23 Apr 2005

Quote of the hour

Anonymous said...
Maybe one of the reasons why the Singaporeans are so annoyed with the term 'infantile' is because they unconsciously agree that they are being infantile but there is nothing they can do to move away from it.

Being angry, annoyed, etc. with the term 'infantile' is so minute. This term can be interpreted in different ways by different people yet, most of the comments posted here seem to concentrate on the negative aspect of this term. Probably because this is posted by a non-Singaporean. If this were to be posted by Mr Brown for example, would the comments be different? Would the article be considered as funny and cute?

Probably the ‘infantilism’ that persist in the majority of Singaporeans is because the education system is designed in such a way to mould the Singaporean to not think beyond their basic needs.

29 comments:

Anthony said...

This term can be interpreted in different ways by different people yet, most of the comments posted here seem to concentrate on the negative aspect of this term.

Only problem with this statement, as far as I see, is that Mc Dermott left a definition of "infantilism" that connotes negativity. Is there a positive aspect to the term I'm unaware of in the wikipedia definition?

a.x+(1-a).y \in S; for all x, y \in S; a \in [0,1] said...

.... I'm so glad I'm not a gamma they're so stupid... and khaki is such a hideous colour...

TriplePeriod said...

I can assure you that it is DEFINITELY because its posted by an Ang Moh and "criticising" the local blogs. Yes, there is definitely the presense of "racial" issue here. But thats just human nature.

jOwIe said...

For me, its not of any racial issues definitely.. and so i might not possess a nature? :D

basically, i dun really understand wat it means after wikipedia's explanation. though it really seems -ve to me but doesn't arouse me much as i dun really noe the definitions well enough. :D Need some clarification from someone as i termed it 'subjective'.

Due to the 'nature' that tripleperiod stated, i am definitely against racial discrimination and thus, not jumping to conclusion as to whether he did put a -ve label on me.

So, how bad is the word.. steve? :D

sway said...

I just got sent here via Mr Miyagi, and I think plenty of people are missing the point (I think) you are trying to make.

(that said, there have been too many comments and I'm too bloody lazy to read through all of them)

perhaps another way to look at this is that in the search for happiness in a non-sanctioned way, people are resorting to blogs.

ALSO, since as mentioned the government clamps down on anyone and anything when not state-sanctioned, satire is the only way to go. I certainly think that's what Mr Brown and Talkingcock.com are aiming for. and Mr Brown has a column in Today (though I've never read it myself because I've been in Australia for 8 years)

Said (to me anyway) is over-applied to the Orient as a whole, especially when he himself was only referring to it from the Arab point of view- which is vastly different from "The Orient delicate lotus blossoms" (as opposed to "The pagan Arab-Muslims terrorists" as the world is now ordered.)

Brose said...
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Brose said...

I fucking hate reading goddamn shitty highly overrated blogs. Guys. Grow some brains.
I hate to say this but Mc Dermott is actually pretty right. Although my post is roughly the same but peppered with 398721937219371 'fuck' cos I was under the effects of Alcohol.
That shit is fucking good man.

Hecate said...

Anthony>> perhaps the response that Steve's been getting from his harmless tag is really because negative notions are attached to the use of the word "infantile"

I think race plays a role here, although this is just my point of view. Singapore is a country which had been under colonial rule for so long, I think to a certain extent, the local blog community reacted against Steve's post because of the "you think you ang moh and you think you're so much better than us" mentality. Alot of us possess that, and I think its just subconscious and already instilled in us. Whether its because there is a resentment or otherwise, we have alot of this sentiment floating around. I think alot of locals would agree with this. People want to believe that foreigners, the ang mohs, "ah tiongs" (Chinese Nationals), Vietnamese, Indian nationals are not much better than us, but the fact that such sentiments arise is evidence that we ourselves don't think we are better than them, hence the need to verbally prove our resentment against them to make ourselves feel better.

Anonymous said...

i guess it's pretty hard to see this objectively on both sides.

A.Ball.of.Yarn said...

I don't see a race issue at all; just a negativity associated with the word "infantile" and the word taken out of context, somewhat.

But Steven, being childlike is also not quite the same as being immature and I feel that the angling for Mr.Brown is not entirely fair as well. There're many ways to skin a cat, even bristly felines such as serious topics and I think MB, like some others just do that in a different way.

Hecate said...

The issue of Steve and his tags is definitely not a race issue, but the reaction to his harmless post may be one of race. Like what someone said, if it was mr brown who posted it, would he get such reactions?

Moof said...

Let not get too personal with any races. but think bout this.

The idea of blog is more like a window for freedom of speech. And if ur really wan something serious pls go read the News paper. if not just sit back and enjoy the fun. Getting too serious in this fight dun't really benefit any one really.

Like having thousand hit on a sites, i think its just 50/50 truth. c'mom e same person can be reloading the page of pop by the site every hour of so.

Personally i see no mean in gettign angry over the remarks or comment. i feel it more like a freedom or expression. and truth is u got my 15min of attention.

Anonymous said...

I am not an ang moh. I am chinese and I agree that most Singaporeans are by nature selfish, arrogant and very ill-mannered. They drive like imbeciles and they have manners of pigs, sorry pig for the comparison.

kief 'maharishi' singam said...

true that on the part of the 'educational system' was and is being designed so as to make the average singaporean live under the shroud of B.S given rightly so by a self-elected govt.....

Anonymous said...

"the education system is designed in such a way to mould the Singaporean to not think beyond their basic needs."

The Singaporean education system, for the large part, consists of the GCE O and A levels. British.

Anthony said...

Anthony>> perhaps the response that Steve's been getting from his harmless tag is really because negative notions are attached to the use of the word "infantile"


Well, considering the definition he linked (and therefore defined the boundaries of the article with) I'm certainly not suprised by the negative backlash.

If the choice was deliberate then he brought this upon himself. If the choice was merely careless or negligent, I'll have a bit more sympathy, but he still brought it upon himself.

This is the final post I'll make about this matter - I have a suspicion that McDermott is either deliberately milking this or is trying to find a way of backpedalling gracefully. Either way, I want no part of this.

Jowie said...

haha!!! relax guys relax... it will only be racial if u think racist. urh.. cos i dun. :D

Its boiling here.. omg.. but why get so worked up, i wonder.. gotta go.. have a nice day!

ciaoz

Anonymous said...

Anthony,

for a guy who wants no part of this you sure are commenting a lot.

Brose said...

Who cares about backpedalling gracefully? He aint gonna run for election or some shit. He is merely trying to point out the truth. And truth hurts.

Dr Negativity said...
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Dr Negativity said...

t's amazing how one's thinking can get blasted by so many people.

It's amazing how one word can induce such comments from people.

While i do find the term 'infantile' a little offensive, nonetheless, what mr author-of-this-blog has said does make sense, no? One must be critical in assessing if what has been said makes perfect sense, rather than being offended by the negative word.

Freedom of speech is much supressed in this 'nanny state'of ours and thus, blogs can be seen as an outlet of mature discussion of contemporary issues and topics.

Yet, at the same time, blogs are just another mean for people to express their thoughts without much repulsion.

Ultimately, any blog that can invoke thoughts and drive across the point that the writer is to make, is successful in its own way. Why bother if it's infantile, satirical, or what-the-hell terms...

No way that a serious,mature and lengthy discussion on political issues will always be 100% successful in invoking the same kind of reaction in people or bring across highlights of the writing.

So, let's all not be too harsh on mr author-of-this-blog and the other bloggers.

Am i making sense?

aerasio said...

Sir, i feel that your accusation that the Singaporean Blogosphere is infantile and immature is unfounded. Furthermore to assume that Singaporean views on current affairs are infantile is most unreasonable.

The fact is that maturity to begin with is rather difficult to define, and that most people reading blogs and writing blogs do not do so for the sake of political expression but rather as a simple expression of their feelings. Most ordinary people online are not looking for the latest information on political issues but rather something entertaining. To assume that going to entertaing blogs like mr brown's and xiaxue's makes you an infantile person is i believe grossly unfair and ludicrous.

soci said...

I am starting to agree with Mark Lawson of the Guardian Newspaper, in that my current feeling is that blogworld at its worst is similar to that of a radio phone-in 'live chat'. The major and most important difference is that there is no one at the other end of the line who can step in and cut the caller off.

It often turns into multiple commentators rambling and ranting at each other and neither taking the required time to read and listen to what the other has stated.

It turns into what looks like a group of people, all and at the same time, engaged in free association.

The Informalist said...

Mr Mc Dermott:

Out of genuine curiosity --- when you have a blog with a name like "Singa-bloody-pore" and make posts that assault the intelligence of Singaporeans, were you seriously expecting an intellectually simulating dialogue?

When you wish to have a fruitful discussion with someone, turning up at his door with a banner bearing an inflammatory slogan and then patronizingly talking down to that person is not a good idea. It seems that you got the kind of "dialogue" that you deserve.

Anonymous said...

hahah... i smirks reading some of the comments here.

I shall pick on the last comment... (not the author himself)
(kick my butt if u want to, aerasio, too bad, your comment's taking the cake)

Mc Dermott has made it clear, him putting the label "Infantile" on Singapore blogsphere pretty much refer to his initial inkling, that "Singapore hasn't changed". He planned to "research into Singapore attitude". He even request for submission of Singapore blogs that are 'mature'.

Aerasio's comment is something that I read annoyingly. Instead of answering to the question, the comment did nothing but question the question itself. (Kick my butt lor aerasio....) Why raise the definition of "maturity"? In the comment, "unfounded" and "unreasonable" mentioned... well, prove it then. (ok ok, so there's no need to prove oneself) 8-)

Now, it's not true, to say that "Most ordinary people online are not looking for the latest information on political issues but rather something entertaining". I, one ordinary fella, come online to search for entertainment, yes...but at the same time, issues that concern me. Label me selfish, that I only be interested in issues CONCERNING me, but hey! I'm not just surfing to search for entertainment; if certain political issues is of my interest, I'll read and participate as well. That very line in that comment, is good enough to backup the 'infantile' 'accusation'.

Hmmm... I shall stop here. I've better things to do. Kick me in my butt, whatever... but know this, my comment is based on the comments in here, and I've singled out aerasio's comment out of convenience. No harm intended to the author.

Ciao

MysteryTanLines said...

Just curious, you link to Michael Moore on your blog. Do you consider Michael Moore's TV shows and movies to be "infantile". To refresh your memory, this is the definition you linked to:
Infantilism (paraphilic) is a certain psychological condition experienced by those whose level of physical maturity has clearly progressed beyond the life-stage of infancy. The defining aspect of this condition is the derivation of a profound sense of well-being or of a certain type of great pleasure that becomes associated with various infantile objects and/ or infantile roleplaying.

Just curious.

whatever said...

Mr McDermott, it seems to me that you fail to live up to your own standards. Have you read each and every comment on your entries? I've already suggested in a previous comment that your research is fundamentally and inherently flawed. What you're basically doing is lamenting the lack of maturity - and there is no other definition of infantilism; your link to wikipedia focuses on the psychological disorder aspect of 'infantilism', a definition I find disturbing in its application here - in one facet of popular culture. It's like patronizing people who watch TV programs other than documentaries and the news. You then go on to lambast the education system for producing people who appreciate the lighter aspects of popular culture. What next - are you going to suggest that because people eat Malay and Indian food with their hands in Singapore, that's another sign of infantilism?

In any society, the people who take themselves less seriously are invariably going to be more popular. This doesn't mean they're infantile. Going by your argument (and your definition of infantile), if we agree that Ali G is infantile (perhaps an assertion impossible to refute), then his popularity in the US and the UK must mean those are the two most psychologically disturbed countries in the world.

I can assure you that no Singaporean blogger worth his or her salt is going to accept the label of 'infantile', and that the majority of Singaporeans are going to take issue with any Western blanket 'assertion of infantilism' about an entire country. (Does that answer your ponderings?) It doesn't matter what race you are; in the blogosphere you represent only yourself, and right now your representation is that of someone who has to resort to superciliousness in order to goad people into reading and responding to your entries.

Two last things: (1) the inability to take criticism should not be confused with the refuting of wild and inaccurate disparagement; (2) I'm pretty sure Mr Miyagi was joking. There was no need to be condescending about that. If you didn't pick up on the joke, perhaps you should wonder if you're spending too much time on this ill-conceived 'research' of yours.

Moof said...

To each of his own. The blogbing world is just like reading diff amg. each aurthor has his/her own style of getting their point of view to the reader. so there is really no right or wrong.

It more as whoes stlye of writing u prefer. Mr brown may seem not serious in his writing but that's the way he bring out issue to talk bout.

So end of the day wat is right of wring is up to each to chose.

James said...

I'm surprised that everybody has focussed on 'infantile', in itself, rather than pointing to a context that 'sub intelligentia nonesense' gives the statement. Infantile in itself is quite harmless but to combine it with the opinion of 'less than intelligent nonsense' (Latin spelling nazi: intelligens rather than intelligentia?) and then cast the inevitable inference upon the readers is likely to cause offence. Many blogs are simply escapism for the author, the reader or both and shouldn't always be construed as trying to be something else.

Perhaps it would also be interesting to note that Xiaxue, for example, seems to have as many detractors (if you read the various forums) as fans? Does that mean anything for bloggers in Singapore?