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Meritocracy and elitism

Comments (2)
  1. 2cents says:

    A few observations if I may.

    – Title
    I read, “Meritocracy in Singapore and Welfarism
    Meritocracy and elitism’ at the top of the page. And then the contents of the piece itself does not align with ‘meritocracy & elitism’ even though it starts off with the
    relationship betw ‘m & e’. But it went on to write about and basically disparage welfarism…linking that to ‘evolving meritocracy’? Wow, that really is pretty tenuous link, to say the least.

    And how did the writer try to show how ‘welfarism’ is linked to an ‘evolving meritocracy’? Via the welfarism of the Nordic nations.

    Really? I have read a fair share of articles, speeches and books on Meritocracy. But I cannot recall if I even read one with any Scandinavian singing its praises or otherwise. Meritocracy is mostly an English & American thing.

    So, with the contents & the 5 references at the end of it, the article is really about Why Welfarism is Not a Good Idea. Nothing to do with Meritocracy.

    – True, Narrow, Broad Meritocracy???
    Very poorly argued and discussed. Lacking in coherence and substance, hardly any academic rigour is all I can say.

    ‘..meritocracy is established on free and fair competition’
    Really? You believe that? Free, hopefully. Fair – as in a level playing field, right? Sure the field can be levelled even if it isn’t now. But does that equate to ‘fair’? Fat hope. As Christopher Hayes observes in his acclaimed book, Twilight of the Elites, the field may be level but rich kids can practise more often on it because their parents could afford that.

    – “True meritocracy implies liberalism.” Really? Where has the writer made that case? Oh, it IS so only because the writer says, ‘for me, I believe in a liberal society; in such a society no one gets special privileges, everyone competes fairly and equally.’ OK, I got it. Has the author view the TED talk of this Chinese chap who explains how China’s progress can be viewed in some ways to ‘meritocracy’, eh, with Chinese characteristics?

    Sorry, folks, if this is the any indication of the standard of thinking and argument at NUS, then there’s a l o n g, l o n g way to go….

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Established in 2009, The Kent Ridge Common is the independent daily of the National University of Singapore. Writers comprise largely of current undergrads with select alumni contributing to the paper. Opinions expressed are of the writer's own. Please visit our disclaimer page for our terms and conditions.
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