|Tense face-off between campaign manager and candidate|
When Palin progressed to blatant lies about Troopergate, it was the absolute pits. The electorate may never get to know the whole truth. Just recall how long it took to unveil the shenanigans of AIMgate.
Prime Minister Lee said the colorectal surgeon will be more than a member of parliament (MP), just like Lee Kuan Yew said of Wong Kan Seng at the 1984 General Election. Wong was swiftly made minister of state immediately after that election, and then full minister. We don't know how long Wong was vetted, but 3 weeks before official announcement of the Punggol East by-election in the case of the rectum specialist gives you an idea how haste is likely to make waste. The nation had to be embarrassed by the Mas Selamat debacle of 2008 before the guy could be told, "You have been weighed, measured and found wanting".
The other medical professional in the cabinet started his long march in politics by riding roughshod over university dons who wrote that more new jobs went to foreigners than to Singaporeans. The truth was confirmed years later when our own fathers, mothers, brothers and sisters lost their jobs to the alien faces. That fellow also had a private practice in Mt Elizabeth Hospital as surgical oncologist, has been in office since 2001, made full minister in August 2004, and collected millions along the way. Can you recall one contribution that has made the lives of Singaporeans better?
And then there was Michael Palmer, brought in as part of the group born after 1965, a.k.a. P65. His political epiphany was discovering that there are poor people in developed countries. Was he properly vetted too?
Speaking in Mandarin at last Saturday rally, Workers' Party's Low Thia Khiang reminded us that the incumbents need to have spurs stuck into them if our lives are to be improved. The English version of his speech missed out on the powerful message:
(Google Translate: You want the PAP government to do more, to do better? You should use the vote in your hand, so that they really work harder.)