As Singapore awaits to celebrate it’s 45th birthday or rather celebration of independence this 9th August, I have for a long time besides, having dreams for Singapore, also question on the life of myself, a Singaporean.
Having survived more than a quarter of a century of living and breathing the air in this 647 sq km island (the last time I remembered), I cannot help but notice a stark difference in educational and social standards between Singapore and the rest of the world, as close as our next door neighbours.
We have perhaps, produced one of the smartest brains in the world in terms of IQ (Intelligent Quotient) as I remembered a survey that Singapore contributes up to 10 Harvard students a year. More than just producing brain smart talents, our fellow Singaporeans who have been socially stigmatized as academically incapable are in fact, perhaps smarter than many others around the world of the same age.
Here’s perhaps an academic ego boost for those who have been sidelined by the education system here.
Our GCE ‘O’ Levels is equivalent to the GCE ‘A’ Levels in the United Kingdom and undergrads in local universities are learning modules which are covered in the Masters and PhD programme in other countries overseas!
So, where am I driving at in this post?
Since Singapore started on it’s quest for independence, just like any other country around the world, we have embarked on a very special and customized social engineering programme, one which we have become infamous for.
The Singaporeans of yesteryears were socially engineered during pre-independence to conform to the political institution of a single state government. Such social engineering to conformity was enacted through the arrest of several political bigwigs who were oppositions through the use of the ISA, which is a law above the law in Operation Coldstore.
As Singaporeans began to bear children, our children were socially engineered to conform to this political institution and through this political and social engineering, we began to seek career paths that we sought for whilst our government promised better housing and a brighter future for future generations.
Now, as we enter the 3rd and 4th phase of generation, many of our 1st and 2nd generation Singaporeans have since passed and for those who are still alive, still very much conform to the social engineering of yesteryears for fear of the potential backlash as what had happened to those in Operation Coldstore in the morning of 1963.
Today, our political institution is very much focused on eliminating individuals out to cause harm to the security and stability of our nation, namely, the terrorists. Of course, there are also occasions whereby the political institution still drives home it’s point that members of the opposition shall not be given due credibility in what they speak of, even if this country speaks about being a democratic country.
Individuals such as Said Zahari, Chee Soon Juan and recently Dr Lim Hock Siew are few of such individuals who have been denied the due credibility to speak openly about the political institution they were subjected to during Singapore’s yesteryears. Let’s not forget also about publications who have been fined for critically and constructively critizing our judicial and political system of governance, the most famous for today is Alan Shadrake.
Further to that, in today’s economic climate of competition, Singaporeans have been socially engineered to take up jobs which they may not have a passion for just to ensure that they can keep a roof above their heads. Such jobs may result in long hours and as such, take their time and minds away from focusing on other areas that they may seek interest or idle to such as the political engineering of Singapore.
Haven’t you ever thought for once that because you are so busy chasing after that career and to maintain that house or to achieve the 5Cs in Singapore, you never really cared about the political situation here as long as you can still have your job?
In comparison, our fellow peers just across the causeway and water channel, are chasing their dreams, maintaining their house, achieving their 5Cs but are also heavily and actively involved in their politics.
My personal thoughts on this?
I think most Singaporeans have been socially and politically engineered by the political institution such that the only means of living in Singapore is to work hard, upkeep that roof above your heads, enjoy the facilities accorded to you and keep your nose out of politics.
For those individuals who conform strictly to the political institution and have the smartest of brains only, you’re invited to join the political institution as a member of the team to ensure that this social engineering remains in place with minor adjustments.
On a sidenote, if all your do is achieve academic excellence, I’ve come to realize that high IQ doesn’t really mean high EQ. Sometimes, individuals with high IQ convince themselves that they have a high EQ, until a situation whereby their EQ’s are put to the test, and you realize that despite that academic distinction they have from the Ivy League Uni, they are just, I’ve no other word but, stupid?
Think about it!