Singapore Celebrity Attacks Free Media

Posted: December 20, 2010 in Uncategorized
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*Originally published by The Temasek Review on November 13th, 2010

Much like his counter-parts in glitzy Hollywood, Singapore celebrity K. Shenanigan receives million dollar pay checks for doing nothing more than appearing in public and speaking from well-crafted scripts.

His most recent engagement in New York was no different from the usual public appearances he has done in Singapore. Speaking before an assembly at Columbia University, he outlined Singapore’s perspective on the role of the media.

Unlike the USA, Singapore has no “in-built stability”, Mr. Shenanigan told the assembly.

“Despite having nearly 50 years of unopposed rule, complete freedom in implementing educational and social policies, the PAP (Singapore’s ruling party) still has not succeeded in upgrading the standards of Singaporeans. Thus, they are still not as sensible and rational as mainstream Americans,” he noted.

In Singapore’s case, social and economic fault lines can easily be exploited and Singaporeans may be swayed to vote against the PAP elites who have been suppressing the wages of ordinary Singaporeans through the wanton import of cheap foreign labour, while they – the PAP elites – continue to pay themselves million dollar pay checks.

The US system of free media, according to Mr. Shenanigan, will impose costs which the thick-skinned and lower-waged American politicians can afford, but will be too high for the thin-skinned and better paid PAP politicians.

“We just have more to lose. We never take our million dollar pay checks for granted. We know that when we do take it for granted, we gamble with the comfort level of ourselves, our wives and children,” he said. “No responsible celebrity… sorry… politician will do that.”

Mr. Shenanigan also warned that having a combination of free media and lax libel laws can lead to fringe lunatic behaviour. First the debate will get dumbed down, then it descends into a series of personal attacks. Certainly, we do not want a politician who calls his political opponents names like ‘mangy dog’ or one who challenges his political opponents to fights in cul-de-sacs.

Also, with their limited talents, Singapore celebrities politicians cannot withstand – nor are they prepared to accept the possible harmful consequences of having its media become like the American press.

“We have never had to deal with labour disputes fronted by powerful unions or destructive natural disasters. If we let our reporters ask penetrative questions about what we Singapore celebrities… sorry… politicians actually do, we could lose our million dollar pay checks! Then where would we be?” asked Mr. Shenanigan in an emotional outburst.

Mr. Shenanigan concluded his speech with a stern rebuke to his audience.

“We are not daft. We know what is in our interest and we intend to preserve our million dollar pay checks and what we have is working. You are not going to tell us how to bilk money from our own people.”

Singa Crew

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