Monday, 3 December 2012

Important to balance govt's key goals for S'pore: PM Lee

Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong said the government is adjusting the balance between its key goals to achieve Singapore's future objectives.

Mr Lee, who likened these goals to yin and yang elements that complement each other, said it is important to strike a balance between them.

Mr Lee, who is also secretary-general of the ruling People's Action Party (PAP), said this at the party's 32nd conference on Sunday morning. Stressing that the PAP must set a clear direction, he highlighted three key goals. 

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At the PAP rally on 8 Dec last Sunday, LHL was in a desperate and panicky state. He talks about the opposition “checking” on them. He mentioned the word ‘checkmate’, clearly indicating that he is clueless about the notion of modern democracy. So, how is he going to appease the citizens?

Well, if you read his speech carefully, you could really feel the desperation. Phrases like ‘If the PAP fails, Singapore is in deep trouble. We shall not fail’, ‘We don’t make empty promises’ and so on, certainly reflect his desperation.

Worse, for the first time, the PAP openly mentions about the possibility that it may not be able to form the govt (see TRE article – ‘First time PAP admits may not be able to form govt‘). Why? just to scare us to continue to vote for him and his party?

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S'pore can't go down 'red vs blue' path: PM Lee

Singapore cannot afford to go down the path of countries like the United States, where most states clearly belong to either the Democrat or Republican camp and the victorious political party has to chose whose interests to represent, said People's Action Party secretary-general Lee Hsien Loong.

"If Singapore had a blue constituency and a red constituency, I think Singapore will be in trouble," said Mr Lee, who was addressing party activists at a seminar this morning, the intra-party version of the ongoing Our Singapore Conversation.

"We have tried to make sure that all our constituencies are about the same colour … because we want all the constituencies to share the same interests. Then we can think together and when you represent Singapore, you represent the whole of Singapore."

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Singapore's 2 casinos: We did the right thing - Lee Hsien Loong

The Government is under pressure to placate voters without disrupting the influx of talent and labour that has helped the economy to more than double in size since 2004.

The authorities have made it more expensive for companies to hire overseas workers by raising levies and requiring better educational qualifications for some categories of foreigners.

On the contribution of the two casinos to the country’s growth, Mr Lee said: “Economically, it’s been a great success. Socially, the impact has been about what we expected it to be. I think we did the right thing.”

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Two percent growth would be good: Singapore PM

Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong has said that the government is no longer aiming for "ridiculously high" economic growth like those seen in the past years, but rather a more sustainable rate of about 2 to 3 percent per year, local media reported Monday.

Lee said at a conference of the ruling People's Action Party that Singapore's growth rate used to be 7 to 8 percent per year, and 5 percent on average over the last decade, reported Xinhua.

"Now, if you can do 3 to 4 percent, I think that's good. As our workforce grows more slowly in future, even 2 to 3 percent will be considered good growth," Lee said.

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Speakers at PAP conference address areas of dissatisfaction

Mr Victor Lye talking about lessons learned from loss of Aljunied GRC to WP

Several speakers at the ruling People's Action Party (PAP) Conference spoke of ways the party can move forward and tackle areas of dissatisfaction.

The party's defeat in Aljunied GRC was also addressed, with one branch chairman declaring that while it's an uphill task, victory is not impossible.

The PAP's cause has not changed, Central Executive Committee (CEC) member Chan Chun Sing.

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PAP selects Central Executive Committee members

Cadres of the ruling People's Action Party (PAP) have elected members of the party's highest policy-making body, the Central Executive Committee (CEC).

Twelve were elected to the CEC, while two were co-opted.

The 12 who were elected are Mr Lee Hsien Loong, Mr Khaw Boon Wan, Dr Yaacob Ibrahim, Mr Teo Chee Hean, Mr Tharman Shanmugaratnam, Mr Lim Swee Say, Mr K Shanmugam, Mr Chan Chun Sing, Ms Grace Fu, Mr Gan Kim Yong, Mr Heng Swee Keat and Dr Ng Eng Hen.

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Singapore must not "go overboard" and abandon its values: PM Lee

Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong said today that as the country re-examines fundamental questions about its future, it must not "go overboard" and abandon the values that have got Singapore to where it is now.

Pushing back against arguments that a focus on economic growth and a system based on meritocracy has harmed Singapore,

Mr Lee said that Singaporeans who think that the Government over-emphasises growth do not appreciate how a lack of growth will impact the country.

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PM: Singapore will be 'a retirement home' without birthrate boost

Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong said encouraging citizens to have more children is the biggest challenge confronting the Republic if it wishes to remain an economic juggernaut in the developed world.

The Government has not succeeded in impressing on citizens that "this is going to be a retirement home and not a vibrant city" if the population is unsustained, Mr Lee said in an interview on Monday.

"We'll be dealing with it over the next 10 years, and longer," he said of the legacy of a falling birthrate. 

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PM wishes he had stressed population woes sooner

PRIME Minister Lee Hsien Loong has said that he should have pressed home to Singaporeans earlier how quickly the world is going to change and the challenges of an ageing population

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National Conversation important in govt’s decision making: PM Lee

Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong on Saturday spoke of the need to make choices and trade-offs in the governing of the country.

Speaking to activists from the ruling People’s Action Party at a seminar on Saturday, Mr Lee, who is also the PAP Secretary-General, said this also means updating and revising policies, and keeping them afresh.

Developments around the world make a big difference to Singapore’s future and Mr Lee feels it is therefore important to pay attention to external trends, like the growth of India and China, and the disputes in the South China Sea

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A need to ensure PAP does not 'harden hearts'

The People's Action Party (PAP) must ensure it does not "harden hearts" in Aljunied Group Representation Constituency (GRC) to avoid a similar situation seen in the Workers' Party-held ward of Hougang, said PAP's Bedok Reservoir-Punggol Branch Chairman Victor Lye (picture) yesterday.

Speaking at the PAP's party conference, Mr Lye, who succeeded Mr George Yeo as the branch's Chairman after the PAP lost to the WP in Aljunied GRC in the last General Election, argued that the PAP should capitalise on their position as the opposition in Aljunied by addressing "the national desire for alternative voices" in Parliament.

To do so, Mr Lye called for the ruling PAP to return to "basics" by demonstrating more heart in policies, while communicating those to Singaporeans and connecting with them.

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Har? quote of the week

"In Aljunied, we must be prepared to argue for policies that are different from the Government, even if they are somewhat similar to the Opposition's." —PAP's Bedok Reservoir-Punggol Branch Chairman Victor Lye


Viktor said...
might as well vote for opposition then...duh

forgetitlah said...
DID Mr Lye just shot himself in the foot? or did he swop the positions for 'Government' and ' Opposition's'?

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Not red vs blue? Why not?

Why settle for just red or blue?

Singapore can’t go down ‘red vs blue’ path, says PM Lee Hsien Loong. No, he was not talking about birth control pills versus Viagra to boost our birth rates, in which case I may actually agree with him. In his exact words: “If Singapore had a blue constituency and a red constituency, I think Singapore will be in trouble.”

It is moments like these that I shake my head, sigh, and mutter to myself: “Here we go again.”

Why not, PM Lee? Will Singapore be in trouble, or is it the PAP who will be in trouble?

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PM Lee’s “red vs blue path” analogy flawed on many level

“If Singapore had a blue constituency and a red constituency, I think Singapore will be in trouble,” Mr Lee told PAP activists at a morning seminar.

He also said: “We have tried to make sure that all our constituencies are about the same colour — because we want all the constituencies to share the same interests. Then we can think together and when you represent Singapore, you represent the whole of Singapore.”

Unfortunately, PM Lee’s “red vs blue path” analogy is flawed on many levels. 

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PM: Finding the right balance

Actually I wanted to use stronger words but since this is public, I thought it was inappropriate.

How many people are anti-growth? Most still want good pay rises right?

How many people are truly anti-foreigner. It is actually about how poorly the government has been managing this. I thought this is water under the bridge already?

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There goes the TODI papers once again, sounding the cymbals for the PAP without understanding what the noise is all about. The PAP conference saw Pinky telling his party cadres that "The Republic has to find the right balance between the pursuit of its future goals and ensuring that guiding values and principles are not abandoned". 

Somehow, the highly questionable 'meritocratic' system of governance employed by the PAP has now become a national value to uphold. He ignores the calls from certain quarters to take a good hard look at the fault lines created by this system, particularly the manner in which it is taken advantaged of by those who have merited themselves to the higher orders of the land - the elites. 

He fails to acknowledge that meritocracy, which started off as a beneficial product that encourages Singaporeans to contribute productively to nation building, had lost its focus when those who had made it there first began looking after themselves and their own.

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The PAP remains unchanged

Mr Lee Hsien Loong is beginning to sound like the old 78 rpm record that he once used to describe NCMP Dr Lee Siew Choh.

In a recent speech at the PAP’s 32nd Party Conference, he stressed that the mainstay of government policy is economic growth, openness to foreigners and meritocracy

There were the usual warnings that low wage workers will be hardest hit if we don’t have growth, that young people will leave if we don’t have meritocracy, and our economy will suffer without foreign immigrants.

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We must all see things the way PAP does, says PM Lee

Lo and behold, PM Lee Hsien Loong said some things yesterday that confirmed my suspicions and dampened my hopes that he and the other PAP leaders would be able to change to be more open minded.

In his  address to PAP party activists on Saturday, PM basically told them there is no room for any other political party in Singapore except for the PAP.

“If Singapore had a blue constituency and a red constituency, I think Singapore will be in trouble,” he said. This is not the worrying part as one would expect him to say he wants only the PAP party to be around. It is the other things he said that raised deep concerns. In PM’s words as reported by TODAY :

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Zero tolerance, zero compassion 

In this year’s National Day Rally, PM Lee said:
There is one particularly difficult area where we need to be big hearted and that is in relations between Singaporeans and non-Singaporeans.
To summarise a long-winded speech, he told us we can’t afford to be one-eyed dragons, because it reflects badly on us and people will think that Singapore is anti-foreigner and xenophobic. He urged us to feel for other fellow human beings, especially non-Singaporeans who may offend because they do not know what our norms are. He reminded us that it is wrong to slam the shortcoming of others but ignore our own transgressions.
Less than a month ago, on 9 November, PM Lee told us again that Singapore’s success must be measured by values too:
SUCCESS is not just about economic growth but growth in values such as compassion and empathy, Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong said last night.
He also spoke of how many people had shared with him their hope for a more gracious, big-hearted Singapore at a dinner last night to celebrate the 60th anniversary of the Singapore Children’s Society (SCS).
“We can’t just measure our success by GDP growth, important as this is, but also by the growth of our values: compassion, empathy, altruism, love for our fellow citizens,” he said.
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Meritocracy must remain a fundamental principle of Singapore society, but this system does not mean that it is about every man for himself.

Rather, those who have benefitted from the system must feel a duty to give back to society, said Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong at a People's Action Party (PAP) conference yesterday.

Mr Lee, who is Secretary-General of the PAP, noted there has been vigorous debate on meritocracy, most recently in discussions about the Primary School Leaving Examination (PSLE) and school rankings.

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PAP and all the good policies

Why was PAP the party and still in power after 46 years? Obviously it has done many things right, not all. The Sinkies are not dead fish that cannot tell the difference between good and bad policies.

Let me just name a few without being exhaustive. Among the best known PAP policies must be asset enhancement, high pay for ministers to fight corruption, high public housing prices(oops, affordable), high fees for good value of services, high influx of foreigners for high growth, high population density, high COEs/car prices, high medical fees(this is related to value for money), high CPF savings, high minimum sums, just to name a few.

And the magical thing about all these policies is that they all work excellently. The country has prospered and the happy are rich beyond anyone’s imagination for a piece of rock without natural resources except people talent, local and foreigners

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PAP conference offered Singaporeans little of value

The People’s Action Party’s (PAP’s) 32nd conference held on Sunday morning offered Singaporeans little of value, because PAP leaders failed to address the urgent issues confronting our citizens.

In his keynote address, PM Lee Hsien Loong, who is the PAP Secretary General, said that the government is adjusting the balance between its key goals to achieve Singapore’s future objectives. (CNA, 02 Dec)

In particular, Mr Lee highlighted the need to achieve not just a vibrant economy but also a harmonious society; a meritocratic system along with special effort to assist the underprivileged; and a Singapore where citizens feel as one but which also welcomes foreigners.

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Selective History

In his speech to the PAP activists at their party conference on Sunday, Lee Hsien Loong certainly airbrushed history when he said, "It was this very principle of equal opportunity and meritocracy that Singapore left Malaysia." The hard truth, be it from Toh Chin Chye or Goh Keng Swee, will tell you that Singapore was turfed out of Malaysia.

Both will agree with James Minchin, who wrote in his book "No Man Is An Island", that "careful research makes it hard to avoid laying much of the blame at Lee's feet".

From late 1963 to the fateful day of separation of Singapore from Malaysia, he recorded, there was no stopping the deterioration of relations between Lee and the Tunku and their respective confidants. The timeless prose of Mohamad Haji Salleh provides rare insight of the difference of views:

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