Via S——‘s Livejournal [livejournal.com] I just read the best description of Singapore ever. Don’t let the fact that it was published in 1993 dissuade you from reading it: other then the to newspaper articles referenced being from ’93 the article could have been written yesterday.
Here’s a sample:
Singapore is a relentlessly G-rated experience, micromanaged by a state that has the look and feel of a very large corporation. If IBM had ever bothered to actually possess a physical country, that country might have had a lot in common with Singapore. There’s a certain white-shirted constraint, an absolute humorlessness in the way Singapore Ltd. operates; conformity here is the prime directive, and the fuzzier brands of creativity are in extremely short supply.
The local papers, including one curiously denatured tabloid, New Paper, are essentially organs of the state, instruments of only the most desirable propagation. This ceaseless boosterism, in the service of order, health, prosperity, and the Singaporean way, quickly induces a species of low-key Orwellian dread. (The feeling that Big Brother is coming at you from behind a happy face does nothing to alleviate this.) It would be possible, certainly, to live in Singapore and remain largely in touch with what was happening elsewhere. Only certain tonalities would be muted, or tuned out entirely, if possible. . . .
I have a feeling this issue of Wired was not on sale in Singapore and thought some things have changed (you can get Cosmo here now. You can even watch bar-top dancing in some pubs) most of this article is very applicable to life here in Singapore.
Most interesting is this article actually pre-dates the Micheal Fay incident!
Read on: Disneyland with the Death Penalty [Wired.com].