Harper’s Bazaar (Malaysia) - - The Zone -

The Negeri Sembilan prince and found­ing pres­i­dent of the In­sti­tute for Democ­racy and Eco­nomic Af­fairs (IDEAS) on writ­ing and his lat­est book Roam­ing Be­yond The Fence, com­pi­la­tion of his news­pa­per ar­ti­cles. Tunku Ab­dul Rah­man. I am par­tic­u­larly in­spired by him be­cause he was a writer him­self; he wrote in The Star ev­ery week. On cen­sorhip? Well, the self-cen­sor­ship prac­tised by me­dia pro­fes­sion­als here is in­sid­i­ous be­cause it de­feats a pro­fes­sion that should be push­ing bound­aries. We should be fight­ing for more free­dom. Be­ing What sparked your first ar­ti­cle? It was dur­ing the 2008 elec­tions and I had just come back from the US. Be­fore that I was work­ing in the Bri­tish par­lia­ment, and I just wanted to share what I had ob­served in the UK elec­tions. Writ­ing influences? I’m not a politi­cian; I’m not try­ing to pro­pose leg­is­la­tion. What I’m try­ing to do is to pro­mote dis­course. I think that’s the first step, to en­sure that is­sues which might have been deemed sen­si­tive can be dis­cussed and trans­lated into poli­cies by po­lit­i­cal par­ties. I think that’s the end game. Some feel that you lack a cer­tain un­der­stand­ing due

a cowed in an at­mos­phere where you feel that you can’t do pub­lic things for fear of some sort of sanc­tion is not healthy. How would you counter the scep­tics who ques­tion the fea­si­bil­ity of cer­tain ideas in your book? to the huge life­style dif­fer­ence be­tween you and the

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