Friday, June 26, 2020

What triggered me about the upcoming elections.

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I was triggered by recent events in the lead up the General Elections 2020.

Apparently, a few reservists who had crossed paths with a potential PAP MP candidate, went online with their real personas to complain of elitism and ill-treatment. The complaints are sufficiently granular and specific to upset me to protest loudly on social media.

There are a few groups of people I implicitly trust in determining whether a person is a good guy. The first is folks who are servers in the F&B industry - a sure sign of being a sadist is to casually dismiss waiters in a restaurant.

The second are NS men.

NS is always, to me, some kind of alternative societal arrangement that kept everyone humble and united in purpose. Push comes to shove from belligerent neighbours, we fight regardless of which part of the society we belong to.

During my time, NS used to distinguish Poly and Air-level grads quite clearly during National service and I was always wary that combat officers with a Polytechnic diploma would have an issue with us Air-levels mainly because we have a much higher probability of entering University and subsequently the middle-class. So in the Army, in the 1990s, there was always a cohort of Polytechnic diploma officers who would find ways to mess with Air-level graduates - especially the potato-eating non-Hokkien speaking Air-level grads who spoke accented English. This made NS unnecessarily difficult for Peranakans or "Chow Angmoh" type of soldiers in the Army in the 1990s.

As we entered reservist, I kept playing it safe.

For my Signals unit, the men consisted of PMETs and we just want to finish the exercise safely and book out on time. But there's always the rare 2LT or CPT who relishes coming to camp to lord over us lowly men because he is some individual contributor in corporate life.

This was the reality when human get together - we form hierarchies. Men answer to specialists. Specialists answer to officers.

So if we're smart in real life, we swallow whatever gets handed to us during the short ICT period.

Maybe this is why this new candidate triggered me so much.

We men have no recourse if officers treat us badly. There are rumours that he made his men wait to book out and was dismissive of safety measures when there was lightning during an exercise. The complaints came from different parts of the web with different Singaporeans coming up anecdotes that reflected poorly on the candidate.

As a loyal PAP voter, I suggest that potential MPs must pass the same test applied to Caesar's Wife - They need to be beyond suspicion. A ruling party of 50-over years must be held to a standard much higher than opposition parties.

As an election is often a walkover for the PAP, we cannot rely on a vote to sift out power-hungry sadists and tyrants from the candidate pool. We know that no recruitment process is perfect as some folks are just too good at kissing up and kicking down. If you don't believe, join the public sector.

It, therefore, falls to us to kick up a big fuss to ensure that the bad candidate is not nominated to run in the first place.

If this candidate gets nominated, I will write to my MP to thank him for his contributions to my ward and I will let him know that it is not his fault that I am not voting PAP this time round.


  1. It'll be naive to think that most of their candidates are not of similar ilk. For me it's easy as I always vote opposition. Even though I'm all for capitalism & free markets. Tactical voting. There's no doubt that PAP will garner the majority of votes. The question is how lopsided it will be. The sweet spot for average Joe is the pap getting between 60% to 67%. Any higher and expect to get roughshod by policies & regulations. Lower and they'll turn socialist. Even at 60.1% in 2011, a lot of policies that were pro-biz and beneficial to owners of capital were backtracked (much to the benefit of millennials born around 1990).

  2. The power is in own individual's own hand in the form of a vote. If the individual decides to go for the incumbent (ruling) party, he/she will have to live with his/choice for the next few months. This is akin to giving the party the free rein of the power on the voters.

    The individual has the option of opting for the alternative party if he/she feels that the results by the ruling party is not up to his/her expectation. No doubt, the ruling party will win the coming GE. By going for the alternative party, this will send a message to the ruling party that there is a need to buck up and not pushing the shaft down the throat of the individual at their will. GE 2011 was a great example in which the ruling party changed its policies which were seen as beneficial to the commoners in the road.

    Look what happened after GE 2015. The ruling party is back to ownself.

    It is up to each individual to decide on whom to cast their vote on.

    I already know which end in which I will cast my vote for the benefit of the country as per my perspective.