Thank you MM Lee, for showing the way

23Nov09

A lovely example of that Straits Times trademark, the utterly sycophantic reader letter:

I HAVE always been impressed with Minister Mentor Lee Kuan Yew for his vision and passion. But my respect for him has gone up a few more notches after his recent speech to encourage the study of Chinese language differently.

Having believed earlier that every child can master two languages equally well, he admitted his mistake. He said he did not realise that a child’s intelligence and language ability were two different things.

These are the lessons I have learnt from MM Lee:

  • Leaders make policy for their country, not for themselves: The implementation of the bilingual policy was for the sake of the country. He envisioned the growth of China and he has been proven right. Now he is championing a change of course for the sake of Singapore citizens.
  • Leaders learn from their mistakes and make amends: MM Lee said: ‘I intervened successively over the years and insisted that my experience should guide the policy. I was taking risks. I started wrong and I put it right.’
  • Leaders acknowledge they may not have it right completely: MM Lee’s willingness to learn, relearn and unlearn is truly admirable. Regarding the policy, he said: ‘It is not completely right but I will get it right if I live long enough.’ His keeping on pushing the boundary and passionately desiring to make a difference tops it all.
  • Thank you, MM Lee, for teaching me how to lead.

    LEEWATCH tips its hat at Temasek Review and continues to await Lee Kuan Yew acknowledging it when anybody else points out his mistakes.
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