Monday, August 11, 2008

Oh hear the patriotic drum

*First Concerto
Chief Maestro taps is wand subtly.

Reflecting on the Beijing Olympic opening ceremony, MM Lee commented that “even a biased foreigner will know that these are very determined people with the capability and the potential. It must mean they will end up on the top table.”

Any observer of political-speak and soft-power aggression, would tell you that MM is not just talking about the Olympic medal table. No my friends, he is posting a warning that China is determined not to be held down by a globally coordinated attempt to derail their progress in the world stage of economics, and eventually politics. The Olympics was their coming out party, and the Chinese plan to do it their way.

He is also reminding the world that Singapore is a China miniature, or maybe a blueprint. Afterall, no matter how aggrieved one may feel about the lack of civil liberties and independent intuitions, Singapore’s economic development continues to baffle disbelieving proponents of free-market liberalism and political pluralism as models of development.

*Second Concerto
The orchestrator signals in his star soloist.

In steps Political Editor Chua Lee Hong for her solo "Why they hate Singapore”.

Chua describes how Singapore is very much like modern China today – a target of jealously from green-eyed western liberal democracies. She reasons that Western countries are unable to stomach the possibility that economic development, educated citizens and world-class talents could possibly emerge under authoritarian regimes. Yes, she begrudgingly described Singapore as an Authoritarian State. And what will these liberal western democracies hate more? Emerging superpowers like China and Russia adopting our model.

*Third Concerto
The orchestrator signals in the rest of the orchestra.

According to the script, letters of national pride will pour into the Mainstream press forum pages. The statement being we are proud of our uniquely Singapore model.

I myself don’t believe in a universal model of governance that is equally applicable to all societies. Hence I too scoff at self-righteous political evangelism by Western systems built on centuries of warmongering, slavery, pillaging, economic tyranny…etc.

But as we come to grips with the biased and hypocritical assumptions of others, we should be careful not to be lost in our own.

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