Wednesday, August 31, 2022

What’s the meaning of keMerdekaan if …

Damansara, 31 Aug:  I was listening to Prime Minister Ismail Sabri’s Merdeka message on radio as I was driving yesterday. A typical “Keluarga Malaysia” message of good news and great optimism for the future of Malaysia. The PM listed down what his Administration has managed to do for the people so far, including the highest GDP growth in the region and the lowest unemployment, assuring the listener that the nation is on the right track. But typical of official speeches, there was no cutting to the chase: the listener had to endure salutatation after grovelling salutation. To address the King alone must have taken the PM like five minutes, or it seemed that long to me. I adore our King and the Raja-Raja (even when they are not at their best behavior) just as the next Malaysian does but I don’t think the people who live in our palaces would mind if we were to shorten the salutations just a little bit. It doesn’t take away any of their daulat if we decide, for example, to do away with the Duli Yang Maha Mulia honorific each time we merafak sembah the Agong or the Raja-Raja. 

The same goes with archaic protocols like Yang Amat Mulia, Yang Amat Berhormat, Yang Amat Arif, Yang Mulia, Yang Berhormat, Yang Ariff, Yang Berusaha, Yang Berbahagia, etcetera. 

Back to Merdeka …

The number of homes in my gated, multiracial neighbourhood that fly the flag in conjunction with Merdeka Day has been dwindling in recent years. For the 65th Merdeka, despite what the Ismail Sabri administration has done for us Yang Merana , less than a handful of homes proudly display the Jalur Gemilang from their balconies. Unbelievable. 

The rest must be flying the Jalur Gemulang in their hearts. 

Selamat Menyambut Hari Kemerdekaan!!!

Friday, August 12, 2022


Friday: You expect to pay more for valet services at shopping malls and hotels, of course, because it’s convenient, it’s cool (maybe), and you’re lazy. But the sudden increase  in valet rates at some of my favourite establishments around the Klang Valley is rather shocking. Nowhere is it more blatant than the valet at Tropical Gardens Mall in Damansara, as far as I’m concerned. Before the pandemic, it was RM10 for a couple of hours to park your car with the valet. Effective last month, this doubled to RM20! Salaries remain the same, though. You pay RM14 an hour to leave your car at the valet in Bangsar Village effective Aug 1, which is RM2 more than before. It’s a sure sign that not only are things back to normal, some people are back to no good. And some people are as lazy as ever. 

Anwar at UNGA

This article has been edited for Heading: Anwar Ibrahim’s much-awaited UN General Assembly debut Sub: Between his address to over...