Malaysia Baharu: Crown Of Thorns In A Modern-Day Game of Thrones

OPINION

Malaysia Baharu: Crown Of Thorns In A Modern-Day Game of Thrones

Heavy lies the head that wears the crown – none weightier than the mantle worn by Pakatan Harapan, one year after its historic slaying of the once seemingly invincible Barisan behemoth.

While TV-land is all agog over the antics of warring factions conniving and plotting for power in a medieval make-believe game of thrones, here in Malaysia, at least the weather is forever sunny and the dreaded winter shall never come.

Or will it – we best leave Doubting Donald and his band of climate deniers out of this.

Perhaps, judging by the distinctly frosty chill between the government holding the levers of power in Putrajaya – today celebrating a year in office;  and the quivers from which arrows are sent arching on its very rafters from way down south.

This is Malaysia Baharu – reset to face a new reality where old norms are no longer obediently accepted with unquestioned resignation nor obsequious timidity

This is not old Siam, or even present-day Thailand where the Chakri Dynasty is embalmed in the cocoon of lese majeste.

This is not the House of Windsor where just as each swelling appetite for republicanism heats up, the fervour gets doused with the `just-in-time’ delivery of the royal stork – as if on her majesty’s command.

This is not the Chrysanthemum throne either, where abdication has injected fresh life to a much-revered institution.

This is Malaysia Baharu – reset to face a new reality where old norms are no longer obediently accepted with unquestioned resignation nor obsequious timidity.

A year into the new government, it is time to take stock of the political ledger.

Where to start but the public spat between the `Regent’ ensconced in the throne and the royals with a bone – to pick?

In Malaysia Baharu, who could be more politically regal than the PM in Putrajaya?

In his dotage, he now has a second chance to rebuild his legacy – to clear the economic and administrative mess which quite a few people will have to answer for by being either blissfully blind or criminally complicit.

With novices suddenly thrust into positions of executive power, the past year can only be described as trying.

In building a new nation out of the detritus of past – what perhaps can be aptly described as economic vandalism or financial mismanagement – voters only want instant results.

With novices suddenly thrust into positions of executive power, the past year can only be described as trying

Never are they placated by the truism that the wheels of justice grinds ever so slowly, and that trials are a long drawn out process – justifiably so.

With individuals accused of all manner of transgressions protesting innocence and showing no signs of contrition; even going on the offensive, the stage is set for a lot of mischief making.

With UMNO reverting to type – playing on Malay insecurities working in concert with its `on-off-on-again’ relations with PAS, three Malay-majority seats fell in post-GE14 by-elections.

Against this background, the uninhibited barbs traded back-and-forth between Putrajaya and the Johor palace has drawn attention to business deals that; mostly everyone claims to know but heretofore, only discussed within the confines of veiled conversation.

They are not lacking for fodder with the likes of newsman A Kadir Jasin, politician Tamrin Ghafar and others still sore from festering wounds digging up and dredging out past deeds by the palace.

Where these actions or deals are less than `royal’ and are now considered questionable, the proletariat are lapping up the unedifying spectacle being dished out.

When Margaret Thatcher took over as Prime Minister from Labour’s James Callaghan she quoted St Francis of Assisi’s prayer to become an instrument of peace.

The boat may not have been pushed too far out – so here is St Francis redacted; “…where there’s discord, (into) union, ….despair, (into) hope…darkness (into) light…”

The perfect antidote can only lie in comedy. Perhaps we should look no further than Jo Kukuthas and Instant Café’s take on May 9.

Together with co-conspirator Sean Ghazi, Instant Café presents an irreverent reprise of events pre and post GE14 in their inimitably hilarious stand up comedy routine.

Jo takes on the persona of YBEEEE! – a seemingly patrician politican who lost an election but not his equanimity.

She also turns up as a really confused Malaysian Spice Girl from Sentul – who else but Curry Spice!.

The show which opened on May 8 is now on for a 10-day run.

At a time when Malaysians look to the dawn of a new nation with notions of revision and hopes of reinvigoration, the real life events unfolding before us would no doubt provide her with fodder for May 9 to run forever.

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