Populist petition calling for NS to be shortened to one year fails to win popular support

Not sure if Singaporeans suspicious of purpose of petition, person who is doing the pandering or just don't care.

Belmont Lay| February 09, 06:40 PM

Former 2011 Presidential Election candidate and ex-CEO of NTUC Income, Tan Kin Lian, has posted a petition online four days ago calling for National Service (NS) to be shortened from the current two years to a year.

His goal is to hit 10,000 signatures.

Currently, there are less than 3,000 signatures as of 2am, Feb. 10, 2014.

This turn of events is highly unusual as NS is a persistent hot button topic that gets local men -- who always feel they have been shortchanged in life due to military policy -- riled easily.


Some possible reasons why Tan Kin Lian's petition is failing to gain much traction:

1. Tan's motherhood statements.

For example: “If there are insufficient NS men who are keen to be selected as officers, this role should be performed by career soldiers. It is costly to train an officer and this investment can get better results when they are given to career soldiers.”


2. What will happen next in the event if there are 10,000 signatures?

This point is not made very clear. Perhaps a clearer objective needs to be stated. Like we will march down the street or something like that.


3. Is Tan's petition trying to emulate the petition Americans signed two weeks ago asking White House to kick Justin Bieber out of the United States, because that went swimmingly well with more than 100,000 signatures?


4. Why pander now?

So who died and made you a petition king?


5. The last Tan Kin Lian petition asked for 100,000 signatures.

So that he will run for presidency, if he hit that number.

Well, he didn't but he ran for presidency anyways...

... which proves petitions are meaningless.

Check out this other petition asking for the current arrangement of NS to be maintained.

Maybe we should start a petition to petition against the use of petitions.


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