“The pragmatism to which the national identity refers is one of purposive rational action, one of means-end calculation, one of technology and science.
Citizens are admonished to identify with the economic success of the state which demonstrates that the correct policies have been applied.
As these policies are not based on an explicitly stated ideology nor even on purely political considerations, but on rational and scientific principles, any criticism of these policies can be branded as irrational.
The prestige of science and technology is thus used to buttress not only the day to day policies but also the social and political system resulting from such policies, because leaders will ask if such a system is not derived from the very principles of scientific and rational action.
The supremacy of this pragmatic identity or technocratic consciousness can thus be used to legitimize tight political control and eventually an authoritarian political system.” – Chan Heng Chee