OPINION: Riot police didn’t fire a shot, but propaganda artillery from state-controlled media in full barrage


Yawningbread.wordpress.com, 11 Dec 2013
Just like what happened in the days following the Chinese bus drivers’ strike November last year, the government is bringing out the artillery to pound Singaporeans’ minds with their preferred framing of the riot that occurred in Little India 8 December 2013: It’s wanton mayhem, monstrous criminality, pure and simple. The small riot (blown up big for its usefulness as bogeyman) is entirely a law and order issue. No sociological enquiry should be entertained, the message insistently says, especially any that asks questions whether the prior behaviour of the the ruling class (both government and business owners) contributed to the state of mind of the underclass.
It won’t be long before anyone who asks such questions will be accused of “excusing” and “condoning” rioting, and cast as a fifth-column threat to Singapore’s prosperity and stability. “Prosperity” and “stability” are the preferred terms for “money-mindedness” and “political control”.
What is particularly sickening is how the propaganda machine is highlighting how the deceased, Sakthivel Kumaravelu, was inebriated when he tried to board the private bus for the journey back to his dormitory slightly after 9 pm, and how he was so far gone from self-control that he lowered his trousers. This exercise in character assassination is being used to subtly communicate how unjustified the riot was, and on the flip side, how justified the authorities will be in making an example of the arrested men. Full story
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