Google and Wikipedia classify Li Shengwu as a politician from China

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A Google search on founding prime minister Lee Kuan Yew’s grandson Li Shengwu curiously classifies the Harvard junior fellow as a “politician” even though he has openly declared that he will “never go into politics” in the past and asserted that he is “completely unsuitable” for politics.

Besides avowing his love for mathematics, he has also said that he is not willing to lie about his beliefs, which he believes he will inevitably have to do if he becomes a politician: “I believe I can become a top economist, my second love is mathematics, that’s where my interests are. As a politician, you will inevitably have to lie, I am not willing to lie about my beliefs, I am not up to it.”

A closer look at Shengwu’s Google listing shows that Google and it’s source, Wikipedia, classify Shengwu as a politician from China who was born in 1899 and died in 1985.

This, despite the fact that the search engine shows an accurate photo of Shengwu together with the listing and even suggests that people who search for Shengwu also search for Lee Hsien Yang and Lee Suet Fern – his parents.

The Google listing for Singapore’s Li Shengwu is also accompanied by news stories and internet results associated with the man that many Singaporeans are familiar with.

Interestingly, a look at the Wikipedia page linked to the name Li Shengwu shows a completely different person, also presumably named Li Shengwu. According to the open-source encyclopedia, this Shengwu was a close aide of Wang Jingwei, the 1st President of the Republic of Singapore under the Nanjing regime.

Wikipedia claims that Li Shengwu apparently served as Minister of Justice, Minister of Education and Minister of Foreign Affairs during the Reorganized National Government of the Republic of China or the Wang Jingwei Regime – a one-party totalitarian dictatorship – during his tenure in the Chinese government in the 1940s.

It is curious to note that a Google image search of the photo above that is apparently of the Chinese Li Shengwu does not seem to yield any other information on him, besides this page with photos of people with the surname “Jiang”.

Li Shengwu and Li Hongyi are no longer on speaking terms but remain Facebook friends