A comment was posted here yesterday that is typical of the blanket condemnation of Malaysian journalists that frequently arises especially from the chattering classes of the urban middle-class. In Internet terms, the commenter was a troll, completely disregarding the points in Saturday’s piece How about prostitution, for Hew’s sake or a previous piece Political hacks knife media ‘pimps and prostitutes’ surfacing only to make a put-down, the kind beloved of policemen and sometimes of parachute foreign correspondents.
Malaysian journalists deserved no respect, the commenter said, because of “half a century of manufactured news, political propaganda and apple-polishing”, an observation that thus conveniently absolves Malaysian society of condoning and meekly accepting the corruption of Malaysian journalism by political and business interests.
The rotten quasi-totalitarian Malaysian political system that has grown over the past half-century was also meekly accepted by the masses. Western media and their local flunkies, sometimes in tandem with their foreign offices, were also quite prepared to praise and even provide fawning support by turning a blind eye when it suited them.
It’s a bit rich of those who were always a part of the gravy train to now condemn Malaysian journalists for being little different from what they themselves have been, collaborators in the prostitution of Malaysian democracy by business and other interests, some of them large transnational conglomerates. Frigates and fighters, tanks and technology transfers have been a powerful incentive to forget principle.
That political flacks for opposition parties have now become highly regarded as torch bearers of crusading independent journalism is merely the other side of the coin of a Malaysian polity gone rotten: Malaysian politicians of either side are as willingly indifferent to repression, as others of that ilk, by conveniently looking the other way when it’s not in their interests to notice.
They had a lot of help from friends at that.
Such friends. Friends like you wouldn’t believe. Feh.
- How to lie and not be called a prostitute (uppercaise.wordpress.com)
- End KDN’s death-grip on the press says Soi Lek (uppercaise.wordpress.com)
- Walloping the NST, Star and all journos (uppercaise.wordpress.com)
- The two faces of journalism (newstatesman.com)
- Political hacks knife media ‘pimps and prostitutes’ (uppercaise.wordpress.com)
- Is the BBC really any different than Fox News? (dangordonreporting.wordpress.com)