Malaysia needs to change. what the hell is Najib doing now?

MR. ANWAR, i don’t care what people say about you, you are one of my favorite people ever and i respect you a lot. You are the great person. 

To see Najib tumble

The people are beginning to see Mahathir’s role in Najib’s administration is not receding but mounting. Apparently, Abdullah Ahmad Badawi was squeezed out from his post as Prime Minister in 2009 by the maverick politician, Mahathir. Could the same happen to Najib if he decides not to ‘listen’ to Mahathir? Mahathir is still influential in UMNO politics not because he is too good a politician but there are factions within UMNO who would want to see Najib tumble. “But if Najib and UMNO tumble, BN has to close shop,” says a political observer. “Pakatan will form the next government.” Mahathir is thus perceived by some political observers as the right man who can decide Najib’s fate and possibly give more hope to the many other UMNO aspirants to climb up the political ladder.The buzz is that before Najib decided on his Cabinet line-up, he was somewhat ‘warned’ by Mahathir that Khairy Jamaluddin – the elected UMNO Youth leader – should be excluded from the Cabinet. True as envisaged, when the Cabinet line-up was announced, Khairy was excluded. Perhaps this must be the first time in the history of UMNO where its Youth leader has not been given any Cabinet post. “With that move by Najib, Khairy’s political fate is sealed,” says an UMNO lawmaker. To some political observers, even Khairy’s performance as a Youth leader is dismal: “He does not have the right charisma as a leader. The next general election would most probably see him not contesting at all.” The political murmur is that Khairy will lose his post as Youth chief in the next UMNO elections much to the delight of Mahathir.Not only that, the hum was that Mahathir signalled to Najib that all Abdullah’s men should also have been thrust aside from the post Abdullah Cabinet line-up. Shahrir Abdul Samad – being a fine politician – and realising the consequence, made a pre-emptive move. He decided to tender his resignation as a minister even before the new Cabinet line-up was announced. He nattily backed out before the axe fell on him. He could have sensed that the new Cabinet was going to be a Mahathir-charted Cabinet.But when Najib had the courtesy to include some of Abdullah’s men in, the whispers were Mahathir murmured that the Cabinet was still filled with some ‘tainted’ characters. Najib had no choice, as he saw some of these UMNO hardliners as his loyal supporters. Being a nebbish Najib needs them to ‘brawl’ for him against the Opposition for his controversial roles in many of the grim accusations on him by the latter. He is wary that he is not a political pugilist. Neither is he the pugnacious type. He is perceived by the people more as a ‘play-safe’ politician or prime minister unlike the belligerent Mahathir.Flip flop policyAbdullah in 2006 cancelled the famed half-crooked or curved bridge project into the Tebrau Straits to replace half of the Causeway that connects Johor Baru and Singapore. The project was mooted by Mahathir during his tenure as prime minister. When the iniquitous half-bridge was again cropped up by Mahathir during Najib’s time, the latter was rather quiet on the issue. Possibly, he must have known that the project was just unviable. Mahathir was again unhappy about this, as he is still adamant that the project must proceed. Najib has since been silent on this whole issue. The bridge project has stalled. The government lost RM740million of taxpayers’ money for this cock-upAbdullah scrapped the double-tracking railway project from Johor to Padang Besar which would have cost RM14billIon during his time as PM. Najib showed no enthusiasm on this project either. Instead the railway project is now being designated only from Ipoh to Padang Besar and the delay has cost the government RM12billion just for this short distance. Mahathir is riled, as he feels that had the project taken off very much earlier, just with an additional amount of RM2billion the double-tracking would have connected Johor Baru and Padang Besar.The use of English to teach Science and Mathematics (PPSMI) – Mahathir’s brainchild is being dropped by Najib’s government. Mahathir has been reported to have disagreed with the idea of dropping this plan that he implemented in 2003. Being averse to controversial issues, Najib smartly tossed ‘the hot potato’ to Muhyiddin Yassin to do the unpopular decision to scrap the policy. Muhyiddin has now ended up becoming a very unpopular education minister. This issue has dented his political career, but Najib is posing a chic silent on the matter. The dust has yet to settle and parents are not happy with this flip flop policy in education. BN is expected to lose more votes because of this issue and Mahathir is aware of this.Muhyiddin is obdurate that the policy has to be totally scrapped. RM5billion ringgit of taxpayers’ money was wasted on the PPSMI which lasted for only nine years before it came to naught. Had this been in another democratic country the whole cabinet members would have resigned and many leaders would have been sent to the political dungeon.Personal baggageThe campaigns leading towards a few by-elections during Najib’s premiership washed a lot of his dirty linen in public. ‘’Enough mud-slinging at me and smearing my name,” Najib was reported to have said during one of the crusades against the Opposition. Unfortunately, Najib is not perceived by the people as a leader free from personal baggage and this is not a good omen for UMNO and BN. To the political observers, Mahathir is more eager to save UMNO than to indulge on personal problems of UMNO leaders.In by-elections where Najib was quite reluctant to tramp Mahathir was seen more ready to tread. But, if Mahathir was to be seen going to the field jousting against the Opposition without Najib to be seen, what would the people perceive of the latter then? Despite Mahathir’s help, UMNO lost a few by-elections and this badly bruised Najib’s image.At that point of time, Najib was cagey when BN lost a few by-elections to the Opposition and Najib ended up becoming the punching bag for the Opposition as well many of his foes within UMNO. “Najib, who grew up in a political aristocratic family would naturally play out-of-harm’s-way politics. The most he would do is to have his people fight for him. But he has failed to realise that others cannot keep on doing the ‘stunt’ for him. Being the PM, the millstone will still hang around his neck,” says a political observer.


With four candidates left in the Republican race, and Mitt Romney topping the polls, who would Barack Obama prefer to face in November?
Romney polls tends to poll better in swing states and with Newt Gingrich prone to the occasional gaffe, the answer seems clear.
Al Jazeera’s Patty Culhane reports from Washington.
There is a not very fine line between issues that should concern a president and issues on which a Fox News commentator should spend his or her time. This was made very evident last week. On Tuesday night President Obama gave his State of the Union address. State of the Union addresses are a rarely compelling form of political theater, but they are significant because they allow the president to present his agenda and goals to the American people. On Thursday night, by contrast, the remaining four Republican presidential candidates engaged in what seemed like their 400th debate. Actually it was only their 19th.
The Republican debate included several strangely long digressions about space travel and moon colonies, widespread agreement that Ron Paul is in fine health for a man his age and a contest to see who could take the strongest anti-Castro position. Paul, of course, did not participate in this contest instead replying, not un-wisely, that if Raul Castro called him, he (Paul) would ask why Castro was calling. The contrast between the Republican candidates and President Obama could not have been more stark, or more favorable to the president. Obama talked about jobs and the economy, while the Republicans rabbited on about moon colonies. It is no surprise that the president’s poll numbers improved last week as well.
The Republican debates have been fun to watch and have given a great deal of exposure to the Republican candidates. However, on balance they have highlighted the weakness of the field and, like the debate last week in Jacksonville, forced the candidates to spend time talking about minor, even quirky, issues or on personal, and silly, questions such as whose wife would be the best first lady, or the role their religious faith would play in their presidencies.
The major issue in this election is, of course, the economy, but while the state of the economy may hurt President Obama in November, the Republican candidates gain little by talking about the economy now. This is because Republican proposals for addressing the economy such as lowering taxes on wealthy Americans, deregulating business more and cutting government programs are the precise ideas which have been so damaging to the ratings of Republicans in Congress. Moreover, there is little disagreement among the major candidates regarding these solutions. The differences are primarily of degree, not of kind. Accordingly, while most of the Republican presidential candidates are happy to criticize the economy and what President Obama has done to try to fix the economy, they are considerably more reluctant to spend a lot of time on their own uninspiring proposals. The debates are therefore taken up with other issues that, at best, make the Republican candidates look unpresidential and, in most cases, make the candidates seem less appealing to voters.
Successful candidates for president must evolve from being just another politician, to a plausible candidate for president to somebody who most Americans could envision sitting in the Oval Office. For challengers, the earlier in the process this happens the better. In 2008, John McCain, despite being a poor candidate in some respects was, due to his long service in the U.S. Senate and his extraordinary personal history, easily viewed as a potential president relatively early in the primary process. Barack Obama did not achieve this status until later in the process in 2008, but through his political skills and wave of well known early endorsers was still able to be viewed as a plausible president relatively early in the primary season.
There are many ways to persuade the American people that one is qualified to sit in the Oval Office, but discussing moon colonies with Newt Gingrich or speculating on Ron Paul’s fine physical health for a septuagenarian are not among them. This is the crux of the problems the debates raise for Mitt Romney, the likely Republican nominee. Even when he is winning them, as he did last Thursday, they are not moving him closer to convincing the American people he should be president. The debates create bigger problems for Romney because while he is trying to become president, his opponents are not. Ron Paul is trying to make a point, while Newt Gingrich is trying to rejuvenate his media career and have one last opportunity to lecture the American people.
It is only a slight overstatement to say that the Republican presidential candidates have debated 19 times and the winner of almost all of those debates has been Barack Obama. The extremist, and often poorly informed, views of most of the candidates, the emphasis on explaining minor differences and the time spent talking about issues which are of little importance to most voters have not helped any Republican seem like a strong threat to President Obama. With fewer debates in the next months, Romney may be able to focus more on Obama, but first he needs to make up for lost time and pass the presidential plausibility test.

Marching into 2012 Najib Abdul Razak is still not perceived as a strong leader by the masses. It is the perspicacity of the masses that his many personal, social and economic debacles will keep haunting him until the next general election – widely believed to be held before June 2012.
Race relations in the country is not getting any better and evidently religion is widely seen as a convenient gizmo used by UMNO to divide the people. Above and beyond, shady characters among some UMNO and Barisan Nasional (BN) politicians , abuse of taxpayers’ money, and the ineffective economic strategies of the government have failed to convince the masses. Almost four years of BN at the helm after the March 2008 general election has not seen much clout in UMNO or Najib to shove the country to the right track. Their popularity seem to slide.Many social and economic woes relating to race relations, religion and the economy have since alienated the masses. Corruption is perceived as too rife among those having power and authority but more often than not these are swept under the carpet for political reasons.They only receive the crumbs The recent RM100 and RM500 one-off payments to students and the poor respectively have been perceived by the masses as trying to ‘bribe’ for votes in facing the next general election. Even the purported 1Malaysia RM5,000 loan to the poor to invest under a national unit trust scheme is not going to electrify the people into voting for BN.To an aid recipient in Kedah, he is not full of praise for the government: “This matters least, as the money given to the people is not from UMNO’s own pocket but it’s taxpayers’ hard-earned money. We have to edify the people on this political strategy of UMNO. For now, just accept the money as it’s the people’s money, not UMNO’s or BN’s. When it comes to voting, this is totally going to be a different issue.”The people sense that the amount of money given to the poor by the government is just pittance that could not even make ends meet in time of high inflation in the country now. “This ‘bribe of sort’ is for short-term delight,” says a farmer in Kedah. “The government has not come up with any concrete long-term plan to reduce inflation and bring down the cost of living to help the poor.” He adds, “Increasing the pay of those already earning big salaries is not going to help reduce the price of food. Only the rich are seen to be given huge incentives and rewards to become richer. The poor are becoming poorer, as they only receive the crumbs.”What is more interesting to the inquisitive minds of the masses is the quality of leadership the country has to offer. The buzz among voters is, ‘”Who is actually running the country now?” This is the question asked by many within and outside UMNO and BN. Everyone knows that officially Najib is the PM. But Najib has been perceived as a leader who could not steer the country free from Mahathir’s influence. “As long as Anwar is around, Mahathir will not give up harassing Najib’s administration. He fears that UMNO and BN will lose big in the coming general election with Pakatan’s increasing popularity,” says a young voter in Kerian.My father used to tell us not to be afraid or fear psychosis when I and my brother were young lads. He told us, people who fear things will happen to them will actually face it – eventually. Could it be karma?
Next person to lead Malaysia is Anwar Ibrahim being the next Prime Minister. READMORE

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