SG: In response to Gopalan Nair's, 'Singapore, Fascist One Party State'

The following was placed as a 'comment' at the following site.

Gopalan Nair: "Singapore's state owned and controlled official government mouthpiece, the newspaper Straits Times, online edition of June 13, 2010 has the story "Grassroots activity rewarded". The title is slightly misleading. It should have read "Pro Lee Kuan Yew grassroots activity rewarded".

It says the Peoples Association, (which is a branch of the Singapore strongman Lee Kuan Yew's Peoples Action Party, which has been governing the one party state island for the last 50 years), will reward those who take part in it's grassroots activities, by being eligible for better chances in a state lottery. Actually what they meant to say was, handsomely rewarded in their jobs, careers, and in every which way you can imagine." source


ed says,

Well, why not take part in 'grassroots' activities, reap the 'benefits' but use it as a platform to encourage mutual empathy and consideration? If one enjoy a modicum of success in that, would it not shift opinion against the PAP or 'Opposition' if either were to not present themselves as a vehicle for its realisation?

That said, your view of singapore's one party 'fascist' state is not incorrect. I have spoken about it quite a bit - and after which, it began to catch on with increased frequency amongst others, albeit in a narrow self-serving ‘kick the government without critical introspection’ approach - but we should also consider how a fascist state is not only known by the government's stance toward the people, but also the people's stance toward the government, difference, and contradiction in the face of what’s popularly practiced and perceived, and traditional.

If we were to engage in an appreciable amount of critically introspection, we would find that the fascism of the government, after half a century, is now bolstered by popular fascism - rallying around a particular racially-biased view of things - i.e. silence in the face of policies or that which compromises the interests of the non-Chinese; chinese-centred ‘blog awards’; media representation; Chinese-centred ‘opposition’; elevation of Chinese culture over all others; etc, etc, etc; popular xenophobia, even amongst the 'opposition'; apathy and disinterest in politics, amongst others. Isn’t this proof that the people in general now not embody the fascist ethos in their collective persona? The government may have promoted it, but do the singaporeans of today not maintain it? And how can a people whom embody the fascist ethos tell the difference between true democracy and fascism? These are fundamental questions that the so-called ‘opposition’ have yet to address to any significant degree. Hence, your vociferous critique cannot but be seen as both an effort to improve things and an attempt to absolve oneself from any responsibility. Singaporean ‘oppositional’ elements may be attempting to bring about democracy, but their oversights result, instead, in the refinement of fascism.

The discussion of a fascist state cannot be confined to how a state might promote it without attention to how it might be maintained at the 'grassroots' level by just about every individual walking the streets or watching sipping teh siew tai (literal translation: tea less sugar) and watching channel 8 in coffeeshops.


ed

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