Saturday, December 26, 2009

Another Booboo of the Minister Mentor

Due to his highfalutin character, the eminent Minister Mentor Lee Kuan Yew can never refrain from making booboo in his bombastic utterances, usually made at the wrong time for the wrong reason. His latest gaffe is his deleterious comments in the National Geographic magazine in which he portrayed Singaporeans as less hard-driving and hard-striving so that it became necessary for the Singapore government to bring in Chinese immigrants as a counter-measure.

His gratuitous comments happen to grate on the raw nerves of Singapore netizens, besides innumerable other citizen, who, one and all, do not mince their words in their condemnation of the ungracious MM Lee. The essence of their anger centres around the fact that for MM Lee, who draws a whopping salary of over three million dollars a year, jets around the world at taxpayers' expense and does nothing but in his own words "forecasting", to portray Singaporeans in such despicable terms is stretching their patience to the limit.

This is not the first time that MM Lee has made a gaffe nor will it be the last to the government's embarassment. The problem is that he has too much time on his hand and, apart from "forecasting", he does not know what to do with his leisure. So he thinks hard to find a topic that he thinks will amuse his international audience and at the same time please his Singapore electorate. But experience has shown that he is not the consummate entertainer who does not falter in his clowning.

The indiscriminate influx of Chinese immigrants is a sore point not only among the discerning Chinese Singaporeans but more so among the Malay and Indian Singaporeans. There is an overtone of racisim involved in this connection as Malays and Indians are naturally alarmed by this overwhelming influx of yellow intruders. They do not appear to enhance the quality of life here except to make up for the deficiency of the Chinese demography and to provide cheap labour. They are so ubiquitous that there is hardly any service job that is not monopolised by a Chinese national.

Is this policy of encouraging the indiscrimiate influx of Chinese immigrants a rational one to rectify the demographic deficiency? Are we getting the right type of Chinese immigrants who can enhance the elitist quality of the population? There appears to be a need for the re-examination of the government's immigration policy to ensure a more equitable influx of quality immigrants, not only of Chinese nationals but of other nationalities as well.

That the Straits Times did not carry MM Lee's callous remarks is not surprising.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

The Sobering View of an Ex-ISD Officer

Those who are sobering readers of the political book Men In White cannot help but form an impression that the tome is a glorification of the narcissistic Minister Mentor Lee Kuan Yew. It is small wonder that some people and portals describe it as a propaganda book. It depicts Lee Kuan Yew to be a one-man crusader in his fight against the might of his so-called pro-communist foes. The authors fail to highlight Lee Kuan Yew's more ignominous persona.

On the other hand the book Fajar Generation by an aggrieved group of former detainees connected with the old Malaya University Socialist Club is an antithesis and contains an incisive indictment of what they imply as the iniquities of a treacherous and inhuman Lee Kuan Yew. The authors, especially Dr. Poh Soo Kai and Tan Jing Quee. had apparently visited the British Archives in the United Kingdom and quoted extensively relevant extracts from the Archives to expose the so-called treachery and perfidy of Lee Kuan Yew in complicity with the British to push through the Malaysia plan. The book Fajar Generation is published in West Malaysia and surprisingly is available in some book stores in Singapore.

To debunk the subtle assertion in Men in White that Lee Kuan Yew had been able through his own industry to build up a mass base for his political ambition by simply agreeing to serve as legal adviser to pro-communist trade unions and other communist front organisations (CUF), it is obvious the authors are over-simplifying the issue. It was a well-known fact that Lim Chin Siong, the former general secretary of the powerful Singapore Factory & Shop Workers Union was the undisputed leader of the communist united front and controlled the mass base. Lee Kuan Yew could not have been unaware of this fact and knew that he had to depend on Lim Chin Siong and his mass base to advance his political ambition.

To give an example of the massive influence of Lim Chin Siong over his CUF members, the CUF used to hold anti-colonial mass meetings at the old Happy World Stadium which were invariably packed to capacity. It was an unforgettable experience to behold that Lim Chin Siong was given a standing ovation when he entered the stadium. Lee Kuan Yew would usually be tagging along holding his briefcase and this phenomenon could not have escaped the sharp attention of Lee Kuan Yew. He had no doubt kept this at the back of his mind for reference in his dealing with Lim Chin Siong in future. Lee was of the conviction that as long as Lim was a free man, Lim would be a great obstacle to his ambitious plan of capturing political power. So along came an unsuspecting benefector in the person of Chief Minister Lim Yew Hock who did Lee a great favour by detaining Lim Chin Siong and his fellow activists thus allowing the ambitious Lee Kuan Yew to inherit Lim Chin Siong's mass base to advance his political ambition. The word gratitude is not to be found in Lee's lexicon. In fact, it would have been a great joke if Lim's detention had caused him any grief.