Sunday, April 24, 2011

PAP and Riding the Tiger of Globalization to ruin

Globalization was sold to us as a no other option because we are a small and exposed state. I think that is rational. But Globalization like any dominant ideology previously all have shelf lives. Like the others, Globalization is riding the Tiger. When the Tiger stops walking, feeling hungry it will eat the riders. In this game of life, there is only one trick. You have to get off the Tiger early and it takes a Pig to do that. It takes a lot of courage and conviction when the rest of the world still want to enjoy the ride. Human nature is perverse. Even when they know the ride will end in tears, yet they want to go on. Didn't Chuck Prince, the fired CEO of Citi also said that as long as the music goes on we must dance. Carry on dancing and see what happens.

In The Romance of the Three Kingdom, the story opens with great insight and wisdom.

"The empire once united must be divided, and once divided must be united" or something like that, but the gist of it is correct.

The pendulum of Globalization is slowing and as a matter of course will reverse. It could have lived longer but the elites, i.e., those who succeeded fantastically under it never bothered to bring everyone along for the ride. Therefore Globalization failing to bring its cousin Democracy along, will have Democracy kick her out. And since there is a void of new ideas (since when there are new ideas, it is always old ideas dressed up as new), Socialism will return or society will not survive. May be Socialism (they will have a more sexy and acceptable label for it) will take us forward another twenty years or so and then we need to reverse once more. The wise society/nation will have to jump off the Socialist Tiger early or be eaten then. However the even wiser society will have allowed the seeds and some seedlings of Globalization (better called it free enterprise) to stay around to take over. So these are the big waves of history. They used to last longer but since the pace of change speeds up, the New Socialism might have a shorter life.

When the big change comes, a lot of wealth would be destroyed. The elites would be displaced, I hope peacefully. A cleaner meritocracy can return for the lucky ones, and we can start swinging the pendulum in the other direction. With time, a new elite would be produced, which will eventually be self serving like the previous one...the cycle repeats itself. Now keep these big moves in mind and live your life with courage and wisdom watching the time on the clock.

So much for the theory, the lesson for us in Singapore is the PAP is in denial and wants to ride this Tiger further. The opposition parties cannot be in denial as they do not have stakes to protect. The smart ones know that the best days of the PAP are over but impossible to pinpoint the exact moment. Either they go and do their own thing or sign up with the opposition. Unless the PAP turns "socialist", as a matter of course the people will elect the opposition that already wants to be "socialist". Examine all their manifestos. They are full of these tendencies.

Unless you are the elite, Globalization is starting not to work for you. The ranks of the disaffected will swell. At the critical point, there will be a change of government. We cannot be sure if we would make the transition successfully. It would be best the present elite are converted but that is not likely to happen. If they could be easily converted, they would have in place policies that distributed wealth better already.

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