And now it has been discussed

What I learned from Channel NewsAsia's report on prime minister Lee Hsien Loong's speech at the Singapore Symposium in New Delhi, "PM Lee highlights wild boars, graffiti on need to be 'messy selectively'" (the speech transcript isn't available yet at the government's SG Press Centre website):

1. Lee said, "I would become messy selectively. There are some areas where you must accept that you cannot do things in a linear or hierarchical way."

In other words: We have a hierarchy of what can be done in a hierarchical way, and what cannot.

2. With respect to the government's ongoing deliberations about how to manage wild boars in our nature reserves, the prime minister said, "In the old days, we would have just said solve the problem and tomorrow they would be literally gone. But now it has been discussed."

I smell a new catchphrase for pacifying the masses: "But now it has been discussed!"

This is what happens when things are discussed: "But we have to go through this discussion and engagement, and explanation and in the end, it takes longer but it will be done."

Same conclusion, just that it takes longer and "it will be done." [emphasis mine]

Lee said, "We invite graffiti artists, by invitation, to perform on designated walls -- with permission. But if you decide to freelance, extra, I'd better do an investigation on how it came about. We want to do this in a controlled way. If the Pandora box is open, then we can't put the demons back."

Artists and others who push the boundaries of freedom of expression are unleashing demonic forces.

Can't wait to read the full speech. And then it can be discussed!



Going Past Forward

So (part of) the reason I've been absent lately from my blog, is I've been pulling together this event as part of the upcoming Singapore Heritage Festival:
Past Forward: A Blogging and Social Media Workshop
Saturday, 14 July, 2:00 - 4:30 pm
(optional tour 4:30 - 6:30 pm)
The Arts House (Old Parliament House)

Interested in local heritage? Enjoy sharing information online? Come and meet some of Singapore’s most interesting heritage enthusiasts and bloggers, as they share how they have used blogging and social media to share their passion for Singapore’s past and present. You can also sign up for a special neighbourhood tour of either Chinatown or Queenstown, which will take place immediately after the workshop. The tour will be conducted by a heritage blogger.
Why you should come if you're interested in heritage and/or sharing online:
  • We have cool speakers who have been blogging, writing and sharing about heritage online for several years at least, if not for a decade in some cases.
  • Everyone really loves what they write about, whether it's 1960s music, photography or their own neighbourhoods.
  • Some of our speakers don't write "typical" heritage websites, but they've all found interesting ways to make connections between Singapore past and present, their own family histories/cultures and the wider world out there.
  • We have speakers from different age groups and generations in Singapore --- it ain't gonna be just "young punks" or "oldtimers" telling stories here.
  • If you can spare an extra hour or so after the event, you can go on a one-time only personalised neighbourhood tour conducted by two of our blogger-speakers, which will show you a different side of either Chinatown or Queenstown.
Our delightful speakers for the afternoon:
I will be moderating the main panel and two sessions; the smart and savvy Pooja Makhijani will be moderating the other two sessions.

Full details are at the Facebook event page. The event is free; register at this Singapore Heritage Festival webpage (including booking your seat for the tour).

Questions? Leave them in the comments or stick them on Facebook.


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