Powered by the Plogosphere

Sunday: Culture, Scholars, and George Yeo in London

Posted by inspir3d on September 10, 2006

“Want a local culture? Just be ourselves creatively” Tay Kheng Soon, “MINISTER Mentor Lee Kuan Yew is right that culture today does not have the isolation or time to develop naturally its own distinctiveness. He is wrong that therefore no culture with distinctiveness will ever arise in Singapore.”

“George Yeo in London” George Yeo, “With Prime Minister in London”

“this is our country, this is our home” My Singapore News, “Do we invite foreigners to our homes and allow them to insult us and tell us to get out?”

“Scholars should work their way up” 

I HAVE many friends and relatives who are in the civil service.The civil service is such that those on scholarships are ‘guaranteed’ high positions even before they come on board.

While it is only right that as scholars they command a high position, let us not forget that most of the time these people are young and inexperienced. Some may not have held down a job.

A diploma-holder may be in the civil service for 10 years but due to his qualification, he may not have opportunities for promotion. In comes a scholar, who becomes the diploma-holder’s boss right away.

In terms of experience, the scholar is nowhere near the diploma-holder. He may have excelled academically but this will not guarantee that he will be a good leader.

Also, as scholars climb the career ladder too fast and too high in a short period of time, they tend to be arrogant.

Is there any way we can change the system so that they gain experience by working their way up? This would help them understand how an entire ministry works. In time, they may become good leaders, and, potentially, ministers.

Annie Koh Seok Kien (Ms)


26 Responses to “Sunday: Culture, Scholars, and George Yeo in London”

  1. guardian of the book of ages said

    Annie koh has definitely hit the nail squarely on the head.

    A persistent concern with having a scholarship program which promotes cs’s using a fast track system is: how does one effectively accomplish this without demotivating the rest of the cs’s who may not be categorized as scholars?

    Are we too assume only scholars are high performers? And the rest of the civil servants can only expect to reach a certain level and no more – so what are we effectively saying, there is a glass ceiling in the system which cannot be broached? Or can it be said this is some sort of institutionalized system to condone a two tier system within one system?

    Her observations only highlights the symptoms, it doesnt effectively prescribe a cure or solution.

  2. bird of prey said

    I agree there is something very wrong with the scholar program – sarr-hart-batth our operative in MB has reported to us the deception is successful – those fools believe it is a single person doing all those postings – we have neutralized the situation – the photo will never appear. Our master darkness is saved from the thing sinister.

    By your command we await your order.

  3. at82 said

    Judging from the way our govt goes about demolishing what little S’poreans can claim to be ours (singlish, dialects, rapid urban redevelopment, etc) and replacing them with “superior” foreign stuff it is no wonder that Spore will not have any culture…

  4. guardian of the book of ages said

    Do not fret At82, our govt simply recognizes the truth – they have no control over the future.

    BOP what is the name of this mind warrior who excelled himself – he must be from one of the 100th fittest of the brotherhood – tell him under no circumstances must the photo appear – all of us will be destroyed.

    It is imperative that we protect darkness at all cost – spare no expense in this enterprise.

  5. Joseph said

    Who the HELL are you jokers and what’s all this brotherhood, cloak and dagger bullshit?

  6. guardian of the book of ages said

    Joesph learn to see and you will see.

  7. guardian of the book of ages said

    consider u a joke and we will always be a joke – but it changes nothing!

  8. Joseph said

    Yes, dear sir, you are a joke. I just recently dropped by mrbrown’s website and I see it all now.

  9. pumpman said

    still doesnt answer the question, why dont they do something abt the performance appraisal system.

    Currently if I am not mistaken scholars have a separate system from normal civil servants.

    Joe we dont know what you are talking abt. You presume too much.

  10. pumpman said

    Perhaps she mistakes our enthuism for change as arrogant. That in my POV is really arrogant.

  11. Harphoon said

    “A man’s life can be as weighty as Mount Tai or as light as a feather”

    This rings true, I have always wanted to do big things in my life.

    We are now leaderless chronicler. I miss him – darkness.

  12. The first few years of an AO’s career is really quite pathetic. Contrary to most believe, they don’t really craft policies. They provide first drafts of policy papers. Ideas are given to them and even if they had any, it is seldom taken.

    If scholars are our brightest, I prefer them not to be pen-pushers. Encourage and support them in their dreams in their respective fields of knowledge.

    To do well, they need real experiences. You can’t get them in a civil service where everyone responds correctly to a job title.

    It will be increasingly glaring to all that the scholars are inadequate in providing solutions to a world that is quite different now.

    Time for re-think, indeed.

  13. prospero said

    chronicler, new PA system, that is a very good idea, but it will never happen in my lifetime.

    I dont think u can motivate ppl effectively, when they all know they have to run against a horse that is supposed to win the race. The whole thing is kelong. Either way you spin the coin, scholars always manage to come up tops. Civil servants typically talk behind their backs, but when it comes to push and shove, those scholars will pulverize you in a meeting room – and most of us are just too scared, after all they all come with the presumption of competence, we dont.

    That is the reason why most scholarship programs in the US and EU have been scrapped. It’s the worst form of discrimination.

    Whispersfromtheheart is right on, the world is a very different place from what it used to be.

    So now the brotherhood needs to understand they simply need to get off their high horse and work for a living like the rest of us.

  14. sapmme said

    What kind of sick joke is this stupid brotherhood BS. You guys must be Airframe’s loy’s denerate relatives to be trolling here.
    Piss off… you running dogs…

  15. Atomic Monkey said

    Spamme – u need to try harder, pls be kind to animals – I call RSPCA, You wan or not!


    You know the ppl who always keep talking behind the back, they always go to block J for Kopi – but when they see you, they are always smiles.

    U think it is easy to be a scholar in the cs, everyone just waits for you to trip up, if you do they will say, “you see cheng hu wasted all the $ on him” – if they do well, they say nothing, bc it is the job of scholars to be brilliant.

    Life is tough at the bottom, no doubt but it is not easy either above the canopy.

  16. Anon said

    I hope George Yeo will not embarrass us, true blue Singaporean Chinese, anymore by misquoting Chinese literature to the Angmohs.

    Sima Qian (not Si Maqian as written by the BG ), wrote that Death( not life as the BG quoted)can be as weighty as Mount Tai or as light as a feather. ( meaning man should sacrifice for a good cause).

    Further, the great Chinese Hitorian did not write this in his famous ‘Shi Ji’ but in ‘报任少卿书’.

  17. Atomic Monkey said

    anon dont bluff real or not?

  18. Anon said

    Why should I bluff. The BG is the one bluffing. Maybe you should forward it to BG Yeo for conformation and see who’s bluffing!

  19. evelynkang said

    BG Yeo >> In his book Shi Ji, the Han Dynasty historian Si Maqian reflected that a man’s life can be as weighty as Mount Tai or as light as a feather.

    司马迁 >> “人固有一死,或重于泰山,或轻于鸿毛。” which means “Though death befalls all men alike, it may be weightier than Mount Tai or lighter than a feather.”

    errr, if i remember correctly, i think anon is right:
    1) Sima Qian wrote this proverb in his letter to his good friend (报任安书 or 报任少卿书) and not 史记;
    2) the context was about his determination to finish writing 史记 despite of the challenges he faced. He expressed that 人固有一死,或重于泰山,或轻于鸿毛 – though all men must die one day, but death can vary in its significance, so he would want to die for the right cause and leave a legacy.

    correct me if i’m wrong. thanks.

  20. Anon said

    Thanks, Evelynkang. You said it all.

  21. Like I said, I am waiting to be impressed. (Eve is correct but is it allowed to correct Ministers, hah?). Maybe he is showing us his humane side of making mistakes as well.

    Aiyah … AOs where got tough?

    You are Deputy Director on the first day you report to work. Then, you write first drafts for Perm Secs. You also have a whole department of EOs to do your legwork.

    But, as far as I know, the job can be boring, that’s all.

    To do well, you must also know how to tell where the wind is blowing.

    In fact, the PCS panel assess returning scholars based on this important criteria. Helicopter view and making a difference to a dying starfish was just sleek marketing gimmick.

    Perhaps now, the Administrative Service is more competitive? I hear even FTs are invading it.

  22. dudu said

    (报任安书 or 报任少卿书) Yes that is true. However, I believe the brotherhood is studying this whole development for another reason. They want to know whether this will the first of many ships to be launched.

    Maybe they believe it will affect their business in the internet. Since the good old days of IRC many yrs ago. They have always been paranoid abt the govt coming into the internet.

    I personally dont think there is any cause for alarm, George Yeo like anyone is welcome to post whatever he wishes in the internet, only dont expect everyone to listen to him kwai kwai, some will ask questions, disagree and even take up issues with him.

    I just hope he knows this when he blogs.

  23. harphoon said

    Well spotted eve, I am terribly impressed by the level of the detail lsdieds. I wouldnt have been able to stop it myself my level of mandarin is really horrible. Thanks and I guess we owe you a retraction anon.

  24. harphoon said


    disagre. We only wish to understand the motivation and implications of his or their actions.

    Agree: we do not believe the govt should project their influence in the net.

    We are after all a secret organization operating an underground game (though we have not been very good at keeping this a secret). This will spell eventual disaster for us.

    For one none of our foreign clients will consider purchasing many of our virtual products and services i.e space stations, ray guns, teleports, sats etc as we guarantee the highest level of security and anonymity in all our transactions.

  25. scholarboy said

    I have problems with the pain barrier as well. But I sorted it out by getting a polar heart rate monitor.

    Darkness if you are interested I have a spare one that you can have for free.

    It would be a privilege.

  26. astroboy said


    You r an idiot. A HR monitor brings nothing to the table.

    Nacra still has the strongest cycling team bc they train ceaselessly, rain or shine they are at it.

    I think we should do the same, but every time I call for a training session two people turn up and the rest are either travelling or pretending to be out of town.

    Frankly that’s the problem.

Sorry, the comment form is closed at this time.

%d bloggers like this: