Tuesday, July 15, 2008

And the winner is.....Malaysia!

Squaring off: Anwar (left) and Shabery

Everyone who watched the historic Anwar-Shabery Chik debate just now will have their own conclusion. The politically partisan ones would have decided on the winner even before the debate started. I personally thought the Information Minister handled the debate well. Remember, he is just a minnow compared to Anwar. He had the facts but some would said he was a little academic and a little stiff. He also delivered some personal blows, which may turn off some people but his fans would say this was necessary to remind the viewers of Anwar's true colours. Anwar was eloquent and persuasive. He was the better orator, no doubt, and had the experience behind him. But others found him evasive and tried too hard to be a populist without answering the questions posed by Shabeery. He appeared to be hit on the IMF issue but was more focused on the debate. In the end, the two were everywhere. The real winner - Malaysians. It wasn't quite like the American presidential debates but this was the first real debate that has been televised. Malaysians want to see more of such telecasts, involving other personalities and issues, to show we have matured. We want to decide for ourselves. Ahmad Shabery must be credited for allowing the parliamentary proceedings and now this debate. The quality of such debates would improve if there are more of such debates. Even the questions asked from the panel could be better. The representatives of the two speakers did not perform up to mark. Finally, congratulations to Agenda Daily for pulling it off, you guys are also the winners!


Anonymous said...

Absolutely. The winner is Malaysia and the reigning givt who allows this!! Way to go..............

Anonymous said...

How to disagree without being disagreeable. That is something all politicians must learn. Tonight's debate is a good start. All the MPs I notice in the audience could learn a thing or two from this debate and I am sure the Speaker must wish he could control the House the way Johan Jaafar did.

In the words of Edward Murrow, Good Night and Good Luck!

Anonymous said...

I agree with you on one factor. Shabery had the guts to face the icon. That's all.
But Shabery was wrong and to some extent the moderator failed to remind Shabery it was not about personal attacks. It was clear Shabery became defensive and out of topics. Anwar did very well and I hope BN would react to Anwar's suggestion.

Anonymous said...

I totally agree with u. Now lets not forget DSAI has got a meeting tomrrow with the police. Lets hope he has the balls to jumpa them after this

Anonymous said...

Does your mind work properly?or perharps your ears?I see that you don't even criticize the minister one bit...

But then again, he is your de facto 'boss'...that explains your level of analysis of the debate. Same level of intelligence as the 'intellectual' UUM Vice-Chancellor.

Anonymous said...

Anwar the clear winner in debate with Ahmad Shabery!

CHee XtheMan said...

The real winner ofcoz is Rakyat !! Malaysia need this kind of open debate !! Amazing to watch !!

however, DSAI got what he wants on mains stream media and done it very well and sounds like gentleman indeed.

As Shabery now become Shabiri , He had succeeded follow the planted “personal attack” script from Umno ON DSAI !! You think
percayalah !! … percayalah !! …. and people will percaya you
Let me tell you i the first will not percaya until you show the facts …. What a joke …. you are running out of idea to defence.

SO, the winner of personal attack goes to …..indeed and as expected Mr Shabiri … bravo brader.

Cheer mate

TheStar be more nuetral .... you are losing the grip to Melaysiakini.

Anonymous said...

Personally I think AI talked more on facts and figures while Shabery talked more on history and evasive on corruption issues.
Dato', you raised that AI was uncomfortable on IMF but I heard his reply correctly,i.e. AI said BN is a hypocrite to say he agreed with IMF's measures as BN's recent fuel hike to reduce subsidies itself is also an IMF's measure.
I think the best answer for me was when Shabery said that BN need to be careful with fuel subsidies as Msia's oil supply will dry up in 2015...Anwar replied that its true if Petronas does nothing between now and 2015 and goyang kaki. He said that in the 90's, Petronas was forecasted to finish its oil supply in 2005 but with the discovery of reserves, it was extended to 2015. How sure was Shabery that Petronas will not find any oil reserves in Msia in the 7 years when it has so many exploration JV with the big boys.With new technology and current oil prices, even small oil fields are feasible. Thats what I called forward thinking.
But for Shabery, I can see that he tried , but he wasnt that good on economic and finance but for history, he would have been good.Maybe he stand a better chance as a history teacher than against a polished and well read Anwar.

Anonymous said...

anwar - 1 the other chap from ex-s46 - 0

(what is his name again?)

Anonymous said...

chun wai,

being a neutral xaverian myself, i find anwar was to the point and focused instead of rambling and dissing about personal attacks.

this is a debate with a very specific topic.

since this is your blog, i would like to get your own unvarnished opinion.


Anonymous said...

Not by any means a defining debate but a good start nonetheless.

Congratulations to both speakers and especially to Datuk Shabery for having the guts to go up against a renowned orator.

If only his cabinet colleagues would do the same, there may be hope yet for true democracy in this country.

Anonymous said...

Dato' Wong,

Disagree with your reading. You must have watched a wrong program. Then again, this is expected of you.

Anonymous said...

this is the most biased review I have ever seen.personal attack justified????come on,Mr Wong!!!!tell you what,the traffic jams on Monday caused many fencesitters like me to reject the ruling parties.BN had been making mistakes since the last general election .They are still SLEEPING.

artic turban said...

Wong, I know you need you job badly, but how much longer canyou go on deceiving yourself, were you on the same channel, wake up man and smell the coffee. it was a slam dunk, if you couldn't see that than please give up your daytime job, you are totally brainless.

Pak Zawi said...

Fair comment from you. Yes the body blows was uncalled for but being done live and speaking from the cuff makes Shabery vulnerable to take such approach.
Anwar seemed to be umprepared for the question to Shabery. That was his only setback. Hopefully there will be more of such and hopefully they won't make Shabery resign from his post otherwise this will be the last debate.

Anonymous said...

Well, what's expected from you apart from STATING the engrained in your mind statement? Anyway, I laughed at how poorly you tried to deflect by splashing 2 PM deadline screaming headline rather than the debate that you have been promoting in the hope that Anwar will be cornered. Nefarious mind indeed. No wonder we have inherent stooges and immoral beings who lord over us and again "preach" to us about the "truth" Sheesh!

Anonymous said...

Most of the UMNO ministers are too chicken to do a public televised debate. They are all used to issuing dictates with no rationale, and get upset even when they get a few questions from the press. They will look like fools in a debate on TV.

Anonymous said...

The debate was totally one side and DSAI was the clear winner.

The basics are very simple, the current BN government has no clue on managing under crisis.

All the points raise were not answered at all by Shabery, especially the part of where the money supposedly saved by the oil subsidy is utilized by the BN government for the rakyat in terms of transportation projects.

The plain point of gradual increase of the petrol price rather than the abrupt increase by 40% is also not gasped by the BN government.

Managing under crisis would basically mean lining up a series of benefits and programs before increasing the oil price but this was NOT done. Now we can see various programs trying to be initiated as an after thought, this clearly shows mismanagement and personal interest at play.

If the BN government is willing to listen to constructive criticism, we should see the price of oil reduced by RM0.50 and measures being implemented in a transparent manner to show the rakyat details and cost reduction and savings of wasteful mega project.

For a better Malaysia

Anonymous said...

More debates should be encouraged.This reflects to the World the political maturity of Malaysians.
Other politicians from BN and PR should be given this chance to debate. This will improve the quality of our leaders.
Can you imagine this sort of thing happening during the Mahatir era?

Anonymous said...

OK there is one brave soul, at least, from UMNO who dares to debate with a opposition leader, live on TV.
Now how about the rest?
It should start with Badawi, the PM. We want to see what Badawi has to say about a issues burning the hearts of Malaysians. And the rest like Najib, Azalina, Mohd2, Syed Hamid, etc. They should debate against Anwar, Lim Kit Siang, Karpal Singh, Lim Guan Eng, etc
We want to see the quality (IQ, knowledge, verbal skill, etc of our country's leaders or potential leaders. But I bet there is no more brave soul in UMNO , except for that one single soul.


Yes I agree with you that the 2 representatives of the speakers did not perform up to mark.....they were below par.

I did expect something from Prof.Kadri , but dia juga merudum.

amoker said...

Why choose the UUM VC, an ex BTN brainwasher who is a UMNO propogandist to be in the panel? And he tanked, outspeaking himself.

A good spin as Shaheby is your boss. He did more than a few cheapshots & seemed more happy to pander to UMNO electorate than to debate on the issue. DSAI is calm, more gentlemen and can talk. In reality, UMNO/BN came out worst with this guy's answer.

shastrishah said...


I enjoyed the debate very much! AI is a veteran! Shabery Cheek up against an established orator but the info minister didn't do too badly.


lanaibeach said...

We can’t say the winner is
In debate of this nature
Malaysians, as you write, are the winners
It should be held more often
To test the ability and knowledge of our leaders

Nobody should view it adversely
The BN government shouldn’t say
‘Now we allow freedom of expression’
It is our rights after all
In the democratic rules and Constitution

Anwar and Shabery Chik
They blast the trail
We hope the BN leaders
Will take it up in debate
For the benefit of Malaysians

Although pot shots were aimed at Anwar
It wouldn’t spoil the spirit of the debate
It shows Anwar has the oratorical skills
Shabery Chik has enough punched to take it on
Though at times he side stepped issues…….

One thing every one knows
UMNO rules the government
Shabery Chik said it in live TV
‘Kerajaan UMNO dan Barisan Nasional’

Now where are MCA, MIC, Gerakan and PPP?
The rest of minnows in the coalition partnership
UMNO runs the ship………………….
Shabery Chik took a nail hit on the coalition partners
So the coalition leaders have nothing to say

Anonymous said...

One would have thought that on your own blog you would be able to separate your personal views from your 'official' views. What is the point of reading your blog when I might as well read the Star ?

Kerp (Ph.D) said...

selamat pagi datuk,

sure, the rakyat are the clear winner and blablabla but neither you nor rocky pointed out that sabery fella was the clear LOSER. when anwar presented his points with facts and figure, your beloved minister kept going astray from the main issue. either that or he did not understand the questions. and when the whole nation was anticipating a debate on fuel price woes, sabery was more interested at hitting anwar below the belt.

apa cerita la dei?

sabery berdebat dalam dewan serbaguna kampung boleh la..

Naveen Sritharan said...

Dato you struggle to say nice thing about Sabbery and the reason is because you write much better when you write with utter honesty. I always read what you write but lately you too became the bird in UMNO cage. Though I do not want to take sides even a child will know Anwar was the winner of this debate. He had more facts and much more well read. No wonder our economy is in such a mess. Please ask the minister to be fully prepared before he faces the country. Shameful, I suggest he takes up the job as a primary school history teacher.

Anonymous said...

I diaagree with you with regard to the debate yesterday.Infact,Anwar was a better orator and his facts were logistic whereas the other chap was attacking Anwar personally which is out of the point.Anyway,he is a good speaker but have to learn his manners.I hope more of this debate would be telecast live and let the public evaluate what which party scores more point.

Anonymous said...

Please lah Wong Chun Wai, cannot even come out with a winner, using sly digs that DSAI lost and Shaburi won???

Every body who watched the debate last night knows who won and who lost.

That Shaburi was a junior minister doesnt come into equation at all.

He lost. Period!

Anonymous said...

Petronas: The RM202billion question

Anonymous said...

I dont mind who win that debate. All I wish is, that I could live as I was before the petrol price goes up. Now, earning RM3k is nothing, almost no savings. Still paying PTPTN, some more.

Please put down petrol price. Dont go too far in guarding resources for next generation. There wont be next generation without our generation. THINK!!!

Anonymous said...

Chun Wai,

It is understandable you try very hard to praise your "boss" Shabbery Chik, but in doing so, you make the hairs on our hands stand on end! Many people would agree that you did not give Anwar his due, but what can we expect from someone like you, a Datuk-datuk. You even went so far as run Anwar down so as to please top UMNO leaders like Badawi and Najib; they should be the ones debating debating with Anwar on such an important issue, not a small fry like Shabbery. You don't have the guts to call them chicken. And you did tell us why RTM and TV3 did not carry the debate "live". Are Badawi and Najib nervous that the whole of Malaysia should hear Anwar's views? Afraid I have to disagree with you that the "winner of the debate is ...Malaysia". Let's be more specific....Anwar and the people of Malaysia are the winners. The losers are Badawi, Najib, UMNO and the federal govt. Shabbery Chik is just a small fry and sacrificial lamb of Badawi and Najib who are afraid to take on Anwar. Anyway Shabbery Chik can easily be discarded as he was once from Semangat 46, someone still not fully accepted in UMNO.

Jonas Lee said...

As expected, the debate was lively and to some extent, a civilised discourse despite some potshots at Anwar's credibility. Even my toddler could predict Anwar will win after watching the first half hour!

The quality of economic discussion could be improved as facts and figures were presented without further analysis. Venezuela is facing major economic problems of hyperinflation because of its currency peg, price controls and years of unbridled monetary expansion thanks to high oil revenues and fiscal spending.

I suggest the next debate be a doubles duel: Tony Phua/Khalid Ibrahim versus Tan Sri Mohd Noor/KJ on "Malaysia's Inflation Time Bomb and Managed Currency Policy".)

alvin lee said...

Come on Chun Wai

Pls don't insult the standard of UKM (u graudated from there, right?)and that includes Stanford University and University of Southern California where u have attended some courses with them.

The evasive guy is clearly Shabery. Not only he is evasive, he has no facts and figures to support him. All he did was to take a defensive approach and take very opportunity to wage a personal attack against anwar. His talk has no substance at all and out of topic. People asked about north, he replied about south.

I think u need to seriously review our stand on the matter.

By the way, what's wrong with you today?

Anonymous said...

well i personally thought that the debate was on par.

Well done agenda daily.

But looking at most replies above, it doesn't matter what is right or wrong anymore, whatever DSAI says or does is correct to a group of people. Saying that others are not being objective or under their bosses etc, i think we all need to seriously re-evaluate ourselves.

Do we seriously think that both performed well? Anything that they've said that we don't know?

Besides it hurting our pockets, do we seriously believe that there's another way out of the subsidies?

I am no economist either, but came across this posting that made me understand the whole scenario in the simplest form

Posted by Sham on http://simplemsian.blogspot.com/2008_07_01_archive.html

Hey there, interesting article.

But really how long more can our govt subsidize our fuel?

I don't think that there's only one true solution to this. At the end of the day, it is what we want.

If we compare with countries like singapore & hk, how much is their property rental/prices? Have you seen the number of big fancy cars parked at pekeliling flats look a like shoebox apartments? The parking charges? So basically, most people don't drive and they live in shoes boxes. They dress fancy in branded clothes etc, because they can't afford to buy a decent double storey terrace house or afford an everyday car. When we refer to these countries, look beyond fuel prices. Everyone has different standards of living. On contrary, when my friends from Sing/HK dropby, they always comment that we msians live like kings, all big houses and drive everywhere. They don't even entertain guest at their homes in HK, no space! So really depends on what we want.

If we want to compare with thailand, the car and road policy have also contributed one of the world's most congested traffic. A traffic jam means the car does not move at all for more than an hour. Where parents send their kids to school at 3am to avoid the jam. Yah, affordable cars that can't be driven on the road! Think again. The standard of living there? There are alot of other factors we need to look into, when we talk about the nations' livelihood.

Now lets go to our richer Middle Eastern counterparts. Count the number of barrels of oil produced and divide by the number of the country's nationals. hence they can afford many other things, they are born with many many barrels per head.

And the 'not so rich' oil producing countries listed above; is that a place we all want to live in, in-exchange for cheaper fuel (venezuela,iran,nigeria?)

In retrospect, this price increase have taught us and people around the world not to take things for granted. Money from oil needs to be invested in various infrastructures so that we can address the economic problems not for the next few years but for many many years to come.

Lastly, when prices go up, demands go down. If we can't be discipline about managing fuel and a greener place, this is probably god's way of teaching us.

But i agree that more can be done for malaysians in the lower income bracket.

Think again.

Anonymous said...


each has his own opinion i guess.

was watching the debate live in a pub in kelana jaya.

most fellas there were quite impressed with the unknown shabery.

of course, DSAI did well, he is one of the best orators in this country, so no surprises.

just that shabery fella with a little bubble around the mouth better than many expected.

on whether who presented better facts, i'm not sure. nothing we have not heard before. DSAI playing populist by using the word nelayan etc more than 20times i think, where shabery was quoting alot of history without solutions.

Both did not give any 'groundbreaking' solutions. But think it was worthwhile for two reasons:
1) a good start to better media freedom
2) at least the rakyat can hear from both and decide on their own.

well done agenda daily, DSAI,Shabery

Anonymous said...

The winner is definitely not the Rakyat. Until the Gomen reduce the petrol by 50sen a liter we are still the loser. The debate is actually an avenue to voice our displeasure thru DSAI only.

People like U the voice of the Govt will have a twisted idea that we are the winner. And you are deaf to answers. Which part of the question did DSAI not answer?

Just can imagine that a person of your stature can't even raise the real issues affecting the rakyat on the newspaper that you lead. You are no different from that VC who literally got a slap and a wakeup call from DSAI on use of Gas by IPP. YOu are sleeping. You are very biased. You are suffering from selective listening syndrome. People like you don't deserve respect from the rakyat.


Anonymous said...

dear saudara WCW,

seems many against your thoughts today, but it's fine, just continue writing what you feel and don't be pressured to play to populist thoughts.

when the gov approved salary increase for civil servants (people say populist, pull votes etc), but then reduce subsidies???? everything done by others oso bad.....this is how some people think. some i'm curious about what is good then....

so biasalah, they reacted to your article that way. stay strong!

probs many who reacted that way are DSAI's stooges, they just don't realize anymore. Ikut je!

siamangagap said...

..And the loser is the people who have to continue suffer with the high cost of living. people with empty stomach are not good for malaysia..!!!

Anonymous said...


If you analyse the winner based on the topic discussed, the clear winner is AI. But if you analyse based on putar-belit and past individual records, then it goes to that BN chap. But what was supposed to be debated on last night? So, the winner is AI. Loud & clear.

Anonymous said...

Hi Chun Wai,

Was that really Anwar Ibrahim last nite? Can't believe my eyes. Gone was the fiery speech at his numerous rallies. The Petronas lambasting, the tirade against the government. Really goody two- shoes. False magnanimity. Oh i forgot. It was on TV for the Malaysian audience and for the crowd at DBP. That's an example of a populist politician in action. Different speeches for different folks.

amoker said...

Black (hole?),

I dun see your logic that those who did not agree with Chun Wai is stooges of Anwar. Are you from UMNO or BTN?

If Datuk writes otherwise, how does his writers quote him on the daily newspaper? But he still does and allows people to comment. Not like Khir TOyo or some Muhammad who supposedly modern by having blogs, yet only show comments that are praising their intellect or ego. I hope you are nobody's stooges..

BlueMoon said...

I think Shabery is the best politican that UMNO currently has. He did brilliantly against one of the best orators in Malaysia if not in the world. In term of age, experience and maturity Shabery is completely a minnow compared to Anwarr. But Anwar with vast experience and given a topic which he clearly has the edge, was continously jolted and rattled with Shaberry's sharp responses.

I think Shabery is PM material.

Anonymous said...


now everyone is thinking about petrol had increased, worry about spending $$$. Do anyone know that if everyone stop or slow down thier spending power, this will directly affect the economy of the country as well as the financial position. Our country need $$$ to manipulate and generate.

talking abt DSAI or Shabery is the winner is not that important...the crucial point is the ideas from other side should be taken note by the BN and the Rakyat could hear and choose wat the best...maybe for future election...

If Malaysia has better transpotation system like other country like aussie, singapore and more...petrol will not be a main concern...because they hav alternatives...but the problem is malaysia's public transportation system really suckz...If anyone not agree wit me in this point can give ur point...


Anonymous said...

I just finished work and stumbled upon your blog unintentionally .......How true your words are ... the RAKYAT was clearly the winner in the debate. What is more important now is to allow the rakyat to continue being the winner by having a free, unshackled and responsible media. It took 51 years for Malaysia to allow this debate -- that too, partly coerced events brought about by the recent political avalanche. How long would it take YOU to achieve that awakening for the paper you work for? By the way, as a Xaverian you certainly have fallen astray. I guess every flock must have its black member.

Anonymous said...

Consider also, other perspectives on this debate:






sinnersaint:saintsinner said...

Mr Chun Wai,

A debate is about exchange of facts, it has nothing to do with personal attacks. The minister was reminding us about CRAP on Anwar, his students days, IMF and didnt have facts tabled.

My fren and i felt DSAI was focused, addressed the issue, where else the Minister was hitting him below the belt. Everyone could see that clearly DSAI won.

I asked some people in the lift, strangers and 3 of them - 2 Malays and 1 Indian had this to say.... apa dia cerita ie Minister, orang tanya dia tentang minyak, dia sebuk cerita tentang Anwar punya hal lama, kenapa dia meliur, takut kut.

Now these are yr average Joes in the street, no blogging types, hardly use computers.

My secretary said, boss you know that guy ie Sabbery - MEREPEK, Cakap Tak Tentu Arah.... Tak Malu Ke.

Well, i guess your comments was expected, why did'nt you write about the photographers being beaten by the Ministers bodyguard??????????

Anonymous said...

There was overall a lack of intellectual discussion throughout the session or is that something to be expected amongst Malaysian politicians?
Nevertheless hitting below the belt is a big no-no and this was overused by the BN guy(was he foaming at the mouth?).
There seemed to be a lack of preparation and insufficient concrete arguments discussed upon.Not to mention the pauses and 'ehhs' which was quite unexpected for people of this stature.
Although this can be said to be a good start ,I am also pondering on the BN's agenda in allowing this to take place.Malaysians might be ready for such debates but is the BN ready for it?
BTW have you ever heard of the word 'objective'?