May 8 — Umno — for a party that abuses the word “struggle” assiduously, as the principle, key and drive for the party, Umno doesn’t allow other people’s struggles that much space.
That is why they really, really don’t get it.
And that is why the party is heading to a tipping point, and the possibility of losing federal government growing real by the day.
The reason why all of Najib’s man, for that matter Abdullah Badawi’s man can’t fathom the developments of the country, is because they are both elitist and more terminally, have a linear think of history.
The British governments systematic arrests of trade union workers, nationalists and general agitators through their rule, always worked out for them.
The waves of arrests through Abdul Rahman’s rule, Razak’s rule, Hussein’s rule and Mahathir’s megalomaniac rule, produced a wave of lowly distributed books only. Your average ISA detainee gets to write his memoir, teach in a non-descript department afterwards, sell insurance — but you, and your type don’t win, you never win.
The outcome is always, certain.
And yesterday, the ended up having the Perak State Assembly and they did keep their royal seal of approval.
And for decades that has always been enough.
The clock on the demise of Umno as it stands today, has long been set, people are just realising that the clock is dead front and centre now.
The national divide between DAP and PAS may outlive most of the present leadership of the party, but in Perak, a bond has shaped.
They have suffered together for months. The civil service which reluctantly served them for a year, enthusiastically overrode any measure that was Pakatan in record time. They could not jump high enough, or bow low enough for the return of the Umno masters.
They did the impossible, they kept a line. The history of Umno’s successes is the history of throwing doubt amongst those outside the Umno cauldron.
“If you are not an Umno man, that is fine, just as long as we can find you someone you detest more than us.
“We don’t mind it at all, as long as those opposed to us, cannot principally agree with each other.”
And that is the coup de grace of the Umno stratagem for the Peninsula.
In the Perak State Assembly, colour did not separate the combatants, their coalition loyalty did.
Umno inadvertently brought those from the fringe together, and more so gave them symbols, moments and common despairs to fuel their new-found friendship.
Najib asks cousin Hisham to get some pressure off his near-exploding balloon of an administration.
Fathers, sons and husbands head home, and they as any person savour freedom, but there is no indication that the people are placated or that the free regret their rejection of Umno.
The tipping point has passed as far as Malaysia is concerned.
Najib will not have the peace of mind his father had in a different Malaysia, and Hisham’s problems are only beginning.
They’ll probably hold their positions till 2013, but they will have to give their pound of flesh to Shylock.
In a quiet end of Cheras
The battle is about inclusiveness and diversity.
I am not an expert of what that means in totality.
But it is sure not about cruise control from Putrajaya.
Umno leaders are intimating to it, in their turun padangs and Najib’s retelling of how it is wonderful being in the layman’s home.
Sincerity is a quality that transcends PR consultants. It is a spirit of intent.
It is always built on personal pain.
You won’t convince people you have pain, when you send people to jail for press conferences opposing your rule.
They don’t weigh-in your side, when you lay barb-wire in a city and hunt people down alleys.
No good will come from dragging one man from his podium with raw force and disregard to his word, or his family who watch their father and husband being dragged out of government like a common criminal.
The Vietnam war had less deaths of US soldiers, but the vividness of the war through media photos and footage, changed America’s view of American military incursions.
Malaysia for decades controlled the eyes, and by default the hearts of Malaysians. The man on the street may have no great love for Umno, but he had no reason for great distaste.
That is changing and is snowballing.
Umno are chasing shadows, when they arrests people. Don’t they know ideas are bulletproof?