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I am Singaporean XXIX – On Blind Faith. June 2, 2007

Posted by The Truth in I am Singaporean, Vol. I.
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I am referring to this special exposé released by the Online Citizen. It’s about how millions of dollars are unaccounted for in the public service. I will not go into the details of this report, because you can read it for yourself. Rather, what i am going into the potential repercussions this report can have for Singapore, and why it is relevant to you, as a Singaporean. If you’re not, maybe this will shed some light upon what Singapore is really like.

The report was not given much emphasis by the Gahmen and their mouthpieces, for very obvious reasons. They fear it will undermine public faith in them, and they fear that it will harm their superhuman image and their ability to introduce legislation at a snap of the finger, with the reason of ‘it’s the best for Singapore. We know and you don’t.’ To put it short, it’s a big loss of face. And in a place like Singapore, where face is very important, that’s one commodity the politicians cannot afford to lose. Really. I’m sure that the States Times is swamped by letters regarding the AGO’s report, but they aren’t published. The States Times publishes articles and letters on the immediate aftermath of the whole thing, but the deeper repercussions are not published. Is it because the people are too dumb to comprehend? Is it because any undermining of the people’s faith in the Gahmen means that Singapore is going down?

Ever since the Singaporean Dream took off, there’s been this blind, arrogant faith in the Gahmen. I’m not saying PAP or whatever, but it’s just a blind faith. Blind faith that our politicians are infallible. Blind faith that they do the best for Singapore. Blind faith that whatever they do is in the interests of Singapore. So, we pay them more and more, we let them raise our taxes, we let them whore our country to millions of foreign talents, who may not actually be top-notch people, people who will pack their bags and leave at the next job opportunity. We all believe it’s so perfect and beautiful, and when you ask a Singaporean what makes the Gahmen so good, you can expect ‘efficiency’ as a reply. True, there’s a lot of bureaucracy here in Germany. But is the ideal behind the Gahmen good? So a government is efficient. But does an efficient government increase the salaries of its ministers because of its efficiency? Is the government efficient because we’re too cowed to say what we really feel? Is the government efficient because there is no effective opposition?

So we place our blind faith in something which is temporal and short-term, and we use it to rationalise our votes. If that’s the real reason for the blind faith, then Singaporeans had better not read the Auditor-General’s report. It’ll cause their faith to shatter and cause them to wander the streets aimlessly. (an analogue for you: what if one day the Bible was proven to be a fake?) But of course, i am exaggerating. And this blind faith also has a certain influence of the objects of this faith, namely, the ministers/ministries.

It makes them arrogant and careless, it makes them believe that they are invulnerable, that all they have to do is turn on the charm and watch the coffers fill. It makes them believe that serious mistakes are ‘setbacks’, and that nothing is wrong, so they don’t have to fix anything. After all, we have the people’s mandate, don’t we? We are going to decide what direction Singapore is going to take, and like it or not, they are going to follow. That’s what blind faith does. It’s like a civilised version of fundamentalist religion. Because of our blind faith, if we were told to work until we die, so we work until we die. Gahmen knows best. If we were told to pay more taxes, we just pay more taxes. Gahmen knows best, and jail got no life. Everything we read in the States Times is taken to be gospel truth, while it may be whitewash.

Why is it like fundamentalist religion? Replace Gahmen with ‘god’, replace States Times with ‘holy text’, and replace jail got no life with ‘i don’t want to go to Hell.’ Just that we are civilised and Gahmen won’t tell us to go and die. Not yet, that is.

This report shows that our gods are human, that the Gahmen is human too. Mistakes happen, and in their arrogance, they were never discovered nor reported until they were discovered by the auditors. It shows that blind faith is not the right kind of faith we should have towards our Government, indeed towards ANY government. A rational, cautious faith is one which we should have towards those above us, not a blind faith and a belief that whatever happens, they will bring us through. This kind of faith is worse than any ‘crutch mentality’ the Gahmen tries to ‘protect’ us from. (isn’t it weird? They don’t want us to have a crutch mentality, but they DO want us to have blind total unquestioning faith in them!) They don’t want a material crutch mentality, but an ideological one would do very well, thank you very much. As long as Singaporeans cannot see a Singapore without the PAP, they’ll remain in power until kingdom come.

We have to open our eyes and start thinking. After receiving 66,7% last elections, such errors still happen. I’m not saying that the PAP regime is facing the twilight already, but i’m saying that we, as a people, should make it very very clear that the Gahmen is answerable to US. To do that, we need to cast off the shackles of blind, unquestioning faith and perceive our surroundings for what they are. Blind, unquestioning faith can cause the Gahmen to take us down a very slippery slope from which there is no recovery. Think they won’t ever? Think again. Think we don’t have to start questioning and thinking because LKY is still MM? Think again. Arrogance is built up over time. Why give it more time to expand unchecked?

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Comments»

1. techme - June 3, 2007

All I can really say is that most Singaporean are not really blind. It is just that their eyes is actually located in their ass rather than on their head. Because the eyes is concealed, they can’t see anything beyond except carrot by gahmen. They will continue to vote for PAP because the PAP bring them Prata And Prata. And because their eyes cannot smell and taste anything in ass, their eyes thought shit is wonderful and tasteless although it look disgusting.

2. guojun - June 3, 2007

? Prata? Erm…nice metaphor. Heh. Let’s just say they are really short-sighted.

3. tranced citizen - June 4, 2007

They know. they don’t care. All these Singaporeans want is progress package, GST offstets, economic growth rewards, citizens bonus and whatnots.

4. insens - June 4, 2007

A nation of Sheep will beget a government of Wolves

5. ziyang - June 6, 2007

All the anti govt rhetoric aside, i find it appalling that EDB only went thru its first audit. For Singapore who preaches accountability and incorruptibility, this is really a smack in the face. Haha yeah like what you said, its high time for people to stop placing blind faith in the government. Power when unchecked leads to a lot of undesirable consequences. Reminds me of this Da Vinci Code quote:
‘uis custodiet ipsos custodes’

6. The Auditor's Report II « Winter Is Coming - June 6, 2007

[…] I seem to have taken a different view from that of my learned friend Guojun. To set the record straight I do not. In fact if one reads his post his point is merely to […]

7. The Truth - June 6, 2007

if you notice, this is not vehemently anti-government. I am just saying that it is more important for us to KNOW what we are doing and what we are voting for, instead of having this ideological crutch mentality. We have to find our souls back and more importantly our rationality.

8. Ned Stark - June 7, 2007

I guess the issue here, in simple terms, is that we cannot abdicate our responsibilty for our future; not to the government, not to anyone else. We have to start taking responsibility.

9. Toby - June 9, 2007

Ive been reading..thank you

10. guojun - June 10, 2007

and you are?


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