Thursday, May 25, 2017

Proton Geely's first model, already?

TTDI, 26 May 2017: The government has been talking about getting the bleeding Proton a foreign partner for years. That it has finally happened (It's official: Geely acquires 49 per cent stake in Proton - NST) is both a great relief and an exciting prospect. 
At one time, Geely (like several others before it, including VW - see Related Article below) had turned away from the proposed partnership with the Malaysian carmaker (because Proton could not make up its mind, reportedly) but that the China giant actually came back to the negotiating table proved that Proton, under the current owners, still has appeal. 
Dr Mahathir Mohamad laments the sale of his "brainchild" to foreigners but that child had bled us dry many times over. The only other option is to close it down. But that would be costly, and some people may accuse Najib Razak of trying to murder the child of Dr M's brain. Like a keen observer tells me: "Sell to China wrong. Retrench staff wrong. Give subsidy wrong. Close shop wrong. Semua pun salah. How lah?" 
There is no guarantee that Proton flourish under the new partnership. Proton is no Volvo. But as a Malaysian whose first "real" car was a Proton, I'd take the chances. 
p.s. I'm just wondering now if the pictures sent to me here are of a new model under that new partnership. If it is, I think I'd hold buying that Japanese pick-up ....

Related article:
Geely, Proton and the shaming of Mahathir - The Independent, Feb 2017

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Mahathir's inevitable parting of ways with everybody else

Yesterday's news

Bangsar, 23 May 2017: What do you see in this picture? Me, I can't explain the sadness that I feel every time I look at this picture that appeared on the front page of the New Straits Times yesterday. And - I can't help it - I've gone back to it scores of times. 
Is Dr Mahathir Mohamad trying to take a photograph with his mobile phone in order to take away the awkwardness or the moment? Or is he hiding his face? If he is doing the selfie, the former PM and longest-serving Umno president would have seen how increasingly desperate his position looked. Lim Kit Siang on his right and Azmin Ali on his left are both holding placards supporting the jailed Anwar Ibrahim as the country's next Prime Minister.  Many were given the impression that the two were Mahathir's pals since the day he quit Umno to form his own party in the hope of helping them - the Opposition - bring down PM Najib Razak. If anything, they are closer to fixing Mahathir. Look closer now, and you'll see the two men slowly turning their backs on the Old Man! 
And that's what they will continue to do from now until the general election. Dr M knows that, surely. This is Anwar's game, it's not one that Mahathir can hope to win. Anwar may well not be the next PM  as lawyer Art Haron has brilliantly argued (Anwar for PM? PKR should think again). But it won't be Muhyiddin Yassin and the son Mukhriz will not rise, either. 
Nobody wants to say it yet, but the end is near for Mahathir dream of hijacking the Opposition's 14th GE agenda and making it his own. That's what I see in this picture. That's what it tells me.

Friday, May 19, 2017

Loaf Story

The curtain falls on a popular meeting place in Village 

Bangsar 190517: It was just the other day that I was at the Loaf in Bangsar to meet an ex Business Times journalist who was meeting two seasoned editors, one from Bernama and the other from NST. We were joined by an ex RTM host who was in between meetings at the Bangsar Village. Did I imagine that to be the last time I'd be a customer of Dr Mahathir Mohamad's hot bakery?  
I am probably one of the saddest to see the Loaf gulung tikar (how sad is that?). With Tun Dr M at the helm, I thought the simple Loaf story deserved a much happier ending ...

Mahahtir's bakery The Loaf in Bangsar closes shop - The Malaysian Digest 18 May

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Rimba Kiara: Ku Nan needs to watch this clip

Individual failure drag down party in battle of perception - The Mole, 190517
DBKL removes online park survey, says nothing to do with TTDI issue - The Star, 170517
 “Now that the poll has been taken down, it makes me question the reason it was put up in the first place,” says TTDI Residents Association chairman Abdul Hafiz Bakar

Original article
TTDI: Every now and then, some developers will try to muscle their way into whatever remaining jungles we have in the city, even those that were meant to be preserved. The greens of Kiara just at the edge of affluent Taman Tun Dr Ismail are a favourite target. Time and again, the residents there would be called to do battle with the developers. Sometimes they succeed in defending Mother Nature, sometimes they lose some of the trees but always, fortunately, they could count on some powerful allies within the government. 
"We are not encroaching," he says
In the latest skirmish between the residents and the powerful developers, however, Tengku Adnan Mansor, the Federal Territories Minister, is being seen as "the enemy", rightly or wrongly (as in here: Rimba condo to go as planned - May 8) 
The Mole, which is based in TTDI,  has been following the issue closely. In this video clip Rimba Kiara: Longhouse settlers' dilemma, we give voice to residents who are concerned with what's happening to their environment.