Side Views

The true colours of Dr M — Uncle Nick

JAN 20 — Finally, the true colours of our esteemed Dr M are revealed.

At a recent forum, Dr M was reported to have touted his idea of what a strong government is and is not. He was quoted to have said that a strong government must be brave to use force and that being liberal is a weakness. He attributed the loss of the two thirds majority by the BN government to the lack of confidence the citizens had towards the then BN leadership.

He also lamented the fact that the power of the BN government is being destroyed because of weak leadership. The fact is that the source of power of a government lies with the citizens, not with a political party. No political party has hereditary rights to govern - 55 years in government notwithstanding. When it comes to the power to govern, the citizens giveth and the citizens taketh. The citizens rightly have the expectation that the power so giveth must be exercised for the citizens' betterment. Most of all, the power must be exercise wisely, or the citizens have every right to taketh it away.

Of course, government leaders have to be daring. But daring to do what is the big question. Surely it is not daring to do things that are unjust, not accountable, fraudulent or downright criminal. When they do that, they no longer deserve the confidence of the citizens and with it, the right to govern.

Dr M seemed to suggest that the current government leadership is afraid of its people. Frankly, I'd rather have a government that is ‘afraid' of its people than one that rides roughshod over its people. As long as a government has the strength of its conviction to do the right things by its people and be accountable for its action, fear does not come into the equation.

Dr M seemed to also suggest that the current weak leadership has resulted in people challenging government policies like the AES. Weak leadership or not, the people did not challenge the AES per se. They challenged the way the enforcement of the AES is privatized, yet again behind closed doors.

Dr M asked why we are so ashamed of the ISA. We are not ashamed of the ISA. We are ashamed of the way ISA has been used as a tool by the BN government to stifle criticism and to stop the people challenging the unjust actions of the government. A democratic government should be unafraid of criticism. It should encourage feedback from the people, for only with feedback, and taking action in response to the feedback, can a nation can take steps to improve itself.

Dr M's punch line was that if BN wins GE13 with fewer seats than it did in 2008, it is a hollow victory. To me, a hollow victory is when one wins with unscrupulous means such as cheating or coercion. It is not measured by how many seats one wins.

To call a reduced majority in the Parliament a hollow victory is the height of arrogance. It shows how much Dr M has taken for granted the BN government's right to govern Malaysia.

I have news for Dr M: Be thankful for any majority, for the right to govern is sacrosanct and cannot be treated as a political plaything for BN.

* Uncle Nick reads The Malaysian Insider.

* This is the personal opinion of the writer or publication and does not necessarily represent the views of The Malaysian Insider.

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