You can easily spot a fake if the prepared message delivered formally seems to be at odds with the spontaneous response to a question that follows. Or maybe the guy is just plain schizo.
Education Minister Heng Swee Keat told parents at the Gongshang Primary School seminar on Saturday his ministry will focus on three core areas: to provide a good value system; to teach social and emotional competencies; and to foster creative thinking skills. "The values that the Ministry of Education and the schools are trying to impart will be the values of care and concern for others, values of integrity, values of resilience," he said.
Then there was his take on the brutes at Bedok Police Station, ""Clearly you see that the principals and the teachers are working with the police, and it's important for us not to make sweeping generalisations."
Er, did he actually say the principals and teachers were acting in cahoots with the cops in sweeping up 80 youths into the lock-ups, without first giving them the benefit of student counselling services? Does the MOE think handcuffing teens in their impressionable years is a good lesson in imparting "social and emotional competencies?" The creativity part we understand, in particular the police's wildly creative claim that "the officers did exercise flexibility and discretion in consideration of the suspects' age." If they handcuff 12 year olds like common criminals, will they taser the teens without compunction? Apparently the mass round up was precedented by the arrest of 156 young people last year, and 60 other young victims in 2008. These guys actaully have a sordid history of scarring young lives, and seem to take perverse pleasure in doing so - that and their maso-sadistic fetish for handcuffs. Heng is basically saying the principals and teachers, since 2008 and earlier, have surrendered their custodial duties to the uniformed thugs. No wonder the cops are so brazen in "calibrating" their approach with their students. Where will they draw the line - make the females do nude squats?
Heng blindly defended the rogue police, instead of taking the side of his young charges. That's hardly the ingredient of a good value system that boast of "care and concern for others, values of integrity, values of resilience." But then that's so typical of this breed of civil servants, perpetually sticking up for their own kind, and never own up to their obvious failings.