The wrap: Malaysia edition
While Malaysia fiddles, its opportunities are running dry - This piece by the Australian columnist Michael Backman touched a raw nerve somewhere. Despite Rafidah's summary dismissal of the article, the truth is, it eloquently articulated the concerns of many Malaysians.
For those interested in an overview of the Dr.M-Badawi faceoff, TIME ASIA has done a decent story. It probably won't be available free forever.
Kuala Lumpur assembly marked by power struggle - An concise AP report of the recent UMNO assembly. For one of the many examples of some of the things that were on the agenda, see here. I have sympathy for our Prime Minister, but this over-the-top NST editorial is just ridiculous. Finally, see this Al-Jazeera article to see how often news is spun differently in both the English-speaking and vernacular press.
Farish Noor is oft-lauded as Malaysia's most straight-talking, irreverent, public intellectual. Utilising postcolonial theory and a deconstructionist framework, he argues that the Malays have accepted the racial construct that British colonisers had imposed on them, namely that of the idle and barbaric race.. It is such a construct that is ironically used to perpetuate existing power relations. I'm not sure if I can fully accept the methodology that Dr. Noor employs (can everything be reduced to discourse analysis and ideology?); nevertheless there are insights to be gleaned from here. There is an an edited version available at this Pakistani newspaper.
[On a related note, here is an Intro to Postcolonial studies which might help if you're feeling a little lost after reading Noor. Dr. Ng Kam Weng's Exploring the role of Orientalism is quite interesting as well.]
The Agora has posted a press release from NECF Malaysia in response to UMNO President's Presidential address.
Also worth reflecting on (and praying through!) is their statement on the Lina Joy case.
Some important Scriptural principles regarding government.
Life as a secret Christian convert, from the BBC. I hope to catch the repeat on radio tomorrow.
Finally, some words from Scripture:
"I urge, then, first of all, that requests, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for everyone — for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness."
- 1 Tim 2:1-2