Former Prime Minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad excelled even himself this week with a speech in which he claimed that “exercising democratic rights could place society in a never-ending vicious cycle of instability and insecurity.”
This from the man who systematically robbed Malaysians of their democratic rights and thus created the vicious cycle of corruption, cronyism, injustice and impunity for himself and his partners and successors in crime that so bedevils the nation to this day.
And now, even in his dotage, he’s so lacking in regret or remorse for his vile misrule of the nation, as to go on to claim in the same “vicious cycle” speech that Malaysia could not possibly go to war against its neighbouring nations as “Malaysians are cowards who don’t want to be injured or die but would rather enjoy life.”
But he’s also vividly aware that many of the people he cowed with his draconian anti-democratic laws, compliant judiciary, politicised police and manacled media would vastly prefer to enjoy life without him and his whole fraudulent Umno/BN regime.
The mammoth Bersih rallies of courageous citizens calling for clean and fair elections first struck terror if not the fear of God into Umno/BN, and now the magnificent Himpunan Hijau walk against the Lynas plant has come as another bitter blow to their self-belief.
But Mahathir remains in denial, claiming that the regime “has done much to prove that it is committed to reform,” and sneering in his trademark sarcastic fashion that if people are calling for even great reforms he will “convey it to the prime minister and he will immediately do it.”
Meanwhile the vicious cycle of regime crime and no punishment swirls on unabated, with no sign whatever of anybody’s being brought to book for the massive robberies and repressions of the Mahathir era, or for any that I can think of since.
Countless questions surrounding the murder of Altantuya Shaaribuu, the suspicious deaths of Teoh Beng Hock and dozens of others in regime custody, and a series of massive frauds and embezzlements ranging from the RM12-billion Port Klang Free Zone (PKFZ) fiasco to the RM250-million National Feedlot Corporation NFC) scandal still go mysteriously unresolved.
And still the vicious cycle continues, with the awarding of the Automated Enforcement System (AES) to crony privateers, and in the process the unexplained payment of ten times the proper price for the system’s cameras.
Indeed, far from feeling any pressure to explain such wholesale thefts of public money, the perpetrators seem to be getting more and more arrogant in their alibis for such atrocities. Witness the laughably lying recent “explanation” by Umno information chief Shukor Idrus that public land in Selangor sold dirt-cheap to a private company during Umno/BN’s rule of the state was for the purpose of providing public amenities.
And this vicious cycle of fraud extends way beyond the strictly financial and criminal, to fake events designed to invest the regime with false perceptions of public support.
Like last Saturday’s so-called Himpunan Barisan 1Malaysia gathering of NGOs that its head organiser Ahmad Maslan claimed had “nothing to do with Umno or the coming Umno annual general assembly.”
Maslan, a deputy minister in the Prime Minister’s Department, was quoted by Malaysiakini as lamely claiming that “you can’t say that it is being held in conjuction with the Umno AGM, as the gathering is this Saturday and the AGM is next Tuesday.”
In any case the event was as big a flop as all Umno/BN’s displays of its “popularity” are, and was completely overshadowed by the 20,000-strong attendance at the final leg of the Himpunan Hijau walk to Dataran Merdeka.
But at least it achieved its fake objective, which was to provide Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak with yet another platform from which to spout yet another of his fraudulent speeches.
This time, according to Malaysiakini, he urged against a change of government in Malaysia with the worn-out old Mahathir claim that the nation is the “envy” of others.
“Why fix the government if it’s not broken? It’s not broken, far from it,” he lied, before proceeding to list all the “incentives” his crooked regime has doled-out to the people with public money and declaring that “more can be given, and we will give more in the future on the condition that the nation is governed well.”
This cannot be done, however, he said, through “empty promises” like those mentioned in the opposition’s manifesto document document the Buku Jingga – “or Buku jing-gay, as others say.”
Of course this latter was a sly slur on Anwar Ibrahim and a reminder of the vicious cycle of trials to which both Mahathir and Najib have subjected Anwar on trumped-up charges of sodomy.
And, sure enough, he followed this up with a typically witless Mahathir-style “joke” to the effect that Anwar “goes here and there and ‘pokes’ people against the Malaysian government. He’s not done with his poking, so maybe that’s why they built this rostrum like a cage – to protect me,” he chortled.
Najib had better get all the jollies he can now, however, as more and more Malaysians are laughing at, not with him. And also, as ever, at the antics of his spouse, the self-styled first lady of Malaysia (FLOM), Rosmah Mansour.
Having been relatively quiet for a while following the torrent of scorn elicited by her collection of Birkin handbags and honorary doctorates, not to mention the RM64-million diamond ring, she burst back onto the world stage with a vengeance the other day following the ASEAN summit in Cambodia.
In an interview with the Phnom Penh Post she defended Najib’s support of the watering-down of the ASEAN Human Rights Declaration with a weasel out-clause based on public morality and civil order on the grounds of what she claimed to be Malaysia’s “high morality” as well as “alarming” rates of HIV/AIDS cases.
Such an outpouring of false sanctimony from the self-seeking wife of an unelected prime minister presiding over the system of virulent venality bestowed on Malaysia by the venomous doctor is nothing short of outrageous.
And yet another of many signs that the vicious cycle of Umno/BN misrule of the nation could well be as close to its end as Mahathir’s own vicious life-cycle must be.