2/27/2006

demographic swing or change

the electoral register saw an increase of 45,000 voters over the last 5 years, giving a net increase of only 9,000 a year. assuming a birth rate of 30,000 in the corresponding period, it means 21,000 have left. and if one is to include the new citizens, maybe more have left, after netting off death. what does this mean to singapore? are we really becoming a hotel for foreigners? would we reach a stage when foreigners, including prs, outnumber citizens? maybe it has already happened. and if the citizens become a clear minority, i think we are in for trouble. why this demographic shift? why are people leaving for greener pasture? why being the best in everything did not attract our people to stay but to leave? when people vote with their feet, no amount of explanation can say otherwise. the negative factors are stronger than the positive. so is there any reason to crow about how good we are? the pattern of flow is serious in the sense that the able middle class are moving out. the leftovers will be the heartlanders and a few super rich. so we have those who either cannot leave or the small minorities who are so comfortable that they would not leave. why? are our policies that difficult for citizens to find living here bearable? the general perception is that our policies are more in favour of non citizens, prs and guests but very unfavourable to our own citizens. what we need is positive discrimination to favour citizens. $2.6 billion is pi sai to the people, a light drizzle. the expensive education system, the expensive healthcare, housing etc are basic things that make life untenable to many. those who think, will know how expensive it is to bring up a child through university education. and they must make sure they have a hoard of savings to pay their hospital bills. and housing will tie up all their little spare cash. for the few rich, no problem. the answer to the woes of the citizens is in the people living. these statistics cannot lie. no amount of explanation can hide this fact.

14 comments:

Matilah_Singapura said...

They are attempting a slowly-slowly approach. It is called "guided" democracy.

Actually there are some aspects of guided democracy I support. However knowing that the PAP have ABSOLUTE POWER reminds me of Lord Acton's immutable obsevation:

Power corrupts. Absolute power corrupts absolutely.

abao said...

The words "Power Corrupts" remind me of robertteh and his blog, Matilah. ^^

But seriously, after reading at redbean's post, i can't help but worry where did the 21000 people go to?

Is Singapore's migration rate really so serious?

Matilah_Singapura said...

The Singapore diaspora is between 100,000 and 200,000.

You'll be surprise how many can't bear the thought of living out their lives there :-)

I would say, many more want to go, but they are either too afraid, unprepared, not motivated enough...or not enough funds to emigrate. (yes folks, you need money - like it or not)

I am a proud "member" of the S'pore diaspora. I get to use S'pore as a "base" and a "banking center" and earn a significant part of my income in a "tax-friendly" way ;-)

I have the best of both worlds: the economic freedom in "free market" Singapore, and the individual freedom in "mabok" Australia, (most people are mabok here, most of the time) which makes it a great place to be a beach bum... I come and go as I please to "Hotel Singapore". :-)

In fact, I am a selfish individual. I have no qualms about using the both systems to my complete benefit. And I know I am not alone - many S'poreans are also selfish - they do things to their own benefit - and bugger the darn cuntries.

I fully support this kind of outlook, and encourage more S'poreans to treat their Mother Cuntry as a HOTEL. :-)

redbean has this bee in his bonnet about his precious cuntry (which happens to be mine as well). He is expecting people to stay and "affect political change".

What for? Who has the time? Everyone is SELFISH and cares about themselves first. So, people are down to 2 choices:

1 Live with it and shut the fuck up

2 Leave and wipe your hands clean of PAP totalitarian dictatorship shit.

... and the third choice:

3 Leave, mercilessly tekan the PAP from overseas, come back and enjoy all the wonderful things S'pore has to offer, in spite of the PAP being there :-)

Such as: Zouk, Sentosa Beach Parties, Holland V, Boat/Clarke Quay, the many fine restaurants and wine bars, cheap flights to regional ports, impost-free banking system, resonably free commercial ...etc.

And the best thing: easy to make money in S'pore, and living costs are reasonable.

But seriously folks, life smiles on you a bit brighter, when you are an expat in Singapore. Consider joining the growing ranks of the ex-Singaporean expat, returning for some lucrative contract work - alot of it offered by govt.

This to me is the BEST WAY to exact REVENGE: take money FROM the government! And keep getting those contracts. Take their money, with GLEE!

Hooray! :-)

redbean said...

hi abao,

i have not been to robertteh's blog and did not understand what you are trying to say.

as for the missing people, it is serious. maybe that is the real reason why the urgency for foreign talents to fill the void. but why not understand the real reason why people are leaving? a leaking well will continue to leak unless the hole is plugged.

it is better to live and face the truth than to live in delusion and pretend everything is ok.

and i believe the numbers are genuine and very serious.

redbean said...

matilah,

if singaporeans can step forward and change the system, gradually, without any upheavals, that will be the best solution. but unfortunately you cannot solve the problem when the solvers are the problem. for that reason alone, they cannot see or understand the problem. they will cook themselves in a matter of time. too comfortable in self delusion.

running away is the last option. and it is not easy to run away. other than the financial cost, there are a lot of intangibles and social cost that are very heavy to pay.

we should not run down the singapore diaspora. they will eventually be the one to save singapore. a repeat of the chinese and indian diaspora. they will have to feed their former homeland and give it another lease of life.

this is a big irony. the stone that the builders reject will form the corner stone for a new palace.

Matilah_Singapura said...

>> we should not run down the singapore diaspora. they will eventually be the one to save singapore. <<

Well, I used to think that.

I don't anymore. s'pore will fail, becoz the people in power are too darn arrogant. the public is asleep and disempowered.

... and the overseas s'poreans are living their new lives in their wonderful new adopted cuntries. And once the new generation of kids are born overseas, the "connection" is diluted further.

China and India are cuntrie - thus they are specific RACES, and Nationalities.

"Singaporean" is not a RACE, it is a nationality.

China and India are also ancient cultures with complex and deep-rooted traditions woven into the social, racial, national, INTERnational and individual fabric of anyone who is Chinese of Indian.

No such thing exists in a Singaporean. S'pore is not even 200 years old.

For those reasons, the S'pore diaspora is not as "switched on and emotionally attached" as the Jewish, Italian, Irish, Chinese and India diasporas.

Italians, Irish, chines etc. claim their own "turf" when they emigrate, so you have Chinatown, the Latin Quarter, Little Italy, etc in many global cities.

To my knowledge, there has yet to be a "Singapore Town" set up overseas!

Even in Perth - if there was to be a "Sinagpore Town", you'd expect it to happen first in Perth. Perth is home to around 20,000 singaporeans - the largest collection of singaporeans in an overseas location.

Most of the singaporeans here don't know each other - and they like it that way :-)

Also important to remember: the emigration form china and india was due to economic hardship - no money, therefore emigrate to a "rich" country, work and send money home so the next family member could come over.

S'poreans OTOH, also have economics in mind, but they are different. Mostly all s'pore emigres are well educated and peopl of means. They are looking for a "good life" which is "affordable". So they tke their CPF, and proceeds form the sale of their apartment to their new cuntry - like Canada or Aust, and find they can afford 2 cars, a large suburban home, maybe some rental property, perhaps a boat. They reason "my dollar goes further overseas. I live in singapore I can only have a small condo and one 1600 cc car".

Now that is, UNIQUELY $INGAPOREAN! :-)

redbean said...

i agree with your reasoning. singaporeans did not have that kind of history and deep roots. and this is a weak link.

if anything were to happen, it will not be in the immediate future. even the indian and chinese diasporas could not do much in the past until the time is ripe.

there may be a time in the future if the conditions are there. but i also accept the fact that the roots are not deep enough and maybe after a couple of generations, the feeling is totally gone.

Matilah_Singapura said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Matilah_Singapura said...

>> if anything were to happen, it will not be in the immediate future. even the indian and chinese diasporas could not do much in the past until the time is ripe.<<

Many of sg's Chinese and Indian diaspora (now several generations born overseas) are "returning" to their rapidly progressing cuntries.

In other words RACE+CULTURE+Nationality beats S'pore's "nationality" in terms of emotional "pull".

>> also accept the fact that the roots are not deep enough and maybe after a couple of generations, the feeling is totally gone.<<

Which is why my prescription is to PRIVATISE EVERYTHING and install a small, effective and capitalist-friendly "nightwatchman government". The other alternative is of course anarcho-capitalism, where there is no govt and everything is privately run.

Now, understandably, many people are uncomfortable with ANARCHY - regardless of its flavour. So, returning to my Objectivist roots, I propose a small govt existing on a FIXED budget (so they cannot grow bigger and stronger) everything within the territorial realm of s'pore - completely privately owned - even by foreigners. as long as someone owns it, that's ok.

The same arguments viz a viz private property apply: WHEN YOU OWN SOMETHING VALUABLE, YOU'LL LOOK AFTER IT. self interest at its best.

But this model is not new. This is the "model" s'pore set out to adopt.

This is essentially the SWISS model.

redbean said...

i think the rich and powerful may love your idea. sell everything and be a landlord.

but what about the poor hardlanders? sure they would protest. though they only have a hdb, but that's all they have in this world.

Matilah_Singapura said...

The heartlanders will actually be the BIGGEST BENIFICIARIES of private property laws.

Their HDB will be considered private property, none of this "lease form the govt" shit.

(remember: the premise on this kind of state is thet EVERYTHING is privately owned)

The poor man will then have exactly the same rights under law as the rich man. That means if the rich man violates the poor man's rights, there is FULL JUSTICE for the poor.

The system that is in place now ensures that justice is a function of wealth. The law is supposed to be "blind".

Yeah. Right.

redbean said...

i must agree with you that our properties, if hdb is considered our properties, is actually owned by the state. it is just on lease.

only the rich own the piece of land they lived on.

for equality we shall have only one kind of ownership. either all state owned or all privately own. that will be a revolution!

Matilah_Singapura said...

When (my hero) Margaret Thatcher started her crazy privatization in the 80's one of the FIRST THINGS she did was give those who lived in council flats and houses full title.

That's how state ownership reverts to private property - it starts with a no-nonsense private property, capitalist leader.

Many folks blame Maggie for the lack of govt funding for this that and the other. Of course. It's all private now... so of course there is no more govt funding!

The best part, is Maggie applied rock solid, centuries old English Common Law Principles (which are perfectly congruent with libertarian or anarcho capitalist principles) - if you lived in the govt flat for X number of years or more, you are entitlted to OWN it.

Immediately, overnight, Magaret Thatcher increased the material wealth of hundreds of thousands of people - those on the lowest salaries. Overnight, these day-to-day struggling folks became property owners - something they could NEVER ACHIEVE on their megre salaries in a STATE CONTROLLED property market. (public housing).

Of course, this little vignette of Thatcherism is hardly ever mentioned. Maggie Thatcher is preferred to be remembered as an evil fascist witch by the masses, who are duped by the commie-left-wing idiots who have the loudest voices.

redbean said...

true to say that our short lease on hdb flats is only good in the short run. and how can they be an asset when it is supposed to disappear in thin air when the lease expires?

if someone is to change the length of the lease title. it will then be real ownership and real wealth for as long as the flats remain standing.