Today National Development Minister Mah Bow Tan announced that to balance development and conservatism, he plans to start a “Forest of Giants” project on the causeway joining Singapore and Malaysia. Being the first day, he got off to a good start by singlehandedly planting 3 giant trees (still saplings) in the dirt right at the edge of the causeway. Mr. Mah was giving a press conference while shoveling dirt and stated as reported by Channel News Asia that “…we are a very small city state, landlocked; development is important for us…” and, right after he mentioned the word “landlocked”, he stepped forward to plant tree number 4 and fell into the Straits of Johor. “I got my pants wet and dirty,” Mah reported after being fished out of the waters. Apparently the Minister, in his zeal to plant additional giant trees, forgot that Singapore was surrounded by water and not land. The good news is that he did not drift over to the Malaysian side during his time in the water. After his pants dried, he continued planting trees.
In a nod to Singapore’s growing supremecy in the field of maths education, Moose City, Alaska (population: 232) decides to adopt the Singapore system in its school district. This makes the grand total number of American schools actually using Singapore textbooks now 1. With 23,457 school districts in total, Singapore is making inroads into the American education system. While Singapore’s textbooks have been added to the list of approved textbooks in hundreds of school districts across the US, Moose City is believed to be the first school district in America to actually use them. In the US, unlike Singapore, the government does not mandate which textbook teachers must use, and teachers have freedom to choose their own textbook from a list of thousands of approved textbooks. Singapore’s textbooks, after significant investment and advertising by the Singapore government, are now included on many of these lists in America. Now that Moose City is actually using the texts, Alaskan students may soon be able to count durians even better than their Singaporean counterparts! PM Lee lauded Moose City’s choice of Singapore’s textbooks: “Yet again, Americans have chosen the Singapore model and are slowly recognizing that their own education system is inferior. Singaporean textbooks are now widely used across the US. Singaporeans should take note and be proud of the education system we have.”
Khmer Rouge Commander Duch (real name Kaing Guek Eay) of notorious Tuol Sleng Prison (also known as S21) is currently on trial in Cambodia for crimes against humanity. Lee Kwan Yew, who was a strong supporter of the Khmer Rouge 30 years ago, changed his mind about his former friend today. In an interview with Singapore Donkey, he reported that “In the early 1980’s I gave the Khmer Rouge $55 million. I didn’t mind the fact that so many ‘Kampucheans’ were tortured and killed by my Khmer Rouge friends in S21, but what really bothers me is that the Khmer Rouge lost the war and hence never returned my money. I also singlehandedly ensured that the Khmer Rouge was able to keep its seat at the UN for over a decade; that was free of charge.” With the ongoing trials, Mr. Lee now claims that the $55 million was in fact a loan, and not a gift, to the Killing Fields commanders. Singapore diplomats report that “Singapore will file a claim at the Cambodian court, so that if convictions are secured on the crimes against humanity charges, Singapore can lay claim to S21 assets to compensate Singapore for its investment losses in the Khmer leadership, which unfortunately has till now been a total loss given that Cambodia has democratized.” If Cambodia refuses to return Singapore’s money, “we retain the right to seize Cambodian assets in Singapore”.
Foreign Minister George Yeo reported that while many nations attended the controversial Durban Review Conference in Switzerland, his own delegation decided to skip the first day to take a tour of the city. “Geneva is a beautiful city, with a big water fountain in the middle of a lake. Just like we have water shooting out of the Merlion’s mouth in Singapore.” While other countries were busy criticizing Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s speech, Mr. Yeo pointed out that racism didn’t exist in Singapore “so why bother attending”. Besides, there are many nice flowers in bloom in Geneva. When asked by Israel whether Singapore supports the multi-nation boycott of the conference led by the US and European countries, the Singapore High Commission pointed out that “racism is not tolerated in Singapore, but we don’t mind if other countries are racist.” A staff member added that “the Iranian racism wasn’t against any of our races, so it is okay.”
The North Korean government today issued a stern warning to Singapore, after Channel News Asia (CNA) reported what it called were “lies started by Imperialist American filth” on its upcoming parliamentary elections. At issue were comments uttered on CNA that described North Korea’s parliament as a “rubber-stamp” parliament, and that only one candidate stands for election in each district.
North Korea’s state news agency KCNA also issued a release to agencies: “We will not stand for disgusting lies spread by Singapore’s state-run news agency, and stand ready for war at a moment’s notice if Singapore allies itself with the conniving Imperialist warmongers. North Korea’s elections are reserved for North Koreans, and pompous Singaporeans and Americans should keep their disgusting foreign faces out of Korea’s internal affairs. The DPRK [North Korea] is a model of good governance with an electoral system not unlike Singapore’s, with equally talented and qualified leaders that sometime must run in walkover elections due to lack of talent. CNA’s characterization of the DPRK’s parliament as “rubber-stamp” is fully refuted, and Singapore is warned not to heed the howls of the vicious wolves in the US.”
Minister Mentor of Singapore Lee Kwan Yew personally telephoned Dear Leader of North Korea Kim Jong Il to apologise.
Note to readers: KCNA is the Korean news agency. CNA is the Singaporean news agency.
Due to the anticipated long queues at Woodlands Checkpoint over Chinese New Year, Singapore’s Immigration and Checkpoints Authority (ICA) has announced a measure that will undoubtedly please Malaysians planning to return home for the New Year; the deployment of one extra ICA officer has already created a stir in the blogosphere. On public holidays, Woodlands Checkpoint is routinely jammed with queues lasting up to 4 or 5 hours at peak times. But no more. ICA announced today that a new officer, Mr. Tan, will be deployed to the checkpoint to alleviate the congestion.
Mr. Tan, an expert passport checker and part-time x-ray machine looker, when interviewed by Singapore Donkey, reported that waiting times are likely to be reduced by at least 5 minutes compared to last year. “This will prove to Malaysians that Singapore is efficient,” he explained. “Our airport immigration queues are less than 5 minutes long, with little candies to give to arriving passengers, and the impression left on our most distinguished visitors is that of uncompromising efficiency. Now, with only 3 hr 55 min queues at Woodlands, Malaysians too will experience a taste of our famed efficiency. With a 3 hr 55 min queue on the Singapore side of the checkpoint and a 5 min queue on the Malaysian side, Malaysians will certainly have even more to celebrate this year!”
On Sunday, 10th August at 11:10 am, an open seat on an eastbound train from City Hall MRT station was reported to Singapore Donkey by a concerned citizen. Normally, SMRT is expected to fill all seats and all standing space on its trains, so the recent appearance of a single open seat has caused shareholders to bristle with anger. Share prices tumbled in Monday trading. The Singapore government, a major shareholder, has been quick to respond. According to Transport Minister Raymond Lim, enforcement action may be taken against SMRT. “Government’s consistent policy has been to never allow any seating room on MRT trains in Singapore. Passengers are accustomed to standing in a tight formation, and any deviation from this may cause confusion. SMRT has assured me that the frequency of trains on the East-West line will be adjusted downwards from the current 5 trains per hour to a more sensible 3 trains per hour, so that demand is ‘better matched’. This will also help increase service standards and passenger comfort.”