Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Finding Our Obama

Just after the Dateline on Tv3, one of my senior in IIUM challenged me to write down something about our Malaysian leader who are parallel with Barack Obama in terms of thought, style and concept here in my blog. He wants me to write in English, otherwise my opinion will be not qualified.(Damn!) It could be difficult to me because I am never put a political posting in English language so far. Nutshell, I feel anxious with lack of facts and English grammar too. Takes 1 hour and half to finish it. So below is my point :

No matter the outcome of the US presidential election, Barack Obamas name has made it into the annals of history. Walking up to the podium at the Democratic convention in Denver as the presidential candidate, he must have shared the popular sentiment that the accompanying thunderous applause signified a faith in the promise of new political norms.

Obamas oratory skills have defined much of the way people view him. On my last count, his acceptance in Denver had been viewed over 600,000 times on YouTube alone (should be higher until this post are viewed).

Obamas promises of change and departure from the “old politics” resonate with young American voters who see him as a public figure who understands their concerns and aspirations. But at 47, he would be considered very young in Malaysia’s political context one imagines that men and women his age would be, at best, a Cabinet member. It would appear that age is not so much a criteria as a necessity in Malaysian politics; it is further unfortunate that political conventions in Malaysia uncontestingly equate experience with age.

What can i say, the irony is that the Malaysian citizenry is young, with the last general election seeing voters under the age of 40 accounting for approximately 40 per cent of the electorate.

Latest figures indicate that the percentage of young voters in the next general election would increase substantially. Yet, this segment remains very much under-represented at the national level; it would be difficult, I suspect, for a casual political observer to name just 10 under-40 Members of Parliament off the cuff.

A qualification is called for here. Just as old is not always gold, the presence of young politicians on the national scene does not guarantee the representation of voices and sentiments of Malaysian Generations X and Y. It would be insulting to our youth for us to assume that we could have a young politician with old ideals and have him or her appeal broadly to that section of the electorate. In fact, I was quietly taken aback when a young friend described a minister whom I thought was looked upon as youthful and vibrant as part of the old guard.

The answer could be as simple as one of a supply problem. In my line of studying, I am encounter many aspiring potentials with strong interest in politics. They have a very good grasp of political theory and are well versed in the art of policy making bringing a fresh outlook that could significantly contribute to nation building. Armed with large dosages of desire and the willingness to work hard, they should, in an ideal world, be able to climb the political hierarchy of any party with great ease.

But the reality is very different. These aspiring young men and women generally fall into two groups.

The first places idealism among the top motivating elements for participation in the cut-throat world of politics. After spending some time in the system, they often turn their back on active participation and end up either disillusioned or seek solace in becoming a member of the silent majority.

Members of the second group usually succumb to the demands of politics and gradually morph into beings that are a shadow of their once-selves.

Thus if we accept the reality of Malaysian politics as it is today that the demands for a successful career in politics include the ability to “bend” ones ideals we certainly need to construct a new brand of politics to make sure these young potential leaders remain engaged with their ideals intact. In charting this new reality, there must be the courage and the will to appoint more members of civil society young leaders with a different set of skills and beliefs in the decision-making level of our political parties.

In the presence of obvious talent and potential, erstwhile taboos must be set aside. Now, more than ever, the older generation must learn to accept that our youth simply do not conform to traditional political stereotypes.

Obama will feature on the Democratic ticket this November because somehow, somewhere, taboos were broken at different stages of his relatively brief political career.

Malaysias Obama is somewhere out there, yearning for his or her space.

Thats my say.


PENDEKAR said...

tq... nice n3

pemimpin yang bagus pemimpin yang membenarkan dirinya dipimpin

sarah said...

hey,that's great.u do write alot of stuffs that are related to politics.i'm not really interested in politics coz the politicians r bullshits n are corrupted.U probably like Political Science rite..mesti score A.

Danial Izzat said...

obama..ntah lerr.. same je kott die ni ngn syaitan2 yg lain tu~

Raafiq said...

obama malaysia?tak ada!

Farhan Ghadzali said...

Sarah,alhamdulillah, i got a for this subject.

Danial, kita tunggu dan lihat kesyaitanan Obama jika benar..

Rafiq, lets us 2gether find our Obama,or perhaps u one day??..hehe

Danial Izzat said...

klu ko masih igt, dlu bush pn dipuja2 seluruh dunia mase die ganti bill clinton.. skang??? die la manusia paling dbenci.. aha aha~

Farhan Ghadzali said...

die di puja sebab George Walker Bush Senior..bapak mamat tu..so people ave tendency to get influence by that factor..Obama dipuja sebab keberanian polisi yang diketengahkan untuk Amerika dan sejagat..

Anonymous said...

dont u think its too early to make judgements about Obama? instead of saying he is angel or evil in disguise, why dont we pray for him? this surely better than cursing..

Farhan Ghadzali said...

yeps!..agree wit u..obama still can not implement all d manifesto made by him till diz January..so we have no right to critics him now..so r u pro-Barack Hussein Obama?