How should we judge a government?

In Malaysia, if you don't watch television or read newspapers, you are uninformed; but if you do, you are misinformed!

"If you're not careful, the newspapers will have you hating the people who are being oppressed, and loving the people who are doing the oppressing." - Malcolm X

Never argue with stupid people, they will drag you down to their level and then beat you with experience - Mark Twain

Never argue with an idiot, otherwise people won't know which one of you is the idiot.
Since light travels faster than sound, some people appears bright - until you hear them speak.

Why we should be against censorship in a court of law: Publicity is the very soul of justice … it keeps the judge himself, while trying, under trial. - Jeremy Bentham

"Our government is like a baby's alimentary canal, with a happy appetite at one end and no
responsibility at the other. " - Ronald Reagan

Government fed by the people

Government fed by the people

Career options

Career options
I suggest government... because nobody has ever been caught.

Corruption so prevalent it affects English language?

Corruption so prevalent it affects English language?

When there's too much dirt...

When there's too much dirt...
We need better tools... to cover up mega corruptions.

Prevent bullying now!

Prevent bullying now!
If you're not going to speak up, how is the world supposed to know you exist? “Orang boleh pandai setinggi langit, tapi selama ia tidak menulis, ia akan hilang di dalam masyarakat dan dari sejarah.” - Ananta Prameodya Toer (Your intellect may soar to the sky but if you do not write, you will be lost from society and to history.)

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Much ado about an Honorary Doctorate?

Why is Dr. Rosmah always at the receiving end? It has a lot to do with her persona in the public stage. There are other wives of Malaysian PM but only she attracted unwanted publicity and criticisms. There must be obvious reasons, like for being the first to prefer being addressed as First Lady of Malaysia. Her demands for special attention to details to her satisfaction are well known to those who were involved in preparations where she was due to appear as guest of honour. Examples of her high-handedness heard through the grapevines include 'no empty seats when she is delivering a speech'; 'pictures due to appear in the newspapers must be previewed and chosen by her'; 'sections of Harrods closed when she was shopping there'; and so on. Though such stories could have been made up to discredit her, I am sure a genuinely lovable person would have been able to be her natural self and disprove all such attempts. To put it simply, she is 'too fake' or 'too put on' to be likeable. Rumours of botox treatments seem to reinforce this perception.

I am sure there must be some truth in claims that some obscure awards were arranged by PR firms and given publicity by them too. With too many instances of self-initiated image building, is it any wonder why an honorary doctorate awarded by a university is presumed to be bought, or at least a form of returning a favour or an inducement for preferential treatment?

In Malaysia, it is common to find honorary doctorates awarded by universities or their foreign associates to those who were responsible for setting up such private institutions. In a way, to those rich enough, it is easier to get one via this route than to study for it. Then there are degree mills churning out degrees, Masters and PhDs to order, to those who are crazy enough to think such false credentials could impress people. The irony of it is that people who are genuinely great and well known in their respective industries are likely to be humble and prefer not to disclose their credentials. Sometimes, it was more because of organizers who wish to publicize such information in order to attract participants in seminars and so on.

Are those who criticize Rosmah or Curtin University for awarding her the honorary doctorate being jealous of her or her success? First of all, she cannot stop people from wanting to criticize her, perhaps only when Facebook or other media decide to stop publishing them. She cannot stop those in coffee shops or bloggers.

For those who understand that such honorary doctorates are easily given to those in power or who have contributed financially to the universities, they would not bother with such vain expressions of greatness. To those who are in the process of writing theses and defending them successfully before they are awarded the 'PhD' which entitled them to use 'Dr.' before their names, there might be some frustration over the ease some people could do so. As a father of someone pursuing a doctorate, which normally takes at least 4 years, it is a test of patience for both student and parent. When it involved having to forgo a fantastic job offer because of commitment to her new supervisor, then it just shows how unfair it is in life when some could have their cake and eat it too!
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1 comment:

bayi said...

It's true the value of an honorary degree really doesn't add to much but the vehemence of negative remarks showed how in general the people thought about the whole issue.kai