My Speech Refuting LHL’s Claims of High Moral Principles Underlying His Hypocritical Attempt to Overturn the Will of the People Just As Was Done to JBJ
I know that many of you are expecting me to be talking about Budget 2022, which plagiarizes some of the Reform Party’s proposals but still utterly fails to address the problems of Singaporeans. However that will have to wait till next week. Today I wanted to ridicule PM Lee’s speech in Parliament in support of the motion to fine Raesah Khan and to refer Pritam Singh and Faisal Manap to the AG for prosecution for perjury. Most of you will already have seen that his speech angered India and led to the Singapore Ambassador being called in by PM Modi’s government for a dressing down
LHL was stony faced like a stern headmaster admonishing and punishing naughty pupils. However his high moral tone was an exercise in blatant hypocrisy spoken without any sense of irony. It was a pack of lies from start to finish. To quote Goebbels, Hitler’s Minister of Propaganda, “if you tell a lie big enough and keep repeating it, people will eventually come to believe it. Unfortunately Singaporeans have come to accept without question many of the lies that LHL tells, even though in Singapore, just as in Orwell’s 1984 or any totalitarian state that were the role models for 1984, words are used with the opposite meaning of what they are supposed to mean.
Take LHL’s use of the word “democracy” as though it’s established fact. The truth is that, apart from having regular elections, we are about as far away from a democracy as it’s possible to get. LHL knows that Singaporeans, brainwashed by decades of indoctrination starting in school, will for the most part unquestioningly accept his false assumption. Yet it fails at the first test. For a country to be a democracy it’s generally accepted by most academics that there has to have been a change of government. That is why Malaysia, Indonesia, South Korea and Taiwan are democracies but Singapore is not. In Singapore it’s not even possible to contemplate a change of government thanks to the PM’s tight grip on all the institutions that in a democratic state would be independent of his control. Our media is state media and LHL gets to decide what is published and what is not. We don’t have an independent Elections Commission, it’s just a department directly under his control. LHL, like his dad before him, freely makes use of state resources to keep himself in power and to monitor and then destroy his opponents. He also makes sure that Singaporeans are reminded that he controls their housing and their savings and tries to scare them that if they elect Opposition members they will lose out on amenities. He uses state-owned companies, where he placed his wife at the top on a salary he refuses to disclose to Singaporeans, to distribute financial rewards to his allies and buy enthusiastic foreign support for his dynastic rule. There is no separation of powers because not only does his party have nearly 90% of the seats in Parliament but he appoints the judges. In addition he controls the coercive power of the state, including the AG the police and the ISD and uses them against his opponents. The Government has bought sophisticated spyware from an Israeli company but Singaporeans cannot find out if their phones have been hacked and there appear to be no controls on its use.
With breathtaking arrogance he says his father could have chosen to make Singapore a one-party state “But he deliberately chose not to, because he knew that without the need to contest and win elections, the governing party would over time become complacent and flabby, and that would be disastrous for Singapore.” As I said above the holding of elections was sufficient for a country to be a democracy then most of the world’s dictatorships would be classified as democracies. The Workers Party have colluded in this charade by deliberately only fielding candidates for less than a third of the seats in Parliament and thus signalling to the PAP that they will never be a threat to LHL’s hegemony. But the use of GRCs and gerrymandering, started by LKY and continued by his son, has resulted in a situation where 40% of the vote for the Opposition only translates into 11% of the seats in Parliament. Thus it is impossible for the Opposition to hold the government to account. LKY established a totalitarian dictatorship in all but name in which all the institutions of government are subverted and bent to the will of one man. LHL was fortunate that this was handed to him on a plate.
LHL rubbishes countries that are real democracies, lamenting that they have fallen from the high standards of their founders. Yet this is another of his big lies! Once the Barisan Socialis walked out of Parliament in 1965 Singapore was a one party state until my father JBJ was elected in 1981. And then LKY worked ceaselessly to undermine the results of a democratic election. He used his control of Parliament to almost constantly fine JBJ or impede him. Finally, after JBJ was re-elected in 1984 with an increased majority, LKY used his AG, who in a democracy should be independent, to bring false charges against JBJ and deprive him of his seat. A higher court, the UK Privy Council, found JBJ to be innocent of all the charges laid against him and to have suffered a grievous injustice. Yet LKY’s government refused to restore him to his seat, alleging that he had not shown enough “contrition” for a non-existent crime that he was not guilty of. Now history repeats itself and LHL uses the same humbug when he says that the WP leaders have not demonstrated shame or contrition for their sins.
Strangely LHL cites the US, where he says that three-quarters of Republican voters are convinced that Joe Biden didn’t win the election and that it was stolen from Trump. He goes on to say “How do you uphold a system, when a large segment of the population is convinced the elected government is illegitimate”. how does LHL have the temerity, the sheer bald-faced lying cheek to talk about stealing elections when his father overturned the democratic election of JBJ through an abuse of power and everyone knows what he is engaged on now is nothing less than to overturn the results of the 2020 election? Even though you have 83 seats in Parliament LHL will not retire until he has a one-party Parliament once more.
LHL’s only achievement in life is to have Singapore handed to him on a platter by his dad. He’s never done a real job in his life. Yet his fake sense of moral outrage and superiority knows no bounds even though surely even he must appreciate the irony. He cites Israel and India as countries which have fallen far below the high ideals of their founders. LHL’s comments about India’s Parliament being full of criminals, including alleged murderers and rapists, has already caused a diplomatic ruckus. It’s probably intended as a dog whistle to racist Singaporeans, given that Pritam is Indian and at all costs LHL wants to stop Singapore from having a minority PM. But it’s his remarks about Israel that really take the biscuit.
LHL’s old friend and ally, Netanyahu, is on trial for exactly the same that LHL does with impunity. He is accused of using his Government’s power to procure favourable coverage in the media by doing favours for the owners. LHL doesn’t need to do any favours since by law he controls 99% of the media in Singapore. He has not been scared to shut down even the remaining fairly timid 1% of independent media if they criticise him through an armoury of repressive laws. By controlling the media he ensures sycophantic and continuous coverage of his government and the systematic disparagement belittling and non-coverage of his opponents. Now he can no longer rely on Singaporeans themselves to pay directly for the privilege of being gaslighted and brainwashed, he is corruptly using $900 million in state funds to keep his media allies from collapsing due to market forces. This helps him stay in power and keeps the money rolling in. Not only does he earn in excess of $2 million per year, until recently his wife was earning a salary as CEO of Temasek that he arrogantly and unreasonably refused to disclose but was probably 10 to 100 times what he earned. And his son is head of the Technology Agency and probably will succeed his father as PM once there has been a suitable interregnum. How is LHL not guilty of corruption? The fact that Netanyahu could be indicted while still in office shows not how far Israel has fallen but how far ahead it is of Singapore as far as transparency and accountability go. Unlike Singapore, the prosecutorial and judicial authorities are not scared to question abuses of power by the executive and the country is not in thrall to the whims of one man.
LHL references the UK and the Partygate scandal. He cites John Major saying that when politicians lie and lies become commonplace truth ceases to exist. Since LHL controls Parliament, the media, the AG, the courts, the CPIB and the police and ensures that the President is a puppet through ensuring virtually that only his wife and appointees satisfy the criteria for election how will anyone know whether LHL breaks the law? But we do know he broke the law before he even became PM. I refer to the Nassim Jade scandal of 1995 when LHL, his dad and other members of his family were able to buy luxury properties before anyone else at a discount not available to the public. Goh Chok Tong was PM at the time and he decided not to refer LHL and his dad to the CPIB despite clear evidence that they had obtained the pecuniary advantage through their positions. They weren’t even referred to the Committee of Privileges though they admitted guilt by returning the discount they received to the developer.
Apart from his corrupt control of the media to keep himself in office, LHL has also abused the power of his office and the AG to prosecute people for criminal defamation. He has sued Roy Ngerng and Leong Sze Hian for defamation despite the fact that he appoints the judges who hear the defamation cases and unlike in the UK and the US, there is no jury. His father abolished the jury system because he was worried that people who were not beholden to him for office, like the judges, might not reach the verdicts that he wanted. In the UK, Ministers have to stand down from office before suing for defamation precisely because of the conflict of interest.
His most glaring abuse of his office is to appoint his wife to run Temasek on a salary which he kept secret from Singaporeans by abusing the power of his government and refusing unreasonably to answer questions in Parliament. During her time as CEO, she has certainly earned hundreds of millions of dollars, if not billions. Since there is no Freedom of Information Act in Singapore, unlike the UK and the US, we have no way of finding out. When I told my old friend the Governor of the Bank of England this he burst out laughing. The rest of his Ministers and PAP MPs copy their master. Many Minister’s spouses and relatives are appointed to million dollar salary jobs with GLCs, like Josephine Teo’s husband. MPs and ex-MPs and Ministers often sit on the boards of or are given similarly rewarding jobs with the same GLCs. To talk about moral lapses like Partygate in other countries, while from the PM downwards the PAP elite have a spigot leading directly from the state coffers into their open mouths, is the height of hypocrisy.
So don’t be fooled! When the PM talks about shame, you need to throw his words back at him. Does he have no shame? His actions have nothing to do with morality or Confucian virtues which his siblings have already accused him of lacking. He’s abusing his control of Parliament and the AG solely to overturn the valid result of a democratic election and clear the way for his son to succeed him, just as his father did the same for him by overturning JBJ’s election. Show your disgust at his actions by voting him out at the next election!