9/09/2006

unhappy singaporeans, please go somewhere else

Johnny be good is right. If people here are not happy, leave for a life overseas. Then you shall see through your one-dimensional prism that you will face the same problem foreigners face in Singapore, and you shall see how you like it. Don't even argue national protectionism for one's own peoples, for your concept of nationalism is increasingly flimsy in this globalised world. A nation is an imagined community and this is one area in which your imagination is a liability to all. The above is a view of anonymous posted in another thread earlier. The discussion is on the serious issue of replacing Singaporeans with more foreign talents. All FTs will stand for such a position. No more countries, no national barriers, the world is free and open and the talented shall be welcomed everywhere. If this is what the world should be, good for the talented. And Singapore just committed the most expensive mistake in Education. There is no need to pamper our teachers with more salaries and perks. Go overseas and recruit the best teachers from the poorer countries and pay them peanuts and they will all rush to come here. As for our demanding teachers, tell them to pack up and go overseas and see which country will pay them the big fat salaries they are getting. Yes, all Singaporeans who think that they are not earning enough and want more should go overseas and see if they are worth what they are getting here. I can bet most Singaporeans, other than a handful of exceptional ones, will find that no one will pay them what they are getting here. The salaries that Singaporeans are getting is an artificiality that is created by ourselves. We consciously push for high salary and high cost of living and are trapped in our own doings. Singaporeans will willingly go for lower salaries if the cost of living is lowered. But we can't if we are to live in this island. But should Singaporeans listen to such comments that if we are unhappy, pack up and leave? Who has the right to say this to Singaporeans? Any politician who dares to utter such remarks will see himself packing. This is home. And for FTs who are here, they must know that they are here with our blessings and good grace. So long as they respect that there are citizens and non citizens, and the citizens must have better privileges, they are welcomed. Once they get crazy ideas in their heads and telling Singaporeans to ship out because they have a right to compete with Singaporeans on less pay, their time is up. They must not understimate the wrath of an angry people, the citizens, to kick them out. The world is not a free or borderless world. Otherwise we will not have any Singaporeans left and all will be replaced by people from the poorer countries. The island belongs to every Singaporean. It is a product of our forefathers, their sweat and tears. Any foreigner who thinks otherwise is planting the seed for their expulsion. Any Singaporean who agrees with this will see his own expulsion as well. For there are many hungry people willing to take their place here.

30 comments:

Anonymous said...

Singaporeans can't even kick the PAP out, let alone the FTs. The reason why they are so cocky is because they know they are here with the full blessings of the PAP, and they know that Singaporeans are powerless to stand up to the PAP. I won't be surprised if one day the FTs will be the ones to kick the born citizens out.

redbean said...

its happening!

Anonymous said...

So, do you still believe Singaporeans have the balls to kick the foreigners out ?

redbean said...

what kicking them out? we are going to make way for them to come in shiploads and plane loads.

the new diaspora will be the singaporeans. citizens of the world. have a country but cannot afford to stay and work in their home land.

Anonymous said...

Assuming they still want to come back to live and work. My experience is that once a Singaporean has tasted life overseas and see how much he's been shortchanged back home, it is going to take a huge effort to entice him back. :-)

redbean said...

if every talented singaporeans go overseas and did not return, then in one generation we will have a totally new breed of singaporeans at home. like blood transfusion.

Anonymous said...

A new breed who are as hungry as the original immigrants from China and India were. That's the only way for Singapore to become competitive once again. The current crop of citizens have gone soft and limp.

redbean said...

yep. time to dispose off unproductive units.

Anonymous said...

Law of natural attrition. Survival of the fittest. Shape up or ship out. However way you look at it, the choice confronting Singaporeans is stark and clear.

Quick Draw said...

Hi redbean. In today's world, ownership is not established by sweat and tears of dead people. You have to prove yourself worthy to own it by working hard. Become complacent and one fine morning you will wake up to the sad realization that you have been displaced by others who are more willing to work hard than you are.

redbean said...

hi quickdraw,

welcome to the blog.

i share the same sentiment and your reasons as well as anonymous.

we don't need globalisation to understand that everyone must shape up. those who want free lunch will be left with nothing. our meritocracy philosophy also adopts this same principle.

if you stretch this principle to its extreme, the world will be taken over by the indians and chinese. they deserve the world. the rich countries, including europe and america will have to make way for them.

it is like water finding the lowest level. all the singaporeans who are getting 'out of this world salaries' will also be redundant. no nation, no country, only individual talent counts. the best 10% of india and china will be better than even the best 1% of our people. and these 10% are 100 million each. not a single singaporean will survive against 200 mil of their best. perhaps i should qualify this by saying maybe 5 or 10 singaporeans may survive. the rest will have to become labourers and construction workers or junior execs. too expensive and not really talented enough to compete.

on the other hand, assuming li ka shing's sons are very average, assuming only, will he ask his sons to go and replace them with foreign talents? will any family or country chase their sons away on the ground of meritocracy and replace them with foreigners?

all of you will be third or fourth best against these competitions. no chance. go to nus and ntu and you will know what kind of competition the singapore students are facing.

Quick Draw said...

Singapore is not like most countries. It is country with many limitations. The big countries can afford to erect barriers and they will still survive because they are self-sustaining. Singapore isn't. Once you understand that, you will realize why the government has done what it did wrt foreign talent.

redbean said...

hi quickdraw,

you are right that we have many limitations. and i think the people are not really against the foreign talent policy to welcome foreign talent.

what the people are against is the influx of talents and non talents to fulfil the prophecy that we will not survive without an increase in population, trying to drive economic growth through population growth. we are limited by space and resources and will hit the roof sooner or later. if we are more sensible and do not drive for high unsustainable growth, just gradual growth, it might allow us more time before hitting the roof.

there are two parts to this policy. the population growth part may drive us to the wall sooner. limited land, roads, air, water and jobs. no point bringing in half a million and create 300k jobs.

Quick Draw said...

The way I see it, the issue is one of demand and supply. I don't think the govt is stupid enough to open the floodgates to these people if they are not convinced that there is a demand for them from employers that needs to be met. So, there is no problem with hitting the roof so long as the job market can absorb them. Their influx into the country also creates positive multiplier effects on the entire economy. Try to look at the issue in more broad terms rather than dwell on the myopic view that they will eat up precious resources.

Anonymous said...

Cherche says:
That paragraph you highlighted in bold and criticised was my comment from a previous post.

Contrary to what you might think after reading that paragraph, I am not some anally retentive Foreign Talent. I am Singaporean through and through. But the truth is that opportunities are open to everyone, everywhere, they are dependent on the degree of barriers to entry, yes, but the chances are there. The stark reality is that you shape up or ship out. How ever much you romanticise about our country (and much romanticism is indeed justified, of course I also am very proud of all that our forebears have accomplished)an efficient country will not wish to be tied down by a group of romantic, nostalgic and inefficient people who encumber its progress towards the top of the world ladder.

That is the simple and hard truth we have to face. From start to finish, nationalism is a naturalised form of hegemony. We all have our emotional ties to our nation, and there exists a two-pronged causation-effect policy which dictates us all:

1) We are selfish because we want to cling onto a nostalgic 'exclusivity' of our country. We want to make it ours, all ours, and never share. This will have the effect of reducing Singapore's political and economic power globally so that ultimately, the collective suffers in place of the individual;

2) We want to 'protect' 'our' nation. In the first instance, what does this word 'our' mean? This piece of land was not ours, it was the indigenous fishermens' on which Sang Nila Utama landed. This concept of 'born' citizens is a very ugly one, and it is also a form of hypocritical, nationality-justified racism / ethnocentrism.

Anonymous said...

Cherche, you have exposed redbean for the hypocrite that he is. On the one hand he writes posts critical of the Malaysian NEP system while on the other advocating the same principle of exclusivity and protectionism on the basis of nationality. Different shit, same smell, redbean.

redbean said...

hi cherche, my apologies for the mistaken identity issue.

the world is being tugged by the trend towards globalisation and away from nation state. either extreme is bad. nation state evolved for a people to organise themselves, synergise and compete as a group. in such a state, the weak gets support from the strong and the strong becomes stronger at the same time.

in the case of globalisation, it is reverting to darwinism, or the law of the jungle where the fittest survive. no room for the weak. 'I am strong, i am talented. make way for me or you shall perished.' and that is what globalisation is all about.

allowing this movement to run its own course is to change the world model and a new master will eventually appear to form a new and bigger state. man will organise for his own selfish good. the concept of state will return.

historically the talented and powerful will want to control the world and set the rules of the game. but all the strong and powerful will be devoured by the poor and helpless when they organised themselves.

capitalism also went through the same road where the rich gets richer and the poor gets poorer. then the poor rose in a revolution.

all these cycles of history will only repeat itself. the strength of any model will lead to its rise and then self destruction.

the malaysian nep and bumiputra policies appeared to be good for the bumiputras in the short run but will eventually destroyed them.

likewise our meritocracy policy or open door policy to welcome foreigners. they look good now but will become our pain tomorrow. remember how right was the 2 child policy?

redbean said...

hi anonymous,

you should get out of the mould of being personal. we should try to engage ourselves on issues and not i scratch you and you scratch me.

i think you are very young. need to grow up.

Anonymous said...

I think you should also try to get out of the mould of a hypocrite.

redbean said...

hi quick draw,

certain sectors of our economy need foreign workers, at the low end and high end. not in the middle when singaporeans are more than adequate.

to stimulate growth by rapid population growth is a double edged sword. i find this a fallacy and we will pay a heavy price for it in later years.

Quick Draw said...

Hi redbean. I think the problem with Singapore is that it is too reliant on FDI to power its economy and create jobs. Foreign investors want a free rein when it comes to staffing their local offices. In this respect the government does not have much bargaining power; insist that they hire locals over and above non-locals, and these investors may not want to come at all. Singaporeans are disadvantaged on several fronts besides higher expectations. Males for example have national service liabilities every year and this can impact on the business operations of a company if for example, the person is working on a project which is at a critical juncture. Employers need the flexibility to get someone who is unencumbered by such burdens. I ahve also found in my experience interviewing for positions that local candidates are extremely averse to regional travel and being outstationed for extended periods of time. So, you see it is not really only a case of being suitably qualified but also having the right attitude.

redbean said...

hi quick draw,

you are right to say that we depend on fdi. we do not have indigenious industry like the swiss to support the economy. our biggest international manufacturer is perhaps creative technology. the rest are all borrowed technologies and need foreign contributions.

and we have a serious problem, like you have mentioned, for our own citizens to compete equally with foreigners even on home ground. in other countries they have home ground advantage. in our case our citizens have homeground disadvantage. how to explain to the people that the govt is looking after their interests?

how to tell them not to be afraid of foreign competition?

Quick Draw said...

Well, the people will just have to understand the position that Singapore is in, that in this matter the government doesn't really have a choice. For those who do not like it, as one of your other commenatators aptly pointed out, they have the option to pack up and search for greener pastures.

Anonymous said...

Govt looking after the people's interests ? Don't make me laugh. Politicians are slimiest scumbags to ever walk this planet. I wouldn't even trust a politician to look after my lunchbox, what more my bigger interests.

Cherche said...

And it's ironic for every working citizen in every country is anxious about the other country's transmobilised citizen, who is in turn anxious about the first, and so on and so forth...

But that's life. I'd rather this happen than see my country be forced to close its doors and rot within itself. We either go all the way, or not embark on it at all. A national protectionist plan, even the one like Malaysia's bumiputra, is repulsive.

What I don't understand, redbean, is why you're so ambivalent about the issue. At one moment, you're raving on about how we should best kick foreigners out, and at another, you're reasoning with a commentator about why the foreign talent appeal is necessary.

What is your stance? You've been going on about this for many entries now.

redbean said...

hi guys, and cherche,

my position is fluid in a way. this is just a discussion platform and not a win a lose debate.

the other position that i am quite consistent is not to take extreme position or decisions. anything that is pushed to the extreme is bad. vitamins may be good for you. but overdosage of vitamins will kill you.

like i said before, i am not opposed to foreign talents. but don't get carried away and dumped the not so talented citizens aside. the govt exists for the people and not the state or for foreigners. there is a social contract between the govt and the people.

Anonymous said...

The govt exists for the people, yes, but when the people elected a govt that ignores their rights and privileges as citizens of this country, in favour of foreigners whose loyalty is at best transient, then there is nothing else to say.

redbean said...

not really. this is the time for the people to voice their disagreements. if not then the govt will think the people are behind them.

hopefully the govt will treat this disagreement as an issue and do not take a broad sweep to condemn the people as anti govt or undermining the govt.

it is the right of the people to disagree. this is a kind of feedback.

Anonymous said...

Sure the people can voice their disagreement, but unless it's during election hustings, you think the govt is going to give a rat's ass at all to your voices ? Election time is the only effective time to voice any disagreement. At other times, your voices seem like background noise to the govt.

redbean said...

throwing a small piece of scrap paper over the window will not dirty the playground. but if everyone throws a little scrap, you will have a mountain of rubbish. and rubbish are useless waste. but if you don't clear them, it can be very unsightly and smelly too : )