"What political party helps an opposition to come to power? Why should we not demolish them before they get started? Once they get started, its more difficult to demolish them"
- MM Lee
Everytime the PAP is asked why they demolished opponents, they throw back this question- "why should I help my opponent?" Rather ridiculous because nobody is asking them to 'help' their opponents but to have a level playing field and respect our pledge to 'build a democratic society'. Political parties in democratic countries compete with ideas not shackle their opponents with arrest, bankruptcy and detention without trial. MM Lee also admits to demolishing his rivals when they are small to prevent the emergence a real challenge to his rule.
On why he thought it was necessary to demolish men such as JB Jeyaratnam:
"Well yes, Jeyaretnam to begin with. Chee Soon Juan is another. I think they deserve to be demolished. I have no regrets. Jeyaretnam went nutty, selling things in the corner, how did that help him? After closing down his practice, I mean, he thought, you know, Western Style, he's sacrificing for his country. No, it is personal ambition to knock me down. I mean, I just laughed him off and brushed him aside, which annoyed him. No, I have no regrets. Chee Soon Juan, also no regrets." - MM Lee
JBJ ended up selling books at street corners because that was all he could do. He never gave up despite the severe repression and that inspires many people today. It is quite absurd for MM Lee to say that he 'just laughed him off and brushed JBJ aside'. Brush him off? MM Lee went after him with his whole arsenal. For those who are too young to remember, they came after JBJ with a series of charges - read about it here : Link to Wikipedia, forcing him out of parliament and making him lose his property and wealth.
“But what I was angry about was the injustice in society, the disparity between rich and poor.." - JBJ, 1990 [Link]
Today, we are all angry.