Lee versus Leong – Food for Thought

The trial in the defamation case of Lee Hsien Loong v Leong Sze Hian ended yesterday.

Now it is for the lawyers to make written submissions and for the judge to hear oral arguments on 30 November at 230pm.

The trial judge Justice Aedit Abdullah gave directions to counsel for both parties on what he would like them to address in their submissions. His directions were as follows:-

In particular, I want parties to address me on that point, whether this is the kind of republication that is actionable, given the circumstances relied on by Mr Lim’s client.

The other, I think, aspect of it is perhaps foreshadowed in Mr Lim Tean’s opening remarks about how the shape of defamation should be looked at, given the presence now of the POFMA legislation and other developments in Singapore. So to what extent is defamation still to be understood in its traditional context, and how much, if anything, should be read from the introduction of POFMA and what is the appropriate balance then between defamation and Article 14 rights under the Constitution.

These are very weighty directions of the trial judge which we shall be addressing in our submissions.

PS: Article 14 of the Constitution guarantees to Singaporeans the rights to freedom of speech and expression.


* Facebook post by Lim Tean.





44 Responses to “Lee versus Leong – Food for Thought”

  • Whoseit:

    go to you tube, buffalo springfield, check out….”for what its worth”

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  • opinion:

    The court should not be used as a convenient platform to silent critics via indirect vindication from the actual suspect party who may [or may not] have all the evidences and proof.

    The court should not be used as a Political tools to silent its Opposition as isn’t it obvious of the 1000 over who republished the link, only the Political opposition is sued.

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  • xoxo:

    The practice of sueing citizens by public servants who receive PUBLIC CRITICISMS IS ALL VERY WRONG, IT MUST BE STOPPED.



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  • opinion:

    Politics aside;

    I am hoping all the able people in Singapore, lawyers, professional will help LT with the submission.

    This is for all Singaporeans, not any party.

    Sharing a link is not republishing or endorsing any insults.
    A link is merely a Uniform Resource Identifier (URI) and is a string of characters that unambiguously identifies a particular resource.

    Any resultant thumbnail [picture and accompanying text] from the link is a result from the web engine, not from the poser.

    As a citizen, I want to be free to send the link and ask if the news is true and it must not be any offense to share links.
    We must not allow our rights to be curtailed.

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  • TUMASIK Patriot:

    Allah, The Creator has eyes that see and ears that HEAR!!!

    Woe to those who are Beholden to Satan and the Love of Money & Power

    The Lies and Evil that lies in the Lies are for all to see in Court…

    and the Deathly look tells ALL that Burong Hantu will come calling soon!!!

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  • salutes to Mr Lim Tean:

    Mr Lim Tean will win the case.
    im praying.
    whatever, it all now depends on the Judge keeping his spine straight and straighter.
    no more bending to the PAPs out of fear please…
    even if you lose your job, at least you stood tall for justice for all, like MR Lim Tean…who said he’d even dare to go to jail in his fight for justice.

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  • MarBowling:

    Singh HAS TO WIN this case for his client Mai Hum because he is the ONE who has ADVISED his client to sue Leong Sze Hian until his pants down or go bankrupt, making him to sleep on the side road. 5 hyenas for Mai Hum and Poa Zin oops Lim Tean for Leong will give their written submissions to the Hide Court Judge on 30 Nov 2020. Heaven has eyes. Heaven and the Barn Owl will keep a close watch on the 5 hyenas and Mai Hum 24/7/365.

    Btw, the outcome of the court case between Indonesian maid, Liyani and the almighty Lewd bugger has PROVEN that HEAVEN HAS EYES! Period. We True Blue Singaporean are HOPING and PRAYING that Leong will ALSO receive FAVORABLE OUTCOME! God bless Leong and Poa Zin oops Lim Tean.

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  • Soccerbetting2:

    Reported on the Independent.sg :Quote – ”

    Home News In the Hood Lim Tean: Why didn’t PM Lee sue The States Times Review or…
    Lim Tean: Why didn’t PM Lee sue The States Times Review or The Coverage?
    Hearing adjourned to Nov 30, when both parties return to court for oral submissions

    Opposition leader and lawyer Lim Tean
    Facebook screengrab: Lim Tean


    Anna Maria Romero

    October 10, 2020

    Home NewsIn the HoodLaw
    - Advertisement -

    Singapore — After having cross-examined Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong on Tuesday (Oct 6) in the defamation trial of writer and financial adviser Leong Sze Hian, the latter’s lawyer, Mr Lim Tean, took to Facebook on Friday (Oct 9) to ask the following question:

    Why didn’t Mr Lee file lawsuits against The States Times Review (STR) or The Coverage, the publications responsible for the article that Mr Leong had shared?

    This point seems to be a key element of Mr Leong’s defence and had been part of Mr Lim’s cross-examination of Mr Lee.

    When asked about the matter, Mr Lee answered that lawsuits had not been served against STR and The Coverage since these publications are not in Singapore, and therefore are outside the country’s jurisdiction. Alex Tan, the Singaporean editor of STR, is based in Australia, while The Coverage is a Malaysian publication.

    - Advertisement -

    When Mr Lim argued that Mr Lee had gone after foreign publications in the past, including Bloomberg, the latter said Bloomberg has a presence in Singapore.

    Mr Lim responded that Mr Lee had filed a lawsuit against a writer for The Online Citizen who is in Malaysia.

    The trial ended abruptly when Mr Lim said on Wednesday that Mr Leong would not take the stand. The lawyer added that he was “very satisfied we have sufficient admissions to meet our case”.

    The hearing has been adjourned to Nov 30, when both parties return to court for oral submissions.

    Mr Lim has expressed satisfaction with how the trial has proceeded, saying in a Facebook post on Oct 7 that he is “very very happy with the way the evidence has emerged over the last two days”.

    He has also called Mr Lee’s case “very weak”.

    Mr Lim wrote in his latest Facebook post that he had “produced evidence” to Mr Lee during the cross-examination that the latter had sued Malaysian national Rubaashini Shunmuganathan, who was accused of writing a defamatory article about him last year.

    “He obtained judgment in default against her when she did not enter appearance to the proceedings he commenced against her (expressed no intention to defend the claim),” wrote Mr Lim. He added that Mr Lee’s lawyers had been given leave by the Singapore Court to serve the Writ of Summons in Malaysia, though it was outside Singapore’s jurisdiction.

    “If Lee Hsien Loong could have sued a foreigner in that case, why couldn’t he have sued The Coverage (a Malaysian website ) or The States Times Review, which is based in Australia ?????… “Unquote.

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  • FACTS:

    The facts that POFMA breaches the iconic tenet of democratic Constitution Seaparation of Power makes it illegal wrt the Laws of the Land. This is further compounded by the contempt of holding the power of laws n denying to furnish evidences n further compounded by one of the branches of independence of the judiciary to help the Government defending its demand of power of law without the benefits of evidence. Illegalizing PFMA on these violations of the
    Constitution should be the primary duty of the top guardian of the Laws of the Land, the Bench of Judges and its various branches including the Attorney General Chamber. The fact that the appointment of AG of AGC violates the Laws re Conflict of interests should be addressed else any representation of the power is illegal n renders all judicial decisions illegal. Without proper n robust execution of judicial judgement on these and all other violation of the Constitution, justice would be compromised n more seriously the foundation of laws wrt equality, freedom and justice loudly endorsed in our national anthem, flag and Constitution would reduced to just acts of the dictator with no courage of admission. A national shame enacted by traitors and illegalities overshadowing the Constitution.

    Vows and pledges are to be honored and not faked. Faking it is criminal if the Constitution is to remain intact wrt its integrity. Violating the Constitution, in particular contempt brought about by the prevailing power not honoring ttheir Oath of Office and the vow to uphold n protect the Constitution should be addressed by the Laws of the Land to maintain the integrity of freedom, justice n equality. Compliancy of the Bureaucracy violates the vows of the bureacrats n the Constitution n should be addressed by the Laws Enforcers with the integrity of the independent institutions of the Judiciary n National Security. This is particularly significant in a single party domination of the Parliament since the Separation of Pwer provides the last fort of checks and balances n LKY’s ‘ownself checks ownself‘ is simple nonconstitutional and the best it can honour is total eradication of compliancy in its buteaucracy else it is simply fake n rubbish n anything built on such premise is evil n con upon the citizenry.

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  • Pofma:

    Free Speech should be be Free from Encumbrances!

    In other words, if I don’t call your mother names I should hold my head high……………..it’s free speech!

    Republication …………..its not original……….so where is the Offence ………..it is now covered by Shame’s pofma to take down?

    Otherwise why waste all the legal Drafters’ tiME?

    YOU SHOULD ONLY GO AFTER THE ORIGINAL WRITER…………..GOT GUTS? Beyond reach is not Leong or lim’s problem!

    Singh gave wrong legal opinion

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  • oxygen:

    THE WORLD IS ROUND BUT not exactly round – we have Mount Everest and Mariana Deep.

    Who has the monopoly of wisdom of accurate interpretation, never mind the hypocrisy of POFMA and Article 14 contradictions.

    Remember we even stupidly claimed Vietnam “invaded” (and “conquered” presumably) Cambodia but they assert that as “liberation” from the tyranny of Khmer Rouge brutal regime of wanton murders, decapitation and destruction.

    Anyone describing Pol Pot regime is murderous is guilty of “defamation”? Or is that just a hotly challenged opinion?

    Donald Trump called Kamala Harris a “communist”!!

    How many “communists” were defamed and still is of grievous hurt in that notorious “Marxists Conspiracy” illegal detention? And is the sovereign “restoring justice” for this one of those still alive?

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  • Asd:

    I think I read about changing some offece to death sentence is this one of the type of offence to be death sentenced

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  • Harder Truths:

    I can plainly see Team Despot frantically writing new laws to cover any criticism of the communist regime. Any kind of criticism will be somehow linked to terrorism and sedition. Once it becomes an ISA issue- forget the courts.

    Do not expect Pritam & Co to do much – the ballsless 61% did not give his team much support to do their job.

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  • Justice For Commoners:

    It is about time that the Singapore Judiciary look deeply into the defamation suits by government leaders against ordinary citizens.

    The primary objectives of the laws in any country should be to:

    1. Protect the weak against the strong.
    2. Protect the powerless against the powerful.
    3. Protect the uneducated or lowly educated against the highly intelligent and highly educated.
    4. Protect the workers against the employers.
    5. Protect the poor against the rich.
    6. Protect the citizens against the government.


    If the laws are being used by the rich and powerful, for whatever reasons, against the weak, powerless, lowly educated and the poor, then something is very wrong.

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  • Soh:

    LT also got fire ants chasing from behind too.don,t know will kena bitten before 30nov anot.?

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  • Great Asia:

    We are in the middle of the COVID-19 and economic crises, but that idiot is busy suing a blogger at court.

    Ha ha ha!

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  • MarBowling:

    PeeM Mai Hum has said VIVIDLY that he sued Leong Sze Hian because he wants to VINDICATE his REPUTATION and STANDING! Leong ONLY POSTED THE ARTICLE WRITTEN BY ALEX TAN of STR/Coverage and NOW because he is BASED here and has chosen NOT to RUN AWAY, he is Kenna sued until pants drop.

    Assuming Mai Hum subsequently will WIN this damn case when the Hide Court Judge finds Leong guiltily of Defamation and then order Leong to pay $1 million compensation, is Mai Hum still concerned or cared that his fiacking REPUTATION and STANDING HAVE NOT BE VINDICATED(BECAUSE HE HAS FAILED TO AND UNABLE TO SUE ALEX TAN AND THE COVERAGE)even though he has managed to NAIL Leong?

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  • Bloody Englishman of the Suez:

    Lee Clown made a big mistake, He should have sued the the originator of the news not the peddler (leong) . On this very basis , His suit can be thrown out by any court in a developed country.

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  • Allah Will Judge Aidit:

    Lets hope Aedit will be a fair person and judge accordingly without fear.

    Allah in turn will judge Aedit.

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  • Pinky Already Lose:

    In the State Court, Pinky may or may not win the case.

    But in the Public Court Of Opinion, I think Pinky already lose the case because he sue the messenger instead of the original writer.

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  • Morerisk:

    Likely not a fire fighter.

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  • Finger pointing moon:

    In the old days, grandmas tell little kids not to point their fingers at the moon. Something bad will happen to them.

    Nowadays, the gov tell the common folks not to point their fingers at high pofma-potential writings. Something bad will happen to them.

    Apparently the gov leaders consider that if they can cut those fingers on their citizens (i.e., within the jurisdiction), they therefore prove that the writings are fake.

    Very weird thinking.

    Imagine. If during a war, some foreigner writes that Sg is losing the war. A resident points to that writing. Then, to prove that Sg is not losing the war, the gov sue that poor resident for defamation.

    It is so easy to win any war. No need SAF.

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  • SureDie:

    I don’t expect national interests to lose. The system keeps the reptile alive and kicking your butt so you keep working to keep the system…alive.

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  • Suing The Whistleblower Is Bad:

    It is ethically, morally and common-sensically wrong for anyone, especially people with power and authority, to punish the message who brings him the news (irrespective of whether good or bad news).

    It is also extremely cowardly for anyone with authority and power to punish a whistleblower, who alerts him of something that he should take note of, instead of going after the real culprit.

    It is even more cowardly and disgusting for anyone to sue only one person, when more than a thousand people have re-posted or shared the same article or link to the same article.

    Leong Sze Hian was merely alerting Lee Hsien Loong of an existence of an article about him. There was no malice intended.

    Yet, Lee Hsien Loong took it so badly. Instead of thanking Leong Sze Hian for posting that article to alert him and his government, he took it that Leong Sze Hian was trying to defame him. So, it is a matter of his own over-sensitiveness about his reputation, name, status, fame and power as a Prime Minister that he had interpreted the message and the messenger wrongly.

    I think he is the one who should apologise to Leong Sze Hian. Not the other way round.

    That is how I perceive, analyse and conclude what this unnecessary legal battle is all about.

    Sometimes, a person with too much power can inadvertently allow himself (you know who) or herself (read Joker Teo of MOM) become a destructive force unto himself/herself.

    History has full of this kind of power-obssessed people who finally caused their own downfall.

    Anything done to the extreme can never have a positive result. Same as the use of the energy and power one may possess. The power itself will just explode at a single moment when the critical breaking point is reached.

    Enough is enough, so to speak.

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  • Sicko Pinky:

    Since Mr Leong refused to take the stand, it was the biggest and most embarrassing slap on Pinky and his 5 high powered lawyers.

    Never they would have thought this will happen. Lawyer Mr Lim Tean is much smarter than all the other 5 brains put together.

    It is an embarrassing and shameful moment. He deserved it. Bad Karma will continue to haunt his conscience till he reach his grave.

    Thank God for this.

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  • Flicskshit:

    if Cut and paste is an offend, then they should sue Microsoft for having this function in the Microsoft word program.


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  • most uselss:

    Of course LT did great job and even D S could not match his oral and debate skills. 5 against 1 but clearly LT has the talent and guts to match.

    History has shown, cases against the incumbent always end up incumbent winning and sometime crap reasons given. Unless this case is being trialed in International Court, the outcome is often predictable.

    If LT cant win, Heaven got eyes to see, the karma inflicted for injustice will be bore by Pinky and his team of stooges.

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  • Pointless:

    This action taken against Leong will not provide the vindication that Lee is looking for. It may even cause some people to see it as vindictive, not vindication. If his intention is to vindicate his reputation, he should go after the source; if the writer cannot support his claims, the “fire” would be put out once for all and the writer discredited. Even if Lee wins this case, it does not prove the truth or falsity of the article’s claims which rests only with the writer.

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  • Goodness here and th afterlife:

    Recalling caliph Umar al-Khattab’s sense of justice:


    “O you people of faith, be persistent and stand firm for justice, as witnesses for Almighty God, even if it be against your own selves, or your parents and relatives; whether the person is rich or poor, God is more worthy of safeguarding both. Follow not your lusts (of your hearts), lest you swerve, and if you distort or decline to do justice, verily God is well-acquainted with all your actions.”
    [Quran, 4:135]

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  • Ong:

    Mr Leong not the one published.so no need say anything.i not a judge also know….go after Leong for f..k!

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  • Ong:

    Covid 19 done most damages!put 100% time and and go after covid…why go after Leong19.?

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  • Queer meaning:

    If the source is not flase by Tripatite (LKY, GCT n LHL himself) public declaration that allegations must be challenged in Court of Law n the verdict speaks for itself n if not so challenged the implication should be true. If the source is not challenged, what is the sense of challenging the republication which held the Tripate public declation with honour n respects. Challenging a republicaption implied that the Tripatie public declaration is rubbish with a significant slir on the integrity of the members of the Tripstite n worse trashing the image n integrity of tpap patriat n the living sest warming peanut now with hi son tied wpith legality surprisingly after the ,seat warming peanut papa got ousted out of the party, perhaps a karma of his betrayal of his ndotsing citizens at his national referendum for people help to keep his speat n the former president bashed like hell for what he wanted to do his duty constitutionally n to honour his vow before his saviour n his deluty without whom there would not be a seat warmer from the honorable great institution now trashed as rotten idiots!

    What is argued when the ground for the argument is already decided by the tripatite if their honor, respect n idignity on and above their integrity r genuine n not fake that one should trust what thry declared publicly! Justice only prevails with logical n sound basis. Without it, the blindfolded balance holder ust as well be unblindfolded to provide authenticity of justice with both eyes wide open to open simultaneously all the eyes of daft Singaporeans to accredit them the chance to be stupid with both eyes eide opened n the judges sentenced with both eyes wide opened. Let the street wayang artistes have the privilege to wayang n their rice bowls not shattered by the power ingrates!

    God bless Singapore with both eyes open be there truths or fakes as they r in absolute nakeedness n not relative to those powerful ingrates!

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  • liew mun leong must be jailed:

    yesterday was sunday.

    we saw a pap tv drama production, z generation or something like that.

    in the drama, it is said, if anyone lies to government, meaning police prosecutor judge, shall be fined S$5,000 or jailed 1 year or both.

    liew mun leong lied to judge prosecutor police in his attempt to fix maid. so how come liew mun leong is not jailed?

    when pap clown slapped dana, pap goh cock tong lied that there was no such thing. how come pap goh cock tong is not jailed?

    when pap clown lied to fix Mr Lee Hisen Yang and wife and Dr Lee Wei Ling over 38 oxy road, how come pap clown is not jailed?


    the pap tv did not mention. the law, S$5,000 or 1 year or both applies only to 61% sheep and non pap members.

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  • What is "free speech"?:

    If there is “free speech” in Singapore why is there a need for Speaker’s Corner? Why is prior police clearance required to use it?

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  • fathope:

    The Head cannot lose. If it loses, oppositions, and people, will have a field day taunting the Head, the government, which is not in the interests of the nation(a loser for a head should not be seated in the highest office of the land should it? If you can’t be right over such simple matter, who can trust you with bigger national issues, right?)

    Furthermore, it is through careful assessment when they write the script against “the troublemaker”).

    They are in power so they dictate(the knowledge) what is right and wrong.

    For more than 50 years, that’s how it is done, with full support of the relevant ministries or his ministers.

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  • True Statesman:

    Would it not be great if all future PM of sg would be of so high integrity that they SUE citizens while in office in his or her own capacity?

    Would it not be great for our children to inherit such a SG where leaders sue to maintain their integrity?

    I think we can see he deserve to be called a world statesman .

    I share a story:
    In country X, a shop was selling Democracy. A customer walks by and the seller asks him, Do You Want Democracy?
    Buyer says Yes! Yes! I want Democracy. Seller revealed the PRICE of Democracy and Buyer walks off heads held low saying I Cannot Afford Democracy.

    Democracy is not if its given.
    Its whether the People can afford it.

    To afford democracy you need:
    1. A lot of Courage Currency
    2. Initiative. It has to be self driven. One should not wait to be given it.
    3. Have the Desire for it. 1.3 billion china people do not feel they need it.
    A big chunk of world humans do not have the desire for Democracy.

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  • God of no conscience:

    Singaporeans who call themselves religious are also put on trial because while they may act blur and ignore this issue with justice, their God knows they have no conscience. Non ultruistic.

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  • Jman:

    Leong has been rambling about a lot of issues over the years, and making all sorts of wild allegations.

    I would have preferred that he didn’t have to face a lawsuit before stopping his rambling nonsense, waste peoples’ time and consume data storage space unnecessarily. But it appears there is no other way.

    And Lim Tean, you should stop your habit of unjustifiably putting undeserving spin on issues such as this, and characterise another wild ramble as something weighty.

    This is not much more than a big hullabuloo over wild rants from Mr Leong.

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  • Jman:

    Lim Tean, every time you characterise something undeserving as something weighty and of importance, is another dent to your personal credibility.

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  • uselesstankl:

    WP chief Pritam Singh calls for universal minimum wage with $1,300 base


    Mr Singh,

    It won’t work,

    Why, becaused the MOM, JTEO, CREATED TOO MANY LOOPHOLES !!!



    PPL LIKE LML, they are aplenty in GLC’s, STAT boards, SNBF, SBFA, SBOF, etc etc …


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  • SureDie:

    Democracy is as much a destructive force as autocracy/aristocracy.

    Both exists to annihilate or punish each other – “adam(head) and Eve(people)” for partaking the knowledge of good and evil”(consequences of dictating right and wrong by your BASE instinct).

    What have you been hearing, huh?

    Damned/misled by your theology.

    There is no other way to your salvation(world). If you fall on/follow false theology, you…..die.

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  • Map SIn Pstlbs cum Plp on LG:

    It will be a good mental exercise to map SIN political billionaires n peeing n pooing compliant bureucratsdescribed by LKY very own children who have gone from their brownnosing to total inversion attitude with a change from L’Nepotist to adversaries with the passing of the strict belter as wikileaked by members of the closed circle of first class peeing n pooing CB, on US Senator Loinsay Gramme. The candidates included the discarded seat warming uncle peanut goh, a highly decorated peeing n pooing brownoser, now has his very own son on the chipping block og family disgrace followed surprisingly so closing after what netizens’ r calling for that scum to be put away to save poor innocent maids n his associates. Having mapped on this us political scum triator lying bast**d, perhaps greater lessons r to learn to map the living n dead pstlbs on Trumpwith respect to his reported white supremacy mentality, above the laws eroticism, his n his supporter lawless ballot boxes, call for extermination of his political opponents. Amomg these a new parallelism of his label of his supporters DISGUSTING to the Oxbridge label l’ nepotic chieftain DAFT on his supporters n the us media query whether the trumpic supporters care above their depravation n humiliation of their devoted pstlb. The same query could be interesting placed on the peeing n pooing supporters!j

    Interesting to look on ourselves while watching the garbages the american thrown at their presidents. SIN bananas add to the whate supremacy of trump after SIN was stripped 39 millions in the moronic pursuit of naking history with two pstlbs with the same feather as SIN billionaire pstlbs!

    Good exercise for improving the ninds n rid of the lingering indoctrination modified peeing n pooing excuse to use isa in the FG n now POFMA by the FG on Singaporeans with the two F salient difference in the numbers of alphabets but with the same implied 4 letter synonym.

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  • Everton:

    Really,if I judge I ask plaintiff one simple question.is,”since you can get 5 lawyers why not serve others like the defendant who had commented.”

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