Reinventing the PAP? A Hard Truth

In Corporate governance on 19/09/2011 at 8:00 am

So PM wants to reinvent the PM and wants it to listen to the people and if necessary change policy. But he spoilt this by saying in the same street interview that he had personally cleared the two media statements from PA that caused much unhappiness.

He should take to heart this statement made by the very arrogant and hyper French president (sounds familiar?)  said late last year, “from the moment that something you do is not understood, or causes a controversy, it’s a mistake.”

Taken to its logical and must stupid conclusion, this can mean never doing anything unpopular. But otherwise, the statement makes sense.

In the S’pore context, because many S’poreans do not understand why the PA “fixed” the WP at Aljunied, the role of the PA, why university education should be rationed, the expensive health and medical care systems, the public housing shortage, the security and overcrowding of the public transport, the need for FTs, and the obsession with GDP growth, he should realise these are policy mistakes. And that he had better do something abt changing the policies or finding new ways to present these policies (including making available more information to help persuade). Or to do both.

Chanting the old mantras or Hard Truths do not help persuade.

I was thinking of saying, “Pigs will fly first”. But given that it’s only four months since the general election, and less than a month since the presidential election, I’ll “pang chance” him and give him a little longer to prove his sincerity abt changing the PAP.  But so long as the PAP believes that being unpopular shows that its leaders have the “right stuff”, the PAP will not never change.

  1. Sinkies deserve the govt they get. Full Stop.

  2. I don’t believe PAP considers these as “policy mistakes.” For example, the rationing of university education is to save money as they cannot create enough jobs that require a university degree. It is a PAP policy failure (not mistake) to generate high paying jobs. Given the size of Singapore economy, it should be a relatively easy job to move to a knowledge-based / value-add service economy. They tried in the 90’s to move into biotech but it was a huge failure.

  3. based on the argument that populist thinking is bad, does this mean that since it is now populist to be non-populist, it is therefore wrong to be non-populist? that the only good decisions are ones that people don’t like becos and say offer no benefits to them, and are in fact making them suffer? yeah, tt’s how absurd things are getting! time to get real.

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