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Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Political Marriage: The Musical

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A lot has been said of late about the now aborted unity government talks between PAS and UMNO. Some have even likened it to a marriage.

There’s probably some truth to that idea, Walski thinks. Had it gone ahead, it would have been a marriage based on love. But not any ‘ol kind of love.

Walski wonders if he’s the only one that sees it this way. 
(more hypothetical thoughts and musical “what ifs”, in the full post)

On a lighter note, Prime Minister and UMNO President likened exploring the possibilities of a unity government to a marriage proposal. The thought that crossed Walski’s mind when he heard this was “Hmmm… isn’t that like coveting another man’s wife?

Oh, wait – Najib’s been down that road before, too.

But, kidding aside, Walski reckons that such a marriage would have been worrisome for many. Himself included.

For one thing, both bride and groom have multiple personalities that make up each whole entity. Each side, for example, have their fair share of conservatives, when combined into a unity government, could mean that any comment or criticism of policies would be tantamount to attacking Islam. Shannon Shah, through his article in The Nut Graph, seemed to think along the same lines.

Sure, both UMNO and PAS came from the same body politic, but that was in a time long, long ago, in a galaxy far, far away.

And what both parties have evolved into belie their more liberal beginnings.

The fear is that had the marriage gone ahead, the conservative elements on both sides would rise to the fore, and it would have been their way, or the highway. Or, that their way would be a highway in itself – one much worse than the other highway.

Hand basket sales would have never been brisker.

The other side of the coin is that mooting such unity talks were strategically designed to cause disarray in the Pakatan Rakyat coalition, and less to do with Malay and/or Islamic “unity”.

Which always begs the question – unity against what? Or whom?

Blogger Dr. M. Bakri Musa, in the opening of his piece, The Poison of “Unity” Government, pretty much asks the same question.

The two Malay political parties – UMNO and PAS – are battling each other to convince us that each is better than the other in advancing the “Malay agenda.” The two are like ageing fighters stuck with their same old tired moves. They are oblivious of the fact that we are fed up with their act; their lack of vigor and imaginative new strategies.

In a clumsy if not desperate attempt for new moves they concocted a ‘vision’ for a ‘unity’ government based on the two parties! Left unstated is the question: Unity for what and against whom?

(source: M. Bakri Musa)

And that’s where part of the fear was, too – that the “real” enemy for this intended marriage may just have been anything, or anyone, against what the proposed New Malaysian Order stood for.

Whatever the heck that would’ve evolved to become…

Politics, apart from having strange bedfellows, can be perplexing sometimes. But the aim of Malaysian politics, it seems, is the pursuit of power. Power and all the trappings that come with it, to Walski, is the real root of all evil. And when power is the real motivation, those in pursuit of it will stop at nothing. You know the saying about the corruptibility of absolute power, right? Well, the pursuit of it gets pretty ugly as well.

In any case, this talk of marriage between PAS and UMNO is now moot. For now, at least. It’s not the first time such “marriage proposals” have been talked about, nor will it likely be the last.

For the time being, we can go back to feeling how we did before all this “unity” talks emerged…

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