Friday, 4 February 2011

Attitudes And Fortitude

M Bakri Musa wrote: Malaysia in the Era of Globalization #51 Chapter Six: Malaysia: Assets and Liabilities. Enhancing Special Privileges.

Do click on the link to read the article.

The article was forwarded to one of the e-Groups I moderate by a member, "X" who is a retired senior officer in the armed forces. The following was the exchange which is the subject of the blogpost title, "Attitudes And Fortitude". Some parts have been removed for privacy reasons.


Comment 1 (From Y, a senior government servant):

"Abang X,

This may sound like preaching but being very familiar with the communication laws (I was actively involved in their drafting and passing by Parliament), I want to remind members of the list that forwarding any material on line that is seditious in nature is a very serious offence, and it opens us all to the possibility of prosecution for participating in the propagation of seditious material. As such, I would like to state that as a list member, I disassociate myself completely from the material written by one Bakri Musa which ended in my inbox unsolicited.

Regards, Y"


Comment 2 (From me as e-Group Moderator)

"Dear Y,

Thank you for the warning. I think we shall put a caveat in the e-Group web-page which is along the lines of your statement: “As such, I would like to state that as a list member, I disassociate myself completely from the material written by one Bakri Musa which ended in my inbox unsolicited.”

Hopefully that would provide some form of blanket immunity or panacea to members of the e-list. Personally, I hate to see freedom of speech being stifled in the name of sedition or fascism being cloaked in nationalism. There are opinions that the Sedition Act should be repealed.




Comment 3 (From X)

"Dear Y & Cheah,

There is a clear escape clause for the elist which states " If it is offensive to you, then don't continue reading it".

Admittedly, I am on the distribution list of Dr. Bakri Musa. Today, the draconian Sedition Act is with utmost vulgarity and cowardice is thrown at me. Why did they not throw the shit at me when my life was "dihujung senapang" against the militants of the CPM, the enemy in the Congo, the Indons in Konfrantasi and the the PGRS in Sarawak? Do you, Y, by any chance believe that I have lost the conquest of fear? I have not lost my balls. The Sedition Act was a Colonial invention, and we are rather happy to perpetuate its backward and barbaric nature. That was how we had Tunisia and currently Tahrir in Egypt.

I remain,

Agi Idup Agi Ngelaban."


Comment 4 (From me)

"Dear X,

Thanks for reminding us of the escape clause which I put in 8 years ago when I started this e-Group. Knowing the nature of (---), it was necessary. The following is the exact notice:
The rule of thumb is:
“if it is offensive to you, then don’t continue reading it”
“if you think it will offend most people here, then don’t post it”
Sort of looks like an irresistible force meeting an immovable object doesn’t it? Well it did not prevent us from being classified as “Adult Category” by Yahoo [I still blame (--) for this :o)] but life in here goes on.
Perhaps our eminent member here, the journalist (--) would like to share his opinion on the subject."


Comment 5 (From Z, a Malaysian living in Singapore)

"Many decades/centuries ago, when religious groups were running the show at different corners on this earth, they also passed law such as death/jail for questioning “god” or the religious rituals or law (which were enacted to either keep the area of control in order OR to protect certain corrupted leaders)

One will see more laws will the ones in power are threatened."


Comment 6 (From X)

"Dear Z,

In Malaysia, there is the actual Sedition Act which the civil servants as sycophantic mercenaries proudly amplified from what was inherited from the Colonial British. They automatically become immune to this barbarism coz they protect each other (re: Syed Hussein Al-Attas, Sociology of Corruption).The other phenomenon is that everything is seditious if you criticize Islam, including the use of Allah by non-Muslims or pray for your departed at the Tugu Negara.

My job, for the best part of my life, by blood and sweat was to ensure that Malaysians had a good sleep every night. Funny about life!? Some of us who carried weapons for the Country were better schooled and had better education that the Chief Secretaries of the Gormen. It tickled us when two of us - Tan Sris (--) and (--) were made Chief Secretaries. Civil servants shud not shake in their pants in fright that there is an anti-BN ghoul behind each tree in Malaysia. There is a factor in leadership called moral courage."


Comment 7 (From me)

"Hear! Hear!"


Comment 8 (From Y)

"Hi Cheah and Abang X,

Your suggestion below might work but I'm not a lawyer so I don't know if it will.

But the other suggestion in another email to merely say 'delete if offensive' will not work in the case of seditious material especially against rulers.

I have read all the other 'hangat' responses as well and understand that people have varied feelings towards all happenings around us. Nonetheless, regardless of how one feels about certain situations, the law on online communication is what it is and the laws on rulers' rights also is what it is and still prevails.

Chatting over a drink or in one's home is one thing but forwarding such material online and the discussion of such privileges does render the sender/forwarder open to prosecution in this country.

It is of course every reader's choice to continue forwarding. I am merely protecting myself and tried to share some information that I happen to know. No one is obliged to follow it. As I said, I'm not preaching. Its everyone's choice if you wish to do first-hand research on the other side of prison walls.

Rgds, Y."


Comment 9 (Also from Y)

"Abang X,

Pls read my final response to Cheah. Its as clear as clear can be. No one disputes your heroism and sacrifice just like that of every individual who helped this country develop one way or another, including even thru the exchange of emails such as these. Neither is there yet a perfect law in the world.

But one lives by rules until the rules change, then we live by those rules until they change and so life goes on.

Salam, Y."


Comment 10 (From X)

"Dear Y,

I have taken the trouble to send Bakri Musa's article to my (--) colleague, and senior lawyer, Datuk (--) for his learned view if the ingredients of Musa's article contain any seditious part or parts. I have read it three times and could not find any seditious inclusions in it. I cannot understand how anyone can be spooked by it. They are all well considered propositions for a better Malaysia. Making royalty more acceptable to the rakyat is surely not seditious!!

Rithuan Tee bin Abdullah writes vicious anti-national postings, pro-Islam, pro-Perkasa, and BN in Utusan. There has been no redress of wrong. Blardy double-standards.

Btw, Dr Bakri Musa is a medical specialist and a prolific writer. He was MCKK."


Comment 11 (From Y)

"Hi Abang X,

Sabar ajelah. Many worse things in the world to worry about. Happy holidays. Y."



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