Tag Archive | "chinese"

Marsiling-Yew Tee GRC 1st staunchly Chinese GRC in S’pore

Marsiling-Yew Tee GRC 1st staunchly Chinese GRC in S’pore

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Chinese Privilege GRC.

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Singaporeans from all walks of life, who can see progress and regression at the same time, are calling out Marsiling-Yew Tee GRC as the first staunchly Chinese GRC in Singapore.

This after its only Indian MP Halimah Yacob will become the next president of Singapore come September 2017.

One Singaporean, Ma Lai Ren, said: “In a bid to reserve the elected presidency for Malays, Singapore inevitably makes an Indian woman become president.”

“Worse, this leaves Marsiling-Yew Tee GRC as the first and most staunchly Chinese GRC in Singapore as there are three heterosexual, upper class Chinese men left to run the place.”

“If this isn’t the face of male Chinese privilege, I don’t know what is.”

Other locals said three Chinese men in a GRC is not the worst thing for Singapore.

Another local, See Mi Sai, said: “The worst thing for Singapore is to have three Chinese men who believe they have what it takes to represent the minority groups.”

“The absolute worst are those Chinese men who believe they have highly fluid identities and are expansive in lived experiences to act as representatives of subjugated persons when they don’t at all.”

 

 





S’pore’s 3 Chinese prime ministers have managed to represent all races

S’pore’s 3 Chinese prime ministers have managed to represent all races

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Diversity lies in the eyes of the beholder.

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Singaporeans from all walks of life, who believe diversity lies in the eyes of the beholder, have come to a realisation.

This after they realised that Singapore’s three Chinese prime ministers have managed to represent all races in Singapore over the past 52 years of nationhood without any feelings of being hiatus-triggered.

One Singaporean, Tng Lang, said: “If you look at Lee Kuan Yew, Goh Chok Tong and Lee Hsien Loong, who do you see?”

“If you say you see three Chinese men, then you must be the racist one.”

“Because if you look at them closely, you can see that they are Chinese, Malay, Indian and Others. Diversity lies in the eyes of the beholder. Don’t be fooled by the superficial exteriors.”

“When you see these three men, you see the full spectrum of races visible to the human eye.”

Other locals then questioned why this rationale cannot be transferred to the elected presidency.

Another local, Ma Lai Ren, said: “When you look at Ong Teng Cheong, who do you see? If you see any race other than Chinese, then you must be racist because he is clearly Chinese.”

“When you look at SR Nathan, who do you see? If you say Indian, then you must be correct.”

“No, don’t argue.”

“You are wrong.”

 

 

 

 

 

 





Cannot remove race categorisation as S’pore needs a Chinese Prime Minister

Cannot remove race categorisation as S’pore needs a Chinese Prime Minister

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If removed, then there will be no one to lead Singapore.

pm-lee-mandate

Singaporeans from all walks of life, who can see that easy labels can be employed as political tools, have been told that Singapore is not ready to do away with race categorisation that puts people into the four major racial groups.

This after locals said they can see where this idea is coming from as Singapore still needs a Chinese Prime Minister to lead the country and the President must be from a minority race.

One Singaporean, Ng Sek, said: “It’s very easy if you disregard race and religion. You have, say, a general election, no racial classification and so on, but what you may end up having is a Parliament where there is no Chinese prime minister.”

“Yes, we can say we do away with race categorisation and Tharman can be prime minister and president, but is that what the Chinese prime minister wants? The Chinese prime minister is not ready for that.”

Other locals said race categorisation will ensure all races can deploy one representative for each racial group to ensure fairness when all are equally represented.

Another local, Tng Lang, said: “Yes, classification ensures Singaporeans are always conscious of each other and reach out to one another.”

“Representatives from each group: One Chinese, one Malay, one Indian and one Other.”

“When all are equally represented, the prime minister will be Chinese.”

“It makes you a bit uncomfortable at first. But that is what I think brings everyone together ultimately.”

 

 

 

 

 

 





3 Chinese men in Marsiling-Yew Tee GRC can represent all races

3 Chinese men in Marsiling-Yew Tee GRC can represent all races

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So capable.

marsiling-yew-tee-3-chinese-mps-left

Singaporeans from all walks of life, who can see diversity in Chinese people, said they are glad that three Chinese men remaining in the four-person Marsiling-Yew Tee GRC can represent all races in the constituency.

This after it was revealed that the only minority MP, Halimah Yacob, will leave the GRC soon to pursue a higher calling, leaving behind three Chinese MPs, namely, Ong Teng Koon, Lawrence Wong and Alex Yam to hold the fort.

One Singaporean, Tng Lang, said: “All three Chinese men who remain in the Marsiling-Yew Tee GRC without triggering a by-election, can speak for Malays, Indians and Others.”

“One look at them, I can tell they are very versatile. They are unlike the President who must be of minority race or who is not Tan Cheng Bock, or else, cannot make the non-Chinese feel represented.”

“In Singapore, president must be minority, but MPs no need. Very special one.”

Other locals said Singaporeans should not be so quick to judge the three remaining Chinese MPs based on their Chinese race.

Another local, Hua Ren, said: “One look I can tell these Chinese men have many friends from the minority races.”

“Therefore, they must know what it is like to be in their shoes. Let’s not be racist and just look at their yellow skin colour but the true diversity that lies inside each one of them.”

“Truly a testament to Singapore’s multi-racial society.”

 

 

 

 

 

 





Difficult to remove race categorisation as S’pore still needs a Chinese Prime Minister

Difficult to remove race categorisation as S’pore still needs a Chinese Prime Minister

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If removed, then there will be no one to lead Singapore.

pm-lee-mandate

Singaporeans from all walks of life, who can see that easy labels can be employed as political tools, have been told that Singapore is not ready to do away with race categorisation that puts people into the four major racial groups.

Locals said they can see where this idea is coming from as Singapore still needs a Chinese Prime Minister to lead the country and the President can be from the minority race just because.

One Singaporean, Ng Sek, said: “It’s very easy if you disregard race and religion. You have, say, a general election, no racial classification and so on, but what you may end up having is a Parliament where there is no Chinese prime minister.”

“Yes, we can say we do away with race categorisation and Tharman can be prime minister and president, but is that what the Chinese prime minister wants? The Chinese prime minister is not ready for that.”

Other locals said race categorisation will ensure all races can deploy one representative for each racial group to ensure fairness when all are equally represented.

Another local, Tng Lang, said: “Yes, classification ensures Singaporeans are always conscious of each other and reach out to one another.”

“Representatives from each group: One Chinese, one Malay, one Indian and one Other.”

“When all are equally represented, the prime minister will be Chinese.”

“It makes you a bit uncomfortable at first. But that is what I think brings everyone together ultimately.”

 

 

 

 

 

 





Singapore residential property snapped up by mainland Chinese buyers

Singapore residential property snapped up by mainland Chinese buyers

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Mainland Chinese made up 7.6 percent of total sales in Singapore in a three-month period this year.

The latest figures released shows that mainland Chinese buyers formed the biggest group of foreigners to purchase property in Singapore.

In the second quarter of this year between April and June, Chinese buyers bought 640 properties, which is 100 more units compared to the previous quarter.

This amounted to 26 percent of all purchases made by foreigners, or 7.6 percent of total property sales in Singapore in three months.

The mainland Chinese are attracted to property here as the market is less voilatile.

A majority of them would buy more than one unit: A three to four-room apartment to live in and perhaps another one or two- room apartment for investment purposes.

However, the overall picture shows that foreigners in general are driving up the demand for high-end residential properties locally.

Foreign buyers purchased 43 percent of all properties that were sold for S$1.5 million or more.

In comparison, Singaporeans are entering into the lower end of the property market: They bought 75 percent of all properties that cost S$500,000 or less in the same period.

Read the original article here.

Mandarin is not my mother tongue (part two)

Mandarin is not my mother tongue (part two)

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Lim Teng Leong compares Hokkien with Mandarin and gives his verdict: Hokkien kicks butt (part one here).

LET us look closely at the Beijing dialect and compare it in every linguistic detail with the Southern dialects. For simplicity, I will pick Hokkien, the most melodious and expressive Chinese dialect.

One of the most beautiful aspects of Hokkien, especially when you set it next to Mandarin, is the versatility of expression. You can express just about any emotion in Hokkien: When you are seized by a sudden surge of anger, you need a loaded expletive to express yourself immediately.

Mandarin is sorely lacking in this.

The closest one can come up with in Mandarin is “ta ma de” which literally, means “his mother’s”. But that hardly conveys the point, no, not by a long shot. You can’t even make it more directly pertinent by changing it to “ni ma de” or “your mother’s”.

The Communist rigidity of the Mandarin dialect just does not permit this. Hokkien, on the other hand, has an expletive for every occasion. Again, this is beyond dispute and I don’t have to give illustrations of Hokkien’s superiority here.

Next, let us look at the comparative beauty of the two dialects. Admittedly, the beauty of a particular language is very much subjective. But linguists have other more objective ways of measuring and accurately calibrating a language.

One of the easiest methods is to look at the consonants available in a language or dialect and to see how these consonants can be attached to the various parts of a word.

All languages have a fixed number of consonants which differs from language to language. Roughly, the number of consonants in the different languages do not differ significantly.

What is different is where these consonants appear. I’ll pick a simple example. Let’s look at the letters “S” and “I”. We have the consonant “S” in front and we fix a vowel immediately following it, in this case, it’s an “I”.

We’ll then see how many legitimate syllables can be made by adding a consonant at the end of the two letters. We will have SICK (it’s the sound that matters and not the actual letters), SIT, SIN, SIM (which is necessary to construct words such as “simple”), and the list goes on. That makes English highly versatile.

Because of the poor quality of air in Beijing, it is hardly surprising that the Beijing dialect closely resembles what you will expect of a population that is usually gasping for air.

Hokkien is the same. You can have consonants of all kinds that end a syllable. Mandarin, however, is different. Apart from the consonants “n” and “ng”, there is ABSOLUTELY NO consonant that can appear at the end of a syllable.

For those of you who are familiar with Mandarin, go ahead and think about it and see if I’m right. And if you know Hokkien or one of the other Southern dialects, you can try this test on them and you’ll see that they do admit a great number of consonants to end a syllable.

For example, in Mandarin, you can have a word such as “wan” or “fang” because they end in “n” and “ng”. You can’t have words or syllables that end in “k” such as “pak” (found in Hokkien) or in “p” (as in the Hokkien word “sip”) and other consonants.

That makes Mandarin a highly limited dialect. There are only so few sounds you can make with it. Because of this shocking limitation, Mandarin has to go tonal in order to have enough sounds for words.

For example, “tang” can be sugar or soup, depending on how you voice it. True, Southern dialects too are tonal but because we have an adequate supply of consonants that can begin and end a syllable, our tones add more to the melody of our speech. The tone is more like a flavour enhancer in Hokkien.

Why, you may legitimately ask, is Mandarin so crippled in its linguistic capabilities? This is totally serious and true so listen up:

We all know that the Gobi desert sits just next to Beijing and for most months in a year, it spews relentlessly desert dust and sand into Beijing. Just check with any hospital in Beijing and you are sure to hear stories of people choked by the dust during a sand storm.

Because of the poor quality of air in Beijing, it is hardly surprising that the Beijing dialect closely resembles what you will expect of a population that is usually gasping for air. Consonants at the end of a syllable will have to be dispensed with because they demand a large intake of air.

Why then do we find “n” and “ng” the only two endings using consonents in the Beijing dialect? The answer is quite simple. These are consonants that are nasal in nature and they act more as a means by which the speaker can clear his nasal passage. They don’t add to the speaker’s burden as far as air intake goes.

The Beijing dialect or Mandarin is highly suitable for those who speak it in Beijing, given the harsh conditions there. But to export it to the rest of China or worse, the rest of the world, is madness.

I have nothing against the Beijing dialect. I find it quite beautiful. But given the historical and environmental background in which the dialect comes about, it is inappropriate to insist that this dialect should be viewed as the mother tongue of everyone of Chinese descent.

It is as alien to me as Urdu is. I’m sure Urdu is a beautiful language but it’s quite another thing to insist that I should speak it.

Let me conclude with an ancient Hokkien poem:

My eyes, hooded with grief, stared into space,
As I sat by the river where the willows weep,
I cast my mind to my good old days,
In Hui’an county with the gorges deep.

Where ang ku cakes were sold with Hokkien mee,
And pandas roamed as far as the eyes could see;
Oh, Min River, my dearest Min River,
To thee, my soul flies, from my heart to my liver.

This article was first published by the author in his blog.

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Mandarin is not my mother tongue (part one)

Mandarin is not my mother tongue (part one)

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Lim Teng Leong believes that it was the Communist dogs who pushed for the adoption of Mandarin as the common language of China.

A banner in front of a Chinese school asks readers to speak only the Beijing dialect. The words can be translated as: “Speak Mandarin. Use polite language to express sincerity”.

FOR THOSE who are not familiar with the history of Chinese dialects, I should say from the outset that Mandarin (as it is historically known), or more accurately, the Beijing dialect, has never been a dialect of national importance or universal acceptance in China before the 20th century.

Confucius was known to have spoken one of the Southern dialects which he himself referred to as “elegant language”. Some have said that he probably spoke an ancient form of Cantonese, but I have reason to believe that it was more probably the precursor of our present-day Hokkien.

True, he did not speak the coarse language of the Hokkien peasants but he spoke a refined form of Hokkien, akin to the Hokkien spoken today in the island of Penang.

From ancient times to the 19th century, many other dialects held sway over the lingua franca of the land we know as China today. Of note is the Nanjing dialect which was the official and most popular dialect used in China right up to the early 20th century.

It was only in 1909 when the dying Manchu Dynasty, which wasn’t even Chinese, ruled that the Beijing dialect be the “guoyi” or national language of China. But the Beijing dialect continued to be sidelined by the literati and the movers and shakers of China.

How can this foreign dialect be forced down my throat as my mother tongue when my mother does not speak a word of it and neither did her mother or her mother’s mother?

It was only after Communism, that noxious poison that destroyed the soul and dignity of the Chinese people and infected the whole of China, that the Beijing dialect, under the edict of the Communist Party of China, became the “putonghua” or “common language” of China.

The Communist Government has since 1949 discouraged the use of non-Beijing dialects in China. Of course we all know what it means when the Communists discourage something – they ban it with an iron fist. They have no qualms about sending in the tanks if necessary as the world has seen them do in the late 1980s to quash peaceful student protests in Tiananmen Square.

Anyone who has lived in China knows that the Communist Government has ensured that “polite language” or “civilized language” is synonymous with “putonghua” or universal language, referring to no other dialect but the Beijing dialect.

It is also a fact of Chinese history that anyone, even before the Boxer Rebellion, who had the courage to enter a Chinese village in the South speaking the Beijing dialect would be lynched and killed by angry mobs and accused of being a Northern infiltrator.

How can I, whose ancestors hail from one of the Southern states of China, accept Mandarin as my mother tongue when I would have been killed for speaking it in my native village just barely 150 years ago?

How can this foreign dialect be forced down my throat as my mother tongue when my mother does not speak a word of it and neither did her mother or her mother’s mother? You can trace that line all the way to Eve and not one of them spoke a word of the Beijing dialect.

So, is the Beijing dialect inherently attractive or superior, such that we can recommend it as a more suitable dialect to represent the entire Chinese people apart from the fact that the Communist politburo in 1949 all spoke it?

In part two, we will compare the Beijing dialect with Hokkien to find out which is more suited as a ‘national language’.

This article was first published by the author in his blog.

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