Trade and Industry Minister Chan Chun Sing (Chan) has called for Singapore be “aware of its weaknesses and strengths, which include its long-term perspectives and strategies, as well as rule of law and predictable business environment where people can thrive“. While I agree broadly with with the sentiments of his words, I wonder what he really means?
Surely for Singapore as a country to be aware of its strengths and weaknesses, the government also has to be aware of its own strengths and weaknesses?
According to Chan, one needs to be aware of both their strengths and weaknesses. Our current Peoples’ Action Party (PAP) dominated government often reminds us of its contributions to the country. I don’t recall off the top of my head any time where it has talked about its weaknesses. If it has, it must be so rare that no incident comes immediately to mind. Does this mean that the PAP led government is unaware of its weaknesses and only aware of its strengths?
Flowing from Chan’s formula for long term success, does this mean that our government does not have long-term perspectives and strategies? How then does it bode for our future?
Or, does Chan only mean for the general populace to be aware of their faults? In other words, could be taken as an implication that the government is near perfect while the people are not? Of course, I am not suggesting that Chan has said this directly. He hasn’t.
However, looking at the way the government has consistently reminded us of all that they have done for us and what Chan has said, it could possibly be construed that either the government considers itself as the strength and us the weakness or that the government does not have long term perspectives and strategies?
No government or system in the world is perfect and no one expects that. My question for Chan is therefore this – what does he see as the government’s weaknesses? We already know their strengths given that they never cease to remind us of such. If the government is unable to honestly and openly admit its shortcomings, how can we be assured that it has long-term perspectives and strategies? Does Chan apply his own logic on his own government?
Before naysayers jump and attack me for perhaps reading between the lines, please remember, I am only applying Chan’s logic. I am asking him for his opinion based on his own formulations.