Category Archives: Politics

Citizens of the world

UN FlagsMy cousin Sumisha, studying in Australia, writes a fascinating piece on dual citizenship for her student union paper – dual citizenship is illegal in Malaysia, Iran and 58 other countries, apparently. As someone that holds a different passport to his wife and daughter this is an issue close to my heart, and, apart from the pride in seeing my cousin write such an insightful and interesting article, there are some really interesting questions raised in this piece.

Questions like – what would your perception of your Nationality be if you had dual citizenship? Which would you give up if you were forced to? Should dual citizenship be legal everywhere? These are asked and answered by Sumisha’s interviewees. In both cases, if forced to choose, they would choose their adoptive countries (less repressive and more wealthy regimes) over their birth nations, although their sense of personal identity seems to lie with the countries they grew up in.

For me, my links to Malaysia may never completely fade, but they are not ones I’m particularly proud of, as you’ll know if you’ve read my relatively recent posts on Sarawak, on the obedience club, on Bersih and beyond. My "national" identity stems more from my family than the Nation of my birth and I hold more ‘loyalty’ to the country I live in now than Malaysia (although National loyalty is rarely a thing that is tested beyond choosing which team to support at football friendlies). And indeed, many of the good things in Malaysia remain the legacy of British colonization.

Although perhaps the judicial and governmental systems they left us were too mature for our leaders, who seem to prefer autocracy and corruption.

Anyway, go read my cousin’s article. Sumisha, mate, good one. This is the best shrimp on the barbie yet. Too easy.

As an afterthought, I give you this music video – almost from down under too:

Negarakuku

The atmosphere in Malaysia is very weird at the moment. There’s a huge build-up to the country’s 50th Independence day celebrations (Merdeka), but at the same time we’re standing in the wake of a considerable amount of racial and religious tension. The deputy Prime Minister, Najib, called Malaysia in Islamic state… and the government issued a gag order to stop the mainstream media from discussing it. You’d think it would be difficult to come up with something more absurd…

…and then this. A Malaysian student studying in Taiwan made a video parodying the Malaysian national anthem is under investigation by the Malaysian government, who are considering confiscating his passport and prosecuting him for sedition. The video raises controversial issues like – accusations of corruption in the Malaysian police force, referring to the morning Muslim prayers as ‘crowing’, and comments about the way the Malaysian Chinese are discriminated against in Malaysia. I’m afraid its in Hokkien and Malay, but you can view it here if you are interested.

It’s all a bit weird. Needless to say, I’m not impressed with the way Malaysia is handling these things. Fortunately, the Malaysian blogosphere is keeping the discussion going.

New liberal masthead

I decided that a moose-head on a stick would be too gross, despite what readers of this blog voted. Obligatory Cuban photo instead, reflecting my wish for victory, always.

Have also joined the Lib Dems, which could be interesting.

Update: Following a conversation today I’d just like to point out now that I feel no call to armed revolution. I just liked the picture. And victory. Always.