"Silence is not an option
 when things are ill-done."
                            - Lord Alfred Denning

"Where the laws are not supreme,
 there do demagogues spring up."
                            - Aristotle, "Politics", 4th Century BC

"All virtue is summed up in dealing justly."
                            - Aristotle, "Nicomachean Ethics, 4th Century BC

"If you give me
 six lines
 written by the most honest man
 I will find
 something in them
 to hang him."
                            - Cardinal, duc de Richelieu

"When a man is wronged, or even if he only thinks he is wronged, especially
when his honour has been put in doubt, he may not be silent. He owes it not
only to himself but also to his family and his friends to put the record
straight. He may do it quietly in the peace and security of his home. He may
do it in a court of law. He may not succeed, but he must try.

But when a man who is a public figure is wronged before the whole world he
must speak out more forcefully so that he is heard. For when a public figure
is wronged, his office is also wronged. And if a court of law does not
vindicate him, he may appeal against such a court. If there is no court to
appeal to, he may not be silent: he must tell the world his story."
                            - Tun Salleh Abas, 1989
                            (Former Lord President and Chief Justice of Malaysia)
                            (sacked unceremoniously by the Prime Minister, Dr.M)

People have asked me, "What is it that you're trying to reform anyway?"

This is my reply:

There are three levels of reform that we should seek now.

1. Reformation of power
2. Reformation of the people
3. Reformation of self

Note: These are only my personal thoughts on Reformation. I do not purport to
represent Anwar Ibrahim in any way, although, I suspect, that there are many
parallels. I too, believe in the dire need to "MENEGAK KEADILAN"

1. Reformation of power
"Power tends to corrupt, and absolute power corrupts absolutely"
                                                         - Lord Acton

Humans are, by our very existence, imperfect. Therefore, civilized society has
developed a system of power that is decentralized. Constitutions all over the
world, Malaysia's included, envisage a separation of powers doctrine, with an
in-built system of checks and balances, to deal with this human imperfection.
The Constitution of the Federation of Malaysia segregates power accordingly:
Legislative power rests in the Federal Parliament; Judicial power rests in the
Judiciary; Executive authority of the Federation is vested in the Yang
di-Pertuan Agong, elected by the nine Malay hereditary Rulers.

However, in Malaysia, because of the constitutional requirement that a person,
in order to be appointed Prime Minister, or Minister, must be a Member of
Parliament, there is no separation of power between the Legislature and the
Executive. This is worsen by the existence of a Senate, where a majority of
its members are appointed by the government (Executive).

If there are lingering doubts on the death of judiciary independence in
Malaysia, please refer to Amendment to Article 121 of the Constitution with
Dr. Mahathir pushed through in March 1988, when more than 10% of the
electorate were not represented at the Dewan Rakyat (because MPs were held
under ISA - Ops Lalang)

Besides the traditional axes of power, there is also power vested in policy
institutions such as the Central Bank to decide monetary policy, and the
Securities and exchange Commission, which sets and enforces regulations
governing the securities industries. There are also institutions of law
enforcement and security: the Police and the Military. The independence of all
of these bodies are vital to ensure a fair equilibrium of power.

Finally, there is the power held by the media. The media plays a critical
mechanism to check the other institutions of power, through independent
research and investigation, and to provide the public with a fair access to

The events surrounding recent developments in Malaysia resulting from the
summary dismissal of Anwar Ibrahim strongly indicate that the balance of power
has tipped too much in favor of the Executive. This gross imbalance has
already reached a critical level that threatens the future of our nation.

Therefore, the key goal of the reformation movement is to address this power

2. Reformation of the people

"Truth can never be told so as to
 be understood and not be believed"
                      - William Blake. "The Marriage of Heaven and Hell"

The demographics of the Malaysian electorate indicate that a majority of
people are still only at a level of socio-cultural development where
individual economic security is paramount. Limited by a lack of educational
opportunities, and deprived of quality information, it is no wonder that many
adults have adopted a simple followership attitude.

There are about 2.5 million UMNO members. A simple estimation exercise will
highlight how the majority of Malays, in the rural areas are members. Absent
of other sources of information, it is not surprising that they would believe
the only credible source visible to them: Dr. Mahathir and the local media.

This second reformation goal is not about going against Dr. Mahathir, but an
educational reformation. We need to help our fellow Malaysians to learn how
to think critically, to weigh the pros and cons, and to make thought-through
decisions. In other words, we need to advance from the
"datok-aku-pangkah-dacing, bapak-aku-pangkah-dacing, aku-pun-pangkah-dacing-aje
- lah" mentality. By all means, "pangkah dacing", as long as you've thought
it through.

This is a long-term goal. We need to create a generation of Malaysians that
think critically. We need to start by telling our kids it is OK to question
teachers and parents, provided it is done politely and respectfully. But
demand explanations and don't settle for "Because I say so".

3. Reformation of self

Finally, an introspective struggle. As Anwar Ibrahim says, ""Qu anfusakum wa
ahlikum nara...  ibda' bi nafsika", (mula dari diri kita dengan semangat kita). We
should each take time to reflect on what truly motivates us as individuals and
as Malaysians.

The past decade of rapid economic growth may have resulted in an overemphasis
on material wealth, at the expense of spiritual, psychological, and cultural
development. In this regard, I have found the nine challenges of Vision 2020
to be a very enlightening beacon.

To each his/her own.

"Not every end is the goal. The end of a melody is not its goal, and yet if a
melody has not reached its end, it has not reached its goal."
             - Friedrich Nietzsche, "The Wanderer and His Shadow"

Ultimately, this reformation movement should not be about Dr. Mahathir or
Anwar. We should in fact try to advance beyond these "personality-based"
politics. It is about the principles of truth and justice. Regardless of his
political agenda, Anwar Ibrahim has been treated unjustly. Nobody, regardless
of race, gender, nationality, creed, deserved the cruel treatment which he had
to endure. We can only hope that this is the beginning of the end.

"You have created doubts and suspicion among them without their
 being able to clear themselves. It is ELEMENTARY JUSTICE that
 people MUST BE ALLOWED to give THEIR side of the story."

           - Dr. Mahathir Mohamad
             written to Auditor-General, Tan Sri Ahmad Noordin Zakaria
             on his investigations of the BMF scandal in the early 80s
            (emphasis mine)

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