[About this blog] Inspired by local soccer player Mike Lim during my rookie reporter days at Singapore Polytechnic, I set up this blog in August 2002. I feel that blogging is a novel platform to document interesting facets of my life and my thoughts on certain issues. [Email blogger] ephraim@singnet.com.sg

Friday, May 30, 2008

[Bloggers' feedback]
Since Minister has written about Malaysia, I shall do so to albeit in a different vein.

The Malaysian Government will respond to wild and baseless allegations raised by bloggers in cyberspace.

When will it be Singapore's turn?

So far, politicians who blog have steered clear of this. Often, I see and read what things that appear in mainstream media replying to what I write online.

In fact, recently, a writer from The Straits Times had suggested the convergence of online media and mainstream media. This would allow a free flow of content between the two. I am unsure of the effectiveness of such a suggestion though.

Many young Singaporeans do not read the newspapers nor keep in touch on current affairs in Singapore. Is the answer to engage online? It is a plausible solution but to what extent it would work is still a big question mark.

Further, many laws that apply online and offline may deter bloggers from fully expressing their views. This is because of the invisible line that should not be crossed. Take for example the Malaysian blogger Raja Petra had crossed that line and was dealt with. In Singapore, one is well aware of the invisible out-of-bound markers that in place. I remember reading what Minister George Yeo had said about the invisible OB markers in the past - you would not know what things people might come up with and hence there are these OB markers in place. The presence of these OB markers are dangerous because anything that is mild may be construed as something intentional and damaging against the greater good of society.

Just like how the game is played in politics.

Recently, I went to view Matthew Ngui's work at the National Museum. I was invited for the opening by my colleagues. Matthew's work is about different points of view and has some political undertones on one's view on democracy. In some sense, it is about pluralism (where individuals have different points of views). I hope he was not trying to portray the rigidness and one-sided view of things.

He also talked about practicality and working within boundaries as opposed to breaking out of boundaries (which I think would be more creative). But at least he tries to do something within legal boundaries rather than stay silent.

And that is what I think may be lacking here. Let's try to push it bit by bit. Until we are finally told to stop.

This is sort of like the incrementalism ideology of public policy. But that is another thing altogether.

1 Comments:

Anonymous bernard said...

Well, I guess I have too much time on my hands to be reading your blog several times this week out of boredom. Oh well, I have nothing better to do other than packing my stuff to prepare for the trip back to Singapore. hahah. anyway, I be going to florida next week to get myself re-accustomed to the hot and humid weather plus sightseeing tour of disneyland.
Hmm speaking of OB markers, it is indeed a blurry vague borderline. Even in America, there is also such OB markers created as a result of some events. Take terrorism for example, now there is considerable restrictions on freedom, for the greater good of society. in the airport, profiling is used more blatantly in the name of ensuring public safety. Suspected terrorists were reportedly whisked to secret overseas bases to be questioned throughly. Guantanamo bay is the big overseas prison for taliban and other suspected terrorists. So U.S laws governing personal rights of suspects can be circumvented conveniently. In the aftermath of sept 11th, nobody dared to question the validity of such measures.Bush administration justified these measures for the greater good of the American people.
Now that the Iraq war is dragging on, flagging economy due to financial subprime upheaval and rising oil prices, Americans rated President Bush poorly now. The democrats took this chance and seized control of congress and senate, thereby making Bush a lame duck now in his last months of office.
I took a course in Fall 2007 about American socio-political environment " American pluralism and the search for equality" This increased my understanding of American politics. The bottom line is people must fight for what they want. stand up for yr beliefs. I admired it at first but i realized too much democracy tend to make the country divided.
Whereas in China according to my China friends, people still have a strong sense of solidarity. Every society have its own brand of indoctrination and principles. Maybe loyalty to country will become lesser of a thing when the world become more homogeneous. alternatively, people also have more mobility. if u don't like yr country, just go search for greener pastures where u can live better.
One thing I must say about, is Singapore's pragmatism - practical attitude which contributed greatly to Singapore's survival. a few years ago, the govt banned casinos. Now there is going to be 2 casinos. last year, section 377A was retained. MM Lee still left the door open for the future. Never say never if we want talented creative people who happen to be gay. also depends on our Singaporeans' sentiments as well.
I am also trying to push bit by bit, to see what is the acceptable limit whether am I satisfied with it ? remains to be seen in 10 years time 2018 when I am 35 years old. I shall see.....

Saturday, May 31, 2008 2:35:00 pm

 

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