Dear Y.B. Dr. Ong Kian Ming,
Thanks for your commentary. However, you seem to ignore economic factors, especially since the 2013 general elections, which had burdened all Malaysians from the urban centres to the most remote rural villages, the rural and semi-rural areas having delivered the number of seats in parliament in the past, thus enabling Alliance, then BN to rule continuously in the 61 years since Malaya achieved independence.
Prices of goods in the stores had been rising, even before the introduction of the GST on 1 April 2015, which added to the burden, especially upon the lower income group, many of whom were traditionally UMNO/BN voters. I recall a time when a can of Ayam brand tuna costs RM3.60 and today it costs around RM6.00.
I have heard accounts of rural people complaining to Mahathir that where they previously could afford to eat three meals a day, now they can afford only two a day, and they looked towards him winning as enabling relief of their plight.
History testifies that dire economic conditions is the stuff which has driven revolutions - such as the French and Russian Revolutions of February and October 1917.
Dire economic conditions upon the people, also drove the electoral victory of the Fascists in Italy and the National Socialists in Germany, whilst tough economic conditions drove the fall or Marcos, the fall of Soeharto, the Arab Spring uprisings in Tunisia and Egypt, more recently the rise of the populist far right in Europe, the election of Donald Trump and now the Pakatan victory in Malaysia.
Also in Malaysia, the grievances of the FELDA settlers drove many of them to vote against the BN.
Thus despite the redelineation of electoral boundaries which would have favoured the BN under more normal conditions, however in GE14, the pain of economic burdens drove those who traditionally had voted UMNO/BN instead voted Pakatan.
Then, let us not forget what I call the "Mahathir Effect", where Mahathir loyalists amongst UMNO voters would vote BN when Mahathir was in UMNO/BN but now that his party Pribumi is part of Pakatan, they voted Pribumi, or for the candidate of another Pakatan party where Pribumi did not stand.
The Mahathir Effect basically split the UMNO/BN vote, thus enabling Pakatan candidates to win the seats contested, many of them with the largest minority of votes in their constituency, for example Dr. Haniza Talhar of PKR who won Lembah Jaya with the largest minority of votes.
Credit must also be given to Mahathir and Rafizi Ramli for going down and campaigning in UMNO/BN's rural heartlands.
This is in stark contrast to mostly urban and semi-rural based Pakatan politicians, especially from DAP and PKR, who appeal mostly to middle class, urban voters, with issues such as 1MDB, Altantuya, Scorpene submarines,corruption, cronyism, nepotism, press freedom, human rights, meritocracy and so forth which are not top priorities for those struggling to make ends meet.
Thus, rather than being a tsunami, the Pakatan victory in GE14 was very much a "Tunami", since without Tun Dr. Mahathir in Pakatan, you would still be in opposition post GE14 and blaming blackouts at polling stations, 40,000 Bangladeshis being flown in to vote, "ignorant" rural voters who are "easily bought off" with handouts of RM50 and so forth to vote BN.
However, that is not to say that issues such as 1MDB, Altantuya, Scorpene submarines,corruption, cronyism, nepotism, press freedom, human rights, meritocracy and so forth are not important issues. My point has always been that whilst these issues are uppermost in the minds of relatively, comfortably well off, educated, English literate, social media savvy, urban middle class voters, who seemingly have the luxury of time to discuss such issues on social media, in teh tarik and bar talk, however these issues are not top priority amongst the lower income urban and rural voters who had traditionally delivered the winning number of seats in parliament to the BN.
That said, I'm glad that our new Prime Minister Tun.Dr.Mahathir is taking action to address the above issues, though I hope that the now Pakatan federal government, as well as the Pakatan state governments will also address those issues which affect us ordinary citizens on the ground.
You guys and gals are the government now, so you had better give up your "opposition as barking watchdog" mindset and learn to govern well.
CONGRATULATIONS ON YOUR VICTORY!
From: "Dr. Ong Kian Ming, Member of Parliament for P102 Bangi" REDACTED>
Reply-to: Dr. Ong Kian Ming, Member of Parliament for P102 Bangi <REDACTED>
Subject: (17 May 2018) GE14 – A truly Malaysian Tsunami
Date: Thu, 17 May 2018 08:50:17 +0000