The Prime Minister who preaches to the world what he fails to practise at home

Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong gave this bit of advice to world leaders at the G-20 summit in Argentina last Friday: “We cannot freeze the status quo, we will not succeed in preserving out of date arrangements, because the world will leave us behind.”

He was making the point that countries have to embrace technological change instead of yielding to their anxieties and causing obstruction.

The twisted irony here is that he and his government seem to go against the grain of what he is preaching.

Social media is an offshoot of the technological revolution. Instead of embracing it, the government has long been suspicious and apprehensive, viewing it as untamed and unhinged, a mighty source of irritant and a purveyor of fake news.

Even before legislation to combat fake news comes into effect, dire warning signals have already been sent to bloggers and socio-political sites. In tightening the screws, will the country not be set back and left behind?

Whether 3G or 4G, the leadership is intent on sticking to much of the same old playbook and politics. In other words, freeze the status quo – the very thing PM Lee cautions against.

First and foremost, preserve one-party rule. Dish out treatment of the opposition the way it has been dished out for decades. Deal with dissent and critics the same old way – if words and arguments do not work, then bring out the hatchet and the sledgehammer.

Freedom of the press? Don’t even think about it! Don’t ever cross the red lines! And so the Newspaper and Printing Presses Act has to be preserved for good measure – characterised by strict licensing restrictions on newspapers and voting rights only to a select few management shareholders.

The Internal Security Act for detention without trail? That has been used to devastating effect for decades so it has to be preserved, no question about it.

And what about 377A, that most archaic British colonial law? Apparently, there’s nothing wrong with keeping that frozen in time too.

So much of the status quo has to be preserved.

And yet PM Lee goes halfway across the world to lecture his audience against “freezing the status quo” and against “preserving out of date arrangements.”

 

Augustine Low

* The author is a proud but concerned citizen. Voicing independent, unplugged opinion is his contribution to citizen engagement.

 

 

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11 Responses to “The Prime Minister who preaches to the world what he fails to practise at home”

  • WhenWillWeEverLearn:

    Hypocritical PM.
    Dunno who composes his speeches!
    Say one thing to the outside world , to show off that SG is an up to date & hip place…but at home a complete different picture!

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  • RDB:

    KIASOO KIASI TYPE OF CHARACTER CAN BE CALLED govt OR GAGAMEN?

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  • nicotineeyes:

    A Clown cannot be a Doctor. Can a fisherman fly an airplane? Whatever he says; he cannot do. Its Eugenics DNA. Smart, Smarter become dumb.

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  • LIONS:

    JUST LIKE CHARITY BEGINS AT *HOME*,i would say,likewise, UNITY MUST BEGIN AT HOME !

    home is where charity and unity must prevail,if not what is the use of SENDING OUT CHARITIES TO OUTSIDERS when we REFUSE TO SEE THAT OUR OWN COUNTRYMEN NEEDS HELP AND CARE?

    WHAT IS UNITY WHEN OUR OWN COUNTRYMEN ARE SO BROKEN UP?

    STOP THE HYPOCRISY!

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  • Bapak:

    Famous to say one thing and do otherwise themselves.

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  • patriot of TUMASIK:

    The world is acting DRUNK to his hypocrisy even TRUMP the Champion of the people in his USA close one eye to the Cock & Bull fully AWARE that The Lady President is a BULLSHIT not daring to show her face as President when Trump & Kim met in Singapore…How MORE HYPOCRITICAL can you get???

    The World??? well a place to Park your ill-gotten GAINS and a little Red Book to go with it

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  • ah seng kopi-o:

    WHERE IS milk-is-milk.no more sound?

    no idea,thought you very kaypoh type?

    MORAL OF STORY: LEE AH LONG’S 4 G CHOICES ARE ALL VERY WRONG!!!

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  • ah seng kopi-o:

    SG needs good leaders,not bootlickers.

    we need ministers who dare question lee ah long’s ideas n policies.

    we need ministers who can present SG to the world.

    does KEE-CHIU think he could?

    if not,pls do us a big favour,STEP DOWN.

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  • pap clown the hypocrite:

    WhenWillWeEverLearn:
    Hypocritical PM.
    Dunno who composes his speeches!
    Say one thing to the outside world , to show off that SG is an up to date & hip place…but at home a complete different picture!

    his own blood brother Mr Lee Hsien Yang, and his own blood sister Dr Lee Wei Ling, has told the world about this clown hypocrite. enough said.

    nicotineeyes:
    A Clown cannot be a Doctor. Can a fisherman fly an airplane? Whatever he says; he cannot do. Its Eugenics DNA. Smart, Smarter become dumb.

    during CNY 2018 the hypocrite said, family family family. but his own brother and own sister said otherwise. what a liar, and lying shame.

    Bapak:
    Famous to say one thing and do otherwise themselves.

    cannot sue own brother and own sister. can sue Mr Roy Ngerng. can sue Mr Leong. when this liar pap clown put up his hand and swore he would govern as pm without fear or favour, he lied. he never sued his own brother and own sister. he only sued anyone not his brother not his sister.

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  • "Do gooder" platitudes:

    He who would do good to another must do it in “minute particulars”:
    “General good” is the plea of the scoundrel, hypocrite, and flatterer; because Art and Science cannot exist but in minutely organized particulars.
    - William Blake

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  • Be real sg lions:

    World Human Rights Day 2018 on Dec 10.

    There will be processions and big marches in support held worldwide.
    Malaysia will be holdibg 2 events in kl.
    Our sg gov has infd sgs to avoid kl if not on urgent travel purposes.
    Will SGs be granted permission to hold a walk or a procession event ??

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