"A country that exists in a permanent state of war cannot exist as a democracy"
There has been a lot of talk about the "social contract" that was formulated by the "Alliance" under Tun Razak, during the post 5.13 period.
Just what is this "social contract"?
To me, it appears that the deal was actually a "ceasefire of sorts", in an unofficial "war" declared by the "young turks" of UMNO, who had decided to revolt against the principles of democracy that the nation was built upon. This ceasefire, was a unilateral declaration, just as the "war" that they had declared upon the "pendatang", with their eye on the 'pot of of gold'.
It was possibly a conspiracy by an elite group of Malay leaders, who were hungry for power, and thirsting for wealth. Without a doubt - they too had legitimate grouses, just as Hindraf did when they conspired to revolt against nobody specific, refuses to condemn the leadership directly, but 'only the policies' - while setting the stage for the demise of the "old guard". The ball was set rolling, after the act of "giving independence" to Singapore, in order to weaken the "opposition" and Tunku's leadership.
The "social contract" was nothing but the "fair" distribution of the spoils of war, with the "co-conspirators", having to agree to "unwritten rules on a level playing field" , possibly while under threat. One thing is for sure - Penang grudgingly agreed to be "bought over", while some other parties did so with much gratitude, in return for being propped up by the 'conspirators'. The media then, only had to disseminate the propaganda of "cooperation" to pacify a nervous rakyat, in the aftermath of a traumatic event.
This had launched a kind of "cold war" that existed in the political circles, that depended on the "unspoken agreements", wherein each group has to take care of his own selfish interests, with or without the approval of "other parties". This had also facilitated the consolidation of power among certain groups who were until then regarded as the "underworld". There was a "war" on the (probably small-time, recalcitrant and dissenting) "triads" launched amidst much fanfare, during the aftermath of the events described. (Tun Hanif, UTK and DSP Kulasingam could probably tell us a lot of "grandfather stories" on these matters!).
A "deal" was also struck with the communist insurgents, who agreed to lay down arms - I really wonder what they got in return (other than possible economic rewards), when they were ready to kill for their beliefs just a while earlier .......
Tun Razak did his job well, when he planned and executed the development schemes which were to transform Malaysia. As a result of this "fair distribution of wealth", the initial few years had to do justice to the bloodletting of 5.13 - and it was indeed given a kind face for all to see. Dato' Hussein Onn simply carried on the policies of Tun Razak, giving due recognition to all the different branches of Government and rule of law, while Dato' Harun was "penalised". It was after the exit of DHO, that the economic policies of Tun Razak had matured, and ripened for the picking - and what a picking it was, done with total abandonment and disregard for the Law!
The Law was now an instrument to protect and enrich the elite, and not the people/ the dispossessed/ the minority. It was an instrument used to blindfold the majority, unleash tyranny upon the minority while "keeping" the elite. Any dissenting voice was considered an enemy of the state, declared to be subversive and a security threat, requiring "drastic measures" to be silenced.
All this is done, while 'they' throw the peanuts that are eagerly lapped up (by those regarded as monkeys by the elite) as rewards, for their emotional outbursts in response to the "state propaganda", while the "pickings" went on. This had also created ill feeling among most of the "Nons" (and many Malays too) who were sidelined, suppressed and repressed as a result of the policies that were purportedly, "affirmative".
While this "picking" was going on, the masses were fed with more reasons to perpetuate this "psychological war" that was destroying the very fabric of the nation. To advance this siege mentality and deepen the "divide", so as to prolong the "picking", a new dimension/paradigm was added to fuel the war - Religion.
All of a sudden, there was a surge in the number of "Bumiputras" who were eligible for UMNO Baru membership, with Religion being used to perpetuate "certain policies" that undermined the rule of Law, as per the constitution. The Executive was now supreme- not the Federal Constitution and the Judiciary no longer independent. To serve the "masters", what we had now was two parallel legal systems, thus creating conflict, discord and division among the people.It had somehow transformed itself into the monster of a psychological war- of Muslims versus Kafir, to join the worldwide bandwagon of "Islamic Revivalism" (initiated by the Muslim Brotherhood of Egypt and Palestinian conflict).
The result of all this is a fractured society, which is vulnerable to the dictates of the "iconic rulers" who act with total impunity, on a people groping for leadership. In such a society, there can be no democracy - only a Fascist dictatorship, that has to rule with an iron fist and repression, as in many a third world nation (eg Pakistan and other "whatever-stans") which would otherwise have to be ruled by primitive tribal laws.
With the current state of affairs, Malaysia will soon be governed by dictatorial regimes or dynasty, playing to the feudal mindset perpetuated by "Ketuanan Melayu". With "Ketuanan Melayu", there can be no Democracy - only a dictatorship.
The Malays have to decide, if that is what they want for their future - the ball is on their court, and UMNO Baru's. If they feel the opposition cannot run the country, the UMNO Baru stalwarts/ 'young turks' should see the need for "separation of powers" for proper governance and progress of the nation. There has to be a balance of these powers, with a visible and viable opposition within the hierarchy, if not in the opposition or parliament, to promote free speech and debate of substance.
Malaysia is today a nation in a permanent state of "cold-war with itself" - and right now, democracy is dead.
It is up to the Malays to decide if they want to revive democracy and progress, or regress into a state like Pakistan or Saddam's Iraq.