atans1

Double confirm: All Harry’s fault and PM’s siblings are spoiled brats

In Political governance, Public Administration on 29/06/2017 at 1:49 pm

Dr Thum Ping Tjin, a S’porean anti-PAP historian based at Oxford University’s Centre for Global History, talked about the row between PM and his administration on one side and his siblings on the other,  in an interview with Reuters, last week.

Dr Thum said that LKY learnt from the British how to rule (I once heard LKY tell a BBC reporter in the late 80s when questioned about how he reconciled his speeches about repression etc when he was in opposition to what he did later: he laughed and said he learnt from the British administrators who tot him the difference between ruling and talking).

What LKY used in Operations Coldstore and Spectrum is a climate of fear that is in turn used to justify authoritarian measures. His genius (my word) is passing “anti-democratic legislation through the form of democracy but not the substance of it.”:

The power LKY acquired and wielded through this system was led to the “steady erosion of our democratic freedoms and liberty, (and) more importantly the erosion of the independence of state institutions.”

This, Dr Thum argues, was what his son inherited: a system where, like dad, he makes a “decision” which passes through the democratic consultation and legislative process where it is legitimised. Despite the facade of democratic deliberation, such decisions are really foregone.

And this is what got his siblings upset:

“That’s what Lee Wei Ling and Lee Hsien Yang are really upset about. For many years they, of course, benefited from this system, but now the system is being used against them. A decision that Lee Hsien Loong made about the house in Oxley Road has probably been taken in advance. What has happened is that he then convened the committee to legitimise this decision to give it a veneer of parliamentary democracy in order to wash his hands clean, to keep his hands clean, to say it was done in the proper way. But its a foregone conclusion.”

He goes on

“The problem with a system where too much power is concentrated in the hands of one man, is that the interests of that one man from his own perspective becomes indistinguishable from the state’s. As long as that one man was Lee Kuan Yew, there was a very clear harmony between the man and the state but now the Lee family is 3 people and they have very different interests, very different perspectives, and so they are fighting each other.”

And

“Lee Hsien Loong, of course, is now fighting back using the machinery of the state against them which shows just how much his personal and the national interests have blurred together. Again, this is part of Lee Kuan Yew’s legacy. 
“His siblings are fighting against him with the only real weapon they have, which is to try and deprive him of the authority of Lee Kuan Yew.
“So what we have today is a very brittle system which is still reliant on the personal authority of a dead man.”

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a-mpreKaFg4

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  1. Nothing new being said here. Since the 2000s many pundits have put in their tea leaf forecasts for how many years after Old Fart up lorry before a split in PAP occurs. Now is happening with the siblings. No big deal. Greater impact is when the cracks & divergences spill over in the party too. We may yet see another Coldstore in our lifetimes to purge the “subversives”.

  2. thum’s good friend, tan wah piow’s view on this event ?

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