Ladies and Gentlemen,
Any sailor can tell you that it is still possible to sail a sailboat even without a rudder. Of course the rudder is the principle item in the boat to move it in the way you want and if it is damaged or lost, it is almost impossible to move the boat in the direction you want, but not quite. Directional change is still possible but just barely, by moving your weight either to windward or leeward, or either sheeting in the mainsail or easing it.
Steve Colgate on Sailing is the definitive book on this. Generally the principle on rudderless sailing is, sheet in the mainsail and the bow moves to windward, ease the sail and the bow moves to leeward. Move your weight to windward and the bow moves to leeward and vice versa. Real sailors consider Colgate the Bible on sailing.
Which brings me to what Singapore is becoming or has already become. On the one hand, you have a powerful government with almost dictatorial powers, albeit disguised as a democracy. On the other hand you have a weak people, who have no idea about their rights as citizens.
And what is worse, the Lee Kuan Yew administration continues to encourage this political ignorance, since the more ignorant they are, the easier they are controlled.
And in the end, fewer and fewer people have any idea about what their rights are and what they should want. For the average Singaporean today, the only thing that matters appears to be to live their lives. They are not concerned whether they have any rights, or anything else. It is perfectly alright to be told what to do, and to obey as you are told. The Lee family to them is boss, and simply that is how it is. The Lees will decide which houses you live in, make sure sufficient clothes and shoes and imported, there are sufficient food stalls all over the island where you can eat, there is television and some entertainment and that is all that matters.
Important matters such as how much capitalism there should be, how much social welfare, how much to spend on eduction, how many foreigners to be allowed, and all these other matters which normally should be of concern to citizens all over the world, merely draws a blank from the average Singaporean.
Of course there are those in the know, the educated, but they have been so intimidated not to express their views, which means they are completely silent. Then there are those like this girl Tin Pei Ling that I wrote about, who grovel and parrot anything that Lee and Company say for the largess that comes with it. They of course do not contribute to the general wisdom of society because all they do is just agree to anything coming from the top. In any case, they don't have any opinions of their own anyway.
Singapore, the imaginary sailboat, ends up as if it is sailing rudderless. It is simply being governed on the ideas of one man Lee Kuan Yew and from who everyone else takes his place. This leaves the country repeatedly in danger coming up with bad policy after bad policy because no sound policy has ever come from one man alone, it always takes multiple opinions for the best to rise.
Very soon Lee Kuan Yew will die which means probably everyone would grovel before his son, and he alone will give the orders, with the few others with him. But no matter how much he knows, he cannot bring out the best for Singapore. And since no one else dares to contradict him, he too will be another Lee Kuan Yew and continue on for some time. After that, as Singaporeans are only capable of following, not leading, there may come about someone else to whom the entire nation will gravitate, because noone has any ideas of his own.
As long as Lee Kuan Yew feels he alone knows everything and if you are against him, you must be destroyed, you will perpetuate the current miserable situation where you have an increasingly strong government and a progressively emasculated population.
In other words you have a few at the top who know and the rest of Singapore just dummies. What you have is a rudderless sailboat. You can sail it but it becomes increasingly difficult to handle.
Attorney at Law
39737 Paseo Padre Parkway, Suite A1
Fremont, CA 94538, USA
Tel: 510 657 6107
Fax: 510 657 6914
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