5/25/2009

Change must be fair, says Chok Tong

Chok Tong has spelt out three fundamental principles for change in the political system. First, 'they must be fair to all contesting parties and "not be biased in favour of one party or the other".' Second, 'they must result in a strong, effective Govt.' And third, they must 'facilitate representation for diverse views in parliament, including views of Opposition parties.' For Chok Tong to talk about a fairer system and the representation of diverse views, including opposition views, is a sign that there is an opening up, a change in the PAP's dominant ideology. Before this, the PAP's position is to win all the seats at all costs, be there opposition in Parliament or otherwise. Perhaps PAP has become wiser, knowing that there are values to have real alternative views, and that they really do not have the monopoly of talent and wisdom. Perhaps they also realised that a time has come when the people forming the opposition parties are decent and respectable people that will contest the election fairly and not to do Singapore in. And many could have very similar values with the PAP except with some differences here and there. Now we will have to see what are the changes and whether they conform to this new paradigm shift, to be more inclusive, more willing to listen and accept opposition as part and parcel of a mature political system. In the first principle above, it wil be interesting to see how this could be done to be seen as being fair by the opposition parties and not fair according to what PAP thinks is fair. The third principle is much easier to attain by working out some formula for greater participation in Parliament. The most tricky part is the second principle. How could a system ensure that there will be 'a strong, effective Govt?' Strong means a big majority. Effective means the candidates must be straight As material. To make these compatible with the second principle will not be easy. We will wait and see the details.

12 comments:

Anonymous said...

Redbeans,
I agree on what Ghok Tong says. Yes, the system must be fair to opposition party, and it also must be fair that opp party is also run by PAP just like worker union is run by PAP and Sweet Say, never mind the conflict of interest and nonsense.

Only when PAP party control and run all opp party by having its ministers heading each opp party will Chok Tong says "This is not a wayang and now we promise you 100% fairness to all political parties !"

Anonymous said...

"Perhaps PAP has become wiser, knowing that there are values to have real alternative views, and that they really do not have the monopoly of talent and wisdom. Perhaps they also realised that a time has come when the people forming the opposition parties are decent and respectable people that will contest the election fairly and not to do Singapore in. And many could have very similar values with the PAP except with some differences here and there."; unquote.

Redbean:

may i offer a different take on your above Statement.
Me thinks that PAP Leaders are not just wise and getting wiser, they are very clever, if Goh Chok Tong is representative of the PAP Leadership.

There exist much survival and social problems which will be very challenging and THREATENING to Singaporeans and their RULERS(RULING POLITICIANS).

In view of the fact that by itself, Singapore has no mean to overcome a prolong economic downfall and the Leadership has to depend on other nations or LUCK to recover or sustain survival. It will be strategic and CLEVER of the Incumbent Regime to pass the Baton of Governance.

Recovery of economic viability and prosperity for Singapore seem weak in prevailing circumstances. It will be lucky if economic situation in Singapore does not deteriorates too sharp and too fast as to cause more hardships and hence social unrest. However, it is not too remote to foresee the possibility of an extended global economic downturn which will adversely and greatly affects Singapore.

There could be and likely mounting unemployment, financial difficulty, health and family problems that will exacerbate social problems. These issues will in turn exert much more on the Leadership to deliver solutions. It won't be easy since Singapore has absolutely no natural resource.

As it is, the Regime had resorted to bringing in foreigners, setting up gaming/gambling(car racing, casino) industries which have yet to prove any contribution in the long run. For all we know, these measures could add on more problems in the future. Here, we must acknowledge that our Present Leadership did its' duty.

On balance, it appears that it is going to be a very tedious and challenging road ahead for any leadership.

SO, i guess; HAVING HAD A GOOD FOUR DECADES OF REWARDING LEADERSHIP and now THAT THE POTENTIAL DIFFICULTIES ARE APPARENT AND HARD TO OVERCOME, it will be a blessing if others come in to take over the Administration of the Country. THE NEW LEADERSHIP(if one ever materialized) WILL HAVE TO FACE AND TACKLE ANY PROBLEM HENCE ON!!!

Imagine how wonderful it will be to retire with abundance in assets to enjoy for a few generations.

patriot

Anonymous said...

"Perhaps PAP has become wiser, knowing that there are values to have real alternative views, and that they really do not have the monopoly of talent and wisdom. Perhaps they also realised that a time has come when the people forming the opposition parties are decent and respectable people that will contest the election fairly and not to do Singapore in. And many could have very similar values with the PAP except with some differences here and there."; unquote.

Redbean:

may i offer a different take on your above Statement.
Me thinks that PAP Leaders are not just wise and getting wiser, they are very clever, if Goh Chok Tong is representative of the PAP Leadership.

There exist much survival and social problems which will be very challenging and THREATENING to Singaporeans and their RULERS(RULING POLITICIANS).

In view of the fact that by itself, Singapore has no mean to overcome a prolong economic downfall and the Leadership has to depend on other nations or LUCK to recover or sustain survival. It will be strategic and CLEVER of the Incumbent Regime to pass the Baton of Governance.

Recovery of economic viability and prosperity for Singapore seem weak in prevailing circumstances. It will be lucky if economic situation in Singapore does not deteriorates too sharp and too fast as to cause more hardships and hence social unrest. However, it is not too remote to foresee the possibility of an extended global economic downturn which will adversely and greatly affects Singapore.

There could be and likely mounting unemployment, financial difficulty, health and family problems that will exacerbate social problems. These issues will in turn exert much more on the Leadership to deliver solutions. It won't be easy since Singapore has absolutely no natural resource.

As it is, the Regime had resorted to bringing in foreigners, setting up gaming/gambling(car racing, casino) industries which have yet to prove any contribution in the long run. For all we know, these measures could add on more problems in the future. Here, we must acknowledge that our Present Leadership did its' duty.

On balance, it appears that it is going to be a very tedious and challenging road ahead for any leadership.

SO, i guess; HAVING HAD A GOOD FOUR DECADES OF REWARDING LEADERSHIP and now THAT THE POTENTIAL DIFFICULTIES ARE APPARENT AND HARD TO OVERCOME, it will be a blessing if others come in to take over the Administration of the Country. THE NEW LEADERSHIP(if one ever materialized) WILL HAVE TO FACE AND TACKLE ANY PROBLEM HENCE ON!!!

Imagine how wonderful it will be to retire with abundance in assets to enjoy for a few generations.

patriot

Anonymous said...

Haha, what he is saying is actually nothing will ever change. If I may say so, this is just propaganda in preparation for the next election. Sounds good to the ears, but will never come about.

Firstly, for real change to the political system the ruling party must be fair to all voters, not just the contesting parties and candidates and most of all, not be biased in favour of voters of one party when it comes to things like upgrading etc. Can they afford that?

Secondly, to have a strong, effective Govt really means having just one dominant party, nothing more, nothing less and certainly not sharing power with an opposition party. So, what does he really mean when he said they must result in a strong, effective Govt? How to ensure such a result? Only one way and that is cast in stone in the present system. It will not change one bit.

Thirdly, can we really come to the stage where the views of opposition parties can be considered. The moment Low or Chiam come up with different views in Parliament they pounce on them or attempt to silence them in numbers. In so many years of opposition in Parliament, has there ever been an adoption of an opposition candidate's views in anything? Borrowed maybe, with modifications, but never adopted.

So, wait and see. But probably not in my lifetime.

Lost Citizen

Jaunty Jabber said...

If I refer Government as a dose of medication, I would think that "strong & effective" means the government would rid or ease the pain of the people, providing cure & aid to the needys.

redbean said...

i think chok tong meant well.

he has spoken and will be judged by what he does. his whole credibility is hanging on this.

Anonymous said...

Wooden is sure talking cock again,judging fr his track record,a compassione society,caring society,ete,etc

I dont believe him,do you???

Anonymous said...

If you believe him, you must also believe that pigs can fly.

redbean said...

you people are more cynical than me a hundred times. maybe you are still remembering the catherine lim episode when she got a dressed down from chok tong. but time has changed. then it was a one way dressing down. today, even catherine lim has her own blog and does not need the official media to give her a space to voice her replies.

so any dressing down today will be vehemently met by more vocal opposition in cyberspace. and both sides will have their own space to say their peace. in fact cyberspace now offers any blogger more space than the official media can offer.

so, when a public official says something but does not live up to it, he is sure to invite public bollocking until he has no where to hide his face.

and, when chok tong said those things, he must have prepared for it or be persecuted in cyberspace for doing otherwise. i am sure everyone will be waiting to rub it in if given a chance.

Anonymous said...

As Ling How Doong would say, GCT is just talking cock. Come on Redbean, he could not even stand on his own two feet when he was PM, what makes you think what he's saying now has even a sprinkling of substance? He's got too much free time on his hands so once in a while must open his mouth just to show that he is still alive and kicking. In all probability, he was tutored on the fine art of talking-cock-when-you-are-no-longer-pm by his erstwhile predecessor. Of course no one can beat the Grand Old Man himself but can't fault Chok Tong for at least trying.

Anonymous said...

If SM has any real credibility left, Hougang and Potong Pasir will be under PAP now.

Instead, both went to the opposition, with higher percentage of votes, even with his intervention during the last election.

Need I say more?

Lost Citizen

redbean said...

from the comments here, it is obvious that chok tong has lost a lot of ground, at least in the eyes of netizens. i hope he reads these comments and take note of his ratings.