Singaporean core can include foreigners… say what?!!

Those who think that a Singaporean core can include foreigners, keechiu! It seems that Minister Chan Chun Sing does. That is if you just read the headlines of the report in TODAY: “Singaporean core does not mean S’poreans only, says Chun Sing”. Then theindependent.sg took it one step further with this headline for their article: “Chan says Singaporean core can include foreigners”.

Boys and girls, this is what the game of “telephone” is trying to teach us. If you aren’t careful, the message you are trying to pass on gets corrupted a little at each step until the end result becomes garbled rubbish.

In this case, you start off with a speech that tries to have snappy cliche sounding phrases like Singaporean core “cannot be exclusive and inward looking” that blurs the message. Then you have a headline of the report in TODAY that is quite terrible leaves the key message by Minister Chan Chun Sing open to misinterpretation. So by the time it got to that article in theindependent.sg all you are left with is that – garbled rubbish that is completely not what Minister Chan Chun Sing meant.

I can’t find the transcript of Minister Chan’s entire speech online. The next best thing I could do was to read the entire report on TODAY and watch Minster Chan’s speech in full (link here). Scroll to 25:30. That’s where he said this about the Singapore core: “We believe in urging and working with all the companies to build a strong Singapore core. But that Singapore core does not mean that it is a all Singaporean workforce only.”

It is clear that the key message that Minister Chan wanted to make was this: The labour force in Singapore must have a Singaporean core. But building a Singaporean core doesn’t mean that there will only be Singaporeans in Singapore’s labour force. Instead, even as we build the Singaporean core, we will still need to allow foreigners with the appropriate skills and talents to work in Singapore.

That message makes perfect sense. Anyone who thinks that the Singapore’s labour force must not have foreigners are as dumb as Donald Trump. For a country like Singapore, that kind of thinking is a surefire way to economic doom. Heck, not just for a country like Singapore. Even for USA, that kind of thinking will lead to its demise. World renowned scientist, Michio Kaku explained it excellently here:

So… NTUC speechwriters… write better speech can? And… TODAY, maybe next time don’t have such rubbish headline can?

[Featured image: Chan Chun Sing at a dialogue. Image from ST by Lim Yaohui]

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13 thoughts on “Singaporean core can include foreigners… say what?!!

  1. There is no need to take these people seriously. The trouble is – the journalists here have to report every silly speech made by equally silly people. I don’t envy them. Like I said before, this straight A student won scholarships because he was good at studies. Good at studies don’t make you a good politician. That is the PAP’s problem; they need to invite people to be their candidates. And the people who accept the invitation talk about gratitude and their sense of duty to contribute ! So, it is BS all the way. How do you expect such people to say something sensible ? Politics is the last refuge of the scoundrel. The media in Singapore has given the mistaken impression that some politicians in the red dot are different.

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  2. Then, it’s up to Chan Chun Sing to correct TODAY’s reporting – “Singaporean core does not mean S’poreans only, says Chun Sing”.

    The fact that he did not correct TODAY’s report can only mean that he agrees with what TODAY, a 2nd major English mainstream media, said.

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  3. If you are in politics and the media mis-reports your speech, it is in your interest to have this corrected. Silence can mean acceptance. They have staff who monitor the press reports. Why are they not alerting their boss ?

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  4. ok. I’ve embedded another video of Minister Chan’s full speech. Scroll to 25:30. That’s where he speaks about the Singapore core. His words are: “We believe in urging and working with all the companies to build a strong Singapore core. But that Singapore core does not mean that it is a all Singaporean workforce only.” There. TODAY headline is rubbish and the article in theindependent.sg is also rubbish.

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