Ladies and Gentlemen,
Singapore's official state controlled newspaper the Straits Times online edition of Feb 04, 2010 has this story, "New Association Approved". It is about James Gomez, a former Singapore opposition politician's receiving government approval to form a new society, Singaporeans for Democracy(SFD) to, as the name suggests, advance democracy in Singapore.
But the whole thing is really nonsensical, as is the story of this island republic itself controlled by the strongman Lee Kuan Yew.
According to the report, he only got government approval because he agreed to the following conditions, and if not, he would not have been able to form this society at all.
One, he was not allowed to receive foreign funding; two, foreigners were not allowed to participate in its activities; three, he was not allowed to operate as a political party; four, he is not allowed to affiliate with any local or foreign political party and five, he cannot sponsor any political party or any candidate in parliamentary elections.
Gomez, being unable to have the society without obeying these ridiculous conditions has, it appears, agreed to all of them.
Each one of these conditions and the requirement for registration itself is not only an illegal act by this Singapore strongman Lee Kuan Yew, they stink to high heavens.
The Constitution guarantees the right to assemble and form associations, repeat, this is a constitutional right. Therefore the requirement for registration itself is illegal. And furthermore, every other condition above mentioned is illegal and the government has no right to demand any of this.
For instance, why is it illegal to receive foreign funding per se? Yes, it may be wrong to to use foreign funding to overthrow the government but receiving it alone should not be illegal by any stretch.
Why is it any of Lee Kuan Yew's business if Gomez invites foreigners to his society? The constitution does not criminalize that. Why is it illegal for him to operate as a political party? Does not the constitution allow anyone to engage in politics? Why is it illegal for him to work with political parties and support candidates? The Constitution does not prevent that.
It is the height of incredulity to even suggest that an organization such as this, which is inherently and completely political in nature, is not to be allowed to engage in such political activities, which was the very purpose it was set up in the first place.
What has happened is this. Gomez has been chained shackled and gagged and then released into a boxing ring to fight his opponent, in this case Lee Kuan Yew and his PAP. This is what one could call a tragic comedy, and Gomez is the star attraction.
In 1948 when the United Nations partitioned Palestine and gave a small stretch of sea front to the Jews as Israel, which by the way was only a quarter of the size of Israel now, David Ben Gurion was asked why he accepted it, a small piece of desert beside the sea. His answer was "Half a loaf was better than none".
If that is why Gomez accepted, he was badly mistaken. One can understand Ben Gurion since Israel may get bigger in time. As for Gomez, with these conditions placed on him and with Lee Kuan Yew in power, he has no hope at all.
If democracy is what Gomez intended to promote, with these conditions, and with Lee Kuan Yew breathing down his neck, he has no hope at all.
If I was Gomez, I would not comply with any of these conditions since they are all illegal. I would do whatever I want, according to universal laws as understood by the free peoples of the world, since it is these unjust laws that prevent democracy from ever taking root in Singapore.
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