ST coverage of Psy’s concert gives Malaysian propaganda a run for their money…

Posted on 12 February 2013

With epic non-coverage of ruling party’s loss of face

Malaysia’ mainstream press has a new competitor in The Straits Times, Singapore’s own propaganda production centre.

Psy Penang

On surface level, this seems like a normal news report of a concert by Gangnam-style superstar Psy, who was apparently engaged by Malaysia’s ruling party BN (Barisan Nasional) to the tune of RM 2million (~S$1mil).


Like every typical ST report, the article is disproportionally made up of self-congratulatory quotes from the prime minister, and then some stuff from the opposition. Throw in an unimaginative political analyst and a run-of-the-mill layman and voila!

Red: Najib quotes Purple: Opposition quotes Blue: The unimaginative analyst and random layman.

Red: Najib quotes
Purple: Opposition quotes
Blue: The unimaginative analyst and random layman.

Balanced, objective coverage by Singapore’s bastion of truth, which was matched by equally sycophantic reportage in Malaysia here, here  and here.

Unfortunately, this was NOT the story behind what happened at Psy’s Penang concert.

If you can’t already tell, this is a video of Najib desperately rallying the crowd (most of whom where impatiently waiting for Psy) to his 1Malaysia campaign, and failing spectacularly.

No, Penangites don’t want BN. They came for Psy, you arse.

According to various accounts on the social media, and Malaysia’s alternative press (here and here) this was what happened.

1. Psy was engaged by the BN to score political points among the younger electorate, and especially the Chinese majority in Penang.

2. Psy’s performance was delayed from 1130 to 1215 so members of the ruling party could make their various appearances. This pissed the standing audience off.

3. Najib’s son’s made a speech in Chinese in an attempt to engage the audience. However, this failed miserably when most of the audience could not understand the relevance of the wise-sounding but ultimately meaningless idioms that he peppered his speech with.

4. Najib’s attempted to engage the audience himself and also, failed spectacularly. When Najib shouted “Satu!”, there were replies of “Malaysia!” from what seemed like the local UMNO youth. But when Najib shouted “一个!”, he was greeted by crickets. Three times.

5. The impatient audience booed when Rosmah (Najib’s wife) surfaced on stage to sing (block) lip-sync CNY songs. Again, they came to see Psy, not a delayed hungry ghost festival performance.

6. Psy refused to appear on stage with the BN leaders to lo hei, who were all ready with their chopsticks, in a bid to preserve his neutrality. After a few awkward minutes, all the BN leaders were ousted off the stage to make way for the performance.

7. Najib makes a last-minute attempt to save what was left of his bitch-slapped face.
“Are you ready for BN?” “NO!” — well, that worked just fine didn’t it.

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- who has written 268 posts on New Nation.

Joey is an intern at New Nation. He hopes to be as funny as Belmont one day and get laid at least twice a month.

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  • Anon

    Guess you need to do a follow up whether it was a “NO” or “YES”.

    • UbahGengsterStyle

      Guess you’d definitely need to crank up the volume to listen to a huge “NO”!

  • Myra Diphyto

    Only one word for the Malaysian federal government: LAUGHABLE.