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OK, let’s assume Kit’s head is filled with problems, so what do you think Muhyiddin’s head is filled with? For the answer-challenged here’s an easy poll for you to fill:
Kit Siang’s head is filled with problems, says Muhyiddin
MUAR, Feb 23 — Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin today refuted DAP leader Lim Kit Siang’s allegation in the news portal, The Malaysian Insider, that he does not fully support the 1 Malaysia concept.
The baseless allegation showed that Lim and the opposition parties had run out of issues to use against the government, the deputy prime minister said.
“I think Lim Kit Siang doesn’t understand my stand (on 1Malaysia) because his head is filled with problems, compounded by the problems of the opposition parties.
“All these problems have placed Kit Siang under pressure and so he wants to draw the people’s attention away from him,” Muhyiddin, who is also Education Minister, he told reporters after witnessing a Robotec demonstration by students in the Pagoh parliamentary constituency here.
Interesting by Facebook here in the region. Would any Indonesian companies qualify for acquisition?
Facebook buys Malaysian start-up
By Lee Wei Lian
KUALA LUMPUR, Feb 22 – Social networking giant Facebook acquired Malaysian Internet start-up, Octazen, for an undisclosed sum last week.
According to tech website Gigaom, Facebook announced the acquisition in a statement sent via e-mail to reporters and described the buy as a “talent acquisition.”
Octazen makes software that helps Facebook grow its user base by encouraging existing members to invite their e-mail contacts.
“We’ve admired the engineering team’s efforts for some time now and this is part of our ongoing effort to add experienced, accomplished technical talent to help drive the company forward in its efforts to be the central way for people to connect and share information,” said Facebook spokeperson Larry Yu in the media statement.
Octazen’s website confirms it is being acquired but does not provide any contact information.
Many Silicon Valley start-ups are launched with an eye on being acquired by large internet companies but this could be the first acquisition of a Malaysian start-up by a bona fide internet giant.
According to website insidefacebook.com, Octazen will remain based in Malaysia, making the two people behind Octazen the first Facebook employees based in Asia full time.
However, Facebook says, “This won’t become an office… It’s just a talent acquisition and they’ll be considered remote workers since we’ve opted to let them remain in Malaysia.”
Facebook has over 400 million users including 250 million added last year, but has been quiet on the acquisition front, preferring to acquire talent rather than products. Octazen is only the third ever acquisition by the company.
The acquisition of Octazen comes as Facebook is fending off a challenge from Google with the launch of the latter’s Buzz social network.
This story has been making headlines in Malaysia. But so far nobody seems to have answered the question of many discerning readers of this episode: How come no men are caned together with the women?
Why is it that only the women were punished for having extramarital sex? What about the men who fucked them? Don’t they have an responsibility in all this? Malaysia Boleh! Once again.
Malaysian Women Caned for Sex Say Punishment Was ‘Good’ for Them
Three Malaysians who became the first women to be caned under the country’s Islamic laws said they “deserved” their punishment and that it would help stem sex outside marriage.
The three women were caned for having sex out of wedlock in a move that has angered human rights activists and some lawyers who say the punishments are illegal in this mainly Muslim country that runs parallel civil and Islamic justice systems.
“I deeply regret my actions as I should have married before having sex,” the New Straits Times newspaper quoted one of the women who it said was aged 17, as saying in its Friday edition.
The newspaper did not reveal the womens’ real names and a picture showed the three clad in traditional Malaysian dress and headscarves seated before reporters.
When Unspun was growing up in Malaysia he was told that the kris was an intrinsic part of the Malay identity.The kris was such a big deal that some years ago when the son of a former Malaysian prime minister and UMNO big shot wanted to establish Malay supremacy over the other Malaysian races he waved it around more vigorously than a koteka would be rattled in a tribal dance.
Stop waving an Indonesian heritage around Hishamuddin. It’s embarrassing.
Unspun was awed. But now Unspun feels cheated.
According to UNESCO the kris isn’t even Malaysian, let alone Malay. And not only that. Even the batik and the wayang is Indonesian. So what’ Malaysia got left to wave with? Malaysia, Truly Indonesia.
Batik, kris and wayang get UNESCO world heritage status
The Jakarta Post , Jakarta | Sat, 02/06/2010 1:02 PM | Headlines
UNESCO on Friday awarded Indonesia four certificates, three stating that it recognized three intangible cultural heritages and one stating its recognition of the country’s efforts to preserve its culture.
The three intangible cultural heritages were batik, a method of decorating fabric with a special dyeing techniques producing specific patterns, wayang, a traditional shadow puppet play, and kris, a traditional ceremonial dagger.
The certificates were symbolically handed by Foreign Minister Marty Natalegawa, to Culture and Tourism Minister Jero Wacik and Coordinating Public Welfare Minister Agung Laksono.
After the awards were given, Agung said, the country should preserve the heritage to prevent the recognition from being withdrawn.
“Batik can be preserved by always wearing it. What will be hard is preserving wayang and kris,” he said.
Agung added he had issued a letter requesting that offices and hotels display the three objects.
Tresna Dermawan Kunaefi, Indonesia’s Ambassador to UNESCO, said the recognition as intangible cultural heritage was not based on the objects’ physical aspects, but the stories and ideas behind them.
It’s a Friday afterall so time for some silly stories to get us all in a good mood for the weekend.
This story below is from The Daily Chilli, The Star’s scandal sheet online. You wonder what students in Malaysia get up to for a good time. Is it the repressed atmosphere in the campuses that makes students want to remove as many strictures on themselves as possible?
And whence the origin of the slang word “commando” to denote women who choose to go, er al fresco beneath their skirts?
Worth noting in the story below too is the stance of the Selangor Islamic Affairs Department that holds forth that Valentines Day is not for Muslims. Not for thou is romance on the Infidel saint’s day.
By Edward Rajendra
Love birds are in danger of being trapped by the snoop squads of the Selangor Islamic Affairs Department JAIS this Valentine’s Day, but girls who go ‘commando’ panty-less may just get away with it.
While female students in institutes of higher learning in Selangor are being encouraged by word of mouth or via the grapevine, electronic or otherwise, about not wearing panties on that day to express their love for their boyfriends, the JAIS officers are all worked up over these deviant acts.
Jais director Datuk Mohamed Khusrin Munawi said he was disgusted by the promotion of such immoral activities.”Muslims must understand that Valentine’s Day is not for them. We will not allow Muslim students to be taken in by such celebrations that deviate from the teachings of Islam.”
At this moment, we are unable to determine the source of the ‘no-panties movement’, but those encouraging such a culture are irresponsible,” he added.
Was recently in the historic town of Malacca in Malaysia and strolling through its old quarter when we chanced on one of several shops that sold offering for the dearly departed. The Chinese believe that when people die they go to a Second Life-like parallel universe where they would still enjoy the materialistic things that their relatives offer to them.
Imagination and a mercenary streak has ensured that the makers of these items, which are burnt as offerings to the dead, have kept up with the times. Hence you have paper cans of beer, paper Mercedes cars (complete with chauffeur), paper handphones and most mod cons you can think of, including the houseboys and pembantus.
Unspun was, however, still struck by the novelty of it all when he and Loved One came across this shop near Malacca’s famous Cheng Hoon Teng Temple and its shopfront display of sexy underwear for the dead. Doesn’t this make you wonder what kind of a relative would buy such merchandise for their dearly departed (and what sort of character she must have been when alive. Granted could be a He at which case…kinky!)?
Is the Malaysian spinning slowly out of control?
Now we have a US trav el waring for Americans travelling to Sabah:
Warden Notice – Travel in Sabah
January 15, 2010
There are indications that both criminal and terrorist groups are planning or intend acts of violence against foreigners in eastern Sabah, notwithstanding the Government of Malaysia’s increased ability to detect, deter and prevent such attacks. The Abu Sayyaf Group, based in the southern Philippines, has kidnapped foreigners in eastern Sabah in the past. Criminal elements are also responsible for kidnapping and piracy committed against foreigners. Of present concern are the resorts (and transportation to and from) located in isolated areas of eastern Sabah, including Semporna and the islands of Mabul and Sipadan. Please avoid or use extreme caution in connection with any travel in these areas or locations.
The Malaysian Government is totally right, of course, in its explanation that Malays in Malaysia are different from Muslims in other countries such as Indonesia. Its insistence that this difference is justification why the word Allah cannot be used by those of other religions as in Indonesia and in Arab nations are, however, spurious.
Marina Mahathir has written in her blog about how Arab nations make no fuss about Christians using the word Allah. Unspun has little knowledge about the Middle East but having grown up in Malaysia and spent 14 years in Indonesia feels somewhat qualified to examine the government’s claim that Malays in Malaysia are different from those in Indonesia. Let me count just three ways (Unspun is aware that the three points are generalizations and contain their quota of untruths but generalizations sometimes capture some truth too that may spur informed conversations, hopefully, and it is in this spirit that this post is written):
1. Malaysian Malays get all confused between race, ethnicity and religion, Indonesians don’t
In Malaysia Malays are all Muslims. If they are not Muslims then the Malaysian Constitution itself rules them out of being a Malay. They also think that Malay is a race and the more idiotic fringes think of it as a super race. Hence the term Ketuanan Melayu.
In Indonesia, everyone has no difficulty identifying themselves as Indonesians in terms of nationality but are clear about their ethnic origins. Malay is considered an ethnic group in Indonesia confined mainly to Riau and parts of Kalimantan. Others are Bataks, Sudanse, Javanese, Bugis etc, who may belong to one religion or another.
2. Malaysian Malays are insecure about themselves, Indonesians are at home in their own skins
Over four decades of affirmative action favoring the Malaysian Malays in the guise of the New Economic Policy (NEP) has resulted in some very warped psyches among the Malays. Unspun thinks it was Rehman Rashid in his book Malaysian Journey many years ago who said that at the back of the minds of many successful Malays is the nagging thought of whether they succeeded on their own steam or because of government largesse and favoritism.
On another level the Malaysian Malays that have not reaped to the full the benefits of the NEP become resentful because they see no way out of their relative meagre existences while the NEP-created Malay tycoons and politicians swish around the country in their Mercedeses and BMWs and live in palatial splendor. They are resentful and angry with the world, not least because somewhere deep down they realize that they are now slave to a handout mentality.
These factors contribute to a lot of hangups and anger, and in such a situation religion and race can be come very potential catalysts.
Of course, there are many Malaysian Malays that are cosmopolitan, liberal and top of the class but many of them end up being critics of the Government or migrate outside the country.
Indonesians, on the other hand, are very comfortable being themselves, some would argue too much so that it breeds a certain level of complacency. But the latter point is not true of the new generation of Indonesians growing up who are confident of their nationality, their ethnic roots and their capabilities. The Indonesian business scene may be a jungle but it is a rather fair jungle to all those to venture into it. Many have succeeded on their own steam and you can almost sense a new level of confidence and optimism in Indonesia today.
3. Malaysian Malays are so subjected by the authoritarian political system of Malaysia that also controls religion that there is little room for moderate religious leaders to thrive
If the Indonesian government were to be so silly as to claim that the use of the word Allah by Christians would confuse the Muslims here, they would be laughed out of town by the likes of the late Gus Dur, who, in spite of his eccentricities was a great voice for religious moderation. You would also have the Mohammadiah and Nadlathul Ulama poo-pooing the notion. In Malaysia you have PAS and UMNO trying to out Islamize each other in their efforts to court the Malay/Muslim voters. As a result no moderate religious figure or voice is able to emerge.
Government officials condemned the violence Monday but defended their position, saying conditions are different in Malaysia from those in neighboring Indonesia or in Arab nations where “Allah” is the common term for God.
“These outrageous incidents are acts of extremism and designed to weaken our diverse communities’ shared commitment to strengthen racial unity,” The Home Ministry secretary, Gen. Mahmood Adam, told reporters after briefing foreign diplomats on the situation.
“They don’t understand the situation here,” he said of the diplomats. “They just want to know why it can be allowed in other countries and not here.”
He said he told them: “Be fair, you have to compare apples to apples, oranges to oranges. Our landscape is different from other countries. Malays here are different from other countries. The landscape here is different from Indonesia so we can’t compare.”
The violence has strained relations among Malays, who are mostly Muslim and who make up 60 percent of the population, and the Chinese and Indian minorities, who are Christian, Hindu and Buddhist.
Indonesia is less divided, with Muslims making up 90 percent of its population of 240 million.
Some Muslims in Malaysia say they fear that Christians are trying to win converts by using the word “Allah.” They say Muslim believers could be confused by the use.
Was having a chat with some friends about the Allah issue and one of them seems to recall that sometime in the 1980s or 1990s the Religious Department in malaysia decreed that Christians should worship in English or Latin and Hindus in Sanskrit.
Sounds preposterous but what is the Allah issue today about if not preposterous. If anyone has any access to NST or Star archives could they be so good to look them up and post their findings here? One needs to trace the pedigree of such stupidity.
This Allah issue in Malaysia is getting ridiculous and dangerous – the latest developments include the firebombings of churches in Taiping.
Ironically Taiping, where Unspun grew up in the state of Perak in Malaysia, is means “Great Peace” in Chinee. It was given the name after a bloody civil war between rival Hokkien and Cantonese migrants in the tin trade. For many years since Taiping has enjoyed the serenity of its namesake and the biggest action in town when Unspun was growing up was when they installed traffic lights in the road junctions.
The firebombings last week has destroyed whatever Great Peace Taiping seems to have had. Perhaps it is a sign of the times.
In this entire hoo ha one question that needs to e asked is what is the role of the Malaysian Government playing in all this? If you will recall, it was the Malaysian Government that triggered the issue in the first place when the Home Minister forbade the Catholic Church to use the word Allah in its newsletter Herald.
When the Church successfully challenged the order in the Malaysian High Court, the Malaysian Government said it would appeal, and it did on the grounds that if the Catholics were allowed to use the word Allah there MIGHT be racial conflict.
The problem with prophecies is that they tend to be self-fulfilling. So did the Malaysian Government inadvertently suggest the idea of racial conflict or was it cynically prescient in predicting the future?
This is a question worth thinking about. But while pondering about this, what to do about the genie that is being let out of the bottle with the firebombings of the churches in KL and Taiping?
Here Malaysians should Look South and learn from the Indonesians about religious harmony. When there were riots in 1997 the more responsible Muslim groups not only did not partake in the destruction of churches and calling for calm, they actively form brigades to guard against the violent attacks of their fellow muslims against churches. How cool is that?
And for those, like the Malaysian Government, who advance the idiotic argument that the use of the word Allah by other religious groups would encourage Muslims to change their religions, they should also Look South to Indonesia, the most populous Muslim country in the world where over 90 percent of its residents have been and remain Muslims.
Here churches use Allah freely in their sermons and in the Bibles they use, Muslims do not whip themselves into a fervor if Muslims decide to change religions, and Allah is just another word for God, whether they are of Christian, Muslim or other persuasions. And the result? No widespread defection of Muslims to other religions. Go figure!