Right now, it looks more like a neighbourhood playground than the legislative body of a developed nation. Following Sylvia Lim’s “test balloon” statement on the GST hike, Minister Heng Swee Keat, Minister Shanmugam, and House leader Grace Fu have all lined up to demand an apology from Ms Lim for making “baseless suggestions”.
Sylvia Lim refused on the grounds that her statement was made in “honest belief”.
So instead of moving on, we now have not one, but three fully-paid Ministers demanding an apology from Ms Lim because her honest belief was not honest enough.
Taxpayer money well spent. Minister Grace Fu deserves an Oscar for Best Supporting Actress in a drama nobody asked for.
This issue deserves a serious commentary about parliamentary privilege and ad hominem political attacks, but we are not going there. Instead, we’re going to analyse the REAL reason why this spat happened.
In short, everyone’s horoscope is Aries.
The Aries horoscope date range is 21 March to 19 April. This means that everyone currently squabbling in parliament is born under the sign of the Ram.
This remarkable discovery goes a long way towards explaining why the quarrel occurred. According to the ancient wisdom of internet horoscopes, Aries people are often headstrong, impatient, short-tempered, impulsive, and moody. Thanks to its ruling planet of Mars, Aries MPs are also “not afraid to do battle” and often “act before they think”.
No wonder our parliament resembles a teacher-less classroom.
With four impulsive Ram-Ps discussing the hot-button topic of GST, it was inevitable that the debate became a pissing contest with hurt feelings and apologies demanded.
The horoscope hypothesis explains why Sylvia Lim made the allegation, why Minister Shanmugam jumped into battle, and why it’s now a stalemate with no nobody giving way. Aries children are stubborn, willful, and prone to “dig in their heels”.
It even explains our parliament’s past dramas.
Minister Grace Fu is always demanding apologies from the opposition because she’s an Aries woman.
Sylvia Lim and Minister Shanmugam butt heads over every single issue because Aries men and Aries women do not get along. According to the horoscope, Aries-Aries relationships are “bound to result in fireworks” and if one party is not telling the truth, they will start “acting defensive and get angry a lot”.
Science be damned. This sounds like a perfect summary of the Sylvia-Shanmugam dynamic.
Of course it can!
Today’s daily horoscope for Aries suggests gathering some friends to go on that long holiday you’ve been putting off. Amazingly, similar advice applies for Speaker Tan Chuan-Jin, a Capricorn who should “feel free to take a trip somewhere without bringing a map” because “you can’t control the hand you’ve been dealt”.
The stars have spoken. Speaker Tan Chuan-Jin should dismiss parliament and plan a team-bonding holiday. Postpone the budget debate until every MP comes back from Bali. Perhaps then the Aries MPs will be less angsty after a good tan and 12 Mimosas by the beach.