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Singapore's Authoritarian Capitalism, Asian Values, Free Market Illusions and Political Dependency

Lingle, Christopher

Published by Locke Institute
ISBN 10: 8485809521 / ISBN 13: 9788485809523
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Title: Singapore's Authoritarian Capitalism, Asian ...

Publisher: Locke Institute

Binding: Mass Market Paperback

Book Condition: As New


Almost in new condition. Book shows only very slight signs of use. Cover and binding are undamaged and pages show minimal use. Bookseller Inventory # G8485809521I2N00

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Synopsis: Leaders in Singapore's PAP regime see themselves as a permanent fixture. Yet despite their grip on all organs of political power, the record clearly shows a continual decline in the margins of victory at the polls. These results suggest that Singaporeans are suffering from PAP fatigue. Apparently, an increasing number of people believe that the material gains do not constitute adequate compensation for the nanny-state nagging of an arrogant political leadership.

Some of the regime's most prominent spokespersons have gone on the offensive by promoting a contrived set of Asian values to legitimize their exercise of unchallenged authority. Simultaneously, they also identify certain values as a threat to stability, usually equated with one-party rule. The PAP's position on these issues remains unchallenged at home due to an obsessive control over the media and the vigorous suppression of dissent.

From a perspective gained from his service as a former Senior Fellow at the National University of Singapore, Dr. Lingle identifies Singapore's authoritarian capitalism as combining a selective degree of economic freedom and private property rights with strong-armed control over political life. According to him, political loyalty is the ultimate determinant of success rather than the efficient utilization of resources, and sycophantic business relations replace the growth-inducing actions of true entrepreneurs. Singapore's Authoritarian Capitalism questions the long-term survival of the PAP and its capacity to sustain Singapore's miracle growth record due to internal contradictions arising from the imposed institutional arrangements.

About the Author: Dr. Lingle began research for this book during his fellowship at the National University of Singapore. Lingle's Singapore visit came to an abrupt halt after he wrote a response to a previously published editorial comment that appeared in the International Herald Tribune. In his article, Lingle inferred that some regimes in East Asia are able to thwart criticism by relying on a compliant judiciary. Within two weeks he had been interrogated repeatedly by police detectives - which prompted him to resign his position, flee the country and seek refuge in the USA with nothing more than his overnight bag and notebook computer. The Singapore government seized his property in Singapore and sentenced him to jail in absentia.

In March, 1996 Mr. Lee Kuan Yew's lawyer urged the High Court of Singapore to order Lingle to pay substantially more than $300,000 in damages for libelling the Senior Minister. Justice S. Rajendran handed down a $70,000 judgment against Lingle.

Dr. Lingle comments: "I am not surprised by the Singapore judge's ruling. I guess the courts didn't see the irony in the judgment against me. As far as I can see it, the judgement vindicates me and supports the criticism that Singapore's rulers use a compliant judiciary to bankrupt their critics .. whether they are the political opposition or news media or foreign nationals."

Dr. Lingle has held university professorships all over the globe including the continents of Asia, Africa, Europe and America. Dr. Lingle is now a Visiting Professor at the Department of Economics, Case Western University.

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