Monday, August 31, 2015

Singapore Elections 2015. Missing the wood from the trees.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

What Singapore, a creation of Lee Kuan Yew of a one party state lacks is any real national political ideology, something that any country needs before anything else.

What is Singapore anyway? A fascist dictatorship or a democracy, it is nowhere clearly stated or understood.

In these elections, as has been the case for the last 50 years, candidates speak of seeking to curb immigration, to raise wages of workers, to improve living conditions, and so on and so forth, a litany of other specific issues. All very good.

But before you achieve any of these things, the fundamental requirement is to have an agreed system upon which all these things can come about. That is the Constitution which is the framework, the foundational structure of any political system. It decides how a society functions. And that is not only lacking, that is something which none of these candidates make any mention of.

It is no good curbing immigration when tomorrow a Minister not accountable to any rules or laws can simply reverse the policy at his whim. It is no good for a government today to say that there should be minimum wages set but tomorrow they could simply do away with it at will.

What Singapore needs before anything else is first the articulation of a political national philosophy. If it is to be a democracy, then the pillars of a democratic state should be established. Which is the constitutional right to free speech, expression and assembly. A free press and the rule of law. Today not only are these fundamental requirements absent in the one party state of Lee Kuan Yew's Singapore, the sad fact is that none of the candidates standing for elections dare make any mention of them.

Singapore's elections today are simply farcical, a comedy, nothing more. You have a state controlled press which hasn't t given any coverage to the opposition for the last 50 years. The only ones who are mentioned daily are the government politicians. Now all of a sudden at these elections, you see people cropping up all over place claiming to want to improve wages, improve lives and bring about a paradise, and what is more, they intend to make laws on your behalf, a thoroughly intolerable situation. Why in Heavens would I want to allow Joe Blokes who has just propped up from nowhere and claims to want to improve wages, to be my representative and what is more, to make laws on my behalf!

Instead of simply appearing from the blue and wanting to represent me, a true leader would have at least some articulated political ideology about a certain political system. And having that conviction,  he would have gone on to bring that about, through political speeches, peaceful protests and agitation. A leader would not be one, as we see in the last couple of days who now suddenly appears and wishes to be my representative, someone about whom I know nothing about, least of all his political ideology. What is he anyway, a fascist, a democrat, a libertarian or a just a dummy, we never know.

Singapore political awareness has alas been totally destroyed by the Lee Kuan Yew government. It not only has a population who are totally ignorant of societal government, but much worse, who have become so timid that they dare not appear to say anything political their entire lives, except during the few days that their totalitarian government allows them to be seen or heard.

I have no respect for even a single one of these opportune political aspirants as they don't appear to have any idea of what they are on about, least of all any modicum of courage or conviction that one would expect of a political leader. These are not leaders, these are artful dodgers who appear in a flash ever 5 years and claim to want to raise minimum wages.

A political leader for whom one can vote is a man whose political stand is known by all, not someone who has turned up yesterday with coverage in the state controlled press for the first time in his life, and claims to want to raise wages. Good  for him if he wants to raise wages, but  my question is, why should I vote for him just for that? Do I know anything more about him? Absolute zero.

Other countries do not have political systems this way. Leaders appear in society not because of any general elections, but because they believe in certain principles; who are men with a passion and a certain political ideology. They make speeches, they protest, they hold demonstrations, they have organizations, they speak in assemblies, they speak in the streets, their speeches are reported daily, and everyone knows that Mr. Joe Blokes stands for more trade, freedom, liberty and the rule of law. But what is more important, Joe Blokes is not deterred by any silly law that requires a license to make a speech or to speak in public. If Joe Blokes thinks it is tight, he will do it, and no law can stop him. Now that is a leader and that is someone I will vote for, not some Singaporean Ting Ting Ting Ting who works for a construction company who has suddenly appeared form the blue.j

Of course there are thinking people, courageous people who are well suited to be leaders. Problem is, they have all left the island and are living in Australia, US and Canada. They have all left in disgust of the system of a totalitarian one party state which is Singapore. Instead what you have left in the island today are men who have worked in a construction company, too afraid of Lee Kuan Yew and his son to even raise a whimper all their lives but suddenly picks up courage, once in 5 years for a span of 11 days, to claim a right to become Members of Parliament. These are not politicians, these are gamblers buying a lottery ticket.

There is of course one exception. He is Chee Soon Juan. Now here is the real thing. In the past I admired Chee tremendously. For one, he appeared to think exactly the way I did. He understood that until and unless you have fundamental rights of free speech expression and the rule of law, these fake elections every 5 years is not going to change anything. And what is more, Chee had courage. Men can respect a man like Chee. To put action where his mouth was, he deliberately broke these unjust laws that prohibited free speech and courted arrest and imprisonment. He was jailed 10 times for his beliefs. Now that is a man one can respect. However he appears to have changed. He is no longer the man he was. Despite his beliefs he appears to have given up on forcing the government to deliver on their Constitutional requirements. He no longer challenges the government openly on their denial of the people's Constitutional rights. But at least no one can deny that he has leadership, unlike any of these men who sprout from he woodwork.

I see no hope for the island, least of all with these elections. What will happen is that the flood of brain drain to the West will only increase, leaving the locals to be no better than the noodle seller in Ang Mo Kio market. In their place even more Chinese nationals from China would be brought in turning the island into a Chinese island republic. To run the more sophisticated industries, they would bring in even more unemployed (in their native countries)  Caucasians to push the Singapore locals around in their menial jobs. Even more young men would refuse to do national service resulting in the army to totally collapse for lack of manpower. The birth rate would drop even further to leave only a handful babies being born in the entire island.

And on my part from California, I would make known the disastrous state of affairs in Lee Kuan Yew's island persuading a few more to the thousands who already leave for settlement abroad and refuse to do national service. That is my contribution to toppling this one party state.

* Please no anonymous comments

Gopalan Nair
California, USA

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