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Psy sizzles Malaysia's election
Publication Date : 07-02-2013
The political battle in Malaysia has given K-pop stars a money-earning opportunity. They might think that it is so easy to earn money here.
Gangnam Style's Psy has been invited to perform at BN's Chinese New Year open house in Penang. How much does he charge for the performance? Some said US$500,000, while some others said $1 million and 5 million ringgit. Penang BN leaders, however, said they spend not even a penny.
Business is business. Do you believe that a global celebrity will perform for free? Of course someone will have to pay him. The Penang BN clarified that the performance is sponsored by a private company in Kuala Lumpur.
In fact, this is not the first time K-pop stars are invited to perform in Malaysia. In 2011, Korean boy band Super Junior-M was invited to perform at a free concert as part of the ‘One Million Youth Gathering’ in Putrajaya in conjunction with National Youth Day celebrations. In 2012, 10 million ringgit was spent for the Hari Belia Negara event, including bringing in K-pop girl group Dal Shabet.
The K-pop wind has been blown to Malaysia. Young people, including the Malays, are crazy about Korean dramas and K-pop stars. Therefore, Malaysia has become a gold mine for Korean artists. Regardless of whether they can understand Korean language, all concert tickets have always been sold out.
Even political parties are now joining the craze. Psy is being dragged into the confrontation before the election. No wonder even foreign media have shown their concern.
How many votes can be fished and would the horse-riding dance affect the election result? Could Psy alone help to overthrow the Penang Pakatan Rakyat state government?
It is undeniable that the dance has swept across the world. Even aunties and children know the dance. However, the general election affects the country's politics. Isn't it too absurd if voters change their minds just because they have watched Psy's performance?
I have asked some friends and colleagues whether they would repay with their votes if they are given the opportunity to watch Psy's live performance. All people answered no.
Of course, we cannot deny that some fans are really crazy, and some even do not know the implication of the song. However, they are just a small number and are insufficient to affect the election result.
Soon after the announcement, many Malaysian fans of Psy have flooded the celebrity's Facebook webpage with messages pleading him not to perform at the BN's CNY open house.
The DAP, meanwhile, called to the people to enjoy the performance, and wear yellow for Bersih, green for environment and red for Penang.
We can see that the country's politics has come to the extend of resorting to every conceivable means. In addition to inviting K-pop stars to fish votes, some have also demonised political leaders online.
The general election is meant to elect a government for the next five years, instead of an entertainment show or a life-and-death battle. The people wish to see how political parties compete in terms of policy and political platform. Everything, however, has gone wrong. Some have lost their personalities, while some have forgotten their principles and judgement.
Election is just a democratic procedure for a month or less. The interests of the country and its people, instead, are the long-term considerations. Political parties should not spend a huge sum of money and worsen the government debt just because of an election. Even more importantly, they should not make the politics dirty, distort the spirit and system of the rule of law and bring long-term and irreparable harm to the country.
A general election should be a progressive , rather than a collectively sinking, democratic vote. The ruling and alternative coalitions should show the people a high-quality politics, instead of a vulgar show and confrontation.
The money spent to invite K-pop stars to perform in Malaysia should not be wasted just like that. We should learn from the achievements of South Korea in democratisation and the success of South Koreans. - Translated by Soong Phui Jee