Saturday, 8 March 2008

Vote wisely

So finally, this is it. Penang goes to the polls to vote for the next state government and our new representatives in Parliament.

Leading up to today, there have been many ceramahs both on the island and the mainland. A lot of promises have been made and a lot of report cards have been presented to the people. Confused? Even if you are, I'm not. Because I haven't been attending the ceramahs and I've only been giving the newspapers a cursory glance. You've got to learn to read inbetween the lines.

I'm resigned to not attending any political ceramahs from now onwards. I believe the ceramahs on the island are more interesting but to cross the Penang Bridge just to listen to them is, in my opinion, ridiculous. However, the ceramahs on the mainland tend to be in either Bahasa Malaysia or Mandarin. No, thank you, I'd rather stay at home than let those candidates attempt to sway me with their rhetorics.

Report cards. That's a favourite ploy of the Barisan candidates. Showing the people what have been done for them in the past. I've with a report card on DVD from my state assemblyman but everything's either in Bahasa Malaysia or Mandarin. I haven't bothered to look at it.

Reports cards. Who wants to know thier achievements? Nobody wants to know all the local issues. This time, we are concerned about the prevalent national issues. Corruption. Misuse of power. Misuse of public funds. Religious intolerance. Racial intolerance. Little Napoleans everywhere. Politicians hiding behind parliamentary immunity. Sexists in parliament. Rising cost of living. Checks and balances. All these and surely, many more.

So before we common folks go to the polling stations today, please consider not what the candidates promise you for the next five years, not what the implications of voting government or opposition will lead to, but whether or not we need to maintain effective checks and balances to the people in power. For me this time, it's not the party but the candidates who can represent me when the time comes.

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