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5/05/2006

invited and uninvited guest politicians

Over the last few days, many descriptions were made of our fresh face politicians. One description compares them to sprinters and long distance runners. The former will appear for a short run and disappear immediately. The latter is in for a long haul, will run the distance, always there. I would like to put the two groups into a clearer perspective. The long distant runners are normally high achievers, academically very brilliant and very successful or promising young people in their professions. They have spend a major part of their lives chasing their dreams of building a successful professional career, not in politics. Then the invitation card came for tea. And most of them will turn down the offer, citing other commitments of work and family. Only after a lot of persuasion will they then reluctantly accept to come forward to serve the people. It seems that to appear not keen to be politicians is a hall mark of this group. Eager beavers are not seen favourably. And once in, they are assured of a long haul. They are virtually assured of winning and becoming MPs. For even if they lose in the election, they will still be appointed as the de facto MP with grassroot leaders and organisations in their charge. And they will have more financial muscles to do more for the people than an elected opposition candidate. They can be assured of a wonderful career ahead of them, win or lose the election. On the other hand, the sprinters, or uninvited guest politicians are normally not that high achievers or very young and untested. They did not wait to be invited. They invited themselves to the political fray, risking a career, reputation and maybe even a lawsuit. This group has no qualms or hesitation about family or career commitment. To serve the people or be politicians seems to be their main life objective. They did not pretend to be uninterested in politics. They came forward on their own to be judged by the people during an election. And if they lose, they have no other means of support, financially or grassroot organisations or a big machinery to keep them active in the constituency. They have to go back to earn a living and be part time politicians. This is a reversal of what they will be, full time politicians when elected but part time politicians if not elected. This is a mark difference from the long distant runner who will be part time politicians when elected and full time politicians when not elected. The above practically sums up the differences between invited and uninvited guest politicians.

10 comments:

Socaps said...

You have made a clear distinction between the 'long distant runners' and the 'sprinters'. I would add that the former tend to lack passion and vision. They are merely 'orang tumpangs' in the GRCs. I regard them as a fleet of sheep which will lift up their heads before the shepherd when not fed. As for the latter, I regard them as 'unpolished diamonds'. Given time they will shine; and a new leader of the nation will likely emerge from this group as leaders are born and not groomed.

redbean said...

when i hear the long distance runners speaking about their call and commitment to serve the people, my hair stands on ends.

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