22 August 2006

NDRS focus!

Analyses of NDRS 2006 should be filing in soon in every corner of the Singapore political blogosphere.

Okay, so maybe Gayle Goh is the only one to attempt an in-depth post on the NDRS. It just has the trademark hindsight of her youthful years, with gems like "There was no mention of new policies, which is a change from last year's National Day Rally Speech". Girl, every year NDRS got new policy announcments. Mr Wang is taking the NDRS apart, piece by piece. It's certainly a far better read. The bloggers at Singaporeangle have made predictions on this year's NDRS, but haven't come back with a post-mortem of the speeh.

However, an interesting exercise is to observe how the media is spinning the speech and deciding how the reader-citizen should react to it. I imagine the Straits Times spin will be covered by other writers very soon, so I'll just stick to Channelnewsasia.

PM Lee's rally speech inspiring and assuring, say Singaporeans

I suspect you wouldn't read this article if it were titled: MPs and other invitees full of praise for NDRS - yet this is what the article is really about. The article talks about the reactions of Singaporeans but neglect to mention they were all invited to the speech and are the type of people whom you can count to applaud vigorously at any Baby Bonus announcements regardless of the soundness of the policy, or laugh heartily at any lame joke Minilee would make. Yet according to CNA, they are not members of the establishment who attended the rally, but merely "many of those who heard Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong's speech".

Channelnewsasia is just as bad as The Straits Times. Wong Siew Ying, Noor Mohd Aziz, and S Ramesh are hacks who have less integrity and honesty than bloggers.

Singaporeans say PM Lee's rally speech resonates with them

CNA spoke to Singaporeans among the lunchtime crowd at Raffles Place, one day after PM Lee Hsien Loong's speech on Sunday. But does this even count as a news article?

"Many felt it touched their lives"
"They said they liked what they heard"
"It was a speech that resonated with them"
"Blah blah blah," said a Singaporean.
"Yakkity yak," said another.

And for those who have just arrived on our shores, they said that Singapore is a most welcoming home away from home.

"Blah blah blah," said one immigrant turned citizen.
"Yadda yadda," said another immigrant.
"So on and so forth," said a third.
... and a fourth.
Whatever their views, Singaporeans took Mr Lee's message to heart.

Dominique Loh certainly fails as a reporter, with his torrent of unnamed, anonymous, unverifiable sources. Is it that difficult to get those people to stand up for what they said? That's troubling, actually.

Who are these people who said Minilee's speech is good?
What are their names?
How many people did you interview?

And no, I am not channelling the spirit of Papalee here.

But this is how the media is attempting to pre-shape the reactions of really existing Singaporeans to this year's NDRS, and creating an orthodoxy of opinion, an acceptable range of responses for them to choose from.

08 August 2006

EOL for win98, winME

Readings from the Book of Leaves

WinME died. It was some time ago, but still I don't know. There was the unfortunate case of my week-long fever, the nastiness of the pneumonia, the drug induced haze that was the recovery.

I never had a relationship with WinME, and now I never will. When we met, she was with a friend of mine, the one who dated all the OS-tans. It was a brief and cordial encounter, and I did not see in her all the faults that circulated in current gossip.

Today, WinME is dead. So is Win98, whom I was seeing on a daily basis until 2002. We decided to call it quits when she didn't get along with my broadband modem. It was a long time ago, and with the passage of time, it feels like a very silly reason to split.

All I know is today, and the day after, and all the days after that, there will be this empty space in my heart. And I know this space is reserved for them.