Ladies and Gentlemen,
Authoritarian countries like the former Soviet Union, today's China and one party state Singapore undoubtedly have achieved some success through coercion and compulsion of their people. That is why you can see some skyscrapers among Singapore's waterfront.
Under these systems citizens are required to obey and toe the government line, which reduces dissension and debate, thereby increasing quick productivity and wealth creation. But studies have also shown that invariably these authoritarian countries cannot sustain their upward trajectory for long, and they all invariably run out of steam and decline.
What they lack is democracy, a plurality of ideas and opinions where people can hold diverse opinions, express and promote them without fear of arrest intimidation and prosecution.
Authoritarian Soviet Union was far more successful than the democratic United States in the 1950s and 1960s when people thought that Russia was the model for the world for economic growth, far better than the United States.
But we see Russia today in shambles and economic collapse. It had simply run out of steam. China today appears to be advancing much faster than other countries but it is based on the same top down, authoritarian model which will, before too long, simply decline as Russia has.
Singapore, just like these other authoritarian regimes will run out of steam, stagnate and decline before too long. In Singapore success requires that you are in effect a card carrying member of Lee's PAP, submit to authority and obey without question.
If you are seen otherwise, you stand no chance in a career either in the government or in the private sector. But the government's dictatorial laws and policies make it very uncomfortable for anybody with some decency to support them.
What then is Lee Kuan Yew government of today?
It is a one party state where every single member in Parliament is either an official member of the ruling party or a de facto member such as the Singapore Workers Party is. For all intends and purposes, it is a one party state. Anyone who prefers democracy and a multi party country is not going to be comfortable in such a system.
Second the government rigs every election through fraud to win. This is done through defamation actions against political opponents either before or after the elections to remove them from running. JB Jeyaretnam was repeatedly charged with fake and dubious charges and removed from Parliament. Che Soon Juan was bankrupted thereby disqualifying him from running.
Third, the government uses corrupt judges in their Kangaroo courts to destroy political opponents. We have seen this repeatedly done against JB Jeyaretnam and Chee Soon Juan. They knew they would be found guilty even before they stepped into the courtroom. Against Lee Kuan Yew's political opponents, the conviction rate is 100%.
Four, Lee has passed laws through his rubber stamp one party Parliament to criminalize free speech, expression or assembly. Today the islanders have no human rights at all. Anyone criticizing the government runs the risk of being sued for defamation of character, being charged for contempt of court or for scandalizing the judiciary, their favorite legal theories to extract island-wide obedience.
Five, the government has decided to pay themselves the highest salaries in the world for politicians. Each one of them is paid $3.7 million a year in compensation. This is corruption. This is a corrupt government.
Six, the entire press and media island wide is state controlled just as the former Soviet Union's Pravda and Isvetzia. Singapore's Newspapers and Printing presses act makes it a crime to run a newspaper without a government license. In fact it even makes owning a printing press machine unlawful unless you had a license.
Despite these thoroughly disgraceful laws, in order to succeed the government demands that you support them and show loyalty to them, a pre-requisite for success. The result of this is that only dishonest opportunists and downright crooks would want to be associated with a government such as this.
As these authoritarian regimes would be obnoxious to most decent human beings, with time their support wanes and lose support, they decline, stagnate and finally destroy themselves. They lose the support of the masses, since most people are not charlatans and ruthless characters as Lee Kuan Yew expects human beings to be.
The Singapore government, their civic institutions and their courts have lost the respect of the citizens. The people do not know if they would jailed on trumped up charges at the whim and fancy of the government.
In respected democracies such as Australia the people have confidence in their government and their core institutions, a healthy respect for their country. Their citizens stay and work for the betterment of themselves and their country benefits from their presence. This is not the case in a discredited one party authoritarian regimes such as Singapore. As one can see, it has already begun to stagnate. In no time, it will begin to decline, as is the fate of all these authoritarian countries with their selfish corrupt regimes.
Attiorneyh at Law
A Singaporean in Exile
Fremont, California, USA
Tel: 510 491 4375