No groupthink within PAP: burying head in sand?
The PAP denies that there is groupthink within the party but many people will disagree with this assertion.
But what exactly is groupthink?
Wikipedia defines it as “a type of thought within a deeply cohesive in-group whose members try to minimize conflict and reach consensus without critically testing, analyzing, and evaluating idea”.
You can see this in Parliament where PAP members put up a perfunctory show of debating issues. Although there are 82 PAP members out of a House of 94, there is a startling unanimity of opinion most of the time.
True, there was some spirited debate over the casino but that was a flash in the pan.
Did any PAP MP have the intellectual and moral courage to veer from the official line on important issues like caning, capital punishment, freedom of speech and assembly, media freedom, human rights, why we are still selling arms to a dictatorship like Myanmar and building a democratic society as envisioned in the National Pledge?
As the people’s representative, MPs are expected to be touch with their constituents’ concerns and bring them up in Parliament. Sadly, many of them are tongue-tied and are so self-effacing that the public are hard put to even know who their MPs are.
I’m not exaggerating. Who is your MP? Ask your friends the same question.
Groupthink has resulted in many faulty decisions. One example that is still agitating Singaporeans is the policy on foreign workers.
And Singaporeans are now suffering the consequences.
High MP’s allowance of up to $13,000 and sky-high ministerial million- dollar salaries perhaps contribute to this don’t-rock-the-boat groupthink mindset.
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