During the campaign period of the general elections in 2015, I reflected on the different posts and trends, and compared them to my own coverage of the general elections in 2011.
Read “The Circus That Is The General Elections“, and here’s a short excerpt:
“You must be overwhelmed by the many posts about the general elections in Singapore, with opinions on who you should vote for, or – even worse – how you should vote. “Vote wisely, they say. Be a responsible citizen, because how the vote is cast at the ballot box will affect the future of the country,” I wrote four week ago, after Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong informed Parliament about the formation of the Electoral Boundaries Review Committee (EBRC). “[Never] mind the fact that few can articulate what it means to be ‘wise’ or ‘responsible’,” or that this chorus of familiar refrains about the significance of the vote seems hardly useful.
Familiar, because similar perspectives were raised in the “social media elections” of 2011, and back then I contributed to the noise too:
– Summarising what was said at different election rallies, with hideous infographics;
– Asking whether a campaign period of ten days – including one for the Cooling-Off Day – was too short;
– Proposing for election debates, whether they are televised live or not;
– Calling for greater transparency of the EBRC, with accusations of gerrymandering;
– Making a case for Opposition unity (and how the Singapore’s People Party had to loan candidates);
– Criticising the People’s Action Party’s (PAP) Tin Pei Ling as inexperienced (on the bandwagon, no less); and
– Suggesting how the PAP may be out of touch.
Last week, with the rallies in full swing, a friend described the elections as “burlesque”, as “carnival”, as “festival”.”