September 27, 2007

Political or Non-Political?

Posted in Malaysia, Reflections at 1:08 am by egalitaria

(photo from – thanks in advance, Jeff!)

Today when one of the PKR members wanted to distribute flyers and was stopped by the Bar because this was meant to be a non-political event (and later the President disassociated the Bar/event from any political parties’ banners and propaganda that were brought along)… I asked myself the question, is this political or is it not?

If we see the appointment of judges and promotion of judges as being influenced heavily by political circles, then we must also see the cleaning up of it as a step in a political direction – purely because the circles of influence are one and the same.

In order to change the decision-making, policy-making process in the country, we must engage at a political level, because as we all know, lines between the pillars of Judiciary, Executive and Legislature are so blurred. So everything we do is at some level, political.

What it meant today, of course, and understandably, was that any one political party’s message should not be assumed to be that of the Bar’s. Rightfully so. Because principles of justice, integrity, honour and dignity cut across all parties, individuals and affiliations.

BUT having said that, lawyers have their cases to fight. Your average Citizen Joe does not, and cannot know how to engage otherwise than to join the political front in whichever way he so chooses.

How to be involved in politics without joining a party: The lowest common denominator that each person has is the power of the vote. This is not new info. The level at which we engage policies, politics, change – eventually lies with the vote. Nazri openly said before that politicians will not do anything if their positions at MP level are not in question. Absolute power corrupts absolutely. Vote for whom stands for the right principles, and make sure these are carried out correctly.



  1. Roy said,

    actually maybe the word “partisan” should have been used instead of “political”.

    The statement, “the Iraq war is unjust” is political.
    The statement, “the republicans are heartless” is partisan.

    “I support greater rights for disabled persons” is political.
    “MP ____ is a champion for disabled persons” is partisan.

  2. painkille said,

    A lot has already been discussed about the demo and march to the Istana. That’s an old story.

    It is true that the right to gather and freedom of speech are all enshrined within the constitution. But the move towards a just and democratic society should be more than just that. The role of institutions (like the judiciary, police, government, media and SPR) also need to be discussed.

    By dwelling on the right or wrong about the demo, while not discussing Bersih’s appeals and communique, we are indirectly supporting the ruling government’s destructive schemes.

    One, we are confirming the lies of the propoganda machine that we are merely an angry mob that only knows how to march on the streets. Two, we are incapable or not interested in discussing the heart of the matter i.e. Electoral reform. Three, that we ourselves are easily distracted from achieving the purposes we all set out.

    Let’s move on to discuss and debate the content of Bersih’s demand.

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