Will He Stay or Will He Go?

I for one have always been sceptical of the assumption that Lee Hsien Loong would step down as PM when he reaches 70. This seems to have originated in a 2012 interview when LHL was asked if he saw himself as PM beyond the age of 70 and he replied “I hope not.”  and then went on to add:

“Seventy is already a long time more. And Singapore needs a prime minister who is younger, who’s got that energy, and who is in tune with that very much younger and very much different generation.”

Of course when our state media lackeys interview LHL, all questions are agreed in advance with his own media advisers writing the questions so there was nothing spontaneous or unscripted about the question. By floating the idea that he would be stepping down at 70 LHL wanted to give the idea that he had a carefully thought out plan for leadership succession.

Like everything else the PAP do, the intention was to leave the impression of long-term planning whereas the reality is that policy is mostly reactive with no long term plan at all other than one or two out-of-date economic policies from the 1960s and 1970s. As with any autocracy or totalitarian government policy is decided by the Supreme Leeder and ministers and civil servants, chosen for their sycophancy rather than ability, hasten to fall into line. Then when the policy has abjectly failed or is deeply unpopular, there is talk of “recalibration” while Singaporeans are blamed for having a low threshold of pain. Examples that spring to mind are the stop-at-two policy from the 1970s, the graduate mothers policy in the 1980s or the huge expansion of the workforce that took place through importing cheap immigrant labour after 2000.  After policy is reversed or moderated somewhat PAP-linked pundits are usually deployed to warn of the dangers to growth of adopting populist policies and of the threat to the “Singapore model” itself.

In a similar manner LHL seems to be softening the ground to stay on past 70 as evidenced by an article that appeared in the State Times on 2 February by Elgin Toh, entitled “Should PM Lee Hsien Loong lead beyond 70?“. This was a merely rhetorical question since after running through the reasons why the so-called fourth-generation leaders might need more time and why it would not be advisable to have an interim PM like Tharman (whom we already know is ruled out because of his skin colour) Toh concludes that it might not be a bad thing for LHL to stay on beyond 70. World leaders like Ronald Reagan who did not finish his second term as US President till he was 78 and Winston Churchill, who stepped down as PM at 80. He does not suggest a time limit for LHL to step down but by saying the latter’s health is still good the implication is that LHL could be leader for another two terms.

Surely if the fourth generation leaders, who are of variable quality anyway, are not ready by 2022 then they will never be ready. Heng Swee Keat, second class degree holder and my Economics classmate from Cambridge, has health issues. Chan Chun Sing is a charisma-free zone and Ong Ye Kung may not be able to escape suspicions of involvement in the Brazilian bribery scandal after he was given a top position at Keppel Corp following his defeat in 2011. Despite the outrageously high salaries

But then it has never been about grooming a successor but about finding a seat warmer to fill in until the throne can be passed to the next generation of Lees. Li Hongyi was probably going to enter politics in 2020 but after last year’s family squabbles over the money for Oxley Rise those plans have been set back by a few years. His cousin, Li Shengwu, warned then that a third generation of Lees would be bad for Singapore and has ended up facing prosecution (for what I say frequently on my blog and social media)  if he sets foot in Singapore again.

Goh Chok Tong, or Holy Goh (a reference to the Eternal Singaporean Trinity whose other members are the Lee Father and Son),  has even joined the fray on social media leading Singaporeans to hope that there could be more light entertainment of the sort provided by the  Lee family drama. He said that he hoped a successor would be named before the end of 2018 prompting LHL to tell him off for getting above his place and reminding everyone that LHL alone would make the decision.

LHL must envy his dad who was able to give the appearance of retiring at 67 while continuing to wield the real power behind the throne for another two decades. In those days the succession was already mapped out and LHL was guaranteed the throne after a respectable interregnum. Now things are a little more complicated and international opprobrium to family dynasties has increased. Having Li Hongyi take over would probably be unpopular with Singaporeans and piss off LHL’s ambitious underlings in the PAP, though no doubt Singaporeans would accept it if offered a few dollars in extra CPF contributions. LHL has always taken care to surround himself with sycophants who can be bought off or who can be blackmailed or have vulnerabilities (like Tharman whom LHL prosecuted and had convicted before he became a Minister) so probably they can be made to find having Li Hongyi parachuted in above them bearable. So I expect LHL will continue beyond 2020 till the succession is secure. If his health deteriorates no doubt his wife can be brought to safeguard the Familee interests. And having a woman PM would earn Singapore extra kudos internationally.

 

 

Kenneth Jeyaretnam

* The author blogs at https://kenjeyaretnam.com/.

 

 

 

 

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21 Responses to “Will He Stay or Will He Go?”

  • HarderTruths:

    LHL will die on the throne and not give it up foe ANYONE – even his son.

    All persons who challange him in any way – like Amos Yee – must be punished until they admit his divine nature bestowed by Heaven.

    The Despot is served by his faithful Eunuchs, Court Clowns, Enforcers and Army of Faithful Followers.

    Heaven mandated. People Elected. What can go wrong?

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  • Red Dress Lee:

    Why are you all Insulting your intelligence?
    He will not go until his maker summons for him just like…

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  • PAP has the mandate:

    Only dumb 70% stinkies will allow such a thing to happen……LOL

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  • 鸟龙的人:

    "你光要"说㸱会从棺材里爬出来
    “蓋头龙"涊为要做到进棺材那最后一刻为止 哈哈!真有趣

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  • does it matter?:

    Does it matter at all?

    He has done enough irreparable damage to our once beautiful island in the sun. He care less if your rice bowls are snatched in broad daylight by the millions of hungry migrants he brought onto our shore.

    For all we know, he is planning to bring in a few more millions. He has no qualm to do so, as he knows that the more he screws sinkies, the more votes he surely lapak.

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  • Millions dollars Servants:

    I hope so not? More time needed? Hahaha!

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  • MarBowling:

    Definitely he wants to stay. However, Too bad, his Big Daddy is constantly waving to him to join him.

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  • opposition dude:

    Since the goondu of a PM is pretty inept in everything he does then it’s with great hope and optimism that I see his party being weakened in the years to come.

    All the lapses seen in the last election cycle and in this one do not bore well for him. The family home aired in public for the whole nation to know won’t go down well with the older generation either.

    Of course there will be a sweeterner for those born from 1950 onwards in terms of PGP2, have to bribe the electorate you know since those who just missed out on the first PGP were grumbling about it back then saying they contributed to the nation’s success.

    See how it goes when the next GE is called for. It will be interesting to see just how much PAP’s vote share falls and whether more monkeys will be kicked out by voters.

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  • PM 's song:

    “Should I Stay Or Should I Go?” lyrics

    The Clash Lyrics

    “Should I Stay Or Should I Go?”

    Darlin’ you got to let me know
    Should I stay or should I go?
    If you say that you are mine
    I’ll be here ’til the end of time
    So you got to let me know
    Should I stay or should I go?

    It’s always tease tease tease
    You’re happy when I’m on my knees
    One day is fine and next is black
    So if you want me off your back
    Well come on and let me know
    Should I stay or should I go?

    Should I stay or should I go now?
    Should I stay or should I go now?
    If I go there will be trouble
    And if I stay it will be double
    So come on and let me know

    This indecision’s buggin’ me (esta indecisión me molesta)
    If you don’t want me, set me free (Si no me quieres, librame)
    Exactly whom I’m supposed to be (Dime! ¿Qué tengo ser?)
    Don’t you know which clothes even fit me? (No sabes que ropas me queda)
    Come on and let me know (Pero tienes que decir)
    Should I cool it or should I blow? (¿Me debo ir o quedarme

    Writer(s): Mick Jones, Joe Strummer
    only.
    Copyright © 2000-2018 AZLyrics.com

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  • 阿不都.仁道班长.衣丝花篮:

    “以小人之腹度君子之心”?

    可恶!

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  • Calling A Deer A Horse:

    Don’t even have to ask this question. His insecurity will make him stay for good. Unless the next PM is of the same bloodline, there is no guarantee he and Ah Ching will not be fixed. Politicians don’t trust each other. Just look across the causeway. This country has no future under this clown.

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  • Jim:

    When one held on to power and riches for so Long, it is hard to give it up
    Dictators is esp true to this
    Jacob Zuma, Mugabe, tony Blair, Maggie thatcher, Putin,
    Greed is their traits
    I don’t expect the clown to give up
    There is already tell tale sign that he will remain on the pretext of no
    Good man around

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  • N.Jungne:

    It is either he could not let go, b’cos his Little Miss Muffet still has some honey. Or his 2 sons are unwilling to be the next PM, surrounded by uncles.

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  • patriot of Temesak:

    Until the SUCCESSION is SECURED with the RIGHT CRONIES in Place…the man with Crab crawling all over his body will have to sit until the Gun Carriage is MOUNTED…and with muffled sound and Owl Hooting he will be brought to where his Dynasty will be Cremated Forever and scattered to the four corners of Temesak!!!

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  • patriot of Temesak:

    PAP has the mandate:
    Only dumb 70% stinkies will allow such a thing to happen……LOL

    The 69.999% has a CHOICE Live a life of Freedom or live a Life of EVIL!!!

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  • to see him despised by plps:

    These arrogant axxxhxxx live and survive upon plps. The moment they leave the stage plps release and hook onto to highest bidder ie able to give a high rewards/credits gained. Siblings became awared too late and have to run for cover. So only death can free their grip. The past cases are glaring examples.

    Big Goh KS proved himself an exception. The rest including the late Toh with his colonial style of sipping liquor after dinner has all his plpsvvanished within fraction of a sec after he was exiled from the active arena.

    SINkies naiviety is depised as stupidity and deservedly bullying and derogatory attitude from those they help to make political billionaires and greed advocators and diehard believer of greed as their central value.

    No they have to be removed by the same guys who made them political billionaires for the last 5 decades! Would these sinkies are so 賎 to be deeply insulted and still give them the vote? Presumably some kopitiam critics opined that they would crawl out their 賎 self when they see their children screwed up the wall which wouldn’t be far away according to uncles and aunties kopitiam political desk. It is therefore a wait and see who screw whom up the wall by the next GE when Fourth generation of whovis the liar on medical treatment for ministers, $10 chaitowkwei bxxtxxd, an enemy no less than Anton Chastvthe Brit scumbag admired by the Indian Chinese submin who defended him against the SINkies who voted her under the gone armpits of her adored humongous lp and the usual axxxhxxx even ESW(apology M) didn’t have the clue.

    Will he stay or leave? better and morevrealistic would he be eradicated by the enlightened 賎民 in the vocab of these axxxhxxxs.

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  • 'high' threshold of pain:

    //Then when the policy has abjectly failed or is deeply unpopular, there is talk of “recalibration” while Singaporeans are blamed for having a low threshold of pain//

    daft sinkies have to finance the expensive experimentation and their highly self-rewarded compensation under ownself-check-ownself wayang for the white idiots to have ‘high’ threshold of pain lor.

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  • Rabble-rouser:

    Whomever that takes over after LHL will have huge problems to resolve! And even if LHL stays on longer as PM, the problems will only continue to grow exceedingly large. The situation in S’pore is like a family business whose main business isn’t doing well but the 2nd generation management is drawing out large salaries & benefits unrelated to their inepted performance. They’re like living on Ah Kong’s monies!

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  • Pls GO !:

    Those who know him are his siblings.
    -
    > Siblings – “Dishonorable son”, “abuse of power”, “empress dowager”, etc . . .
    -
    Enuff said !

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  • MarBowling:

    Pui Yi, the last Emperor of China, remember this Bugger? His last few years on Planet Earth was a HOrrible experience for him. Think he died as an UNKNOWN, with his tombstone marked as Mr NOBODY!

    Now, in SinKapore, the peasants will soon have a Bugger by the Name of Hong Yi as their Emperor oops Pee-M. Pui means to spit or throw out the saliva. Macham like Heaven ensure Pui Yi is Pui OUT or THROW OUT. So Out he went. Likewise, Hong Yi means it’s a Passing Wind. Heaven, as usual will ensure this Horny oops Hong Yi aka Passing Wind won’t be LOONG-Lasting, Macham like WIND, NOT STATIC! If he is lucky, Heaven Willing, the wind over the True Blue Sky of SinKapore will blow gently when he eventually squats on the Imperial Throne. However, if Heaven is UnWilling, mini typhoon, ponding, Big Trees toppling, SHTF will occur. Good luck to him. Hopefully, he doesn’t end up like Pui Yi, a Mr NOBODY!

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  • SINkies r strange:

    SINkies seems to be on killing trail when low income workers fail in their responsibility but cheer the politically self endowed politicians to continuing wayangingvthem till they r told to be hungrier, greedier and more agressive not towards them but to STEAL the jobs from the foreigners. They are happy with these self paid millions for doing a bad job, derogate them andvtelling them that all wrongs are not these billionaies politicians’fault of incapability but these Sinkies fault. They can sit down and beam happily when Amos Orrifible scorned at them as daft not dove but STUPID Sinkies.

    They go after the people for not returning their trays but beams stupidly when the politically made billionaires not returning the long promised CPF when they returned with their promise that this will see them thru retirement but now they give your aged parents but only a selected few as Pioneer Generation. How thry select is as usual done in the dark. When citizen Roy asked for transparency and accountability he was virtually moored to the ground by the bureaucrats of plps big and small. These same sinkies going after the blood of liw income workers sat and grin. When Amos was chained in cuff and shackled like a serial kilker and raper just for using horribke innocently and copying adults with video, these sinkies sat like rotten idiots as if the world is what Singapore is their dream paradise a torture chamber.

    Aren’t Sinkies strange or as their dead leader called them Daft Singaporeans and Indian chinese brat defending the Brit scum derogating the public transport commuters as stinks, the no work pmo minister for telling them that the hawkers in the wet market food court is overcharging them their chaitowkwei at $2.50 compared to his well the $10 he paid.

    Aint these Sinkies strange or just plain stupid. No wonder the White can beat up their Taxi driver and bash up their pedestrains. Presumably they are proud that SIN is such a well governed place by a bundle of brainless arrogant and greedy imberciles with their rewards waiting band of bootlickers or what they call polanpa seemingly referred to the stick they hide between their legs that even the smugguler fly their flag which were caught perhaps just because they fly the flag.

    Wisdom is when to ko your oppressor not the poors. Stupid tiny red dot!

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