Make Covid-19 the culprit for just about everything

He has spent years talking up the capabilities of the 4G leadership and urging Singaporeans to give them our fullest support. Yet Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong is now putting leadership transition on hold indefinitely.

He is unlikely to achieve his target of stepping down by the time he turns 70. Asked about his plans, the 68-year-old said last week: “I had expressed the hope that I would be able to hand over by the time I celebrate my 70th birthday. But I do not determine the path of the COVID-19 pandemic, and it will also depend on how events unfold.”

So it’s now out of the Prime Minister’s hands. The virus is the one calling the shots. The virus determines when 3G hands over to 4G. Since it is expected to be around for the long haul, the process could be long and winding.

Goh Chok Tong became PM at 49, Lee Hsien Loong at 52. PM-in-waiting Heng Swee Keat is already 59. If he and the 4G team are not ready now, when will they ever be ready?

If PM Lee stays on until the next general election, he will be 73 – well past his target of stepping down by 70. Heng will be 64, primed to serve one, at most two terms. Is that true leadership renewal?

COVID-19 has become the be all and end all. Asked why quite a number of older ministers have been retained for the new cabinet, PM Lee pointed to the virus, saying experienced ministers are needed for continuity and “in this crisis, this need is even greater.”

The government had also earlier claimed it urgently needed a fresh mandate to steer Singapore through COVID-19. And during campaigning for GE2020, the rallying cry was that the People’s Action Party needed a strong mandate to overcome COVID-19.

In short, COVID-19 is responsible for recession and retrenchments, for seeking fresh mandate, for seeking strong mandate, for continuity with older ministers, for setting back leadership renewal, for keeping PM Lee longer on the job, for preventing the 4G team from taking over.

Since they cannot defeat COVID-19, they might as well make it the culprit for just about everything.

 

Augustine Low

 

 

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19 Responses to “Make Covid-19 the culprit for just about everything”

  • The Crony $$$ Curse:

    The common curse of mankind – folly and ignorance – be thine in great revenue!

    William Shakespeare

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  • xoxo:

    It would be an irreparable national mistake for him to MENTOR THE 4G.
    It is going to be a national disaster.

    He,of LOW QUALITY himself.
    Since his *reign*, so many good sgs n their families got screwed.

    Damn,he still thinks he has been doing a great job?
    Lack of self-reflection n self-criticism even as he does not allow for rightful PUBLIC CRITICISM?

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  • blueview:

    PM Lee, please start thinking about a support model equivalent to the true 1st world countries. CPF cannot be the only one source of money pot that can solve living issues for Singaporeans going forward. THIS CHANGE IS A MUST, MUST, MUST!!!!

    Look at all the other countries that provides a good support system for citizens of all age groups. They have reasonably good benefits for people:

    1. Parents who stay home to look after their children can chalk up child-rearing benefits to their retirement pension benefits.

    2. People who lose their jobs are provided Unemployment Benefits to ride through unemployment periods.

    3. All citizens have old age benefits provided by their govt that are calculated based on their residency years in their countries. The calculation is based on e.g. if a person has 10 years of residency, that person will get $XX number of dollars, next calculation is based on 15 years, 20 years, etc. up to a maximum of say 40 years of residency. It’s based on residency, how long you lived in the country. Applying this to Singapore it means our old uncles and aunties who have been a homemaker for many decades or throughout their lives receive some benefits/$$$ every month to help them out in their twilight years.

    4. All citizens have their company pension and federal pension when they retire. The 1st world govts do strongly encourage their citizens to save more money on their own to live a comfortable lives. This is mainly personal investment which many people may or may not be able to do on their own. Even 1st world countries citizens struggle in personal investment areas.

    My emphasis here is on the benefits that a govt provides to its citizens. Not everyone can save money or are savvy at personal investment. With Singapore’s all-in-one financial solution vehicle, the great CPF is just not enough anymore. It was great for the previous generations but it’s no longer sufficient or cannot meet the ever rising cost of living in Singapore plus other expenses.

    We have trillions of reserve money with 3.5 million citizens. PM Lee, you can provide some monthly govt benefits directly to Singaporeans. Pension was established for a good reasons, to at least provide citizens to put food on the table for their loved ones and take things a little easy in their twilight years. Majority of people work like 40 to 45 years of their lives, don’t you think citizens deserve it? You yourself is wants to retire….it’s the same feeling for everyone. You can retire in luxury and embrace active aging like Goh Chok Tong but what about ordinary citizens? We want the same thing too because we are all humans. After working for donkey years we all feel the same way but citizens are not millionaires like you and your friends.

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  • TUMASIK Patriot:

    He won’t be in the office @ ISTANA after August 26, 2020, with a possible grace +- 3months subject to…

    the GunCarriage will take him on a journey of No Return

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  • Tom:

    LHL has no intention of stepping down. The empress won’t allow it. If he goes, she goes from Temasek. Money too good! Power too addictive!

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  • opposition dude:

    He got a strong vote share drop instead of his strong mandate. From a strong mandate it was downgraded to just a clear mandate. What is extrememly clear is that another GRC was lost and 4 monkeys were kicked. That is very clear indeed.

    As long as he is around then nothing will change since he won’t be changing his way of doing things. We can expect GST to be brought forward to next year and 4 to 5 years of transport fare hikes amongst other increases. When PAP has the supermajority they don’t care if they have 50.01% of the votes.

    I’m waiting for PAP to announce if stroke man is indeed the successor since he will be 60 pretty soon. If not then if xia suay was the target then we will be having a field day with it!

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  • Sojoürner:

    This corona-virus didn’t have to be a worldwide catastrophe: We just screwed up. Karma is really nothing more than cause and effect. The year of rat in Chinese zodiac. Rats are known source of pestilence or Bible’s list creatures that man should not eat since they unclean. Infectious disease experts have warned for years about the dangers of keeping live, stressed animals of different species in confined spaces as has been happening in the wet markets. This practice had already spawned other types of pandemics.

    It will be a matter of time, before there is another pandemic that the human immune system hadn’t seen before: ‘The Mother of all Pandemics’

    COVID-19 triggered seismic shifts in many industries & changes individual values, consumption patterns, business approaches, government policies & foreign affairs. It reshapes our beliefs, social attitudes & behaviors. There will be many structural changes in our economy as this virus lingers maybe for years?

    Companies who fail to change with it will fail. We won’t be returning to the retail binge economy. We won’t need as many cars (working from home and not traveling will negate the need), oil demand will stay down, global travels will be greatly curtailed. We will learn to live more at home (not a bad thing). But you are kidding yourself if you think our former lives will return. They won’t.

    Suffering can be redemptive. I do hope for humanity sake we actually listen to what the virus is telling us. And as long as we can’t learn to cooperate across political and national lines, we are going to continue to screw up. We are staring into an abyss without a bottom.

    Is it creating a safe, secure, and healthy environment for The People or is it achieving wealth and power for the political elites? Or we could face destruction from our own heartlessness, greed and stupidity. This is our test.

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  • Leelian:

    What a disgrace. Utter disgrace to his father. And still going to stick around for many more years despite promising to step down by 70 — which is 18 months’ time.

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  • RDB:

    Aiyah, pap as I repeat has always been a Peeing And Pooing GaGament lor! Why so leh? because they can only this type in their lot to be P And P pm lor. Tioboh lah!

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  • little time left:

    if the human race still persists in their present mindsets- ie selfishness ,abusing mother nature and disregarding kindness to one another, i think MOTHER EARTH will send down more plagues…
    look listen and learn NOW!

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  • Boh Kia See:

    Never trust the Clown PM. Whatever he says is meant for the moment and for consumers. I am sure there was never any thought of stepping down until his son is ready. When he mentioned about stepping down at 70, he thought his son will be ready by then.

    HSK is never destined to be PM in this own right but a seat warmer for the son. He is the trusted one for that task.

    The New Zealand PM was a first term PM, she did very well to control the virus. You think experience is necessary? If so, she would have failed miserably. The point is that this is a new virus, therefore every one is at the same starting point to control it. Experience in other scenarios count for nothing and in fact can act as a barrier to good thinking and action. That has been the case with the PAP.

    So the PAP is continuing with their gibberish or experience etc. The results in controlling the pandemic says otherwise.

    Why pay a high price for monkeys?

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  • Billy ma:

    It is clear that despite the slap to lhl, no lesson learned & nothing has changed.

    Lhl & PAP continue to stick to their no accountability & someone’s else fault sickness.

    Guess indeed that GE2020 slap is not good enough to bring about any significant self reflection & outlook revision with regards to what & how the country & citizens want the ruling parties to govern.

    The degree of truth on PAP is at a low & the mistrust on lhl himself is growing day by day.
    Hope his wife will continue to dig the hole deeper for lhl to jump in.
    Singaporeans may have had enough of this aweful couple.

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  • uselesstankl:

    To the best of my knowledge the vaccine invented in Oxford is being produced by AstraZeneca and not Moderna which is producing it’s own vaccine. The author is conflating two different vaccines.
    Google :
    “AstraZeneca and Oxford University announce landmark agreement for COVID-19 vaccine”.
    and also Google:
    “AstraZeneca to supply Europe with up to 400 million doses of Oxford University’s vaccine at no profit”
    and Google:
    “Moderna’s Work on a COVID-19 Vaccine Candidate” …See more

    ####

    Claims, are claims.

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  • loot the reserves:

    he is to be known as Lee Sian LOOT from now on…
    only BIG thing he does for common sgs is LOOTING RESERVES BIG TIME and hand PEANUTS to needy sgs even as he squander on PAYING SALARIES FOR MANY EXPENSIVE FTs/PRs who have stolen OUR jobs?

    the CRAPPIEST OF ALL PAP CRAPS!

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  • oxygen:

    PRESENT TENSE IS UTTERLY MISTAKEN or hallucinating of PAPpypolitics/PAPpynomics’s hegemonic longevity is still relevant to the survival of LEE-jiapore.

    I agree with much of the observations of @ sojourner

    Sojoürner: This corona-virus didn’t have to be a worldwide catastrophe: We just screwed up. Karma is really nothing more than cause and effect. The year of rat in Chinese zodiac. Rats are known source of pestilence or Bible’s list creatures that man should not eat since they unclean. Infectious disease experts have warned for years about the dangers of keeping live, stressed animals of different species in confined spaces as has been happening in the wet markets. This practice had already spawned other types of pandemics.

    It will be a matter of time, before there is another pandemic that the human immune system hadn’t seen before: ‘The Mother of all Pandemics’

    COVID-19 triggered seismic shifts in many industries & changes individual values, consumption patterns, business approaches, government policies & foreign affairs. It reshapes our beliefs, social attitudes & behaviors. There will be many structural changes in our economy as this virus lingers maybe for years?

    Companies who fail to change with it will fail. We won’t be returning to the retail binge economy. We won’t need as many cars (working from home and not traveling will negate the need), oil demand will stay down, global travels will be greatly curtailed. We will learn to live more at home (not a bad thing). But you are kidding yourself if you think our former lives will return. They won’t.

    Blackrock Investment Institute spoke of this poignant advice – global economy has to walk these three steps

    - activity retart
    - POLICY REVOLUTION
    - real resilience.

    https://www.blackrock.com/us/individual/insights/blackrock-investment-institute/outlook

    Why?

    BECAUSE THE FUTURE IS RUNNING AT US.

    In fact I would argue that the FUTURE IS RUSHING ( instead of mere “running” at us.

    HENCE THE URGENCY OF TIME-PRESSURE ON RAPID TRANSFORMATIONAL CHANGE against embedded irrelevant economic structure (like Changi Jewel, RWS, Changi Airport terminal 5 etc and other artificial beauties of white elephants), outmoded ideologies (Population Recycling Economics and self-deluding asset enhancement politics scam sucking up CPF savings) and insane drive for hegemony longevity pursuit of “legacy” dreams AND MOVING INTO NEW PARADIGMS to discover survival landscape/terranes.

    Prolonging the status quo of staying and hanging on to failed leadership endangers our survival chances.

    LEE-jiapore, I would argue, biggest mistake is PAPpypolitics drive for hegemonic longevity – G1, G2, G3 all overstayed the relevance to change. $G failed in crisis. 5Gs silent virgins in fear now of taking over the baton?

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  • oxygen:

    JUST LIKE INVESTING, political and economic decisions must be made under conditions of partial or near complete ignorance of the environment.

    That is :

    decisions must be made under constraints of evolving environmental changes and every decision delimits future choices ( e.g. deglobalisation renders our strategic location useless of future relevance and value of national survival, we must invest elsewhere).

    decisions must lead to further decision (from the decision-maker himself/herself) and from those affected by the decision (e.g. gutter politics imperiled the political governance and distracted the necessary focus of attention at economic planning agenda for too long and that same vile politics backfired in the 2020 election outcome as voters retaliate despite the grave contingencies facing this nation)

    PRESENT TENSE have to make tough decision on whether he wants to stay the full term or hand over soonest.

    He does not have the luxury of time or revelation of reality confronting staying on to then discover this surprise shock that could be waiting for him.

    HOW LONG CAN PRESENT TENSE LAST IF THIS HAPPENS?

    Analyst:Long-term deleterious economic after-effects of pandemics could span multiple decades

    The stock market could be facing ‘multiple decades’ of ‘deleterious’ economic after-effects, analyst warns

    https://www.marketwatch.com/story/the-stock-market-could-be-facing-multiple-decades-of-deleterious-economic-after-effects-analyst-warns-2020-08-02?mod=home-page

    WHATEVER MISTAKE OF PAST MADE IS ALREADY MADE.

    We, in my opinion, must discard the past, and seek the future bravely to discover new destiny.

    3G must fade quietly and rapidly to the backbench – sooner than later – and let 4G swims or drown the nation together.

    There is IMMENSE RISKS.

    5G looks like heart transplant to me – we can’t grow instant tree via the dilapidated “leadership renewal process” motion of hunting/harvesting the same infertile ground of the same old ex-military, civil servants and professions” of quick insertions through airdrops into safe GRC bunkers.

    The tsunami of change and future, rushing in now, I suspect, will drown out that mob.

    THE GRC BUNKER MENTALITY AND ITS CRUMBLING ARCHITECTURE AND ENGINEERING MUST GO and thrown into the dustbin of history. It is useless “condom protection” in a world of turbulent change crashing in at an ever escalating rate of change.

    FUTURE “LEADERS” that must come into leadership via CONDOM PROTECTION will not survive in crisis – CRISIS WILL MANAGE THEM INSTEAD OF THEY MANAGING CRISIS just like the dorm pandemic saga.

    The truth and reality exposed is irrefutable.

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  • Sojoürner:

    oxygen: PRESENT TENSE have to make tough decision on whether he wants to stay the full term or hand over soonest.

    @ oxygen
    Howdy mate,

    It will still be more like between a hammer and an anvil if handover to a designate of his choice
    @ xoxo has make some valid points below.

    xoxo:
    It would be an irreparable national mistake for him to MENTOR THE 4G.
    It is going to be a national disaster.

    He,of LOW QUALITY himself.
    Since his *reign*, so many good sgs n their families got screwed.

    Damn,he still thinks he has been doing a great job?
    Lack of self-reflection n self-criticism even as he does not allow for rightful PUBLIC CRITICISM?

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  • Take care of our Seniors:

    We need to take care of our Seniors and the poor.
    Many of them are suffering to cope with the Pandemic.
    Should give them a resonable monthly allowance as the CPF Policy has failed them.
    Too much of their CPF is used for HDB housing and many are too cash poor for their retirements needs.

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  • Covid effect:

    Covid will have a long lasting devastating effect on people and economy.
    Just look at the impact on the world now…worst to come.
    Need to take a pause and consider how we treat Nature and people .
    Nature is taking a reset and hitting back.
    We need to treat Nature and people better moving forward.
    We should take care of our Venerable and poor better.Our social net is a disgrace.Such a Policy can only come from those out of touch with the common man problem and suffering.

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