People have often asked, how did Najib turned bad? Wasn’t he just like any other spoilt rich man’s son, happily doing pub crawls and sowing his wild oats on stray women acquaintances considered as spoils along the trail?
I am sure many have asked this question because they do not want to believe that Najib has two personalities. The public Najib is a reflection of the private Najib. And if in private, he is a decent fellow as many would say so, then his public personae, which is opposite his private self, must have been nurtured by his environment.
The problem is this. The public personae displays consistency such that it is difficult not to infer a permanent inner character trait. The outside personality cannot just be occasional reactions to outside stimuli. We are therefore inclined to say Najib’s private vileness meshed exactly his brutal and opportunistic public style.
That description I borrow from Christopher Hitchens’s description of slick Willy Clinton. In simpler terms, the public personae which Najib portrays is a near reflection of his private personae. Bad inside, bad outside.
Because if he has an ethical inner self- that that would be enough to stop him from 1MDB-eing Malaysia. He was crooked on the inside and outside. It’s difficult for us to understand, why he approved the money sent to Jho Low’s account not once, but twice. An inherently crooked inner self is the only explanation. The intention to steal was there right from the beginning.
The test of Najib’s fitness for high office is now his ability to lie continuously. It’s not his desire to serve the 30 million people of Malaysia. It was never the commitment to religion, race and country. Who does that anymore?
Management of populism by elitism.
The most successful elite group is the one who can win the allegiance of a pliant and dependent crowd. Which can present itself as most in touch with popular concerns- such as portraying itself as stout defenders of religion, the purity of race, protector of Malays from challenges, which are mostly imagined.
It also includes the insipid inclusiveness slogan of putting people first. Putting people first where? In the line of fire? As the first to suffer?