Basic journalism pivots on the 5W1H questions.
If one were to apply the ‘What, Who, When, Why, Where and How’ questions to the Red Shirts rally, the asker would definitely get himself lost and end up in Confusion Central, what with the thick haze shrouding the Klang Valley these few days.
And who knew that Umno Malays are even greater believers in the UBAH mantra than the DAP Chinese. Here, bend your mind around all the perplexing changes that have beset the Red Shirts rally.
Himpunan Anti-Bersih → Himpunan Rakyat Bersatu → Himpunan Maruah Melayu → Himpunan Ini Takut Nanti Di-hijack Tun Pula
Dunno → Jamal Sekinchan → Anon → Ali Tinju → Pengerusi Pesaka Ali Rustam
16 Sept 2015 (Nih soalan ehsan, disedekahkan markah penuh)
Anti-Cina DAP → Untuk Memupuk Perpaduan → Meraikan Kepelbagaian Warna-Warna Malaysia → Pesta Borong T-shirt → Mempopularkan Seni Silat
Low Yat → Chinatown → Padang Merbok → Gong Badak
Wear manyak garang garang red T-shirt → Wear sponsored red T-shirt → Wear any colour except yellow → Wear black like silat exponent → Wear blue checked shirt and white fedora
KISS: Keep It Short & Sweet
Communications Minister Salleh Said Keruak yesterday admonished “the noisy minority” who keep screaming and shouting their displeasure in the social media.
In truth, the Dapsters are able to scream and shout endlessly because they’re consistent. They have one message only – “BN wicked! BN wicked! BN wicked!” – and they keep repeating that one idea in a never-ending loop. It’s called keeping things simple.
(NOTE: Tun Faisal – above – is an advisor/panel pemikir to Jabatan Hal Ehwal Khas (JASA) in the Prime Minister’s Dept)
Salleh Keruak tried to remind the “noisy minority” that the urbanites’ monopoly of the Internet does not mean that they truly represent the majority viewpoint. They’re just loud and aggressive, that’s all, and hell-bent moreover on intimidating the “silent majority”.
Truth to tell, the minority are very sure-footed in their march to Putrajaya. The confused majority, on the other hand, clearly don’t know whether they’re coming or going. See FMT top news headlines this morning ‘Silat group to wear BLACK at own Sept 16 rally’ – below.
How many rallies are there? Red? Black?
Communications Minister Salleh also commented that the silent majority have shied away from posting their opinions online because they are turned off by the cyberbullies who vilify and insult anyone holding a contrary opinion.
No, actually the real reason the majority are silent is because they’re confused. And you can’t blame them, what with all the conflicting info that they’re being bombarded with. They’re even mixed up over their shirt colour.
At least the Bersih 4.0 participants wore yellow unequivocally, despite that the Dapster family of Grandpapa, Papa and Mama only wore plain yellow T-shirts which did not have the “Bersih” legend printed on it.
Big but weak
The small yellow circle below depicts the “noisy minority” as well as the comparative size of urban Parliament seats. The yellow-shirted MPs are necessarily a minority because only one out of every five Parliament seats is urban.
The large blue circle represents the “silent majority” as well as rural Parliament seats.
Proportionate to the size of the blue circle, it is rural MPs who predominate in the 222-seat Parliament, going by the great number of rural constituencies (i.e. 125 all in all) – see chart.
Nonetheless, even the advantage conferred by weightage favouring rural seats is not enough to offset the ruling party MPs from getting clobbered by the opposition MPs.
In the last general election, Pakatan won 38 out of the 43 urban seats. Altogether there are a total of 30 Chinese majority seats. For details, see ‘Pakatan menguasai 88 peratus kerusi bandar‘.
Yup, the Chinese-led opposition is the representative voice of city slickers.
Rural-urban divide is the blueprint
Admittedly, it is the opposition also that has a larger share of the suburban or mixed seats which make up roughly a quarter of our Parliament constituencies.
It is only in the rural areas, including the ones in the interior of Sabah and Sarawak, that the BN enjoys any advantage.
The majority of the MPs belonging to PAS – similar to their Umno counterparts – are representing rural areas. Hence following PAS’s recent pullout from the opposition pact, the fault line between the races (Chinese-urban dwellers vs Malays-rural denizens) has become even more pronounced.
BELOW: Yellow denotes urban seats, red the suburban seats while blue is rural
NOTE: The chart above incorporates semi-urban Teluk Intan changing hands from DAP to BN in a by-election last year.
Below are details of the 14 PAS Parliamentarians and their wards. They are taking along with them eight rural and five semi-rural seats plus one urban seat in their departure from Pakatan.
|P008||Mahfuz Omar||Pokok Sena / rural|
|P020||Izani Husin||Pengkalan Chepa / semi-urban|
|P021||Takiyuddin Hassan||Kota Bharu / urban|
|P022||Nik Abduh Nik Aziz||Pasir Mas / rural|
|P023||Siti Zailah Yusoff||Rantau Panjang / rural|
|P024||Ahmad Baihaki Atiqullah||Kubang Kerian / rural|
|P025||Ahmad Marzuk Shaary||Bachok / semi-urban|
|P028||Nik Mazian Nik Mohd||Pasir Puteh / rural|
|P035||Khairuddin Razali||Kuala Nerus / rural|
|P037||Hadi Awang||Marang / rural|
|P039||Wan Hassan Ramli||Dungun / semi-urban|
|P059||Idris Ahmad||Bukit Gantang / rural|
|P088||Nasrudin Hassan||Temerloh / semi-urban|
|P101||Che Rosli Che Mat||Hulu Langat / semi-urban|
On the other side of the break-up, seven MPs are considered to have left or to be estranged from PAS.
Kamarudin Jaffar, the PAS Parliamentarian for Tumpat, has joined PKR. The rest of the PAS renegades are aligned to the evangelista-friendly Amanah – a political outfit earlier called the New Hope Movement.
The seven MPs who are leaving or have already defected from PAS are as follows:
|P019||Kamarudin Jaffar||Tumpat / rural|
|P111||Siti Mariah Mahmud||Kota Raja / urban|
|P113||Hanipa Maidin||Sepang / semi-urban|
|P108||Khalid Samad||Shah Alam / urban|
|P057||Mujahid Yusof||Parit Buntar / rural|
|P036||Raja Kamarul Bahrin||K. Terengganu / urban|
|P031||Hatta Ramli||Kuala Krai / rural|
The Amanah-linked MPs have three urban seats under their belt – Kota Raja, Shah Alam and state capital Kuala Terengganu.
Do note that Amanah pro-tem deputy chairman Salahuddin Ayub is not a sitting MP. In GE13, he had contested Pulai Parliament seat in Johor which was nevertheless successfully retained by Umno.
Another prominent Erdogan, Husam Musa, is a PAS state assemblyman in Kelantan and not an MP.
There were 5.76 million registered voters in the rural areas for GE13. Urban voters numbered 3.56 million while suburban voters were 3.95 million.
Rural voters still comprise the biggest chunk of the electorate in the country. Nonetheless, they’re the silent majority and nowhere near as well-organized as the “noisy minority” urban crowd.
Chun Wai wants Reds rally organizers arrested by police
“So will the Malay rally be a case of big talk and small numbers?”, asks a J-Star columnist.
In his column today, Star Media Group CEO Wong Chun Wai urged the police to arrest the organizers of the Red Shirt rally – see passage from his article, below.
Click to enlarge
The EvangeliSTAR boss also hinted that the difference between the Bersih 4.0 assembly and the Red Shirt planned gathering is that the latter “smacks of racism”.
Chun Wai is somewhat reticent to confess that he himself personally believes the Sept 16 event “smacks of racism”. Instead he hedges by inserting the disclaimer that “at least according to some news reports”, the Red Shirt gathering smacks of racism.
Chun Wai: “Politicians can also be disposed”
Communications Minister Salleh Said Keruak might be interested in this next passage from Chun Wai’s article. It smells like the ‘smoking gun’ – finally furnishing a sliver of ‘proof’ that the MCA-owned media has been sneakily inclining to the opposition ever since the game-changing GE12 on 8 March 2008.
Chun Wai wrote:
“It was carnival-like [at Bersih 4.0] although our leaders naturally found themselves mocked, as in all protests.
“Our politicians should stop expecting to be revered like an almighty. They can walk around with their entourage of political hangers-on and groupies, with their false sense of importance but really, those days are over.
“Don’t expect the people to be their servants as it should be the other way around. Politicians can be elected but they can also be disposed.”
The arrogance of his tone does sound as if consummate lalang Datuk Seri Wong Chun Wai is already anticipating the end of days for Najib.
It is likely that the noisy minority are better informed seeing as how the silent majority remain quite confused.