Point-Counterpoint #2

Posted: June 15, 2008 in Uncategorized

Doubtful (PAP propagandist) posted this on www.sgpolitics.net:

Can the bias free market accommodate the rights( or demands) of the majority similar to the rights enjoyed by our esteemed leaders? Your idea of human rights seems to be a socialist or communist concept? If so, will we end up like the russians( before reform) or cubans?

<End of Doubtful’s post>

Crew’s note: Doubtful’s comment was in response to Ng Ejay’s article – ‘Singapore needs human rights. We really do.’

My reply to Doubtful:

I would say that stinks of unwarranted extrapolation – the tendency to make huge predictions about the future on the basis of a few small facts.

Why should respect for human rights and democracy cause Singapore to end up like the Russians or Cubans? Lee Kuan Yew was fond of using unwarranted extrapolation too. What with his statements that Singapore will become a third world nation without the PAP.

I think it would be helpful for us to ask the following questions:

1) Is there enough data to support the speaker’s statement?

No. Because if we are to believe our own eyes, countries like USA, UK, Sweden and others who subscribe to the principles of human rights and democracy have not suffered for it. Quite the opposite in fact.

2) Are there other ways that things might turn out?

Yes certainly! Instead of predicting that Singapore will end up like Russia and Cuba, why not say we will end up like USA, UK, France, Germany or Japan? The list goes on and on. These are countries that have done well with democracy and human rights.

If we were to examine your fears of Singapore ending up like Cuba or Russia, I would say since Russia and Cuba are countries that do not respect human rights and democracy, it would be more logical to conclude that in order to prevent Singapore from going the way of Russia and Cuba, we ought to have democracy and human rights!

3) If there are many different ways that things could turn out, why is the speaker painting such an extreme picture?

Fear mongering?



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