Home > PAP candidates, Silliness and stupidity > Listening, a skill the PAP needs to learn

Listening, a skill the PAP needs to learn

I am reposting this article from TOC. It’s a completely honest piece of work and it speaks much of how I feel too. I have mentioned in my earlier post that I do not think much  of MG (NS) Chan Chun Sing. While he came from a humble background, much of his humility had been corrupted by his smooth sailing life as a top-down speaking, high earning and powerful army high flier and politician.


Dear MG (NS) Chan

I was one of the audience who attended the dialogue held yesterday by the YPAP and I am writing this letter directly to you to address some of the points that you have raised as it is obvious that you do not bother to read views on the Internet at all. They may sound rudely raw, but these are my most honest comments to you as a Minister in the government of the day.

May I ask if you know the meaning of a Dialogue? Is it either that you didn’t bother to check up the agenda of the session or you innocently do not know the meaning of a dialogue? For even your fellow comrades Abner Koh and Teo Ser Luck agree (after speaking to them), this one-way talking down session you conducted is certainly not one. Your presumptuous arrogance says you know it all and though your fanciful analogies make good laughing entertainment, they are disconnected and incomparable to whatever point you put across.

We are not there to listen to your whinings of how unconstructive the online media is or your aspirations as a politician or the PAP’s manner of governance. That was not a Dialogue I attended yesterday, it was a Lecture. We were there to listen, not interact. If you feel like giving a speech or a lecture, please conduct one at the Speakers’ Corner. The 2 hour one-man session is at best an irritating off-topic load of hot air. Your moderator Abner Koh looks like a stupid young lieutenant standing by you waiting on you by the stage. To give you due credit, you did put in some convincing one-liners but judging from what the PAP has done in the past 10 years, it is at best unsubstantiated political doublespeak to support PAP’s agenda.

Demonizing the New Media

“How many of you are proud of the discussions we have on the Internet these days? Raise up your hands (Kee Chiu)”

Excellent question, you have fully utilized the shyness of the general audience to prove your flawed perception that the quality of New Media’s discussions we have today is shameful and not worth taking a second look at. If your purpose is to run down people and have pro-government views praising your every move, please do it on the Straits Times. You called for the audience to reclaim their space. What do you mean by “reclaiming” their space? The Internet is nobody’s space and nobody is interested in being a government mouthpiece (unless of course you pay somebody to do it).

We netizens write for an altruistic cause, serving no personal agendas and solely for the nation’s interest (Temasek Review Emeritus almost closed down this July without the $30 000 fundings it raised). Compared to the mainstream media, the New Media is just in their cause and a true Singaporean avenue for Singaporeans by Singaporeans. Teo Ser Luck told me the mainstream media have improved, yes I agree they have, but not to the standards of calling themselves “balanced” and “objective”. Without the rise of popular socio-civic websites and blogs, would the mainstream media have improved?

The PAP only realize the power of the New Media when independent socio-civic website  Temasek Review Emeritus managed to send a team into Ang Mo Kio GRC by raising $32 000 in a night over Facebook. You can continue to sideline existing netizens and deem us as an online community of daft Singaporean noises, or work with us. It is your choice.


Your condescending attitude towards Singaporeans’ alternative voices in the “dialogue” is putting off. We do not have to be reminded that something is in place for a purpose in the first place, and we are not calling for ALL policies to be changed overnight. Your shallow statements display how narrow-minded and ignorant you are of netizens who are already engaging in high level reasonable discussions that you are calling for. When you speak about fundamentals of Singapore, I wonder if you yourself know of Singapore 101 yourself.

You speak like as if that only the PAP has a monopoly of ideas and in-depth understanding of our society. If this has been so, would we see such deepening political division of our people? Is there any notion that only you as a PAP Elite Million Dollar Minister understand that we Singaporeans can never fathom? Your military experience has proven irrelevant to political leadership and you simply can’t lead without a disciplinary law the like of a SAF Act. We are not soldiers who will abide your every biddings and we citizens do not owe you, the government a living.

This is my very objective article I have promised Teo Ser Luck and I look forward to you conducting a real dialogue and please, for once, shut up and listen. You are not a consultant and we are not consulting you. Rather, you hold this dialogue because you are consulting us, the people, not the other way round. A dialogue is an exchange between 2 party of different interests. If you think a dialogue is a waste of time, don’t attend one. We don’t need you in any way. You deem yourself a man of practicality, but your delivery failed to achieve PAP’s self-proclamation of engaging and listening to the people. Or is listening to the citizens impractical? I urge you to learn more from Khaw Boon Wah who is working 24/7 working his head off to taking real tangible actions in implementations. Tharman, even though uncovered, has silently tightened up the foreign labor employment to create more jobs for locals. Even Lui Tuck Yew bothered to wayang by having his photos taken on buses and trains (it would be absurd if you don’t realize anyone taking a photo of you hahah) when transport fares are still going up and our public transport is still as crowded.

Your Ministry today, has made no changes for the underprivileged and sports. What have you done for the Community? We still see plenty of Singaporean elderly begging on the streets everywhere and scavenging rubbish for a living. Foreigners integration is still a problem even after the government throw $10 Million dollars at it (I am not asking you to throw more money at it, throwing money don’t solve problems). What have you done for the Youths? Most have become an apathetic lot and resigned to fate under the government(perhaps this has all along been your agenda?) Facing bleak employment prospects, rising cost of living, diminishing quality of life, an impossible retirement and other social insecurities, how can you blame Youths for being anti-PAP on the Internet?

What have you done for Sports? Your underperforming and overpaid Foreigners sports “talents” are not winning medals and our locals sports talents are not invested into. Singaporeans are still disinterested in sports of any kind, except soccer – not the S-League that is full of foreign player jokers of course. With this starry performance in the past 5 weeks, you are not fit to be a MCYS Minister and please scram back to the army talking down NSFs and Reservists. As your PAP comrade Lim Wee Kiak put it, you need not listen to me as I do not earn a million dollars and I don’t even have a single bit of dignity discussing policies with you.


A Singaporean Economic Digit.


Pte (NS) Alex Tan Zhixiang


The PAP needs to learn to listen instead of expecting the new modern citizens to listen to them. New media is changing everything. If they think that is ‘dialogue’, I don’t see many more good years for them in the coming elections.

  1. WL
    July 5, 2011 at 3:23 am

    The MG made a very basic mistake – he forgot he is no longer in the army and a top-down monologue is not quite the same or appreciated as a dialogue in the real world. I would add that the PAP needs to learn to LISTEN and HEAR!

  2. Ang
    July 12, 2011 at 7:33 pm

    By the way, this article is from TR not TOC ( http://www.temasekreview.com/2011/07/03/an-open-letter-to-mg-chan-chun-sing/ ). 🙂

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