Monday, June 18, 2012

When Words Fail Me

WARNING: Prudes and hypocrites who are allergic to swear words are advised not to read further.

The editorial in ST of June 18, 2012 titled "Swearing off the profanities" makes me want to swear. It is editorial like this that "can spark a chain of reactions that can spin out of control". Indeed!

Trying to be preachy, ST wrote, "More troubling than just the language was the student's attitude - he wanted answers to national issues from the minister rather than to be asked for his views on them. It spoke of a lack of understanding that citizens own and shape societies they live in, not government leaders or officials. Carried to extremes, this what's-in-it-for me attitude is antithetical to fostering social cohesion and consensus on the way forward on the many challenges this country faces."

The way I read it, apart from belittling Reuben Wang's lack of vocabulary prowess, ST now blames poor Reuben for being a selfish brat with a what's-in-it-for me attitude!

If "citizens own and shape societies they live in, not government leaders or officials." why the fuck is ST still harping and flogging this dead horse?

If the attitude of the 17-year-old is fooked up, the attitude of the DPM is worse!  An ex-PAP minister who lost and got lost in Aljunied GRC (George Yeo?) once said something like we cannot be "bo tua bo sway" literally meaning "no big no small". In other word, "respectful".  It does not mean that the small must respect the big!  It means respect needs to be earned, regardless of race, language, religion, age, gender and/or status. If the big and powerful behave no better than bullying scumbags, they deserve no fucking respect!

I love the attitude of Reuben. He has the guts to tell it like it is. He is so different from the majority (60%?) who are either cowered and coerced for fear of the rich and powerful. For fear of losing what's-in-it-for-them!

If ST is still having an orgasm beating up young Reuben, using him as a example to scare others from fecking off deadwood ministers, ST deserves to be fooked big time! (Oops, my words fail me!) Instead of flogging a dead horse on the 'fuck' word, I think decent Singaporeans (even those who dislike to use the fuck word) would see that the sickening behaviour of a DPM who almost always answer a question with a question in that forum was fuckin' irritating. Isn't it a no brainer to ask a question when you know the answer?

DPM: "What do you think?"
Student: "Dear Millionaire Minister, you take me for an idiot or are you one? If I know the fuckin' answer, would I be asking you?

I believe the way the DPM behaved in the Pre-U Forum is "antithetical to fostering social cohesion and consensus on the way forward on the many challenges this country faces." If Millionare Ministers of PAP continue to behave this way, it'll be the death of Singapore!

ST ends the editorial with: "Worse, profanity for its own sake can can vulgarise a community and degenerate the tone of public discussions. It could foster a cynical culture, more ready to knock down than to nurture and build. With maturity, the young may come to see that it is all a question of time, tone and place."

No Sir, vulgarity or the 'fuck' word' is not going to bring Singapore down. The following will definitely bring Singapore down:

  • Rulers who do not know how to lead, 
  • Leaders who take care of themselves instead of the people
  • Msm that sucks up without any sense of fair play or decency
  • Discontent of the people generated by ivory-towered leaders who still think that Singaporeans are daft.
  • Prudes and hypocrites who make a fuckfarce out of a 'fuck' word used by a 17-year-old 

Usually, I do not use so many 'fuck' words in what I write. I guess "it is all a question of time, tone and place."

Indeed, what triggered it is my sympathy for the plight of a young man who has the gumption to tell it like it is!

Peace and strength be with him.


The menacing editorial of ST 18 June 2012 in full:

Swearing off the profanities

PROFANITY on the Web is so common these days that it has lost much of its impact. It is poor substitute for wit or a clever argument, of course, but it's a no-brainer for some bloggers when words fail them.

Consequently, swearing for effect tends to be seen in a negative light, as noted by Glen Matlock, formerly of the Sex Pistols, in a television interview: 'It's pathetic when people just swear for the sake of it.' He should know as the punk band didn't do itself any favours by spewing vulgarities for no apparent reason on the most inappropriate occasions.

What is appropriate, of course, depends on the context of a group and a verbal exchange. In working class interactions and the online chatter of the young, foul words are so routinely traded that some would consider it a way of merely building rapport.

Hence, the measured response to the expletive-filled blog post of a junior college student commenting on this year's annual Pre-U Seminar where Deputy Prime Minister Teo Chee Hean was the key speaker. The student deleted the post afterwards and apologised for his words, which an Education Ministry spokesman noted were 'rude and unbecoming'. The spokesman added: 'We hope to turn this into a teachable moment both for the student blogger and students in general.'

More troubling than just the language was the student's attitude - he wanted answers to national issues from the minister rather than to be asked for his views on them. It spoke of a lack of understanding that citizens own and shape the societies they live in, not government leaders or officials. Carried to extremes, this much lamented what's-in-it-for-me attitude is antithetical to fostering social cohesion and consensus on the way forward on the many challenges this country faces. Beyond this, the swearing incident raises questions of public manners and how public discourse should be conducted.

Even so, it would be unrealistic for language gestapos to even try to stamp out such conduct entirely. Swearing is so much a part of popular culture that it has surfaced everywhere, from acclaimed books like J. D. Salinger's The Catcher In The Rye to the HBO drama Deadwood. In real life, however, if the intent is to show disrespect or desecration, it can spark a chain of reactions that can spin out of control.
Worse, profanity for its own sake can vulgarise a community and degenerate the tone of public discussions. It could foster a cynical culture, more ready to knock down than to nurture and build. With maturity, the young may come to see that it is all a question of the time, tone and place.


At June 18, 2012 at 3:02 PM , Anonymous newhik said...

Funny for ST to say "citizens own and shape societies they live in" when many times the citizens rejected proposals put up by these "leaders and officials", for e.g. the Youth Olympics and Casinos,but the Gahment did not listen to the so called shapers and owners ad went ahead with the entire thing. Was it not a PAP Minister who said that "We are like the little frog. We are deaf to all these criticisms"

How can the citizens then own and shape when their views are being ignored

At June 18, 2012 at 3:06 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

This morning when I read the editorial, this was what I wanted to say to the writer:"FUCK YOU".

At June 18, 2012 at 3:19 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

So now the MIW don't dare to preach 'know your place'. Instead, they send Warren & his team to wield the sword and tell the people to 'know your place'. Same strategy, different tactics.

Now, why don't I see a critical piece being written up to lecture ALL the foreign scholars on courtesy of taxpayers money , to watch their language on social media and insulting singaporeans which will not help to shape the migrant community if they don't behave?

Come on, ST, I'm waiting. If you won't spare the immaturity of a 17yr pre-u student, surely you ain't going to let the 23yrs young adult free would you?

At June 18, 2012 at 4:13 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ungracious bastards. Can't they let a young man go? Do they need to burn him in a stake?

At June 18, 2012 at 4:22 PM , Anonymous ex-Singaporean said...

Thanks Fish for sharing your thoughts. IMHO, your words have never failed you. Like poor Reuben, you call it as it is (with or without the "f" word). Whenever I am on the net, I would look out for your posts, although I now live in Aussieland. I want you to know that your blog is much appreciated.

At June 18, 2012 at 5:34 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thanks fish for telling us what ST wrote today. I don't bother to buy Shit Times because it no longer has any value to the people and this Society. I don't even recognise them as journalist or reporters but a bunch of animals bred by the PAP.

Knowing ST demise is near, it might as well suck up to its master in the hope of getting more funding for its dismal profit (or was it a loss?).

At June 18, 2012 at 5:36 PM , Anonymous My hero... said...

Dear Reuben

You did well. Fear not the future for that is for you to make and you've made it plain & simple:

"Don't take us as fools"

The Statesman has reached his prime and can go no further. Thanks to you, that maximum limit has been defined.

This is just the first step. The next one is just 4 years away. By then, you would have completed you NS or will be ending it.

When you go to the voting station, reflect upon the event and this time answer his question:
"What do you think?"

The baton is in your hands.

You and your generation are the ones that have the power to change many things.

As for me and my generation, you will be remembered as:

"the bravest man that spoke the truth.. the man with a courage far larger than any professor, MP, minister or any opposition combined"

Reuben, you are the one.

At June 18, 2012 at 10:40 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Give Reuben a Tiger! No, make it a 6 pack. LOL

It matters not what the MSM or TeoCH thinks, I see it as one young man speaking from his heart.

At June 19, 2012 at 11:30 AM , Anonymous gm . 绿效精神 said...

Deadlock between so-called leader/ new generation (and dead-end from bottom up) will put Singapore no way down the right path.

I hope Reuben Wang would put back his earlier post (exclude #@^*...) as long as his original intention was of no ill intention.

Nevertheless his priority is still to further his study, think for his future/ family and later can do more right things for the country.

At June 19, 2012 at 11:38 AM , Anonymous Huang Lee said...

MSM does not have the moral authority to point out the lack of decorum in someone else's speech. The boy may have used foul language but the MSM use biased language to protect the interests of the elite at the expense of the worker.

There is no difference between foul language and language tilted by MSM to further the interests of a select group of people at the expense of others.

At June 19, 2012 at 1:16 PM , Blogger patriot said...

The Straits Times by reviving the Incident, appears to be petty and unforgiving to me. Not much of a National Media for our students to learn any values.


At June 19, 2012 at 1:25 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Good place to start a bonfire.. the most useful activity.

Reuben, you can have the honour of ignition.

At June 19, 2012 at 3:10 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

"From profanity to Hero"
and that is what Reuben has become the more ShittyTimes try to revive the issue. People all the more become curious as why the ShittyTimes keep humping down on Reuben, and it turns out that profanity is just a smokescreen to coverup the pertinent questions of major public interest.

At June 19, 2012 at 9:26 PM , Anonymous benjamin tan said...

i like this..true blue singaporean from the heartlands not those in IVORY TOWERS such that they had lost touch with mother earth...

At June 20, 2012 at 1:45 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Talk cock Teo has not only failed to connect with pre-U students, he failed big time in the Hougang by-election. Doesn't it disappoint and make you cringe to see a DPM so lost at sea with his recent shambolic performances, no matter how the ST spin it?

Maybe he will have better results adressing the yPAP, the PA, kindergartens, the Home Team etc because there respect is expected. What do you think?

"It is better to remain silent and be thought a fool than to open one's mouth and remove all doubt" - Mark Twain

"We have the best government that money can buy" - Mark Twain

At June 20, 2012 at 2:16 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

PAP can only answer prepared or censored questions, live debate was never their forte. Does this explain why PAP prefer to engage msm instead of new media because the former know how to ask the "right" question and make PAP appear "intelligent".

At June 20, 2012 at 10:15 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Oh okay.
Now I get it.

Reuben Wang is responsible for the loss of Aljunied GRC.

Singapore loves you.
Up & On!
It's nice to know that the young Saints still retain the egalitarian spirit of St Andrew's.

As for you know who.

At June 20, 2012 at 10:19 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I cancelled my Shit Times subscription.
In support of Reuben Wang.

My family has been reading the Shit Times for more than 35 years.

At October 29, 2012 at 2:02 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Reuben, the fuck word is no big deal, and not respect the fucking ministers is the right thing to do, since they deserve to be fucked.

At October 29, 2012 at 2:03 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Reuben, love you. Keep it up

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