Tag Archive | "forum"

S’poreans react to PAP Lawrence Wong launching personal attack on SDP Chee Soon Juan on TV

S’poreans react to PAP Lawrence Wong launching personal attack on SDP Chee Soon Juan on TV

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Three thoughts that must have went past your mind at some point.

chee-soon-juan-lawrence-wong

PAP minister Lawrence Wong launched a personal attack on SDP’s Chee Soon Juan during a televised Channel News Asia policy forum debate on Sept. 1, 2015, featuring various political party representatives.

According to Chee, Wong cited a matter that happened 20 years ago as a way to continue the PAP’s tactic of character-assassination.

Here are three thoughts Singaporeans have:

 

sian-half-auntie “At least Chee Soon Juan is happily married and not a divorcee.”
Lee Hun, 45-year-old marriage counsellor

 

sian-half-uncle “I would watch a debate where various politicians personally attacked one another for one hour straight as it will allow me to better know who I am voting for.”
Jiang Bie Ren, 62-year-old undercover police

 

happy-bird-girl “Once again, the PAP prove they don’t need a credible opposition to discredit them.”
Mei Xin Xing, 19-year-old faith healer

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 











Silent Majority: Too much freedom in S’pore equals freedom to be raped

Silent Majority: Too much freedom in S’pore equals freedom to be raped

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There is a limit to freedom, says The Straits Times letter writer.

lky-simisai

I AM one of the “silent majority”.

I have never written or blogged or Facebooked about national issues. But there’s always a time for it.

I mourn the loss of our national giant, Mr Lee Kuan Yew. My heart is saddened as if I have lost someone close to me. At the same time, my heart is bursting with pride at the unprecedented show of gratitude and patriotism.

If there was one good thing that came out of Mr Lee’s death, this must be it. Grieving together has enlarged our horizons and our souls.

Once, as I was leaving my exercise class, I remarked that it was extremely humid outside. Quick as lightning, my exercise mate from Hong Kong told me: “Don’t complain, Singapore is half a paradise.” She is right. And this, in no small part, is due to the work of Mr Lee, who really could not have done more in his life for this nation.

To the “noisy minority” in relentless search of freedom of speech, political freedom and all, the acid test is this: Have you given 50 per cent of your life for this country? How about 25 per cent, 10 per cent or even 5 per cent? If not, why the noise?

There are always places where such freedom can be found. But together with it, there will be freedom to be discriminated against, freedom to be raped, freedom to be mugged, freedom to be shot – complete freedom.

As for me, I am staying put, humidity and all. I am blessed and proud to be a Singaporean.

Loh Lay San (Madam)

This is a real letter published in The Straits Times Forum on April 1, 2015.

 

Another one living in paradise:

Take those who disrespect Lee Kuan Yew to task

S’pore shouldn’t use SIN to represent us in sports because it’s a dirty word

S’pore shouldn’t use SIN to represent us in sports because it’s a dirty word

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Every time it is mentioned we are degraded, says The Straits Times letter writer.

singapore-fencing

Take the SIN out of Singapore

SEEING the word “SIN” emblazoned across the chests of our beaming Asian Games athletes (“Finally, a golden day for Singapore”; last Wednesday) evoked a feeling that was somewhat bittersweet.

“SIN” is the International Olympic Committee code for Singapore and is used to represent our country in sporting events. “SIN” is also the International Air Traffic Association code for Changi Airport, the gateway to our country.

Sports and travel are two of the most visible platforms through which we project ourselves to the world. “SIN” is the word projected when we make a name for ourselves on these platforms.

Sin cities of the world are well known, for better or for worse.

Whenever Singapore is elevated into focus, the image must be one that is in keeping with our cultural and social mores.

Singapore is not a sin city. But, with the use of the code “SIN”, the eye will make the association, even if the heart and mind know otherwise.

Is it in our national interest for “SIN” to be associated with Singapore?

We should consider adopting the less-used (but not lesser) code “SGP” instead of “SIN”.

“SGP” is, after all, the United Nations’ country code for Singapore.

Indeed, the Internet domain designation for Singapore is “.sg”.

Furthermore, “SGP” corresponds to the syllables that make up the word “Sin-Ga-Pore”.

It looks better, sounds better and unifies all usage and application.

Andrew Choo Ming Sing

This is a real letter published in The Straits Times Forum on Oct. 6, 2014.

 

Why not take the “porn” out?:

Take the porn out of Singaporean

 





S’poreans to raise illegal rental concerns with AirBNB CEO Brian Chesky

S’poreans to raise illegal rental concerns with AirBNB CEO Brian Chesky

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AirBNB CEO will be speaking in Singapore Oct. 25, 2013 at Thomas Friedman’s Global Forum Asia.

friedman-forum

Singaporeans are expected to raise concerns with AirBNB’s CEO Brian Chesky about how they are disallowed by local authorities from renting out their place of residence.

Chesky will be in Singapore on Oct. 25 as a guest speaker at Thomas Friedman’s Global Forum Asia.

Currently, the law states that temporary rental of residences is illegal. The minimum lease period is six months.

This means that tourists who visit Singapore either have to stay in overpriced hotels or crappy hostels, unlike in other countries where visitors can stay with locals at their homes and experience real culture.

This is because the authorities have decreed that short term rentals might inconvenience other home owners as human traffic can be disruptive.

The authorities are also rumoured to routinely monitor AirBNB listings to look for violators.

Zheng Hu Chu, a local HDB dweller said: “I will go to the forum and tell the AirBNB CEO: ‘Hello? You come here speak for what? No one in Singapore can even list their residences for short term rental because it is against the law. You want to talk to our government to change that?'”

The questioning of Singapore’s housing rules and regulations will be a sensitive topic that could be potentially tricky for a country trying hard to protect its cosmopolitan image, while residents are trying to milk the value of their property for all it’s worth.

 

 

 

 

ST Forum editor causes PAP to lose face

ST Forum editor causes PAP to lose face

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Out of the 68 handpicked ST forum letters of 2011, he only republished two in praise of the ruling party.

Trouble might be brewing for The Straits Times Forum editor, Yap Koon Hong.

Will his slight go unnoticed?

Yesterday, on Oct. 18, in a special ST Forum page feature, Yap handpicked and republished 68 ST forum letters from 2011 to reflect the major talking points of ST readers last year.

But none of them touched on issues such as gay rights, freedom of expression and right to assembly because these words mainly do not exist in the limited vocabulary of ST readers.

Nonetheless, more tellingly, Yap only chose to republish two letters that are in praise and in complete awe of the PAP.

Letter #1:

Letter #2

This shows that Yap’s approval rating of the PAP is only 2.94 percent (two out of 68), way below the national average of 60.1 percent, based on the 2011 General Election result where the PAP won the majority of parliament seats by a margin as slim as Kate Moss.

His move to minimise the PAP’s presence in the Forum pages is demeaning and uncalled for and risks tearing asunder the very PR exercise of setting up a Forum page special that was supposed to be trumpeting PAP’s triumph.

This turn of events is particularly humiliating for the PAP because they have never received such scant praise and abject treatment from the national broadsheet before.

This blatant slight will most likely not go unnoticed.

The loss of face for the PAP usually results in severe repercussions for the offender and his family, such as the inability to successfully ballot for a HDB flat in the future, or balloting for one in Ulu Jurong.

Vote for the opposition: PAP will not lose

Vote for the opposition: PAP will not lose

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Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong needs to have more faith in the political system his dad built.

By Fang Shihan

Like it or not, PM Lee has plenty of supporters. Photo: SINGAPORE YOUTH OLYMPIC GAMES / Creative Commons

IN HIS dialogue with 12 Singaporeans who supposedly represent various sections of the population, PM Lee remarked, as a reply to a question about having a level political playing field, that it cannot be equal.

He also noted: “If you ask the people in Potong Pasir, whom do they want to make the government of Singapore? I think they’ll say they want a PAP government, so too in Hougang. But then you ask them who do they want to vote for, they’ll say Mr Chiam or Mr Low. In other words, they’re counting on someone else to vote for the PAP, so they can get the luxury to vote for Mr Chiam or Mr Low….”

Replying to a question of why opposition wards get bumped down the upgrading queue even though opposition voters are Singaporeans too, he replied that this is to incentivise residents in opposition-held wards to vote for the PAP.

Quite frankly, PM Lee has nothing to worry about. Wearing a pink shirt as a lucky charm all the time is actually quite unnecessary.

While there are plenty of keyboard warriors and TV critics out there who will make a song and dance about voting the opposition (and some have their minds made up, judging by the comments posted online), the PAP is in no serious danger of losing just yet.

Opposition supporters, go ahead. Enjoy your luxury of ticking the box under “Worker’s Party” or “Singapore People’s Party” because MM Lee has put in place a robust system to ensure the continued longevity of his son’s party.

We have the lazy voter to thank. Not just your usual ‘politically apathetic youth’, but also the contented Malay welfare recipients, the uncles and aunties who’ve lived in walkover wards their whole life and couldn’t give two hoots about the new opposition candidates, and the white-collar baby boomers who’re too busy keeping their salary in step with rising COE prices. People who wouldn’t bother reading political information, and consider the elections only marginally more important than the season finale of a soap opera.

But one has to applaud PM Lee for his honesty. He does not resist taking jibes at the opposition and their inability to provide upgrading services, simply by being the opposition. This time, at least, he has more tact and no longer claims to ‘fix’ the opposition, unlike 2006.

Political constructs built with the purpose of keeping the incumbent authoritarian party in power do not disappear overnight. Lazy voters especially, only take the path of least mental resistance, towards the only party they’ve been familiar with their whole lives.

If you’re the biggest bully in the playground, and your father happens to be the contractor who built the playground, there’s no point pretending to be humble.

Each and every fixture in the playground has a purpose, and this is for the good of all who have a stake in it. Non-Constituency Member-of-Parliament schemes? A good transition for opposition politicians to break into ‘real’ politics. Nominated Member-of-Parliament provide more substantive debate than NCMPs?

But of course! That was by design. Using public infrastructure as incentives for the public to vote for the incumbent? Ah-bor-den? Without the PAP, you wouldn’t even have public infrastructure because politicians would be too busy tearing each other apart to take care of you.

The PAP system was built so well that the best losing and nominated opposition MPs can speak but not vote on budget and constitutional matters. This results in a wayang for public entertainment, without the government policies being actually affected. Lacklustre entertainment as it may be, with MPs falling asleep in parliament, this wayang provides fodder for political conversation yet spares the lazy voter from thinking too much, or taking time off from more important matters.

Why? Because it’s only talk, no action. Don’t need to worry.

Unlike our neighbours up north, so frequently cited as an example of freedom gone wrong, Singapore has little chance of becoming an actual democracy even though PM Lee might actually have a chance of losing. Political constructs built with the purpose of keeping the incumbent authoritarian party in power do not disappear overnight. Lazy voters especially, only take the path of least mental resistance, towards the only party they’ve been familiar with their whole lives.

So why fret? Root for the quiet kid building his sandcastle in the corner. He doesn’t have that many friends, and the bully doesn’t need you anyway.

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