update: I wrote this posting immediately after midnite July 4 while Prime Minister Datuk Seri Mohd Najib Tun Razak made similar statement in the afternoon (here). Whatever it is, my worries for Umno is more than that of his. Why? He only cited the problems in Umno Kelantan, not knowing that Terengganu and few other states is worse than expected. Anyway, he is the party President. Whether he gets the right info or not, he should be aware that Umno needs a total 'clean up'.
Tasik Kenyir in Terengganu is one of the best local retreats I have been. So tranquil, so fascinating. Never had I imagined how this man-made lake has turned out to be Trengganu's most popular hideaway. You may easily get enchanted.
However, yesterday added to my joy. Watching how Holland buried Brazil to advance to the semi-finals of the World Cup football in South Africa, made me realize that the best does not always rule. I am also glad that my prediction about England and Argentina was correct. How did England, Brazil and Argentina fail to make it to the last four, is now up to their respective team manager and coach to answer.
In politics, it applies. Being among the top leaders/politicians does not guarantee you of anything. You may be a Prime Minister, a Deputy Prime Minister, a senior minister etc but should you resort to wrong sets of policy and strategy, you may find the exit soon.
A leader might be happy to introduce something new for the rakyat. While making the minority happy, he fails to take into account the interest of the majority. Just because the minority controls the economy and other sectors, he thinks it is important that their quest for anything and their demand be fulfilled. The majority, most of whom depend so much on government subsidy and discretion, are now being sidelined. While the minority is allowed to build big supermarkets in the city, the majority is only given license to operate a 'keropok lekor' stall nearby.
Being the best too does not necessarily make us popular. Our approach may be obsolete. While England, Brazil and Argentina are so comfortable being among the best in world football, they failed to acknowledge the fact that other countries are fast catching up to their standard, and in some cases emerged to be better than them in terms of tactic and approach. While the best are getting saturated, the others are leaping forward to take over their standings.
Remember what did FIFA say about Holland before the start of the Finals? -- that Holland is among the no hoppers!
Here in Malaysia, our FAM keeps on trying to find the right tuning for the soccer team. So much was spent, so many foreign coaches were engaged and thousands of players were tested but the standard is still declining.
I think its nothing wrong to look out for the best. However, if we keep on looking for the best, we may end up having nothing.
Our politic is the same. While we keep on believing that our policy is the best, it finally backfires. In trying to provide the best for the rakyat, we actually offer them product of the lowest class. Why? We dont have enough knowledge about their actual need. While encouraging the retailers to multiply their business, we build a special complex for them... and they are so much happy. A year later, we allowed a wholesale supermarket to open next to the complex, forgetting that this retailers have been buying from the wholesaler all this while.
And finally, the retailer complex has to be closed down. Its tenants, too have to 'gulung tikar'. Our best assistance to them was actually the best, silly error to kill them. Anyone knows anything about Wisma Yakin? Its no longer 'meyakinkan'. Most if the small retailers and petty traders had left.
Umno, too is trying to stay relevant. While its President, deputy president and other office bearers are so convinced that the next general elections would see the party wresting more seats from the Opposition, they failed to distinguish the problems at grassroots.
The grief of grassroots member is not for them to listen. They have their own division and branch chiefs. Unfortunately, most of them those chiefs are rotten politicians. Not only that they feed the leaders with wrong info, they also turned up as 'division dictators'. Again, such an approach is not relevant anymore. Umno may end up just like Brazil - claiming to be the best for the Malays but is actually meant for the rich Malays.
So, football and politics are more or less the same. If you ignore the might of your opponent, you may fall down to your knees. If Umno thinks Parti Keadilan and PAS fail to attract more Malays, they are wrong. If Umno leaders feel comfortable with the feedback they got from down and bottom, they may end up reeling during the next PRU.
England players have gone home, and so are the Brazilians and Argentinians. It will take them years to recover from the agony of defeat. Brazilian coach has declared that he would resign. That is only soccer. Will any of our leaders willing to resign should his/her policy backfires and upset the rakyat?
One thing for sure - we are not Japan!