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Posts Tagged ‘Dr Eng Kai Er’

A*STAR, unlucky or accident-prone?

In Public Administration on 17/01/2016 at 1:21 pm

Is there anything wrong with the way A*Star selects scholars?

I mean we have had the very entitled scholar Eng.

And now we hear that ex-A^Star scholar Ouyang Xiangyu admitted putting toxic substances (i.e. mildly poisonous substances) in the water bottles of two lab mates. But she never had any personal issues with them and “didn’t mean to harm people”, she said.

Huh? She really must be looney to want to poison people who she didn’t dislike ? And double loooney to poison people that she “didn’t mean to harm”? Juz the kind of looney criminal that Batman sends to Arkham.

Seriously, she comes across as one of the guards in a Nazi concentration camp explaining to their trial judges why they did what they did to inmates. They often  said they “didn’t mean to harm”. or that they don’t hate the inmates: juz doing their duty and obeying orders.

Let’s wish her well*, unlike the PAPpies (Think readers and followers of Jason Chua and FATPAP) who are screaming that she should have been jailed or hung** for disgracing S’pore (They forgot court is US court), but surely there must be a flaw with the way A*STAR chooses its scholars.

One swallow does not make a summer. But two?

And remember Oscar’s Wilde: “To lose one parent may be regarded as a misfortune; to lose both looks like carelessness.”

To have one scholar that is a potential inmate of Gotham City’s Arkham may be an accident, but to have two nut cases looks like carelessness. And is worrying use of taxpayers’ money.

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*She got probation and has to do community service in California, and is getting treatment. I can’t help but think that in the S’pore of the early 80s (when I was a close observer of how the govt did things), the matter would be resolved quietly since the victims were only slightly hurt and because she was a scholar. She’d have to give up her scholarship (but not pay any penalty for bond breaking) and seek treatment, and the public would be no wiser.

Wonder if her parents, guarantors have to pay up on her bond? I hope not.

**OK I exaggerate about the hanging, but not by much. Their long-lost siblings, the TRE cybernuts shout the same tots.

 

Scholar Eng not smart enough to craft the right narrative

In Uncategorized on 09/12/2014 at 5:07 am

Being, a budding dramatist (albeit in physical theatre)  she could have constructed via her blog a compelling narrative that makes us root for her, or at least feel or share her sorrow. Instead by allowing her petulance (low EQ?) to show she behaved like a spoiled* grandchild**.despite not being funded by her grandfather.

The greatest novelists (like Tolstoy, Dickens, and Jane Austen and dramatists (Shakespeare ) of Western literature could have provided her with compelling narratives.

Take Tolstoy’s “Anna Karenina”. “Anna Karenina” is the tragic story of an upper crust married Russian lady and her affair with Count Vronsky. After much agonising, she leaves her husband and children and lives openly with the count. She is ostracised by society. Anna becomes increasingly jealous and irrational towards Vronsky. They have a bitter row and Anna commits suicide by throwing herself under a passing train.

The narrative of “Hamlet” could also have provided a compelling narrative. Should the prince do his duty to his dead father by murdering his uncle. His dad’s ghost had alleged that his uncle murdered dad and demanded Hamlet avenge the murder.

Well, Dr Eng could have constructed a narrative of someone torn between a “passion” she discovered she only had after getting her doctorate (or that she had suppressed), and her duty to the society that funded her studies, in the hope that she could be a scientist that does good scientific work that benefits said society.

The narrative could have included a constructive, nation-building decision to make the best of a bad situation, by burning the candle at both ends for the next few yrs (until she finishes serving her bond) by trying her best in both her day job (scientist) and her passion (dance theatre).

Whatever it is, Tolstoy or Shakesheapre could have taught her how to construct a narrative that shows S’poreans the tragic circumstances she finds herself in.

Instead she and her artycrafty friends makes it clear that she is so very unhappy: she “is not interested in science at all, but has to serve her bond or pay, as of 30 September 2014, around $741,657.37. .

She has amplified her bad decision [getting science scholarships] by using a public platform to vent her frustration. Everybody makes bad decisions from time to time. We accept the consequences of our actions and do not whine and moan in public. That is what she has done and she is blaming society and everyone else but herself for her bad decisions. Absolutely no personal accountability here

http://www.lukeyishandsome.com/2014/12/dissecting-dr-eng-kai-er-issue.html

Btw, I’m sure she’d have advised Anna to bitch publicly about her lover, the husband she abandoned, and her children; and not kill herself.

Btw2, photos of her and her artycrafy friends who must have advised her on how to project herself.  http://substation.org/directorslab/eng-kai-er.php

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*I speak from personal experience. No lomger spoilt but smug.

**But from the way she describes herself, you cannot help but to feel that she is terribly unhappy with the situation that she is in now. She certainly sounded like someone who is oppressed by a bigger force, which in this case happened to A*Star, the institute that granted Dr Eng her scholarship. According to other sites, Eng Kai Er wrote that she “is not interested in science at all, but has to serve her bond or pay, as of 30 September 2014, around $741,657.37 in order to quit her job. Since she understands the pain of having a paid job that is not aligned with her interests, she wishes to change the world by having more instances of paid jobs aligned with people’s interest.”

I’m not sure of how she really sees her situation, but from the paragraph above, I would warrant a guess that she views her life as painful, stuck in a job she does not like (correct me if I am wrong to make the deduction). I think the issue that we all have her is the sense of self-entitlement that oozes out from the statement that she made. Granted, a lot of us may be stuck in jobs we dislike and all of us have the rights the complain. The only reason why Dr Eng is taking so much heat is because she is complaining from a much privileged position, while most of us can only dream of having what she has. Akin to a first world problem. 
Okay, maybe she can complain. Because all of us deserves the right to. But when you take it online, especially in a net savvy society like Singapore, you are bound to be scrutinized and criticized. Like the English saying goes, “Never air your dirty laundry in the public net” 

– See more at: http://www.lukeyishandsome.com/2014/12/dissecting-dr-eng-kai-er-issue.html#sthash.IlH4qyqp.dpuf

Do read the above post as it also puts into a proper perspective some really dumb comments that are unfair and unkind to Dr Eng.

 

Property developers think they GLCs? Or Dr Eng Kai Er?

In Economy, Property on 05/12/2014 at 6:28 am

PAP administration must always ensure that they make good money or can screw the taxpayers  to indulge themselves (Btw, one of these days, when I really make up on the wrong side of the bed, remind me to blog on why Dr Eng’s actions show that while she may have a passion for the arts — like she had — when was interviewed for her scholarship, she had a passion for scientific research, she doesn’t have a clue about the way to craft a narrative  that pleases the audience. She must belong to the school that believes in upsetting the audience, unlike Stanley Kulbrick, John Ford or even Shakespeare who entertained while provoking them)

Sorry, for the digression. I got the impression that property developers think that they like GLCs and Dr Eng can screw the public when I read that REDAS president Chia Boon Kuah said  at the Real Estate Developers’ Association of Singapore’s (REDAS) 55th anniversary dinner at the Ritz-Carlton on 26 Nov, that the real estate industry could be heading for major trouble unless the government takes “supportive measures” to help property developers.

“[The slowdown and added pressures in the residential market] pose significant challenges to the property sector, and there could be wider impact on the economy,” he said.

Mr Chia is worried that the looming supply of 68,000 completed new residential units in the next few years is likely to cause home vacancy rates to head towards 10%. Presently, the private home vacancy rate is estimated to be at 7.1% in the 3Q of this year.

“This will add even more pressure on the residential market,” Mr Chia said.

“Developers are concerned. Genuine home buyers from the Singapore market have adopted a wait-and-see attitude. The situation poses significant challenges to the property sector, and there could be wider impact. It is in no one’s interests to witness unintended outcomes.”

“We urge the Government to stand ready, to take supportive measures to prevent a tipping point, should the market turn volatile and worsen further.”

With National Development Minister Khaw Boon Wan present at the dinner as REDAS’ guest-of-honour.Mr Chia took the opportunity to KPKB that the government’s cooling measures continue to bite and dampen property buying sentiment.

“The data and facts truly speak for themselves,” pointing out the falling transaction volume and declining prices or properties. Private home prices have declined in the last 4 consecutive quarters, while transaction volume has also dipped 50% from 18,000 last year to less than 9,000 expected this year.

Mr Chia also highlighted the importance of the property sector to the Singapore’s economy, “Real estate accounts for about half of the total fixed capital formation. One in 5 people in the workforce is employed by the real estate and construction industry.”

As usual our local media did not criticise the self-seving nature of his comments*. But let’s be thankful. Once upon a time, MediaCorp’s ace columnist (now reired. Wonder how many houses he got at big discounts?) would have come out in support of the developers.

So it was with great pleasure that I read this in Forum a few days ago.

Where was Redas when home prices were rising?

Published on Dec 1, 2014 12:47 AM

LAST Thursday’s report (“Property sector ‘needs govt support'”) reads like a case of the Real Estate Developers’ Association of Singapore (Redas) wanting to have its cake and eat it, too.

Redas president Chia Boon Kuah warned of grave consequences for the country, noting how property prices have declined amid falling sales in the last four consecutive quarters.

Did Redas make any such warning when property prices ran ahead of the growth in household incomes, and did it ask the Government to take action then?

It was only last year that we saw the second-quarter private residential property price index hitting an all-time high despite a few rounds of cooling measures.

Did Redas not realise that rising property prices caused the public to fear that homes would be beyond their reach, and that many have bought property even though they may not be able to service the housing loans?

The supply of 68,000 completed residential units over the next few years will be built by the association’s members.

More properties may have been put on the block due to mortgage defaults (“More homes go under the hammer in weak market”; Nov 21), if not for the cooling measures and the total debt servicing ratio framework.

Khong Kiong Seng

– See more at: http://www.straitstimes.com/archive/monday/premium/forum-letters/story/where-was-redas-when-home-prices-were-rising-20141201#sthash.me7zc0Ki.dpuf

Developers must long for the days when Mah was the property minister

https://atans1.wordpress.com/2011/04/30/property-prices-going-against-natural-laws/

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

https://atans1.wordpress.com/2014/02/10/bring-back-super-mah/

*But ST said that if the restrictions were not lifted, developers will make less than usual profit margins, and some may lose money: as though making huge profits is the natural state of things, like scholars entitled to indulge their fantasies? [Update at 10 am)

We funded A*STAR scholar, not her grandfather

In Uncategorized on 01/12/2014 at 5:06 pm

[Updated at 6.20 am to include a v.v. gd Forum letter on the issue]

Eng Kai Er and her friends in the artistic community elitist sense of entitlement is amazing: The scientist and dancer who is protesting against her six-year scholarship bond, because she is in a job “not aligned with her interests”, received funding for two university stints – and could have turned down the second if she was not keen on research.

I can understand if she had qualms about being a scientist after her first degree. I moved from law into dealing, sales and arbitraging equities by way of corporate finance and fund mgt. So I do know a little about moving into unplanned areas.

But then I wasn’t funded by the tax-payer. My parents funded me. So while can I understand her change of mind, I do not sympathise with her.

The really annoying bit is that after her first degree she came back to work here and then applied for post-grad studies. When she applied for post grad work, she already had four years of experience in her field of study. She was’t an 18-yr old gal.

And now after spending tax-payers’ money, and depriving someone else of the opportunity to do what she did, she wants to do something she could have gone into after A-levels, at zero expense to us.

As someone on Facebook pointed out: It doesn’t make sense for Singapore to invest money on her to groom her in field A of work and she claims No passion and asks to transfer bond to Field B. If not interested, why apply scholarship in field A in the first place? She deprived another person of the scholarship to fulfill her own gains and then claims no passion and wants out? Everything is about her own selfish agenda.

Want to follow that star, then get family or self to fund. Don’t take tax-payers’ money and then insist on the right to follow the star. And bitch publicly when thwarted.

Even now, she’s got a way out: juz pay the S$750,000 and be free to do what she wants to do. Her parents can sell their property and downgrade.

Or is this juz too much of a sacrifice? Everything must be done for her to follow her star but not when this entails personal sacrifice on the part of her and her family.

As my female dog says, “Eng Kai Er, gives us [ ]itches a bad name.”

I’ll leave the final word to this

 

True purpose of scholarships

A scholarship programme is not about the recipients, their careers, their earnings or their ever-changing interests; it is about the maximisation of our national intellectual capital for the benefit of society.

LET me disabuse all scholarship holders, past and present, of the notion that they are special people who in some way deserve to be provided with an expensive free education in prestigious foreign universities (“Drop ungrateful scholarship holders” by Ms Estella Young and “How successful have programmes been?” by Mr Justin Wang Qi Wei; last Friday).

Scholarship holders are very fortunate people who were given financial support by their fellow citizens to further their studies, in view of their desire, commitment and potential capability to serve as leaders in specific fields, either in public service or in the private sector.

Scholarships are awarded because there has been a meeting of minds and a common purpose between the recipients and society.

Those who harbour grandiose illusions about their own talents and a matching false sense of entitlement should never apply for a scholarship. Those who treat scholarships solely as opportunities to secure fame, prestige and an easy road to self-serving ends should abstain, lest they waste everybody’s time.

Those who, at the end of their studies, did a cost-benefit analysis of bond-breaking should ask for moral guidance.

Not keeping their end of the bargain after successfully completing their studies is not merely a breakdown of a transaction between the scholarship holder and the Government, but also a grave affront to the trust, honour and respect that we normally reserve for recipients who served our society humbly and dutifully.

Lee Hock Seng (Dr)

– See more at: http://www.straitstimes.com/premium/forum-letters/story/true-purpose-scholarships-20141202#sthash.ktYmytqw.dpuf

*The Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*Star) has revealed that Dr Eng Kai Er spent three years studying as an undergraduate at Britain’s prestigious Cambridge University before returning here to do a one-year research stint at A*Star in 2006.

At the end of that, she took up a second scholarship to study for a PhD in infection biology at Swedish medical university Karolinska Institute. She completed this at the end of 2012 and now works in an A*Star research institute studying infectious diseases.

However, last week, Dr Eng, 30, criticised the bond in a blog and set up a “No Star Arts Grant” in protest – pledging to give $1,000 a month from her salary to support arts projects for a year.

“Eng Kai Er is not interested in science at all, but has to serve her bond or pay, as of 30 September 2014, around $741,657.37 in order to quit her job,” she wrote.

“Since she understands the pain of having a paid job that is not aligned with her interests, she wishes to change the world by having more instances of paid jobs aligned with people’s interest.”

It is believed she tried to transfer her bond to the National Arts Council but was unsuccessful.

– See more at: http://www.straitstimes.com/news/singapore/education/story/astar-scientist-took-two-scholarships-20141201#xtor=CS1-10