Thursday, November 5, 2009

Singapore. Lee Kuan Yew's son, the Prime Minister is looking for "future leaders".

Ladies and Gentlemen,

Singapore's state controlled newspaper the Straits Times online edition of Nov 02, 2009 has this rather unusual article "PM Future leaders ready. Committed candidates-including potential office holders-already identified".

It is true that Singapore has some unusual practices, one being the criminalizing of chewing gum. It also appears to have a penchant for blood and killing, because they officially brutally beat criminals convicted of offenses (this is called caning) and hang hundreds of people every year, even teenagers, even for petty drug offenses. I understand this government has lately refused to release the actual numbers of people caught with chewing gum or executed by hanging, but there is anecdotal evidence that it is the highest in the world. As someone once said, "Singapore is the beating and hanging capital of the world"!

One other weird practice that goes on is this. Despite its claim to be a democracy with political parties and a Parliament, the Lee Kuan Yew family, that is Lee Kuan Yew the 86 year old man who has appointed himself the Minister Mentor and his son, whom he has placed as Prime Minister, go around the island each year, looking for suitable Singaporeans they like and anoint them as Singapore's leaders. This is what this state controlled newspaper is referring to. It says "The ruling PAP (Lee Kuan Yew's party) will have the next generation of leaders in place by the next general election in 2011 or 2012, said Lee Hsien Loong (Lee Kuan Yew's son) on Sunday".

The son said, at a PAP convention on Sunday, some candidates have already been identified but the full team is not ready now! He has also said "the hunt for successors has been a constant PAP agenda"

You can see why this is astonishing of course! Lee Kuan Yew's son, although we know this is the case anyway, speaks as if Singapore belongs to him, and he will decide who will govern Singapore. But wait a minute! Surely, it is supposed to be a democracy is it not? And if so, should not the electorate be deciding who the leaders are supposed to be? Why is he assuming that only his chosen candidates will be future leaders? Are there not opposition political parties like the SDP? What makes him think that Singaporeans would not vote for them at the elections? Is he not being too presumptive?

No, he is not. He is not being too presumptive at all. If you knew Singapore, the elections mean nothing. It is a smoke screen. A charade. First because there are no real leaders among it's people anyway, because they are all sued or bankrupted or jailed; and there are no real elections because no one dares to run for office. The only ones who do are those selected by the father Lee Kuan Yew and son, and they will naturally be elected into office since no one dares challenge them. It is as simple as that.

So in this dictatorship (that is what it is), Lee Kuan Yew and his son will appoint the next leaders like they have always done. And to accomplish that task, they are, as they have always done before commenced their "hunt" for candidates as the article correctly says.

In truth Singapore is no different from Communist China which renews itself at each election by nominating new leaders which the people will rubber stamp their approval.

Interesting is it not? That is why Lee Kuan Yew's family members have coined the phrase "Uniquely Singapore".

Gopalan Nair
39737 Paseo Padre Parkway, Suite A1
Fremont, CA 94538, USA
Tel: 510 657 6107
Fax: 510 657 6914

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Anonymous said...

It's not like communist China as the communist China doesn't recognize family dynasty in it top leadership while Singapore has lky family members put in strategic places. Father to son as PM too and will be son to grandson in the future there's no doubt about it if things don't change.


Anonymous said...

Dear Mr Nair,

It is unfair to put China together with Singapore.

1. Everyone know that China is a one-party communist-rule state. But, not many people realise that Singapore is a one-party state. Singapore is masquadering as a .... well, you remember the Singapore Pledge. The opposition parties and elections are for show as well. Tell me another freely elected leader who is handpicked by the current leader.

2. China has no history of democracy and freedom. But Singapore is borned out of the ashes of the British colony, and like the political peers from Africa, Lee Kuan Yew managed to school himself in the UK and made the choice to be a dictator.

3. Singapore inherits the British common law and made a mess of it during its peace time.
China does not have this luxury. After the last monarchy, China was sucked into wars and revolutions.

Anonymous said...

Singapore is a dictatorship. It is also one of the most prosperous societies in the world. Take it to the bank, cash it, and go fucking on a vacation out of our lives.

Anonymous said...

To Anonymous Fri Nov 06 12:15 AM PST

Yes I agree with you. Singapore in one word can be surmised as a FRAUD.
While China is just China.


mycroft said...

Lee Kuan Yew didn't originate the Singapore-My-Home-My-Fiefdom model of absolute rule. The 17th century English philosopher Thomas Hobbes had formulated that doctrine long before Marxism/communism and when Lee's sad micro-empire was but a mud-skipper's wet dream.

Hobbes, for the highest of reasons and with his thinking influenced by the ongoing English Civil War, suggested that a strong central authority via a social contract which surrendered citizens' civil rights was a necessity for the nation to progress and so avoid a fate which would be "solitary, poor, nasty, brutish, and short". He acknowledged that the leaders must control civil, military, judicial and ecclesiastical powers. Sound familiar, my fellow Singaporeans?

Our Baba Hitler and his PAP ran with that idea which is why we find ourselves in the position of being between the devil and a hard place today. The England of Hobbes was a time of war so his strictures were entirely logical - no such excuse is available to Singapore's despot though he does try extremely hard indeed to frighten the populace with manufactured bogeymen and vague, unsubstantiated threats of the 'they're coming to get us' variety. We're kept in the dark as to who's actually coming to get whom, of course, but it justifies squandering $12b on sabre-rattling and only a third of that for health care.

Surprisingly, that's worked for half a century with the help of a pinch of disinformation here, a touch of opposition suppression there, and a fistful of civil brutality now and again. But it's all beginning to wear thin as the lies, the prevarication, the abuse of power, the outright bad management, and PAP's increasingly dumb leadership are laid bare to the glare of the Internet flood lights. Sigh. No where to hide, no place to run now, just firefighting and sticking plaster left.

Lee and his men-in-white ought to ponder Hobbes' warning thought - that rebellion is to be expected when the abuse goes beyond tolerance. That threshold draws ever closer with the election of the octogenarian's flawed wishy-washy son to the premiership and the mismanagement of the economy and civil society ever since. His government has stumbled from one cockup to the next like a slo-mo train-wreck since he took up the reins.

We shall see whether the PAP's hubris in counting their leaders before the election is hatched does indeed come to pass. One has to wonder (and fear) what quality of candidate they have attracted to their ranks. It bodes ill that these people need to be paid millions to entice them into serving their nation otherwise they might embrace corruption, does it not? Do we really want a potential leader with all the moral fibre of an alley cat?

Anonymous said...

Referring to the "Singapore is a dictatorship. It is also one of the most prosperous societies in the world."

This would be true if the wealth has been better distributed and not vested in the few. ref The Gini Index

Nate said...

I've got a great idea, we should be paying NSmen millions too because they are serving their country just like our ministers, what do you think? Shall we have a vote? On second thought, I doubt we'll find any opposition!

Anonymous said...

"This would be true if the wealth has been better distributed and not vested in the few. ref The Gini Index."

They actually claim it is a pure meritocracy, of yes-men that is.

As for me, I don't have to be a yes-man to earn hundreds of thousands and more thousands of dollars. Poor Singaporeans.