Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Publish and be damned: I'd do the same but up to a point ...

Otais: Zam, AKJ, SyedN
Updated: Not all willing to openly agree with Kay Tat's Way, The Mole quizzes seasoned journos if they'd do the same if they were in Kay Tat's shoes ...
No political agenda? In my posting below, I deliberately left out the politics from Kay Tat's "we couldn't walk away" statement. Do read YB Rahman Dahlan's "Excuse me, I wasn't born yesterday" for that. 

Original posting:

Ho Kay Tat: I did not pay for the documents

As a journalist, I salute Ho Kay Tat for upholding our right to publish what he deems to be true and in the interest of the public. I have known editors who'd rather be damned for NOT publishing instead of pushing the limits of press freedom: they'd cower at the slightest prospect of a lawsuit, or the displeasure of their CEO, or the wrath of politicians.

Kay Tat, based on the statement he issued yesterday, is a publish-and-be-damend kind of editor. My kind of guy.

"The easiest thing we could have done after coming across what we found, was to walk away. Why look for trouble? But we could not do that. We chose to take the difficult path, one that we knew will be fraught with risks to ourselves personally and to our organisation, which now faces the possibility of action by the Home Ministry." - Ho Kay Tat in We could not walk away on finding out about the scheme to cheat Malaysia of billions of ringgit The Malaysian Insider 20/7/2015

If you ask me,  I'd probably do what Kay Tat did: publish those stories about dubious and shady deals once I've established for certain that those "thousands and thousands of" documents were authentic and, more importantly, that the source(s) were genuine and had no ulterior motives.

But I would have done it only up to the point of Xavier Justo's arrest in Thailand late last month and the Thai police revelation that documents had been stolen/tampered with/used for blackmail and other criminal intent.

At that point, the right thing to do would have been for the Edge to stop using those documents immediately (for fear that they may be the same documents the Thai police said may have been tampered with) and give the authorities and the accused the benefit of the doubt. The act of doing the "last kopek" article on Monday is, therefore, on the side of reckless and can be construed as self-glorification.

Did you know that ...
"Publish and be damned" were words first uttered in response to a blackmail attempt over an extra-marital affair.


  1. Can we focus on Najib answering questions instead? Radio silence from Najib is really insulting.

    All these sideshows are really annoying.

  2. Saya akan dedahkan The Edge FD memang nak tutup tapi cari alasan nak persalahkan kerajaan. Lihat blog saya pukul 3:30 petang

    1. Anonymous1:24 pm

      Kami da lama boycott the edge..

  3. Anonymous10:39 am

    It isn't easy to be a journalist and do what conscience dictates. I do take my hats off to Mr. Ho.

    I'm not a supporter of opposition or anyone out to 'unseat Najib' via 'undemocratic means'. Nope, I'm not any of that.

    If it is PR in power, if the PM is from PR, and if PR is the ruling party involved in this 1MDB mess, I'd demand the same standard of courage in reporting from Mr. Ho.


    1. You are dreaming. They would have put a gag order on Mr Ho and The Edge from the start.

    2. Anonymous9:22 am

      wahhhhh latuk, nampak sangat awak ni macai najib la!!!

  4. That you may not have done is common knowledge. Nothing new.
    Others hold a contrary opinion to yours.......

    Someday, the country will give its highest honors to Ho Kay Tat for doing what he has been doing. Sarawak Report will also be given due recognition.
    And in Malaysia the expert on transparency is of course that hypocritical "Transparency" fellow who is now on the side of Najib Razak.
    And until today, Husni Hanadzlah has not explained what is a 'unit'? According to Husni, 1MDB 'invested' the RM27 billion in 'units'. Apa itu unit? Still no answer.

    The following is a declaration of war by Ho Kay Tat and The Edge Media Group :

    "nothing more than a scheme to scam billions of ringgit from Malaysia by a small group of Malaysians and their foreign partners"

    This means you can go back over the past two years of The Edge's reporting about 1MDB and take it that their reporting was to expose "nothing more than a scheme to scam billions of ringgit from Malaysia by a small group of Malaysians and their foreign partners."

    What does this mean? This is a simple case of thievery. Pencuri. Penyamun. A theft has occurred.

    1. Anonymous9:03 pm

      Bro , you are taiching again .
      But then that is your trademark .

      Isn't it clear that Justo have revealed the info of criminal plot being hatched out to sabotage our PM.

      Isn't it clear that S'pore SB have shared evidence ( with photo furthermore ) with Thai police on the plot mentioned by Justo .

      Isn't it clear that Lester story and admission colaborate with that of Justo and it involve former leader as well as apposition members and gullible bizmen .

      Ahhh yes , you are one of those who are now wriggling due to the heat .

      The Holy month of Ramadhan is actually not for those with smelly heart . ...The Almighty say that..


  5. Anonymous10:51 am

    "But I would have done it only to the point of Xavier Justo's arrest in Thailand late last month and the Thai police revelation that documents had been stolen/tampered with/used for blackmail and other criminal intent."

    No, the story keeps changing.

    If they need to frame someone else as tamperer, then Justo cannot be the one. Yet they said he had, at first.

    Read all the articles.

    The Thai story has changed THREE TIMES.

    The NST are getting sloppy.

    That's why nobody reads it any more.

  6. Anonymous11:10 am

    aku tahu...dlm hati kamu , kamu tahu kamu menipu...atau kamu memang suka menipu...jadilah kamu pengangkat orang yg menipu...hidup tertipu...

  7. let him publish what he deem as the truth.he'll be damned if he's wrong and vice versa...

  8. Anonymous1:41 pm

    Very strange of Ho to submit all the documents now after keeping them for months. Shouldn't a responsible media organization and citizen provide the proof to the authorities instead of writing stories after stories to attack MDB using stolen materials ?

    He says some of the materials were too sensitive to be published and yet published not evidence to backup the accusations he made so far. Any responsible news organization would have revealed all after receiving the materials to the police.

    All of sudden he realizes his responsibility and willing to see the police now. And he suddenly admits seeing Xavier Justo and expects us to believe he did not pay Xavier for the materials.

    If we read his previous reports, none gave any indications of any evidence other than sourced from the Sarawak Report or public records. Why did he hide the facts that he has the emails all along?

    1. Agreed. At that point when both tjhe source and the info had become doubtful, or questionable, the Edge should have come clean and report to the authorities - the PAC, the Task Force or Police - about the documents that are in its possession.

      It's the right (not write :-)) thing to do.

  9. Anonymous2:10 pm

    "YB Rahman Dahlan's "Excuse me, I wasn't born yesterday"?

    Hello, Dahlan??? Dei, that pariah NGO coolie inserts an innocent man's picture as "master forger", you tak clarify pun???


    Using the poor stroke-ridden bankrupt Lester as a mouthpiece is the depths Umno have sunk to.

    I think YB Rahman Dahlan's budding career - oh sorry, he didn't have one.

    My mistake.

  10. Anonymous2:29 pm

    Every week rocky write lame article void is main issue. When is the task force will issue warrant tangkap on Dato seri Najib?. 30 million Malaysia are waiting too long. Why so lame the task force? I am bloody amaze how these leaders of task force got so far in the government office

  11. IT.Scheiss3:49 pm

    It's not so much Ho Kay Tat but The Edge which is owned by Tong who is Anwar Ibrahim's good friend, which raises concerns as to how "independent" The Edge's intentions and perspectives are.

    Also The Sarawak Report is not all that "independent" either, since somebody must be funding it or else how can it survive, have the money to pay for air tickets for long haul flights and so forth.

    At the end of the day, this whole thing is a battle between political taikors (godfathers) and the issues with Sarawak Report, The Edge, the WSJ, etc are just "trees" in the proverbial "forest", so we should take care not to lose sight of the bigger picture by being distracted by particular issues.

    Sit back and watch the "fun" like cheering spectators watching gladiators fight each other to the death in an ancient Roman arena, or like 24 hour coffee shop customers watching pro wrestlers (modern day gladiators) take turns to bash each to a pulp without leaving even a bruise.

    1. yes, taikors playing chess. It's all a game to them. Lucky are those who get to sit back and watch. Some of us are the pawns, we get killed first. Sob.

  12. Anonymous7:11 pm


    Koyak lah the whole story...

  13. trifling-jester4:15 am

    who cares what you would do rocky. you have had the opportunity to do the write thing 100 times over but chose to please your paymasters but chose not to.

    1. I'm still doing the "write" thing, mo. :-)

    2. Anonymous9:26 am

      poorahhhhh bru....... your credibility is down the drain now. stop saying you doint the "write" thing. what you doing now is pleasing your paymaster and pretending to be a 'self righteous' person.

  14. Anonymous5:06 am

    so the info on 1MDB from swak report is allegedly tampered; WSJ report 'is a conspiracy to topple najib' and the edge 'has an agenda'....

    najib can just sue them, but....(cue for awkward silence, broken by sounds of crickets)

  15. Anonymous9:46 am

    For what it's worth: this whole 1MDB story, news reports and so-called millions said to be banked into najib's account did somehow affect my perception of najib; BUT i'm going to let the authorities & the law handle it. Now - the earth rotates on its axis and it's back to the daily grind :)


  16. Anonymous3:24 pm

    "...the Thai police revelation that documents had been stolen/tampered with/used for blackmail and other criminal intent."

    What is the exact statement by Thai police?
    Are you putting words in their mouth?

  17. Anonymous7:47 pm

    Woi! Answer la... Just answer the stupid question.. Where's the money?

  18. Hi Rocky Bru,

    I repeat again, as from my earlier post. I am not even a Malaysian. You are still a piece of shit, full stop.

  19. publish those stories about dubious and shady deals once established for certain that those "thousands of documents were authentic and, more importantly, that the source(s) were genuine and had no ulterior motives. "

    Not sure about the "ulterior motives" but it would be interesting to determine how or by what criteria was used to determine that the info was authentic ,reliable and hence factual.
    To be so positively sure of financial misconduct of those named in the allegedly involved,is not a trivia matter esp when considering the very NAMES that are incriminated.What was the process of fact checking and verifying to cover all bases and to ensure no grounds for slander.? And the element of certainty so high,they were confident enough to publish.?