Monday, 15 June 2009

Rapier Sharp

As a reporter, covering Assembly sittings is both a boon and a bane.

For one, you’re assured of some columns in tomorrow’s print, and you’d also get to see firsthand some real life political circussing (for want of a better word) which is incidentally also its bane.

(Of course, there is also information to be had, but most of the official ones are normally stale in that you already have it and all they do is confirm them.)

If you are looking at anything resembling the wit and poise in exchanges ala Jeffrey Archer’s First Amongst Equals, you’re better off rereading the novel again and again.

That said, I normally look forward to Question Time; easily the most – shall we say – exciting part of any Sittings, as this is where a reporter can get not only stories to follow up on, but also controversies should someone slip up in their Supplementaries.

Most of the time, though, Supplementary Question Time (designed to catch those unwary) ends up highlighting the evasive capabilities of our politicians.

Controversial questions would be sidestepped, often with a “back in your face” statement or bullshit of some kind, or for the more gentlemanly, a heat dousing “Kita akan kaji” (We will look into it).

I have thrown pens in disgust at such answers, vainly hoping for something snappy a response the writing could reflect.

The country experience a New Renaissance of sorts during the last General Election with more opposition members filling the Parliament, but do the numbers also bring in some much needed quality in debates and exchanges?

The (Old New – Does Rocky’s qualify as Newer?) Malay Mail provides some (highly readable, very entertaining and quite transparent) writing and highlights on Parliamentary Sittings.

Readingthem, you’d be forgiven to conclude that while there are some bright sparks among the newcomers, many more are quite the Twits.

TwitsThus we get things like this unnecessary show of Un-Parliamentary Childishness.

Surely there are more creative ways of getting your message across than getting thrown out of the august Hall, isn't there?

The stunt should bring some lines in prints, but it also goes to overshadow some obviously valid points of contention on the whole Perak BN takeover fiasco.

(Technicalities yada yada notwithstanding, it’s still very much a fiasco… If you have to do, do it right.)

Nizar should have stolen the thunder in his first day as a Parliamentarian in a far more dignified and, dare I say it, gentlemanly manner.

Perhaps, I’m asking for too much for a politician with a rapier sharp wit in the still green Nizar, eh?

Then again, he should make it a point to rise above gutter political antics.

No comments: