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Tuesday, October 31, 2006 

PAP-Bashing with Reasoning II

I guess most of the entries on why you've dislike the PAP are already in. Thus, I'll take the next week or so to distil the comments into few key arguments and take it on from there. Many thanks for your "bashing with reasoning". Perhaps, after this "PAP-Bashing with Reasoning", we could start something of ex-President and lesser appreciated Founding Father of Singapore, Devan Nair. His speeches are often inspirational and maybe it would be good to start by publishing some of his speeches before commencing an article on him. Stay tuned!

Thanks for having such a blog.
It is quite refreshing to have a counterfoil to most of the PAP-bashing that we usually find online.

Perhaps besides Mr Devan Nair, you could look to Mr David Marshall as a source as well.

Thanks and keep it up!

how about some discussion of Today?

"The PAP, in its desire to govern without opposition and entrench its own position, has systematically either corrupted or dismantled our system of checks and balances. This makes out system very vulnerable to abuse by those in power, as the NKF has shown. After 40 years of nation building we actually have weaker rather than stronger institutions. This augurs badly for the future of Singapore.

Posted by Anonymous | October 16, 2006 10:20 PM "

the press is an obvious example

what about comment on temasek's thai problems; another example of weak institutions not provding check and balance on individuals making decisions

Thanks all!

Btw, what is the discussion about the TODAY?

Cheers!
T

the newspaper whose editor just "resigned"

anything about the things you feel negative about the Government? it'll be refreshing to read a critical piece from you rather than a moderate stand article.

http://whalesharkchronicles.blogspot.com/2006/11/how-to-believe.html

Hi thor666

Well, it is not a matter of writing some negative about the govt just because the rest of the bloggers are. If we looked at the comments on their reasons of negativity in the previous page, the issues are common for almost all govt in the world. Essentially, we should look beyond the veil of negativity and assess our own debates before we are fully reasoned and equiped to argue our case.

Many a times, we fall short in our arguments and debate as we stop short of arguing against our own perspectives.

Thanks!
T

no that's not what i mean at all. it's more like i'm looking forward to your own misgivings with the government, irregardless of what other people say. policies and implementations, not individuals - should be the issue.

being critical is very different from being negative - you can propose solutions and amendments beyond what you think is wrong.

Of course, whether you'd like to do so is really up to you.

Hi thor666

Apologies for misinterpreting you. Yes, I've planned to incorporate some thoughts on that in the coming article where we response to all the "PAP-bashing".

But if you have any other thoughts, please feel free to state them.

Cheers!
T

so no comment on Today? no comment on Temasek? you are out of touch

Hi there

Yes, I think I am very out of touch. Well, in my defense, I am busy with work and apathy seemed into my bloodstreams.

Haha...anyway, I'm in the process of the article so bear with me. I'll get to Temasek and TODAY soon enough.

Cheers!
T

As Low Thia Khiang said in the rally:

"Singaporeans can afford to pay, but have the ministers live up to their million dollar salaries?"

We should frame the question this way, Yes, we should pay them well, but are they living up to the expectations of the people?

GST increase, Bus fares increase, less welfare and health spending than most mature democracies, increasing university school fees etc.

Everyone should watch what Low Thia Khiang says about ministeral salaries. Moderate, Thoughtful and just brilliant.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_90PnKY14k8&mode=related&sear

First of all,why do you guys like to sign off as "Anonymous"? If you really want to be anonymous, just leave a pseudonym to identify yourself.

Yes, it will be interesting to hear T's perspective on our so-called "negative comments".

To sum up my comments in the previous article, the main issue I have with the government is the lack of a voice of the people.

Or rather the lack of a civil society; perhaps the govt. feels our society is too small and fragile to survive any shocks to the system?

Moving up the Maslow's hierarchy of needs to the top; self actualisation anyone?

now who is self actualizing? maybe all those ministers and CEOs earning a million plus a year? or the professor who talks sociology to people who prefer soap opera?

old professor

It is disheartening that the common people is always being shafted down with their polices one after another. Most accept them but the hearts are filled with anger and disappointment. Most feel that they cannot break their might, they feel trapped. Life will go by, but with certain sadness. We may have fines to stop people from doing crimes, but people will become anti-social because it is only thing that the laws cannot control. People will start to have attitude problems. And no law can stop that.

I think it's more of the out of bound marker which has been preventing people from speaking and voicing their views of the gov. It's good to speak out. However, we might never know whether we've stpped on a landmine and get involved in unnecessary trouble. And I want to ask u guys a problem. How often are our views taken in? We voiced our displeasure against the fare rise. But eventually, the bus fare still rised. So one would come to think whether it is a futile task to raise our opinions. So in the end, our people have learnt to keep silent because they know no one will bother about it. That might explain the lack of voice in singapore.

if you do not have degrees from harvard/stanford, or at least went to RJC, your views are obviously unnecessary

Goh C T nvr attended these uni his views still matter

If every single view of the pple has to be taken in acct (esp bad ones like welfare state) then sooner or later there will be no spore.

if you want to nitpick, then LHL went to catholic high and cambridge (though went to harvard for a master degree later); you need to get the gist of what I said

also to nitpick, Tony Tan was the preferred successor, and today has the important jobs like SPH, GIC, Research Foundation

about the 10.27pm anon, the PAP slogan speaks for itself

Hi all

Thanks for all your inputs. Layman and Owen, your comments are well taken. Instead of replying in depths here, I guess I'll just do a brief one.

In this aspect (of liberal freedom of speech and closing the feedback loop), no country is truly democratic. Perhaps the closest human came to it was in ancient Greek times. But that didn't last very long. To a certain degree, a society can only work efficiently when the authorities have a level of autonomy.

But to keep it simple and short, society will self-select itself to a certain model that best suits itself.

Cheers!
T

>no country is truly democratic

this is really weak; so there is no need to criticize and look for improvement? it is as bad as

>If every single view of the pple has to be taken in acct (esp bad ones like welfare state) then sooner or later there will be no spore

so there is no need to listen and find out which view is valid and policies should change?

Yes, agree to the point that not every view must be taken in especially the bad ones. However, there are also good views that weren't taken in as well. This like some of u have explained, no gov is democractic. The gov might want to rule the country in their own way so as to maintain control of the people in the country.

The comment of: if you do not have degrees from harvard/stanford, or at least went to RJC, your views are obviously unnecessary

Are we living in a country running by the elites and don even care on the views of the "low" class citizens in the country? Those who knows how to study do not necessarily equal to knowing how to formulate good and effectively policies. It's just the same explanation as one who knows how to study do not necessarily mean he/she is good in every field that he/she came across. So equating his/her qualification does not mean his/her abilities in politics.

Sad to say, we are indeed living in a country where qualifications means everything. So i think its still up to the gov to change such attitudes. But if they do not lead the change, how could they expect their citizens to follow suit?

Hi Anonymous

Well, isn't your reply equally guilty of generalization and taking my comments out of context? Never have I said that there isn't a need to criticize and look for improvements. I think it wouldn't be fair to me if you presume and assume my comments.

If you may, direct me to my comments where I said "that there is no need to criticize and look for improvements". Otherwise, aren't you just as PAP-like to assume and presume policies?

Hi Owen,

I do agree with your point. But I would beg to differ that there are avenues and channels for Singaporeans from all walks of life to contribute to feedback and channels when the people in position are there to listen. But are we too apathetic and skeptical to voice? Maybe yes, maybe no.

I think everyone's voice is important, but not everyone has the same kind of energy and optimism to make themselves heard thru the channels. While critics may call these channels as pseudo ones and doing it for face value, but have we tried hard enough or be persistent enough to drive our message across? Or have we become cynics out of convenience?

As I said before, if you truly believe in something, make your self heard and make other hear you. If we live in fear of our responsibility, we have not lived. But glad that your have shared it, and it is a valid point.

Thanks!
T

I guess we should be grateful that the PAP didn't win in Potong Pasir. Otherwise that $80m upgrading they were going to spend on the constituency would have to be raised via GST collection. Then GST would've been raised to 9%, at least.

The way the government uses tax payers' money to consolidate their monopoly on power disgusts me to no end. I cannot believe how the MPs and ministers can go through all these logic back flips to justify and explain it. There is no logic; it is plainly unconsciuonable

P.S. T, thx for the insights in your blog. And also a punt is a guess or bet; a pun is a play on words. You mean the latter.

Thrasymachus,
I am a 61yr old Sg now. Been jobless for 10 years but I did not blame govt or anybody for my poverty. I am to blame for my own situation.
But 2 days back when I saw on TV, LHL announcing GST rise to 7% I could not help shedding tears. This govt's program of finding way to tax the poor has never been deviated for 40 years. Initially it was only a earthworm but now it turns into a scorpion, devouring poor, downtoearth sporeans even as they struggle to survive.
Initially I thought LHL would be different from his father and less pretentious than GCT. Now I cry painfully because LHL is no different.
Then this morning I read in ST Mah Bow Tan saying opposition wards naive to expect upgrading. What is this man trying to say? That the people of spore, including PP and HG should not hold any hope from the mouth of GCT during the electionary period.
I like to read your analysis of all the political leaders. Now can you tell us your thoughts on MBT and LBH? I am puzzled as to how these people can assume so much power in this country when they were never elected by the people.
I remember that MBT was defeated at PP and had to walk over the people in the subsequent election.
I have no intention to criticise anybody. Only inquisitive to know how things happening in our country is causing so much pains in mind and heart to the majority of our people.

Hi Anonymous,

I share and empathise your feelings and predicaments. Well, there are reasons and overarching logic why they increased the GST. Eventually, they planned to lower the income tax to 17%, to be competitive with HK. But, yes, the govt should and could do more to help the needy and Singaporeans with financial difficulties. Will not try to defend or explain the govt's point.

The widening income gap is a problem with the govt has to solve and has no way of evading it. Maybe if there is more answers need from me, please feel free to drop me a note at singaporegovt@singapore.com

Why MBT and LBH are high up in the ladder when they were not contested? Maybe only the "paramount leaders" have the answers. But I once recalled, LKY talking about the appointment of newer Ministers is that, they should not hessitate to make difficult decisions and implement difficult but necessary policies. Maybe the description fits them.

Thanks!
T

T thanks
I understand your answers a little. I think what you mean is that the PAP ball is rolling downhill and gathering momentum plus mass. The earth on which it rolls will be pressed harder and harder. Its passage will cut a groove which runs deeper and deeper. And perhaps the ball's passage will be stopped by the muddy patch (the poorest sgrean) which yields a great depression made by its own weight.
The widening income gap is a deliberate creation, just like the ball above. It cannot be solved by the govt. Only the lowly soil can stop it and that is by all turning into mud prematurely.
Ah! Suddenly I remember that Johor is opening up for us to live, work and play there. That is the place where our soils should go and turn into mud.
Thank you for inviting me to email you but I am afraid to. Especially when your mailbox is singaporegovt. I admit I am an old coward.

Hi Anonymous

Nice analogy. Well, call me an optimist, but I think there is a concerted effort to narrow this gap, even within the top ranks. As their new legitimacy will depend on it.

As for the email, if you are worried, you can always setup a anonymous yahoo account and send me the mail. Rest assured that it will be confidential and I am too poor and occupied to trace who you are. Not that I am bothered about tracing anyone.

Cheers!
T

tax increase? where is all that profit from overseas investment?

Robbing the poor to help the poor. Decreasing the income tax to benefit the rich. CAn you call this help to the lower income people? Instead i think it's more of increasing the wage disparity between the lower income and the higher income group. This is obviously trying to drive the poor to become poorer and the rich to become richer. What a joke PAP..

Folks!
I think if you even try to think of a better way to help our country, you already over-rate yourself. The govt today is not just made up of Mps and ministers who are rich in pockets and in knowledge. Most important of all, they are supported by thousands of highly educated and intelligent public servants. The amount of brainpower available to the govt or pap is beyond your imagination. So if pap cannot find a solution to any problem in this red dot, nobody else can. Definitely not any local bloke who has not been invited to join the party. And you still schooling folks please do not muddle the water by speaking your mind which is still full of water and therefore crystal clear.
What am I saying?
I am saying that as citizen, if there is anything on which you are unhappy about, be it your neighbour's dog or the GST, you please don't start jumping about for an alternative or solution. The proper and most efficient way is to tell the powers that be that you are not happy with this or that. If you can, state your reasons for your unhappiness. If cannot, never mind. Just say you are unhappy will do. And let our govt find the alternative solutions. It is their duty to look for solutions which pleases the peasants. And unlike other countries, they are highly paid so kindly let them do their jobs more. Please do not make the mistake of accepting their automatic challenge that you suggest an alternative. Any attempt on your part means you are trying to do their job and of course you cannot so you end up muddling matters.
Note that we plain citizens are not political or opposition. So do not behave like some OP mp who really tries hard to offer alternatives instead of performing their primary duty of telling the unhappiness of the simple folks who elected them. So don't bash or thrash the ruling part. Just whine and cry in their hearings. Let our sobs disturb and irritate them so much that they got no choice but to direct us to JSER or find solution to stop our whining. On this matter of whining, we the netizen must do it on behalf of those of our fellowmen who are peasants and never been online.
These are my personal thoughts about how I should behave as a citizen.
scratching dog

So in short, if SG citizen is unhappy, vote opposition. :P Since that's the best way to show your unhappiness.

On another thought, have been thinking - actually a opposition dominated parliament isn't that bad. The power hungry Republician-like PAP will always want mileage back to control other aspects of Singapore. Let them fight for such mileage and work harder.

Agreed. Vote for more opposition MPs because they are more willing to speak in the parliament. They do not have to risk being kicked out or asked to stand down by the gov when they made bad comments about the party. So what if they are educated. If they made bad comments about the party or go against the party's will, out u go..

hi thor66,
Thinking of op = being political. Please, never indulge in politics. Pap is messing up the govt by treating every action as political - citizen's, organisation's and in particular, poli.p. and pap's. But in reality, majority of citizens are apolitical, though some like you and I are vocal and make much noise like politicians (I believe T is poli. :)). Anyone who foolishly puts a finger into the poli-soup pap will be pursued and ass biten to shreds by mad dogs.
As common folks, we however do have the right (not rights, only 1 right) to whine over unpleasantries imposed by govt. Must whine personally. Whine right now, to the person near you. Don't even bother to know who he/she is. When your mind happens to think of our govt, e.g. GST or minister's salary, you whine immediately. Do it alone never mind where you are. Even if you are in the public toilet with your pants down shitting, you should whine and let your moans be heard outside the cubicle. I am sure you will find instance relieves and feel better as a Sgren. Hopefully some kind soul will asked you why you whine and moan. You explain and he learns to do the same when he feels down as a Sgren. Very soon, the govt workers will learn this and so would pap.
Exercise our right to whine as and when we like, thor66! Don't wait 4 more years to exercise the right to vote because there is no assurance you can exercise it. I have not been voting for 20 years and never had to chance for my mp to come my door to listen to me whine. So don't wait. Whine now.
And sorry. I don't know if more op in parliament is good or bad. Now I only whining to you.
scratching dog

hi thor66,
Thinking of op = being political. Please, never indulge in politics. Pap is messing up the govt by treating every action as political - citizen's, organisation's and in particular, poli.p. and pap's. But in reality, majority of citizens are apolitical, though some like you and I are vocal and make much noise like politicians (I believe T is poli. :)). Anyone who foolishly puts a finger into the poli-soup pap will be pursued and ass biten to shreds by mad dogs.
As common folks, we however do have the right (not rights, only 1 right) to whine over unpleasantries imposed by govt. Must whine personally. Whine right now, to the person near you. Don't even bother to know who he/she is. When your mind happens to think of our govt, e.g. GST or minister's salary, you whine immediately. Do it alone never mind where you are. Even if you are in the public toilet with your pants down shitting, you should whine and let your moans be heard outside the cubicle. I am sure you will find instance relieves and feel better as a Sgren. Hopefully some kind soul will asked you why you whine and moan. You explain and he learns to do the same when he feels down as a Sgren. Very soon, the govt workers will learn this and so would pap.
Exercise our right to whine as and when we like, thor66! Don't wait 4 more years to exercise the right to vote because there is no assurance you can exercise it. I have not been voting for 20 years and never had to chance for my mp to come my door to listen to me whine. So don't wait. Whine now.
And sorry. I don't know if more op in parliament is good or bad. Now I only whining to you.
scratching dog

i don't know. if whining changes anything, i would whine. but it doesn't.

i am probably actively apolitical - I keep track of current affairs and I choose to become apolitical. Why? Because to effect change, I believe you need to rock the boat.

Too many people in Singapore are unwilling to rock the boat. They don't believe in giving inexperienced sailors a chance, and the captains prefer certain inexperienced sailors over others, even if the sailors they have are sub-quality. We're still sailing the same boat even if it's worn already, fixing as it moves along. Nobody's thinking of preparing a new boat, sailing a new direction or grooming a captain with experience in sailing. We're all sticking to the old captain's sailing route even when the seas are changing. We're all as so to speak, on autopilot.

And I think that's the saddest thing about Singapore in the years to come.

We do need people who can inspires people, the people of Singapore in particular. Someone who is more of an idealist, preach and practice with passion, instead of cold pragmatism which is leading us nowhere.

Owen,

Yes i agree more opposition MPs in parliament because they r not kicked out when they criticise the govt. But instead men like Ling How Doong & Cheo Chai Chen r kicked by voters instead!!! Hahahahaha what hv u got to say?

Furthermore a man like Tan Soo Khoon who "drew blood" was asked to serve another term. Tan C B another fierce PAP critic lasted 6 GEs. what more u got to say?

maybe these guys should be rewarded? made ministers? sent to run Temasek/GIC? no?

i wont wish to comment on that because i wasn't that concern about politics. So, what i say might not be true. But growing up in this era and being concerned about the past 2 GE has made me, a 19 yr old, thinking what more we can do to make our country better.

So, the possible reasons i can think is the financial downfall during that period. People might be voting for securty of the country as PAP was the dominant party at that time. So in order to get the security for their GRC, people voted the PAP in.

Regarding Tan Soo Khoon, his parliamentary speeches has made well-known by his fellow colleagues in parliament. So, if the PAP were to kick such influential speaker out of the party, isnt that too obvious that the PAP is trying to kick out people who are against them..

I'm not too sure about my comments. Any disputes you guys can raise it up or further clarify it for more. Don't expect too much from a 19 yr old though. :)

Hi,
When I was 17, I was a temp teacher earning a meagre salary which greatly brought relieves to the family. At 19 I was shouting Merdeka when news trickled to my ears at the work place. Then I did not really know what it meant but only that my hero LKY will bring people like us out of poverty. And all of us, poor O Level holders did slog hard. Spurred by the very nationalistic speeches only. Nobody did give us a real helping hand to build our lives. Nor did we go ask pap for help. We were only asked to bear with the hardship.
So take note owen. Nobody really expect a 19 year to contribute to the nation but throughout the ages people above 16 have been making changes to their own lives. This in turn affects those around him, like parents, siblings, relatives and friends for sure.
One important difference between Sg youths of today and my time is that today there is too much talk of need for leaders. And since we don't like the incumbent leaders we wait noisily for the leaders we can respect to come along. I wonder why the noise making youth cannot be leaders. Leader of small little things like whining aloud in the toilet cubicle? Or just write JST on a t-shirt with a cross on it?
Of course it take guts to do even such small little things.
However it sure beats just grumbling here and waiting for something to happen. Anyway something is already happening out there. There is someone sighing and then sheepishly smiling in anticipation for a kindly Sgren to ask him his reason. You will never know his name but please do ask his reasons if you happen to be around a sighing man.
Make things happen folks. Start by doing little things. Help it grow. As long as the mass has a common objective the little sparks here and there will turn into flames. There is no lead flame needed.
T! Do you thing the rolling ball is nearing the mud patch?
scratching dog

i know a self-employed Sgren called his friend at 10pm to ask help for $100 outstanding money to be paid up by, and his friend understandingly transferred $100 by iBanking that evening.

I am whining. Making a living is so hard in Sg for educated Sg, and Sgren has to help each other.

Sgren will rise up from grave to work if she/he has no money, even if there are social safety nets. So why raise the tax to give Sgren less strength to wake-up, and ask them to lie down instead with the welfare ?

I am whining, very very sad. Not becos of money, but becos of suicidal spirit of the poor to work, met with the increase in tax.

Don't whine. Please go take a look at http://dogahowl.blogspot.com/
Perhaps we can help our country now.

scratcher

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

Few days away from the internet always leave me with surprises in the number of comments.

Anyway, thanks for all your genuine comments and it is well appreciated. Rest assured that I'll also response to them in my next article.

Cheers!
T

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

Programming...
Line001 1998 - 3% GST
Line007 2004 - FH, FW, FT
Line008 2005 - Income gap widdened
Line009 2006 - FareHike, PUBhike
Line010 2007 - 7% GST
Line011 2008 ?
Line012 2009 ?
...
(20 years from now)
...
Line032 2029 - GST how ?Fare ?Salary ?

One Question now for Gov : Now GST 7%, Retire 2029 in Sg ?

Technically, unlikely.

Is it so difficult for Gov to make Sgren to love his/her own country, ie. to say "I love Singapore." ?

On the contrary, any average Sgren, will wake up now or overnight, and realized, "Shit ! I am in a deep shit for my future."

Are the elected leaders (in general) not worrying about not able to help average Sgren say,

(*) "I love my country becos i am comfortable with my country ?"

this is precisely the nature of the job given to the leaders, to worry, and the rest is secondary and will follow naturally (*)

If leaders cannot worry exactly about this, no matter how big achievements or success Sg is, or how out of touched leaders are, the job given is mistakenly taken up as other jobs. It is like the analogy, chicken and duck talking.

Think about it, the home is the same. If parents can worry about what their family members are worrying, no matter how little improvements parents are making, it is still worthwhile to be at home.

Help the Needy

Our Government is reputed to be efficient in our management of the country. We’ve managed the communists. We’ve managed the secret societies. We’ve managed improper conduct of certain opposition party members. We’ve managed the turf club, legal soccer betting, and Singapore pools well. We’ve managed to overcome the oil crisis in the ‘70’s, the stock market crash in the ‘80’s, and the Asian currency crisis of the ‘90’s.

And we’ll be able to manage any misuse of the casinoes that will be built. Yet, when it comes to giving some welfare for some needy people, we can’t manage any abuse of the welfare.

Is it because we can’t – or because we don’t want to? Will giving some welfare lead to a welfare state or welfarism?

We emphasise ‘self-help’ which is well and good. Yet, what about those who can’t help themselves? Then, ‘self-help’ means ‘no-help’. And if there’s ‘no-help’, what’s the Government doing? Only to help the young, the gifted, and the able-bodied?

A man jumped to his death because of money onto the MRT tracks at Chinese Garden MRT station. There’re those who have no food for their family and commit suicide!

Something i reflected on myself today. Most knowlegde and reasons (for raising GST) are found, only when the heart is right, or has love and sincerity.

When GST is going to be raised, i ( or everyone ) sought to find out the reasons why, and discussed why such policy is taken by Sg.

Based on the rise in cost of living in the past and present, the hike in GST is negatively taken by me/many.

However, reasons and knowledge (for raising GST) are not helpful, when my/one's heart has not found the goodwill and sincerity of Sg.

So, i will not think further about this issue.

Nevertheless, the theory that GST will help the economy and the poor, has not yet been proven, because it has not connected yet through the heart and with love/sincerity with commoners.

This theory/policy will not be disliked nor accepted either. It will just be held pending to be understood. (Becos there has been too many business cheatings in life and society, so i could not fully support Sg all the time.)

(But the opinions remain, must lowering income tax come with raising GST ? and many commoners are struggling to meet financial needs).

Meantime, it maybe meaningless to comments that Sg should not raise GST, without sound knowledge myself.

(i used the word 'i' and 'me' to mean as an average commoner)

one phrase.. with no sense of belonging to the country, we do not feel the sense to contribute to the country.

Just why do people shut out the idea of this GST raise? Simply because people are already very discontented with the living standards in singapore.

Yes, the gov may list out why there is a need for this increase. But the fact remains that people have already shut themselves up of the idea. Everything that is said is of no proper reasoning to the commoners.

Yes, the gov may compared our rates with the other countries. But are we as great as them just yet to be in that kind of conditions.

So the problem here is clearly that of nation building. The inability of singapore to build a nation is the cause of its failure to persuade citizens of their policies. So if the gov brings out the comparison with other nations again, i would predict the uproar of people saying that since we do not have a sense of beloning to singapore and do not defer from other countries that much, we might as well migrate to other countries. With a full range of rich cultures and distressful life, why choose singapore over those european countries?

And yes, that would be the ultimate effects that might just appear in the near future. BUILD OUR NATIONAL IDENTITY FIRST or else what policies is all futile efforts in the very very near future.

GST....I cant believe that the real reason to increase GST is to help the poor.... If this is true, the government should come clean with the breakdown on how much of these monies collected from the people are really put into good use for the poor...

Just to give an example... My friend's dad recently got admitted into hospital for heart failure and treatment alone will cost $1000 per month... She is the sole breadwinner at home earning a modest sum of $2800 per month. The hospital set her up with a social worker who was suppose to help her see if there are any schemes she can tap on to help manage the medical fees. The result of the meeting was disappointing as she was told that only families with a combined income of less than $1,000 is eligible for some government schemes that help the poor... So no help at all....Fortunately or unfortunately, her dad passed away 2 weeks ago and it was a financial relieve for the family... So helping the poor? Where's the help when people need them? Are we only having nice written policies sitting on the shelves that never gets implemented?

Coming clean on how the money has been used to help the poor will be very interesting for me at least... I am not against paying 2% to help those in need but I need to know how these money is helping the poor to have a better life....

Firstly, its unjust to just name the gross earnings alone. It is difficult to judge on the welfare side whether that amount of salary is really considered poor or not poor. Just compare your friends dad with those lonely old folks who have none to depend on and have totally zero salary. So, it is just a matter of comparison whether who needs the money more. And in the healthcare sector, i would agree that the income cut off be low because there's just too much old folks needing such benefits in order to treat the "old people diseases". Being in the healthcare sector before has made me realised this. There are really alot of unfortunate people around us.

2800 bucks is considered quite a huge sum of money if considering he just need to support the family with ur fren, his wife and himself. Considering doing away all the luxury and stuff, i would think that they still can afford to go by without much of a problem. Fyi, my family takes home a gross income of close to 2700 bucks, dad and mum are on long term medical treatment which cost like 300 bucks every month and having 2 kids attending university. Life gets by pretty well except for the lack of luxury items. So dont stand on your side to look at the picture. Consider the big picture especially since the number of aged has started to increase in the past few years.

And like what ive said earlier, the requirements for GST shud be based on a per head calculations of the family to determine who requires the benefits. This is a fairer system to judge the poor and the middle income families. Healthcare benefits comes in hundred or thousands in dollars while GST benefits will just be limited to a few hundred bucks. So we just cant compare the 2 situation together.

I agree with ur very last point. Come clean on how the money should be used to help the poor. The rest u can read in the previous posts.

The two per cent was earlier said to help the needy. Today, it is that it's not to be redistributed. It's better to 'lift all boats'. What contradicting statements within the government!

"lift all boats" is only temporary, lesser maid levy, more childcare subsidy, blah, blah, blah, blah, are only temporary.

Owen,
Sgrens are just global citizens. The gov do not protect the people (and its industries). Remember they said this to the arabs ? As global citizens, there is no culture.

The way a rich pple deal with global citizens - is to make sure global citizens do not create trouble in the world, make them work hard, tax them, pay ownself high salary, and join the league of rich countries and people.

Even with money reserves, will Sg become a forgotten place, where world events pass us by, and it's just a barren land, compared against giant resources like China, India, US, Arabs, Europe, South Africa ?

Even if it maybe will, but i think the gov is just too kia-su, and making itself out-of-touched with some ABC issues, after handsomely rewarding itself.

http://straitstimes.asiaone.com/portal/site/STI/menuitem.c2aef3d65baca16abb31f610a06310a0/?vgnextoid=6fadbe120b93a010VgnVCM1000000a35010aRCRD&vgnextfmt=vgnartid:e241784ab493f010VgnVCM100000430a0a0aRCRD

During the forum, aired last night on Channel News Asia, Mr Tharman said that the increase in GST was part of a larger effort to raise revenue and boost government spending to invest in the future.

It is not purely for the sake of redistribution, he took pains to stress. Rather, the aim is to grow the economy by investing in the country's future, by improving the education system, renewing estates and building better homes, transport, medical care and creating a world-class city.

'This is not just an exercise in redistribution. This is not a zero-sum game. If we use all the GST money to simply give it back and redistribute it, I don't think that would be worth it.

'We've got to invest in the future so that all Singaporeans enjoy better growth, lift all boats, so... everyone is better off. That's the way we will do it - tilt the balance towards the lower end but make sure we're investing in the future so that all boats are lifted.'

He acknowledged that the GST on its own is a regressive tax as it takes up a bigger portion of a lower-income person's wages compared to that of a higher-income earner.

But in Singapore, the GST comes with other measures put in place systematically to help the lower-income group, he said.

'This is the Singapore way of doing it. GST by itself will be regressive, but GST plus other schemes will not be regressive.

'That's our commitment. We will make sure it is not regressive.'

Hence, there will be schemes like Workfare to ensure the lower-income ended up 'better off with the GST increase compared to before'.

When we asked ourselves.."Are we satisfied with the living condition in Sg, with so much to pay ?" we know the Sg Gov never try to answer this question, but side-track to talk about short-term subsidies, while still increasing other costs of living for long-term.

So we know Gov is making us unsatisfied with the living condition, and maybe driving us out to "work abroad and have home instinct".

When we moved abroad to establish ourselves, Gov will dangle a carrot, to call us back, and introduce us business networks.

When we come back for a while, we find that there are Gov's sticks again, to make us move abroad.

Is this the kind of push and pull agenda that will embrace Sg policies.

Average S'poreans pay the least in taxes as compared to other countries. Most taxes r paid by top income earners (eg wee cho yaw) and corporate taxes by ig MNCs.

If we r to go down the slippery path as designed by WP (welfare state), end of the day there will be no S'pore left.

Rich and able men will leave spore in droves leaving the poor behind to bear the brunt of the enormous taxes.

low tax if you only count income tax ang gst; you have to add in things like coe, arf, land prices, etc; overall, i dont think is tax burden is much lower

"'It is not purely for the sake of redistribution.' He took pains to stress."

...by anonymous.

This was not the impression given during the first announcement that GST will be raised. It was to help the lower- income group. Whether pains was taken to stress was not obvious.

Did WP say they want a welfare state? The path is not slippery if welfare is well controlled.

Of cos Low T K has got no guts to admit tht in parliament. HIs ill designed welfare scheme aim at bankrupting S'pore has been clearly pointed out by V Balakrishnan. When asked by PM Lee what exactly he wants, he cant answer either. PM Lee went on to further add Low has ample opportunities to tell the world what exactly he wants but each time he failed to do so. He could hv say it during the launch of his party manifesto, GE2006 and during debate of President address but each time he dont wan to say.

If u buy cars of cos COE, who asked u buy cars?

Average sporean dont buy cars.

Maybe u urself is a car owner here with a hidden agenda hahahahah.

Apologies if i expose u but a man like u with no intention of doing gd but just like Low who wana bankrupt us has to be exposed anyway to let sporeans see ur true colours. hahahahah

If Low tk did not say it, then it is yr assumption and allegation that he had a 'ill-designed' welfare scheme to 'bankrupt' Spore. This is slander.

If he did noot say it, he simply did not. It does not mean he did not hv guts. One may hv guts yet commit slander.

Besides, was it V. Bala who said it? Even if he did, that was his opinion. It might not be a fact.

Welfare state is certainly not good.

BTW, Can u give some eg.s of countries literally 'bankrulpted' by welfarism?

Cars issue was not mentioned by me.

U committed libel that I/we want to 'bankrupt' Spore. U did not eexpose me. U exposed yr own folly.

I'm not Low's supporter. I only give objective views. the other anon writer has also been objective. we do not make persoanl attacks like some ppl. lol

"with no intention of doing gd but just like Low who wana bankrupt us"

If Low tk did not say it, then it is yr assumption and allegation that he had a 'ill-designed' welfare scheme to 'bankrupt' Spore. And "with no intention of doing gd but just like Low who wana bankrupt us" These r libel.

If he did noot say it, he simply did not. It does not mean he did not hv guts. One may hv guts yet commit libel.

Besides, was it V. Bala who said it? Even if he did, that was his opinion. It might not be a fact.

Welfare state is certainly not good.

BTW, Can u give some eg.s of countries literally 'bankrulpted' by welfarism?

Cars issue was not mentioned by me.

U committed libel that I/we/Low want to 'bankrupt' Spore. U did not eexpose me. U exposed yr own folly.

I'm not Low's supporter. I only give objective views. the other anon writer has also been objective. we do not make persoanl attacks like some ppl. :-)

Y din Low asked V Bala to repeat tht out of parliament so tht he can be sued? Lol

This is indeed a very interesting exchange abt welfare state. Tht anon poster who wana distnaced himself from Low must be a very shrewd political player (I guessed around for a long time) but at the same time so supportive of Low. One really wonders who he is. Must be walking on a tight political rope, any moment fall to his death also dunno why. hahahhaha

the last anon. is the one who can be sued 1st.
Since he/she has more guts than LOW, y r his comments anon.?
He/she insulted and cursed the previous anon. as 'walking on a tight political rope, any moment fall to his death also dunno why. hahahhaha'. Curse can return to himself/herself. ;)
Previous anon. more mature.hehehe

Please pay attention to per capita (per head from Latin) numbers as they are more meaningful.
2007 popn lineup:
China (1.3b); US (0.3b); Sin (4.5m).
China/Sin: 286x; China/US: 4.33x; US/Sin: 65.9x;
GDP/PCAP: China: US$8,928; USA: US$45,144; Sin: $35,817
PMSin pay US$2.5m; US$percap: 0.55; PMSin gets this pay per year from everyone in Singapore.
USPresident pay US$0.4m; US$percap: 0.0013; USPr gets this pay from everyone in USA.
SinPM gross pay: 6.26x USPr
SinPM pay per capita: 411.8x USPr.
China GLC per cap: US$1,000;
Sin GLC per cap: US$28,552;
Sin GLC per cap: 28.55x of China.
GLC: Govt linked company
Interpretation: Based on per cap income, USPr will need to work 411.8 years for one year SinPM worked. Conversely, since in one year everyman has 24/7 x 52wks; USPr is stressed out 411.8 times that compared with Sin PM.
If SinPM were to get his pay per cap as that of USPr, Sin PM will receive: US$6,070.
Conversely, if USPr were to get Sin PM pay; US Pr will receive US$164,726,553 a year. To do this a plebscite will be called.
Pay/GDP/CAP: US Pr: 8.86x; Sin PM: 69.8x. This means USPr makes 8.86 times GDP/CAP(USA); SinPM makes 69.8 times GDP/CAP(Sin).
E&OE

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