3 Sep 2004

NOTHING HAS CHANGED

The Scotsman

Economist Magazine Pays £127,000 Damages to Singapore Leaders

The Economist magazine has published an apology and agreed to pay £127,000 in damages to Singapore founding father Lee Kuan Yew and his son, Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong.

The apology, published in its latest issue, says allegations in a recent article were “false and completely without merit”.

The article appeared in the magazine last month and was titled “Temasek, First Singapore, Next the World”.

Temasek is the Singapore government’s investment arm, headed by the prime minister’s wife, Ho Ching.

The Economist said in its apology that the article was understood to imply that Ho’s appointment was based not on merit but on “corrupt, nepotist motives for the advancement of the Lee family’s interests”.

“We admit and acknowledge that these allegations are false and completely without foundation. We unreservedly apologise to Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong and Minister Mentor Lee Kuan Yew for the distress and embarrassment caused to them by these allegations,” the apology said.

Economist editor Bill Emmott said the magazine received a complaint from the Lees on August 21 and agreed to pay the damages and issue the apology on September 1.

The Economist also agreed to pay the expenses incurred by the Lees, said Hri Kumar, director of Drew & Napier, the law firm representing the Lees in their complaint.

The elder Lee was Singapore’s prime minister from its independence in 1965 until 1990. He still wields considerable influence under the title of minister mentor.

Emmott said the incident would not affect the magazine’s Singapore operations.

“It won’t affect any of our operations at all, it’s entirely a self-contained issue that’s been dealt with,” he said.


So the new era of an open Singapore is a complete fabrication for the benefit of sounding open. The reality is that nothing has changed. Why does a large international publication backdown to such threats? Simple answer, the Lee family can ensure that the permitted number of copies to be sold of the Economist be cut. A limit on sales of the magazine would be introduced as opposed to an out-right ban.


Sing it and sing it out loud it is plain and clear to see for all...
“corrupt, nepotist motives for the advancement of the Lee family’s interests”.
“corrupt, nepotist motives for the advancement of the Lee family’s interests”.
“corrupt, nepotist motives for the advancement of the Lee family’s interests”.
“corrupt, nepotist motives for the advancement of the Lee family’s interests”.
“corrupt, nepotist motives for the advancement of the Lee family’s interests”.
“corrupt, nepotist motives for the advancement of the Lee family’s interests”.

6 comments:

isotope said...

"Why does a large international publication backdown to such threats? Simple answer, the Lee family can ensure that the permitted number of copies to be sold of the Economist be cut. A limit on sales of the magazine would be introduced as opposed to an out-right ban."

Hmm...considering the relatively small population in Singapore, and the even smaller readership of Economist in Singapore, I don't think limiting their sales would really bother Economist.
Furthermore, most people don't buy it from newstands, the people who buy them are more like professionals who need to keep up with the world's economy and all, and so they would already subscribe to the Economist, right?
So, if they subscribe, the government can't do anything about it..I mean, they can't remove your subscription, could they?
But yeah, I'm wondering why the Economist backed down instead of defending their own reports.

soci said...

If you are interested in my further support for my 'restriction of circulation' argument for the Economist's sudden u-turn, go to the following link for a more extended article on this issue in Singapore.

http://groups.yahoo.com/group/Sg_Review/message/1239

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