"It is well and fine to blame BN and the media controlled by the ruling coalition for “manipulating” public perception against PR parties. But the fact is PR parties have not done much to shake off the perception that they cannot rise beyond an “opposition” mindset. And so long as they see themselves as the “opposition”, the “opposition” they shall remain."Ah, Leslie Lau! Someone pointed out to me that Leslie Lau, the consultant editor of The Malaysian Insider, is uncharacteristically critical of Anwar Ibrahim and the Pakatan Rakyat today.
So I read the piece.
Here's what I think. I think it's good, free advice for PR. Harsh in places but sound advice all the same. Pakatan has been a bit too much about politicking (and I say Anwar's stupid 16/11 attempt to take over the Federal Government via mass defections from BN started it) and very little focus on the economy. Instead of concrete proposals, Leslie writes, PR is offering "a vague, watered down commitment to provide better social justice, uplift the judiciary and be less corrupt". Leslie's point is quite simple, as I see it: the issues that helped PR won their seats in March 2008 are no longer enough. They have to do a lot more but they aren't.
To make matters worse, Najib seems to know that it's all about the economy, Leslie says:Najib’s strategy is clear and simple — put enough money in people’s pockets and not only will all those problems like race relations go away, the public will back BN again in big numbers. Well, achieving high economic growth will be the tricky part. But at least Najib knows that it is all about the economy.Read Leslie Lau's piece On Pakatan's Big Day, Najib Looks the Winner here.
Perhaps Anwar and PR knows it is about the economy too. Perhaps Anwar and PR are hoping the economy will slide so badly again that the public will vote out BN. Isn’t that the “we are not as bad as BN” strategy? Is that all PR stands for? Is PR merely defined by the fact it is the “anti-BN?”
The public will have to be forgiven if that is the impression they get.