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Archive for February, 2020|Monthly archive page

Wuhan virus: No beards please and other news you may have missed

In China on 29/02/2020 at 10:56 am

The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommend the shaving of beards as a precaution against Covid 19 infection. The Iranian, Taliban and other mad mullahs will say Wuhan virus is CIA or Chinese plot against Islam.

The outbreak in Iran may not have come from China, nor an ethnic Chinese may have brought it in. Int’l media reports that someone from Canada may have been Iran’s zero patient. There’s a large emigre Iranian population in Canada.

Btw, the Iranian authorities are not telling Iranian men to shave off their beards to prevent the virus from spreading.

The Wuhan virus affects telephones too

A rush of employees using phones has led to a deterioration in the audio quality in China and South Korea of about 10 per cent, according to Spearline, which monitors international phone lines.

FT

Spearline expects similar problems soon in Italy.

HK has quarantined a dog that tested “weak positive” for the virus. The owner is infected.The dog will be kept in isolation for 14 days. Not clear whether pet animals can be infected or a source of infection. But experts say better to be safe than sorry.

Patient zero date pushed back by 30 days?

The first case could have on 1 December, not 31 December 2019.

The official Chinese narrative is that the first coronavirus case was on 31 December last yr and many of the first cases of the pneumonia-like infection were immediately connected to a seafood and animal market in Wuhan, in the Hubei province.

But this narrative could be wrong by 30 days. The first case could have occurred on 1 December:

Wuhan virus: Jialat, if this true

Looking on the bright side, Chinese residents of Beijing, Shanghai, Wuhan and other major cities, and minor cities too are enjoying pollution free skies.

And Chinese are enjoying livestreaming

China has the world’s largest livestreaming industry and Wuhan – the epicentre of the Covid-19 outbreak – was already something of a livestreaming hub.

So when the new virus emerged, confining millions of people to their homes, the industry responded quickly, with new programming genres emerging and a shift in the formats of popular TV reality shows.

Audiences have been watching livestreams of both celebrities and ordinary people singing, cooking and exercising in their own homes. Programmes that usually feature live audiences have instead come to resemble video conferences – but have still proven an unusual hit.

https://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-china-51636621

Ho Ho Ho the VC

In Temasek on 29/02/2020 at 5:01 am

Loss-making food delivery co DoorDash is planning an IPO in the US. Last yr this time,  DoorDash raised US$400 million in a round led by Temasek Holdings and Dragoneer Investment Group, at a valuation of US$7.1bn. In August 2018, it was valued at US$4bn.

The expectation is that it’ll ve valued below US$7.1bn. Ho Ho Ho.

Let’s hope Temasek does better in agritech.

Anuj Maheshwari, Temasek’s managing director of agribusiness, recently told the FT: “New and innovative technologies are catalysing revolutions in the agri-food value chain.”

Temasek has funded agritech start-ups such as vertical farm Bowery, cell-based dairy maker Perfect Day, and Nuro, a delivery robotics company.

 

Wuhan virus: Jialat, if this true

In China on 28/02/2020 at 4:00 am

The first case could have on 1 December, not 31 December 2019.

The official Chinese narrative is that the first coronavirus case was on 31 December last yr and many of the first cases of the pneumonia-like infection were immediately connected to a seafood and animal market in Wuhan, in the Hubei province.

But this narrative could be wrong by 30 days. The first case could have occurred on 1 December:

[A} study, by Chinese researchers published in the Lancet medical journal, claimed the first person to be diagnosed with Covid-19, was on 1 December 2019 (a lot of earlier) and that person had “no contact” with the Huanan Seafood Wholesale Market.

Wu Wenjuan, a senior doctor at Wuhan’s Jinyintan Hospital and one of the authors of the study, told the BBC Chinese Service that the patient was an elderly man who suffered from Alzheimer’s disease.

“He (the patient) lived four or five buses from the seafood market, and because he was sick he basically didn’t go out,” Wu Wenjuan said.

She also said that three other people developed symptoms in the following days – two of whom had no exposure to Huanan either.

However, the researchers also found that 27 people of a sample of 41 patients admitted to hospital in the early stages of the outbreak “had been exposed to the market”.

The hypothesis that the outbreak started at the market and could have been transmitted from a living animal to a human host before spreading human-to-human is still considered the most likely, according to the World Health Organization (WHO).

https://www.bbc.com/future/article/20200221-coronavirus-the-harmful-hunt-for-covid-19s-patient-zero

 

Why Trump loves the Wuhan (Covid-19) virus

In China on 27/02/2020 at 4:07 pm

Google, Microsoft shift production from China faster due to virus

Nikkei Asian Review headline

The Nikkei Asian Review reports that the worsening coronavirus outbreak has Google and Microsoft accelerating their shifts in production of new phones, personal computers and other devices from China to Southeast Asia. Factories in Vietnam and Thailand are expected to be the biggest beneficiaries.

Apple is also doing the same.

While Trump would prefer them to move manufacturing back to the US of A, he’d settle for them leaving China.

All in all, the Wuhan virus is hastening not only US-China conspicuous decoupling, but also China’s links with other developed countries.

Note that the word “Covid-19” was added to the title on March 21 at 6.30 am. LOL.

Simple guide to M’sian politics

In Malaysia on 27/02/2020 at 5:16 am

Or “Why 37 MPs ratted on Perkatan Harapan and outsmarted themselves”.

Bersatu’s 26 MPs (This technically includes Tun and his son) led by Bersati president Muhyiddin Yassin) and 11 MPs (led by Azmin Ali) from Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR), the largest party in Pakatan Harapan (PH), left the coalition earlier this week, leaving it without a parliamentary majority. Before the departures, the coalition had 129 MPs. To form a government, any coalition must have a minimum of 112 out of the 222 members of parliament. PH is 17 MPs short.

Tun is now the interim PM, while the king decides what to do.


Politics is all out race

About 69% of Malaysia’s 32m people are Bumiputra: Malays and other indigenous groups. A further 24% are ethnic Chinese and 7% Indian. The Malays have historically supported UMNO because it champions and defends policies to boost them economically. Bersatu, founded by Tun and Muhyiddin does too. The Chinese and Indians resent the privileges accorded to Malays. The DAP represents Chinese interests and supposedly Indian interests; PKR, led by Anwar, supposedly embraces multiculturalism.


Why did the 37 quit the coalition? One reason is an attempt to ensure that Anwar doesn’t get to become PM, another is to keep Tun in power. But an important reason is that many of them are scared of losing their seats in a GE.

Shortly after Pakatan Harapan won power, 63% of Malays thought the country was “going in the right direction”, according to the Merdeka Center, a pollster. Within two years that share had plummeted to 24%. And PH keeps losing by-elections: 5 in all so far.

Mahathir could now try to form a government with parties who remain in the coalition, backed up by new support from elsewhere (Think Sawawak’s governing party, PBB and its pals who have 18 MPs*). They have told him to f-off, coming out to say they want Anwar as PM. Looks like whatever Anwar and Lim Guan Eng (head of DAP) said publicly in support of Tun’s resignation (He said he didn’t want to team up with UMNO), there’s disbelief in PH that he didn’t known his party president and Amin were talking to UMNO and PAS.

Or he could follow his traditional supporters who have abandoned the ruling coalition, and team up with those he removed from power in 2018 (UMNO and friends). UMNO and PAS have told him that they want a GE. Sawawak’s governing party, PBB and its pals who have 18 MPs* “say” that they’ll support him.

He could also step back, and make way for a race between Anwar, Azmin and figures from his own party, Bersatu.

Fun fact: According to his website, Azmin was born in Singapore in 1964 as the fourth child of six siblings. His father, Haji Ali Omar, was in the Malaysian army, in 1968, he returned to Malaya.

—————————————————-

*Parti Pesaka Bumiputera Bersatu (PBB), Parti Rakyat Sarawak (PRS), Progressive Democratic Party (PDP) and Sarawak United People’s Party (SUPP) formed a new coalition called Gabungan Parti Sarawak (GPS).

 

Xia suay! LKY’s really dishonourable son?

In Uncategorized on 26/02/2020 at 4:26 am

KNN! CCB! Xia suay! Son honour pa like this meh?

When I was a junior officer in the central bank, I was fortunate enough to work for someone who in a previous incarnation was the perm sec in the PMO’s office.

He once told me that LKY, was a stickler for accuracy and the truth. Anyone caught misrepresenting the truth, however innocently, to LKY got terminated ASAP. If LKY tot the person lied, it was terminated with extreme prejudice. 

So I can well imagine LKY’s ashes spinning in his urn (which are on a table in his Oxley Rise house, beside that his wife’s urn) if he knew what Lee Hsien Yang said in his sworn testimony to the disciplinary tribunal investigating his wife’s role in LKY’s final will.

“Statements he made need not be accurate because they were not sworn ones, said Mr Lee Hsien Yang, when asked why his statements on Facebook and in public were at odds with his testimony.”

And

“He said his public statements could be inaccurate because they are not sworn statements and thus he may not look at them carefully,” said the tribunal.

And

“Mr Lee admitted in cross-examination that aspects of the posts could be misleading and inaccurate,” 

https://www.straitstimes.com/singapore/lee-hsien-yang-statements-were-not-sworn-ones-so-need-not-be-accurate?fbclid=IwAR0bAKpz5yju2y1h4AEXurCUmqhh7EDBIjzsndDYs4-zeRK-xMCCWcsnV_k

Not only would LKY be upset, so would ma. My friend was her pupil in Lee & Lee and said she was a stickler for accuracy and the truth.

Lee Hsien Loong’s Yang’swife said she looked forward to defending herself in open court. The tribunal’s findings will go before a court made up of three high court judges.

I look forward to learning if the findings of the tribunal about LHY’s integrity are upheld or thrown out by the judges. I once wrote:

 As a son of LKY, Lee Hsien Yang would have learnt the importance of defending his integrity. He could do no less as a son of Harry than to attack his brother’s integrity in return.

Just a tot, maybe, the constructive, nation-building quoted what he said out of context?

Whatever, for the record, I’ve always had a problem with statements uttered by LHY in 2017 on FB about his wife’s role in relation to LKY’s final will. From 2017: Can understand why SD wanted from Hsien Yang and Talking cock about the will.

Posts to show I’m no fan of LKY and his three children (From what I’ve been told of Mrs Lee, I admire her: real MGS girl)

Biblical verses that explain Lees’ row?

White Horses get taste of what Marxist conspirators kanna isit?

Juz move yr ass Dr Lee: Dr Lee trying to have her cake and eat it

Speaking truth to LHY

FamiLee: Karma’s a bitch

PM should have just sat down and shut up not tell his subordinates his concerns.

 

Investors who gave finger to Wuhan virus doom mongers now crying

In Financial competency on 25/02/2020 at 4:39 am

The S&P 500 was down by 3.6% by lunchtime today, its worst day since February 2018, and the tech-heavy Nasdaq lost 4%.

Earlier other global stocks slide after Italy’s coronavirus lockdown. Iinvestors shift from equities and oil to bonds and gold

Just last week,  Wall Street bullish on corporate earnings despite virus. The case for stock market bull run bolstered, despite risk warnings like the one below.

(Chart from last week. LOL)

“There’s a big chance for disappointment if the impact is greater in China and the spillover effects on to the global economy last longer than expected,” said Liz Young, director of market strategy for BNY Mellon Investment Management.

Related posts:

Wuhan virus: Goldman Sachs has second tots?

Wuhan virus: Why investors are not panicking

Xia suay! KNN! Why our millionaire ministers not ordering money to be laundered?

In Uncategorized on 24/02/2020 at 4:27 am

Chinese banks have been ordered to remove potentially contaminated notes from circulation. Only after launderisation (sterilisation) will the notes return to general circulation.

Why we no follow?

Seriously

In ordinary circumstances, modern notes carry similar quantities of bacteria to those found on a door handle. It is harder for germs to adhere to newer polymer notes.

FT

As our notes are polymer, no need for PAP govt to launder our notes. That’s a private sector initiative reserved for banks.

But it’ll not prevent cybernuts from calling for this when they hear that China is laundering its notes.

Hongkie monkeys panic buying, S’porean cybernuts must follow: Thanks to cybernuts, Fairprice is laughing all the way to bank.

Then there’s the use of masks: Xia suay! PRC monkey see, S’porean monkey must do isit?

Xia suay! PRC monkey see, S’porean monkey must do isit?

In Public Administration on 23/02/2020 at 1:01 pm

Not juz the PAP govt question masks’ effectiveness.

Public health bodies, including the World Health Organisation, US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Australian Department of Health, question whether masks are an effective guard against infection and emphasise the importance instead of regular handwashing.

From Q&As on WHO’s official website on “when to wear a mask”.

  • If you are healthy, you only need to wear a mask if you are taking care of a person with suspected 2019-nCoV infection.
  • Wear a mask if you are coughing or sneezing.
  • Masks are effective only when used in combination with frequent hand-cleaning with alcohol-based hand rub or soap and water.

Dr David Carrington, a clinical virologist at St George’s, University of London, told BBC News that “routine surgical masks for the public are not an effective protection against viruses or bacteria carried in the air” because they are too loose, have no air filter and leave the eyes exposed.

But to be fair to the mob of anti-PAP cybernuts and activists, WHO has no advisory on whether there is a need to wear a mask when going outdoor in a city as infected as S’pore, and the above advice is “general lah”.

Cybernuts point out that in Wuhan masks are worn. And in other cities in China, and in HK.

Chinese monkeys do, our cybernuts must follow isit? Monkey see, monkey do.

Jokes aside, as I wrote in Kiasu? Get hold of the king mask/ Listen to expert on infectious disease

 A very Chinese habit, the using of masks.

There’s widespread use of face masks among the ordinary population, whether or not they’ve been instructed to do so by the authorities.

  • More than half a million staff working on public transport in China have been told to use masks
  • There are reports that some shops, businesses and other public premises have told people to use masks if they want to enter

Culturally, it’s quite common for people in China to wear face masks, both as general protection and if they feel they are getting ill.

Same with Hongkies. And becoming the practice in S’pore among cybernuts as TOC and other anti-PAP activists spread the lie that it’s effective against the Wuhan virus; and KPKBing that the PAP govt is not giving out enough masks. (Fake news that S’poreans panicking about shortage of masks)

There is very little evidence that wearing face masks make a difference. Experts say good hygiene – such as regularly washing your hands and certainly before putting them near your mouth – is vastly more effective.

BBC

And in said article I quoted SDP’s Chairman, Professor Paul Tambyah the only infectious diseases specialist in NUH, if not S’pore (No money in this line, so doctors avoid it. Remember the PAP MP doc who implied he did not respect people with low pay?) who explains the real purpose of the surgical masks:

Question: “Should we only wear a mask if we are sick? Wouldn’t a mask help to protect a healthy person too?”

Professor Tambyah: “Well, it does both. You see, the mask actually prevents or reduces the amount of virus you’re going to shed. But ultimately, you shouldn’t be walking around town if you’re sick because when the mask gets wet, it loses its efficacy. So ideally, you should put on a mask, go see a doctor and then get treated.”

“Now, the reason why [healthy] people wear a mask is because they are not sure that people who are going to be sick are going to be staying at home. And I think that is the message that needs to get across, you see? If you are sick, you shouldn’t go to the office, you shouldn’t take the MRT, you should get yourself evaluated. You should put on a mask, go and get yourself evaluated by your doctor.”

“And if everybody does that, then there’s no need [for healthy people] to wear a mask, right? Because then everybody walking in the streets is going to be healthy. And you don’t need to worry about some guy coughing in your face and infecting you. Right now, you see, too many people are worried that there are people who are sick walking around. And that, I think, needs to be addressed.”

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1-qK7OeTRf8

Wuhan virus: Why electricity prices sure to collapse

In Economy, Energy on 23/02/2020 at 5:16 am

BP chief financial officer Brian Gilvary said that he believed the latest virus could slash oil demand growth globally by 40% his year. The slowdown in economic activity due to coronavirus could take out 5-7% of China’s LNG demand in February, according to S&P Global Platts.

This prediction will come thru

Electricity tariffs will drop because oil prices have fallen from around US$65 to below US$55. China is not buying oil. Related post: Why MSM no kanna POFMA for spreading fake news?

Wuhan virus: Look on the bright side

Interesting ideas from Germany and US to protecting borrowing home owners and their lenders

In Banks, Financial competency, Financial planning, Property on 22/02/2020 at 2:38 pm

Recently I wrote in TRE cybernuts and central bank singing from the same song sheet that our central bank is worried that

Singapore property market faces risks from unsold units, uncertain economy: MAS

Here’s what the Germans do to protect banks and borrowers

German mortgage-lenders embrace an unusual appraisal technique. When assessing the value of a house, they rarely refer to market price; instead they consider “mortgage-lending value”, an assessment of the probable price of a house over the economic cycle. A report from the Bank for International Settlements, a club of central banks, suggests that by discounting short-term price fluctuations, this valuation technique can stop bubbles from forming. Lenders in America once embraced the technique, points out Ed Pinto of the American Enterprise Institute, a think-tank, yet after the second world war it fell out of fashion.

https://www.economist.com/special-report/2020/01/16/what-is-the-future-of-the-rich-worlds-housing-markets

Meanwhile in America

Safe Rate, based in Chicago, offers a new type of mortgage. When local house prices decline, so do borrowers’ monthly mortgage repayments. The benefit for the borrowers is that they save money and are less likely to default. The advantage for investors is that, by preventing foreclosures, more mortgages will be kept going and it is less likely that house prices across a region will spiral downwards.

https://www.economist.com/special-report/2020/01/16/a-decade-on-from-the-housing-crash-new-risks-are-emerging

Wuhan virus: Goldman Sachs has second tots?

In China, Financial competency on 22/02/2020 at 4:14 am

Just as well as Wall ST is down two days in a row on fears that that the Wuhan Virus is an economic killer. Apple’s profits warning early this week spooked the market. When Apple sneezes, investors worry.

Before Apple’s warning, in Wuhan virus: Why investors are not panicking, I had quoted Goldman Sachs

We estimate that even in a scenario where the rate of new infections did not peak until the second quarter, the negative hit to global economic growth would be about 0.3 percentage points. That means the expansion would still be 3.1 per cent — in line with last year’s pace.

Goldman Sachs Japan vice chair talking about the global economy

This week, “The impact of the coronavirus on earnings may well be underestimated in current stock prices,” Peter Oppenheimer, analyst at Goldman Sachs, warned in a client note this week.

He said that investors are misjudging the full impact of the Covid-19 outbreak on companies’ earnings, pointing to China’s economic rise and greater integration in the world economy. Note (The Chinese economy is six times larger now than it was during the Sars outbreak of 2003, and Chinese tourism alone accounts for about 0.4%) of global GDP.

He said forecasts for profit growth this year are already “relatively modest” and so far earnings revisions have been in line with the historical trends, including in “more cyclical markets like Europe, where direct exposure to China is much higher”.

Equity markets are looking increasingly exposed to near-term downward surprises to earnings growth and while a sustained bear market does not look likely, a near-term correction is looking much more probable.

Remember: A correction is defined as a drop of 10% or more from a recent peak.

 

With director like this, any wonder why Hyflux collapsed?

In Accounting, Corporate governance on 21/02/2020 at 4:12 am

The departure of one of Hyflux’s non-executive independent director, super legal eagle and academic, Simon Tay earlier this month after there was “unresolved differences in opinion” between Mr him and the other directors over the issue, opened an interesting side window into his financial illiteracy.

As at Feb 7, Mr Tay held 500,000 of Hyflux’s 6 per cent perpetual securities and 350,000 share options in his own name, it said.

Constructive, nation-building media

I make no comment about his share options as I don’t know how he came by them.

But why would anyone who is financially literate own 500,000 of Hyflux’s 6 per cent perpetual securities? The company had negative cash flow: Hyflux revisited: Got profits but cash flows out.

It was a high risk investment whose only reward was a 6% coupon. There are lower risk alternatives: think S-reits or SPH.

What it shows is someone who is not financial literate having a brain like that of the greedy, stupid uncles and aunties who bought Hyflux’s perpetual and preference shares. How did a financially illiterate person become an independent director of Hyflux?

But maybe he could too rich to care about losing $500,000. So much toilet paper?

Want to know more about what went wrong at Hyflux?

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

Did Hyflux’s auditors mislead?

Hyflux fiasco shows why “book value” is BS

 

Where S’pore is not too exposed to China

In China, Economy on 20/02/2020 at 5:42 am

S’pore’s a very open economy. But I was surprised to learn that like M’sia and Vietnam, we are not that dependent on China for electrical and electronic components. China’s the world’s largest exporter.

We are below world’s average. India despite considering China as its geopolitical rival (Chinese think Indians are deluded) are the 5th most dependent country: all those cheap made in India smartphones are assembled from Chinese imports.

Of course this doesn’t mean that places like Vietnam, S’pore and M’sia will not be hurt by China’s slowdown. MNCs from these countries are large exporters of  electrical and electronic components to China.

I’ll try to find a chart showing this.

Why Mamas are running US tech giants, not us slit-eyes

In China, Humour, India, Uncategorized on 19/02/2020 at 3:36 pm

Indian supremacists and their Chinese friends are KPKBing about Indian start-ops depend on Chinese money

They point out that as usual Mamas are punching above their weight (like in S’pore law and politics) in the US C-suites and politically. Hello Andrew Yang juz dropped out of the presidential. The ladies with mama blood were booted out a long time ago.

OK, OK, there are 4 mamas heading US giant techs.

Mr Krishna’s recent elevation at IBM mirrors the rise of Satya Nadella at Microsoft and Shantanu Narayen at Adobe. They were Indian-born engineers who took over at prominent US tech companies that were going through a midlife crisis. Then there is Alphabet’s CEO, Sundar Pichai

Meanwhile,

Chinese engineers complain that Silicon Valley has an ethnic glass ceiling, and interviewees, many of whom are naturalised American citizens, compared their status with the relative success of Indians in large tech companies.

“In the US many Indian managers have become big company’s CEOs, but in many ways there’s still a bottleneck for Chinese people,” said Hans Tung, managing partner of GGV Capital, at a recent conference in Beijing. Turning to Eric Yuan, the founder of Zoom, he asked: “What do you think can be done?”.

Mr Yuan is Silicon Valley’s most well-known Chinese immigrant success story. His video conference app Zoom, which listed last April, is valued at almost $21bn. Mr Yuan responded that many Indian engineers were not only proficient at technical work, but also at understanding business models and management.

“It’s Chinese culture: it emphasises obedience and modesty, not confidence,” says Sophie Xu, a PayPal employee who left China for Canada and then the US 17 years ago. “There’s no wild ambition, we love book smarts.”

FT

My interpretation: Mamas suck up to ang mohs while Chinese ignore ang mohs. The latter believe that their work will show how good they are: they think of Grandpa’s Xi rise in China. Mamas not that naive: they know sucking ass matters.

Indian start-ops depend on Chinese money

In China, India on 19/02/2020 at 4:04 am

India has always tot of China as a geopolitical rival* and is cautious about Chinese investment.

But that caution has not prevented Chinese venture capitalists from providing a record amount of funding for Indian start-ups last year In the final quarter of the year, deals involving Chinese investors totalled a record US$1.4bn, according to figures from Refinitiv. Data provider Tracxn said Chinese funds invested in 54 funding rounds last year — the largest ever number — compared with just three in 2013 and more than double what it was in 2017.

This made China into one of the biggest sources of funds for start-ups in India, joining traditional investors in Indian start-ups like Sequoia and SoftBank. Two-thirds of India’s start-ups valued at more than US$1bn now have at least one Chinese VC investor.

Indian talking heads are fueling concerns about Chinese influence amid unfriendly relations between the two countries.

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

*Chinese are surprised that India thinks itself as China’s rival. They can’t stop stop laughing at India’s delusions of grandeur.

What if GST goes up today?

In Economy, Political governance, Public Administration on 18/02/2020 at 4:37 am

I’ve predicted sometime back that GST will not go up this yr: Double confirm: No GST rise this yr.because the economy is weak.

Already, economic forecasts have been slashed:

After seeing its economy grow at a decade-low of 0.7 per cent last year, Singapore is expecting possibly even slower growth in 2020 and has downgraded its gross domestic product (GDP) forecast amid concerns about the ongoing COVID-19 outbreak.

Economic growth for this year is expected to come in at around 0.5 per cent, the mid-point of a new estimated range of between -0.5 per cent and 1.5 per cent, said the Ministry of Trade and Industry (MTI) on Monday (Feb 17).

The previous forecast range announced last November was 0.5 per cent to 2.5 per cent.

Constructive, nation-building CNA

If the PAP govt, die die insists that GST must go up because as PAP supporter Grace Yeo puts it

It’s a no brainer to be populist and say, tax less and give more. BTW, not increasing the GST is not even a new idea. For years and years, politicians hv campaigned against increasing of prices. I can also say to the government too. Mr Government, please don’t increase the GST or for that matter, any direct or indirect taxes. Also, give more and more money to help Singaporeans defray costs of living and to live a better quality of life, especially to the poor, the needy, the vulnerable, and the disadvantaged, and those who are suffering under unforeseen and uncontrollable distress. There, I hv said it – without much thinking and it’s highly popular and appealing, isn’t it? A non-political novice will propose solutions on how to generate more revenue and/or increase net investment returns (NIR). In addition, it’s one thing to get the private sector to fund Changi Airport Terminal 5 and in doing so, cede a degree of control to the private sector, but quite another to look into how to manage and control possible fallouts, including both intended and unintended consequences from having a public-private sector partnership. More importantly, what’s key right now is winning the battle against the virus … The time has come to compel our people to make hard, deep and inconvenient changes, including re-skilling, up-skilling, deep-skilling and multi-skilling themselves (quoted from the NTUC) and such changes will bring about unhappiness and dissatisfaction from many quarters of society …

the recent fall in the S$ will be “peanuts”: S$ tanks as GDP forecasts slashed and Why has M$ strengthened against S$?.

Japan increased its version of GST by 2 points in October last year and the result was that annualised GDP fell by a much steeper than expected 6.3% in October-December 2019.

Japan’s economy shrank at the fastest rate in five years at the end of 2019 as it was hit by a sales tax rise, a major typhoon and weak global demand.

As the PAP 4G needs 65% of the popular vote, I doubt they would listen to Grace Yeo

PAP $G leaders not as stupid as her.

With fans like her, the PAP needs enemies like Mad Dog, Lim Tean, Goh Meng Seng, Tan Kin Lian, Tan Jee Say and that guy on Finland’s dole: Anti-PAP activists loi hei wish.

 

 

Thanks to cybernuts, Fairprice is laughing all the way to bank

In Uncategorized on 17/02/2020 at 6:54 am

NTUC Fairprice made so much money recently that it stopped advertising last Thursday its discounts for the week, saving the money it throws the way of the constructive, nation-building media, and consumers.

The run on the supermarkets by the anti-PAP cybernuts was really money for jam for Fairprice, and Sheng Siong and Giant, the other two supermarkets serving us plebs.

Why do I say the panic-buyers are anti-PAP cybernuts?

Firstly, anti-PAP cybernuts are the people who distrust the PAP govt.

How could the panic-buyers be part of the 70% that vote for the PAP in the last GE? They trust the PAP govt and would not not panicked when DORSCON Orange was announced. (Memo to PAP govt: No amount of communication is possible or needed when dealing with cybernuts. Focus the message on the hard core PAP vote and those who who voted for Tan Cheng Bock in PE2011. Just sneer at the cybernuts and call them stupid trash, unfit to be S’poreans. And think about replacing them with hardworking FTs. Practice eugenics if necessary. The 70% will support any culling policy of the trash.)


Pick-up rate of masks prove Roy and TRE cybernuts wrong

“Singaporeans don’t trust the government,” says Roy Ngerng, saying that the panic buying proves his case. TRE cybernuts roared their approval, claiming that the Spastics League will defeat the PAP in the coming GE.

Let’s see shall we. The PAP will win at least 62% of the popular vote is my prediction.

In the meantime, how does Roy and his equally nutty TRE fans explain the slow pick-up rate of the masks

The truth is that the majority of voters trust the PAP govt to look after us. They are so trusting that as of the morning of the final collection date, which was 9 Feb, only 54% of households collected their masks, according to The Straits Times (ST).

Collection date for the masks now extended until 29 Feb.

Panic? What panic?/ Anti-PAP activists loi hei wish

Roy and fellow nutters should accept the fact that while they don’t trust the govt, the majority of S’poreans do trust the govt to look after them. In fact, 46% of households were too complacent: they didn’t bother to collect the masks.

—————————————–

Secondly these panic buyers did not have Fairprice co-op membership cards. Secret Squirrel’s sidekick Morocco Mole informs me that his second cousin removed who works in Fairprice told him that the purchasers did not get the 5% off the listed prices that members get (Rebate paid annually). Given their distrust of the PAP govt,  cybernuts would be unlikely to be co-op members especially as nowadays only NTUC members can the join co-op. (My mum joined when there was no need to be an NTUC member: they were so desperate for S’poreans to join them in the early 70s.)

Taz another reason why Fairprice is laughing all the way to the bank. No rebates will be paid to the hoarders who social media reports say paid each an average of between $800 to $1000 for a trolley-load of groceries.

As my mum is a Fairprice co-op member, she can expect a bigger dividend next yr.

Even though she’s in her late 90s, she’ll vote in the next GE to show her appreciation. Despite owning private property and living off her dividend income, she got to go to Raffles Hospital at SingHealth rates for B2 patients: Bill: Private hospital treatment, public hospital fees.

 

 

 

Two experts think Wuhan virus is juz “bad cold”

In Uncategorized on 16/02/2020 at 10:33 am

Update on 16 February at 10.55 am: World Health Organisation (WHO) found 82% of infected have mild symptoms, 15% severe and 3% critical. COVID-19 fatality rate far lower than SARS, closer to H1N1 according to WHO. Sounds like common flu to me.

PAP govt says:

COVID-19 spreads easily

– Infectious as influenza
– Infectious even if symptoms mild
– Stay home even with mild flu-like symptoms)

——————————————–

“Fear spreads faster than infection?” the BBC asks. “Social media was giving people partial information, but not all the facts, and that magnified their concerns,” Dr Lee Riley, professor of infectious diseases and vaccinology at the University of California


First coronavirus death outside Asia as China toll passes 1,500 is what media is reporting now.


But first, John Nicholls, a professor in pathology at the University of Hong Kong compares the novel coronavirus to a bad cold. It’s a rare upbeat assessment that defies consensus. Nicholls has said this on CNN and elsewhere.

Nicholls downplays the severity of the epidemic as fear and panic were spreading. His hometown, Hong Kong,  closed schools for over a month and speculation of shortages has prompted shoppers to hoard toilet paper and other goods.

Then there is Dr Lee Riley, professor of infectious diseases and vaccinology at the University of California – a man who has spent his career studying epidemics, including a spell at the World Health Organization.

He was surprisingly sanguine about the coronavirus, pointing out that common-or-garden influenza was far more deadly, though he said he understood that uncertainty about the nature of the disease was bound to make people fearful.

But he said a 24/7 news culture and the rise of social media made that fear spread faster than the virus itself – especially as the coronavirus was being diagnosed far more rapidly than Sars was 20 years ago.

“They do the diagnosis, and then we hear about the news of the diagnosis right away throughout the world instantaneously. They’re constantly getting updates on this… and I think that feeds into some of the anxiety that people have.”

Social media was giving people partial information, but not all the facts, and that magnified their concerns.

He seemed surprised when we told him there was talk of cancelling Mobile World Congress. He said that would be an “over-reaction”. Even if people were attending the show from China, he said, “we have new ways to diagnose these types of infections very quickly and accurately so that shouldn’t be a concern.”

https://www.bbc.com/news/technology-51510196

What do you think?

“Better safe than sorry” is the BS response. But what is “safe” and what is “sorry”?

Answers pls.

No, markets are not in a bubble

In Financial competency on 16/02/2020 at 4:53 am

Rather as a perceptive FT reader puts it after yet another article denouncing that markets are not behaving the way the FT thinks they should (ie collapse)

The other way of looking at things is it is not that asset prices have gone up, but the value of cash has gone down. Equity prices may have risen, but so have the prices of property, luxury items, art, etc., i.e. all the things that matter to most owners of stocks – so the purchasing power of stocks is unchanged for them. This comes at the expense of the the middle class (who pay capital gains tax on their nominal gains) and the working class (whose labour has become less valued).

Wuhan virus: Indonesia is known unknown

In Indonesia on 15/02/2020 at 1:37 pm

Extracts from a very long Guardian report (link below) showing why there is good reason to be worried about the reported absence of the Wuhan virus in Indonesia.

A Harvard academic has defended research suggesting a possible underreporting of coronavirus cases in Indonesia, following fierce criticism from the health minister in the world’s fourth most populous country, which insists it has no cases.

Professor Marc Lipsitch analysed air traffic out of the Chinese city at the centre of the outbreak in China and suggested in a report last week that Indonesia might have missed cases. On Tuesday the Indonesian health minister Terawan Agus Putranto called the report “insulting” and said the country had proper testing equipment.

On Thursday, health officials in Indonesia, which has a population of 272 million and is a popular destination for Chinese tourists, said they were retracing the movements of a Chinese tourist who was diagnosed with coronavirus upon his return from Bali. No-one in Bali has yet been found with symptoms.

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2020/feb/14/indonesia-coronavirus-academic-harvard-marc-lipsitch

Note there were no test kits until early Feb

A leading hypothesis for the lack of reported cases in Indonesia is that imported cases were missed, said Lipsitch, who pointed to a Sydney Morning Herald report that the country had no test kits until 5 February in support of the theory.

“If cases have been introduced into Indonesia, then there is a good chance that more cases are circulating via transmission from those cases. If so, they may go undetected for some weeks as the individuals may not seek care or may not be suspected and tested for coronavirus, especially if there is no direct link to China.”

Samples only tested in Jakarta

Currently, the policy in Yogyakarta is to ship all samples from potentially affected patients to testing facilities in Jakarta

Insufficient training to detect virus

Dr Riris Andono Ahmad, director of the Center for Tropical Medicine at Gadjah Mada University in Yogyakarta, said facilities had been set up to handle potential cases but health practitioners have not received sufficient training. “We need to be much more alert,” Ahmad said.

Insufficient public knowledge

“Public awareness of effective prevention measures is not high,” he said. “For instance, there was a lot of panic-buying of masks, but masks only work with people who are already sick. Whereas something that actually works, like washing hands more frequently – I don’t know how many people are really doing it yet.”

And finally, Indonesian officials are BS artists

One senior former diplomat in the country, who did not want to to be named, said he did not believe official assertions that no cases had been found. “There’s a tendency to hide or gloss over serious problems in the top levels of the government,” he said. “I’m a bit concerned.”.

 

 

S$ in intensive care

In China, Currencies, Economy on 15/02/2020 at 4:19 am

The u/m currencies the fragile, vulnerable Wuhan flu currencies.

 

Related posts:

S$ tanks as GDP forecasts slashed

China sneezes, S’pore in intensive care with Thailand, HK, M’sia and Korea dying.

Why has M$ strengthened against S$?

Emerging mkts to look at

In Emerging markets on 14/02/2020 at 2:40 pm

Look elsewhere, not Asia.

Emerging Europe generally, including Bulgaria and Serbia, may benefit from European companies looking to bring supply chains closer to home.

And Mexico will benefit from US cos looking to bring supply chains closer to home.

Then there is Ukraine Its doing well, partly thanks to ambitious reforms and disciplined fiscal policy, even if its president was a comedian.

Egypt, which completed an IMF programme last year, is seen as a potential outperformer.

 

S’poreans prefer pets to breeding for S’pore

In Uncategorized on 13/02/2020 at 2:45 pm

 

 

 

Wuhan virus: Look on the bright side

In Uncategorized on 13/02/2020 at 4:46 am

So DBS, our biggest bank, has lowered its 2020 GDP growth forecast for Singapore by 28% from 1.4% previously to 0.9% because of a drop of 1m tourist arrivals for every three months Singapore’s travel ban on Chinese passport holders continues. (Related post: S$ tanks as GDP forecasts slashed)


Wuhan virus: Why investors are not panicking

——————————————————————

Time to look on the bright side.

Electricity tariffs will drop because oil prices have fallen from around US$65 to below US$55. China is not buying oil. Related post: Why MSM no kanna POFMA for spreading fake news?

Less crowds when going to supermarkets. The anti-PAP cybernut hoarders got to eat up their stocks of rice, instant noodles and toilet paper. They also have no spare money to spend on other groceries after spending hundreds if not thousands of $ on rice, instant noodles and toilet paper.

Sure to have sales for luxury goods because tourists are not coming.

I’m seeing ads offering discounts for fine dining and stuff like suckling pig.

Sure got more comedy shows as Goh Meng Seng and Tan Kin Lian attack PAP govt: Clowns of Singapore.

No GST rise this yr: Double confirm: No GST rise this yr.

More goodies even if it’s more of Ownself pay ownself: it’s our money PAP govt is using to bribe lessen the pain of a slowing economy in an election yr.

Anti-PAP types should be cheering as if the economy suffers badly, more people will vote against the PAP: Anti-PAP activists loi hei wish.

 

Wuhan virus: Why investors are not panicking

In Financial competency on 12/02/2020 at 11:22 am

Unlike the anti-PAP cybernuts who rushed to hoard rice and instant noodles investors are not panicking Because

We estimate that even in a scenario where the rate of new infections did not peak until the second quarter, the negative hit to global economic growth would be about 0.3 percentage points. That means the expansion would still be 3.1 per cent — in line with last year’s pace.

Goldman Sachs Japan vice chair talking about the global economy

Current investor sentiment seem to suggest an economic recovery from 2018 lows remains on track, albeit with a delay.

JPMorgan’s Asia equity strategy team notes the prevalence of three types of investors at the moment:

“The largest group of investors have chosen to ride out the whole episode with an assumption that market reactions to the developments would be transitory and difficult to time. Much of this camp has recently been adding to existing holdings as they have corrected.”

It says, one gauge of this, which also dovetails with the Nasdaq 100 up 9.4% this year to a record high, is how the China A-shares tech sector is the best performing sector, says JPM.

A more KS group of investors believes “the situation is about to significantly deteriorate, calling cycle views into question”, notes JPM.

The bank’s strategists say “there are risks from unexpected supply disruptions (through bottleneck inputs or processes) or a resurgence of new cases as factories reopen or the virus mutates”. That scenario entails a drop of 6% in the MSCI Asia Share index excluding Japan, and further pain should the cycle falter from here.

The final group includes the buyers of the dip or what JPM term “a similar minority of investors are tactically raising risk exposure” and anticipating a lot more easing from China that offsets any damage to consumer sentiment.

JPM points out:

“In a somewhat cyclical argument, it is important for the market to hold up as, contrary to popular belief, we find price action shaping narratives and sentiment as much as (if not more than) the other way around.”

In simple English it’s saying “This view requires a degree of optimism”.

Wuhan virus: black humour

In Uncategorized on 12/02/2020 at 4:39 am

A senior health official sent from Beijing to Wuhan to publicly reassure the plebs that the disease was “preventable and controllable”. He contracted the virus himself, becoming a symbol of government incompetence and mendacity on social media and the internet. (Source int’l media)

Women are the stronger sex.

“The average age of the [ Wuhan virus] patients was 55.5 years, including 67 men and 32 women,” said a Lancet paper published last month.

It is an eye-catching discrepancy. A picture is emerging of 2019-nCoV as a novel pathogen that disproportionately affects older men, particularly those with existing illnesses such as heart disease and diabetes. A similar pattern can be found in the statistics on Sars, which caused about 780 deaths nearly two decades ago.

FT

FT goes on to say that some scientists are now convinced that these sex differences in clinical data reflect a genuine male vulnerability to coronaviruses, rather than a bias in exposure.

(Following added at 2.00pm on 12 Feb 2020.)

Never ending cruise to nowhere. Shades of the Flying Dutchman:

A cruise ship carrying more than 1,450 passengers has been told it cannot dock in Thailand over coronavirus fears.

The Westerdam had already been turned away from several ports, including in Japan, Taiwan, Guam and the Philippines, amid fears of the virus.

BBC report

From Wikipedia:

The Flying Dutchman is a legendary ghost ship that can never make port and is doomed to sail the oceans forever.

These S’porean artists do us proud

In Uncategorized on 11/02/2020 at 5:22 pm

The last exhibit in an exhibition on Buddhism (ending soon in London):

[T]he British Library commissioned a painted wall hanging – a new Buddhist ‘text’ – of the Vessantara Jātaka by three Singaporean artists, Irving Chan Johnson, Lim Su Qi, and Rungnapa Kitiarsa. It is painted in the style of a 19th-Century Thai banner painting, a visual teaching aid. It is an outstanding work of art, and depicts 13 scenes from the Buddha’s previous life in order to teach about the Buddhist values of generosity and charity.

http://www.bbc.com/culture/story/20200115-how-buddhism-spread-written-language-around-the-world

Difference between opposing the PAP and being anti-PAP

In Political economy on 11/02/2020 at 4:53 am

The former disagree with “The PAP is always right”, always willing to challenge the PAP on issues where they think the PAP doesn’t get it, or where they think there are better alternatives to the path the PAP is taking. In this category are the likes of Yeoh Lam Keong, Chris K, Dr Paul Thambyah (even if he’s chairman of the SDP), Mr Chiam, Dr Tan Cheng Bock and the PSP are like that. This is a good example of how these people think and behave.

 

The Wankers’ Party and its members, when they stop wanking themselves, and find their balls (as they occasionally) do are also in this camp.

The anti-PAP types are those who say “The f**king PAP bastards are always wrong”.

They could be sincere social justice warriors like Terry Xu of Terry’s Online Channel, Gilbert Goh and Teo Soh Lung. They could be ang moh tua kees like PJ Tham and Kirsten Han.

Or self serving opportunists like Goh Meng Seng, Lim Tean, Mad Dog, Tan Kin Lian, Tan Jee Say and that guy on Finland’s dole, who do not wish S’pore well: Anti-PAP activists loi hei wish.

Or juz cybernuts like grave-dancing Oxygen and other TRE and TOC ranters.

I can’t make my mind whether Donald Low and Tay Kheng Soon oppose the PAP or are anti-PAP.

I’ll end with Dr Tan Cheng Bock’s FB post:

Wuhan Virus – Stay Calm. Take Care. Be Considerate.

In 2003, Singapore faced the SARs virus. Our country overcame and learned invaluable lessons in outbreak management and spread containment. We then applied these lessons to counter subsequent threats such as the swine flu and the H1N1 bird flu.

Today, the Wuhan virus has landed on our shores. It is a new virus that the world has never seen before. Worldwide, governments and health professionals are sparing no effort combating this mutant strain – learning its behaviour, treating patients and hopefully finding a vaccine soon.

At the frontline, brave doctors, nurses, paramedics, hospital, laboratory and clinic staff are literally risking their lives to lead the fight. They have my utmost admiration. Let’s do everything we can to support our health workers.

For the rest of us, we can also play our part. The DORSCON level in Singapore is now orange. Understandably, some people have acted in fear by storming the supermarkets to the extent that NTUC Fairprice has had to impose purchase limits for paper products, rice and instant noodles.

What we can do may not seem much compared to our courageous health workers. But if everyone chips in, it will send a signal that we stand with them. To do so, we also need to be brave in the way we react.

Stay Calm
The 1st thing we can do is to Stay Calm. It takes courage not to panic. If parents remain cool and steady, your children will learn to do so as well. Don’t forward rumours on social media. Don’t panic buy groceries. Don’t blame others. Worry and stress will also affect your health and the quality of your sleep. Panicking helps nobody, least of all ourselves.

Take Care
The 2nd thing we can do is to Take Care. Take good care of your personal health and hygiene. If we stay healthy, we will help free up the medical profession to treat those who really need medical care and attention. Exercise regularly. Eat healthy. Keep your living areas clean. Wash your hands often. You will be an asset to those in need when you are strong.

Be Considerate
The 3rd thing we can do is to Be Considerate. Think of the well-being of others. Look out for the interest of our senior citizens and young children. Stay home if you are unwell. Wear a mask if you have a cold or are coughing. Your cough may be harmless but you will ease the worry of others when you wear a mask.

If you are under quarantine, follow all the prescribed regulations to stop the spreading of disease. Don’t avoid giving your information for contact tracing. Co-operate fully. It may seem a little more troublesome and take up your time, but it is the right and good thing to do. Keep others safe and others will keep you safe.

Let’s do this together with our frontline heroes. Don’t leave this fight to them. This virus is everyones problem, and together, with God’s grace, we shall overcome. Remember, Stay Calm, Take Care and Be Considerate.

For country, For people.

Image may contain: cloud and sky, possible text that says 'Stay Calm Take Care Be Considerate'

Why has M$ strengthened against S$?

In Currencies, Economy, Malaysia on 10/02/2020 at 11:10 am

Last week, the Singapore dollar fell below the RM3 mark for the first time in about a year after our said central bank said there was sufficient room for the Singapore currency to ease as the Wuhan virus hits the economy: S$ tanks as GDP forecasts slashed

It’s now at M$2.98.

Bit surprising that the M$ has strengthened against S$ and outperformed it vis-a-vis the US$ because while S’pore is intensive care when China sneezes, M’sia dies: China sneezes, S’pore in intensive care.

Ang moh investors were net sellers of all things M’sia since 2018 when Tun came into power and are so going into this crisis, they very underweight M’sian assets. Hence had nothing much to sell. They were also especially overweighted S’pore because of the HK crisis. And so had a lot to sell to get to an underweight position.

Tun must be happy.

 

 

 

Panic? What panic?/ Anti-PAP activists loi hei wish

In Internet, Public Administration on 10/02/2020 at 4:25 am

Social media and the internet are full of pictures of empty supermarket shelves here.

Must be the work of anti-PAP activists and others who wish S’pore ill doing their best to astro turf that S’poreans are panicking because the PAP govt has not done enough to contain the Wuhan virus. Just go to Goh Meng Seng’s FB page and see the lies he’s trying to spread.


Anti-PAP activists lot hei wish

Secret Squirrel’s sidekick Morocco Mole says that his second cousin removed working in the ISD tells him that when Lim Tean, Goh Meng Seng, Tan Jee Say, Tan Kin Lian, Kirsten Han, PJ Thum and Mad Dog loh heied last Friday, they loh heied that S’pore would go into a deep, deep recession because of the virus. He also reports that the host, Goh Meng Seng, claimed that his wallet was Wuhan virus infected and asked the others to pay. They ran out of the restaurant without paying the bill.

But the restaurant owner is not out of pocket. He knew Meng Seng’s reputation and told his staff to use only left overs and other unwanted stuff to prepare the yusheng.

—————————————————————————-

The truth is that the majority of voters trust the PAP govt to look after us. They are so trusting that as of the morning of the final collection date, which was 9 Feb, only 54% of households collected their masks, according to The Straits Times (ST).

Collection date for the masks now extended until 29 Feb.

Related posts:

Fake news that S’poreans panicking about shortage of masks

Kiasu? Get hold of the king mask/ Listen to expert on infectious disease

Kiasu? Get hold of the king mask/ Listen to expert on infectious disease

In Uncategorized on 09/02/2020 at 5:05 am

Don’t bother with surgical masks. They are BS.

There are masks and then there are masks.

The betterest mask is the N95 respirator. It filters at least 95% of airborne particles, and is more effective than an ordinary surgical or medical mask, which also needs to be changed more frequently.

Look at the pixs of HK CEO and China’s PM, when they visit the plebs. They use this mask: google, if you don’t believe me. Let’s see if our millionaire ministers follow them. If they do, time to demand we get the N95 respirator

 

Fyi, medical advice in China is to change face masks regularly, as often as four times a day for medical teams. This would require a minimum of two million masks each day.

A very Chinese habit, the using of masks.

There’s widespread use of face masks among the ordinary population, whether or not they’ve been instructed to do so by the authorities.

  • More than half a million staff working on public transport in China have been told to use masks
  • There are reports that some shops, businesses and other public premises have told people to use masks if they want to enter

Culturally, it’s quite common for people in China to wear face masks, both as general protection and if they feel they are getting ill.

Same with Hongkies. And becoming the practice in S’pore as TOC and other anti-PAP activists spread the lie that it’s effective against the Wuhan virus and KPKBing that the PAP govt is not giving out enough masks. (Fake news that S’poreans panicking about shortage of masks)

There is very little evidence that wearing face masks make a difference. Experts say good hygiene – such as regularly washing your hands and certainly before putting them near your mouth – is vastly more effective.

BBC

The SDP’s chairman, Professor Paul Tambyah the only infectious diseases specialist in NUH, if not S’pore (No money in this line, so doctors avoid it. Remember the PAP MP doc who implied he did not respect people with low pay?) explains the real purpose of the surgical mask:

Question: “Should we only wear a mask if we are sick? Wouldn’t a mask help to protect a healthy person too?”

Professor Tambyah: “Well, it does both. You see, the mask actually prevents or reduces the amount of virus you’re going to shed. But ultimately, you shouldn’t be walking around town if you’re sick because when the mask gets wet, it loses its efficacy. So ideally, you should put on a mask, go see a doctor and then get treated.”

“Now, the reason why [healthy] people wear a mask is because they are not sure that people who are going to be sick are going to be staying at home. And I think that is the message that needs to get across, you see? If you are sick, you shouldn’t go to the office, you shouldn’t take the MRT, you should get yourself evaluated. You should put on a mask, go and get yourself evaluated by your doctor.”

“And if everybody does that, then there’s no need [for healthy people] to wear a mask, right? Because then everybody walking in the streets is going to be healthy. And you don’t need to worry about some guy coughing in your face and infecting you. Right now, you see, too many people are worried that there are people who are sick walking around. And that, I think, needs to be addressed.”

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1-qK7OeTRf8

 

Spare a tot for widow of dead Chinese hero who China POFMaed

In China on 08/02/2020 at 7:22 am

Li Wenliang’s widow is sick.

According to an official Chinese statement, Li Wenliang’s widow Fu Xuejie has a fever, and is five months pregnant with Li’s second child. She worries about who will care for their five-year-old son if her health deteriorates.

China’s version of POFMA gives our POFMa a bad name.

On 30 December 2019, Li Wenliang, informed fellow doctors in an online chat group of seven new pneumonia cases and talked about a SARs like virus. He was reprimanded by Wuhan police, who made him sign a document saying he was “making false comments on the Internet.”. At least seven other medical professionals were similarly warned over “rumour-mongering”.

Effectively the Wuhan authorities forbade doctors from making public announcements and ordered them to report cases internally.

Whatever, the Chinese Sopreme court cleared them of “rumour-mongering.

Hard Truth about Old Guard’s insight on home ownership

In Political governance, Property, Public Administration on 07/02/2020 at 10:58 am

It’s a myth that LKY and Dr Goh etc were geniuses for their insight into the importance of home ownership in building a nation and their public housing building programnes.

They were juz good in copying and pasting best practice of ang mosh. From the PAP’s bible*:

After the second world war … Governments across the rich world decided that they had to do more to care for their citizens—both as a thank-you for the sacrifices and to ward off the communist threat.

To this end, they vowed to boost home-ownership. A country of owner-occupiers, the thinking went, would be financially stable. People could draw down on equity in their house when they hit retirement or if they found themselves in difficulty. In the late 1940s and the 1950s manifestos of Western political parties became more likely to identify home ownership as a policy goal, according to research by Sebastian Kohl of the Max Planck Institute for the Study of Societies. Over time, the notion that owner occupation was superior to renting became common, even apparently self-evident.

Policies to promote owner-occupation proliferated. In America the Veterans Administration made mortgages with no down-payment available to veterans in the mid-1940s. Canada established the Central Mortgage and Housing Corporation for returning war veterans. In 1950 the Japanese government established the Government Housing Loan Corporation to provide low-interest, fixed-rate mortgages. Changes to international financial regulations also encouraged banks to issue mortgages.

https://www.economist.com/special-report/2020/01/16/how-housing-became-the-worlds-biggest-asset-class

Related post:If LKY were alive, PAP govt wouldn’t publicly admit that HDB leases end worth nothing

—————————————–

*PAP’s bible

I’ve blogged before that the PAP doesn’t need that many smart people as it follows most of the Economist’s prescriptions (except on hanging, drug legalisation, free media and a liberal democracy). It has been an Economist mantra that market pricing is “betterest” because it uncovers the “correct” price. It is also a PAP Hard Truth.

PAP’s bible

S$ tanks as GDP forecasts slashed

In Currencies, Economy on 06/02/2020 at 5:16 am

Because: China sneezes, S’pore in intensive care.

As an example of the slashing of forecasts, MayBank lowered S’pore’s GDP forecast by 38%.

MayBank’s highly respected local economist lowered his 2020 GDP growth forecast for S’pore from 1.8% to 1.1%. He said the virus outbreak and travel restrictions would hurt tourism and retail, while disruptions to China’s supply chain would have knock-on effects for manufacturers. Other economists also saying the same thing.

Meanwhile there was continued selling of the S$. It was down 0.6% against the US dollar by Wednesday afternoon in London according to the FT. It fell 0.9% earlier: https://finance.yahoo.com/news/singapore-says-monetary-policy-unchanged-022532822.html

It’s the third worst-performing currency in region this year, down 2.3%, according to Bloomberg. The Thai baht is the worst-performing currency in the region this year, according to Bloomberg, down 3% against the US dollar. Rupiah is the second worst-performing.

Think PAP govt dares raise GST this yr? Double confirm: No GST rise this yr

 

Another Nazi first — CCTV

In China, Internet on 05/02/2020 at 5:03 am

In Peenemünde,

in October 1942, German engineers sat in a control room watching a television screen. It showed live, close-up images of a prototype weapon on its launch pad some 2.5km (1.5 miles) away. On another screen, with a wide-angle view, they saw the weapon surge skywards.

The test had succeeded. They were looking at something that would shape the future – but perhaps not in the way they imagined.

First time CCTV was used.

The pictures in that control room were the first example of a video feed being used not for broadcasting, but for real-time monitoring, in private – over a so-called “closed circuit”.

Television engineer Walter Bruch devised a way for the senior officers, and scientists to monitor the launches from a safe distance.

And that was wise, because the first V2 they tested did indeed blow up, destroying one of Bruch’s cameras.

Exactly how popular Bruch’s brainchild has now become is tricky to pin down. One estimate, a few years old, puts the number of surveillance cameras around the world at 245 million – that is about one for every 30 people. Another reckons there will soon be over twice that number in China alone.

https://www.bbc.com/news/business-50673770

 

Waz the point of local banks’ going digital?

In Banks, Internet on 04/02/2020 at 2:36 pm

BS in action and wasted productivity.

“Experts” are asking how the new digital banks can really differentiate themselves. They say market is already well served by big financial institutions who have good digital banking services.

These “experts” don’t know how the local banks work. Yes they have good digital services but only on paper.

I’ll highlight a major failing of the big three local banks and HSBC. (They, StanChart and MayBank dominate retail banking. I don’t know much about the last two’s digital banking services. But i don’t think they willing to go against the grain.)

The fixed deposit (FD) rates that HSBC and the three local banks are offering online are BS. If you use their online systems to put money into FD accounts, you get screwed.

They whisper to customers over the counter that you really must go down to the branch to get the best FD rates. It’s peanuts but the online rates are atom-sized peanuts.

Worse, when want to renew, still got to go down to the branch to get the best rates. WTF.

As I recently asked a bank customer service officer “Why go digital, when the customer has to come down to the branch to get the so-called best rate? Buggeration at work”

She juz giggled.

Whatever, try avoid using FD deposits. Best: Using yr CPF OA as a savings account. But as can withdraw only once a year, so FD deposits still needed.

(Amended to reflect change if CPF rules after I last took out money before my birthday last year. 45 Feb 2020 at 1.30 pm)

Of course one can buy dividend paying shares, or Reits and hope the prices don’t collapse.

 

Double confirm: No GST rise this yr

In Economy, Political governance, Public Administration on 04/02/2020 at 4:35 am

Thanks to the Wuhan virus.

Remember you heard this here first.

During the recent CNY gatherings of the elites, I put my finger to the hot air being emitted from the BS I was smelling and sensed that the consensus was that the PAP govt would really, really like to defer the two points GST rise penciled in for this yr to make sure that it gets 65% of the popular vote needed to show that they have the people’s mandate.

Anything less is F9.


I wrote this late last yr

A GE late this year as expected by me in 2018 (Akan datang: GE in late 2019) even with vote losers like pending GST rises etc (PAP is like one armed swordsman) would have resulted in a PAP victory of around 62% (How the PAP can get 62% is explained in PAP fighting for every last vote).

But 65%? No way without more dropping GST rise ( How PAP can win 65% plus of the vote) or more goodies. Well a GST rise is set in stone, so got to have more bribes goodies, all with our own money.

Why no GE in Dec 2019

——————————————————–

Only the dogmas that the Hard Truth (Or BS?) that the PAP does not do populist policies ever

By addressing the issue of affordability, will he implicitly be sending the message that he is be ditching dad’s Hard Truth that populism is bad**?

Not if Education Minister Heng Swee Keat, the minister in-charge of Our Singapore Conversation (OSC), is to believed. He told the media this week that OSC is not a knee-jerk, “populist” policy-making exercise. It is not a “major meet-the-people session”, with the govt collating a wish list and then giving the people what they want. He emphasised that OSC does not sacrifice any strategic thinking on the part of the govt for the sake of showing empathy with the people.

Analysing PM’s coming rally speech

and does not admit making mistakes:

All the POFMA orders flying around before an expected GE next yr, reminded me that George Orwell

wrote that because totalitarian regimes insist that the leadership is infallible, history must be perpetually rewritten in order to eliminate evidence of past mistakes. Totalitarianism thus “demands a disbelief in the very existence of objective truth.” Orwell added darkly that “to be corrupted by totalitarianism one does not have to live in a totalitarian country”; one simply had to surrender to certain habits of thought.

https://www.economist.com/open-future/2019/12/04/is-liberalism-really-kaput

Why PAP never admits to mistakes?

(Related post: Why one-party rule sucks for Xi, Lee and Heng)

were preventing the PAP govt from doing what it wanted to do. Ownself sabo ownself.

Well given that the Wuhan Virus will hurt the economy (China sneezes, S’pore in intensive care), this gives the PAP govt a really good excuse to change its mind. PM or Heng can reasonably say:

When the facts change, I change my mind. What do you do, Sir?

Supposedly said by Keynes.

Don’t believe me? The way is being prepared by ministers and the constructive, nation-building media

ST Lite headline:

Worst hit by Wuhan coronavirus outbreak, tourism and transport sectors to get targeted help in Budget: DPM Heng

ST headline:

Key focus on protecting jobs and helping businesses: Chan Chun Sing

What better way to help tourism and transport sectors and help businesses in general, and protect jobs than by deferring the GST rise until the the economy recovers?

And still give out the Budget”goodies” (our money leh): sweeteners originally meant to make palatable the GST rise. “See how generous we are”.

Christmas 2020 and Chinese New Year 2021 will come early in Feb 2020

We’ll still get a GST rise but maybe next year the world economy will be worried by political turmoil in China as Xi has to explain why he has not lost the mandate of heaven, despite repeated market crashes, African swine fever, the Wuhan virus and H1N1 swine fever. There are credible reports of reports of the last occurring in China.

Other reasons that the PAP will get the votes to take it over the 65% pass mark:

Vote wisely.

 

 

 

 

China sneezes, S’pore in intensive care

In China, Economy, Uncategorized on 03/02/2020 at 7:22 am

Koreans will die.

So will the Hongkies, Thais and M’sias. S’poreans, Japanese, Peenoys, Viet Kong, Diggers and Indons will be in the intensive care unit.

 

The only people happy in S’pore are those who wish S’pore ill: Fake news that S’poreans panicking about shortage of masks.

Anti-PAP activists and cybernuts love the opportiunity, or so they think, of spreading more fake news to sabo the PAP govt.

But they are deluded. Tom, I’ll post why the PAP govt will now win bigely this GE. The 4G leaders will get the 65% of the popular vote that they need.

Remember that I was negative about the 4G team getting 65% of the popular vote: Ground is not sweet for an early 2020 GE.

Did you notice yesterday was a very special day

In Uncategorized on 03/02/2020 at 5:31 am

The UK’s Sunday Times reported that 2 February 2020 – when set out in numbers – becomes the rarest of palindromes, whether the day or month is written first. 02/02/2020 reads the same forwards and backwards. It says there won’t be another like it until 12/12/2121 (Huh? Surely shume mistake?)

It also notes that yesterday is the 33rd day of a leap year, with 333 days of 2020 left.

Really a special day for numerologists, statisticians and anyone else who is fascinated by “oddball integers”.

Fake news that S’poreans panicking about shortage of masks

In Internet, Public Administration on 02/02/2020 at 10:50 am

S’poreans are not picking up their free masks.

When I read that each Singapore household would receive four surgical face masks via 89 Community Centres (CCs) and 654 Residents’ Committee (RC) centres, I tot we would soon know whether S’poreans are genuinely concerned about the shortage of the masks.

Or whether the comments on social media and the internet about the desperate of S’poreans afraid of the Wuhan virus looking in vain for masks are nothing but astro-turfing by the usual anti-PAP paper activists and cybernuts playing up the absence of masks in the shops as incompetence on the part of the PAP govt.

The evidence, so far, is that these anti-PAP types lied about the concerns of ordinary S’poreans

When the Hougang Community Club opened its doors at 2pm on Saturday (Feb 1) for the first day of mask collection, there were as many volunteers waiting as there were residents in line.

“We had about 10 to 20 people in the queue in the first hour so we cleared that very fast,” said Community Club Management Committee chairman for Hougang SMC Joel Leong. “It was a very small queue … We haven’t seen a big crowd (in the first two hours).”

These scenes were similar to those at other distribution centres across the island, during a largely uneventful first day of mask collection for members of the public.

https://www.channelnewsasia.com/news/singapore/wuhan-coronavirus-singapore-free-surgical-mask-collection-queues-12380564

Of course, this could be fake news from the constructive nation-building CNA. But I doubt it. Ever since the really bad haze we had in 2013 (Remember this incident P Ravi’s reposting: What the govt should have done?), there is anecdotal evidence that the 60-70% of S’poreans who vote for the PAP have been prepared: some masks are stored away, ready for use.


Plenty of masks

Haze: PAP govt cares, they really do

————————————————————-

Whatever, the attempt by the anti-PAP paper activists and cybernuts to use the Wuhan virus to show that the PAP govt is incompetent has failed. Worse they were caught lying.

And with a GE later this yr, the serious Oppo (Wankers’ Party , SDP sans Mad Dog and Tan Cheng Bock’s PSP) needs these anti-PAP paper activists and cybernuts like they need a hole in the head.

More evidence that these anti-PAP paper activists and cybernuts do not wish S’pore well.

Btw, my advice is to pick-up the free masks, and store them away for future use. Don’t know about you, but I can smell the haze

 

 

 

 

Creative local writer

In Uncategorized on 02/02/2020 at 5:07 am

Greek myths localised

The Greek Gods have arrived in Singapore! Mesa is an Expat Wife. Orpheus is a wretched Club DJ. And Prometheus sells #damngood Roasted Charsiew in Toa Payoh. Would the Almighty Zeus be the leader of the Lightning Party?

And

Figures from Greek mythology take up residence in contemporary Singapore in this collection of stories that explores the pain and dilemma of modern living. What happens when you are doomed to repeat your actions over and over? Or have to remake your decisions, knowing that times have changed? What if struggling makes the divine human, and the human divine?

MODERN MYTHS (2ND PRINTING)
by Clara Chow
published by Math Paper Press

Click the link if you want to hear audio excerpts read by the author or buy the book

Modern Myths (2nd Printing)

S’pore can go nuclear safely

In Energy on 01/02/2020 at 6:13 am

Every now and then, when the anti-PAP paper warriors are so short of ideas to KPKB about, they raise the possibility of S’pore building a nuclear power station.

Many yrs ago I wrote

In 2008, I attended a seminar where a very senior Shell analyst dismissed the possibility of nuclear energy as an option for S’pore. He said that if a nuclear plant was sited on the NE side of S’pore, the safety or protection zone would stretch somewhere to the SW side of S’pore, in Jurong.

Nuclear power: will property prices implode?

Well things have changed

Mini nuclear reactors could be generating power in the UK by the end of the decade.

Manufacturer Rolls-Royce has told the BBC’s Today programme that it plans to install and operate factory-built power stations by 2029.

Mini nuclear stations can be mass manufactured and delivered in chunks on the back of a lorry, which makes costs more predictable.

https://www.bbc.com/news/business-51233444

So whenever a cybernut or one of Terry’s M’sian Indian goons KPKB about S’pore going nuclear, they don’t know anything small modular reactors (SMRs)

They are about 1.5 acres in size – sitting in a 10-acre space …

SMRs are so small that theoretically every [UK] town could have its own reactor

Imagine Ang Moh Kio, Tampines, Jurong, woodlands and Marine Parade each having their own SMR.

You heard this first here: in next yr’s National Day Rally Speech, PM will talk of SMRs.

My track record in predicting PM’s tots:

PM’s speech: Not juz a change of format

Ever wondered why PM wants to build polders?

What PM will say in National Dally Rally speech

Analysing PM’s coming rally speech