Tuesday, March 15, 2011

A History Of Heartlessness

It's a terrible picture by any standard. The stoic Japanese, reduced to utter despair by the devastation at Natori. They are human after all, and every human has his or her own threshold of pain. Japan has more suicides than the United States, yet less than half the population. Still, the use of drugs in Prozac's class has only recently begun to spread. Tell that to the despicable Goh Chok Tong.

Goh shamefully used the tsunami tragedy to forward his own political agenda. He abused the dignity of the suffering Japanese to lambaste Singaporeans for expressing disgust at the folly of the street floods, caused by lack of drainage maintenance, and not act of God as claimed by the Environment Minister. Speaking to some 200 REACH contributors at a forum held at the Marine Parade Community Club, Goh quoted an example of how Singaporeans reacted strongly to the Orchard Road floods that happened last year, saying that "Singaporeans should not complain too much but instead learn from the Japanese tsunami incident". And you thought Mrs Goh was the insensitive brute, rallying support for NKF's TT Durai at his day in court. Despite public calls for an apology, Mrs Goh Chok Tong never did recant her odious remark, "$600,000 per year is peanuts compared to the reserves the NKF has." At that time, "I stand corrected" was not yet a fashionable statement.

Goh's cold fish temperament was earlier demonstrated in 1995, when domestic help Flor Contemplacion, a 42-year-old mother of four children, was hanged. Then Philippines President Fidel Ramos was flabbergasted at his lack of comprehension of the heightened emotions in his country regarding the perceived injustice. A pile of Manila local dailies was couriered across, to let Goh witness at first hand the large print headlines, Singapore prefixed with a four-lettered expletive. It should be noted that Yeo Cheow Tong and George Yeo, each in their own ministerial capacities, had made advance trips to Manila to prepare for Goh's April visit to the Philippines. Neither had any clue of the Pinoy reaction to the Singapore brand of justice. There was this talk host of a children's TV program, instructing the kids to burst balloons by stomping on them, "Just imagine they are Singaporeans."

Maybe Goh Chok Tong does have a heart, maybe it's just buried too deep in the mountain of cash acquired over the years. Or maybe he needs see a psychiatrist after all. That prognosis still stands, unless otherwise corrected.


  1. A heart without conscience is akin to a piece of wood without life, only fit to be charcoal or burn to produce fire.


  2. I absolutely concur with you Tattler!

    Goh CT and mrs peanuts Goh deserve each other!

    I actually wonder if Goh CT really understands what it means to remain 'stoic' under different circumstances, because frankly, only a blockhead like Goh can remain stoic while Durai is having mrs peanuts Goh for dessert.

    I call it "just dessert" for a blockhead with very low EQ.

  3. About time Goh attend Communications 101. He probably was trying to show his empathy but projected out wrongly. Instead he should simply say "I am in awe with how the japanese people respond so stoically to the tragedy by xxx. These are characteristics that we can learn from as a nation. Period, simple and to his personal point, without any shady inference to both japanese or singaporeans' dignity.

    Confucius also recommend self-cultivation. Yes, there is a way to revive his heart in spite of and in response to the Japan event that plagues our planet. How? One person at a time. Goh might want to start with himself first.

  4. I suppose when our PAP Ministers like Lim Suai Suai and Goh SoTong are so happy looking at their bank accounts and CPF statements, they must have no idea what real suffering is.

    In their minds they are probably still thinking how to con voters into believing they are the best MPs to vote for, so that they can continue to count the money pouring in once they are elected again.

    Remember his false carrots and his wife's expensive peanuts already gives the lie away. Does anyone, for a second, believe that he gives a damn to the Japanese's suffering ?

  5. the conscience3/15/2011 11:15 PM

    Dear Tattler,

    This is one of your best posts. The picture together with your opening paragraph were akin to a lance penetrating in a boil. As for GCT...I am at a loss for words. I will make myself heard at the ballot box.

  6. I'm glad you mentioned the Flor Contemplacion case. We seem to be good at catching and hanging small time dealers and couriers.

    To date have we witnessed the capture of a drug baron? No, we have not.

  7. i don't understand why you brought up flor contemplacion case. Yes, she deserved to be hanged after murdering what, 1 or 2 people in her employer's household. in fact, if singapore hadn't executed her but caved in to the pinoy government, i would think pap had no back bone.

    on the issue of exploiting the japanese national tragedy for political points, yes, i agree this is extremely distasteful.

  8. Methinks the Contemplacion case was one of diplomacy gaffe. Another was the Michael Fay incident. After all those years in office, haven't they learnt that lesson?

  9. A response to "SM Goh to S’poreans: Learn from Japan disaster" - Will we stay a “kintaro-ame” nation, SM Goh?

  10. "SM Goh to S’poreans: Learn from Japan disaster"

    S'poreans to SG Goh and PAP: Look into the mirror first, learn from Orchard Floods first.

  11. Hey, he's not called Woody for nothing hor!

  12. Flor Contemplacion retracted her confession with the claim that it was given in duress. The case was controversial. We do not know for sure what happened. Certain groups may have used this incident to highlight the treatment Filipina maids were receiving in Spore.

    The point however was Singapore's enthusiasm for hanging Flor and their unwillingness to reopen the cause for further investigation. This lack of going the extra mile was I think the problem. It gave the impression that we were a hard hearted and an empty minded lot who didnt give a rats ass about others.

  13. It was stoic display, when all the Ministers were trying to justify their huge pay increment. They were actually giggling inside, thinking what a dumb population they have. And then they laughed all the way to the bank and while seeing their CPF statement. And they still put on stoic display when their first world salary and third world standards are mentioned.

  14. Very high quality writing. Thanks "singaporedesk"