Ladies and Gentlemen,
The political climate in Singapore is in imbalance. Government and the people are odds. It cannot go on like this. Some balance has to be struck.
The people of Singapore are almost unanimously against the Lee Kuan Yew and his government politicians. They dislike the high salaries that ministers earn while many of them hardly get by. They complain about the inability to withdraw their retirement funds. They complain about the ever escalating costs and prices, while their income, instead of increasing, decreases. The complain list is long.
The government on the other hand totally ignore the people's concerns. No use complaining to their local Members of Parliament since they too fear the government and are helpless to do anything.
The government on the other hand continue with their salary increases, paying themselves any amount they want, with ridiculous excuses. This government has come to stage where they are not concerned anymore whether their arguments in support of unpopular policies sound silly.
The people are completely disenfranchised. They no longer have any voice in the governance of their country. During the currency of the tenure of this government, they will do anything they want and no one can stop them.
Lee Kuan Yew wants to help only his own family members and his chosen supporters. In other words, this government practices nepotism. Lee Kuan Yew's family members, that is, his sons, his in laws, his cousins, their cousins, uncles and the entire family members and their relatives are placed in various government and quasi government positions with incomes in the millions. The blog sg_review has detailed tabulated account of who and where these family members are placed. No account is actually provided as to why these particular individuals are placed in these moneyed positions. Is it because of merit or is it because they are related to Lee Kuan Yew. Lee believes, as can be seen in these important and financially rewarding positions that blood is thicker than water, and therefore his safest bet to remain in power is the placing of his family in the right jobs.
As far as the rest of Singaporeans are concerned, he appears not to be interested. You can call the rest of Singaporeans the CPF lot. That is their retirement money is in the government ordered savings scheme of Central Provident Fund. Problem is, that now Lee is refusing to pay Singaporeans what they are entitled to by raising the age at which anyone will get anything is 85 years. Problem is, he as well as Singaporeans know that most will die before then!
And then there is all the other dictatorial policies. Singaporeans are denied a free press. So the people are deliberately told a bunch of lies each day by the state controlled newspapers. Same with the TV and radio, all just propaganda. The people are aware that they are a told a bunch of lies each day, and they don't like it.
Singaporeans are becoming more educated. They travel more. They prefer more freedom. A free press. A more spontaneous society rather than this tight lipped one. The want the right to assemble, the right to speak, the right to organize, just like any other human anywhere else. They dislike living under this all embracing control, this all embracing surveillance that they are kept under.
In the past, all they wanted was basic necessities, like food and shelter. Then they were peasants. Today they are no longer peasants. It is not enough if the trains run on time and the telephone works. They want more than that. They want to be able to think freely, to organize freely, to speak freely, to exchange ideas freely without the government constantly arresting people with such stupid laws such as requiring permits to speak in public.
Singaporeans are saying, we will speak when we want. Not by getting a permit first! The people are upset with this government wasting taxpayers money arresting Dr. Chee Soon Juan repeatedly just because he spoke in public. They are tired of these stupid laws as the Public Entertainments and Meetings Act. And so is Dr. Chee. Dr. Chee is going to speak whenever he wants. And so are so many others.
The people are getting tired of this stupidity and arrogance of this government. They no longer respect this government. They look upon this government as money grapping arrogant autocrats who are out there to look after their own interests, not the interests of the people. If any of these ministers tried to visit any ordinary Singaporean’s home, they would probably not be welcome. I have heard that in the past, people from higher storey HDB flats have thrown water and filth over the heads of Ministers who were walking below in meet the people sessions.
I can go on. The people have lost faith in the judiciary, as being an organ out there to punish political opponents. They have lost faith in the police. They feel the police just unlawfully arrest political opponents. You have seen the videos of DSP Deep Singh of Tanglin Police Station harassing the SDP activists during the Burmese protests and Police Officer Michael Tan of the Special Operations Department abducting and kidnapping Chee Siok Chin and John Tan of the SDP in unmarked police vans and releasing them at a far off location for no reason at all! No crimes were committed by anyone.
The Civil Service has been discredited for similar reasons as being Government Party stooges instead of an independent and fair government office working for the interests of all Singaporeans. As a result more and more Singaporeans are refusing careers in the Civil Service resulting in the government having to increase their salaries even further to stem the tide of declining applicants.
At the same time, children are not being born even to a replacement level of the population. In tandem, more educated people are emigrating. They are particularly doing so in larger numbers now because of the government refusing to pay them retirement CPF monies. Therefore one way they can get their money is to emigrate and give up their Singapore citizenship. This is causing even more people to emigrate for good.
The entire blogsphere is anti Lee Kuan Yew and the Singapore government. There might be one or two blogs which are paid for by the government to say nice things about them, but even when they try, it becomes silly. Tell me, how can anyone justify a salary of $4 million dollars per annum for the Prime Minister without sounding silly. It is the same with all their other unpopular policies. It is not possible for any pro Singapore government blog to be taken seriously simply because everyone knows that they are writing that nonsense because they are paid to do so.
And the people now have become completely de-politicized. It is as if they only live their lives to work. They have no role whatsoever in how their country is run. The Lee Kuan Yew Administration wants such a de-politicized population and the people themselves have accepted voluntarily the restriction placed on them, namely that politics is off limits for them. Of course politics is off limits only as long as it is critical of the government. If, on the other hand, you want to praise this government for what they do, you are very welcome and encouraged. The problem is, there is almost no one who has anything nice to say about them.
In fact it is almost fashionable for even educated people to say they are not interested in politics; which is another way of saying that they don't want to get into any trouble. I have met many lawyers during my time as a lawyer in Singapore. Their standard answer to any political question is to say they are not interested in politics. For instance, if you were to ask a lawyer why there are so many unjust laws like a permit being required for speaking, his answer will again be that he is not interested in politics. In fact, that answer is non responsive, since it is a human rights question. Not a political question. But that, unfortunately, is what they say to try to avoid the issue.
I don't personally see this complete imbalance between the people and the government to last too long. There has to come a time that people will not be prepared to accept this boring subservient life much longer.
Since they know by now that elections are not going to change anything, the answer can only lie in protest. I really cannot see any other way out. Remaining the way Singaporeans live is not an option.
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