Thursday, September 01, 2011
Why I am not a “PAP die hard”
Our recent presidential election (PE) had as much drama as any TV addict could hope for: four pre-qualified candidates (when all previous PEs after 1993 failed to produce even two!) and a recount that created a nation of temporary insomniacs.
Now it’s all over and the Net is awash with post-hoc analyses about why who got how many votes and so on. Much of it, however, lacks any real depth. (The only exception, perhaps, comes from Yawning Bread).
You see, I voted for TT; by some accounts, I am now labelled – along with 35% of my fellow voters – as a “PAP die-hard.”
I detest that label. I am not a PAP die-hard and had in fact voted opposition during the GE.
It was in fact a process of elimination.
First, as the president is an apolitical position, I tried to view each individual as such.
I could not in good conscience not vote for TKL because he appeared to be very much out of his depth. During the exchanges/debates, he was clearly outclassed by the other three candidates. He tried to be like a favourite uncle, but I was voting for a president, not an uncle.
I saw TJS as being divisive; sure, he had grand plans and promises, but the issues he raised are meant for Parliament. Given the role of the president as defined by the Constitution, I felt that there was a fundamental misfit between the person and the post.
I remained undecided between TT and TCB until polling day itself.
I did not buy TT’s claim that we need him as president because of the impending financial crisis. After all, in a fire, our best fire fighters should ideally be in the SCDF, not the Istana. Hence, he should have stayed in GIC. I also did not feel that he (or MINDEF) had adequately addressed the brouhaha over Dr Patrick Tan’s NS obligations.
TCB’s plan to boot the Prime Minister out of the Istana did not make sense to me. I did not see it as congruent with his claim that he would unify Singaporeans; after all, how can one unify a country if he feels he cannot stay and work in the same compound (and a very large one at that) as the Prime Minister?
My one vote was precious to me. I did my due diligence and thought over my decision carefully. I believe that many other voters likewise did not take their decision lightly. Those who are too quick to label voters as “die hard” fans (of either the PAP or anyone else) are guilty of shallow reasoning.