It’s Payback Time for Muhyiddin, Shafie Apdal and Others

December 1, 2015

It’s Payback Time for Muhyiddin, Shafie Apdal and Others


Former DPM Muhyiddin Yassin is concerned about the “strange things happening in UMNO” which he says reveals an erosion of “responsibility, justice, and trust among certain leaders.”

We would like to tell him, former PM Mahathir Mohamad and other UMNO dissenters, “Now, you know what the rakyat have suffered over these past four decades.”

While we support the efforts within UMNO to make Najib Abdul Razak accountable for his actions, we must not forget that the Internal Security Act was used to persecute people who had legitimate grouses against the government. Many lecturers, politicians and artists were silenced in their prime (1987 Ops Lalang). Many more critics fled overseas to escape imprisonment. And today we are shackled by the Prevention of Terrorism Act, the Sedition Act, Sosma and other laws.

For decades, the lack of a credible opposition and the use of indoctrination crippled democracy and created a nation ruled by fear. Many of us are still afraid to speak out, especially when we see people who were once powerful, like Mahathir and Muhyiddin, ignored or sacked and their characters assassinated.

Mahathir the Mamak

The rakyat need the help of the UMNO rebels, the G25, human rights activists, and NGOs like Bersih to help restore democracy and true governance to Malaysia. Will those in power understand that power cannot last forever? Will they think of the welfare of the nation instead of their party’s interests or their individual interests?

Mahathir and Muhyiddin have acted out of loyalty only to UMNO Baru. They may have mistakenly imagined that they were acting for the good of the nation. Mahathir still maintains that Najib must be removed, but that BN should remain in power. He refuses to accept that UMNO Baru (of his own making) is a major part of the problem.

People in UMNO Baru are blind to many of the problems created by the party. If Najib were to be removed, these same people would continue to call the shots. They are unable to distinguish between what’s right and wrong and what’s just and unjust.

During Mahathir’s rule, UMNO Baru used race, religion and the royal houses to divide the people. We have seen the rise of cronyism and nepotism. We have observed that accountability and taking responsibility do not feature in UMNO Baru’s processes. We have seen the breakdown of independent public institutions like the judiciary, the civil service and the police. We are alarmed by the increase in moral policing, the unstoppable rise of religious bodies and the attack on individual liberties.

In East Malaysia, Sabah is practically overrun by immigrants. The demographics of the nation were destroyed by Project IC, and despite their natural wealth, both Sabah and Sarawak are treated like pariah states when they should be on par with peninsular Malaysia.

Hamidah Osman was unfairly sacked by the UMNO Supreme Council, and it was right for Muhyiddin to come to her defence when he said, “I would like to remind them (the leaders) that UMNO is not a party belonging to any individual. It is a party for all Malays. Do not hurt the Malays with actions that are untrustworthy and irresponsible.”

But then, unfair dismissals, lack of understanding and compassion, injustice and treachery have been endured by the rakyat for many years. Unfortunately, UMNO Baru politicians treat Malaysia as a country belonging to their party.

Finally, isn’t it time for Muhyiddin to realise that race-based politics have been the undoing of Malaysia?


Malaysian Authorities protect Prime Minister Najib Razak and his Rosie Consort

December 1, 2015

Malaysian Authorities protect Prime Minister Najib Razak and his Rosie Consort

by John Berthelsen

Najib and Rosie

The lengths Malaysian authorities are willing to go in the effort to keep a lid on continuing financial scandals involving Najib Razak and his wife, Rosmah Mansor, has taken a new turn with a threat to arrest a prominent lawyer for assisting a US businessman in making a sworn statement on his brother’s reported involvement into the stalled probe.

Police are demanding that Americk Sidhu, who assisted in writing the sworn statement by Atlanta-based businessman Charles Morais of his murdered brother’s reported involvement in the stalled Najib investigation, come in for questioning. Khalid Abu Bakar, Malaysia’s Inspector-General of Police, told local media on November 30 that “we are giving Americk two days to step forward and have his statement recorded.”

On November 26, Morais read a sworn statement to a press conference in Kuala Lumpur that his brother Anthony Kevin Morais, a Malaysian deputy prosecutor whose body was found in a cement-filled oil drum that had been dumped in a river, had said he was assisting in the investigation of Najib and his wife, Rosmah Mansor, before he disappeared. Morais said he had also received a USB drive from his dead brother, to be kept for safekeeping. But he gave no details about what was on the USB drive. Almost immediately after holding the press conference, Charles Morais left the country to go back to the US.

Wanita UMNO

Forgive these UMNO Women for they know not what they are doing

The investigation into allegations of an unexplained US$681 million infusion into Najib’s bank accounts, and the money’s subsequent disappearance, plus irregularities involving the ill-starred 1Malaysia Development Bhd. state-backed investment fund, have metamorphosed into one of Asia’s biggest potential scandals. 

Minutely detailed stories of the financial transactions have appeared in the Sarawak Report, the Wall Street Journal, the New York Times and Asia Sentinel.  They have had no apparent effect on his viability as Prime Minister, with all stories met with denials or charges that the publications were biased despite the fact that Najib and his grasping wife are beginning to attain the legendary status of such outsized kleptomaniacs as the late Ferdinand Marcos in the Philippines and Suharto in Indonesia.

To a semi-public request by US President Barack Obama that Najib free opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim, who was imprisoned on what are widely considered trumped-up charges, Najib replied only that Malaysia must follow the law. Anwar has been labeled a prisoner of conscience by a United Nations committee, which has also demanded that he be freed.

Beyond that, however, multiple allegations involving Najib run back for a more than a decade to the purchases when he was Defense Minister of a cornucopia of military gear including Russian jets, helicopters, patrol boats and submarines, all of which involved allegations of over payments of substantial amounts of money that were kicked back to the United Malays National Organization(UMNO) or went into top cadres’ own pockets.

The biggest – until the onset of the state-backed 1Malaysia Development Bhd investment fund – involved the purchase of French submarines and kickbacks of €114 million to UMNO and the murder of a 28-year-old Mongolian national, Altantuya Shaariibuu, who may have known too much about that scandal. If anything they are an illustration of the lengths to which the leaders of UMNO, a corruption-ridden and sclerotic party that has held power in Malaysia since it became a country, are willing to go to stay in power.

So far, Najib has ridden out the both the French controversy, despite the fact that French authorities developed voluminous evidence of the scandal and made it public, and the current one  by threatening scores of critics with sedition and other charges.

He has fired critical officials including his own Deputy Prime Minister, Muhyiddin Yassin, and Abdul Gani Patail, the Attorney-General, among others. He retains the backing of the 192 cadres of the UMNO whose support is crucial by pouring vast amounts of money into bribes or make-work jobs to maintain their loyalty. On December 8-10, that loyalty is expected to be tested at the UMNO Annual General Assembly, where scores of lower-ranking division chiefs, especially from Johor – Muhyiddin’s home state – have demanded answers over the twin scandals.  Longtime political analysts in Malaysia believe there will be no answers at the AGM and that Najib is prepared to ride out the storm until at least 2018, when the next general election is expected.


Americk has been an increasing thorn in the side of Malaysian authorities since 2008, when he helped to write a sworn declaration for a private detective named Perumal Balasubramaniam that raised spectacular allegations that Najib had an affair with Altantuya, who was murdered in 2006 by two of Najib’s bodyguards when Najib was defense minister and involved in the corruption-riddled purchase of two submarines from the subsidiary of France’s biggest defense company DCN.

Sidhu later played a key role in Balasubramaniam’s subsequent declarations that one of Najib’s brothers and an Indian businessman had collaborated in paying him hundreds of thousands of Malaysian ringgit to rescind his allegations, accompanied with a threat to leave the country hurriedly.  Bala, as he was known, returned to Malaysia to deliver a volley of charges involving Najib’s supposed dalliance with Altantuya and other allegations of corruption, only to die suddenly of a heart attack in 2013.

Charles Morais delivered his sworn statement of his brother’s involvement in the now-stalled investigation and almost immediately left the country to go back to Atlanta, Ga., in the US, where he is involved in the hotel business. The Police Chief told local media the police want to know “among other questions, why did Charles select this lawyer to represent him…and as a lawyer, Americk should know his client’s whereabouts.” 

To the Police Chief’s public remark that it wasn’t the first time an Americk client had disappeared after making a sworn statement, the defiant lawyer replied that “at least this time, my client had the choice of ‘disappearing’ voluntarily.”

Americk “has a bad reputation when it comes to statutory declarations,” the Police Chief said, impelling a defiant Americk to issue a public statement that the official’s remarks were “clearly defamatory of me and I am in consultation with my lawyers on my legal options in this respect.”

Eric Paulson, the Executive Director of Lawyers for Liberty – who himself has been threatened with sedition charges  for criticizing the Malaysian Islamic Development Department (JAKIM) for spreading extremism — called on the Police to rescind their intention to question Americk over Morais’s statement, saying such an act amounted to harassment of a lawyer who was merely performing his duties in acting for his client.

“Needless to say, Americk, like any other lawyer, must be allowed to carry out his work freely and without improper interference, Paulson said in a prepared statement. “We further call upon the police to recognize and respect the vital function played by lawyers in upholding the rule of law and constitutional rights, including the right to legal representation as guaranteed by Article 5 of the Federal Constitution.”

Americk is expected to be questioned by the Police on December 1, according to authorities in Kuala Lumpur. Paulsen, in his statement, said the move to investigate lawyers representing clients is a serious assault on the independence of the Bar and the fundamental principle of lawyer-client privilege, upon which all lawyers are bound.

“It is basic that all communications and consultations between lawyers and their clients within their professional relationship are confidential and privileged,” he said. “Further, lawyers shall not be identified with their clients or their client’s causes as a result of discharging their functions.”

A Damning Report on Malaysia’s New Autocrat by The Washington Post

November 30, 2015

Obama shakes hands with Najib

The New Autocrat shakes hands with The Democrat

A Damning Report on Malaysia’s New Autocrat by The Washington Post

by Anna Fifield

Online critics of the Malaysian government would be well advised not to spend too much money on cellphones. “Just lost number four,” Eric Paulsen, an outspoken civil liberties lawyer and compulsive tweeter, said Nov. 20 after nearly two hours of questioning at the main police station here over his latest sedition charge.

Paulsen went into the Police station with a shiny new Chinese handset, a Xiaomi, and came out without it. At least it was cheaper than the iPhone and two Samsung Galaxies that previously were confiscated from him this year, apparently because they are tools in his social-media activism.


MP Steven Sim Tze Tzin

His friend Steven Sim Tze Tzin, an opposition parliamentarian who also was questioned that day, still smarts over the iPhone 6 Plus that was taken from him this year. “Don’t they know how much that thing cost?” Sim said, laughing, after emerging from his own session with the Police.

Malaysia, ostensibly one of the United States’ democratic allies in Southeast Asia, is engaged in a broad crackdown on freedom of expression that detractors say is all about silencing critics of Prime Minister Najib Razak, who is embroiled in a corruption scandal. And the crackdown is particularly focused on online commentary, which is proving much harder to control than traditional media.

“The government has at least two intentions,” said Yin Shao Loong, who is Executive Director of the Institut Rakyat, a think tank, and is aligned with the opposition. “One is to stifle freedom of expression. The other is to harass the opposition and sap their energy and tie them up in court cases that could take years.”

Najib’s government has been making heavy use of the 1948 Sedition Act, a remnant of the British colonial period, which makes it an offense to “bring into hatred or contempt or to excite disaffection against any Ruler or against any Government.”

Azmi Sharom 3

University of Malaya’s Dr. Azmi Sharom

Among the three dozen or so who have been targeted so far this year are  Dr.Azmi Sharom, a law professor at the University of Malaya who gave his legal opinion on a 2009 political crisis, and Maria Chin Abdullah, the leader of the Bersih group, a civil-society organization that promotes electoral reform, who has been charged with illegal assembly and sedition for organizing huge anti-Najib rallies in August.

Numerous opposition parliamentarians also have been charged with sedition, most of them for criticizing a federal court’s decision in February upholding the conviction of opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim on charges of sodomy. That case is widely viewed as political.

S. Arutchelvan, a socialist politician, was charged in the past week with sedition for comments he made in February. The well-known cartoonist Zunar, who in September won an International Press Freedom Award from the Committee to Protect Journalists, has been charged with nine counts of sedition for nine tweets criticizing the Anwar conviction.

Congrats Zunar

Award Winning Malaysian Cartoonist ZUNAR

And two newspapers deemed hostile to the government were suspended from publishing.“Prime Minister Najib Razak and the Malaysian government are making a mockery of their claim to be a rights-respecting democracy by prosecuting those who speak out on corruption or say anything even remotely critical of the government,” said Linda Lakhdhir of Human Rights Watch. The government, she added, should stop using “repressive laws to harass the media and intimidate its critics.”

The crackdown began after the ruling party fared poorly in 2013 elections, said Murray Hiebert, an expert on Southeast Asia at the Center for Strategic and International Studies in Washington, but the repression has accelerated amid a corruption scandal that threatens Najib’s hold on power.

Investigators looking into the heavily indebted sovereign wealth fund, 1Malaysia Development Berhad, or 1MDB, found that almost $700 million (Malaysian ringgit 2.6 billion) had been deposited into Najib’s personal bank accounts, the Wall Street Journal has reported.

Najib, who founded 1MDB and heads its board of advisers, has strenuously denied any wrongdoing. Arif Shah, a spokesman for 1MDB, said the allegations against Najib were “old” and had been “comprehensively addressed” by the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission, which in August reported that no funds from 1MDB had been transferred to the Prime Minister’s personal bank accounts.

But amid investigations into the fund, Najib has replaced key officials with appointees deemed friendlier. The new Attorney-General, for example, has dismissed a recommendation from the central bank to begin criminal proceedings against 1MDB.

For Peace and Freedom

The Prime Minister’s Office did not respond directly to questions about Najib’s links to the fund, saying the investigation continues, but a spokesman strongly denied suggestions that opponents of the government were being targeted with legal action.

“The Sedition Act does not impinge on free speech or democratic principles,” said Dato’ Tengku Sariffuddin, the ‘Prime Minister’s press secretary. “Most, if not all, countries have legal safeguards on the printed and spoken word in order to maintain public order. It is reasonable for Malaysia to safeguard itself in the same manner.”

Pending amendments to the Sedition Act, he said, would serve “to better protect all religions and to prevent the incitement of racial or inter-ethnic conflict.”

The changes would remove a clause outlawing criticism of the government and judiciary. A provision would be added to outlaw incitement to religious hatred in the country, which is 60 percent Muslim. The amendments, once ratified, also would increase the term of imprisonment for sedition from three years to seven years and add a penalty of up to 20 years in prison for seditious activities that result in physical harm or destruction of property.

The spokesman said that Malaysia has “a thriving online space in which opposition voices and publications are given free rein” and that government critics “are more outspoken than in almost any other country in the region.” But critics of Najib describe an elaborate effort to silence them. The Malaysian government has long controlled newspapers and TV stations. Although the rising use of cellphones and social media has loosened the state’s grip on information, especially in rural regions, the government is trying to get a handle on the new technologies.

“There are lots of cybertroopers monitoring posts by opposition [members of Parliament], taking screen shots of them and then circulating them and tagging the Police Chief,” said the opposition parliamentarian Steven Sim, who is being charged for a tweet in which he mistakenly suggested that the former attorney general was manhandled out of office. Sim deleted the tweet when he realized that the photo included was an old one and said it was a genuine mistake. Too late.

“The cybertroopers wrote, ‘Arrest Sim. He’s giving the government a bad name,’ ” the legislator said. It is not clear whether these online monitors are hired by the government or are zealous volunteers. But they have been effective at alerting the authorities to criticism.

For Paulsen, 42, an ethnic Chinese lawyer who leads a human rights advocacy group called Lawyers for Liberty, problems began after the terrorist attack on the satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo in Paris in January.

A government official said such an attack could happen here, prompting Paulsen to send out a tweet about the Department of Islamic Advancement Malaysia, or JAKIM, which prescribes the sermons delivered during politically slanted Friday prayers.

“JAKIM is promoting extremism every Friday. Goverment needs to address that if serious about extremism in Malaysia,” Paulsen tweeted. The cybertroopers seized on it. The next day, Khalid Abu Bakar, the fawning Inspector General of Police, who also is active on Twitter, posted a photo of Paulsen and his tweet overlaid with the word “rude.”

Then came Paulsen’s first sedition charge. The second was filed after he tweeted that the most extreme forms of Islamic punishment, such as cutting off hands and stonings, were inhumane. The third run-in with the law was a criminal defamation charge after two tweets suggesting that Najib was trying to avoid questioning over the 1MDB affair.

Paulsen does not deny writing any of the tweets, but he does assert his innocence on the fourth allegation against him, which concerns a Facebook post showing a banner in a march that had been doctored to read, “Chinese pigs go home.”

“It was clearly fabricated to make it look like I had posted this,” he said, adding that it seemed designed to provoke racial divisions.

Paulsen said he thinks the efforts against him are part of a broader attempt to silence criticism of the government on social media. “If you’re from the opposition, are a dissident or are active in civil society, they’re going to come after you.”

But Lakhdhir of Human Rights Watch finds some cause for optimism. “A bright light for Malaysia is the strength of its civil society,” she said, “with many who are willing to speak out despite the risks.”

Anna Fifield is The Post’s bureau chief in Tokyo, focusing on Japan and the Koreas. She previously reported for the Financial Times from Washington DC, Seoul, Sydney, London and from across the Middle East.

Education as a Political Institution

November 29, 2015

Education as a Political Institution

by Bertrand Russell

June 1916 Issue

The Atlantic

“Education should not aim at a dead awareness of static facts, but at an activity directed toward the world that our efforts are to create.”

No political theory is adequate unless it is applicable to children as well as to men and women. Theorists are mostly childless, or, if they have children, they are carefully screened from the disturbances which would be caused by youthful turmoil. Some of them have written books on education, but without, as a rule, having any actual children present to their minds while they wrote. Those educational theorists who have had a knowledge of children, such as the inventors of kindergarten and the Montessori system, have not always had enough realization of the ultimate goal of education to be able to deal successfully with advanced instruction. I have not the knowledge either of children or of education which would enable me to supply whatever defects there may be in the writings of others. But some questions concerning education as a political institution are involved in any hope of social reconstruction, and are not usually considered by writers on educational theory. These questions only I wish to discuss.

The two principles of justice and liberty, which cover a very great deal of the social reconstructionBertie required, will not give much guidance as regards education. Tolstoy tried to conduct a village school without infringing liberty; but when anybody except Tolstoy was teaching, the children all talked to each other, and when he himself was teaching, he secured order only by untheoretically boxing their ears in a fit of temper. It is clear that a literal adherence to the principle of liberty is quite impossible if the children are to be taught anything, except in the case of unusually intelligent children who are kept isolated from more normal companions. This is one reason for the great responsibility which rests upon teachers: the children must, unavoidably, be more or less at the mercy of their elders, and cannot make themselves the guardians of their own interests. Authority in education is to some extent unavoidable, and those who educate have to find a way of exercising authority in accordance with the spirit of liberty.

Where authority is unavoidable, what is needed is reverence. A man who is to educate really well, who is to bring out of the young all that it is possible to bring out, who is to make them grow and develop into their full stature, must be filled through and through with the spirit of reverence. It is reverence that is lacking in those who advocate ma­chine-made, cast-iron systems: militarism, capitalism, Fabian scientific organization, and all the other prisons into which reformers and reactionaries try to force the human spirit. In education, with its codes of rules emanating from a government office, with its large classes and fixed curriculum and overworked teachers, with its determination to produce a dead level of glib mediocrity, the lack of reverence for the child is all but universal. Reverence requires imagination and vital warmth; it requires most imagination in respect of those who have least actual achievement or power. The child is weak and superficially foolish; the teacher is strong, and in an everyday sense wiser than the child. The teacher without reverence, or the bureaucrat without reverence, easily despises the child for these outward inferiorities. He thinks it his duty to ‘mould’ the child; in imagination he is the potter with the clay. And so he gives to the child some unnatural shape which hardens with age, producing strains and spiritual dissatisfactions, out of which grow cruelty and envy and the belief that others must be compelled to undergo the same distortions.

The man who has reverence will not think it his duty to ‘mould’ the young. He feels in all that lives, but especially in human beings, and most of all in children, something sacred, indefinable, unlimited, something individual and strangely precious, the growing principle of life, an embodied fragment of the dumb striving of the world. He feels an unaccountable humility in the presence of a child—a humility not easily defensible on any rational ground, and yet somehow nearer to wisdom than the easy self-confidence of many parents and teachers. He feels the outward helplessness of the child, the appeal of dependence, the responsibility of a trust. His imagination shows him what the child may become, for good or evil; how its impulses may be developed or thwarted, how its hopes must be dimmed and the life in it grow less living, how its trust will be bruised and its quick desires replaced by brooding will. All this gives him a longing to help the child in its own battle, to strengthen it and equip it, not for some outside end proposed by the state or by any other impersonal authority, but for the ends which the child’s own spirit is obscurely seeking. The man who feels this can wield the authority of an educator without infringing the principle of liberty.

It is not in a spirit of reverence that education is conducted by states and churches and the great institutions that are subservient to them. What is considered in education is hardly ever the boy or girl, the young man or young woman, but almost always, in some form, the maintenance of the existing order. When the individual is considered, it is with a view to worldly success- making money, or achieving a good position. To be ordinary, and to acquire the art of getting on, is the idea which is set before the youthful mind, except by a few rare teachers who have enough energy of belief to break through the system within which they are expected to work. Almost all education has a political motive: it aims at strengthening some group, national or religious or even social, in the competition with other groups. It is this motive, in the main, which determines the subjects taught, the knowledge which is offered, and the knowledge which is withheld. It is this motive also which determines the mental habits that the pupils are expected to acquire. Hardly anything is done to foster the inward growth of mind and spirit; in fact, those who have had most education are very often atrophied in their mental and spiritual life, devoid of impulse, and possessing only certain mechanical aptitudes which take the place of living thought.


Some of the things which education achieves at present must continue to be achieved by education in any civilized country. All children must continue to be taught how to read and write, and some must continue to acquire the knowledge needed for such professions as medicine and law and engineering. Except in such matters as history and religion, the actual instruction is only inadequate, not positively harmful. The instruction might be given in a more liberal spirit, with more attempt to show its ultimate uses; and of course much of it is traditional or dead. But in the main it is necessary, and would have to form a part of any educational system.

It is in history and religion and other controversial subjects that the actual instruction is positively harmful. These subjects touch the interests by which schools are maintained; and the interests maintain the schools in order that certain views on these subjects may be taught. History, in every country, is so taught as to magnify that country: children learn to believe that their own country has been always in the right and almost always victorious, that it has produced almost all the great men, and that it is in all respects superior to all other countries. Since these beliefs are flattering, they are easily absorbed, and hardly ever dislodged from instinct by later knowledge.

To take a simple and almost trivial example: the facts about the battle of Waterloo are known in great detail and with minute accuracy; but the facts as taught in elementary schools will be widely different in England, France and Germany. The ordinary English boy imagines that the Prussians played hardly any part; the ordinary German boy imagines that Wellington was practically defeated when the day was retrieved byBlucher’s gallantry. If the facts were taught accurately in both countries, national pride would not be fostered to the same extent, neither nation would feel so certain of victory in the event of war, and the willingness to fight would be diminished. It is this result which has to be prevented. Every state wishes to foster national pride, and is conscious that this cannot be done by unbiased history. The defenseless children are taught by distortions and suppressions and suggestions. The false ideas as to the history of the world which are taught in the various countries are of a kind which fosters strife and serves to keep alive a bigoted nationalism. If good relations between states were desired, one of the first steps ought to be to submit all teaching of history to an international commission, which should produce neutral textbooks free from the patriotic bias which is now demanded everywhere.

Exactly the same thing applies to religion. Elementary schools are practically always in the hands, either of some religious body, or of a state which has a definite attitude toward religion. A religious body exists through the fact that its members all have certain definite beliefs on subjects as to which the truth is not ascertainable. Schools conducted by religious bodies have to prevent the young, who are often inquiring by nature, from discovering that these definite beliefs are opposed by other equally definite beliefs which are no more unreasonable, and that many of the men best qualified to judge think that there is no good evidence in favor of any definite belief. When the state is militantly secular, as in France, state schools become as dogmatic as those that are in the hands of the churches; I understand that the word ‘God’ must not be mentioned in a French elementary school. When the state is neutral, as in America, all religious discussion has to be excluded, and the Bible must be read without comment, lest the comment should favor one sect rather than another. The result in all these cases is the same: free inquiry is checked, and on the most important matter in the world the child is met with dogma or with stony silence.

It is not only in elementary education that these evils exist. In more advanced education they take subtler forms, and there is more attempt to conceal them, but they are still present. Eton and Oxford set a certain stamp upon a man’s mind, just as a Jesuit college does. It can hardly be said that Eton and Oxford have a conscious purpose, but they have a purpose which is none the less strong and effective for not being formulated. In almost all who have been through them, they produce a worship of ‘good form,’ which is as destructive to life and thought as the mediaeval Church. ‘Good form’ is quite compatible with superficial openmindedness, with readiness to hear all sides, with a certain urbanity toward opponents. But it is not compatible with fundamental openmindedness, or with any inward readiness to give weight to the other side. Its essence is the assumption that what is most important is a certain kind of behavior: a behavior which minimizes friction between equals, and delicately impresses inferiors with a conviction of their own crudity. As a political weapon for preserving the privileges of the rich in a snobbish democracy, it is unsurpassa­ble. As a means of producing an agreeable social milieu for those who have money with no strong beliefs or unusual desires, it has some merit. In every other respect, it is abominable.

The evils of ‘good form’ arise from two sources: its perfect assurance of its own rightness, and its belief that correct manners are more to be desired than intellect or artistic creation or vital energy, or any of the other sources of progress in the world. Perfect assurance, by itself, is enough to destroy all mental progress in those who have it. And when it is combined with contempt for the angularities and awkwardnesses that are almost invariably combined with great mental power, it becomes a source of destruction to all who come in contact with it. ‘Good form’ is itself dead, static, incapable of growth; and by its attitude to those who are without it, it spreads its own death to many who might otherwise have life. The harm which it has done to well-to-do Englishmen, and to men whose abilities have led the well-to-do to notice them, is incalculable.

The prevention of free inquiry is unavoidable so long as the purpose of education is to produce belief rather than thought, to compel the young to hold positive opinions on doubtful matters rather than to let them see the doubtfulness and be encouraged to independence of mind. Education ought to foster the wish for truth, not the conviction that some particular creed is the truth. But it is creeds that hold men together in fighting organizations: churches, states, political parties. It is intensity of belief in a creed that produces efficiency in fighting: victory comes to those who feel the strongest certainty about matters on which doubt is the only rational attitude. To produce this intensity of belief and this efficiency in fighting, the child’s nature is warped, its free outlook is cramped, inhibitions are cultivated in order to check the growth of new ideas. In those whose minds are not very active, the result is the omnipotence of prejudice; while those whose thought cannot be wholly killed become cynical, intellectually hopeless, destructively critical, able to make all that is living seem foolish, unable to supply themselves the creative impulses which they destroy in others.


Certain mental habits are commonly instilled by those who are engaged in educating: obedience and discipline, ruthlessness in the struggle for worldly success, contempt toward opposing groups, and an unquestioning credulity, a passive acceptance of the teacher’s wisdom. All these habits are against life. Instead of obedience and discipline, we ought to aim at preserving independence and impulse. Instead of ruthlessness, education ought to aim at producing justice in thought. Instead of contempt, it ought to instill reverence, the attempt at understanding– not necessarily acquiescence, but only such opposition as is combined with imaginative apprehension and a clear comprehension of the grounds for opposition. Instead of credulity, the object should be to stimulate constructive doubt, the love of mental adventure, the sense of worlds to conquer by enterprise and boldness in thought. Contentment with the status quo, subordination of the individual pupil to political aims, indifference to the things of the mind, are the immediate causes of these evils; but beneath these causes there is one more fundamental, the fact that education is treated as a means of acquiring power over the pupil, not as a means of fostering his own growth. It is in this that lack of reverence shows itself; and it is only by more reverence that a fundamental reform can be effected.

Obedience and discipline are supposed to be indispensable if order is to be kept in a class, and if any instruction is to be given. To some extent, this is true; but the extent is much less than it is thought to be by those who regard obedience and discipline as in themselves desirable. Obedience, the yielding of one’s will to outside direction, is the counterpart of authority, which consists in directing the will of others. Both may be necessary in certain cases. Refractory children, lunatics, and criminals may require authority, and may need to be forced to obey. But in so far as this is necessary, it is a misfortune: what is to be desired is the free choice of ends with which it is not necessary to interfere. And educational reformers have shown that this is far more possible than our fathers would ever have believed.

What makes obedience seem necessary in schools is the large classes and overworked teachers demanded by a false economy. Those who have no experience of teaching are incapable of imagining the expense of spirit entailed by any really living instruction. They think that teachers can reasonably be expected to work as many hours as bank clerks. The result is intense fatigue, irritable nerves, an absolute necessity of performing the day’s task mechanically. And the task cannot be performed mechanically except by exacting obedience.

If we took education seriously, we thought it as important to keep alive the minds of children as to secure victory in war, we should conduct education quite differently: we should make sure of achieving the end, even if the expense were a hundredfold greater than it is. To many men and women a small amount of teaching is a delight, and can be done with a fresh zest and life which keeps most pupils interested without any need of discipline. The few who do not become interested might be separated from the rest, and given a different kind of instruction. A teacher ought to have only as much teaching as can be done, on most days, with actual pleasure in the work, and with an awareness of the pupil’s mental needs. The result would be a relation of friendliness instead of hostility between teacher and pupil, a realization on the part of most pupils that education serves to develop their own lives and is not merely an outside imposition, interfering with play and demanding many hours of sitting still. All that is necessary to this end is a greater expenditure of money, to secure teachers with more leisure and with a natural love of teaching.

Discipline, as it exists in schools, is very largely an evil. There is a kind of discipline which is necessary to almost all achievement, and which is perhaps not sufficiently valued by those who react against the purely external discipline of traditional methods. The desirable kind of discipline is the kind which comes from within, which consists in the power of pursuing a distant object steadily, foregoing and suffering many things on the way. This involves the subordination of impulse to will, the power of directing action by large creative desires even at moments when they are not vividly alive. Without this, no serious ambition, good or bad, can be realized, no consistent purpose can dominate. This kind of discipline is very necessary. But this kind can result only from strong desires for ends not immediately attainable, and can be produced only by education if education fosters such desires, which it seldom does at present. This kind of discipline springs from within, from one’s own will, not from outside authority. It is not this kind which is sought in schools, and it is not this kind which seems to me an evil.

Ruthlessness in the economic struggle will almost unavoidably be taught in schools while the economic structure of society remains unchanged. This must be particularly the case in the middle-class schools, which depend for their numbers upon the good opinion of parents, and secure that good opinion by advertising the success of their pupils. This is one of many ways in which the competitive organization of the state is harmful. Spontaneous and disinterested desire for ‘knowledge is not at all uncommon in the young, and is easily aroused in many in whom it remains latent. But it is ruthlessly checked by teachers who think only of examinations, diplomas, and degrees. For the abler boys, there is no time for thought, no time for the indulgence of intellectual taste, from the moment of first going to school until the moment of leaving the university. From first to last it is simply one long drudgery of examination tips and textbook facts. The most intelligent, at the end, are disgusted with learning, longing only to forget it and to escape into a life of action. Yet there, as before, the economic machine holds them prisoners, and all their spontaneous desires are bruised and thwarted.

The examination system, and the fact that instruction is treated entirely as training for a livelihood, leads the young to regard knowledge from a purely utilitarian point of view, as the road to money, not as the gateway to wisdom. This would not matter so much if it affected only those who have no genuine intellectual interests. But unfortunately it affects most those whose intellectual interests are strongest, since it is upon them that the pressure of examinations falls with most severity. To them most, but to all in some degree, education appears as a means of acquiring superiority over others; it is infected through and through with ruthlessness and glorification of social inequality. Any free disinterested consideration shows that, whatever inequalities might remain in a Utopia, the actual inequalities are almost all contrary to justice. But our educational system will conceal this from all except the failures, since those who succeed are on the way to profit by the inequalities, with every encouragement from the men who have directed their education.


Passive acceptance of the teacher’s wisdom is easy to most boys and girls. It involves no effort of independent thought, it seems rational because the teacher knows more than his pupils, and it is the way to win the favor of the teacher unless he is a very exceptional man. Yet the habit of passive acceptance is a disastrous one in later life. It causes men to seek a leader, and to accept as a leader whoever is established in that position. It makes the power of churches, governments, party caucuses, and all the other organizations by which plain men are misled into supporting old systems which are harmful to the nation and to themselves. It is possible that there would not be much independence of thought, even if education did everything to encourage it; but there would certainly be more than there is at present. If the object were to make pupils think, rather than to make them accept certain conclusions, education would be conducted quite differently: there would be less rapidity of instruction, more discussion, more occasions when pupils were encouraged to express themselves, more attempt to make education concern itself with matters in which the pupils felt some interest.

Above all, there would be an en­deavor to rouse and stimulate the lo of mental adventure. The world in which we live is various and astonishing: some of the things which seem plainest grow more and more difficult the more they are considered; other things, which might have been thought forever undiscoverable, have been laid bare by the genius and industry of the men of science. The power of thought, the vast regions which it can master, the much more vast regions which it can only dimly suggest to imagination, give to those whose minds have traveled beyond the daily round an amazing richness of material, an escape from the triviality and wearisomeness of familiar routine, by which the whole of life is filled with interest, and the prison walls of the commonplace are broken down. The same love of adventure which takes men to the South Pole, the same passion for a conclusive trial of strength which makes some men welcome war, can find in creative thought an outlet which is not wasteful or cruel, but full of profit for the whole human race, increasing the dignity of man, incarnating in life some of that shining splendor which the human spirit is bringing down out of the unknown. To give this joy, in a greater or less measure, to all who are capable of it, is the supreme end for which the education of the mind is to be valued.

It will be said that the joy of mental adventure must be rare, that there are few who can appreciate it, and that ordinary education can take no account of so aristocratic a good. I do not believe this. The joy of mental adventure is far commoner in the young than in grown men and women. Among children it is very common, and grows naturally out of the period of make-believe and fancy. It is rare in later life because everything is done to kill it during education. Men fear thought as they fear nothing else on earth – more than ruin, more even than death. Thought is subversive and revolutionary, destructive and terrible; thought is merciless to privilege, established institutions, and comfortable habits; thought is anarchic and lawless, indifferent to authority, careless of the well-tried wisdom of the ages. Thought, real thought, looks into the pit of Hell and is not afraid. It sees man, a feeble speck, surrounded by unfathomable depths of silence; yet it bears itself proudly, as unmoved as if it were lord of the universe. Thought is great and swift and free, the light ofthe world, and the chief glory of man.

But if thought is to become the possession of many, not the privilege of the few, we must have done with fear. It is fear that holds men back: fear lest their cherished beliefs should prove delusions, fear lest the institutions by which they live should prove harmful, fear lest they themselves should prove less worthy of respect than they have supposed themselves to be. Should the working man think freely about property? Then what will become of us, the rich? Should young men and young women think freely about sex? Then what will become of morality? Should soldiers think freely about war? Then what will become of military discipline? Away with thought! Back into the shades of prejudice, lest property, morals, and war should be endangered! Better that men should be stupid, slothful, and oppressive than that their thoughts should be free. For if their thoughts were free, they might not think as we do. And at all costs this disaster must be averted. So the opponents of thought argue in the unconscious depths of their souls. And so they act in their churches, their schools, and their universities.

No institution inspired by fear can further life. Hope, not fear, is the creative principle in human affairs. All that has made man great has sprung from the attempt to secure what is good, not from the struggle to avert what was thought evil. It is because modern education is so seldom inspired by a great hope that it so seldom achieves a great result. The wish to preserve the past, rather than the hope of creating the future, dominates the minds of those who control the teaching of the young. Education should not aim at a dead awareness of static facts, but at an activity directed toward the world that our efforts are to create. It should be inspired, not by a regretful hankering after the extinct beauties of Greece and the Renaissance, but by a shining vision of the society that is to be, of the triumph that thought will achieve in the time to come, and of the ever-widening horizon of man’s survey over the universe. Those who are taught in this spirit will be filled with life and hope and joy, able to bear their part in bringing to mankind a future less sombre than the past, with faith in the glory that human effort can create.

Don’t Make Kevin Morais a Hero, says Raja Petra Kamaruddin

November 27, 2015

Don’t Make Kevin Morais a Hero, says Raja Petra Kamaruddin

The bottom line is: Kevin was not a saint and hero as many are now saying he was. He was just one more slime ball and scumbag. And he served his masters in the Royal Malaysian Police (PDRM), MACC, and the Attorney General’s Chambers to fix up innocent people on fabricated charges. And he was NOT murdered on the orders of the Prime Minister, as some are insinuating. He was murdered because he did dirty deals and those who do dirty deals normally risk that sort of retaliation and retribution. That is called payback.


Raja Petra Kamarudin


RPK and The Dilemma

Anwar Ibrahim was an  enigma to many of you people. Well, at least while he was in UMNO and when he whacked Chinese schools and Hindu temples and helped make many corrupt China men and Malays extremely rich. And then he became God’s gift to Malaysia and the person who was going to become Prime Minister and who will save the country from the very party that he tried to take over but failed — meaning UMNO, of course.

Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad was a dilemma to many of you people. Well, at least when he threw Anwar into jail and detained so many people without trial and killed so many people in Memali and spent RM100-200 billion of the country’s money and destroyed the judiciary, etc. And then he became God’s gift to Malaysia and the person who was going to save Malaysia by ousting Prime Minister Najib Razak and replace him with a puppet who will rule Malaysia by proxy with a Council of Elders telling him what to do.


Kevin Anthony Morais was a scumbag to many of you people. Well, at least when he tried to fix up lawyer Rosli Dahlan on fabricated charges on behalf of the A-G and IGP who wanted to bring down the Director of the CCID who was investigating the shenanigans in MAS that led all the way to those who walked in the corridors of power. And then he became Malaysia’s latest hero because he was murdered for reasons we do not know yet but which everyone assumes must have something to do with the Prime Minister because that story sounds nicer than the other story even if the other story may be true.

Well, Malaysians have short memories, as Dr Mahathir is fond of saying. So they forgot what Din Merican wrote five years ago in December 2010 (READ HERE). Amongst what Din said were:

On Monday December 20, Lawyer Rosli Dahlan will be in the dock of the Kuala Lumpur Sessions Court to be adjudged whether he is guilty or innocent of the charge brought against him by A-G Gani Patail using the MACC. That will be the verdict by a court of law.

I have attended Rosli Dahlan’s trial from Day 1 until it ended. I know the charge, I know the facts, I have seen the MACC witnesses in action giving evidence ,and I have heard the MACC DPPs delivering their submissions. I will now pronounce this verdict by the court of public opinion.

The accuser is Senior DPP cum Assistant Director of Legal & Prosecution MACC, Anthony Kevin Morais. He prefers to use his second name as his first and thus he is called Kevin rather than Anthony. Kevin regards himself as learned in the law with wide powers conferred on him by the MACC Act and its predecessor legislations. Kevin does not like to be questioned as to his decision making, a trait passed down from the Attorney- General Gani Patail himself. The philosophy of power that this higher echelon of the A-G’s Chambers subscribe to is that “We command, you abide”.

He looks rather youthful for his age. He is a dapper dresser and is very well-groomed, putting to shame some of the shabby looking lady DPPs. He powders his face, puts on mascara, rouge and lip gloss when he is in court with well manicured finger nails. With such attention to personal vanity, he looks even more attractive outside of office hours.

Kevin’s sexual orientation is unknown although Malaysia Today’s report out of London suggests that he has an older English boyfriend whom he spent time with last Christmas. He is unmarried, and it is doubtful if he ever will, at least not in Malaysia. As such, there is nothing to be said of his family values.

Although born a Catholic, his present lifestyle would invite ex-communication by the Pope in the Vatican. Because of the predominant number of Malays in the Legal and Judicial Service, his flair of the English language places him amongst the more competent government lawyers. Thus he interprets the law as he wants to, and not as how it should be.

Kevin hopes to be a Judge one day to fill in the vacuum left by another Indian Judge with an English sounding name, Justice Augustine Paul, whose eminence was in ruling every piece of defence evidence in Anwar Ibrahim’s Sodomy I as “Irrelevant”. Consequently, the Good Lord rendered him irrelevant by recalling him to permanent abode six feet underground.

Life was all sunshine and rosy for Rosli Dahlan – he had a good happy family, his firm had expanded, his practice was flourishing. Nothing, it seemed, could have gone wrong, that was until Rosli decided to defend his friend, the former Director of Commercial Crimes Investigations Dept (CCID), Commissioner of Police Dato’ Ramli Yusuff. Since 2006, Ramli was targeted to be eliminated from PDRM by former IGP Musa Hassan and by A-G Gani Patail.

Musa Hassan had to eliminate Ramli because Ramli had discovered his links with the BK Tan syndicate which was about to nationalise and corporatise the illegal money-lending Along syndicates. Gani Patail wanted to eliminate Ramli because Ramli had recommended that the former MAS Chairman, Tan Sri Tajuddin Ramli, should be charged for various offences, whereas Gani Patail had already cut a deal with Tajuddin’s proxy – Shahidan Shafie.

You can read more about that case HERE, which Din Merican has laid out in detail.


The bottom line is: Kevin was not a saint and hero as many are now saying he was. He was just one more slime ball and scumbag. And he served his masters in the Royal Malaysian Police (PDRM), MACC, and the Attorney General’s Chambers to fix up innocent people on fabricated charges. And he was NOT murdered on the orders of the Prime Minister, as some are insinuating. He was murdered because he did dirty deals and those who do dirty deals normally risk that sort of retaliation and retribution. That is called payback.



Slain Malaysian Prosecutor Tied to Najib Probe

November 27, 2015

Slain Malaysian Prosecutor Tied to Najib Probe

Brother of victim found in oil drum contradicts AG’s claim the dead man had nothing to do with case.

 Dato’Anthony Kevin Morais

Morais apparently had been strangled although that is uncertain since his body was cremated before his brother, Charles Suresh Morais, an Atlanta, Georgia businessman, could order a second autopsy. The story involves an astonishing series of twists and turns, including possible links to the 2013 murder of a prominent banker in a Kuala Lumpur temple parking lot.

Morais’s body disappeared from a Kuala Lumpur hospital mortuary despite pleas by the brother, Charles, for a second autopsy. The body was claimed and cremated over Charles’ objections by

another brother, Richard, who has been in constant trouble with the law and who figured in the 2013 murder of the late Arab Malaysian Bank founder Hussain Najadi.  The bank is now known as AmBank.

Car rammed, prosecutor abducted

Surveillance footage from a CCTV camera the day the 55-year-old Kevin Morais disappeared showed his car being followed and rammed by another. He was reportedly abducted after the collision and was never seen alive again. One of the seven suspects arrested after the footage identified the car in the collision led investigators to a suburb near Kuala Lumpur where Morais’s body, encased in the oil drum, had been rolled into a river. 

Morais had been seconded from the Attorney-General’s Chambers to the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission, which was looking into financial irregularities involving the troubled 1Malaysia Development Bhd. state-backed investment fund and other issues.

In July, Najib fired the Attorney-Ggeneral, Abdul Gani Patail, one of a dramatic series of events that included forcing out the Deputy Prime Minister, Muhyiddin Yassin, transferring the deputy head of the police special branch intelligence division, neutralizing a special parliamentary committee seeking answers over corruption, questioning seven members of the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission over leaks about the case, sending the head of the MACC “on vacation” and threatening any and all critics with sedition charges.   

Today, a source said, the commission investigators are terrified and believe they are in danger, followed by Special Branch police, over suspicions they had leaked details of the investigation to Clare Rewcastle Brown, the editor of the UK-based Sarawak Report, which has been deeply involved in investigating the 1MDB case and broken most of the important stories. The leaker, Charles Morais said, may have been his dead brother because anonymous emails to Rewcastle Brown were signed by “” “ Jibby,” Charles Morais said  was a nickname for a Morais family friend. However, it is also a derisory nickname used by many for Najib himself.

Najib crony Mohd Apandi Ali, the Attorney-General picked to replace Gani Patail – who is also a lawyer connected to the United Malays National Organization, which Najib heads,  had previously dismissed the alleged draft charge sheet as false. The office denied Kevin Morais was working on the Najib case, which appears to have disappeared.

berthelsen morais 112615-1

Although prosecutors said the mastermind was actually a military doctor who had been prosecuted by Morais recently in a graft case, Charles Morais called for the case to be revisited. 

A thumb drive of evidence

In a press conference in Kuala Lumpur on November 26, Charles Morais, who had flown back to Malaysia from the US, said he had received a mobile USB storage device from his brother shortly before his death, dealing with investigations he was looking into, as well as an alleged draft charge sheet against the prime minister which was released by Sarawak Report and carried the initials of his brother. Morais said that when he saw the alleged draft charge sheet, he recognized his brother’s initials. 

To a police demand that he turn over the USB device for investigation, Charles Morais said the device is in safekeeping in Atlanta, and that he didn’t trust the Police enough to give it to them.

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Charles Morais

“Two to three months before Kevin’s demise, he told me that he was working on a case involving the prime minister and his wife,” Charles Morais said in the sworn document. “He said the prime minister was a terrible guy but that his wife was worse. He actually used the words kolata ala. (Eds: These were Malayalam (a Dravidian dialect spoken in the Indian state of Kerala) and translated into English meaning ‘a person up to no good’. He told me his phone might be tapped and to be careful what I said. That is why half of our conversations were usually in Malayalam.”

Read the statutory declaration of Charles Morais here.

Dead man couriers possible evidence to brother

In mid-August, Morais said, his brother, who in frequent telephone calls said he was increasingly depressed and wanted to retire to London, emailed him telling him he would courier something to him and “to watch out for it as he wanted me to keep it in safe custody. This was the last call I received from Kevin and was about a week before he went missing.” 

Morais called Abdul Gani Patail, the cashiered Attorney-Ggeneral, twice in the attempt to find his brother.  On the second call, Gani Patail answered, saying: “Please remain calm, I am not working there any more. What I have been told is that the police are working relentlessly on the matter.”

Notified that his brother was dead, Charles Morais flew back to Malaysia and went to the mortuary to meet his two brothers, with Richard demanding to leave with Kevin’s body despite the fact that Kevin had broken with him 14 years before.

Connection to AmBank murder

Richard Morais has a checkered history. He has been in frequent trouble with the law in both Kuala Lumpur and Hong Kong. Pascal Najadi, the son of the AmBank founder Hussain Najadi, who was assassinated in the car park of a Kuala Lumpur temple in 2013, has charged that no real investigation of the crime has taken place.  Najadi said Richard Morais had requested that his father go to the temple to attempt to settle business dispute that that the murderer was waiting for him.

Pascal Najadi, now a banking consultant in Moscow who says he fears for his own life and has employed bodyguards,  has raised questions over whether his father’s refusal to play along with UMNO financial irregularities led to his death.  On two occasions shortly before he was killed, Najadi said, his father complained about UMNO corruption.  Najadi has repeatedly called for the investigation of his father’s death to be reopened.

On the first occasion, during a lunch at the Shangri-La Hotel in Kuala Lumpur, he told his son he had been approached by unnamed high-ranking UMNO officials to orchestrate a multi-billion  ringgit property deal connected to the Kuala Lumpur City Center that Hussain characterized as clearly illegal and “told them to go fly a kite.” On the second occasion, he told his son that Najib was “lining his pockets with billions of ringgit with no consideration for the future of the country.”

The speculation is that the funds deposited with AmBank came from companies connected to the 1MDB, which has RM42 billion in liabilities, an unknown amount of that unfunded, and is struggling to meet its payments. 

Mastermind arrested, mysteriously freed

Police identified a Malacca nightclub owner, Lim Yuen Soo as the mastermind who paid to have Najadi shot. Lim disappeared for more than two years, with a red alert issued by Interpol at the behest of the Kuala Lumpur police although sources say he seemed to be in and out of Kuala Lumpur regularly. Police arrested him at Kuala Lumpur International Airport in late October, but turned him loose eight days later for lack of evidence, raising a multitude of questions over how he could have been identified as the mastermind for two years only to be freed almost immediately when he was caught.  Since the murder case involving Hussain Najadi was closed,  there are questions why it hasn’t been reopened to find another mastermind behind the killing. 

That has raised additional questions whether Lim – and Richard Morais — have friends in Malaysia’s high political circles. Despite his status –until recently – as a fugitive, Lim is the registered part owner of the Active Force Security Services Sdn Bhd. with the former Malacca Police Chief Mohd Khasni Mohd Nor.