A cautionary tale for expats in Asia


Don’t shit where you live and work sounds like common sense. We all now, however, that common sense is not common. But when this surfeit is combined with the sensitivity of a prat, the mixture is disastrous.

Take the case of Anton Casey, a well-heeled expat banker in Singapore, who has been raising heckles in Singapore lately with his smug arrogance and insensitive remarks.

The story of how Casey almost singlehandedly manages to piss off a whole nation by calling them “poor” because they could not afford a Porsche, and then rubbed salt in the wound by posting a video blaming the Singapore’s parents for raising them as “wusses” is told in the Straits Times story below and other blog posting (see here and here), so Unspun does not need to delve into it.

Flash to yesterday. After, understandably, receiving death threats and wholesale abuse Casey finally wakes up to the fact that he’s done something not too clever. So what does he do?

He hires a PR firm to help him send an apology in the form oaf a press release to the Singaporean people in the Straits Times and, apparently, to do the dog’s work of contacting social media users to take down their postings about Casey.

Not a smart move. Especially when the PR agency can’t even write a proper press  release that sounds anything remotely like a contrite human being. The release apparently quoted casey saying: “I would like to extend a sincere apology to the people of Singapore.” (Italics mine)

Would like? To extend a sincere apology? Who talks like this? Would like signals his intention, doesn’t mean that he’s apologising. Extend a sincere (as opposed to insincere) apology.

How about: “I am deeply sorry” instead?

And what’s wrong with this man, who presumably has had more than rudimentary education, that he cannot write the letter himself and ask the PR company to use their contacts to send it to the paper’s editors?

It looks like Casey’s travails are not over as many Singaporeans won’t see this as enough contrition to forgive him. This is exacerbated by the fact that many Singaporans, except for the very well off, are feeling the economic pinch of escalating prices, limited professional opportunities and the pressure of keeping up with the pristine and success self-image that the Government carefully encourages and nurtures in its citizens.

All this has also bred envy and resentment against expats, euphemistically called foreign talents, in Singapore. The popular local perception is that all expats get lucrative and perk-filled work packages that most of the time are unjustified. This is not quite accurate although all it takes here is for a few rotten apples to spoil the whole basket.

And when rotten, boorish apples like Casey get on social media and trumpet their ignorance, the rest of the expats, many of whom are very professional, totally integrated into local society and very decent people, can only cringe.

Hopefully the rest of us would remember not to shit where we live and work.

British expat, husband of former Miss Singapore, apologises for calling commuters “poor people”.

An expatriate who referred to commuters on public transport as “poor people” in his Facebook post has apologised on Tuesday in a statement sent to the press.

British national Anton Casey, who is married to former Miss Singapore Universe Bernice Wong, added that he and his family had received death threats and that he had exercised “poor judgment” in his earlier comments.

In a statement issued through Fulford Public Relations, he said: “I would like to extend a sincere apology to the people of Singapore.”

Mr Casey, who apparently drives a Porsche, added: “In the past 24 hours due to a security breach of my personal Facebook page and the misuse of an old video by unknown sources, my family and especially my Singaporean son have suffered extreme emotional and verbal abuse online.”

The online roasting started following the circulation of a couple of Mr Anton Casey’s Facebook posts which sported insensitive comments. A YouTube video of him in what seemed like a taunting response to his detractors, was also blasted by netizens.

3 Comments Add yours

  1. Achmad Sudarsono says:

    Why are they getting so riled up about what he thinks, Unspun?

    Like

    1. alvin says:

      its not what he THINKS, rather he is INSULTING the people through social mediums.

      Like

  2. sham plumber says:

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    Like

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