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Dear Ms. Alicia, In replying to your letter, I will probably admit to only this: perhaps I accidentally casted my net too widely by not using enough qualification when I criticized Farrelly some days ago.[1] I qualified my statement at the beginning but later, I did away with it. I tend to do this because […]

Elizabeth Farrelly at the Sydney Morning Herald writes that the burqa is an affront to feminism.[1] She makes feminism sounds authoritarian. Quoting a friend of mine, “all this really is another case of someone trying to shove the politics of one kind of identity ahead of another.” I am unsure how widely this view is […]

There is much stress on economic freedom these days. This is clear by the fact that the New Economic Model is advocating less government in various aspects. So excited are the document authors about the idea of free market that at its rhetorical climax, they highlight the phrase ”market-friendly affirmative action”, never mind the apparent contradiction […]

I admire John Stuart Mill’s On Liberty. In it, the author succinctly describes the limits of the state and individual liberty. His defense of individual liberty against the transgression of the state and the majority is impressive to me, who is already familiar with core points Mill articulated in On Liberty even before learning Mill’s […]

Is it not great to witness the culture of freedom spreading in Malaysia, no matter how painfully slow progress has been so far? To observe individuals debating in the public sphere on issues that none was willing to ponder so openly in the past is an encouraging development for all freedom lovers. It opens up […]

[2112] Of a return to basics

One simply cannot overestimate the power of education in shaping a society. It has an awesome capability of influencing a person’s perspective towards the world by impressing certain mind frame, especially to young, whose mind is naively free of skepticism. A liberal society will require an education system that removes that naiveté and develops critically […]

Here is to liberty. Forgive, but never forget the tyranny of communism and socialism.

An optimist may take the view that politics is unifying. A realist will understand that politics is divisive. It is possible that this realization is the reason why the Sultan of Selangor expressed his concern about the use of mosques for political purposes. For better or for worse, political activities in mosques are inevitable, if […]

It is easy to dismiss the triviality, for instance, of choosing a pair of high heels out of hundreds as excesses of modern life defined by free market. How does one sympathize with a dilemma of a purchaser who faces a petty option between consuming Coke and Pepsi? Such inconsequential puzzles seem so shallow for […]

I had trouble writing not too long ago. This is one of few reasons why my column at The Malaysian Insider was published late after Monday in the past few weeks. I constantly found myself writing several paragraphs only to delete it, deciding that I wanted to write something else instead. At first, I figured […]

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