Screw the Pakatan


(Breakdown of missing Pakatan politicians during the crucial voting of national budget recently – chart source: Go Malaysia)

The question is what happened to the missing 20 especially those on the MIA list includes, sadly, senior politicians and one Chief Minister?

After several years getting the key votes from the people, are these people from the Pakatan been starting to slack without them knowing about it? Why the missing absentees from the Parliament sessions?

RPK rightly stated:-

As much as we may want change and would like to see Barisan Nasional ousted, Pakatan Rakyat has to earn our votes, not expect to get it without any effort.

I want to start by demanding an apology from those 20 Pakatan Rakyat Parliamentarians who are earning their salary without working for it. Then, and only then, will we consider whether they are worthy of our votes.

And what about the news that “there are about 500,000 qualified voters in Perak who have yet to register themselves with the Election Commission”?

If you ask me, it is nothing but pathetic – with Pakatan have lost the state after 3 “frogs” jumped, they need all the votes in case State level election is held the next day (see RPK’s post below). Pakatan should start their “campaign” to get these voters registered and perhaps they may get some extra votes to wrestle back the State.

Pakatan cannot continue to be sleeping – they may not get a second chance again. With Najib heavily promoting his 1Malaysia concept and BN making some improvements when dealing with the people, time is running out for the Pakatan to wake up and start improving.

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Come on Pakatan Rakyat – please wake up

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Code of Ethics for Politicians


(Honest politicians are rare species – Cartoon source: http://z.about.com)

The Prime Minister said:-

Bloggers have been urged to adopt a new code of ethics issued by US-based Society of Professional Journalists and published on an internet news portal.

Writing in his blog http://www.1malaysia.com.my, Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak said it was important for the truth to be told through responsible reporting and the new media played a significant role in this.

(From theStar)

Since the politicians asked the bloggers to adhere by a code of ethics, I guess it is only FAIR that we, bloggers ask the politicians to adhere by a code of ethics as well.

There are many lists of codes in the internet, compounded by different people and non-profit institutes but this is one that makes sense for many politicians (from Barisan Nasional, Pakatan Rakyat, lonely independents and future and aspirant politicians) in Malaysia

From Canada based Mad River Institute for Political Science:-

1. No elected official will intentionally violate any laws, or any provisions of the constitution, nor will they promote others to do so. Upon conviction of any provincial or federal offence, the elected official shall resign from office, even before pending appeals.

2. No elected official will intentionally do harm to, or breech the confidentiality and anonymity, of any citizen or resident. Given the power of a politician to undermine reputations in parliament, legislature, or council, or interfere in an individual’s relationship with the government, elected officials must treat everyone with civility, honesty, equality, and respect at all times.

3. No elected official will intentionally delay or disrupt the proceedings of parliament, legislature, or council, outside the rules.

4. No elected official will intentionally mislead or offend the people. All statements made by an elected official must, at all times, be truthful. No elected official will falsely represent issues to the people. This includes making promises that the elected official knows cannot be kept, or making promises that seem unlikely to be kept.

5. No elected official will misrepresent their own abilities, education, training, standards of performance, certifications, or experiences to others. No elected official will claim to have political beliefs or affiliations they do not, nor will they disavow political beliefs or affiliations they hold.

6. No elected official will participate when in a conflict of interest. If a politician is found to be in an unintentional conflict, he or she must immediately act to end it or be considered to be knowingly in a conflict. A conflict must be ended immediately, even if it threatens the position or reputation of the elected official.

7. No elected official will, at any time, give anything less than their best effort to the people, and commit to see that government is run in the most efficient and effective way.

8. No candidate for elected office will campaign in a negative style that attacks opponents in a personal way, or propagates fear of an opponent. Campaigning should be limited to comparisons of partisan policy differences only.

9. Elected officials will commit to legally protect any person who publicly reports illegal and/or unethical actions by other officials, regardless of any ‘whistleblower’ legislation that may, or may not, be in effect.

If Najib can incorporate this easy code of ethics into his 1Malaysia concept and get his “people” to follow it religiously for the benefit of the country and people, it will give the Pakatan Rakyat a good run for their money.

But talk, as all of us know, is cheap and double standards are useless – if one party is asking another to abide by certain rules, it only makes sense if the same party is also adhering by same kind of ideal rules. Otherwise, please do not say things that are sounds nice in theory but hardly makes any dent in reality.

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CNN’s Anderson Coopers 360’ – A Code of Ethics for Politicians

RPK’s want to talk ethics, let’s talk ethics

Blogging and Responsibility

Bazaar Time


I first learned about bazaars when I watched the Travel series on the Discovery Channel and I first experienced a real bazaar when I was in Bangkok couple of years ago. Basically it was a modernised flea market and much updated for foreign tourists. Not exactly a traditional kind of bazaar that one was looking for.

(Tightly packed shops on the left and right but the items on sales not necessarily old and ancient)

But we heard that there is a traditional bazaar in the Iran and it is just a metro-travel away, we decided to check it out on one of the weekends. The nearest metro station was almost a kilometre walk away from our house. So one fine cold morning, we got dressed in thick clothes, packed water and camera and started to walk to towards the nearest metro station.

The thing about the general rule about photographing in Iran is that you can take photo if it is expressly allowed so. I have lost count of the times when we were asked not to take photographs (very politely and with a smile) by the authorities. So photography becomes the exception rather than the general rule (a far cry compared to Malaysia where we loved to be photographed).

So, since we do not want to run into any problems, we usually opt out from photographing anything and everything that we see (missing a lot of unique photo opportunities) and we only do it if it is safe to do so or we have gotten the necessary permission. So, photographing the inside of the metro station was out of the question but we were highly impressed with the metro system in Iran here.

(Metro ticket – fast and efficient)

At first, the layout of the station is simple and easy even for foreigners like us. We went to the ticket counter, mentioned the station that we wanted to go (to get the station name, we just googled the metro’s website and the names are laid out clearly in English), mention whether we wanted a one way or two way ticket, paid the cash, get the ticket, swipe it over the electronic gate and walk on to the platform.

Iranian metro trains are super efficient – there are plenty of cabins and trains arrives and departs on time. Most of the time, the cabins are full but when we went on that particular date, we found enough space to stand at one corner (or perhaps we were foreigners and the locals were kind enough to squeeze some space for us). After almost 6 stations, we arrived at the station that we wanted to go.

As we walk out from the metro station which is located underground, we can feel the strong cold breeze flushing in from the outside. We walked out and make a couple of turns, we arrived at the bazaar.

(The entrance to the bazaar – nothing strange from the outside. Note the crowd at the entrance)

There is one main entrance at the bazaar and there a big different it makes when one moves from the outside to the inside. On the outside, it is covered by a rather modern building but in the inside, one is transformed to an old looking bazaar. The walkway moves from the outside and moves along a huge tunnel. On the left and the right of the walkway, there is nothing but shops. The bazaar as whole is huge and somehow divided into different area of produce – carpets on one side, lamps on another side, electrical goods and souvenirs and so on.

But the problem here in the bazaar which becomes self evident is that it is not so friendly to foreign tourists – no sign boards in English, photographers is looked rather suspiciously and there was no indication whatsoever as to where the bathrooms is!. My friend actually had to go one of the carpet shops to use the bathrooms (we had to walk along some deserted lanes to reach this shop – we were expecting to be jumped by a gang of bandits, waiting for the unexpected foreigners at the corner of the alley but luckily it ended as nothing but our wildest imagination) .

(The tunnel and the crowd and somewhere in between “speedy” Gonzales! Noticed the many strange look as I was taking this shot)

Compared to “bazaar” in Bangkok, there are more people here in the Bazaar here and everyone seems to be on the move to somewhere. If we stop to snap some photos or to look at the produce sold in the shops, we find ourselves being pushed around by this large human traffic. If that is not enough, we also have to confront the goods handlers who busy with sending the goods from the outside and to the shops. We almost got run over by these goods handlers on a number of times and thankfully we were quick enough to move out from the way in time. With an uneven walkway (seems to be made from big rough tiles), the act of avoiding “speedy” Gonzales on goods carts makes it even more tricky.

(We loved the interior decorations on the wall and ceiling. The clock reminded of the clock that we used to see in the old train stations)

One of the things that we noticed immediately when we are in the inside of the bazaar is the architecture – something on the wall and ceiling spelt ancient architecture and history. And we managed to find some quiet spot where there was less people to allow us to snap some photos on a more leisurely pace.

We must have walked about in the bazaar for almost an hour (we managed to buy some things in the process) before realising that we were both hungry and tired. We walked out, only to be greeted by small children begging and people trying to sell small items – we decided to have our lunch at one of the nearest “sandwich” (what else?) shop. The good thing was the “chief” waiter spoke some English which made it easier to confirm and order our lunch (the menu was all in local language).

By the time we came back home tired, it was almost time for dinner time.