Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Divisive Remarks

"If they (Singaporeans) were politically aware, the voters must have been much wiser," said the man who was warning the NTU undergrads of rifts that hinder progress. It was a snide reference to the electoral outcomes of GE 2011 and PE 2011, a divisive insinuation that voters have erred in their political judgement.

Condoleezza Rice's comment on authoritarians of a Jurassic era makes for a fit response:
"The people who are experiencing glimpses of freedom in Egypt, Libya, Syria, Tunisia and across the Middle East have just begun to build the institutions that will secure their liberties. And in some places, dictators are fighting to hold back the day when they will fall. Freedom can be delayed but not denied."

Reliving the terror of 9/11, Ms Rice maintains she would not trade stability at the expense of democracy. As she sees it, if people have no way to hold their government accountable through peaceful change, they will do so violently. Think about that. The world does not need another Tiananmen.

Instead of fessing up to the follies of ill conceived party policies, Lee Kuan Yew chose to invent straw men arguments like rising levels of education result in segmentation of society. He even blames the populace for the jealousy associated with disparity of income levels, instead of taking ownership for the obscene Gini efficient. He still points towards a relentless pursuit of a growing GDP as the holy grail, blind to the many unfortunates who have, and still are falling through the cracks, due to circumstances beyond their control. Like being born physically and/or mentally handicapped. Or crippled by an industrial accident at work. Or humbled by the ravages of age.  Is he even aware of the social impediments in the development of his albino grandson? Not everyone has the financial resources to smoothen out the ride.

Nope. Singaporeans are politically aware. Aware that locking up people without trial can't possibly be an honorable act. Aware that elections have been robbed through gerrymandering. Aware that dual passports are only available for the privileged. Minister Yaacob Ibrahim claims his kids were "conferred US citizenship" because his wife was foreign born. If his heart is truly with Singapore, why is he waiting till they are 18 before encouraging them to declare their true loyalties? Your shopping purchase may come with a free voucher, but that doesn't always mean you should accept it. Not when the freebie is for a massage at Geylang. Sigh, so much wasted social capital.


  1. We are deaf frogs.

    We can't hear you.

    Heck. We are not even listening.

    And we are proud of it.

  2. Agree that communication should be two ways. Whilst we respect the government, it is also the duty of the government to respect our views too. Only dynasty ruler expect one way traffic. Despite our progress, Singapore has a long way to attain full democracy.

  3. Tatler

    Are you are seriously stating that the parents should than take away the rights of their children, under international law where there is recognition by birth for citizenship, as long as one of the parents is of different nationality, children are given the right to hold dual citizenship until a certain age in which they than have to decide for those countries which does not recognise eg Singapore and Malaysia.

    Frankly, to attack children, would opine such to be sub par.

  4. Tatler

    By the way than, this can also be raised to the queries of members on either side of the political divide whose spouse have separate nationality.
    Frankly, such attacks would opine are below the belt and sub par.

  5. Benjamin Franklin said that "They who can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety."

    Chee Soon Juan was right in saying that Singaporeans cannot wait for the PAP to reform itself.

  6. Singapore citizenship so good.

    What is Yaacob Ibrahim waiting for?

    Why is he denying his children the benefits of unambiguous sole Singapore citizenship?

  7. IBs start to infiltrate your blog :)

  8. FMM said " If they are political aware, their votes would have been wiser"
    In other words, if the daft singaporeans had known better, they would not have given TT only 35% of votes, and Opposition 6 votes in that cowboy town GRC! He has just shrewdly given us all another veiled "dumb-down".

    For all the purported "unity talks", they have done nothing other than going around their "divisive" tours. Starting from (1) PA (2) Political divide = National divide (3) ST forum - blogosphere/internet nihilism vs MSM rational civil debate.

    Are Singaporeans young & old awake to discern who's continuously trying to sell koyok?

  9. Srsly? Who's freaking attacking the children? To begin with, it was only through Wikileaks that people learnt that MPs like Yacoob have children/spouse that have dual-citizenships. Naturally, is only fair that singaporeans are curious and wanted to know where exactly their MP stand on the issue of national loyalty and his own credibility when he represents them. Particularly due to the recent unresolved fiasco that the MIW occupying the highest office on this land is still hoping it goes away quietly on his son's white horse treatment, clearly something that irks ALL the NS men who have proudly served/serving their country (on the basis of meritocracy my ass). If Mr Yaacob think this is sub par or an attack, he obviously has all the chicanery of the Straits Times to clarify or support him with right of reply. So why the defensive? Just a matter of simple clarification really. So stop all the name-calling of sub-par groups vs superior-groups !

  10. Even Chan Chun Sing also say there're divides between religious vs non-religious. Aiyah..they just kiasi lah. Want to fear monger everyone into staying their course, and not rock" the boat. Who can't see through that.

  11. He jumped from Political Divide to National Divide (citing US as a bad example once again) and conveniently give the Social Divide a big miss. Classic MM; or he's just senile? Probably the latter.

  12. Who made political divide into national divide?

    Our dear LKY is at it again - raising fire alarm as he brazenly holds the burning torch!

    Hasn't PAP injected party politics into national laws/policies using public $$$? Eg,

    1. HDB Lift Upgrading tied to GE votes for PAP.

    2. CCC Advisers in opposition constituent wards appointed by PA Chairman who is PAP Sec Gen.

    3. Wealth redistribution dished out just b4 GE.

  13. Poor Singaporean9/06/2011 9:21 PM

    If the salesman doesn't buy his own product, how to convince others to buy? PCK said it "use your blain lah".

  14. Here's an interesting insight from an expat:

    "I doubt if you will find it on the ICA site as from what I was given to understand, it's not a fact at this point. It has however been told to my wife, by the officer who granted my PR many years ago, that while it is NOT a law nor will it be found if you happen to have an American Parent then they will just kinda look the other way.

    The reason for this is a US State Department case which I am aware of as my daughter was coming up for the same problem. Seems a female of dual parentage and citizenship came of age and was going to marry a local boy but did not want to give up her US Citizenship. Under duress from the Local Authorities she had to give a "letter of renunciation" to the US Embassy. While there, she made the comment to the US Consultate that she was being forced to do this by the Singapore Government. That was all it took. Nobody tells the US who cannot or can be a citizen. They told her to leave the letter, but they did not have to grant the renounciation. She has followed the letter of the Singpapore law by delivering the letter. The US's contention is that they do not have to abide by another country's laws, therefore they are not required to accept her renunciation. Stalemate. You gonna f**k with your largest trading partner? I think not. So, it's the blind eye syndrome."

    Just as Mindef came up with a statement to justify Patrick Tan's 12-year disruptment, look out for a ICA statement soon to support Yaacob's special deal.

  15. Now looking back at our history, can anyone remember why did our 'great' leaders resort to such a heavy handed and divisive decision to close down the whole of Nantah University at one time and in one big stroke destroy the whole future of those Nantah students studying at that time ?

    And now he wants us believe he has the interests of our university students at heart when on the other hand, some MOE official admits in some secret conversation with the US govt officers that our education policy is actually not to encourage too many of our students to make it up to university level ?

    What do all these tell us ... that some hypocrite really has a forked tongue and an evil heart ?

  16. The wise man said "Political divide must not become national divide." He must be in denial. The national divide had been in existence since 1994 as expounded by Catherine Lim in her "Great Affective Divide" article that brought GCT's sledgehammer on her. In fact, I would say the divide was already showing in the 1984 General Election. It was only in recent years that the national divide was slowly manifesting itself into political divide. And it was only in the last GE that the political divide was getting more obvious, with the WP able to win a GRC.

  17. For obvious reasons this isn't promoted: in the sections tagged "after May 2004", ICA no longer requires proof of renouncing previous citizenships as a condition for becoming a Singapore citizen. The ICA pages note that "You will be advised to renounce your foreign citizenship at the respective Embassies/High Commissions in Singapore" and you'll have to swear an oath of "renunciation and allegiance", but it appears to be basically on your conscience whether you keep a previous passport or not. This doesn't make it de jure legal to be a dual citizen, it just makes it de facto possible.