In the midst of the Hougang by-election, the Straits Times put out this report and headline on its front page:
What followed were criticisms directed at the Straits Times for biased and irresponsible reporting. Even WP sec gen Low Thia Khiang accused it of being a “political tool” of the PAP.
The Straits Times, of course, has come out to defend itself, rambling on about its “balanced” report and what not. Here is what the “ST Editor” says. [By the way, I wonder who this “ST Editor” is – is he the Forum Page editor, or the Chief Editor, *Warren Fernandez? Why not put a name to the reply?]
“As professional journalists, we do not see ourselves as cheerleaders for any political party. Our aim is simply to report the news dispassionately and objectively, so that our readers can decide for themselves.”
The simple fact is that the Straits Times is a propaganda sheet, a mouthpiece of the Gov’t and ruling party which controls it. No? Then perhaps the Straits Times would do something similar to show why we all should believe in its integrity, independence and credibility.
It can do this this weekend or next week, after the event at Speakers’ Corner to mark the 25th anniversary of the 1987 arrests and detention of 22 Singaporeans (and a few foreigners) under the ISA for plotting a”Marxist conspiracy” to topple the Gov’t.
To help the Straits Times, I’ve done a mock-up of the would-be report. I’ve followed as closely as I can the original headline which the Straits Times used on that report on the WP.
Go ahead, Straits Times, and prove to us that you are fair and balanced – and independent.
Here’s the original Straits Times report:
Honestly, I do not like to whack the Straits Times because I know there are good reporters in there who are trying their best to be good journalists. But when the editors play politics and then take us as fools, it makes me mad. Also, it makes our job so much harder having to counter these infantile attempts at propaganda. It also makes a mockery of the Straits Times journalists who’re doing their best to do a good job.
What does such blatant stupidity by the editors do for our country? Ask yourself. It brings us back to the old times of blatant bully tactics, and drags our country down with it – just because some people think they know better than everyone else and attempt to shove their stupidity down our throats.
Han Fook Kwang, the predecessor to Warren Fernandez, the current Chief Editor of the Straits Times, had written a book on Lee Kuan Yew in 1988, titled “Lee Kuan Yew, the man and his ideas”. Warren Fernandez is also one of the 3 writers, the 3rd being ST editor Sumiko Tan.
Han was also involved in the other book by Lee Kuan Yew, titled, “Hard Truths to keep Singapore going“, in 2011.