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Are Singaporeans “crybabies” who get the government they deserve?

Vlogger Nuseir Yassin, also known as Nas Daily, has branded Singaporeans “crybabies” for taking him to task over his videos effusively praising the country, the latest one even calling Singapore “the almost perfect country.”

You may also recall that after a crushing defeat on election day in 2015, Opposition politician Kenneth Jeyaretnam said: “Singaporeans get the government they deserve, so I don’t want to hear any more complaints.”

Are they spot on in their indictment of Singaporeans as “crybabies” and complainers?

They are certainly not alone. There are others in our midst who feel that Singaporeans ought to put up or shut up.

Today, there is again a growing chorus of anti-government voices. Voices of dissent and complaint, voices of resentment and unhappiness. Even those who used to keep their sentiments close to their chest are now speaking up because they cannot tahan anymore.

But is it all same same like in the past, when Singaporeans made a lot of noise yet when they went to the polls, 70% marked X for the People’s Action Party?

No, say a segment of Singaporeans. This time around, it is different and there is a storm brewing. They point to any number of issues which cause discontent.

The Malaysian tsunami and the motivation for change. The shenanigans of the Elected Presidency. Rising cost of living. Impending GST hike. HDB woes. Healthcare woes. Lack of transparency and accountability on so many issues, including Ministers’ pay and Temasek. Crazy Rich Politicians who are out of touch with ordinary citizens.

The Workers’ Party’s Low Thia Khiang once remarked: “I came to a conclusion. You can talk until the cows come home, debate until the cows come home in Parliament. The PAP will not change. It is the people, the electorate that have to show them, they have to change.”

The question is, will Singaporeans change?

We will know the answers soon enough, by the next general elections.

If it still pans out the way it has in the past and 70% give a resounding thumbs-up to the PAP, then the logical conclusion has to be: Singaporeans are indeed “crybabies” who get the government they deserve and when they grumble and complain and show dissent and disapproval, they are merely crying wolf. And one day, their voices and cries will not be heard anymore and they will then literally have to put up or shut up.