(Or “Gd PR for Kong’s message that donors’ wealth multiply will manifold” or “Other people’s money: taz the Prosperity Gospel’s message”)
When I read that Kong Hee ‘s fellow defendants had all engaged Senior Counsels to defend them*, I tot, “Where get money leh?” A SC is not cheap. In a recently concluded case, the SC’s fees (including that of his team of junior lawyers), I know, amounted to over S$1m. And it was rumoured that Susan Lim, the surgeon, sold her Sentosa Cove bungalow for over S$30m, partly to fund her ongoing case that the medical authorities took out against her.
So I expected the question of whether the City Harvest Church was funding the defence to be raised by netizens or the MSM, and if the CHC was funding their defence, how come the Commissioner of Charities allowed it?
Or, I tot, maybe CHC had the foresight (thanks to the God its members worhip?) to have bought a “water-tight” insurance policy that covered its managers legal liabilities? Bit like indemnity policies that doctors, lawyers, accountants, company directors etc take out, except a lot more generous.
Then CHC announced that it was not funding the defence. And there was no mention of an insurance policy.
I then tot, “Wah maybe Auntie Sun’s hubbie’s and CHC’s message that donations to the church would cause donors personal wealth to multiply manifold, is true?”
After all, his co-defendants were at best middle management level professionals earning at best decent salaries, so how can afford SCs? They were not like Kong and Auntie Sun who were entrepreneurs: they spotted a gap in the market that other Christian churches were not exploiting, and went for it. The result: a Sentosa Cove penthouse for Kong Hee, and a rented Hollywood mansion a singing career for Auntie (even then she got other people’s money to fund her fantasies). .
Well turns out that Kong Hee’s friends (and him) are “blessed” by their God. According to a ST report on Saturday, members are rushing to fund the defence of them and Kong. As it’s not via the church, it’s legal. Maybe when the dust clears over the criminal charges, the members should fund
Auntie’s Hollywood lifestyle and her singing career Crossover Project direct? But then all the details of all her expenses might become public.
In “high finance”, a central premise is that the ability to mobilise funds or in the jargon “using other people’s money” is the best indicator of one’s success as a deal maker, and vof one’s influence. By that criteria, Kong and friends are very, very succesful. They can mobilise other people’s money for their own ends. QED: “Prosperity” gospel works.
S’porean Chinese who worship money: forget about going to the Middle Road Quan Yin temple or its branch at Tembling Rd or any other temple famous for rewarding devotees. Juz attend CHC, and make a mega donation.
Leave the rest to the God of the Prosperity Gospel.
*While Kong did not engage a SC, his lawyer charges about the same rates as a typical SC, if not more.