Thursday, October 15, 2009

Young PAP member guises human rights as western imperialism and praises Chinese communist premier

Seelan: Just when I was giving the Young PAP the benefit of the doubt, they put out a flabbergasting statement like this! Totally 'Highfalutin'!

Another online commenter: "The PAPpies keep claiming that Westerners are attempting to impose their ideas of liberal democracy (and now human rights) on Singaporeans, yet PAP is the one that denies us of our right to determine for ourselves. It is the PAP that is imposing its values on us, insisting the party knows what's best for everyone."

From the Young PAP website:

To The Devotees of Western Democracy and Human Rights.
Written by Ho Cheow Seng
Tuesday, 22 September 2009 is one thing for one to have read about Singapore's Early History as a nascent, sovereign Nation and quite another thing to have lived through that period and to play a crucial role in Singapore's struggle to stand on its own two feet and fend for itself.

We, as Citizens of Singapore, are the best to judge which system of governance suits our Nation best in terms of advancing the well-being of our people. And no, we should not be so arrogant as not to want to look closely at other successful systems of governance with a view to adapting aspects of those systems to our benefit.

The observation has been made that it is those countries in the West, who were former colonisers of countries in Asia, and who robbed lands belonging to others, suppressing the native inhabitants of the lands they conquered, and stealing their valuable resources to fuel their own industrialization now condescendingly want to teach us how to govern ourselves following their model wholesale.

These were also the countries that once lorded over the great ancient civilization of India, and who also derided China [another great ancient civilization] as the 'sick man of Asia’. And these were also the nations that, at the height of their imperialism, imposed, by sheer brute force, the 'right' of extra-territoriality upon the countries they had subjected. And now, they are crusading for Freedom and Human Rights in their former colonies as well as the other countries of Asia.

Have you ever wondered why no Asian countries have ever tried to preach to countries in the West about our Asian values and way of life? Do remember that it was the great Asian and Middle-Eastern nations that gave the world the first great inventions in the various fields of human activities. As the current Chinese Premier Wen Jie-bao once said in his address to the Chinese People's Congress: "Why should the U.S. and the West be afraid of China's economic re-surgence?" He went on to say that history has shown that China had never harboured any imperialistic ambition and had not occupied an inch of anyone's territory.

And so the West, and in particular the U.S., want now to teach us how to run our countries according to their model of Democracy. Beware of their pulling cotton wool over our eyes. Do you seriously believe there is genuine Freedom and practice of Human Rights in America? May I refer you to Noam Chomsky's "Manufacturing Consent", a book that exposes American Democracy as a sham? And Chomsky is both a citizen and one of America's most brilliant thinkers and incisive critics on Social and Political issues.

You know the term 'cultural bananas'? To give you some clue, a banana is yellow outside and white inside. And 'cultural bananas' is the term the great white lords used to pour scorn on the 'Westernized Asians' who were bold enough to speak up to them.

Now why do we allow them to treat us this way? Have we no self-respect or do we totally lack the ability to think for ourselves that we should sink so low as to be devotees of everything white and Western? Given our colonial history, many of our citizens are Anglophones. This is perfectly fine especially as we are a muti-racial society and we need a common language to facilitate transactions both social and economic among our various ethnic groups.

But please, don't ever fall into the trap of taking that one further step to become an 'anglophile' in the misguided belief that THAT would enhance your standing in the eyes of your countrymen and that of the 'great white lords'. If at all, you will likely be despised.

The late Mahatma Gandhi once penned a few verses to show his disgust for the hero-worshippers of Western culture. He wrote:

Discarded by the West
And despised by the East,
They stand as living monuments,
Of Western adultery.

By 'Western adultery' Gandhi may be referring to the adulteration of Indian [and likewise Asian] culture by the Western culture. So don't be sold on Western Democracy and Human Rights. Right up to the second half of the 20th Century, Afro-Americans were still fighting their white counterparts to be accorded equal rights. Martin Luther King Jr. had this to say:

"I have a dream that the children of slaves and the children of former slave-owners will one day sit at the table of brotherhood".

Martin Luther King Jr. may well be more than surprised should he be alive today to witness that an Afro-American, a coloured man holding the highest post in 'the Land of the brave and the free', the post, that is to say, of the President of the United States of America.

For all Afro-Americans and all coloured peoples of the world, indeed the wheel has come full circle.

Majulah Singapura!


BryanT said...

Hi Seelan,

Yes I agree, quite shocking piece this.

I don't know which era the writer dwells in, but at least of the fallacy of his argument is that the former colonisers are still "condescendingly" wanting to teach us how to govern ourselves following their model wholesale.

Also, Noam Chomsky might regard American democracy as a sham, but knowing Mr Chomsky, that does not preclude him branding others (such as ours) as shams too. If he could spare some attention here, his mighty pen (nay, keyboard) might yield some uncomplimentary observations as well, as much as the late and pugnacious Mr Safire did.

BTW, "highfalutin" has no space in-between, unless there was a pun there that I missed; and I don't think the Chinese premier is doing such a bad job.

Have a good day :)

Jezebella said...

I am disturbed by this piece... because it is actually spreading hate.

Anonymous said...

The article is riddled with prejudices and rhetoric. Complete hyperbole.

I'm amazed at the standards they dish out.

Nyved said...

An interesting point to note is the PAP isn't mentioned here. The writer himself has written on TOC before (published a poem, google his name), i think this piece is just used as a very interesting piece of propaganda to boost the image of old PAP ideology, ie rejection of "western values" for an asian values system which definition is so vague.

There's no point dwelling on his article. It's written with a clearly shocking bias against white people, almost to the point where it reeks of nationalistic rhetoric. At the end of the day we'll just ignore and forget this poor piece.

ed said...

Why am i not surprised...but I am certainly surprised that others are.

The generation preceding my own, had allowed the redefinition of the 'singaporean' persona to the point that 'democracy' can be perceived as 'chaotic', demonstrations as 'trouble-making', and freedom of speech as a good thing only if it enables the communication of the next best venue to eat.

It has come to a point that the young pap bloke is not really speaking in unintelligible tongues but is quite representative of a significant mass of the Confucian nation that singapore has turned out to be - and which precious few 'democrats' of the past or present have taken issue with. What these people have failed to realise is that one cannot address an evil without being a part of it - and especially when it has had a 50 year reign. Hence, the 'opposition' has predictably and inevitably missed out on lots of critical events that lay the perspectival foundations that birthed this bloke.

No statement such as this can be made unless the cultural foundations upon which it might emerge is well placed enough to enable this bloke to espouse as such with popular impunity.

I'm not shocked whatsoever. The other indicators of this is all around and this is just another manifestation amongst others emerging from the general mindset. Anyway, there is nothing new about this perspective. If i remember correctly, this perspective was first forwarded by the government itself in the 80s or early 90s as a prelude to bringing in Confucianism. The chinese, unfortunately, were too busy indulging in cultural pride to deem anything amiss.

Hence, i was forced to acknowledge to someone who asked me if Lee KY is indeed a smart man as he knew that the tweaking of culture is that which is required to deliver singapore into the hands of fascism. I have to give him credit for seeing beyond any oppositional individual.

Neither JBJ, Chee, Gomez, or any other 'democrat' recognised the long-term significance of quite a few events and broached the subject of democracy as if we had a western history behind us to enable such an approach to bear fruit. Lee, unlike most of the 'opposition' here, is well-versed in the art of social engineering, and he acquired this through the study of various histories and continuing interest in global affairs. It is from this that he gleans the perspectives required to bring about that which has transpired. When i start seeing local opposition blokes discussing global events with as much interest as they do with local events, that is when they will began to come of age. Till then, they are just victims of a history they have yet to understand.

Unfortunate really. The singapore i knew in the 70s was on a completely different developmental trajectory than the reoriented version of today.(pun intended)

Anonymous said...

It's actually a myth that Asian resources were plundered to fund the industrialization of the West. Actually, many of the colonies (especially the French colonies such as Indochina) were huge money losing operations. The French sunk a huge amount of resources into Indochina and never profited. Someone should, in LKY's words, "demolish" this person's writing. I would go so far as to say that this Young PAP member's piece borders on anti-white racism. America is less white than Singapore is Chinese. More multicultural than Singapore. How dare the writer cast America as a white country full of white imperialists. They don't even know or care about Singapore. The writer is full of himself if he thinks that Americans give one hoot what happens in Singapore. They care about it as much as they care about Burkina Faso.

The only great inventions that came from Asia are ancient ones. Americans won all but 2 of the Nobel prizes this year. Did those white people on the Nobel committee somehow overlook the great accomplishments of Singaporean Chinese like the writer? I don't think he's going to get the Nobel for literature with that kind of hate-filled writing.

I am Chinese Singaporean living in America. It is not racist at all. Singaporeans are far more racist towards whites than Westerners are towards Asians. I can tell because of crap pieces like that spewing out of Singapore's future leadership. I'm glad I left.

Anonymous said...

Yes, the article is very poor.

See commentary here: