Cheap petrol and no rights

November 2, 2009

trafficIt was a nightmare on the roads last Saturday. I was caught in at least three traffic jams on my way to Eunos.

All of them were caused by the petrol discount that Shell was offering that day. I was appalled by the congestion that the cars queuing up for cheap petrol was causing. The slip road from the PIE to Paya Lebar Road was choc-a-bloc. There was obvious frustration for road users near any Shell station that day.

However, all the news that was reported by Mediacorp that night was how long some drivers had waited to get tanks filled and how much savings they made. Nothing was said about the havoc that these cars-in-waiting had caused.

Compare this major disruption to traffic flow in many areas to the fear of public disorder that the police were concerned about, leading them to charge me and four others for distributing flyers at Raffles City in 2006.

So it’s okay for public disorder to occur when it’s for commercial purposes but if it is to advocate for rights of citizens, it is an offence.

I guess you can buy cheap petrol but you can’t buy dignity and rights.

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4 Responses to “Cheap petrol and no rights”

  1. sacral.nirvana Says:

    “I guess you can buy cheap petrol but you can’t buy dignity and rights.”

    Greetings Siok Chin,

    This reminds me of the Hello Kitty commotion at McDonald’s outlets across the island some years back.

    I guess a good number of Singaporeans are still more interested in getting deals than in their civil and political rights.

    Sad, but true.

  2. steven Says:

    Hi Siok Chin

    No link between the jam caused by cheap petrol n your distributing of flyers at Raffles City in 2006. I agreed with Sacral, i do not thingk any wrong with majority of Singaporeans who are more interseted to be able to fill their stomach first than the Western notions of democracy and whatever rights.

  3. ren Says:

    I think you misunderstand steven cause I don’t think that was the point she was trying to make with her comparison. She wasn’t referring to the people not caring about what you think is “Western democracy” (which is actually practiced in several countries across Asia).

    It was more about how the local authorities are quick and harsh to react to something as simple as flyering, but less so to solve the real problems of the people.

    And Sacral didn’t say there is nothing wrong with majority of Singaporeans’ scope of interest. In fact he/she said that its a sad truth – which means the person actually thinks that Singaporeans should be more concerned about their rights.


  4. […] Discourse – ~eternalhap~: No, this Myth is Reality – Chee Siok Chin’s Blog: Cheap petrol and no rights [Thanks Seelan ] – Singaporean Skeptic: I love the Straits Times Forum! – TOC: Meet the Protagonist […]


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