Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Shedding Tears For Singapore

Pass the Kleenex, please
 The reporter was merely expressing Singaporeans' worry that there might be group think coming out from policy makers, and addressed the question to the 3 spanking new PAP candidates on display. But Lim Boon Heng decided to take it on himself, and stated vehemently there was no group think in the casino decision.

The tears came like a flash flood after uttering the words, "For me it was a very difficult process to accept the casino". He also said he saw wages stagnating for the lower income group, some even falling, due to implementation of globalisation policies. Perhaps the Minister had personally witnessed a relative, or friend of a friend, haplessly snared by the social evil of gambling. Or someone caught in the double whammy of job or income loss, and had to resort to the casinos as would a drowning man grasping at straws. Only a cold hearted heathen would fail to be moved.

Then again, he might have interpreted "group think" as an euphemism for "yes-men", given the unsettled debate about diversity in the party ranks. At age 63, Lim would surely feel sullied if his 31 years of office should go down in history as a mendicant lackey. On the other hand, with Goh Chok Tong making threats (Straits Times, April 6, 2002) like, "If you sing Jailhouse Rock with your electric guitar when others are playing Beethoven, you are out of order. The whip must be used on you," Lim had little choice but to fall in line if he valued his paycheck. Besides, what does a Minister Without Portfolio exactly do to earn a performance bonus?

Han Fook Kwang presented the recurring issue to Lee Kuan Yew in this way: "One concern is that with such high pay, ministers will become beholden to the PM and afraid to go against the PM's wishes because there's too much to lose." We get a hint about the possibility when Lim said, "The trouble is that if you have a public debate on some matters that are very sensitive, somebody will have to lose face." No prizes for guessing who that thin skinned somebody might be.

Lee Kuan Yew's counter argument to Han was that if a prime minister uses his patronage to keep a minister obedient, he will end up with a dub Cabinet. That's the Hard Truth (page 125), and that should explain the proliferation of duds over the last few years. Really, Singaporeans should be doing more of the crying.


  1. not for sg but for himself.
    he was asked to leave unexpectedly so he felt a little betrayed.

  2. NoWorkersLeftBehind4/13/2011 1:28 AM

    When a tragedy is greater, crying is not just understandable, but properly human. While it's public knowledge that he stood against the policy but in the end, as you said, the party line is such that the end ALWAYS justified the means. And it also proved that as a party, they have ran out of creative ideas to generate fresh solutions.

    What's done cannot be undone sounds straightforward, but it is not sweepingly wrong, as anyone who has had to backtrack while assembling flat-pack furniture will know. But now we have the insights that they truly have the best interest for Singaporeans when they had to choose between a rock & a hard place.

    So now what? We can't undo the casino, and still have to deal with the social consequences, and on top of that, local unemployments. The thought that every past hurt matters as little as spilt milk leaves a sour taste.

  3. Mr Lim was persuaded by the 30 thousands job creation but the majority of these jobs went to FT. No ?
    That is why he was that emotional, if you ask me. By the way, reducing two Minister from the PMO as announced so far do not mean much. Yet.

  4. In a reply at last night's TV forum, Lee Hsien Loong said, "I think if we bulldoze agendas through, we wouldn't stay in power very long because in the end, we have to govern with the consent of the people and in the interest of the people." Uh? We consented to the influx of foreigners? GST? HDB pricing? It's mee siam mai hum all over again.

  5. He'll get a higher pay check if he becomes President!

  6. He could be clear to his own conscience by resigning or leaving the party. Tears of guilt I suppose. It only goes to confirm that the ruling party has a track record of churning out and recruitng yes men. Spare me the show.

  7. i've already included him in my list of Star Awards 2011 nominees

  8. The wayang has begun...1st "freak" event

  9. Crocodile tears from PAP NTUC chief.

    Shows clearly Lim BOO Heng chose to serve his PAP masters rather than to look after Singaporeans' interests. His multi million dollar paycheck, PAP big (or pig) face and lack of better ideas take precedence over Singaporeans' interests.

    Just ask Lim BOO Heng and PAP how many Singaporeans are employed at the casinos, compared to foreigners and PRs!!!

    On the other hand, it is good to see long-time PAP stalwarts bowing out (presumably bros they have earned enough MONEY to last several lifetimes). Now Singaporeans will just have to finish the job by kicking out the rest of the pai-si-buay-zao eg LKY, Goh Joke Tong, Mini Lee, Lim Swee Say etc.

    Vote for REAL CHANGE!

  10. NTUC, e2i and WDA are all dud organisations. The management inside all cho bo lan and pay patronage to all seekers of jobs. They will ask you to upgrade even when you have a masters degree. Bunch of bollocks.

    And the biggest dud is...of course the chief.

  11. He could not fight the PAP to fight for Singaporeans 'future. Better to retire gracefully.

    Read :-

  12. ". Besides, what does a Minister Without Portfolio exactly do to earn a performance bonus?"

    I thought having no portfolio means it is extremely easy for him to earn his performance bonus since anything he does is over and beyond his (non-existent) job scope.

  13. Just wonder whether the NTUC chief followed up with a warning to all the govt owned media not to publish any smiling photo of him, just in case they used a old pic of his smiling face.

    For a sly politician, tears are cheap especially when they can happily count the millions in their bank account afterwards. Remember how our MM, Mahathir once cried in public for some private reason that is only best known to themselves. And the best part of it that gives the lie away must be the warning that followed.

  14. Lim had tried his very best to protect the interest of most Singaporean...lets move on. Lau Lee has designed a system that is not easy for others to penetrate. If it does, it would not easy for the white to regain in power as the system acted as a double edge sword!

  15. I am starting to realize why PAP gov't is so screwed...

    How many dud too big to fail GLCs are there around in a small economy like singapore...and why these over bloated GLCs & PAP gov't affiliated "companies" plus civil service need to be fed with more & more public funds... "maintain" their loyalties to the PAP...the problem is the amount of monies (public funds) needed for the feeding has exceed beyond the capacity of singapore's local economy and its people to provide...

    Thus the logical reasons for everything going up...and the "open door to 'foreign talent' policies" special open trades with india & china to absorb their "jobless" new graduates/high school or diploma fresh out of selling off singapore's strategic assets...just to secure more & more money to feed that bottomless pit of PAP "loyalists" & the neutrals in singapore...

    Stupid...that should be a max pay cap or to the feeding...else how will it end...PAP loyalists are never satisfied...why...easy blood money...just use the law to get more...and more...if not from singapore & its people..than no choice...from outside or from imported foreigners...

    Really bunch of blood sucking greedy modern day vampires...except these vampires feed on peoples blood monies...blood monies because some folks do not even have tat money to help put better heathier food on the table or pay for the education of their kids or upkeep their elders or saved their loved ones who has almost terminal type illness...

    Do note...PM LHL went for his cancer treatments...and whose money is he using for his treatment...well...the public direct/indirect proud huh...using others monies instead of earning your own keep and using your own honest sweat...

    Sick of these low lifes.

  16. Wonder why despite his concern still end up with 2 casino. You mean to say one casino is not enough ?

  17. damn right they are all duds and eunuchs.

  18. Tattler,
    lim boon heng was shedding tears for himself, felt sorry for himself that he was forced to leave and yet must perform one last act for father and son.

    i am inclined to agree he will go down in spore history as nothing more than a eunuch serving the familee.

    ps: the outcome of this GE will decide what kind of tears we will be shedding.

  19. Quite obvious that LBH's crybaby episode was due to being unexpectedly asked by PAP top mgmt to resign. I mean come on, the question posed was innocent enough -- got groupthink or not? yes or no? -- like that need to suddenly waah waah waah?!?

    Just 2 days before this TV interview, LBH was strutting around and giving holy pronouncements on the upcoming GE and PAP new candidate selection process etc etc. Clearly this man was caught by surprise and shock when given his termination letter.

  20. I agree with anon 3:05pm. It would be hard to imagine LBH shedding tears a couple days before the interview. Everything was going well for him until he got the boot. Pathetic!

  21. Compare to those western Ministers who quit when they disagree with the policies of their PM or Party, LBH is a shade of their moral standing and principle.
    He shouldn't have cried .
    He's set for life with pension of a million+ every year and maybe a GLC post for him while many of us common folks still need to slug it out till kingdom come

  22. @ April 13, 2011 10:09pm
    I think it might be more correct that you are and will be left to fend for yourself even if you are a Master's or PhD holder, because those will assume that you "can take care of yourself" or if not, just die in your own ivory tower of knowledge, since knowledge is not seemingly the priority to 'yes-man' as much as earning more money.