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Saturday, October 28, 2006

Dissecting the Saturday morning news...

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It used to be that Saturday mornings were totally dedicated to catch up on the cartoon shows on Astro - Cow & Chicken, I am Weasel, Johnny Bravo... modern-day classics, all of them. Walski's not too keen on the superhero type cartoons, although he does watch them occassionally.

Well today, Walski decided to do something different for a change - to scan the mainstream news to see what the rest of the nation would be forced to read reading. And the nice thing about the Internet and RSS technology is that these days, all the news perusal can be done without harming a single tree.

The first bit of news - more a Public Service Announcement, actually - comes from The Sun e-paper (free subscription required).

Image hosting by PhotobucketThe most educational comic book you'll read this week

This is undoubtedly better than one of those "Send RM 10 to the following address" type ads, which are a real money black hole for the extremely gullible. And there are a lot of gullible Malaysians, that's for sure.

Mediums - large and small - seem to be the favorite go-to people for all kinds of problems - also large and small. Anything from persistent itchy scalp to rebellious children to getting so-and-so to fall in (or out of) love - people consult mediums as the de facto problem solvers. The spirit world, it seems, never seem able to get their eternal rest.

Image from The Star, hosting by PhotobucketMoving along to the next story: An update on that unfortunate American elderly couple, whose apartment got raided at 2am by Langkawi's version of the Mutaween. It appears that Mr. & Mrs. Barnhart are seriously reconsidering making Malaysia their second home.

Duhhh.... well, yeah... who in their right mind wouldn't?

Meanwhile the Kedah state authorities have taken the usual I'm-a-f*cktard-but-too-f*cking-stupid-to-realize-it stance - something called plausible denial, officially. Walski calls it plausible f*cktardiness. From The Star (emphasis by myAsylum):

State Religious and Humanity Development Committee chairman Professor Datuk Wira Dr Othman Ishak said he would investigate the matter.

I was not aware of this case. I will ask the Religious Department head. We will get feedback from the vice-prevention squad in Langkawi before making comments,” he said.

Kedah Mentri Besar Datuk Seri Mahdzir Khalid said he would check with the state Religious Department to find out what really happened.

I was not informed about this case. I will find out what really happened before making any comment,” he said.

Same 'ol, same 'ol... Geez... don't you people read the newspapers (apart from Siti or Mawi stories)? Or surf the 'Net (for things other than porn)? Or do we actually have a bunch of ignorant doofuses running state departments, and entire states, for that matter?

Reminds Walski of I.R. Babboon, for some reason...
(more news dissected in the full post)

Another story from The Star - and this really has to be filed under the WTF?!? category.

Image from The Star, hosting by PhotobucketRail services suspended for 20 minutes - literally.
A stupid accident, with some REALLY stupid onlooker uppers

Perhaps this is a wake-up call to tell us that something is seriously wrong with our public transportation system, particularly in KL. Look at the picture closely. Now, how on earth could anyone have approved an elevated track design that just ends. No barricade, no barrier (a flimsy guard-rail doesn't count, okay?) - just freakin' ends at the last pillar, plus whatever little pre-mixed concrete they had left-over to extend the track-support into oblivion. Or at the very least, a 10-meter drop.

Apart from services at the Sentul East station being "suspended" (get it?) for about 20 minutes, no other service disruptions were reported. More importantly - no casualties (apart from the train).

But the most interesting quote out of all this came from Transport Minister Datuk Seri Chan Kong Choy (emphasis by myAsylum):

“I want them to submit a report to me. It has to be specific, identifying the cause of the incident and who is to be blamed,” he said.

With every problem, blame must be assigned, right? This must be a standard line from the "Malaysian Politician-speak for Dummies" handbook. And at the end of the day, can you blame the Malaysian public for losing confidence in a Government that puts more emphasis in assigning blame, rather than finding long-term, viable, and blame-less solutions?

And finally, a case of "you say to-MAY-to, I say to-MAH-to".

Image from The Star, hosting by PhotobucketNo matter how you pronounce it, it's still
a very essential ingredient in any good spaghetti sauce

Same story, different spin. Apart from the brevity of the New Straits Times report (Walski figures they're bored as well) being the most noticable difference, both news agencies highlighted the very keris-wielding remarks from Baby UMNO Youth chief, Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein.

Whether Bored or Tired, the truth of the matter is that despite the bravado displayed on the exterior, our political stalwarts in UMNO are getting skiddish - they're not used to this type of vocal challenge. Their style is more of an elegant STFU and comply. The ripples of malcontent as a result of this open tirade between Ex and Present is probably going to provide the political underlings (and hopefully more forthright underlings) of this party the gumption to finally speak out en-masse against the ills plauging UMNO. The entire government actually. Or is Walski being over-optimistic?

In the meantime, however, it looks like the battle between Dr. M and the UMNO Juggernaut continues...