Saturday, June 24, 2006

Save the UN

To my mind, it seems obvious that it is important to have an international legal order and to foster strong international institutions that seek to advance the greater good of all humanity.

As John F Kennedy said.... "We prefer world law, in the age of self-determination, to world war in the age of mass extermination."

But, it appears that the UN is in a bit of a crisis. Major powers see it as a nuisance in the pursuit of their own agenda. Demonising the UN and tarnishing its image has become a popular sport for some. We cannot underestimate the important role of this world body. It may appear weak at times. But its will is only as strong as we allow it to be.

As such, I decided to sign the following petition:

Don't Shut Down the | Send a message to world leaders.

"The heroes of the world community are not those who withdraw when difficulties ensue, not those who can envision neither the prospect of success nor the consequence of failure -- but those who stand the heat of battle, the fight for world peace through the United Nations." Hubert H Humphrey

Wednesday, June 14, 2006


The Works of James Madison

Secularism is a political value that needs to be continually reinforced. In a multi-cultural, multi-religious society such as Singapore, it is taken for granted. Secularism is so much a part of the substratum of politics here that one does not even consider the dangers of a non-secular theological state.

One cannot be overly complacent about unholy alliance between the church and the state. Such alliances have never been spiritually fruitful and have always been instrumental in facilitating some form of tyranny or other... I was just reading some of the works of James Madison and came across the following. Its from an address by him to the General Assembly of the Commonwealth of Virgia in 1785. Americans today are faced with the dangerous enchroachment of right wing religious groups into the political arena. This observation of James Madison from 221 years ago has not been proven wrong despite the passage of time.

"What influence in fact have ecclesiastical establishments had on Civil Society?

In some instances they have been seen to erect a spiritual tyranny on the ruins of the Civil authority; in many instances they have been seen upholding the thrones of political tyranny: in no instance have they been seen the guardians of the liberties of the people. Rulers who wished to subvert the public liberty, may have found an established Clergy convenient auxiliaries.

A just Government instituted to secure & perpetuate it needs them not. Such a Government will be best supported by protecting every Citizen in the enjoyment of his Religion with the same equal hand which protects his person and his property; by neither invading the equal rights of any Sect, nor suffering any Sect to invade those of another."

Thursday, June 08, 2006

death of a bogeyman

Just read this rather funny take on the death of al-Zarqawi. well placed humour and certainly not off the mark... at least there is no collateral damage to innocent reputations. :-)
Hubub in Hibhib: The Timely Death of al-Zarqawi