Long before Barack Obama, who has become a global icon for change, there was Jesse Jackson. The former Baptist pastor and civil rights activist was THE African-American leader of the Democratic party. In fact, he was the first black leader to campaign for a nomination from the Democrats to contest the election for US president. The outspoken politician is no stranger to controversy, landing himself in trouble once for his remarks about Jewish domination in New York and more recently, criticising Obama for "talking down to blacks" and at one point, made a vulgar remark about wanting to cut off Obama's private parts. Jackson had to apologise subsequently. But when this blogger caught up with him at the Clinton Global Initiatives meeting in NY recently, Jackson was polite and civil. He was bigger than life literally. His father was a professional boxer and it must be in his blood because he is still fighting politically. With the next CGI meeting in Hong Kong, the Clinton crowd, like Jackson, have began looking at the financial power of Asians and the problems like health, education and poverty in the continent. The CGI has already set up an office in Hong Kong which includes former White House staff such as Nancy Hernreich Bowen, who was an assistant to Clinton and the director of Oval Office operations during the Clinton Administration. She is also a friend of Malaysians and Malaysia, with positive views of the country.