Instead of begging people to condemn others why don’t you first consider why they so shiok?

November 15, 2013

The crux of the issue was never the Messiah. This I admit may appear odd to many, but to me, he has always been really only a side dish…. a cherry on a cup cake…dressing.

What I feel is far more substantial and disturbing event was the underlying reasons that accounted for the overwhelming schadenfreude that swept through the public consciousness when the Messiah threatened mayhem – it was surreal (to me, at least) to have observed so many deriving a gleeful pleasure out of a government bunkering down to blunt cyber raids mounted by the Messiah and his motley crew.

That the general sentiment bordered on euphoria and fingered into every segment of society can never be denied – neither can one elide this outpouring of unfettered jubilation which emerged from the groundswell that seemingly celebrated this unfortunate incident without at least trying to explain why? – this should prompt us to ask, did the Messiah manage to tap into a vein of public consciousness? Did his message to the government of the day to annul the unpopular licensing of blogs resonate with many? Did he even manage to compress all the pent up resentment that was harboured by so many?

To me this will always be the crux of the issue. Not whether what the Messiah did was right or wrong.

And this should really be a wake up call for Mini Lee and his crew to think long and hard about whether what has reliably continued to unite all of us as a nation and people has fractured beyond the point where our divisions are greater than even what would continue to hold us together.

These are disturbing questions….and to me it doesn’t pay to beat around the bush to pretend that all is well.

Something is very wrong…when a significant segment of a nation takes to the other side and decides to stand with the enemy.

That is why I can’t help but feel, it’s rather strange for Mini Lee now to issue out a plea to the same public that once indulged in unmitigated schadenfreude, to now condemn those who were responsible for those cyber intrusions.

Instead Mini Lee and his government would do well to set aside sometime along with many of their their fantasies, to do some serious soul searching as to what are the causal links that provoked so many reasonable, law abiding and well adjusted people to react in the way they did.

In my opinion, it doesn’t pay for government to run away from reality – by trying their best to elide the public support for the Messiah (I could well be wrong in my assessment, but that was how it all felt to me watching by as a by stander) – as in truth, if the right conditions in the ground did not really exist to breed the requisite resentment, anger and hatred towards the government – it is very unlikely the Messiah or for that matter any trouble maker would have garnered even the smallest cachet of adherents and supporters. 

Something I feel must be very wrong between state and citizen –  It will serve both the interest of the people and government better for the latter to face the facts honestly and to analyse further what has taken us to today’s lamentable situation – where the government seems to have lost the trust of the people so completely that they even delight when misfortune befalls them.

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“Let me speak plainly. If you want to go into business just to make a lot of money at every turn and opportunity. Then the chances are you will probably end up a bankrupt.

That was what the last person who owned the land I am presently standing on did – he operated his plantation like a business.

Now don’t get me wrong, there is nothing wrong with the whole idea of making money. I am not a communist. Only there is a right and wrong way.

Let me begin by telling you the wrong way – you do what you want to do and you don’t care what others think. You don’t even respect what they regard to be important.

And that was essentially what the last man who owned this parcel of land did – and that is really another way of saying he willfully derogated his role as keeper of the wheel of life to his community – and the mini skirt version is the community eventually turned against him.

Now there are certain realities in commercial farming – the first is I cannot turn a profit without the good will of my community.

That means I have take care of them. If I do a good job, then they will take good care of me. I can’t take the attitude, life is tough and leave it all to the wisdom of the free market – it doesn’t work that way in an agrarian society – as the weather and a hundred other things will always conspire to make life uncertain.

So every week on Monday. I go to the local barber who is the head of clandestine services to get a run down on the price of fish, poultry etc etc. I also work very closely with the village police outpost to make sure crime is under control.

From time to time I will eat in the local warung so that my men can see that my life differs from them very little – and in the hour when the cows return indolently to their pens, it is not unusual for me to drop in for dinner with a family to see how things are getting along.

During Ramadan I will fast. This way no man will complain about the work load. As I will take off my bush jacket and work beside them. In the ghost month when Taoist believe the malevolent spirits roam the plantations – again it is not unusual for them to see me working beside my men – and when the Tamils believe Durga is nearby, I am the first to offer alms to placate the restless spirits.

Above all, I believe very strongly when people are with you – they will wish you well. When the enemy stands at the gates, there will not be much talk, men will come forward and they will stand in one neat line and stand ready to repel the enemy. When the farmer is sick, the villagers will ask, how is the keeper of the wheel of life – tell me what can we do?

Now you understand why I feel deeply something is awfully wrong in Singapore….it is so wrong that I do not even know how or where to begin to explain what is wrong. It is just very wrong in so many ways.”

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