Thursday, February 21, 2013

Hearing but not listening. Beyond the population white paper.

We all know the expression 'to hear but not listen'. How many times have we screamed' in exasperation at our kids, and for that matter - our kids screamed at us..   " .....but you are not listening!! *sigh*

Our present gahment seems a bit like that, isn't it. Minister Ng Eng Hen, said in no uncertain terms "We heard  Singaporeans clearly". PM Lee in his post election speech said it too..." We hear all your voices.". Hear, hear. The question is...have they listened?

In Medicine, hearing is a function of the auditory organ, the ear and all its connections. If you can't hear, it is a malfunction of the organ. Something is damaged, or there's just a big cockroach stuffed into your ear. But if you can't understand despite hearing.... something is wrong higher up. Some people call this an auditory Perception Difficulty, and link it with the more recognizable group of dyslexic conditions.

But it is not necessary that the gahment has something so crippling. More likely, they are just locked into an ideological frame of mind, that they cannot see anything worth considering beyond the ideology. Talk about needing to think out of the box. Here is a bunch of smart (very smart, I believe), high salaried technocrats, who believe that all they have is in that box, and cannot conceive of any possibilities outside of that box.

So when they hear, they actually cannot understand. So when they say they hear, what they mean is that they  have heard the noise and clamour, and believe that their failing is merely that they have not worked hard enough to make us come round to their way of thinking. So they will try harder, to make us understand.

Sadly, with potentially tragic outcomes.

No comments: