“little disappointment”: Tony Tan to TOC

In Political governance on 01/08/2011 at 7:09 am

Here’s another example of Tony Tan and his team’s carelessness (or is it elitist meritocratic snobbery at work?).when talking to “lesser mortals”, in this case the plebs at TOC. I don’t think, based on TOC’s reply, that the plebs understood why patricians read TOC’s piece “with a little disappointment”.

Let me explain. Tony Tan and his team are disappointed because they must believe in an 18th century philosophical theory that is now treated as a forerunner of the concept of “subjective idealism”. One Bishop Berkeley argued that there are no material objects, only minds and ideas in those minds. He summarised his theory with the motto “esse est percipi” (“To be is to be perceived”). In modern PR-speak, this translates into,“Perception is reality”, one of the major tenets of the PR and public communication industry.

This theory of “Perception is reality” is best summarised in the following example he gave. If a tree in a forest falls, but no-one sees or hears it fall, has it fallen? Berkeley argues that it has not fallen. It is still standing.

An example in the S’pore context would be that S’poreans were not aware of how close the voting would be on polling day in 1988 in Eunos GRC and in Cheng San GRC in 1991. The mainstream media did not report the sentiment on the ground in these two GRCs, so S’poreans were not aware that many S’poreans were unhappy with the PAP. The unhappiness did not exist because it was not reported.

Coming back to Tony Tan. We know that our constructive, nation building media did not see it fit to cover the questions raised by netizens after Tony Tan issued a statement on FaceBook explaining his son’s very, very long disruption from NS. One could reasonably argue (based on the reporting of voters’ views in Eunos and Cheng San) that the media didn’t report the statement and the queries it raised because the media were adopting Berkeley’s reasoning that if no-one knew a tree fell, it hadn’t fallen.

Here because mainstream S’poreans were not aware of the questions raised by some netizens, these questions were never asked (i.e. did not exist). But because TOC informed mainstream S’poreans that the questions existed, they (the questions) came into existence. And this disappointed Tony Tan and team “a little”.

Get it? If you don’t, don’t worry. I am just trying to show that Tony Tan and his team communes not with us “lesser mortals”, but with the immortals. Well let the immortals vote for him.

As for myself,in a three-Tan race, I was planning to vote (admittedly through gritted teeth) for Tony Tan because I didn’t want a “feedback”, “constructive criticism only”, and fickle-minded president i.e. TKL by default. But after this and other public communication failures by Tony Tan, I’ll vote for the guy I want as President, Tan Cheng Bock.

If TKL becomes president, the government can come to a deal with him (remember the 2008 Income AGM?) or remove him.

  1. Look how quick you changed your mind on who to vote for. It will be very interesting as voting day approaches. That’s why they use tracking polls in many countries.

  2. Er wot happened at 2008 Income AGM? Was it reported? If so, didn’t read it. So spill the beans n tell all?

    • He was upset as policy holder over change of bonus scheme. Called for support at AGM where he was going to speak out.. Before meeting Mathia Yeo spoke to him and TKL said he would wait and see.

      After AGM, he kanna tight slap by mgt.

      In 2009, wanted to cause “trouble” at AGM over some other issue. Asked for support. He never said anything at AGM.

      So if as president, he keep quiet , you know has happened before.

  3. He was probably “disappointed” that despite the free lunch given to TOC & a bunch of new media bloggers, they didn’t show any “quid pro quo” (face) to him and still print stuff that are not in favor of his campaign. He must think that the alternative new media can be “bought”. Kudos to TOC and Yawning Bread – for continuing to reflect the realities from the ground, and the truth from the people.

  4. OMG, another TAN? 🙄

  5. Why not vote for Tan Jee Seng?

  6. Cynical Uncle, thanks fr yr email. Why share that info with me? Why not be that responsible voice on the Internet and run the story yourself? Being infected by your cynicism, u want me to draw the flak instead of yourself? Just joking. 😀

    • My unproven thesis. Needs verification.

      Not asking you to blog it. But as you seem well-connected, you could know someone who could verify, disprove it. And get a more influential voice to write abt it.

  7. Although me feels that the President Of Sin is useless;
    at least one president aspirant was kind to buy lunch for
    was the Lunch sponsored?

  8. 1: Patrick Tan’s Bachelor degree in Harvard is not a medical degree, in his own word, it is a pre-medical study.
    So the question is, does Mindef based on the medical need (soil disease) to grant him the deferment? In Tony Tan’s own statement, the deferment is grant for the medical study.

    His study in Harvard:
    1992 Graduated summa cum laude (Highest Honors), Harvard University

    And all Harvard Medical School’s degrees are here:

    2: Patrick Tan study for Ph.D is from 1992-2000 in his CV, however, in the same CV, his graduate thesis is completed in 1998. Is there a two-year gap?

    1998 Charles Yanofsky Award for Most Outstanding Graduate Thesis, Stanford University

    Patrick Tan’s online CV

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