Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Magnamity To Forgive

Omigosh! Did Tommy Koh really say that? Elsewhere in the mainstream media, every one is singing the old man's praises on cue, including one guy who claims the clean toilets at Changi Airport are attributed to his personal intervention.

Former Law Minister Jayakumar, still sprightly for his advanced years, was quick to jump to the defence. Paraphrasing his successor Shanmugam, and using similar vernacular, Jayakumar said, "He can be criticised for foolishness, maybe even for incompetence, for arrogance, but his red line was - not on reputation and integrity." Actually, Shanmugam had used words like "stupid fool" and "don't know what they're talking". Jayakumar is retired, Shanmugam is still on the payroll, so former can get off with the harsher "foolishness", "incompetence", and "arrogance". Both draw the same line on corruption though, as in Minister of National Development Teh Cheang Wan caught taking in cash on the side.

Which kind of justifies Tang Liang Hang being bankrupted and booted out to Australia. For good measure, Mrs Tang suffered same treatment. Tang was the chap who raised the issue of the Hotel Properties Ltd (HPL) condominium purchases during an election campaign, specifically the discounts received by father, son, mother, daughter and assorted relatives from a company which happened to have a brother on board as director.

Prof Koh also touched on the some Singaporeans' view on the Internal Security Act (ISA), as an example of "rule by law, rather than rule of law". Here, it was ex-chief justice Chan Sek Keong who jumped in to say that the standard definition of rule by law is that the government is subject to the law and accepts so. In which case, there would rule of law, and the government is not "ruling by law". This from the guy who ruled that the Parliamentary Elections Act forbade unauthorized persons to loiter within 200 metres of polling stations on polling day, but does not apply to unauthorized persons who were already inside the stations.

With such clarity of thought on the subject of corruption and the law, one wonders why there have been some many long drawn corruption cases in the courts. The answer must be embedded somewhere in Mr Chan's open question, "If the government does not rule by law, in the technical sense, what else can it rule by?" Here we are reminded of how Pontius Pilate famously replied, "What is truth?" ("Quid est veritas?")

24 comments:

  1. Dict, dict, dicta, dictato, dictato...cannot say lah, wait police can catch.

    ReplyDelete
  2. /// "If the government does not rule by law, in the technical sense, what else can it rule by?" ///

    Simple - rule of law.

    http://branemrys.blogspot.sg/2005/08/rule-of-law-vs-rule-by-law.html

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. rule of law in SinCity ?...not when some are above the law and the system subservient to one political party.

      Delete
  3. @Anonymous: u mean saying lky is dictator police will catch?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Dictatorship out of fashion, except in N Korea and a few 3rd world countries.The wise man does not want to be compared with.Wise but with a small heart.

      Delete
    2. You are on your own now boy. Be prepared for that midnight knock on your door.

      Delete
    3. Lee jr has the chance now to end his oldman's knuckle duster tactics... perpetuating such tactics is no guarantee the familee down the line will not be at the receiving end.
      No doubt he is dumb but not that dumb.

      Delete
    4. Dictatorship out of fashion. When did it become a fashion? So now there is an outbreak of democracy? Look! There's a piggy in the sky.

      Delete
  4. Chan Sek Leong is a liar and was supporting the covert operations of ISD. He was the chosen one (by LKY) to corrupt the entire judiciary.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Rule by law is very different, despite some superficial similarities.

    Rule by law is prudential: one rules by law (properly speaking) not because the law is higher than oneself but because it is convenient to do so and inconvenient not to do so. In rule of law, the law is something the government serves; in rule by law, the government uses law as the most convenient way to govern.

    I think Singaporeans having lived through the past 50years are smart enough to know what we have in place, politically.

    ReplyDelete
  6. Every politicians have egos...except Michael Palmer, he has mangoes.

    Speaking of mangoes, can anyone tell me what is the inference of mangoes here in the video?

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kyfOIq0U0V4

    ReplyDelete
  7. Why does one need a red line if there is nothing to hide? American presidents have been accused of many things and none has a red line.

    Something is seriously wrong when one needs a red line to defend his reputation. Just don't take that free extra egg to begin with! Accepting a (mortgage) discount from a banker has gotten politicians in trouble in the states. What about politicians drawing million dollar salaries? In America, that is called CORRUPTION, red line or not!

    ReplyDelete
  8. The one most lamentable characteristic of Sin after some five decades of autonomy, is the widespread and growing distrust and cynicism of the Rulers.

    patriot

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. This is what happened when the citizenry are constantly blamed for all of society's ill and told they are worthless.
      Fear and loathing mixed with - you said it - cynicism resulting in the total loss of collective self esteem and confidence.

      Delete
  9. Apologies - when and where did this cutting appear? Unable to locate in any of the MSM.
    Thanks.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It's not in the Shitty Times, it's on page 12 of TODAY, Tuesday 17 September 2013

      Delete
  10. omfucking god.... when the despot is sick and feeble, close to the death bed;

    even his enunches start to rebel .... when will the chua bitches start doing so too?

    but i am kuan yew ardent admirer ...

    LONG LIVE KUAN YEW ...

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Sooner or later.
      If he lives long enough.
      He will have to start wearing adult diapers.
      Do we really want to wish him such a long life?

      Delete
    2. Embroidered red silk diapers from China no doubt.

      Delete
  11. I have always held the good Professor Tommy Koh in high regards. Must be something about professors of that era , beside his mild manners and very down to earth way of carrying himself.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I suppose carrying yourself is more dignified than carrying your master's b...s. Cannot say lah wait mata catch.

      Delete
    2. Are the knives out already? The old man is way beyond being able to respond. Anyone for Shakespeare? Not Minister Ng and his colleagues whom he reminded us had greatness thrust upon them of course.

      Delete
    3. Romans, countrymen, and lovers!
      hear me for my cause,
      and be silent,
      that you may hear:
      believe me for mine honour,
      and have respect to mine honour,
      that you may believe:
      censure me in your wisdom,
      and awake your senses,
      that you may the better judge.

      If there be any in this assembly,
      any dear friend of Caesar's,
      to him I say,
      that Brutus' love to Caesar
      was no less than his.
      If then that friend demand
      why Brutus rose against Caesar,
      this is my answer:
      --Not that I loved Caesar less,
      but that I loved Rome more.

      Delete
  12. Oh yes he will respond alright, with yet another book. Where did he find those ghost writers?

    ReplyDelete