Archive for 2006
One sentence often heard in Malaysia is that “Non-muslims should not comment on Islam” , which is partly true since most non-muslims don’t know much about Islam. However, within Islam, most Muslims don’t have a clearly outlined doctrine. For instance take this article:
Firstly this man is a Muslim.
Secondly he’s the The director of the Institute of Islamic Political Thought in London.
And finally he holds a PhD, which would make him more learned on issues pertaining to Islam then 99% of this country and 99% of Umno and 99% of PAS. (I would love to say 100% but I like to leave room for error seeing as how I’m not perfect.)
If he says things like
He added that it was also wrong for someone to convert just to marry a Muslim, adding: “Conversion should be because one believes that Islam is better than other religions, not because one loves someone.”
“If submission to Allah involves free choice, then the same principle must apply if one wants to leave the faith,”
From a Neutral perspective I would definitely take his word over anyone from UMNO or PAS( Definitely over any of the 2-bit bloggers of Malaysia ,present company included) for what Islam is suppose to be.
It’s just my 2 cents, but I would definitely think that Dr Azzam Tamimi knows more about Islam than any Malaysian blogger and any Malaysian politician, and if he says Muslims should be allowed to freely leave the faith then ……..maybe that’s what Islam allows.
That’s my 2 cents.. don’t spend it all in one place.
Anyone who has read my blog knows that I’m a moderate supporter of the NEP. I don’t mind the NEP for 2 reasons, firstly it has noble intentions and secondly having 60% of the population control less than 20% of the economy isn’t good. The problem is that the NEP is racist, while Malays who make up 60% of Malaysia control only 18% of the economy, Indians on the other hand make up 9% of the population and control 1.2% of the economy. Indians are far more deserving of the NEP that malays, yet Indians don’t receive the handouts that should be given to them. However here are some little tidbits I have thought regarding the NEP. Most people have forgotten about the Indians, you can read the papers and the NEP is talked in the context of Malay and Chinese but no one brings up the plight of the Indians.
Firstly, the NEP was introduced to divide the countries economy among the races. However, it doesn’t really stipulate how the wealth would be divided WITHIN a race. If we had 300 Malay billionaires , that would be more than enough. It wouldn’t matter if the other 15 odd million malays were poor, since the 30% equity would be reached. The NEP needs to properly allocate the wealth within the race as well. There should be some quantifiable metric that provides for the allocation of wealth within a race.
Secondly, wasn’t the NEP suppose to be temporary? There’s only two things that could have happened for the NEP to continue the way it is. Firstly the Malays failed the system, or UMNO failed the malays. It’s just that simple. Something failed somewhere if the objective could not be met in the timeline specified.
Implementation of the NEP has been both poorly done and corruptly handled. Look at the AP scandal? How many bumiputeras did it make rich? Was that money made from AP sales properly distributed among the Malays or was it handled by an elite few? What has the average Malay attained from the AP system? The answer is almost as much as the average chinese or Indian.
So what do we do? I don’t know. How do you solve a complex problem, the truth is nobody knows. So let’s find out, but we can’t find out because people insist of keeping a lid on the NEP. We’ve come to accept it without question, why is public debate regarding the ASLI report discouraged? Why is the Malaysian public being treated like a bunch of 12 year olds, aren’t we mature enough to discuss this? Why is the population of the 17th largest trading nation treated like kindergarten children by their government. If we do not have the maturity to discuss the problems we’re facing in a calm and objective manner, how can we achieve anything. Let’s discuss this in an ultra transparent manner, the more transparent you are the more likely you’re going to reach a better solution. Unfortunately, those you question the NEP are branded traitors, by a bunch of over-emotional idiots who can’t handle a mature discussion without blabbing words like traitor, malay warrior or blood bath.
That’s my 2 cents ..don’t spend it all in one place.
The following is merely fiction, though I believe it could happen. I have not done any research or collected numbers, I just used some simple deductive theory which could be wrong. It is by no means a comprehensive study, but merely a hypothetical scenario which I BELIEVE COULD happen.
PAS or Parti Agama Islam has been gaining some political mileage ever since the Lina Joy case. It’s a very political and religious party that was COMPLETELY oblitarated during the last election. Left realing from a defeat that was both humiliating and embarassing, PAS has since gone in 2 directions. It’s basically a split party now, with a group of PAS members advocating a more relaxed stance to gain the support of the 40% of non-muslims in this country, while another sector of PAS called to become even more radical . But let’s for one second just imagine a Malaysia where PAS has won, let’s imagine that….
First of, if PAS had won the first casualty would be our economy. With PAS the main body calling for the boycott of Israeli and American goods, we’d be blasted back to the stone age.
The first effect would be the more than 1,000,000 people in Malaysia who work for American companies or companies directly related to American Companies. These include Intel, Motorola , Agilent, HP, Dell, Exxon Mobil, Flextronics, Freescale, Microsoft, Accenture, and the list goes on. All these people would be out of a job overnight. Because it was Malaysia who boycotted American Products, the Companies would not have to reimburse the workers. So the immediate effect would be unemployment that would easily reach 20% overnight. Then we’d see companies that directly depend on American imports going down, these are smaller SME and SMIs that depend directly on American products. Their GONE. Unemployment would be at an all time HIGH.
Next we’d see an immediate cease of a lot of things. Without American Microprocessors (INTEL and AMD and both American) , we’d have no computers. In fact the Intel Pentium line ever since Pentium 3 was design partly in Israel. So say goodbye pentium, then say goodbye to computer security, because Symantec has an office in Israel as well. Then say goodbye to computer servers from Dell, HP or Sun. Without servers there’d be NO websites or networks.
So now that we’re backing to using pencils and paper, without any American imports, dying economy, high unemployment and a boycott of American Products. The europeans and Japanese would start moving out as well. Without the ability to bring in American technology it would make no sense to invest in Malaysia. So within about 6 months to a year, we’d see unemployment reach a whooping 35%.
Once this happens, all the SMI’s and SMEs that depend on MNCs for their business will start shutting down. That would lead directly to an unemployment rate of 55% within the first 2 years.
PAS of course has promised to subsidise petrol, which is NOT good. To subsidise they’ll need to reach in into the goverment till, which would be drained from the huge unemployment (jobless people don’t pay taxes). Then once they bankcrupt the contry, they’ll put it into debt. End of the economy.
The next thing to suffer would be the people, with high-unemployment comes high crimes. With the high amount of crime, especially in urban areas we’d be afraid to walk out at night. Also when there is suddenly a high amount of unemployment, people stop paying their housing loans. The real-estate market goes crashing and the price of your house (especially if you live in urban areas) will drop by at least 50% over the course of 2 years.
Because people don’t pay their housing loans, the banks start becoming desperate, soon at least one major local bank will crash taking with it the TOTAL life savings of the a lot of people. This all while the stock market crashes to nearly 10% of the total worth now, that’s a 90% crash. Stock markets are a lot more volatile than anything else.
With no money, no house and no savings, the welfare department would be overwhelmed. People would riot in the streets for food and money. Inflation would be double digits within 2 years. And you wouldn’t be able to buy anything.
With the massive unrest, comes a backlash. Rioting in the streets, if people can riot for a 30 cents rise in petrol, how’d you think they’ll take a 300% rise in bread, sugar and everything else.
Riots would break out and the military would be called in to quell the unrest. Then a General would decide he’d have enough of the current government and overthrow it. A military coup would be in place just 3 years after the election. From then on, we all know how our lives would change.
Sounds untrue, well the reality is that it could happen. It’s not all doom and gloom. The majority of people don’t support a party that has absolutely no idea how to run and economy like Malaysias. For the short future at least we’re saved. The reality is that with globalisation it’s impossible to boycott America or even Israel and not feel the pinch. In fact, if we boycott America it won’t fell like a pinch but rather a PUNCH. If you think we’re already boycotting Israel think again. Intel has a few Design centers in Israel. A lot of the technology we think is American is actually designed by the Israelis.
That’s my 2 cents. Don’t spend it all in one place.
Today I was proven wrong. I’ve discovered a couple of blogs written by Muslims that support Lina Joys Decision. They don’t realyl agree with her chosing to become a Christian but they support that it is her decision. They are willing to find the root cause rather than pursue and openly persecute Lina Joy. Over the past few days on the internet people have been lambasting her, even to the extent of lodging a police report againts the church which includes her IC number. Some have even posted pictures of her knowing full well how it could affect the lady. The 2 links below are good links and offer a ray of hope.
The first link is a rather good article written in Malay. The author (being a Muslim) truly wishes for Lina Joy to return to Islam, as he believes that Islam is the religion of Truth. However, he respects her rights and her decision. I enjoyed the first link. Do read.
Menj is a blogger who openly is againts the ‘apostates’ , he admits his distaste for Israel and America by calling our Prime Minister Spineless for NOT calling for a boycott of American goods. Today however, his website supported conversions to Judaism, the picture below is 100% accurate taken at 10:47 a.m Malaysian Time (I’m an unemployed graduate I have time). Look at the bottom left-hand corner of the screen where the words ‘CONVERSION TO JUDAISM’ is proudly proclaimed. If Menj was serious, tell him to take out google ads from his website and stop being a bloody hypocrite.
More information on why Menj is hypocritical.
Menj is openly againts preaching to Muslims, but is ok with a conversion to Judaism link on his website where most visitors are Muslim.
In the same picture you see him saying that Lina Joy chose the path to Hell. Basically he’s calling Christianity a path to hell. So it’s OK to call christianity a path to hell, but it’s not ok for a Danish cartoonist to draw pictures of the prophet. The reality is that if you wish to have respect for your religion you must respect others first. People like Menj hypocritical in their ways, they expect respect from others but don’t give respect back. Truly he can’t be serious.
Calling our Prime Minister Spineless for NOT boycotting American Goods, that’s a laugh. This is because in MENJ blog he’s happy to get cheques from GOOGLE. Now unless things change since I last remember, Google is an AMERICAN company. Not only that Google has a Operations in… ISRAEL. So unless the hypocrite stops collecting cheques from Google, he’ll continue to be a hypocrite.
Finally, let me say I wish MENJ would continue to receive cheques from Israel. I wish all this boycotting Israel nonsense would just stop. There is no possible way in a globalized world you could avoid doing business with any country. Intel has a design center in Israel… are you going to stop buying Intel Chips? The worlds foremost experts on Encryption are from Israeli companies. You can’t progress without it. I openly condemened the Israeli attacks on Lebanon. From my previous blogs you can see, but all this BS about boycotts are just going to HOLD US back, we will be the ones who suffer NOT ISRAEL.
Lately I’ve seen my some arguments for the conversion of Lina Joy posted on some other blogs. Some authors have taken a 3rd argument out of context, and there are new arguments againts the conversion of Lina joy.
Firstly, when I said that Malaysia was a Hindu LONG LONG before it was Parameswara was wearing diapers, I meant it in response to a an argument againts Lina Joy. The classic argument is that the history of Malaysia shows that Malaysia was an Islamic country since the Mallaca Sultanate, and that the British watered down the Islamic laws with their own secular man-made laws. The argument then follows that we should revert back to Islamic Law since we are no longer a British Colony but rather an Independant country. My reply is that we WERE an Islamic country, and what was in the past is in the past. Let’s concentrate on the present constituion that we have and the existing set of laws that we have.
Secondly, many people feel that Lina Joy should just convert ‘SILENTLY’ without the need for official documentation. The response is simple, while being a Muslim Lina Joy CANNOT:-
1) Marry someone that is NOT a Muslim ( Againts the UN declaration of Human Rights)
2) Go to church and pray without a reasonable fear that the Religious department CAN prosecute her in the Syariah court.
3) Cannot Leave her inheritance to her children (if her children are not Muslim)
4) Be buried as a christian , ALL MUSLIMS MUST BE BURIED IN ACCORDANCE TO ISLAMIC PRACTICES regardless of their practicing creed.
5) Choose not to fast during Ramadhan but official she is still a Muslim.
While some blogger might think that the burial of someone is a trivial matter since God would not mind. The burial in accordance to any religion is as much for the greiving family as it is for the deceased. Without the proper burial such as the Moorthy Case, the family will find it difficult to grieve. I don’t think burial customs are antiqudated, I think they are as relevant today as they were 1000 years ago. People need them to grieve, at least I know I do.
Finally, on conclusion once again I would remind all readers that there is a call from the Archbishop of Malaysia to Fast on the 14th of August 2006. This is for the people in Lebanon, the official stand of the catholic church is that Israels attack is both unjustified and cruel. It is a disproportionate response to the situation. We fast for peace in Lebanon and the entire middle east. If you wish to fast, you can follow the catholic tradition of fasting normally observed during the month of Lent that is:
1) You’re allowed only one full meal througout the day.
2) You shall not consume any meat (though fish is permissible).
3) You’re allowed 2 collations that when combine do not make up more than one meal.
4) Although no explicit mention of it, you should refrain from Alcohol, cigarrates and things of the like.
5) Water can be consumed throughout the day.
6) Remember to pray always.
Recently, by having too much free time on my hands I decided to download a show I’ve always wanted to see .. Hotel Rwanda. After watching that show, I felt a uneasy feeling , and was totally shocked. The movie is based on the true story of Paul Rusesabagina , a man of tremendous honor and valor. If you haven’t watched the show… you should.
The story goes like this, Rwanda is a country comprising of Hutus and Tutsis. The concept of race was something new to the rwandans they never new of this till the europeans came and decided to divide the country. The europeans (mainly belgians) decided to divide the united rwandans into 2 separate races. Through years of colonialization and segregration there was tremendous resentment between both Hutus and Tutsis, which culminated in a civil war between Hutu Goverment forces and Tutsi rebels. During this time it was estimated a near 1 million Tutsis were killed, 1 million. Take a brief moment. 1 million civilian casualties killed during the civil war in Rwanda.
Now just think of the number, 1 million. All carefully organised murder of Tutsis , and guess what the world did…..NOTHING. That means you. If you’re not from rwanda, you did NOTHING. While 1 million people, who cried for your help, died. Just think about it. Was there international condemnation…YES, was there international action… NO. Kofi Annan, Bill Clinton and to an extent even Malaysia did nothing. The UN instead of sending troops pulled them out, and saved no rwandans while and OBVIOUS genocide was taking place.
Fast forward 12 years, and we’re in Lebanon. Not really the same thing. See in lebanon it isn’t about race nor religion. It’s about non-discrimination. When an Israeli planes fires a missile into a civilian populated area, whether you’re lebanese , arab, muslim or Jew you WILL DIE. Israel is just bombing a country that has for years been an example to the muslim world. The lebanese had a good economy about to grow, it was filled with moderates and it had a good balance of both Christians and Muslims living in peaceful co-existence. However, although Hezbollah is to be blamed for SOME of it, the Israelis are using them as an excuse to unilaterally act civilians in Lebanon. The people that are dying are not soldiers, they’re not even militants they are children and mothers, and normal people going about their work. The red cross and UN can get bombed which means Israel is more or less hitting lebanon at random. It is totally unjustifiable and it’s a disgrace that the UN and everyone else is sitting down on their asses doing NOTHING.
Just like Rwanda, the US has refuse to get involved. We all condemn but fail to act. Protesting in front of the US embassy in Malaysia is both ridiculously stupid and extremely useless. PAS just loves to protest, albeit for stupid reasons. They would do much better collecting money for the lebanese, or arranging for aid to be sent. Malaysia on our part have volunteered peace keepers just like the ones we sent to Timor Leste (bravo Pak Lah), so we’re at least doing SOMETHING. When Condelezza Rice was here, she said America was working towards a peaceful and ‘REALISTIC’ cease-fire somewhere in the ‘coming weeks’ which to me is both inhumane and pathethic. Pathethic that the worlds so called ‘hyper-power’ refuses to help. The hyper-power is basically saying that we’re prepared to let people DIE for the next 2-3 weeks , try telling that to the mothers that lost their children or the children that lost their mothers. It’s basically saying that the lives of INNOCENT LEBANESE CIVILIANS are worthless to the American Government. That their LIVES are not worth spoiling an alliance with Israel.
So what have we learnt from Rwanda…NOTHING. Just like we let 1 million Tutsis die, we’re allowing Israel to kill off innocent civilian lives. What can we do? For the moment … NOTHING. What should we do? …there’s only one thing….Pray. May God Bless Lebanon.
That’s my 2 cents… don’t spend it all in one place.
I’ve compiled a short list of arguments AGAINTS the conversion of Lina Joy, and some short simple straight to the point replies for them.
1) Lina Joy should not be allowed to convert because it will open the flood gate for the 100,000 ‘murtads’ in Malaysia to convert. This in turn will affect the Muslim population.
Answer: There is ABSOLUTELY no proof that there are 100,000 murtads in Malaysia. Furthermore shouldn’t Muslims be solving the ‘ROOT CAUSE OF THE PROBLEM’ rather than the symptom. Isn’t solving the root cause of the problem, what we ask the governments of Israel and America to do, but we ourselves don’t practice it here.
2) Islam has always enjoyed a special place in the constituition and is not subservient to it.
NO, the constituition is the SUPREME law of the land, the syariah court is merely a subservient court. Islam is mentioned as the official religion of our country, and other religions are freely allowed to practice their religion. Lina Joy is a christian and she should be freely allowed to practice her religion.
3) Let her go to the syariah court first then only allow her to convert.
NO, the syariah court has ABSOLUTELY NO PROVISION to leaving the Islamic Faith. The ONLY penalty it can give for apostasy is DEATH. Not exactly the best place to go. Furthermore she isn’t Muslim, she is NOT ALLOWED into the syariah court.
4) Only the Britis introduced the secular constituion before that Islam was the law, and now that Malaysia is independant, we should return to it.
Well before Parameswara was born, almost the entire peninsular Malaysia was Hindu. Under the Srivijaya government, so in reality Malaysia was a Hindu country long before it was a Muslim one. Let’s not talk about the past, but rather the future and present.
5) Lina Joy is taking advantage of a threat againts Islam, and IFC and article 11 people are all trying to attack Islam.
Ever since the moorthy case, and shamala case as well, it is the NON-MUSLIMS that are feeling threaten. We feel that the muslims in this country are trying to ATTACK us and not the other way around.