Damian S. L. Yeo & L. C. Goh (DSLY)
No. 2007, Lorong Sidang Omar, off Jalan Penghulu Abbas, Bukit Baru, Hang Tuah Jaya, 75100 Melaka

Tel : 06-2347011
& 06-2347012
Fax: 06-2347022


Monday, November 24, 2008

Was it PEACEFUL? OR PEWARIS gave their piece

It was reported below in the Star that it was a peaceful gathering. I doubt that is so. Seeing a lady ran for her life and the kicking of her car in one of the news media would certainly show a 'piece' rather peace.

Anyway was wondering whether the gathering is an illegal gathering without a police permit. If it so I was also wondering will there be any arrest is made.

------ the Star

KUALA LUMPUR: Representatives from an umbrella body of Malay and Muslim non-governmental organisations lodged five police reports yesterday over several issues which they claimed would endanger Muslim and Malay unity.

The group dubbed as Pewaris or Heritage Associations, Malay Cultural Organisations and Related Bodies Cooperation Network urged the Government to act against groups which sought to abolish the Internal Security Act (ISA).

It also asked for action against the Hindu Rights Action Force (Hindraf), Gerakan Wanita chief Datuk Tan Lian Hoe for her recent remarks on Malays and the criticism by the Sisters in Islam on the National Fatwa Council’s decision on pengkid or tomboys.

Pewaris spokesman Datuk Dr Maamor Osman told reporters that the group of 30 NGOs would form a coalition called Majlis Permuafakatan Ummah to counter criticism against the Malays and Islam.

Later, about 500 of the coalition’s members held a peaceful gathering outside their meeting place at Wisma Sejarah at Jalan Tun Razak before going to the Jalan Tun Razak police station to lodge the reports.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Shah Rukh Khan's Malaysian 'knighthood' postponed: official

Hmm looks like Datuk Shah Rukh Khan is not interested with the datukship...

Bollywood legend Shah Rukh Khan has postponed a controversial ceremony to award him a Malaysian "knighthood" because he is too busy, officials said Wednesday.

Khan is to be presented with an award from southern Malacca state which carries the title "Datuk", equivalent to a British knighthood, after a 2001 film set in Malacca boosted its profile as a tourist destination.

The award has proved contentious, with some questioning whether Khan is deserving or whether local artists and celebrities should be recognised instead.

"The ceremony has been postponed for now," a senior Malacca official told AFP on condition of anonymity.

"We wanted the ceremony to take place over a weekend but Shah Rukh's schedule was such that we could not agree on a date so we are now working on a new one that will keep everyone happy, but it hasn't been fixed yet," he said.

Since the filming of Khan's 2001 movie, "One 2 Ka 4" at a popular resort in Malacca, the number of tourists coming from India has increased significantly, state officials say.

The 42-year-old heart-throb was to have received his award on November 29, in a ceremony aired live on India's top entertainment channel, Zee TV.

"The postponement of the award shows just how ridiculous it is to give such an award to Shah Rukh as Malaysia and the award most probably does not even picture on his radar," opposition politician Lim Kit Siang told AFP.

Malaysia has become a popular location for Indian films, which have a huge following among ethnic Indians and the majority Muslim-Malays.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

It sound like me BUT it's not me.

Checkmate Mr. Z.

Or it may be it sound like me but it's not me.

©The Sun (Used by permission)

KUALA LUMPUR (Nov 18, 2008) : DAP chairman Karpal Singh (DAP-Bukit Gelugor) says he is in possession of an audio recording of what what Chief Justice Tan Sri Zaki Azmi said in Kuching, and subsequently reported by the New Straits Times (NST) on Nov 8 under the heading "Stop it now, corrupt court staff warned".

The report quoted Zaki as saying :"It took me six months to be nice, to bribe each and every individual to get back into their good books before our files were being attended to".

Zaki subsequently denied what was reported and a clarification was carried in the NST on Nov 9.

Zaki’s clarification, published in NST on Nov 9, said: "Your reporter must have interpreted what I said, which is during that period, there was corruption in order to get things done at the court registry, as I myself having done it. I have never in my life bribed or received any bribe."

Karpal urged Zaki to step down from the judiciary's top post for making the statement in Kuching, Sarawak on Nov 7.

"Rest assured, there is an audio recording of what Zaki said," said Karpal.

Karpal gave Zaki seven days to step down, failing which he will move a motion against Zaki under Article 127 of the Federal Constitution for having misled the country with his clarification.

He said he was speaking in his capacity as chairman of the parliamentary caucus on the Integrity and Independence of the Judiciary and urged members of the Barisan Nasional backbenchers club to forward the names of those interested in joining the caucus to make it more representative.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Why Obama?

I came back from Court this morning and found in my blog, my little sister asked me "y every post oso about Obama?".

"Change We Believe In" is phenomenal. It affects many like a good ole' flu. Not only the Americans are excited, but across the globe including hostile nations that are not to happy with the Bush administration. African and Asian loves him. Even a press report did mentioned if the world is to vote for the US Presidency, Obama will win definitely.

My answer to my sister was simply, "he subscribed to the value of change". I think not only that he value it but at the same time he believe and act upon it until this date. And I also foresee that the Obama administration will spearhead great changes in terms of its foreign and economic policy as well as it's internal administration. I know knocking at the doors of North Korea and Iran seems to be NOT PRESIDENTIAL, but nevertheless I think that is what American wants and as such prefering Obama as President over McCain.

His book, Audacity of Hope is a heart cry and a strong desire and willingness from his heart to see change in his country not divided by race or political belief or ideology but all embracing unity for a once divided state.

Following the footsteps of Lincoln by pulling in strong people in the administration who once against him like his running mate Joe Biden who once said that Obama is inexperience. And now (intending) to appoint Hillary Clinton (unless she refuse to join the administration) as Secretary of State, the third in line of succession to the presidency. Not only that but from sources he will also be appointing from the Grand ole Party (GOP) Republicans like Chuck Hagel as a probable Secretary of Defence. He will also be meeting his one time GOP contender Senator John McCain (today-Monday), of course I don't think Obama will be asking him to join the administration but probably talking about unifying the great divide and PLEASE remember that McCain received 58 million votes (Obama 66 million).

I think Mr. Obama was not only talking about it to gain support or votes, but as a minority figurehead in the almost white Senate, I believe he value change in a white America. In fact it is a similar echo amongst Opposition members whether it is in America, or Malaysia or Australia or even Taiwan. In Malaysia, the DAP had "Kai Pian" or "Berubah" which means change.

Many people talk about CHANGE but few would take it to the next level. And Obama did just that. And I also believe YAB Lim Guan Eng did almost that and same goes to YAB Tan Sri Khalid Ibrahim also did the same. Albeit in their own ways.

Of course to stretch a further, no way would the Prime Minister of Malaysia appointing a Deputy from another party. Or to stretch a little further, appoints a member of the Opposition as a Deputy Prime Minister. Pak Lah will not have guts to do that neither Najib later on. Look at Penang, when YAB Lim Guan Eng appointed Datuk Lee Kah Choon from Gerakan as director or something over PenangInvest, the whole BN adminsitration condemned him as though Datuk Lee betrayed their trust.

I think that is admirable for YAB Lim Guan Eng to do what other in the mainstream will NEVER do. Or like in Selangor where a chinese lady was appointed as Manager of PKNS. I think it will be bravo to the Khalid administration. Unlike some chaps in UMNO protesting just because she is a non Malay. I applaud the administration of the Pakatan State for daring enough to change for a better Malaysia.

I think Malaysia can continue to look forward one day, and cry out with all of our hearts that we are just Malaysians. And I am proud of it.

So to my sister, another post on Obama. Hehe.

Not Here Not Now

An interesting piece I want to share....

Barack Obama©New Sunday Times (Used by permission)
by Chok Suat Ling

Barack Obama's victory in the US presidential election raises the question of whether someone from an ethnic minority can rise to the highest political office in Malaysia. However, for the moment, that would be an unrealistic expectation, writes Chok Suat Ling.

BARACK Obama's election as president of the United States sent people around the world onto the streets in celebration. From the plains of Kenya to the port of Obama, there was rapturous response to his promise to bring change at a time when it is direly expected and needed not just in the US, but everywhere else.

But people were also jubilating over the ascendency of a man of colour to the most powerful seat in the world. Almost immediately, parallels were drawn and questions raised as to whether what happened in the US could also happen in other countries: could a person from an ethnic minority advance to the highest political post in the land?

Singapore has already answered in the negative, at least for the near future. Its Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong, in remarks published last week, said he did not think a Malay would be able to become premier in the Chinese-majority city state any time soon.

In Malaysia, similar questions have also been raised in the wake of Obama's victory. Politicians and activists are among those who have commented about the significance of his victory to minorities and ethnic politics in Malaysia. They wonder whether a Chinese, Indian or non-Muslim Bumiputera, among others, could one day become prime minister.

The Federal Constitution, they stress, does not specify that the prime minister must be of any particular race.

Some recalled a statement by then prime minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad which supported the possibility of a Chinese or Indian leading the country.

"There will come a day when Malaysians of Chinese or Indian descent are accepted by all races and then, the prime minister need not necessarily be a Malay. The process in this direction has already begun. Believe me, if we are sensitive to the needs of the Malaysian people, the issue of race and descent will no longer prevent any Malaysian from holding any post," he said when opening the 47th MCA general assembly in 2000.

But that was eight years ago. And while there have been sweeping changes in the political landscape, especially since the watershed date of March 8, the likelihood of a non-Malay assuming the post of prime minister remains remote, even implausible, for now.

Only the right candidate would be able to cross ethnic borders. This would have to be someone charismatic who appeals to all, irrespective of racial background.

Experts say the equivalent of Obama has yet to make an appearance on the public stage in Malaysia.

Obama would not have won if he were a Muslim instead of a Christian; or if he came across as speaking from the perspective of his race instead of his more inclusive language; or if he did not have the experience of growing up with his white grandparents and mother.

According to political analyst Ong Kian Ming, the Malaysian equivalent of Obama would be a Chinese Muslim who is fluent in Bahasa Malaysia, grew up with adopted Malay parents in Kelantan, obtained his undergraduate degree from a Malaysian public university and then went on to get his Masters' from Oxford or Cambridge.

He says those who tracked Obama's campaign also could not help but notice that he stayed purposefully away from issues of race.

Again, the equivalent of this in Malaysia is a non-Malay leader of a major party who does not use racially charged issues to advance his or her party's aspirations to be the leading party of the governing coalition.

That expectation is unrealistic at present, as is the prospect of a non-Malay prime minister, says Universiti Sains Malaysia senior lecturer in the School of Social Sciences, Dr Sivamurugan Pandian.

"Beyond ethnicity is the issue of religion," he says. While this "requirement" is not explicitly spelt out, it is indubitably part of the social contract.

"There was a gentleman's agreement that with citizenship given to the non-Malays, the Malays would have special rights and that Islam would be the national religion. In this regard, the dominant group will not allow a non-Muslim to be prime minister. Whatever happens must be in line with all that has been agreed upon by our founding fathers."

He feels that whether or not a non-Malay can be prime minister depends on the extent to which the Malays are willing to let go of their special privileges.

Consequently, he is sure that a non-Malay will not become prime minister any time soon.

Professor James Chin of Monash University says: "It will not happen in Malaysia under the current political set-up. Large sections of Malay Muslims will not accept a non-Malay as prime minister."

There is one key difference between the US and Malaysia, Chin points out.

"In America, the constitution is followed to the word whereas here, many things which are not part of the constitution are followed as political tradition."

An example is that the prime minister must be from the majority race and religion, he says.

A non-Malay can only ascend to the post of prime minister when political parties in the country are no longer racially based and mobilised along religious lines, says Chin.

"When that happens, maybe there is a chance. But I definitely do not see it happening in my lifetime.

"Nobody takes this issue seriously anyway. People got caught up with it pursuant to Obama's win because they are sick of the racial and religious politics here.

"A more pertinent question would be whether an indigenous person, a Bumiputera from Sabah or Sarawak, can become the prime minister."

A non-Malay prime minister may be improbable but that is not to say that the Obama campaign does not hold valuable lessons for Malaysians and for Malaysian politics.

Ong says there are ideals espoused in this campaign which Malaysians can identify with and aim for.

"The vision of America as a place where every child, regardless of race or religion, can aspire to the highest office in the land is surely one which we can all support."

But for now, what the people can realistically hope for is a prime minister with a multiracial approach and who will take care of the interests of all, regardless of religion, ethnicity or gender.

It will certainly do the country much good if politicians and political parties can move away from racist rhetoric and debate policy differences based on more substantive grounds.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

The Audacity of Hope...

I was reading the President-elect NY best seller. The book that sourced from the keynote address he gave in the Democratic National Convention endorsing the then Democrat presidential contender, John Kerry in 2004. Barack Obama at that time was an Illinois State Senator who had just won the primary victory to the United States Senate and was then a junior United States Senator (Note : Mr. Obama resigned today -16th November 2008)

I was challenged to read his book recently by a member of the Malacca Bar. I bought it like six months ago after watching him closely neck to neck against Hillary Clinton, of course history war rewrote and now America has an African-American President hopefully uniting the United States of America.

In fact to this date, in the United States Senate of a hundred senators, there are only three Hispanics, two Asian Americans from Hawaii, and the famed Senator President-elect Barack Obama.

Further, all US Supreme Court Justices were white until the appointment of Thurgood Marshall in 1967. And after Marshall's appointment was succeeded by the current Clarence Thomas. Of the 110 justices that was appointed since Day-1, 108 have been white i.e. 98%. In fact it was since George J W Bush administration (the 42nd President), Hispanic judge was considered in the selection process.

It is also noted that President Bush Jr. appointed Colin Powell in 2001 as the first African American to be Secretary of State. And mind you that Mr. Powell was the former Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff during Desert Storm. And became the only African American holding that position.

This great nation has gone a long way since the Constitution was written and though in 1964 Civil Rights Act, prohibiting discrimination based on race, color, religion, sex, and national origin by federal and state governments as well as some public places, the minorities were still in many ways discriminated and segregated through unwritten policies, conventions and characters and habits. Like ol’ Mick Jagger once sing “Old Habits Die Hard”.

For example, as stated in his book, the President-elect states that in today’s America such prejudices are far more loosely held than they once were – and hence subject to refutation. A black teenage boy walking down the street may elicit fear in a white couple, but if he turns out to be their son’s friend from school he may be invited over for dinner…

As such I was in fact very skeptical about whether the whites will vote for Obama as President. So I was watching closely, and deeply to my surprise, white males gave Obama about 44% of the total votes compare to McCain a 55%. Of course more than 98% African-American voted for Obama. So with white support, a landslide victory is inevitable.

Whatever said, the United States of America will experience a dream come true come 20th January 2009, when Barack Obama becomes the 44th President of the United States. It will be a manifestation of a dream and a completion of strength of this great nation. As spoken by his truly that founded this book, Audacity of Hope, he declared in 2004,

"There's not a liberal America and a conservative America—there's the United States of America."

And he further emphasized…

"We worship an awesome God in the blue states, and we don't like federal agents poking around in our libraries in the red states. We coach Little League in the blue states, and yes, we've got some gay friends in the red states. There are patriots who opposed the war in Iraq, and there are patriots who supported the war in Iraq. We are one people, all of us pledging allegiance to the Stars and Stripes, all of us defending the United States of America."

Those words were emphatic and firmed. Those words change America in a right direction.

So what it is for Malaysia?

So long as the constitution does not restrict the race of a Malaysian Prime Minister, a minority can be the Chief Executive. Of course like what Tun Mahatir says or is it Pak Lah, so long as the majority of people are happy that a minority be appointed as Prime Minister, then the Malaysian dream will be a reality or it will be just a fantasy due to Obama-mania.

Though the US election is gone and over, it will always strike a chord amongst Malaysians, bumiputra or non bumiputra. I believe since the March general election, Malays in the city and towns voted for a secular representative in DAP and the rural and city Chinese voted for PAS’ Islam for All, I see the audacity of hope in Malaysia. The Chinese and the Indians no more fear PAS and in fact, the support for PAS amongst the Indians are growing. Evidenced was when I was asked to ceramah with PAS representative in the rural of Malacca state, I found many Indians sitting around hearing us talking.

So will Malaysia allowed and welcome those change to seep into our system and not just immediately cry SENSATIVE or ISA the moment a discussion on race and religion is deliberated and openly discuss. I am all for the discussion of all issues to further understand and harmonized all Malaysians. But will this be anytime soon. Maybe not for another hundred years.

The Americans took 300 years to fulfill a dream that was once dreamt by a prominent Civil Right leader in the 60s.

I have a hope for Malaysia and that one day, a declaration similar to Obama, "There's not a secular Malaysia and a conservative Malaysia - there's a Malaysia.

source : Audacity of Hope, Wikipedia

Saturday, November 8, 2008

President-elect Barrack Obama first speech as CEO of the United States of America

source : AP

Text of President-elect Obama at a news conference Friday in Chicago, as transcribed by CQ Transcriptions:


OBAMA: Thank you very much, everybody. Thank you very much.

This morning, we woke up to more sobering news about the state of our economy. The 240,000 jobs lost in October marks the 10th consecutive month that our economy has shed jobs. In total, we've lost nearly 1.2 million jobs this year, and more than 10 million Americans are now unemployed.

Tens of millions of families are struggling to figure out how to pay the bills and stay in their homes. Their stories are an urgent reminder that we are facing the greatest economic challenge of our lifetime, and we're going to have to act swiftly to resolve it.

Now, the United States has only one government and one president at a time. And until January 20th of next year, that government is the current administration.

I've spoken to President Bush. I appreciate his commitment to ensuring that his economic policy team keeps us fully informed as developments unfold. And I'm also thankful for his invitation to the White House.

Immediately after I become president, I'm going to confront this economic crisis head on by taking all necessary steps to ease the credit crisis, help hardworking families, and restore growth and prosperity.

And this morning, I met with members of my transition economic advisory board, who are standing behind me, alongside my vice president-elect, Joe Biden.

They will help to guide the work of my transition team, working with Rahm Emanuel, my chief of staff, in developing a strong set of policies to respond to this crisis. We discussed in the earlier meeting several of the most immediate challenges facing our economy and key priorities on which to focus in the days and weeks ahead.

First of all, we need a rescue plan for the middle class that invests in immediate efforts to create jobs and provide relief to families that are watching their paychecks shrink and their life savings disappear.

A particularly urgent priority is a further extension of unemployment insurance benefits for workers who cannot find work in the increasingly weak economy.

A fiscal stimulus plan that will jump-start economic growth is long overdue. I've talked about it throughout this — the last few months of the campaign. We should get it done.

Second, we have to address the spreading impact of the financial crisis on the other sectors of our economy: small businesses that are struggling to meet their payrolls and finance their holiday inventories; and state and municipal governments facing devastating budget cuts and tax increases.

We must also remember that the financial crisis is increasingly global and requires a global response.

The news coming out of the auto industry this week reminds us of the hardship it faces, hardship that goes far beyond individual auto companies to the countless suppliers, small businesses and communities throughout our nation who depend on a vibrant American auto industry.

The auto industry is the backbone of American manufacturing and a critical part of our attempt to reduce our dependence on foreign oil.

I would like to see the administration do everything it can to accelerate the retooling assistance that Congress has already enacted. In addition, I have made it a high priority for my transition team to work on additional policy options to help the auto industry adjust, weather the financial crisis, and succeed in producing fuel-efficient cars here in the United States of America.

And I was glad to be joined today by Governor Jennifer Granholm, who obviously has great knowledge and great interest on this issue.

I've asked my team to explore what we can do under current law and whether additional legislation will be needed for this purpose.

Third, we will review the implementation of this administration's financial program to ensure that the government's efforts are achieving their central goal of stabilizing financial markets while protecting taxpayers, helping homeowners, and not unduly rewarding the management of financial firms that are receiving government assistance.

It is absolutely critical that the Treasury work closely with the FDIC, HUD, and other government agencies to use the substantial authority that they already have to help families avoid foreclosure and stay in their homes.

Finally, as we monitor and address these immediate economic challenges, we will be moving forward in laying out a set of policies that will grow our middle class and strengthen our economy in the long term. We cannot afford to wait on moving forward on the key priorities that I identified during the campaign, including clean energy, health care, education and tax relief for middle-class families.

My transition team will be working on each of these priorities in the weeks ahead, and I intend to reconvene this advisory board to discuss the best ideas for responding to these immediate problems.

Let me close by saying this. I do not underestimate the enormity of the task that lies ahead. We have taken some major action to date, and we will need further action during this transition and subsequent months.

Some of the choices that we make are going to be difficult. And I have said before and I will repeat again: It is not going to be quick, and it is not going to be easy for us to dig ourselves out of the hole that we are in.

But America is a strong and resilient country. And I know we will succeed, if we put aside partisanship and politics and work together as one nation. That's what I intend to do.

With that, let me open it up for some questions. And I'm going to start right here with you.

Q: Thank you, Mr. President-elect. I wonder what you think any president can accomplish during their first 100 days in office to turn the economy around? How far can you go? And what will be your priorities on day one?

OBAMA: Well, I think that a new president can do an enormous amount to restore confidence, to move an agenda forward that speaks to the needs of the economy and the needs of middle-class families all across the country.

I've outlined during the course of the campaign some critical issues that I intend to work on.

We have a current financial crisis that is spilling out into rest of the economy, and we have taken some action so far. More action is undoubtedly going to be needed. My transition team is going to be monitoring very closely what happens over the course of the next several months.

The one thing I can say with certainty is that we are going to need to see a stimulus package passed either before or after inauguration.

We are going to have to focus on jobs, because the hemorrhaging of jobs has an impact, obviously, on consumer confidence and the ability of people to ... buy goods and services and can have enormous spillover effects.

And I think it's going to be very important for us to provide the kinds of assistance to state and local governments to make sure that they don't compound some of the problems that are already out there by having to initiate major layoffs or initiate tax increases.

So there are some things that we know we're going to have to do, but I'm confident that a new president can have an enormous impact. That's why I ran for president.

Q: (OFF-MIKE) from House Democrats that the stimulus package may be in trouble, that it's going to be a hard time getting out of a lame-duck session. Are you still confident that you would be able to get something done before you actually take office?

OBAMA: I want to see a stimulus package sooner rather than later. If it does not get done in the lame-duck session, it will be the first thing I get done as president of the United States.

Q: Senator, for the first time since the Iranian revolution, the president of Iran sent a congratulations note to a new U.S. president. I'm wondering if, first of all, if you responded to President (Mahmoud) Ahmadinejad's note of congratulations and, second of all, and more importantly, how soon do you plan on sending low-level envoys to countries such as Iran, Syria, Venezuela, Cuba, to see if a presidential-level talk would be productive?

OBAMA: I am aware that the letter was sent. Let me state ... repeat what I stated during the course of the campaign.

Iran's development of a nuclear weapon I believe is unacceptable. And we have to mount an international effort to prevent that from happening.

Iran's support of terrorist organizations I think is something that has to cease.

I will be reviewing the letter from President Ahmadinejad, and we will respond appropriately. It's only been three days since the election. Obviously, how we approach and deal with a country like Iran is not something that we should, you know, simply do in a knee-jerk fashion. I think we've got to think it through.

But I have to reiterate once again that we only have one president at a time. And I want to be very careful that we are sending the right signals to the world as a whole that I am not the president and I won't be until January 20th.

Q: Picking up what we were just talking about, your meeting with President Bush on Monday. When — he is still the decider, obviously, stating the obvious. When you disagree with decisions he makes, will you defer? Will you challenge? Will you confront? And if it becomes confrontational, could that rattle the markets even more?

OBAMA: Well, President Bush graciously invited Michelle and I to — to meet with him and first lady Laura Bush. We are gratified by the invitation. I'm sure that, in addition to taking a tour of the White House, there's going to be a substantive conversation between myself and the president.

I'm not going to anticipate problems. I'm going to go in there with a spirit of bipartisanship and a sense that both the president and various leaders in Congress all recognize the severity of the situation right now and want to get stuff done.

And, you know, undoubtedly there may end up being differences between not just members of different parties, but between people within the same party.

The critical point and I think the critical tone that has to be struck by all of us involved right now is the American people need help. This economy is in bad shape. And we have just completed one of the longest election cycles in recorded history.

Now is a good time for us to set politics aside for a while and think practically about what will actually work to move the economy forward. And it's in that spirit that I'll have the conversation with the president.

Q: Thank you, Mr. President-elect. With the country facing two wars and a financial crisis, do you think it's important for you to move especially quickly to fill key cabinet posts, such as treasury secretary and secretary of state?

OBAMA: When we have an announcement about cabinet appointments, we will make them. There is no doubt that I think people want to know who's going to make up our team.

And I want to move with all deliberate haste, but I want to emphasize deliberate as well as haste. I'm proud of the choice I made of vice president, partly because we did it right. I'm proud of the choice of chief of staff, because we thought it through.

And I think it's very important, in all these key positions, both in the economic team and the national security team, to ... to get it right and not to be so rushed that you end up making mistakes.

I'm confident that we're going to have an outstanding team, and we will be rolling that out in subsequent weeks.

Q: Yes, sir. To what extent — to what extent are you planning to use your probably pretty great influence in determining the successor for your Senate seat? And what sort of criteria should the governor be looking at in filling that position?

OBAMA: This is the governor's decision; it is not my decision.

And I think that the criteria that I would have for my successor would be the same criteria that I'd have if I were a voter: somebody who is capable; somebody who is passionate about helping working families in Illinois meet their ... meet their dreams.

And I think there are going to be a lot of good choices out there, but it is the governor's decision to make, not mine.

Lynn Sweet?

Q: Mr. President-elect...

OBAMA: What happened to your arm, Lynn?

Q: I cracked my shoulder running to your speech on election night.

OBAMA: Oh, no.


Q: (inaudible)

OBAMA: I think that was the only major incident during the ... the entire Grant Park celebration.

Q: Thank you for asking. Here's my question. I'm wondering what you're doing to get ready. Have you spoken to any living ex-presidents, what books you might be reading?

Everyone wants to know, what kind of dog are you going to buy for your girls? Have you decided on a private or public school for your daughters?

OBAMA: Let ... let me list those off.

In terms of speaking to former presidents, I've spoken to all of them that are living. Obviously, President Clinton — I didn't want to get into a Nancy Reagan thing about, you know, doing any seances.

I have reread some of Lincoln's writings, who's always an extraordinary inspiration.

And, by the way, President Carter, President Bush, Sr., as well as the current president have all been very gracious and offered to provide any help that they can in this transition process.

With respect to the dog, this is a major issue. I think it's generated more interest on our Web site than just about anything.

We have ... we have two criteria that have to be reconciled. One is that Malia is allergic, so it has to be hypoallergenic. There are a number of breeds that are hypoallergenic.

On the other hand, our preference would be to get a shelter dog, but, obviously, a lot of shelter dogs are mutts like me. So ... so whether we're going to be able to balance those two things I think is a pressing issue on the Obama household.

And with respect to schools, Michelle will be — will be scouting out some schools. We'll be making a decision about that in the future.

Q: You are now privy to a lot of intelligence that you haven't had access to before, in fact, much of what the president sees, I'm sure all of it.

First of all, do you — what do you think about the state of U.S. intelligence, whether you think it needs beefing up, whether you think there's enough interaction between the various agencies?

And, second of all, has anything that you've heard given you pause about anything you've talked about on the campaign trail?

OBAMA: Well, as you know, if ... if there was something I had heard, I couldn't tell you. But...


OBAMA: I have received intelligence briefings. And I will make just a general statement: Our intelligence process can always improve. I think it has gotten better. And, you know, beyond that, I don't think I should comment on the nature of the intelligence briefings. That was a two-parter. Was there another aspect to that?

Q: Well, just whether — you know, absent what you've heard...

OBAMA: OK, I get you.

Q: ... whether anything has given you pause.

OBAMA: I'm going to skip that.

Q: Mr. President-elect, do you still intend to seek income tax increases for upper-income Americans? And if so, should these Americans expect to pay higher taxes in 2009?

OBAMA: The ... my tax plan represented a net tax cut. It provided for substantial middle-class tax cuts; 95 percent of working Americans would receive them.

It also provided for cuts in capital gains for small businesses, additional tax credits. All of it is designed for job growth.

My priority is going to be, how do we grow the economy? How do we create more jobs?

I think that the plan that we've put forward is the right one, but, obviously, over the next several weeks and months, we're going to be continuing to take a look at the data and see what's taking place in the economy as a whole.

But, understand, the goal of my plan is to provide tax relief to families that are struggling, but also to boost the capacity of the economy to grow from the bottom up.

All right. Thank you very much, guys.

Friday, November 7, 2008

RPK freed....YES

A welcomed decision of the High Court to release RPK.

©The Star (Used by permission)

SHAH ALAM: Malaysia Today editor Raja Petra Kamaruddin is to be freed Friday.

He succeeded Friday in his bid to obtain a release order from detention under the Internal Security Act (ISA) via his habeas corpus application.

The judge ruled that the Home Minister had acted outside his jurisdiction when he issued the two-year detention order under Section 8(1) of the ISA.

The High Court here also allowed Raja Petra to be brought to court to be released today.

He was detained for a second time under the ISA on Sept 12.

On April 11, 2001, Raja Petra along with 10 other activists were detained under the ISA for allegedly plotting to overthrow former prime minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad. Raja Petra was released 52 days later.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Full Text of President-Elect Barrack Obama's victory speech

The full text of President-Elect Barrack Obama's victory speech, I have taken from the Malaysian Bar Website

Tuesday, November 4th, 2008, Chicago, Illinois: Text of President-elect Barack Obama's victory speech in Chicago on Tuesday, as released by his campaign:

If there is anyone out there who still doubts that America is a place where all things are possible; who still wonders if the dream of our founders is alive in our time; who still questions the power of our democracy, tonight is your answer.

It's the answer told by lines that stretched around schools and churches in numbers this nation has never seen; by people who waited three hours and four hours, many for the very first time in their lives, because they believed that this time must be different; that their voice could be that difference.

It's the answer spoken by young and old, rich and poor, Democrat and Republican, black, white, Latino, Asian, Native American, gay, straight, disabled and not disabled - Americans who sent a message to the world that we have never been a collection of Red States and Blue States: we are, and always will be, the United States of America.

It's the answer that led those who have been told for so long by so many to be cynical, and fearful, and doubtful of what we can achieve to put their hands on the arc of history and bend it once more toward the hope of a better day.

It's been a long time coming, but tonight, because of what we did on this day, in this election, at this defining moment, change has come to America.

I just received a very gracious call from Senator McCain. He fought long and hard in this campaign, and he's fought even longer and harder for the country he loves. He has endured sacrifices for America that most of us cannot begin to imagine, and we are better off for the service rendered by this brave and selfless leader. I congratulate him and Governor Palin for all they have achieved, and I look forward to working with them to renew this nation's promise in the months ahead.

I want to thank my partner in this journey, a man who campaigned from his heart and spoke for the men and women he grew up with on the streets of Scranton and rode with on that train home to Delaware, the Vice President-elect of the United States, Joe Biden.

I would not be standing here tonight without the unyielding support of my best friend for the last sixteen years, the rock of our family and the love of my life, our nation's next First Lady, Michelle Obama. Sasha and Malia, I love you both so much, and you have earned the new puppy that's coming with us to the White House. And while she's no longer with us, I know my grandmother is watching, along with the family that made me who I am. I miss them tonight, and know that my debt to them is beyond measure.

To my campaign manager David Plouffe, my chief strategist David Axelrod, and the best campaign team ever assembled in the history of politics - you made this happen, and I am forever grateful for what you've sacrificed to get it done.

But above all, I will never forget who this victory truly belongs to - it belongs to you.

I was never the likeliest candidate for this office. We didn't start with much money or many endorsements. Our campaign was not hatched in the halls of Washington - it began in the backyards of Des Moines and the living rooms of Concord and the front porches of Charleston.

Text of Obama's victory speech

It was built by working men and women who dug into what little savings they had to give five dollars and ten dollars and twenty dollars to this cause. It grew strength from the young people who rejected the myth of their generation's apathy; who left their homes and their families for jobs that offered little pay and less sleep; from the not-so-young people who braved the bitter cold and scorching heat to knock on the doors of perfect strangers; from the millions of Americans who volunteered, and organized, and proved that more than two centuries later, a government of the people, by the people and for the people has not perished from this Earth. This is your victory.

I know you didn't do this just to win an election and I know you didn't do it for me. You did it because you understand the enormity of the task that lies ahead. For even as we celebrate tonight, we know the challenges that tomorrow will bring are the greatest of our lifetime - two wars, a planet in peril, the worst financial crisis in a century. Even as we stand here tonight, we know there are brave Americans waking up in the deserts of Iraq and the mountains of Afghanistan to risk their lives for us. There are mothers and fathers who will lie awake after their children fall asleep and wonder how they'll make the mortgage, or pay their doctor's bills, or save enough for college. There is new energy to harness and new jobs to be created; new schools to build and threats to meet and alliances to repair.

The road ahead will be long. Our climb will be steep. We may not get there in one year or even one term, but America - I have never been more hopeful than I am tonight that we will get there. I promise you - we as a people will get there.

There will be setbacks and false starts. There are many who won't agree with every decision or policy I make as President, and we know that government can't solve every problem. But I will always be honest with you about the challenges we face. I will listen to you, especially when we disagree. And above all, I will ask you join in the work of remaking this nation the only way it's been done in America for two-hundred and twenty-one years - block by block, brick by brick, calloused hand by calloused hand.

What began twenty-one months ago in the depths of winter must not end on this autumn night. This victory alone is not the change we seek - it is only the chance for us to make that change. And that cannot happen if we go back to the way things were. It cannot happen without you.

So let us summon a new spirit of patriotism; of service and responsibility where each of us resolves to pitch in and work harder and look after not only ourselves, but each other. Let us remember that if this financial crisis taught us anything, it's that we cannot have a thriving Wall Street while Main Street suffers - in this country, we rise or fall as one nation; as one people.

Let us resist the temptation to fall back on the same partisanship and pettiness and immaturity that has poisoned our politics for so long. Let us remember that it was a man from this state who first carried the banner of the Republican Party to the White House - a party founded on the values of self-reliance, individual liberty, and national unity. Those are values we all share, and while the Democratic Party has won a great victory tonight, we do so with a measure of humility and determination to heal the divides that have held back our progress. As Lincoln said to a nation far more divided than ours, "We are not enemies, but friends...though passion may have strained it must not break our bonds of affection." And to those Americans whose support I have yet to earn - I may not have won your vote, but I hear your voices, I need your help, and I will be your President too.

And to all those watching tonight from beyond our shores, from parliaments and palaces to those who are huddled around radios in the forgotten corners of our world - our stories are singular, but our destiny is shared, and a new dawn of American leadership is at hand. To those who would tear this world down - we will defeat you. To those who seek peace and security - we support you. And to all those who have wondered if America's beacon still burns as bright - tonight we proved once more that the true strength of our nation comes not from our the might of our arms or the scale of our wealth, but from the enduring power of our ideals: democracy, liberty, opportunity, and unyielding hope.

For that is the true genius of America - that America can change. Our union can be perfected. And what we have already achieved gives us hope for what we can and must achieve tomorrow.

This election had many firsts and many stories that will be told for generations. But one that's on my mind tonight is about a woman who cast her ballot in Atlanta. She's a lot like the millions of others who stood in line to make their voice heard in this election except for one thing - Ann Nixon Cooper is 106 years old.

She was born just a generation past slavery; a time when there were no cars on the road or planes in the sky; when someone like her couldn't vote for two reasons - because she was a woman and because of the color of her skin.

And tonight, I think about all that she's seen throughout her century in America - the heartache and the hope; the struggle and the progress; the times we were told that we can't, and the people who pressed on with that American creed: Yes we can.

At a time when women's voices were silenced and their hopes dismissed, she lived to see them stand up and speak out and reach for the ballot. Yes we can.

When there was despair in the dust bowl and depression across the land, she saw a nation conquer fear itself with a New Deal, new jobs and a new sense of common purpose. Yes we can.

When the bombs fell on our harbor and tyranny threatened the world, she was there to witness a generation rise to greatness and a democracy was saved. Yes we can.

She was there for the buses in Montgomery, the hoses in Birmingham, a bridge in Selma, and a preacher from Atlanta who told a people that "We Shall Overcome." Yes we can.

A man touched down on the moon, a wall came down in Berlin, a world was connected by our own science and imagination. And this year, in this election, she touched her finger to a screen, and cast her vote, because after 106 years in America, through the best of times and the darkest of hours, she knows how America can change. Yes we can.

America, we have come so far. We have seen so much. But there is so much more to do. So tonight, let us ask ourselves - if our children should live to see the next century; if my daughters should be so lucky to live as long as Ann Nixon Cooper, what change will they see? What progress will we have made?

This is our chance to answer that call. This is our moment. This is our time - to put our people back to work and open doors of opportunity for our kids; to restore prosperity and promote the cause of peace; to reclaim the American Dream and reaffirm that fundamental truth - that out of many, we are one; that while we breathe, we hope, and where we are met with cynicism, and doubt, and those who tell us that we can't, we will respond with that timeless creed that sums up the spirit of a people:

Yes We Can. Thank you, God bless you, and may God Bless the United States of America.

Text of Obama's victory speech