自我对话 5 Self Conversation
Even the next general election is 4 or 5 years later, the PAP has already begun their election campaign through the National Conversation by emphasizing traditional value.
This is in line with the typical PAP kiasu and kiasi mentality. To start earlier is kiasu and ‘afraid of losing more votes’ in the next GE is kiasi. After all, kiasu and kiasi are the PAP politics of tradition.
Anyway, the public media is free, the public administration is free, and even the participants are free too. In this world, it is so hard to find free goods and under the one-party ruled Singapore, it is not only possible but also a practical and effective (?) propaganda.
The tragedy of the commons
When there are so many free commons of media, public administration and participants, the tragedy of the commons will have to appear, especially there is only one user – the PAP.
All these free goods are available for the PAP. So, they tend to over used, over exploited, and over applied until these resources have no more values or add negative values to the PAP.
But they still believe in tradition – the traditional way of misusing media, public resources and people. They can’t find an alternative way to reach out to the people.
To the PAP, it is the best way to gather public support and agreement to their policies. They know they can no longer attract large crowd to their election rally. National Conversation is the only way for the PAP to reach out to more people, more supporters and most importantly the traditional voters. No wonder they are only interested (and have confidence) to attract few thousands participants to the National Conversation.
Top down approach continued
In the telecasted “A Conversation with PM Lee”, from the sitting arrangement, it is still very top down, very traditional. No wonder they talk about traditional family values, they still want you to pay respect to them as it they are still high up even it is a dialogue – they are seeking views and opinions from you. Dialogue is supposed to be equal and paying due respect to each other. They can’t do it the ‘town hall’ way, but only the traditional way.
The emphasis of traditional values is understandable and it reminds Singaporeans the PAP contributions to Singapore. This is a reminder that changes are not always good and a vote for change is not the main stream of traditional voters.
However, who is the one who breaks away from the traditional values? Of course, it is the PAP. You know housing is important to marriage and family planning, but you create a situation of short supply of public housing. You know the traditional value of public transport is for the public, instead you look for profit. You know education is important but you limit the places of university education.
The traditional parliament election is single constituency. But the PAP introduces GRC, NCMP, and NMP to devalue the one-man one-vote system. If the PAP wants to improve the system, it should introduce proportional representation election system. Instead of going forward, it goes backward just to keep them in power. And they call it a traditional value of election system!
Sincere effort to get votes, not for oppositions
Heng Swee Keat said it is a sincere effort. He hopes more people will join the National Conversation. Rather than seeking feedbacks, the PAP is interesting to feel the ground. They had misjudged the ground in GE2011 and PE2011. They hope through sincerity and traditions, more supporters including new citizens can come out openly and influence others to support the PAP.
National Conversation may last for more than one year or two years, there is no time limit, no restriction on topics. It can even extend to 2016, just ahead of the next GE. They can also use this opportunity to look for more candidates, especially those with ‘radical views’. This can also serve as the training for the new minsters and new MPs.
This sincere effort of the PAP is, of course, for the PAP and by the PAP. No wonder this is a national program without the oppositions. Otherwise, the result of sincere effort will be shared and depreciated.
When PM Lee talks about a stronger Singapore promises a better future for Singaporeans, his sincere effort is to urge Singaporeans to think about the PAP in a traditional mindset like the past 50 years – an era without oppositions. The meaning of stronger Singapore is same as a stronger PAP likes the past.
Does it mean the traditional voters of the PAP are moving away? This is why some say the National Conversation is a con job and the aim is to con more traditional voters to continue support the PAP.