No matter how often one reads about the sordid corruption and abuse of power in Malaysia, one can never get used to the staggering scale of betrayal by those we trusted to govern in our name.The latest scandal HERE, that certain political leaders illegally and secretly manipulated citizenship grants in order to shift the balance of votes in their favour, is beyond outrageous. The full scope of their treachery might never be known.
What is particularly galling is that despite all the publicity, despite the fact that we are about to head to the polls, it's still business as usual. It speaks of an overbearing sense of impunity and an utter disdain for the people of Malaysia.
A government which allows these things to continue unchecked year after year surely loses all its credibility as well as its moral legitimacy.
The carnage that decades of misrule has wrought is now evident in nearly every area of national life - the justice system, the police force, the civil service, the Election Commission and the anti-corruption commission.
Part of the problem is that we, as a nation, have for too long put our trust in personalities and political parties rather than in the kind of institutions that alone can guarantee our democracy and help ensure good governance. So enamoured were we with personalities that we did little as the caudillos undermined our national institutions and weakened the fabric of our nation.
We unwittingly traded our fundamental freedoms for short-term prosperity and stability.
And now, we, like many other nations before us, have discovered the truth of Benjamin Franklin's axiom - that those who trade their freedom for temporary security deserve neither and will lose both.
READ ON HERE