Fake news has become such a perceived threat – especially from external forces – that the Singapore government is determined to adopt measures to safeguard the sovereignty and security of the country.
But it would seem that there are many other fake stuff going on in this country. And they have got nothing to do with foreign intervention, they are born and bred in Singapore.
Fake rationale: When the price of water goes up, they say it’s to get Singaporeans to treasure water more as a precious resource. When cost of living goes up, they say it shows Singapore is doing well. Social inequality? Oh, that’s a problem of success! In other words, a good problem to have!
Fake promises: Whatever happened to the promise of keeping everyday living affordable for all Singaporeans, the promise of no GST increase, the promise of Swiss standard of living?
Fake outrage: How dare you allege that the government floated “test balloons” before announcing the impending GST take hike! (to Workers’ Party MP Sylvia Lim). How dare you point the finger at Lee Kuan Yew for being a creator of fake news! (to historian Thum Ping Tjin). How dare you hurl such grave accusations against the Prime Minister! (to Lee Hsien Yang and Lee Wei Ling).
Fake humility: What’s the point of the Prime Minister queuing up for chicken wings while several security officers are standing around keeping watch? What’s the point of Chan Chun Sing repeatedly talking about his decades-old Casio watch and second-hand Japanese car and growing up in a three-room HDB flat?
Fake tears: Ministers like Lim Boon Heng and Lim Swee Say have cried in Parliament. Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong has cried both in and outside of Parliament. Did they cry for the plight of Singaporeans? Did they cry for themselves? Or was it all just buckets of tears for nothing?
Fake meritocracy: We are told that meritocracy is the bedrock of Singapore’s success. But then all three children of Lee Kuan Yew are President’s Scholars. Both the children of former President Tony Tan are President’s Scholars. And so on it goes. Is this what meritocracy looks like? In his new book, Goh Chok Tong talks about how he spotted the talent of Lee Hsien Loong and roped him into politics. He talks about how Lee Kuan Yew tried to get him to induct Lee Wei Ling into politics. He talks about how he (Goh) tried to recruit Ho Ching into politics. She then went on to marry Lee Hsien Loong and got talent spotted by S Dhanabalan, then chairman of Temasek Holdings. The rest is history. Is this what meritocracy looks like? Doesn’t it smell like an exclusive club of who’s who doing favours for each other – you scratch my back and I’ll scratch yours.
Can you think of anything else that’s fake in this country?