Thursday, January 15, 2009

When Idiots rule the Blogs of Singapore

Recently in Singapore, a Member of Parliament Mr. Seng Han Thong was set on fire by a disgruntled Singaporean. Mr. Seng sustained 15% burns to his face, neck and back. You would think that after an incident like this, there will be an outpouring of condolences to Mr. Seng and an outpouring of condemnation to his attacker.

Not a chance. If you read the blogs and the Internet websites in Singapore, you will be struck by the sense that most people in Singapore admired the attacker. Never mind that the attack, Mr. Ong Kah Chua, is suspected to be a mentally disturbed man, Mr. Seng (and the PAP) got it coming.

This is what happen when idiots rule the blogsphere. MP Seng Han Thong was the unfortunate victim of a vicious attack by a mentally unbalanced man, and as he is undergoing a second skin graft operation, people are condemning him?

People are complaining about the fact that he is under the care of one of the best plastic surgeons in Singapore, and that his medical expenses are all covered by the government. Some even complain that he will continue to receive his monthly pay of over $10,000 while on sick leave.

Singapore websites are full of articles about how this is just the response of the people after being kicked by the state for too long. For those idiots who said these, I have a suggestion.

GO AND SET YOURSELF ON FIRE! If you are unhappy with the government, there's a thing call elections! You do not set fire to a Member of Parliament.

A Member of Parliament was attacked while carrying out his duty and he is facing condemnation from the public? I'm not a big fan of the Singapore government, but any attack on a Member of Parliament must not be tolerated and his attacker must be harshly punished. I don't know what illness his attacker has and I don't care! Throw the book at him; lock him up for 20 years, give him the death penalty, send a message that any attack on any Member of Parliament will NOT be tolerated.

64 comments:

AngryAngMo said...

Wow, the death penalty for a 70 year old, mentally challenged person following his (definitely wrong) doings. I believe the 20 years of prison would do their job alone pretty well already.

Guess there will be a lot of more "Idiots" in the Singapore blogosphere who might disagree there with you...

Cheers
Another Idiot

beAr said...

the death penalty for a mentally-unstable man... wow...

i don't condone his actions, but to call for such punitive action seems really excessive.

i think perhaps you should learn to be more compassionate. your tone sounds quite similar to those that you deride...

Fargoal said...

Question. If Mr Ong is indeed mentally disabled, is there some law that would protect him (from his own actions?)

Anonymous said...

This is so disgusting....

Makes me feel shameful to be a singaporean.

Why not just cull all those with mental problems like those stray cats and dogs?!

Afterall, they all run a risk of hurting someone one day.

Ghost said...

A Member of Parliament was set on fire while carrying out his duty and there are people on the internet who are applauding that attack. Even when you read those who say the attack was wrong, there is almost without question an excuse in there (the man being mentally unstable, the guy got it coming, it’s the PAP’s fault etc). I do not have any question in my mind that this attack is wrong and I don’t believe any reason the attacker has justified his actions. Even if he is crazy, it’s still no excuse and Singapore must ensure the safety of our PAP, whether they are government or opposition MPs. Those guys who are clapping their hand; yes, they are idiots!

Clumsy Girl said...

This is a 'supposedly' free space. You can air your views and others can too. Resorting to name calling does not make you any better. Extreme opinions are expected of a free space. No need to get so worked up over it.

Sympathizing with the underdog is a natural human behaviour. Self-reflection is necessary when the elderly, mentally unsound person is seen as the victim here despite Mr Seng's serious injury.

If the people do not feel so unfairly treated in normal days, would they react in this manner in times of crisis?

It is like those period dramas when people are happy when rich tyrants in the shows were hurt/ punished by the folk hero. In shows they call it retribution.

I just didn't expect to see it in real life in modern day Singapore. Maybe, something is seriously wrong here. No point blaming people. Self-reflection and introspection is the call of the day.

Mercia said...

Perhaps you might want to ask yourself how the senior citizen arrived in his state of mental instability which led to him setting the MP on fire. Why is it that this MP seems to be attracting assaults when others are not? Members of the PAP should also reflect on how circumstances could lead to such an unprecedented incident in staid Singapore.

Also, note that most people in Singapore have not had the chance to vote in most elections, so as a form of representative government I'd say "our PAP" is quite the misnomer.

Anonymous said...

I think it's retribution.

This chap has been targetted twice.

His odds are better than striking toto for the third.

I think Seng should do some reflecting.

I am another idiot who doesn't think death penalty for the 70 year old man is warranted.

You are giving too much credit to being an MP. Every job has its hazards. A fireman gets burnt too, in the course of duties sometimes.

Don't get worked up just because he is an MP.

There are more injustice in Singapore. I think Jeremy Tan requires our empathy than Seng.

Desmond Lim said...

Actually, I've realised that the blog postings are reflections about the attitude of a lot of Singaporeans in general about the incident. There hasn't been much sympathy talk in the coffee shops and markets in Singapore.

Anonymous said...

oh the injured MP should have his medical fees fully paid for because he was injured while giving out hongbaos.... what about the NS boy who now lies in a coma.... no wait... that cos he's just a peasants son isn't it. He can just die for all the fricking gahmen care... or better yet... culled like all the mentally sick. So shut the piss up... you mentally defective piece of adolf hilter...

Anonymous said...

The MP *supposedly* knew the man was mentally unsound and broke but did not do his duty as a MP to help.

If he was a manual labourer who got injured because of his own failing in work ...

Its an honest mistake.
Lets move on.

soup said...

I feel that many people like to lump everything when it comes to affairs of the government. However, that attitude can be understood especially when there seems to be discrepancies with regards to how the government seemed to handle one matter as compared to the next.

However I am aghast at those people who say that the MP did something wrong since he was targeted twice. This is a huge fallcy.

Correct me if I'm wrong, since I may be ignorant about such matters, but isn't there other MPs or ministers who seem to be more unpopular? Mr Seng doesn't seem to have been doing anything bad so far I know.

I empathise with him and his condition, and I'm alright with him receiving best medical care or still receiving his pay. This is because, if the government cannot take care of its own MPs well, then there can be no confidence in the civil service that they will be taken care of in the case of such pitiful situations.

I would like to conclude by saying that it is easy to attack the government from a citizen's point of view, but perhaps we would have done the same had we had the same amount of knowledge and experience at governing.

Daniel Ling said...

From a not that neutral point of view.

I do feel that the attack is wrong. No matter what wrong a person has done, it sincerely should not be resolve through violence. But then again, emotions may play a big part sometimes.

http://informationreadbyme.blogspot.com/2009/01/perspective-experience-concerns.html


From a slightly more positive point of view.

I do agree with soup that there seem to be other MPs who might be more hated.


From a slightly negative point of view.

No Fire No Smoke.


From a neutral point of view.

There can be 2 assumptions from what has happened.

1) The Old Man was Mentally Ill and unable to control his Actions. Thus he Randomly Attacked a person (Who happens to be the MP) and is currently being charged in court EVEN THOUGH his Mentally Unstable.

2) The Old Man WAS NOT Mentally Ill and is able to control his Actions. Thus he SPECIFICALLY Attacked the MP for a SPECIFIC REASON and is currently being charged in court.

Of course there's a few variables that can be interchangeable, so I'll leave it up to people to think through. Of course all of these ARE NOT FACTS.

Variables
Mentally Stable or Unstable
Able to Control Actions or Not
Random Target or Specific Target
Specific Reason or No Reason

What do you think?

For my view.
http://informationreadbyme.blogspot.com/2009/01/what-was-old-man-thinking-mp-on-fire-p2.html


Cheers
From "I'm a Idiot too"

Ghost said...

Actually the comments so far reflect a lot of the blogs I read. There’s a lot more sympathy for the attacker than the guy who is set on fire. How in the world can that be right?

The said...

/// If you are unhappy with the government, there's a thing call elections! ///

And there is such a thing call gerrymendering and GRC. If you can get rid of the GRC system, then we can talk....

soojenn said...

As AngryAngMo said - "Guess there will be a lot of more "Idiots" in the Singapore blogosphere who might disagree there with you..." Precisely the case.

"You would think that after an incident like this, there will be an outpouring of condolences to Mr. Seng and an outpouring of condemnation to his attacker." - I wonder why would you think so. Singaporeans in general are compassionate and giving, as can be seen when there are major disasters, like the Szehuan earthquake, etc.. You have to ask yourself why in this case the reactions are completely reversed, and not resort to name calling. As Clumsy Girl said "Resorting to name calling does not make you any better. Extreme opinions are expected of a free space. No need to get so worked up over it.". At the least we get accurate thoughts of the people, not cooked up praises lavished in general by the mainstream media.

Analyse - why is this happening to the same MP - twice and not to any others. As Mercier said "Perhaps you might want to ask yourself how the senior citizen arrived in his state of mental instability which led to him setting the MP on fire. Why is it that this MP seems to be attracting assaults when others are not? Members of the PAP should also reflect on how circumstances could lead to such an unprecedented incident in staid Singapore."

"People are complaining about the fact that he is under the care of one of the best plastic surgeons in Singapore, and that his medical expenses are all covered by the government. Some even complain that he will continue to receive his monthly pay of over $10,000 while on sick leave." - what do you expect. Read about what is happening to the NS Storeman case where the government discliam any liability, insisting that he was not on duty? and made his family pay for his medical expenses? One law for the rich and one law for the poor?

"GO AND SET YOURSELF ON FIRE! If you are unhappy with the government, there's a thing call elections! You do not set fire to a Member of Parliament." - why get overworked? Elections? who are you trying to kid? As Mercia said "most people in Singapore have not had the chance to vote in most elections, so as a form of representative government I'd say "our PAP" is quite the misnomer." - (i) the PAP changes the election rules whenever they sense a potential challenge, like setting up the GRC's on the premise of having a blanace race representation? hogwash, (ii) redrawing the GRC's when the votes for the opposition get too close for comfort, with areas ridiculously far away from the original GRC's have also been included. Marine Parade is a good example of having far away areas under their charge. Why? because the PAP probably feel more confident of not getting challenged under the wing of their vetren politician Goh Chok Tong, and just walk over, as have been shown in all the past elections. (iii) putting candidates that the has voted out, in the coat tails of the veteran politicians in the GRC's which will have walkovers, like Mah Bow Tan who was one of the candidates who was voted out by the people and is now a million dollar Minister (iii) bankrupting the up and coming opposition leaders to stop them from participating in the elections (iv) recounting votes when the opposition has won in one of the GRC's in the past elections (v) harassing of opponents after the elections, effectively affecting their livelihood. There are some much more incidences for space to allow for. You were probably in pampers or your mother's womb when all these happened for you to appear to be so ignorant of the issues surrounding our so called "democratic elections" when you tell the netizens that "there is a thing call elections!" - come on and wake up to your senses if you have any.

"A Member of Parliament was attacked while carrying out his duty and he is facing condemnation from the public?" - carrying out what duties? like the Singapore Keleng kissing babies. What is S$200 for this 70 year old man? There is apparently no compassion from this MP? Anon wrote - "The MP *supposedly* knew the man was mentally unsound and broke but did not do his duty as a MP to help." What do you expect from the netizens and Singaporeans in general.

I also do not condone the acts but try to understand the emotions and feeling of the people when they write such blogs. At the least, they are expressing their thoughts culminated from many issues, and are not hypocrites like some people.

"...give him the death penalty, send a message that any attack on any Member of Parliament will NOT be tolerated." - why are you concerned only on any attack on any MP. This should be for all, not just MPs? Death penalty? are you kidding, just for this. By the way, if the 70-year man is mentally unsound as reported in the mainstream media, then it is the government's responsibility to ensure that he has rehabilitated before he is let loose. So what do they have to say on this? Death sentence should probably be abolished and commuted to lifelong sentences. This is to avoid the potential issues like in the case of the one-eyed dragon where his request to extend for a few more months is denied (so what type of a caring society do you expect when the government is setting the stage for this), so that his kidney can be donated to the rich man Tang in time? two laws - one for the rich and one for the poor.

Anonymous said...

I believe such incidents will become more prominent in the future.

Especially when Singapore imports in many more residents from other countries where people are more 'hot-blooded'.

The crux of the issue as someone had mentioned, these so called leaders of our society have not been elected by the majority of us.

They were selected by one authority who thinks it knows best.

Why should we give them any respect? I'll say .. earn it.

I have met and seen Seng in person outside his wayang MP role.

I think this is a wake up call for him. God has spoken to him twice.

Anonymous said...

All animals are equal, but some are more equal than the others.

Let's face it, there is no real equality in any society. The rich will always get preference in treatment, like it or not. It's just too bad that most of us are not, but if the day comes when you become one, you may dance to the tune of the rich yourself, who knows?

Money is still the master of the masses, and money talks.

Ghost said...

I really hope such incidents will NOT become more prominent in the future, in fact I hope it NEVER happen again. That's why I think the attacker should be heavily punished.
As for the elections, well I can't vote as well because it's always a walkover in my GRC. But I don't blame the PAP for that, I blame the opposition. They should get rid of the by-election tactic, it do more harm than good for Singapore

Anonymous said...

George says:
I agree with the poster who said you must be im pampers when this country's political history began.

I was one of those who stood by the roadside along Paya Lebar Road (the old 2-lane version) to welcome home one LKY from his victorious trip to London to fight for our independence/self-rule.

Today, myself and many others like me, no longer think of him in the same emotional tone we did several decades ago. Today, we see him as comparable to the main character in Oscar Wildes' book, The Picture Of Dorian Gray.

Because of him, I believe that NS is primary to Singapore's survival and nation building. Today, I know better, when I see the sort of govt policies the govt have for looking after the poor, disable, aged and sick of this country.

Singapore's 'nation-building' history was a lot of self-serving crap designed to manipulate the building up of one massive ego of one man and his family and relatives.

Daniel Ling said...

To Ghost, what can the opposition do when pap owns 80 out of 84 seats?

Anonymous said...

I think you have been listening to too much "Tales from the Kangaroo Courts" when you say, "If you're not happy with the government, there is such a thing as elections."

Get a reality check.

Gar said...

I tried to read through all the comments and I didn't make it so I'll just start where I can.

I like what "Clumsy Girl" had to say. I was going to say something similar in a not so nice fashion.

Americans are often berated because somehow the USA became a "powerful nation" and people generally support the underdog and hate the powerful.

I don't agree with the mentally ill defense at all. You can't tell me anyone that physically hurts (or kills) another human being is mentally stable.

So, the "this person was mentally unstable" argument could be used for anyone that is mentally capable of doing harm to another human.

Only argument I would have with Ghost's original post was that perhaps the way he said it wasn't nice :).

The Hermit said...

Dude, you don't expect to work for the devil and not get burnt.

What goes around comes around. My apologies but my sympathy is only reserved for my peers as well as the poor and helpless.

The rich self-serving cronies of PAP do not need or deserve our sympathies. They have our CPF and tax monies to sooth their pains.

Ghost said...

A thing I must say is that a lot has been made about the fact that the MP that was attacked is rich while the attacker is poor. Being poor is no excuse to set fire to someone else. I'm not rich myself but I don't set fire to rich people. Whether the guy has any issue with mental instability also should not matter. He set a MP on fire and must be punished. No attacks on any MP must be allowed or else the next time an MP might be killed. I believe no one want that to happen

Anonymous said...

I really not concerned if more MPs are killed.

They are a dime a dozen and they are of no economic value.

May be better for Singapore if a few of them die. Maybe then, I'll see them in another light.

AngryAngMo said...

Ghost said...

Actually the comments so far reflect a lot of the blogs I read. There’s a lot more sympathy for the attacker than the guy who is set on fire.

I have the feeling you look at this matter from a very single sided point of view, in fact, there is not that much sympathy to be found in the comments, but much more disagreement with your radical point of view, suggesting to "kill" the attacker...

A lot of people agree in fact that such an attack is wrong, but correctly question how and why it came so far in the first place and if executing an mentally unstable person is really a good solution...

The Hermit said...

My point of view in life had always been this, you reap what you sowed. What goes around comes around and nature (or karma as some like to call it) always has a way of balancing things.

If a person do too much evil, they will get punished one way or another.

The court, although an official dispenser of justice, do not necessarily have the exclusive rights to dispense justice.

Justice can come in many forms, depending on each individual's beliefs and religion. For example, if a man is evil and he got struck by lightning, are we going to accuse heaven of murder, insisting that only the court can determine who the executor is? Of course not, since we can't very well hurl heaven to our humanly court, so we human beings made up an excuse and call it the act of God / death by misadventure. But to the victims of the evil man, with the evil man dead, justice is served, no matter who or what served it.

In this case of turning the MP into a piece of walking Char Siew, the MP was served his due justice by the way of fire from an old man. The old man may had done wrong in the eyes of many, and justice will be serve on him in due course. And if the court should be unfair and wrong the old man, justice too will be served on the court in good time, one way or another.

At the end of the day, do no evil, and retribution shall not be descend upon you.

That said, being human, my sympathy goes out to the old man who had nothing. Pardon me if I sound heartless, but I see no further need to waste any sympathy on the MP since he have all the sympathies he needs from our tax dollars. It wouldn't bother me if more useless PAP fellows get turn into char siew. In fact, it will probably be a welcome sight in this mellow 2009.

Anonymous said...

So what if an MP is killed?

No difference to any other human being .....

Your emphasis is wrongly placed, it seemed to me.

That because Seng was an MP, we must draw blood from the attacker even if he was not mentally sound?!

MPs are civil servants, not our masters. They do not deserve any special treatment.

And I thought we are done with the colonial hangover when we mari kita some 40 years back.

Please don't go replacing one set of white masters with white-wearing ones.

Anonymous said...

"So what if an MP is killed?
No difference to any other human being ....."

Sorry but it sound to me that you are saying that it's okay for people to set fire or kill each other on the streets of Singapore. Even to me, that's going way too far. Someone is set on fire, the guy setting the fire should be punished. Sound simple enough for me.

Daniel Ling said...

I can't state that what I'm saying is what the other Anon said.

But
"So what if an MP is killed?
No difference to any other human being ....."

What he might be trying to say is that.
So what if it's a MP, why is the MP getting different treatment as compared to if a normal person is the one who got hurt.

Assuming the Old Man in this case was really unsound, and the target was just a normal Citizen, would there have been so much news article? Would he have still receive pay while he was hospitalize? Would his GM, CEO, Top Management visit him?

Would the Nurse and Staff esort his Visitors?

This Statement
"So what if an MP is killed?
No difference to any other human being ....."

In my opinion is more of trying to ask, why Elite and Peasant? For a MP, i would have thought it's even more important to be down to earth since they are suppose to be our "Leaders".

Anonymous said...

Thanks for clarifying on my behalf.

Yes, that is exactly my point.

The attacker has been arrested and waiting for his trial.

He should be judged and accorded punishment based on the crime and his circumstances. Who he attacked is not material.

Asking for death penalty because Seng is an MP is simply telling the whole world, one country, two systems. Kangaroo Court.

And these elites will continue to behave as such if we do not stop seeing ourselves as their lower counterparts or their slaves.

We don't owe them a living. They owe us because we voted for them and paid millions.

Anonymous said...

the bitter old man needs some "love and sugar".
but no one was there for him because he is such a .... loser.
so all our love and sugar have been heaped upon winners like mr seng( just look at all the VIPs who turned up in support) because he served the community or is "talented"

moral of the story: do not ignore the little rusty nail stuck to your BMW tyre even the tyre does not look deflated to you

doing so may punctured your journey to the perfect (a) party of your life or...

...ignore that infected little toe of yours and possibly subject the entire body to irreversible damages and even fatal consequences

Daniel Ling said...

I'm glad i got it right. =D

To the Anon just above me. I think your comment sums it up nicely. I'm going to keep it as a quote.

"moral of the story: do not ignore the little rusty nail stuck to your BMW tyre even the tyre does not look deflated to you

doing so may punctured your journey to the perfect (a) party of your life or...

...ignore that infected little toe of yours and possibly subject the entire body to irreversible damages and even fatal consequences"

@

http://informationreadbyme.blogspot.com/2008/11/list-of-quotes.html

Kaffein said...

Guess I fall into the category of 'idiot' as per your article. Look as a human, I do not condone the assualt on MP Seng. He does not need to go through that. I sympathize with him and family.

But the government keeps telling us to 'look at the big picture'. So that's what many are doing.

This incident has sparked a lot of dissent among the voices of many Singaporeans, esp blogsphere. The government knows it is losing its touch on the ground. And this is another outburst that kinda confirmed the sentiments.

The reaction (PAP saw it coming) was a focal point to let out steam. It is a needed triggering point for people to jump into the bandwagon that they are unhappy about the government policies.

And what about this man who vandalized 'Harry I love you'? The point is both man should be charged because they had done something unlawful. But the way the media put it is:

How dare anyone touch the elites?!

And in parallel, we have this NSman who got the blunt end of the stick against Mindef. This makes people blood boil.

The grudge against the government is people aren't happy with the way you are handling our affairs. Each day, there will be more and more dissent. All it needs is a spark.

Don't give the excuse of global market forces, or economic reasons. We paid you, so deliver.

So far, the PAP government has ran out of ideas. They want $$$ to justify their salaries. So jolly well, deliver like one!

All was fine during good times. However in bad times, people are more prone to reactive actions. So either the government shape up, or ship out. But with the gerrymeandering we have, seems like the incumbent party is here to stay for a long time.

Don't take it too hard. I won't be surprised if more of these reactions suddenly spring up. There is only how much you can drive a person up the wall.

My patience ran thin some years ago. I've decided to ship out.

Kaffein

Ghost said...

Whether the Singapore government is losing touch to the ground ui a different question. A MP in Singapore was attacked and set on fire, are you saying this should be allowed just because the MP attacked was a PAP MP? Whatever the sentiment is on the ground, an attack on any MP must NOT be allowed to happen ever again.

The Hermit said...

What is the different between a MP who do not speak for the people and a common laborer?

Nothing, except that the common laborer is doing his job but the MP is not.

In this case, we have the MP and the old man. The old man, in fact, sent PAP a message that the MP failed to do despite being paid handsomely to do so.

The message reads, "This is what you get for giving us 4 decades of bullshit. Do not force us into a corner, we will strike back."

Daniel Ling said...

To Ghost, I'm not sure whether you still get it. But i think u still dun get it becoz of the way you phrased your sentence.

"Whatever the sentiment is on the ground, an attack on any MP must NOT be allowed to happen ever again."

Shouldn't it be phrase as

"an attack on ANYONE must NOT be allowed to happen ever again."

Not trying to play with your words but just enlightening you on how your words look like to others.

Xtrocious said...

Wait - if he even on duty?

Wasn't he just gracing the occasion?

Not that I condone acts of violence but just like to set the record straight...

Personally I think there are too many times where they just go and grace the occasion - lend their name and weight and nothing else...

Case in point - Chan Soo Sen being the "guest of honour" at a degree mill presentation...hahah

Anonymous said...

He still dun get it.

No one is going scott free on this incident. No Singaporean is saying Ong shud be set free.

Only, he wanted more to be done just because an elite is being hurt.

He is showing us who's the bigger idiot amongst us so called idiots.

Daniel Ling said...

From a Neutral Stand.

To the Anon above me. Calling names doesn't help. As what Clumsy Girl has said much earlier, the Net is a free space and people can say what they want as long as they take responsibility for it.

The author actually has not said anything wrong. He may have slightly higher opinion of the MPs than us thus he feels that they should deserve slightly different treatment which in my Opinion is not wrong.

(I mean a Richer Person paying more money for Better Medical Treatment)
Or
(Smarter Person getting more Scholarships)
Or
(Prettier Person getting more Attention)
ETC

But I guess the other side of the coin feels that as a MP, a people's Leader, a not Held in that high Opinion person should not be treated so differently.

But of course, I THINK most of those on the other side of the coin do feel that a crime needs to be punished. But should be punished fairly and not take into consideration so much that the victim is a MP.

Anonymous said...

Nope .. i don't enjoy calling him an idiot. In fact, I think he did not show much courtesy in the first place in his blog title.

But, after reading all the comments from everyone, I am forming my impression that he is an idiot.

I will say it like it is.

He writes to give his opinons, so be prepared to receive others'.

Daniel Ling said...

I guess it's personal preference.

I just try to stick to my principles which is

"Do not to others what you do not want done to you."

Anonymous said...

""GO AND SET YOURSELF ON FIRE!"...

This is Very Serious and Xiao word!

Thought U are educated person who own a blog,,yet wrote this sentences,,,??!

Anonymous said...

ghost I think you are confusing the issue.

I think majority of the people thinks it is wrong to set fire on anyone.

The issue of judgment should be based on law. I don't know law but maybe lawyers can give some insight. First of all there are provisions of mentally ill offenders. If you want to follow the laws then you should take that into considerations. Secondly there is also a maximum penalty for causing grievious hurt. I don't know the limit but doesn't sound like a life sentence.

The question now would be should offence against MP be different from a citizen.

The second confusion you have is why are people cheering the 'hero' instead of sympathising with the victim. This is because in some people's eyes PAP ministers deserved it. They raise their salary without any accountability to the citizens. They implement a lot of unpopular policies without sufficiently engaging and doing the necessary convincing. All these breed ill will for PAP ministers. When people do not have a outlet to express the injustice they feel, this incident becomes a vent to let off steam.

Personally I don't believe that attacking MP is the way to go but the government should be worried that citizen cheer when the MP is attacked. It tells a lot about their popularity in certain sections of the population.

Mercia said...

While I understand your reason for being aghast at the general reaction of the Singaporean blogosphere, perhaps you should ask yourself certain question:

1) How is this occupational hazard different from say, a taxi driver being stabbed by one of his passengers?

2) Should additional laws be passed to make assaulting an MP more serious when laws addressing assault and causing grievious harm already cover this crime?

3) To what extent is a 70 year old man, who might be suffering ill mental health, be responsible for his actions?

4) If said 70 year old had previously approached the MP and his condition was known, why was his issue(s) not addressed, and was he being treated for his mental condition?

5) Again, not to whip a dead horse, but can we accord due value to the MP as a more important member of society if the mandate of representative governance does not count?

Seems to me like there is a mix of shock and outrage that extends beyond just sympathy for any member of the public. I think the issue here is that bloggers hold MPs and government officials to higher regard than they actually should, and thus have heaped more scorn than on PAP members than they actually deserve. One can understand the lack of sympathy for the MP, because people see him as part of the establishment responsible for perpetrating whatever perceived injustice that is abound in Singaporean society. If this were anyone else other than an MP, you'd imagine Singaporeans would feel a fair bit more empathy. Can you imagine the public response if a minister were the victim? I think that's the scary question, because Singaporeans at large seem to have no empathy for most, if not all senior civil servants.

Wouldn't you be worried?

Dex said...

I agree with what you've said here. Posted something similar in tone elsewhere.

For anyone to endorse the actions of a person who is intent on physically harming another, is appalling. It's akin to saying you support something like, say, Israel's actions against Gaza.

However i don't see why you should need to call for some sort of heavy punishment, or the death penalty. This is not the time for an eye for an eye, tooth for tooth.

bunkincedar said...

Is this supposed to be tongue-in-cheek?

Ghost said...

Based on what I’ve read so far on the blogshere, most bloggers are applauding the attack which is something that I firmly believe to be wrong. Whatever grievances you have with the Singapore government, you cannot attack a MP. And Singaporeans (and Singapore bloggers) should not be clapping theirs hands in ‘celebration’ that a MP of Singapore was set on fire.
To the Anon above that commented on January 18, 2009 1:42 PM; I’m more than happy to receive any comment from the public. I’m a blogger that blog about politics in Singapore. If I’m afraid, I’ll talk about the weather. BTW, you know about the strong winds lately…

Wormie said...

Having read most of the comments, I noticed the reason why people do not sympathise with Mr Seng is because he is linked to PAP. My feeling is that if he is not linked to PAP and was doused with fire, people will cry foul and shouting for blood against the attacker. To me this is totally misplaced hatred.

Do you go around hurting your enemies children just because you do not like (no, hate) the parents?

Like they say, two wrongs don't make a right

Daniel Ling said...

To Wormie, let me ask you a question.

If you have a boss whose not very nice and might have taken advantage of situation often. Basically you and your colleagues would have talked behind his/her back of how he treats the employee, etc.

So he/she mets with a accident.

Would you say haiz, unlucky but retribution?

DISCLAIMER: I do not feel that the attack was right.


To Ghost, if you have been reading the comments, you would have realise some people agree that the attack is wrong but people disagree that there seems to be a need for extra special treatment just becoz the victim is a MP.

For those who celebrates, that's their opinion. =D

Wormie said...

Quoting Daniel Ling:
If you have a boss whose not very nice and might have taken advantage of situation often. Basically you and your colleagues would have talked behind his/her back of how he treats the employee, etc.

That's where the problem lies, from sentiments, people support the attacker because Mr Seng represents the PAP. Your analogy equates to something happening to PAP itself or the leaders in PAP.
This is misplaced anger, if got problem with PAP or its leader don't attack its supporters.

Would you say haiz, unlucky but retribution?

If somebody meet with an accident, I definitely will not say its retribution

DISCLAIMER: I do not feel that the attack was right.

So is it fair to say that you do not support the attack even though Mr Seng represents the PAP and hence you yourself would probably not say that it is Mr Seng's retribution?

Daniel Ling said...

"That's where the problem lies, from sentiments, people support the attacker because Mr Seng represents the PAP. Your analogy equates to something happening to PAP itself or the leaders in PAP.
This is misplaced anger, if got problem with PAP or its leader don't attack its supporters."

I apologise, i think i may have phrase it wrongly.

But i get your point of "Do not attack the supporters."

I believe I misunderstood your first post.


"If somebody meet with an accident, I definitely will not say its retribution"

Maybe you do not dislike the person enough?


"So is it fair to say that you do not support the attack even though Mr Seng represents the PAP and hence you yourself would probably not say that it is Mr Seng's retribution?"

Yes I do not support the attack. I do feel there's other means of effecting a change or getting your point across although it may be diffcult.


PS: How did you do the italic font?

Ganga said...


This author is funny...

He/She condemns the attacker and demands extreme punishment against him. Nevermind that other critical factors (eg. mental state) also played a part in the commission of the offence.

This is the same as those who say that the MP deserved it - taking things out of proportion, isn't it? A case of the pot calling the kettle an idiot?

And of course, there is the issue of, perhaps, the blogosphere getting out of touch and being disconnected with our politicians. That would explain why such a tragedy is taken out of context and a lot of unnecesary points that have nothing to do with the actual situation are being thrown about.

Hmmm... Isn't that the same as what the people get? A whole lot of unrelated and vague points from the officials that actually have nothing to do with the root problem - or solving it.

Well, this article shows that if how the bloggers are reacting is ridiculous, then it just mirrors the sentiments/approach of the 'people up there' as well.

Hint to author: It might be a good idea to look at WHY they are saying such 'idiotic' things instead of focusing on what they are saying alone. Just like you say the irrational (eg. execute the attacker) to illustrate that it is a serious act of violence, so too do bloggers say the seemingly-irrational (eg. he deserved it) to emphasise how disconnecetd the rulers are from the people...

Ghost said...

"It might be a good idea to look at WHY they are saying such 'idiotic' things instead of focusing on what they are saying alone."
That's a good point. And the reason they are saying it is because a member of the PAP was attacked. It's a very serious act of violence and I do feel strongly that no matter how "disconnecetd" the rulers are from the people, something like this must not be allowed, much less applauded.

Wormie said...

[OOT] To Daniel Ling, to get italics do the following: use html tags < i > before and < / i > after the text without the spaces

Idiot 1 said...

Oh, so you are the idiot from the other side.

Anonymous said...

>> This is misplaced anger, if got >> problem with PAP or its leader >> don't attack its supporters.

A PAP *MP* is as close to PAP as you are going to get, Seng is not simply a supporter.

This MP, by aligning with the PAP, shows that he supports their policies, so I don't see how there is any misplaced anger.

Anonymous said...

u r an idiot. may u be burnt too

cc chia said...

Maybe in Singapore it could be different, but elsewhere in the world, mentally unsound persons are not treated the same way in law as "normal" people.

Since the MP who was burnt was the target of 2 angry former taxi drivers, looks like it was not a coincidence and that he must have deserved what he got, by not doing a proper MP job over the years.

Perhaps time for the MP to resign or step down so that someone more suitable can take over.

Anonymous said...

Hi, WSM the 2nd.

Yours,
Yet nother' idiot.

Anonymous said...

Funny how this author insisted because the person concerned (Mr Seng)IS an MP, therefore he must NOT be set on fire.

Are you insinuating that it's alright for a commoner to be set on fire because he/she is no one important?

Anonymous said...

You and ur chao chee bye writing. did u realise most of us have ABSOLUTELY NO chance to vote AT ALL and has to suffer in silence and eating all those shit handled out by the gov. why not u set urself on fire then?

So an MP on fire who now receive the best of everything paid by the people is ok while ordinary people have a cheapskate life.

go fuck urself u motherfucker, u can delete this if u want but u will most probably see this b4 u delete it.

Mohd Hisham said...

Ghost, and all others,

I think it is pretty clear that Ghost is very confused on what most of the others here thinks.

1) all of us agree that setting fire on anyone is wrong. agreed?

So, the attacker, should be punished according to the laws that we have here; subject to certain provisions; that the person being punished, is of sound mind and aware of the degree of pain he is causing.

Now, the Author of this post have suggested longer prison terms and even the death sentence. Any persons on the street will tell you, you must be nuts to haul a crazy men to the gallows for actions beyond his level of understanding. Put him away, out of the public so he will not make anymore troubles for anyone would have suffice but no, the Author insist on harsher punishment.

Let me be straightforward here. All of us agree, that the action is wrong. IF it was done by anyone of us, then we deserve the full measure of the law. But it is not, I mean seriously, you can't tell a drunkard that he is drunk, you will have to wait until he is sober, then you tell him his actions have caused pain to others. Can you wait for an insane men to be cure of his insanity? You must be insane, my dear Sir!