Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Believe In Me: Barack Obama

A Kadir Jasin

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TODAY, Jan. 20, Barack Obama will be sworn in as the 44th President of the United States of America, making him the first mixed parentage person to hold the post in 332 years.

He is half white and half black. His father was a Black African from Kenya and his mother a White woman from Kansas.

The 47-year old Obama won a landslide victory in the Nov. 4, 2008 presidential election, thanks in part to the unpopularity of the George W. Bush Republican presidency and the financial meltdown that occurred just months earlier.

Thus it’s both a boom and a bane for President Obama to take office at this critical juncture. He inherits a very sick US and global economy, and a string of disastrous foreign policy misadventures of his warlike predecessor.

So, what does his inauguration has in store for the US and world? A lot -- whether we like it or not. Briefly:

The economy

He has no choice but clear the mess created during the Bush two-term presidency. Just days ago he had asked the outgoing Bust Administration for the remaining $350 billion (RM1,260 billion) in the Wall Street rescue money.

So it can be expected that he will disburse the fund, which, hopefully, will send positive ripples around the globe. Even we in Malaysia need it given the state of economy and our stock market.

America and the world do buy we cannot sell, plain and simple. That an average of 6,000 American families are losing their homes everyday cannot be good news for us.

“I felt it would be irresponsible for me, with the first $350 billion already spent, to enter into a new administration without any potential ammunition should there be any potential emergency or weakening of the financial systems,” Obama said after meeting the visiting Mexican president, Felipe Calderon.

Obama’s Economic Policy Platorm

1. To restore fairness to the tax code and provide 95 percent of working Americans the tax relief they need. They will create a new "Making Work Pay" tax credit of up to $500 per person, or $1,000 per working family;

2. To provide tax relief for small businesses and startups. He promises to eliminate all capital gains taxes on startup and small businesses to encourage innovation and job creation; and

3. To Fight for fair trade. He promises to fight for a trade policy that opens up foreign markets to support good American jobs. They will use trade agreements to spread good labor and environmental standards around the world.

Foreign Policy

Obama’s foreign policy platform states, among other things, that:-

1. Secure loose nuclear materials from terrorists – Obama and Vice Presiden Joseph Robinette "Joe" Biden will secure all loose nuclear materials in the world within four years, and will negotiate a verifiable global ban on the production of new nuclear weapons material to curb the spread of nuclear weapons;

2. Pursue tough, direct diplomacy without preconditions to end the threat from Iran: Obama will present the Iranian regime with a clear choice. If Iran abandons its nuclear program and support for terrorism, they would offer incentives like membership in the World Trade Organization. If Iran continues its troubling behavior, Obama will step up our economic pressure and political isolation;

3. Renew American diplomacy: Obama will renew American diplomacy to meet the challenges of the 21st century. They will rebuild our alliances. And they would be willing to meet with all nations, friend and foe, to advance American interests.

On Israel

1. Ensure a Strong U.S.-Israel Partnership: Barack promises to strongly support the U.S.-Israel relationship, believe that our first and incontrovertible commitment in the Middle East must be to the security of Israel, America's strongest ally in the Middle East. They support this closeness, stating that that the United States would never distance itself from Israel;

2. Support Israel's Right to Self Defense: During the July 2006 Lebanon war, Barack Obama stood up strongly for Israel's right to defend itself from Hezbollah raids and rocket attacks, cosponsoring a Senate resolution against Iran and Syria's involvement in the war, and insisting that Israel should not be pressured into a ceasefire that did not deal with the threat of Hezbollah missiles. He believes strongly in Israel's right to protect its citizens; and

3. Support Foreign Assistance to Israel: Obama has consistently supported foreign assistance to Israel. They defend and support the annual foreign aid package that involves both military and economic assistance to Israel and have advocated increased foreign aid budgets to ensure that these funding priorities are met. They have called for continuing U.S. cooperation with Israel in the development of missile defense systems.

On Iraq

1. Obama will responsibly end the war in Iraq. Immediately upon taking office, Obama promises to give his Secretary of Defense and military commanders a new mission in Iraq: successfully ending the war. The removal of our troops will be responsible and phased;

2. Encourage political accommodation. Obama will press Iraq's leaders to take responsibility for their future and to substantially spend their oil revenues on their own reconstruction; and

3. Increase stability in Iraq and the region. Obama will launch an aggressive diplomatic effort to reach a comprehensive compact on the stability of Iraq and the region. They also will address Iraq's refugee crisis.


The inauguration celebrations, how much will they cost?
The short answer, according to the US media reports, is more than $150 million (RM540 million) — the most expensive ever. (By comparison, George W. Bush's 2005 inauguration cost $42.3 million (RM152 million) and Bill Clinton managed with $33 million (RM119 million) in 1993.

And President Bush has to declare an emergency in Washington D.C. in order to supplement the $15-million (RM54 million) Congress has already allotted for security measures.

The reason? Obama received Secret Service protection very early in his presidential campaign and record crowds -- anywhere from 1.5 to 3 million -- are expected to converge on the US capital.

The Homeland Security Secretary, Michael Chertoff, to the Associated Press: “This will be the most security, as far as I'm aware, that any inauguration's had."

But at the end of the day, a US President is a US President. He will always be under the spell of the lobbyists, the big companies and, not to forget, the omnipresent and omnipotent Jewish-Israel lobby.

“I am asking you to believe. Not just in my ability to bring about change in Washington…. I’m asking you to believe in yours.” – Barack Obama.

PS: The information is mostly from Obama’s official website.

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Pengundi Masih Marah Kepada BN

A Kadir Jasin

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[Versi Yang Dirombak/Revised Version)

PADA hari Jumaat, 16 Januari, akhbar arus perdana Berita Harian menyiarkan tajuk berita berbunyi “Harapan BN Cerah” dan meramalkan parti kerajaan pusat itu akan mengekalkan kerusi Parlimen Kuala Terengganu.

Akhbar kembarnya, New Straits Times pula berkata : “Barisan Upbeat, Pas Edgy” (Barisan Yakin, Pas Gementar).

BH menokok tambah dengan menyiarkan temu ramah dengan Timbalan Perdana Menteri, Mohd Najib Abdul Razak di mana Timbalan Presiden Umno itu menyangkal persamaan antara Kuala Terengganu dan Permatang Pauh.

Utusan Malaysia memilih tajuk berita yang lebih neutral berbunyi “Jangan Terpengaruh Serangan Peribadi” dan semalam (17 Januari) menyiarkan tajuk ringkas “Siapa Pilihan Pengundi?”

Ternyata sekali BH dan NST membuat ramalan yang songsang sama ada kerana maklumat dan perisikannya tidak tetap atau kerana mahu menjaga hati pihak-pihak tertentu.

Seperti umum sudah maklum BN gagal mempertahankan Kuala Terengganu malah telah kalah dengan teruk.

Calonnya, Wan Ahmad Farid Wan Salleh tewas kepada calon Pas, Abdul Wahid Endut dengan 2,631 undi. Dia memperoleh 30,252 undi berbanding Abdul Wahid yang memperoleh 32,883 undi.

Pengundi Kuala Terengganu nampaknya tidak termakan janji melangit yang dibuat oleh Umno dan BN malahan ahli dan penyokong Umno sendiri nampaknya masih marah dan menyimpan dendam terhadap kepemimpinan parti mereka.

Kekalahan ini pastinyalah memberi kesan yang besar kepada BN dan Umno, khasnya kepada Mohd Najib yang menjadi kepala perang Umno dan BN walaupun beliau berkata kekalahan itu tidak bermakna pengundi menolak BN dan memberi undi tidak percaya kepadanya.

Kekalahan ini sedikit sebanyak membayangkan yang pengundi Kuala Terengganu belum bersedia untuk memberi “endorsement” kepada beliau atau kepada proses pemulihan Umno dan BN yang diuar-uarkan itu.

Bagi Umno dan BN, kegagalan mempertahankan Kuala Terengganu memberi gambaran bahawa penolakan terhadapnya semakin meluas sejak pilihan raya umum Mac lalu.

Ini tentunya akan menyukarkan lagi kedudukan Mohd Najib apabila beliau mengambil alih pemerintahan negara Mac ini.

Tetapi seandainya beliau faham sentimen pengundi dan bersedia membuat perubahan yang drastik ke atas Umno, BN dan kerajaan selepas mengambil alih pemerintahan beliau mungkin dapat meredakan kemarahan pengundi khasnya dan rakyat jelata amnya.

Kekalahan di Kuala Terengganu adalah sumpahan dan bala yang sangat besar kepada Umno dan BN kerana ia adalah kerusi BN dan terletak di dalam negeri yang memberi sokongan yang sangat kuat kepada BN pada pilihan raya umum Mac lalu.

Gagal menakluki semula Permatang Pauh Ogos lalu tidak teruk kerana ia kubu Anwar Ibrahim dan terletak di dalam negeri yang menolak BN pada pilihan raya umum lalu.

Sekiranya Umno dan BN gagal memahami sebab musabab kekalahannya di Kuala Terengganu dan mengambil tindakan mengatasi kesilapannya, tragedi yang sama akan menimpanya pada pilihan raya kecil yang lain dan, yang lebih mendesak, pada pilihan raya Dewan Undangan Negeri Sarawak tidak lama lagi.

Jelas daripada keputusan Kuala Terengganu bahawa pemilihan calon dan penanganan isu tempatan adalah kunci kejayaan dalam pilihan raya kecil.

Nyata andaian umum mengenai ketidaksuaian calon BN tetap apabila dia bukan sahaja gagal mempertahankan kerusi Kuala Terengganu sebaliknya kalah dengan teruk.

Janji pembangunan, penaburan wang dan kempen yang keterlaluan menyebabkan ramai pemilih berasa jijik. Begitu juga dengan peranan media massa arus perdana yang tidak berpijak kepada realiti apabila membuat laporan dan analisis menyokong Umno dan BN.

Boleh jadi juga pengundi masih belum puas hati dengan perubahan yang berlaku di Umno dan BN maka mereka terus menghukum Umno dan BN walaupun Abdullah sudah berjanji akan mengundurkan diri dan menyerahkan jawatan kepada Mohd Najib Mac ini.

Mungkin juga kaedah kempen “carpet bombing” oleh Umno dan BN, dan pergantungannya kepada jentera kerajaan, media massa arus perdana dan orang luar tidak lagi berkesan malah memualkan pemilih.

Kemenangan calon Pas membuktikan yang parti itu serta rakan-rakannya dalam Pakatan Rakyatnya semakin kuat dan diyakini walaupun wujud perbezaan yang besar antara Pas dan DAP.

Apa pun, semua pihak wajib menerima pilihan yang dibuat oleh pengundi Kuala Terengganu itu.

To recap,

1. Umno and BN are not getting stronger, not yet;

2. The voters are yet to be fully convinced that they have changed;

3. Wan Ahmad Farid being the PM’s political secretary and is linked to Khairy Jamaluddin and 4th Floor was the wrong choice as a candidate;

4. Umno must be brave enough to acknowledge that Abdullah, Khairy, the 4th Floor Boys and some segments of the mainstream media are a liability during the by-election;

5. Mohd Najib is yet to sharpen his skills and be totally accepted as the anointed successor to Abdullah. He has own baggage that he needs to unload;

6. To make thing worse for Umno and the BN, Pas had successfully put up a much better candidate;

7. Umno and the BN have not changed their campaign tactics and styles. It's still the carpet bombing method;

8. The people are put off by the huge police presence and the presence of so many unfamiliar outside campaigners who are unfamiliar with KT;

9. The voters were put off by candidates of the Umno election this March using KT to “canvass” for votes or merely to show their faces to the party bosses;

10. Mixing local, national and international issues (Gaza) confused the voters;

11. Attempt to exploit the Hudud Law to pin down Pas and to stir up squabbles among PR parties backfired or had not affected the oppositions much;

12. The voters are getting more mature. They are not as easily spooked, intimidated and bribed;

13. They know now that the development money is their own money and are, therefore, entitled to it;

14. Mohd Najib, by not accepting defeat with humility, suggests the general arrogance of Umno and BN leaders and their inability to accept the fact that Umno and BN are no longer supreme;

15. Change or Umno and the BN will suffer further humiliation in the coming months and years, starting with the Sawarak state election;

16. For Umno, starts by firing those non-performing staff at its headquarters, remove those state liaison chiefs whose states fell to the opposition parties in the last general elections and not elect them to the Supreme Council in the March party election;

17. Come down from the high chairs. Stop from being treated like Kings, Lords and Masters. Sit on the plastic chairs with the rakyat and the voters. You are Wakil Rakyat. You are elected by them. You are not their Lords and Masters. They are, in fact, your Masters; and

18. They elected you. They never elected your spouses, your children, your sons- and daughters-in-law, your kins and clansmen.

Thank you and God bless.


Wednesday, January 14, 2009

I am sorry Gaza

I am sorry Gaza
I cannot paint a good picture of you
the whole world is watching
just like watching the American Idol
World Wrestling Champion
Oprah Show

I am sorry Gaza
I have no better words
to describe you.

Ramli Abdul Rahim
13 January 2009

Monday, January 12, 2009

Monday, January 12, 2009


Ketua Jabatan Ekonomi London School of Economics and Political Science, Profesor Danny Quah, meminta pemimpin dan rakyat Malaysia “jangan panik” kerana “dunia belum kiamat” dan “Asia dijangka tidak mengalami kemelesetan drastik walaupun terdapat jangkaan akan menerima tempias krisis kewangan di Amerika Syarikat.”

Ekonomi Malaysia Mampu Pulih Dalam Tempoh Enam Bulan

KUALA LUMPUR, 10 Jan (Bernama) -- Ekonomi Malaysia mampu pulih daripada kelembapan semasa dalam tempoh antara tiga dan enam bulan, menerusi sokongan kerajaan serta dasar yang kukuh.

Ketua Jabatan Ekonomi London School of Economics and Political Science, Profesor Danny Quah berkata Timbalan Perdana Menteri Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak mempunyai keupayaan untuk membawa Malaysia ke tahap pembangunan ekonomi selanjutnya.

"Kerajaan tidak wajar terlalu memberi penekanan terhadap defisit bajet, sebaliknya memberi tumpuan terhadap malaksanakan dasar-dasar yang mampu meningkatkan daya saingan negara bagi menampung pertumbuhan dan pergerakan ekonomi," kata Quah pada ceramah Persatuan Alumni London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE) Malaysia.

Meskipun unjuran ekonomi global yang suram, Quah memberi mesej jaminan yang kukuh.

"Jangan panik. Dunia belum kiamat. Asia dijangka tidak mengalami kemelesetan drastik walaupun terdapat jangkaan akan menerima tempias krisis kewangan di Amerika Syarikat," kata Quah. – BERNAMA

Apa yang diramalkan oleh Quah mungkin benar. Tetapi, kerajaan Malaysia wajar meramalkan keadaan yang eksrim, yang terburuk. Indikator kesuraman ekonomi dunia berada di depan mata kita. Jadi, jangan terlalu bergantung kepada ramalan seperti ini. – Ruhanie Ahmad
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Thursday, January 08, 2009


Pilihan Raya Kecil (PRK) Parlimen Kuala Terengganu amat signifiken kepada UMNO, Barisan Nasional (BN), PAS dan Pakatan Rakyat (PR). UMNO dan BN mengharapkan kemenangan Datuk Wan Ahmad Farid Wan Salleh. PAS dan PR mengharapkan kejayaan Mohd. Abdul Wahid Endut.

Kepada UMNO pusat, kemenangan Farid selaku proksi Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi, akan jadi indikator kepada penerimaan para pengundi kepada Abdullah di saat-saat akhir kepimpinannya. Kemenangan ini juga akan mengukur komitmen Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak, selaku pengarah PRK tersebut, untuk memastikan kemenangan proksi Abdullah.

Kepada UMNO Terengganu, kemenangan Farid akan mencerminkan tahap perpaduan di kalangan pemimpin parti berkenaan di peringkat negeri. Ia akan jadi manifestasi penerimaan kelompok Datuk Seri Idris Jusoh selaku bekas Menteri Besar, kepada kelompok Datuk Ahmad Said, selaku Menteri Besar mutakhir, dan sebaliknya.

Pelbagai komponen BN bukan UMNO pula mahu memastikan kemenangan Farid untuk membuktikan bahawa tahap kesetiakawanan mereka dengan UMNO yang retak di era pasca PRU12 telah pulih seperti sediakala.

Kepada PAS, kemenangan Wahid akan membuktikan tahap persefahaman antara kelompok Datuk Seri Haji Hadi Awang selaku presiden, kelompok Datuk Nik Aziz Nik Mat selaku Musyidul Am, dan kelompok Erdogan pimpinan Nasaruddin Mat Isa selaku Timbalan Presiden.

Kepada PR, kemenangan Wahid akan jadi ujian utama sama ada pakatan yang longgar dan tidak berdaftar itu akan wujud secara berwibawa dan bersatupadu setelah melalui proses persengketaan antara PKR dengan PAS di Selangor dan antara PKR dengan DAP di Pulau Pinang baru-baru ini. Kemenangan Wahid juga akan membuktikan sama ada pakatan siasah ini akan terus wujud atau mungkin menemui jalan penghujungnya tidak lama lagi.

Begitulah hakikatnya PRK Parlimen Kuala Terengganu kepada politik nasional Malaysia. Banyak pihak meramalkan BN akan berjaya. Tetapi, ada juga pihak mahukan PR memang. Kedua-dua pihak ini wajar menganalisa huraian di atas sebelum meramalkan siapa akan menang dan siapa akan kecundang. Akhir sekali, akuilah hakikat bahawa Allah SWT sahaja akan menentukan segala-galanya! – Ruhanie Ahmad

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Sunday, January 04, 2009


Pencapaian matlamat adalah salah satu daripada langkah pertama dalam mencapai kejayaan. Terdapat beberapa sebab mengapa matlamat menjadi amat penting dalam kehidupan seseorang, antaranya seperti berikut:

1. Memenuhi kehendak asas

Setiap perlakuan dan tindakan kita adalah berdasarkan maklumat. Matlamat menunjukkan arah dan tujuan kita untuk menghadapi kehidupan. Ini adalah satu kehendak psikologi yang asas bagi semua manusia, sama ada tua ataupun muda.

2. Asas menyalurkan masa, tenaga dan idea

Sistem matlamat dan objektif yang dirancang dengan betul boleh melancarkan segala kegiatan harian. Matlamat menghalang kita daripada mengikut jalan yang salah. Inilah amalan orang yang kuat imannya kepada Allah.

”Mereka beriman kepada Allah dan hari kemudaian, mereka menyuruh mengerjakan yang benar dan melarang mengerjakan yang salah dan menyegerakan pekerjaan yang baik. Mereka itu termasuk orang yang baik-baik (soleh)”.

- al-Imran: 114

”Dan kebaikan-kebaikan apa saja yang mereka kerjakan, tidak akan diingkari Allah ganjarannya. Dan Allah itu mengetahui orang-orang yang memelihara dirinya (daripada kejahatan).”

3. Menwujudkan asas keyakinan dan kemajuan diri.

Apabila kita mula mencapai matlamat yang ditetapkan, maka akan timbul perasaan bangga dan yakin dengan kemajuan yang kita peroleh. Dengan itu, kita akan menetapkan matlamat yang lebih besar dan memiliki keyakinan dan kepercayaan yang sepenuhnya terhadap diri kita sendiri.

4. Membuat kehidupan lebih menarik dan menyeronokkan

Sesungguhnya kebahagian hidup terletak di tangan kita sendiri. Jika kita berjaya mencorak kehidupan yang lebih bermakna, maka kebahagiaan akan sentiasa berada di samping kita. Sebaliknya jika kita sentiasa berkata, Tiada apa yang boleh aku lakukan”’ maka sudah pasti kita menempah kegagalan.

5. Tulang belakang kepada sikap positif

Sikap mental yang positif adalah satu aset yang penting dalam pencapaian matlamat. Asas kepada pendirian positif pulak ialah penetapan matlamat. Kesimpulannya, sikap positif terletak di tengah-tengah penetapan dan pencapaian matlamat.

Apabila kita telah mempunyai matlamat, kita mesti mempunyai rancangan sebagai tindakan dan kemudiannya berusaha sedaya upaya untuk mencapai matlamat tersebut. Matlamat tidak akan dapat dicapai hanya dengan angan-angan. Ia hanya akan menjadi kenyataan apabila diiringi dengan tindakan demi tindakan.

Dengan erti kata lain, kita mesti mengambil langkah-langkah yang positif untuk mencapai matlamat kita. Seorang pemimpin Perancis yang terkenal, iaitu Nepoleon Bonarparte pernah berkata, ”tidak ada perkataan `tidak boleh’ (impossible) dalam kamus aku,””

Dengan kata lain, wujudkan matlamat dan berusahalah secara positif untuk memburu kejayaan. Anggaplah tidak ada apa pun yang mustahil untuk dicapai.

”Sekiranya anda tahu bahawa anda tidak mungkin gagal, apakah pilihan dan tindakan anda?”

Friday, January 02, 2009


tika semua
sedang dibungkus mimpi
aku sendiri
melayan diri
dalam sepi

Ramli Abdul Rahim
Shah ALam
2 Januari 2009
3.03 pagi

Thursday, January 01, 2009

Open Letter to Barack Hussein Obama President-elect of the United States of America

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Dear Mr. President,

I did not vote for you in the Presidential Election because I am Malaysian.

But I consider myself one of your constituents because what you do or say will affect me and my country as well.

I welcome your promise to change. Certainly your country, the United States of America need a lot of changes.

That is because America and Americans have become the best hated people in the world. Even Europeans dislike your arrogance. Yet you were once admired and liked because you freed a lot of countries from conquest and subjugation.

It is the custom on New Year's day for people to make resolutions. You must have listed your good resolutions already. But may I politely suggest that you also resolve to do the following in pursuit of Change.

1) Stop killing people. The United States is too fond of killing people in order to achieve its objectives. You call it war, but today's wars are not about professional soldiers fighting and killing each other. It is about killing people, ordinary innocent people by the hundreds of thousands. Whole countries will be devastated.

War is primitive, the cavemen's way of dealing with a problem. Stop your arms build up and your planning for future wars.

2) Stop indiscriminate support of Israeli killers with your money and your weapons. The planes and the bombs killing the people of Gaza are from you.

3) Stop applying sanctions against countries which cannot do the same against you.

In Iraq your sanctions killed 500,000 children through depriving them of medicine and food. Others were born deformed.

What have you achieved with this cruelty? Nothing except the hatred of the victims and right-thinking people.

4) Stop your scientists and researchers from inventing new and more diabolical weapons to kill more people more efficiently.

5) Stop your arms manufacturers from producing them. Stop your sales of arms to the world. It is blood money that you earn. It is un-Christian.

6) Stop trying to democratize all the countries of the world. Democracy may work for the United States but it does not always work for other countries.

Don't kill people because they are not democratic. Your crusade to democratize countries has killed more people than the authoritarian Governments which you overthrew. And you have not succeeded anyway.

7) Stop the casinos which you call financial institutions. Stop hedge funds, derivatives and currency trading. Stop banks from lending non-existent money by the billions.

Regulate and supervise your banks. Jail the miscreants who made profits from abusing the system.

8) Sign the Kyoto Protocol and other international agreements.

9) Show respect for the United Nations.

I have many other resolutions for change which I think you should consider and undertake.

But I think you have enough on your plate for this 2009th year of the Christian Era.

If you can do only a few of what I suggest you will be remembered by the world as a great leader. Then the United States will again be the most admired nation. Your embassies will be able to take down the high fences and razor-wire coils that surround them.

May I wish you a Happy New Year and a great Presidency.

Yours Sincerely,

Dr Mahathir bin Mohamad

(Former Prime Minister of Malaysia)