The Hsien Loong shocker
Did anyone of you hear what Hsien Loong said in his National Day Rally last night? It was a shocker alright. More space for political participation. Outdoor demonstration allowed at Hong Lim. Liberalisation of the internet for political campaigns and factual movie scripts. This is a big move definitely. The devil is in the implementation of this change. Would it be just a motherhood statement or is it real? It must be as this is broadcast over the TV and in the papers as well. I was getting worried a few weeks back when Chua Lee Hoong was trumpeting that our authoritarian system is the alternative model to the liberal western model. I thought we are heading that way. And when Ho Peng Kee still insisted that anyone who wanted to participate in political discourse must get into the political arena, things looked grim. Would Ho Peng Kee and his men go around cyberspace asking bloggers if they are poets, philosophers or public intellectuals, or else join a political party? Did Ho Peng Kee got Hsien Loong's message? Or would people and kids be rounded up for putting up white elephants or selling white elephant T shirts? The reality and perception must be in sync, and the reality speaks louder if it is different from the perception or publicly announced govt policies. If things are what Hsien Loong had said, we are marching into a new revolution, a New Age of Internet. And every blogger is a pioneer and active participant in this revolution. And we should be proud of ourselves to be in this movement. Over the last couple of years the govt must be monitoring very closely the happenings in cyberspace. And they must find some comfort that cyberspace could self regulate, and there are decent and passionate bloggers who are airing their views, disagreeing with policies, but all for the betterment of the country and people. Cyberspace is not just rubbish and rogues and scoundrels who abuse their freedom of expression to attack people recklessly. Mysingaporenews and redbeanforum have played a small and significant part in proving that discussion of political and national issues can be conducted rationally and sensibly. We have been in existence for quite sometime and no one has come knocking at our doors in the middle of the night. We should continue to say our piece in the way we are doing, kpkb if necessary, to get our views heard. 90,000 hits a month, that can translate into a substantial number of people reading our news. And they will pass it to their friends and their friends to their friends. It is a communicating process that cannot be under estimated. Keep posting fellow bloggers. Hsien Loong has given the green light. And if Ho Peng Kee ask if you are a poet, philosopher or public intellectual, tell him to see Hsien Loong for the answer.