Friday, February 14, 2014

The Wit & Wisdom Of Lee Kuan Yew

If you are shopping for a book of quotes as a Valentine's Day gift, you have to be blinded by Cupid's arrows to mistake this for Francis Seow's "Confucius Confounded: The Analects of Lee Kuan Yew". There's no author associated with this Editions Didier Millet (EDM) publication of 600+ quotations. There is a mention though, in the very last page, that Professor Chan Heng Chee had reviewed the book's manuscripts. Seow's compilation has forewards penned by Mahathir and Derek Davies.

The quotes are arranged according to year of citation. There is no indication of context to add panache to the words, be it battling the colonial Brits, debating the Malaysian ultras or brow beating the interfering foreign journalists. Some samples:

On Singaporeans:
"I do not want a suppliant, an inert society where people just say 'yes' to everything I say because that means it is a society with no verve, no vitality." - 1966

On Colonialism:
"The day I can say, 'I am a free man. This is my country', that day I will welcome you as a friendly host would do a guest.  But I will not be a guest in my own country." - 1955

On Democracy:
"If you believe in democracy, you must believe in it unconditionally.  If you believe that men should be free, then they should have the right of free association, of free speech, of free publication." - 1955

On The PAP:
"My party may have a lot of faults, but there is one fault that it has not got - too much money." -1957

On Immigration:
"For cheap labour, they [the British] allowed unrestricted immigration without any plan, without any policy and without any intention of creating or preserving the self." - 1957

On International Relations:
"No people like to be told by their neighbours, particularly a smaller one, what they should do about their leaders." - 1963

On Prosperity:
"The poor know that you don't get manna falling from heaven, not in Singapore anyway." - 1976

On The Welfare State:
"There is nothing wrong about free health and education, if a society can afford it." - 1970

Above quotes are taken from the EDM book, not Francis Seow's. It is easy to see how the pioneer generation fell deeply in love during the golden years. Too bad the party could not last forever.

This being Valentine's Day, we must have a quote with "love" in it:
"Repression, sir, is a habit that grows. I am told it is like making love - it is always easier the second time! The first time there may be pangs of conscience, a sense of guilt. But once embarked on this course, with constant repetition, you get more and more brazen in the attack and in the scope of the attack".
- (Hansard, Oct 4, 1956)
That one is not from the EDM publication, but the Francis Seow book (page 20).

89 comments:

  1. That's how politicians cannot and should not be trusted.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Nicely done, Tattler. It appears that the man and his words were soon parted. He might have said "don't quote me."

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. More gems.....

      Page 73 - For cheap labour, they (the British) allowed unrestricted immigration without any plan, without any policy and without any intention of creating or preserving the self. I do not condemn the immigration as such, but I condemn the government which has no regard for the people of the country who have been assimilated and did not bother to educate or to provide education for those coming in. Today, with the renaissance of the motherland of each of the immigration groups, chauvinist tendencies are incited. Yet at this critical juncture we have to call upon these immigrants to give this country their undivided loyalty. - 1957

      Page 67 - There are many ways of putting over one's political views. We depend upon the courtesy of the newspapers, and some of them are not very courteous. They go out of their way not to tell the public that you are holding an election meeting because they do not happen to like your political party. They black out one party's meeting, they boost up another's. When one party has a big crowd they way it has a small gathering. If the parties they favour have a small crowd they do not show a picture of the crowd. There are many other ways of manipulating propaganda. - 1957

      How about bus-sing in aunties and uncles and give them free chicken rice??? All in favour - kee chiu!!!

      Delete
  3. Everything which he said that should or shouldn't be is happening now right in front of our eyes!

    ReplyDelete
  4. Classic Animal Farm stuff.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Agree. PAP = PIG?

      Delete
  5. Looks like they will pick & choose what is to be the hard truth. With hindsight, the ultimate hard truth is never to believe a politician's words, what more a cunning one.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Even hard truth is a term coined to deceive people. Who are you to decide what is the truth? People with brains can judge for their own. The rest minions will be fooled to rely on their blind faith to swallow half truths as the hard truth. Is that hard truth or half truth that he wrote?

      Delete
    2. This great man turned Spore around from 3rd to 1st world. None of his critics could in a million years.

      Delete
    3.  Again, the devil took him to an exceedingly high mountain, and showed him all the kingdoms of the world, and their glory.

      And he said to him, “I will give you all of these things, if you will fall down and worship me.”

      Delete
    4. First world? Could have fooled me. Tell that to the senior citizens mopping up human waste at public toilets and picking up dirty dishes at eating places. Believe the propaganda machine and you'll believe anything. First world indeed.

      Delete
  6. A chameleon and a turncoat.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Never trust politicians, especially those who had worked for the Japanese during WWII.

      Delete
    2. A ruthless opportunist.

      Delete
    3. Another LKY quote for Tattler's blog.
      >Giving advice to PRC leaders and 1.3 Billion Chinese <

      "If I have to shoot 200,000 students to save China from another 100 years of disorder, so be it." - Lee Kuan Yew endorsing the Tiananmen massacre, Straits Times, 17 August 2004

      I can't help wondering how many in China are aware LKY served the Japanese imperial army during the occupation of Singapore...and still managed to become the prime minister and thereafter paved the way for his son to take over.

      Delete
    4. Another LKY quote for Tattler's blog.
      >Giving advice to PRC leaders and 1.3 Billion Chinese <

      "If I have to shoot 200,000 students to save China from another 100 years of disorder, so be it." - Lee Kuan Yew endorsing the Tiananmen massacre, Straits Times, 17 August 2004

      I can't help wondering how many in China are aware LKY served the Japanese imperial army during the occupation of Singapore...and still managed to become the prime minister and thereafter paved the way for his son to take over.

      Delete
    5. Another LKY quote for Tattler's blog.
      >Giving advice to PRC leaders and 1.3 Billion Chinese <

      "If I have to shoot 200,000 students to save China from another 100 years of disorder, so be it." - Lee Kuan Yew endorsing the Tiananmen massacre, Straits Times, 17 August 2004

      I can't help wondering how many in China are aware LKY served the Japanese imperial army during the occupation of Singapore...and still managed to become the prime minister and thereafter paved the way for his son to take over.

      Delete
  7. Happy Valentine's Tattler. Thank you for your articles.

    ReplyDelete
  8. Dont take any founding member as Singapore style Mao Ze Dong and they get paid to do the job - that is the way we run Singapore in a free market mechanism system...

    ReplyDelete
  9. What one despises, one becomes.

    ReplyDelete
  10. - Is this the "Hard Truths" or the "Slippery Truths" ?
    - Maybe book should be called "The Devolution of Lee Kuan Yew"

    Isn't this Li Con Yew?

    ReplyDelete
  11. LKY is a human afterall. He succumbs easily to the evils of power just like any powerful people before him. He is very much the modern equivalent of Cao Cao - intellectual, great statesman, ambitious, merciless and a coward. Though he may want to be known as a Confucian thinker, he is not. He fails to practise the most important teaching of Confucius - "Don't do unto others what you don't want others to do unto you."

    ReplyDelete
  12. The old man really has foresight. Too bad, his son lost it.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. you mean his son as pm is not part of his "foresight"? his son has become the conductor of his orchestra and his daughter-in-law the ticketing office manager. everyone has to pay to listen to his orchestra comprised mostly of duds these days. what happened to the foresight? didn't know foresight can fail like human's eyesight.

      Delete
    2. On hindsight, the old man made mistake in appointing his son as PM.

      Delete
    3. A grave mistake indeed!

      Delete
    4. But Mahathir would have love to do a LKY legacy to anoint his own heir to the throne.

      Delete
  13. Dictator old man.

    ReplyDelete
  14. Twilight time for the D.O.M.

    ReplyDelete
  15. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rWNdeRtBmWA#t=30

    Millions of oppressed ukrainains fought back against their oppressor. The Judge who sentenced the protestor who shot dead. Those trojan horses, are hot to trot. If his son takes it up two notches and turn the repeated repression into oppression, he will be seeing more of the above, and many more of the Usmans just waiting to strike.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Our Hong Lim Square will never look like the Ukraine youtube video.
      That is why Singaporeans have to pay interest to the PAP government when we want to use our CPF money to buy property.

      Where else in the world you get charged interest for using your own money?

      Long live Lee Kuan Yew.
      Adult diapers forever.

      Delete
    2. Silk adult diapers with Imperial Oriental motifs. ,

      Delete
    3. No less,

      Delete
  16. Hahaha.....

    20 Comments and me does not get to read a single positive one about the Man.

    Lamentable!

    patriot

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Positively a benevolent dictator.

      Delete
    2. Actually he is the ultimate inspiration to Singaporeans LOL
      those who worship money, selfserving to the very end, incorrigible liars, condone bullying, nepotism, cronyism and severely lacking in EQ .

      Delete
  17. Uniquely PAP who will never believe in what the preached till these days except with all the time fixing opposition and plyaing up petty politics. Like Chan Chun Sing admitted, PAP is always at constant war with the people and thus they must battle everywhere and in every corner of Singapore until PAP has no enemy. I wonder, why these PAP people hated Singaporeans so much and so deeply that it makes a substantial portion of Singaporeans poor and have to rely on regular handout like GST voucher, restructuring bonus, and now PGP. *Sigh* when will PAP apologist ever wake up and see Singapore has been sold!!!

    ReplyDelete
  18. Hi Tattler,
    when did LKY made his famous quote, "two legs good, four legs better"?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. My Literature teacher says "two legs good, four legs better" is a quote from George Orwell's Animal Farm. The Singapore version is "four legs good, two Lees better".

      Delete
    2. LeeConYew's version : the secret to domination is to make two legs think and behave like four legs, starting with those in parliament.

      Delete
    3. In Animal Farm it was at first " four legs good, two legs bad", then the pigs changed that to "four legs good, two legs better" without the other animals noticing.

      Delete
  19. Another book?!!?

    ReplyDelete
  20. SG50's reflection:

    Singapore today has become a suppliant, inert society where people just say 'yes' to everything PAP says. It is a society with no verve and vitality.

    The PAP government welcome foreigners like a friendly host. Singaporeans feel like they are guest in Singapore all over again.

    Singaporeans have been robbed of their right of free association, of free speech, of free publication.

    The PAP has a lot of faults including having too much money.

    For cheap labour, the PAP allowed unrestricted immigration without any plan, without any policy and without any intention of creating or preserving the self.

    No people like to be told by their neighbours, particularly a smaller one, what they should do about their leaders. But the PAP likes to tell its big neighbour how not honour its heroes.

    The poor know that you don't get manna falling from heaven in Singapore. They also know they have to pay GST.

    It is so wrong to have free health and education these days even if a society can afford it.

    Did you see the irony?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. In other words, if you read his early speeches, just think the opposite of what he said, and that will be the hard truths. If only he had practised what he preached then, we would be much different and better today. If only we had the wit and wisdom to vote out this charlatan. The final irony is that he calls us dafts, witless idiots! KNN.

      Delete
    2. "if you read his early speeches,.... .. If only he had practised what he preached then, we would be much different and better today. If only we had the wit and wisdom to vote out this charlatan..."

      LKY no different from all successful "charlatans". Another charlatan. "Change, change you can believe in". Are Sinkies any different from the US or vice versa, to be more precise voters everywhere?

      Delete
  21. The day he can say he's a free man...pity about the poor souls he locked up so he can have sole ownership.

    ReplyDelete
  22. Every political party has their 'LKY' just like every Church has their most Reverend. You can't challenge the man's right to be your god (or god over you) without challenging the religion which gives him that right.

    And what makes you think you can put a few 'LKY' in the same room and not have a last man standing?

    Live in Sin, die in Sin.

    ReplyDelete
  23. LKY is truely a Giant in a small stage. What he achieved for Singapore none of his critics could in a million years.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. To put thing in perspective, this is what ex-president of France, Francois Mitterrand said of him, "Who is this ridiculous man who wastes my time? Running Singapore is like running Marseilles. I am running a whole country!”

      LKY has done a great job, so do many past and present first world leaders. To accord anything more favourable is nothing short of idol worshipping. Look no further than North Korea.

      Delete
    2. @anon 10.29am,
      in truth, LKY is merely the biggest frog in a small pond and it's understandable for some in the same pond to be impress with his croaking.

      Delete
    3. An ugly one to boot.

      Delete
    4. Gotta love those testicles lickers. Balls of giant to be sure. But alas, those 90 years old balls must be in a shrivelled state by now.

      Delete
    5. If anything those shrivelled up old prunes of a testicles surely must make it more bearable (pun intended) for the army of ball carriers.

      Delete
    6. There are some well-trained LKY dogs, who happily take his abuse, and Pee And Poo at his bidding.

      "It's like with dogs. You train it in a proper way from small. It will know that it's got to leave, go outside to pee and to defecate."

      Delete
  24. His eyes may not be closed
    when his heart stopped.
    He will want you people to
    know that you people have
    been ingrates. After he has
    dedicated his whole life to
    Sin, all he gets before resting
    in peace are your curses and
    scorns.
    If he can get out from his grave,
    he will haunt you till you join him.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You mean he is not haunting us now ... even though he is not yet dead?

      Delete
  25. Join him in Sin and sell your soul to the devil?
    The strongman has the media under his control to only preach his gospel.

    Have you tried talking sense to the heavily indoctrinated?

    The religious dictator is preaching... love. That's why they are still in the business of reaping the heavenly life for themselves.. with many stupid sheep giving them the. ..vote

    ReplyDelete
  26. It is precisely because of the control of information that Sin has a politically uneducated great unwashed.

    ReplyDelete
  27. LKY inherited a very well run Singapore from the British.
    It's a myth that Singapore was a 3rd World country.

    Li Con Yew

    ReplyDelete
  28. One day the Buddha was walking through a village. A very angry and rude young man came up and began insulting him. "You have no right teaching others," he shouted. "You are as stupid as everyone else. You are nothing but a fake!"

    The Buddha was not upset by these insults. Instead he asked the young man, "Tell me, if you buy a gift for someone, and that person does not take it, to whom does the gift belong?"
    The young man was surprised to be asked such a strange question and answered, "It would belong to me, because I bought the gift."

    The Buddha smiled and said, "That is correct. And it is exactly the same with your anger. If you become angry with me and I do not get insulted, then the anger falls back on you. You are then the only one who becomes unhappy, not me. All you have done is hurt yourself."

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Wah chim leh. This bulla.

      Delete
    2. Thank you for sharing the story.
      However, considering we are now in the 21st century and men like LeeConYew is quite likely more cunning than those thousands of years ago, it is far more effective to give the father and son including their stooges the boot, thereafter house them in Changi resort hotel to learn Buddha's teachings. And no doubt, you will know they have attained enlightenment when they voluntarily declare all their wealth and insist they distribute it to the needy....of course Khaw has to be enrolled as well...right ?

      Delete
    3. Comparing the enlighten one to a tyrant? What an insult to the compassionate Buddha.

      Delete
    4. Did the buddha pay himself million out of taxpayer's money and yet ask the taxpayer to be "better, cheaper and faster" ? If not, why should people insult the buddha then ? So, want to compare, compare intelligently. Dictators that are selfish-centre and greedy characters will always be greedy and face the angst of the citizens

      Delete
    5. Making such an outrages analogy is tantamount to scandalising the good name of The Buddha, a man of great insight and compassion who gave up a life of luxury to serve the less fortunate in the ladder of life.

      Delete
  29. Oppositions Sinkies, will not hesitate to criticize the present PAP leaders, but worship past generation’s leaders. Two highly visible bloggers, Chua Chin Leng aka redbean and Gentai, now a new one Liew Chin Fu in TRE practicing it.

    Do Sinkies selectively choose what they wanna hear or believe? My answer, most opposition Sinkies are no different from PAP's supporters - past and present.

    Singapore lost its chance for reform in 1988
    http://www.tremeritus.com/2014/02/13/singapore-lost-its-chance-for-reform-in-1988/

    What Singapore faced back then & now
    http://www.tremeritus.com/2014/02/15/what-singapore-faced-back-then-now/

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. PAP grooms two public transport companies;
      SMRT and SBS Transit to compete with each other.
      So Sinkie must also groom two worthy political parties to compete with each other to better Singaporeans' livelihood.
      e.g. Workers' Party and SDP.

      As for PAP.
      This one no hope.
      Beyond redemption.
      Quite useless for the purposes of bettering the lives of Singaporeans.

      Delete
  30. "Total War"
    Is this the ideological origins of Lee Hsien Loong's "Total Defence"

    SOURCE
    --------------
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Total_war

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Erich_Ludendorff

    Why not "Total Healthcare"?
    Why not "Total Education"?
    Good things like healthcare and education;
    It's all ad hoc and piecemeal.
    As if Singaporeans have a subsidy mentality to ask for these things.

    Shit things like war;
    It's "total everything"
    Ever hear PAPigs ask "Where is the money going to come from?" when it comes to defence spending?

    Confrontation with Indonesia.
    Where is the money going to come from?

    ReplyDelete
  31. When dealing with the People, it is war at every corner.
    How much war will PAP wages against external foe (s)?

    ReplyDelete
  32. /// Anonymous2/15/2014 10:18 AM
    This great man turned Spore around from 3rd to 1st world. None of his critics could in a million years. ///

    Yes, it was true for the first 30 years, and we all admired him for that. But the last 20 years were a series of bad policies which undid the fantastic progress of the first 30 years.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The last 20 year lky show his truth color,whatever he do,the endgame will benefit him somehow !cpf !hdb etc, lky is a conman when he wining, a dictator when he is losing! A wolf in sheep clothing...

      Delete
  33. How should we rate one who works to achieve glory and fame and ended up causing great hardships to his subjects in the later decades of
    Leadership?
    How would one feels if scorned and cursed for decades before expiring?
    How are his\her offsprings to face the people
    and history when ones forebear is called traitor
    and or betrayor?

    ReplyDelete
  34. I have some gems too. Wonder whether his grandson when he ascends to the thrown will proceed scrape elections, after seeing how Swiss voters voted down the immigration agreement with EU.

    "At this rate, the one-man, one-vote system could lead to decline and disintegration of my power and that of the PAP!" - after Chiam and LTK won their first terms in office

    "We must encourage those who earn less than $200 per month and cannot afford to nurture and educate many children never to have more than two... We will regret the time lost if we do not now take the first tentative steps towards correcting a trend which can leave our society with a large number of the physically, intellectually and culturally anaemic."

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. This man will go down in history as the mad proponent of eugenics. Notice the attempt at sanitising history with the sudden rush of books about or by the "one whose is always right".

      Delete
    2. And in case you don't read his books.
      You can watch his two musicals.

      Delete
    3. //This man will go down in history as the mad proponent of eugenics// reminds me of Derek Davies's story:

      One evening, Britain's Princess Royal was being entertained to dinner at the Istana by Lee with half the Cabinet and distinguished guests. He told her about the notorious "love boat" cruises run by the government's Social Development Unit, offering blind dates and matchmaking services for marriageable graduates and expiated at length on his Hitlerian worries about declining reservoirs of Chinese genes and his efforts to combat the trend.
      The Princess waited for him to finish and then commented: "I really don't know what to say, Mr Prime Minister. All I know is that it doesn't work with horses."

      Delete
    4. But it seems to work for the famiLee.

      Delete
  35. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3yAW1daYXD4

    ReplyDelete
  36. How does ending up in history as a traitor make his succeeding generations feel?

    ReplyDelete
  37. It is a fitting posterity that tallies with historical evidence and he has an Indian pal with similar record.

    ReplyDelete
  38. Traitors?
    This is how Singaporeans pay tributes to their founding father and ex-president?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. ROFL!
      Founding father.
      Is it LKY or Stamford Raffles?
      One is a founding father of Singapore.
      The other is a floundering father of an incompetent.

      Delete
    2. Anyone who believe that LKY is his founding father, than the person is a bastard!

      His unfaithful mother screwed by LKY.

      Delete
  39. Q: What do PAPigs call a Chinese guy who worked for the Japanese Imperial Army in World War Two?
    A: Founding Father.

    Q: What do PRC Chinese call a Chinese guy who worked for the Japanese Imperial Army in World War Two?
    A: Traitor.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Q: What do PAPigs call an Indian guy who worked for the Japanese Imperial Army in World War Two?
      A: Ex-President

      Q: What does India call an Indian guy who worked for the Japanese Imperial Army in World War Two?
      A: Traitor.

      Delete
  40. How the heck Singporeans of his generation called him Founding Father Of Sin, knowing very well that he and his Pal, Ex-President Of Sin Nathan, were working for the Japanese Imperial Army?
    And mysteriously after a few generations, the Two got back the Titles they deserve. How is this so? Mind boggling and uniquely Sin.
    Karma?

    ReplyDelete
  41. If you live in sin long enough, you will know lky is a conman when he wining, a dictator when he is losing!, no earthly money and power can save him from his final judgement

    ReplyDelete