Send in the clowns

When are we ever going to get a truly critical look at Singapore’s modern history?  I doubt if Men in White, a new book that the Straits Times is heavily promoting, is it. Meanwhile the newspaper asks a question everybody else has long asked: What if the PAP turns bad? But why is the question in the future tense?  Full essay.

6 Responses to “Send in the clowns”


  1. 1 Laremy 7 September 2009 at 08:15

    This is really well-written, Alex!

  2. 2 KiWeTO 7 September 2009 at 09:40

    In a discussion I had yesterday:

    What if Singapore turned Communist RED in the 1960s?
    (and perhaps, the region.)

    Would we have collapsed then?

    or would we now be in a great position to serve greater China, since we would have been a shining tropical paradise getaway for the Chinese Communists to see as a tourist destination? The same way that Cuba was seen as an exotic travel destination for Communist Russia?

    Would we have been made worse off? Or better off? or been about the same?

    😉

    E.o.M.

  3. 3 ikanrajah 7 September 2009 at 17:06

    “In any case, is it not over-simplistic to speak of a “rogue” government, as if we will know when we have one? The nature of things is that decline is gradual….”

    In fact, the govt is really already a rogue one now. LKY has ensured that the system or institutions it has put in place – the elected President, the nominated members of the judiciary, top civil servants, police, armed forces etc- are all beholden to and fearful of the insidious and ‘invisible’ hand of Lee Snr.
    The real revolution will come when the old man passes away, as those who inherit the system, albeit the younger gen of PAP leaders, will never be able to wield the kind of influence and instil the kind of fear thru Lee’s brand of brute force and/or subtle/overt machinations of the state apparatus over its enemies.

  4. 4 Anonymous 7 September 2009 at 17:10

    Very well written. Thanks for expressing what I feel so well.

    Only thing is I am not sure if “The centre of gravity has finally shifted”. It may be true of the thinking people in Singapore, but from my experience not this is the minority. Majority are either too busy trying to survive, or happily enjoying the “goodies” from their political alignment with the dominant PAP party, or simply too apathetic and cowed (thanks to ISA’s track record, some even consider discussing about socialist politics dangerous)!

  5. 5 Singapore Democrats 12 September 2009 at 16:23

    Thank you for the insightful blogpost. The Singapore Democrats have featured your post in our blogs of the week section – http://yoursdp.org/index.php/news/blogs-of-the-week

  6. 6 Anonymous 15 September 2009 at 11:35

    Good analysis. Things are already falling apart in this country. The so-called progress, material affluence is just a facade masquerading an internal rot — much like the glossy /highly waxed apple whose core is rotting away by worms inside.

    It is not healthy that the ruling elites think they can play God and squash all opposing voices.

    Perhaps the ST article (on the rogue government rising up from within PAP) is planted to convince the naysayers out there that the paper is not a mouthpiece of the govt and who knows maybe the government will split itself up to create a pseudo opposition. I really hope that it will not come to that.


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