|Front page of The Star 31 July 2012|
It's not often that the mainstream media feature headlines that brighten up the rakyat's (citizens) day. Today's front page of The Star is one such example, and a cause to celebrate especially for the residents of Taiping. More than 10,000 of them signed a petition to protest against the setting up of fast food and handicraft kiosks that would have marred the tranquil beauty of the iconic Taiping Lake Gardens and threatened the existence of the century-old raintrees.
|Front page of The Malay Mail 30 July 2012|
Yesterday's front page of the Malay Mail is another example of the power of the rakyat's voice. When the PM launched this year's National Day theme - Janji Ditepati" (Promises Fulfilled), my immediate reaction was "OMG, the BN (ruling political party) has hijacked the National Day celebrations, and is forcing their election campaigning down the throats of the people!"
|Singapore's Straits Times|
In the weeks that followed, the shock waves grew louder and angrier, extending to beyond the shores of the country. A few days ago the unveiling of the National Day logo also drew the same incredulous reaction from the people.
The rising criticism and anger left the government with no choice but to withdraw the logo and issue a statement to the effect that there will be no 'official logo' for this year's National Day theme. The people have won!
|No end to splashing out money and vouchers to make the rakyat happy. Only shallow minds would think that that is all it takes to win votes. The government should give us more credit than that.|
|Could this video go on record as receiving the most dislikes on Youtube?|
If the government thinks the people are a bunch of gullible fools who will accept without murmur anything the government says or does, it's time it took a course on PEOPLE POWER 101. The people have also learned to harness the sweeping reach of social media to express their displeasure. The latest example - the number of 'DISLIKE' for the Youtube video featuring the National Day song. The latest total will have probably reached over 20,000 by the time you click on the video below to view.
Watch the video for yourself and see if you can find anything that is honest and unscripted.
There was a time when the rakyat would listen to the government and accept everything they were told without question or dissent, or face being detained under the ISA (Internal Security Act which has since been abolished). This is no longer true today. The government should learn that it would be made a laughing stock if it chose to ignore the voice of the people.
The people have spoken as we have seen in the Bersih demonstrations, and they will speak again in the coming elections.
POWER TO THE PEOPLE, RIGHT ON!