besi Expressway, to pay RM65mil to Fawziah Holdings in compensation for loss of advertising rights.

DESIDERATA thinks a new era of "openness" will flower in Malaysia if the Players on the Malaysian Stage are truly motivated by the nation's interests. If the intetrests lie within the bedsheets of scitiloP-Business, then be prepared to weep another round for Malaysia.
Postpone that till after February 12, 2006, will you!

Thursday, January 26, 2006

Thieves are transforming ...

When we talk about theft and burglary, it used to mere stealing several thousand ringgit worth of goods from business premises over the weekend or holiday period, or valuables bundled into cars from unguarded homes in rich neighbourhoods in the steal of the night...

Or an occasional "The Heist"-style copy-cat tunnelling into a bank vault -- it happened over a festive weekend holiday to one in Cheras, leading to many Safe Deposits boxes disappearing ... that's another long olde story ...

Of course, in view of the coming Year of the Dog, some owners are lucky they keep Man's Best Friend as pets, and they could have deterred many a potential housebreaker or robber. In you still have no Doggie in the Window, please visit the SPCA in Jalan Ulu Klang, Selangor. Get caught in the last minute rush. It lends to hyping up the CNY atmosphere a woofing notch or two?

But Malaysians -- including thieves and robbers -- have moved up the tech level in tandem with the rest of society.

Look at the audacity of these buggers as reported:

from The Star, page 19, Jan 26, 2006:

Transformer thieves held

TANJUNG MALIM: A syndicate, believed to be experienced in stealing power transformers from sub-stations, has been busted with the arrest of four men.

OCPD Deputy Supt Shariff Abdul Aziz Shariff Rahimattullah said the four, aged between 20 and 41, were detained at the toll exit here at 3am yesterday.

“Ulu Bernam police spotted a lorry which was equipped with a crane at the toll exit and discovered the two transformers belonging to Tenaga Nasional Bhd,” he told reporters.

The police also seized a Proton Wira car used by the suspects.

Pic showing: SEIZED: DSP Shariff Abdul Aziz (right) checking the car that was used by the syndicate which stole two transformers from the Bernam Industrial Park I and II in Tanjung Malim yesterday. The transformers can be seen on the lorry in the background. (As I wrote yesterday, please use a li'l Imagination on the pic, rite!:)

DSP Shariff Abdul Aziz said investigations revealed that the two transformers, worth a total of RM200,000, were from a sub-station at the Bernam Industrial Park I and II here.

The police believed that there were “ready buyers” for the transformers.

DSP Shariff Abdul Aziz said the transformers were stolen because the thieves wanted to remove the copper and lubricant which could be sold at a high price.

The transformers contained expensive recyclable lubricant and 1,000kg of copper, which could be sold at RM16 per kg, he added.

He also appealed to the public to contact TNB immediately whenever there was a power cut because residents near the industrial estate did experience a blackout before the transformers were found missing from the sub-station.

Last month, seven suspects were picked up in connection with the theft of three 132KW transformers in Taiping.

Police recovered two of the transformers, each weighing over 30 tons, and also seized a forklift, a lorry trailer, a crane, about 60 drums of lubricants siphoned from the two transformers and several insulators.

But at the back of my mind, some questions pop up:
* Who are these "ready buyers" of stolen transformers?
These must be reasonably sized businesses in need of the electric machines, yes?
Maybe they should electrocute themselves w'ile putting up these stolen goodies.

* In this reported incident, a lorry was used to carry the transformers of several
tonnes. They surely need a lot of other machines like loaders and jackers and muscled men to load these green and mean transformers, yes?
What are the sources of these "collateral machines and equipment" to do the Italian-style jobs?
(Must apologise to these people femes for their spa-ghetti and Sophia Loren...)

When it comes to audacity and daylight robbery, I'm sad to record Malaysians have indeed gone up the international ranks. In line with MSC development?

In the forthcoming long break during CNY, make sure to minimise break-in chances into your war-chest, right. Desi da church mouse offers his "jaga" services -- RM1,000 per hour, any takers?

Me, I'm a low-tech guy -- Desi even had to ring Kyels to copy a PDF file! And she is a real Befriender in word and spirit.

Wednesday, January 25, 2006

NGOs maketh me wary...

Many NGOs and their protagonists have made me quite wary...
Some have made the organisations their own li'l kindoms...
Some have institutionalised them personally so much so Mr ABC is NGO1 and NGO1 is Mr ABC; Miss XYZ is NGO2 and NGO2 is Miss XYZ...

You have got my drift, yes?


Then how about after reading this...?

From The Star, page 46:
Wednesday January 25, 2006

NGOs quit Sri Lanka with tsunami cash

COLOMBO: A number of foreign non-governmental organisations, which had signed agreements with the Sri Lankan government to reconstruct houses and schools in the Ampara district, have left the country before completing their work, the Housing Ministry said.

It was reported that these NGOs had collected large funds from their respective countries and other donors, but reneged on their agreements and slipped out to Pakistan where they were now engaged in fraudulent activities.

Minister of Housing and the Construction Industry Ferial Ashraff told The Island that the government had signed agreements with 25 NGOs to construct houses for tsunami-affected people, with the government providing them the relevant plans and required land.

She added that although 12,500 houses were needed in Ampara, construction work had commenced on only 1,200 houses. – The Island / Asia News Network


Too often many NGOs criticise the government or agencies for lack of accountability.
But they should hold themselves up once a while in front of the mirror and ask of themselves:
Are we any different?

OtherWISE, how do you account for events such as the one publicised in COLOMBO as reported by The Island?
The worst type of "sin" I can imagine that humans can commit against humanity is to "steal" the funds collected in the name of disaster victims and then run away to enjoy the spoils.
May their gods of monkey business tear out their human-like brains,
trhen fed to the vultures that descend on seas of human misery whenever disaster strikes.
What is that?
Some NGO activists treat it as an occasion to feast on Sushi -- Japanese BF, anyone, lunch2 and dinner3?!
What we do in outr own backyard is not subject to public scrutiny okay?!:(
And that's a rhetorical question...

Human rights?

What is that?
Some NGO activists treat it as something that they are entitled for themselves.
Do a check out on how they treat their own staff or house maids?
Oh, yeah, human rights in the public limelight.
What we do in our own backyard is none of your biz, okay?!:(
And that's another rhetorical question2...

If by now you are still at sea as to what Desiderata's ranting about this morning, please join me to use that God-given commodity which we seldom do justice to-
which according to a fellow Blogger - -
is the Key to Freedom.

I know of certain Malaysian NGOS whose top few office bearers hog the limelight as if there are NO other office bearers suitable to become spokesmen. They would like my Post this morning.
Just like some NGO leaders go on annual holidays abroad sponsored by big funders from overseas who are sold on their causes.
Just some some others who hold on to their CEO posts -- like many of our much loved Polititkus -- for a few decades as if they are indsipensable.
Just like one social activist -- a former Opposition MP -- some people are "experts" in all fields of human endeavours that they speak like authorittative spokesmen for every damn thing happening under the Malaysian sun.
If you ask whop is this or that person referred to, my answer is:
Use your Imagination-lah!:)

Now I feel as liberated as Kyels, or maybe even as free as -
Jonathan Livingstone Seagull.

Tuesday, January 24, 2006

Some Steal LOST in Da Woods...

While all the newspapers highlighted the "banning" aspect of the Nude Squat flowing from the Incident of Squatgate, some people with eyes which do not see are still LOST in the woods. They can't see the trees for the forest.

But if I were to tell them "You are seeing the trees for the woods", most likely they would be LOST at sea as well.
So what the ...., it's a four-letter word, and this being Tuesday, IT'S CONEY DOG DAY, no swearing aloud because the neighbour just hung out a newly painted sign: BEWARE OF DOGS!

Compare The Star, frontpage, with a smallish item on page 20 quite lost in the forest of words today.

It will be law

Nude squat recommendations
to be incorporated into CPC

reads the headline of the Print edition.

Following is the Online edition -- easier lah, Cut&Paste!:)

Tuesday January 24, 2006

Ear squats no longer allowed

KUALA LUMPUR: A Code of Practice on Body Search will be incorporated into amendments to the Criminal Procedure Code (CPC) which will be tabled in Parliament in March.

Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Datuk Seri Mohd Radzi Sheikh Ahmad, who heads the Parliamentary Select Committee on Penal and Criminal Procedure Codes, said that at present there were so many different rules and regulations that “nobody knew what procedure to follow.”

“We want to codify it all in a single legislation. Ketuk ketampi (ear squats) is no longer allowed. This has been a convention in the past. And now the police themselves are not sure what to do,” he said.

He said the seven-member select committee had been working on major amendments to the CPC for nearly two years and its first draft was ready.

“So we will look at making the recommendations a part of the amendments. We have to be ready in March,” he said, adding that the select committee’s next meeting would take place after Chinese New Year.

He expected the select committee to have four to five meetings before finalising the proposed bill.

Yesterday, the Government made public the nude ear squat video report by the independent commission headed by former Chief Justice Tun Mohamed Dzaiddin Abdullah.

The video of a woman forced to do ear squats naked in a police lock up in front of a policewoman had angered many Malaysians.

The commission found that ear squats in the nude was not standard police practice, haram (forbidden) and violated the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, and should be discontinued immediately.

Radzi said the proposed amendments to the CPC would enhance the stature of the police and put enforcement officers in a better light.

“It is a very comprehensive amendment and an important document which affects the lives of people. With it the police can carry out investigations very nicely and at the same time safeguard the interests of the public.

“The balance will be better. We don’t want to hamper the police in their investigations,” he added.


Police report lodged against Kok

KUALA LUMPUR: The Umno Overseas Clubs Alumni Organisation has lodged a police report against Seputeh MP Teresa Kok for storing, distributing and disseminating at the Parliament lobby on Nov 25 last year pornographic material of a nude woman doing squats.

The report was made by a member of the organisation, Abd Razak Mohd Ghazali, at the Sentul district police headquarters at 5pm yesterday.

He claimed in the report that Kok had by intention, words and deed distributed the video clip by way of a laptop computer to several members of parliament and journalists. – Bernama


Some people will continue to be at sea forever.
They will continue to cut down the trees for the timber until there is not a single blade of grass to be seen.
Then they ask: Where are the woods?
I don't see any.
Yeah, Semuanya Okay!

Jest expanding my thoughts this morning, since I just had some Coney Dogs
on a Stop at A&W on the way to work, yeah, I've to work like a dog!-
it rhymes with Horny -
Why Are Malaysians So Fond of Setting Up Race-Based Clubs Overseas?

Thinking aloud, aren't most of these UMNO Club, MCA Club or MIC Club (if annie) members students?
Aren't they barred from political activities under the Universities and University Colleges Act?

I hear some mGf murmuring -- hey, they have two sets of regulations, like you Chionoeserie bizmen having three sets of accounts -- oh, I digress.

Can I set up a DAP or PRM Club at Universiti Nusantara? or Universiti Pergi Sini Sana?
I think I'd go get a set of Borang from PutraJaga-Jaga...
Testing the waters -- Hope those Crocs leave Desi alone!
If I don't 'rite my usual tomorrow, you can gas what happened, rite!

Monday, January 23, 2006

For PM tea, from one BOLD Chinoserie press:

MCA hard pressed for RM45,000 Eat, Drink and Be Merry bill.

I heard lust nite from a media buddy some juicy "news" which for reasons only known to the power-brokers, made it to only ONE Chinopserie press thatI know of. If they were others, please eduacate Desi, and I'll accord accordingly the honours mention.

Meanwhile, do some catch up on olde "news"
regarding an outstanding bill from the MCA Kapar Batu 3 branch in Klang. The then chairman -- a Datuk Tan LT - who transacted the dinner with a restaurant for a 100-table dinner held at the Hokkien Association, Klang, in 2001, had just recently passed on. Present at that dinner was then MCA chief Dr Ling LS officiating. Though the late Datuk Tan issued two cheques as payment in 2003, the restaurant bossed said the cheques "bounced" ('dishonoured' is the right term). So the unpaid bills are left for the Eat, Drink and Be Merry leaders surviving to pay.

The RM45.000 is not settled, and the restaurant boss is seeking his dues in court. The clainant filed a summons - naming the present Kapar Batu 3, MCA branch chairman, MCA Presient and Secretary-General as respondents - suing for the monies owed via counsel, Teng Chang Khim (who BTW, is also a DAP wakil rakyat...), reported THE ORIENTAL DAILY NEWS last Thursday.

If you still had not "heard" about this episode, the four-day old "event"(or isit 4-year-old?) is still "news", ain't it! You tell Desi, because the mainstream press in the majority can't tell the difference! I'm grounded in Journalism 101, but this type of news may come under J1001?

Should we yell: Yum Seng!
Hey, where is my Credit Card?
Buddy, I (slyly) left it at home,
so Desi turns to his buddy on the Right(as a leftist is wont to do...)
"Can you pay first ah?"
This took place at lust night's SU(p)PER...
It was not in ANY of this morn's papers, rest assURED.

PS: This may just relieve a li'l mGf JeffOoi who claims he's "scik and tired" and I can't forward him Haridas' tehtarik, cos it may add to his pressure!
Take care, matey!
YL, Desi

Crocs in Troubled Waters

Love Quote of the Day
The difficulty with marriage is that we fall in love with a personality, but must live with a character.
Peter De Vries

Do you see any personality or character among the protagonists below?
If your answer is Yes, Malaysia has some HOPe steal.
If your answer tailors with mine, then Malaysia steals some hOPE by jumping into the Troubled waters. Swim among the crocs. You will survive after 22 plus years of dress rehearsals plus another two of re-rehearsals and some undressing.
The worst case scenario with MOndaeBlues: You get gobbled up by the crocs and do the dance with the crocs in their belly. Steal a dance wat!

from The NST Jan 23, 2006

Samy Vellu blasts Kayveas over remarks

"I will not listen to anyone but the Prime Minister," MIC president Datuk Seri S. Samy Vellu said today.

Taking exception to a statement by People’s Progressive Party leader Datuk M. Kayveas that the nine ministers who submitted a memorandum to Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi should resign for their "improper behaviour", he said: "Who is he? Who is Kayveas to tell us what to do? He is not even a minister. That is his problem. He is not even in the Cabinet. We are full ministers and we have direct access to the Prime Minister.

"If Kayveas wants to be a minister, ask him to see the Prime Minister and ask him to be made a minister. No one has to advise us on what to do except the Prime Minister."

Five of the nine ministers met Abdullah yesterday and eight of them have since withdrawn the memorandum on the advice of the Prime Minister.

Upko president Tan Sri Bernard Dompok, one of the signatories, has been non-commital on the withdrawal.

Samy Vellu, who was one of the ministers who submitted the memorandum seeking to protect the rights of non-Muslims, said he did not want to talk about the memorandum any more.

"What I want to say is in my heart. We will talk about it at the Cabinet meeting," he said at a Press conference after handing out RM500 and trophies each to 518 Tamil primary school pupils who had scored seven As in the 2005 UPSR examination.

Then there is the Other Predictable in Malaysian politics:
and from theSun, frontpage continuing to page 2:

'We did it in the national interest'

We were not forced to withdraw memo: Ong

KUALA LUMPUR: The decision by non-Muslim cabinet ministers to retract a memorandum they had given to Prime Minister Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi was not done because of pressure but more for the sake of national interest.
"We did it in the national interest and our statement is good enough to explain everything," MCA president Datuk Seri Ong Ka Ting said on Sunday.

The memorandum called for a review of laws affecting the rights of non-Muslims.

Asked whether they were pressured to retract the memorandum, Ong said the non-Muslim ministers had a very good understanding with Abdullah and the solution found was "good enough".

On Friday, Abdullah had said it was not normal or proper for the ministers to send the memorandum as the matter could have been discussed in the weekly cabinet meeting.

He then said he had yet to read the memorandum as he was busy looking at the 9th Malaysia Plan but would allow the ministers to present their views at the next cabinet meeting.

But on Saturday, Abdullah summoned and met five of the nine non-Muslim ministers at his official residence in Seri Perdana, leading to their withdrawal of the memorandum.

He then said the issue was closed.

"Our statement says it clearly enough to explain why we retracted the memorandum and I do not wish to further elaborate (on) it," Ong said after opening the party's school of political studies.

He said the joint statement issued was in line with the prime minister's statement and him openly stating that all important and essential issues can be discussed at the cabinet as it is the best place to discuss such issue.

"That's what we are trying to convey -- the same thing the PM said. It's over now and there is no need to play up the issue again," Ong said.

"The Barisan Nasional government under the leadership of Abdullah will also know how and when to resolve the issue."

Asked how will he and the other non-Muslim ministers explain to the public, especially their party members, he said: "Don't worry, the public will understand."

The other non-Muslim ministers who signed the memorandum were Transport Minister Datuk Seri Chan Kong Choy, Health Minister Datuk Dr Chua Soi Lek, Works Minister Datuk Seri S. Samy Vellu, Energy, Water and Communications Minister Datuk Seri Dr Lim Keng Yaik, Human Resources Minister Datuk Dr Fong Chan Onn, Plantation Enterprises and Commodities Minister Datuk Peter Chin and Ministers in the Prime Minister's Department Datuk Dr Maximus Ongkili and Tan Sri Bernard Dompok.

In life, in Desi's mind, there are generally three classes of people.

(a)People with principles.
(b)People without any scruples.
(c)People with a mixture of both -- that is having some principles at times, can be unscrupulous too when the circumstances are right -- depending on the circumstances and forces at work and how they impact on the individuals.

If you have friends mostly from Category (a), you are one hell-of-lucky bloke!
If you think your "friends" come mostly from (c), you are the average JOe or Jane. You are a survivor in Malaysia. You'll be o'rite, mate!

Butt if you mingle mostly with people from Category (b), pray very hard you don't fall into the croc-infested waters! Also, please don't cross Desi's path, may the Good Lord Protect me&mGf from your type of Company.

To which Category do the Protagonists mentuioned in the two political dramas just played out on the Malaysian stage -- so predicable -- as entertaining as Hollywood soap and HongKong soup operas? I like your esteemed opinions.

Of course of the three, I hate Bee. This category I'd wish it upon my worst enemies!

Don't you believe it when you hear that YL does not have enemies. He's a poet-aspirant, ain't he?
When you maketh an enemy of a Poet, maketh sure you can stand a Crocodile bite plus a rattle-snake venom.

And that's not a threat. It's a friendly sign like those they hang on our friendly neighbourhood fences:
Beware of dogs.
More such signs are apparently expected to bloom at the advent of the Year of the Doggone Animal.
Do you realise when you hang a dog upside down, it reads somethin' awesome?

Be With Thee.

Sunday, January 22, 2006

I Walk The Line...

It's so predictable.
The Chief Firenman has come out once again.
He puts out the fire that his "firemen" subordinates had set up.

Bravo. Trumpets sound. drums roll.
The Chief has spoken. Everything is solved, and Children please quieten down...

Until the next fire...

From the SUNDAYStar frontpage:

Memo withdrawn

The matter is now closed, says
the Prime Minister

KUALA LUMPUR: The memorandum to Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi has been withdrawn.

And as far as the Prime Minister is concerned, the matter is closed.

The retraction of the document signed by nine non-Muslim Cabinet ministers calling for a review of laws affecting the rights of non-Muslims was made during a meeting between Abdullah and five of the signatories at Seri Perdana in Putrajaya yesterday.

They were Housing and Local Government Minister Datuk Seri Ong Ka Ting; Transport Minister Datuk Seri Chan Kong Choy; Health Minister Datuk Dr Chua Soi Lek; Works Minister Datuk Seri S. Samy Vellu; and Energy, Water and Communications Minister Datuk Seri Lim Keng Yaik.

“I met them and I told them that they need to retract the memorandum and they all agreed. I hope the memorandum will no longer be an issue from now on,” said the Prime Minister.

Abdullah, who is Umno president, told newsmen after launching an Umno recruitment campaign that he considered the issue closed and urged everyone particularly politicians to stop harping on it.

There should no longer be any debate on whether it was right or wrong, fitting or otherwise, in sending the memorandum, he said.

“We don’t want this to remain an issue because the parties who sent me the memorandum have already withdrawn it.

“They understand the views expressed by others over the sending of the memorandum and that is why when I asked them to retract it, they agreed,” he said.

Abdullah said the only sensitive part of the whole chapter that stirred emotions among various parties was the act of sending the memorandum, and now that the ministers have taken it back, “it is over.”

But this does not mean that the subject of the memorandum could not be discussed at Cabinet meetings, he stressed.

MCA president Datuk Seri Ong Ka Ting welcomed the Prime Minister’s assurance that the issue would be addressed by the Cabinet.

Gerakan president Datuk Seri Lim Keng Yaik said the meeting with Abdullah was necessary because the press has made the matter concerning the memorandum a “hot issue”.


MIC president Datuk Seri S. Samy Vellu said the MIC “really appreciate the advice and views of the Prime Minister and will adhere to his decision.”


Go spend RM1.20 and read, digest the fool report ... and educate thyself on a Sundae brunch or hi or lo tea. For Desi, it's the usual CON BF Xcept this morning I'm taking 1/2 the portion. BNo more appetite, but will make up for it come
SUP(p)ER time!


I had in an earlier earlier Post gave a "small salute" to the TEN-minus-one (like minus 1 tape at the Karaoke joint, remember?) miniSTERS (adopting one LONE-style...) put forth the MEMO. I said I might upgrade the salute if they could stand the test -- sticking to their guns.
But it's proven Desi's prediction -- it's the DOG WHICH BARKS, WITH NO BITE! Or another word associated with my dear Friend -- call them COW-....?
(Fun challengiA: .... fill in the blanks, and gas'ing rite will win thee TehTarik plus SUP(p)ER tonight!

Now adapting from the SundayStar's headline,

Desi's sub-title for today's rumination reads:


Last night at sup(P)er chat with some mGf, we also discussed the subject, and of various organisations holding a daily candle-light vigil in front of the Hi-Court buildings at Jalan Raja, fronting Dataran Merdeka.

I shared with them I often "saluted" such activists.
There are many loud Malaysians who have many things and issues to rant and rave about -- directed at the Government mostly. But do they Walk The Line?
Desi likes to throw them a challenge by asking them to join "the troops" at such demonstrations of their commitment to the Cause.
I had even drafted some "memo" to ask them to sign on, or requested for some "indicative" show of support for some of the civil causes. Many behave/d like chickens, or isit COW....?

I am glad I can count on my two hands' fingers -- now proceeding to the MIStheTOES - a number of people who would join Desi in Walking The Line...Some may be physically far from my side -- one is having flu and country in cold winter, and others up north and east and west away from FuRong, but ne'er mind, I know for sure their heart&soul will accompany Desi&FRiends tonight...

One night the coming week (will confirm later..) Desi will invite to some likeminded ones out there near Kuala Lumpur, have a DATE WITH DESI?

8.30PM, Jan ..., 2006
Venue: Front of Hi-Court buildings, Jalan Raja, Koala Lumpur.

Followed by THAT SUP(p)ER I talked about! On Desi, don't bring your purse, but remember to bring some candles and your EYE-SEE!

from The Man In Black
Johnny Cash

I Walk The Line

I keep a close watch on this heart of mine
I keep my eyes wide open all the time
I keep the ends out for the tie that binds
Because you're mine, I walk the line

I find it very, very easy to be true
I find myself alone when each day is through
Yes, I'll admit that I'm a fool for you
Because you're mine, I walk the line

As sure as night is dark and day is light
I keep you on my mind both day and night
And happiness I've known proves that it's right
Because you're mine, I walk the line

You've got a way to keep me on your side
You give me cause for love that I can't hide
For you I know I'd even try to turn the tide
Because you're mine, I walk the line

I keep a close watch on this heart of mine
I keep my eyes wide open all the time
I keep the ends out for the tie that binds
Because you're mine,
I walk the line

Saturday, January 21, 2006

News to cheer, more burden to bear!

Desi selects two news breaks fro The Star today -- and sees some "bright lighT' from an "unexpected" source, and another dampener -- with long and lasting negative connotations for our nation-- from yet another "unexpected" sopurce.

Saturday January 21, 2006

Move by non-Muslim Cabinet ministers ‘improper’

KUALA LUMPUR: Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak said the action by 10 non-Muslim Cabinet ministers in submitting a memorandum to the Prime Minister calling for a review of laws that affect the rights of non-Muslims was “improper” and “not nice”.

“It is against the Cabinet system and unprecedented,” he told reporters at the Malaysian-French Chamber of Commerce annual dinner here last night.

Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Datuk Seri Mohamad Nazri Abdul Aziz said the non-Muslim ministers should withdraw their memorandum.

“It is a dangerous precedent. In principle, the Cabinet had already discussed and agreed on a review of all laws pertaining to a conversion of a non-Muslim to Islam.

“Their action seems to suggest a rift between non-Muslim and Muslim ministers. The Muslim ministers are patient and moderate and we can discuss this in the Cabinet,” he added.

In PUTRAJAYA, Umno Youth said the Cabinet members must abide by the principle of working together.

“They acted as if they were not part of the Cabinet line-up appointed by the Prime Minister. They should instead use the present channel like the Cabinet meeting and Barisan Nasional meeting,” the movement's exco member Datuk Pirdaus Ismail told reporters.

He also said religious issues were sensitive in multi-racial Malaysia and the ministers should have discussed it in the Cabinet.

However, International Trade and Industry Minister Datuk Seri Rafidah Aziz said it was okay with her.

“We, the Muslims, are also concerned over the process which determines who is a Muslim and who is not. If a person is a Muslim convert and he is wrongly buried, we are concerned.

“Similarly, if a Muslim who professes to have left the faith (apostate) but is buried as a Muslim is also of concern to us,” she said.

Rafidah felt what her colleagues in the Cabinet had brought up was appropriate as they represented the views and thoughts of the non-Muslims on the matter.

DESIDERATA:Under Pak Lah, there has been a discerning "opening up" of the Cabinet forum for members to speak their mind. I don't share the DPM's and Minister in the PM's Department about their concern over what is a memorandum by their Cabinet colleagues on a "national concern".

I see the development as a positive development in the democartisation of the maturing Malaysian society. You push away such openings or prefer to "sweep them under the carpet", you only encourage guerilla activities, and more violents expressions leading to law breaking and anarchy, which are poor options to the average JoePublic.

So it was a "ray of hope" when the Minister who got so much "flak" over the infamous AP issue finally expressed a stand I must applaud her for!

Let's give credit where credit is due -- and her support for her non-Muslim fellow members for their initiative shows there is at lwast one clear thinking and progressive mind among Pak Lah's policy-makers.

Her stance is in line with a nation striving to find its place among the Developed Nations community and fostering First World mentality and helping cultivating among us some "Towering Malaysian" performers.

Let's not try to drape the Jalur Gemilang over the Egyptian Pyramids when we chase a French man doing "Spider man" stunt on thhe Petronas Twin Towers.
Let's not sweep things under the carpet when some countries use such carpets for "flying" -- Imagination from thinking outside the box?

Next to a dampening which Malaysians can do without.Desi gets more and more depressed with such developments unfolding event which IMHO, does NOT doing the nation any good. It reminds Desi of former PM Dr Mahathir Mohamad warning the Malaysian society against following unhealthy trends as had happened in other countries. Malaysia is becoming overly litigious for its own good...

Students sue over teaching in English

KUALA LUMPUR: Four students have filed a suit against the Government over its policy to teach Science and Mathematics in English.

The students – Mohammad Syawwaal Mohammad Nizar, Mohammad Fadzil Nor Mohd Rosni, Nur Najihah Muhaimin and Syazaira Arham Yahya Ariff – are seeking to declare two circulars on the execution of the policy dated Nov 27, 2002, unconstitutional, null and void, and of no effect.

They are also seeking a declaration from the High Court that the Government had no power and privilege to introduce, enforce and implement the policy stated in the two circulars.

Apart from that, the students also want the High Court to issue an order to compel the Government to change or restore the policy stated in those two policies according to the provisions of the Federal Constitution and written laws regarding the matter.

Mohammad Syawwaal is a Year Four student in SK Batu Tiga while Mohammad Fadzil and Nur Najihah are Form Three students in SMK Tok Muda Abd Aziz and SMK Seri Perak, respectively.

Syazaira Arham is a Form Four student in Madrasah Idrissiah.

The four students, who are all from Perak, filed the suit through their fathers Mohammad Nizar Jamaluddin, Mohd Rosni Abu Bakar, Muhaimin Sulam and Yahya Ariff Kamaruzzaman.

In their originating summons, the students claimed that the policy had been enforced without taking into consideration Article 152 of the Constitution and the provisions of laws like the National Language Act 1967 and Education Act 1996.

(The Malay language is enshrined as the national language under Article 152 of the Constitution.)

They also claimed that the differences in the time allocated for the teaching of Science and Mathematics for Year 1 in national schools, Tamil schools and Chinese schools, and the fact that the two subjects were taught in English and Mandarin in Chinese schools had resulted in a form of discrimination and inequality.

This, they argued, was against Article 8 (1) of the Federal Constitution because it “results in a big discriminatory gap between urban and rural students”.

The policy, they added, contradicted the National Education Policy that was based on the National Education Philosophy which, among other things, stressed on an education system using the national language as its medium.

As students, the plaintiffs claimed that they were “victims” because they were deprived of learning the two subjects in the national language.

The suit was filed through the legal firm of Mohamed Hanipa & Associates at the appellate and special powers division of the High Court here yesterday.

DESIDERATA: The court is not the proper forum for adult Malaysians to pursue what is clearly a matter to be decided by the "political process". Take it to your MPs and political leaders, don't jeopardise our already heavily burdened judiciary system... they have enough on their plate!

Fight the political opponents via political and socio-civic or community organisations and societies -- but using children to pursue a political cause in the courts? Let the children be -- studying in the library, and playing in the sunshine. Yes, even like what brother Imran advises: "Waste their youth a little." Desi adds: Don't use them as pawns in our adult games to add burden to their yound shoulders.

Heaven forbid, don't open more such negative Pandora's Boxes! Enough is enough!

Friday, January 20, 2006

Searching for th Truth from the Ash s?

mGf from Down Under is in hi spirits this GoodFridae Morn, and wishes to share some "eye-opening" videos if thou can lay thy hands on them:

emailed me thus:

"Hi Desi

How are you ? Thought i'd send ya a quick email with a link to this

I found it interesting to say the least, i also watched it on tv a few weeks ago.

Take a look ;)
cheerz sweets "

DESIDERATA: Thanks Sweets. Take care and Always God Speed.
To my EsteemedReaders, Go visit the referenced site, you'll be educated...:)

Just give thee an inkling of what lie among the Ashes are some links as headed below:


Washington Times -

Witnesses link missile to small military jet parts found at Pentagon on 9/11

Retired Air Force Colonel
Challenges Official Reports of September 11th

"Debunking the Debunkers"

"It's The Flash, Stupid"

Spanish University: "Pod is three dimensional"

Hunter Thompson's Mysterious Death

Rumsfeld Makes Startling Slip of The Tongue

"From Deception to Revelation"
Full Story Click Here

Important thoughts from a Malaysian abroad:

M. BAKRI MUSA. I had the privilege of interacting with Saudara Bakri some years back (Those were the days!) when I was News Editor of an online newspaper and Bakri was one of its freelance contributors.

I have enjoyed the discerning thoughts from a Malaysian-born who writes frequently on issues affecting his native land, Malaysia. Bakri’s day job is as a surgeon in private practice in Silicon Valley, California. He and his wife Karen live on a ranch in Morgan Hill.

Today I have his kind permission to reprise an article from his website - - which I feel is "timely" for all my fellow countrymen, back home or abroad, to reflect on a Holy Friday, also a DayOfLove for 1 in SE7EN worldborn. Desi humblebee thinks there is a "message" there for Malaysians of all religious faiths.

~~~~~~~Learning Islam by Writing About It

[A slightly shorter version appeared in the Sun , Weekend edition, November 18, 2005]

Writing on Islam is one way for me to learn about my faith. When I do, I can count on receiving many responses, some passionate and a few, extreme, to the point of crudity.

I am deeply appreciative of those who are supportive of my views. Often they lament that they are unable to express their own thoughts and feelings in Malaysia because of fear and other reasons. This further reinforces my gratitude to Allah for this freedom I enjoy living in the West. It also reminds me of the awesome responsibilities that go along with that freedom.

This freedom enables me to explore the rich heritage of my faith. To my delight, many of the spiritual and theological issues I have been struggling with have engaged the greatest minds in Islam, past and present. Far from undermining my faith, such exposures have strengthened it. Back in Malaysia, they would jail or at the very least, brand me a “deviationists” for daring to “stray.”

To the Malaysian Islamic establishment, and others, we would solve all that ails Muslims if only we could go back to the original “pure” Islam, as defined by them of course.

Categories of Critics

Those who disagree with me fall roughly into three categories. First are those who are sincerely concerned with my personal salvation. The second are the ulama and others with impeccable Islamic credentials who disdainfully dismiss me for daring to comment on matters they claim to be their exclusive preserve. The third smugly proclaim that their ulama, gurus or scholars are “smarter” and more learned than mine, and that I have been “misled.”

Repent, the first group would earnestly plead to me, before it is too late! They would even pray for my salvation should I do so. While I am touched by their concerns about my entering Heaven, nonetheless I cannot believe something that does not make sense to me. After all, God gave me akal (reason), and I value that divine gift by fully using it.

The overriding and recurring message of the Quran is to command good and forbid evil. This is further reinforced by the teachings of Prophet Muhammad, may peace and the blessings of Allah be upon his soul. When an alim, no matter how pious and impeccably credentialed, exhorts me to “kill the infidels” while heavily quoting the Quran or Hadith, the message does not resonate with me. Tak masuk akal (It does not make sense), as we say back in my kampong. That does not mean that I do not believe in the Quran or Hadith, rather only that alim’s interpretation.

On the Day of Judgment, the Good Lord will judge me solely on my own actions and niat (intentions). I cannot excuse them, says the Quran, by saying that I am following the teachings of that great alim or this eminent scholar. There is no “Being a Good German” defense in Islam, that is, no excuse for merely following orders.

Those in the second group would chide me for even daring to write about Islam. How presumptuous of me dwelling in the land of the infidels and who could recite but a few short verses of the Quran to enter into a discourse with a hafiz (someone who has memorized the entire Quran) and who had spent decades with the great ulama at Al-Azhar. Such insolence and cheekiness on my part!

Let me answer them by resorting to the teaching manner of our great prophet Muhammad s.a.w., that is, by an anecdote. May Allah forgive me if I sound pretentious!

Imagine if a simple kampong woman were to consult me for a cancerous lump in her breast. I recommended surgery. She demurred, preferring instead to seek herbal treatment and the advice of a bomoh. She had heard of terrible complications from surgery; even death!

Should I then berate her for her temerity to challenge the diagnosis and advice of an experienced surgeon with years of training and multiple degrees to boot? Can’t she tell that from all those fancy-framed diplomas on my wall? Should I then contemptuously dismiss her? After all, what does she know about oncology, pharmacology, immunology, and all the other “-logies.” She does not even know the meaning of the word “cell,” much less a cancerous one!

Or, should I address her concerns? Yes, people do die and have bad complications from their surgery. Fortunately today, with well-trained surgeons and anesthesiologists, as well as wonderful drugs, modern surgery is safe. Yes, the occasional unfortunate few have complications and indeed die. Perfection after all is only with Allah.

With the first approach, I am effectively denigrating her, treating her as inferior to me. That is ‘unIslamic.’ We are all equal. I may be better at performing surgery than she is at carving her chicken, but then she could stir up a mean rendang better that I could. By treating her with respect, that is, as an equal, she may even change her mind and opt for the life-saving surgery. Even if she does not, at least she would have a better understanding of modern medicine. She would be better for it, and I would have the satisfaction of having contributed something towards her enlightenment. In contrast, with the first approach, she would definitely be turned off by modern medicine and doctors.

No doubt, some conservative Muslims would take exception to this example. To them, I as a male have no business examining women’s breasts. Yes, my examining of breasts may seem like fondling to a layperson, but my niat or intention, is different. I am trying to save her life, a meritorious act by any standard or Holy Book, not gratifying my erotic senses.

I have little to add for the third group. It is not productive to engage them; it would just be a spitting contest (or pissing contest, in the colorful language of local cowboys). They simply would dismiss me as being under the spell of the “orientalists” and “deviationists.”

The surprise is that this attitude is also prevalent among Muslim intellectuals and scholars. Obviously they have not learned from their illustrious predecessors who eagerly learned from the Greeks, Romans and Hindus, and then went on to make their own seminal contributions. The likes of Ibn Sini were not at all bothered that they were learning from the infidels.

Another argument these modern ulama frequently advance is that their interpretations and translations are the only true and valid ones. All others are simply adulterations (bida’a) of our great faith. Their certitude merely betrays their arrogance, not to mention their intellectual shallowness.

They forget that all translations are at best approximate; they all involve some interpreting and editorializing.

Dealing with Rude Responses

I do get my share of rude and crude comments. I always respond courteously – initially. Invariably they reply with apologies. The old adage, goodwill begets more goodwill, works. There are exceptions, however. For those relatively few, the powerful click of the mighty mouse – delete – does wonders to my sanity and psyche!

Some of the most obnoxious and vulgar e-mails I get are from otherwise upright citizens, respected commentators, and seemingly pious ulama. Regardless, the mighty mouse does not care. They do not in any way detract me from continually striving to learn about my faith; hence this essay.~~~~~~~

Thursday, January 19, 2006

Please send out the Chief Fireman!

In the land of Monkeys, the SemiManKey is king.
ylchong | Homepage | 01.18.06 - 7:34 pm | #

Yesterday I was having a leisurely surfing of fellow Bloggers' turf and the following Post attracted by question. Well, at least Viewtru's ending poser elicited a quickie response from Desi, three seconds -- just hope some of of infrastructure does not collapse on us in three years after opening for public use!

So to put in context, some extracts:

Wednesday, January 18, 2006

Will collapse or not, tell me!
You know, when I first saw this news heading in the one-star newspaper on “Monkey’s reign of terror ended”, my first thought was that one of our ministers got canned and now everything is back under control. But apparently, that was not the case. The news story was actually about a real monkey gone bad.

Fed up. Gave me false hope like that.

Oh, did you notice that the troubled Kepong flyover affair is in the news again?

This was reported here on January 17: “The Utusan Malaysia yesterday reported that the flyover was no longer safe because of excessive vibrations and that it was believed to have reached the maximum tolerance level where safety is concerned.”

Samy assures us that “the Flyover will not collapse.”

Come on, tell me who is right.
Tell me who the more creditable source is.
Tell me if they know what they are talking about.

Oh, never mind, just complete this sentence for me:
“In the land of the ....., the .......... is king.”

Visit his Weblog and read Viewtru's full entry and other Commenters'


I find the above highly relevant when this morning's newspaper headlined several "national" happenings, and I, average JoePublic, and perhaps other fellow citizens, must have that "deja vu" feeling again -- that NO ONE SEEMS TO BE IN CHARGE IN THE BLODDY GOVERNMENT DEPARTMENTS ANYMORE!

Every minor irritant had to have Pak Lah's personal intervention. The Fire Chief is being called upon out to douse fires set up by his own Firemen!
Maybe it's time for him to start "firing" the under-performing monkeys!

No wonder I seem to get nausea every now and then -- the ship is lurching from left to right, and right to left, once too often for us Passengers' comfort...

~Fire 1
From The Star, page 1

Religious Department told to disband squad

KUALA LUMPUR: The Cabinet told the Federal Territory Religious Department to disband the “snoop team” as it is tantamount to invasion of privacy.
With this move, the Cabinet has sent a clear message - "forget about it" - to other groupos that may have plans to set up similar units.

In gist, the report added that "The matter was brought up by Information Minister Datuk Paduka Abdul Kadir Sheikh Fadzir at the Cabinet meeting."
Minister in the Prime Minister's Department Radzi Sheikh Ahmad said the ministers were "incredulous" that such a squad was being formed "right under their noses" in Putrajaya.
Fellow minister Mohd Nazri Aziz said the Cabinet's stand applied to all states, and not just the FT and Malacca.
Nazri said the Government had already rejected last year the plan by 4B Youth movement led by Malacca Chief Minister Mohd Ali Rustam to set u[p an Islamic snoop squad dubbed "Mat Skodeng", where youths would be encouraged to spy on couples and report those who engage in immoral actiovities."

DESIDERATA had blogged widely on the Malacca example -- and this FT imitating Papa Monkey Does,Sonny Monkey Follows episode is truly, yes, "incredulous".
You know why? -- Nobody seems to be in charge!

~~Fire 2:

From The Star, its Online edition, and Desi has highlighted the relevance of the key point to today's main grouse:

Car industry has lost its way


Malaysia has lost its direction in the automotive industry, former Proton chief executive officer Tengku Tan Sri Mahaleel Tengku Ariff said.

Instead of becoming a car exporter, Malaysia was reverting to a labour supplier in the industry, he said.

Tengku Mahaleel: Says Malaysia is reverting to a labour supplier in the industry
Expressing frustration over the fate of local carmakers, Tengku Mahaleel said the national car faced competition even in its own homeland with the emergence of “pseudo” national cars.

“Some local manufacturers use local logos for imported cars. How can such cars be truly national cars, when the content of imported parts and components is high?” he asked.

“I am frustrated with this development. I am frustrated for Malaysia,” he told reporters after giving a lecture on Governance and Transparency in the Automotive Industry at Universiti Sains Malaysia here yesterday.

Tengku Mahaleel also questioned how many of the 17 automotive factory operators were car exporters.

“We are importing more than we export. When we import more, we are spending more.

“The duty imposed on some of the cars is so low that the Government loses billions in tax collection,” he said.

Tengku Mahaleel also urged the Government to formulate the Third Industrial Master Plan (IMP3, 2006-2020), adding that IMP2 ended last year and that it was tough for the industry players to embark on strategies without a direction.

“We are bound to suffer losses amounting to billions of ringgit because we do not know where we are heading,” he said.

Yes, a policy that had ended with the year 2005 has no follow-up.
You know why?
The ship's captain is being DIVERTED from steering the ship because most of the subordinates are indulging in monkley sideshows instead of "doing their duties".

Yes, send out the firemen to create more fires. The Bomba chief then claims credit for putting out the fires.

How easy to earn a "living" in the Government departrment or government-linked companies -- Wanna join Proton, Mas, anyone?

Meanwhile, can anyone update Desi what is the final outcome of the AP fiasco?
Anyone sacked? Prosecuted?
Oh, yes, they shot ONE MESSENGER. The MITI officer who appendixed the list of MP benefiociaries, which according to his honourable minister, should not have been published.
Can Desi recommend a Datukship for this fall/fallen guy for doing National Service?

~~~Fire 3.

One parting shot, though there's actually more, but Desi has other better things top attend to! Also from The Star:

Contractor claims he thought waste material was fertiliser

JOHOR BARU: The contractor who was hired to dump the toxic waste in Labis has come forward to claim that he was duped into believing the waste material was fertiliser.

Tey Tian Seng, 30, also revealed that there are two more such illegal dumpsites in the state.

In a press conference in Segamat yesterday, Tey said he was engaged by a Malacca-based company late last year to dump waste but he didn't know the material was aluminium dross.

Tey: ‘I am very sorry to the people. I really did not know that it was dangerous material’
“I was told by the company that it was some form of fertiliser,” said a distressed Tey who fretted over how he and two other drivers did not wear protective gear when handling the waste.

Tey declined to identify the location of the two sites because he wanted to inform the Department of Environment (DOE) first.

He said a middleman would identify the dumping ground, usually a sand mining site, and Tey’s job was to deposit the waste and cover it up with soil. Tey also said he was paid RM50 per tonne for the task.

(He would have been paid RM15,000 for depositing the 300 tonnes of waste recovered at Kampung Sungai Gatom in Labis).

“I am very sorry to the people. I really did not know that it was dangerous material. I hope I can set things right by coming forward and help the authorities get to the bottom of this,” said Tey, who was accompanied by his lawyer Pang Hok Liong.

Meanwhile, State Tourism and Environment Committee chairman Freddie Long said that since Jan 13, some 330 tonnes of aluminium dross buried 3m in the ground had been unearthed and sent for disposal at Bukit Nenas in Negri Sembilan.

Long said the authorities have been monitoring the air and water quality in the affected areas and found that the ammonia level was below the danger point. A total of 568 evacuees from 135 families were allowed to go home on Tuesday, he said.

Johor Mentri Besar Datuk Abdul Ghani Othman, when met at a function later, said the two sites were in an oil palm plantation at Batu 8 and Batu 9 of Jalan Yong Peng in Labis.

He added that the DOE would seal off the area and arrange to remove the waste as soon as possible.

“Next, it will have to ascertain what kind of waste it is and whether it is hazardous to the environment,” he said.

DESIDERATA: With reference to Long's well-informed statements, also the MB's assurances, do you think those affected residents living around the dump sites feel anysense of relief and assurance of safety.
This contractor operates "right under the department's nose" and the monkeys seem to have no eyes, no see.
Anyone saw a semimankey around?

What is happening to the case of an DOE officer who allegedly "committed suicide" but his family reported "foul play", implying it could be MURDER?
Is there a cover-up by DOE on wrongdoings in the department, and even a fellow officer's life was sacrificed?

Too much monkeying around.
I'm beginning to see some SemiManKey on the far horizon, waving GoodBye, I'm leaving on a jetplane...

See you, my most EsteemedReaders, I'll add a gay Postscript this afternoon -- Desi always keeps his promise, Insya-Allah he's still breathing at around 5.00pm -- to brigfhten up your spirits.
Hey, we must not let the monkeys spoil our party!:)

UPDATED at about 3.13PM:
Ah, the PS of Good Tidings arrived early, because Desi is especially hard-working anticipating the Chineses New Year break! Arrival of the Year of the Dog soon -- Doggone days ahead?

Page 4, the Sun Jan 19, 2006 quietly hidden onshore but in the middle:

Shell JV finds oil off Sabah

The joint venture of Shell Malaysia, Petronas Carigali and ConocoPhillips has made its fourth oil discovery within a year offshore northwest Sabah, with their recent Pigagan-1A exploration well.
According to a Shell Malaysia statement yesterday, the well, located in deepwater Block G, had encountered both oil and gas in the reservoir. It was drilled in a water depth of 1,465 metres.
"The Pigagan discovery,following so soon after our previously announced Ubah-2 discovery, is another positive step for Malaysia and for the Block G joint-venture partners," said Shell Malaysia chairman Datuk Jon Chadwick.
The JV partners in Block G are Shell Malaysia with a 35% stake, ConocoPhillips (East Malaysia) 35% and Petronas Carigalli 30%. Shell Malaysia is the operator of the block on behaLf on the JV.

DESIDERATA: Are the Rakyat going to taste some sweetness of these new oil finds?
Ask Petronas -- your national oil ccorpration! The Singapore government recently announced a bonus of one-month and half-month annual bonus to be paid to households earing less than certain cut-off points in their salaries to help the average Citizen JoePublic to cope with rising costs of living.
Dare Malaysians in the lowest income groups expect such similar help from the Government/Petronas from the country's oil wealth?

Desi has given up appearing like a beggar as if we have no rights to enjoy some benefits of the nation's rich resources. And as a CivilSociety promoter, I'm just asking for some gesture of goodwill from Petronas to help those TRULY IN NEEDS. NO RACE INVOLVED, PLAIN NEEDS!

Yeah, they will continue to remind us about the petrol and diesel subsidies...So be damn bloody gratefool!

And don't compare with our southern neighbour!

My counter is: Why not?
This neighbour does NOT have any oil fields, yet they can help those truly under-privileged, and in greatest need.
Isn't this waht a Caring Society about, dear Mr Prime Minister Pak Lah?

Wednesday, January 18, 2006

Pope, Pop-Up, Nades & Pop-Eye?

The Pope & Ah Peh

About a century or two ago, the Pope decided that all the
Chinese had to leave Italy. Naturally there was a big uproar from the
Chinese community. So the Pope made a deal. He would have a
religious debate with a member of the Chinese community. If the Chinese
win, they could stay. If the Pope wins, the Chinese would leave.
The Chinese realized that they had no other choice. So they picked a
middle-aged man named Ah Peh to represent them. Ah Peh asked for one
condition to be added to the debate. "To make it more interesting", he
said, "neither side would be allowed to talk". The Pope agreed.

The day of the great debate came. Ah Peh and the Pope sat opposite each
other for a full minute. Then,

The Pope raised his hand and showed three fingers.
Ah Peh looked back at him and raised one finger.

The Pope waved his fingers in a circle around his head.
Ah Peh pointed to the ground at where he sat.

The Pope pulled out a loaf and a glass of wine.

Ah Peh pulled out an apple.

The Pope stood up and said: "I give up.
This man is too good.

The Chinese can stay."

An hour later, the cardinals were all around The Pope
asking him what had happened? The Pope said, "First I held up three
fingers to represent the holy trinity. He responded by holding up one
to remind me that there was still one God common to both our
religions. Then I waved my finger around me to show him that God was
us. He responded by pointing to the ground and showing that God was
right here with us. I pulled out the wine and loaf to show that God
absolves all sin. He showed me an apple to remind us of the original
He had an answer for everything. What could I do?"

Meanwhile, the Chinese community had crowded around Ah Peh.
"What happened?" they asked.
"Well," said Ah Peh, "First he indicated to me that all Chinese had 3
days to get out of here. I replied to him not one of us was leaving.
Then he pointed that this whole city would be cleared of Chinese.
I showed him that we are staying right here."
"Yes, and then???" asked the crowd.

"I don't know", said Ah Peh, "He took out his lunch,
and I took out mine!"

DESIDERATA need to light up Malaysians' generally sombre daily (for for some dark&dreary) wakeups with the above nugget jest so that Wednesdays are not always fool of woe. Hence reprising the above received via one of those Mass-Emails which can bring along some flu or bug. Just bloody make sure you are not irritated by POP-UPs!

I already had symptoms pointing to a migraine this morning and so was not in too good a mood. Logging on to the PC, a Pop-Up of Online Betting-Casino ad keeps hogging the screen, even ass I kept on "closing" the page. A "smaller" image with either "Block" OR "Move" function hogged the bottom Right-hand Corner. Despite pressing on "Block" or "Move" umpteen times, the B...., F.... thingy remained, causing me to lose precious minutes of my valuable life on planet Earth. Hey, can someONE physically "remove" that Irritant and send him unto Hades, or isit Hell? This reminds me of some unwelcome guest to the house who refused to get the hint he's overtayed his/her welcome. But I was patient enough to control myself from giving the Righthand Bottom Corner of the PC a right hook ala Ali. If you don't know who Ali is, please don't bother to ask, Desi's patience is right, royal, limited. Like some political parties, …& Sons Sdn Bhd! (For this, please ask y&A johnleemk!)

Reading theSun (not a feebie as the neasrets 7ELEVEN is 10minutes walk away, and I don't have that time to spareat BF table -- precious, remember? ), as usual my early reference is to the Column by fellow scribe Nadeswaran, whose take from which I would extract some nuggets.
The OPINION on page 9 ttitled "Don't expect anything to change", ,
he echoes almost 100% what I summed up yesterday, ending with "QUO VADIS?"

Nades led off with the quote by Court of Appeal judge, Datuk Gopal Sri Ram-
"Is everyone taking out their blanket and pillow to sleep because of the cosy atmosphere in the air conditioned office? Nobody knows what is happening. The public should know that this department is badly managed and chaotic."

"PROPHETIC words indeed," Nades wrote,"but this is not the first time such damning has come from the Bench. Civil servants, polic officers and even counsel have incurred the wrath of judges warranting harsh words.
"For the next few days,there will be meetings at the Insolvency Department, with the top brass setting up a task force to 'sreamline operations' and after the Chinese New Year break, everyone would have forgotten about it.
"Sri Ram's remarks will be the talk of the town for the next few days, and after that, another issue will be raised, in or outside the hallowed chambers of our courthouses, and there'll be a new subject to chew on.
The whole cycle will continue and despite the findings of the justice system, the entrenched philosophy of 'let them say anything' will prevail.
The civil servixce, despite the admonishment, will continue to be what is. There seems to be no will and determination, political or otherwise, to change the mindset of civil servants who will contuinue to be saya yang menurut perintah, without asking himself of herself, if what he or she is doing is right or wrong."

So mGf Y&A Sabrina Tan is right all along -- it's a hopeless sitruation. Things won't change, and she has the confirmation from a veteran journalist that is Citizen Nades.
Desi will continue to Be Positive though, though Not Optimistic.

Finally, an item to be noted by the Blogging community. We Internet publishers -- esp BLOGGERS - have better see some warning lights in the following development so that we are prepared for the potholes along the joyurney:

From The Star, January 18, 2006, page 29:

Ruling to bar website upheld

PUTRAJAYA: A disgruntled engineer who had put up a website containing several defamatory allegations against Perusahaan Otomobil Kedua Sdn Bhd (Perodua) after purchasing a Kelisa with defects failed to overturn an interim injunction order barring the site.
Court of Appeal Justices Gopal Sri Ram, Azmel Ma'amor and Mohd Noor Abdullah dismissed Richard Fong Khee Choong's appeal and said they were satisfied that the defamatory passages in the website were open to interpretation.
“The High Court judge had applied the correct test when he granted the interim injunction,” Justice Sri Ram said, adding that since this was the first case of its kind a written decision would be delivered later.
Justice Sri Ram said that if the article, written by Fong, was a personal grievance and contained true facts, he could consider it fair comment.
“But he went further and attacked the reputation and integrity of that company,” he said.
Fong, 49, was appealing against the Kuala Lumpur High Court's decision on Sept 17, 2003, which granted Perodua, Perodua Manufacturing Sdn Bhd and Perodua Sales Sdn Bhd the injunction to bar his website pending the trial.
Fong's counsel Gobind Singh Deo said the trial judge had misdirected himself in law when he failed to recognise that Perodua cannot apply for an injunction on matters that were pleaded outside of their statement of claim.
“If a judge considers matters outside of the statement of claim, he would certainly prejudice my client,” he said.
Perodua's counsel Liew Teck Huat said the appeal should be dismissed as the entire website constituted one article and related to the subject of Fong's complaint about the defective car.
He also said Fong had failed to adduce any evidence in affidavits to show that such serious allegations made by him were true.
“There was clear evidence of the threat to continue publication. The learned trial judge was clearly justified in holding that the purported defence has no probability of success,” he told the three-men bench.
On Nov 27, Perodua and its subsidiaries sued Fong for defamation through his website mykelisa2002 which alleged the company had practised corruption in procuring the ISO 9000 certification by bribing the UK Vehicle Certification Agency.
The company claimed that Fong's allegations in the website gave the implication that Perodua practiced deception and fraud for its own interest instead of the customer's needs.
It further claimed that Fong's allegations meant that the second national car producer was betraying the public's trust and was involved in a conspiracy to cheat the people.

DESIDERATA: If Desi can have one wish granted this morning, I would like to have some spinach and gain the strength of Pop-eye and then I'll swing all those Nincompoops sitting on their ars-k, -e, -es to'er mind, it's just Desi having one of his D-Dreams...

Tuesday, January 17, 2006

Olde Orde vs New Orde: Quo Vadis?

Like most Malaysians, I was taken by a "landmark" judgement handed down by a three-man Court of Appeal bench, last Thursday with Judge Sri Ram reading out a damning verdict of possible offences allegely committed by certain landmark personalities on the Malaysian scene.
I'm putting on record theSun's report yesterday which Desi deems an "encouraging" sign of changing times.

But the real test is what happens now? As the Latin phrase aptly puts it:


Malaysians have to be XX-tra Patient to see any meaningful action after monumental pronoucements. Sometimes Desi gets wary and tired.
What about you, mGf? Tell me-lah, is Desi the IMpatient one?

WEB EDITION from theSUN:: Local News
Mon, 16 Jan 2006

Judgment for toll firm gets high praise

PETALING JAYA: Revelations arising from the Court of Appeal's judgment in the case against toll concessionaire Metramac Corp Sdn Bhd have been lauded by various quarters.
The court had on Thursday ordered Metramac to pay RM65 million to Fawziah Holdings Sdn Bhd for loss of advertising rights as a result of the sale of the company following the suspension of toll.

In its 52-page judgment released on Friday, Justices Datuk Gopal Sri Ram, Datuk Hashim Yusoff and Datuk Zulkefli Ahmad Makinudin unanimously held that two prominent businessmen had siphoned RM32.5 million from a toll operator and that they could have been flirting with an aggravated form of criminal breach of trust.

Public Accounts Committee chairman Datuk Shahrir Abdul Samad said: "I think this is a very interesting case because judges passed such comments ... In a situation where some people benefited from the government's pay-off.

"This is something that would have been impossible two or three years ago, and it is something for the judiciary system to be proud of.

"It is good that we have paid attention to such cases as there are more cases which deserve similar attention," said Shahrir who is also the Backbenchers Club chairman.

He expressed the hope that the judiciary and courts will continue to be brave and objective in cases, especially commercial cases.

In a similar vein, Transparency International president Datuk Param Cumaraswamy said the findings must be investigated by the Attorney General and Anti-Corruption Agency (ACA).

"The court's findings are most welcomed as it is one of very few civil cases with findings of possible criminal improprieties and corrupt deals among high ranking ministerial figures and prominent businessmen.

"It also raises questions on the administration of the National Economic Policy under former prime minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad," he said.

"As the court's findings also impute possible ministerial corruption, we urge the ACA director to commence investigation and take appropriate action if the evidence warrants," Param said.

He added that such investigations could lead to revelation of grand corruption at high levels of government during the previous administration in the light of widespread speculations then.

Joining the fray, Opposition Leader and Ipoh Timur MP Lim Kit Siang said the case raised questions on the integrity of Tun Daim Zainuddin who was finance minister in 1991.

"The case should be the first case study of the Parliamentary Select Committee on Integrity, headed by Minister in the Prime Minister's Department Tan Sri Bernard Dompok."

He said the question is whether the police will immediately commence investigations into alleged aggravated form of CBT based on the judgment.

The NST today frontpaged the update with an attractive header:


Former poster boy of corporate Malaysia Tan Sri Halim Saad joined that small group when he issued a nine-page statement hitting out at the ruling handed down by Datuk Gopal Sri Ram.

The businessman has been seething since the appeals court delivered its judgment in the matter of Fawziah Holdings and Metramac Corporation on Thursday. With his reputation at stake and the manner in which the Government did business then under scrutiny, the normally reticent Halim let fly.

"I have been judged and condemned by a court of law without a hearing accorded to me," he said in the statement.

"The Court of Appeal went so far as to conclude that my former partner and I had misappropriated the RM32.5 million from Metramac, an offence of criminal breach of trust of an aggravated nature, assisted by Tun Daim Zainuddin, the former Minister of Finance.

"All this was said about us without any opportunity accorded to us to be heard before we were condemned. I am deprived of this basic natural justice and human right, which has been recognised since Biblical times. I have large business interests locally and overseas. The erroneous statement in the judgment has damaged me, probably in an irreparable way."

On Thursday, the Court of Appeal ordered Metramac to pay about RM65 million to Fawziah Holdings in compensation for loss of advertising rights. The case involved Datuk Fawziah Abdul Karim and her mother Maimon Bee, who were shareholders of Syarikat Teratai K.G. (STKG) Sdn Bhd, now known as Metramac.

In July 1986, Fawziah had obtained a tender to design, build and operate the privatisation of a number of roads. However, the toll collection was suspended in September 1990 after a demonstration at the Cheras toll plaza.

STKG was in a spot. It had spent large sums of money on the project and was in dire straits after the toll collection was suspended. Some RM764 million was supposed to be paid as compensation to STKG, but Sri Ram noted that in 1990, Daim had said the Government was in no position to pay the compensation.

STKG was then bought over by Metro Juara for RM97.5 million. Halim and Anuar Othman were the shareholders of Metro Juara.

After this, the Government found the money to compensate the company.

DESIDERATA: I won't place much hope that anything impactful -- like criminal charges being preferred against the named protagonists -- would come out of this opera entertaining Citizens Joe&Jane. Malaysians have seen too many "sandiwara" to be fooled, again and again, to harbour that some substantive and meaningful changes will take place in Malaysia's political and civic society.

What essentially takes place is the changing of the guards. New guards-corporate cronies of New Orde versus Old guards-corporate cronies of the Olde Orde.

Desi would be happy to be proven wrong for his sceptism.

Another Tuesday with minor worries for some.
Small change for a Sunday fling at the stock market or Genting, anyone?

Monday, January 16, 2006

No-brainer Consumer Affairs Ministry...

R. NADESWARAN of theSUN is one of my favourite commentators, usually lifting my Sundaes with my CON BF. Yesterday he doled up the anticipated Thumbs Down to one minister, using Don Trump's fav compliment to a loser -- IT'S A NO-BRAINER!

Desi will try to "summarise" the GIST of an important issue from

Page 12, The Sun Weekend Jan 14-15 headlined:

Arithmetic lesson a no-brainer

Highlighted was a picture of a Billboard proclaiming:
Subsidi minyak meringankan beban anda
Depicted in 3 columns are:
Harga Sebenar of Petrol Premium at RM2.2663 selitre - Diesel at RM2.188 selitre
Anda Bayar RM1.620 selitre - RM1.281 selitre (respectively)
Subsidi Kerajaan RM1.043 selitre - RM0.907 (respectively).

Nades reported that "There are now huge billboards in the Klang Valley, giving Malaysians, civil servants included, bassic lessons in arithmetic.
These efforts did not come from the Education Ministry (it is busy counting the number of biillboards in the Universiti Malaya campus), but one by the Domestic Trade and Consumer Affairs Ministry.

"Now, if you thought the ministry will lead by example by using money sensibly and as a smart consumer, this whole exercise in a non-brainer that not only deserves an entry into that book for the most expensive arithmetic lesson but it could also be misleading.
The subsidies, we the stupid consumers are told, reduce the burden on us."


Desiderata agrees with many of the arguments and questions thrown up by Nades, many have indeed been raised at Desi's Place when fuel price rises and PETRONAS' earnings -- last year's profits topped at RM35.5billion after-tax! -- and other subsidies and inflation issues came up in the national consciousness -- I pray my ER will get hold of a copy of the daily (beg the 7ELEVEN nearest thee for the precious copy-lah!)
Do right by "No Punches Pulled" Nades-the-Citizen writer by protesting to the stupid Minister in charge to put out tax-payers' money to better use.
* As Nades asked, "And if our money is taken and returned to us in the form of subsidies, what reduction of burden is there?"
** Taxpayers in the kampung or villagers -- or town centre hawkers and manual labourers riding bicycles or pulling mobile carts to earn a decent living working 7-to-5, then also 7pm till midnite -- how do they benefit from such subsidies to those better-off driving cars and worse, imported luxury oil guzzlers?

DESIDERATA had on many occasions also noted that the Government would allow the petroleum companies - who already reap huge and growing preofits every year - raise pump prices when international oil prices go up, but when the world prices come down, we don't see any corresponding fall in our pump prices. We are made to look like "stupid" consumers who can't understanding simple arith metic, isit?
Desi has also asked for the national oil resource's riches to be shared more equitably with the Rakyat -- like giving an annual bones -- like what the Singapore government rcently announced -- to the low-income groups -- one month's bonus to those earning less than RM1,000 perhaps, and half-month bonus to those earnuing less RM1,001-1,500, to be paid from Petronas' rising profits.And don't don't anyone tell ME, a Malaysian, NOT to compare with Singapore, compare with Indioensia and Thailand!

Some misguided Malaysians want others to benchmark against those lower-in-standard than us.
Me and mGf say: Go fly a kite!
In line with Pak Lah's worth ethics of striving for EXCELLENCE,
we'd like to benchmark against those countries ahead of us!

Over tha past 12 months, the everyuday basic food and household items have gone up in prices from 20 to 40 percent, a plate of noodles jumping from RM2.50 to RM3.50, eggs from 15sen to 25-30 sen each; vegetables like greens and cilis, Malaysian staples, doubling in prices; bus and taxi fares hikes, and essential goods that really hit the housewife's pocket.
Thank God for the common men like Desi, only the humble tehtarik and roti canai stayed within the reasonable rise of just 10-20sen, marking less than 20 percent rise.

So Desi joins Citizen Nades to the call to this Ministry to get its priorities right.
I covered the "Prize Scratch&Win" Scame some SE7EN years ago, and it's steal around! Moving from town to town -- I had not seen any "major" prosecutions with deterrent penalties like jail term; instead, you fiund the offenders RM1,000 to RM2,000 but his rip-offs give him tens of thousand a week!

And from theSun today, a Letter to the Editor from the Consumers Association of Penang highting the problem of enforcement of, yes, another wing of the same Ministry -- the Consumer Claims Tribunal; it's reported that up to some 20-30 percent of the cases of successful claims against corporations have NOT been paid to the claimants. And the Ministry has been shown to be a "toothless" tiger in enforcement. Desi suspects there is some hanky-panky going on, as usual.

From page 11, theSun, January 16, 2006, some more important extracts, headlined:

Ensure tribunal rulings are obeyed

"The Consumer Claims Tribunal was set up in 1999 with a noble objective to provide consumers a simple and quick method pf obtaining redress for the failure of business people to deliver their promises or for a breach of their respective contracts.
In a news report on Friday, it was stated that the tribunal rulings were ignored as companies were not settling awards.
Hence, the government's promise that the Tribunal would be a quick method of obtaining redress is not being fulfilled.

"When tribuanl awards do not evoke any fear or suffering quick punishment for defying them, the awards become useless.
"With an inefficient system of acting against those who defy the awards, the system only breeds more recalcitrant defaulters. To date, there have been no reported cases of award-defaulters being taken to copurt and sentenced for their defiance of the decisions.
"The party against whom an award is made should be required to furnish proof of compliance with the award to the respective Tribunal within two weeks of the deadline of the compliance."

DESIDERATA: Two salutes to Citizen Nades and CAP, presiodent SM MOHAMED IDRIS, for their relentless fight for consumers' rights and protection against Big Business Bullies.

Pethaps, it is a faint hope next time the Ministery of Domestic Trade and Consumer Affairs puts up some billboards, theyu would publicise the FIRST SCRATCH&WIN SCAMMER OR THE FIRST CORPORATE CEO DEFYING THE CONSUMER CLAIMS TRUBUNAL ORDER TO PAY BEING PUT BEHIND BARS. I'm sure Nades and others like him would NOT begrudge such spending!
Am I overly HOPEfool on a Black Monday?