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Archive for 2019|Yearly archive page

HK protestors prove George Orwell’s point

In China, Hong Kong on 24/06/2019 at 2:18 pm

The announcement by Hong Kong’s chief executive Carrie Lam that she was suspending the proposal surprised many China-watchers, who had assumed that President Xi Jinping in Beijing would be reluctant to back down and lose face. The fact that Mr Xi decided to hit the pause button suggests that the Chinese president and the Hong Kong government have collectively realised that the greatest risk facing them now is not perceived weakness, but chaos and violence on the streets of Hong Kong that could have significant domestic and international repercussions.

Emphasis mine

Well George Orwell did write

Since pacifists have more freedom of action in countries where traces of democracy survive, pacifism can act more effectively against democracy than for it. Objectively the pacifist is pro-Nazi.

“No, Not One”, Adelphi (October 1941)

A few yrs later, he elaborated further about the uselessness of pacifism or civil disobedience where democracy is absent (emphasis mine)

[Gandhi] believed in “arousing the world”, which is only possible if the world gets a chance to hear what you are doing. It is difficult to see how Gandhi’s methods could be applied in a country where opponents of the regime disappear in the middle of the night and are never heard of again. Without a free press and the right of assembly, it is impossible not merely to appeal to outside opinion, but to bring a mass movement into being, or even to make your intentions known to your adversary. Is there a Gandhi in Russia at this moment? And if there is, what is he accomplishing? The Russian masses could only practise civil disobedience if the same idea happened to occur to all of them simultaneously, and even then, to judge by the history of the Ukraine famine, it would make no difference. But let it be granted that non-violent resistance can be effective against one’s own government, or against an occupying power: even so, how does one put it into practise internationally? Gandhi’s various conflicting statements on the late war seem to show that he felt the difficulty of this. Applied to foreign politics, pacifism either stops being pacifist or becomes appeasement. Moreover the assumption, which served Gandhi so well in dealing with individuals, that all human beings are more or less approachable and will respond to a generous gesture, needs to be seriously questioned. It is not necessarily true, for example, when you are dealing with lunatics. Then the question becomes: Who is sane? Was Hitler sane? And is it not possible for one whole culture to be insane by the standards of another? And, so far as one can gauge the feelings of whole nations, is there any apparent connection between a generous deed and a friendly response? Is gratitude a factor in international politics?

http://www.orwell.ru/library/reviews/gandhi/english/e_gandhi

Related posts:

Keeping power in a one-party state

Would this happen in a one-party state?

Did Hali ask Xi for this app when they met?

“There is freedom of speech, but I cannot guarantee freedom after speech”

 

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TKL shows how cheapskate and blur he is

In Uncategorized on 24/06/2019 at 8:38 am

And 5% of voters voted for him in PE 2011 helping him and Goh Meng Seng help the preferred PAP candidate to win?

Difficult to register for Business Times Online

I received an email asking me to subscribe to Business Times online for $0.99 per month.
I clicked on the link and proceed to register.
I had the trouble with the following:
a) They require my password to be at least 8 characters with capital and lower case.
b) I have to give my address with level and unit number.
After creating the password that match their requirement, I have to write it down somewhere – as it is not my usual password format.
Why do they need to have such a format? This is not something that hackers are interested in.
I could not pass through the address check. My address does not have a level and unit number.
They provided a telephone number and email address for me to seek help.
Before I could call their telephone number and hope that it does not get me to a “terrible call center”, I saw* that the subscription is $0.99 for 3 months and it will automatically revert to $34 a month (or thereabout) after that. This was too costly to me.
I abandon the registration process.
I wish our business organizations are more transparent in their operations*.

Tan Kin Lian

Nice to know that this cheapskate lost his $48,000 presidential deposit deposit. Must have hurt.


*I too have received the email. The caveat while in smaller print, is clearly visible. TKL either very careless, misrepresented the facts or he too cheapskate or vain to use spectacles.

 

 

Why Hongkies sang ‘Sing Hallelujah to the Lord’

In China, Hong Kong on 23/06/2019 at 1:39 pm

I refer to HK: See the people walk, Hear the people sing.

Hallelujah to the Lord” became the unofficial anthem of crowds protesting against a controversial proposed law that would allow people accused of crimes in China to be extradited to the mainland not because the protesting Hongkies are Christians, or are ang moh tua kees or because CIA and MI6 operatives taught the organisers of the protesters the song in boot camp.

And definitely not because the protesters want to annoy Grandpa Xi and the other Chinese leaders who are all atheists.

Maybe it could to shame and irritate his head prefect in HK? After all Carrie Lam was once head prefect in a convent school and this song could be to remind her that as a devoted Roman Catholic she should not be the HK running dog of the atheistic Chinese Communist Party?

Here’s why according to BBC

For Christians in Hong Kong, the hymn is a sign of faith but also of their concerns that it’s not only political but also religious issues that are at stake, should the bill ever pass.

And

The hymn was picked up by other protesters – soon even non-Christians were singing it.

Because

“People picked up this song as it is short and easy to remember,” Edwin Chow, 19, acting president of the Hong Kong Federation of Catholic Students, told the BBC. “There’s only one line: ‘Sing Hallelujah to the Lord’.”

Also

The protesters said they sang it hoping it would have a calming effect on police, and would help diffuse tensions.

This was especially needed after police had earlier fired tear gas and shooting rubber bullets towards protesters.

Finally

The song also acted as a political shield, of sorts.

“According to the law, any religious assemblies in public areas are not considered as illegal, so if people sing hymns together, it could actually work as a protection and guarantee that [they] stay safe,” said Mr Chow.

“Therefore people started to sing this song to protect themselves.”

Btw, in case Terry Xu or Mad Dog is thinking of starting up a church, this loophole doesn’t exist in S’pore. Related post: Seelan Palay: Sylvia Lim was right

 

 

AI robots already in charge

In Internet on 23/06/2019 at 9:43 am

Artificial intelligence is already so deeply embedded in our lives that we don’t notice it according to Amy Webb, a professor of strategic foresight at New York University’s Stern School of Business and author of “The Big Nine: How the Tech Titans and Their Thinking Machines Could Warp Humanity”.

We juz don’t notice it “because we mindlessly use it every single day as we like and share stories, send emails and texts, speak to machines and allow ourselves to be nudged,” she says.

Don’t believe her? FB’s automated “M suggestions” claims more than 100m people interact it with each month.

Btw, the 9 are Google, Microsoft, Amazon, Facebook, IBM and Apple from the US of A, and .Baidu, Alibaba and Tencent from China.

 

 

Amy Webb

 

Temasek, GIC got this right in our backyard

In GIC, Indonesia, Internet, Temasek on 22/06/2019 at 6:01 pm

Indonesia is really the place to be in e-commerce.

And Temasek is there: Indonesia: Temasek, Google & McKinsey singing from the same page

As is GIC via Bukalapak: an e-commerce unicorn: https://techcrunch.com/2019/01/18/bukalapak-raises-50m/

Btw, Go-Jek where Tenmasek has a stake has big plans in Thailand and Vietnam, as does Grab (where Temasek also has a stake).

 

 

Apple planning to leave China with help of Taiwanese Foxconn

In China on 22/06/2019 at 9:23 am

Yet more headaches for Grandpa Xi on top of having to deal with his spoiled bastard grandchildren from HK, and an uncouth ang moh kaw (or is it quai low?)

From FT’s Tech Scroll Asia

Apple has sounded out its major suppliers over the cost implications of shifting 15 to 30 per cent of its production capacity from China to south-east Asian countries as it prepares to restructure its supply chain, according to this scoop from the Nikkei Asian Review. Although the shift is yet to happen, the size of Apple’s supply chain in China — and the signal this potential move sends to others — makes this a vital issue.

Key Implications: The concerns of Apple over its exposure to China derive in part from the protracted trade tensions between Washington and Beijing. But even if such tensions are resolved, several sources said there would be “no turning back”. Apple has decided that China’s lower birth rate and higher labour costs add to the risks of overconcentration in one country.

Upshot: Apple’s move heralds what is likely to be a big shift of manufacturing supply chains from China to south-east Asia. Indeed, this is already under way. Foxconn, Pegatron, Wistron, Quanta Computer, Compal Electronics and key Apple suppliers have all been asked to evaluate options outside of China.

Earlier in the week, FT reported that Foxconn said it could help Apple, for example, move iPhone production out of China if necessary. Foxconn told companies worried about the trade war between Beijing and Washington that it can move electronics production for the US market out of China at short notice and said 25% of its total capacity is now outside of China.

Do PJ, Kirsten and friends still want Tun to bring democracy to S’pore?

In Uncategorized on 21/06/2019 at 3:31 pm

I refer to

According to Kirsten Han, PJ Thum “urged (Mahathir) to take leadership in Southeast Asia for the promotion of democracy, human rights, freedom of expression and freedom of information”.

Kirsten Han trying to defecate herself and PJ out of self-made crater

and am wondering if they still think he’s the Messiah to liberate S’pore from the PAP?

A day after the MH17 plane crash inquiry team announced murder charges against four men, Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad has condemned the decision as “ridiculous”.

However, Malaysia is itself part of the Dutch-led joint investigation team (JIT), which has been working on the criminal inquiry for years. A foreign ministry statement said it remained committed to the inquiry process.

https://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-48702115

Related posts:

Still urging Tun to take leadership in SE Asia; PJ, Kirsten?

Tun’s greatest achievement and real Kiling unhappy

 

HK: See the people walk, Hear the people sing

In China, Hong Kong on 21/06/2019 at 4:35 am

IT WAS PROBABLY the largest political protest ever staged in Hong Kong. It may have been the biggest in China’s history. Organisers reckon that about 1.9m people joined the demonstration on June 16th. Even during the unrest in Tiananmen Square three decades ago, no single protest approached that scale.

Economist

They sang in English, “Do you hear the people sing?” and “Sing Hallelujah To The Lord”.

Organisers say two million people have turned out for a demonstration in Hong Kong, the latest large protest against a controversial extradition bill.

But what did the protests look like on the ground?

We collated images taken within a short time of each other that show the extent of the crowds in Hong Kong on Sunday.

https://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-china-48655634

(Do look at the photos to see the scale of the protests.)

Which version would our Protection against Online Falsehoods and Manipulation say is fake? Grandpa Xi heard the Hongkies sing or Not fear of the people singing but fear of US growling made Xi chicken-out?

But maybe both reflect different facets of a very complicated situation.

What do u think?

Expect MAS to “manipulate” S$ lower

In Currencies on 20/06/2019 at 4:58 am

TD Securities recently said S’pore could shift to an easier stance (code for allowing S$ to weaken against US$ and other currencies) in October.

TD Securities expects plenty of central bank action from Asia this summer as US and Chinese tariffs against each other bite and other Asian economies become collateral damage. It says many Asian countries have room to act, given the relative stability in their currencies.

M’sia is likely to ease policy in July. India, Indonesia and Philippines are likely to ease by August. South Korea, Taiwan and Thailand are likely to ease later in the year.

And they will all say “We don’t target the exchange rate.”

Yesterday, Trump complained that the euro zone’s monetary policy is unfair, complaining of a weak euro

Asked whether he was starting a currency war, Mr Draghi [the president of the European Central Bank] responded that his only objective was to achieve the bank’s inflation target. “We don’t target the exchange rate,” he said. His audience burst into applause.

Economist

Asian central banks will copy and paste “We don’t target the exchange rate.”

And Trump will KPKB.

Related posts:

Winter is here, how big will the anti-PAP vote be?

Winter’s here, and it’s an Antarctic winter

 

S’pore: the canary in the coalmine/ Is the ground sweet for the PAP?

In Economy, Political governance, Public Administration on 19/06/2019 at 5:15 am

In Europe once upon a time, every team of coal miners going underground carried a caged canary. If the canary died, they got out ASAP because it meant that there there were poisonous gases that could kill them.

S’pore is the world’s canary when it comes to trade. We suffer earlier than other countries or cities when there’s a global trade slowdown.

As the FT reports,

A trade canary sings — Singapore’s non-oil exports recorded their third consecutive double-digit fall in May, with electronics shipments falling 31.4 per cent (the largest decrease since late 2008) after a 16.3 per cent drop in April.

Marc Ostwald at ADM says the slide in electronics exports sends a “dire signal” as it represents “a generally very reliable proxy for the semiconductor and telecoms sectors worldwide”.

Oxford Economics note that their “coincident and leading global trade indicators are continuing to trend downwards, and the latter has fallen to its lowest level since 2009”.

“While this does not mean that a global recession is around the corner, it suggests that global growth will remain sluggish in the near term and that export-orientated economies will continue to struggle.”

Heng has to do better than talking about cock about natural aristocrats (PAP ministers) partnering us plebs to make S’pore a better place. His 4G team needs 65% of the popular vote: the pass mark for bragging rights that they have the people’s mandate.

What are the headwinds other than a lousy economy going into a GE

— Another reason why ground is not sweet for the PAP.

And there’s the promised 2 percentage points GST rise .coming possibly, when the economy’s in a recession. This when the PAP govt has huge budget surpluses.

But the PAP has a good vote bank because Why S’poreans continue voting for the PAP to have 2/3 of parly seats;  PAP genius at work and Why grumbling about PAP govt, doesn’t mean S’poreans are disaffected and rooting for change.

Where the PAP votes are coming from

 

CPF interest rates: PAP govt cares for u, they really do

In CPF, Economy, Financial competency, Financial planning, Public Administration on 18/06/2019 at 11:02 am

The US 10-year real yield — a barometer of future growth expectations for the economy — has dropped below 0.4 per cent, eyeing its September 2017 nadir of 0.25 per cent.

FT a few days ago

CPFers get a better deal from the PAP govt.

Our inflation rate is about 1.37%.

But

Savings in the Special Account earn a guaranteed 4% while savings in the Ordinary Account only earn a guaranteed 2.5%. The lower interest rate offered by OA is due to its wider usage. For instance, funds in OA are allowed to be utilised to fund child’s tertiary education as well as CPF member’s property purchase. Such uses of the CPF funds are not applicable to the Special Account and a higher interest rate is therefore provided to compensate for its restricted use.

How to Optimise Singapore CPF: Ordinary Account into Special Account

2.5 – 1.37 = 1.13. 1.13 is the real return assuming that the CPF interest rate is only 2.5%. and we know it’s higher, don’t we?

And taz not all. Read, the bits I bolded

The interest rate on Ordinary Account (OA) monies is reviewed quarterly. OA monies earn either the legislated minimum interest of 2.5% per annum, or the 3-month average of major local banks’ interest rates, whichever is higher.

The OA interest rate will be maintained at 2.5% per annum from 1 July 2019 to 30 September 2019, as the computed rate of 0.60% is lower than the legislated minimum interest rate.

And​

The interest rate on Special and MediSave Account (SMA) monies is reviewed quarterly. SMA monies earn either the current floor interest rate of 4% per annum or the 12-month average yield of 10-year Singapore Government Securities (10YSGS) plus 1%, whichever is higher. In view of the continuing low interest rate environment, the Government has decided to further extend the 4% floor rate for interest earned on all SMA monies for another year until 31 December 2019.

Consequently, the SMA interest rate will be maintained at 4% per annum from 1 July 2019 to 30 September 2019, as the computed rate of 3.37% is lower than the current floor interest rate of 4% per annum.

And

The interest rate on Retirement Account (RA) monies is reviewed annually. RA monies credited each year will be invested in newly-issued Special Singapore Government Securities (SSGS) which will earn a fixed coupon rate equal to either the 12-month average yield of the 10YSGS plus 1% computed for the year, or the current floor rate of 4% per annum, whichever is higher. The interest rate earned by RA monies is the weighted average interest rate of the entire portfolio of these SSGS, which is adjusted in January each year to take into account the coupon rates payable by the new SSGS issuance. In view of the continuing low interest rate environment, the Government has decided to further extend the 4% floor rate for interest earned on the RA for another year until 31 December 2019.

The average yield of the 10YSGS plus 1% from November 2017 to October 2018 is 3.38% per annum. As this is below the current floor rate of 4% per annum, new SSGS issued in the year of 2019 will pay a fixed coupon of 4%.

Consequently, the RA interest rate from 1 January 2019 to 31 December 2019 will be maintained at 4% per annum.

Above from CPF website

Vote wisely.

Related posts (Even an anti-PAP TOC writer appreciates that the PAP govt cares):

CPFLife: PAP govt cares for u, really they do

TOC’s “Correspondent” shows that PAP govt really cares for S’poreans

Vaping: PAP govt cares for u, really they do

Merdeka Generation: PAP cares for u, really they do

Groceries: PAP cares for u, really they do

KPMG (Hyflux’s and Temasek’s auditor) latest US problem

In Accounting, Corporate governance on 18/06/2019 at 6:58 am

KPMG has agreed to pay U$50m to settle claims by the Securities and Exchange Commission that it went back to alter audits it had already completed, after using stolen data from the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board, an accouting watchdog that revealed they were about to be inspected.

The SEC also found that numerous KPMG audit professionals had cheated on internal training exams by sharing answers and manipulating test results.

Related post: Hyflux: “going concern” BS/ KPMG again and again

 

 

 

PAP cares for S’poreans, really they do: Look at Save the Children’s Global Childhood Report

In Internet on 17/06/2019 at 2:02 pm

(Part of an occasional series)

About two months ago, TOC, other cybernut publications, social media cybernuts and even a ex-wannabe IB member* living in Finland on welfare were up in arms over the constructive, nation-building MSM’s reports on S’pores top ranking in the Save the Children’s Global Childhood Report.

I was wondering why they were upset until I read in the FT recently

Reasons to be cheerful Singapore is the top country for taking care of its children, according to Save the Children’s Global Childhood Report. More children all over the world are surviving past their fifth birthday than at any time in the last twenty years; more than ever before eat well enough to avoid stunting; more are in education; and more are safe from violence.

The PAP govt in the alternative but parallel universe these anti-PAP types live in cannot do anything gd for S’poreans. So when reality intrudes, they get upset and fake the news. Why? Read Terry Xu and cybernuts are really PAPpies


*He and ex-ST wannabe Seth Lord turned wannabe Jedi, its alleged wanted more than going rate to be part of IB but were allegedly told off to bugger off because mothership was better than them and wasn’t demanding as much money as them. He had to migrate to Finland, his wife’s country, because that’s the only way his kids can have a good but free education. In S’pore, they could only make it to “Every school a good school” neighbourhood school. And, the parents couldn’t afford to send them to the int’l schools here.

Interesting post: How to make a school good?

HK demonstrations: What I’d like to know

In China, Hong Kong on 17/06/2019 at 4:51 am

How many of the protesters are mainland tourists or long term residents of HK from China.

The crowds are massive, no doubt about it. And Hongkies are really upset, no doubt about it: Not fear of the people singing but fear of US growling made Xi chicken-out.

But I’m curious about whether there are substantial numbers of mainlanders in the crowds, who are there really to protest against Xi.

The tourist numbers from China are staggering, fyi,

From January to November last year, about 58.6 million tourists visited Hong Kong, up 10.7 per cent from the previous year. Among them, 45.9 million were mainland tourists, an increase of 14.2 per cent from the same period in 2017.

In November, the number of mainland day trippers jumped 40.3 per cent year on year to a record 2.9 million, and accounted for 86.5 per cent of the city’s total of same-day arrivals.

Alan Au, a member of a Hung Hom community group, said it was common to see 300 mainland tourists blocking the streets as they waited for coaches in some parts of the district.

SCMP in January 2019

Not fear of the people singing but fear of US growling made Xi chicken-out

In China, Hong Kong on 16/06/2019 at 1:28 pm

Further to this, Grandpa Xi heard the Hongkies sing, the truth seems to be a lot more complicated.

No, people power didn’t make Xi’s head prefect in HK suspend, as she claimed. rather than withdrawn the extradition bill, arguing the amendment was well intended but had been poorly communicated to the stupid ang moh tua kee Hongkies.

It all has to with America being the tua kee capable of destroying HK’s economy and damaging China. (Today, HK contributes a  mere 3% of China’s GNP, down from 20% in 1997 but when winter’s arrived in the form of an economic slow down and a trade skirmish with the US, every little bit helps.)

[T]he US, began eyeing the territory as another possible stick with which to beat Beijing in the trade war. Congress on Thursday introduced a bipartisan Hong Kong Human Rights and Democracy Act that could remove the city’s unique trading privileges with the US if the government did not uphold its freedoms.

FT

As the BBC reported

US lawmakers have introduced a bill to amend the Hong Kong Policy Act of 1992. The amendment requires the US Secretary of State to “issue an annual certification of Hong Kong’s autonomy to justify special treatment” by the US.

“The bigger issue is probably that the global perception of Hong Kong as a separate part of China is under threat. And that includes official recognition of Hong Kong as a separate customs, immigration, tax and legal jurisdiction,” said David Webb, editor of Webb-site.com and long-time resident of Hong Kong.

“If Hong Kong loses its separate status then, for example, all of the duties that America has applied to Chinese exports would apply to Hong Kong exports. And any prohibitions on transfers of high grade technology to China would apply to Hong Kong as well.”

https://www.bbc.com/news/business-48618585

The U-turn is a humiliation for Xi and Beijing. The people of HK will suffer.

Related post: Keeping power in a one-party state

 

Grandpa Xi heard the Hongkies sing

In China, Hong Kong on 16/06/2019 at 5:03 am

And backed off.

His head prefect in HK emphasised she had suspended rather than withdrawn the bill, arguing the amendment was well intended but had been poorly communicated to the stupid ang moh tua kee Hongkies. Ms Carrie Lam, Hong Kong’s chief executive, was the head prefect in her HK convent school, really.

This song is not allowed to be streamed in China, but the Hongkies sang it as they protested and won a victory that they did not expect to win.

Do you hear the people sing?
Singing the songs of angry men?
It is the music of the people
Who will not be slaves again!
When the beating of your heart
Echoes the beating of the drums
There is a life about to start
When tomorrow comes!
Will you join in our crusade?
Who will be strong and stand with me?
Somewhere beyond the barricade
Is there a world you long to see?
Then join in the fight
That will give you the right to be free!
Do you hear the people sing?
Singing the songs of angry men?
It is the music of the people
Who will not be slaves again!
When the beating of your heart
Echoes the beating of the drums
There is a life about to start
When tomorrow comes!
Will you give all you can give
So that our banner may advance
Some will fall and some will live
Will you stand up and take your chance?
The blood of the martyrs
Will water the meadows of France!

Do you hear the people sing?
Singing the songs of angry men?
It is the music of the people
Who will not be slaves again!
When the beating of your heart
Echoes the beating of the drums
There is a life about to start
When tomorrow comes

The bad news is that the students and others who supposedly sang this song in 1848 were killed in the French predecessor of Tiananmen.

But it’s a famous victory still for the Hongkies. So let’s give them three cheers. And hope for the best.

Streaming — S’pore tua kee

In Internet on 15/06/2019 at 1:50 pm

In Asean

Where China can make America Cry Uncle

In China on 15/06/2019 at 5:02 am

Stop its students from studying in the USA

The United States is the number one destination for Chinese students seeking to study abroad.

They make up one-third of the total international body in the US and pay significant sums to study at top institutions.

BBC report

Serious money: billions

What TOC doesn’t tell about “victim” it’s championing

In Internet on 14/06/2019 at 1:55 pm

Further to Fake news the TOC way/ History is very complicated, TOC, cybernuts juz plain jealous isit? and Why TOC’s Danisha Hakeem is a menace to the credibility of alt media, here’s more on how TOC does fake news.

A Singaporean man, who is a retired teacher and a well-known musician, is suing Malaysia’s Immigration Department for RM2.67 million over his 37-day detention in an over-crowded and badly-maintained cell.

Puis Gilbert Louis, who will turn 68 next month, said that his nightmare started when the immigration officers raided his house in Johor Bahru on 9 October 2018 and arrested him.

Based on his statement of claim filed by his lawyer Arun Kasi, the man who owns a valid visa to be in Malaysia until 2 November 2018, was in the house with four other individuals, and one of them was his female friend from the Philippines who also holds a valid visa.

However, the additional three people in the house were friends of his Filipino friend and he is unaware of their origin or their immigration status.

TOC

What TOC doesn’t tell us is that Gilbert Louis has a history of violence against others that  he claims were caused by an ISD-inplant. In particular, he was jailed for six yrs for assaulting his then-wife’s lawyer. She wanted a divorce but he claimed that the lawyer instigated the divorce: so he beat up the lawyer (a lady, I think).

He also has a history of mental illness, although he denies that there’s anything wrong with him. He says the ISD fixes him via the implant: This fan should join Ravi in Woodbridge.

 

 

Winter’s here, and it’s an Antarctic winter

In Economy on 14/06/2019 at 6:43 am

Further to Winter is here, how big will the anti-PAP vote be?, we now know the winter is really bad.

Retrenchments rose in the first quarter of the year, driven by losses in the manufacturing sector, the Ministry of Manpower (MOM) said on Thursday (Jun 13).

According to MOM, retrenchments increased from 2,510 in the previous quarter to 3,230 in the first three months of 2019.

Read more at https://www.channelnewsasia.com/news/singapore/labour-market-held-up-in-q1-2019-retrenchments-up-mom-11622978

Stay tuned for my analysis on what the PAP govt will do to make sure that the 4G team will get 65% of the popular vote: the pass mark for bragging rights that they have the people’s mandate.

Winter is here, how big will the anti-PAP vote be?

In Economy, Political economy, Political governance on 13/06/2019 at 11:19 am

Economists again lowered their guesstimates  for S’pore’s expected growth in 2019 after the year’s first quarter saw its slowest growth in nearly a decade, the latest economic survey from the central bank said on Wednesday. The economists guess this year’s GDP to be 2.1%, down from the previous forecast of 2.5 per cent.

This follows the S’pore’s Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) – which measures manufacturing activity and sentiment – declined 0.4 point from the previous month to 49.9 in May, said the S’pore Institute of Purchasing and Materials Management (SIPMM) on Monday (Jun 3). This is the first contraction in 32 months or since 2016.(Fyi, a PMI reading above 50 indicates expansion, while one below the benchmark line points to contraction.)

Worse according to a report released by the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales (ICAEW) and financial forecasting firm Oxford Economics released around the same time as the PMI data

Export-dependent Singapore is expected to be hurt the most among major South-east Asian economies, as fears of more trade tariffs between the United States and China set in.

Singapore’s economy is projected to slide from the 3.1 per cent growth last year to 1.9 per cent this year, before recovering slightly to 2.2 per cent in 2020.

Singapore’s projected performance this year falls below the 4.8 per cent growth forecast for the year across the region.

Why Milliennals will vote for the PAP

 

 

 

Indian bull? Sold a ton of BS

In India on 13/06/2019 at 5:11 am

Fake stats on growth rates:

Arvind Subramanian, a veteran economist who advised the Indian government from 2014 to 2018, said that the country’s average annual growth in gross domestic product between 2011 and 2017 was in fact around 4.5 per cent, against official estimates of 7 per cent.

His findings were presented in a research paper published by the Center for International Development at Harvard University’s Kennedy School, which found that the correlations between 17 independent indicators of economic activity and GDP broke down after 2011, leaving India an outlier compared to other countries’ economic data.

FT

Btw, I’m still a holder of Ascendas India: biz trust with office space in IT parks. Good yield and price moves in the right direction.

Hyflux auditor in s*** house yet again

In Accounting, Corporate governance on 12/06/2019 at 11:18 am

Must be KPMG again

India is pushing for a five-year ban on Deloitte and KPMG over allegations the firms helped conceal bad loans at Infrastructure Leasing & Financial Services, a major infrastructure and finance group whose default last year triggered a credit crisis.

FT

Related posts:

Time investors to put pressure on Hyflux’s auditor?

Hyflux: “going concern” BS/ KPMG again and again

Hyflux on investor losses: “Not our fault, banksters at work”

Beer, glorious beer

In Uncategorized on 12/06/2019 at 5:43 am

Beer is being marketed as a wellness drink to enjoy after a tough workout.

FT

No wonder, the Hash Harriers here have a reputation for boozing after a run. They knew it was a wellness drink long before the beer cos: must be ’cause of the many medicos running.

Fake news the TOC way/ History is very complicated

In Internet on 11/06/2019 at 11:24 am

Last week, TOC and its fellow anti-PAP cybernuts discredited themselves thrice over with the voters the Oppo needs to win over in any general election (the PAP voters who voted for Tan Cheng Bock in PE 2011 who but for TKL, Goh Meng Seng and Tan Jee Say would have been president: really fixing the PAP).

TOC, using Vietnamese and Cambodian state media reports (Vietnam did not invade Cambodia as claimed by PM, these reports screamed) as their source material, pictured PM as getting his history wrong. The cybernuts went into overdrive dissing PM’s lack of knowledge of the “liberation” of Cambodia by Vietnam.

When the complicated truth emerged on cyberspace, showing that TOC and friends were propagating fake news, TOC and the cybernuts changed tack. They then said PM should not have upset the people of Vietnam and Cambodia with his comments. Example:

Sivakumaran Chellappathere was absolutely no need to mention what he should know clearly to be a diplomatic minefield. He could of course have had continued to maintain his stand on that matter without ever mentioning it.

When this didn’t wash with the target audience, they changed the conversation accusing those who disagreed with their view of history of calling them “traitors” (There were some PAP nutters, the PAP version of TOC and cybernuts, using the  “t” word, but not enough to tar people like me who disagree with TOC’s and the cybernuts’ view that Vietnam liberated Cambodia): when they were juz patriotic S’poreans who believed in the truth.

Truth, what truth? Their truth was to swallow uncritically what the Vietnamese and Cambodian state media said. Why are they so uncritical of the state media of really repressive regimes? Because these media attack the PM and his PAP govt? (Related post “Licking the ass of the enemy of my enemy”)

Calvin Cheng got it about right when he posted on FB

I wonder why so many anti-Government people are willing to take the side of foreigners, during this storm in a teacup regarding PM Lee’s remarks on Vietnam and Cambodia.

The issue is actually very simple.

Did Vietnam invade Cambodia?

Yes.

Whether you invade to liberate (Current Vietnam and Cambodian point of view) or invade to set up a puppet Government (the prevailing view then), it’s still an invasion right ?

Why is Vietnam angry?

Because they don’t want to be called invaders.

Why is Cambodia angry ?

Because PM Hun Sen was one of the 7 central committee members in the pro-Vietnam Government that Vietnam set up. If he admits it’s an invasion, then he is a collaborator with invaders. So he can never say it was an invasion, but rather he was a Cambodian patriot who came to power with Vietnamese help.

Did the Vietnamese invasion stop a murderous regime, that of Pol Pot?

Yes.

But if the international community back then allowed Vietnam to invade Cambodia to overthrow the Khmer Rouge on the basis of ‘liberation’, what was to stop communist Vietnam from invading Thailand to liberate them from the bourgeoisie capitalists ? And then Malaysia? And then Singapore?

That’s why ASEAN had to oppose it on principle. Even if the consequences in Cambodia were benign.

Who says choices in international relations are easy ?

Finally, why did PM Lee mention it when writing a condolence note for Thai Gen Prem?

Because that was one of Gen Prem’s biggest achievements – staring down the Vietnamese across the border and opposing them, knowing that his country could be next.

So that’s a simple summary of the issues.

No need to write long op-eds and posts to over-complicate.

Just silly opportunists looking to obfuscate, confuse, and to make people angry with PM Lee.


When I said Calvin Cheng was a dickhead

Riposte to Calvin Cheng’s defence of UA

Calvin, Amos & other cyber-vermin: the global perspective

Why MLC has to talk about Calvin

When I agreed with him

When being a minister turns from a calling into a job for life

Kee Chiu Cybernuts who want to migrate to Bangladesh

HIV data leak: Calvin Cheng is right again


All in all, TOC is proving to be a better friend of the PAP then even TKL, TJS and Meng Seng. TOC is a really useful idiot. or maybe Terry and his TOC team are as mad as M Ravi, when he’s not taking his medicine? More evidence that being anti-PAP is bad for yr mental health

SingPass technical support versus that of OCBC and HSBC

In Banks, Internet on 11/06/2019 at 7:00 am

But first, HSBC is boosting the headcount of its wealth management team in Asia. The focus is here, where the banks says it will launch new digital initiatives this year.

The bank should ensure that staff are trained in PR as well in the technical details. I have e-banking accounts with OCBC and HSBC. The OCBC staff are not that good in technical support as the HSBC staff, who really know their stuff. But when it comes to telling client about the features, the OCBC staff are really great.

As for SingPass support, what can I say? I had another bad experience yesterday. Gal hadn’t a clue. Worse gal never called back despite promising to call back later in the day: still waiting. Btw, a tech mole helped me solve the problem I had, a problem caused by the SingPass system. I’ll provide details later this week.

But for now, I can use SingPass: no thanks to the staff or the system.

Related post:  SingPass sucks, really sucks (Cont’d)

SingTel Prepaid: SMS giving wrong info

In S'pore Inc, Telecoms on 10/06/2019 at 11:02 am

To get users to top-up unnecessarily?

A friend who uses a pre-paid SIM card because he doesn’t use his mobile phone that often told me that on 4 May he topped up his Singtel Hi card ($15) successfully. On 7 May, he got an SMS message saying that there was less then $2 in the Hi card account. He was shocked as he hadn’t made or received any call since the top-up, and had received only two SMS messages (excluding the SMS confirming the top-up), prior to SingTel’s SMS message.

He tried to access his account via the Hi card website but he could not key-in his mobile number because only 7-digit tel numbers could be keyed in. I kid u not, I tried to access and only 7-digit numbers could be keyed in. Know any S’porean with a 7-digit HP number?

He then tried calling on his mobile a SingTel toll free number to check his balance. He had a bit of a problem accessing his account, but finally got thru. He was told by a bot that he had $16 in the account.

Was the SMS message an honest mistake?

He (and I) have our doubts. Prior to this incident, whenever he got such a message, he topped up because he assumed he’s really running out of $. This time, the message came juz after he had topped up. The honest mistake in his view was sending him a top-up message juz after he had topped up, instead of waiting a week or so. Adding to our suspicions is that in mid April he had topped up by $10 his account, and he doesn’t remember using the phone that much.

What do u think?

Btw, my mum’s maid had recently received such a message, shortly after topping up last month. She went on to ask me to top up her card thinking that she had used most of her the earlier, recent, top-up. In her case, knowing her, she might have really used up the money. After what happened to my friend, I told her to keep me posted the next time she receives a message that she has less than $2 in her account. I’ll investigate.

To be continued.

SingPass sucks, really sucks: Saga continues

In Internet, Public Administration on 10/06/2019 at 7:17 am

I have yet to receive my new one-time password, despite KPKBing last Monday and doing the necessaries: SingPass sucks, really sucks (Cont’d)

But to be really fair, Wednesday was a public holiday, and SingPass promises a response within five working days. If by this evening, I don’t get my password via the post, I go KPKBing tomorrow morning. Doubtless Singpost will be blamed.

Another reason to ban e-scooters

In Public Administration on 09/06/2019 at 7:59 am

Further to UK got this right, S’pore wrong and LTA: What a lot of bull, another reason to ban e-scooters

Motorised versions of children’s kick scooters are notoriously unsafe. Their silent motors catch pedestrians and other road users unawares. A study by the Portland Bureau of Transportation concluded that e-scooters get into accidents 22 times as often as cars do, and 44 times as often as motorbikes. Another, by the city of Austin, found that one in three users is hurt on their first go. They are also increasingly unwelcome.

https://www.economist.com/business/2019/06/06/electric-scooter-startups-are-becoming-more-cautious

Chinese cuisine with German characteristics

In China on 09/06/2019 at 4:59 am

Steamed dumplings filled with German sausage and sauerkraut. Sounds yummy.

Aldi, a German owned supermarket catering to cheapskates in Europe, the UK and the USA, has juz opened two stores in Shanghai. On sale are steamed dumplings filled with German sausage and sauerkraut alongside chicken feet and salted duck eggs. And cheap European wine and beer from the Aldi’s house brands are also available

Techs are humongous

In Banks, Energy, Financial competency on 08/06/2019 at 2:34 pm

 

Winners, losers this week

In Commodities, Currencies, Energy, Financial competency, Gold on 08/06/2019 at 4:37 am

Need CoE or not?

In Uncategorized on 07/06/2019 at 1:23 pm

Volocopter, a German startup, will be conducting trials of its flying car in S’pore later this year, with a view to starting an air-taxi service.

Grab and Gojek got competition.

Why is Tun full of gas?

In Energy, Malaysia on 07/06/2019 at 4:04 am

Because M’sia’s the world’s third biggest exporter of gas. Never realised this until yesterday.

SPH, MediaCorp can cull another 90% from their newsrooms

In Internet, Media on 06/06/2019 at 1:28 pm

Juz use Radar (Reporters and Data and Robots). Stories generated by the semi-automated news agency often make the front page of local newspapers in the UK, FT reports.

Given that most of our constructive, nation-building media’s reports are copy and paste of the PAP govt’s and its agencies, or corporate releases, do we really still need that many zombies?

Amnesty Int’l practiced torture

In Uncategorized on 06/06/2019 at 5:24 am

Amnesty Int’l has no moral authority to lecture S’pore govt, or any other govt.

Amnesty Int’l’s managers “tortured” its staff leading to one, possibly two suicides

Gaëtan Mootoo, a long-term employee, committed suicide, leaving a note blaming work pressures. Another staff member committed suicide shortly afterwards, although inquries found no evidence that the death was work-related.

https://www.economist.com/business/2019/06/02/charity-begins-at-work

Seriously this was how bad things were:

The working environment at the organisation was described as “toxic”, there was widespread bullying of staff, a bunker mentality among senior management and 39% of employees developed mental or physical health issues as a result of their work.

Ang moh tua kees must be proud of AI’s actions. Why are they not shouting, “Torturing yr employees in best human rights practice”?

GIC bitten once, still not shy?

In Banks, GIC on 05/06/2019 at 10:47 am

Taz GIC when it comes to buying Swiss Banks.

It bot a 3% stake in Swiss private bank Julius Baer, in what FT says @is in a vote of confidence for the bank after months of lacklustre performance”.

FT went on

GIC was previously a large shareholder in UBS. Having purchased hybrid debt instruments in the bank during the financial crisis, the fund became its largest shareholder after the holding converted to equity. The fund sold off the bulk of its stake two years ago, however, after the investment failed to perform.

Related posts

GIC: Loss of S$5.2bn on combined UBS and Citi investments

What Mad Dog Chee doesn’t say about GIC’s UBS investment

Winter is round the corner

In Financial competency on 05/06/2019 at 4:48 am

Morgan Stanley warns on growing risk of US market “downturn”. It says its market cycle gauge moved from “expansion” to “downturn” for the first time since 2007.

Waitain fans: Muslims cannot be, but can Malays be ?

In Uncategorized on 04/06/2019 at 7:25 am

As Muslims end their period of healthy living (dieting, and no booze and smoking) this evening, I tot that the above issues are topical.

“Muslims cannot be Waitain fans” is a reasonable reading of what the Singapore Islamic Scholars and Religious Teachers Association (Pergas) said about the relationship between Islam and black metal music. Pergas

has issued religious guidelines on black metal, a subgenre of music that has been thrust into the spotlight after Swedish black metal band Watain was banned from performing here.

In a media release dated March 22, it stated that elements of black metal are “clearly in opposition to Islamic teachings” and that such music may lead to the glorification of Syaitan, or the devil, and “to the level of worshipping him as God”.

ST

“The band is infamous for their Theistic Satanist views and for their live shows which involve pyrotechnics, candles, Satanic rituals, animal carcasses, and blood,” according to their Wikipedia entry.

Need I say more about real Muslims being Watain fans? If professing Muslims claim to be Watain fans, they are BSing about being Muslims.

Pergas was reacting to remarks by Minister Shan after Watain’s performance was banned, upsetting its Malay fans.

“You have a group of Malay young men, showing the one-finger sign, supporting the group,” CNA quoted the minister.

“If a group of Chinese went and showed the finger sign and said that we should allow it – how would you all have felt? It is the same.”

As the photo has gone viral “across the Christian community”, Shanmugam said that it was crucial to show that the picture does not represent what the Muslim community thinks. “They won’t realize that this a small group of Malays, but they may think, is this what Muslims think of us? So now we have to send the message that this is not what the Muslim community thinks. These are black metal group supporters, they are not the mainstream community.”

Watain ban: playing the easily offended game can backfire

Pergas deserves a gold medal (or a beer and a cigar) for side-stepping the minister’s challenge, but in a way he cannot fault them for. Got good lawyers?

Now to shumething more serious.

Note that under the constitution here unlike that of M’sia’s, Malays need not be Muslims to be considered Malays. So Malays can be Watain fans? But since they must pass the community acceptance test (see below), if the Malay community only accepts Muslims as Malays (as seems to be the practice), there are no Malay Watain fans because they are not Muslims.

Below is an extract from Why PAP thinks we need a Malay president? on who is or can be a Malay:

According to law professor Kevin Tan in a talk at the Institute of Policy Studies (IPS) Forum on The Reserved Presidential Election on Sept. 8, the definition of “Malay” in the Constitution is anomalous because he says“who is a Malay?” is a highly problematic legal question.

Source: Singapore Statutes Online

“With Malay candidates, it gets even more interesting, because I think back in 1988, this formula when it was first brought up, they already recognised that it was almost next to impossible to define who is or is not a Malay…Because it is a social construct, we make it up, about race, about who is and is not a Malay, or Chinese or so on. It is actually socially constructed. In the case of the Malay, it actually says, a person belonging to the Malay Community means any person and here nobody else has this phrase ‘of the Malay race or otherwise’. So this means that I, meaning Kevin Tan can say I am Malay, even though I am not of Malay stock, theoretically. “

My take on the “Malay” race: no such race.

 

 

SingPass sucks, really sucks (Cont’d)

In Internet, Public Administration on 03/06/2019 at 5:25 pm

Further to SingPass sucks, really sucks (where I explained that I was given an invalid one-time password by SingPass to reset the password of my dormant, unused SingPass account) when I called the SingPass call centre this morning, what I was told had my blood pressure up to 180/100.

I was told that I could not have been given the password I was given because it was all numeric: it should be alpha numeric. I was then told that it would take another 10 days before I could use my SingPass account. Of course, it was explained, I could go down to the Marine Parade SingPass counter and sort the issue out on the spot: which defeats the purpose of a digital nation, doesn’t it?

The Chinese (local or M’sian, I’m not sure) gal could also not answer my question, “What assurance do I have that the single-use password I will given again, is not rubbish: like the one sent to me?”

I demanded to talk to someone more senior. It took 10 minutes before someone dared pick up the phone. The Malay lady who came to my assistance assured me (after receiving my reset request digitally), that there should not be a mistake this time in the password provided (Let’s wait and see) and that by next Monday, I should be able to use SingPass to do stuff (Let’s wait and see). I also found out that one-time password can be all numeric.

Says a lot about quality of staff training, that I was given wrong info.

Morocco Mole (Secret Squirrel’s sidekick) assures me that his second cousin removed working in SingPass tells him that a true-blue anti-PAP cybernut working in IT forgot to ensure that when the password was sent to me that the system would accept it. Has happened before because the cybernut spends almost all his working time reading TOC, TRE and The Idiots, and posting comments on these sites.

 

Older HDB flats: How much value is lost in under 2 yrs

In Property, Public Administration on 03/06/2019 at 7:27 am

Windbag Tan Kin Lian who lost his deposit in 2011 PE but who helped the PAP’s preferred candidate become president has provided some interesting data on how fast a flat can lose value.

A Miss X, he reports, has a HDB flat in Telok Blangah … with a market valuation price of $322,000 as at Dec 2017. The property agent told her that the market price had dropped as her flat had passed the 40 year mark. Later, the market became worse after Lawrence Wong (Fixing Sabo King minister) announced that HDB flat will have no value at the end of 99 year lease.

Miss X could not sell her Telok Blangah flat within 6 months. She had bot another flat nearer her place of work. But HDB did not press her to sell the flat.

She was finally (In late 2018 or early 2019, we are not told) able to get a buyer willing to pay $292,000. HDB gave a lower valuation of $275,000 for the flat. The buyer opted out.

Worse, an agent she had used) is marketing her neighbours’ flats at around $250,000.

From $322,000 to $250,000 within one and a half yrs: a 23% fall. Vote PAP?

The ground is not sweet for the PAP: Double confirm, ground not sweet for PAP and Will resale flat owners still vote for PAP in next GE? contd.

How to get 65% of the popular vote liddat?

Answer: How PAP can win 65% plus of the vote.

Vote wisely.

 

SingPass sucks, really sucks

In Internet, Public Administration on 02/06/2019 at 7:18 am

I ‘ve been making the move to the e-age. I’ve activated or setup e-banking systems (Tot of finally voting for the PAP govt because of the free (so far) same day funds transfer) etc.

As a final step, I decided to reactivate my SingPass. As I had forgotten my password, I applied for and got a new one-time password so that I can reset my password.

Guess what? Earlier this morning, I tried to log in with the SingPass given password. Cannot get in.

I wasted half an hour retrying (maybe my typo mistake or I went to wrong login page). Called call centre and it only works during office hrs.

Got to wait until Monday morning to sort out what went wrong at SingPass’s end. I think someone didn’t change the password.

Li Hongyi got a lot to do before he is PM material. And grandpa and GCT didn’t set the bar very high for Hongyi’s pa did they?

More jobs for FTs?

In Economy on 01/06/2019 at 1:53 pm

Masayoshi Son-led Vision Fund is reportedly in talks to open a China office and expand its Singapore team, according to Deal Street Asia.

A call centre on the outskirts of Florence opened earlier has 150 people answering calls from customers in 26 countries who want to buy, return or chat about Gucci. By 2020, Gucci plans to open similar call centres in New York, Tokyo, Seoul, Shanghai and Singapore.

Data protection the PAP way

In Internet, Public Administration on 01/06/2019 at 10:42 am

S’pore has begun a public consultation on proposed changes to its Personal Data Protection Act.

There are also proposed changes to allow a business to use personal data for business innovation purposes without needing consent.

FT quotes Anne Petterd, a principal at Baker McKenzie Wong & Leow, a law firm

Data protection? What data protection?

Related post: Welcome to S’pore: Mall BSing on data protection law

Three cheers for Koh Nguang this bicentennial yr

In Uncategorized on 31/05/2019 at 2:05 pm

He’s “Singapore’s one-man museum” according to https://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-38754054?fbclid=IwAR352l6k4-p9XAGuhg8tEA-dT1dreio-icPscK_5FqvdHMWl17fWSn7257Y

Here’s the relevant bits of his story, extracted from the BBC article of two yrs ago

Before every Chinese New Year, Koh Nguang How spends several weeks clearing his mother’s flat.

The 54-year-old is a hoarder, and his collection of more than one million items fills up his flat, his parent’s flat, and a space rented at a nearby industrial unit.

Everywhere you look, Mr Koh is surrounded by epic piles of newspapers, flattened posters and boxes overflowing with tapes.

“Without looking at it carefully it could be mistaken for the junk collected by my neighbours every Friday morning,” he admits.

Koh has amassed an extraordinary collection of photographs, papers and recordings charting the development of the cultural scene in South East Asia.

Mr Koh’s story began when he joined the National Museum of Singapore as a museum assistant in 1985.

At the time the museum only had a small staff, and the business of preparing and marketing exhibitions led him to begin collecting posters, catalogues and all kinds of visual ephemera.

He took pictures and, lacking the money for a video camera, tape-recorded performances.

[Academic recognition of his archives] has also changed the family’s perception of Koh. “My own flat is usually filled with my archives,” explains Mr Koh. “And yes my family members did feel that I was crazy.”

Now aspects of his personal archive have been exhibited internationally, as well as at the Gillman Barracks arts hub in Singapore, the mood has shifted.

“It also helped to change their perceptions of my archives and projects that the National Gallery Singapore had wanted to procure part of my collection,” he says.

But his ambition remains modest. Koh simply hopes to turn his flat into a space where his collection can be consulted by anyone.

 

 

LTA: What a lot of bull

In Public Administration on 31/05/2019 at 10:57 am

With Singapore’s ageing population, roads and paths in residential towns must be updated to reflect the needs of seniors who may have difficulty traversing the streets, LTA said in its report.

To this end, it has committed to complete road safety installations at 50 mature estates, or “Silver Zones”, by 2023.

These safety installations include narrower roads, speed humps and two-stage crossing that allow people to pause safely in the middle of the street crossing.

Today

If the PAP govt were really conerned about the safety of us senior citizens, it should ban electric scooters from pavements. They can kill or injure badly because they are heavy metal “monsters” designed for speed.

They are banned in the UK, France and in Madrid, all first world places.

Related post: UK got this right, S’pore wrong

FamiLee: Karma’s a bitch

In Uncategorized on 30/05/2019 at 6:46 am

In a comment when TRE reposted Why PAP should juz ban Facebook, there was this irrelevant, scurrilous comment

 

Singaporean Kong Come:

TRE also never highlight LHY son’s same sex marriage in S africa, at least evening chinese newspaper reported. Very afraid karma is addressing the familee. His grandfather screw all Singaporean, now his son kenna screw by commoner. Next maybe their whole familee member die in a horrible accident. Karma never miss their address.

Scurrilous but funny.

Btw, my take on the family row written in 2017: Biblical verses that explain Lees’ row?

Achtung! Cybernut mind at work

In Internet on 29/05/2019 at 11:22 am

When TRE republished in part* Why PAP should juz ban Facebook, there was this comment on a comment that had me smiling:  the emphasis is mine.

why should TRE report?:

TRE also never report:
TRE also never highlight LHY son’s same sex marriage in S africa, at least evening chinese newspaper reported.

all things, humans or animals, as long as not pap, are good things.

since Mr Lee Hsien Yang is not pap, WTF is there a need to report?

things worth reporting are lky clown prints lying cheating and lky clown prints wife lying cheating and lky clown prints sons daughters gays lesbians.

as long as not pap, no need to report since it is ok.

as long as it is pap, must report since it is NEVER ok.

ffff. wake up. this is 21st century 2019 pap corrupted Singapore.

This

as long as not pap, no need to report since it is ok.

reminded me of what I recently wrote

Today the PAP and the constructive, nation-building media believe that if it isn’t reported, a fact doesn’t exist.

Sad that ), and other anti-PAP paper warriors believe the same.

The PAP has won.

Terry Xu and cybernuts are really PAPpies

*It omitted my links to other related posts (which I included because they gave a lot of background info on the topic), but I’ll let this incident go without KPKBing. I had given permission to reproduce my pieces in full. If TeamTRE members wanted to omit or edit anything, they should check with me, not suka suka do what they like. But as they are really hard working people who provide a service to a bunch of ingrates, I’ll let this pass, this time.

US$ is haram

In Currencies on 29/05/2019 at 5:27 am

“Pakistani clerics declare fatwa against ‘sinful’ dollar buying” is an FT headline.

Waiting for the Muslim authorities in M’sia to follow.

Hyflux: Can believe or not?

In Corporate governance, Financial competency on 28/05/2019 at 7:31 am

Earlier this month, Utico, a UAE water utility offered to invest S$400 million in Hyflux, offering a binding agreement. But Oliver Lum and her board kaki are playing hard to get, telling the Arabs to go f*** a camel.

So Utico has gone on a massive PR exercise to put pressure on the Hyflux board via the retail holders of perpetual securities and preference shares.

In a media statement, after a meeting with SIAS, chief executive of Utico, Richard Menezes, made an offer to the retail investors in Hyflux perpetual securities and preference shares, if Hyflux accepted his offer, of a

“part cash redemption and also a hope for full redemption with a plan and exit option” …

“Full details can only be revealed later but as part of the overall deal, small investors of up to S$2,000 to S$3,000 could get 50 per cent cash redemption along with full redemption opportunity, while the rest of the investors could get a similar but staggered and cascade deal.”

“All investors will have an opportunity to get their money back … if they support the deal,” he added.

Read more at https://www.channelnewsasia.com/news/business/utico-offers-hyflux-s-small-investors-part-cash-redemption-as-11567048

He’s also scoring a lot of PR points for explaining why the company is making this offer to Hyflux’s junior creditors with perpetual securities and preference shares, instead of senior creditors.

“(Senior creditors) took an active business risk with ringside view, whereas (perpetual securities and preference shares) investors took a passive blind faith risk,” he said in the statement.

He said neither coupon nor principal was guaranteed in the offer prospectus and while trading at SGX, and morally there remains some responsibility from Hyflux for the predicament of the perpetual securities and preference shareholders.

To score even more points, he says:

Meanwhile, Utico said it could consider a listing in Singapore and “put some skin into the game” if it gets investors’ support for the deal.

As to the reality of the offer to retail perpetual securities and preference shares , it sounds like an extend and pretend game: both sides agree that the debt will be repayable sometime in the distant future, if at all. Tan ko ko.

Related posts

Hyflux: Sue those with money

Hyflux: “going concern” BS/ KPMG again and again

Hyflux on investor losses: “Not our fault, banksters at work”

Why PAP govt will not allow robot cars

In Uncategorized on 27/05/2019 at 12:59 pm

When pedestrians meet robot cars, there’ll be traffic gridlock because pedestrians will realise that jaywalking will not cause accidents. ERP? What ERP?

[P]edestrians would have no hesitation in stepping out in front of driverless cars, knowing they were programmed to stop, and the result would be gridlock.

“Once you set the rule that driverless cars have to effectively kowtow to any pedestrian in the street, and pedestrians begin to learn that, then the whole balance of power in our streets will change,” he said.

“The concept just doesn’t survive the idea of mixed use streets.”

The robots are coming to our roads but they are still nervous new drivers with a lot to learn.

For all the warnings that millions of driving jobs could be automated out of existence, it looks as though humans will stay behind the wheel for years to come.

[UK transport writer Christian Wolmar standing the hectic crossroads outside Holborn Tube station, in central London.

https://www.bbc.com/news/technology-48334449%5D

Iran today, China tomorrow: What US will do

In Banks, China on 27/05/2019 at 9:42 am

The US Department of Justice (even under wimp Obama) has gone after foreign banks for trading with countries like Iran: the global financial system being dominated by the US dollar. A French bank was crucified, StanChart bashed on the head etc because they did biz with countries the US didn’t like.

Financial system can be used against China too.

And if sells its US treasury notes, it hurts itself. Also what can it buy with the US$ it holds in lieu of notes? Japan and Germany will make China pay to hold their debt: already at negative yields. And if it sells the US$ it holds for euros etc, how is it going to fund its Belt and Road projects using those currencies.

Why PAP should juz ban Facebook

In Internet on 26/05/2019 at 11:13 am

Facebook users are the problem, not fake news.

Research by the Oxford Internet Institute found that that individual junk news (as it defined) stories were more likely to be shared on Facebook than the work of mainstream news organisations. While mainstream news was more visible, stories from junk news sources proved far more engaging. In English, for example, the average junk news story got four times as many likes and other Facebook interactions as a story from a professional news organisation.

The study was done across seven languages ahead of the vote in recent EU elections.

Reference: https://www.bbc.com/news/business-48345260

Related articles:

Fake news is magic

Fake news?

The one-party state and fake news

Why the PAP is really afraid of Facebook?

Silencing fake news and inconvenient voices: two sides of the same coin

Fighting fake news while raising revenue

What is “news”?/ “Fake news” is not “fake” says Harvard expert

Why Korea is happy with US ban on Huawei

In China on 26/05/2019 at 7:39 am

Because Samsung is happy. No chance of Huawei overtaking it in smartphone sales.

Huawei could see shipments decline by as much as a quarter this year, and faces the possibility that its smartphones will disappear from international markets, analysts have said.

Smartphone shipments at Huawei, the world’s second-largest smartphone maker by volume (after Samsung), could fall between 4% and 24% in 2019 if the ban stays in place, according to Fubon Research and Strategy Analytics.

Where US has to buy from China

In China, Internet on 25/05/2019 at 2:35 pm

Many Chinese surveillance cameras are fitted with artificial intelligence including facial recognition technology, and some can read simple faces, or can estimate age, ethnicity and gender.

There are more than 170 million surveillance cameras and the country has plans to install a further 400 million by 2020.

 

Pro-biz PAP govt will never do this

In Uncategorized on 25/05/2019 at 5:00 am

Brazil is suing British American Tobacco and Philip Morris International, the two biggest cigarette companies, to recover health treatment costs of tobacco-related diseases.

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-brazil-tobacco-lawsuit/in-landmark-case-brazil-sues-top-tobacco-firms-to-recover-public-health-costs-idUSKCN1SS2DN

Praying for minister Shan

In Uncategorized on 24/05/2019 at 9:56 am

Recently, in Religious equality, the PAP way, I said Minister Shan treated equally offended Christians as the equals of easily offended Muslims by banning Waitain from performing.

Since then, for reasons unrelated to the ban, Minister Shan is getting a lot of flak from anti-PAP activists and cybernuts for the very draconian fake news law .

But when he needs a show of public support, where are these Christian bigots? They refuse to stand up and be counted: what a bunch of ingrates. They are worse than the cybernuts who use social services provided by the PAP supporting tax payers and then diss the PAP and the voters who support the PAP.

But to be fair to the easily offended Christians, maybe they are on their knees quietly praying that Shan’s opponents like Terry Xu and Kirsten Han will be smitten with some terrible incurable disease, other than the brain damage they are suffering from.

Related posts:

Spending too much time in TRELand is bad for one’s mental health

 

 

 

How Tun saboed Jack Ma

In China on 23/05/2019 at 10:45 am

“When a foreign leader came to China and the first person he wanted to meet was Jack Ma rather than [President] Xi Jinping, you knew the company was going to be in trouble,” said a venture capitalist who has close ties with Alibaba. He was referring to Malaysian prime minister Mahathir Mohamad’s decision to visit Mr Ma in 2018 before heading to Beijing for a meeting with the Chinese president.

Venture capitalist quoted by FT

Since then Alibaba has had several run-ins with the Chinese authorities, including regulatory and IPO problems at Ant Finance.

With admirer like Tun, who needs enemies.

And he has admirers here?

— Kirsten Han trying to defecate herself and PJ out of self-made crater

— Jolovan Wham: Nothing wrong in asking Tun M to intervene in S’porean affairs

— Tan Kin Lian thinks Tun is more sinned against than sinning

Terry Xu and cybernuts are really PAPpies

In Internet, Media on 22/05/2019 at 3:02 pm

(Alternative title: “Why TOC and other anti-PAP sites never reported HK MRT trains’ collisions?”)

After I wrote TOC: A lot of bull

(where I reported that Terry had revealed that he employed foreigners to write for TOC because they were cheaper than true blue S’poreans, a lot cheaper)yesterday, I remembered another example where TOC and Terry behaved like PAPpies, not talking about news that diverts from the “right” view. TOC (and to be fair, otheranti-PAP alt media sites) didn’t tell S’poreans that a few months ago there was a very serious incident on HK’s MRT: shumething that never ever happened here.

Two subway trains have collided during a new signal system test in Hong Kong, halting services and threatening travel disruption for millions of commuters.

The incident occurred between the Central and Admiralty stations before the service was open to the public early on Monday morning.

Rail officials warned that repairs were likely to take “quite a long time”.

Network operator Mass Transit Railway (MTR) said sections of the Tsuen Wan Line had been suspended and urged commuters to avoid the route affected and to use other forms of transport if possible.

https://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-china-47607676

Looks like Terry’s and other anti-PAP types brains are like that of the PAP: when the public doesn’t know a fact, that fact never exists. Their readers will have no doubts that the our MRT system sucks when compared to that of HK’s.

Actually even with this HK cock-up, the HK system is a lot better. So why didn’t the anti-PAP publications not report the accident?

In 2011, I analysed a senior PAPpy’s and his team’s unhappiness with a TOC report.

[T]hey must believe in an 18th century philosophical theory that is now treated as a forerunner of the concept of “subjective idealism”. One Bishop Berkeley argued that there are no material objects, only minds and ideas in those minds. He summarised his theory with the motto “esse est percipi” (“To be is to be perceived”). In modern PR-speak, this translates into,“Perception is reality”, one of the major tenets of the PR and public communication industry.

This theory of “Perception is reality” is best summarised in the following example he gave. If a tree in a forest falls, but no-one sees or hears it fall, has it fallen? Berkeley argues that it has not fallen. It is still standing.

An example in the S’pore context would be that S’poreans were not aware of how close the voting would be on polling day in 1988 in Eunos GRC and in Cheng San GRC in 1991. The mainstream media did not report the sentiment on the ground in these two GRCs, so S’poreans were not aware that many S’poreans were unhappy with the PAP. The unhappiness did not exist because it was not reported.

https://atans1.wordpress.com/2011/08/01/%E2%80%9Clittle-disappointment%E2%80%9D-tony-tan-to-toc/

In Silence of SMRT, LTA & MoT explained,I wrote the following about Traingate

SMRT, the LTA and MoT kept quiet because they like Bishop Berkeley believe that “Perception is reality”. So long as the public did not know that there were cracks in the 26 China-made trains, and that the trains had been returned for repairs, there were no train cracks. There were no cracked trains because If a tree in a forest falls, but no-one sees or hears it fall, has it fallen? Berkeley argues that it has not fallen. It is still standing.

What they still don’t realise that in this age of social media and the internet where many people walk around with smartphone cameras, If a tree in a forest falls, someone will see it or hear it fall. And tell others about the falling tree, after taking a selfie beside the fallen tree.

This being the case, disclosure of problems or cock-ups, not cover-ups or silence should be the best (and default) policy for the authorities and corporations They should assume that news of the cock-up or problem will become public knowledge and that by disclosing, the news agenda can, hopefully, be controlled..

But in one-party states, silence or cover-up are the default options, not disclosure. And this is the weakness of one-party states where people carry smartphone cameras. The one-party state will, in time, be undermined.

Ban smartphone cameras PAP? After all internet access for public servants will soon be restricted in this wired, connected nation.

Today the PAP and the constructive, nation-building media believe that if it isn’t reported, a fact doesn’t exist.

Sad that ), and other anti-PAP paper warriors believe the same.

The PAP has won.

 

 

 

Time investors to put pressure on Hyflux’s auditor?

In Accounting, Corporate governance on 22/05/2019 at 7:03 am

Lim Tean has said he’s been talking to a group of Hyflux investors who lost money. Well they should and other Hyflux investors should take note that KPMG (their watchdog)

——————————-

KPMG’s role in Hyflux

“When KPMG issued an unqualified opinion on the full year results for the Hyflux Group in March 2018, there were no events or conditions that individually or collectively, cast significant doubt on the going concern assumption as at the balance sheet date of 31 December 2017, or at the audit report date of 22 March 2018.”

Then according to Hyflux, everything went wrong when in May, there was a run on Hyflux by its banksters. Because of its bad (and unexpected?) Q12018 results announced on 9 May: “certain financiers expressed concerns over their ability to continue with existing credit exposures to the group.”* They tot halal Hyflux had transmuted into haram Hyflux.

Hyflux on investor losses: “Not our fault, banksters at work”

——————————————————————————-

is in more trouble in the UK. British regulators have called for KPMG to be fined at least a record £12.5m for misconduct in its work for Bank of New York Mellon.

(It’s other UK troubles: Hyflux: “going concern” BS/ KPMG again and again)

Time to shakedown KPMG for $.

 

TOC: A lot of bull

In Uncategorized on 21/05/2019 at 1:50 pm

Our aim is to examine the issues that matter, or should matter, to Singaporeans and to reflect the diversity of life, of ideas and opinions, that is Singapore.

TOC

And in order to do this, Terry’s Online Channel uses foreign writers, not locals.

In a long and rambling thread of FB (that unfortunately is too long winded to reprint without extensive edits) , Terrx Xu admitted that he employed foreigners to write for him. The main reason was that they were a lot cheaper than S’poreans.

So for the TOC, it’s all about money. And it’s always berating the PAP govt for putting money ahead of the welfare of S’poreans? What hypocrisy.

Our aim is to examine the issues that matter, or should matter, to Singaporeans and to reflect the diversity of life, of ideas and opinions, that is Singapore.

TOC

And TOC uses foreigners to write about issues that concern S’poreans. Sad.

Swiss Standard? What Swiss standard?

In Uncategorized on 21/05/2019 at 10:35 am

S’pore not even up to third world standards when it comes to severance pay.

Related post:

More CGT BS? Swiss Standard? What Swiss standard?

 

Religious equality, the PAP way

In Public Administration on 20/05/2019 at 11:04 am

Yesterday was Vesak Day and this reminded me of the way the PAP govt treats the sensibilities of the various religions: equal treatment of intolerant religious views.

Recently minister Shan gave the lie (in the religious context) to the view that “All animals are equal, but some animals are more equal than others.” 

The Christian preachers, when they talk to me, say ‘you are very, very strict when it comes to anti-Muslim, anti-Islamic messages…They said: ‘You treat the Muslim community differently than the Christian community.’

Minister Shanmugam

True, very true in my opinion. I had always tot that easily offended Muslims found it very easy to obtain satisfaction from the PAP govt compared to easily offended Christians. (Declaration of interest: I was once upon a time a very liberal Methodist. Didn’t believe that God created the world in seven days; didn’t believe that bible is the only record of what God says; tot that it didn’t matter if Christ never rose from the dead; and relaxed about LGBTs and divorce etc.)

So what did this PAP minister do after hearing out the Christian preachers?

I looked at it and I thought that there is some truth to what they say, I won’t say that it is completely true but it is an approach.

Result Watain’s performance was banned, upsetting its Malay fans.

“You have a group of Malay young men, showing the one-finger sign, supporting the group,” CNA quoted the minister.

“If a group of Chinese went and showed the finger sign and said that we should allow it – how would you all have felt? It is the same.”

Watain ban: playing the easily offended game can backfire

He’s being very fair in trying to ensure that all easily offended zealots of all religions are not offended, and if as a result of his actions, others are offended, juz too bad. No longer true (if it ever was) that “All animals are equal, but some animals are more equal than others.” Remember what George Yeo once infamously said, “Christians are less likely to riot”?

But what this even handed illiberal attitude does to S’pore’s aspiration to be a global city on par with London and NY?

As intolerant as M’sian Talibanites? Uniquely S’porean solution

S377A: Ex-ST tua kee thinks Christians won’t harm him?

 

Tencent doing it’s bit for Chinese culture

In China on 20/05/2019 at 5:01 am

Tencent has linked up with overseas museums that have Chinese collections, showing the country’s artefacts to the world while helping the domestic audience to view collections online.

 

True Grit: the real deal

In Uncategorized on 19/05/2019 at 4:40 am

Arturo was a famous bagualero, or backwoodsman, a specialist in capturing feral cattle in the wilderness of Chilean Patagonia … a bull had knocked out all of Arturo’s teeth and then gored him through the testicles but that he’d managed to ride home afterwards.

Quote from FT magazine’s story about a ranch stay in Chilean Patagonia

Don’t think any John Wayne character was ever that tough.

No elections this year?

In Economy, Political governance on 18/05/2019 at 11:36 am

How to hold a general election this yr when the ground is not sweet for PAP to get 65% of the vote ( Why PAP aiming for 65% of the popular vote)? The economy is going to the dogs.

Non-oil exports continue slide in April with export performance missed expectations, posting a steep drop in April as regional trade tensions continued to weigh on the island nation’s economy.  Non-oil domestic exports fell 10% year on year, below a Reuters poll forecasting a 6%.

The fall was the second consecutive drop after March’s disappointing data, which showed an 11.8 per cent year-on-year drop, marking the worst export performance since October 2016.

No wonder Kee Chiu said

Singaporeans must gird themselves for the long haul.

Related posts:

Double confirm, ground not sweet for PAP

Another reason why ground is not sweet for the PAP

But doesn’t mean PAP will lose election as predicted by TOC and TRE cybernuts

Why 37,000+ sure to vote for PAP (But balanced off by above 34,000+ retail investors in Hyflux who could lose 90% of their investments)

Why S’poreans continue voting for the PAP to have 2/3 of parly seats

6,400 senior citizens each get $312.50 hongpao from a TLC

 

What a product we are missing

In Uncategorized on 18/05/2019 at 5:09 am

Because of our draconian laws on the use of drugs.

French start-up Daye raised US$5.5m to develop its cannabis tampons for pain relief, cashing in on the explosion of interest for CBD-infused products.

Why most S’poreans keep voting for PAP

In Financial competency, Political governance on 17/05/2019 at 1:32 pm

It’s like shopping leh:

self-reinforcing cycle, where they became more and more attached to a product.

We are attached to the PAP because we keep voting for it.

Analysing the decisions we make in the supermarket can help us understand the choices we make in other areas of our lives.

Analysing the buying decisions of 280,000 customers revealed that they fell into a self-reinforcing cycle, where they became more and more attached to a product.

These cycles tend to last for several consecutive store visits before the pattern is broken and the process starts again with a different brand.

Interestingly, when consumers break out of these self-reinforcing loops, they tend to do so across multiple products at a time.

For example, when switching their brand of coffee, they are more likely to change their brands of yoghurt and washing detergent as well.

Blind loyalty

Why does this loyalty build up?

Further analysis of the data ruled out simpler explanations, such as price or force of habit being responsible for these patterns.

One explanation is that people come to like what they purchase, out of a need to “make sense” and explain their choices to themselves and others.

For example, after buying the ingredients for a salad, a consumer might start to value healthy foods more to justify the purchase.

This pattern of behaviour could be exploited to try to create a relationship with a selected product.

In the loyalty card study, we sent the supermarket’s instant coffee drinking customers coupons to try a different brand.

Those in the switching phase were twice as likely to use the coupon as those still locked in to their existing coffee product.

Beyond shopping

This self-justified decision making is not limited to the weekly shop, but probably spills over to many areas of our lives.

For example, studies suggest people defend their selection of everything from the jam they buy to the politicians they decide to vote for in an election.

After we vote for a leader we may mimic their positions on many issues, including those we were undecided about or even to which we were opposed.

https://www.bbc.com/news/business-47357292

Jewish entrepreneurs take two bites from one apple

In Uncategorized on 17/05/2019 at 10:10 am

NSO, an Israeli tech co is able to inject spyware on to phones via the messaging app WhatsApp, simply by ringing up targets over the app — even if they didn’t answer the call.

NSO’s founders Shalev Hulio and Omri Lavie have another business with an interesting business model: producing a phone that can’t be hacked.

Did Hali ask Xi for this app when they met?

In China, Internet on 16/05/2019 at 11:15 am

Hali’s welcome by the Chinese reminded me that the Chinese have an app that will help Heng and other 4G leaders keep S’pore a one-party state, like China:

—  Keeping power in a one-party state

—  Would this happen in a one-party state?

Seriously, like China, S’pore is concerned about terrorists. An app is being used in Xinjiang to keep China safe from the coreligionists of Hali and TRE’s bapak (Note bapak not Bapak).

—————————————————

bapak not Bapak

Btw, Morocco Mole, Secret Squirrel’s sidekick, told me that his second cousin removed working in the ISD alleges that TRE took down its republication of Watain ban: playing the easily offended game can backfire when it was threatened with suicide denial of service attacks by Jihadist Jills and Joes from bapak’s harem. (note bapak not Bapak.) Seriously, they told TRE that the first paragraph was so offensive and could get TRE into trouble with the law. Well, the original article still stands despite Harder Truths saying he’d report me: lying as usual. Or maybe, I got good ISD connections?

———————————————————

According to Human Rights Watch, predictive policing in Xinjiang comes in the form of a smartphone app, with access to data about citizens’ religion, travel history, family connections and more. Those deemed suspicious by the algorithm may potentially be taken into custody. Sounds a good thing to have in the war against terrorism.

But according to human rights activists (They not scared of being bombed or knifed is it?) this app represents a deeply disturbing scenario in which government repression and mass surveillance intersect because itpulls down data from mobile phones to build up encyclopedic knowledge of those it tracks in China.

SAF cares for S’poreans, they do, really

In Uncategorized on 16/05/2019 at 5:41 am

Yes, yes, I know another soldier was found dead in Mandai and before that

Six NSFs, an NSman and a regular serviceman have died in the past 16 months

Pang’s death marks the eighth death in the past 16 months. These were the past incidents:

3 Nov 2018: 22 year-old CFC Liu Kai died at the Jalan Murai training grounds when an armored infantry fighting vehicle reversed onto his jeep.

28 Sep 2018: An unnamed off-duty NSF was found hanging from a rope in his office in Sembawang Air Base.

9 Sep 2018: An unnamed 23-year-old police NSF died a week after he was found with a gunshot wound to his head. Although tis service revolver was found beside him, no foul play was suspected.

28 Jul 2018: An unnamed off-duty SAF regular servicemen was found hanging from a rope in his bunk in Nee Soon Camp.

13 May 2018: 22 year-old CPL Kok Yuen Chin died after being pushed into a 12m-deep pump well at Tuas View Fire Station. Despite not being able to swim, his squadmates did so as part of a rutual to celebrate the end of his two-year service.

30 Apr 2018: 19-year old CFC Dave Lee succumbed to his injuries after being hospitalized for heatstroke. He had collapsed from heat injury after completing a fast march. There were allegations of abuse by superiors.

15 Sep 2017: 21 year-old 3SG Gavin Chan died in Australia when the armored infantry vehicle he was in landed on its side. He was found unconscious next to it, and eventually succumbed to his injuries.

But, I learnt that a boy I know was exempted from NS and is now studying in NUS, in one of the most sought after courses. He has had mental health problems during his school days, so much so that he had to see a shrink regularly.

I had expected him to be another Li (the Harvard guy). But it turned out that SAF tot that he could freak out even if he was in the pariah caste of NS men. So he got exempted from NS. But good luck to him getting a job after he graduates.

Related posts

No $ needed: Three fixes to show the PAP really cares (Btw, these were not implemented. Sad.)

Merdeka Generation: PAP cares for u, really they do

Groceries: PAP cares for u, really they do

CPFLife: PAP govt cares for u, really they do

Vaping: PAP govt cares for u, really they do

TOC’s “Correspondent” shows that PAP govt really cares for S’poreans

 

 

Why Seelan Palay and Jolovan Wham like being jailed

In Uncategorized on 15/05/2019 at 11:25 am

Seelan Palay and Jolovan Wham have gone to prison rather than pay fines.

Maybe they tot that going to prison is a ‘Moving and maturing experience’?

The prison guide [of the Extinction Rebellion: my note] advised people to take books with “plenty of good tips for yoga and meditation” and to “structure the space with time for sitting, yoga, breathing exercises, journalising, creative art”.

It continued: “If you get solitary [confinement], there’s plenty of time for meditation. Lastly you can take as many naps as you want!”

https://www.bbc.com/news/blogs-trending-48147915

And I’m sure Willy Sum agrees with them.

As does Terry Xu: he says he’s mentally prepared to go to prison for his views and actions. It’ll do him a lot of good, because he’ll lose a lot of weight.

Does this happen here, PJ Thum and friends?

In Malaysia on 15/05/2019 at 6:03 am

Firdaus Abdillah, the editor of online magazine Neon Berapi, was arrested on Thursday night after allegedly badmouthing Johor Crown Prince Tunku Ismail Sultan Ibrahim in a series of tweets, reported local media.

Read more at https://www.channelnewsasia.com/news/asia/malaysia-mahathir-regrets-arrest-of-activist-crown-prince-11522290

When I read the above, I tot of

According to Kirsten Han, PJ Thum “urged (Mahathir) to take leadership in Southeast Asia for the promotion of democracy, human rights, freedom of expression and freedom of information”.

Kirsten Han trying to defecate herself and PJ out of self-made crater

Related posts:

Still urging Tun to take leadership in SE Asia; PJ, Kirsten?

WTF! With PAP on the ropes why this self-inflicted distraction?

Jolovan Wham: Nothing wrong in asking Tun M to intervene in S’porean affairs

If Tun still allows this to happen in M’sia, why should we want regime change here?

Vote wisely.

 

M’sia one yr on: What Tun’s fans here don’t tell us

In Malaysia on 14/05/2019 at 11:09 am

When Tun and his new gang took power around this time last year, anti-PAP types were so happy. They asked him to bring democracy to S’pore:

— Kirsten Han trying to defecate herself and PJ out of self-made crater

— Jolovan Wham: Nothing wrong in asking Tun M to intervene in S’porean affairs

Well a year later, they kinda quiet and it’s not only because he threatened S’pore over water and territorial waters

— Let’s gloat at Tun as he threatens us

— Tan Kin Lian thinks Tun is more sinned against than sinning

The M’sian economy is in a bad place with foreign investors giving M’sia a miss.  Deep divisions within the ruling coalition have prevented measures to increase government revenue, attract investment or create jobs. Poor Chinese died in a rush for food coupons: M’sian voters repenting?

Here’s what Reuters reports

Investor Concerns

Business sentiment has cooled after initial optimism that followed Pakatan’s electoral win, due mainly to a lack of consensus on the way forward for the economy, according to an April survey of 250 businesses by Ipsos Business Consulting.

“The continued lack of clarity on economic policies may lead to an increased level of anxiety among the businesses and further intensify the fear of an economic slowdown,” the firm said its report.

Investors in the survey also expressed concerns over currency fluctuations and slowing economic growth. The ringgit currency has slumped this year and stocks are underperforming regional rivals.

Malaysia has had to fill a revenue shortfall stemming from a populist measure to scrap a goods and services tax last year, while efforts to turn around struggling state entities that burden the treasury, including long-suffering Malaysia Airlines, have faltered.

In March, Malaysia’s central bank cut its 2019 economic growth forecast to 4.3-4.8% from 4.9%, on expectations of a significant drop in export expansion due to slowing global growth and the U.S.-China trade war.

On Tuesday, Bank Negara Malaysia became the first central bank in the region to cut its benchmark interest rate, in a move to support the country’s economy.

Mahathir has mended ties with China, reaching a cut-price $11 billion rail link deal, which is a welcome investment boost.

But with Malaysia’s debt-to-GDP ratio around 50%, public support waning and an unstable ruling coalition, it will become increasingly difficult for Mahathir to boost economic growth and win back disillusioned voters.

“With exports likely to remain in the doldrums, GDP growth in Malaysia looks set to slow to a post-financial crisis low this year. The government’s recent policies will make the downturn even worse,” Capital Economics said in a research note on Wednesday.

(Reuters)

Already the Malays are repenting for deserting UMNO

Support for the government fell to just 39% in March, sharply down from the 66% rating in August 2018, according to a survey by independent pollster Merdeka Center.

Mahathir also saw his popularity plunge to 46% from 71% over the same period, although he says he doesn’t put much faith in these numbers.

Worryingly for Mahathir, Merdeka Center said Malay Muslims, who make up around 60% of Malaysia’s 32 million people, were largely more critical of his administration.

Most of the poorest people in the country are Malay and for decades they have been the beneficiaries of subsidies and other affirmative action policies pushed by UMNO.

Many in the majority community were also angered when Mahathir appointed an ethnic Chinese finance minister and an attorney-general from the Malaysian-Indian minority, and said cash handouts to Malays could be reduced.

Pledges to end the death penalty and rescind oppressive laws such as the colonial-era Sedition Act were also unpopular with traditionalists.

Vote wisely.

High tech seafood

In Uncategorized on 14/05/2019 at 5:34 am

Impossible Foods, a plant-based meat company, based in the US, has just raised raised US$300m from Temasek and other int’l investors.

This reminds me that recently, a Singapore-based company aiming to make seafood by growing them from cells has secured US$4.6m in funding: https://shiokmeats.com/

All the best.

PAP govt one up up on repressive central Asian republic?

In Political governance, Public Administration on 13/05/2019 at 10:55 am

In S’pore, a few years ago, a person was arrested for holding a mirror. So did someone from Kazakhstan study our laws and decide to imitate us?

The Kazakh police took a young activist into custody after he decided to test whether he could get away with standing in the street holding a placard with no writing on it.

Aslan Sagutdinov took the placard to the central Abay Square of his native city of Oral in the west of the country, and held it up opposite the central council offices.

The video blogger took the precaution of having a colleague capture the whole thing on film, which the local Uralskaya Nedelya news site embedded in its report.

“I’m not taking part in a protest, and I want to show that they’ll still take me down the police station, even though there’s nothing written on my placard and I’m not shouting any slogans,” the 24-year-old told reporters who’d turned up to see what happened.

https://www.bbc.com/news/blogs-news-from-elsewhere-48187353

Here is what I wrote in 2017 about the guy carrying a mirror who was arrested.

Seelan Palay: Sylvia Lim was right

Here I made fun of Seelan Palay’s latest attempt to test the OB markers: he crossed a red line after the police tried very hard not to arrest him, but he persisted, “After several failed attempts by the Police to persuade Seelan to leave the area, he was arrested by the Police at 3.20pm.” (TOC report)

Two years ago I wrote about how one person can be arrested for an illegal assembly

Jogging alone can be illegal?

If wearing the wrong tee-shirt or singlet?

Try walkng or jogging alone* wearing a “Free our CPF” singlet: remember that any public assembly of more than one person** needs police permission.

And jogging in a group of two or more”Free our CPF” singlets will be like jogging in groups in Burundi: illegal.

Running is a national pastime in Burundi, with hundreds of people out jogging on weekend mornings. But in March [2014] the authorities banned jogging in groups – unless permission was sought from the authorities. It affects all group sports in the capital, which can now only be played in designated areas.

Jogging by Lake Tanganyika

The restrictions followed the arrest of some opposition members who were out jogging and chanting political slangs. Police officers tried to stop what they regarded as an illegal march and the situation deteriorated into clashes. More than 40 Movement for Solidarity and Democracy (MSD) party members received sentences ranging from five years to life.

Burundi: Where jogging is a crime

Wonder what about wearing a tee shirt with a Oppo party logo, drinking teh tarik as social media celebrities Ravi and Jeannette Chong used to do when they were NSP tua kees.

And what about the crowds assembling to pay their respects to LKY? What about the crowds at the National Museum LKY exhibition?

Seems anything the PAP administration or the SPF doesn’t like can be an illegal assembly.

Related post: PAP uses Lawfare against its opponents?

———‘

*Auntie Sylvia was absolutely right in 2007 and 2009 when she spoke out publicly:

The change in definition of “assembly” and “procession” is more disturbing. As the Explanatory Statement to the Bill says, these words are no longer restricted to gatherings of 5 persons or more. This means even ONE person alone can constitute illegal assembly, thus giving the State complete control over an individual citizen’s freedoms.

‘First, to say that 1 person constitutes an assembly is certainly an abuse of the word. Secondly, is the government making the change because there had been incidents involving less than 5 persons which had disrupted public life? Unless there is compelling evidence to prove to us that expanding the definition of assembly and procession is needed, this expansion does not deserve our support,”  Sylvia Lim in parly in 2009.

Earlier, in 2007, she had said:

“This refers to clauses 29 and 30 of the Bill. By clause 29 of the Bill, we are removing the heading “Offences Against Public Tranquility” and replacing it with “Offences relating to Unlawful Assembly”. By Clause 30, we will be deleting “mischief or trespass or other offence” and replacing it with “to commit any offence”.

S 141 has been amended to bring it in line with a recent Court of Appeal case: PP v Tan Meng Khin [1995] 2 SLR 505. Now, an assembly will be unlawful if people intend to commit an offence punishable with imprisonment of 6 mths or more, even if it is peaceful and does not disturb public tranquillity. Under our law, a person who organizes a procession or assembly after the police rejection of a permit can be punished with max 6 months jail under the Miscellaneous Offences Act. Hence 5 or more people who gather to do so will become members of an unlawful assembly.

As our society continues to evolve, the time is surely ripe for us to allow peaceful outdoor protests as a form of expression. By all means, we can have rules about how, where and when such processions may be held, but wider law reform is needed. S 141 should be restricted to offences which threaten the public peace, and other laws such as the Miscellaneous Offences Act which require permits for peaceful assemblies should be modified.”

**Two men between the ages of 24 and 25 were arrested by police outside the Istana on Saturday afternoon (Apr 4).

Police said the duo had turned up in front of the Istana with placards at about 4pm. Channel NewsAsia understands that the men were holding signs that read “You can’t silence the people” and “Injustice” for about half an hour. They were clad in identical red hoodies and dark blue jeans.

Police also said both of them had refused to stop the activity despite requests from officers. As such, they were arrested for organising a public assembly without a permit, under Section 16(1)(a) of the Public Order Act, Chapter 257A.

Seelan Palay: Sylvia Lim was right

And there’s this more recent event: Jolovan’s latest problem shows Sylvia Lim’s and my prescience

When China and US row

In China, Economy on 13/05/2019 at 4:18 am

This is what happens to the world.

 

 

(Artist Walker Wright created the skeleton from driftwood while the vomit was made from washed-up plastic.

https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-wales-48193779?intlink_from_url=https://www.bbc.com/news/entertainment_and_arts&link_location=live-reporting-story)

Meanwhile

 

 

 

 

Fake news is magic

In Internet on 12/05/2019 at 1:46 pm

Here’s an interesting extract on why fake news works even when we know it’s fake news

Magic is about manipulating our perceptions, “exploiting cognitive loopholes,” says Dr Kuhn – and understanding how magic works is being recognised as having wider implications.

“Misdirection” is a key part of magic – getting people to not look at what’s important, but to distract them, change the subject, use a dramatic prop and push their attention elsewhere, so they do not see what is happening in front of their eyes.

It’s being used to to examine areas such as road safety, says Dr Kuhn, looking at how to make sure drivers can really focus on what’s important.

“How do people fail to see something even though they are looking at it?” he says.

Fake news
It’s also applicable to bigger social and political questions, he says, such as how to respond to “fake news” and false information on social media.

The lesson of magic, says Dr Kuhn, is that even if something is recognised as false, it still makes an impression and steals our attention, and researchers are looking at how understanding magic can help to investigate the world of conspiracy theories and fake information.

.This is where someone thinks they are choosing a card at random, but the magician is really manipulating their decision and the “choices” are false.

“Free will is an illusion. People are much more suggestible than they think. All of our perceptions are very malleable,” says Dr Kuhn.

This suggestibility and use of false options can be misused in a political sense, he says.

https://www.bbc.com/news/education-47827346

Don’t believe me? Read more at Fake news?

proposed law against fake news narrows, not widens, the Government’s powers, the Ministry of Law said on Thursday (May 2).

Or

The one-party state and fake news

Silencing fake news and inconvenient voices: two sides of the same coin

Fighting fake news while raising revenue

What is “news”?/ “Fake news” is not “fake” says Harvard expert

 

S’pore: 0, HK: 1

In Hong Kong on 12/05/2019 at 4:49 am

Anheuser-Busch InBev filed on Friday to list a minority stake (probably 15%) in Budweiser Brewing Company APAC, in what will be one of the biggest floats in Hong Kong’s history, if an IPO happens

Budweiser Brewing Company APAC, part of the AB InBev group and the largest beer company in Asia Pacific by sales value.

“There is freedom of speech, but I cannot guarantee freedom after speech”

In Internet, Political governance, Public Administration on 11/05/2019 at 10:59 am

Did Minister Shan say this?

No. But he could have and still may soon. Or some other minister may say it, if Shan is taking a break, because this is the philosophy behind the new law. Ministers can publish corrections alongside claims about public institutions that it deems false. Those who publish false statements with “malicious intent” face criminal sanctions, including fines of up to S$1m and jail sentences of up to 10 years.

Don’t believe me? The law differs from laws against the spread of misinformation in other jurisdictions, which typically focus on taking down problematic content from online platforms.

Still don’t believe me? Read The one-party state and fake news where I quoted from Fake news law: Ownself judge ownself

The problem about lies or “fake news” is who gets to decide what is or is not a lie or “fake news”.

In liberal democracies, even the president of the US cannot get his view of what is or is not a lie or “fake news” accepted by even a majority of the voters. There’s some sort of consensus (“conventional wisdom”) driven (manipulated?) by the elites and media about what is or is not a lie or “fake news” in which facts often play an important part.

In a one-party state (de facto or de jure) the ruling party decides what is or is not a lie or “fake news”

— Keeping power in a one-party state

— Would this happen in a one-party state?

— Coldstore: Why Harry’s narrative or the highway

The planned tackling of “fake news” is a smokescreen for muzzling further netizens, not juz cybernuts. The internet and social media has made it a lot easier for S’poreans to share facts, ideas, and criticisms of the way we are governed by the PAP.

— Minister wants his cake and eat it/ PAP doesn’t get the Internet

— Ingratitude, uniquely S’porean? Blame the internet? Not really

— Us Netizens: Comancherios of the Internet?

This freedom (relative) to share facts, ideas, and criticisms of the way we are governed by the PAP worries the PAP (juz like the CCP worries about the internet and social media in China), hence the plan to further muzzle the internet and social media.

was said by Idi Amin

a Ugandan president best known for his brutal regime and crimes against humanity while in power from 1971-1979.

Idi Amin – Facts, Life & Uganda – Biography – Famous Biographies

HoHoHo: Bad news for Go-Jek and Grab

In Indonesia, Malaysia, Temasek, Vietnam on 11/05/2019 at 5:32 am

Uber’s shares sank almost 8 per cent below their offer price on Friday, giving the ride-hailing company a disappointing market value of below $70bn — a far cry from the $100bn valuation it had until recently hoped to achieve.

FT today

Meanwhile Lyft which was valued at U$22.4bn at its IPO closing price (up 9% from its offer price). By May 7th, the day it reported results for the first quarter as a public company, it was worth only US$17bn. Lyft’s share price fell by another 11% the next day.

These performances have

left investors questioning the appetite for unprofitable car-booking companies that have relied on a flood of private capital to fund heated expansion and competition.

FT

As Economist says

Both firms have enough cash to continue to burn money for years, but public investors expect a rapid path to profitability. Making it into the black will require either raising prices or reducing the cut of bookings passed on to drivers. The former will be hard; in many markets ride-hailing competes with other cheap modes of transport, such as buses, bicycles and riders’ own cars.

Think Grab and Go-Jek, and Temasek that has invested in them. Grab and Go-Jek are also losing money.

Btw, in 2018 according to an article in the Tiền Phong newspaper, GIC realised a 60% loss over 4 years after it sold 5.4 million shares in Vietnamese taxi operator Vinasun.

 

Where we don’t Pay and Pay

In Internet, Telecoms on 10/05/2019 at 1:41 pm

 

S’pore is between Nigeria and Brazil at US$3.24 based on data from https://www.valuechampion.sg/are-singaporeans-overpaying-their-mobile-plans

Vote wisely.

 

 

 

Fake news: Use electric cars to reduce carbon usage

In Environment, Financial competency on 10/05/2019 at 10:55 am

The German Institute for Economic Research (Ifo) claims that an electric vehicle produces more carbon emissions than a diesel car. They are right because major carbon emitters like China, USA and Germany use lots of coal to produce electricity.

Social mobility depends on structure of economy not education

In Public Administration on 09/05/2019 at 1:33 pm

When I read the following excerpts from the FT’s chief economics columnist, Martin Wolf, I couldn’t help but think about the so called abolition of streaming and other attempts to make good education less exclusive  (Examples: Lower- and middle-income students at independent schools to receive more financial aid: Ong Ye Kung and “abolition” of streaming for the plebs.


My take on our education system

No more streaming? Really? What a load of BS: It’s only for the plebs not gd enough for RI, MGS, St Nick and other so-called elite schools.

Don’t blame kiasu parents, blame PAP govt

Hard truths about elite schools

Doublespeak on “Every school a good school”

Minister Ong wants a camel?

Akan datang says minister: Non-grad minister

——————-

Martin Wolf:

The chief determinant of social mobility [the writer had earlier used UK data to show the relationship of the UK economy to social mobility], then, is the class structure of the economy and its rate of change.

Education has only second-order effects on mobility. It influences, but does not determine, the structure of the economy: that is why graduate unemployment is quite common across the world. It is, in fact, more of a positional good: relative education matters. While some from working-class backgrounds will get more of this good, professional parents will always help their offspring to outcompete them.

In sum, if we really care about social mobility, it is on the economy that we should focus most of our attention.

 

Trumpets pls: Formula E circus coming to town

In Tourism on 09/05/2019 at 5:08 am

The constructive, nation-building media  that S’pore will stage a Formula E race here next yr.

Nice to know someone high up reads me. In 2013, I wrote the following:

S’pore did the first Kiddie Games and overspent for no apparent gain.

Why not try Formula E?

There will be 10 teams and 20 drivers racing on roads – not racetracks – in 10 cities, with a preliminary line-up that includes Los Angeles, Berlin, Rio de Janeiro, London, Buenos Aires and Beijing …

Jean Todt, president of the FIA, called Formula E “a vision of the future”. And this comes from a man who built his reputation in rally car racing and then as head of F1’s most famous competitor, Ferrari.

He told the BBC: “F1 is the pinnacle of motor racing, but there is plenty of space for other championships, from endurance racing to touring car, to karting – and definitely Formula E.”

He rejected claims that Formula E is simply a promotional exercise to improve motorsport’s image.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-24053853

OK, we got to divert traffic etc, one more time a yr. But this is new and innovative.

Formula E the new F1?/ Why can’t MSM report F1 event like this?

Related post explaining why there are gains to be made from staging events like F1 and Formula E: LKY answered Ngiam Tong Dow’s F1 question

Fake news?

In Internet, Political governance, Public Administration on 08/05/2019 at 1:22 pm

proposed law against fake news narrows, not widens, the Government’s powers, the Ministry of Law said on Thursday (May 2).

Read more at https://www.channelnewsasia.com/news/singapore/online-falsehoods-bill-pofma-fake-news-narrows-government-powers-11496172

The article goes on

The Law Ministry’s Ms Teo reiterated the point …. that that the powers to be given to the Government under the Bill, and the public interest grounds on which the Government can exercise its powers, “are actually narrower than the Government’s existing powers”.

“In key areas, the Bill narrows, rather than extends, the Government’s powers,” she said in the letter that was also provided to CNA and published in the Straits Times.

But as has been pointed out by the public

[The] proposed law is also broad and vague in how it can and will be implemented. Clarifications and amendments are needed to make it more focused on its real purpose.

FB post

And

But more clarifications and more amendments might mean more restrictions which the G is not willing to impose on itself.

If and how the G reacts to criticism will be very telling on where its comfort zone is.

Another FB post

Related posts:

The one-party state and fake news

Why the PAP is really afraid of Facebook?

Silencing fake news and inconvenient voices: two sides of the same coin

Fighting fake news while raising revenue

What is “news”?/ “Fake news” is not “fake” says Harvard expert

 

 

We can use 100% green energy by 2035 but won’t

In Economy, Energy on 08/05/2019 at 10:27 am

In the US more than 100 cities have recently pledged to run on 100% renewable energy, signing onto the Sierra Club’s “Ready For 100” campaign.

One of the cities is Atlanta, a place that uses lots of air conditioning

So, how exactly will the folks in Atlanta increase the city’s green energy supply from 8% to 100% by 2035? They’re going to start by trying to use less energy.

“There’s an awful lot of low-hanging fruit left,” said Matt Cox, CEO of the Greenlink Group, who helped craft Atlanta’s new plan.

Mr Cox says you start with the basics: insulating old homes and installing energy-efficient lights and better cooling and heating systems.

“We identified an opportunity to reduce the consumption in the city 25% to 30%, just through the energy-efficiency side alone.”

And Mr Cox says studies found there’s another benefit to investing in efficiency: “They were showing an internal rate of return of over 60%. That’s six-zero percent. That kind of a return on an investment is a tremendous opportunity that you don’t see hardly anywhere.

“You look at the stock market, you’re going to be happy to get 7% or 10% out of that.”

But efficiency is just a start. Atlanta’s plan also relies on putting up a lot more solar panels – on homes, commercial buildings and at utility scale solar farms. It banks on things like improved battery storage for solar energy as well as renewable-energy credits from outside the state to offset coal and gas power still coming from the local grid.

https://www.bbc.com/news/world-us-canada-48112075

If Atlanta is aspiring to be so green, so should we: https://sbr.com.sg/utilities/more-news/singapore-takes-lead-in-embracing-green-energy-across-asean-report

But I forget that we want to be a major LNG centre and so our power generators are paid to use LNG: http://singaporepowerdesk.com/vesting-contracts-made-singapore-consumers-pay-2-7-billion-sgd-last-4-years/

And screwing Hyflux and its investors:

When Hyflux was first awarded the Tuaspring project in 2011, based on the financial model which modeled the cashflow projections from the project, the power plant was expected to generate profits from day one. This financial model was audited by an external financial model auditor and furnished to the offtaker. In 2013 when Tuaspring was able to secure a non-recourse project financing loan, the lender commissioned an independent market study of the project which arrived at similar conclusions supporting the book value of approximately SGD1.4 billion.

Hyflux fiasco shows why “book value” is BS

But to be fair to the PAP govt:

 Hyflux decided to build its power plant after the LNG vesting contracts were awarded to the other gencos. When Hyflux made this decision, information on the plans by other gencos to increase their generation capacity was publicly available. Hyflux’s present financial situation is a result of its own commercial decisions, with full knowledge of the gas supply situation and electricity generation market. It is incorrect for Mr Leong to claim that Hyflux’s financial problems were caused by “an unexpected domestic policy change”.

https://www.ema.gov.sg/reply_to_forum_letter.aspx?news_sid=20190403hDf4R8s5Rwna

Related post written before EMA set the record straight: Will Oliver Lum and other Hyflux investors still vote for the PAP?

These might interest:

Hyflux: Don’t cry for the investors

Hyflux directors, mgt & auditors kooning from 2016 onwards?

Hyflux on investor losses: “Not our fault, banksters at work”

 

 

 

Buffett “responds” to our PM presumptive

In Political economy, Political governance, Public Administration, S'pore Inc on 07/05/2019 at 8:42 am

Heng said last Saturday our time

It is “not a given” that having an opposition party, or having multiple parties, will “result in the best outcome for our society” …

“So the question is this: As our society becomes more diverse, as our people are better educated, better exposed all round the world, how do we harness the energies of everyone in a constructive way and to take Singapore forward? Rather than spend time scoring political points, debating for the sake of debating.”

Buffett said last Saturday at his co’s AGM:

In the end Berkshire should prove itself over time. There are no perpetuities and it needs to deserve to be continued in its present form.”

Since the time GCT and Ah Loong took over, the one-party state leaders have run into one problem after another: asset inflation, MRT breakdowns, immigration etc etc. The younger leaders have not proved themselves. They have been living off the legacies and ideas of the Old Guard.

PAP has lost “output legitimacy”

The PAP govt has lost “output legitimacy”: Discuss

Memo to Paper General heading Computer Security Agency

Even PAP voters don’t trust the PAP to tell the truth

But because there’s some form of Opposition, the PAP govt is forced to spend more of our money on S’poreans (not on foreign investment bankers and other advisers on our reserves) to keep its share of the popular vote above 60%.

Hard Truth why PAP wins and wins

Merdeka Generation: PAP cares for u, really they do

Under PAP rule will S’pore become like UK or Venezuela?

Imagine if there was no Oppo candidates to vote for? We’d have to eat bitter while our reserves pile up.

Vote wisely. Vote tactically.

 

Chinese are sheep

In China on 07/05/2019 at 4:51 am

They are led by their noses by online KOLs (Key Opinion Leaders)

A new McKinsey report here contains the finding that 94 per cent of Chinese luxury shoppers get their information from online KOLs (Key Opinion Leaders). This is far higher than for traditional ads, which influence only 39 per cent of shoppers. No wonder that Ruhnn Holdings, a platform for Chinese KOLs, just managed to list on the Nasdaq. The IPO didn’t go well, but that doesn’t alter the fact that Chinese consumers are still the biggest force in luxury, buying $115bn last year — one-third of the world’s total luxury sales.

Related post: Why ang moh luxury brands lick Chinese p***ies

Why grumbling about PAP govt, doesn’t mean S’poreans are disaffected and rooting for change

In Political economy, Political governance, Public Administration on 06/05/2019 at 9:34 am

The first anniversary of regime change in M’sia is coming. This reminded me how happy the ang moh tua kees and their cybernut allies were last yr, saying that regime change was coming here. PJ Thum even asked Tun to bring change here: PJ Thum cares about S’pore?

The ang moh tua kees and their cybernut allies should have read, “Unpopular Culture: The Ritual of Complaint in a British Bank”, published in 2004, was written by a John Weeks, a US academic.

He spent six years observing NatWest (a UK bank, and since 2000 part of RBS, with retail and commercial operations in England and Wales ), investigating why the staff (from the CEO to the tea-ladies) spent so much time grumbling about it.

Their gentle KPKBing, he found, was a sign of affection for NatWest and of loyalty to each other: they were not unhappy with their employer.

An outsider might have assumed the complaining meant the staff disliked the bank, they did not.

Likewise “outsiders” like Kirsten Han, Mad Dog, PJ Thum, s/o JBJ etc, and their cybernut allies like Ozzie-based “Oxygen” (He fled S’pore yrs ago butcan’t get S’pore off his mind: he still has a CPF account and it’s alleged he uses it to evade Oz taxes) think that S’poreans dislike the PAP govt: when in fact our KPKBing about the PAP govt is a sign of affection for the PAP govt and other S’poreans.  No wonder, our Harry called us affectionately “champion grumblers”.

Related posts showing why ang moh tua kees and cybernuts are not real S’poreans but clueless”outsiders”:

Cluelessness of ang moh tua kees

10- 20% of voters are anti-PAP cybernuts

What the anti-PAP cybernuts have in common with US progressives

Kee Chiu Cybernuts who want to migrate to Bangladesh

 

DBS: Money talks BS walks

In Banks on 06/05/2019 at 3:46 am

DBS Visa Debit card, which gives 5 per cent cash back when you tap for your purchases. You can get up to S$50 back a month as long as you spend at least S$400 a month, which can be easy here even with the bank’s limit of S$200 a tap.

https://www.todayonline.com/singapore/benefits-tagged-debit-cards-can-help-savings

Meanwhile OCBC believes its customers only shop at FairPrice, Popular and Cheers

get a 4 per cent discount at NTUC FairPrice supermarket and a 3 per cent discount at FairPrice online, as well as 3 per cent off at Popular bookstores or Cheers convenience stores.

UOB’s debit card is nothing to write home about.

Telsa’s made-in-China “brain”

In China on 05/05/2019 at 5:40 pm

Only in America: US trade officials have rejected Tesla’s request for relief from the 25% tariffs on the Chinese-made computer “brain” of its Model 3 electric vehicle, says Reuters. The tariff was imposed by The Donald to Make America Great Again.

Telsa is an all-American electric car manufacturer.

Jialat for M’sia and Indonesia/ Even a Chinese M’sian minister is stupid

In Indonesia, Malaysia on 05/05/2019 at 5:12 am

A pair of Scottish entrepreneurs are aiming to go global with their hope to replace palm oil using coffee waste.

Scott Kennedy and Fergus Moore said they came up with a unique way to extract oil from used coffee grounds which had a wide range of uses.

Palm oil is found in many household products, but environmentalists say demand for it is devastating rainforests in Asia.

Manufacturers are now under pressure to find an alternative.

“About 60% of a cafe’s waste is about coffee grounds.

“The most exciting part for us is that they have all the same components as palm.

“Palm oil’s in the news for all the wrong reasons. It’s really exciting for us that we could potentially provide a local and more sustainable alternative to all the industries that are currently using palm oil.”

https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-scotland-scotland-business-48023412

In a sign of how nervous the M’sian govt is of criticism of palm oil, a M’sian minister criticises ‘sensationalised’ signs on palm oil at Singapore Zoo.

https://www.todayonline.com/world/malaysian-minister-criticises-sensationalised-signs-palm-oil-singapore-zoo

And she’s Chinese and from DAP. I tot only stupid, balls-carrying Malay ministers from Bersatu criticise S’pore. Didn’t realise got such people from DAP.

 

 

Crazy Rich Asian in wrong country, should migrate

In Uncategorized on 04/05/2019 at 9:51 am

Metro family scion Ong Jenn, who is in jail for attempted drug possession, had an additional sentence of two years and two months meted out to him on Thursday (Apr 25).

The 43-year-old received the extra jail time for one charge of consuming cannabis and two counts of possessing the drug

Read more at https://www.channelnewsasia.com/news/singapore/metro-founder-grandson-ong-jenn-cannabis-more-jail-time-11478888

When he finally gets released, time to emigrate to Canada or California where he can smoke cannabis to his heart’s content. But will he be allowed in given his criminal record? He can argue that he’s a fighter against repression, like Amos (Remember him?). Will Maruah support him? Human rights kay pohs don’t do “fixers” and “jihadists”, but they might do rich druggies.

Related posts:

Yet another Crazy Rich Asian druggie has gd lawyer

Crazy Rich Asians not falling for Ang Moh BS

Cheer, not jeer, “Crazy Rich Asians”

Crazy Rich Asians: Money talks, BS walks

Eat a durian and fail breathanalyser test

In China on 04/05/2019 at 3:56 am

A man in China has failed an on-the-spot breathalyser test after eating too much durian fruit.

According to Chinese video website Pear Video, an unnamed man in Rudong county, in the eastern province of Jiangsu, was pulled over by the police on 17 April for suspected drink-driving.

He failed his breathalyzer test, but was filmed by police protesting: “I’ve just eaten durian fruit!”

A follow-up blood test proved that there was no alcohol in his system, putting the man in the clear.

But it also prompted local police to subsequently carry out tests themselves, to check the legitimacy of the man’s claims.

https://www.bbc.com/news/blogs-news-from-elsewhere-48123775

The man was right.

Devan Nair, the ghost at the NTUC May Day rally

In Political governance on 03/05/2019 at 11:35 am

Since Heng raised by accidently the spectre of one Devan Nair (Remember him?) by talking about Harry’s role in NTUC (To be fair to Heng, he didn’t mentioning Devan Nair, but any talk of Harry’s role in NTUC will lead to tots about his side-kick and fixer) ),  let’s revisit Devan Nair’s legacy. If you feel like skipping what Heng said, you can start reading from NTUC: What Devan Nair got wrong. But I suggest you plough thru his BS because it sets the context of what follows.

The “close symbiotic relationship” between the ruling People’s Action Party (PAP) and the National Trades Union Congress (NTUC) will continue into the fourth generation (4G) of leaders and beyond, Deputy Prime Minister Heng Swee Keat said on Wednesday (May 1) at this year’s May Day Rally.

Read more at https://www.channelnewsasia.com/news/singapore/dpm-heng-swee-keat-close-ties-pap-ntuc-continue-4g-leadership-11493706

(FYI: May Day 1961 versus today)

This reminded me of one Devan Nair who was the ghost at the banquet when the PM presumptive talked about our Harry and the Modernisation Seminar in 1969

“Today is the first time I’m speaking to you as leader of the next generation of PAP leaders,” said Mr Heng, … “I renew today the pledge that Mr Lee (Kuan Yew) made at your Modernisation Seminar 50 years ago, and that every prime minister has since renewed.”

The landmark Modernisation Seminar in 1969 marked the labour movement’s decision to fundamentally shift from confrontation to collaboration.

Then-Prime Minister Lee Kuan Yew had said then that there is a school of thought that argues it is better not to have trade unions for the rapid industrialisation of an underdeveloped country, but Singapore should not go down that route.

Singapore’s objective is not just industrialisation: While the development of the country is very important, the development of the nature of society is equally important, he had said.

“We do not want our workers submissive, docile, toadying up to the foreman, the foreman to the supervisor and the supervisor to the boss for increments and promotions,” said Mr Heng, quoting Mr Lee. “To survive as a nation and distinct community we have to be a proud and rugged people, or we will fail.

“You can neither be proud nor rugged if you have not got self-respect.”

Read more at https://www.channelnewsasia.com/news/singapore/dpm-heng-swee-keat-close-ties-pap-ntuc-continue-4g-leadership-11493706

The last two paragraphs above quoted reminded me of the piece I wrote five years ago when Zorro Lim was the NTUC supremo and a cabinet minister.

NTUC: What Devan Nair got wrong

The NTUC has a clown cabinet minister and its own MPs within the PAP. The last time it approved of a strike was decades ago (2 Jan 1986). The PAP govt frowns on strikes, and NTUC has to be constructive, and nation-building, like the local media. The PAP govt knows best leh.

Once upon a time the PAP was strike friendly. In 1960 125,000 man-hours were lost in strikes compared with only 26.000 in 1959. The person who reported this statistic, the outgoing head of the S’pore Chamber of Commerce called for an inquiry into where the trade union movement was leading S’pore.

Woodhull, a union man (Singapore Trades Union Congressand a PAP cadre and activist (later arrested in Coldstore) said in the 6 months before the PAP took power in 1959, the workers were “repressed”. So the jump in strikes was to be expected when they were liberated. (Singapore Correspondent. Political Dispatches from Singapore (1958-1962)*

Well the PAP soon grew less-strike friendly** as the economy was affected by strikes and an economic slowdown.

LKY and the other PAP leaders (remember he was only first among equals) decided to form a new trade union movement. National Trades Union Congress (NTUC) was created in 1961 when the Singapore Trades Union Congress (STUC), which had backed the People’s Action Party (PAP), split into the NTUC and the Singapore Association of Trade Unions (SATU). In 1963, the government detained SATU’s leaders during Operation Coldstore and deregistered it.

Only NTUC was left standing: competition eliminated. It never had to persuade the workers that its plans were better.

Devan Nair as a founder of the NTUC and as its first Sec-Gen had a different idea of the role of unions from the one of union leaders in the S’pore of the 1950s: one where the govt, unions and businessmen collaborated for the public good, and where general economic prosperity benefited the employers and their workers

He (and other PAP leaders) publicly said that they had in mind the German model of industrial relations: “The most notable of such experiments have been by the Staedtler, Carl Zeiss, Robert Bosch, Gert Spindler and Rexroth businesses in West Germany, and the John Lewis and Scott-Bader enterprises in England.” The last two were British worker co-operatives. John Lewis is still a model for the co-operative way of doing things.

They hated the traditional British model despite (perhaps because) many of the leaders having studied there, and despite the English-educated leaders having influenced by British socialist thinkers, the Fabian Society and the British Labour party. Devan Nair (not one of the UK educated leaders) quoting a British writerMr. Folkert Wilken, on the subject:

“It is an inveterate evil of the traditional structure of trade unions, that in order to exist they must struggle to recruit members, and to make membership appear in the most attractive light. They are therefore under constant compulsion to prove the necessity of their existence. They have to institute periodic and militant proceedings for increased wages and shorter hours. By doing this, they are appealing to the egotistic interests of the workers. Thus, they never appeal to the social ideals dormant in the workers. They cannot, for they do not consider it their duty to further such ideals, and have no clear picture of the practical realisation of these ideals. They therefore wish to persevere in their war for higher wages and less work. To these aims they owed their birth, a hundred years ago. But then, those aims were justified by the conditions of the time, as they are always justified when there is capitalistic exploitation of labour.”

The virus of the British industrial disease is also latent in Singapore** and could develop a malignant potency in future years, if our social thinkers and planners do not give thought to the development of corrective and remedial measures.

(http://sgrepository.wordpress.com/2014/04/03/wages-alone/)

Funnily for an ex-communist, he never ever mentioned (at least publicly: I’m happy to stand corrected on this point) that the NTUC was modeled on the Soviet Union’s and Communist China’s trade unions’ movements (Just like one LKY kept insisting that the PAP was modeled on the Roman Catholic Church when in fact it was modeled on the Soviet communist party and the Chinese communist party that imitated its structure. The ideas and principles of both organisations followed those of Lenin, even though Lenin got the idea of his structure from the Catholic Church.). The unions were subordinate to the leaders of the communist party who were also the leaders of the govt, the countries being one party states.  They were not equal partners to the govt or the employers (state-owned). This didn’t matter because the communist party represented the interests of the workers, the proletariat.

Devan Nair wanted to improve the working conditions and life of the workers, but he was willingly to use a model that had shown itself capable of exploiting the workers; a system that depended on the whims and fancies of the political leader, there being no institutional checks to their power. No need to have checks and balances because the party and hence its leaders represented the workers.

I’m sure that such a smart man (in EQ and IQ) would have realised the danger especially as he was a well read man (his speeches seem to indicate this, or did he have a good speech writer?). But as he tot the world of LKY***, he created (with others) the NTUC based on the Leninist model.

As I pointed out earlier, by 1973, he may have recognised the problems S’pore was going to face if it continued on the PAP govt’s chosen trajectory, but he was impotent to change the system. He had helped create a union movement that was subordinate to the ruling govt in a defacto one-party state. The NTUC would improve the life of the the workers only if the govt wanted to take care of the workers. If it didn’t, the NTUC would not be in a position to help the workers. It would only spin the govt’s propaganda, like Squealer in Animal Farm, explaining why the other farm animals had to endure hardship.

When in the mid 1990s, the govt realised that S’pore was losing its competitive edge (a fact, not a Hard Truth or Heart Truth) and it tot that economic growth required real wages to be held down and real estate prices to be inflated**** the workers had to accept the nasty consequences. The NTUC was part of the machinery of govt. As to protesting, well sheep S’poreans don’t protest: they juz bleat*****. Besides, S’poreans are law abiding and protests (Hong Leong excepted) and strikes need official permission.

NTUC, as a champion of the workers, was flawed from its conception, a bit like the creature that Dr Frankenstein created. For that, Devan Nair, whatever his good intentions, must accept part of the blame.

One wonders whether when Lim Chin Seong and Fong Swee Suan, Woodhull  and other radical left unionists met Devan Nair in the afterlife, they chorused,”Dr Frankenstein, we presume?”?

—–

*(http://artsonline.monash.edu.au/mai/new-book-singapore-correspondent/)

by Leon Comber MAI Adjunct Research Fellow

Publisher:  Marshall Cavendish International Asia

Singapore Correspondent Book CoverSingapore Correspondent” covers five years of Singapore’s colourful political past – a period of living turbulently and sometimes dangerously. It is a collection of eye-witness dispatches, sent from Singapore to London, spanning a time when Singapore was emerging from British colonial rule and moving forward to self-government and independence. Many of the early struggles of the People’s Action Party (PAP) are described as the focus is on the political struggle taking place in which the PAP played a major part. Many important events which have long been forgotten are brought to life. These dispatches prove that political history need not be dull, and indeed can sometimes be entertaining and lively.

Reviewed here: https://atans1.wordpress.com/2013/01/18/im-invested-in-spore-spore-in-50s-60s/

**Bit ironical this given that PAP activists were in the forefront of the strikes.

***It is important to appreciate, however, that Lee Kuan Yew and Co. belong to a freak generation. In fact, as individuals, they were quite unrepresentative of the great majority of their social class, the members of which were brought up and educated in the colonial era, and whose major preoccupation was to fend for themselves and feather their own nests … But because the present generation of leaders exceeded their class characteristics and loyalties, and developed a creative vision of a better society, they were able to establish themselves as the modern leaders of Singapore. In more senses than one, this freak generation are the creators of the vibrant and bustling Republic we know today.

https://atans1.wordpress.com/2014/04/04/in-1973-devan-nair-foresaw-todays-income-inequality/

****OK, OK, I exaggerate. But go ask Mah Bow Tan.

*****They always have. It’s juz that the internet and social media have amplified the once soft bleats. Take away the anonymity of the internet and social media and there will be a return to the silence of the lambs.

Only ministers can afford this for their kids?

In Uncategorized on 03/05/2019 at 4:26 am

Wealthy people will spend heavily to buy their children an early advantage, as demonstrated by Cognita’s new “early-learning village” in Singapore, which will eventually cater for 2,100 children aged 18 months to six years. Facilities include 114 outside spaces, one for each classroom, and nine playdecks equipped with pirate ships, tricycle tracks and suchlike. The classrooms are arranged in groups of four, each with a central space to create a sense of community. “The building develops with the children,” says Adam Paterson, one of the centre’s two headteachers. “They move through it as they grow.” Fees range from S$14,832 ($8,393) to S$35,610 a year.

https://www.economist.com/special-report/2019/04/13/private-education-is-stepping-in-where-the-state-leaves-off

No PAP Community Foundation kindergarten for them?

HoHoHo: Time for Ho to take an aspirin?

In Temasek on 02/05/2019 at 4:36 am

In Apr last year that Bayer,  aspirin-to-crop chemicals group, sold 3.6 per cent stake to Temasek for 3 billion euros at 96.77 euros per share. Now worth only 60-something euros a share: not even 65.

Bayer faces problems over legal liabilities stemming from last year’s $63bn acquisition of Monsanto, which included weedkiller products that two US courts have since ruled caused cancer.

FT reports

Any settlement worth about €5bn — still the base case for many analysts who follow Bayer — could be absorbed by the German group without jeopardising its credit rating. Should the cost spiral to €20bn, however, Bayer’s leverage could rise to a level where a cut to the group’s “Baa1” credit rating was necessary, and even a “Baa2” rating could look stretched. Such a scenario could leave the company’s rating just two notches above junk status.

But as aspirin is not available here, maybe she’s have to settle for paracetamol, only 1.5 cents a pill, thanks to SingHealth. (Wannbabe MP doesn’t know paracetamol available here: Need Paracetamol? Ask SingHealth)

Btw, “abc” any idea why Bayer isn’t bringing in aspirin into S’pore? Informal govt ban? It’s easily available in M’sia and Indonesia (place where Bayer makes its aspirin).

May Day 1961 versus today

In Uncategorized on 01/05/2019 at 11:12 am

Here’s shumething I wrote several yrs ago

May Day 1961

On May Day 1961, the PAP is strike friendly and a real friend of the S’porean workers, not FTs with fake degrees or who are willing to work for wages that S’poreans cannot live on because this is home (remember 25-yr “affordable” public housing mortgages) for those S’poreans: In 1960 125,000 man-hours were lost in strikes compared with only 26.000 in 1959. The person who reported this statistic, the outgoing head of the S’pore Chamber of Commerce called for an inquiry into where the trade union movement was leading S’pore.

Woodhull, a union man (Singapore Trades Union Congress) and a PAP cadre and activist (later arrested in Coldstore) said in the 6 months before the PAP took power in 1959, the workers were “repressed”. So the jump in strikes was to be expected when they were liberated. (Singapore Correspondent. Political Dispatches from Singapore (1958-1962)

Well Devan Nair, working on orders from one Harry, soon changed things. Want to know more, click https://atans1.wordpress.com/2014/04/11/ntuc-what-devan-nair-got-wrong/.

Fat kids are depressed kids

In Uncategorized on 01/05/2019 at 5:29 am

Obese seven-year-olds are at greater risk of suffering emotional problems, such as anxiety and low mood, when they reach 11, a large UK study suggests.

https://www.bbc.com/news/health-48067478