The final assault on PAP
PAP has been a very successful political party for nearly 50 years. Through this period, it was the dominant and unchallenged ruling party and well supported by the majority of people of all races and political affiliations. It has chalked up an impressive track record from successful policies that brought wealth and material comfort to the average citizens and all. And this track record has been the PAP’s first layer of defence. It always, without fail, waved this track record to the voters in every election. This is what we have done and achieved, and challenged the people whether their lives are getting better than before. Its two other armours are super talent MPs and Ministers and impeccable and selfless men and women in leadership roles.
This first ring of defence is starting to crumble. The people are having doubts of their well beings. The elite have no problem identifying with the great material success as everyone of them is a symbol of success.. Even then, some elite are also starting to question things that are not as right as before. Those further down the pecking order, needless to say, are clearer as to whether their lives are getting better or going to get worst.
The second level of defence the PAP has built around it is the quality of its leadership. They are able and talented men and women of great abilities. They are the best of the best, the crème ala crème of the country. This is now ringing hollow. Many policies have failed. Many ministries and ministers are found wanting in their areas of responsibility. And the new recruits at the lower level are viewed with so much scepticism and cynicism that it is not a laughing matter. It was like scraping the bottom of the barrel. The aura of greatness, of infallible men and women with great talents and ideas somehow is drawing a blank. Many are being ridiculed publicly in the social media, in public conversation and private gossip mills.
The third and final ring of defence, the integrity of the leadership, is now exposed to attacks. These include honesty, incorruptibility, moral righteousness, compassion, sincerity, selflessness and other goodness that are expected of benevolent rulers. Now the criticism and challenge are targeted at very personal level, very close to the heart and the persona of each and every leader in the party. This is not just about the ability to deliver anymore, though many are seen as not delivering. The people have gone past the stage of material well being. It is about the softwares, the ideas, the feelings, the hearts and the intangible goodness of being national leaders, to inspire and to lead, for the people and for the country.
When the characters of the leaders are being challenged, and if they cannot hold, there is nothing left to keep the party afloat anymore. Many good and charismatic rulers could survive and rule for years in spite of bad policies and bad administrations. No leaders can survive if they cannot win the support and trust of the people. The last chip to play by unpopular leaders that have lost the support of the people is to usurp power by ruling with an iron fist, authoritarianism, dictatorship, military junta etc etc.
Is the ruling party facing this final stage of assault on their rights and legitimacy to rule the country and people? If this is so, then it would not be long before the final curtain falls.