This picture below has been ripped off the Online Citizen website. Take a look at Mr Chiam See Tong. How different he looks from the days when he burst onto the political scene to contest the Cairnhill constituency where I had only recently bought my home.
He wanted to make a difference; to help Singaporeans articulate words and thoughts that had not been homogenised by the PAP machinery. He stood in the election against a PAP strong man, Mr Lim Kim San.
He lost naturally. Though I am sure he wasn’t without his supporters, overt and covert.
Have his efforts been worth it — for himself and his family? Would the Singaporeans he sought to serve and finally got to serve in Potong Pasir think it’s been worth it — for him and for those who voted for him general election after general election?
For a PAP version of what politics can do to your looks, I can think of at least two instances, when the chaps had started out suai ger and are today well, worse for wear — that surpasses anything that can be attributed to the ravages of time.
They are MP Charles Chong (whom I once thought was the most handsome man in Parliament — foolish me!) and Minister for Education Ng Eng Hen (who is a nodding acquaintance, him having been a colleague of one of my brothers at SGH).
So whether Opposition or Ruling Party politics, they are simply baaaad for your looks.
Perhaps Dr Finian Tan (something of a good looker) — a deal-maker who returned from the US, joined our Ministry of Finance and widely expected to be in the PAP line-up of new candidates at the last general election but didn’t make it to the stage in the end — has had a lucky escape! 😀