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Archive for 2018|Yearly archive page

The real truths about public housing

In Property on 21/06/2018 at 11:13 am

Not Hard Truths but the truths about public housing as revealed by “Tan Jin Meng, a postgraduate from the Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy. He has an interest in social policy and economics.”.

But first, a reminder why the topic of HDB housing is a problem for the PAP administration what with its “asset enhancement” policies.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Whatever happened to asset enhancement since 2013 Q2 is a question being asked by more than the anti-PAP activists and their allied cybernuts.

Back to Tan Jin Meng and his truths about HDB: writing in CNA he says

An over-emphasis on home ownership can come at a cost to society. Time for a review of public housing policy

And

Singapore’s housing policy started out with the aim of providing basic, comfortable and safe housing security for Singaporeans. Over the decades, strong public policy support may have led to an over-emphasis on housing ownership, leading to unintended consequences …

Read more at https://www.channelnewsasia.com/news/commentary/emphasis-home-ownership-hdb-lease-review-of-public-housing-10423116.

But if time-challenged juz read these two extracts

The first explains that the PAP administration has by way of subsidies (Uncle Leong and cybernuts will ask though “Subsidies? What subsidies?”) created an entitlement mentality in public housing:

Addressing the 99-year leasehold issue or the retirement security issue without a cost to the home owner would effectively need a cross subsidy from future tax payers.

Any changes to housing policy that impact prices would need to consider the fact that most voting Singaporeans have a vested interest in keeping house prices up.

The continuous subsidy of housing in Singapore has been underpinned by the Land Acquisition Act of 1966, which had used historical cost for acquiring land, managing to keep new HDB flat prices low. In 1959, the State owned 44 per cent of all land, and by the mid-2000s, it was 85 per cent.

Effectively, the Government redistributed land wealth from land owners to the rest of the population, aided by a growing economy supporting prices. This, however, cannot continue forever as housing leases start to run out, our economy slows, and our population ages.

The Government had, over the decades since independence, resisted calls to liberally expand the social safety net, in order to avoid the development of an entitlement culture – that once you give someone something, you cannot easily take it back without antagonising that person, and you may end up with an intolerable burden for future generations.

Yet, housing remains one social programme where much resources have been poured into.

The other very important truth is

A house is not just a shelter. It is also a leveraged financial asset. You are taking risk on both property prices and interest rates. Singapore’s rapid growth over the first 50 years from independence has led many people to believe that home ownership is a “sure win”, as house prices also rose from wage and population growth.

Sounds like the “asset enhancement” policies got a lot to answer for, and so has our PM who was DPM and the economy czar in the 90s, when the policies were introduced to fix the Oppo.

“Asset enhancement? What asset enhancement?”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Only if buy BTO flat leh, PAP will say. Go back and read whaqt the PM, DPM and other PAP ministers said.

Wonder if our our constructive, nation-building media’s articles from the 1990s are as amendable as the media articles in Airstrip One in “1984”.

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M’sia: Time to buy?

In China, Emerging markets, India, Indonesia, Malaysia on 21/06/2018 at 4:28 am

M’sian mkt being ignored. One of least crowded emerging markets. Thailand and China look vulnerable because everyone’s there. Indonesia, Pinoy Land, Taiwan, Korea and India are in between. 

Akan Datang: Why CPF Life payments will begin at 85

In CPF, Financial competency, Financial planning on 20/06/2018 at 11:00 am

This will happen because 85 is 2.4 years above the average S’porean life expectancy rate of 82.6 yrs.

Let me run readers thru the argument.

In CPF Life: How withdrawal age “moved” to 70, I explained how the CPF Life default age for receiving payments was raised to 70, while earlier in Why CPF annuity will begin at 75 I joked that Queen Jos was planning how to justify raising the age to 75.

Well Russia has an even better ,plan to screw the elderly. Russia today, S’pore tomorrow?

Russia recently proposed raising retirement age above the average life expectancy of Russian males (63 yrs)

Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev proposed increasing the pension age for men from 60 to 65 years old, and increasing the pension age for women from 55 to 63 years old.

… with many pointing out on social media it would make retirement age higher than the average male life expectancy in Russia.

https://www.bbc.com/news/blogs-trending-44495136

In S’pore, according to govt data the average male life expectancy age is 80, the female life expectancy age is 86.1 and the average 82.6. Don’t ask me how the average is calculated.

Rounding the average up to 83, and learning from Russia, CPF Life payments will begin at 85, enabling the reserves to grow and grow because many male S’poreans will be dead before CPF Life payments begin.

Btw, remember if CPF Life plan dies, you die: not yr money.

There is a provision in the law governing the CPF Life Plans which states that payouts are contingent on the Plans being solvent. This is because premiums that are paid in to get the annuities are pooled and collectively invested. If the plan you chose doesn’t have enough money to pay out, you die. This is unlike the [Minimum Sum] scheme, where account holders are legally entitled to the monies in their CPF accounts …

(https://atans1.wordpress.com/2011/12/03/best-cpf-life-plan/)

 

 

 

 

Bit rich of Tun to say this about Trump

In Malaysia on 20/06/2018 at 4:17 am

.“I have no plans to go and see him,” Dr Mahathir said of Mr Trump, whom he called volatile. “I don’t know how I can deal with a person who is so much like a chameleon.”

NYT

Remember this

“The belief that I dismissed him because I was afraid he would oust me is without basis. I dismissed him for two reasons only: he was unsuitable to continue serving in the Government and he was unsuitable to succeed me as Prime Minister.” — Mahathir’s 2011 book “A Doctor in the House,” on his sacking of Anwar as his deputy during the Asian financial crisis. “I may have made many mistakes, but removing Anwar was not one of them.”

https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2018-05-10/mahathir-in-his-own-words-on-markets-islam-and-anwar-ibrahim

Then he said before the election he said he would make way (after serving two yrs as PM) for jailed opposition politician Anwar Ibrahim to be PM after Anwar is pardoned by the King.  Now he’s hinting he’ll stay on on PM.

And like Trump he’s taking a long time to announce his full cabinet.

Oh and remember this? HSR: I was right wasn’t I?

Sounds like Tun is Asean’s Trump. All he needs to complete the comparison is a couple of buildings named Tun. Akan datang.

HoHoHo: Singtel’s big World Cup balls-up

In Footie, Internet, Telecoms, Temasek on 19/06/2018 at 10:53 am

Fortunately for the PAP govt and S’porean footie fans, it’s in Oz.

[F]or Optus, Australia’s second-biggest telecoms company, the 2018 Fifa World Cup is fast becoming a public relations disaster.

On Monday the Singtel-owned operator, which holds the streaming rights to all 64 matches, voluntarily handed its television rival SBS the rights to broadcast the following two nights of world cup action. It made the decision following a consumer backlash prompted by technical difficulties with its own streaming services- and a public intervention by Malcolm Turnbull, Australia’s prime minister.

FT

SBS is state-owned.

Anti-PAPpies want Kim to nuke S’pore isit?

In Uncategorized on 19/06/2018 at 5:26 am

Why liddat?

On FB, TRE and TOC and the Indian (I’m told, I don’t read it) the anti-PAP types are denouncing two PAP ministers for taking wefies with Little Rocket Man).

On FB in response to comments denouncing the PAP ministers:

There seems to be an assumption among people of a certain ideological bend that our ministers wanted to take the wefies. Has it ever occurred that Kim asked for the wefies as a goodwill gesture to say thanks to S’pore for hosting and paying his bills?

Adrian Tan

He’s a bit of a wimp for calling the anti-PAP types “people of a certain ideological bend” but he’s right about the assumption that the ministers wanted the wefies, and the possibility that Kim asked for the wefies as a goodwill gesture.

Imagine what would happen if the two ministers (not my fav ones*) said “No”.

Btw, since VivianB has also been denounced on FB, TOC, TRE etc of saying innocuous words like “impressive” when describing his impressions of North Korea which he visited recently. They want him to say, “The place is a shithole like Aljunied town council run areas” isit?

Our anti-PAP types hate the PAP so much that they openly want Kim to destroy S’pore because if S’pore is nuked PAP ministers will die. They forget that there are special measures to protect these ministers. How not to call these anti-PAP types, cybernuts?

The PAP couldn’t have wished for nuttier enemies, what with friends like Calvin Cheng (Err so why the silence on Calvin, minister?) and FATPAP.


*What I’ve written about them

VivianB’s other folly: F1

Our new PM/ Trumpets pls for me

HSR: I was right wasn’t I?

In Infrastructure, Malaysia on 18/06/2018 at 11:04 am

Trumpets pls.

HSR “delayed” not “cancelled” according to Tun. (Btw, someone pls tell TKL this. He thinks still cancelled according to his TOC article.)

In Will we ever get letter cancelling HSR?

I wrote

The two DAP** ministers want to send a letter saying M’sia wants to have talks on a review of the project with a view to revising the costs and timetable. They hope that lower costs means S’pore will be amendable to a delay in the start date, and not ask for compensation.

**Remember that Lim Guan Eng and his pa came to brief our Harry when the DAP won Penang in 2008. More like “kowtow” said my UMNO inner circle connection when I told him what the present finance minister told an ISEAS seminar in 2008.

Now Tun (and his anti-PAP fans here) has had to swallow sperm what with

The proposed high-speed rail (HSR) project connecting Malaysia’s capital city to Singapore has not been cancelled but merely postponed, Malaysian Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad said, softening his earlier intention to scrap the deal entirely.

In an interview with Japanese media published in the Asian Nikkei Review on Monday night (June 11), Dr Mahathir explained that the project was put on the backburner because of its exorbitant cost of RM110 billion (S$37 billion).

https://www.todayonline.com/world/kl-singapore-hsr-project-postponed-not-scrapped-says-dr-mahathir

And

Mr Khaw’s Malaysian counterpart Anthony Loke said on Tuesday a negotiating party consisting of the Finance, Economics Affairs, and Transport ministers will make a trip across the Causeway to iron out a deal concerning the HSR.

“As it was announced last week, we will still negotiate with Singapore. We, the Finance, Economic, and Transport ministers will go to Singapore and negotiate this deal,” Mr Loke said.

As it is alleged by UMNO (Or so I’m told) that DAP leaders have to burn incense before this graven image daily, our ministers sure have to pang chance.

 

Must be cheap skate cybernuts visting Johor

In Indonesia, Malaysia, Tourism, Vietnam on 18/06/2018 at 4:14 am

Diagram shows that M’sia is even worse than Vietnam in not fleecing tourists: must all those freeloading TRE, TOC readers and other cheap skates taking adv of weak ringgit. Tun will not be happy. 

Waz the point of Social Service Office and Comcare?

In CPF, Public Administration on 17/06/2018 at 10:54 am

When “Got CPF income” is the excuse for the PAP govt not helping a man in need?

“Got CPF income,” man told: so no help from Social Service Office or ComCare.

So CPF money is not yr money, isit? Going by this, how can the PAP govt dare say “CPF money is your money”?  Govt money isit?

 

Whether he gets aid or not from ComCare or the Social Welfare Office, should not depend on his monthly CPF payout because this payout is from his own savings, doled out to him in drips and drabs, instead of being returned the full saved sum to him, as was once promised, a long time ago. It cannot be considered income. 

Damage control at work but BS missing the point

MSF posted the following on FB on Saturday afternoon. Wah civil servants that hard-working meh?. Feel free to skip the BS and read my take.

Hi everyone

You may have come across a post recently about a ComCare applicant who did not qualify for ComCare Long Term Assistance (LTA).

We would like to share more about the case and our LTA scheme.

The applicant, Mr T, was referred to the Social Service Office (SSO) at Toa Payoh for assistance in Feb 2018.

The SSO assessed Mr T’s needs. To determine how much further assistance he required, the SSO considered his sources of income, money received and support provided by family, friends and the community.

Mr T has been receiving the following support:

1. The monthly rent for his HDB 2-room rental flat of $50 a month (shared by him and 2 other tenants), as well as conservancy fees, are paid for by a Buddhist Temple.

2. Mr T’s weekly kidney dialysis charges are fully covered by National Kidney Foundation (NKF).

3. His taxi trips to the dialysis centre are fully subsidised by an NKF taxi card.

4. The SSO is working with NKF to assess whether he needs more support when he travels to and from his dialysis appointments.

5. He receives full subsidy for his medical treatment at Tan Tock Seng Hospital (TTSH).

6. TOUCH Home Care provides him 2 daily meals, under MOH’s programme, which are delivered to his home every day.

7. The Singapore Association for the Visually Handicapped (SAVH) provides Mr T with monthly food rations.

8. Mr T receives monthly payouts of $620 a month from his CPF Retirement Account, which is sufficient for around 3 years.

9. He receives an additional $550 a month from a close friend who lives overseas.

10. From Feb to Apr 2018, the Toa Payoh Central Grassroots Organisations also provided Mr T with financial assistance, and visited Mr T.

Based on his daily expenses, monies received, and the community support provided, the SSO assessed that Mr T did not currently require ComCare LTA. However, the SSO will reassess his needs if circumstances change, and work with agencies and community partners to support him.

ComCare LTA provides long-term support to those who are unable to work due to old age, illness or disability, have limited or no means of income, and have little or no family support. As part of our ComCare assessment, we take into consideration the needs of the individual or household, as well as monies received and overall support rendered by the Government, the community, family and friends to the applicant. This reflects our partnership approach that involves the community and families

Members of the public who know of someone in need can call the ComCare hotline at 1800-222-0000 or approach the nearest MSF SSO (www.msf.gov.sg/ssolocator) or Family Service Centre (www.msf.gov.sg/fsclocator) for help.

He gets help from MOH, hospital and NGOs. Bugger all from ComCare or Social Service Office. So waz the point of these? Ownself create work for ownself so that Ownself pay ownself isit?

Why liddat?

Whatever, the explanation doesn’t answer why “Ownself money” makes one ineligible for financial assistance from Social Service Office or ComCare.

PAP definition of Middle Class?

In Property on 17/06/2018 at 3:39 am

An older managing director at a large bank complained of the struggles of the middle class. When I asked him to define “middle class,” he spoke of people like him, earning between two and four million dollars a year. Young analysts told me they were being priced out of Brooklyn, much less Manhattan, by rising hedge-fund plutocrats and their ilk.

New York based writer

Somehow, I tot of the PAP’s reasoning for the need to pay ex-SAF generals and ex-civil servants millions when they become ministers.

For some reason I tot about the PAP’s changing definition of affordability for HDB flats. Once upon a time it took only up to 10 yrs (Correct me if I’m wrong) to pay off the mortgage, now

The maximum loan repayment period is 30 years *. The maximum loan repayment period for HDB loans is 65 years minus buyer’s age or 30 years, whichever is shorter. The maximum loan repayment period for loans taken through financial institutions is 35 years.

https://www.cpf.gov.sg/eSvc/Web/Schemes/FirstHome/Assumptions

Sad.

Note: Text after quote changedtwo hrs after publication. Sorry, “Writer’s block”.

 

 

HoHoHo: Another great Temasek investment?

In China, Temasek on 16/06/2018 at 10:30 am

When Hainan Airlines, HNA’s flagship carrier and HNA’s main cash generator, earlier this week, said it would sell up to 20% of its Shanghai listed shares to 10 investors among whom was one Temasek Holdings, cybernuts were screaming “Sure to lose money”.

Well they might like to know that China is leaning hard on its banks to support troubled HNA’s refinancing activities.

A person familiar with HNA’s investment in Deutsche Bank said the German lender saw the call to support the bond issue as positive. “It’s not a bailout but support in financing, absolutely different to Anbang.”

FT

So a stake in HNA’s crown jewels, Hainan Airlines, sounds a good deal.

Whatever, with enemies like Phillip Ang (cybernuts go-to person for financial advice and analysis on our SWFs) and Uncle Leong, the PAP govt doesn’t need friends like Fabrications About the PAP or Calvin Cheng. Sad.

Einstein didn’t like us yellow slit-eyes

In China on 16/06/2018 at 4:05 am

According to a piece in the Guardian about the diaries, he describes Chinese children as “spiritless and obtuse”, and calls it “a pity if these Chinese supplant all other races”.

In other entries he calls China “a peculiar herd-like nation,” and “more like automatons than people”, before claiming there is “little difference” between Chinese men and women, and questioning how the men are “incapable of defending themselves” from female “fatal attraction”.

https://www.bbc.com/news/science-environment-44472277

But “Chinese defend Einstein’s portrait of their people as ‘filthy’ and ‘obtuse'”: https://www.theguardian.com/world/2018/jun/15/chinese-defend-einsteins-diaries-filthy-obtuse

Will people like Mr Ang and his family ever vote for Oppo?

In Political governance on 15/06/2018 at 11:00 am

Further to S’poreans unhappy enough to make mad Dog PM?

where I reported this survey which says

Singaporeans are less satisfied with their overall quality of life and democratic rights compared with previous years, according to a survey conducted by two National University of Singapore (NUS) dons.

https://sg.news.yahoo.com/singaporeans-less-satisfied-quality-life-democratic-rights-nus-survey-130122483.html

there’s

As far as Mr Ang Hong King, 72, is concerned, his three-room flat which he bought for S$6,000 in 1970, has served its purpose — providing a roof over his family’s head for almost five decades and counting.

The semi-retired driver and his wife raised their three daughters in the unit at Block 65 Circuit Road. Their children have since moved out, and gotten flats of their own.

Having no plans to move out, Mr Ang shrugged off the prospect of his flat — which is worth about S$250,000 now — losing its value in the future. “Price drop also never mind,” he said.

https://www.todayonline.com/singapore/big-read-no-easy-answers-hdb-lease-decay-issue-public-expectations-have-change-first

Somehow I doubt it. So long as Mad Dog and his fellow nutters refuse to accept that there’s a big group of voters out there contented (Note I didn’t say “happy”) with the PAP, S’pore will continue to be a one-party state where the voters are happy every few yrs to renew the status quo of a one-party state.

Once Mad Dog and friends accept this reality, they can think of ways to destroy this contentment. More soon on possibles tactics. But if they continue thinking that 60-70% of S’poreans are stupid, then they can continue howling at the moon and banging their balls.

 

 

 

More evidence PAP talking cock on minimum wages

In Economy on 15/06/2018 at 6:57 am

The mounting evidence that minimum wages do not seem to reduce employment

One of these is a study by economists Doruk Cengiz, Arindrajit Dube, Attila Lindner and Ben Zipperer, which looked at state-level evidence and found no negative effect of mandated pay increases on employment. They found that minimum wage hikes tend to decrease the number of jobs just below the new cutoff, but increase the number above the line — implying that the wage hike isn’t killing jobs, but simply giving people raises.

Now, Kevin Rinz and John Voorheis, a pair of researchers from the U.S. Census Bureau, have an even more comprehensive study with even more detailed evidence. Looking at data on individual earners from 1991 through 2013 — a very long time period — the authors take careful account of factors like mobility and transitions into and out of the labor force. They find that minimum-wage increases tend to raise incomes for people at the bottom of the distribution, and that the effect doesn’t fade with time. Meanwhile, they find that the probability of people losing their income entirely — i.e., unemployment or dropping out of the labor force — isn’t significantly affected by minimum-wage increases.

https://www.bloomberg.com/view/articles/2018-04-05/supply-and-demand-does-a-poor-job-of-explaining-depressed-wages

Interesting the writer Noah Smith says we should change our standard model of the labour market. Employer market power seems to be the rule, not the exception.

Well in S’pore where employers have have their fill of FTs (They KPKB that govt doesn’t give them the right to bring in more) and you can see why productivity is so bad.

M’sia: Bit rich coming from Daim?

In Malaysia on 14/06/2018 at 11:18 am

The following remarks, by Tun’s right-hand man, had Tun’s anti-PAP fans here wetting their pants and comparing our GLCs and govt unfavourably with that of M’sia

“They don’t understand that they are put there in a position of trust,” Mr Daim said at his office. “And you have to make sure every single cent you spend is spent properly. There should be no abuse and you must account for every single cent.”

(Diam talking of M’sian GLC officials)

And

Mr Daim’s answer to the country’s fiscal problems is to clean up corruption, prevent leakages in state spending and ensure no political appointees in government-linked companies. He is proposing an open tender system for state procurement and informing “political personalities” he’d welcome those who decide to step down.

https://www.todayonline.com/world/mini-1mdbs-rife-across-malaysia-pm-mahathirs-top-adviser-says

The same remarks had people of my generation (and older) in KL sniggering.

When I was what today would be called a M’sian equities specialist (I was flogging and arbitraging M’sian shares in the 80s and 90s), Daim was M’sia’s finance minister for a lot of the time. He had a reputation of not being able to separate the personal and official, something FT reminded readers recently.

Whatever, I know Anwar KPKBed (when he was finance minister) that Diam was very greedy in his demands for goodies and getting upset at not getting them.

And our cynernuts are treating his words as the gospel truth?

M’sia to profit from Mrs Najib’s handbags?

In Malaysia on 14/06/2018 at 4:47 am

200+ handbags were reported seized.

If they are mostly Birkins, M’sia could make a profit

A second-hand Hermes Birkin bag has sold for £162,500 ($217,144) in London, a new European record for the most expensive handbag sold at auction.

The 2008 Himalaya Birkin, with an 18-carat white gold diamond encrusted lock, exceeded its list price of £100,000 – £150,000 on Tuesday.

The record for a bag sold at auction – also a Hermes Birkin – is £253,700 ($380,000), set in Hong Kong in 2017.

It is the “undisputed most valuable bag in the world,” Christie’s said.

https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-44463624

Assuming 200 Birkins were seized and each is worth an average of US$180,000, then M’sia makes US$36m from selling them, and reduces the M$1 trillion debt by a little.

Related posts:

Poor Najib, not believed when telling the truth

What TOC didn’t tell us why Harry met Najib’s wife

 

 

Amg moh always tua kee

In Uncategorized on 13/06/2018 at 11:37 am

The recent summit meeting showed the usual deference shown to ang mohs but not other races.

There was a news report that Kim’s look-a-like (a Hongkie) complained that he was detained briefly for questioning by immigration officials, while Trump’s look-alike didn’t have such problems.

Wonder if Kim’s Air China faced problems that Trump’s Air Force One didn’t?

FTs at work, not juz beating up locals & stealing their lunches

In Uncategorized on 13/06/2018 at 4:10 am

What TOC, TRE and other anti-PAP sites, and even mothership don’t tell S’poreans about the great things FTs are doing here:

In a recent ranking of the most cited artificial intelligence research papers, which was studded with the likes of MIT and Google, a perhaps surprising name stood out: Nanyang Technological University. In fact, the Singapore university ranked second in the top ten only to Microsoft.

https://www.ft.com/content/4fb6269c-696b-11e8-8cf3-0c230fa67aec

Morocco Mole, Secret Squirrel’s sidekick, tells me that I highlighted what makes NTU great in AI in NTU’s global first in AI. And that these researchers are all FTs, though Secret Squirrel says there’s a true blue S’porean among the lot, but he’s not sure.

More of these FTs please.

 

CPF Life: How withdrawal age “moved” to 70/ Silence of the activists

In CPF, Financial competency, Financial planning on 12/06/2018 at 10:59 am
I was going to explain how the dastardly deed was done but when TRE republished
Red alert! Achtung! S’poreans approaching 65, a TRE reader gave the answer, saving me the need to explain.
Lye Khuen Way:

The CPF Board do send out letters to those approaching their cohort drawdown age.
For those borned in 1953, it’s their 64th Birthdays.

There after, I believe it is 65.

The sly way they put it, is to suggest that you could delay your drawdown and receive more per month.

That applies to both Minimum Sum Scheme or those who opted for CPF Life.

Those who instinctively do not want any delay might just chuck the letter and the forms aside.

That’s where the devils come in.
Tuck away in the middle of the FORM, is a line that tell you that if you didn’t indicate that you want to start your drawdown from age 64,or 65,the DEFAULT AGE is 70.

Yes, Age 70.

I happen to opt for the CPF Life and somehow my enhanced topup application had already stated I wanted my draw down to start from age 64.

If unsure, call, write or better still go down personally to any of the CPF offices. Note that the Main CPF Board office is closed on Saturdays.

(Emphasis

In places like the UK, or US of A or Europe, this kind of action

Tuck away in the middle of the FORM, is a line that tell you that if you didn’t indicate that you want to start your drawdown from age 64,or 65,the DEFAULT AGE is 70.

is not acceptable. It’s not Christian, kosher or halal. It’s politically toxic, playing bgames this way.

Civil rights activists would be KPKBing and rightly so.

Here it’s par for the course.

Worse our ang moh tua kees don’t care. They don’t have to rely on CPF Life payouts. People like Kirsten Han got pa’s and ma’s money just like Harry’s children.

And juz as bad is the silence of the Oppo politicians. Nothing from the Wankers’ Party or from Goh Meng Seng (Silence of Goh Meng Seng) or Lim Tean (Where’s yr defamation video and jobs rally Lim Tean?) the two talk, sing song artistes.

All so rich. It’s a fact that Lim Tean rents a black and white bungalow costing $15,000 a month.

Kim came on a Boeing 747

In Uncategorized on 12/06/2018 at 4:24 am

And it’s owned by China.

According to air traffic experts, the paper says, the Air China Boeing 747 carrying Mr Kim took off using a standard flight number – indicating it was heading to Beijing – before changing its call sign and route once airborne.

BBC report of Daily Mail story.

Looks like his personal jet is not fit for the short journey here.

US tua kee in aviation.

Btw, as he’s leaving five hrs after the Summit shows that Air China is charging him by the hour.

Ex ST tua kee’s delusions of respect

In Media on 11/06/2018 at 10:47 am

Wannabe be Sith Lord who left the Dark Side in a huff when she didn’t become ST editor KPKBed that ministers didn’t give two ST columnists (her buddies) no respect, and implied that this showed that they also had no respect for the mob, us plebs:

If respected MSM columnists who are not unknown to G get this kind of opaque and befuddling response (in Ms Fu’s case) or a blistering lecture (in Mr Heng’s case), what more lesser mortals?

https://sg.news.yahoo.com/comment-theres-no-humility-respect-082844791.html?soc_src=social-sh&soc_trk=fb

A FB post says it all by giving her and her buddies the finger

Ever tot, they have no respect for any local MSM columnist? LOL Re “If respected MSM columnists …”. They rightly treat local MSM journalists and columnists as running dogs or dog poo? 🤣

Adrian Tan

I think he got it about right. Why should ministers and civil servants have any respect for their well paid “running dogs”, propagandists who prostitute themselves day in day out for thirty pieces of silver? I don’t, and neither do many other ordinary S’poreans (many of whom are regular PAP voters). And ministers and civil servants shouldn’t either.

Ms Bertha Henson is deluded if she thinks local MSM journalists, columnists and editors are respected.

As my RI-standard mongrel says, “It’s an insult to us dogs calling them ‘dogs’. Dogs remain loyal to their masters, thru thick and thin.These are prostitutes, Judases, jackals or hyenas.”

To avoid any doubt, I’m not making any comment on the quality of the analysis written by the two running dogs columnists: I’ve not read the pieces. One of the joys of new media is that I can read really gd analysis about the situation here without having to read our constructive, nation-building columnists or analysts.

Sure, I may miss something interesting and insightful, but it’s not worth the wallowing in the BS to find these nuggets of gold.

And another thing: having sold their souls for 30 pieces of silver, how do I know that they have not prostituted (ie being intellectually dishonest) themselves as usual with these “new” views? Views that go against the grain of what they’ve written before, as friends who read their stuff tell me. That they still work for ST shows that at heart they are “running dogs” of the PAP govt.

Btw, Jeff Pang disagrees that the columnists and other MSM people should not be respected but with a friend like him (he admits that they are usually cowed into silence), they don’t need enemies:

MSM hardly speaks out against the government, understandably so. However, whenever they do, instead of understanding, they get unhelpful and offensive labeling like this.

I know what I’d do with a pet dog that bites me it feels like doing so without provocation: I put the dog down. That these two columnists have yet to be sacked, indicates that it’s all a “wayang”. They are juz acting a part.

 

 

M’sian economy: a safe haven in emerging mkts storm

In Currencies, Emerging markets, Indonesia, Malaysia on 11/06/2018 at 5:40 am

Tun should chill out on his fears for the M’sian economy. His fiance minister and Najib  are right about how gd the economy is: Either Tun or his Cina finance minister is wrong: OK, OK vis-a-vis other emerging mkts.

Remember the Taper Tantrum of 2013? Back then, the talk was of the Fragile Five (sometimes known as the BIITS): Brazil, India, Indonesia, Turkey and South Africa:  these large emerging markets had large current account deficits.

Well the tantrum is back with India, Indonesia, Turkey, Pakistan and the Philippines recently raising their official interest rates but despite Tun’s KPKBing M’sia is in great shape. True getting rid of GST is not a great idea but with oil in the US$70s , there’s room for compacency: Mahathirnomics/ Luck of the devil.

Juz tell that to the foreigners selling M’sian equities.

TOC saying vote PAP?

In Property, Financial competency on 10/06/2018 at 10:44 am

I kid u not, Terry’s Online Channel has a gd word for the PAP govt and one of its flagship programmes.

This is what TOC wrote

S$1 million will easily cover the cost of most new and resale HDB flats in Singapore. The median price of HDB resale flats in every neighborhood is below S$1,000,000, so prospective homebuyers could afford a comfortable residence in even the most expensive areas of Singapore.

For example, the median resale price of a 4-room HDB even in Central was S$850,000 in the early months of 2018.

And

S$1 Million is Not Enough to Afford Most Homes in Many Major International Cities

Both quotes from https://www.theonlinecitizen.com/2018/06/09/what-kind-of-home-would-s1-million-buy-in-major-cities-around-the-world/

Is TOC getting paid to say nice things about the PAP govt? One of TOC’s grouses is that mothership gets sponsorship from GLCs. So has TOC saold its soul too?

Btw, the writer is the only numerate person in TOC’s stable of writers and editors.

 

Our London ambassador on why Reformasi here is for the deluded

In Political governance on 09/06/2018 at 1:24 pm

I’ve quoted a few letters from our London ambassador to the Economist showing that in return for a cushy, well, paid job, the lady has to shallow some sperm now and then.

But the latest letter got it about right in terms of the PAP’s dominance of S’pore politics. And it’s funny too:

Politics in Singapore

Your Banyan columnist (May 26th) notes that “voting is clean” in Singapore. Furthermore, that the ruling People’s Action Party (PAP) has won 14 general elections since 1959 because it runs “the country competently”. I thank Banyan for the compliment. After all, how many former British colonies are there where voting has always been clean and their governments consistently competent?

But Banyan insists there is more to the PAP’s longevity: a “favourable electoral system” and a cowed electorate, among other things. The PAP won 70% of the popular vote in the last general election. Could a “favourable electoral system” have delivered that? Your correspondents have been stationed in Singapore for decades. Did Singaporeans strike them as a people easily brainwashed into believing that the PAP and Singapore are “synonymous”?

Singaporeans are well-travelled, well informed and some even read The Economist. They continue to vote for the PAP because it continues to deliver them good government, stability and progress. The PAP has never taken this support for granted. As Lee Hsien Loong, the prime minister, noted recently, the political system is contestable. We have kept it so. The PAP could well lose power, and would deserve to do so if it ever became incompetent and corrupt.

FOO CHI HSIA
High commissioner for Singapore
London

So Tun and the S’poreans who think the sun shines from his ass can keep on wanking:

A Financial Times story today said – Mr Mahathir, who always enjoyed needling neighbouring Singapore and its long-ruling People’s Action Party, said the electoral earthquake would reverberate across the narrow Straits of Johor.

Mahathir told the Financial Times, “I think the people of Singapore, like the people of Malaysia, must be tired of having the same government, the same party, since independence.”

Related post: M’sia/ S’pore: Academic nuttier than cybernuts

 

Productivity: Err maybe PAP not to blame?

In Economy on 09/06/2018 at 10:51 am

And there are free lunches available: not juz for our Hali and millionaire ministers.

Cyberspace is full of complaints (self included)  that PAP’s FT is responsible for the low producitivity of the labour force.

But maybe we all wrong

One of the big thinkers on the economics of technology tells us why its impact is not being properly measured in GDP figures. Erik Brynjolfsson was co-author of the Second Machine Age, the book which really kickstarted the debate about the impact of automation and is director of the MIT Initiative on the Digital Economy.

He says the problem is that official data does not capture the value of services like Facebook or Wikipedia which are essentially free. He points out that in the early 1980s, information services accounted for 4.6% of US GDP – and the figure is exactly the same today, despite the huge advances in the technology sector.

Prof Brynjolfsson and his team set out to prove that value was being created by services like Facebook by asking people how much they would have to pay them to give them up for a month. The average answer was $42 (£31).

Why does this matter? “You can’t manage what you can’t measure,” he says. If we had some way of working out what technological advances had done to our economy, then we might understand that the last 10 years had not been as bad as we thought for our incomes.

“We haven’t got richer in terms of dollars or pounds or euros. But we have access to all the world’s information through Wikipedia, we can connect with friends and family – these are unpriced goods.”

http://www.bbc.com/news/technology-44168096

So there are free lunches available for the taking.

Whatever, money is not the measure of all things: another Hard Truth demolished.

 

 

Red alert! Achtung! S’poreans approaching 65

In CPF, Financial competency, Financial planning on 08/06/2018 at 10:43 am

Responding to this Why CPF annuity will begin at 75 fat cat investor and ex-medical doctor “abc” said that

In case you didn’t know, the DEFAULT CPF Life payout age is now 70.

This is in the event you don’t get back to CPF before your 65th birthday.

I think this policy started (silently) in 2017.

I asked a financial planner if this assertion was right, and he said after checking with a colleague, “Yes”.

So if u want yr CPF Life payments to start at 65, tell CPF. Otherwise have to wait until 70: which will soon morph into 75 as I predicted.

As, I’m on the minimum sum and I’ll be checking to see if I have to give notice that I want my money from 65 onwards. Until I give CPF details of bank account where the money is to be paid into ,I know the money will be rolled over but now I want to know if I don’t give them bank account details before I’m 65, will the payments start only when I’m 70.

Not at it really matters, I’ve not withdrawn any of my CPF monies.

Btw, anyone knows what happens if someone “opts” for payment to begin at 70, but dies between 65-70: will the estate lose “everything” i.e. the amountrs not paid out? If so better start receiving money at 65.

Anwar off to make a fortune

In Malaysia on 08/06/2018 at 5:28 am

Anwar has said he’ll spend the next two yrs going round the world, giving lectures on freedom and reform. What he hasn’t added, is that he’ll make a fortune doing so, especially if as expected he gets the Washington Speakers Bureau to represent him.

No this is not part of the CIA, but a business, based in Washington DC, that arranges for ex-politicans etc to get paid for public performances lectures.

The FT reported in Nov 2016 that the George Osborne, the UK chancellor fired less than 6 months earlier had earned £320,000 from lecturing in the US.  He earned more than £140,000 for two speeches at JPMorgan. The Washington Speakers Bureau was his agent. The Clintons too are clients, I think. She too earned big bucks talking to banks’ staff and clients.

Seriously do find the time to read this:http://www.scmp.com/week-asia/politics/article/2148930/anwar-ibrahim-qa-malaysian-democracy-icon-prison-dissent-and

Ex-ST journalists interviewed him.

Will Tun take up PRC offer that Najib declined?

In Malaysia on 07/06/2018 at 1:20 pm

Because Nabib is a pal of our PM.

Sometime back when China was upset that Ah Loong was carrying Trump’s balls and not Xi’s, there was a report that China offered its AR3 multiple launch rocket system (MLRS) with accompanying radar to M’sia to be positioned specifically in Johor. It was a great deal for M’sia: low-interest payment of up to 50 years.

Najib as a friend of S’pore declined the deal.

So will Tun’s next move against S’pore (he juz called off a proposed equities trading link) be calling Xi to take up the offer?

Whatever, this deal will have Terry’s Online Channel’s writers and readers sticking their tongues further up Tun’s ass to reach the source of light that they think shines from his ass. They’d love the idea of Tun having surface to surface missiles able to blow up Changi Airport, the port and the CBD. They see him as a friend to suck up to because he like them hates the PAP. They even do this sucking up despite Tun disliking S’pore, not juz hating the PAP: the enemy of my enemy is my friend say these TOC cybernuts.

With enemies like TOC, the PAP needn’t fear losing power.

Related posts

— Tun will not be happy

— Tun following Xi?

 

 

Ang moh tua kee even in Africa

In Humour, Uncategorized on 07/06/2018 at 4:42 am

“A person would rather buy second-hand from America, instead of buying a new Chinese product,” says Nelson Mandela, a Ugandan trader

Economist

As usual Chinese sua kee.

Will we ever get letter cancelling HSR?

In Malaysia on 06/06/2018 at 11:10 am

Not if the DAP ministers get their way.

Secret Squirrel and Morocco Mole (my ISD contacts) tell me that that their pal Sang Kancil in the M;sian Special Branch tells them, there’s an unreported cabinet row in KL.

Tun it seems wants the Transport Minister to send a letter saying. “HSR is hereby cancelled. Sue M’sia, punk and make Tun Mahathir’s day. He’ll lease the Middle Rocks to China for free on condition they expand and militarise* it.”

Seriously, the DAP’s finance minister and transport ministers want to send a nuanced letter than Tun’s cancellation is “final” letter. After all, Malaysia’s new Transport Minister Anthony Loke had told Channel Newsasia that the project is “subject to review” if the country is in a better fiscal position later on: Still waiting for letter cancelling HSR.

The two DAP** ministers want to send a letter saying M’sia wants to have talks on a review of the project with a view to revising the costs and timetable. They hope that lower costs means S’pore will be amendable to a delay in the start date, and not ask for compensation. After all, M’sia was the one pushing for quick completion. Najib wanted it build by 2016, when he first suggested it in 2010, I think. S’pore took it’s time deciding and cybernuts in TOC, TRE, The Idiots etc were KPKBing that we should take up the offer: anything the PAP govt opposes, they support.

The other cabinet ministers and Anwar are sitting back, eating peanuts and enjoying the row.

Well if we don’t get a letter soon, the 60- 70%  who vote PAP will think Tun is as big a talk cock, sing song artiste as Lim Tean  (Where’s yr defamation video and jobs rally Lim Tean?) and Goh Meng Seng (Meng Seng doesn’t know his Chinese history), even though Tun was the straw that tilted the election result to the Hope League, and he has just stared down the king over the cabinet choice of a snake an Indian Christian as AG.


*Tun following Xi?

**Remember that Lim Guan Eng and his pa came to brief our Harry when the DAP won Penang in 2008. More like “kowtow” said my UMNO inner circle connection when I told him what the present finance minister told an ISEAS seminar in 2008.

 

 

 

 

Today

A gd word for Duterte

In Uncategorized on 06/06/2018 at 4:12 am

The many controversies of Rodrigo Duterte’s presidency have overshadowed his considerable achievement in reducing smoking rates. No he didn’t it by shooting smokers aka like drug users and dealers. He strengthened an existing law. In May 2017, he passed an executive order banning smoking in public, imposing a maximum penalty of a four-month jail term and a 5,000-peso ($95) fine: the S’pore way sort off.

Taxes on tobacco are also shooting thru the roof.

Tun and Trump: Talk cock, break things

In Uncategorized on 05/06/2018 at 10:37 am

Looks like Najib was faking it when he hinted he and Trump were bros. Tun and Trump are the real bros deal.

For starters, they both remind me of this quote by another POTUS

Any jackass can kick down a barn but it takes a good carpenter to build one.”

Lyndon B. Johnson

For another this is what Augustine Low wrote on TRE

Dr Mahathir has a fundamental strategy not unlike that of the one that has served President Donald Trump very well. He keeps saying he wants to Restore Malaysia’s Glory (Trump’s motto is Make America Great Again). Dr Mahathir is moving at breakneck speed, racing against time to do what he tells Malaysians is necessary to bring back the glory days. What he says is gold and he has the backing of his countrymen and women because he is seen as a saviour who can do no wrong – at least for now.

Tun has the same communication strategy as Trump: Talk cock, Move fast, Break things,

Full piece

The risks of letting Mahathir be Mahathir in the age of social media

When Dr Mahathir Mohamad was last the Prime Minister of Malaysia, Lee Hsien Loong was not yet Prime Minister of Singapore, and social media was not yet the phenomenon it is today.

But it seems that the Singapore government is treating Dr Mahathir the way it did some 20 years ago: Let Mahathir be Mahathir, let him say and do what he wants, we’ll keep mum and we’ll only cross that bridge when we come to it.

With the social media, everything that Dr Mahathir says becomes instantaneously widespread. His remarks that “the people of Singapore, like the people of Malaysia, must be tired of having the same government, the same party since independence,” immediately became the talk of the town. Thanks to the fact that it was all over the Internet and social media applications such as blogs, Facebook, Twitter and WhatsApp in double quick time.

Singapore’s mainstream media did not even touch on those remarks. Because Singaporeans are not supposed to know? Because they would be deemed offensive by the government? Needless to say, such censorship does not hold sway anymore.

The government has always been quick to rebut criticism and unseemly comments, especially those seen as meddling in internal affairs. But it has kept mum about Mahathir’s provocative remarks about Singaporeans being “tired of having the same government” and about plans to build an island near Pedra Branca.

Dr Mahathir has tested the waters and sent out signals that he going to be combative, especially the way he called off the Kuala Lumpur-Singapore high speed rail project – unilaterally, without even an official word to the Singapore government, displaying trademark nonchalance and disdain.

Dr Mahathir has a fundamental strategy not unlike that of the one that has served President Donald Trump very well. He keeps saying he wants to Restore Malaysia’s Glory (Trump’s motto is Make America Great Again). Dr Mahathir is moving at breakneck speed, racing against time to do what he tells Malaysians is necessary to bring back the glory days. What he says is gold and he has the backing of his countrymen and women because he is seen as a saviour who can do no wrong – at least for now.

Singapore’s strategy of letting things simmer down and take its course may no longer be relevant because the 92-year-old is a man in a hurry and the 24-hour news and social media cycle suits him just fine.

Clearly, the government is still trying to grapple with how to manage relations with Dr Mahathir. The strategy of two decades ago must be reworked.

Beyond showing their mettle and resolve, Singapore’s leaders also need to raise their game when it comes to agility and speed of response and communication.

Augustine Low

* The author is a proud but concerned citizen. Voicing independent, unplugged opinion is his contribution to citizen engagement.

Tun will not be happy

In Malaysia on 05/06/2018 at 5:30 am

I’m sure M’sia’s defence minister will be forced to deny this this Mindef statement as fake news.

Singapore and Malaysia affirmed warm and long-standing defence relations, as the countries’ defence ministers met on Sunday (Jun 3), a press release from Singapore’s Ministry of Defence (MINDEF) said.

Singapore’s Defence Minister Ng Eng Hen and newly-appointed Malaysian Defence Minister Mohamad Sabu met on the sidelines of the 17th Shangri-La Dialogue (SLD), in their first official meeting.

The ministers noted the good progress made in bilateral defence relations, such as the recent conduct of a new bilateral exercise between the two Air Forces.

Read more at https://www.channelnewsasia.com/news/singapore/singapore-malaysia-agree-to-strengthen-bilateral-defence-10345038

S’poreans unhappy enough to make mad Dog PM?

In CPF, Economy, Political governance on 04/06/2018 at 9:56 am

And Lim Tean (Where’s yr defamation video and jobs rally Lim Tean?) and Meng Seng, our very own Wu Sangui (Silence of Goh Meng Seng), ministers?

In The real reason why Reformasi won’t happen here, I pointed out that whatever the KPKBing S’poreans were not really that unhappy, and in  Why Reformasi won’t happen here, that maybe

Maybe they really don’t oppose the PAP? They juz make some noise, hoping the PAP will throw them some goodies? Bit like my dogs barking or whining to get my attention.

Now after Tun’s comments to the FT that

I think the people of Singapore, like the people in Malaysia, must be tired of having the same government, the same party since independence.

got the cybernuts who think the sun shines from Tun’s ass (Anti-PAP S’poreans sucking up to Tun)happy

there’s this survey which says

Singaporeans are less satisfied with their overall quality of life and democratic rights compared with previous years, according to a survey conducted by two National University of Singapore (NUS) dons.

The findings were unveiled on Thursday (31 May) at NUS’ Shaw Foundation Alumni House as part of a book launch for Happiness, Wellbeing and Society – What matters for Singaporeans” by its Business School associate professors Siok Kuan Tambyah and Tan Soo Jiuan.

The survey found that Singaporeans, on average, were the least satisfied with their overall quality of life at a personal level in 2016, compared with the surveys in previous years.

Out of 15 choices, they were least satisfied with their household income followed by studies (for students), level of education attained, jobs (for working adults) and the standard of living.

https://sg.news.yahoo.com/singaporeans-less-satisfied-quality-life-democratic-rights-nus-survey-130122483.html

So do you think that the survey shows that Reformasi is coming at the next GE because S’poreans are that unhappy? I think not.

Btw, I think Siok Kuan Tambyah is the wife of Mad Dog’s Doctor-in-Chief, who has been doing a decent job keeping Mad Dog sane, though this recent outburst is worrying http://yoursdp.org/news/careshield_stop_making_public_healthcare_a_profit_making_business/2018-06-01-6245*.

Dr  Paul Anantharajah Tambyah’s wife is an associate professor in NUS Biz School. Strange if there are two lady Tambyahs in the same faculty. But then there were once two Indian Syrian Othordox Christians in the AG”s Chambers. They are a really tiny Indian minority here.


Countering SDP’s views on Eldershield

*Here’s a good FB analysis from a pro PAP lawyer who is a fair-minded person

The SDP article claims that “government is making a handsome profit from ElderShield.”

An outright LIE.

ElderShield cover is provided by 3 private insurers, namely Aviva Limited, The Great Eastern Life Assurance Company Limited and NTUC Income Insurance Co-operative Limited. An insured is assigned to one of these 3 carriers randomly.

Hence, when SDP claims the G is making a large profit, there is no truth in this assertion.

In addition, the underwriting profit from ElderShield does not equate to premiums collected to date, less claims – i.e. no-one, not the insurance carriers, makes a 96% profit from ElderShield. The SDP claim is pure balderdash. This is because ElderShield is a disability scheme and insureds are likely to pay more in premiums upfront, and are more likely to receive payout when the insured cohorts get older.

Minister Gan explained all this in response to a question from Dr Daniel Goh of the Workers’ Party last February – see here https://www.moh.gov.sg/…/Parliamentar…/2017/ElderShield.html

In other words, in order to ascertain the underwriting profit, reserves for future claims have to be deducted. SDP’s calculation makes ZERO attempt to do this and is actuarial nonsense.

Quite shamefully false (as a matter of fact) from the SDP. Outrageous!

 

Fate of S’porean dating Initial Coin Offering

In Financial competency on 04/06/2018 at 4:22 am

A report in the FT over the weekend that an ICO has raised US$4bn reminded me of this recent BBC report about a S’pore-based ICO

Violet Lim wants to get rich by marrying together internet dating and the latest investment craze.

“Our ICO is about love on the blockchain,” the founder of Viola.ai exclaims.

“You can use it to get curated matches, to buy flowers, to book restaurants or even get dating and relationship advice.”

ICOs – or initial coin offerings to give them their full name – are a way to raise funds by creating a new form of money from thin air.

Singapore-based Violet has been involved in the internet dating industry for years.

But she believes an ICO presents a way to raise $17m (£12.6m) from investors, who will get tokens to use in their dating activities.

Why, I want to know, do you need a token to buy flowers for your loved one and why does the service have to be on this magical blockchain which apparently solves every problem?

“We are trying to solve a very important problem in our industry, which is the lack of trust,” she replies.

And she explains that by entering people’s details on an immutable blockchain, Viola will be able to deal with “love scammers” who hide their true identity.

But her enthusiasm gives way to a degree of despondency soon after, when Google bans crypto-currency and ICO ads on the very day Viola’s public sale gets started.

“[It’s been] a very bad first day followed by a very bad first week,” a more muted Violet tells me.

http://www.bbc.com/news/technology-44038181

It got a lot worse. The BBC asked finance blogger and former banker Frances Coppola to look at the S’porean’s ICO, and she was not impressed.

Of Viola she asked: “What’s the point?”

And she was not convinced by Violet Lim’s assertion that the blockchain would make dating more secure

“Why on earth would I want my entire dating history up on a public blockchain where everyone could see it?”

Well she wasn’t the only sceptic

As for dating-on-the-blockchain Viola, its founder and her team have decided to “pause” the sale and are monitoring market conditions to see when will be a good time to restart.

Another BS scheme bites the dust. There goes Violet’s and her team’s 5Cs ambitions, assuming she’s not a rich, clueless kid, playing with pa’s money.

 

Still waiting for letter cancelling HSR

In Malaysia on 03/06/2018 at 10:40 am

It’s insulting to Tun to compare him with Lim tean because unlike Lim Tean, Tun is a man of many accomplishments, unlike Lim Tean who only knows how to to talk cock, sing song, and help the PAP by forming yet another new party “People’s Voice”*

But it looks like Tun is talking cock, singing song when it comes to HSR.

As of Friday evening, S’pore was still waiting for official confirmation that M’sia wants to cancel the HSR project, despite Tun saying that M’sia has cancelled the project. It’s been almost a week since he said that.

================

Related posts:

—  Anti-PAP S’poreans sucking up to Tun

— Either Tun or his Cina finance minister is wrong

=============================

Meanwhile S’poreans are still waiting for Lim Tean’s jobs rally and defamation video promised for last September, then last November and for which he raised money from the public: Where’s yr defamation video and jobs rally Lim Tean?

Whatever, with enemies like this, the PAP doesn’t need friends.


*The name “People’s Voice” truly reflects the founder’s aim of talking cock, singing song.

Guy to blame for Trump becoming POTUS

In Uncategorized on 03/06/2018 at 4:25 am

As a banker, Mr Ross opted not to force the casino developer into bankruptcy.

FT

Wilbur Ross, billionaire, and US Commerce Secretary was that banker.

Why CPF annuity will begin at 75

In CPF on 02/06/2018 at 11:05 am

Trumpets pls. Sometime back I wrote Why CPF annuity will begin at 75? (Piece is reproduced below)

Well now

A tripartite workgroup will be set up to relook the Central Provident Fund (CPF) contribution rates for older workers and study the “relevance of retirement and re-employment age”, Manpower Minister Josephine Teo announced on Monday (May 28).

Speaking at the Ministry of Manpower’s annual workplan seminar, Mrs Teo — who took over the manpower portfolio this month — said the new Tripartite Workgroup on Older Workers will also look into ensuring fair treatment of mature employees at the workplace.

https://www.todayonline.com/singapore/cpf-contribution-rates-older-workers-relevance-retirement-age-be-reviewed-josephine-teo

Emphasis mine

Why CPF annuity will begin at 75?

By the early 2000s the state of health of American men aged 69, as reported by themselves, was as good as that of 60-year-olds in the 1970s; 70 really does seem to be the new 60.

Economist

So if liddat can work until 75 meh?

So if the PAP wants to raise the age when we can get our CPF annuities, it can quote the BBC and the Economist, its bible of Hard Truths for intellectual support.

In 1948 the average 65-year-old could expect to live 13.5 years.

People retiring now can expect to live much longer – 22.8 years.

If the trend continues as expected, today’s young people can expect to live into their early nineties.

Imagine the amount of money you spend on a pension is a pot of jam. Either you spread it far more thinly in future over more years – meaning a lower annual pension – or you are going to need a much bigger pot.

BBC

And

The Oxford English dictionary defines “old” as “having lived for a long time”. It illustrates the sense with an accompanying phrase, “the old man lay propped up on cushions”: the old person as one who has made all the useful contributions he can possibly make to society and is now at rest. When pensions were first introduced in Prussia, in the 1880s, this was probably a fair characterisation for anyone over 65. Not many people lived beyond this age; those who did were rarely in good health. But today many 65-year-olds are healthy and active. Donald Trump (71) may be many things, but old he is not, nor for that matter is Vladimir Putin (64), who qualifies for his bus pass in October. Yet governments and employers still treat 65 as a cliff’s edge beyond which people can be regarded as “old”: inactive, and an economic burden.

This is wrong, for three reasons. First, what “old” means is relative. Life expectancy has gone through the roof since Otto von Bismarck pioneered the Prussian welfare state. Today the average 65-year-old German can expect to live another 20 years. So can most people in other rich countries, meaning old age now arguably kicks in later than before. Second, the term carries an underlying implication about health, or at least fitness. But healthy-life expectancy has grown roughly in tandem with life expectancy; for many, 70 really is the new 60. Third, surveys show that the majority of younger over-65-year-olds increasingly want to stay actively involved in their communities and economies. Few want to retire in the literal sense of the word, which implies withdrawing from society as a whole. Many want to continue working but on different terms than before, asking for more flexibility and fewer hours.

https://www.economist.com/blogs/economist-explains/2017/07/economist-explains-7

S’pore is tops for safe, happy childhoods

In Uncategorized on 02/06/2018 at 4:25 am

Reading comments on social media and on anti-PAP websites like TOC, TRE and The Indian, our kids have unhappy childhoods: all that exam stress caused by the PAP govt’s policies. But what the cybernuts don’t tell us is that S’pore is joint tops for safe, happy childhoods. PAP must have something to do with this right?

RANK COUNTRY
1 Singapore
1 Slovenia
3 Norway
3 Sweden
5 Finland
6 Ireland
6 Netherlands
8 Iceland
8 Italy
8 South Korea

https://campaigns.savethechildren.net/sites/campaigns.savethechildren.net/files/report/EndofChildhood_Report_2018_ENGLISH.pdf

WHAT DO THE SCORES MEAN?
End of Childhood Index scores for countries are
calculated on a scale of 1 to 1,000. Countries with
higher scores do a better job of protecting childhoods.
The scores measure the extent to which children in
each country experience “childhood enders” such as
death, chronic malnutrition, being out of school and
being forced into adult roles of work, marriage
and motherhood.

Another reason why 60-70% vote for the PAP?

Mahathirnomics/ Luck of the devil

In Malaysia on 01/06/2018 at 11:18 am

Investors are concerned that Dr Mahathir’s government will struggle to curb debts while implementing populist campaign pledges to drop highway tolls, increase fuel subsidies and abolish the goods and services tax*, which was set to generate US$12 billion (S$16 billion) or a fifth of state revenues this year.

FT

Or as averageguysg posted on this blog

I find it interesting to see what Tun M does. Let’s look at the situation Msia is in now:

1) Supposedly 1 trillion of debt. Can’t raid the reserves.

2) At the same time, they need to raise wages, improve healthcare and poverty.

3) While mega projects can create jobs and investment, they got no money to do it.

4) Also don’t want to open legs to China, so that kind of “investment” will not be pursued.

5) Can recover a few hundred million from 1MDB, but still only tip of the iceberg.

6) Plenty of pro-BN civil servants still need jobs even if you sack them.

7) Can cut defense projects, but also this is small money and may piss China off.

8) Want to improve education system, abolish vernacular schools etc, all this takes money and the tangible benefit will only come much later.

So how**?

Tun wants to spend money on the people (Nor make them Pay And Pay) while cutting taxes, and reducing debts and deficits: sounds like Reagan’s “Vodoo economics***”

Well if oil goes to US$100 a barallel, he’ll manage this feat.

If it falls to US$30, M’sia will be really bankrupt.


Budget assumpions on oil

In the country’s 2018 Budget, the oil price was projected to be around US$52 instead of the above US$70 per barrel now. So now government would record an additional RM5.4bn revenue from higher oil prices, Cina minister said.

—————————————————————–

If it trades within the zone of US$50- US$60, “In the hands of Allah” and Anwar might think twice about becoming PM and inheriting a poisoned chalice: Tun will have done a “Hail Mary” pass to Anwar, while smirking.

——————————————–

Petrol subsidy

The prices of RON95 petrol and diesel will be maintained at the current levels of RM2.20 and RM2.18 per litre respectively, although after June 7, the price of RON97 petrol will be floated according to market prices.

———————————

Whatever don’t underestimate Tun’s intuition (or luck?). Someone in his inner most circle who recommeded in 1998 that M’sia get an IMF loan (and who thrown out of that magic circle for that advice and other “crimes”, but now back in the circle circa 2010) told me in the noughties that Tun M got it right and people like him and other economic literate advisers got it wrong. He added that even the IMF had changed its mind on the use of capital controls: something that was haram to the IMF when Tun introduced them to M’sia.

Btw, Read this about how analysts who supported the need for GST in KL, now downplaying its importance: https://www.todayonline.com/world/economists-play-down-concerns-over-malaysias-fiscal-health-despite-governments-populist. Some things never change: the sucking up to power.

Related post: Either Tun or his Cina finance minister is wrong

—————————————————————-

*”The scrapping of a Goods and Services Tax will blow a RM$21 billion (S$7.1 billion) hole in the Malaysian government’s wallet, but the country will still be able to meet its budget deficit target for 2018, said Finance Minister Lim Guan Eng on Thursday (May 31).

The lost revenue from the tax due to be axed on Friday would be offset by rising oil-related revenues, spending cuts on non-essential projects, increased dividends from govt-linked firms and a new sales tax expected to be introduced in September, he added.”

Agencies

**Easy leh. Shake down S’pore for money. We got the cybernuts ready and willing to help Tun subvert S’pore: Anti-PAP S’poreans sucking up to Tun. With S’poreans like these nuts, we need the PAP. If Tun M is still PM when the next GE is held: “Vote PAP to protect our right to Pay And Pay”.

Fortress Middle Islands could be such a shakedown ploy: Tun following Xi?

***Vodoo economics Also called “Reaganomics,” voodoo economics is the nickname for the hallmark economic policy of Ronald Reagan, the 40th President of the United States (1981-1989), who was trying to stimulate an economy that lay stagnant after the Jimmy Carter years.

http://www.investinganswers.com/financial-dictionary/economics/voodoo-economics-5170

 

Tun following Xi?

In Malaysia on 01/06/2018 at 4:24 am

In place of the crooked bridge to upset patriotic S’poreans and please the anti-PAP fifth column*

Dr Mahathir added that his government is thinking of expanding Middle Rocks, which was awarded to Malaysia in the 2008 ICJ decision.

“On Middle Rocks we have already built structures,” he said. “It is our intention to enlarge middle rocks so that we can form a small island for us.”

Read more at https://www.channelnewsasia.com/news/singapore/pedra-branca-icj-malaysia-discontinued-challenges-10288912

Next build an airstrip and aircraft hangers? Then install surface to air and surface to surface missiles and anti-aircraft guns?

And to compensate the Chinese for contracts, he wants cancelled, he could award the Chinese the contract to build and fortify the place. The Chinese have the experience, reference what they are doing in the South China Sea. Goh Meng Seng for one will kiss his ass because he is imitating Meng Seng’s hero Grandpa Xi.

Alternatively, Tun can use Middle Rocks to build a new Forest City.


*”A fifth column is any group of people who undermine a larger group from within, usually in favour of an enemy group or nation. The activities of a fifth column can be overt or clandestine.” Wikipedia

Think Goh Meng Seng and his pro Chinese comments.

Either Tun or his Cina finance minister is wrong

In Malaysia on 31/05/2018 at 10:47 am

Both can’t be right about how good (“Malaysia’s economic fundamentals were still intact”) or how bad (“[need to] avoid being declared bankrupt”) a shape is the M’sian economy in.

But first

I am surprised at how fast the country’s economy changed from a supposed crisis and failure before GE14 to a stable and strong economy.

All in just over two weeks?

Ah Jib Gor over the weekend

He was responding to

Finance Minister Lim had said yesterday that Malaysia’s economic fundamentals were still intact, and that the new government would strive to make the country’s fiscal position more sustainable.

https://www.malaymail.com/s/1635311/najib-says-surprised-how-pakatan-restored-economy-in-just-over-two-weeks

Well his Malay boss (after reading Ah Jib Gor’s jibe?) said on Monday

Malaysia is scrapping the multi-billion-dollar Kuala Lumpur-Singapore High-Speed Rail project as part of drastic cuts to government spending and investment that are required for the country to “avoid being declared bankrupt”, Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad said on Monday (May 28).

“One of the most important priorities of course is the financial situation of the country,” he told the Financial Times.

What do u think? Is Tun or Lim right? Or neither and that the truth is somewhere in between.

As it is, another DAP Cina minister sided with Tun:

Why we cancelled the [HSR] project is because of affordability,” he added. “The priority of the government is to pay our debts and the ability to repay our debts, that is our main priority, that’s why some of these projects must be shelved.

Meanwhile as foreign investors continue selling M’sian shares, M’sia Inc entities like the EPF and Tabung Haji are buying.

Related post: Poor Najib, not believed when telling the truth

 

 

 

 

Memo to anti-PAP cybernuts: Tun is not God

In Malaysia on 31/05/2018 at 4:15 am

Further to Anti-PAP S’poreans sucking up to Tun where I reported that anti-PAP cybernuts were upset that our PM had not told Tun M that M’sia need not pay anything to cancel HSR deal

When asked if Dr Mahathir’s decision was final, Transport Minister Anthony Loke said the Malaysia Cabinet had not yet discussed the issue, but would do so at their weekly meeting on Wednesday.

Read more at https://www.channelnewsasia.com/news/asia/malaysia-pm-mahathir-says-will-inform-singapore-of-intent-to-10286868

Now Tun says

Speaking to reporters after a weekly Cabinet meeting, Dr Mahathir announced that his Cabinet has agreed to cancel the HSR project.

But this will be subject to discussions with the Singapore government because it involves “high financial implications”, he added.

When asked if he would reconsider should Singapore request for the project’s continuation, Dr Mahathir replied: “We will listen to them. They are our good partners.”

So nothing is “final”. Don’t believe me?

Malaysia’s new Transport Minister Anthony Loke said as much when he told Channel Newsasia that the project is “subject to review” if the country is in a better fiscal position later on. “Why we cancelled the project is because of affordability,” he added. “The priority of the government is to pay our debts and the ability to repay our debts, that is our main priority, that’s why some of these projects must be shelved.”

Today

And btw, still no letter:

the Singapore Land Authority repeated the Ministry of Transport’s earlier media statement that the Government is waiting for official confirmation from its Malaysian counterparts.

Hopefully our cybernuts will stop behaving as though he is God.

Anti-PAP S’poreans sucking up to Tun

In Infrastructure, Malaysia on 30/05/2018 at 11:04 am

From my coffee shop chat group: I feel the silence on d part of our govt on d cancellation HSR proj is shocking in diplomatic terms. We shld imm announce that we will forgive d penalty other than for what we had spent.!!! LHL fave strategy is always to keep quiet on any crisis. This is leadership.

FB post by anti-PAP FB warrior yesterday

I’m sure if Dr M asked this group to suck his XXXX, this bunch of anti-PAP Facebook warriors would happily do so. They’d even offer their asses to Anwar while pleasuring Tun with their mouths,if Anwar asked.

Think I’m being too harsh?

The above was posted on Vesak Day (public hoiday in both countries) and came after media reports overnight that

— Tun said that he had cancelled the agreement on Monday,

— and S’pore said that it had not received official confirmation of the cancellation.

Had the letter the agreement cancelling even been sent, let alone drafted? Why must do everything to saka Tun? Thinking about it, since Tun has said that S’pore has yet to be told, looks like these guys will suck Tun’s XXXX while allowing anwar to bugger them even before they ask him for these actions.

Is there really na vneed to saka him? We survived his last premiership (22 years) in pretty good shape, while he now admits M’sia is now in a mess because of the actions of his handpicled successor.

As I said before I know very well the KL that Tun and Anwar were in charge of: I thrived in that environment. Their actions and inactions came to roost and haunt them personally and other M’sians after Najib became PM.Yet our anti-PAP types praise them as antidotes to the PAP.

By all remains praise the DAP* and the moderate Muslims that left PAS to form the National Trust Party (Amanah;Malay: Parti Amanah Negara), but be real about Tun and Anwar. They won a famous victory but it was a victory that owed a lot to the DAP and Amanah.

===============

*Though anti-PAP types won’t because Lim Guan Eng and his pa came to S’pore to “brief” our Harry when the DAP won Penang. More like “kowtow” joked an UMNO insider when I told him what Lim Jnr told a seminar at ISEAS in 2008 after meeting Harry.

 

The real-life Wakanda City

In Uncategorized on 30/05/2018 at 4:32 am

In the Black Panther Wakandia City is a high tech city in darkest Africa. There’s one really coming up.

completion of a $5bn (£3bn) technology city called Konza City, which is part of Kenya’s ambitious development plan known as Vision 2030.

The technology hub will sit on 5,000 acres of land and aims to be the centre of innovation which will attract top technology companies to set up shop.

If Konza City turns out as planned, Kenya will really live up to its title of the “Silicon Savannah”.

BBC report

Whatever, it’ll be a lot better than Cyberjaya. Remember Tun M’s mega project?

Looks like PAP right about cyberspace “noise”

In Uncategorized on 29/05/2018 at 11:23 am

And I’m right about

Maybe they really don’t oppose the PAP? They juz make some noise, hoping the PAP will throw them some goodies? Bit like my dogs barking or whining to get my attention.

Why Reformasi won’t happen here

Terry (of Terry’s Online Channel ) wrote on FB

Seriously, why do people go write articles in their own name and then years later ask to remove the articles because they have changed their stance?

If you want to express yourself without fear, use a pen name or something.

You use your real name because you want to be identified for the write-up, so it makes no sense to be given the right to remove your name years after, just because you think that write up is unsafe or inappropriate.

Take down is ok if the publication misused the write-up or misrepresented what was expressed.

But not simply because you regretted writing the post in your name.

Juz “noise” for the sake of noise or “They juz make some noise, hoping the PAP will throw them some goodies? Bit like my dogs barking or whining to get my attention.”? Or juz nutty?

What do you think?

Coming here: “the first international hair style competition”

In Uncategorized on 29/05/2018 at 4:14 am

When Trump first called off the summit (Looks like it’s on again), one of the most popular Sina Weibo comments, receiving over 2,000 likes is from a user saying they are “gutted” that “the first international hair style competition has been cancelled in Singapore!” (BBC)

It took 5 policeman to arrest a child in his school?

In Public Administration on 28/05/2018 at 10:54 am

This brought back unhappy, angry memories

How many police officers does it take to arrest someone? This was a question asked when two videos of a group of people fighting last year resurfaced last month and went viral.

In them, around six police officers could be seen trying to defuse the situation, prompting netizens to question why so many were needed, and why they could not just use a taser and be done with it.

Amid such comments, the police invited some reporters to the Home Team Academy last week for a half-day boot camp to experience firsthand the challenges and decisions officers faced in such situations.

https://www.todayonline.com/singapore/arresting-someone-not-easy-it-seems

The above puff piece from the constructive, nation-building media over the weekend reminded me about Benjamin Lim’s arrest and suicide in 2016. This FB comment says it all:

Shan said a lot but answered none of the most obvious and vexatious questions. The procedures/protocol he took pains to spell out told us nothing about what took place. He made it sound like a routine walk in the park by the policemen. The fact that they thought fit to send FIVE grown up policemen to ‘fetch’ a 14-year old from school revealed a lot about the mentality of the police. DON’T FORGET THAT BY THEN THEY HAVE ALREADY VIEWED THE HDB CCTV CLIPS AND KNEW EXACTLY WHAT TO EXPECT AND HOW BENJAMIN LIM LOOKED LIKE. SO ANY SUGGESTION THAT THE POLICE HAS TO ‘INVADE’ THE SCHOOL IN FORCE IN CASE OF AN AGGRESSIVE BENJAMIN WILL BE PURE BS. Even from the pictures on social media we can see how average and geeky the student looked like. It is not as if Benjamin Lim had a punk hairstyle (i.e. bald headed) and had tattoo on his arm and legs!!!

Minister Shan tried to play down the ‘number’ game when he said only one policeman had accompanied Benjamin to the AMK police station. I am unconvinced and would rebut this by pointing out that at least three of them could had easily left earlier in one of the two unmarked police cars that they drove to the school in without waiting for the officer questioning Benjamin in the principal office. Why were they idling in the school’s premises, unless they were there to pre-empt the student from making a possible run for it! This says quite a lot about the kiasuness of the police or perhaps it exposed their lack of confidence or competence. God knows what sort of internal police guidelines they have to comply with which perhaps could have been issued after a couple of past cases where adult prisoners had escaped from custody! This raises questions about the competency of at least some of our policemen or their (kiasu) superiors.

The silence of Sham

What TOC didn’t tell us why Harry met Najib’s wife

In Malaysia on 27/05/2018 at 11:11 am

 

https://www.theonlinecitizen.com/2018/05/24/lee-kuan-yew-specifically-asked-to-meet-rosmah-after-najib-became-pm/

What TOC left out that FLOM (as she was nick-named by M’sians: It stood for First Lady of M’sia, her adopted “title” after she met Mrs Obama when Obama was president. (Explanation:The US secret service code name for any US first lady is “FLOTUS”  ) was well-known* for wearing the pants in her marriage to Najib: he did what she asked him to do.

There were stories* that Dr M would jokingly ask him in cabinet meetings who his wife wanted defence contracts to be awarded to. It was well-known that she lobbied for certain arms manufacturers and that she would call defence officials to ask “Why taking so long?”

So our Harry was smart enough to know that she was the person to talk to make sure that relations improved post Dr M’s reign. Three cheers for our Harry.

————————–

*From the mid eighties until late 90s, I was what today would be called a M’sian equities specialist: I flogged, arbitraded M’sian shares for a living.

 

Poor Najib, not believed when telling the truth

In Malaysia on 27/05/2018 at 5:22 am

But first Great comedy rootine, (even better than M’sia: Two doctors’ routine) featuring Tun M and Najib.

Ah Jib Gor said the victorious Alliance of Hope had falsely promised voters “the moon and the stars”.

“It’s like playing football. We played clean; the others fouled. And they won,” he said.

He was countering Tun M’s

Malaysia’s debt has reached an alarming RM1 trillion (S$337 billion), said Malaysian Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad on Monday (May 21), as he pledged to restore the nation to its former glory.

Blaming the previous government led by former protégé Datuk Seri Najib Razak who now faces domestic graft investigations, Dr Mahathir said important measures must be taken for the South-east Asian country to quickly recover from the situation, pointing out Malaysia had debts of about RM300 billion only when he was previously prime minister for 22 years.

“We find that the country’s finances for example, was abused in a way that now we are facing trouble settling debts that have risen to a trillion ringgit. We have never had to deal with this before. Before we never faced debts higher than RM300 billion, but now it has climbed to RM1 trillion” he said in his maiden address to civil servants of the Prime Minister’s Department.

Dr Mahathir, 92, was Malaysia’s prime minister from 1981 and 2003.

https://www.todayonline.com/world/malaysias-debt-alarming-level-1-trillion-ringgit-says-mahathir

Can’t stop laughing at Tun M implication that he was so prudent. Badawi, Tun M’s chosen successor, came out to say after Tun M, replaced him with Najib, that when he (Badawi) became PM, there was no money to spend on Tun M’s plans. And that Tun turned against him because he couldn’t and wouldn’t fund Tun’s projects.

Anyway Najib’s FB’s more detailed response is juz as brazen and funny (but truthful in parts).

Political narrative or facts?

1. Words said and allegations made while in the opposition carries a very different weight now that you are in power and holding the positions of the Finance Minister or the Prime Minister.

2. Coming out to say that our country’s government debt to GDP is now 65%, which is a big jump from the official 50.9% figure and saying that our debt is now RM1 trillion without giving any details of what you mean will just unsettle the financial markets, alarm the credit rating agencies and investors confidence in our institutions such as our Bank Negara Malaysia.

3. There must be a clear distinction between political narrative and facts. Mixing them will create doubts on the credibility of our numbers and the professionalism of the institutions that were involved in preparing them, governed by Malaysians laws and international standards.

4. As a result of these alarming and confusing statements, our Bursa Malaysia index fell the most among all worldwide stock markets resulting in tens of billions of ringgit in market value wiped out in one day. Our Bursa index fell 40.78 points today or 2.21% while the Indonesian stock index added 0.71%.

5. The business news-portal The EdgeMarkets said this sharp fall in our share market was contributed by concern on our public debt.

Surely this fall would affect our funds such as EPF and PNB and could lower the dividend rates for its members for the year.

6. Similarly, issuing statements that we should not worry about our country’s sovereign credit ratings being downgraded will result in further rocking the confidence in our institutions.

7. A downgrade will result in higher debt financing costs of RM10 billion per year to our country and may result in our banks who had borrowed from the international markets to sustain losses. It may also result in large capital outflows from foreign investors and cause our Ringgit to weaken.

8. While you may want to slander and put all the blame on me to give a perception of a dire financial position to justify why you cannot deliver on your manifesto promises and to massively cut the civil service, you must remember that the country and our people comes first.

9. You can also issue misleading statements on 1MDB or tell half the story about it to blame me but the time to play politics is over.

10. Words spoken while in such positions of power result in actual losses to the country and the people, as was proven today in the stock market. It is no longer just about votes anymore.

I won’t go into the technical details of why Najib is right to KPKB that the new debt level of M$1 trillion isa “fake”: it’s bad accounting, not in line with IMF guidelines (But then we too don’t follow IMF guidelines.)

And it’s a fact that that foreigners have been spooked. They’ve been net sellers of M’sian equities since the election.

But then was Pinocchio believed when he finally told the truth?

 

 

M’sia: See who is now KPKBing

In Malaysia on 26/05/2018 at 1:44 pm

Before the General election, Election reform group Bersih 2.0 (M’sian activists opposed to BN) accused the Election Commission of electoral fraud citing

10 “serious crimes”, including alleged failure to remove dead people from the electoral roll, irregularities in postal voting, a failure to take action against corruption allegations and allowing the bare minimum time between parliament being dissolved and voting taking place.

But when their side won, there was silence.

But Najib said over the last weekend,

It’s like playing football. We played clean; the others fouled. And they won.

And that the victorious Alliance of Hope had falsely promised voters “the moon and the stars”.

 

 

One for the Donald

In Energy on 26/05/2018 at 4:38 am

Oil fell last night to around US$76 when it was announced that Opec and Russia are set to boost oil output after Trump pressure.

Opec’s secretary-general Mohammed Barkindo said Mr Trump’s tweet last month had prompted the cartel to respond as “we pride ourselves as friends of the US”.

Our Southern Indians are world class

In Uncategorized on 25/05/2018 at 10:59 am

This M’sia: Must be kilang reminded me that one source of tension locally is that FT Indians who call themselves “Aryans” (Shades of Hitler’s master race) look down on the local Indians from the South who are darker skinned. The Aryans subscribe to a now discredited version of history that the Aryans (who claim ang mohs descended from them) invaded India kicking South the darker skin abos.

In an FT report, sometime back, FT said that the Trump administration is considering Randy Quarles, the Fed’s vice chairman for supervision, as the next head of the Financial Stability Board, but it mentioned that Ravi Menon was a possible candidate from East Asia.

The new head’s job is to refrain from making new regulations and instead evaluate whether its post-crisis reforms are having any unintended consequences

A local Tamil has held a high-profile post in int’l finance before.

In April 2017, Tharman was appointed to chair a G20 Eminent Persons Group on Global Financial Governance, which was set up to review the system of multilateral financial institutions. He also succeeded Jean-Claude Trichet as Chairman of the Group of Thirty, an independent global council of leading economic and financial policy-makers from January 1, 2017.

Tharman had previously been appointed by his international peers as Chairman of the International Monetary and Financial Committee (IMFC), the key policy forum of the IMF, for an extended period of four years from 2011; he was its first Asian chair. In announcing Tharman’s selection, the IMF said that his “broad experience, deep knowledge of economic and financial issues, and active engagement with global policy makers will be highly valuable to the IMFC”

But our Chinese tua kee types should not be too upset because Jacqueline Loh, deputy managing director of our  central bank chairs the BIS’s markets committee. On digital currencies, Ms Loh, who has presided over experiments that offered digital currencies to wholesale market participants in her role as DMD of the central bank, acknowledged that any decision would ultimately have to be made at state level.

 

M’sia: Must be kilang

In Malaysia on 25/05/2018 at 6:31 am

M’sia’s Chinese finance minister* on 1MDB’s CEO

It is completely unbelievable that a highly paid and ‘experienced’ investment banker can be so irresponsibly clueless as to not know whether 9.8 billion ringgit worth of investments are even real.

I have found Arul Kanda to be utterly dishonest and untrustworthy.

Can’t blame for being so derogatory because Kanda had said everything was now OK at 1MDB during the election campaign. Turns out that that even the board of directors thought 1MDB was effectively insolvent, and it was unable to service its billions of debt and interest payments on its own. Even Arul says that that is true. So he implies that he was lying that all was well.

But he still is thinking of suing for defamation. Lim says: “Make my day, punk”.

But not all Indians like that. We got world class Tamils. Post coming up.


He and his pa so respect our Harry that when he came became Penang’s chief minister, they came down to “brief” him. When I told an UMNO insider he said “He means kow tow” with a laugh.

The real reason why Reformasi won’t happen here

In Malaysia, Political governance on 24/05/2018 at 11:04 am

In Why Reformasi won’t happen here, I had a dig at the cheapskates who wanted Reformasi on the cheap.

Here’s the real reason (articulated by a member of a FB group I belong to): S’poreans have not suffered enough (Something Chris K has said on FB) because things ain’t that bad her (Chris never pointed this out, but then he’s likely to go the way of other PAP critics, unless they are as cynical as me or “abc”. PAP critics usually end up as anti-PAP: Terry once told me . But don’t blame them because this is fault of PAP: Either you are with us or against us because what is good for the PAP is good for S’pore.)

Sorry back to the posts by a fellow member of a FB group.

If the ministers go in the way of Malaysia or Cambodia, let it happen naturally. If anyone is actually hoping for that to happen just so that they can see something happen, be careful what you wish for. Citizens of these countries are not having it easy, you know.

He then later went on

Having dialogued with DAP politicians over several years, I feel they looked at their political situation with grief, despondence, and exasperation. That was why my friend Liew Chin Tong went for the tough one at Ayer Hitam, because he didn’t want to be around to see what happens if BN wins another term. He’s tired. Now that they are part of the powers that be, it feels surreal and a relief. (For Liew, he’s re-energized though he was one of the only 2 DAP candidates who lost.)

I believe with the many people who are against PAP and/or support the opposition have anger and upsetness against the PAPG. When the PAP lost Aljunied, what they felt was jubilation.

So the 2 sets of emotions are different. The former are felt by citizens in a more desperate situation, waking up everyday to another new day of worry. Do we feel that here in Singapore?

I’d add that things are so good here that in last GE, 70% of the voters voted for PAP and continued to give two-thirds of parly seats. PAP nearly won  a GLC that would have reduced oppo elected MP to one. Fortunately the Wankers’ Party retained Aljunied, barely.

The BN lost its two-thirds majority in parly in 2008 and had less than 50% of the votes in the GE 2013.

(Updated at 11.35am: The last two paras were carelessly left out in initially published piece. Sorry.)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

With enemy like this, UMNO will soon be back in power

In Malaysia on 24/05/2018 at 6:44 am

Lim Guan Eng must be cleared of any corruption charges before becoming the Finance Minister, said the Centre to Combat Corruption and Cronyism (C4).

“The C4 Centre is troubled that Lim has been appointed as Finance Minister despite earlier statements by Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad that he can only be appointed if he has been cleared of his corruption charge,” its executive director Cynthia Gabriel said in a statement on Tuesday (May 22).
Read more at https://www.thestar.com.my/news/nation/2018/05/22/guan-eng-must-be-cleared-of-corruption-charges-before-becoming-finance-minister-says-c4/#lU5s2e4jcAiEGT5g.99

WTF.

When UMNO was in power, this NGO like many other NGOs were KPKBing that the charges against him were “fake” and “political”. So the least it could do now is to sit down and shut up until the court makes a decision (expected in late June I think).

I think this NGO (and a lot more) must prioritise what it wants. The new govt has prioritised growing and reforming the economy (Oil at US$80 is very helpful though abolishing GST is not), helping for the poor (abolishing GST has the poor cheering) and exposing the truth about 1MDB. Sounds about right.

Other things can wait, and rightly so. This what Maria Chin Abdullah a warrior who has been arrested, put in solitary confinement etc says

For 61 years, it was only criticism but now we have to implement what we say. It’s a tall order as the new coalition is not all homogeneous. Ironing out our differences and the principles of our new democracy will take some years.

It’s going to be hard work, and NGOs and others must focus on the big picture, not the details, especially irrelevant wants.

My beef against Terry’s OnLine Channel

In Malaysia on 23/05/2018 at 10:46 am

Sadly I have to agree with u/m FB PAP IB rant that

— TOC is failing to “to separate Singapore’s national interests and standing from their usual Prime Minister-bashing rhetoric.”; and 

— “The shallowness of some of TOC’s arguments on how bad the PAP and their blatant disregard to facts or context is worrisome*.”

Sad.

To be fair to Terry, the failure to differentiate between national interests and whacking the PAP is a trait that most critics of the PAP fall into into the long run (Yes I’m thinking about the danger of Chris K becoming one of these “PAP is always wrong” sheep.). But they can’t be blamed for this because the PAP and the constructive, nation-building media are always saying or implying “What is good for the PAP is good for S’pore”. 

back to the IBer

Mun Loon

TOC has lost the plot. It’s role, as it seemingly wants recognition for, is for the interest of Singaporeans, to hold the government in its checks and balances.

however, in more recent days, TOC has appeared more delusional.

It had always maintained that Singapore was bigger than the ruling party, but (TOC) is unable to separate Singapore’s national interests and standing from their usual Prime Minister-bashing rhetoric.

The shallowness of some of TOC’s arguments on how bad the PAP and their blatant disregard to facts or context is worrisome.

There is a role for media outlets online like Malaysiakini; and to equate TOC with Malaysiakini is an undeserved compliment to the prior or an insult to latter.

Your rhetoric is getting tiresome.


*TOC’s coverage on regime change in KL and its implications for S’pore is particularly bad. For starters, there’s the glossing over of Tun’s and Anwar’s roles in bringing M’sia to where it was before regime change. They messed up:

— M’sia: Don’t anyhow blame Najib

— M’sia: Two doctors’ routine

Then, does TOC really want people like these two running S’pore?

— Breaking election promises or trying to: Waz this call for a leader like Tun M here?

—  Read carefully what he says beyond the soundbite: Anwar: Beyond the sound bite of “Malaysia to scrap race policies”

Finally internal rowing is happening already:

— Bayee minister gives Tun M the finger

(More on another row soon)

 

Bayee minister gives Tun M the finger

In Malaysia on 23/05/2018 at 4:44 am

Malaysia’s controversial Anti-Fake News Act will be repealed, the country’s new Communications and Multimedia Minister Gobind Singh Deo* said on Monday (May 21).
Read more athttps://www.channelnewsasia.com/news/asia/malaysia-anti-fake-news-act-will-be-repealed-gobind-singh-10255272

But earlier Tun M had said the law would be reviewed and tweaked not repealed, breaking an election pledge: Waz this call for a leader like Tun M here?

Off with his turban.

Or is M’sian cabinet as dysfunctional as Trump’s? LOL


*First ever Sikh minister in M’sia’s history. He’s a son of Karpal Singh (deceased), the famous DAP politician. Like pa was, he’s a DAP tua kee. Had to be leader from DAP to give Tun M the finger. DAP was LKY’s trojan horse, but it has since evolved to be a an ethnic Chinese social democratic political party, with some Indians thrown in. When DAP won power in Penang (2008) Lim Kit Siang and son, Lim Guan Eng, (It’s really all in the family in the DAP) came to “brief” our Harry. More like “kow tow” said UMNO insiders when I told them what Lim Guan Eng had said in a seminar here.

Why Reformasi won’t happen here

In Political governance on 22/05/2018 at 9:49 am

TOC, TRE and all the usual places where cybernuts congregate are full of comments that change is coming here. like it did in M’sia, and the PAP is doomed.

Taz a lot of “noise” and hot air because most of the 30% that die die must vote for any donkey or clown so long as said clown or donkey is anti-PAP are a bunch of wanking cheapskates.

Terry’s Online Service reported on FB yesterday that

In 2014, there were already 16,039 subscribers at a monthly subscription rate of RM$40( SGD$15.4) [Terry was talking about M’siakini]. In comparison, TOC has 64 subscribers at a monthly subscription rate of $3 and a few at $10.

S$264,000 a month in 2014 versus less than S$640.

And

By 2013, Malaysiakini was already earning an annual income of close to 1.5 million ringgits (SGD$577k). While – as reported to IRAS for TOC’s revenue in 2017 – we received around SGD$29,600 in advertising and donation.

TOC’s numbers were in response to

A reader, Dylan Tan wrote in response to the report on Anwar’s thanks to Malaysiakini of its role in Malaysia, “that works if the Alternative news in SIN can be as quality as Mal(aysia)”

Terry retorted

We agree that our quality of reporting and coverage is not even close to that of Malaysiakini, but that can be said the same of our operating expenses.

And cited the numbers given above and repeated below

— Subscriptions: S$264,000 a month in 2014 versus less than S$640 a month.

— Total annual income of S$577,000 in 2013 versus S$29,600 in advertising and donation for 2017. TOC’s subs are “peanuts”.

With enemies like the free-loading fans of TOC and TRE, the PAP doesn’t need friends. And will rule forever and a day.

Jokes’ aside. Maybe they really don’t oppose the PAP? They juz make some noise, hoping the PAP will throw them some goodies? Bit like my dogs barking or whining to get my attention.

Or worse, maybe tha fans are part of PAP’s IB. They aim to deceive Terry and TeamTRE and other suckers that there are people out there listening to them.

Why we’ll be servants of the Peenoys

In Currencies, Economy on 22/05/2018 at 4:37 am

Yesterday, I showed u/m chart which showed that M$ a lot stronger than our S$ despite attempts by our constructive, nation-building media to show that the economy in KL was collapasing after regime change.

Well it also shows that the Peenoy peso is like S$ when Harry was leader: tua kee. S$ is the new old Peenoy peso?

 

Anwar: Beyond the sound bite of “Malaysia to scrap race policies”

In Malaysia on 21/05/2018 at 11:14 am

Behind the soundbite “Malaysia to scrap race policies”, this is what Anwar is saying publicly:

“I have said that the NEP should be dismantled but the affirmative action must be more effective. I believe that poor underprivileged Malays will benefit more through a transparent, effective affirmative action policy rather than the New Economic Policy which has been hijacked to enrich the few cronies,” said Anwar, a Malay.

https://apnews.com/fd0ca6e7b6b44219a566aae972e72192

And

He also assured Malays and bumiputeras that their rights under the new government would not be sidelined, while stressing to all not to be taken with the false propaganda about the Democratic Alliance Party, which is also part of PH.

“Felda and Universiti Teknologi Mara will not be threatened but kangkung professors can’t (be accepted),” Dr Anwar said.

(Our constructive, nation-building media)

And

When pressed on whether he would repeal the affirmative-action rules once he becomes premier, Mr Anwar said he would “honour the guarantees” for ethnic Malays as set out in the constitution. He added that other races would also receive state support based on merit and need.

“We would, of course, protect the position of the Malaysian Bumiputeras in terms of giving opportunities, but not enriching them to become billionaires,” he said at his residence in Kuala Lumpur shortly after being released from prison on a sodomy charge he said was politically motivated.

Bloomberg via https://www.todayonline.com/world/anwar-reassures-malays-who-fear-they-may-lose-racial-advantage

(Note this Bloomberg extract was added at 12 pm on day of publication)

Btw, this is the first of a few short pieces on the reality behind his words. Because words are an important part of his armoury, ignore the sound bites but listen carefully to the details.

Btw2, I think it’s great that he and Tun M have teamed up again. I was in the 80s and 90s, what today would be called a M’sian equities specialist.After they won, I caught myself singing this http://www.bbc.com/news/business-43959687.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Vis-a-vis US$: S$ falls more than M$

In Currencies, Economy, Malaysia on 21/05/2018 at 5:15 am

Juz asking if our constructive, nation-building told u that?

I mean the narrative the ST etc is spinning is that changes in M’sia is upsetting investors.

Waz this call for a leader like Tun M here?

In Malaysia, Political governance, Public Administration on 20/05/2018 at 10:54 am

Cyberspace is full of unfavourable comparisons between our leaders and Tun M.

Do our anti-PAP activists and cybernuts really want a leader that is quick to break election promises?

Tun broke one pledge,

PH previously pledged to repeal a host of laws that it said were oppressive, such as the Anti-Fake News Act, the Printing Presses and Publications Act, and Sedition Act.

Malay Mail

He is now saying the Anti-Fake News Act will be reviewd and tweaked, not repealed: Why M’sia needs a Fake News Law but S’pore doesn’t

And is all over the place on another pledge

New Malaysian Prime Minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad will no longer take on the education ministry portfolio, after members of the public pointed out that his coalition’s manifesto had pledged that there would be no double portfolios for the premier.

“I cannot break (the manifesto pledge) at the moment,” he said in a video posted on his party’s Facebook page on Friday (May 18).

“Unless of course there is a demand that I take up the education portfolio.”

Read more at https://www.channelnewsasia.com/news/asia/malaysian-pm-mahathir-drops-education-portfolio-to-honour-10247712

(Whatever, I’m happy about his interest in education and hopes he becames education minister, though the new minister is also a reformer: http://says.com/my/news/who-is-dr-maszlee-malik-our-new-education-minister. An education project, where I tot up the seed idea and did a lot of the initial leg work, had the blessing of Badawi when he was PM. The project was premised on a good Mahathir-era policy. Najib changed the policy and a Malaysian lost money. Let’s see if it can be revived.)

Coming back to our anti-PAP types: have they forgotten how upset they got over the so-called failure of the PAP govt to live up to its promise of no GST increase until 2021? Why the PM doesn’t need friends


How not to handle fake news

Though the PAP administration was dumb in the way it handled reaction to the fake news that the Mad Dog and his fellow cybernuts were propogating: GST: Even economists tot GST could go up.

The PAP administration was too clever by half and the result in PR terms was a score draw: and mud in the eye for the PAP in a de-facto one party state.

—————————————————–

And they now want an “effective” leader who breaks his promises when he gets into power? Btw, I predict that like the Anti-Fake News Act, the Printing Presses and Publications Act, and Sedition Act will only be tweaked, not repealed.

With enemies of the PAP like these, 60-70% of the voters will allow the PAP to rule forever and a day.

It’s not echo chamber effect of social media

In Internet on 20/05/2018 at 4:48 am

It’s all about “A little knowledge is a dangerous thing”.

Contrary to popular belief, we now hear more diverse voices than ever before – studies suggest that most people do not live in Facebook or Twitter echo chambers and ‘filter bubbles’. So why is global politics still so divided?

http://www.bbc.com/future/story/20180416-the-myth-of-the-online-echo-chamber

People become more divided because we are dismissive of contrary evidence that challenges our beliefs

“motivated reasoning”. Countless studies have shown that we are so attached to our political identities that we will devote extra cognitive resources to dismissing any evidence that disagrees with our initial point of view, so that we end up even more sure of our convictions.

Or because a little knowledge is dangerous

But an alternative possible explanation comes from the psychology of ‘self-licensing’ – the unconscious belief that once we have shown our open-mindedness in one situation, we have somehow earned the credentials to be more prejudiced later on. One study from 2008 found that people who had supported Barack Obama were subsequently more likely to express a potentially racist view, for instance. By reading a few dissenting voices on Facebook or Twitter, we may feel that we have already gained the right to be more dogmatic about our existing opinions. Anecdotally, at least, this seems to have been the case for a few of my own acquaintances following the UK’s referendum on Europe in 2016.

 

M’sia: Two doctors’ routine

In Malaysia on 19/05/2018 at 11:35 am

Dr M

My instruction is very clear. I am not going to torture people . . . I want people to be treated decently.

Err Najib shouldn’t be reassured. Remember that Anwar was nor tortued  20 yrs ago when he was arrested. But the Inspector-General Police assaulted him causing him serious injuries. To be fair to Tun and IGP, Anwar provoked him bycaqlling insulting, haram names..

Now this should scare progressives in M’sia: Dr Anwar said that among the world leaders he planned to meet was Turkish president Recep Tayyip Edrogan.

Well the progressives in the US,Europe and Turkey dislike him for making himself de-facto dictator in Turkey and clamping down on human rights, freedom of the press etc.

He also believes that the way to fight inflation is to cut interest rates, something he just told investors in London. The Tutkish lira kept on falling.

Anwar could recommend Tun M try this in KL.

.

Best analysis of Trump

In Uncategorized on 19/05/2018 at 7:16 am

This appeared in the comments section of an FT article on Trump

Mouldover

The whole theatre of this presidency concentrates on promoting an image of a colossus commanding every aspect of society and government where the other branches of government are ineffectual and withering away. It is completely compatible with the roles of other totalitarian leaders such as President Xi and Putin. Probably President Trump changed his stance on ZTE purely to show that he also is not constrained by any rules just like President Xi. Thus the US is having the opportunity to see what command government can be like. It will be interesting to see what percentage of his support base supports this. He is surely shaking up Washington, and draining the swamp. However he didn’t say that he would not replace it with his own swamp and denizens. Hopefully the US military will not be bought by unlimited expenditure on their coveted weapons, however he is doing his best to get allies in law and order and the military fields. Hopefully he will not start a war to strengthen these relationships though that is the usual path taken by similar dictators as it polarises the country into believers and non believers as happened in the Iraq war. His actions in the Middle East are surely inflaming everything, and Israel might seize the opportunity to greatlly increase its power in the region and expand militarily. Thus this might be a prelude to more instability and gambling on his part, with extremely dangerous consequences, possibly with a view to influencing the coming election in November.

Coldstore: FT minister thinks Pa rightly detained

In Uncategorized on 18/05/2018 at 10:56 am

At least that’s the reasonable conclusion one can draw from his remarks to ST.

In an interview with ST (‘Facts, falsehoods, feedback – Janil has firm grasp of them all’, 7 May), the new Senior Minister of State for Communications and Information Janil Puthucheary said

he believes there were national security reasons for the Coldstore arrests and detentions.

“I think that is a reasonable conclusion to come to, that there were indeed national security considerations,” he said.

So, Puthucheary agrees that there were good grounds for interning his father and uncle without trial, since his father and uncle (and others) were considered to be “dangerous communists” ready to overthrow the government through violence.

All this reminds me of what Jesus told Peter

I tell thee, Peter, the cock shall not crow this day, before that thou shalt thrice deny that thou knowest me.

When the ST reporter asked him about his father’s case, talked using both sides of his mouth, he said “I am quite comfortable talking about it but I don’t see that it is in any way relevant.”

He’ll be a full cabinet minister soon.

For what is a man profited, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul? or what shall a man give in exchange for his soul?

Btw, looks I was wrong when I wrote this: FT jnr minister disagrees that “Pa” was a justly detained commie?

 

How to outnegotiate Trump

In Uncategorized on 18/05/2018 at 4:28 am

Seems the author of The Art of the Deal has been doing the wrong things: he breaks all but three of the tips of good negotiation listed below. But then he regained billionaire status after losing it: that in my book makes him a winner.

Whatever from FT

Top tips for good negotiation

Learn to empathise and put yourself in someone else’s shoes
Thorough preparation is essential. Make sure you do the necessary research on those parties with which you will be negotiating
Do not get too caught up in internal negotiations — negotiating among yourselves rather than with the party across the table
Learn to read your opponent
Communicate effectively. Never lie or exaggerate
Be patient and learn to listen
If both parties reach an impasse, bring other issues to the table
Learn to deal with difficult situations without being aggressive
Conduct a fair and respectful process
Know your bottom line and what your alternative is if your bottom line cannot be met

Trump’s tips (based on his tweets)

Learn to empathise and put yourself in someone else’s shoes
Thorough preparation is essential. Make sure you do the necessary research on those parties with which you will be negotiating
Do not get too caught up in internal negotiations — negotiating among yourselves rather than with the party across the table
Learn to read your opponent
Communicate effectively. Never lie or exaggerate
Be patient and learn to listen
If both parties reach an impasse, bring other issues to the table
Learn to deal with difficult situations without being aggressive
Conduct a fair and respectful process
Know your bottom line and what your alternative is if your bottom line cannot be met

Why M’sia needs a Fake News Law but S’pore doesn’t

In Malaysia on 17/05/2018 at 11:00 am

When the law was first mooted in KL

The law was met with horror from activists and journalists, who say that the bill will simply be another way for the government to crack down on dissent and suppress embarrassing stories. Amnesty International said it was a “blatant attempt to shield the government from peaceful criticism”. Lawyers For Liberty, a local free speech NGO which is representing Syarul Ema, called it “the death knell for freedom of speech”.

http://www.wired.co.uk/article/election-malaysia-2018-general-fake-news-day-2008-syarul-ema

Well Tun M was being investigated under that law when he was oppo leader. But the Sith Lord turned Jedi Grand Master, when he became PM said the law will be reviewed and tweaked not revoked.

Here’s why there’s a need in M’sia for such a law

Just in the last 12 months, the police have had to debunk rumours that Chinese government patrol cars were operating in Malaysia; shoppers have boycotted shoe company Bata Primavera after a false report that it was stocking shoes with ‘Allah’ written on the soles; and the owner of the local McDonald’s franchise has filed police reports against social media users wrongly claiming the company was funding Israel’s actions against Palestine.

http://www.wired.co.uk/article/election-malaysia-2018-general-fake-news-day-2008-syarul-ema

(Related post: Fake news law: Malays not stupid)

As to S’pore, i wrote shumetime back

Our brown-nosing constructive nation-building academics presented at the recent Select Committee hearings on Deliberate Online Falsehoods,

an alarming scenario of disinformation campaigns launched by foreign actors bent on attacking the island state, of cyber armies in neighbouring Malaysia and Singapore working as proxies for other countries in undermining national security.

Did they produce any evidence?

But the actual examples of fake news which have come up during this national debate have mostly been prosaic; a hoax photo showing a collapsed roof at a housing complex, which sent officials rushing unnecessarily to the scene; and an erroneous report of a collision between two trains on the light rail transit line.

As the BBC reporter wrote

Irritating and worrying for some, for a while, but hardly likely to bring Singapore society to its knees. In any case both Singapore and Malaysia already have plenty of laws capable of penalising false, inflammatory or defamatory comment.

http://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-43637744

Btw, have to tell u that the reporter also said

It also gave Singapore academics and officials an opportunity to snipe at the US belief in free expression, the “marketplace of ideas”, which had allowed the abuse of personal data on Facebook to take place, in contrast to Singapore’s “better safe than sorry” belief in a more tightly regulated society.

Local academics propogate fake news?

Related article: Why I no ak the Select Committee hearings on Deliberate Online Falsehoods

Trump is fan of Rolling Stones song, but they don’t love him

In Uncategorized on 17/05/2018 at 5:10 am

Jagger

Trump’s choice of song to follow his victory speech when he became US president last year, the band’s You Can’t Always Get What You Want.

“It’s a funny song for a play-out song – a drowsy ballad about drugs in Chelsea! It’s kind of weird. He couldn’t be persuaded to use something else.”

http://www.bbc.com/news/entertainment-arts-44112902

Keith Richards got it right about Trump, 30 yrs ago

Keith Richards says he can’t be bothered to get angry any more – but the last time he did was nearly 30 years ago with Donald Trump.

“He [Trump] was the promoter for us in Atlantic City [during 1989’s Steel Wheels Tour],” he told the BBC.

“[It was billed as] ‘Donald Trump presents the Rolling Stones’ [with the band’s name written in miniature].”

“I got out my trusty blade, stuck it in the table and said: ‘You have to get rid of this man!'”

He joked: “Now America has to get rid of him. Don’t say I didn’t warn you!”

M’sia: Don’t anyhow blame Najib

In Malaysia on 16/05/2018 at 11:02 am

Be more nuanced.

Couldn’t stop laughing

But translating the alliance’s manifesto into action — including sweeping political reforms meant to repair checks and balances eroded under Najib.

https://asia.nikkei.com/Politics/Malaysia-election/Mahathir-moves-with-practiced-skill-to-assert-control

What a really dumb remark,”repair checks and balances eroded under Najib”.

I mean Najib was able to do what he did because one Tun M had in his tenure as PM got the Auditor-General and the Chief Justice Lord President removed, cowed the king and sultans, and finally sacked Anwar and was complicit in him being roughed up in custody. Najib was juz following precedents, juz like when the electoral districts were redrawn to BN’s advantage. All Najib’s actions were from Tun’s playbook, including muzzling the voices of dissidents

Btw, Najib was right about Tun’s desire for council of elders.


Tun M

is forming a council of five elders including palm oil tycoon Robert Kuok, former Finance Minister Daim Zainuddin and Zeti Akhtar Aziz, who led Bank Negara Malaysia for 16 years. The people will be tasked with advising the cabinet and probing government personnel.

Bloomberg

———————————–

Najib had said:

“I think he’s obsessed about control, about calling the shots, in fact, when we were quite close together he even suggested establishing a council of elders,” said Mr Najib.

“Of course, you can imagine who’s going to chair the council of elders and a sitting prime minister after every Cabinet, I suppose I would have to march to his office to get his consent.”

“He wanted me to do his bidding,” Mr Najib said.

Bloomberg via https://www.todayonline.com/world/najib-predicts-hell-extend-grip-power-malaysia-election-after-2013-vote-scare-1mdb-mistakes

Najib on Tun M

I’m sure that he’ll make sure that the Council of Eminent Persons he installed will remain beyond the 100 days he says it will last. And that he’ll retire to an institutionalised Council of Elders when Anwar becomes PM.

Then truly A New Hope will be followed by The Empire Strikes Back and not the Return of the Jedi: in the movies.

Coming back to “repair checks and balances eroded under Najib”, here’s a more nuanced remark:

Mr Najib, who tightened the screws on Malaysia’s already authoritarian system

As the FT is now part of the stable of the publisher of the first quote, time for FT to send trainers to teach the Orientals.


On 20th May 2018, amended to reflect that he sacked the Lord President on the CJ. In the M’sian judicial system, the Lord President is the most senior judge.

 

Difference between privacy and secrecy

In Uncategorized on 16/05/2018 at 5:55 am

Here’s some really insight comments by an FT reader on the issue of whether end to end encryption of apps like What Appt is good for society.

RunningCommentary 18: I think this dilemma* illustrates a lack of clear thinking around the difference between privacy and secrecy. Encryption is a tool for secrecy and you might wonder why any law-abiding person would need to operate in secret. Shouldn’t respect for privacy be sufficient? But the answer is in the question. Both the state and big business have for some time regarded privacy as an inconvenience. Quite naturally, people are having to protect their privacy with the technologies of secrecy. Privacy is a form of security: security from intrusion, impersonation, misrepresentation, harassment and nuisance. But its not meant to be a cover for wrongdoing. Given respect for privacy: there will be a threshold for intrusion: for example, what the Americans would call probable cause. And given the potential for error and the importance of maintaining respect for private life, intrusions will be questioning and self-critical. There will be cases where national security and personal security are in conflict but is there any reason to suppose that that is the norm. And we don’t need to assume that privacy protection will thwart the operations of the security services. If you haven’t got probable cause what is the likelihood that your scarce resources are being deployed in an effective manner? What is the likelihood that mass surveillance is the answer when the problem is one of targeted surveillance?

CoolDude: Didn’t the Snowden leak show mass survillence?

@CoolDude Quite so. Modern states ignore privacy because it is inconvenient when it comes to mass surveillance. My point is twofold: (1) that privacy protection is not incompatible with targeted surveillance (2) That anti-terrorism is a ‘looking for a needle in a haystack problem’ and therefore implies targeted surveillance.


*Whether privacy overrides security issues.

 

 

Whatever happened to Brudder Bill, the wannabe saviour of S’pore footie?

In Casinos, Corporate governance, Footie on 15/05/2018 at 11:00 am

The recent news before the M’sian election that seven footie clubs clubs were told to wind down jackpot operations by the end April 2018 reminded me that the national sports governing body Sport Singapore filed a police report against Tiong Bahru FC (TBFC) for suspected misuse of club funds, as well as a purported attempt by a senior club official to obstruct the completing of audits of the S League’s sit-out clubs.

TBFC and Hougang chairman Bill Ng (Brudder Bill aka Billy the Kid), his wife Bonnie Wong, FAS general secretary Winston Lee and former FAS president Zainudin Nordin were subsequently arrested, then released on police bail.

S’poreans were shocked to learn that TBFC was found to have earned $37 million from its clubhouse operations while spending just $169,000 on its football team, which plays in the amateur National Football League. And that TBFC paid rent for its gaming operations at over the market rates to a company linked to Bonnie Wong.

Well Secret Squirrel and Morocco Mole have just told me that their sources in the police tell them that the papers involving the investigation of the wannabe be saviour of S’pore footie (Remember he led team Game Changers in the 2017 FAS elections?) and the others had been forwarded to the AG earlier this year.

A decision by the AG on whether to proceed further is expected any time soon as the lawyers for the wannabe Jesus Christ Superstar, his Mrs and the ex-FAS officials have made their final representations.

Bill is still pleading, “It’s all a misunderstanding. Miscommunication leh”: it didn’t work with me all those yrs ago, FAS elections: Do the other Game Changers know the name of Bill Ng’s wife?,and I doubt it would work with AG. And while getting me onside was cheap, a few good dinners and a promise not to try to “fix” me, I doubt the AG is so kind. Already the lawyers’ fees are escalating.

Secret Squirrel and Morocco Mole have also been told to expect an announcement soon by the authorities.

But let’s be far to Bill Ng. TBFC shows the use of reserves. Secret Squirrel and Morocco Mole tell me that TBFC’s players have been assured that despite TBFC no longer having any more gaming revenue, the players will be paid for this season, if not longer: the financial reserves will be used.

Good for management.

Jack Ma is a patriotic parrot

In China on 15/05/2018 at 4:29 am

From NYT Dealbook sometime back. He should remember that Xi had to beg Trump not to kill ZTE.

Jack Ma on what a trade war would cost the U.S.
The Alibaba Group co-founder asserted in a WSJ op-ed today that the U.S. risked throwing away a huge opportunity to make money in China, because his home country may soon become an enormous consumer. From his piece:
“It is therefore ironic that the U.S. administration is waging a trade war at a time when the largest potential consumer market in the world is open for business.”
Yet economists point out that China is still an offender on intellectual-property theft and restricting its market to foreign companies — even as they worry that tariffs will backfire. (The Fed is worried, too.) But Larry Kudlow has urged calm, even as he didn’t rule out tariffs coming before negotiations with Beijing.
Elsewhere in trade: While the U.S. wants a Nafta deal by next month, Mexican negotiators are still balking at some Washington demands.

Uncle Leong and cybernuts should sit down and shut up

In Economy on 14/05/2018 at 9:53 am

And if they have the balls and grace, they should praise the PAP administration for a far-sighted policy which they are forever criticising, misrepresenting and publishing fake news about: the policy of bringing in young FTs (mainly ethnic Chinese from neighbouring countries) to study here.

Dr Oh, who was formerly the political secretary of ousted leader Najib Razak, added: “Economic matters will always be prioritised. There are a number of Pakatan senior leaders, such as (DAP’s) Tony Pua and Ong Kian Ming who have had experience in Singapore such as having lived there, so they would have some inputs into Malaysian policy towards Singapore.”

Both Mr Pua and Mr Ong Kian Ming had studied in Raffles Institution and Raffles Junior College in the Republic, on the Singapore Government’s Asean (Association of South-east Asian Nations) scholarship programme.

Readers will know that I’m a critic of the PAP administration’s FTs by the cattle-truck load policy and the policy restricting locals getting into the local publicly funded universities. But, I’m a fan of  the Asean (Association of South-east Asian Nations) scholarship programme and other programmes (such as allowing Johoreans easy access to schools here) bringing in young FTs (especially ethnic Chinese) from around the region and China.

One reason why the UK has great soft power is that many foreigners (self included) have fond memories of their student days in the UK. This is something that the govt here is trying to replicate (Hard work though, given the puritanical norms the PAP expects here: study here and no fun allowed.)

M’sia/ S’pore: Academic nuttier than cybernuts

In Malaysia, Political governance, Public Administration on 13/05/2018 at 10:26 am

(Or “Will US AG accuse our PM of theft?“)

In M’sia: ‘Mountain of challenges’/ BBC analysis applicable here too,I made fun of those anti-PAP cybernuts who shout that Mad Dog will lead a coalition of the nuts to beat the PAP in the next GE.

Well I found an even nuttier nut: he’s a M’sian-born Oz academicwho he thinks PAP is like UMNO

Meanwhile Singapore has been ruled by the People’s Action Party (PAP) since 1959, almost the same number of years as UMNO was in power. On the surface, PAP appears to be strong. In the most recent general elections, held in 2015, PAP’s share of the popular vote increased by about 10 per cent, reversing after years of decline. Many would argue that the increased vote was primarily due to the death of Lee Kuan Yew six months earlier; Singapore’s voters wanted to give LKY a last hurrah. The nation is due to hold its next general election in two years’ time and Lee Hsien Loong, the current prime minister, will hand over power to the so-called 4G (Fourth Generation) leaders. No corruption allegations akin to 1MDB have been made about the PAP leadership but there is persistent unhappiness among Singaporeans over the escalating cost of living and the paternalistic style of PAP rule. The standard joke is PAP actually stands for “Pay And Pay” party.

Given Malaysians and Singaporeans have a fairly similar political culture, the dismissal of UNMO by their Malaysian cousins may prove inspirational. As more and more Singaporeans associate PAP with surging costs – and a planned hike in the rate of GST confirmed earlier this year – the PAP brand may become toxic as well. Ordinary Singaporeans already have a negative view of the PAP elite, who graduate from the best-known universities, hold the most prestigious scholarships and serve in the Singapore Armed Forces before entering PAP politics. They are seen as totally removed from the hard lives of ordinary Singaporeans.

http://www.afr.com/opinion/mahathirs-victory-a-warning-shot-for-singapores-pap-20180510-h0zwql

The nut forgets that the PAP had 70% of the popular vote in the last GE (the UMNO-led coalition had less than 50%) and the PAP has still a two thirds majority in parly (the UMNO-led coalition lost that in 2008).

I have two questions for him, “Does he foresee any scandal like 1MDB happening here? A scandal here that has the US of A’s Department of Justice and the AG accusing the PM* of theft?”

Btw, I’ll always joke that what will bring the PAP down is for S’poreans to find out from the int’l media that our Harry had had a secret Swiss bank account. Even after Pincohet lost power in Chile, even his opponents respected him as incorruptible: he had his enemies killed but he was not corrupt, or so they tot. But Chileans lost their respect, love of him when it was discovered he had a secret Swiss bank account.

Coming back to the topic of nuts, here’s another nut. He was a FT (where the “T” stood for “Trash”): https://www.bloomberg.com/view/articles/2018-05-11/malaysia-singapore-union-flickers-back-to-life.


*OK, OK, they did not directly name Najib, but the documentation made it clear they were referring to FLOM’s hubbie.

Achtung: What Google says about TRE site

In Internet on 13/05/2018 at 4:52 am

When I try to access TRE’s sit,. Google sends me a strongly worded message that the site contains malware. And tells me to avoid the site, though I can go to the site if I really, really want to.

Previously my anti-virus software cut me off from the site because it was beta testing crypto-mining. TRE told visitors of its plans. I had suggested moons ago that it try to crypto-mining to help pay expenses from its freeloading cheapskates.

Staircase to financial paradise

In Financial competency, Financial planning on 12/05/2018 at 11:34 am

From FT columnist

Step 1: Do you need a financial adviser?

Step 2: Decide which type of service you want

Step 3: Independent or restricted advice?

Step 4: Choose which level of advice you need

Step 5: What are the charges?

Step 6: Finding an adviser

Step 7: Choosing the right person for you

Step 8: Keep your finger on the pulse

S’pore: 15th best city to be uni student

In Uncategorized on 12/05/2018 at 4:52 am

We are in the middle of a 30 city ranking. In Asia, Tokyo, Melbourne, Sydney, Seoul and HK ahead of us. Below us are Kyoto-Osaka-Kobe,Taipei, Brisbane, Canberra, Auckland, Beijing and Shanghai. I’m surprised Edinburgh is at 16th.

The ranking of university cities, rather than the quality of institutions, is produced by the QS higher education group, which publishes the annual World University Rankings.

The ratings are based on factors such as the number of top universities in a city, the local jobs market, the diversity of the culture and the quality of life.

http://www.bbc.com/news/business-44039666

Best Student Cities 2018

  1. London
  2. Tokyo
  3. Melbourne
  4. Montreal
  5. Paris
  6. Munich
  7. Berlin
  8. Zurich
  9. Sydney
  10. Seoul
  11. Vienna
  12. Hong Kong
  13. Toronto
  14. Boston
  15. Singapore
  16. Edinburgh
  17. Vancouver
  18. New York
  19. Kyoto-Osaka-Kobe
  20. Taipei
  21. Brisbane
  22. Canberra
  23. Auckland
  24. Manchester
  25. Buenos Aires
  26. Beijing
  27. Amsterdam
  28. Moscow
  29. Shanghai
  30. Prague

 

M’sia: ‘Mountain of challenges’/ BBC analysis applicable here too?

In Malaysia, Political governance on 11/05/2018 at 11:07 am

Here’s the analysis of Jonathan Head, BBC South East Asia correspondent on the problems facing the new govt in KL. A good reason for reading it is because what faces the new govt there will be what the SDP etc face if the Oppo comes into power here at next GE or any future GE.

Yes the anti-PAP cybernuts are already predicting victory. Goh Meng Seng, Mad Dog and Lim Tean (Got time to register another Oppo party but no time to deliver on promises after raising money from public for video and rally:Where’s yr defamation video and jobs rally Lim Tean?) are already rehearsing their victory speeches.

Sorry back to the BBC analysis.

This morning Malaysia has woken to an entirely new situation, the first transfer of power in its history, albeit to a very familiar leader. But there are huge unknowns. How willingly will Barisan Nasional, the coalition which has, in various forms, run the country since independence and embedded itself into all areas of governance, relinquish power?

How well will a disparate coalition, united largely by their desire to oust Najb Razak, work together in government? How smoothly will the plan to gain a pardon for imprisoned opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim, and then for Mr Mahathir to hand the premiership to him within two years, actually proceed? And how will they treat Mr Najib, and his high-spending wife, both accused of greed and corruption?

After all the jubilation over an impressive act of defiance by Malaysian voters, there is a mountain of challenges to face.

For anti-PAP cybernuts who can’t make comparisons this is for them:

This morning S’pore has woken to an entirely new situation, the first transfer of power in its history. But there are huge unknowns. How willingly will the PAP which run the country since before independence and embedded itself into all areas of governance, relinquish power?

How well will a disparate coalition led by Mad Dog Chee, united largely by their desire to oust the PAP work together in government? And how will they treat ministers accused of incompetence or corruption by the most rapid supporters of Dr Chee?

After all the jubilation over an impressive act of defiance by S’porean voters, there is a mountain of challenges to face.

 

Taxes on MNCs: 4G leaders should relook

In Economy on 11/05/2018 at 5:26 am

Recently I wrote:

To show S’poreans that saying that they want to earn the right to lead is more than BS, the coming generation of leaders should start looking at Hard Truths that have become irrelevant or were wrong in the first place.

Healthcare: user fees drives up costs

Here’s another Hard Truth that should be relooked. It’s a Hard Truth that MNCs should be given tax incentives so that they invest here. But the premise of such a Hard Truth no longer is valid

As Paul Krugman pointed out in his regular NYT column:

In the world according to Trump officials, or right-wing think tanks like the Tax Foundation, corporate profits are basically a return on physical capital — on bricks and mortar and machines. Cut taxes, and companies will add more physical capital, increasing competition for labor, and profits will go down while wages go up.

Apple, however, is nothing like that. Its profits come from its market position — its brand, if you like. It doesn’t matter whether you think it deserves its role as a quasi-monopolist; what matters is that given its position, it can and does charge what the market will bear, pretty much regardless of costs. If Trump cuts its taxes, it gets to keep more of its profits, but it has no real incentive to change its behaviour by, say, building more Apple stores. It just takes the extra money and either sits on it or hands it back to stockholders via buybacks.

Why Anwar will have a problem with Tun M

In Malaysia on 10/05/2018 at 10:55 am

Under the deal that the two struck, Dr Mahathir will be PM and will seek a royal pardon for Anwar. When all that happens (time frame of two years) and Anwar wins a parly seat, Tun  Mahathir will step down and Anwar will become PM.

Well even assuming all these things come to pass, Tun M could still cause problems for Anwar. Tun M is more LKY than Harry. This is what Najib said recently about Tun M.

Mr Najib spoke of his falling out with Dr Mahathir, who has accused the Prime Minister of everything from theft to redrawing electoral boundaries to Umno’s advantage.

Mr Najib said Dr Mahathir presided over several district redraws and the recent changes were to “take into account some demographic changes”.

“I think he’s obsessed about control, about calling the shots, in fact, when we were quite close together he even suggested establishing a council of elders,” said Mr Najib.

“Of course, you can imagine who’s going to chair the council of elders and a sitting prime minister after every Cabinet, I suppose I would have to march to his office to get his consent.”

“He wanted me to do his bidding,” Mr Najib said.

Bloomberg via https://www.todayonline.com/world/najib-predicts-hell-extend-grip-power-malaysia-election-after-2013-vote-scare-1mdb-mistakes

Najib on Tun M

Xiaomi IPO: Why cybernuts will be happy again

In GIC, Temasek on 10/05/2018 at 5:57 am

A few yrs ago the cybernuts were celebrating the purported losses that Xiaomi were costing GIC and Temasek. (Btw, interesting that so called patriotic S’poreans, think tax-dodging Oz resident Oxygen and S’pore-based Phillip Ang  love to celebrate losses that our SWFs make: maybe taz why they are cybernuts? What do you think?)

But they were silent when earlier this yr when Xiaomi was great again: Xiaomi’s IPO will make anti-PAPpyists frus.

Now that the IPO valuation will be US$70bn and not the mooted valuation of US$100bn, expect the cybernuts to point out that Temask and GIC lost money.

With enemies like this, the PAP doesn’t need friends. Sad.

Najib shows power that Lee Jnr can command as PM

In Political governance, Public Administration on 09/05/2018 at 11:28 am

Najib said in a recent interview “that Malaysia’s attorney-general later cleared him of wrongdoing”, adding for good measure, “you cannot just accuse somebody of being a thief or anything unless there is evidence”.

Bit rich of Najib to say AG had cleared him. The AG was planning to charge him but was sacked (OK, Ok officially he resigned because of ill-health) before he could charge Najib

As either FT or Economist said about Najib:

He has shored up his position by sacking dissenting senior government figures, curbing freedom of speech, hamstringing investigations, gerrymandering, and increasing handouts.

Accusations against Najib

1MDB, which since 2015 has been the subject of global probes into billions in lost funds.

Mr Najib himself faced allegations — which he denied — of misappropriating around US$700 million (S$929.45 million) that was channelled into his personal accounts before the 2013 election.

Now what Najib did to his AG and others, our  veryPM can likewise do here, if pushed in a corner.

The following (talking about our constitution) also applies to the constitutional framework in M’sia: hence Najib’s powers.

our constitution was drafted by ang mohs and locals steeped in the tradition that the ruling elite know best, certainly not the demos or mob or masses or ordinary people.

The drafters probably had liberal instincts but were elitists having gone to elite schools here or in the UK, and then to Oxbridge colleges. The mob are only allowed a choice of their dictator every 4-5 yrs. To further ensure the mob doesn’t get ideas beyond their station, it was drafted in such a way that all the colonial-era laws still applied and were “deemed” constitutionally legal.

In S’pore we have rule by law not the rule of law.   

And assuming Najib and BN lose the election but decides to stay in power, we’ll see what further powers he can wield though he’ll need the acquiescence of the commanders of the police and military, the AG, Chief Justice and the king. The last is the joker who can derail his plans to retain power if he and BN loses the election. While he’s a constitutional monarch, he also has to answer to the other sultans who elected him.

In S’pore, given the way Hali became president, #hardlymahpresidentit’s reasonable to doubt Hali ever disagreeing with the PM.

And I’m the guy who in March 2016 tot she could thrash TCB, and I said that I’d have voted for her despite having voted for TCB.

Sigh.

 

GST rise: Anti-PAP activists should take note

In Political governance on 09/05/2018 at 4:35 am

“Najib, he’s good,” said Matakahr bin-Ali, a 78-year-old rubber farmer. “Yes he put in the GST, but then he gives back to us.”

Mad Dog, Lim Tean (Got time to register another Oppo party but no time to deliver on promises after raising money from public for video and rally:Where’s yr defamation video and jobs rally Lim Tean?, Meng Seng, Tan Kin Lian, Tan Jee Say, Uncle Leong etc will KPKB at next GE campaign about coming GE rise.

But PAP will say, “Got even more and bigger rebates leh: trust us.”

Who you think majority of voters will trust? PAP, or Mad Dog, “Can’t keep promise” Lim Tean, “Fake data” Leong or the diabolical trio that helped PAP thwart voters who wanted Tan Cheng Bock as president?

Even I who have never voted PAP in my life, think I’d trust PAP more than I trust Mad Dog, “Can’t keep promise” Lim Tean, “Fake data” Leong or the diabolical trio.

With enemies like these, does the PAP need friends? What do you think?

My serious point is that these guys should sit down and shut up. They should allow people like Dr Paul, Pritam, Auntie, Show Mao (If he can remove his balls from his mouth), Chris K, and the young professionals in the SDP and WP to lead the battle in denouncing and rebutting the need for the GST rises.

Let others succeed where they failed.

A new generation should fight the PAP’s mixture of young and old leaders. They can at least seriously dent the PAP’s hegemony: but only if the Old Guard step aside.

 

Healthcare: user fees drives up costs

In Political governance, Public Administration on 08/05/2018 at 11:17 am

To show S’poreans that saying that they want to earn the right to lead is more than BS, the coming generation of leaders should start looking at Hard Truths that have become irrelevant or were wrong in the first place. They can do no worse than look at user fees in healthcare.

The PAP administration swears by user fees in healthcare because it says that not to have fees means that there’s a buffett syndrome: Welfare for insurers (cont’d)

It would argue

In the 1980s and 1990s many health economists were relaxed about out-of-pocket payments, also known as user fees. The World Bank saw them as a way of making sure money was not wasted, and of helping health-care consumers hold providers to account. There is merit to this argument. Research by Jishnu Das of the World Bank found that when Indian health workers saw patients in their private clinics, they spent more time with them and asked more questions than when the same health workers saw patients in public clinics.

Economist

———————-

I’ve blogged before that the PAP doesn’t need that many smart people as it follows most of the Economist’s prescriptions (except on hanging, drug legalisation, free media and a liberal democracy): PAP’s bible challenges “market-based solution”)

—————————————————–

Well its bible now says that it’s not a

good idea to rely mostly on user fees to fund a health system. They stop those who need care from seeking it. Concerns that users will consume too much health care unless they have to pay are overblown. And when people are not getting vaccinated to save a few cents, others suffer, too.

Worse

Out-of-pocket payments are also “cannonballs of inefficiency”, says Timothy Evans of the World Bank, which is now sceptical about user fees. If spending is pooled, it can insure more people against the risk of ill health and put pressure on providers to cut prices. Of the $500bn generated globally by user fees every year, the World Bank estimates that 40% is wasted.

https://www.economist.com/news/special-report/21740870-if-universal-health-care-become-ubiquitous-politicians-will-have-act-more

Re the issue that user fees

are also “cannonballs of inefficiency”

seems to apply here as DBS says govt should control costs of households esp in healthcare: See who’s telling govt to control healthcare costs/ What we be should be KPKBing about

M’sia: Now this is gerrymandering

In Malaysia on 08/05/2018 at 4:38 am

Anti-PAP types who allege the PM gerrymanders seats here to help his PAP should go see how it’s really done in M’sia. LOL.

These boundary changes now leave some opposition strongholds with populations five or six times higher than rural constituencies, which tend to support the governing Barisan Nasional coalition, dominated by Mr Najib’s UMNO party.

Some estimates show Barisan getting an extra eight of the 222 parliamentary seats from these changes, and that it could win a majority with as little as 20% of the popular vote.

Opposition supporters have for many years complained of unfair advantages like this. This time some believe the election is so rigged it is hardly worth contesting.

http://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-43985623

And then this happened to Nurul Izzar Anwar, star opposition candidate and eldest daughter of Anwar Ibrahim

recent and controversial boundary changes, and the inclusion of the votes of thousands of police officers who tend to support the government, have significantly reduced her prospects of holding Lembah Pantai.

But being the daughter of Anwar means Ms Nurul has been moved to contest a safe seat once held by her father, in opposition-dominated Penang.  Wants to change system of privilege? Must be joking right?

What Oxford really says about PJ Thum and Project Southeast Asia

In Uncategorized on 07/05/2018 at 10:44 am

(Or Best not to gild the lily/ Why liddat PJ?“)

In How PAP can tame cyberspace while making money (cont’d) I pointed out that the KPKBing about PJ Thum being roughed up by the PAP adminstration came from some (not many) Oxford academics and not the colleges that comprise Oxford University.

Here’s what Project Southeast Asia says about him:

Thum Ping Tjin (“PJ”) is co-ordinator of Project Southeast Asia, and a Research Fellow at the University of Oxford.

http://projectsoutheastasia.com/people/academics/pingtjin-thum

Here’s what Green Temple, an Oxford college, says about PJ Thum (the only reference on the University’s website about PJ)

Dr Pingtjin Thum, BA, MSc, DPhil
Senior Research Fellow, Sunway University, Malaysia / Research Fellow, Jeffrey Cheah Institute on South East Asia

He’s only visiting leh.

—————————————

Here’s the various types of the Green Temple’s Fellows

Interesting Visiting Fellows roles are not described. Compare that with the descriptions of the others.

—————————————-

Anyway his “real” posts are

Senior Research Fellow, Sunway University, Malaysia / Research Fellow, Jeffrey Cheah Institute on South East Asia

Anyone heard of these? yuenchungkwong?

Not Oxford university entities are they?

And no mention of his role as “Co-ordinator Project Southeast Asia”.

This leads conveniently to Project Southeast Asia. I had tot that Project Southeast Asia is a centre in Oxford like the Centre for Islamic Studies etc i.e. that it’s a corporate entity of the university like the colleges. It ain’t

Southeast Asia is a major player on the global stage, and growing ever more so. Recognising this, the University of Oxford has created Project Southeast Asia, with the ultimate aim of establishing a Centre for Southeast Asian Studies – a home for Southeast Asia in the heart of one of the world’s premier universities. The Project acts as a focal point for academic and research activity, bringing together many of the most distinguished scholars in the field of Southeast Asian studies, together with the best and brightest new academic talent, for the acquisition and dissemination of knowledge about countries in the Southeast Asian region.

While emphasising core disciplines of history, politics/international relations, anthropology, human sciences, medicine, and development studies, it also addresses and offers input into important contemporary issues facing Southeast Asia, such as regional security, infectious diseases, environmental change, ageing and sustainable development. It supports research, student degree programmes, library and archival resources, institutional exchanges and academic events, and ensures that the most talented students, regardless of need, will be able to study Southeast Asia at Oxford.

https://www.ox.ac.uk/about/international-oxford/oxfords-global-links/asia-south-east/asia-south-east-region?wssl=1

Coming back to PJ, here’s a long extract from the constructive, nation-building ST: it spoke to the university’s spokesman. To summarise he is no Research Fellow, only a research associate, who is not an employee of the university.

Historian Thum Ping Tjin is a research associate with Oxford University’s School of Anthropology and Museum Ethnography, said a university spokesman yesterday.

Responding to queries from The Straits Times, Oxford University’s head of communications Stephen Rouse said Dr Thum was awarded a doctorate in history by Oxford in 2011. He added that Dr Thum is a Visiting Fellow of the Fertility and Reproduction Studies Group within the school, and therefore an affiliate of the school.

Mr Rouse also said there are three categories of research associates with the school – anthropologists based in Oxford, recent doctorate graduates of the department, or social scientists based outside the university working with members of the department.

Dr Thum falls into the third category, he said, adding that research associates are not employees of the school or university. “But they are valued colleagues with whom we have shared research interests.”

Oxford’s response came after the Parliament Secretariat yesterday wrote to Dr Thum asking him to “clarify his academic credentials”.

In a press statement yesterday, the Office of the Clerk of Parliament said Dr Thum’s written representation to the Select Committee on deliberate online falsehoods had stated that he was a research fellow in history at Oxford. It noted that there have been varying accounts, citing how Dr Thum informed the committee during the hearing that he held a “visiting professorship in anthropology”, among other things.

ST 14 April 2018

It’s very clear that he was exaggerating his credentials. Funny because a doctorate from Oxford is a many-splendour thing, showing that the S’porean holder is no half-past six, balls licking, broen-nosing academic from a local university, but a patrician in high academic standing. He was gilding the lily and was caught with his pants down.

When I read about him a long time ago, I was suspicious about him calling himself “Research Fellow, University of Oxford” because my understanding has always been that Oxford-based Fellows are attached to a specific college or centre or school. No such thing as University of Oxford Fellow.

Whatever, with enemies like him, the PAP has no problem getting 60-70% of the popular vote.

Sad.

As my mongrel dogs said when I asked them their views on PJ, “To call himself a ‘Research Fellow’ or ‘visting professor’ when he’s only a ‘research associate'”  is like us calling ourselves purebreds: misrepresenting at the very least.”

 

 

 

Fake news spreader on anti-PAP “Press Freedom and Fake News S’pore” panel

In Uncategorized on 06/05/2018 at 10:16 am

When I read this on FB

New Naratif

Editor-in-Chief Kirsten Han speaking at the “Press Freedom and Fake News in Singapore” event, organised by the Community Action Network and Function 8 in commemoration of World Press Freedom Day this week, about fake news, independent journalism, and the politics of foreign funding, alongside Daniel Yap (formerly of “The Middle Ground”), and Braema Mathi (former President of MARUAH).

I couldn’t help but snigger at the irony of having Braema Mathi on the panel.

FB friends of Braema Mathi tell me that if anyone is a spreader of fake news, or more accurately distorted news, it is Braema Mathi. They suspect she doesn’t read a quarter of what she is posting.

Her latest whopper is to post that Roger Moore just died and that she is missing him. He died last yr.

She also recently implied the US used chlorine gas in the retaking of Mosul last year, like what the Syrian govt forces are accused of at Douma. Btw, she thinks that the Syrian govt forces didn’t do it.

She also likes to post articles disagreeing or casting doubt that the Russians were involved in the poisoning of a Russian who spied for the UK and his daughter.

And she hates Trump. But with enemies like him, Trump doesn’t need friends.

She is one of those useful idiots much-loved by Reds like a jnr minister’s uncle and father. He may disagree that they were commies but only in code: FT jnr minister disagrees that “Pa” was a justly detained commie?

Where are his balls?

Coming back to the ang moh tua kee, when Trump wins the Nobel Peace Prize, she’ll go mad. Or finally accept that that prize is BS. I mean Obama got it for being elected POTUS.

Oh and she hates the PAP. But with enemies like her, no wonder the PAP has 60-70% of the vote. At least 30% know BS when they see it.

Btw, she’s a fan girl of PJ Thum. But with fans like her, he doesn’t need enemies. More on how Oxford University describes him and Project Southeast Asia soon. And his “real” academic posts.

 

Gd advice for struggling S’poreans

In Financial competency, Financial planning on 06/05/2018 at 4:55 am

In fact for anyone who isn’t fithy rich.

“You need to use a different lens to look at this question of finances,” says Ken McKellar, partner at AGM Transitions, a consultancy, and former partner at Deloitte and EY. “Rather than thinking of how big an income you need, think of how small a cost you could get away with without major changes to your lifestyle. Be aggressive about the cost. We learnt that a lot of ‘fat’ had crept into our spending over the years, and I have heard the same from many others.”

He was talking in the context of retirement planning and living in retirement in the UK.

Anti-PAP Malay that ungrateful meh?

In Political governance on 05/05/2018 at 10:48 am

High Court recently threw out SDP assistant treasurer’s bid for Marsiling-Yew Tee by-election. Hali was the MP there before Why PAP thinks we need a Malay president?

One Faizal Maidin posted on FB 

Marsiling has one of the highest Malay Muslims population in Singapore but yet we have no Malay/Muslim MP to represent us. ZzZzZ This is unfair to us. We have voted for 4 MPs and not 3 ok.

He should go on his knees and thank the PAP for making a Malay a president when the voters want Dr Tan Cheng Bock to be our presient. But to be fair, maybe he thinks “Malay presidency” is “Calling a deer a horse”?

Related posts

— Good crowd at #notmypresident protest

— #hardlymahpresident

Wall St: Death Cross coming?

In Uncategorized on 05/05/2018 at 4:58 am

On Friday afternoon, the S&P 500 was up 1.5%  at 2,668 but overall it was slightly down on the week. The Dow Jones Industrial Average was up 1.6% All’s well it seems.

But on Thurs in NY the S&P 500 and the DJI were each down 1.3% at 2,602.92 and 23,605.75, for a time (S&P closed o.2% down while DJ flat )respectively. They were trading below their 200-day moving averages for the first time since early April.

Trading was also volatile on Friday, with both indices off initially before reversing.

Look up waz a Death Cross.

 

How PAP can tame cyberspace while making money (cont’d)

In Internet on 04/05/2018 at 10:52 am

The spate between no-class Charles Chong (representing the no-class PAP administration), and some lobbied (instigated? manipulated?) over-sensitive (Err did they watch the video of the exchange, or relied on hearsay? And from whom? PJ?) Oxford University academics (not colleges I note) and the non-entity Project Southeast Asia (more on this strange beast soon) reminds me of

“The unspeakable in pursuit of the uneatable!”

Oscar Wilde

“A plague o’ both your houses!”

Mercutio, Romeo and Juliet, Shakespeare

It further reminds me that the PAP are missing another two tricks from darkest, dysfunctional Africa. Making bloggers Pay and Pay and tieing them up in petty details are what the PAP can introduce from Africa.

I had in Fighting fake news while raising revenue where I pointed out that our meritocratic scholars in the PAP administration could learn from Uganda in darkest, dysfunctional Africa: they could tax users of social media.

Another country from that dark continent has two brilliant ideas

Tanzania’s government has come up with a scheme that could prove even more draconian [referring to Uganda’s plan]: it plans to charge hundreds of dollars a year for the privilege of blogging. As part of new online regulations, bloggers will be required to pay hefty registration and annual licence fees that add up to roughly $920 — prohibitive for most in a country with a nominal per capita income of under $900. In proportion to GDP, the Tanzanian registration and licence fee would be the equivalent of asking Americans to pay nearly $60,000 to start a blog.

FT

Somehow I don’t think, the Idiots S’pore, Terry Online’s Channel or TRE (even if TRE’s pilot plan to use visitors’ clicks to mine crpto coins takes off) can afford the kind of sums required. Different for the SDP (CIA? Or Soros?) and mothership (George Yeo?Philip Yeo?).

And I certainly can’t be bothered with the paper work Tanzania is insisting on

What are the rules?

All online publishers including bloggers, vloggers and podcasters have up to 5 May to register and are required to pay $480 for a three-year licence, plus an annual fee of $440.

Radio and TV stations must also apply for licences to share their content online.

To get a permit, applicants must fulfil a list of requirements, like submitting staff CVs and reveal their future plans.

They will also have to keep a record of visitors to their site.

The regulations say the aim is to clamp down on “hate speech” and indecent material with the same standard being applied to online users.

They broadly define a blog as “a website containing a writer’s, or group of writer’s own, experiences, observations, opinions including current news… images, video clips and links to other websites”.

http://www.bbc.com/news/world-africa-43867292

Vietnam: Where yr Samsung HP comes from

In Vietnam on 04/05/2018 at 4:00 am

OK most probably.

Samsung makes about half of its global output of smartphones in Vietnam, including its flagship Galaxy series. It employs some 100,000 people in the south-east Asian country and its output there accounts for roughly one-quarter of Vietnam’s export revenues.

FT

Imagine if Foxcomm and Apple decide to move iPhone manufacturing and assembly to Vietnam: bye bye Grandpa Xi.

Intel has a big plant there. It’s been there a long time.

Fake news law: Malays not stupid

In Malaysia on 03/05/2018 at 10:52 am

The Malays ruling M’sia show that authorities in SE Asia (S’pore included) got a point on need of a “fake news” law.

M’sia’s first use of its newly passed “fake news” law will have ang moh tua kees here wondering what hit them. They’ll have to admit that the actions of one Sulaiman (who pleaded guilty) shows the need for such a law even if it limits freedom of expression:

A Malaysian court has convicted a Danish citizen over inaccurate criticism of police on social media, the first person to be prosecuted under a new law against fake news.

Salah Salem Saleh Sulaiman, 46, was charged with spreading false news after he posted a video on YouTube accusing police of taking 50 minutes to respond to distress calls after the shooting of a Palestinian lecturer on 21 April.

Police said they took eight minutes to respond to the shooting in the capital, Kuala Lumpur. The charge against Sulaiman said he had “with ill intent, published fake news through a video on YouTube”.

Sulaiman, who was not represented at the court hearing, pleaded guilty, but said the video was posted in a “moment of anger” and he did not mean any harm. “I agreed I made a mistake … I seriously apologise to everybody inMalaysia, not just in the Malaysian police,” said Sulaiman, a Danish citizen of Yemeni descent.

From ang moh tua kees favourite newspaper https://www.theguardian.com/world/2018/apr/30/first-person-convicted-under-malaysias-fake-news-law

It’s a sad day for the ang moh tua kees here and the rest of SE Asia because

Governments elsewhere in south-east Asia, including Singapore and the Philippines, have also proposed laws aimed at clamping down on the spread of fake news, to the dismay of media rights advocates.

Trump’s Chinese allies in China trade war

In China on 03/05/2018 at 4:19 am

His fifth column in China, juz as China has US retailers and MNCs as their fifth column in the US (Don’t know what fifth column is? Think of what the PAP thinks of our ang moh tua kees esp one PJ Thum.).

Or how a Chinese boycott of U.S. goods could backfire.

Beijing is aware of the importance of American companies to China’s economy. Ernan Cui, a consumer analyst at the research firm Gavekal Dragonomics, said a boycott could have many victims.

“Due to the integration of the economies, whatever China does to the U.S. will end up hurting itself,” Ms. Cui said.

Lots of Chinese work for US MNCs directly and a lot more indirectly.

And notably, many of those products are made by Chinese workers. Factories in China assemble iPhones, stitch up Nike apparel and footwear and make Chevrolets and Fords. It isn’t clear how many jobs this creates, but the American Chamber of Commerce in China said that more than one-third of its 800-plus member companies have more than 1,000 employees in the country.

“China needs the U.S., the U.S. needs China,” said Max Baucus, a former United States ambassador to China. “We are joined at the hip economically.”

US cos are big investors

The United States has also supplied much of the investment underpinning China’s economic growth. Between 1990 and 2017, America pumped more than $250 billion into China, according to a report by the Rhodium Group and the National Committee on United States-China Relations.

“The U.S. multinationals have been playing a very critical part of China’s development story, providing investment, technology, brands,” said Erlend Ek, trade research manager of China Policy, a Beijing-based advisory firm.

“They have a very good relationship with each other.”

Then US cos help China become great.

There’s another reason that Beijing may be reluctant to try a boycott: American multinationals are aiding the Chinese government in some important projects. IBM and Walmart, for example, are collaborating with the e-commerce company JD.com and Tsinghua University to improve food safety in China, a priority for Beijing.

Thewn Chinese love US products like iPhones, McDonalds (edible),Starbucks coffee (even if it’s crap), KFC congee and chicken (both rubbish), and Nike shoes (made in China).

And finally they eat lots of meat. Cattle, chickens and pigs need imported feed and if US feed is banned or taxed heavily, feed (and meat) will be a lot more expensive.

Falling HDB prices: Mad Dog, Meng Seng etc don’t count yr chickens yet

In Property on 02/05/2018 at 11:20 am

Private property mkt is going thru the roof

The Republic confirmed its biggest quarterly surge in private home prices in nearly eight years on Friday (April 27) — a 3.9 per cent jump that beat an earlier estimate of 3.1 per cent, data from the Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA) showed.

This is the highest quarterly price growth since the 5.3 per cent quarter-on-quarter increase in the second quarter of 2010.  In comparison, prices of private residential properties rose 0.8 per cent in the fourth quarter of last year over the previous quarter.

Ms Tricia Song, Colliers International head of research for Singapore, noted that it was “rare to see such a wide variance between the actual and flash numbers”. Flash estimates are based on data from the first two months of the quarter.

Constructive  T

while the Housing and Development Board (HDB) resale market has experienced a contrasting fortune compared to the private with the HDB resale price index contracting by 0.8%  for January to March.

Analysts have said that the increase in housing grants, shorter waiting time for Build-To-Order flats in certain housing estates, a strong supply of new public housing units, and the Government’s pronouncement that it will not renew the leases of HDB flats when they run out are some of the factors pushing down HDB resale prices.

So Mad Dog, Meng Seng, Lim Tean (Collect money from public but Where’s yr defamation video and jobs rally Lim Tean?) and other cybernuts (active or paper) are celebrating the defeat of the PAP in next GE.

But they did not read the ending

In the next quarters, HDB resale prices are expected to eventually rebound, the analysts said.

Given the huge number of en bloc sales since last year, Mr Ismail predicts “a greater demand for HDB resale properties with some en bloc owners considering bigger sized resale flats in the second half of the year”.

For the full year, the analysts said they expect HDB resale prices to be flat or grow by up to 1 per cent.

Not as gd as private property but then GE will not be held next year but the year after: after Raffles200. There’ll be goodies galore for HDB flat owners, trust me.

As to Goh Meng Seng’s BS that he’ll reveal his plan to solve the 99-yr HDB lease “problem” during next GE campaign, he shouldn’t waste his time BSing us. The PAP administration can solve the problem with a stroke of the pen. But will it is the question? More on what PAP administration can do soon.

When CIA bombed Indonesia

In Indonesia on 01/05/2018 at 11:04 am

This

Charles Chong says historian Thum had ‘engineered’ support for himself, points to ‘coordinated attempt’ with ‘foreign actors’ to subvert parliamentary process

and the sebsequent KPKBing by the ang moh tua kees (“witch hunt”) reminded me of documented foreign interference in the affairs of SE Asian countries in the 1950s.

The story of an almost forgotten episode in the histories of the CIA and Indonesia. The CIA’s airforce was supporting rebels in Sulawesi.

http://www.warhistoryonline.com/guest-bloggers/pby-catalina-26-invaders-p-51-mustangs-cia-rebel-air-force-attacking-indonesia-1958-m.html

The CIA was also active in supplying arms to the Acheh rebels at the other end of Indonesia.

This was happening around the time the British detained people like Devan Nair and Lim Chin Siong here for subversion.

Then there was the incident related in Why PAP (and PMs) sue and sue a year later here. Might not be the CIA directly but weren’t the KMT friends of the CIA? 

“Just because you’re paranoid doesn’t mean they aren’t after you.”

― Joseph Heller, Catch-22

Double confirm: Volatility is back from the living dead

In Uncategorized on 01/05/2018 at 5:31 am

Last nite in NY, the S&P 500 ended 0.8% at 2,648, having earlier risen by as much as 0.5% earlier: A 1.3 point move in a single trading session.

“We are controlled and worried enough by women at the present time”

In Uncategorized on 30/04/2018 at 10:40 am

The reason why a British MP opposed the vote for women all those years ago.

— “We are controlled and worried enough by women at the present time, and I have heard no reason why we should alter the present state of affairs.”

He got a point.

LKY should have heeded this reason

— “You have at the present moment certain statistics which show that both the birth and marriage rate are decreasing.

“Can you adopt at this time a policy which might mean an immense destruction of the population of the country which it is essential should not only be retained, but increased.”

But I assume Mrs Lee told him to give womwn the vote or else. Btw, she made sure he ate simple disgestable food. No Straits food from his sisters when she was ruling the roost.

Other reasons other MPs gave for not giving women the vote:

— “Women are tremendously accessible, extraordinarily impressionable, noted for the adoption of any new thing, and for the easy acceptance of other people’s views.

— “Intuition is far more largely developed in women than in men, but instinct and intuition, although good guides, are not the best masters so far as Parliament is concerned.

“Parliament exists for the very purpose of opposing feelings, fancies, and inclinations by reason.”

— “I daresay that the idealism of the feminine mind and its deadly logic which we have all experienced in private life are qualities superior to those of men, but I do say that in governing a great country and in considering the problems which we have to consider every day in this House such qualities are not valuable, but destructive.”

http://www.bbc.com/news/uk-43740033