atans1

“Black is white, white is black”: Our UK ambassador defends POFMA

In Political governance on 23/12/2019 at 11:18 am

Regular regulars will know that I’m no fan of POFMA (Fake news is in the eyes of the beholder) even though Alex Tan, Brad Bowels and Lim Tean deserve to kanna POFMAed (The last two talk so much cock that even if the authorities wrongly POFMa them, the courts can still find that they deserve to kannna POFMAed for other BS). As to the SDP’s POFMA, if it kanna POFMA, so should the constructive, nation-building ST.

So I had a great laugh when this appeared in the Economist’s letters section: note the implied argument that POFMA is nothing more than “right of reply”. If so why not make “Right of reply” law apply to social media etc, not juz the media? Someone talking cock, me thimks.

Free speech in Singapore

Contrary to your report (“False alarm”, December 7th), our Protection from Online Falsehoods and Manipulation Act should be looked at in the same context as our belief in the right of reply, which in our view enhances rather than reduces the quality of public discourse, and strengthens and safeguards proper public accountability that must necessarily underpin democracies. Online posts that have been corrected remain available in full, but with links to the government’s response appended. Readers can see both and decide for themselves which is the truth. How does twinning factual replies to falsehoods limit free speech?

You also misrepresented the falsehoods that the government corrected. One post not only accused the government of rigging elections and conspiring to convert Singapore into a Christian theocracy, but also made false claims that it had arrested specific critics. Another did not only question the “investment nous of Singapore’s sovereign-wealth funds”, but based this on false allegations of losses that never occurred. The Economist itself recognises how serious a problem online falsehoods are, for example in “Anglichanka strikes again” (April 21st 2018). Fake stories have influenced British politics, notably in the Brexit campaign. Legislatures around the world have been grappling with this problem.

Singapore, a small English-speaking, multiracial, multi-religious city-state open to the world, is more vulnerable than most to this threat. Having observed in Britain and elsewhere the cost of doing nothing, we decided to act. Singapore’s laws are designed to meet our own context and needs. We have no ambition to set any example for other countries, but neither do we make any apologies for defending our own interests.

Foo Chi Hsia
High commissioner for Singapore
London

Ah well, having to write letters like this is the price of a cushy life funded by us tax payers.

The letter reminds me of Race is BS or “post-truth” at work?

“They wanted facts. Facts! They demanded facts from him, as if facts could explain anything.”
―from LORD JIM (1900) by Joseph Conrad

Ms Foo’s other attempts at comedy and post-truths:

Christmas laughs from our comic lady in London

What next? Senior civil servant saying that those who don’t vote PAP don’t wish S’pore well?

Ang mohs told secret of why PAP wins and wins

Our London ambassador on why Reformasi here is for the deluded

PAP govt speaking? No ler North Korean minister

Economist piece on Amos etc: Dark Side cousin responds

Somehow I’m reminded of

Song of the Witches from Macbeth

Double, double toil and trouble;
Fire burn and caldron bubble.
Fillet of a fenny snake,
In the caldron boil and bake;
Eye of newt and toe of frog,
Wool of bat and tongue of dog,
Adder’s fork and blind-worm’s sting,
Lizard’s leg and howlet’s wing,
For a charm of powerful trouble,
Like a hell-broth boil and bubble.
Double, double toil and trouble;
Fire burn and caldron bubble.
Cool it with a baboon’s blood,
Then the charm is firm and good.

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