Monday, May 05, 2008

Kicks like a mule

I was emailing my friend D today about Malaysia, in a wide-ranging discussion about religion, cultural mores, Schapelle Corby, the death penalty for drug-trafficking, and bribery, prompted by a story in today's paper about a Malaysian government official's proposal to require all young Malaysian women leaving the country to carry letters of authorisation, Middle-East chaperone style, to prevent them from becoming drug mules - which they would all otherwise obviously do - and was reminded of my favourite loony cult, the Teapot Cult of Malaysia (see this unreliable source for a contemporaneous report). What I didn't tell him about, but should have, was my other favourite Malaysian story (at least, of those which don't involve me, of which more some other time): the carjacking gang who were wont to force drivers of luxury cars out of the driver's seat at gunpoint at the traffic lights. On encountering the immobiliser in a Mercedes which needed a fingerprint to start it, they cut out the middle man by chopping off the owner's finger and taking it with them.

Wicked, I know, but I have this irresistible image of the scene back at the carjack gang's hideout shack:

"Anyone got the key to the SLK?"
"Hang on a minute -" (rummages in jar of formaldehyde, before triumphantly holding finger aloft) "Here it is!"

On a more serious note: clearly this measure is an attempt to curb women's freedom by the back door and is to be deplored.

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