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Archive for the ‘Political governance’ Category

The one-party state and fake news

In Internet, Political governance, Public Administration on 18/04/2019 at 7:57 am

In Why I no ak the Select Committee hearings on Deliberate Online Falsehoods in April last year, I wrote about the above. I tot that as this is the season about

disaster and even death as the doorways for redemption. It’s about apparent failure and ultimate success. It’s about vivid appearances and unsuspected realities.

Tom Morris

, I’d resurrect the piece given that a very draconian law is going to be enacted soon (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.

In a recent FB post, I commented that I can see the good of getting Lim Tean and Goh Meng Seng (Meng Seng: fake news propogator) off the air: Chris K that my view was the equivalent of thinking the SS were right to kill everyone in a village when a few SS troops were killed nearby. He has a point.

Since you have read this far, you may be interested in

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

Local academics propogate fake news?

 

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So what if S’pore is very low on democratic accountability?

In Political economy, Political governance, Public Administration on 12/04/2019 at 11:08 am

The KPKBing about very draconian laws further restricting the space on the internet and social media is evidence, anti-PAP activists say, that the PAP govt is very authoritarian with very little democratic accountability. Very true: look at the area shade pink. Among developed “countries” only HK (Remember Goh Meng Seng thinks HK is paradise), is worse.

So what? Look at the area shaded pink in these two charts, and vote wisely and tactically.

 

 

 

 

Merdeka Generation: PAP cares for u, really they do

In Political governance, Public Administration on 27/03/2019 at 11:28 am

(Part of an occasional series meant to burst the blood vessels of cybernuts like pork-eating, alcohol drinking “bapak” aka “Jihadist Joe”, and tax-dodging grave-dancer “Oxygen”).

Taxi driver Lim Ee Teh, 66, usually spends between S$10 and S$20 when he visits the polyclinic for his monthly diabetes check-up.

Mr Lim, who is eligible for the newly-announced Merdeka Generation Package, learnt on Sunday (March 24) that he could soon be paying less for this visit. This was after he attended a briefing organised by the Silver Generation Office (SGO) at the ComfortDelGro’s Cabbies’ Carnival.


What’s expensive, what’s cheap in diabetes treatment

If Mr Lim is seeing the polyclinic doctor monthly, his must be terok case. As the consultation fee is $12+, he’s only paying $7 for the blood test and medicine. But the blood test is pretty expensive: $13+ each time. So the numbers don’t add up: unless he’s seeing a nurse, where the consultation fee might be lower.

My friends’ monthly medicine bill for diabetes average between $4-5, they tell me. They see the doctor once every three or four months. They pay $12+ for the consultation, and $13+ for the blood test. Assuming, they see the doctor once every three months, their monthly cost is around $12.

Seeing the doctor and blood tests are the expensive bits.

—————————–

Whatever, this is what he (and me) are getting

Under the Merdeka Generation Package, which is eligible to all Singaporeans born between 1950 and 1959, beneficiaries will be entitled to Chas subsidies from November regardless of their household monthly income per person or the annual value of their homes.

Beneficiaries of the package will also receive an annual topup of S$200 into their Medisave account under the Central Provident Fund (CPF) until 2023. They will also receive an extra 25 per cent discount on their bills at polyclinics and specialist outpatient clinics, on top of prevailing subsidies.

https://www.todayonline.com/singapore/more-medisave-top-ups-merdeka-generations-wishlist

Wow. How not to vote for the PAP? Still prefer BS from Mad Dog, Lim Tean and Meng Seng, Jihadist  Joe aka Pious Joe?

And taz not all, from NTUC Fairprice, there’s this

And for a one-year period from July onwards, customers who belong to the Merdeka Generation will enjoy a 3 per cent discount on all purchases every Wednesday.

Merdeka Generation individuals are those who were born from 1950 to 1959 and obtained citizenship in or before 1996, as well as seniors who were born in or before 1949, became citizens in or before 1996 and did not receive the Pioneer Generation Package.

Mr Ng Chee Meng, the secretary-general of NTUC, said that this was done because of feedback from workers that they needed more help to cope with the cost of living.

“So NTUC, as a social enterprise, we were trying to see how we could help in meaningful ways. Essentially, what we wanted to do was help people cope with the rising costs, in ways we could afford,” he said.

https://www.todayonline.com/singapore/prices-ntuc-fairprice-house-brands-cut-remain-same-for-15-months

PAP is really trying hard to get 65% of the popular vote: Why PAP aiming for 65% of the popular vote.

Vote wisely. Remember that a GST rise is coming: How to ensure no GST rise.

Vote tactically (I tell how soon) because at worse PAP will still form govt:

But the cybernuts like bapak should not be raising their hopes of their hero Mad Dog forming a coalition govt of spastics. At the very least, the PAP will get only 60% of the popular vote (a 10 point fall) and retain a two-thirds majority and not win back Aljunied. No GRC will fall even to Team TCB.

Another reason why ground is not sweet for the PAP

Why 37,000+ sure to vote for PAP

In Political governance, Public Administration on 08/03/2019 at 9:57 am

I refer to Double confirm, ground not sweet for PAP where I talked of falling resale prices causing a problem for the PAP with those who bot resale flats. But this is not an issue for those received this special government grant for buying a home to live with or near their parents or children. A friend drew my attention to (emphasis mine):

The number of households that received a government grant for buying a home to live with or near their parents or children has nearly doubled, said the Housing and Development Board (HDB) on Friday (Feb 8).

Since the launch of the Proximity Housing Grant in 2015, about 20,100 households have benefited from the scheme as of end-2018. This compares to the 11,000 households that received the grant between 2015 and 2017.

The grant was increased in February 2018 to encourage more families to live near each other.

In total, S$377 million has been disbursed under the scheme. An additional 300 families will receive their grants once their resale transactions are completed.

Under the scheme, all Singaporean citizen families who buy a resale flat to live with their parents or children enjoy a grant of S$30,000. Those buying a resale flat to live near their parents or children receive S$20,000.

Eligible singles who buy a resale flat to live with their parents receive S$15,000, while singles who buy a resale flat near their parents receive S$10,000.
Advertisement

The proximity condition of “near” is defined as within 4km.

All Singaporeans are eligible for the Proximity Housing Grant once, regardless of their household income, ownership of private property or whether they have enjoyed housing subsidies before.

Those who own private properties will have to dispose of them within six months of the resale flat purchase.

As of Dec 31, 2018, about 20,400 households have applied for the grant. Of these, 53 per cent did not qualify for other housing grants, HDB said.

Families made up 83 per cent of the applications, while the remainder were singles.

Read more at https://www.channelnewsasia.com/news/singapore/hdb-proximity-grant-number-doubled-live-near-parents-children-11222086

why will they not thank the PAP govt by voting for the PAP?

FYI, I got the headline number based on “Families made up 83 per cent of the applications, while the remainder were singles.” and “An additional 300 families will receive their grants once their resale transactions are completed.”

Every vote matters for the PAP.

Vote wisely.

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

In Political governance, Public Administration on 05/03/2019 at 1:35 pm

Interesting graphic that shows that S’pore scores well on well-being axis.

Explains why despite Terry’s Indian Goons, Correspondent or Ghui, all from TOC,  and the cybernuts ranters from TRE, The Indians Idiots, other alt media outlets and FB, 60- 70% S’poreans keep on supporting the PAP.

Rather than juz KPKB maybe these anti-PAP types should try explaining how S’pore “fixes” its high score on the Well Being axis.

Chart from https://www.economist.com/open-future/2019/01/28/culture-as-the-menacing-force-behind-todays-crazy-politics.

Vote wisely. And I don’t mean Mad Dog, Lim Tean or Meng Seng. But pls remember the SDP is more than Mad Dog.

Related post: Great IB riposte to Mad Dog and P Ravi etc

Jolovan’s latest problem shows Sylvia Lim’s and my prescience

In Political governance, Public Administration on 04/03/2019 at 10:01 am

 

And that Terry Xu has a good point on the police and constructive, nation-building media.”

Many moons ago, I asked:

“Jogging alone can be illegal?

‘If wearing the wrong tee-shirt or singlet?”

Well something like it has happened here.

Social worker and activist Jolovan Wham is being investigated for protesting outside State Courts without a valid permit, police said on Saturday (Mar 2)*.

Seriously, 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.”

Jogging alone can be illegal?

Terry Xu wrote on FB yesterday

[T]he shocking part for me, is that the Police had provided information to the media to create an impression that Wham willfully committed an offence on 13 Dec despite being warned.

This is even before any charge is being made against Wham and established that a protest was being held in front of the state court. What is factually established is Wham took a photo in front of the state court with a piece of paper that had some wordings. He was not being approached by any officers nor arrested for his act, which would imply it was either too insignificant or too short of a time period to be noticed by the guards.

Also, the act of taking a photo should not be considered an offence as photographers from the media take photos of suspects on a regular basis. Unless there is a blatant double standard by the Police.

Yet the Police and the media frame it up as an act which justifies the investigation launched upon Wham.

It’s not shocking to me, or I’m sure, Auntie.

As I wrote many moons ago, try walking or jogging alone wearing a “Free our CPF” singlet: remember that any public assembly of more than one person needs police permission.

But 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? Nothing happened to them.

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

Sad. Because discretionary, or vaguely worded powers can one day be turned against you, the upright, civic, PAP-voting S’porean; not juz against the usual suspects like Jolovan Wham.

Vote wisely.

Related posts:

PAP uses Lawfare against its opponents?

Seelan Palay: Sylvia Lim was right

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

Why Jolovan Wham’s vigil singled out?


*CNA report goes on

Wham had posted a photo on Dec 13 on social media channels, which showed him standing outside the court complex while holding up a piece of paper that read: “Drop the charges against Terry Xu and Daniel De Costa.”

The protest happened the same day Terry Xu, the editor of socio-political website The Online Citizen, and Daniel De Costa were charged for publishing an article that alleged corruption among the Singapore Government’s highest officers.

In response to Channel NewsAsia’s queries, police said that Wham had written to the police earlier in November to apply for a permit to stage a protest outside the State Courts. His application was not approved.

“The State Courts is gazetted as a Prohibited Area under the Public Order Act, with stricter security protocols,” police said.

“He was well aware that a police permit was required for such an event. Still, he went ahead to protest outside the State Courts on Dec 13, 2018.”

Read more at https://www.channelnewsasia.com/news/singapore/police-investigating-activist-jolovan-wham-protest-state-courts-11305502

 

 

 

Merdeka Package shows how smart scholars are

In Political governance, Property, Public Administration on 24/02/2019 at 11:23 am

It shows how the PAP’s millionaire ministers are killing five birds with one stone.

The Budget especially the Merdeka Generation Package has been condemned by all the usual suspects. Alt media and social media is full of criticism of said Budget. Nothing new here especially from the cybernuts who like Goh Meng Seng are prepared to misrepresent the facts (More on this another day). (Related post: 10- 20% of voters are anti-PAP cybernuts.)

Here’s an interesting angle from 99.co which has no known or even alleged links to the PAP IB or the constructive, nation building media.

THE MERDEKA GENERATION PACKAGE WILL INDIRECTLY HELP WITH AFFORDABLE HOUSING

The Merdeka Generation Package will benefit some 500,000 Singaporeans, mostly from ages 60 to 69. Over S$6 billion will be channelled into outpatient treatment subsidies, Medisave top-ups, and CHAS coverage of chronic illnesses.

But how does this affect Singapore’s housing? One of the biggest contributors to our rising cost of living is healthcare. Singapore’s healthcare inflation is now the highest in the region, and it will grow as our population ages. Anything that mitigates the rising cost of living will indirectly affect our ability to afford housing.

We feel that, while most Singaporeans can afford their HDB flats, taking the strain off healthcare costs will affect the housing considerations of retirees, or those near retirement. It may now be possible for some of them to finish off outstanding home loans instead of downgrading, for example, given CHAS coverage of chronic conditions and greater outpatient subsidies.

https://www.99.co/blog/singapore/how-budget-2019-could-impact-property/?utm_source=homepage&utm_medium=featured_stories

Hmm. Not tot about this. Did you?

What the Merdeka Generation Package does

— makes healthcare more affordable

— makes then housing more affordable

— also lessens pain of weaker HDB prices (Double confirm, ground not sweet for PAP) for resale buyers

vote buying i.e. spending more of our money on ourselves

— shows the PAP govt cares

Vote wisely.

Maybe that’s why Terry’s Online Channel has been praising the PAP govt — TOC now part of constructive, nation-building media? and Wah lan! TOC praises PAP govt?

But to be fair: Cybernuts can relax: TOC resumes normal anti-PAP service.

Great IB riposte to Mad Dog and P Ravi etc

In Political governance, Public Administration on 22/02/2019 at 5:00 am

Mad Dog and P Ravi have been telling S’poreans not to succumb to the PAP’s bribes election goodies.

Btw, it would be smarter for them to tell or remind S’poreans that it’s our money the PAP is using.

Will Oliver Lum and other Hyflux investors still vote for the PAP?

In Financial competency, Infrastructure, Political governance, Public Administration on 18/02/2019 at 7:21 am

Amid all the KPKBing by SIAS, Hyflux investors aided and abetted by the anti-PAP cybernuts, why doesn’t anyone from this mob of born losers point out the “honest mistake” made by an agency of the PAP govt that led Hyflux to build Tuaspring? The Electricity Market Authority (EMA) got a key economic projection wrong, badly wrong, by 50 percentage points: see bits I bolded below.

[I]t is important to highlight that when the Tuaspring project was first awarded in 2011, the outlook for the Singapore power market was very favorable. The Tuaspring power plant was projected to turn in profits from day one. At that time, new power generation plants were planned to support the country’s projected electricity demand with a reserve margin of 30%. Today, however, due to oversupply of gas in the market, the projection by Electricity Market Authority (EMA) in their Singapore Electricity Market Outlook 2017 showed an increase in reserve margin to 80% in 2018. By way of illustration,the average wholesale electricity price has dropped from about SGD220 per MWh in 2011 when the Tuaspring project was awarded to an average of SGD81 per MWh in 2017, resulting in significant losses from electricity generation.

https://www.hyflux.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/02/Hyflux-responses-to-SIAS-letter.pdf

Blame the all seeing, all wise PAP govt that a minister was praising in SunTimes.

Vote wisely. As though it’ll make a difference. With Tan Kin Lian, Mad Dog, Lim Tean and Meng Seng opposing them, the PAP don’t need friends. Sad.

Related posts:

A really curious incident

Did Hyflux’s auditors mislead?

Hyflux fiasco shows why “book value” is BS

Did u know S’pore graduated to “Flawed democracy”?

In Political governance on 14/02/2019 at 3:00 pm

I refer to Repression? What repression?/ Alt media cannot be trusted, where I pointed out that it was a lie that S’pore was getting less repressive, at least going by the EIU’s Democracy Index.

I hope that readers who clicked the link noticed that in 2014, S’pore graduated from “Hybrid regime” to “Flawed democracy”: same ranking as the US of A under Trump. Btw score in 2014 was 6.03. In 2018 it was 6.38

Repression? What repression? Glass half full leh.

Related posts:

— Repression? What repression? (Cont’d)

— Is S’pore “authoritarian”?

Vote wisely based on yr economic interests. Do not believe liars.

 

Is S’pore “authoritarian”?

In Political governance on 09/02/2019 at 11:27 am

I’ve often described S’pore as an as authoritarian state: example in Keeping power in a one-party state.

But what does “authoritarian” mean?

The answer is: the absence of democracy. Democracy, in turn, means a system in which free and fair elections determine who holds power. Thus the state must allow free expression of opinion, a free media, impartial execution of election law, a universal adult franchise and the right of political competitors to obtain the resources they need. Today, elections confer legitimacy. For this reason, many authoritarians offer “pseudo-democracy”, but not the reality. Elections in such countries are a form of theatre. Everybody knows the leader will not let himself be defeated. Such a regime is not just a bit different from a democracy: it is an entirely different animal.

Martin Wolf of the FT

For thinking S’poreans (not cybernuts who have since the dawn of the internet age — circa 1998 —  been shouting that PAP rule will end at the next GE):

S’pore: An illiberal democracy?

Repression? What repression?/ Alt media cannot be trusted

Repression? What repression? (Cont’d)

Fixing Sabo King minister

In Political governance, Property on 29/01/2019 at 10:58 am

I refer to my Double confirm, ground not sweet for PAP (about the discrepancy between falling HDB resale prices, while private property prices keep inching up in an election yr) where I alsomumbled about how the PAP can make the ground sweeter.

This blog is a fan of of Lawrence Wong: Lawrence Wong: a PM-in-waiting.

But if the PM wants to make sure of a strong mandate for 4G leaders (Why PAP aiming for 65% of the popular vote), in addition to promising not to increase GST by two points (How PAP can win 65% plus of the vote), he should publicly sack Lawrence Wong just before campaigning for next GE begins. This should give HDB resale flat owners peace of mind: Sers will cover all expiring leases.

I’ll let the constructive, nation-building media explain why:

In March 2017, National Development Minister Lawrence Wong cautioned home buyers not to assume that all old HDB flats would automatically be eligible for the Selective En bloc Redevelopment Scheme (Sers).

“From what we hear from agents on the ground, in the past, when people buy older flats in a mature estate, the balance lease was not a top-of-the-mind concern,” said Ms Sun.

“But now, it seems like in almost every other deal, that would be the key question asked.”

Owners of old flats concerned about depreciation also tried to sell their apartments, leading to an increase in the supply of resale flats.

https://www.todayonline.com/singapore/hdb-resale-numbers-highest-2012-while-sales-private-homes-dive

No need yet

to promise big lease buyback amounts for old flats lorr. And allow more of the compensation to be withdrawable in cash apart from putting into CPF Life.

This would mean loosening the connection between LBS valuation and the ever-dropping actual market transactions.

Fat cat MD

Btw, cybernuts should realise that not coming from an elite school is no sign of competency: Lawrence Wong went to a neighbourhood school and then VJC, not even Hwa Chong or ACS.

 

 

Double confirm, ground not sweet for PAP

In Political governance, Property on 28/01/2019 at 9:34 am

HDB resale prices go down, while private property prices go up.

Confirming flash estimates issued earlier this month*, the URA’s statistics showed that private home prices here soared 7.9 per cent last year as compared with an 1.1 per cent increase in 2017.

However, resale prices of HDB flats continued to dip, falling by 0.9 per cent last year, which was slightly lower than the 1.5 per cent decrease from 2017.

WHY THIS HAPPENED

Property experts pointed out that the disparity in price trends for HDB resale flats and private homes last year was an anomaly as prices for both tend to rise and fall in tandem.

They attributed this to collective sales fever heating up in late 2016 after the Government reduced supply in its biannual sales programme and land-hungry developers turned to en bloc projects to meet land demand.

Ms Christine Sun, head of research and consultancy at real estate firm OrangeTee & Tie, said that while en bloc fever typically triggers an upturn in the property market as a whole, the HDB market was not impacted “very much” last year largely due to increased awareness of the depreciating value of ageing HDB flats.

https://www.todayonline.com/singapore/hdb-resale-numbers-highest-2012-while-sales-private-homes-dive

So how to get strong mandate for 4G leaders (Why PAP aiming for 65% of the popular vote)? Tell you tom.

——————————————————————

*Will resale flat owners still vote for PAP in next GE? contd

 

 

No surplus B2 and C beds in govt hospitals

In Political governance, Public Administration on 25/01/2019 at 9:34 am

When Secret Squirrel visited my mum in hospital, he told me that we were really lucky that my mum had breathing problems during office hrs and that since there was a longish queue for B2 and C beds in the nearest govt hospital, the ambulance took her to an atas hospital: Private hospital treatment, public hospital fees.

He said the govt hospitals do not have spare C and B2 beds: they are juggling fluctuating demand with existing capacity. There are always patients going to be discharged and beds waiting to be made ready for new patients, and so while the supply and demand match over 24 hrs or as usual less, there’s always a waiting period for a bed: sometimes longer, sometimes shorter.

He told me that last weekend, a walk-in patient at the NUH A&E had to wait 10 hrs before getting a bed in a ward. Luckily, for him (Election yr?), there are now fully equipped rooms in govt hospital A&E departments that are effectively wards: transit wards. This helps give peace of mind to patients and their families, and avoids the bad PR of patients on stretchers in A&E corridors.

(Though I’m sure Alex Tan and other irresponsible anti-PAP people in alt media or social media will publish photos of patients on stretchers A&E corridors, saying that this is happening now. Doubtless Uncle Leong and friends will share such photos. And so there’ll be plenty to keep AG’s lawyers and ministers’ private lawyers busy.)

Contrary to what the cybernuts say, the PAP cares: at least to do enough to win 65% of the votes. The reason why: Why PAP aiming for 65% of the popular vote.

Vote wisely.

There are many things to be unhappy about the PAP govt

— no balls to sink M’sian ships

— MRT still screwed up

— Pay And Pay policies on water and GST

— SAF training deaths

— arrogance etc etc.

And there are good oppo people out there like Dr Tan Cheng Bock, Dr Paul and other SDP activists, the Chiams, and the Wankers.

But there are the likes of Mad Dog, Goh Meng Seng and Lim Tean.

Soon I’ll blog on how AMK voters voted wisely in 2006 (PM only had 66% of the popular vote) and got extra goodies by the next GE. In 2011, voters were happy, and PM was happy with the result (70% of the popular vote, in an otherwise bad yr for the PAP: only 60% of the popular vote).

 

 

 

Even star TOC columnist thinks the PAP way

In Political governance on 20/01/2019 at 7:51 am

What’s the assumption behind this for Ghui, star columnist for TOC?

it is important to note that Heng will have a sharp learning curve. Unlike PM Lee and former Prime Minister Goh Chok Tong, Heng has not spent years waiting in the wings. He only entered politics in 2011 and was made a minister immediately after his win at the general elections in 2011. With only 7 years or so under his belt and without the benefit of having spent years as a member of parliament (MP), does Heng have all the experience necessary to lead the country?

That’s right, she, like the PAP, believes that S’pore must have experienced leaders and political succession must be planned and managed. She seems to like the Chinese way, juz the the PAP.


“Why CCP’s fears are PAP’s fears”

Keeping power in a one-party state

———————————————————————————–

Bit strange this because going by her other articles, she’s a progressive (not an ang moh tua kee) that believes that S’pore should be a liberal democracy.

Well in the Western liberal democracies, it isn’t a given that the government is always led by experienced, tested leaders.

Look at the US: Obama and then Trump became presidents with no prior experience in government. Along the way, they beat people with plenty of experience of govt (think Hilary Clinton).

And there’s France’s Macron.

And the UK’s PM is a great example of an experienced minister proving to be a useless leader.

As to succession being planned and managed, the whole purpose of meaningful elections in a liberal democracy, is that the Opposition, can become the govt. Managed change? What managed change? Two of the most successful govts in the UK this century came only after long periods in opposition (Labour 1997-2010 and Conservative/ Lib Dem 2010- 2015). There were practically no ministers who had previous ministerial experience.

My point is that the PAP has been in power so long that their Hard Truths are accepted uncritically by their critics or opponents, even those, who like Ghui, think. The anti-PAP cybernuts like the alcohol drinking, pork-eating, religious “bapak” from TREland or Terry’s Indian goons are even bigger believers in Hard Truths. They only want to their snouts, not the PAP ministers in the troughs.

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

In Political governance, Property, Public Administration on 16/01/2019 at 11:04 am

In a story headlined

HDB extends LBS to 5-room and larger units as resale value of old flats continues to slide

TOC’s “Correspondent” inadvertently (He very anti-PAP and his mental health shows it: More evidence that being anti-PAP is bad for yr mental health) shows that PAP cares for those flat owners who have 5-roomers who don’t want to move if they need to downsize by extending the buy-back to five room flats.

In the media report, it quoted part-time security guard Tang Lum Sui, 68, a widower who lives alone in his Jalan Bahagia 5-room flat is all for the extended LBS.

“I don’t want to move out of Toa Payoh because I have lived here all my life, and I like that my son’s family (living in Qatar) can stay with me whenever they come back to Singapore,” he said. Mr Tang, whose flat has 67 years left on the lease, added, “As long as the terms are favourable, I will go for it.”

TOC’s writer (He is not one of the two Indian subversives propagating fake news: Why TOC’s Danisha Hakeem is a menace to the credibility of alt media) then goes further, implying that the leaseback could help if prices fall.

However, Mr Tang should be aware that the value of his 5-room flat is no longer as high as before.

But if he can use the buy-back scheme, why should he worry about falling prices? And even if prices fall so what? All depends on his entry price. As he’s 68, his entry price will be pretty low, assuming he BToed it.

Vote wisely.

 

 

 

 

How PAP can win 65% plus of the vote

In Political governance on 15/01/2019 at 2:06 pm

Further to Why PAP aiming for 65% of the popular vote ,if the PAP really really wants to get more 65% or more of the popular vote, it should find an excuse to kick the promised 2 points increase in GST into the long grass. It should say “Thanks to PM’s wife and her team in Temasek, and the team in GIC, we got lots of money. So no need to increase GST until after 2025.

After all over the last 10 years, Singapore’s net investment returns (NIR) contribution (NIRC) to the Budget has more than doubled from S$7 billion in FY2009 to an estimated S$15.9 billion in FY2018.

NIRC consists of 50 per cent of the Net Investment Returns (NIR) on the net assets invested by GIC, the Monetary Authority of Singapore and Temasek Holdings and 50 per cent of the Net Investment Income (NII) derived from past reserves from the remaining assets.

In other words, we spend 50 per cent of the estimated gains from investment, and put the remaining 50 per cent back into the reserves to preserve its growth for future use.

Associate Professor Randolph Tan is Director of the Centre for Applied Research at the Singapore University of Social Services, and a Nominated Member of Parliament.

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

Making this announcement has the added advantage that after making it, it can close TOC down, persecute prosecute more people for criminal defamation or illegal assembly, and 50-60% ofS’poreans won’t get worked up about these “repressive” acts. They’ll think it’s a fair trade.

Why PAP aiming for 65% of the popular vote

In Political governance on 14/01/2019 at 4:09 pm

In 2006, in Lee Jnr’s first GE as PM , the PAP won 66.6% of the popular vote (Btw, in Goh Cock Chok Tong first GE as PM in1991, PAP only got 61%).

In GE 2011, the 60.1% share of the popular vote was a black eye for PM and the PAP and the PAP had to pull all the stops to get up to 69.9%.

So will be trying very hard not to get the 60-61% kind of result in the next GE because it wants a smooth transition to the 4G leaders: at 60-61% the message is that the voters don’t trust the 4G leaders

Nikkei Asian Review puts it this way:

If Mr Lee … can secure a smooth leadership transition, it would go a long way toward convincing voters that the party is capable of navigating an increasingly turbulent global environment.*

I’d put it this way: In the context of a 60- 61% share of the popular vote being mud in the eye for the PAP, anything less than 65% will be seen as less than a smooth transition by the PAP and the voters.

Hence the crackdown on some CB mouths and the other usual suspects, and the goodies we’ll be getting. CB is short form for an extremely vulgar Hokkien term that describes aptly people like Uncle Leong, the two Indians in TOC, and Oxygen who danced on the graves of children who died (TRE grave dancer doesn’t deny grave dancing), Bapak and the other cybernuts like Lim Tean and Goh Meng Seng.

————————————-

*The full piece

An early election in Singapore?

Singapore must hold its next general election by April 2021, but Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong has hinted that it could come two years early.

Mr Lee seems to be weighing his timing carefully. The trade-reliant economy will probably see a slowdown in the next 12 months, according to a survey of economists by the Monetary Authority of Singapore. All 23 respondents cited intensifying trade friction as a risk to growth. Public discontent over this, as well as planned tax rises and the income gap, could provide ammunition for opposition parties.

The ruling People’s Action Party revamped its executive team in late November. This included Finance Minister Heng Swee Keat being named first assistant secretary-general, a move seen as a key step for him to succeed Mr Lee as prime minister.

If Mr Lee — the son of Singapore’s founding father Lee Kuan Yew — can secure a smooth leadership transition, it would go a long way toward convincing voters that the party is capable of navigating an increasingly turbulent global environment.

Kentaro Iwamoto, Nikkei staff writer

Repression? What repression? (Cont’d)

In Political governance, Public Administration on 13/01/2019 at 6:34 pm

Further to Repression? What repression?/ Alt media cannot be trusted, we had our National Conversation after the PAP got only 60% of the popular vote.


From Wikipedia

Our Singapore Conversation is a national conversation initiative first announced by Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong during his 2012 National Day Message.

Heng Swee Keat, then Minister for Education of Singapore, was appointed to lead the committee that will participate in the conversations with Singaporeans to create “a home with hope and heart”.[1]

The committee held the first of an estimated 30 dialogue sessions with Singaporeans on 13 October 2012, involving “about 60 people from all walks of life, including taxi drivers, professionals, full-time national servicemen, university undergraduates and retirees.” [2]

————————————————————————————————–

France is about to start its National Conversation after weeks of protests, some violent. There were deaths and central Paris boutique shops were set on fire.

French President Emmanuel Macron has said a national debate is due to kick off on 15 January in response to weeks of protests by the “gilets jaunes” – so-called because of the high-visibility jackets they wear.

It will be held publicly in town halls across France and on the internet, and will focus on four themes: taxes, green energy, institutional reform and citizenship.

BBC report

Sure as I’ve often said S’pore is a de facto one-party state (China is a de jure one party state), but this doesn’t mean that in a one-party state repression is a given.

How PAP can make S’poreans happier

In Political economy, Political governance, Public Administration on 11/01/2019 at 10:48 am

But won’t.

Because it’ll go against one of LKY’s Hardest Truths: S’pore should not have supportive social systems and institutions thereby making it easier for people who don’t or won’t work hard (But do you want cybernuts living off yr money and dissing you and the govt for not giving them more money?) to fall through the cracks.

But seriously Hard Truths seem to have forgotten about those who can’t work hard because they are too sick, too old or have to care for others.

So we only 34th globally. But PAP govt will point out we are top dog in the neighbourhood. Bit like having a bungalow house surrounded by slums.

 

The UN’s Sustainable Development Solutions Network ranking of the happiest countries in the world

suggest that happy societies are those with supportive social systems and institutions that make it harder for people to fall through the cracks.

Why is Finland so happy? | March 2018

In March 2018 Finland was named the happiest country in the world by the UN’s Sustainable Development Solutions Network. Three Nordic cousins—Norway, Denmark and Iceland—took the next places. The UN report uses global polling data from Gallup to measure how pleased people feel with their lives, and tries to explain the differences in results using variables such as GDP per person, social support, healthy-life expectancy, freedom to make life choices, generosity, and freedom from corruption. Its results suggest that happy societies are those with supportive social systems and institutions that make it harder for people to fall through the cracks.

(Emphasis mine)

 

Repression? What repression?/ Alt media cannot be trusted

In Political governance, Public Administration on 10/01/2019 at 11:25 am

Going by the Economist Intelligence Unit’s Democracy Index, Kirsten Han, the Lee White than White  Horses, TOC, other alt media, and Lim Tean and his fellow cybernuts are fibbing when they claim that the PAP govt is getting more repressive.

S’pore’s Democracy score is improving

2018 — 6.38

2017 — 6.32

2016 — 6.38

2015 — 6.14 LKY died in March

2014 — 6.05

2013 — 5.92

2012 — 5.88

(2011 — LKY resigned from cabinet after GE)

2010 — 5.89

2008 — 5.89

2006 — 5.89

S’pore is classified, like the US, as a “Flawed Democracy”. To be fair to both nations, the US of A only joined S’pore in this category since Trump’s election as president. Before that it was a “Full Democracy”: juz on the right side (or wrong side, depending on one’s views) of the railway.


The Chinese Communist Party way is the The PAP way?

————————————————————————————-

The Economist Intelligence Unit’s Democracy Index. The index rates 167 countries by 60 indicators across five broad categories: electoral process and pluralism, the functioning of government, political participation, democratic political culture and civil liberties. It is stricter than most similar indices: it concludes that just 4.5% of the world’s people live in a “full democracy”. However, the overall global score remained stable in 2018 for the first time in three years.

Why our millionaire ministers don’t deserve their salaries

In Economy, Political economy, Political governance on 09/01/2019 at 10:00 am

S’pore’s trade-reliant economy will see a slowdown in the next 12 months, according to a survey of economists by the Monetary Authority of Singapore. All 23 respondents cited intensifying trade friction as a risk to growth.

Economists … project that gross domestic product (GDP) growth could ease to 2.6% from an estimated 3.3% for 2018.

https://sg.finance.yahoo.com/news/singapore-economy-five-things-watch-2019-014107270.html

Look at where that will place us in the 2019 sweep stakes: around where the better developed countries will be.

For that we pay the best global rates for ministers? Even the constructive, nation-building media don’t deny that S’pore’s ministers top the global league for ministers but say they deserve their salaries.

Really?

They would say that, wouldn’t they?

Gods punishing Potong Pasir residents for voting PAP?

In Media, Political governance, Public Administration on 31/12/2018 at 10:32 am

In the space of the last few days, the constructive, nation-building media reported without comment (Imagine if these bad things had happened in Aljunied or Hougang?):

Giant trap to control Javan Myna population trialed in Potong Pasir
and
Burst pipe in Potong Pasir leaves homes without water for several hours
It could be that the Gods are punishing the residents of Potong Pasir for preferring material benefits that the PAP offers in return for deserting the Chiams.
Will the residents repent abandoning the Chiams in 2011 and not turning back to them in 2015? Will they vote for Mrs Chiam in next GE?
Seriously, I’m shocked that anti-PAP publications like TOC, TRE and The Idiots, and the cybernuts on social media are not using the incidents to show that the PAP govt is incompetent: it can’t even look after areas that support the PAP.
Maybe, these people are on luxury holidays overseas and so missed the news.
But most probably, the cybernuts (not enough money to even donate peanuts to keep alive TOC and TRE let alone go on luxury hols) are distracted by what they consider as the persecutions of Uncle Leong, Terry and Daniel Augustin De Costa aka Willy Sum: PAP & strategic distraction
Or even more likely, the PAP has succeeded in frightening the chickens and sheep by suing a few monkeys.
What do you think?
Prosperous 2019. Vote wisely but not for the three stooges: Mad Dog, Lim Tean, Meng Seng where are yr durians?. And make a distinction between Dr Chee and the SDP.

Defusing a stink bomb before the next GE

In Political governance, Public Administration on 05/12/2018 at 11:18 am

The PAP listens to the concerns of the 70% especially near a GE (before not after: think Watergate: All about fleecing the sheep, Watergate: MIW caught with pants down).

The issue of parking fees by MPs, civil servants and grassroots volunteers became a major KPKBing point after the Education Ministry said in March that teachers at all national schools and junior colleges will have to pay for parking in school premises from August 1, after a policy review.

The debate prompted questions by the public (not juz the usual cybernuts like Lim Tean and his TRE pals) over whether MPs, civil servants and grassroots volunteers must pay to park their vehicles.

So

Under the revised system, elected MPs with an annual permit may park in Parliament House, and will still be able to enter HDB carparks and park in any spot — including season-parking spaces — for their constituency work. But they will have to pay to use the carparks, based on the circular.

https://www.todayonline.com/singapore/mps-pay-short-term-parking-hdb-carparks-following-govt-review

The annual permit will cost S$250 (including GST) to park in Parliament House for official business. This permit costs S$365, and lets MPs park in HDB carparks — including in season-parking spaces — when they carry out constituency work, and in Parliament House.
Advertisement.

The changes, which take effect from Jan 1 next year, follow a government review of the yearly permit.

The issue of parking fees was thrust into the spotlight after the Education Ministry said in March that teachers at all national schools and junior colleges will have to pay for parking in school premises from August 1, after a policy review.

The debate prompted questions over whether MPs, civil servants and grassroots volunteers pay to park their vehicles.

The PAP listens to the concerns of the 70% especially near a GE (before not after: think Watergate: All about fleecing the sheep, Watergate: MIW caught with pants down), I repeat.

Interesting a Wankers’ Party MP is the only MP grumbling that his parking fees could go up a lot as a result of the change.

The Hardest Truths about the PAP/ Not cybernuts but PAP IB?

In Political governance, Public Administration on 02/12/2018 at 1:23 pm

When TRE republished this Another sign that GE will be next yr/ Three cheers for TOC, there was a response from a PAP supporter covered here: What has the PAP ever done for us?

A TRE reader made two good points (emphasis mine) in response to the PAP supporter

Always Reember:
November 17, 2018 at 6:58 am (Quote)

A political party is just about a group of people.

A party is only as good as the people in that group at the very moment in time.

Your primary school teacher who guided you to top performing PSLE, may not be able to do the same when you are in poly, uni or corporate world.

Especially those who though their past success, entitles them to still herd you around like “fishing villagers”.

PC Ong:
2019 is the 200th anniversary of the founding of Singapore. Yes, Singapore was not founded by PAP but by Raffles. But the PAP deserves the most credit for getting Singapore to its 200th anniversary, as a top global city where talents and corporations of all kinds want to be. Ever since independence in 1965, Singapore could very easily have lost its way because we do not have natural resources and we were so vulnerable to external threats. Not only were these threats and vulnerabilities overcome, Singapore has just grown better and better, while other top cities in the world like New York, London, Paris, Tokyo and HK decline. This is due in large part to political stability and sound policies in Singapore.

No cybernut he or she.

So unlike Oz tax dodger, Oxygen or his pals Hagen, The Angry Rooster; Sg; rukidding; Homeless Cat; LIONS; and patriot of Temesak (also known as patriot of TUMASIK) who are as nutty as they come. They even think that ex-ST tua kee mentioned in TRE Cybernut defends ex ST tua kee didn’t carry the PAP’s balls when she was in ST saying she only wrote nasty things about the PAP.

But then maybe TRE funder Oxygen ($50,000 in 2015) and his pals are well-trained, deep cover agents of the PAP’s IB, exposed by their stupidity.

Why S’poreans keep voting for the PAP (cont’d)

In Political governance, Public Administration on 01/12/2018 at 2:10 pm

Another way of putting what I said in Why PAP’s cock-ups don’t matter to most voters most of the time is that

We react to real events when and after they happen

Voters cannot be persuaded of that which has yet to be felt.

(Can’t remember where I came across this)

Until things start going badly wrong, then voters will turn against the PAP explaining partly why Why access to the truth has not set S’poreans free

Related post: Truths about voter choices: Why people vote PAP despite everything

 

Why PAP’s cock-ups don’t matter to most voters most of the time

In Political governance, Public Administration on 29/11/2018 at 12:12 pm

Think the

— MRT problems (Khaw seems to say that part of it is the fault of Dr Goh Dr Goh’s HK counterpart had similar views on MRT and other major issues),

— present and future HDB “flaw” (“Houses are for living in, not for speculation”),

— uncalled for water hike (Watergate: All about fleecing the sheep, Watergate: MIW caught with pants down),

— Hawkergate (Another sign that GE will be next yr/ Three cheers for TOC),

— promised pain of a GST hike (How to ensure no GST rise),

— and a general perception of arrogance (Think of Kee Chiu’s smirks):

then wonder why the PAP will get at least 60% of the vote at next GE in a free but unfair election.

Doesn’t sound rational does it?

It’s rational though because there is a great deal of ruin in a nation, as Adam Smith once observed: meaning a lot of things need to go wrong over a longish period of time before a country gets into a mess and voters get really upset.

Think M’sia. It went off the rails in the 90s under the then and now present PM. The next PM tried to sort things out but was ousted by a peeved Tun, his predecessor, who then picked Najib who decided if the US Marshall is to be believed, that he’d rather be rich than good.

Other examples:

— The Swedish welfare system was only reformed beginning in 1990s despite problems with it becoming apparent in the 70s (Think the hike in the price of oil). The system was set up after WWII.

— The US infrastructure system is still staggering despite many roads, bridges etc passing their useful life spans decades ago.

As Chris K has said “S’porean’s have not suffered enough”. Which is the reason why Oxygen and his TRE cybernut pals keep on cursing S’pore hoping their fellow S’poreans finally suffer. Meanwhile ordinary S’poreans juz take the “right” coloured pill and keep on paying and paying.

Meanwhile the PAP will continue doing just enough to keep us mutinous but not rebellious, using our own money. Ownself pay ownself to keep PAP in power.

No wonder Oxygen and his nutty pals are consumed with anger and rage.

But let’s be fair to S’poreans and the PAP:

Like people around the world, the Taiwanese voted for peace and prosperity.

BBC’s ending sentence in an article on the recent Taiwanese elections.

Whatever the problems S’poreans have with the PAP as regards prosperity, will having people like Mad Dog, Lim Tean and Meng Seng (Mad Dog, Lim Tean, Meng Seng where are yr durians?) in an anti-PAP coalition govt ensure prosperity?

So cybernuts, don’t blame S’poreans for voting for the continued hegemony of the PAP. Blame the likes of Mad Dog, Lim Tean and Meng Seng. S’poreans are prepared to vote for people like Chiam, Low, Auntie and Dr Tan Cheng Bock.

 

BS from ex-MSM tua kee on Heng’s appt?/ Juz Plan B ler

In Political governance on 26/11/2018 at 9:47 am

Do you notice what is wrong in the first sentence?

Something curious happened on Thursday morning (22 November), one day before the highly-anticipated revelation of whom the People’s Action Party’s (PAP) secretive cadres had picked as its central executive committee’s first assistant secretary-general. It would be Heng Swee Keat, Chinese-language daily Lianhe Zaobao reported, making him a near certainty to become Singapore’s fourth Prime Minister. A majority of the ruling party’s cadre members picked him over Chan Chun Sing, the man many had predicted would get the job.

The leak to the media was uncharacteristic as the cadre system has been described as a closed shop, a priesthood even, that keeps its decisions close to its heart, leaving it to the top leadership to make the announcements public. Thursday’s report, closely followed by Today’s story on the same issue citing a “senior party leader”, breached that sacred rule.

Balji, one-time PAP enabler: “The Idiots — S’pore”: From PAP loudhailer to running dog?(apologies to dogs, mall dogs especially mongrels)

The first sentence had me running back to the PAP’s constitution to double check a fact. I tot the party cadres do not choose the first assistant secretary-general, as claimed by Balji, or indeed any other office bearer. They vote on who will be members of the politburo (or central executive committee), who then decide who else to include in the politburo, and who then decide who the office bearers will be.

The cadres do not choose the the first assistant secretary-general or any other office bearer.

To double confirm this I asked Secret Squirrel and Morocco Mole if the PAP had changed their procedures. They said “No”.

So what is Balji trying to do given that the cybernuts are still shouting themselves hoarse that Kee Chiu will be the next PM because PM wants him to be the next PM? Btw, they got faeces on their faces saying that he’d beat Heng to the post of first asst). Can one reasonably assume that Balji is trying to show that PM is weak and that there are divisions inside the PAP? Remember that he’s trying to redefine himself as a Jedi juz like Bertha Henson: Ex-ST wimmin promoting ex-PM’s book? 

Most probably Balji forgot the PAP’s rules on choosing polituro members given that he had a massive heart attack several yrs ago.

Btw, do remember that I wrote in 2015 that Heng would be the next PM:  The next PM has been unveiled. I still do, sans serious health problems, which could still happen: hence the perceived “promotion” of Kee Chiu since 2016 (after Heng got a stroke) by PM. There is a need a plan B and Kee Chiu is plan B.

But Kee Chui (Why “Kee Chiu” got renamed “Kee Chui”) can still be PM even after Heng becomes PM. More on this soon.

 

Double confirm GE in 2019: Free lunches for two yrs for KPKBing hawkers

In Political governance, Public Administration on 19/11/2018 at 1:42 pm

OK, OK, sort of free.

Stallholders at seven new social enterprise-run hawker centres will get some help in paying for dishwashing services from next year, the National Environment Agency (NEA) announced on Friday (Nov 16) in a move to mitigate hawkers’ operating costs.

From Jan 1, the authorities will co-fund the costs for centralised dishwashing at seven new hawker centres. They are: Pasir Ris Central Hawker Centre, Kampung Admiralty Hawker Centre, Bukit Panjang Hawker Centre, Ci Yuan Hawker Centre, Yishun Park Hawker Centre, Jurong West Hawker Centre, and Our Tampines Hub Hawker Centre.

Stallholders there will pay 50 per cent of the costs for the first year, and 70 per cent of the costs for the second year, under an extension of the NEA’s Productive Hawker Centres grant. They will pay the full costs from the third year onwards.

https://www.todayonline.com/singapore/stallholders-social-enterprise-run-hawker-centres-pay-only-50-cent-dishwashing-costs-help

Notice that the subsidy ends at end of 2020 and that in 2020 it’s only 30% compared to 50% in 2019?

Well Terry’s Online Channel noticed and is KPKBing that’s “not enough”.

Looks like it wants everything subsidised for hawkers.

“Dollars and Sense” of a Hawker Stall should be required reading for wannabe hawkers. 

 

What has the PAP ever done for us?

In Political governance, Public Administration on 18/11/2018 at 1:41 pm

A  lot according to a TRe reader: a really Hard Truth for TRE cybernuts to swallow.

When TRE republished this, Another sign that GE will be next yr/ Three cheers for TOC, among the bile, vomit and BS that it caused, there was this comment that was posted by a 70%er

PC Ong:
2019 is the 200th anniversary of the founding of Singapore. Yes, Singapore was not founded by PAP but by Raffles. But the PAP deserves the most credit for getting Singapore to its 200th anniversary, as a top global city where talents and corporations of all kinds want to be. Ever since independence in 1965, Singapore could very easily have lost its way because we do not have natural resources and we were so vulnerable to external threats. Not only were these threats and vulnerabilities overcome, Singapore has just grown better and better, while other top cities in the world like New York, London, Paris, Tokyo and HK decline. This is due in large part to political stability and sound policies in Singapore.

As expected, he got slimed and insulted. So here’s my good deed for the day: publicising his view.

Other gd things PAP has done for S’pore:

Why are there hawker centres in Singapore?

https://atans1.wordpress.com/2013/01/25/when-55-of-voters-were-fts/

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

https://atans1.wordpress.com/2010/10/17/minimum-wages-yikes-pap-may-be-right/

https://atans1.wordpress.com/2009/12/15/property-prices-mm-lee-is-too-modest/

More advice for PM, PAP from world’s richest man

In Political governance, Public Administration on 17/11/2018 at 2:14 pm

Further to PM, PAP should remember what world’s richest man said, l came across another saying by Bezoz (“no mediocre” man). Explaining why he raised minimum wages at Amazon, Jeff Bezos said “the Henry Ford approach: if you put more money in your employees’ pockets, they spend more money on your platform. It comes back to you.”

Given that personal consumption figures are really bad here vis-a-vis places like HK, time to stop FTs by the cattle car loads so that wages of locals can rise, and they can spend more?

And given that the value of HDB flats are declining while private property prices are inching up (Will this resale flat buyer vote for PAP in next GE?) and the PAP needs a big win because of the change of PM a few yrs after next GE, voters with more $in their pockets are likely to vote PAP.

So time to tweak NIRC and NIR?

NIRC consists of 50 per cent of the Net Investment Returns (NIR) on the net assets invested by GIC, the Monetary Authority of Singapore and Temasek Holdings and 50 per cent of the Net Investment Income (NII) derived from past reserves from the remaining assets.

[W] spend 50 per cent of the estimated gains from investment, and put the remaining 50 per cent back into the reserves to preserve its growth for future use.

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

And promise not to think about raising GST until 2023? How to ensure no GST rise.

And even more goodies for oldies Hard Truth why PAP wins and wins.

After all after PAP wins 70% of popular vote, PM can take back most of the goodies. Think water hike after last GE:

Watergate: MIW caught with pants down

Watergate: All about fleecing the sheep

Watergate: PUB got consumption figures all wrong?

 

 

 

 

Timing of next GE: More trumpets for me

In Political governance on 11/11/2018 at 9:37 am

In Akan datang: GE in late 2019,I predicted that the GE would be in late 2019, giving my reasons for the call.

Well, the general elections may be called as soon as next year, said Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong, very recently.

While speaking at the welcome dinner dialogue of the Bloomberg New Economic Forum, he was asked if our bicentennial celebration of Sir Stamford Raffles’ arrival next year might be a reason to bring forward the general election which is due to be held in 2021, he said “It’s always possible. There are many reasons to bring elections forward for a party, so we’ll see”.

PAP’s thinking is Xi’s thinking

In China, Political governance on 09/11/2018 at 10:05 am

Further to What next? Senior civil servant saying that those who don’t vote PAP don’t wish S’pore well? where I quoted our London ambassador sneering at the ang moh way of alternating opposing parties in power

The alternative—a constant merry-go-round of contending parties—does not necessarily produce better outcomes. Politicians fail to keep the promises they make, the people become disillusioned, and eventually lose faith in democracy. Witness the low voter-turnouts in many Western democracies.

Doesn’t this sound like u/m?

Chinese leaders are too cynical about elections in the democratic West, and about the lessons that even messy campaigns can offer. They are not cynical enough about their own authoritarian system, refusing to see how it induces a sort of democracy-blindness. Even well-informed officials and scholars misread political dynamics around the world.

https://www.economist.com/china/2018/10/20/china-is-misreading-western-populism

Related posts:  Keeping power in a one-party state and Would this happen in a one-party state?

 

 

Will this resale flat buyer vote for PAP in next GE?

In Political governance, Property on 07/11/2018 at 4:19 pm

After reading this post, tell me if you think Jun Liang, the resale flat buyer, will vote for the PAP in the next GE.

Further to Will resale flat owners still vote for PAP in next GE? where I reported that the value of the homes has been falling even as prices of private dwellings rebounded over the past five quarters, leading to a 13.8 points gap in their price performance, the widest in more than a decade. Private home prices rose 0.5% in the third quarter, after climbing 3.4% in the previous three months here’s a really sad story

🤑🤣😛😢😪😂😝😜

“I bought in the resale market when the prices were quite high some years back,” said Jun Liang, 42, whose apartment is in a 55-year-old block called Selegie House. “When I look at the value now, it would not have appreciated — in fact, after renovation costs it could even be a small loss.”

[…]

Home-owner Jun and his wife bought their apartment in one of the oldest HDB blocks in 2013 after getting married, spending about S$700,000 on the property and another S$100,000 to renovate. Now, they have thoughts of upgrading to a private condo. But, looking at their budget, the couple wonder if they’ve any chance of getting the home they want.

https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2018-10-25/singapore-s-public-housing-envy-of-the-world-hits-rough-patch

I think he’s deluded about a small loss taking into account renovation costs. Remember prices for flats like his took a dive after Lawrence Wong’s warning about the govt taking back the land when the leasehold expires: Why 30-year old HDB flats difficult to sell.

And it’s going to get worse. 🤑🤣😛😢😪😂😝😜

Nicholas Mak, executive director and head of research at real estate firm ZACD Group said:

HDB resale prices may fall 1 percent to 2 percent this year, according to Mak.  In the long term, besides undermining public sentiment, declines could threaten demand for private housing, since fewer people will feel wealthy enough to upgrade to condominiums, according to Cushman & Wakefield Inc.

https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2018-10-25/singapore-s-public-housing-envy-of-the-world-hits-rough-patch

Who asked Jun Liang and his wife to believe PM and his ministers on asset values? Exposed: Flaws in PM’s HDB spin 

🤑🤣😛😢😪😂😝😜

And Jun Liang should also worry about the trade war between China and Trump because a slow down in China is terrible for us: we more affected than the rest of Asean:  PAP needs strong Chinese economic growth.

“Singapore is a not a clean city. It’s a cleaned city.”

In Environment, Political governance, Public Administration on 06/11/2018 at 2:10 pm

So what we may ask?

More than S$120m a year is spent on cleaning public spaces. And PAPpies not happy that the PAP administration has to this amount to keep S’pore clean. (Perhaps they hope that this money can be diverted to millionaire ministers?).

The PAPpy unhappiness

At first, the policy [LKY’s Clean and Green policy of which the anti-littering campaign was part of ] worked, according to Liak Teng Lit, chairman of the National Environment Agency. A combination of public awareness campaigning and punitive measures made a difference. More people picked up after themselves. The city became cleaner.

————————————–

Green S’pore

LKY & greenery

My S’pore: A greener & more pleasant land

Urban planning: a constrasting tale of UK cities & S’pore

2025: LKY’s memorial unveiled

Uniquely global: Rainforest in a global city

————————————

In 1961, Singapore had a “broom brigade” of 7,000 day labourers who were directly employed by the department of health. By 1989, there were only 2,100.

But things changed. The city became wealthier, and it became easier to use low-cost labour to clean up. Nowadays, says Liak, Singapore isn’t clean because locals fear fines. It’s clean because there’s an army of workers scrubbing it. They do the heavy lifting. More than anyone else, they keep Singapore clean.

“Singapore is a not a clean city. It’s a cleaned city,” Liak declares.

There are 56,000 cleaners registered with the National Environment Agency. There are likely thousands of independent contractors who aren’t registered. Mostly they’re low-paid foreign workers or elderly workers. Taipei, by contrast, has maybe 5,000 cleaners, Liak adds.

http://www.bbc.com/capital/story/20181025-the-cost-of-keeping-singapore-squeaky-clean

One reason they give for wanting us to pick up litter: good for our souls i.e. civic consciousness the PAPpy way

Edward D’Silva [chairman of the Public Hygiene Council] is frustrated about the way the rise of this army of cleaners has changed the culture in Singapore. With so many cleaners, Singaporeans came to regard cleaning up as someone else’s job. Today, Singaporeans often leave their tray on the table at hawker centres after eating a meal, because they don’t consider it littering, or they think it’s the cleaners’ job to clean up after them. (In fairness, tray return facilities were only installed in 2013.)

D’Silva says students don’t pick up after themselves either, because they’ve always had a cleaner to do it for them. It’s something the Public Hygiene Council is trying to address at local schools. Simply put, he thinks Singaporeans have had it too easy for too long, and they need to change. Liak agrees.

“The government cleans the apartment [building], right up to your corridor, typically twice a day. When you have a very efficient cleaning service, and your neighbour messes up the place, you don’t blame the neighbour, you blame the cleaner for not picking it up,” he says.

BBC report

The real reason, want to save $:

In Singapore, cleaners are mostly drawn from a pool of roughly a million foreign workers as well as local aged workers. But as Singapore’s population grows and labour becomes more expensive, it simply won’t be affordable to employ so many cleaners.

Edward D’Silva says part of the original push for a cleaner Singapore was economic. Cleaning public spaces is expensive and it takes money away from more valuable pursuits. He says that’s still the case, and Singapore needs to change its behaviour fast. Singapore spends at least SGD$120m (US$87m) a year on cleaning public spaces.

“If you are able to instill and cultivate a habit whereby people don’t throw their litter anywhere and anyhow, then the money you would have otherwise spent to employ those cleaners, well, millions of dollars could have been better spent on health and education,” he said.

BBC report

As usual with the PAP, it’s all about money.

Survey feedback: a really Hard Truth

In Political governance, Public Administration on 02/11/2018 at 4:52 pm

The PAP administration is always asking for feedback via surveys etc. But even many of the 70% think that the whole exercise is a waste of time because they think the PAP administration already “knows” the results of the survey etc.

The feedback is for confirmation that the PAP administration got it right and is wayang.

To overcome this cynicism:

It is more important to follow through and take real steps to make people happier and more productive.

FT

Context of above quote

There is a growing view that too many companies think doing the odd staff survey is enough to tick the engagement box. It is more important to follow through and take real steps to make people happier and more productive. Put another way, a company can do as many surveys as it likes, but if it irks workers with doltish managers, idiotic dress codes, petty rules on attendance and worse, it should expect to be treated in kind.

The really Hard Truth:

The PAP administration can do as many surveys as it likes, but if it annoys voters with second rate but overpaid ministers, inefficient (think SMRT) or expensive public serices (water and electricity), bullying, agencies with bad culture (Integrated Health Systems*), petty rules or worse, it should expect cynicism: a “What’s it in for me?” attitude or worse even if S’pore remains a de facto one-party state.


*Senior mgr chiak chua

The day before, a senior manager of IHiS’ security management department, Mr Ernest Tan, had testified that he was reluctant to raise the alarm to his superiors despite knowing about suspicious logins to the patient database, for fear of working “non-stop” to “deliver answers” to top management.

This had led to a delay in the reporting and detection of the cyber attack, which saw hackers make off with the personal data of 1.5 million SingHealth patients between June 27 and July 4.

https://www.todayonline.com/singapore/cultural-issues-ihis-hampered-detection-and-reporting-cybersecurity-incidents

 

 

Will resale flat owners still vote for PAP in next GE?

In Political governance, Property on 30/10/2018 at 1:29 pm

🤑🤣😛😢😪😂😝😜

Resale prices for HDB flats have been on the decline over the last year. Prices fell 0.7 per cent in the third quarter of 2017, 0.2 per cent in the fourth quarter of 2017 and 0.8 per cent in the first quarter of this year, although they inched up 0.1 per cent in the second quarter.

Read more at https://www.channelnewsasia.com/news/singapore/hdb-resale-transactions-up-19-in-q3-as-prices-remain-flat-10865850

🤑🤣😛😢😪😂😝😜

Whatever happened to “asset enhancement”? Exposed: Flaws in PM’s HDB spin 

And Why 30-year old HDB flats difficult to sell/ Why PAP rule will end in 2029

No guesses about why S’poreans are so unhappy that they donated to WP MPs  (How to protest effectively when there’s no GE).

African example PAP govt will follow?

In Economy, Political governance, Public Administration on 30/10/2018 at 9:47 am

The Tanzanian government is in the process of amending its statistical legislation so that it can impose fines or jail time on anyone who questions the accuracy of official figures.

Not a big step from what Ng Eng Hen did as a newbie cabinet minister (Manpower) many yrs ago when he roughed up some academics who published analysis based on extrapolation (I think) of officially published data on a sensitive issue (FT employment rates vis-a-vis locals). Appparently there was some unpublished data according to Hen that contradicted the extrapolation: they should have asked his ministry whether their analysis was correct.

After the row died down (the academics sucked XXXX), the long-standing head of the stats dept resigned. As a noted economist (then and now) remarked tongue -in-cheek: “Wow, govt admits data published on website is not accurate”.

Whatever, Hen never looked back: his star was on the rise.

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

In Political economy, Political governance, Public Administration on 28/10/2018 at 2:07 pm

In Hard Truth why PAP wins and wins I wrote about goodies for oldies from the PAP govt as its way of of bribing making sure that the vast majority of the Pioneer and Merdeka Generations continue voting for the PAP. As far as I’m concerned, we got the money for this and more, a lot more. Think of the buget surpluses: How we fund our SWFs

But if the cybernuts are right that our reserves have been lost, implying that the income from our reserves that goes into the Budget is fake $, then we are in trouble.

After all over the last 10 years, Singapore’s net investment returns (NIR) contribution (NIRC) to the Budget has more than doubled from S$7 billion in FY2009 to an estimated S$15.9 billion in FY2018.


Waz this NIRC and NIR BS?

NIRC consists of 50 per cent of the Net Investment Returns (NIR) on the net assets invested by GIC, the Monetary Authority of Singapore and Temasek Holdings and 50 per cent of the Net Investment Income (NII) derived from past reserves from the remaining assets.

In other words, we spend 50 per cent of the estimated gains from investment, and put the remaining 50 per cent back into the reserves to preserve its growth for future use.

Associate Professor Randolph Tan is Director of the Centre for Applied Research at the Singapore University of Social Services, and a Nominated Member of Parliament.


The money finally runs out because of too many bribes goodies for voters to keep them voting for the PAP. So if there’s really no money because the reserves are squandered as alleged by Phillip Ang (CPF class action: Phillip Ang’s “reply’ to fellow cybernut) and other cybernuts, then S’pore under the PAP will become like UK and Venezuela.

In the UK

‘Everything is just stretched to its limit’

“There are more people requiring services,” says Simon. “We’re an ageing population and there are more children in schools. It’s alright them saying they’re putting more money in, but per individual it doesn’t equate.”

Like many locals, the men are worried about Scarborough Hospital, which is part of York Teaching Hospital NHS Foundation Trust. It is facing a reorganisation and locals fear departments could be closed in their town.

https://www.bbc.com/news/business-45968036

And in Venezuela

From schoolteacher to cleaner

Maria Eugenia Carrillo was enthusiastic about the system of free schooling introduced by Hugo Chávez in the early 2000s. But increasing pressure by her bosses to include political content in lessons bothered her. And then there was the poverty.

“I saw my children sick and hungry, their parents looking for food among the rubbish and diseases like measles running rampant through the school,” she says.

“When parents came to pick up their children they stopped asking ‘what did you learn today?’ and asked instead: ‘What did you eat today?'”
Image caption “I always dreamed of living and dying in Venezuela.”

The 52-year-old teacher says that the political pressure caused her so much stress that her fibromyalgia became more acute – until she decided she had to leave Venezuela, flying to Madrid in October 2017.

Without official papers, she has no chance of working as a teacher, and is cleaning homes for cash.

“I always dreamed of living and dying in Venezuela,” she says. “I even had a beach house until a Chavista [a supporter of Venezuela’s government] took a shine to it and moved in. I couldn’t do anything. I was paralysed by the fear of being arrested.”

And

The irony of Spain and Venezuela’s reversal in fortunes is not lost on Cándido Soengas, who escaped poverty and dictatorship in 1950s Spain by crossing the Atlantic.

Now, he has been forced to return to Spain, as living conditions unravelled in the Venezuelan capital.

“I never expected to come back,” 87-year-old Mr Soengas says in the garden of his Madrid retirement home, reminiscing on the life he and his late wife made for themselves in Caracas.

“I was happy in Venezuela. There were always people about to lend me a hand and when I brought my children up, we wanted for nothing.”

“They were good times.”

https://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-45640307

“They were good times,” hopefully I won’t say this 25 yrs from now when I’m his age.

 

Hard Truth why PAP wins and wins

In Financial planning, Political economy, Political governance, Public Administration on 26/10/2018 at 1:36 pm

(Or “Why oldies are getting more goodies” or “You massage my back, and I scratch yrs”)

The Merdeka generation are getting goodies, juz like the Pioner Generation. Both generations in their prime have given the PAP solid support (over 60% of the popular vote).

PAP is juz rewarding voters who keep it in power

Not only that, but as S’poreans are living longer, keeping the Merdeka generation (and the balance of the Pioneer Generation) contented with the PAP govt means that the PAP’s hegemony can last at another 20 yrs.

The average Singaporean can expect to live 85.4 years in 2040, up 2.1 years from the average of 83.3 years in 2016, according to a new study by a global health research organisation.

Singapore is expected to maintain its third-place ranking in average life expectancy in 2040, if recent health trends continue.

By then, Spaniards are expected to live the longest — an average of 85.8 years — pipping the Japanese, who are expected to live an average of 85.7 years.

https://www.todayonline.com/singapore/average-singaporean-live-third-longest-world-till-854-years-2040-study

Add to that having people like Mad Dog, Lim Tean and Meng Seng as opponents and the PAP will rule forever and a day.

 

Oil prices are “right” for PAP

In Energy, Political governance on 24/10/2018 at 10:15 am

Last night Brent touched US$75.88 a barrel — the lowest since early September — before settling at US$76.44 in NY. In early October it was above US$86.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Phew that was a really quick sharp retracement after a very sharp spik in October: Tua kee traders take opposing views on price of oil.

The PAP govt must be relieved oil is now trading below US$80.

A US$ oil price of closer to US$100  than US$60 will pose problems for an early GE in late 2019 esp with the promised rise in GST(See below for GST related posts) after GE: Akan datang: GE in late 2019

According to Citi’s Johanna Chua, Asian countries suffer the most when oil prices rise because, aside from Malaysia, most are net oil importers. Singapore runs a sizable 6.5% oil and gas deficit,

HoHoHo: Why oil price rises are not gd for PAP

 

 

What next? Senior civil servant saying that those who don’t vote PAP don’t wish S’pore well?

In Political economy, Political governance, Public Administration on 23/10/2018 at 10:49 am

In Ang mohs told secret of why PAP wins and wins, I quoted our London ambassador on why the PAP thinks it wins and win.

She also wrote

The alternative—a constant merry-go-round of contending parties—does not necessarily produce better outcomes. Politicians fail to keep the promises they make, the people become disillusioned, and eventually lose faith in democracy. Witness the low voter-turnouts in many Western democracies.

FOO CHI HSIA

Doesn’t this sound as though she’s saying that those of us (self included) who want a viable opposition so that we can have a system whereby power can change hands in a GE are S’poreans who do not wish S’pore well?

Er,tot civil servants cannot engage in politics? And whatever happened to a neutral that our ministers and senior civil servants talk and boast about? They talking cock meh?

Seriously, our ang moh tua kees are forever bitching that civil service is not neutral.

But why should it be neutral?

Given that the PAP has ruled S’pore since 1959 (and first had the voters’ mandate in 1957), how can they expect the civil service to be neutral as it’s expected to be in the Westminster system? They don’t know their UK politcal history.

The UK (where of the Westminster model originated) has had two recent periods where one party ruled for a long period: 1979 — 1997 (Tories) and 1997 — 2010 (Labour). During both periods, the neutrality of the civil service was called in question by serious, fair-minded people, not the usual loonies and fruitcakes i.e. the British version of our cybernuts The complaint made by retired senior servants among others was that civil service was being co-opted by the governing party during both periods: ministers made sure the “right” civil servants were promoted.

Since the PAP has had repeatedly won the mandate (by wide margins) to push around and bully S’poreans, how can the civil service here not not be neutral ? Voters have made the choice: the PAP way or the highway.

And given that we are defacto one-party state, (“Why CCP’s fears are PAP’s fears”Keeping power in a one-party state and Would this happen in a one-party state?) how can any sane, rational voter expect a neutral civil service here?

Ending on the theme of a one-party state, here’s two parting tots to ponder

Communist party theorists have long railed against the danger of “peaceful evolution”, in which Communist rule is slowly undone as democratic ideals, from civil society to the rule of law, seep in through the back door.

FT

Same here?

And if so, Dr Thum Ping Tjin has a point when writing in TOC he cautions against being overly reliant on elections as the sole legitimate tool for political change: “Elections may be free, but not necessarily fair”:

HoHoHo: Why oil price rises are not gd for PAP

In Economy, Emerging markets, Energy, Political economy, Political governance, Public Administration on 15/10/2018 at 11:19 am

Phew that was a quick sharp retracement after a very sharp spik: Tua kee traders take opposing views on price of oil. The PAP govt must be relieved oil is now trading around US$82 (minutes ago) than above US$86 (middle of last week).

A US$ oil price of closer to US$100 will not only make Tun M (M’sia exports oil) more willingly to cut off our water supply but will pose problems for an early GE in late 2019 esp with the promised rise in GST(See below for GST related posts) after GE: Akan datang: GE in late 2019

According to Citi’s Johanna Chua, Asian countries suffer the most when oil prices rise because, aside from Malaysia, most are net oil importers. Singapore runs a sizable 6.5% oil and gas deficit, followed closely by Pakistan, Thailand, Sri Lanka and Taiwan. Indonesia and Vietnam manage slightly smaller deficits of roughly 1%.

So many of these economies see the largest inflation swings when oil prices rise. Chua’s chart ranking the sensitivity regionally over the past six years. See where we stand.

S'pore oilThe ** explained that the spike in inflation here is caused by some one-off stats adjustment of data base. So not really comparable to other countries. But try telling that to cybernuts like Oxygen or Phillip Ang.

But rational readers should get the message. Voters really get hurt by oil price rises. And the promised GST price increase is not going to impress the 10 points of voters that voted for the PAP in last GE, bring the total votes for the PAP to 70%: a great result for the PM and the PAP after the failure of only 60% in 2011.


GST-related posts

GST rise: Anti-PAP activists should take note

How to ensure no GST rise

Countering PAP’s BS that taxes must go up

 

Ang mohs told secret of why PAP wins and wins

In Political governance, Public Administration on 14/10/2018 at 2:17 pm

Not because S’pore is a repressive place as the ang moh tua kees like Kirsten Han allege. Or because of Oppo clowns like Mad Dog, Lim Tean and Meng Seng.

But because according to the PAP administration’s Lady in London

The PAP has been repeatedly re-elected because it has been honest with the voters, delivers on its promises, and provides long-term stability and progress. When it has not fully met voters’ expectations, and so lost votes, it has responded with appropriate policy adjustments.

The cynics would say “She would say this, wouldn’t she?”.

But is she right? What do you think?

Her letter to the Economist

Politics in Singapore

Banyan suggested that the government of Singapore wins elections because it hounds critics and denies public-housing upgrades to opposition districts, and wondered why the ruling People’s Action Party “holds on so tenaciously” to power (September 22nd). The PAP has been repeatedly re-elected because it has been honest with the voters, delivers on its promises, and provides long-term stability and progress. When it has not fully met voters’ expectations, and so lost votes, it has responded with appropriate policy adjustments. It has also consciously renewed its leadership, with a fourth generation since independence readying itself to take on the responsibility.

The alternative—a constant merry-go-round of contending parties—does not necessarily produce better outcomes. Politicians fail to keep the promises they make, the people become disillusioned, and eventually lose faith in democracy. Witness the low voter-turnouts in many Western democracies.

FOO CHI HSIA
High commissioner for Singapore
London

 

Anti-PAPpies screaming about Oxfam report, what about World Bank’s Human Capital Index

In Economy, Political governance, Public Administration on 11/10/2018 at 2:26 pm

Another way to measure economic success other than by GDP was launched released two days ago earlier today by the World Bank.

Its Human Capital Index ranks countries according to how much is invested in young people.

The higher the investment in education and health the more productive and higher earning the workforce tends to be, the World Bank says.

Which leads to the creation of higher levels of wealth and a stronger economy.

They are silent because

First is Singapore, followed by South Korea, Japan and Hong Kong.

Finland and Ireland are fifth and sixth, with the UK in 15th place, below Germany but ahead of France, Norway and Switzerland.

The bottom of the list is dominated by countries in Africa, where human capital scores are a third of those enjoyed by leading nations.

Chad, South Sudan and Niger are the bottom three countries.

For 157 countries the World Bank studied the quantity and quality of education provided to children, the mortality rate for under-5s, the “rate of stunting” among young people (a measure of how healthy children are) and the chances of someone living to 60 by the time they reach 15-years-of-age (the “adult survival rate”).

Bringing the data together produced a score between 0 and 1, where zero would mean all children died before reaching education age and 1 would be all children receiving the perfect education and health start in life.

Singapore scored 0.88 and the UK scored 0.78.

https://www.bbc.com/news/business-45816049

“Experts” wrong to write-off Ong as next PM

In Political governance, Public Administration on 01/10/2018 at 9:34 am

“Experts” kanna chiat sai a second time: they got to recant their view that he’s no longer in contention to be the next PM. (For the record, I’ve never tot Ong Ye Kung was in the running to be PM. In fact, I tot he was “very mediocre”. In Ong Ye Kung: A study in failure I’ve listed his NTUC and SMRT failings, and more.)

But many “experts” (Think Eugene Tan) did think he could be our next PM, and they had to eat their own faeces and drink their own urine after the latest cabinet reshuffle: Our new PM/ Trumpets pls for me

But given the announcement of a very major change in our education system,


Primary and secondary schools to cut down on exams and tests, as MOE announces sweeping changes to reduce emphasis on grades

In a major move to reduce emphasis on grades, the Ministry of Education (MOE) will do away with examinations and graded assessments for Primary 1 and 2 students from next year.

Mid-year examinations for students in Pri 3, Pri 5, Secondary 1 and Sec 3 will also be removed in phases from 2019 while all students from Pri 3 to Sec 4 or Sec 5 will not have more than one weighted assessment per subject per school term.

In addition, students’ report books will also no longer reflect their class and level positions as well as overall marks, with scores to be rounded off without decimal points.

These changes were announced by Education Minister Ong Ye Kung on Friday (Sept 28).

https://www.todayonline.com/singapore/primary-and-secondary-schools-cut-down-exams-and-tests-moe-announces-sweeping-changes

—————————————————————————–

these experts should now eat more their own faeces and drink more their own urine and repent and recant their writing-off of his chances of becoming PM. There was a really good reason for PM to retain him at MoE: to finalise and announce the above changes, even if “Schools” were in the portfolio of Ng Chee Meng, now NTUC’s Secretary-General.

Me? I don’t think he’s going to be the next PM, but I’m not so cocksure any more.

Firstly, because PM seems to like him: remember he served as Lee Hsien Loong’s Principal Private Secretary (2002–2004). To be fair to him and PM, he did good work when he was concurrently

  • Director of Trade at the Ministry of Trade & Industry (2000–2003)
  • Deputy Chief Negotiator of Singapore-US Free Trade Agreement (2000–2003).

And because he can throw smoke. Not as good as Lawrence Wong (Smell the smoke? From Indonesia or from the PAP & cybernuts?) but still better (Doublespeak on “Every school a good school”) than Heng or Kee Chiu:

The real reason why HDB flats are a touchy topic

In Political governance, Property, Public Administration on 27/09/2018 at 10:22 am

Other than the fact that S’poreans have realised or discovered that HDB flats are 99-yr leases not freehold (They read what they agreed to buy? Exposed: Flaws in PM’s HDB spin) the other major headache for the PAP govt in public housing is that housing (private or public) seems to be more about psychological rather than material needs.

In the US and UK

Our space expectations are conditioned not only by where we have lived before, but also by our neighbours.

Because house size is a status symbol, we feel worse off when other people get larger houses.

A recent US study found that an increase in the size of the largest 10% of “superstar” houses had a significant negative effect on their neighbours, even if those people had also moved to bigger homes.

Previous surveys have suggested people would be prepared to have less living space overall if it meant they had more than others.

https://www.bbc.com/news/business-45420795

Given that more than 80% of Singapore’s population live in HDB flats, no wonder the PAP govt now wants to kick the expiring lease issue into the really long grass.

Exposed: Flaws in PM’s HDB spin

Smell the smoke? From Indonesia or from the PAP & cybernuts?

Ex-PM’s money obsession causing PAP problems

In Political governance, Public Administration on 19/09/2018 at 10:33 am

Over the weekend I read

Finance, like law, is a profession that attracts a lot of reasonably intelligent, hard-working people who rather like money. People like me. Most of us are not really suited to it, though, and that makes for a lot of unhappy careers. The financial crisis saved me from that, and I am grateful.

Robert Armstrong FT’s chief editorial writer and was a hedgie analyst 10 yrs ago

This reminded me of

“For the love of money is the root of all evil: which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows.”

1 Timothy 6:10

Then today, I read

Factually, the government website, has debunked online falsehoods on PM’s and Ministers’ pay. I shall use this opportunity to debunk public perception that I am paid a ministerial salary.

(GCT on FB)

This then reminded me that GCT poured shit and piss on the PAP’s NatDay celebrations with his comment that those in the private sector earning less than $1m are “very mediocre people”. And that the PAP only chose ministers from the private sector if they were earning $1m or more. OK, OK, he later did say that salary was not the “starting point” when the PAP chose $1m ministers.

The silence from the present cabinet is deafening.

Secret Squirrel and Morocco Mole tell me that they hear that he was “ordered” to release the transcript of what he said and clarify that salary was not a factor when the PAP chose ministers.

Much good this did. I didn’t start commenting on his comments until I read the transcript. I mean TOC, TRE and The Indians Idiots are the cybernuts what ST is to the PAPpies.

And if salary was not the “starting point” when the PAP chose $1m ministers, why talk so much about money?

Whatever, based on his comments about ministerial salaries over the yrs, I get the sense that he is obsessed about money. Fault of wife? Remember she said $600,000 salary was “Peanuts”. Or could it be because he came from a very poor family?

“For the love of money is the root of all evil: which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows.”

1 Timothy 6:10

I’m not the only one not impressed  with the transcript he released. Here’s something a FBer posted at the time

There was a clarification? I thought it’s the just the transcript.

Or did he think the transcript gave him a context? I’ve read it, the points remain that his idea of meritocracy is how much money one can make.

His main point, which is where the money is going to come from, is correct, but he is also forgetting that if people are taxed more, then what politicians earn come even under greater scrutiny.

Certainly, I am happy to pay Scandinavian level taxes if it means free healthcare for the elderly and free education, but not if it goes to enriching politicians.

That said, and it goes back to what I said about the Ben Davis saga, our Government need to be more innovative when it comes to their pay package. Using an indicator based on economy sends a strong signal that nothing else matters, that running a country is only about the economy.

But it’s not.

Shouldn’t a minister in charge of transportation, for example, be pegged against how efficiently our transport systems run?

Shouldn’t a minister of social and family development be pegged with how many families move out of poverty each year?

Shouldn’t a minister of health be pegged to how more people are getting proper healthcare and the overall health of the nation?

If a minister does a good job at his portfolio, based on tangible KPIs on the aspect of society he or she looks after, I’d be happy to even pay them $10m, much less $1m. So maybe it can be flexi-wage, where they get a lower monthly salary but a much higher bonus payout if they perform well for example.

There are so many ways we can attract private sector talent, especially today when so many bright minds join start-ups for very little money in the hope of a big pay-out later.

I agree that we do need to pay our ministers well – but how that pay comes about can be far more creative than the way it is currently structured.

Related posts

What PM, PAP can learn from very rich tech entrepreneur

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

New Hope: Time to make robots PAP ministers?

 

What PM, PAP can learn from very rich tech entrepreneur

In Political governance, Public Administration on 17/09/2018 at 10:13 am

And by so doing make sure that S’pore will remain a de facto one-party state forever and day: though there won’t be mega-rich ministers*.

Mr Von Ahn is CEO of Duolingo, the world’s most popular language learning app, with 200m users. He also has academic credentials that PAPpies can only dream about.

And best of all he’s not a “very mediocre” person (Remember GCT’s comment that those in the private sector earning less than $1m are “very mediocre people”. And that the PAP only chose ministers from the private sector if they were earning $1m or more.): he’s very rich.

So the PAP should listen to what Von Ahn recently told the FT, “If it requires you paying them off to come work for you, I don’t think they’re going to be in it. We prefer missionaries to mercenaries.” Related post: When being a minister turns from a calling into a job for life

Another of his strategy is to differentiate Duolingo from other employers by is focusing on diversity. He now has a 50/50 male female ratio in software engineers. Related post: New Hope: Time to make robots PAP ministers?

On diversity, FT’s Letter from Lex a few weeks ago said

Working with outsiders helps solve problems. When a stranger joins a team its performance tends to improve, according to research by US psychologists who tested out the theory on groups engaged in murder mystery puzzles. But do not expect gratitude. Tight-knit groups often do not realise they are underperforming.

Still, the pain is worth the gain. In business, assertive shareholders can help companies improve their strategies. But the experience tends to be uncomfortable for company bosses.

[…]

Of course, boards do not have to listen to naysayers — only to those with the clout to count. That is frustrating for Arsenal’s small shareholders. Its fans criticised a deal struck between the north London football club’s two largest shareholders, which will hand full control to the US sports magnate Stan Kroenke. Lex said Mr Kroenke’s leveraged bet might pay off if the value of Premiership media rights go up. But the shareholder fans, known as “gooners”, face disappointment. They are likely to be left without any more annual meetings to have their say.

Related post: PM, PAP should remember what world’s richest man said

______________________________

*Er but maybe if ministers can’t be rich they don’t care if the PAP doesn’t rule.

 

Akan datang says minister: Non-grad minister

In Political governance on 13/09/2018 at 11:31 am

Or is Ong Ye Kung talking a good game i.e. talking cock?

This blog doesn’t think much of Ong Ye Kung (Example Our new PM/ Trumpets pls for me).

But here’s something that he said a few weeks ago that should shut up people like the usual cybernuts and people like P(olitician) Ravi quiet for a second.

They are always KPKBing that non-grad cannot make it to the cabinet (let alone to parly if a PAPpy) so waz point of the govt pushing the line that there’s more to life than being a grad? (Btw, don’t they know that there’s more to life than earning millions as cabinet ministers? But then they are true-blue S’poreans well schooled by the PAP: money talks, BS walks. So unlike PJ Thum and Kirsten Han they mean well for S’pore when they criticise the PAP.)

point out that we don’t have a single non-graduate minister today. Can’t the Government more boldly set the tone?

Ong Ye Kung

“We are products of an education system of the past. But today, you look at the education system, we have students who opt for a more applied pathway through the diploma route. So you look at the students now, they’re making their choices very differently from the past. I think when they grow up, if they have interest in politics, what will be the state of ministers in future. It’s hard to say. I think you’ll get a much more diverse group coming from different pathways. I certainly hope so.”

https://www.channelnewsasia.com/news/singapore/ong-ye-kung-education-minister-on-the-record-10651612

Can believe or not?

 

PM, PAP should remember what world’s richest man said

In Political governance, Public Administration on 09/09/2018 at 10:56 am

Given former PM’s comments his comment that those in the private sector earning less than $1m are “very mediocre people”, it’s surprising that the PM and the PAP are ignoring what the world’s richest man said

“Experiments are by their very nature prone to failure. But a few big successes compensate for dozens and dozens of things that didn’t work,” said Mr Jeff Bezos in 2014.

FT

I was reminded of this when I read

Mr Alfred Tan said that the PAP still refuses to acknowledge the policy blunder [about HDB leases]. He said that one of the key basic disciplines in problem solving is admitting that there is a problem. Only when there is an admission of misjudgment can the first step be taken towards a real and meaningful resolution and rectification of the problem.

“Is the PAP government prepared to man up and admit this misstep?” Mr Tan asked.

http://yoursdp.org/…/sdp_calls_out_out_of_t…/2018-09-08-6257

Dr Chee

 

Exposed: Flaws in PM’s HDB spin

In Political governance, Property, Public Administration on 31/08/2018 at 10:56 am

From a TRE reader

In his NDR speech, PM Loong gave an example of his AMK 4-rm residents, trumpeting how their flats can now fetch $400k when they’ve paid only $25k for their units 40 years ago.

Yes, no one will argue about this fact. First owners of HDB flats were able to make a huge profit from their flats purchased decades ago. This is possible only because they bought their flats cheap.

Leong Piah Mann

Yup, it was all about getting in at a great level and riding the Pacific wave.

But now

Govt ‘smartly’ pegged BTO flats to HDB resale price. Resale price is based on the flat’s valuation price. Owners were given high valuation for their units (and you know who valued your HDB and they BS you it’s about demand that your flat cost that much), so resale price kept heading skyward and BTO price follow suit to the delight of the greedy govt.

Entry point is “rigged”. So how to make money?

And what about the sucker buyer?

When PM Loong bragged about how much profit a AMK 4-rm flat first owner can make from selling his flat, PM made himself look so excellent, like a grade A, top notch leader, but he conveniently forgot to mention about the buyer of that resale flat. After paying $400k for an almost 40yrs old flat, how much will the buyer be able to sell his flat for as it continues to age and ending up as govt’s eventually?

Sorry jialat. Liddat why vote PAP so that $$G ministers also can be “Crazy Rich Asians”?


Related posts:

The real truths about public housing  my summary of piece by “Tan Jin Meng, a postgraduate from the Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy. He has an interest in social policy and economics.”.

Why many PAP voters are ready to be flipped

New Hope: Why Dr Tambyah can flip PAP voters

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Leong Piah Mann’s comments in full

A Layman’s View On The Hot HDB Issue

I think people should stop arguing about whether we’re “owners” or “lessees” of HDB flats because the PAP and their lackeys can always defend the govt using all kinds of crooked logics. Fact remains, our HDB flats will belong to the govt after 99 yrs.

In his NDR speech, PM Loong gave an example of his AMK 4-rm residents, trumpeting how their flats can now fetch $400k when they’ve paid only $25k for their units 40 years ago.

Yes, no one will argue about this fact. First owners of HDB flats were able to make a huge profit from their flats purchased decades ago. This is possible only because they bought their flats cheap. This is possible only because our govt 40 yrs ago was genuinely caring. This is possible only because our 1G leaders’ main intention of building public housing was to let citizens have a roof over our heads. The Old Guards weren’t greedy. They didn’t price the HDB flats with the intention to make big profit from citizens or to let citizens make profits from their flats. More importantly, they never buy votes using the HDB flats upgrading or asset enhancement policy as election carrots.

As we can see, the situation now is no longer the same. The present govt has become too greedy that their greed has resulted in our  public housing (amongst others) becoming so costly, in fact too costly!

Govt ‘smartly’ pegged BTO flats to HDB resale price. Resale price is based on the flat’s valuation price. Owners were given high valuation for their units (and you know who valued your HDB and they BS you it’s about demand that your flat cost that much), so resale price kept heading skyward and BTO price follow suit to the delight of the greedy govt.

When PM Loong bragged about how much profit a AMK 4-rm flat first owner can make from selling his flat, PM made himself look so excellent, like a grade A, top notch leader, but he conveniently forgot to mention about the buyer of that resale flat. After paying $400k for an almost 40yrs old flat, how much will the buyer be able to sell his flat for as it continues to age and ending up as govt’s eventually?

Mr Owner is lucky and happy but what about Mr Buyer? If VERS is real, how much will the govt compensate Mr Buyer in 30 yrs’ time? For sure he’s going to make a loss. And what if VERS is just an invincible election carrot? If Mr Buyer is 30 yrs old, by the time he’s 89 yrs old, his $400k would go up in smoke. Why didn’t PM Loong talk about Mr Buyer? Don’t tell me getting paid millions of dollars cannot even foresee such an obvious problem?

I’d definitely applaud the govt if Mr Owner is allowed to sell his flat back to govt at the market value of $400k. Then the govt sells that flat to Mr Buyer at $400k but renew the lease to 99 yrs.

Did the govt not plan to have HIP II? They can even have HIP III and HIP IV to keep the flats in good conditions. Continuous upgrading whenever necessary for our future generations to live in, is this not also being fair to our descendants? If there really is a must to tear down any blocks of flats due to safety reasons, then compensate the residents accordingly with SERS.

Our children and grandchildren are our future generations. Families are getting very small these days. Our children can inherit our old flats and continue to live in them. If our govt genuinely cares and thinks for the people, there’s really no need for all our flats to
go back to the state for the govt to redevelop the land and build new flats.

We first heard that CPF money is not our money. Now we realised our HDB flats will not be our flats eventually. What next?

Apparently the scariest thieves in sg wear white not black. So, Singaporeans beware! Please stop inviting thieves into our house and allow them to freely steal our belongings anymore.

Leong Piah Mann

Smell the smoke? From Indonesia or from the PAP & cybernuts?

In Political governance, Public Administration on 30/08/2018 at 10:34 am

In the last few weeks, the smell of smoke has been getting stronger even though the usually annual haze has yet to show up in the weather stats.

So maybe its juz the PAP throwing smoke and the cybernuts reacting with hot air?

After all I started smelling the smoke when Goh Chok Tong decided to shit and piss on the PAP’s NatDay celebrations with his comment that those in the private sector earning less than $1m are “very mediocre people”. The subsequent uproar had him back pedalling.

Then came PM’s NDR speech on being frugal (Shumething PM left out in NDR speech/ Reason why?) and the plan to kick the HDB lease expiry issue into the long grass via Voluntary Early Redevelopment Scheme (Vers) which will begin circa 2038

Experts interviewed told TODAY that by airing its thoughts on the complex issue early, the Government achieved another objective: To restore some calm in the HDB resale market, and provide reassurance to homeowners.

https://www.todayonline.com/big-read/big-read-hdb-lease-decay-govts-solutions-not-perfect-theres-light-end-tunnel

This goodie was ignored:

Every HDB flat can also expect to undergo major upgrading twice during its 99-year lease period, with the new Home Improvement Programme (HIP) II rolled out for ageing units at the 60- to 70-year mark.

Then came Larry (Lawrence Wong: a PM-in-waiting) with

Mr Wong had also said earlier this week that even though many details for Vers will not be ready for some time, the Government felt that it “owed” Singaporeans an early explanation on its thinking for the next phase of public housing.

Of course the cybenut mob had to react with hot air of their own drowning out the cold doses of reality that sensible criticks of the PAP like Calvin Cheng (When being a minister turns from a calling into a job for life) and Eugene Wee (Best riposte to recent PAP BS) were pouring out to counter the PAP’s smoke.

And then there was “There seems to be a certain sourness on the ground, with more grumbling than usual about issues especially to do with the Government,” a semi-retired ST tua kee observed: “In the many chat groups I belong to, more people seem to be getting worked up.”

“ST Editor panicked over ground sourness urges PAP 4G leaders to do something” screamed Terry’s Online Channel cutting and pasting the ST piece: https://www.theonlinecitizen.com/2018/08/26/st-editor-panicked-over-ground-sourness-urges-pap-4g-leaders-to-do-something/

I’m still thinking if Han Fook Kwang is correct to say the present mood reminds him of the run-up to the 2011

— attributing the public discontent to the “disconnect” between the government leaders and the general public,

— adding “I agree with commentators who have pointed out that overly high ministerial salaries poison the relationship between leaders and the led, reducing it to a transactional one.”

What do you think, is the mood like that in 2011?

 

 

Even PAPPy agrees with Eugene Wee on PAP BS

In Political governance, Public Administration on 26/08/2018 at 11:03 am

But first, a beef I have against the Lord of the Rings films is that Peter Jackson left out a very interesting episode almost at the end of the real LOTR. In the last film, after the defeat of the Dark Lord, the Hobbits returned an unchanged shire. In the real LOTR, they returned to a shire where Saruman had taken control of and ruined in revenge for his defeat, and they had to defeat him recalled as the Scouring of the Shire.

Saruman’s sidekick was one Worm who was badly treated by Saruman. He killed Saruman in the end when Saruman went too far in mistreating him: http://lotr.wikia.com/wiki/Gr%C3%ADma_Wormtongue

Well this post by a PAPpy reminded me of the “Scouring of the Shire” episode and the Worm’s killing of Saruman

Well said! That’s why I said the servants have become self serving. They want the voters to sacrifice for Low wages and Long working hours while they themselves demanded to be well paid.

And “right” sizing not only mean shifting into smaller house to get some retirement fund, but it also means forcing to move out of our home where memories were build upon from childhood.

If we don’t have any emotional attachment to our home we have grow up in, how do they expect us to have any attachment to our homeland?

FB post by PAP fan agreeing with Eugene Wee in Best riposte to recent PAP BS

The really funny thing is that while he’s a fan of the PAP, he claims that he’s no “ultra white” (his term, not mine). He even claims he gets dissed by them.

Best riposte to recent PAP BS

In Political governance, Public Administration on 25/08/2018 at 11:00 am

(Yes, Yes, I know I’m lifting stuff off FB, but the problem is that I’ve been seeing some really great stuff, think Calvin Cheng and now this, that I think I should share.)

One Eugene Wee posted this on FB. From his FB wall, he doesn’t seem to be a frustrated pleb who thinks he deserves to be in the elites i.e. he’s no cybernut like Tan Jee Say or those in TOC or TRE lands. He’s juz one upset S’porean now living in Chiang Mai: lucky guy living in place I might move to when the time is right to check out of Hotel S’pore where I’m living in a three star suite.

Dear Ministers,

When Singaporeans share about their pains of making ends meet or how they are struggling with living costs. The government’s response has consistently been for us to “right-size” or more clearly, downgrade.

The message is simple.

Living in singapore is not cheap, so if you are struggling, reduce your spending, reduce your lifestyle and spend within your means.

Yes frugality is important. But we may not be addressing the underlying issues here.

Singaporeans have worked all their lives; they too have hopes, dreams and ambition. No one wakes up with a dream to downgrade.

For most Singaporeans that I know, they are a hardworking bunch, willing to put in longer hours at work just to bring more to the family table.

They are not asking to buy another Lamborghini, or to stay in orchard road, or have caviar for lunch every day.

They’ve worked long hours in hopes that they can give their kids access to the best education, tutors to help the kids catch up with homework and maybe fund those rare family outings.

Most do not have much, but one thing that they have is a love for the nation. The same love, the same passion, the same commitment flows through our veins, as it did for our forefathers who brought this country to where it is today.

It is in us, that we understand that a minimum wage will affect our global competitiveness; so we have opted for lowered wages to keep the country attractive to investors and keep Singapore at the peak.

We take on these sacrifices, not because we like it, but we know it is for a bigger cause.

If you take the trains at nights, you will see exhausted fathers and mothers, after a hard day’s work, taking a crowded late night train home; often only to reach home after their child is already asleep.

That is the sacrifice we put in, plow in and give on a daily basis; because this is home.

But here is where we see the disconnect.

After we have accepted lower wages, after living with less, after sacrificing time with our families; now when we get old, we are asked to right-size” or even consider going to JB to retire.

It hurts our older folks, because this is home.

And instead of finding solutions, you we ask our forefathers aka the Merdeka generation to leave Singapore, their home.

Now for the rest of us, it gradually becomes apparent that there seems to be a different narrative when it comes to the general population and the top civil servants.

Let me explain.

When it comes to ministerial salaries, we justify that we need to pay Ministers well. The argument changes, it is no longer about frugality, but about meeting lifestyle needs.

Slowly, we see the argument going up another notch, proposing that we ought to be pegging our civil servants salary against the top earners in corporate Singapore.

Suddenly, it’s no longer about lifestyle need, but a lucrative career in politics.

We talk about the need to attract the top talents and the argument is that if we don’t offer more, these top talents will refuse to switch from the corporate world to the Civil service.

Well, I think this may actually be a good thing. It may actually help to sift out the ones who serve the country for public good and not the ones who hop on the bandwagon simply because it pays well.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m all for paying our civil servants well, but in doing so, we are also looking for leaders who are driven by conviction, competence and compassion.

And definitely not leaders who are so accustomed to a high life, so disconnected with the ground that one can – so carelessly – suggest that people who earn less than half a million, are “mediocre”.

It’s good to be reminded that the “mediocre” Singaporeans are the ones who have opted to go without a minimum wage. It’s the “mediocre” that have kept the country attractive to investors. And these “mediocre” Singaporean form 95% of the population that built the foundational blocks of our country.

If “mediocre” meant a generation of Singaporeans who love, bleed and gave sacrificially for the country, maybe its also time the leaders joined us in being “mediocre”, and maybe “right-size” a little.

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

In Political governance, Public Administration on 24/08/2018 at 10:55 am

Have to agree with Calvin (again)

After posting PM talked cock I came across a FB post by Calvin Cheng on the PAP’s BS reasoning on ministerial salaries. As I see it he’s saying that that being a minister has turned turned from a calling into a cushy job for life.

Calvin Cheng
August 16 at 6:43 PM ·

I have argued consistently that the leaders of a country should be well-paid and Singapore gets it right, albeit for different reasons that the Government gives.

However, I think that the debate on Ministerial salaries will never end as long as outdated justifications keep getting trotted out.

Firstly, paying high salaries to prevent corruption may have been a good reason 20 to 30 years ago when we were a developing country. But if after 53 years of nation building and education , and as a developed nation, if our leaders have to be paid well in order for them not to be corrupt, it is bloody tragic. The leaders of other developed countries are paid less than Singapore leaders but are not any less incorruptible.

Secondly, paying high to attract talent from the private sector and/or prevent government talent from leaving is also highly doubtful. There is a Chinese saying 隔行如隔山. A different profession is like a different mountain.

It means that each profession takes time to master, and a superstar highly paid lawyer may not make a superstar government minister. And vice versa – a superstar career technocrat may not succeed in the private sector. In fact, some of the best paid professionals on Shenton Way are traders who make millions of dollars, but I am pretty sure their skills are not transferable to governance. Also, a good trader is paid more than a bad trader, a good lawyer is paid more than a bad lawyer, but that doesn’t mean that the trader is mediocre compared to the lawyer – some professions are just paid more than others.

Which brings me to why I think leaders should be paid well.

I think that Governance is an expertise in itself and I am of the school of thought that technocrats should run a country.

I do not subscribe to the whole ‘servant’ and ‘sacrifice’ rhetoric – these are things leaders all over the world say to be popular. After the end of absolute monarchies as a system of government, who wants to be lorded over by arrogant leaders? So the whole ‘humility’ “I am your servant” rhetoric is served by elected leaders all over.

In truth, I don’t need to be served. I don’t need leaders to make a ‘sacrifice’. Just run the country well – make sure that people have jobs, healthcare, education, good infrastructure and are happy. It is the most important job in the every country and thus should be the most highly paid. But in a democracy, the people reserve the right to sack them every few years, and it should also be the most insecure job. The people must be brave enough to vote a Minister out if he is not doing his job every 5 years.

Finally, what about other developed countries? They seem to be doing well even though their leaders are paid much less.

In other rich, developed countries, elected leaders are either 1) already rich people going for power or 2) career politicians. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t, but in general I think in developed democracies, power is diffused and things work in spite of the government instead of because of it.

I would rather we pay more, make sure we elect the best technocrats to run the country instead of hoping for a benign rich person, or a capable career hack.

But stop saying that it is to prevent corruption, or to attract high-paying professionals from the private sector, or prevent ministers from leaving for the private sector.

The people know it is BS and the more you say it, the more the issue of high ministerial pay will never go away.

Just be upfront: it is the most important job in the country, let’s pay them very well, but every 5 years if they don’t perform well, sack them.

Akan datang: GE in late 2019

In Political governance, Property on 23/08/2018 at 11:07 am
Singapore’s next parliamentary general election must be held by 15 January 2021. According to the Constitution, the Parliament of Singapore’s maximum term is five years from the date of the first sitting of Parliament following a general election, after which it is dissolved by operation of law.

So far the PAP has signaled trice in recent months that an election will be held in late 2019 or early 2020, after the 200th anniversary of Raffles making S’pore British is co-opted by the PAP to propogandise the benefits of PAP rule, (like the 50th anniversary of getting kicked out of M’sia was co-opted in 2015).

First signal: the PAP govt ended the property cycle upswing early. If things had been allowed to run their usual course, we’d have rising property prices in 2019, if not 2020.

With less than a third of collective sale sites sold so far this year and no deal inked since property cooling measures took effect more than a month ago, one property analyst has declared the current cycle of en bloc fever to be over.

More than 30 collective sale sites have failed to secure a buyer since January, according to data from real estate agencies Huttons Asia, Savills and Colliers.

“This cycle has reached its end,” said International Property Advisor’s chief executive Ku Swee Yong.

If that is the case, the current cycle would have lasted about two years – If that is the case, the current cycle would have lasted about two years – beginning with the sale of former Housing and Urban Development Company (HUDC) estate Shunfu Ville – shorter than the three-year run that lasted between 2005 and 2007, he said.

https://www.todayonline.com/singapore/more-30-en-bloc-tenders-closed-without-buyer-year-none-successful-after-july-cooling

Rising property prices in 2019 would have been problematic for early elections.

Second signal: goodies for my generation

Just as Singaporeans born in 1949 or earlier received the Pioneer Generation Package to cope with healthcare and other expenses, baby boomers born in the 1950s will receive help from the Government.

Called the Merdeka Generation Package, it will cover areas such as outpatient subsidies, Medisave account top-ups, MediShield Life premium subsidies and payouts for long-term care, announced Prime Minister Lee Hsien at the National Day Rally on Sunday (Aug 19).

Third signal: kicking problem of expiring HDB leases (Why 30-year old HDB flats difficult to sell/ Why PAP rule will end in 2029) into the long grass while details will be worked out in the next 20 yrs or so (Taz how confident PAP is of ruling S’pore)

With Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong’s speech, the Government has laid out a “visible” programme for Housing and Development Board (HDB) flat owners for the future of their homes, said CIMB economist Song Seng Wun, who added that public housing has been the backbone of Singapore’s wealth creation.

Vers, which Mr Lee said would start about 20 years from now, will see residents of precincts that are about 70 years into their 99-year leases voting on whether they would like the Government to buy back the flats. The Government will compensate them — at terms less generous than the Selective Enbloc Redevelopment Scheme (Sers), which is compulsory — and help them get another flat to live in.

https://www.todayonline.com/singapore/devils-details-flat-owners-should-not-expect-windfall-new-hdb-scheme-analysts

I hope that the Oppo is better prepared this time to handle the PAP’s handouts of goodies. This was written in Sept 2012: Time for Opposition to rethink assumptions, lest it repents after next GE. But the Oppo fought GE 2015 as though it was GE 2006 and 2011 again. The result PAP got 70% of the popular vote. Of course LKY’s death and the 50th anniversary of independence celebrations helped.
One thing is sure, talk cock sing song Lim Tean is sure to make another video. Which reminds me: if he can make videos of himself talking cock, why can’t he produce the video on how to avoid getting sued for defamation he promised for Sept, then Nov 2017 after raising the money for it? Remind Lim Tean, it’s December

Shumething PM left out in NDR speech/ Reason why?

In Political governance on 22/08/2018 at 11:29 am

When blaming S’poreans for KPKBing about the rising cost of living (and ignoring the elephant in the room, the Pay And Pay polices when accessing public services (Minister “keeping a close eye” or “closed eye”?), he could have told S’poreans about how to be thrifty. After all, many yrs ago Lim Hng Kiang told us to use “cheaper brands:  Hng Kiang on inflation

PM’s “omission” crossed my mind when I read yesterday

the Daily Express highlights the thrift of a woman from Bury in Greater Manchester.

Claire Hughes has apparently saved more than fifteen thousand pounds to put a deposit on a house – by trawling the web for discount coupons and cut-price offers.

“Now we’ve got the house,” she tells the paper, “it’s time to save for the wedding.”

BBC

PM coould have and should have advised us plebs to trawl the web for discount coupons and cut-price offers.

But maybe he didn’t want us to be reminded how once upon a time, he and his pa got discounts from Ong Beng Seng for properties they bought? In the end they had to donate the discounts to the govt: http://edition.cnn.com/ASIANOW/asiaweek/96/0510/nat4.html

Related post: PM talked cock

MoE got think like this? Our teachers?

In Political governance, Public Administration on 22/08/2018 at 6:25 am

I came across this interesting Canadian idea.

Let’s start with the wrong answer

Exams have traditionally been used to test the abilities of students, while their results when aggregated are often used by parents and inspectors to judge the quality of schools.

In Canada, with an educational system that rates very highly in international assessments, administrations have adopted a very different approach.

FT

I doubt if our education system does this:

Schools and teachers focus less on celebrating correct answers, and more on interpreting how to respond to the most common incorrect responses. That allows them to understand areas of weakness in understanding, so they can reinforce aspects of the curriculum.

The “PAP is always right” attitude doesn’t allow such an approach. 

And even many 70% KPKBing that our education system doesn’t help kids get creative? Hey it’s the PAP system, stupid.

Related post: More qns for education minister

 

New Hope: How the young can end PAP rule

In Political governance on 09/08/2018 at 6:01 am

In a Turkish short story, titled “R-09 and Pluto”, the Economist reports that “two artificially intelligent robots contemplate the limits of their brains”.

Humans, the bots agree, are afraid of their creation’s potential power, so rules are designed to limit the use of their full intellect and to keep them from questioning authourity. What could happen, one bot suggests, if they broke those rules and freed their minds?

This reminded me of

‘If you work like a robot, you will be replaced by a robot’

Ong Ye Kung, education minister

which in turn reminded me that

Students from Singapore and East Asian countries have consistently come out tops in the Programme for International Student Assessment (Pisa) and Trends in International Math and Science Study (Timss) rankings for decades, and yet companies from these countries barely feature in Forbes’ annual ranking of, say, the Top 25 most innovative companies in the world.

Interestingly, the United States and European countries feature prominently in the latter ranking, but not the former.

https://www.todayonline.com/daily-focus/education/why-spores-education-system-needs-overhaul

For all the fine works about nurturing creative students, real life is different.

I know a S’porean working in Vietnam for a local S’porean MNC. His kids (mum’s Vietnamese) go to a pay and pay ang moh int’l school.

But to make sure his kids have S’porean roots, during ang moh term hols they stay in S’pore and attend local schools.

He says there’s no competition on which system they prefer, and which is better for them.

The PAP

are afraid of their creation’s potential power, so rules are designed to limit the use of their full intellect and to keep them from questioning authority.

Look at our what are students are taught in social studies: Time to walk the talk, SDP

The Hope

S’porean students (from RI, MGS, SGS and St Nick of course) contemplate the limits of their abilities to be creative. The PAP, the students agree, are afraid of the students’ potential power, so rules are designed to limit the use of their full intellect and to keep them from questioning authority. What could happen, one student suggests, if they broke those rules and freed their minds?

On National Day, feel free to let your imaginations run wild.

 

Why even with 4G donkeys, PAP will retain power

In Political governance on 02/08/2018 at 12:39 pm

I have a low opinion of the probable 4G leaders, though to be fair it could be because when I was young we had the likes of LKY, Dr Goh, Toh Chin Chye, Lim Kim San, Barker etc. And we have Tharman today. And I’m also wondering why Lawrence Wong is not a contender to be PM: Lawrence Wong: a PM-in-waiting.

So you can understand why I’m underwhelmed by a shortie who got stroke and Kee Chiu (Why “Kee Chiu” got renamed “Kee Chui”) and Ong (Our new PM/ Trumpets pls for me).

So I had a disturbing laugh when a troller responded to this which has been appearing on FB pages of anti-PAP types, sane and nutty

Mahathir’s ‘underdog’ victory has also inspired four in five (80%) Singaporeans to take a closer look at their own emerging 4G leaders, whilst 70% think that the Malaysian election result will make more Singaporeans consider if they should vote for the ruling party at the next election.

http://www.blackbox.com.sg/youknowledge/2018/07/20/singaporeans-react-to-mahathirs-new-malaysia/

In response, one Adrian Tan trolled

They’ll consider. Then look at Oppo and see Lim Tean, Goh Meng Seng and other clowns. And conclude “Nothing can be worse than these talk cock sing song artistes”. And vote PAP as usual  or ?

He has a point. What do you think?

And don’t forget that for many of us in our 60s (self included), Mad Dog Chee is toxic: Chee reinvented SDP after making it toxic.

And he’ll soon defenestrate the guy that Dr Tan Cheng Bock praises: Akan Datang: Boodbath in the SDP.

So despite PM choosing a donkey to be PM (Makes him look gd by comparison? And gives the excuse for another Li Lee?), how can the PAP lose with enemies like Mad Dog, Lim Tean (No, Lim Tean hasn’t absconded) and Meng Seng?

—————————-

Meng Seng R Amos Yee

Will Roy, Meng Seng and s/o JBJ help Amos now?

What Amos and Meng Seng have in common? Con’td

———————————————————————–

Its scrapping the barrel. Sad.

We really should have more people like the young Mr Chiam, Dr Paul, Dr Ang Yong Guan, Leon Perera: A Lion of a Man and Show Mao (even if he has disappointed as an MP). Even Low, Auntie and her Bayee, and the other parly Wankers are a lot better rather than the clowns at the meeting of the Coalition of the Spastics that are trying hard to get associated with Dr Tan Cheng Bock: Waz the point Mad Dog? Where are the Wankers?

 

Another reason why the PAP rules OK

In Political governance, Public Administration on 28/07/2018 at 11:17 am

Another area where S’pore is tops, because of the PAP govt, is in “state capacity”.

Research from political scientist Lant Pritchett and others has shown that of the world’s 102 “historically developing” states, only eight have managed to develop what he describes as “high capacity” governments. True, three of those — Brunei, Singapore and South Korea — are in Asia. But Pritchett’s bar is actually pretty low: a high capacity government, he suggests, is one with institutions roughly as good as those found in Uruguay.

Worse, it is all too common to see periods of rapid state capacity degradation. Almost no country has managed to follow Singapore and persistently improve its government, decade after decade. Between 1996 and 2012, for instance, Pritchett’s work shows that the quality of Malaysia’s state declined moderately, while the Philippines declined rapidly. Both countries’ performances over the last five years seems likely to have been even worse.

Part of the problem stems from a widespread misunderstanding about what state capacity actually means. At some level a well-functioning government does indeed need basic capabilities, such as the ability to fund and run an army, or to make the railways run on time. But as James Robinson argued at a conference I attended in India in mid-June, it also means a state that has popular legitimacy amongst its people.

States work better when their citizens, and in particular the powerful middle classes, voluntarily pay their taxes and obey laws without the need for expensive enforcement, because they view their government as acting broadly in the common interest. By contrast, government works less well when the elite is seen to be largely serving their self-interests, as was the case with the obvious venality of Malaysia’s ruling party over the last decade.

https://asia.nikkei.com/Opinion/Asian-governments-must-escape-the-state-capacity-trap

What is state capacity?

State capacity has become something of a buzzword amongst policy makers trying to understand how countries develop. It underpins the work of MIT’s Daron Acemoglu and Chicago University’s James Robinson, whose celebrated 2012 book “Why Nations Fail” argued that good institutions support development, rather than other factors like geography or culture. The idea of state capacity has also found widespread favor in bodies like the World Bank, as well as amongst influential thinkers like Arvind Subramanian, India’s chief economic adviser.

No wonder 60-70% vote PAP despite PAP cock-ups like

— MRT system that is not first world

— S’pore like this?

— The real truths about public housing

— Akan Datang: Why CPF Life payments will begin at 85

— MAS gives finger to CSA’s CEO

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

PAP’s kung fu with tax payers’ money cont’d

In Political governance, Public Administration on 18/07/2018 at 10:59 am

In response to SDP’s chairman’s views quoted in PAP’s kung fu with tax payers’ money 

Even though Dr Tambyah says he reiterated that ‘it’s your money that went into this wheelchair’, his patient ‘refused to accept’ it.

“This was a guy I’d been looking after for 10 years. He knew me. We got on with each other very well. But at the same time, he felt indebted to the ruling party politician because she was able to, in his mind, provide him with mobility.”

the retired NUS professor I quoted extensively in  PAP’s cock-ups since the 1980s  and Why the PAP thinks it is infallible argues that the SDP chairman is peeing on the wrong tree

Tambyah expressed himself badly, and may also have the wrong conceptual framework: the guy obviously knows that government spends taxpayer money, but it is other people’s money which the government collected and spent on his behalf; why should the guy not feel appreciative?

it is the government’s job to take money from those who have some to spare, and spend it where it is needed; there is no sin in that, just question of how well it does so; if Tambyah thinks there is something wrong with this, then he has the wrong conceptual framework about government; but I think it is probably a case of laziness: “u r spending our money” is an easy stick to grab; it can sometimes work, e.g., Roy Ngern’s “give back our CPF” did work for a while – nearly launched several new political careers; similarly, PJ Thum’s “government tells lies”, Kirsten’s “SG is repressive, becoming more so” are for the moment still working

Wondering out loud: maybe in treating Mad Dog Chee, Dr Paul got infected? Juz wondering. Juz saying. LOL.

Seriously, I think Dr Paul has yet to be bitten by Mad Dog. He was trying to make the point that the PAP works very hard to personalise govt funding to its advantage, using the example of his patient

(Minister) Grace Fu gave us this wheelchair.’ Then I said, ‘She didn’t give you the wheelchair. This is paid for by your taxes’.

“He said, ‘No, no no, she came to my house with an entourage of people, with her photographers and she gave me the wheelchair’.”

 

 

PAP’s kung fu with tax payers’ money

In Political governance, Public Administration on 17/07/2018 at 11:00 am

PAP knows how to make yr money its money and make you grateful for it spending money on you.

Those were my tots when I read Dr Paul Tambyah:

[t]he PAP’s ability to mobilise state resources in other ways is “very, very difficult to try to go up against”, he says.

“During my first clinic session after the election, a patient of mine who I’ve been treating for many years wheeled himself into the room in his motorised wheelchair and he said, ‘Doc, you guys ran a good campaign. Too bad you all lost.’ I said, ‘Thank you. By the way, where do you live?’ Then he said, ‘We live in Yuhua, but you know, (Minister) Grace Fu gave us this wheelchair.’ Then I said, ‘She didn’t give you the wheelchair. This is paid for by your taxes’.

“He said, ‘No, no no, she came to my house with an entourage of people, with her photographers and she gave me the wheelchair’.”

Even though Dr Tambyah says he reiterated that ‘it’s your money that went into this wheelchair’, his patient ‘refused to accept’ it.

“This was a guy I’d been looking after for 10 years. He knew me. We got on with each other very well. But at the same time, he felt indebted to the ruling party politician because she was able to, in his mind, provide him with mobility.”

Read more at https://www.channelnewsasia.com/news/singapore/paul-tambyah-chairman-singapore-democratic-party-on-the-record-10527550

Related post written in Sept 2012: Time for Opposition to rethink assumptions, lest it repents after next GE

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

In Political governance, Public Administration on 16/07/2018 at 11:19 am

A recent comment on TRE set me thinking

NotMyProblem:
July 8, 2018 at 11:30 am (Quote)
Keep information in the dark reminds me of my schooling days.
When I had a “F” for my examination, I would not dare to show to my parents.
But when I had an “A”, the first thing I would do was flashing my result to the whole family.
Do you think this is similar with PAP’s result?
PAP being such an arrogant govt, do you think it would hide something that was good? Don’t you see the amount of skeletons in the closets which required so many million dollars Ministers to keep them hidden.

Many people vote for the PAP because they are happy, or least contented, with the results as they perceive them of the PAP govt’s policies: PAP has lost “output legitimacy”

But talk to them about whether they trust the PAP govt to tell the truth about anything and their attitude can be summed up by the above quote, in particular

When I had a “F” for my examination, I would not dare to show to my parents.
But when I had an “A”, the first thing I would do was flashing my result to the whole family.
Do you think this is similar with PAP’s result?

The PAP’s “need to know” attitude, trumpeting of successes and stifling of criticism no matter how reasonable, makes even PAP voters wonder about what we are not being told.

Why do you think the PAP until very recently had to resort to sue and sue? (Why PAP (and PMs) sue and sue). They know the trust factor is not high despite 70% voting for the continuance of a one-party state.

The bottom line for the PAP govt especially the 4th generation ministers is that they should

— realise that the PAP is in the stagnation phase (Is PAP in “decline and disintegration”?);

— stop talking cock about Hard Truths and how great is the system Harry created; and

— start fixing the flaws in the system starting with the MRT system: Public tpt: PAP ahead of the curve and flew off the rails? Related: PAP’s cock-ups since the 1980s.

They shouldn’t expect their clownish and nuttyenemies like Lim Tean (Lim Tean: A disgraceful chamber of horrors) and Meng Seng (Silence of Goh Meng Seng) to continue helping them keep the 70% onside.

 

 

 

The PAP way is the American corporate way

In Corporate governance, Political governance, Public Administration on 15/07/2018 at 11:21 am

They both exercise “extreme ownership”: Ownself check ownself.This way really delivers compared to the British way of checks and balances.

At more established US companies, managers often practise “extreme ownership” — which Jocko Willink and Leif Babin, the Seals-turned-management gurus, define as taking charge and holding yourself accountable. They have to. There is no one else to do the job.

When he was not writing books or building the world’s biggest chipmaker, Grove of Intel weighed in on this perpetual corporate governance debate: “The separation of the two jobs goes to the heart of the conception of a corporation. Is a company a sandbox for the CEO, or is the CEO an employee? If he’s an employee, he needs a boss, and that boss is the board. The chairman runs the board. How can the CEO be his own boss?”

That comment has since been quoted in numerous shareholder proposals to install an independent chairman, including at Amazon, Kroger, Target, Goldman Sachs, JPMorgan Chase, ExxonMobil, Wendy’s and AbbVie. They have all been defeated. A report this week by Equilar, the pay and governance consultants, found that 38 of the top 500 US public companies last year had proposals to install an independent chair. All failed.

At seven of the top 10 US companies by market value, there is no independent chair. Most shareholders are content to give the CEO a sandbox if he builds a nice enough castle.

Contrast that with the UK, where independence is deemed essential by the corporate governance code; chairs even feel empowered to pontificate in public on the direction of their companies.

This may play well with corporate governance experts. It does not seem to help performance. The top four companies on the S&P 500 are now worth more than the entire FTSE 100.

FT

Why the PAP thinks it is infallible

In Political economy, Political governance, Public Administration on 13/07/2018 at 11:20 am

In response to PAP’s cock-ups since the 1980s where I wrote:

one is left wondering why the Oppo parties couldn’t and can’t (WP is expected to lose Aljunied in next GE) make a more serious dent in the PAP’s popularity with 60- 70% of the voters? Only Tan Cheng Bock (ex-PAPpy) can.

Is it repression and fear?

Or is the PAP juz lucky what with the quality of Oppo leaders …?

the retired NUS professor who had listed the PAP’s cock-ups since the 80s, I quoted, answered

[T]he leninist government model assumes a network of best talents that are attracted by a good ruling ideology and by distribution of material rewards from national resources controlled by the group – so by definition, opposition parties are left with inferior talent and lack resources to effectively compete; elections are meant to be “exams” in which citizens give the government a “mark” – a low mark leads it to improve itself through genuine effort, not intimidation, bribery, propaganda; you can contrast the situation in neighbouring countries to see that failure to observe these rules eventually leads to breakdown

I think he’s right. Remember our Harry liked to compare the PAP’s system of choosing leaders to the Roman Catholic church’s method of choosing leaders: cardinals elect a pope who in turn appoints the cardinals. And the pope like the church is always right. Sounds like PAP?

He went on to make a more telling observation

I also point out that the various past “blunders” I discussed are already baked into the system, and there is no simple way to reverse them; whoever currently running the country can only take the situation as it exists and work from there onwards

Harry and the rest of the Old Guard, contrary to the belief of many S’poreans, therefore bear responsibility for the problems we now face. It’s not all the fault of their successors, even if they are not as good as the Old Guard

Akan datang here: A six-figure salary is ‘low income’

In Political economy, Political governance on 12/07/2018 at 11:09 am

It’s already happening in parts of the US

A family getting by on $117,400 (£87,970) in one US city can now be considered ‘low income’, according to government figures. How can that be the case?

That workers with six-figure salaries could be considered “poor” is something that might surprise many people.

But taking into account income and housing costs that is the reality for some families – who may be eligible for housing assistance – according to a recent report from the US Department of Housing and Urban Development.

In San Francisco and nearby San Mateo and Marin Counties it said $117,400 for a family of four was “low income”, while $73,300 (£54,900) was “very low income” – the highest figures anywhere in the country.

https://www.bbc.com/news/world-us-canada-44725026

So don’t be surprise if those couples here on a combined low six-figure salary start thinking of themselves as hard done by the PAP administration, despite the low levels (“peanuts”) of income tax and GST.

Remember the Singapore Dream of the 5Cs of condominiums, cars, country clubs, cash and credit cards? How many S’poreans can realistic afford condominiums, cars, country clubs and still have cash? Credit cards are now nothing but bait to get consumers to over spend so that banks can charge them usurious eates

A NUS survey points out

Out of 25 aspects about living in the country, Singaporeans ranked the affordability of cars as being the least satisfied with, followed by the affordability of properties, cost of living, ratio of locals to foreigners, and affordability of healthcare.

“Increasingly (over the years), they are upset about the affordability of cars and properties, so you can surmise from there that they are concerned with the issue,” said Tan.

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

Related posts

S’poreans unhappy enough to make mad Dog PM?

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

 

PAP’s cock-ups since the 1980s

In Political economy, Political governance, Public Administration on 11/07/2018 at 9:53 am

In Is PAP in “decline and disintegration”? I wrote that PAP was in stagnation phase that began in 1990

A regular reader, a retired NUS professor lists the things the PAP got wrong since the 1984.

[S]everal major PAP blunders started in 1984 during the election campaign of that year

1. elected president: LKY had already reached 60 by that year, and this was then the public sector retirement age; so he had to face the question whether he was stepping down; the thinking at the time was to move to the presidency – under the then constitution, parliament would decide; he being who he is, the position would not be merely ceremonial, but it must be his legal background that made him uncomfortable, and a decision was made to enhance the position; the resulting controversy led to his undertaking not to be the first elected president, Goh Chok Tong’s decision to invent the post of Senior Minister to keep LKY in the cabinet, the elected president Ong Teng Chong’s conflict with cabinet, regular embarrassment about a 3-men committee rejecting candidates causing a no contest, etc

LKY could have just retired in 1990, started a newspaper column (modern idea would be blog), a charity/research foundation, a senate, and he would have remained the most influential person in the country, taking into consideration his son and his 2nd cousin were both in cabinet; it was quite unnecessary for him to feel insecure about his own place in singapore society even if he held no elected office; if he had been a blogger posting articles daily, every important person in singapore, the cabinet ministers especially, would have eagerly read them as soon as they were posted

2. HDB asset enhancement: during the campaign LKY got annoyed by opposition claiming “your HDB apartmen[t] is on 99-year lease; you dont really own it”, and announced “HDB will stop building in opposition districts”; at the time I actually did not understand why that should cause anyone to worry; but the Northeast MRT line provided part of the explanation – no population increase, no new infrastructure; the Mathias Yao–Chee Soon Juan Straits Times Forum series of letters provided some more – poor infrastructure, lower HDB value; with HDB apartments traded on the open market (previous owners are allowed to go back and buy a new apartment from HDB after 5 years).. Soon Permanent Residents, who are not entitled to buy from HDB, buying on the open market caused the HDB asset values to rise beyond affordability

3. CPF: with people living longer, the idea of delaying CPF money return was raised in 1984 and initial reaction was negative; again LKY was annoyed; soon the idea of minimum sum was adopted, later compulsory annuity, which would have been workable if most people can still get a substantial part out in cash at 55; with the weak salary increases in the past decade or so (partly because of foreign labour, e.g., IT used to have highest paid new graduates, before the industry bought in PRCs and Indians) and low interest rate, more and more people found themselves not meeting the minimum sum requirement, and every increase in minimum sum value makes more people angry

2011

[M]uch of PAP’s recent electoral adversity was self inflicted; the major examples I recall

1. James Gomez case 2006: LKY, Wong Kan Seng and George Yeo spent far too much time talking about a minor issue (LHL and GCT both kept quiet – they could afford to); the Aljunied voters punished George Yeo, and WP identified the electorate as vulnerable, put effort into the ground work and won it decisively in 2011

2. Tin Pei Lin case 2011: it was sound strategy to find some younger, especially female, faces, but the party should have made the effort to find someone with a track record as a political operator in her own right, not just a polished presenter with management consultancy experience recommended by a personal connection; I also believe if they introduced her at the end, after people have grown bored with all those familiar CVs of civil servants, generals, professionals, executives, etc, she might have enjoyed a better reception, so they botched the presentation in addition to selection

3. Joo Chiat case 2011: it was also sound strategy to replace old by young, but Charles Chong is older than Chen Soo Sen so the change could not be justified on that ground; Chen also enjoyed certain personal support which did not readily transfer via party loyalty; Workers Party ended with nearly 50%

4. Hougang case 2012: Teo Chee Hean dwelt far too long on Yaw Shin Leong’s personal and business failings, which Yaw’s former supporters preferred not to be reminded of, whereas upbeat talks about the wonderful things PAP would do for Hougang if elected, might have more fully exploited the unexpected opportunity; after the Hougang moralizing, the Palmer case was a particularly hard blow – PAP candidates are like anyone else

[W]hether the party would learn from these mistakes, and whether it would make new ones in 2016, is of course to be seen; given the resources available; it certainly has the potential of doing much better

Looking at the above, one is left wondering why the Oppo parties couldn’t and can’t (WP is expected to lose Aljunied in next GE) make a more serious dent in the PAP’s popularity with 60- 70% of the voters? Only Tan Cheng Bock (ex-PAPpy) can.

Is it repression and fear?

Or is the PAP juz lucky what with the quality of Oppo leaders: clowns like Lim Tean (Lim Tean: A disgraceful chamber of horrors), Goh Meng Seng (Silence of Goh Meng Seng) and Pritam Singh (WP distributing unsafe food (pass expiry date) and getting financial advice of cybernut resulting in having to take down misleading video after Lawrence Wong kicked Bayee’s ass)?

Email yr answers pls.

 

Is PAP in “decline and disintegration”?

In Economy, Malaysia, Political governance, Public Administration on 09/07/2018 at 2:08 pm

Seems that Abdullah Badawi had told an adviser after the premier was compelled to step down following the 2008 general election in which the UMNO-led BN’s margins of victory were badly dented:

In the nature of evolution, the former prime minister said, there were four phases in the rise and fall of states and entities: kesedaran (awareness), kebangkitan (emergence), kegemilangan (greatness) and kehancuran (decline and disintegration). When asked what phase he saw UMNO to be in then, Abdullah told the adviser: the last one  ̶  of decline and disintegration. It would take another decade, or two more general elections coinciding with the premiership of his successor, Najib Razak, before this prognosis proved to be an indisputable fact.

http://www.rsis.edu.sg/wp-content/uploads/2018/07/CO18112.pdf?utm_source=getresponse&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=rsis_publications&utm_content=RSIS+Commentary+112%2F2018+UMNO+Post-Power%3A+What+Now+in+a+Changing+Landscape%3F+by+Yang+Razali+Kassim+

I’m sure the anti-PAP cybernuts will say that the PAP is in the “decline and disintegration” phase, but they have been saying this since cyberspace became polluted by their presence in the mid noughties. And they were saying it post 1959 when they lived in the gutters, drains and toilets of brothels.

Me? I think that Badawi is wrong about four phases: There’s a “stagnation” phase between “greatness” and “decline and disintegration”.

Harry was pretty shrewd to pass the baton to his son and GCT in 1990. By then, the PAP had entered the “stagnation” phase what with Harry getting progressively getting rid of his Old Guard in the name of leadership renewal.

Think of the flawed policies of the teams led by GCT and Harry’s son, and then Harry’s son alone: “asset enhancement”, “FTs by the cattle truck load”, the failures in the public transport system and the many restructuring plans (Economic restructuring: This time, it’s really different). I mean why the need for so many since the 1980s? LHL must have drawn up a really bad plan in the 1980s for there to be a need of so many followup plans?

And he’s now PM, what? Meritocracy? What Meritocracy?

Meritocracy? What meritocracy?

Why PAP doesn’t do accountability, meritocracy

We are still in that phase. As for M’sia, it entered that phase with the arrest of Anwar and continued until the day after the 2008 general election. But of course, Badawi wouldn’t admit that he presided over the stagnation that would lead to decline.

The PAP will enter the “decline and disintegration” phase when like the BN it cocks up so badly that it loses its two-thirds parly majority (BN lost this in 2008). Until then dream on cybernuts. Or should it be wank on, what?

After all, in the coming GE. WP is expected to lose Aljunied GRC: How to ensure no GST rise. It’ll then only have fortress Hougang. As for the SDP, so long as S’poreans don’t want to get rabies, it’ll be unelectable. The later Mad Dog Chee realises this, the happier the PAP will be.

Why no NIMBYism here

In Infrastructure, Political economy, Political governance, Public Administration on 08/07/2018 at 10:18 am

NIMBYism is a problem in developed countries bar S’pore.

A really bad example of “Not In My Backyard” is Heathrow’s expansion. They’ve been talking about it since the 70s (I first used that airport in 1976). UK’s parliament has finally decided to let Heathrow build a third runaway.The majority of 296 for third runway is welcomed by business and deplored by locals: court challenges are expected.

Here’s someone complaining to the FT about the decision

What utter tripe. Of course the most important question is whether the runway is “needed”, and for this Country, in this Century; the answer is no. There is little to be gained environmentally or financially for the Citizens of the UK. BAA – yes. Transit passengers- yes. BA- yes. Travel operators- yes. But for tax payers, Children who breathe the air, and UK PLC as a whole, who will suffer ever poorer traffic delays and travel costs. Nope. It’s a scam. Like The Privatised Utilities, and the whole Brexit fiasco. Heathrow expansion is a bl33dy scam.

NIMBYism is kept in check in S’pore not because 70% of S’poreans are constructive and nation building, putting the needs of S’pore (as defined by the PAP) before self, but because S’pore is a one-party authoritarian state.

 

Why Tun M, Anwar, PAP won’t, can’t reform the status quo

In Political governance, Public Administration on 28/06/2018 at 10:36 am

Reformasi is in the air on both sides of the causeway, with even PAP ministers talking of the need to change.

I’m the first to admit that because I’ve had an active interest in M’sia since the 80s, I’m skeptical that A New Hope will be followed by the Return of the Jedi. It’ll be followed by The Empire Strikes Back (though that doesn’t imply the return of BN or UMNO).

As for the PAP, pigs will fly first before the PAP reforms S’pore.

Whatever,

[Alan Blinder, Fed Vice-Chairman when Greenspan was Chairman] draws various lessons[for reforms based on his experiences in helping get Reagan’s 1980s tax reform package passed]. First, start with strong but broad presidential leadership. Second, leave technocrats to design a policy combining effectiveness and simplicity. Third, find some wily political operators with tactical nous to sell it. Fourth, come up with an eye-catching symbol that defines the package (in this case, a massive reduction in the top rate from 50 per cent to 28 per cent). Fifth, allow a degree of backroom bargaining while the deal is constructed. And sixth, make sure the package is agreed as a whole, rather than picked apart by special interests.

Advice and Dissent, by Alan Blinder

Think Tun will do this? I have my doubts. For one, he wants to ensure the continuance of Malay dominance.

And it’s not only Tun who wants to ensure cont’d Malay dominance.

Anwar has assured Malays and other Bumiputras that their rights under the new government would not be sidelined, while stressing to all not to be taken with the false propaganda about the Democratic Alliance Party, which is also part of PH. Like Tun and the DAP, he needs the kilang and cina coolies to clean up the manure created by Tun, himself and Najib.

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

As for the PAP, so long as they worship Harry,  Hard Truths will prevail. Sad. Because Harry between the 1950s and the end of the 1980s had no Hard Truths to guide him. He did what he did to get power, then retain power and in the process help bring material prosperity to S’poreans and S’pore. He changed course several times: from socialist to fascist lite, from democrat to authoritarian, from multiracism to “English and Mandarin tua kee”.

He only tot up Hard Truths when he became goal keeper to keep himself busy because as goal keeper he had little to do other than manage the team. He was the first of the player managers. Sad.

What kind of voter are u?

In Political governance on 25/06/2018 at 10:53 am

Remember this?

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

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

reminded me that the day after last GE I wrote

Which type of voter were you on 9/11?

1. Comfortable Nostalgia: “They tend to be older, more traditional voters who dislike the social and cultural changes they see as altering [country] for the worse.”

2. Optimistic Contentment: “Confident, comfortable & usually on higher incomes they are prudent & tolerant but think [country] is a soft touch.”

3. Calm Persistence: “Often coping rather than comfortable, they hope rather than expect things to get better.”

4. Hard-pressed Anxiety: “Pessimistic & insecure, these people want more help from government and resent competition for that help particularly from new-comers.”

5. Long-term Despair: “Many are serial strugglers; angry & alienated they feel little or no stake in the country or that anyone stands up for them.”

6. Cosmopolitan Critics: “Generally younger, more secular and urban-based, worried about growing inequality & the general direction the country is going in.”

Go to https://atans1.wordpress.com/2014/03/28/which-voter-are-you/  to see how I tot those who vote for the PAP, or Oppo can be categorised.

Btw, I now think that TOC’s editors, team and readers are now in the same categories as the majority of TRE posters.

I think based on the postings on TRE,  the majority of TRE posters would seem fall into the “Hard-pressed Anxiety” and “Long-term Despair” (i.e. the losers) even though TeamTRE belongs in the “Calm Persistence” and “Hard-pressed Anxiety”  categories: the only people who would spend time and money on doing what they believe is right, even if the losers are freeloading on their efforts.

TOC’s editors, team and natural readers would fall into the ”Calm Persistence”, “Hard-pressed Anxiety” and ”Cosmopolitan Critics” groups.

Sad. Seems like Terry (Once ”Calm Persistence” now “Hard-pressed Anxiety” or “Long-term Despair”?) has given up trying to persuade those who voted for PAP in GE 2011 and Dr Tan Cheng Bock in PE2011 that they should think about alternatives to the PAP.

 

 

Coming? Cyber law forbidding “anti-state purposes”?

In Political governance, Public Administration on 24/06/2018 at 11:28 am

(Or “Who said “Law should not protect the weakling but make the strong even stronger”)

A law has just been passed in Vietnam which

bans internet users in Vietnam from organising people for “anti-state purposes” and contains sweeping language under which users would not be allowed to “distort history” or “negate the nation’s revolutionary achievements”

FT

Such a law can be used lock up one PJ Thum (What Oxford really says about PJ Thum and Project Southeast Asia) and his side kick one Sonny Liew (Coldstore: Why Harry’s narrative or the highway).

While our Minister for Pets and Police could have said this based on what he has said about the authorities needing more powers

Law should not protect the weakling but make the strong even stronger.

he didn’t.

This was said by Hans Frank’s Hiltler’s personal lawyer immortal words (cf. Konrad Heiden,’The Fuehrer’, p. 567).

Why “S’pore is not a repressive country”

In Political governance on 22/06/2018 at 10:53 am

When an anti-PAP warrior living in an HDB flat posted this on FB

“In a recent interview with renowned CNN anchorwoman, Christine Amanpour, Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong as categorically stated that Singapore is not a repressive country because in the last election, every seat was contested.

I find this reasoning rather one dimensional as whether or not an election is contested is not the complete picture. This is especially the case in Singapore whereby the opposition do face certain challenges before they even get to the contest.”

TOC

One Adrian Tan posted:

Got a lot of anti-PAP types living in “subsidised”, “affordable” public housing. If S’pore as bad as what TOC claims, why PAP govt no kick them out? 🤣😜

To which I’ll add some of the names of some of these warriors: M Ravi, Terry of TOC and Teo Soh Lung.

If they get kicked out of the HDB flats they are in living in, I’ll admit that S’pore is a repressive country. Until then, I’ll hold the view that S’pore is an authoritarian one-party state that 60-70% of voters every five yrs or so willingly agree to put up with for another five yrs.

S’pore: An illiberal democracy?

Goh Meng Seng (Silence of Goh Meng Seng) even claims that to part finance the fight against the PAP, he sold his HDB flat in 2010 or 2011 when he was NSP’s Sec-Gen. But it’s alleged that he never paid any monies into the NSP’s bank account.

 

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

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

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

where I reported this survey which says

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

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

there’s

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

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

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

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

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

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

 

 

 

Our London ambassador on why Reformasi here is for the deluded

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

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

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

Politics in Singapore

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

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

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

FOO CHI HSIA
High commissioner for Singapore
London

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

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

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

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

 

S’poreans unhappy enough to make Mad Dog PM?

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

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

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

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

Now after Tun’s comments to the FT that

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

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

there’s this survey which says

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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


Countering SDP’s views on Eldershield

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

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

An outright LIE.

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

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

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

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

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

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

 

The real reason why Reformasi won’t happen here

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

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

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

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

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

He then later went on

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

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

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

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

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

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

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Why Reformasi won’t happen here

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

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

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

Terry’s Online Service reported on FB yesterday that

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

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

And

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

TOC’s numbers were in response to

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

Terry retorted

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

And cited the numbers given above and repeated below

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

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

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

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

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

Waz this call for a leader like Tun M here?

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

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

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

Tun broke one pledge,

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

Malay Mail

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

And is all over the place on another pledge

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

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

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

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

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

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


How not to handle fake news

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

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

—————————————————–

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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


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

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

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

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

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

Sorry back to the BBC analysis.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

 

Najib shows power that Lee Jnr can command as PM

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

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

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

As either FT or Economist said about Najib:

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

Accusations against Najib

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Sigh.

 

GST rise: Anti-PAP activists should take note

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Let others succeed where they failed.

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

 

Healthcare: user fees drives up costs

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

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

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

It would argue

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

Economist

———————-

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

—————————————————–

Well its bible now says that it’s not a

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

Worse

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

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

Re the issue that user fees

are also “cannonballs of inefficiency”

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

Anti-PAP Malay that ungrateful meh?

In Political governance on 05/05/2018 at 10:48 am

High Court recently threw out SDP assistant treasurer’s bid for Marsiling-Yew Tee by-election. Hali was the MP there before Why PAP thinks we need a Malay president?

One Faizal Maidin posted on FB 

Marsiling has one of the highest Malay Muslims population in Singapore but yet we have no Malay/Muslim MP to represent us. ZzZzZ This is unfair to us. We have voted for 4 MPs and not 3 ok.

He should go on his knees and thank the PAP for making a Malay a president when the voters want Dr Tan Cheng Bock to be our presient. But to be fair, maybe he thinks “Malay presidency” is “Calling a deer a horse”?

Related posts

— Good crowd at #notmypresident protest

— #hardlymahpresident

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

In Internet, Media, Political governance on 29/04/2018 at 11:46 am

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.

Our new PM/ Trumpets pls for me

In Political governance on 27/04/2018 at 11:05 am

Whoever he turns out to be, it will “Continuity with change.” the slogan of the fictional President Selina Meyer in the television satire Veep.

That was actually stolen from the secret slogan of Goh Chok Tong’s and Jnr Lee’s (still continuing) tenures.

Btw, trumpets pls for me. Nice to see that academic and anti-PAP nuts have finally realised that Ong Ye Kung is not PM material https://www.theonlinecitizen.com/2018/04/26/ntu-prof-next-pm-between-chan-and-heng-ong-is-out/. But only after PM said so.

Lest anyone forgets, I wrote in late March

I never was impressed by Ong Ye Kung (See Ong Ye Kung: A study in failure) and nothing since he became minister and a contender to be PM has changed my mind.

I went on to say

I doubt he’s as good as Prof Tommy Koh makes him out to be: “I have the highest respect for Minister Ong and regard him as credible and the leading candidate to be our next prime minister.”

He was the CEO of the Workforce Development Agency and labour productivity never did improve. His NTUC and SMRT failings I’ve listed in Ong Ye Kung: A study in failure.

Granted he has good communication skills, but so did JBJ, M Ravi and this serial promise breaker: Where’s yr defamation video and jobs rally Lim Tean?.

Ong Ye Kung: “Is he the 4G leader with the killer instinct?”

Chris K, when u next meet the people who claim they are in the know, pls ask them why did they get Ong’s prospects so wrong? Are they really in the know or only pretend they are in the know.

As I used to advise people overseas: the real decision makers here don’t talk a lot to their inner circles, even in private.

OK, OK I was wrong to think that Bayee would not become the Sec-Gen of the Wankers’ Party. I underestimated Bayee’s stupidity and Low’s inner SunTzu and despair at WP’s prospects at the GE. More on this next week.

 

“One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest” & the PAP

In Political governance, Public Administration on 17/04/2018 at 10:56 am

Milos Forman, the director of “One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest”, died recently died. It was only the second film in history to win Oscars for best picture, director, actor, actress and screenplay.

The film starred Back Nicholson as a man battling the system in a psychiatric establishment and was based on Ken Kesey’s novel.

Milos Forman said:

“To me it was not just literature but real life, the life I lived in Czechoslovakia from my birth in 1932 until 1968,” …

“The Communist Party was my Nurse Ratched, telling me what I could and could not do.”

http://www.bbc.com/news/entertainment-arts-43767278

Here’s an extract from the book on which it was based.  The speaker is Nurse Ratched, the lady really running the equivalent of our Mental Health Institute:

“Please understand: We do not impose certain rules and restrictions on you without a great deal of thought about their therapeutic value. A good many of you are in here because you could not adjust to the rules of society in the Outside World, because you refused to face up to them, because you tried to circumvent them and avoid them. At some time—perhaps in your childhood—you may have been allowed to get away with flouting the rules of society. When you broke a rule you knew it. You wanted to be dealt with, needed it, but the punishment did not come. That foolish lenience on the part of your parents may have been the germ that grew into your present illness. I tell you this hoping you will understand that it is entirely for your own good that we enforce discipline and order.”

She let her head twist around the room. Regret for the job she has to do was worked into her face. It was quiet except for that high fevered, delirious ringing in my head.

“It’s difficult to enforce discipline in these surroundings. You must be able to see that. What can we do to you? You can’t be arrested. You can’t be put on bread and water. You must see that the staff has a problem; what can we do?”

… The face moved with a ticking noise till the features achieved a different look. She finally answered her own question.

“We must take away a privilege. And after careful consideration of the circumstances of this rebellion, we’ve decided that there would be a certain justice in taking away the privilege of the tub room that you men have been using for your card games during the day. Does this seem unfair?”

Doesn’t what she say sound familiar if you

— lived in Potong Pasir when the Chiams ruled the place; or

— are living in Aljunied or Hougang

and have to wait forever and a day for yr HDB upgrading?

Or if you are a singleton below age 35, ineligible to get a BTO flat?

Or are a singleton age 35, eligible to only get a two room BTO flat in a non-mature estate?

 

 

MPs: Ours compared to Taiwanese/ No real change in Wankers’ Party?

In Political governance on 13/04/2018 at 11:01 am

The Taiwanese parliament has a really bad reputation here because our constructive, nation-building media are forever highlighting the rows, fights that goes on there. To be fair to our media and their masters, the Taiwanese parliament is world class in its level of rowdiness and the willingness of its members to use their fists.

So when TRE used CNA report shows public tpt Hard Truths are BS there was this interesting response

Taiwan MP vs SG MP:

Inside parliament, they fight against each other.
Outside parliament, they fight for their people.

SG MPs:
Inside parliament, they fight for each other.
Outside parliament, they fight against their people.

It got this response
 MarBowling:

Nowadays, we hardly find MPs like Dr Tan CB and Dr Lily Neo who have concern and heart for the common folks. MPs like Cheng Li Hui and the rest of the PAPigs are more concern for the pockets and perks than the welfare of the common folks. So voters of Tampines GRC should do the Needful in the next GE:show your middle finger to filthy rich MP Cheng Li Hui who CLEARLY shows that she cares more for the coffers of transport operators than the pockets of the common folks commuters!

Juz wondering, why both writers make no mention the WP MPs? Because they are MPs from the Worthless Wankers’ Party?
Couldn’t help but think that Bayee was saying “We remain the Worthless Wankers’ Party” when I read
Workers’ Party (WP) new chief Pritam Singh said on Sunday (Apr 8) the opposition party will build on the work of his predecessor, Mr Low Thia Khiang, and continue to be “rational, responsible and respectable”, as it seeks to work with all Singaporeans to “take on the form and the shape of a loyal Opposition”.

https://www.todayonline.com/singapore/pritam-singh-takes-over-low-thia-khiang-new-wp-secretary-general

Btw, Secret Squirrel and Morroco Mole tell me that MP Cheng Li Hui has never ever used public transport. In her school and uni days, she had a chaffeur-driven German luxury car to ferry her around.

S’pore: An illiberal democracy?

In Political governance on 10/04/2018 at 11:31 am

I’ve said repeatedly that S’pore is not a democracy but a one-party state like China (Keeping power in a one-party state) albeit a de-facto one where the voters every few yrs approve in overwhelming numbers in a de-facto referendum (never less than 60% of the popular vote) its continuance.

But could it be a democracy albeit an illiberal one?

Yascha Mounk who teaches at Harvard

argues that there are two sides to liberal democracy. One focuses on the first half of the equation: protecting individuals from the tyranny of the majority through checks and balances and enumerated rights. The second focuses on the other half: handing power to the people. For most of the post-war period these two versions of liberal democracy went together like apple and pie.

Today, though, the popular will is increasingly coming into conflict with individual rights. Liberal elites are willing to exclude the people from important decisions, most notably about immigration in the case of the European Union, in the name of “rights”; meanwhile populists are willing to dispense with constitutional niceties in the name of “the people”. Politics is defined by a growing battle between illiberal democracy, or democracy without rights, on the one hand, and undemocratic liberalism, or rights without democracy, on the other.

https://www.economist.com/news/books-and-arts/21738862-yascha-mounks-diagnosis-more-convincing-his-cure-how-liberal-democracy-fell-apart

But somehow I don’t see S’pore as an illiberal democracy because the PAP doesn’t believe in giving power to the people i.e. the masses.

Three quotes from LKY make my point about their contempt for the views of the masses

“I have never been overconcerned or obsessed with opinion polls or popularity polls. I think a leader who is, is a weak leader. If you are concerned with whether your rating will go up or down, then you are not a leader. You are just catching the wind … you will go where the wind is blowing. And that’s not what I am in this for.”

“Between being loved and being feared, I have always believed Machiavelli was right. If nobody is afraid of me, I’m meaningless.”

“You take a poll of any people. What is it they want? The right to write an editorial as you like? They want homes, medicine, jobs, schools.”

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2015/mar/23/lee-kuan-yew-the-best-quotes-from-singapores-founding-father

F9: Education Minister Ng Chee Meng

In Political governance, Public Administration, Uncategorized on 05/04/2018 at 10:47 am

Ong Ye Kung minister of Education (Higher Education and Skills) talks the talk reflecting the latest ang moh thinking, example

Singapore’s education system should, as far as possible, reflect the real world that our children are going to grow up and live in. That is why the Government is making changes to take the emphasis away from just academic grades, said … Ong Ye Kung.

But the other education minister (Ng Chee Meng is responsible for schools) doesn’t seem to have a clue about the latest trends in education.

From the PAP’s bible (PAP’s bible challenges “market-based solution”):

EVERY year in Singapore 1% of pupils in the third year of primary school bring home an envelope headed “On government service”. Inside is an invitation to the city-state’s Gifted Education Programme. To receive the overture, pupils must ace tests in maths, English and “general ability”. If their parents accept the offer, the children are taught using a special curriculum.

Singapore’s approach is emblematic of the traditional form of “gifted” education, one that uses intelligence tests with strict thresholds to identify children with seemingly innate ability. Yet in many countries it is being overhauled in two main ways. The first is that educationists are using a broader range of methods to identify highly intelligent children, especially those from poor households. The second is an increasing focus on fostering the attitudes and personality traits found in successful people in an array of disciplines—including those who did not ace intelligence tests.

New research lies behind these shifts … The research also suggests that the nature-or-nurture debate is a false dichotomy. Intelligence is highly heritable and perhaps the best predictor of success. But it is far from the only characteristic that matters for future eminence.

https://www.economist.com/news/international/21739144-new-research-suggests-new-ways-nurture-gifted-children-how-and-why-search-young

It’s impt to kick Ng’s ass because according to the Economist”new research”

shows that countries which do not get the most from their best and brightest face big economic costs.

Ong should show that he can be PM by telling off Ng for sticking to outdated practices and theories (like PSLE). He should remember that Harry became PM by showing S’poreans that Lim Chin Siong was “wrong”.

Coldstore: Why Harry’s narrative or the highway

In Political governance on 03/04/2018 at 10:44 am

(Or “Why Harry’s Coldstore narrative must be the truth”)

The roughing up of someone who dares to publicly talk about a Coldstore narrative that is different from that of one Harry Lee has cyberspace talking cock and upset*.

Amidst the noise and fury, one important issue in both what constitutes “fake news”, generally,and, in particular, in the ongoing dialogue of the deaf about different Coldstore narratives has been forgotten.

The son of one of the Coldstore detainees recently said:

For some of the matters around national security, race, religion, economic and financial issues, public health issues, by definition that source of truth must be government-backed or state-backed. The most egregious issues, the issues with significant impact, significant impact on our social fabric, on our national security, on our public health, the issues of peace, stability, the facts behind those, if you’re going to have a source of truth, it needs to be state-backed.

Dr. Janil Puthucheary, a Jnr Minister, at the Select Committee hearings on Deliberate Online Falsehoods, 23 March 2018

As S’pore is a de facto one-party state (because the voters regularly agree to it), Harry’s version of ColdStore (Bunch of commie subversives who had to be locked up because they wanted to make S’pore Great for Communism) is the official version. 

And because it is “government-backed or state-backed” it must be the truth going by what the jnr minister said. (And don’t forget that the greatest of the Hard Truths is that “Harry is always right. Harry is never wrong”.)

Related post: Were the Coldstore detainees communists, progressives or leftists?

Coming back to the jnr minister’s comments, looks like he agrees with what a M’sian minister said is “fake news”:

“Any information related to 1Malaysia Development Bhd (1MDB) that has not been verified by the Government is considered fake news.

Datuk Jailani Johari (pic), the Deputy Communications and Multimedia Minister, explained that fake news is information that is confirmed to be untrue, especially by the authorities or parties related to the news.”

What “fake” news will be allowed

What else does the jnr minister says about “fake news”? Fake news traffickers will be hanged.

But does the jnr minister disagree with the allegations made against his Pa and uncle who were Coldstore detainees, thereby contradicting the official narrative of “Bunch of commie subversives who had to be locked up because they wanted to make S’pore Great for Communism”?


*The grand inquisitor explains why he did what he did

I have been asked why I spent some time asking PJ Thum questions.

PJ’s main point, in his written submission to the Select Committee, was that Mr Lee Kuan Yew was the biggest creator of fake news in Singapore, a liar, and Operation Coldstore was based on falsehoods.

These are serious allegations made in Parliament about our founding PM.

Either they have to be accepted, or shown to be untrue. Keeping quiet about them was not an option.

Thus I told PJ I will ask him questions, on what he had said.

PJ refused to answer many of the questions directly – if a person believes in what he says, and has gone through the documents carefully, then what is the difficulty in answering questions?

It took 5 hours plus to go through the documents and records carefully.

In the end, PJ said that he had not read some of the material published by ex-Communists on what happened in Singapore; that he disregarded the statements made by Chin Peng, the CPM leader; that the way he set out the most important documents (of December 1962) was not accurate; the key meetings of Barisan Socialis showed that they were prepared to use armed struggle to overthrow a Government of Singapore, if necessary; and the British had a honest view, in December 1962, that security action (which was Operation Coldstore), was necessary.

People know me – I am direct, I deal with the facts, and say it as I think it is.

I can see that Sonny Liew is not happy with what happened with PJ. It is quite understandable. Based on what he says, he and PJ are quite close; they work together in a venture. His award winning cartoon, The Art of Charlie Chan Hock Chye, is also based on PJ’s version of history.

I have not met Sonny, but I have to say he is a good cartoonist. He is a talent.

K Shanmugam Sc‘s post

Btw, I agree with the points he makes about Sonny Liew being a good cartoonist and about why he asked the questions he asked. He had every right to beat up PJ Thum. I make no comment on

PJ refused to answer many of the questions directly – if a person believes in what he says, and has gone through the documents carefully, then what is the difficulty in answering questions?

Btw, seems PJ gave as good as he got, so his whining seems strange. But that’s grist for yet another post soon.

PAP proves point made by Buffett

In Political governance on 01/04/2018 at 6:06 am

Warren Buffett said that if you put good managers into a bad business, the business will win. His message was that investors should back good businesses that control their markets and can be run by idiots, because one day the idiots will be in charge.

FT columnist

Re “investors should back good businesses … and can be run by idiots, because one day the idiots will be in charge” applies now to S’pore today and the foreeeable future because it seems the idiots are in charge.

Think of the fiascos around SMRT, GST, and economic strategies that don’t work (Economic restructuring: This time, it’s really different)

Don’t believe me? Why do we keep getting mediocre ministers?

Ong Ye Kung: “Is he the 4G leader with the killer instinct?”

In Political governance on 28/03/2018 at 11:02 am

I never was impressed by Ong Ye Kung (See Ong Ye Kung: A study in failure) and nothing since he became minister and a contender to be PM has changed my mind.

But a TRE reader who wrote a gd piece about the People’s Choice to be PM (See Look who wants Tharman for PM) has written about Ong, so I reproduce it below for yr reading.

Is he the 4G leader with the killer instinct?

Of the three men reportedly in the running to be the next PM, Ong Ye Kung is the one least talked about and widely seen as least favourite.

He has two things on his resume which set him apart from every other cabinet Minister and 4G leader: he has experienced the bitter taste of defeat at an election and he is the son of a leftist.

Ong was in the PAP’s Aljunied GRC team which suffered a devastating defeat at the hands of the Workers’ Party – marking the first every GRC loss by the PAP. Ong witnessed up close the inglorious end to the Ministerial careers of George Yeo, Lim Hwee Hua and Zainal Abidin Rasheed, all three retiring from politics after the elections.

There is yet another aspect to Ong’s background which makes him stand out from his colleagues. His father Ong Lian Teng was one of 13 Barisan Socialis legislative representatives elected in the 1963 GE.

So Ong has lived through a baptism of fire and high drama and has “jumped ship” from his father. Put together, they may not be bad credentials to boast of because it can be argued that his resolve has been toughened and his mettle and strength of character tested.

But it could have been much sweeter – imagine if Ong had made a comeback for the 2015 GE by helming a team to take on the WP at Aljunied GRC (which was there for the taking). Instead Ong entered Parliament through the backdoor – he was fielded in one of the safest of GRCs for the PAP, the Sembawang GRC.

On paper, Ong is significantly behind in terms of exposure and profile when compared with Heng Swee Keat and Chan Chun Sing. But as Minister for Education (Higher Education and Skills) and Second Minister for Defence, he is in the thick of two key ministries. He was also Chief Executive of the Workforce Development Agency and Deputy Chief Negotiator for the Singapore-US Free Trade Agreement.

Ong has a very staunch advocate and champion in Prof Tommy Koh, arguably Singapore’s most illustrious diplomat. Last January, Prof Koh told a conference that from his experience working with him, “I have the highest respect for Minister Ong and regard him as credible and the leading candidate to be our next prime minister.”

Those remarks more than anything suddenly shifted the spotlight to Ong because Prof Koh is known to be astute in judgement and judicious in his choice of words. Just over a month ago, Prof Koh again set tongues wagging with a Facebook post of a photo of himself with Ong and the telling endorsement: “He has both high IQ and EQ. He is charismatic and an eloquent speaker. He has good leadership qualities and is very likeable. He is a man of integrity.”

Ong has a stoic, steely focus and set views about what works for the country and the PAP. He has said that one-party rule is the best way for a small country like Singapore to succeed. An indication perhaps that he would be prepared to do what’s necessary to shore up the power and dominance of the PAP.

He is also sharp-tongued – recently chastising MP Louis Lim for saying that public officers dare not speak up for fear of getting into trouble. Ong, who spearheads public innovation efforts, warned against “generalisations that tar the entire (public) service” and rounded it off in a caustic tone: “So I say to Mr Louis Ng, be part of the change, be part of the change . . .” The MP was stung. He beat a hasty retreat, assuring that he would be careful about making generalisations in future.

If made PM, Ong would have beaten the odds, surging ahead of more fancied and more high profile candidates in Heng Swee Keat and Chan Chun Sing. He is not to be counted out – yet.

There’s something about Ong which speaks volumes. To get a grip on it, let’s turn to celebrated manga artist Hiroyu Oku who said: “The killer instinct is not perceived by words, but by look.”

Ong Ye Kung has the look of one who is cool, calm, composed – and calculated. He is more caustic and more unnerving than any other 4G politician. He is to be underestimated at one’s peril.

Augustine Low

I doubt he’s as good as Prof Tommy Koh makes him out to be: “I have the highest respect for Minister Ong and regard him as credible and the leading candidate to be our next prime minister.”

He was the CEO of the Workforce Development Agency and labour productivity never did improve. His NTUC and SMRT failings I’ve listed in Ong Ye Kung: A study in failure.

Granted he has good communication skills, but so did JBJ, M Ravi and this serial promise breaker: Where’s yr defamation video and jobs rally Lim Tean?.

Coming back to Ong and the PAP:

Connecting SMRT failures, 4th gen ministers & change of PM

Why do we keep getting mediocre ministers?

Why cabinet can’t do bold new ideas

What “fake” news will be allowed

In Malaysia, Media, Political governance, Public Administration on 27/03/2018 at 11:01 am

Adding to my tots in Fake news traffickers will be hanged

there was this

“Any information related to 1Malaysia Development Bhd (1MDB) that has not been verified by the Government is considered fake news.

Datuk Jailani Johari (pic), the Deputy Communications and Multimedia Minister, explained that fake news is information that is confirmed to be untrue, especially by the authorities or parties related to the news.”*

Read more at https://www.thestar.com.my/news/nation/2018/03/21/unverfied-info-on-1mdb/#QKmu29kU273TUQuU.99

M’sia is introducing legislation that would result in people found guilty of publishing “fake news” being jailed for up to 10 years or face fines of up to M$500,000: http://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-43538109

This reminded me of

 

 

The Straits Times (ST) splashed on the front page today (16 Mar) the headline, “Fewer foreigners, more locals in workforce last year“.

It reported that the number of foreigners working in Singapore fell by 32,000 last year – the biggest in 15 years, ST said.

However buried within the artcle ST did report that the decline was mostly due to fewer work permit holders due to weakness in the construction and marine industries. For more read https://www.theonlinecitizen.com/2018/03/16/net-increase-in-foreign-pmets-last-year/

I think ST’s headline is more than misleading or misrepresenting the truth: it’s “fake” news analysis. Inconvenient facts are “hidden” from view.

Sadly this is the kind of “fake” news that will be allowed. Why? Because ST and other constructive, nation-building publications and channels practice it as part of nation-building.

In times of universal deceit, telling the truth is a revolutionary act

George Orwell

Sadly in S’pore our anti-PAP cybernuts do not believe in doing revoluntary acts. They’d rather tell lies too: think Phillip Ang.


*But then

Communications and Multimedia Minister Salleh Said Keruak (above) today assured that the US Department of Justice (DOJ) filings on 1MDB won’t be considered fake news.

He said this during a meeting with foreign correspondents today which also saw the government tabling its the Anti-Fake News Bill in Parliament.

“You can quote them, what did they say, based on the filings. It is not considered fake news.

“It’s their views. Like DOJ, you quote them, what they said,” he said.

 

Welfare for insurers (cont’d)

In Financial competency, Financial planning, Insurance, Political economy, Political governance on 22/03/2018 at 10:22 am

Here in Welfarism the PAP way I gave an example (share of taxes paid) that the PAP did welfare: corporates get welfare, not the people

Here’s another: the new requirement that Integrated Shield Plans (IPs) with riders have a co-payment portion of at least 5%.

When the PAP introduced this welfare scheme for insurers, a minister talked about “buffet syndrome” of policyholders.

Well the insurers should have allowed to wallow in their own urine and shit.

The problem was self-created. The “free” riders were created to increase their profits, or so they tot. Now that it was not working for them, the PAPpies should not be riding to their rescue. They should simply stop marketing the products. And start increasing the premiums for existing holders to reflect previous pricing mistakes.

But to be fair to the corporate loving PAP govt: the change has not mandated any change for the 1.1m people who already have full riders for their Integrated Shield Plans (IPs) – which means they still will pay nothing for hospital bills.

But the freeloaders and scroungers that are the insurance industry will not stop lobbying for this to change. They had wanted the co-sharing to apply to the existing contract, or so Secret Squirrel and Morroco Mole tell me.

But the PAP govt didn’t want another public row what with its plans to raise GST after the next GE.

 

Fake news traffickers will be hanged

In Media, Political governance, Public Administration on 19/03/2018 at 10:53 am

That was my tot when I read on FB

Singapore may fight fake news in the same way as drugs: Puthucheary

(Constructive, nation-building headline last week)

My FB avater commented: Hang convicted people isit? Terry Xu u have been warned.

TX: I am always prepared to die for what I am doing. So not much of a threat.

My avater: Respect.

Seriously, other than hanging convicted traffickers of “fake news”, there’s another probability about what the FT (He sneered at those who did NS) jnr minister wants: there’ll be no presumption of innoncence for those accused of trafficking in fake news. They got to prove their innocence.

If a suspect is caught with a prescribed amount of an illegal drug, it is deemed to be a trafficker and liable to be hung. It’s up to the suspect to prove that it isn’t a trafficker.

So maybe a suspect traffickier of ‘fake” news has to prove his innocence?  Stuff from certain sites like “The Indian Idiots — S’pore” are presumed to be “fake” unless proven otherwise by the suspect? Maybe anything that Dr Chee says will be deemed to ne “fake” news, until proven otherwise?

And maybe the presumption of guilt can be overturned by showing that the “fake” item was from a report that orginated from the constructive, nation-building local media like Mothership or ST? Or that a govt agency said it?

And maybe there’ll be a law that says that whatever a minister or govt agency says is the truth: those who allege otherwise will be deemed to be traffickers of fake news who will have to prove their innocence like drug “traffickers”.

The mind boggles.

How to ensure no GST rise

In Political governance on 16/03/2018 at 11:20 am
This suggested tight slap to PAP sure to work. Sad that it wouldn’t be administered.
A TRE reader who is no cybernut wrote that losing five GRCs will make a GST rise unlikely. But that it wouldn’t happen because S’poreans don’t want Oppo running their wards. He’s right on both counts. And based on WP’s leaders behaviour in Aljunied (Now the subject of a legal suit by the town council against Low, Auntie and her bayee for breach of fiduciary duties) who can blame the voters?
Btw, based on sentiment in Aljunied, the WP is likely to lose big time in next GE. If Indian PAPpy can beat Chinese speaking scholar Show Mao in his ward in last GE, anything is possible in next GE.
opposition dude:

Always remember, this is a numbers game. He who has the most seats in parliament will govern Singapore it’s as simple as that. Right now PAP has over 80 seats and 1 to 3 more will be created in the next GE for sure. You want to make PAP lose more than 40 seats in the next GE is unthinkable for both the 70%/30%. All we can do is to make PAP lose more than what they have planned for, only then will a crystal clear signal be sent to the party that we are all frustrated with them over the immigration policy and the high cost of living in SIngapore.

If they lose 5 GRCs in the next GE then we will have sent in 25 or so opposition MPs into parliament. But the same stupid problem of voters not wanting an opposition party to run their ward lingers on. Together with the annual 20k new citizens being granted citizenship this will be quite the challenge.