Heng’s Performance Shows He Would Not Survive If He Was Not Protected from Competition
The main reason I chose to study Economics was that it truly is the Queen of all Sciences. Economics provided the blinding insight that competition leads to the survival of the fittest, and to Darwin’s theory of evolution. Nature is ruthless and those organisms that are best adapted to their environment will prevail, eventually wiping out other species that are less well adapted in the ceaseless battle for resources.
Ever since LKY, who for all his undoubted oratorical skills could not cope with my dad in Parliament and had to resort to faked-up charges and ludicrous defamation awards to get rid of him and make things safe for his son to succeed him on the throne, the PAP have protected themselves as though they are fragile hothouse flowers that need shielding from the fierce winds of competition. The experiment with live telecasts of Parliamentary debates in the 1980s were ended because my father was so effective at showing up PAP Ministers. He was removed from Parliament in 1986 and, apart from 1997, kept from standing again till his death. After he died LHL’s condolence letter accused him of having tried to destroy the PAP and Singapore’s whole system of government when actually what he was doing was ensuring that the Westminster-style model of political competition and accountability worked.
As a result the PAP have had to face no real competition in Parliament and the quality of their Ministers and MPs have regressed. Question Time has been cut back and there is no Prime Minister’s Questions as in the UK, which give the Leader of the Opposition an opportunity to ensure the executive branch’s actions are scrutinised and held to account. Low’s removal of my dad as leader of the Workers Party with the help of LKY, LHL and the PAP ensured that what had been an effective though severely constrained Opposition became toothless and ineffectual, shying away from asking hard-hitting questions or making even an attempt to hold the executive accountable.
Outside Parliament, as is their prerogative, the PAP make a point of refusing to answer anyone who raises hard questions on subjects they prefer to keep secret. I have been asking questions about the Budget, the real value of our reserves and why the PM appointed his wife as head of Temasek and what he pays her. Nor will they debate with anyone in the Opposition unless it is in brief forums before elections where they demand and receive artificial advantages, like being able to send two representatives so they get double the time. They usually ensure that I am not invited to forums where their failure to answer fundamental questions would be shown up.
Before GE2011 I was not invited to a televised Budget forum in case I embarrassed the Finance Minister, Tharman. Instead the Reform Party was invited to a Mandarin forum. There was a forum before GE2015 to which representatives of all the parties were invited but the PAP were allowed to send two representatives thus giving them twice the time of any of the other parties. I am not invited to any university forums. The BBC also retracted an invitation to me to appear on a discussion about population policy with a PAP Minister, substituting my brother as someone whom the PAP see as reliable or at least someone who will never criticise them directly.
To repeat what I said above, the end-result of this protective mollycoddling has been, as Darwinian theory predicts, a decline in the standards of Parliamentary debate and the ability of PAP Ministers to think on their feet, which was never high to start with. This was particularly in evidence during the motion brought by Heng Swee Keat demanding that Sylvia and Low recuse themselves from involvement with financial matters relating to Aljunied-Hougang Town Council. His fumbling, halting performance against two fairly weak adversaries has been widely ridiculed and lampooned so I will not go into details but it demonstrates that he is unfit to be PM. In a democracy he would be unlikely to survive.
Of course it suits LHL and his family to have a weak and ineffectual candidate as the caretaker regent between his rule and the probable accession of his son Hongyi. LHL has never had any real competition in Parliament or outside and would also not be PM if he was not his father’s son. He famously fainted during the National Day Rally Speech in 2016 but any understandable questions about his health were submerged by an orchestrated campaign of troll attacks by his sycophants, who were largely foreigners given lucrative PR and media jobs in Singapore.
Heng’s disastrous performance shows that in a fair fight, in a state that was even slightly less totalitarian than Singapore) the PAP would not survive. The Emperor is naked! Singaporeans need to stop giving Heng and his master LHL the benefit of the doubt and start believing that competition can only be good for them.