Tag Archive | "resignation"

Shock? What shock?

Shock? What shock?

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Why the sudden resignation of a high-flying colonel is not newsworthy.

By Myk Litoris
Special Defence Correspondent Report

Colonel Nelson Yau says "I quit!"

There has been quite a few media reports that are portraying the resignation of Singapore Armed Forces regular Colonel Nelson Yau, who was also the chairman of the National Day Parade organising committee, as a mystery and a shock.

I mean, is this necessary?

Yes, no reasoning has been given other than saying that his departure is due to “personal reasons”.

But what should we be expecting from the Singapore Armed Forces?

For them to reveal the whole case in black and white?

Disseminate the news over Twitter the moment Colonel Yau sat down with his colleagues to inform them about his resignation last Monday?

Imagine how this would look: “Col Nel Yau quits SAF. Becos he cannot tahan cookhouse food anymore? More details soon.”

Put it out on Facebook?

Call Tessa Wong of The Straits Times the moment he decided to bail?

But more importantly, why should his sudden resignation be of any interest to the general public?

Yes, it could possibly be true that without the calibre of Colonel Yau to oversee the organisation of this year’s 47th National Day Parade, our nation’s birthday celebration will go to the dogs.

There won’t be the bright lights. Or the sorry-looking NSFs prancing around, working below minimum wage levels. Or the fire works might be replaced with hand-held sparklers.

And even if it did take place, instead of a dazzling display of performers running around and reenacting Singapore’s tempestuous rise away from Malaysia and the proud military showboating technique of rifle-twirling, we have the normal cake-cutting with candle-blowing, followed by a buffet that is normally found at a 12-year-old’s birthday celebration.

But we all know the military is never short of talent.

Look, they’ve even produced Chan Chun Sing!

So to really proclaim shock at anything, there is a need to produce miraculous evidence.

Because, all things considered, it is not as if Colonel Yau is quiting the Singapore Armed Forces to join Al Qaeda.

If that were the case, it will truly be newsworthy.

It will be like Anakin Skywalker to Darth Vader all over again.

Switching sides like this will be something that will deserve a screaming font size 72-worthy headline.

So what else would be considered news?

Well, if Colonel Yau quit the SAF so he can become a woman.

This would attract attention for sure. But no worries, because The New Paper will be on his case and they will provide a lot of anonymous quotes by people who might not even exist to talk about him.

But this will truly be a personal story worth reporting.

Other than these two scenarios, what else can provoke a lot of interest?

Mmm let’s see. He quits the SAF because he has grown gills and he is becoming a full-time fish?

That would be an evolutionary step in the right direction.

Yes, I know. There might in fact be more than meets the eye.

But then again, so what?

Even if Colonel Yau quits so that he will be eligible to join a political party to contest in Hougang SMC, why should this be news?

Everyone knows that if he joins the PAP, they will still lose no matter what.

Why there will never be opposition unity

Why there will never be opposition unity

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And why diversity should be celebrated.

By Belmont Lay

Photo borrowed from Yahoo!

Six key members from Singapore People’s Party have resigned.

This has left a lot of semi-professional political observers sighing and wondering what went wrong again.

But don’t blame the “Opposition” for not playing as a team and being dramatic.

Why? Because there never really was a united team to begin with.

What is occurring now is similar to a rearrangement. Not unlike what happens when you clean your bedroom.

It has to get messier before it gets any tidier.

This is a process. Not the finality. After which, things will get better.

Because so what if we are in this lull period after the General Election where the hype and fury has subsided?

Let’s just put it this way: The many complex personalities, the past historical baggage and competing perspectives will intermingle and act up time and again.

And this latest SPP incident is just one such case in point.

So think about it this way too: We can either go along with what we have now or go back to the days when Singapore politics was as interesting as watching paint dry.

If you don’t yet know what makes our politics tick, I implore you to show up at the various open houses by the political parties and have a feel for yourselves.

You will find personable politicians who can talk to anyone and anything, including a lamp post, and change their lives.

You will also find politicians who are quick on their feet with assertions and spurious statistics.

And then, there are also those that are just plain weird.

And I will even implore you further to support them, jeer at them, laugh at them, laugh with them and even begrudge them.

But whatever you do, do not allow politics — I repeat, DO NOT ALLOW POLITICS in Singapore to slide back to what it was in those days when watching grass grow was more interesting.

In fact, I believe it is this richness and the diversity of our political landscape that we are seeing now that should be celebrated.

This is a phenomenon that probably hasn’t happened in Singapore since the 1960s. Which was a time where people actually had something interesting to say about politics other than “Oh, it will be a walkover again, for sure”.

And all of us who are living through this right now are probably witnessing something pivotal. So pivotal and buttocks-clenching exciting in fact, that you do feel you want to look back in 10 or 20 years’ time and think to yourself what an honour it was to have experienced the height of it.

Politicians are human. And humans have their pet peeves.

And when they do fight, it only makes the making up sweeter.

So back to the SPP resignations. The six of them can leave and form something else or join another party, it doesn’t matter.

The fact that talented people would rather walk away and consider their options than acquiesce to a structure or system that they don’t relate to is highly laudable.

I don’t like apologists or the gutless who bend over backwards to make concessions. And you shouldn’t too. We mustn’t fancy the spineless.

I’m pretty sure at some point in your lives you probably wished that you developed the courage to not settle but instead went for the next option, however uncertain the outcome might have been.

It might have been another competing dream job you turned down, another girl you didn’t marry or that asshole you wished you should have just punched in the face.

If you settled, I hope it turned out well.

If you didn’t, continue to aspire.

Did you know that Lord Peter Mandelson…

Did you know that Lord Peter Mandelson…

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…who is part of the Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy Exchange Fellowship programme, resigned from Tony Blair’s cabinet in disgrace – twice?

In November 2009, Jeremy Clarkson, presenter of blokish Top Gear and god of funny prose, expressed his hatred for Peter Mandelson by writing in his column in The Sunday Times that he wanted Mandelson “to be tied to the front of a van and driven round the country until he isn’t alive any more”.

Apparently, that caused a bit of controversy. (And who said entertainers can’t take pot shots at politicians?)

Not only that, Clarkson also called Mandelson a “conniving idiot” who displays “left-wing fanaticism”.

And guess what? Lord Peter Mandelson, as he is being called in our darling press, was in Singapore recently giving a public lecture on Sept. 21 at the Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy.

His advice for the PAP? Continuously forge an emotional bond with voters and ensure that the party does not lose its identity.

Funny, no? It should be because get a load of this:

The Labour party, in which Mandelson played an important role in reshaping and rebranding over the past decade, famously lost power to the Conservatives during last year’s election.

So it is common practice to get somebody who lost to dish out philosophically-sound advice now? Actually yes, considering that Tony Blair, Mandelson’s superior, did not win the Iraq War when he exited office but is still netting millions on the lecture circuit these days… Hmm…

Oh wait. Did we mention something else?

Funny how Mandelson, the former European Commissioner for Trade, was forced to resign in disgrace, not once, but twice, from Tony Blair’s cabinet, is deemed fit enough to talk about giving “more power to the people”?

And here’s the best of the best part yet: Mandelson actually made it back into The Cabinet the third time by Gordon Brown as business secretary (some new post that was created and not without controversy) .

Get me a rope indeed…