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8/20/2006

reinventing singapore

After 41 years as a new nation, we celebrate national day again and again while others celebrate independence day. Our independence was handed to us on a platter, not on a pool of blood of independence fighters. We have grown from about 1 million people to 4 million, including all the residents, PRs and guest workers. It is quite a strange feeling to count the guests and PRs as part of our population. And we are aiming for 8 millions despite the dwindling fertility rate. And projections claimed that only 1.5 million Singaporeans will be left in the not too distant future at the rate we are going. This would mean that Singaporeans will be a minority in this island which they called home. Assuming that this will be the case, lesser indigenous and organic growth but with an influx of foreigners who are happy to be just permanent residents as they get better privileges than the citizens, would the island then really resembles what we have heard very often, a hotel? And if this is the nature of things to come, maybe we should think about reinventing Singapore into a global city without citizens. Everyone is a guest. Everyone is a PR. Then we can change our status from the Republic of Singapore to PR Singapore. Not People's Republic of Singapore, but Permanent Residence's Singapore. We can declare ourselves something like a neutral piece of land like Switzerland and get a guarantee from the United Nations and all the big powers to safeguard our neutrality. Then we can disband all the expensive and cumbersome defence infrastructure and national service. We will be the shining example of a country without borders. Anyone can come and go as they please. And no citizens to curse and swear about being at a disadvantage in their home country. Everyone is equal, just a PR. No more Singaporeans, just citizens of the world.

2 comments:

abao said...

I hold mixed feelings about this "Reinventing Singapore".

Its true that we will become endangered in this century based on current trends. So are we going to:

Follow the Government and make Hotel Singapore?

For a Nation which takes pride in surviving the bleak prospects of independence, are we going to undo what our ancestors done and make Singapore back to the Colonial days where Singapore is just a trading post?

And with immigration, foreigners bring on the local customs and mannerisms to Singapore. Can we accept this?

And about the last part, where we disband our army, I think the day where PR Singapore comes true we will no longer have an army as we are no longer a country. No Government, just pure people and business......

redbean said...

the current assumption is that singapore needs 6 to 8 million people to survive. we survived with less than 3 million people, even slightly more than 1 million. if the assumption of 6 to 8 million people is true, we are doomed for good.

but could this assumption be wrong? could we survive with just 4 million people and do not push to the limit our limited land resources?

when new citizens and prs are small in numbers, there can be absorbed without affecting the character of the people. when the foreigners are more than the locals, we will be absorbed and loose our original identity as a people. we may find a new one that is better. but can be worst also.