1. Fear – the government uses fear to knock down dissent for five decades through ISA and police intervention. But people are fighting back abeit cautiously. Dissidents are also often painted by the mass media as hooligans and trouble makers though some are beginning to see them as heroes.
2. Intimidation – when someone goes too far out, the government will use the law to sue that individual so that the opposition is kept in check. This is however sparingly used nowadays than during the LKY regime. More and more people thus are pushing the boundaries nowadays to try and test the political water.
3. Low wages – many people struggle to make a living so much so that they have little energy left to go against the regime. A population with about 40% earning $2000 and below also feels powerless to retaliate against tyranny and dictatorship. Self esteem is low when one earns so little and often he also feels powerless.
4. Dependency – the government uses a system of dependency to keep the general population in check. Many people queuing for subsidised BTO flats dare not vote against the regime for fear that their preference is found out as it is pereceived that voting is not secret. The CPF withdrawal system for retirement is one way the ruling party tries to control the population but people are now fighting back in anger.
5. Curtailment of information – the mass media is tightly controlled for many decades so the general population reads what the government wants it to see. But the internet is slowly reversing that advantage.
6. Division – the government rules by dividing the population into different races and religions. Every country in the world wants to unite the country into one but not ours as it serves the government to have a disunited population so it can be better ruled. Needless to say, our minorities races suffer immensely from this exploitation.
7. Tripartism – the government controls the unions by introducing the pro-employer tripartite movement so that workers’ rights are nullified. Employers collaborate indirectly with the government to make sure our system works like an animal farm-like one whereby the master rules over its subjects like slaves. Without a proper union to fight for workers, many are often left alone to fend for themselves helplessly.
8. Internet brigades – the government realises that they are losing out in the social media arena and launches its own internet brigades (IBs) to try and win back the propaganda game. Its foreseeable that the IBs will get fiercer closer to general election and cyberbullying at its worse.
9. Votes buying – the government intends to sell the country out by offering almost 200,000 new citizenships to foreigners so that they can vote them back into power election after election. Its dictatorship at its worse and many foresee that by 2030, there will be more converted citizens than naturally born ones. Thus, the next election is seen as significant and even regime-changing.
10. Power pool – power is seen focused on a few individuals and they rule the country tightly without any interference. Our Prime Minister controls the counry and his wife the world’s richest sovereign fund. However, many have predicted that our Prime Minister may not be able to hold on to power when his father passes on. This remains to be seen but something that many Singaporeans will like to see happen sooner rather than later.