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Posts Tagged ‘PAP’

Another sign that GE will be next yr/ Three cheers for TOC

In Media, Public Administration on 13/11/2018 at 4:16 pm

In another sign that GE will be next yr, the PAP govt is showing that it does listen, even if the agitation for a change in policy started in Terry’s Online Channel.

I’m talking about Hawkergate. The qyiet, underground grumbling about the so called “not-for-profit hawker centre model” which some unhappy hawkers and foodies like Seetoh see as Pay And Pay in action* did not catch the public attention until our constructive, nation-building media and TOC publicised the allegations. In highlighting the problems faced by hawkers such as costly tray-return deposit schemes, long working hours, unreasonable penalties for contract termination and additional fees for dishwashing, tray returns and quality control, they started a forest fire which had the PAP scrambling to contain the conflagration. TOC, unlike the MSM, also agitated for something to be done, unlike the MSM, whose silence on what should be done were deafening.

Senior Minister of State for the Environment and Water Resource Dr Amy Khor announced in October that NEA will do a “stock take” of the not-for-profit hawker centre model, which allows social enterprises and cooperatives to run these centres.

The National Environment Agency (NEA) said on Nov 9 that it had ordered “tweaks to standardise the contractual terms between socially-conscious enterprises and hawkers following feedback from hawkers, patrons and social enterprise hawker operators”. More on this at: https://sg.news.yahoo.com/nea-impose-changes-hawker-operator-contract-terms-1-january-085102551.html

The four changes include the removal of “onerous” terms to better safeguard the interest of hawkers, said Dr Khor on Nov 9 during a visit to Ci Yuan Hawker Centre.


All about hawker food

Why are there hawker centres in Singapore?

The Hard Truth about hawker food

The Harder Truth on hawker food

“Dollars and Sense” of a Hawker Stall

Subsidised hawker food book

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Three cheers for Terry and his team (if there’s one). Sadly that’s all the recognition he’ll get. TOC needs $, but the cybernuts don’t want to help it out. A long time (2006 — 2012), the then readers were generous with their money. But then they were not cheapskates, born losers like those now polluting the comment pages of TOC and TRE.

Of course opportunists like Lim Tean and Meng Seng (Lim Tean, Meng Seng where are yr durians?) had to join in the agitation for changes. Since Lim Tean has raised funds from the public for various projects (see above link) but not done anything at all about his projects, he should hand over his loot the monies raised to TOC?


*Written before TOC started publicising the problems faced by hawkers in the not-for-profit hawker centre model and agitating for changes to the model. The contributors were focusing on LGBT and other identity issues. They had and have no time for chay kway teow issues, only ang moh issues.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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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.

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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

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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

 

 

Why paper generals, not private sector CEOs make it to PAP cabinet

In Corporate governance, Public Administration, S'pore Inc on 01/11/2018 at 10:43 am

Today when flipping thru the FT, emphasis mine, I read

The desire to have more “business people” involved in politics is a well-worn itch. Gordon Brown’s decision, for example, to form a “ government of all talents” in 2007 with non-politicians such as Lords Digby Jones and Alan West proved a flop. The skills that make individuals successful in business rarely translate into politics. CEOs are programmed to take charge. Operating under political guidance grates, even for the most seasoned executive, however alluring the grace-and-favour mansion may be.

FT editorial

Our paper generals are programmed to take orders from ministers and senior civil servants; local private sector CEOs are not. Unlike our paper generals, who never have had to lead troops into battle or even into a hostile, environment, these CEOs “are programmed to take charge.”


Paper General in action

Kidding me? Kee Chui potential PM? He from RI?

Why “Kee Chiu” got renamed “Kee Chui”

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Btw, the CEOs of those successful TLCs and GLCs that are world class, are somewhere in between, if they rose from the ranks of the GLC or TLC, and not parachuted in. And the best ”are programmed to take charge”.

Don’t tell us, tell ex-PM, Indranee Rajah

In Political economy on 31/10/2018 at 5:22 pm

Those were my tots when I read in the construction, nation-building CNA

Stop thinking of people in terms of social class or income: Indranee Rajah

What can Singaporeans do to help bridge the gap between social classes? For Minister in the Prime Minister’s Office Indranee Rajah, the answer is very simple: Think of people as people.

She was responding to a question from a participant at a dialogue and closed-door screening of the Channel NewsAsia documentary “Regardless of Class” on Monday (Oct 29). The documentary explores the class divide in Singapore and how it affects society.

Read more at https://www.channelnewsasia.com/news/singapore/stop-thinking-of-people-in-terms-of-social-class-or-income-10876762

I mean who was the cock that tried to sabo the PAP govt when it was trying to showcase why S’poreans should be happy with the PAP by saying around the time of the National Day celebrations

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.

Ex-PM’s money obsession causing PAP problems

Anyone using money to distinguish between “mediocre” and “not mediocre” people is thinking in terms “of people in terms of social class or income”.

Or is she trying to be a stand-up comic, like Tharman?

Tharman trying to tell jokes

Tharman trying to tell jokes again?

— Property: Tharman trying to crack jokes again

 

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).

How to protest effectively when there’s no GE

In Corporate governance on 29/10/2018 at 9:48 am

S’poreans unhappy enough with PAP to donate $1m

is the header I used when sending an email to an overseas connection enclosing a link which began

After raising more than S$1 million in about three days, the three Workers’ Party Members of Parliament (MPs) who are facing civil lawsuits have suspended their public appeal for legal funds.

https://www.todayonline.com/singapore/wp-mps-suspend-public-appeal-legal-funds-after-raising-more-s1-million

Given that in S’pore, a one-person street protest is illegal unless police permission is obtained (Seelan Palay: Sylvia Lim was right) and even holding up placards on private land will lead to police visiting scene and having a chat (ask the Reuters staff who held up placards on office premises), publicly donating serious $ to Oppo MPs is a good sign that there are unhappy S’poreans who are willing to walk the talk: unlike the cybernuts who publicly wank themselves on sites like TOC and TRE but who are unwilling to fund these sites.

They talk the talk, but don’t walk the talk. They are life’s born losers.

Juz before the appeal and response, Terry of Terry’s Online Channel commented on FB that he was “pissed” because in the last yr TOC had received $8,000 in donations, and most of the money came from three persons. TRE gave up asking for donations yrs ago.

Coming back to the demonstration of public unhappiness with the PAP govt, given the PAP’s obsession about the importance of money (example Ex-PM’s money obsession causing PAP problems), I’m sure that PM and other PAP leaders are wondering what further goodies to hand out to keep the 70% happy or what monkey to kill to keep the 30% fearful.

Seriously, the donations should worry the PAP. Secret Squirrel tells me that he knows of several people who regularly vote PAP who donated. His sidekick Morocco Mole tells me that several pro PAP “like” this FB comment

The problem is this. Yes WP ward has an issue based on rules set forth by the governing party. However, because of the lack of action to correct all the problems in the government agencies, nevermind the TC for now, the PAP has no moral right to question others.

That’s the problem…that’s why no one gives any respect because none is due to them.

 

 

 

 

 

 

*

 

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”:

How to react to PAP’s prognosis of doom and gloom

In Uncategorized on 18/10/2018 at 5:28 am

But first, why take IMF’s & other int’l bodies forecastswith a large pinch of salt

Forecasting is not really the IMF’s forte, while pessimism is. Every growth forecast since 2009 for the UK economy has undershot the actual result, often by a significant margin. The warning of misery ahead is widely reported, but is really no more likely to be right than the average bank economist. It’s not only the IMF which finds misery gets more coverage. In 2007, the WWF estimated that the world had five years to avoid catastrophic climate change. In 2011 the International Energy Agency gave us five years. By last year the United Nations’ tame expert reckoned we had only three. Now the grand-daddy of the doomsters, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, reckons we have 12 years to mend our sinful ways. At least the trend is encouraging.

FT’s sardonic Neil Collins

Likewise take the PAP administrations prognosis of doom and gloom for S’pore and voters if the “right” policies are not followed (Ie must Pay and Pay for ministers and public gds, must have FTs by cattle-truck load, and PAP must be have policitcal hegemony) with a larger pinch of salt.

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

 

Kee Chiu Cybernuts who want to migrate to Bangladesh

In Political economy on 13/10/2018 at 11:34 am

Can’t stop laughing at our ungrateful, envious cybernuts. In their KBKBing that S’pore is ranked below Bangladesh, Namibia, Costa Rica, Guyana, Moldova, Kazakhstan, Kosovo and Palestine, they come across to the 35% swing voters as saying that these countries are better places to live in vis-a-vis S’pore.

Know any cybernut wanting to move out of their rented two-room HDB flat and move to Bangladesh, Namibia, Costa Rica, Guyana, Moldova, Kazakhstan, Kosovo and Palestine? I doubt any exist. They know life is better here. They juz behaving like ex-local MSM journalists who bite the hand that once fed them. They are worse because because cybernuts still get fed.

I agree with Calvin Cheng. I know, I know, it’s getting to be a habit ( When being a minister turns from a calling into a job for life) . But what can I say except that he seems to have mellowed.)

Singapore ranks below countries such as Bangladesh, Namibia, Costa Rica, Guyana, Moldova, Kazakhstan and even Kosovo and Palestine.

Ask yourselves if any Singaporeans, no matter how relatively poor, would rather live in those countries.

This highlights the sometimes shrill obsession with inequality, rather than focusing on absolute standards of living. Both are important, but I would argue that absolute standards of living are far more important. We should make sure our poor and even our average Singaporeans have good standards of living, regardless how they compare to rich Singaporeans.

We must be careful to keep our priorities right and balanced, and not give in to the politics of envy that has rend many Western societies apart in recent years.

———————————————————–

When I said Calvin Cheng was a dickhead

Riposte to Calvin Cheng’s defence of UA

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

Why MLC has to talk about Calvin


Coming back to the report and our cybernuts. Here’s another reasoned perspective on the Oxfam report,

There is a need “to have a better conversation about inequality” in Singapore, he added. “But it cannot be premised on research that is not well-suited for the challenges we face in Singapore, and ultimately, doesn’t produce a measure that correlates well with the living reality of Singaporeans, who know that inequality is a problem here, but is not characterised by the poverty and absolute deprivation seen in many countries of similar ‘rank’.””

Walter Theseira, academic, NMP

Another flaw in argument why ministers’ pay must be linked to fat cats ‘ pay

In Banks on 12/10/2018 at 1:25 pm

Many of the people in the fat cats top earners list that the PAP govt uses to set the pay for ministers are senior bank executives

But has the PAP govt ever tot about the banks’ KPI for bonus payments?

“If you rob a bank, you go to jail. If a banker robs you, he gets a bonus,” says a UK minibus saleman who found he had to lend money to tradesmen and SMEs so that they could afford to buy minibuses from him.

David Fishwick has since set up a SME lender and uses the tagline “Bank on Dave”. Knowing where the money is (twice over) he’s now turning to crowdfunding to raise £5m for a full banking licence.

But to be fair to bankers, Sir Douglas Flint who was the previous chairman of HSBC and a former finance director chairs the Archbishop of Canterbury’s Just Finance Foundation. And another ex-HSBC chairman and former CEO, Stephen Green was a lay preacher.

When these guys were senior executives, HSBC Mexico was doing “God’s work” (HSBC: Doing God’s Work?) by being the drug cartels’ favourite bank: HSBC: great customer & shareholder service.

Related post:HSBC should return to its roots

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

In Internet on 02/10/2018 at 10:28 am

The very people who thoughtlessly and carelessly allowed Trump to “Make America Great Again”.

How a disastrous change in perspective disempowered the left and let the right rise

By dismissing the masses as fools, progressives confirmed all the culture warriors’ claims

are the headlines of an article (https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2018/oct/01/how-a-disastrous-change-in-perspective-disempowered-the-left-and-let-the-right-rise )in the ang hoh tua kees’ favourite British paper (One reason it’s a fav is that it’s free: unlike my favs the FT and Economist)

It went on somewhere towards the end

The consolatory power of the “idiot nation” trope was obvious. If voters were slack-jawed rubes, well, it couldn’t be the fault of progressives that protests were small or that leftwing ideas lacked purchase. Activists committed to smug politics could take comfort knowing that the masses were too dumb to grasp the cogent arguments being presented to them.

But, politically, such rhetoric was disastrous. By dismissing the people as fools, progressives confirmed everything the culture warriors said: they openly embraced the condescending stereotype of the liberal elitist.

Now doesn’t this sound familiar in the S’pore context?

The views appearing in TRE, Terry’s OnLine Channel, The Indians Idiots, social media etc are that the 60-70% of S’porean voters who regularly vote for the PAP are morons. And that the hard core PAP haters are the ones that should rule S’pore.

———————————

Related article

Singaporeans want an opposition but are “very discerning in the type of opposition they seek. In my view, it is not wise to pursue any approach that does not establish firmer foundations for a permanent and institutionalised opposition in Singapore.

Pritam Singh, Wankers’ Party Sec Gen

(For the context of his comments read: https://www.todayonline.com/singapore/wp-chief-pritam-singh-responds-activist-select-committees-treatment-historian-thum)

WP: Spot on Bayee/ Lim Tean’s first anniversary of BSing


With enemies like the ang moh tua kees like and their cybernut allies the PAP doesn’t need friends to stay in power.

And I’m not the only one who thinks the PAP’s enemies are the reason why the PAP will rule S’pore forever and a day: “Antics Of Civil Society Activists Endanger Opposition Cause”

 

 

“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

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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:

Why private property owners appreciate the PAP

In Economy, Financial competency, Financial planning, Property on 28/09/2018 at 9:40 am

Especially if they are still mortgaged to their eyeballs.

S’pore’s NOT among the global cities that have the highest risk of seeing their property values collapse. We are not even on the “overvalued” list. We are on the “juz right” list.

The cities seeing the highest risk of seeing their property values collapse are HK, Munich, Toronto, Vancouver, Amsterdam and London, says UBS’s latest Global Real Estate Bubble Index.

Milan, S’pore and Boston are “fairly valued”. Ten cities including NY, Sydney and Stockholm are overvalued. Chicago is the only undervalued housing market in the 20-city index.

Still want to vote against the PAP?

Related post: Akan datang: GE in late 2019

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.

PAP in charge of LA subway?

In Uncategorized on 23/09/2018 at 1:28 pm

OK, OK only PAP logic in action in LA.

Authorities said the screening would be “voluntary”, but those refusing a scan will not be allowed to travel.

BBC report

Doesn’t the above sound like PAP logic?

Body scanners will be used on the Los Angeles subway to screen passengers for explosives and weapons, the local transport authority has announced.

It is the first mass transport system in the US to adopt the technology.

Portable scanners will be used to screen passengers as they enter stations, without them having to pass through a security checkpoint.

 

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

 

Pay And Pay in action

In Public Administration on 07/09/2018 at 10:59 am

Yes taking a break from commenting on the useful dupes*, PJ Thum (as rich as the Youngs of Crazy Rich Asians fame) and his side-kick Hirsten.

Sorry for the aside. The constructive, nation-building media, NOT Terry’s Online Channel** report that social enterprise hawker centres use PAP’s SOPs to make hawkers Pay And Pay.

They were introduced three years ago with the aim of keeping food prices low for consumers, among other social objectives.

But the jury is still out on not-for-profit, social enterprise hawker centres, as they came under the spotlight recently after food critic and consultant K F Seetoh raised concerns about how they were run.

Mr Seetoh said in a post on his Makansutra website that hawkers at such centres have to pay an average of S$4,000 a month in rent due to extra expenses that included coin-changing services, charges for crockery washing, collection and return, as well as a fee for spot-checks on food quality and operation.

This monthly rental fee is higher than that of popular centres such as Maxwell Food Centre managed by the National Environment Agency (NEA), he said.

https://www.todayonline.com/singapore/not-all-can-stomach-social-enterprise-hawker-centres-stall-owners-call-flexibility-lower

To add insult to injury no freedom on to of costs:

Other policies have also led some to question the way these social enterprise hawker centres are being run. Among those that have not gone down well with hawkers include requirements to keep their stalls open at least 12 hours, forking out monthly fees for cashless or self-payment kiosks, as well as having to pay for marketing and publicity efforts.


*Chris K posted on FB

The philosopher and sometime novelist G.K Chesterton once noted,

“Evil always wins through the strength of its splendid dupes; and there has in all ages been a disastrous alliance between abnormal innocence and abnormal sin.”

The PAP is always lucky to have its “splendid dupes” among its critics and opponents. If you think “splendid dupes” is too cheem, then use the more common “useful fools”. The fools should give their brains a chance and not fall in love with the sound of their own voices.

**To be fair to Terry, he’s a one-man show and swamped with “contributions” from the friends of PJ, Kisten and Jovolan. So much so, that he published a piece saying flat owner does not own HBD flat because cannot rent via Airbnb. If that is so, us landed property also don’t own our properties.

 

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 Manncomments 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

 

PM talked cock

In Uncategorized on 21/08/2018 at 2:08 pm

Have to agree with Calvin Cheng

To be honest, I don’t think this Government has the moral authority to tell people to be frugal and spend within their means. Unlike LKY.

They are too young, and also too wealthy (LKY was famously frugal and walked the talk).

If Ah Gong or Father tells you to use WiFi not 4G and save money, you probably will nod your head and say ok even if u not happy.

If your rich brother tells you the same thing, you will probably tell him to go fly a kite.

Which is what’s happening.

Facebook

New Hope: Time to make robots PAP ministers?

In Uncategorized on 11/08/2018 at 10:57 am

Goh Chok Tong’s comment that those in the private sector earning less than $1m are “very mediocre people” reminded me that he’s a very robotic person. While by the standards of the 3G and 4G PAP leaders, this roboticness doesn’t stand out, by the standards of the Old Guard and other 2G leaders (Think Dhanabalan or even Tony Tan), his robot-like attributes stood out like a sore thumb.

This reminded me of an article suggesting that we should have robot politicians

A poll of British consumers conducted by software firm OpenText found that one in four Brits think robots would do a better job than humans as politicians. Years ago, The Muppet Show ran a segment mocking politicians for their stereotypical robotic behaviour. Last April a robot was nominated to run to be Tokyo’s mayor, promising fair and balanced representation.

https://www.economist.com/open-future/2018/07/31/is-it-time-to-automate-politicians

(Another extract of the end of this piece.)

Think of the money we can save, having a robot replace Kee Chiu

PAP: Chinese defecate in public, Indians clean up

Kidding me? Kee Chui potential PM? He from RI?

Or VivianB:  VivianB who sneered at the elderly poor

Or Tharman and other wannabe stand-up comics:Tharman joking again? Or trying to BS us?

And robots don’t have sisters and brothers with grudges, or ambitious sister-in-laws or nephews.

As promised another extract from Economist article

[R]obot-politicians can do at exponential speed and scale, from shaking hands and kissing babies to handling the fundraising “robocalls” that frustrate American voters. A robot could take over every politician’s favourite task of cutting ribbons to inaugurate new buildings. We already cede decision-making responsibility on health and finances to algorithms, why not with voting? An automated democracy could replace both politicians and ballot boxes.

That may be extreme. Yet comical though it sounds, parts of our politics has already been technified. Consider reach. Both Narendra Modi, India’s prime minister, and the French presidential candidate Jean-Luc Mélenchon, beamed holograms of themselves to speak to several groups of thousands of people simultaneously. Next, there’s the message. In America’s 2016 election, candidates used social-media advertising to target different voters with different messages.

The growing automation of our government is no longer sci-fi. Instead, it’s a reality we are only beginning to grasp. So to the question, can we replace politicians with robots? The answer is a soft yes.

Big data and artificial intelligence allow us to understand public issues better and faster. They may be able to identify the most effective approaches to solving problems, just as algorithms became world champions of chess and Go. Predictive analytics is used to identify potential criminals or romantic partners. It can predict voting habits from Facebook likes (country music lovers in America are more likely to be Republican, while Bob Marley fans are more likely to lean Democrat, and so on).

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 many PAP voters are ready to be flipped

In Political economy, Public Administration on 06/08/2018 at 11:28 am

After I wrote Akan datang here: A six-figure salary is ‘low income’ I remembered an observation that I kept forgetting to blog on. And I promptly forgot about it until yesterday after I wrote Why anti-PAP Save S’pore Fund won’t work.

I keep getting the sense from talking to young S’poreans and their parents and grandparents that more and more young S’poreans are asking out loud: “Can I get a job that will actually pay me enough to live on (let alone be able to have a family someday)?”

And their parents and grandparents fear that their children’s (or grandchildren’s) lives will not be better and more prosperous than their own: it’ll be worse, a lot worse. Many moons ago, one P (for Politician) Ravi (Remember him?) told me that his fear for his children’s future led him to stray from the narrow, white road of Hard Truths, even though he, his siblings and his mum had benefited from the PAP govt policies: the policies, combined with their efforts and a bit of luck, took them out from poverty. But he didn’t think the PAP’ govt’s policies will ensure that his children’s lives will be better and more prosperous than his own.

The Singapore Dream of the 5Cs of condominiums, cars, country clubs, cash and credit cards are no more. Most young S’poreans know they can’t afford  condominiums, cars and country clubs, and they’ll be always short of cash (all in CPF leh they’ll moan). And they know that maxing out on their credit cards is a sure way to bankruptcy: PAP govt tot them to count.

———————————————————————

NUS survey bears out my observation

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


So it’s not surprising that the young have different aspirations: an observation made by Mr Masagos Zulkifli, the Minister in charge of Muslim Affairs. The young are realistic of the possibilities of life under the PAP govt: only the rich and the anointed ones get richer, the rest pay and pay. Their parents and grandparents are also realistic about the young’s prospects.

The support for Dr Tan Cheng Bock in PE 2011 and his enduring popularity (despite the PAP’s increase of the popular vote in GE 2015 to 70% from 60%) shows that there are unhappy PAP voters out there waiting to be tapped: Why the PAP fears Dr Tan Cheng Bock.

Therein lies the opportunity for the Oppo.

But then the PAP can rely on the likes of Lim Tean: A disgraceful chamber of horrors and Silence of Goh Meng Seng (self-proclaimed Indian chiefs with no Indians behind them) to keep S’poreans fearful and contemptuous of a liberal democratic alternative to one-party rule.

With enemies like these two, how can the PAP ever lose? Sad.

Let’s hope they take the hints from Dr Tan Cheng Bock:

[S]ome may also need to stand down and serve from the backroom if it is for the good of the country.

I believe that the men and women I met yesterday, were more than willing to make way for better men and women who would stand in their place. They have guts. They have put themselves out there.

Somehow I don’t think they will. What do you think?

 

 

 

 

Why anti-PAP Save S’pore Fund won’t work

In Uncategorized on 05/08/2018 at 9:59 am

Yesterday, I posted this Maybe to “Save S’pore Fund” but No to Lim Tean getting involved and said I’d explain later why the fund won’t raise any money.

Here’s why.

Recently, the Economist reminded readers of Dr Johnson’s response when Boswell asked whether the Giant’s Causeway in Northern Ireland was worth seeing, he replied: “Worth seeing, yes; but not worth going to see.”

Translated into the context of funding a “Save S’pore Fund” to defeat the PAP this means

 Worth having effective Oppo, yes; but not worth paying for.

This is the attitude most anti-PAP types* take going by how poorly funded the Oppo parties are.

Johnson’s “Worth seeing, yes; but not worth going to see,” also explains why TOC, TRE and The “Idiots” all have grateful, happy cybernut readers who are unwilling to pay to keep these publications going:

Worth reading, yes; but not worth paying to read.

Seriously, this is the attitude that S’poreans have towards online media in general, be it pro PAP, anti-PAP or anything in between.

Yes, yes: all this is a round about way of saying what Chris Kuan and abc say, “S’poreans are a bunch of cheap skates who deserve the PAP.”


*Especially in case the PAP really loses power. Let’s face it, the rabid anti-PAP types, especially the nutty ones define their very existence by their anti-PAPness. If PAP loses, they will have nothing to live for.

 

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

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Prosperity with S’porean, Chinese characteristics

In China, Media on 26/07/2018 at 10:56 am

Unique to both China and S’pore

Further to Bang yr balls ang moh tua kees

The case for a free press rests not only on classical liberal principles but also on hard data. Cross-country studies show strong and consistent associations between unfettered media, vibrant democracies and limited corruption. China, which has a tightly controlled media and perhaps the world’s most sophisticated censorship scheme, thinks it has proven that prosperity can be achieved without a free press. In less extreme fashion, Singapore shares similar authoritarian attitudes. Politicians everywhere do not much like to be criticised. To a worrying number of them, this Singapore model—or Beijing model, depending on preference—can prove more attractive than the Western approach of putting up with a pesky press.

https://www.economist.com/graphic-detail/2018/07/23/the-global-slump-in-press-freedom

Related posts

PAP’s bible challenges “market-based solution”

The PAP way is the American corporate way

Keeping power in a one-party state

TOC unmasks itself

In Uncategorized on 19/07/2018 at 11:04 am

Years ago I told Terry of Terry’s Online Channel that he was anti-PAP. He denied it saying that he would support a PAP policy if tot it would help the poor or correct an injustice.

After I posted TOC misrepresents facts yet again

I read this post

Terry Xu
People asks me, or tell me, how good the Pap government is and that we should be appreciative of this fact. While it may be comparatively true with our neighbours who had despotic leaders, but until you see the things I see, and experienced, which cannot be reported because it is illegal to do so, you would have no idea how rotten is this country behind the elaborate facade.

Singapore and Singaporeans can achieve much more with what we have today but not with this ruling party and its cronies changing laws and maintaining archaic colonial rules for its own interest.

It is naive to think that a party that has all the powers at its disposal will be humble and push for changes especially when cronyism is so rampant in the country. Don’t lie to yourself when you say there is real meritocracy and xxxx in Singapore.

The fact that I can’t type out the words represented by xxxx, just shows how dire the situation is for Singapore.

Do you want to live in aspiration or in constant fear of the government?

People who support and is part of this whole oppression ought to think about how history will judge your involvement for the sake of self perseverance or in most cases, simply the high pay. Just look at the world and back at history to realise that a change of regime is not impossible and that the Internet never forgets.

Need I say more about his denial of not being anti-PAP?

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.

Why I like Seah Kian Peng

In Uncategorized on 27/06/2018 at 10:51 am

Yesterday in Why Seah Kian Peng is right to say he’s “left of centre”, I said I would explain why I like Seah. I like him because he doesn’t let the Hard Truths of hypocrisy, morality and groupthink stand in the way of attempts to help an unfortunate group of S’poreans: unmarried single mothers.

In TRELand when the cybnenuts talk of unmarried mums, they compare them to prostitutes. Even PAP ministers, MPs and the IBers don’t go that far. They juz say “Undeserving poor. They bring it on themselves. Promoting moral hazard to help them.”

And sadly many, many S’poreans agree with them and the TRE cybernuts.

But Seah (and a few other MPs like Lily Neo) joins NGOs in trying to help them, and in trying to get the PAP and society to change their views on these “fallen” women. Power to him and the others.

Over the years, he has also spoken up for more assistance for unmarried single mothers.

In 2016, the Ministry for Social and Family Development finally announced that the Government is ready to extend the full 16-week maternity leave accorded to married mothers, to single mothers as well.

Their children also now have access to a Child Development Account, a savings scheme to help pay for childcare and healthcare costs.

MPs and women’s rights groups spent years campaigning for this and other benefits.

Mr Seah feels even more can be done to address their needs.

Unmarried mothers still do not get the Baby Bonus cash gift and parenthood tax rebates that even widows and divorcees, receive. When it comes to housing, they have to wait until they turn 35 to buy an HDB flat under the singles scheme.

“The challenges of raising children by themselves is already hard enough. But they have to still think about something as basic as housing. So on our part as a Government, how can we help?”

The Government has traditionally been cautious about equalising benefits for this group as it says doing so could send out the wrong signals.  A common argument is that such a move might be seen as condoning having children out of wedlock.

“Frankly, I don’t believe in this. But even if as a result, one or two people start thinking along those lines, so be it. We shouldn’t stop ourselves from helping people just because we fear a small group could end up abusing a policy.”

This concept should apply to every policy, he says, including to how much help should be given to the low-income in society and how even means-testing to assess a person’s eligibility for assistance is conducted.

https://www.channelnewsasia.com/news/singapore/seah-kian-peng-mp-marine-parade-ceo-ntuc-fairprice-on-the-record-10459284

 

 

Why Seah Kian Peng is right to say he’s “left of centre”

In Humour, Uncategorized on 26/06/2018 at 2:41 pm

Here’s Chris Kuan KPKBing about Seah Kian Peng calling himself “left of centre” in this interview https://www.channelnewsasia.com/news/singapore/seah-kian-peng-mp-marine-parade-ceo-ntuc-fairprice-on-the-record-10459284

He labelled himself “left of center”. Read his opinions (and his back pedaling when put on a spot by the journo) on various issues like taxes, using the reserves and solving social divide and inequality, you will realize straightaway, unless you are politically inert, that if this MP considers himself “left of center” then that is as good a reason as any that we must have a lot more opposition MPs. In other words, if the Honourable Seah Kian Peng is the best the PAP has in terms of checks and alternative / independent views or thinking on policy positions, then there is really little to no serious debates within the party, well not seriously enough to generate meaningful changes. But we do know that already, don’t we?

FB

The way Chris (and often me?) often describes the PAP (elitist, illiberal, and steals from the poor to give to the rich) makes it sound like a fascist party.

So any PAPpy that is a half way decent guy or gal (think Tharman or Liy Neo) is left of centre. So Seah is right to call himself as “left of centre”. Tomorrow I’ll give an example of his “progressive” views, views that even TRE cybernuts disagree with.

Btw, did anyone notice that

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

looks like this?

 

 

 

 

 

 

the flag of the British Union of Fascists in the 1930s?

And this?

File:Runic letter sowilo variant.svg

Add another oneFile:Runic letter sowilo variant.svg File:Runic letter sowilo variant.svg and we have a sign associated with the Nazis (National Socialists): the SS, a Nazi military unit that had two distinct branches. One branch were elite fighting men, feared and respected by the Allies in WWII. The other butchered Jews and other “lesser mortals”.

A more appropriate symbol for the PAP?

 

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.

 

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

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

Why liddat?

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

On FB in response to comments denouncing the PAP ministers:

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

Adrian Tan

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

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

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

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

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


*What I’ve written about them

VivianB’s other folly: F1

Our new PM/ Trumpets pls for me

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

 

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.

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.

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

How PAP can tame cyberspace while making money (cont’d)

In Internet on 04/05/2018 at 10:52 am

The spate between no-class Charles Chong (representing the no-class PAP administration), and some lobbied (instigated? manipulated?) over-sensitive (Err did they watch the video of the exchange, or relied on hearsay? And from whom? PJ?) Oxford University academics (not colleges I note) and the non-entity Project Southeast Asia (more on this strange beast soon) reminds me of

“The unspeakable in pursuit of the uneatable!”

Oscar Wilde

“A plague o’ both your houses!”

Mercutio, Romeo and Juliet, Shakespeare

It further reminds me that the PAP are missing another two tricks from darkest, dysfunctional Africa. Making bloggers Pay and Pay and tieing them up in petty details are what the PAP can introduce from Africa.

I had in Fighting fake news while raising revenue where I pointed out that our meritocratic scholars in the PAP administration could learn from Uganda in darkest, dysfunctional Africa: they could tax users of social media.

Another country from that dark continent has two brilliant ideas

Tanzania’s government has come up with a scheme that could prove even more draconian [referring to Uganda’s plan]: it plans to charge hundreds of dollars a year for the privilege of blogging. As part of new online regulations, bloggers will be required to pay hefty registration and annual licence fees that add up to roughly $920 — prohibitive for most in a country with a nominal per capita income of under $900. In proportion to GDP, the Tanzanian registration and licence fee would be the equivalent of asking Americans to pay nearly $60,000 to start a blog.

FT

Somehow I don’t think, the Idiots S’pore, Terry Online’s Channel or TRE (even if TRE’s pilot plan to use visitors’ clicks to mine crpto coins takes off) can afford the kind of sums required. Different for the SDP (CIA? Or Soros?) and mothership (George Yeo?Philip Yeo?).

And I certainly can’t be bothered with the paper work Tanzania is insisting on

What are the rules?

All online publishers including bloggers, vloggers and podcasters have up to 5 May to register and are required to pay $480 for a three-year licence, plus an annual fee of $440.

Radio and TV stations must also apply for licences to share their content online.

To get a permit, applicants must fulfil a list of requirements, like submitting staff CVs and reveal their future plans.

They will also have to keep a record of visitors to their site.

The regulations say the aim is to clamp down on “hate speech” and indecent material with the same standard being applied to online users.

They broadly define a blog as “a website containing a writer’s, or group of writer’s own, experiences, observations, opinions including current news… images, video clips and links to other websites”.

http://www.bbc.com/news/world-africa-43867292

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

PAP FT policy trying to avoid this mistake?

In Economy on 08/04/2018 at 10:52 am

In The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire, Edward Gibbon wrote: “The narrow policy of preserving, without any foreign mixture, the pure blood of the ancient citizens, had checked the fortune, and hastened the ruin, of Athens and Sparta. The aspiring genius of Rome sacrificed vanity to ambition, and deemed it more prudent, as well as honourable, to adopt virtue and merit for her own wheresoever they were found, among slaves or strangers, enemies or barbarians.”

Well we now have an FT jnr minister Dr. Janil Puthucheary who comes from M’sia and FTs by the cattle truck load.

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.

How PAP responds to criticism

In Uncategorized on 02/04/2018 at 9:16 am

Cyberspace is KPKBing about the attacks by PAP MPs on PJ Thum*, Terry Xu etc before parly’s select committee on falsehoods.


Reliable evidence?

This is what my FB avatar posted when Kirsten KPKBed about the attack on PJ Thum

Go read about the paper he submitted. They had every right to ask him the questions they asked him about Coldstore. Anyway based on newspaper report, I now know why he never referenced the views of certain known Communists when he analysed Coldstore. (I read his stuff). He thinks they are unreliable. So an issue when analysing his views is whether he’s right or reasonable to dismiss the views of said Communists.

This is what Chris K says about using what Communists said

Whatever the commies said or wrote, especially b4 the fall of the Berlin Wall, should never be taken as evidence. Marxist ideology was essentially based on historical dialectics, corrupted into their own version, Dialectic Materialism which brought “material” into the theory that history proceeds from conflicts and resolution of social forces. Therefore the commies had regarded that their ideology was “scientific” and therefore inevitable. The trouble was when history proceeded contrary to the way they read the tea leaves, they edited or erased history. The result was lies upon lies.

—————————————————————————————————

And then there is this attack on the PAPpies

Well. This is blistering. Can you sieve the facts from fiction, the specifics from the generalisations? What is true is that it is difficult to navigate the thicket of laws we have. The PAP group would have done better to give a point-by-point reply rather than casting everything as deliberate online falsehoods. That’s the way to win an argument, rather than have it shut down. And nobody should consider it a waste of time and inconvenient, because there will also be people who are willing to hear all points of view and decide for themselves.

Wannabe ST editor attacking PAP’s attack on Human Rights Watch report on S’pore

She of all people should know the PAP way: after all once upon a time she, as an ambitious senior editor in ST, helped facilitate such attacks. It’s alleged she resigned from ST when she didn’t become ST’s editor. Whatever, she walked away from the Dark Side only after she left ST and SPH group. Then she showed her Jedi sight?

Sorry back to the PAP.

PAP calls its opponents’ names. It also makes ad hominem attacks on the opponent. It KPKBs about the opponent’s tone. It contradicts without facts. And its IB changes Wilipedia articles (Example IB changes to PJ Thum’s Wikipedia entry).

arguments

Update at 4.34 pm In response to “Anyone can attribute this exhibit?”, Amelia says

The diagram is based on Paul Graham’s work. http://bigthink.com/paul-ratner/how-to-disagree-well-7-of-the-best-and-worst-ways-to-argue

 

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

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.

Auntie’s behaviour: Why PAP can hang her

In Uncategorized on 15/03/2018 at 10:06 am

If they want to. But will they dare?

But first, Grace Fu is that cock meh that she had to take advice from AG?

The law is simple. Parliament decides what is parliamentary privilege.

The Court of Appeal in 1988 upheld the ruling by the Parliamentary Committee on Privileges by against one JBJ on the ground that Parliament was empowered by the Constitution to decide on what was covered by parliamentary privilege and to punish an MP if the Committee held that the MP had abused his or her privilege or were in contempt of the Committee or Parliament.

Therefore, it was up to the Committee and not the Courts to decide whether JBJ was covered by parliamentary privilege.

Parliament is judge, jury and executioner, the court effectively said, reflecting the common law position that is is still applicable in the UK.


Is this what AG advise?

Secret Squirrel and Morocco Mole claim to have seen AG’s advice on the matter.

They claim that AG referred to the Court of Appeal ruling in 1988 upholding the ruling by the Parliamentary Committee on Privileges by against one JBJ. The CA said that Parliament was empowered by the Constitution to decide on what was covered by parliamentary privilege and to punish MPs if the Committee held that such MPs had abused their privilege or were in contempt of the Committee or Parliament.

That the AG said is the law of the land. Well at least that’s what Secret Squirrel and Morocco Mole said the AG said.

——————————-

And because Parliament is judge, jury and executioner, therein lies the political danger for the PAP if the PAP decides to “fix” Auntie because if even a PAP voter cheers on Auntie, says Fu talking cock, there’ll be many more S’poreans (many not anti-PAP) that will agree with this anti-PAP cybernut

HarderTruths:

Does anyone remember JBJ and CST plus Amos. It does not matter what you do, as longas you stand up to these bunch of bullies you are done for.

if Auntie kanna whack by the Parliamentary Committee on Privileges.

Tan Cheng Bock, as usual, gets it about right. He posted on FB

BE GRACIOUS IN PARLIAMENT

Having watched the video on the GST debate, I felt the PAP ministers especially Shanmugam were brow beating MP Sylvia Lim by demanding an apology for asking whether the government postponed the GST hike because of negative public feedback. Many people perceive this brow beating as arrogance. I remember our former Prime Minister Lee Kuan Yew once told all PAP MPs in 1988 “Any show of arrogance or indifference by any MP or Minister will erode confidence in him and, later, in the government.”

Instead of getting upset, the Ministers should be thankful Sylvia Lim gave them an opportunity to explain. If the government’s position is ‘no’ then just say no and let’s just stop at that. No need to get defensive. As PM Lee Hsien Loong rightly said at the close of the Oxley Road debate: “If MPs believe that something is wrong, it’s an MP’s job to pursue the facts and make these allegations in their own name, decide whether something seems to be wrong, and if you think something is wrong, even if you’re not fully sure, then come to this House, confront the Government, ask for explanations and answers.” I enclose a video clip of Sylvia Lim quoting PM Lee.

PM Lee was echoing the view of our former Prime Minister Lee Kuan Yew who said “All MPs new and old, should speak out. You have to speak up and bring out the grapevine criticism in the coffee shops and hawker centres. It is damaging for the government not to openly refute it with facts and argument. By bringing up apparently embarrassing issues, you help the government openly state the facts and explain the reasons for our policies and so continue to hold the ground.”

So be gracious, no need to over-react or ask for any apology for bringing out “grapevine criticism” or “apparently embarrassing issues” in Parliament.

Sad that I can’t call him “My president”. For that blame Goh Meng Seng and Tan Kin Lian

Goh Meng Seng, our very own Wu Sangui

Remember he was

the guy who helped (Was he paid? Or did he do it out of the goodness of his heart because he loved the PAP?) the PAP’s preferred candidate to win in PE 2011 by

— persuading TKL to run;

— then running a shambolic campaign for TLK;

— and then saying he had to go to HK for a job interview,

Meng Seng wants us to kowtow to Xi

Look who wants Tharman for PM

In Political governance on 13/03/2018 at 11:31 am

Really a wide spectrum.

For starters a Muslim Indian who is now KPJBing because he needed “approval” to talk to undergrads here http://www.airconditionednation.com/2018/03/09/campus-control/. Do read it. It’s a great rant. I’ll come back to it some other day.

Sorry: back to Indian support for Tharman. So what’s new? Countryman always supporet countryman, their non-countryan co-workers in any organisation will grumble, rightly or wrongly.

But then this is a Muslim Indian (by conversion because he wanted to have sex with marry a Malay*) keeps on saying Tharman (Hindu?) must become PM.

Singapore’s mystifying political succession

Why is the PAP so ambivalent about the idea of being led by Tharman Shanmugaratnam?

http://www.newmandala.org/singapores-mystifying-political-succession/

(Byw, I first read the article a day after being told by a friend that he once attended a wedding in India where there was a drinking session for the male guests in which the main topic of conversation was “those XXXX Muslims”.)

Seriously, Cherian George lists all the usual (and reasonably good) reasons why ang moh tua kees like him want Tharman to be PM.

If an ang moh tua kee wants Tharman to be PM, that is precisely the reason why the ruling party in a de facto one party state do not want Tharman as PM; as do many other S’poreans.

It’s not mystifying, simply that the judgements and preferences of ang moh tua kees are treated with suspicion and contempt, both within the PAP, and within the wider society. It’s not always about one’s skin tone.

Then there’s this guy who comes across as an ordinary S’porean. He most probably voted For Dr Tan Cheng Bock.

The curious case of a politician who is so wildly popular

Tharman Shanmugaratnam is a one-of-a-kind politician. He has more ardent fans than any other. Netizens have long clamoured for him to be Prime Minister. Even critics of the PAP have heaped praise on him.

Yet Tharman never sought adulation. On the contrary he seemed discomfited by it and has done his best to deflect attention, protesting “I’m not the man for PM. I say that categorically. It’s not me . . . I know myself, I know what I can do, and it’s not me.”

What is it about Tharman that makes him so well-liked and wildly popular? It could be the sum of different parts in the man. Ironically the more he tried to shore up his imperfections, the more he connected with people.

He revealed that he was “completely disinterested” in studies and was aimless as a youth. “Studying medicine would have required time and academic effort, and I did not have that at the age of 17 0r 18 . . . I never had a job in mind, no ambition in terms of career.”

Tharman went on to major in Economics at Cambridge and Public Administration at Harvard. And the chap who hated studying became of all things the Education Minister!

As an ACS boy, Tharman spent much of his time indulging in sports – playing hockey, cricket, football, volleyball, rugby, sepak takraw. In later years he even played in the premier hockey league for Singapore Cricket Club and Singapore Recreation Club. The once sports-crazy politician gave this bit of advice on Facebook after Joseph Schooling won an Olympic gold medal: Discover something we each can be good at. Persevere and never give up. Then pass the passion on to the next generation.

There is also the rebel in him. Tharman has said that he was once “a dissident, a government critic.” He even got into trouble with the law. As a director at MAS 25 years ago, he was charged along with four others under the Official Secrets Act for illegal disclosure of sensitive or classified information. He was eventually convicted of a lesser charge of negligence and fined $1,500.

When cultural icon David Bowie died, Tharman posted the lyrics of the classic hit Space Oddity on Facebook and called Bowie a “musical genius.” It seems that his love for music goes hand-in-hand with a passion for poetry. Tharman penned four poems for a 1978 anthology called but we have no legends. He co-edited the book with two friends, all then in National Service and part of the Young Writers’ Circle at the National Library.

How cool is that – a poet and a David Bowie fan who became a Deputy Prime Minister?

The supremely smart and brainy side of Tharman is most apparent to people. He has a sterling record as Finance Minister and is the first Asian to chair the G-30 – a prestigious global body of top financial experts.  He has also been named Finance Minister of the Year by Euromoney magazine.

For someone who is not attention-seeking or rhetoric-driven, who is in fact  diffident at times, he actually has a great common touch and rapport with citizens. In the 2015 general election, Tharman outperformed all others, securing 79.3% of the votes for Jurong GRC.

Given his unique set of characteristics, his past as a rebel, his artistic bent, his refusal to airbrush his imperfections and struggles, it is a wonder that Tharman ended up as a man in white. He is not cast in the mould of a PAP politician.

Furthermore, we have been told by the ruling party that race and ethnic considerations will always be in the minds of voters when they cast their ballots. As a non-Chinese, he is supposed to be disadvantaged, although polling results have not borne that out.

In fact there are a surprising number of people who still harbour hopes of Tharman being Prime Minister. It may be wishful thinking. But it just goes to show that Singaporeans are not looking for sound and fury in their leader, for someone who is ever generous with promises. Rather, Singaporeans are dying for someone who is smart yet straight talking and sincere, and whose imperfections make him all the more human and relatable.

Augustine Low

—————————————————————

*I personally know one such couple. Mum’s Arab/ Chinese (looks Chinese), hubbie is Chinese. They have a daughter who looks Chinese and attends a Christian school (Dad’s from ACS) but is Muslim. When hols come around, she spends a lot of time in KL with her Muslim cousins.

 

 

Why do we keep getting mediocre ministers?

In Political governance on 12/03/2018 at 10:56 am

I mean what accounts for people like Kee Chui (Kidding me? Kee Chui potential PM? He from RI?), Ong Ye Kung (Ong Ye Kung: A study in failure) and Grace Fu (“Getting AG advice leh” after Auntie kicked her ass) getting into the cabinet?


disGrace Fu

When TRE used PAP voter cheers on Auntie, says Fu talking cock there were two good responses

opposition dude:
So disGrace didn’t get the sorry she wanted and is feeling pretty malu by now. How can a respectable minister not even get an apology out of a mere MP right? What will voters think of her as a minister now?

Face is very important to the PAP you know. I wouldn’t be surprised if she is already working on something else to one up Sylvia in the next parliamentary session. I don’t think she will just let it rest like that.

And

grace will be promoted soon?:

where will grace find herself. promoted or demoted?
put in a position where she can do lesser damage to the PAP’s brand?

or even damage to Singapore. we can now see that grace do not possess the qualities to represent SG to deal with foreign governments.

sinkies are now just waiting for LHL to make his announcement.
is he making last minute changes? LOL!

———————————————————

In an FT article on the role that managers played in the continuing productivity problems the UK faces (Sounds familiar?), the writer made three observations

— “Mediocre management is often the product of a flawed business model.”

—  Mediocre management “is at least in part, reflect policy failings.”

— “All too often we remain loath to trace persistent managerial weaknesses back to root causes.”‘

Well the PAP’s business model of “We will grow the economy and voters will have the good things in life. In return, voters will vote for S’pore remaining a de-facto one-party state.” is flawed.

Once upon a time (in the days of Harry and his thugs) growing the economy, most probably resulted in S’poreans’ material prosperity improving. This usually happens in the early stages of economic development. But as the economy matures, this link is usually weakened. Today? Not any more, as strong GDP growth no longer benefits ordinary S’poreans as the GDP growth in the late 90s, noughties and beyond shows (Still expect world topping salaries isit?).

S’poreans are also realising that giving the PAP such concentrated power since 1959 has resulted in the PAP’s leaders being detached from reality. PM admitted in 2011 that the anger on the ground shocked the PAP MPs. They had been assured by their PA grassroot leaders, that the unhappiness voiced in cyberspace was just “noise”. It didn’t reflect reality. Well it did.

As to “policy failings”, think failures like getting S’pore to breed like rabbits (Pandas’ birth rates in the wild are better than ours or so I’ve been told: remember they are still in danger of extinction), immigration (PM that stupid meh?) and all the “transformative” economic plans (Heng, can be PM meh?) starting from the one by one Lee Hsien Loong in the 80s. At least he couldn’t copy, cut and paste from earlier reports (seems Dr Goh made him think) but all other subsequent ministers copied, cuy and pasted from lee.

But remember the FT writer wrote

All too often we remain loath to trace persistent managerial weaknesses back to root causes.

What is the root cause of mediocre ministers?

Us the voters.

Why do 60-70% of the voters consistently vote for the PAP, thereby enabling the PAP to have over two-thirds of parly seats, thereby enabling the PAP to suka suka change the constitution? Example:Why PAP thinks we need a Malay president?

And its not only the 60-70% who enable mediocrity.

In 2011, the 30% who consistently vote for any clown (Think Goh Meng Seng or Tan Kin Lian or Lim Tean) so long as it’s not a PAP monkey, missed the opportunity to cock a snook at the PAP in the presidential election. Instead they voted for two RI opportunists, thereby allowing the PAP’s prefered candidate to win. Half of the voters who usually vote PAP voted for Tan Cheng Bock but the anti-PAP voters prefered the Mad Dog Chee’s preferred candidate or Goh Meng Seng’s buddy, Tan Kin Lian.

As has often been said

Voters deserve the government they get.

It’s the fault of S’porean voters that we get mediocre ministers.

Whatever, with enemies like Mad Dog, Tan Jee Say, Goh Meng Seng and Tan Kin Lian, the PAP can get away with ministers like Kee Chui, Ong and disGrace Fu.

 

PAP voter cheers on Auntie, says Fu talking cock

In Political governance, Uncategorized on 10/03/2018 at 11:28 am

Here’s two FB posts by a senior lawyer who admitted that he voted for the PAP in past elections

I think that Minister Grace Fu should drop the threat to refer to the Committee of Privileges.

Such a display of arrogance and high-handedness doesn’t impress me, and should not impress Singaporeans.

The facts are this, simply.

The G has said since 2013 that revenues must be raised. I was long aware of PM’s comments at the time. So we know that taxes are going up at some time in the future, but not when.

I was also aware of DPM’s 2015 remarks that the G had enough revenue for the decade. This implied that GST might not need to be raised this decade but it was not a clear, direct and explicit promise not too. Neither was PM’s remarks at the 2017 PAP Convention a categorical promise or confirmation.

The was much discussion in 2017 about an impeding announcement of a GST increase, promoted at least in part by PM’s and Minister Heng’s remarks.

Many economists speculated about the timing of the GST increase. Many of them thought it would be this decade, notwithstanding the G’s earlier comments.

For myself, I was not sure what the G would announce in Budget 2018. I expected an announcement of GST to be raised, but I had no confidence whether it would be after or before 2021.

Does this mean that I thought the G dishonest in its earlier comments?

No, not at all, because while earlier statements were made about having sufficient revenue for the decade, these statements did not amount to a clear promise not to raise the GST in this term of government.

If the G thinks the earlier remarks were clear and categorical, so that citizens could have no doubts, how does it explain why so many reputable economists were willing to entertain thoughts of an increase this decade?

And later

Having read all the transcripts, Minister Fu’s ability to understand the debate seemed dodgy at best. As Bertha has written elsewhere, she seemed out of her depth and one has to say that this impression is not without basis.

For example, she deplored the fact that Sylvia Lim “continued with this accusation” after the G’s explanations but what does the Honourable Minister mean by that? Sylvia said clearly that she can accept, in light of the G’s response as to its intentions, that her suspicions may be wrong, but she simply does not accept that there was no basis for suspicion when originally made.

I rather struggle to see how this position could reasonably found a complaint to the Committee of Privileges except for a hyper-sensitive government – and that should NOT be encouraged.

Minister Fu also failed to give any coherent explanation of how – if the G’s contention that their intentions not to raise taxes this decade has been made clear in numerous statements pre-budget 2018 – that numerous respected economists could have entered and speculated about exactly that possibility.

Her answer was this : “But having said so, after she has brought the matter here, we have laid down the facts to her. And yet she continued to insist on the allegation. This is the difference between what we say in this chamber and what economists, analysts say outside this chamber.”

This answer of course says nothing about whether Minister Fu would claim that the G had previously made its position so clear that entertaining the possibility of an increase this decade was an unreasonable idea. And probably Minister Fu would, with respect, struggle to make a convincing claim here.

Instead, Minister Fu focuses her complaint simply on Sylvia’s (alleged) continued maintenance of her claim despite the G’s response.

But what does this (alleged) continued maintenance consist of?

Sylvia made plain that in light of the G’s insistance on its position, her suspicion might be wrong as a matter of fact (although the true facts are only known to Cabinet).

But she maintains that, when made, the suspicion was not without basis and essentially Minister Fu had no coherent explanation for why that was the case. She simply is unhappy that Sylvia did not withdraw the original allegation or apologise.

But why should Sylvia, unless the G could demonstrate that there was no basis for suspicion when the claim was first made – and here Minister Fu has no explanation (see above). For example, she did not respond to the question of whether all the economists who speculated on a budget increase this decade after after DPM’s 2015 statement and PM’s PAP Convention speech were thinking in an unreasonable way.

So to threaten to refer to the Committee of Privileges in these circumstances simply reflects poorly on Minister Fu, with the greatest of respect.

 

 

Lawrence Wong: a PM-in-waiting

In Uncategorized on 09/03/2018 at 11:12 am

I’m surprised that the talk cock, sing song academics and other pundit don’t think of Lawrence Wong as a contender to be PM.

Because unlike their favourite, Kee Chui (Why “Kee Chiu” got renamed “Kee Chui”), he knows how to throw smoke when “answering” inconvenient questions

The entire additional S$7.7 billion above the official estimate is being given back to Singaporeans in various ways, instead of just the S$700 million SG bonus, Mr Wong stressed, as he addressed Nominated Member of Parliament (NMP) Azmoon Ahmad’s suggestion for the Government to share more of the unexpected budget surplus.

“We don’t save surpluses.”

I went WTF!

But I had to admire his explanation (OK BS).

“We give them all back to Singaporeans but we give back in different forms,” said Mr Wong in Parliament on Tuesday (Mar 6) during the debate on his ministry’s budget.

“Some will be for spending (on) future needs. Some will be spending for current needs… and some will be through a direct transfer, like the SG bonus,” he added, urging for the surplus to be viewed “in totality”.

Mr Wong cited the setting aside of S$5 billion for a Rail Infrastructure Fund “which will benefit all MRT commuters”, and S$2 billion for premium subsidies and other forms of support when the ElderShield review is complete.

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Why Lawrence Wong is wrong on “We don’t save surpluses”
Or rather “We don’t save surpluses” is misleading.
FB post by Chris Kuan

CNA reported Larry the MND and the second MOF as saying all of the $7.7b of additional surplus from the revised 2017 budget overall surplus has been shared with Singaporeans in various ways such as a $5b transfer to the Rail Infrastructure Fund and $2b for Eldershield. Don’t look at the SG bonus in isolation he said. But that is not quite correct, is it? Tell me if I am wrong but this is how I look at it.

If that $7.7b additional surplus had been shared in the 2018 budget, then the 2018 Budget position would not have been a deficit of $0.6b but of $8.3b. After all each Financial Year Budget is based on that FY’s revenues and expenditures plus that FY’s transfers to funds and endowments and its NIR Contribution right? If the $7.7b has been shared with Singaporeans, then the sum of the Budget position for 2017 and 2018 should equal to the original FY 2017 estimate surplus of $1.9b. But that is not the case, the sum is a surplus of $9b (2017’s $9.6b surplus minus 2018’s $0.6b deficit). So how can this be if the $7.7b surplus from the first year is spent or shared in the second year?

The better explanation or rather the truth of the matter may well be that the $7,7b additional surplus has not yet been shared with Singaporeans, It will eventually – just wait for the year before the general election. Of course in fairness to Larry the MND and the 2nd MOF, all that spending on rail infrastructure and Eldershield in 2018 did take place but that is from using up all the revenues and the NIR contributions estimated for the year. Call me pedantic or whatever.

PS: Being transfers to funds and endowments, the $5b allocated to rail and $2b to Edlershield are ofcos not spent all at once but over several years. An important distinction to be aware of given the govie’s propensity to report this kind of expenditures in a single year.

But the fact that Chris Kuan has to go into such detail to show that “We don’t save surpluses” is misleading. shows that Lawrence Wong is a throw smoke specialist, good enough to be PM after Heng’s one term in that post. You heard these predictions here first.

And here’s another one: he’ll be the next Finance Minister. Remember you first heard this here.

————————————————–

Coming back to Kee Chui. If Lawrence has to answer the questions on the need, and the use of reserves, unlike Kee Chui, he would have said something along the lines of what the CEO of Norwaty’s SWF said when he reported a great set of results*
stressed that the good times would not continue forever, warning Norwegians to be prepared for a potential fall in value in the future.
Btw, remember his warning on HDB flats? Why 30-year old HDB flats difficult to sell
 ————————————————
*The oil fund separately reported one of the best years in its 20-year history as it returned 13.7 per cent in 2017, helped by booming equity markets. Equities returned almost 20 per cent, while property and bonds also contributed positively. The NKr1tn ($128bn) return was the biggest ever measured in kroner.
FT

Why cabinet can’t do bold new ideas

In Political governance, Public Administration on 06/03/2018 at 10:04 am

And why ministers can only talk cock sing song, repeating mantras or clichés about Hard Truths: think about the comments about GST and the reserves.

Last Saturday, I read in the FT

“By appointing people with like minds but with a wide range of professional backgrounds . . . we can discuss things with an open mind and go beyond past ways of doing things to speedily implement bold new ideas.”

Toyota’s president on Toyota’s appointing the first female director, a senior Japanese banker

This led me to think about our cabinet.

With the exception of two doctors and a private sector lawyer, the rest of cabinet (85%) came from the public sector*. All but three were senior officers of three bureaucratic, command and control and hierarchical organisations: SAF, the civil service (which effectively means the admin service: there’s only one “civil service” minister that’s not from the admin service) and NTUC. Two of the remaining three were executives from GLCs (SingTel and PSA) and other was an academic from a local university.

So how to expect creative thinking, let alone commercial, financial or business expertise?


The Spartan who defeated Athens

By the end of the 5th century BC, the superiority of the Athenian Navy had long gone, and the Spartans were more than a match for the Athenians at sea … Firstly, the Spartan Navy had significantly improved. Naval warfare had traditionally been seen as ‘cowardly’ by the Spartans, but this attitude began to change as Lysander gained authority. The illegitimate son of an aristocrat, Lysander grew up in relative poverty. It was perhaps his unusual upbringing that allowed him to think differently from the Spartan norm. He painstakingly made his way up the ranks and was finally given a position of authority in his mid-forties, when he was made the Spartan Admiral in 407. Lysander borrowed heavily from the Achaemenid Empire and used the money to purchase ships and crews; the Spartans were finally a proper naval force.n his

http://www.warhistoryonline.com/guest-bloggers/final-blow-lysander-aegospotami.html

————————————————————————-

The first PAP cabinet in 1959 (and for at least a decade  and a half thereafter) was diversity in action. There were private sector lawyers, civil servants and businessmen.

Later, there was a local executive from HP (then a respected tech MNC), the MD of Shell’s local operations and two bankers. OK, OK, one banker was from a bank where his uncle was the chairman, although uncle was not the controlling shareholder. Before that he was an academic. And when in the bank, he was considered by many outsider bankers an improvement to the usual OCBC senior managers. The other banker was originally from the civil service but he was transferred to DBS.

Things went downhill in terms of diversity since the day when several ex-SAF generals were made ministers. To be fair to one Goh Chok Tong, he tried to bring diversity back by bringing one VivianB into the cabinet. But in 2005 or 2006, he told Cheong Yip Seng (ST editor appointed by one Harry Lee)) that he was disappointed that VivianB had “become like the others”. In fact, VivianB went one step worse than the other PAP ministers, he openly sneered at the elderly poor.

Btw, the PAP administration is so desperate to show that it has private sector experience and expertiste that one minister who in his younger days was in the admin service was said in his cabinet CV to have joined the private sector*. He worked in S’pore Technologies and Temasek.

This would be hilarious if it wasn’t so pathetically tragic for S’pore.


*Many yrs ago, I “discovered” that official data classified all 100%  govt owned cos incorporated under the Companies Act as “private companies”. Hence the huge discrepency between official data and a report from the US embassy on state participation in the economy.

 

Why “Kee Chiu” got renamed “Kee Chui”

In Uncategorized on 26/02/2018 at 10:14 am

Chan Kee Chui’s (aka Chan Kee Chiu’s) latest attempts to talk cock, sing song

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

See Chris K’s comments reported in https://www.theonlinecitizen.com/2018/02/25/chan-chun-sing-says-severe-implications-if-singapore-does-not-have-sufficient-reserves-but-just-how-much-is-enough/)

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

reminded me that when TRE republished Kidding me? Kee Chui potential PM? He from RI? there were a few cybernuts (Or PAP IBs?) who tried to slime me by pointing out that I should be using “Kee Chiu” and not “Kee Chui”, pointing out that Chan’s nick-name is Kee Chiu because he liked to use the term once upon his time. I have no objection to this criticism.

But they went on to say that I didn’t know the difference between  the two terms  because I wasn’t S’porean. Excuse me; must know Hokkien to be S’porean isit?

Whatever if they had any brains (which they don’t being ratty anti-pAP cybernuts or PAP IBs), these guys should know that “Kee Chui” is now a more apt nick-name for him based on his verbal gaffes.

Beng pek ma?

And while focusing on his need for strong reserves, it seems critics missed this gaffe

In a democratic society, few governments will take this approach, informing citizens about a tax increase a few years beforehand.

We are a “democratic society” meh?

Worse, maybe even the cybenuts, and critics like TOC and Chris K believe that S’pore is a “democratic society”. If so what weed are they smoking? To be fair to them, maybe the PAP has put something, other than recycled water, into the water S’poreans drink.

My view? We are not a “democratic society”: The PAP way? is the CCP way.

 

 

 

 

Our Goebbels’ works: only for today 25% discount

In Media on 25/02/2018 at 6:19 am

Saw this yesterday

25% DISCOUNT! Yes, you read right. Tomorrow (25 Feb) is the birthday of S. Rajaratnam, Singapore’s first Foreign Minister, who also wrote our National Pledge. 
However, did you know that he also wrote several short stories and radio plays before he became a politician? 
Some of the stories were so good, they were selected for anthologies in the UK and USA and translated into several languages, including French and German!

Find out more here: https://buff.ly/2CgI8fR

When I think of S. Rajaratnam, I think of Joseph Goebbels who was one of Hitler’s closest associates and most devoted followers. One could say the same of the relationship between Rajaratnam and one Harry Lee.

Goebbels, like Rajaratnam, was known for his public speaking skills.

But his greatest skill was in the use of propoganda

began to take an interest in the use of propaganda to promote the party and its programme. After the Nazi Seizure of Power in 1933, Goebbels’ Propaganda Ministry quickly gained and exerted controlling supervision over the news media, arts, and information in Germany. He was particularly adept at using the relatively new media of radio and film for propaganda purposes.

Wikipedia

Rajaratnam was also good in controlling the media and spinning for the PAP.

But Rajaratnam was no anti-Semite. And he was the side that won.

PAP got a point on welfare programmes

In Economy on 14/02/2018 at 10:26 am

[M]y first wish is that Medishield Life be expanded to cover evidence-based healthcare interventions. I raised this at the IPS dialogue with DPM Teo Chee Hean last month and his response was to cite the classic neoliberal argument* that if you provide free medical care, a “buffet table syndrome” will result. This means that individuals will get all kinds of diseases and treatments just so that they can enjoy the free medical benefits. This is not his fault, it is a widely held belief among health economists from various right wing think tanks primarily in the United States who have advanced this argument.

Dr Paul Tambyah

http://yoursdp.org/news/paul_tambyah_39_s_speech_budget_2018/2018-02-12-6222

(Do read the speech from the only adult in the SDP portiburo. If only Mad Dog would step down and Dr Paul replaces him, the voters perception of SDP would change, enabling the SDP to be the Opposition not the Wankers’ (Or it it “Worthless”?) Party But Mad Dogs don’t do resigning, only biting. Sad.)

The PAP would also make the point that all welfare programmes grow and grow, as expectations rise. This in turn overwhelms other worthy state expenditures. Are they wrong?

Here’s what’s happening in the US

the crucial driver of US indebtedness is not military or discretionary domestic spending. It is the spending on “mandatory” entitlements, primarily social security payments for pensioners and healthcare programmes for the elderly and the poor. Along with interest on the nation’s debt, these make up more than two-thirds of federal spending, a proportion that is expected to grow. In the absence of a debate about how to reduce spending on big entitlements, or how to generate more revenue to support them, political fights like the one just resolved are theatre. They have the potential to do damage if they go wrong, but no chance whatsoever of changing the long-term outlook. The trajectory of the US debt burden is disquieting. The country is headed, by all accounts, for deficits of at least $1tn a year, which amounts to 5 per cent or more of gross domestic product. The total stock of US debt, now standing at 80 per cent of GDP, will pass 100 per cent before a decade is out if current policies are sustained.

FT

Dan Coats, the director of national intelligence, has just urged Congress to tackle the ballooning national debt, saying it posed a “dire threat” to economic and national security.

Btw, I’m sure Dr Tambyah would consider the FT and the the US intelligence community to be major part of the neoliberal establishment.


*Why you think he started sending potential ministers to the Kennedy School of Government at Harvard? Harvard is a another major part of the neoliberal establishment.

Bishan otters PAP members?

In Environment on 14/02/2018 at 4:51 am

Or did the otters got co-opted into being constructive, nation-building animals? Did the otters got paid for this?

Seriously, this video shows the PAP, knowing that we love the otters, and are using them to influence us

Whatever fun to watch.

Heng, can be PM meh?

In Economy, Political governance on 13/02/2018 at 10:25 am

Two major biz trade groups are publicly very unhappy with Heng’s Industry Transformation Maps. Looks like bizmen and corporate executives don’t think much of the Industry Transformation Maps (ITMs), drawn up by Finance Minister Heng Swee Keat’s  Committee on the Future Economy (CFE)

The ITMs, which make up one of the key strategies outlined in the Committee on the Future Economy (CFE) report, have come under the spotlight recently amid questions from business and industry leaders about its relevance.

https://www.channelnewsasia.com/news/singapore/looking-ahead-to-budget-2018-what-it-could-mean-for-businesses-9943406

And he’s suppose to be a contender to PM? I mean did anyone say that Ah Loong’s economic strategies drawn up when he was a minister or DPM (Economic restructuring: This time, it’s really different) were anything less than greater than great? He was the Messiah, Moses and Jesus Christ Superstar all rolled into one, even though Ong Teng Cheong was more popular with the masses.

The Association of Banks is one of the unhappy business groups:

At a pre-Budget roundtable organised by the Institute of Singapore Chartered Accountants (ISCA) last month, DBS CEO Piyush Gupta, who speaking in his capacity as chairman of the Association of Banks in Singapore, questioned if the ITMs can keep up with the rapid changes in each industry.

“The blueprint and roadmap that you put in place will be outdated by six months so what we have to create is not a transformation roadmap but transformation capabilities,” he said. “We need to take our ITMs to the next level, which is to create the industry’s capacity to experiment and rapidly change.”

Then there’s the Singapore Business Federation

Also speaking at the roundtable, Singapore Business Federation (SBF) CEO Ho Meng Kit noted a disconnect between the ITMs, which are led by Government agencies, and the “realities of the industries”.

He added that he was concerned about the ITMs being developed for the bigger firms and risk leaving out “the long tail of SMEs in the same industry that are not as productive”.

(And btw this is damning for the Ministry of Trade & Industry

According to the SBF’s latest survey, half of the roughly 1,000 businesses surveyed said they still do not know enough about the ITMs to assess their impact*.)

I repeat again:

[H]e’s suppose to be a contender to PM? I mean did anyone say that Ah Loong’s economic strategies drawn up when he was DPM (Economic restructuring: This time, it’s really different) were anything less than great?

For the record, I predicted many moons ago that Heng would be PM: The next PM has been unveiled.

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

*Minister for Trade and Industry (Industry) S Iswaran said on Feb 5 that “it is not possible for the Government to reach out directly” to all enterprises. In a written response to a parliamentary question, Mr Iswaran stressed that unions, trade associations and chambers (TACs) “must help to propagate the message”, while business owners “must also take the initiative to find out more about the ITMs”. He’s got a point that ‘business owners “must also take the initiative to find out more about the ITMs”’.

 

 

 

 

 

Kidding me? Kee Chui potential PM? He from RI?

In Political governance on 12/02/2018 at 9:40 am

The academics and the anti-PAP cybernuts who claim that Kee Chui is likely to be the next PM must either be really stupid, or really trying to sien us?

I mean who can reasonably conclude that Kee Chui is the material that PMs can be made off?

Two weeks ago, High Court judge See Kee Oon questioned an appellant’s use of a letter from her MP Lam Pin Min (Sengkang West) to play down the offence she was convicted of. (Juz wondering? MP White Horse? Or spouse White Horse or grassroots tua kee?

Kee Chui, Minister and Chief Whip, was then quoted by ST as saying that the PAP has “no specific governing rules” on the sending of MP letters to the courts or other agencies or ministries.

A retired district judge, Mr Low Wee Ping, who was the Registrar of the Subordinate Courts and Supreme Court in the 1980s, in a letter to ST, said one Harry Lee had instructed all MPs, in writing, that they should not write such letters to the courts.

Mr Lee was also of the view that if the MP’s constituent resident perceived his sentence imposed by the court as lenient, he might attribute it solely to the MP’s letter, and, therefore, feel obligated or grateful to vote for the MP in an election wrote

Also

MPs approached by TODAY, such as West Coast GRC MP Patrick Tay, said they are aware of the “long-standing practice” for PAP MPs not to write to the courts on behalf of their constituents*.

So what does Kee Chui do? Scholar and ex-SAF commander makes a U-turn on PAP MPs writing to court.

In his letter to PAP MPs on Friday, Mr Chan wrote that PAP MPs have, “as a norm” over the years, refrained from writing to the Courts on behalf of their constituents.

PAP MPs, he said, “must not do anything that may give rise to any misperception that they can influence or interfere in the judicial process”.

“When approached by constituents over matters that come before the Courts, PAP MPs may write to the Ministry of Law (on procedural issues) and the Attorney-General’s Chambers (on prosecutorial issues). This has been the general practice, and will remain so,” he added.

In his letter, Mr Chan reminded his fellow PAP MPs that the courts have “clear and strict procedures to uphold the independence and integrity of the judicial process”, and are in the best position to evaluate the evidence and merits of a case.

He added: “The separation of powers has never been in question even when the courts have received a letter from an MP, directly or indirectly. Nevertheless, to avoid any doubt or public misperception, may I remind PAP MPs not to write to the Courts on behalf of their constituents.”

Today

Like that can become SAF commander and minster meh?


Kee Chui’s other major cock-up

PAP: Chinese defecate in public, Indians clean up

Remember PM signaled him to listen to how a minister should explain things?

If he were tansport minister, S’pore would suffer a catastrophic breakdown of train services, and Changi airport would close.

________________________________________________________

And PM in waiting? Like that can be RI boy? But then he was only in RI for Pre U. Even TLK was in RI for four years. But even in RI for six yrs is no guarantee of not being a cock: think TJS.

Like that cybernut should earn millions.


*OK, OK this appeared after he wrote letter but if these MPs knew, how come Kee Chui didn’t know?

The PAP never sleeps

In Political governance, Public Administration on 09/02/2018 at 11:02 am

Well it’s Budget Day, so, With the Budget 10 days away (Sorry I got my dates mixed up, I tot it was today when I first did the piece this morning: 5.00pm)) it’s a good time to remind the anti-PAP types that the PAP is always preparing to win the next general election.

———————————————–

The PAP, like City, never sleeps

The PAP is already preparing for the next General Election (GE) – possibly to be held in 2021 – and Health Minister Gan Kim Yong has been appointed to lead the process of identifying new candidates.

PM on 1 December 2016.

And immediately after the results of GE 2011, Ng Eng Hen, said the PAP campaigning starts next day.

————————————————

It’s already preparing to win over another segment of the population in time for the next GE. The millennials are being courted:

Young couples will soon be able to move into their new homes quicker, as the Government is looking to shorten the wait for public housing.

When implemented, the move will see the waiting period for Build-To-Order (BTO) flats dip to two to three years, from the current three to four years, said National Development Minister Lawrence Wong last week.

ST sometime back

And the elderly (and their children and grandchildren too because less state help means they have to pay and pay more for the needs of the old) are being given more goodies

Amid the rapidly ageing population, healthcare expenditure with a strong social focus to support seniors to age in place will be one of the “big items” in the Budget, said Senior Minister of State for Law and Finance Indranee Rajah.

We already know GST will go up, but the timing, what are the “offsets” (after all our money) and how will everything be spun is what be known later today.

 

How to get S’poreans to welcome mass immigration

In Economy, Political governance, Property on 05/02/2018 at 10:25 am

The calls are getting louder, with more and more voices making the case for Singapore to relook its position on the foreign manpower issue, in the face of a severe demographics slowdown*.

http://www.todayonline.com/singapore/big-read-foreigner-issue-are-we-ready-rethink

The above and a similar ST article a few days earlier is evidence that the constructive, nation-building media is again preparing the way for the flood gates to be opened and for FTs to be allowed in by the cattle truck load (not like now by only the A380 or 747 cattle class load).

The stories reminded me also that

“Opposition to immigration is largely cultural and psychological. Policy options will therefore have to address this.”

Eric Kaufmann, professor of politics at Birkbeck University of London, http://blogs.lse.ac.uk/politicsandpolicy/why-culture-is-more-important-than-skills-understanding-british-public-opinion-on-immigration/)

Eric Kaufmann was talking about the UK, but what he says also applies here.

So somehow, I think talking in general terms that the economy needs FTs wouldn’t work. Think the Population White Paper (Population White Paper: PAP’s suicide note?) which didn’t convince S’poreans that we need FTs by the cattle-truck load.


A personal view

As I’ve blogged before, FTs by the cattle-truck load is good for me personally because of the wage repression effect, stronger GDP growth, rising property prices etc. But still I’m not even in favour of FTs by the A380 load. I want FTs by the A350 or 787 business class and first class load.

__________________________________________________________

So if the PAP wants to use culture and psychology to get S’poreans to welcome cattle truck-loads of FTs, the constructive, nation-building media should tell S’poreans what will happen to the value of their “affordable” HDB flats that they are paying for via 25-year mortgages, if said FTs are not allowed to come in by cattle truck-loads to beat up taxi uncles and professional women. After all, falling HDB, and private property, prices are a consequence of weak economic growth, which will result from restrictions on immigration: at least according according to the “experts” quoted in the said articles*.

As Moneytheism (particularly the Propery cult) is our religion, the message will sink in very fast that S’pore needs FTs by the cattle-truck load to prevent HDB prices, and private property prices, from collapsing.


*The article goes on

Last December, economists said it may be time to re-look the Government’s stringent immigration policies following a UOB report on Singapore’s “demographic time bomb” which will start ticking next year, when the share of the population who are 65 and over will match that of those under 15 for the first time.

In January, Monetary Authority of Singapore chief Ravi Menon devoted much of his speech at a high-profile conference on the topic, making an impassioned plea for Singapore to “reframe our question on foreign workers”, given the limited scope in raising birth rates and labour force participation rate (LFPR). This was followed by a commentary penned by National University of Singapore (NUS) academics urging the Republic’s universities to admit more international students, in light of falling numbers.

Dr Chua, the Maybank economist, questioned how the targets could be met based on the current workforce size without additional foreign manpower, even after taking into account those who are displaced from positions becoming redundant.

“Manpower policies will need to be fine-tuned…Singapore’s transformation roadmap cannot be fulfilled without some flexibility in its manpower policies,” he said.

Dr Chua reiterated that relaxing foreign manpower restrictions during economic upcycles will allow Singapore to capitalise on growing investments and demand. “If restrictions are too tight, business will choose not to invest in the first place,” he said. “That in turn hurts job creation and opportunities for Singaporeans.”

He added that foreigners also “pay their fair share of taxes and contribute to the overall fiscal position, reducing the tax burden on citizens”.

 

 

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

In Banks, CPF, Financial competency, Financial planning, Political economy, Political governance, Property on 02/02/2018 at 7:19 am

A doctor turned fat cat investor responded to Jialat for PAP where I reported a property saleman (OK, OK, he’s title is “research director”) as saying “From the ground, homes with leases of less than 60 years took longer to sell, and at a much lower price …”. (Background reading for those who have not followed the problem with HDB leases of less than 60 years: HDB flats: 35 is a dangerous age)

He wrote

Since 2016/2017 HDB flats older than 39 years have seen a “cliff drop” in prices due to:
(1) Reduction of CPF quantum that can be used for properties with less than 60 yrs lease;
(2) Age of buyer plus remaining lease must be >= 80.

In many mature estates undergoing SERS activities, the price of 40+ year old flats are having 35% discounts against nearby brand new “subsidized” BTO flats. Even with marketing efforts extolling the “higher chance” of SERS for those older flats, buyers are not buying it.

This mini cliff drop has been exacerbated since LW [Lawrence Wong] did an about turn against Old Fart’s & Woody’s asset enhancement propaganda.

Currently majority of HDB flats are still within 25-38 yrs old. The above problem will get worse over the next 10-15 years.

This gives PAPies another 2 terms at least to continue milking Sinkies.

Assuming the next general election is in 2019, this means the PAP will lose power or its two-thirds parly majority in 2029 or thereabouts. Mad Dog will then be 67 and Dr Paul will be about 65. If Mad Dog becomes PM jialat. If Dr Paul becomes PM, let the good times roll.

So if SDP is still headed by Mad Dog as is most likely because he’ll knife Dr Paul in the back to ensure that he’ll rule the SDP, I’ll be forced to vote PAP for the good of S’pore. So I hope he steps down soon.

 

Jialat for PAP

In Banks, Financial competency, Financial planning, Property on 29/01/2018 at 7:39 am

Unhappy HDB “owners”will complicate change of PM (Connecting SMRT failures, 4th gen ministers & change of PM) and other plans.

In yet another sign of a recovery in the private residential market (SIBOR up 25%, but property mkt is hot?), prices went up 1.1 % in 2017, reversing the 3.1%  decline in 2016, figures from the URA showed last  Friday.

But the HDB Resale Price Index (RPI) for 2017 declined by 1.5% , HDB said on Friday.

Worse for those wanting to sell older HDB flats

From the ground, homes with leases of less than 60 years took longer to sell, and at a much lower price … we anticipate the market to improve, especially in areas where former HUDC developments were sold en bloc. Some of these buyers downsized to a HDB flat and kept the proceeds for retirement, or to support their children in purchasing a private home.

Dr Lee Nai Jia, Head of Research at Edmund Tie & Company

http://www.todayonline.com/singapore/private-home-prices-11-2017-reversing-2016s-31-decline

(Trumpets pls: I posted this in April 2017 HDB flats: 35 is a dangerous age. And btw, this Old private flats’ value can also fall off a cliff).)

Anyway, the PAP has a problem if private property prices keep going up while HDB flats prices continue to decline, or stagnate at these levels.

Those with HDB mortgages will not be happy that their their “heavily subsidised” flats have not appreciated in value in line with FTs’ and elites’ private property values, while those with older flats will be doubly unhappy.

Since more than 80% of Singapore’s population live in HDB flats, a growing gap between HDB prices and private housing prices is not good for the PAP.

But at least Mad Dog and the cybernuts will be happy: more of the 70% will be unhappy with the PAP. They can “Keep on wanking and dreaming that the PAP will lose the next GE”.

Even PAP govt thinks ang moh tua kee

In Political governance, Public Administration on 28/01/2018 at 10:57 am

Juz different type of ang moh. They look up to the “Victorians” i.e. the arch colonisers. (Btw, one Raffles, was a pre “Victorian”. Farquhar with his Malay mistress and support of gambling as a source of revenue, was not.

But first, below is the govt’s response to an Economist article entitled “Rules are thicker than blood” which made fun of S’pore’s “Victorian” values.

It makes several good points that our ang moh tua kees forget or ignore or are ignorant of:

— “today’s Western norms … are historically recent and by no means uncontested, even in Western societies”; and

— “time will tell if a cautious approach to social change is wiser”.

———————————————————-

Singaporean values

Rules are thicker than blood” (January 13th) derided Singapore’s norms on what constitutes a family as “Victorian”. Our values and social norms on what makes for a stable family unit are conservative and shape the government’s policies and rules on adoption. They differ from today’s Western norms, which are historically recent and by no means uncontested, even in Western societies. Singaporeans will determine their own pace of any change in family values.

A push for rapid social change, especially on contentious moral issues, risks polarising society and producing unintended results. In Singapore nearly all children are born and raised in wedlock, starkly different from what now happens in the West. We make no claim to know which values are best for every society. The Economist may think Singapore is quaint and old-fashioned, but time will tell if a cautious approach to social change is wiser.

FOO CHI HSIA
High commissioner for Singapore
London


OK, OK yes I know “Victorian” values were once ang moh values. And that shows that today’s ang moh tua kees are also real S’poreans like the PAPpies.

Public tenders = PAPpy greed?

In Financial competency, Public Administration on 23/01/2018 at 7:26 am

At regular intervals, cybernuts (Think TKL and TRE nuts) and usually rational S’poreans complain that public sector public tenders must not always go to the lowest bid or to the highest offer. Discretion must always be exercised for the good of the public. In their opinion, the PAP administration’s failure to exercise discretion for the good of the public is evidence of the greed of the PAP.

But are they willing in turn to give the govt and other public organisations the benefit of the doubt when bids are won by those bidding more or offering more (say for leases) but then things go wrong?

The reality of winning public tenders is that the lowest bids or highest offers are the way to win them. The UK has seen the collapse of Carillion, a construction and outsourcing contractor, who won public sector bids by consistently being the lowest bidder.

—————————————————-

The trap of awarding tenders to lowest bidder for society

Rob Whiteman oversaw the procurement process at the government’s UK Border Agency, where he used to be chief executive. He now heads up the Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy.

He worries public contracts are too often awarded to low bidders.

“Low bidding can appear attractive to procurement officers because they know they will be judged on value for money. But I think there is a bear trap,” he explains.

“If we overscore cost in the evaluation then we risk squeezing contractors’ profits and if they’ve got their sums wrong they may take their best staff off the contract and the taxpayer gets a sub-standard delivery.”

Another concern raised by Mr Whiteman is a lack of focus on the companies’ financial robustness during the tendering process.

He thinks that while civil servants look at a firm’s track record for delivery, more questions need to be asked about how financially sound the company is before awarding a contract.

http://www.bbc.com/news/business-42720245

——————————————————————–

To avoid accusations of wasting public money, there’s pressure to accept the lowest bid. Conversely when tendering revenue generating contracts (say leases), there’s pressure to accept the highest bid to avoid accusations of failing to maximise public revenue.

Remember that in the background is the elephant: there’s the taint or accusation of corruption, favouritism or cronyism when the lowest bid (or highest offer) is not accepted.

Coming back to the idea that discretion must be exercised for the good of the public, what is the “good of the public”? Ideas on a post card, as those wanting public tenders to be awarded using this criteria don’t seem to be able to define it. In the case of renting leases, for the “good of the public” usually amounts to renting out to a small mom-and-pop comfort food operation rather than Tony Tan Colonel Saunders or Big Mac who can afford to pay and pay unlike the small family eatery. So everyone KPKBs of “moneytheism” of the PAP administration.

 

This issue is more complicated than the cybernuts think.

 

 

Connecting SMRT failures, 4th gen ministers & change of PM

In Economy, Political governance on 22/01/2018 at 8:16 am

This headline

All EWL stations to see early closures, late openings on weekends and select weekdays in March

(CNA)

reminded me of the failure of the PAP administration to ensure that the trains run on time*. I mean even that incompetent World War II dictator, Mussolini, ensured that Italian trains ran on time.

This failure is more significant than just the loss of output legitimacy (PAP has lost “output legitimacy”) because the PAP is talking about a change of leaders and the importance of trust.

People would also give their trust when they see the Government has been “responsible, anticipates and are responsive in meeting their needs” and there is an overall improvement in their lives, Mr Chan said.

The minister added: “Some policies take longer to bring forth results and the population may feel impatient.

“Each generation of leaders would therefore need to be consultative yet nimble in meeting these needs while managing finite resources responsibly. These are important so that we do not face a trust deficit, and run the risk of citizens disconnecting with or being disenfranchised by the government.”

Read more at https://www.channelnewsasia.com/news/singapore/chan-chun-sing-lays-out-key-leadership-qualities-needed-for-9852508

The problem for Kee Chui and other potential PMs is that the trust (partly based on output legitimacy”) S’poreans have for the PAP leaders is based on Harry, Dr Goh and gang did. The PAP has been living on (literally withdrawing yearlymillions of dollars) the trust in the bank trust account that these guys put in.

But the fourth generation ministers have not put much trust in the trust bank (OK, OK, same for GCT and Ah Loong and their gangs but that’s another story).

In fact, they could have cost losses to the bank account

— a possible future PM,  Ong Ye Kung, can be blamed for three problems: low productivity, labour unhappiness and SMRT breakdowns.

— Heng, the probable next PM, is linked to the minibond and DBS HN5 note losses (He was MD of the central bank at the time: Helping retail investors: the HK way and the S’pore way).

And worse, there’s not that much left in the bank account after the SMRT cock-ups and PE 2017 fiasco.

True, the 4th gen ministers have avoided getting involved in the SMRT mess. But that shows that they were not trusted to get involved in such an important matter affecting the lives of ordinary S’poreans.

Trust? What trust, Kee Chui?

What’s more, in a one-party state, the party in charge can’t be seen to incompetent, and the SMRT fiascos clearly show that there’s something wrong with the way the PAP does things. So that’s yet another problem for the 4th gen team.

But then could the failings of the 4th generation leaders be the excuse for the 3rd gen leaders in the cabinet to skip a generation and bring in a young, IT savvy guy as the PM in waiting? Names please on a post card?

————————————–

*SMRT said on Friday (Jan 19) that its board has confidence in the company’s management team and the ongoing efforts to enhance management, operational and maintenance capabilities.

CNA

The report went on

A Straits Times report on Thursday said that Mr Nathan has resigned and is serving out his notice. It also said that “observers are expecting chief executive Desmond Kuek to step down as well”. It did not specify which observers it was referring to or why they expect this to happen.

SMRT has been under pressure from the public and the government in recent months after a series of high-profile incidents, including the train collision at Joo Koon station in November which left more than 30 people injured, and the flooding of a section of a tunnel in October which caused prolonged delays.

 

Why PAPPies’ apologies make many angrier

In Uncategorized on 21/01/2018 at 11:38 am

When I read a BBC article on what kind of apologies work (http://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-42716501), I couldn’t help but think of how the PAPPies and their kak kian apologise.

Think PM (before 2011 election and his family row), and Khaw, and the chairman and CEO on the MRT cock-ups; and one thing is clear. Their apologies don’t work i.e. they are not effective: they leave many angrier.

Reason is that the apologists don’t show enough concern

Experts say the formula for an affective apology can be summed up with the acronym CAR

show concern

demonstrate action

offer reassurance

(BBC article. Other extracts also from the same article.)

They demonstrate action and offer reassurance but they don’t show enough concern. But to be far, does Khaw, or the CEO and chairman of SMRT take the MRT to work? And PM was born with a silver spoon in his mouth. It was even encrusted with diamonds.

And they don’t convey empathy and compassion

From businesses, governments and organisations, a scripted response will fail to resonate as it will not convey empathy and compassion.

But if it’s one thing Harry taught the PAP, if in doubt, be “Be arrogant and complacent”.

Moreover

“It is vital that any business or individual making an apology understands the focus – is it sorry for the way it’s acted or is it sorry that the complainant feels the way they do?”

In the case of the PAPies and their minions their apologies come across as sorry that the complainants feels the way they do: think PM or Khaw.

I’ll end with

How to tell a genuine apology from a fake one

— Spontaneity – watch out for the speed of response, the quicker the apology comes, the better indication that the person making it has felt an immediate sense of guilt

— Body language – if genuine, the person making the apology will be looking for listening clues to see if they are being understood, such as eye contact and facial expressions

— Vulnerability – performed apologies always have a sense of being “acted out”, and are often accompanied by too many theatrical gestures. If the person is genuine they will provide “humbling signals”‘, such as a lowered head, to indicate remorse and vulnerability

— Denial gestures – the biggest clues of insincerity can come after the gesture itself, with non-verbal signals that silently reject the words used; this can include looking to the floor and smirking.

 

Sounds like Singapore?

In Political governance, Public Administration on 25/12/2017 at 4:54 am

An anti-PAP talking?

[G]overnment has maintained a façade. It proclaimed democracy and concern for social rights. In reality, it eroded civil, political and economic freedom.

Nope some analyst describing Venezuela

 

Trump and Republicans take a leaf from PAP’s playbook

In Uncategorized on 24/12/2017 at 5:16 am

Remember the howls of protest from the ang moh tua kees and the other anti-PAP types when the PAP administration reduced state spending on wards that had Oppo MPs? Unfair they screamed.

Seems that ang mohs in the shape of Trump and the Republicans have done something similar. Their Christmas present tax cut clearly favoured loyal red (Republican-voting) states over Democratic blue ones.

Deductions of state and local income and property taxes, known as SALT, when calculating liability for Federal taxes is now limited to US$10,000. The provision hits hardest Democratic-leaning states with high incomes, high property values, and high taxes, like New York, New Jersey, and California.

FT reports that a New York based banker earning US$5m a year, will be paying an extra US$400-500,000 in taxes.

 

 

So unlike ministers

In Banks, Uncategorized on 23/12/2017 at 1:43 pm

The zero bonus, or doughnut, could be looming for bond traders as bank revenue from fixed-income sales and trading units has been falling FT reports.

TRE reader tells off s/o JBJ, analyses TCB’s comments

In Political governance on 21/12/2017 at 8:27 am

When TRE used a piece by s/o JBJ ranting about Dr Tan Cheng Bock’s comments etc, he was rebuked by a TRE reader

opposition dude:
December 19, 2017 at 7:36 pm (Quote)
Kenneth, kindly do stop talking about your dad at every opportunity. You are sounding like a real sore loser. At the very least carve out your own standing amongst the electorate just like how your dad was seen as a fiery match for Lee Kayu.

He then went on to explain why he disagreed with Dr Tan Cheng Bock’s comments that the fixing of PE 2017 would affect the next general election. He makes some valid points:

With that being said, the electorate will forget about the PE when the next GE comes. This is because PAP has screwed us all over so many times the electorate votes based on the frustration level on the ground at that point in time.

Just compare and contrast the last 2 GEs. The overcrowdedness on the island led to PAP’s lowest vote share, even the PAP admitted it. It wasn’t the raising of GST or lack of freedom of speech or CPF or even high BTO prices, ministers’ pay, lack of accountability or any of the issues frequently raised here on TRE.

Then you look at 2015. The PAP CLAIMS to have solved all the unhappiness for 2011 but we all know the island is even more crowded than before. But see what gratitude gets you, in this case a 10% increase in votes. Even the PAP says they were stunned because we all know that they didn’t do a proper job on the immigration issue.

Now, if the PE alone can decide PAP’s fate then I would be very surprised. For one thing, I would ask myself why the PAP were not reduced in number when the price of so called public housing made us pay up to a 35 year home loan, why there were still so many of them in parliament when GST was raised from 3% to 7% and why voters did jack when the donkeys’ pay was raised 20% in the 90s.

My take on Dr Tan’s comments: Will Oppo parties step up to the mark and score?