Friday, July 07, 2006

Mr Brown

I just heard the Mr Brown podcast called "Resident Smilers".

It's revolting, disgusting, perverse, cynical, demeaning filth. It may have been meant as humour or irony, but the manner of its execution is needlessly vitriolic, relentlessly pessimistic, savagely ironic, and grotesque in the extreme, from the poster of the gruesome, surgically-altered grimace to the very content of the podcast.

Is Mr Brown suggesting that we are mindless syncophants? Is he casting the government's harmless and well-meant intention to INITIATE A WELCOME to the WB and IMF summit delegates, an exhortation to just MIND OUR MANNERS, to be the workings of some cynical plot to pander and suck up to Westerners? Is his ironic scorn meant as a jab at the government, or is his portrayal of us Singaporeans in the podcast meant to reflect our true natures?

That podcast is disgusting and demeaning. Worse still, it is told from the point of view of the foreign delegates, symphathetic to them, and it begs the question of who exactly he wishes to criticize and to insult; a relentlessly campaigning government whose aims are, at this juncture, benign, representatives of an ineffectual and unpopular group of delegates, or Singaporeans themselves.

I suppose we should all act our surly selves when they arrive, and throw rotten tomatoes at their passing cars, rather than extending them the courtesy that is their very right as human beings.

2 comments:

The Fascist said...

Your criticism is rather unjust. Really, I do think this podcast was not good but not deserving of the vitriol you've poured on it.

John Riemann Soong said...

The government's intention is benign? In an administration which favours foreign workers more than its own citizens, would you not expect xenophobia or lack of tact in regards to foreign relations especially when an administration fails to have the same?

Do you get offended at being called mindless syncophants? Well, if you recall (I remember it vividly) Lee Hsien Loong's speech in 2004 about China and Taiwan, just after he had visited Taiwan, there's a suck-up right there.

Have you evaluated how the government treats its citizens like schoolchildren? "Mind your manners" is something primary school teachers say to pupils when expecting a guest of honor.

But please, IMF and the World Bank are loathed institutions of emotionless globalism and all-encompassing plutocratic corporatism.

It is not a personal attack at Singaporeans, but rather a flawed attitude that needs to change.

(Government failure #91614 at Kindness Campaign, if you might remember, was trying to encourage "courtesy" in the MRT by not speaking too loud by playing a staged recording of a loud conversation over the speaker.)