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2/28/2006

are we becoming a police state?

there is a big article in the straits times on youth loitering after 11pm. and loitering after this hour is a no, according to the police definition. these youths were found either drinking or chit chatting or some even attempting mischief. on first thought, all youth should be tucked in bed by this hour. or they should be mugging their books. no reason to be wasting their time outside or being tempted to try the unacceptable. yes, these youth must be controlled and sent home. now, by who? who is responsible for their nocturnal activities? what if the parents allowed them to do so? some may not and did not know. do we want all our children to be in bed by 11pm? is it wrong, if parents allowed it, for children to hang out after 11pm? now what's wrong with that? what's wrong with a city that does not sleep? do we really need the police to go about rounding up children and packing them home? are we afraid of the children's safety or the safety of others at the hands of these children? there are bound to be some who are up to no good. guilty till proven innocent or innocent till proven guilty? if the police shall go around checking on children, would it amount to guilty till proven innocent? or does it mean that loitering around after 11pm is a violation of some sort? and the police is in the thick of things. i have a very funny feeling about this.

workfare bonus: different views

some pap mps were concerned about the expectation of the bonus by the people. opposition mps were against it as an election gimmick. so don't have workfare bonus! uh huh. there are always different ways of looking at it. understandable for opposition to whack it as another form of pork barrel politics. understandable for mps to raise concerns that people will expect more of it in the future. but whatever, it is the people's money. it is profit from investing the people's money. and there is no better way than to return them to the people, and make the people feel that they are part owner of the nation's wealth. what other nonsensible ways to dispose of the money? pay big fat bonuses to the managers of the nation's reserve? give away to foreign talents like mercenary footballers? splash them to make beautiful parks or landscapes, pay more to political leaders, give the presidency another perk? or what? there are many ways to waste the money. it is sinful to just keep the money and not benefitting the people. it is all how to explain and package it. the best way is to link it as returns from investment and treat every citizen as a shareholder of the nation's reserve. and to return to the shareholders when there is a surplus. have a transparent formula so that people know what to expect. and don't do away with it because mps are very rich and don't need the money. the people, many of them, need every cent that they can lay their hands on. ok, rich mps, please back off.

2/27/2006

lky welcomes good opposition

the mood seems to have changed. the tone set by lky and his message to chiam and low to put up good men to contest came out quite genuine. gather some good men and win a grc, serve well and pave the way for more opposition members in parliament. this is a welcome change. but how many good men will take the bite? how many will brave the possibilities of being ridiculed for the smallest demeanour in their lives? how many have not pee along the roadside in their younger days? how many have not climbed the fence to steal a few rambutans? how many have not taken a few pieces of papers from the office for their private use? how many have not called their wives or girlfriends using office phone and time? everyone is human and erred in some ways, or being playful or mischievious at times, smell the wild flowers, paint the town red. but if coming out to stand for public office means having their laundries hanged up for public scrutiny, then not many good men will come forward. only a few monks and priests will deem themselves worthy enough to stand. or those who know they will not be exposed by being in the right camp will have the cheek to stand. and walk around like saints. unless such stigma of running down potential candidates are no longer in the cards, many good and decent men, who have strayed a little, will not offer themselves to serve. and we will have those who have nothing to lose to come out screaming and fighting. politics is a dirty game but need not be made too dirty.

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.

2/26/2006

money can buy anything

we bought two nigerian footballers for $50k a piece and capped with a $5k salary plus perks for every match they played. and our citizenship was also given away. and itimi and agu ran away. money can buy anything, but at best mercenaries. who ever is the higher bidder will get his mercenary. it is a neat deal. no sentiments, no emotion, no attachment, no care two hoots about loyalty, decency or citizenship. how much is all that matters. we shall keep our football league as strictly a business enterprise. no tax payers money shall go to buying foreigners. no citizenship shall be given to mercenaries. let the business run as a business. if the clubs can afford to pay a million, good for them. if they can't, please leave taxpayer's money alone. and please show some respect for our citizenship and stop throwing them around to shits.

golf and politics

sunday morning is good for a round of golf, after posting on sex video. dr geh min used the term golf to describe politics in singapore. 'they compete against themselves. what do you expect from people whose favourite game is golf?' what has golf got to do with politics? in golf, they set up exclusive clubs where only members are welcomed. and in the past, members must be introduced by members, making it a very exclusive party for a close knit group of people who scratched each others back. outsiders are kept far away by the stringent club membership rules and golf regulations. and the golf clubs are also located in areas that are out of bound to the ordinary folks. and yes, golf is a game where a golfer plays against himself. though at times he will cheat on his flight mates, if they are not watching. preferred lie, finding a lost ball drop from his pocket, not counting air shot as practised swing etc. and after a good game and with some winnings in the pocket, time for enjoyment at the nineteen hole. golf is all about good time, fun and beautiful people.

tammy nyp video: internet power

a self made video is now the craze in blogosphere around the world. it is even converted in dvd and on sale. one cannot understimate the power of the internet. the news can spread world wide by the push of a few buttons. nothing the media can beat. fox, bbc, cnn or whatever, now have to contend with the power of the blog and internet. you can no longer control the media the way it was. welcome to the brave new world. tammy is world famous. nyp is world famous. these two words are the most hit in the internet search engines. no need to spend a single cent for the publicity. singapore is also well known for this teenage escapee. putting morality aside, tammy is going to be more famous than paris hilton, william hung or annabel chong. maybe tammy should bank on it and launch a career in hollywood. many have taken this route even in hongkong and taiwan. did i hear exclusive film rights being offered?

2/25/2006

peter costello: adapt or leave

the anointed successor to john howard told australian migrants bluntly that they adopt australian values or leave. it is about time national leaders stand up and say what needs to be said. nations shall not accept immigrants who do not share their values and laws, and worst, choose to live a lifestyle and under a law that is in conflict with the host nation. how could they be accepted as citizens of their adopted country? the saudi arabia example where foreigners must accept the saudi way of life and law is the most simple and explicit way to get this message across. you come to my country, you be like us and not unlike us. otherwise don't come or leave. why should the muslim community in australia be upset? shit, if they like to live a lifestyle like the saudis, go to saudi arabia. don't try to live like a saudi in australia. and this must apply to all countries. the immigrants have a right to make his choice. and so does the host nation to decide what is acceptable. why be a sore prick and try to stick it in a hole that would not fit, and then be angry with the hole? immigrants coming to singapore must accept this as a condition before coming here. and the govt has a right to set its conditions.

s rajaratnam: speak up. if you don't who would?

a bulbir singh from seremban, malaysia, wrote to the straits times forum on his encounter with rajaratnam in the 1960s when raja visited seremban. during the visit raja said that young people of malaysia must take a keen interest in what was happening in the nation and speak up. 'if you don't, who would? and if you don't, some day your kids and grandkids would ask, "pa, grandpa, you were there when these matters were discussed. why did you not speak up then? what would i say?" bulbir singh said that ever since he had not stopped speaking up for his country. and he did that often. as concerned citizens of singapore, if we don't speak up, why fight to be a citizen? why called yourself a citizen? might as well be a pr. no responisibility and no obligation. just live your own life and be an anarchist. just concern with self and nothing else. if the govt think it is their right to gag the people, then they will have to answer for it. and if the people abscond or surrender their right to talk, then they deserve it.

2/24/2006

uob makes $1.7 billion profit

wee cho yaw has done it again. $1.7 billion profit. i think uob makes the most money compare to all the other local banks. and i think uob is the only one without foreign talents. the talents are found in the father and son team. both local talents.

mr mean is here

school tuition fees are subject to means testing? how much a student pays depends on the affordability of his parents? well, is this 1984 or 2084? when such mean mentality is put to practice in all sectors of our lives, we have to be tagged, with all information made available to the authority. a loaf of bread will be priced differently according to the income level of the consumer. in fact everything will have a different price. from each his best and to each his worth. hey i thought this is an outdated socialist or communist concept. from each his best and to each his needs. now ain't the world getting meaner when mean people are in charge? i mean mean testing. they are not mean but they love mean testing and adore mean testing. mean is the way to go. lets all get comfortable with being mean. mean or mean testing is going to be our way of life.

half mast: consistency or to be not

s rajaratnam's departure and the honour of a half mast has raised questions. and many were thinking, how it causes a lot of discomfort in several quarters. devan nair may be a doubtful starter. but teng cheong seems to receive many sympathetic calls and grumbling about the half mast he was not given. this will go down our history book and will resurface every now and then. a half mast is given to a founding father who rightly deserves the honour. for consistency, we can expect keng swee, chin chye, othman, pang boon and nyuk lin to be given the same honour when they take their turns to go home. after this batch would the honour be bestowed to the second generations of leaders? chok tong as pm, would likely be given a half mast. what about the rest of the ministers? so far all are living their lives quite correctly as honourable people. but one slip and tongues go awagging.

2/23/2006

dependency strategy

the more people depends on the govt, the more they need the govt/ruling party. if this dependency relationship can be created, then the ruling party will have the people at its beck and call. the trick is to make the people eat from your hand. now how to do that? make everything very expensive or make things just a bit difficult to afford or need to be helped. then offer help to them. they will forever be grateful. this is the real part. on the fiction part, just shout everything is affordable. and we all know what affordability means to different people. affordable to who? a millionaire or a beggar? affordable to someone who earns $20k a month or someone who earns $1k a month? how could anyone shout 'affordable' when the term is so relative?

business times headlines: s rajaratnam dies

don't you people find the heading a bit bland, a bit too direct? why can't they put in a little more effort in choosing a few nicer words to describe this man of words? a giant passes away, or a titan fades away. even called home to be with the lord would sound so much more pleasant then, s rajaratnam dies. he dies. so kopitiam lingo. he dies. die already. die liao. sometimes, in some matters or things that we treasure or value, people will put in that little extra effort to phrase things in a more graceful manner, and sounds so much better. i hope our media could spare a little thought on this.

2/22/2006

s rajaratnam, a founding father gone home

not too long ago we heard the passing away of devan nair. today we witness the passing away of another founding father of our nation. his is a generation of men that changed lives and charted the path of our nation, created history for future generations to read about. and it is good that they have all live to a ripe old age and see the fruit of their labour and conviction. they must all have been pleased for what they had done as young men, freedom fighters and nation builders. rajaratnam is one of the few men whose speeches are worth reading. speeches that are colourful and interesting and meaningful. other than lky, perhaps rajaratnam is the only person that could capture the attention of his audience. i could still have vivid glimpses of his fiery speeches of independence and self rule. we wish him a good journey home.

singaporean version of pride

i just read a post in soc.cul.spore by a 'zipper' writing an open letter to the prime minister. his contention is that singapore regulators must quickly put in regulations to control bloggers. his reason. the story of a school boy and a school girl having sex on video hitting headlines in usa. and this is bad as the news was spread by bloggers. so bloggers must be gagged. i have awarded him a pbm, pingkat boleh 'cari' makan' for his sense of loyalty and righteousness. his suggestion is perhaps the most intelligent yet heard over blogosphere.

mtouche suspended

what about those telcos who thoughtlessly sent out demands for payments and even collected payments on behalf of mtouche? need they be warned that if they thoughtlessly and negligently do it again they should be taken to task as well. commercial organisations need to abide by strict standards of operational procedures with regards to demanding payments from clients.

2/21/2006

air travel: aussies protectionism!

how can the aussies got the cheek to talk about free trade when they cornered the asia pacific route and blocked out everyone? come on oz, let's be fair and be a gentleman. don't live in your own world in the outbacks and only come back to civilisation when you need to. the world is watching you. and singapore must understand that the whole world is not playing fair and there is protectionism everywhere, in usa, europe and japan. so lets not strip our pants down and walk naked everywhere asking to be screwed, for free. we need to be careful about our financial institutions and job markets. we need some protection or one day we will be bought, lock stock and barrel. and even africa will not sell us a piece of wasteland for whatever price, for us to squat there.

desperate and neglected housewives

the most mistaken and underrated group of working people, the housewives or homemaker or whatever. they are the general manager of the home. but no one would accept that they are working. and no value has been attached to their contribution to the economy or at least to the homes. and many now added the responsibility of looking after grandchildren. the grandmother's home is the best nursery. any commercial value? would these unemployed housewives or homemakers be given due recognition for their valuable contribution to home and society, providing the anchor and support, and an environment for children to grow up safely? so far nothing heard from the govt or anyone, even the aware or woman's rights groups are quiet about this issue.

2/20/2006

ge: internet kopitiam no talk politics

Bloggers, podcasts online may be subject to Parliamentary Elections Act By Farah Abdul Rahim, Channel NewsAsia i think people can talk politics in kopitiams and the markets or in the pubs during the general elections. there are many people who are not members of any political parties but have their own websites and blogs featuring general elections related matters. if people in the kopitiams can talk about politics, why can't individuals in internet kopitiams talk politics? is freedom of expression to be curbed? kopitiams and internet kopitiams all cannot talk politics or subject to what, parliamentary election acts? huh?these people are encouraged to be less apathetic and show more interests in politics during non election time. but during election time, only politicians can talk politics. the rest must be apolitical. encouraged not to be interested in politics. after the election is over, every kopitiam can reopen for talkshop sessions and pretend to be interested in politics again. would bloggers be curbed? why can't singaporeans say their peace as long as they don't spread lies or libels? should people be allowed to talk politics in kopitiams and not in internet? do we know why singaporeans are not interested in politics?

$2.6 billion payout not enough

sure what. where got enough for elfred and me. we were both expecting $15k each. ok ok, we were kidding. but the reality is also true for many of the low income earners. not enough to clear all the debts they have accumulated and all the bills they have to pay. as usual, some will be happy some will not. it is $2.6 billion to be spread around, like a drizzle. i still think it is better to reduce the cost of essential services and food. then no need to throw money not enough for everyone. and another forumer wrote to say that voting shall not be on the payout. that is from the govt and in a way, from the party. so are we going to vote for the party? the forumer said that people shall vote for the candidates who are going to be their mps. are they working for them or for themselves? do they have time even to attend parliament sessions? or they are too busy doing something else? the voters will be best to decide who to elect.

mtouche, you touch you pay

how could a company just send any nonsense to anyone and have the audacity to ask for payment? and how could those stupid telcos send the bills automatically to their customers to collect payment for these content providers without any verifications and authentications? and how could ida not step in and put a stop to it? the first contact, telcos, should have stop it immediately. they cannot claimed ignorant and that it is none of their businesses. by aiding the content providers to collect payment, would not they be part of the scheme, an accomplice? come on telcos, you are more professional than this to take a handsoff approach, that it has nothing to do with the telcos. your bills come with the demand for payment, and with your letterhead and big corporate logos. it is you, the telcos, who are demanding for payments on behalf the errant content providers. how could you do it and said you are innocent? we demand that telcos be more responsible in their billings to their clients. they cannot send the bills and claimed that it is system error. the system sent the bills blindly and they did not know can the subscribers claim for damages from the telcos for harrassment for payment? can they also sue the content providers for harrassing their lines by sending them nonsense? ida better clarify on these.

2/19/2006

casino: no sacrifice like self sacrifice

sorry guys and gals. i was away for two days, using myself as the guinea pig, soaking in everything inside an active and very popular casino. how else am i to say if it is ok or otherwise. i must put myself to the test. to live my life as a occasional gambler. i am out, alive. not addicted but still thinking of returning for more. can that be an addiction. maybe i will go again next year. sorry for not responding to your postings. will start posting tomorrow. need a rest and catch up on what had happened over the last two days.

2/17/2006

a listening pm

just heard the budget speech by hsien loong over the radio. what came across is that he is very interested in what people said in the media forum and he takes them seriously, and responded to the issues raised by the public. not sure about blogs though. this is a positive development as it shows that the media is becoming an important tool for communication with the govt. it would be good if the pm and ministers/mps/govt officers be more active and engage the people directly, once in a while. they are busy and cannot expect them to be so free like bloggers or site forumers. the full power and convenience of the internet shall be exploited by all parties to communicate and exchange views that are relevant to the people and affect public policies. writing a letter and waiting for another few weeks for a reply is passe. internet provides intant feedback and response. maybe they shall engage full time staff to man their emails or their message boxes.

general election held during good times

good times are back. there will be many goodies for everyone because the country is doing well. and the people can look forward to more goodies. this time probably more than the last time as the budget surplus is much bigger. elfred and i are expecting $15k per head. i am already smiling with the thought. how can they disappoint me and turn my smile into a frown ? : ) the budget is definitely not an election budget. it just so happen that it turns out this way. a coincidence. and it is only natural for the ruling party to call an election when times are good. i have no complain about this. as long as i get my $15k. and elfred too will be very happy. but one thing i sure know now. our economy is running on a 4 year cycle. every 4 years our economy will turnaround. and everyone can look forward to good times and to more goodies. lets cheer to that. hey, i am not complaining. just keep the goodies coming.

2/16/2006

money grabbing philosophy

does the pap really believe that the people are with them and approve of all the money motivated solutions and profit making policies? do they really believe that the people do not think, cannot think, and do not know what is happening, and agree with how things are being done? maybe my interpretations of events are all wrong. that the people are all with the govt and are satisfied with how things are being done. but i still believe that when tan soo khoon said that the party is over, he probably understand the position better. and he knows what is the mood. he must have a good feel of things.

new police measures: for better or for worst

hey you girl, come here. how old are you? where do you live? show me your ic. what is your telephone number? i am the police. the police are concerned that young people are loitering in the streets late at night and take it as their duty to inform their mummies. good for employment. now we can employ more policemen to do nannying work on the streets. and employment rate will go down. there are thousands of teenagers on the streets daily. how many more policemen will be needed to check on them? i must say the intention is good. very good. it will be better if the policemen carry some spare cash in case these teenagers have no money for transport home. or they may be hungry after a night out. but will these actions by the police be seen as harrassing or intrusion into the privacy of a person's life? even a teenager does have his right to go anywhere to please himself. does the police think that it is ok for them to suka suka check on every teenager? does the teenager have a right not to tell them her phone number? is the checking of a person/teenager's ic at the whims and fancy of the police acceptable? good night nanny. i am going home now.

university fees: smu joins the fray

smu does not want to lose out in the race to be the most expensive university in singapore, which means the best education money can buy. the more you pay the better will be the university. smu has raised its fee the second time, each time by 15%. so on the same logic, the quality of its education is up by 30%. nus and ntu have raised by 8%. so in terms of percentage its quality is up by only 8%. so smu is now a better university. so we shall wait to see who will up the stake in the next increment. nus and ntu now have better reasons to up their fees as they can justify by quoting smu. smu is now more expensive than us. so we are charging below market rate. or smu up 30%. we up only 8%. that is a great anomaly. a miscarriage of justice. better up another 22% to make up. anyone dare to say our university fees are expensive? it is not even peanuts. what great universities we are having now. world class, in tuition fees.

ge: is there a coordinated effort or spanners in the work

it is election time and we can all expect everything coming out from the govt or govt related organisations to be carefully time for this big event. for any wrong move could make or break the ruling party, or at least the majority votes that it aims to win. we have seen and heard all the good economic, financial and employment data. for once the govt has stopped gloating over the greatness of foreign talents. and the govt is going to pump in a lot of money to beautify the infrastructure. a lot of giveaways, money going to be thrown down from the balcony. the people are all eagerly expecting some handouts. so far all these can only be good for the ruling party. but then we are also hearing irritating and sickening news coming out from other corners. we have had our transportation fee hike in bad times but ended with the transport operators laughing all the way to the bank. there were school fees hike for independent schools and now universities think they were given a blank cheque to fill in the numbers they want. the ire of the people is heightening. people are starting to grit their teeth. the money crazy people seems so distant from the politics on the ground. who cares, line up the pocket first. this country is not going to the dogs. but going to the greedy money grabbers. squeezing from the public seems to be the easiest way to grab money as the public are helpless and clueless. where are we heading? now the general election is around the corners. for every bad decision or bad news, it will take 10 good and pleasant news to remove the stale bitterness. when is the govt going to rein in this madness that money is the solution to all problems and money is there to be grabbed....from the people?

2/15/2006

angmohs are really smart.

if i were an angmoh organisation, and if i want to spread my soft culture to influence the world, and at the same time provide high salary employment for my academics, this is what i will do. set up an agency to rank universities around the world according to my criteria. the same way the miss world or miss universe contests were organised and conducted. the same angmoh biased criteria. some of these criteria that will be important are: 1. the number of notable angmoh academics teaching in the universities. 2. how to judge them as notables? a lot of publications in renowned publications and professional journals. and for these, the angmohs have a comparative advantage as all or most of the renowned journals are angmoh journals. 3. and who to do the judging, the angmohs of course. so all the wannabe third world universities will be scrambling to meet these criteria to be ranked among the greats in this angmoh ranking organisations. they will end up employing all the great angmoh academics and pay them great angmoh salaries. and these great angmoh academics will be so highly regarded that it will be so easy for them to go out there to influence the minds and thinking of the future leaders of the third world countries. did i hear neo colonialism of the minds? and for those third world academics who ended up losing their jobs in their own national universities, just too bad. they are not good enough. don't fit the criteria of what is great. any angmoh reading this, please pat yourself on your back for such a brilliant concept. i mean it. the third world wannabes will be crawling on their knees to beg the great angmoh academics to grace their shores.

academics hired on merits and not nationality

for the past 5 years, 23% of newly recruited academics to our tertiary institutions were singaporeans. or put it the other way, 77% are foreign talents. at the rate it is going, we will need to rename the tertiary institutions as singapore world universities. singapore for the location of the universities. and world to tell people all the academics were recruited from around the world. now, a world class university is coming up right on our soil. now i know why the fees must keep going up. world class academics are really good and really expensive. now the question is whether our student quality is up to par to be taught and converted into world class graduates. then, whether the world will recognise our students as world class, on top of the world, after graduating from our world class universities. if our students are not of world class material, never mind. instant solution. offer their places to top students from china and india and neigbouring countries. by taking these measures, sure we will get world class academics and world class students to be turned into world class graduates. singaporeans who are not up to world class mark can go to polytechnics, or get a father's scholarship and go overseas to attend not so world class universities. we are the best. we are number one. we can buy quality, just like we bought honesty.

casinos: singaporeans are so lucky

after skimming through the newspaper reports on the casino debate, i spent less than 3 minutes, and that is how important or meaningful the debate was, i concluded that singaporeans are very lucky. and singapore is so very safe from disintegrating into a nation with loose morals. singaporeans must stand up and give a standing ovation to the strong moral standards on casinos that were displayed in parliament. many parliamentarians were worried for singaporeans and how singaporeans could be destroyed by the casinos. and they recommended many measures to protect the singaporeans. may i also take this opportunity to offer a few solid proposals for on the casinos. 1. do a means testing(i hate means testing) on any singaporeans who want to enter the casinos. and make sure they have at least $10,000 cash to lose. 2. make their family members sign a letter of consent before they be allowed to enter the casinos. with the letter of consent they can be issued with an ezlink card just for the casinos. 3. limit the number of times each person can visit the casinos. preferably once a month. too many times they will be addicted and become a danger to themselves, their families and society. 4. all gamblers must visit a psychiatrist once a month for pre addiction checkup, just in case they have been infected by the gambling bugs. they will then be issued with a pass to certify their clean bill of health. 5. more psychiatric clinics will be set up dedicated for these gamblers. 6. the anti vice unit shall set up a gambling squad to conduct surprise checks on these gamblers. i learn this from the snoop squads. they must carry their health cards with them at all times. 7. any gambler who skip their monthly appointment with the psychiatrist shall be fined and banned from gambling for 3 months. 8. the anti vice shall be empowered to call up the gamblers for interview when they deemed it necessary. wow, ain't i smart to come out with such morally correct recommendations.

crooked bridge: another sound argument in its favour

a lot of sound is coming down from across the causeway in support of its demolition. this time the reasoning is that the water in the straits is like water in a giant toxic sink. funny that no fish has been found floating belly up over the last 82 years. for the same reasons, the water in all the rivers are water in a toxic sink. and all the lakes must be containing deadly water. the living and thriving fishes in the straits is the best testimony of the quality of water in the straits. hey, come off the craps! the water is a huge waterway leading into the open seas on both sides. it is not dead water. come to think of it, our reservoir must be containing poisonous water as the water are land lock. the giant toxic sink description would fit our reservoirs perfectly. and we are drinking them. we should all be dead now. or no, all the aquatic life in the reservoirs should be dead, poison, under this kind of stretched and contrived logic.

the best news today

nus and ntu are both raising their fees, again, the second time in two years after acquiring autonomous status. this augurs well for the education scene in singapore. the two universities will soon be among the top few universities in the world. they needed the money to raise the standard and quality of their courses and degrees. well, at least if they don't get it to the top in quality they will be in the tops in fees, in no time. maybe they are already there if we measure the fees relative to the income of the population. and if these hikes did not improve the quality, they should make a more hefty hike next year and the year after. sure the quality will improve. if i were in the opposition parties i will place education on top of my agenda. and tell the voters, if elected, fire all those who are the reasons for the fee hike. this silly thing about money equals quality must be put to a stop. we have a lot of quality shit everywhere.

2/14/2006

national service: the singapore solution

as expected, the over reaction mentality is again put into motion. heavier penalties and more stringent regulations to curb ns evasion. children below the age of 16 will now be affected if they stay overseas for more than 3 months without permit. fines and fines. this is the standard way of public policy making. just whack the people with more fines, use the stick, use more disincentives. why can't the approach be more incentives for citizens and those who serve ns as a dutiful citizen? the concept of tightening the noose around the citizens neck is very negative. the nation cannot force the people who longer wish to stay... to stay. by tightening the noose, it only increase the push factor for people to want to get out. and citizenship becomes so restrictive and a huge burden of can't dos. i would thought a better approach would be to let those who want to leave... leave. and then add on the incentives for citizens who stay, who do their duties as citizens. make citizenship really worthwhile, an attractive and desirable choice. not a citizenship that has nothing more to offer except more restrictions, regulations and penalties. why are singaporeans be put on a leash? what is clear now is that citizenship is nothing better, but a worse off option. is that what singapore citizenship is all about? where is the value and heart and soul to be a citizen?

ge: you want my vote? listen to me

in every election it is always the politicians who tell the voters this is what i am going to do for you. this is what you will get when you elect me. never did the politicians ask the voters what they want. and this is about the best time for the voters to register their minds and thoughts. you want my vote, listen to me. this is what i want. this is what i think is good for me. is there a platform for the people to tell the politicians what they want? the internet chat sites and blogs and the media forum may be the place for it. this is an opportunity presented for the voters to say their piece. these are what i want, if you want my vote. 1. i want my cpf back at 55. you may keep $10k for a medical insurance. the rest is my money and i want it back. 2. i want public transport to be returned to the people. deprivatise public transport and return it to the stats board as an essential service for the people. no profit motive. 3. no more essential services to be privatised. if they do, make sure that the citizen's access to such service is not subject to profit motive. 4. take care of the citizens first. all jobs between $1000 to $10k must first be offered to the citizens. only if no takers shall it be given to ft. exceptions can be given to mncs. all govt and stats boards and glcs must prioritise to give jobs to citizens. 5. keep medical cost down with every citizen accessible to c wards if he so chooses. these are just the starters from me, for my vote. don't tell me what is good for me. i tell you what is good for me.

2/13/2006

budget terminal budget decision

when i switched on the news i chanced to hear sin boon ann asking the minister of transportation whether the building of the budget terminal was a hasty decision. it seems that till now only one budget airline has committed to use the budget terminal. what about the rest of the budget airlines? lim hwee hua said that they were adopting a wait and see approach. sin boon ann also questioned whether there were excess capacity at changi where budget airlines could operate temporary while the situation was still developing. or could the transport ministry also adopt a wait and see approach before committing millions to the new budget terminal. when have singapore reached this state of affair when million dollar decision were done hastily and now we got a practically empty terminal. a buangkok terminal? but there were only what, 4 budget airlines in operation? so one out of four, that is 25% of the market. not too bad statistically. it would only look funny when the rest of the airlines choose not to use the budget terminal. why is transportation in singapore so difficult to handle? must go to waterloo street and bathe with flower water, i think.

when will the teachers grow up?

students prevented from entering schools to collect 'o' level results or told to come back later, properly attired, hair dyed black and not in primary colours. these were the actions taken by the educators of our children, who deemed spaghetti straps, short skirts or punkish hair improper or undesirable inside a school compound. many years back in the 60s or 70s, long hair rock stars were not allowed to perform in singapore unless their hair are cropped short, like singaporeans. today this kind of mentality is still with our teachers. better tell choktong and hsienloong cannot wear red shirts while on tv. must wear clean white long sleeve shirts. by the way, the school children have left the schools after sitting for the 'o' level. some could be working or in other schools. they came back only for the result slips. why are these schools still think that they have the right to regiment them? can they let the young have their fun? why must every young one dressed up like old spinsters or monks? come on teachers, relax lah. if they are bad they are bad. otherwise it is just some innocent fun of the adolescence. making them come back in dresses that the teachers found palatable is not going to change anything. i think the teachers need to grow up. with such rigid minds, how can there be creativity?

futuristic singapore

the infrastructure of singapore will be designed to be handicap friendly, from lifts, walkways, roads, to public transport. with the ageing population, singapore is preparing itself for a nation of wheelchair bound communters. i am not sure of the economics, but i think it would be easier and more economical to set up a dedicated transport service to cater for these people than to turn the whole island into a white elephant. i have seen all the beautiful metal strips and buttons on mrt station floors. i have yet to see one handicap person using them. sure there will be some handicap people using them. but the frequency and cost of having them need to be studied carefully. and stop passing the buck of a poorly thought out solution to the commuters. it is easy to make everyone pays. another crooked bridge solution. i am not against making life easier for the handicaps. but i think the solution must be practical and cost effective. imagine redesigning all the buses for wheelchairs? how many buses need to be redesigned and how much will it cost? would it be better to have a fleet of taxis with such additional capabilities and be subsidised by the transport companies. more thinking needs to go into the concept before ploughing more public money into it. it will be public money, everyone's money. the transport companies are going to pass the buck to everyone. so please think carefully when using public money. transport companies have a moral responsibility to spend such money wisely and efficiently. if they want to spend on more gimmicks, please pay for it themselves, from their own pockets. maybe it will be better to have powered wheelchair vehicles. afterall at that age, many will have all the time in the world to sight see at their own time.

crooked bridge: a rip off for poor commuters

After more than eight decades, it has really outlived its usefulness, painful though this may be for some of us to admit. It is understandable that there are those who cling on to the Causeway and loathe to see it go. It is so much a part of their psyche that its demolition could well leave a psychological, sentimental and emotional vacuum in their version of the republic’s history.Such sentiments could be shared by some Malaysians, too. But this is the 21st century. We owe it to the younger generations on both sides of the strait to optimise the economic potential of the region. The economic and non-economic arguments for the Causeway’s removal are compelling. Opposition to the new bridge should not be rooted in outmoded fears about Singapore Port’s status, perceived threats to its economic well-being and its regional role as a transportation hub.The republic has progressed way beyond its once heavy dependence on its port. ... In fact, the beneficial impact on Singapore from an improved economic hinterland in Johor with the Causeway’s removal will far outweigh any adverse effect, if at all there is any. Johor is already a major destination for Singapore’s investment dollars, which have contributed immensely to the State’s economic growth and prosperity. There will be more commercial and investment opportunities when the bridge is built.... The mutual benefits of a new bridge are not difficult to fathom. Hopefully, economic realities and common sense will win the day for the bridge. by Tan Sri Lim Kok Wing is president of the Malaysian Institute of Directors. i have extracted parts of an article by lim kok wing posted in singaporesurf. i think this is an idiotic parroting of a silly idea that is not tenable economically. the bridge is anything but a ripoff of the people who needs to commute daily to and fro from both sides. with the bridge no one can save a few dollars walking across. with the bridge, all transportation is limited by the bridge and with its dangers of mishaps. with the bridge, room for expansion is so limited than with a land bridge. no sensible person will spend billions to cut off a land bridge to be replaced by a flimsy bridge just for some water to flow under and a few small pleasure craft or small ships to sail through. it is definitely water under the bridge. the people of malaysia and singapore must stand up to protest against this silly bridge concept. when are these people going to think for the people on both sides of the causeway, sincerely, than for their own pockets?

general election: prelim round 7

george yeo, the affable gentleman minister, said he will work very hard for every vote. he will not take voters for granted. this is a big contrast from the initial outburst of arrogance, that pap will win in any contest that we heard. perhaps the feedback has its effect. or maybe it is just george yeo and his sense of humility. but why is aljunid a hot seat that attracts the opposition? they failed the first time for technical reasons. what a shame and what a fish. why would wp do itself in on a simple procedural matter? is there something fishy inside wp? in my perception, george yeo is a very bright and sensible minister. i even rated him as a sure win minister. but why would the opposition want to challenge him when there are very obvious weak and controversial ministers to take on? did the opposition reads the ground differently, that george yeo is weak in aljunid and the ground is sweet? or, someone fed misinformation to wp to take on a strong minister, thus wasted their valuable and limited resources in a sure lose contest? there is something very strange in wp's strategy. it defies logic and sensibilities to contest against george yeo. but the worker's party may known something we don't. or they could be misled.

2/12/2006

general election: can sm goh produce another miracle

this is the title of a post in ypap forum. can sm goh produce another miracle? it reminds me of a friend of mine. he has a bag full of miracles. so if anyone needs a miracle he is the man. for every club in his bag is a miracle. from his 3 irons to his sand wedge, his driver to his 5 woods, everyone is a miracle. we used to have a good laugh when he pull his miracles from his bag. we can expect something great, except his shots. hope he is not reading this. a bag of clubs named miracles! a bag full of miracles!

general election: political parties

on a sunday morning, i was musing with the names of political parties. we have our fair share of punts on our political parties' names. then i look north and things are very different. they called themselves, or recognised themselves as umno, mca, mic, gerakan, keadilan and pas. one feature that is very different from singapore that the missing of 'p' except for pas. pas can still be recognised as p...a...s. the rest are called quite differently. 'p' is a common denominator in singapore's political parties. we have p...and...p, w...p or worker's p, s...d...p, s...u...p...p, s...d...p, and s...p...p. so all our parties are called p's. we used to have the singapore alliance and the barisan socialis. but maybe because there don't have p's and can not exist here. looks like p is key to political success. i was thinking, if i were to name a new party, what kind of p would sound good? people' p, worker's p, citizen's p, singapore's p, as long as it has a p sounding at the end. but i still prefer not to p. somehow p does not sound so nice.

2/11/2006

freedom of expression: how far shall it go?

Singapore A small reaction Arab-Muslim coffee shop puts up 'Danes Not Welcome' sign, but.. By Satirat Dam-ampai. scanasia.com.Feb 10, 2006 After the furore over the published caricatures of the Prophet Muhammed made it to Singapore, a coffee shop there has put up a sign saying that Danish citizens were not welcome. The sign, which said “Citizens of Denmark are not welcomed in Samar till further notice” was displayed at the entrance and also inside of the Samar café on Friday 3 February, 2006. However the sign was removed on Monday 6 after the owner of the shop was ordered by the police to do so. He has also been ordered to go to a police station for questioning. The café supervisor Saiful Bahari told TMCNet News, "Basically we did it to express our freedom of speech because the cartoons touched on Islam and our beloved Prophet Muhammad. "As a Muslim, I do feel angry with what happened as it was totally insensitive." This cafe is located in the heavily Arab commercial area of Singapore and is owned by a Singapore citizen of Arab descent. i extracted this from littlespeck.com. on the ground of freedom of expression, i agree that there is nothing wrong with the sign. the cafe owner has a right not to welcome whoever he does not wish to welcome. then the next thing can happen is that every shop and restaurant starts to put up signs not to welcome this and that. then what? more heat will be generated and one leads to two and we will have riots on our streets. is freedom of expression worth what it is in such a case? contrast this with the white elephant issue and the little school girls selling white elephant t shirts, i think the police did it right this time. i do not think any sensible singaporeans will be offended by the police action in this case. as a people, we respect different races and their cultural and religious practices as long as each group keeps it within themselves. no group is allowed to make expressions that are rude or unpleasant to another group. to be selfish, the world can burn. but we shall live our lives the way we want it, peacefully. who says we must always court excitement? that singapore must be as exciting as other places? excitement often courts danger.

general election: a reflective moment

before the heat of the election proper gets in the way, there is time for a little reflection. lky asked what would he do if he were in the opposition. his formula, go for a single ward, get elected, established your credibility, then get a few good men and go for a grc and later a few grcs. chiam seetong had walked that road, intentional or by accident. he had the opportunity to do exactly what lky said. it did not work out for one big reason, he did not have good men with him. there was this lingering doubt as to the quality of the people he had then. hypothetically, if he did have good and decent men with him then, would it make any difference? would the ruling party be in a more generous mood to accommodate these new upstarts? would the road would be full of obstacles that making further advances treacherous? we have seen many casualities along the way. would it make any difference if these were genuine and sincere men who wanted to offer themselves as leaders of the nation? there are many good men but unwilling to step forward for good reasons. no one who is thinking would want to fight an uphill battle, no matter how fair and hard they fought, when defeat meant total destruction of life in the country. when a defeat meant a ticket of no return. in today's road map, can lky's formula work? unlikely. no independent candidate can hope to fight a decent election and win. there are too few single wards available and a one on one contest with the ruling pap is impossible. every single ward will be contested by the existing opposition parties. an independent candidate will find himself in a 3 corner fight, further weakening his chances. unless of course, there is a real change in the thinking of the ruling party, to welcome good people to stand and compete with them on equal terms. is lky's message an invitation for more good people to step forward? the number of single wards available will be a sign of whether there is a real change in perception of things to come. my formula, get a clean slate of good men and go straight for a grc. the time has come when a group of good men can take a grc from the ruling party. provided of course there is no underhand tactics being employed. and what is good and decent is very subjective and would need the approval of the 3 wise men, in a similar way.

2/10/2006

general election: crystal ball gazing

this is my guess of the chances of pap ministers in the coming election. i will classify them under four categories, sure win, sure win but can have upsets, quite safe, and anything can happen. sure win: chok tong, jayakumar, chee hean, george yeo, kan seng, boonwan, sure win but can have upsets: hsien loong, lky, eng hen quite safe: yaacob, vivian, tharman, boon yang, raymond anything can happen: boon heng, swee say, bow tan, hng kiang, cheow tong just my gut feels. i think a fortune teller will also have his own take and so does anyone. you guys are welcome to make your guess. no prizes for the best forecast.

medisave: is cpf violating the law

there are two laws on medisave. one requires a self employed to continue to contribute to the medisave regardless of his age as long as he is self employed. does it mean that if a person is 100 years old and still self employed, he is still required to contribute to his medisave? obviously it is and no one in cpf cares two hoots why or is this an anomaly. the second law says the ceiling for contribution to the medisave currently stands at $32,500. this means there is no need to contribute to the medisave once this ceiling is reached. but the cpf practice is to transfer the medisave contribution into the ordinary account. or if this account is closed for members above 55 years, then the excess will be transferred to the retirement account. is this legally right to do so? all these laws seems to be conceived separately for different reasons in different times. should not the cpf straighten these laws to make them more sensible and relevant to the other cpf regulations like partial withdrawal at 55 and paying out at 62? should there be a law to stop cpf from demanding contributions from the self employed after a certain age? why is it so fun and shiok to keep collecting people's money? is cpf in violation of the laws that it introduces and implemented for its own convenience?

2/09/2006

snoop squad kenna snooped

a snoop squad broke into a room, beat up the young man and followed up by molesting the girl. then they hauled the couple to the police station. the police on hearing the girl's story decided to arrest the snoop squad members for molesting. what about beating up the man? this kind of kangaroo court still exists in malaysia, the icon of modernisation in the muslim world. this type of tribal behaviour is quite frightening for the innocents. is it a country with laws or lawlessness?

singaporean IQ: an interesting post in soc.cul.spore

Hello there, I am an Indian graduate from the University of Madras. In the next few weeks, I will be traveling to your country Singapore to take up a job as a Chemical Engineer. I hope that I can integrate well into your society. I am a fresh graduate without any working experience, but was surprised to get this job with a handsome pay package. May better than most of you all. I understand through my daily news that young working Singaporeans is less intelligent than their elder. Is that true? Someone told me that you people have very low IQ, and because of this, your government had no choice but to import foreign workers. More than half the population is foreign workers I supposed? Anyway, immediately I was told by my interviewers that I will be classified as a foreign talent. I hope that I can impart some knowledge or teach you while I am there. As you know, Madras University is among a few top universities in the world, and from my judgment, it should be much higher in subject level and competency and more prestigious than any of your universities in tiny Singapore. Although it is not officially stated that I shall be employed as a foreign talent, I wish to be treated as one with due respect base on your lower IQ. above is an article posted in soc.cul.spore. i am truly amazed by the responses to the above articles, presumably by singaporeans. though a couple expressed doubts that the article was from a genuine indian foreign talent, several took him and his comments seriously. now what does that say of singaporean IQs?

general election: prelim round 6

this is more a kopitiam impression of how things have changed over the years. not too long ago the most frustrating compliant by the opposition is that they find it very difficult to contest the election. and the reason was not the redrawing of boundaries or grcs. the reason against the opposition is simply the brand name. it was often heard that you wear the badge on anyone or anything, it will be voted into parliament. the pap brand was so strong that it was quite pointless for the opposition to think of winning. today kopitiam talk is quite different. the impression is that if you wear the badge on anyone or thing, it is likely to lose. what a reversal in trend. a 180 degress about turn. would such an impression really be an indication of a big vote swing? kopitiam talk is one thing and the voting pattern or the actual voting is another. given the track record, the goodies, and the lack of good decent candidates from the opposition, even if there is a vote swing, the impact is not likely to be very great. but it will all depend on how good the opposition is. the issue now is not how good the pap is. so if the opposition is able to attract and put up good people, the mood may be more favourable to them to get voted in.

2/08/2006

crooked bridge: a bridge with no returns

by now the message to the malaysian govt must have been very clear. it is a bridge that has no value to singapore but going to burn a big hole in the pocket. now why would the singapore govt go ahead to spend public funds, in the billions, on something that is not only of no real value, but comes with a string of liabilities. this just does not make economic sense to the singapore govt who would have to justify to the population for its unsound decision. but then again, if the money is spent as a goodwill for some other tradeoffs, maybe that can be considered. simply spending the money for no returns is absurb and out of question. now if the malaysians can say, ok, these are the sweeteners for the goodwill. then the issue will be what kind of sweeteners will be worth a billion singapore dollars? that will be the money the singapore govt will have to cough out to go ahead with the bridge. now the horse tradings start. you want the singapore govt to pay, then what is there to offer?

thaksin, shin corp and temasek

the trouble with thaksin is trouble for the sale of shin corp to temasek. and the fallout can be quite painful if the emotions of the thai public is played up. will temasek and singapore be embroiled in a domestic uprising in thailand and scuttle a seemingly business transaction? the rise and fall of thaksin is so dramatic that fortunes can change overnight. let's keep our finger crossed that this is strictly thai internal politics.

expensive health care

i have touched on this topic many times and will continue to bring it up every now and then until the cost of health care becomes reasonable to the average singaporeans. for this is going to be a pain to many singaporeans as age catch up with them but without the money catching up with the high cost of healthcare. and many singaporeans know that this is a serious problem close to their heart. the government's health care expenditure for the year 2004 is $1.71 billion or about $500 per citizen using a rough population of 3 million. on the other hand, govt subsidy for healthcare is a whopping $1.28 billion for the same year. now that is very high indeed. in fact far too high if one extrapolates on the amount of subsidy to the actual users. why is the govt unable to bring down health cost? or are we having the same kind of formula or logic used in the computation of hdb flats and subsidies? there is no reason for healthcare to be so expensive when all the people needs is basic healthcare. maybe a different set of figures shall be produced to look at health expenditure according to the classes of wards. how much is being subsidised at the lower end and upper end. i always call for govt hospitals to provide decent and adequate healthcare and not the luxurious kind. the latter can be provided by the commercial hospitals. and if govt hospitals do provide such services, there must be no subsidy. but the bottom line is still the factors used in coming out with the cost of healthcare.

2/07/2006

cartoon caricatures: muslims retaliate

the indignation felt by the muslims over the cartoon incident is expected and understandable knowing how they revered prophet mohammed. the spontaneous protests in muslim countries around the world have driven home the message of how sensitive the issue is and should not be repeated. and i think this point is well taken by the western nations. but further violence and destruction of life may negate whatever injustice felt by the rest of the world for the muslims. the muslims must not assume that the incident is a licence for them to take lives or go on a rampage. the recent incident in sydney should be a reminder to the muslims that there are many westerners who can be as violent as them. there are many rightists and anti muslim groups in western countries that could not wait to retaliate and respond in kind to what the muslims are doing. attacking europeans and their properties in muslim countries may give reasons and justifications for the violent prone to similarly attack muslims and their properties in western countries. it is not an issue for any party to prove how violent they can be for whatever reasons. hatred begets hatred and violence begets violence.

taro aso: taiwan benefitted from colonisation

taro aso is really an arsehole. he is telling the taiwanese that being colonised by the japanese was a good thing. this is like telling a woman that being rape is a good thing. and what have chen shui bian and the rest of the taiwanese got to say about it? i think they agree. maybe japan should colonise taiwan one more time.

32 year old thinking of emigrating

why would a 32 year old professional think of emigrating and separated himself from the comfort of home and love ones? his reasoning is that the shelf life is too short here. imagine being over the hill by 40 and unable to find decent employment by 50. this is a very serious problem for professionals who spent so many years acquiring the paper qualifications only to see the end of the road staring at their faces. a 20 year working life prospect is very depressing what is happening to our system?

2/06/2006

the botak incident was anything but racism

the shaving of the heads of several senior citizens having a game of mahjong, similar to bridge, is serious enough for a police raid and the men, ordinary citizens in their 50s and 60s, were arrested during chinese new year and bungled to the police station. a very petty crime, if there was, the men were shaved bald by the police. and what did the politicians or opposition or interest groups complained about? police abuse of power, violation of human rights, high handedness. no one dare to whisper the word, 'racism.' racism is so entrenched and institutionalised in the country that if anyone from the minority dares mentioned it will bring the wrath of the majority and the law upon him. only the majority has the privilege to use that term when they like to harass and threaten the minorities. so there is no racism. it is the police hitting back at the calls for police reformed.

life is getting tougher at home

forumer jimmy ho kwok hoong wrote a long article in today paper explaining why life is tough from birth to death in this prosperous country when unemployment rate is as low as 2 and a half per cent, and wealth and richness are on display everywhere. how can life be tough? isn't that a misconception or an irony? people are all doing very well, million dollar salaries, landed properties, driving around in mercedes and bmws, car show rooms are packed with happy customers. jimmy then listed out the struggle of a child, their parents to bring them up, and the parents lost of high paying jobs, the short lifespan of working, and the downgrading of lifestyles when one becomes unemployed. foreign worker's policies seemed to be the biggest culprit. this is supported by another forumer nelson quah who wrote that in australia, citizens and prs have priority over foreigners when employment is concerned. hey, this is alien to singaporeans. we have been following the western model of free economy and free everything, even giving our citizens' jobs to foreigners on a free competition basis. how can such things happened in australia? why are countries protecting their citizens for jobs and we think it is alright for our citizens to lose their jobs to non citizens? with the election around the corner, will the govt pay a heavy price for such a policy? or the views of the two forumers were wrong. that people are all very happy and well taken care off by the govt? looking at the confidence and happy faces of the mps and ministers, everything is fine. the people will continue to give a strong vote of confidence for the policies of the govt. now who is right?

general election: more single wards?

given the situation where grcs are no longer a sure win formula with several doubtful ministers able to carry them home, maybe there will be a slight change with more single wards being offered. this will allow more contest and a chance for the voters to exercise their rights of choice. this will be good for every one, the voters, opposition as well as the pap. for once, the seal of invincibility is no longer there. the apparent weaknesses are now exposed through years of scrapping the bottom of the barrel. not many strong leaders were churned up that can command the votes without being questioned. many are good administrators, number crunchers, playing with figures and statistics, but as people motivators, they seem to be wanting. would pap then change strategies and break up a few weaker grcs and hope to lose less instead of the whole grcs? or would pap still perceive that they are invincible in grcs with all the ministers carrying their weight? or will grcs become bigger and lesser ministers need to be called upon to shoulder the heavy responsibilities of a home run. the number of single wards being offered for contest will be the first indicator of what the real perception is.

2/05/2006

must RI join the crowd

Letter from Elias Tan posted in Today Online. I refer to Raffles Institution's (RI) letter (Feb 1) in response to Today's article "Are the 'brains' unwilling to face defeat" (Jan 25). .It seems its communications head has, in a roundabout and verbose manner, admitted "yes". Why else would a school as rich in resources as RI say they do not have enough resources to dedicate to competitive soccer when neighbourhood schools can? .Why else would a football field (albeit only one, as RI stresses) be used for everything else under the sun — rugby, track and field, cricket — except football? Perhaps, RI should check its history books for the reason it stopped playing soccer at a competitive level. Was it because they started losing to neighbourhood schools, which was when returns on investments proved no longer viable? .Enough debating — either you play or you'll never win. And the best of luck to RI's boys who enjoy playing ball with the school staff and among themselves. why should ri play football if it chooses not to? if everyone goes to the casinos, does it mean that the rest must also do so or be censured as not team players, not one of them? there is no shame not to play football. do what you are good at and do them best. ri should continue to produce their champions in academics and in the sports that they excelled in. let those who have their brians embedded in their feet to excel and marvel in football or whatever foot related sports. let them be the maradonna or the ronaldhino. why shall the twains meet?

jack neo: i not stupid

to the english educated, jack neo's spoken english is not that refined, halting, singlish, and sometimess not so elegant. to those who do not know that he is chinese educated, jack neo's came out as not so cool, not so clever. maybe N level material. jack neo belongs to those generations of lost talents educated in the chinese medium. because of language, and their inability to be fluent in english, and a chinese certificate that the english educated could not fathom, he will probably ended up selling vcds on the roadside or in pasar malam. but talents will find its own way to surface. he was also fortunate that our media and entertainment industry were flourishing, giving him an avenue to show off his talents. he may not by an lee ang or zhang yimou yet, but he has proven that there is more in him. for those who constantly attacked the chinese helicopter stereo type, it is time to try to talk to them in chinese. it is a different world. they will find difficulty in understanding your accented english as well. would they also think that how come you not in N level stream huh?

the politicisation of islam

i have posted on this topic before. today, its relevance and the danger it poses to world peace is even more stark. the world must thank the americans for lighting the fire for a united islamic movement. not that islam was disunited. it is a very huge potent force that connects all the muslims around the world for good or bad. the muslims too have cherished the day of the revival and glory of islam and the islamic world. the recent events in europe and around the world are seeing the rise of islam as a force that will challenge the western domination of power. the usa sees china as the only power to contest for world supremacy. they forgot that they have unleased the most powerful force yet to be seen. it is not war in the conventional sense. the superpowers will not be dragged into a war of mutual assured destruction(mad). it is the continuous confrontation, skirmishes, terrorism, sabotage, and outright civil violence that will disrupt the cities around the world. the rise of islam, the unifying force of islam, is based on hatred. a hatred sowed by the western world. samuelson's clash of civilisation has begun. the west against the muslim world. now that is not going to go away by buying the arab royalties. the arab royalties will be ploughed down along the way. it is the muslim masses against the western masses that will contest this war.

crooked bridge: a defence perspective

Not only is the bridge a crucial deciding factor of Johor’s future, other analysts believe there’s a defence reason for Malaysia, too. Since former Prime Minister Lee Kuan Yew declaring years ago that in an event of Malaysia’s unilateral cut-off of crucial water supplies to Singapore, Singaporean tanks would move in to defend the Republic’s survival.He said If that happened, he would not wait for United Nations to intervene because by then it would be too late. Unlike the Causeway, the new replacing link will have a drawbridge that can be raised at intervals to allow ships to pass under. So even a crooked half-bridge would have a defence value for Malaysia. A raised drawbridge could stop the Singaporean tanks from crossing into Johor in the unlikely event of war. above posted by seah chiangnee in littlespeck.com we have been discussing all the economic, social and political aspects of the crooked bridge. now there is this defence angle to look at. chiangnee's view is that the malaysians are concerned that in the event of a war, the most immediate concern of the malaysians is the tanks rolling across the causeway. sounds reasonable after quoting what lky said. as for the issue of a war between the two nations, it is a possibility that both countries would avoid and would not attempt to get into. the destruction and loss of lives will be too costly for any decent thinking leader to even contemplate. war is not an option unless they are prepared to get into a brawl that will last a few generations. both will be destroyed in the process. just tension alone is disruptive enough to bankrupt the two countries. for a small country like singapore, it can never afford a war with anyone. it can only work to prevent war. assuming that it happens, and assuming that the tanks rolled across and occupied the state of johore, what next? the state of hostility will be perpetual. and there is also the element of the indonesians. there is no way for singapore to flirt with such a thought unless it is provoked, like chen shui bian provoking china through a declaration of independence. what can malaysia do to force singapore into a hobson's choice? is there a reason for malaysia to fear tanks rolling across the causeway? only one. and that is the cutting off of water supply by whatever means or pretext. do the malaysians have any such schemes up their sleeves to worry about provoking singapore to make a death plunge? now that is a good question to ponder over.

2/04/2006

nude squat, snoop squad to botak squad

the nude squat and snoop squad incidents have barely faded from people's memory and now botak squad is the latest that surrounds the infamous police of malaysia. is malaysia returning to the medieval age? with the death of the msc and the waning of mahathir's drive to 2020, a modern malaysia, the dreams are fast fading away. the comfort of returning to the behaviour of kampong chiefs are easier to adapt to. what is all these difficult things called human rights and international behavioural norms? why must the police behave like decent and sophisticated law enforcer, as protector of the citizens? the police is the power to be used to deal with whoever they liked. even giving the dpm a black eye. so shaving bald the heads of innocent citizens having a little fun in the privacy of closed doors is the right thing to do. it is the duty and responsibility of the police. it is a big operation executed in the most professional way with the full force of the police paid by tax payers money. the country is so crime free that the police must find something better to do. will we see people being publicly whipped or burn on the stake? akan datang.

charisma in leadership

leadership comes in many forms, but the strongest and most influential of leadership is perhaps the personality of the leader and how this is projected and perceived by the people. a powerful and charismatic personality is undeniably a tremendous asset to have. we have seen many such personalities in the past. they carried themselves around as undisputed leaders, man of man. they do not have to shout or keep telling people i am the man. they are natural leaders. they have developed a certain aura around them. unwritten, unmentioned, but felt. lky, keng swee, chin chye, raja, pang boon, sui sen, chok tong, teng cheong, tony are among the names that will just pop up when people asked about the leaders of singapore. and in an election, throwing their names will be as good as winning the election. such are the qualities of leadership that cannot be explained, and cannot be taught. the academics may be having courses in grooming leaders, telling people what are the qualities and characteristics of good leaders. they can go as far as identifying them. but to transfer these qualities into another person who just don't have it will only fail. we have many new leaders among the ministers. how many have such qualities? many are outright no. as simple as that. remove the title and they will be lost, unrecognised by anyone in the street. will people stand up and listen to them when they talked without wearing the title? that will be the real test of a leader. that is the quality of leadership. the impression is that what we are having are administrators or leadership by virtue of position or title. the leadership comes with the job or title. remove the job or title, nothing is left. a few have the potential, but too new and yet to be truly felt. somehow, for these latter batches, this aura of power and leadership takes a bit longer to form. you can see them in say hsien loong, tharman, boon wan, chee hian, who else? scratching my head to feel that kind of dominance of personality as the leaders of the people... given a bit more time, maybe a few will grow and develop their influence while in their jobs. but as of now, throw some of them to lead a grc and it does not mean anything. they do not carry the weight to give the impression that with their presence, the grc is as good as won.

2/03/2006

racial harmony or peaceful coexistence

a forumer, michael heng, wrote in the straits times lamenting that his son did not have a malay friend in his school. he is worried that his son will not be able to understand his malay friends and their culture etc. such atrocious situation shall not have happened. such parents must send their children to a school where there are more malay students so that their sons will grow up in the company of malay friends. if they did not do so they will undermine our objective of racial harmony and peaceful coexistence among the different races. and if they are stubborn, like michael heng, and keep their sons in such schools, they should be caned. and schools that have few malay students must make special effort to recruit more malay students or students from minority groups into their cohorts. or the principal must be made to explain why they have failed to do so. now am i making sense?

general election: prelim round 5

after the initial exchanges of a few blows, all has quieten down. both sides are reassessing their positions. who has done the right things and is on the upper hand after the brief encounter? pap started by attacking the wp manifesto as a time bomb and a poison and demanded condescendingly that the wp must change its manifesto or else. it is a talk down tactic by the strong against the weak and it puts the wp on the defensive, giving the impression that wp has erred seriously and pap knows best. this immediately drew response from the opposition as a high and mighty attitude and undemocratic. a bullying tactic. how are all these gesturings being perceived by the voters? would the voters bite the pap reasoning and say yes wp is dangerous and up to no good. cannot be trusted to be given the vote. or would the voters said, well, all these are political stance and may even say, stop the bullying. if the later, then it will put the pap in a not so comfortable start. a big bully small contest. and then there were some follow up comments that pap sure win. would this be taken by the voters as jumping the gun or taking them for granted? arrogance? the issues are simmering and probably both parties are discussing their positions after the initial standoff. anyone gains an upper hand?

islam tested in europe

the current rift in denmark over the caricature of the prophet mohammed is gearing up for an ugly fight. according to islam, no image of the prophet is allowed. this is banned. and the danish paper made caricatures of the prophet is a violation of islamic laws. this is now a boiling issue and could become nasty as the muslims felt very offended. the european papers' position is that it is freedom of the press to write or present whatever to the readers. and they defended themselves by asking whether islamic law applies to non muslims. if it is banned by islam, does it mean that it is banned to non muslim as well. now this is a little tricky. islam bans the eating of pork. when non muslims eat pork does it offend the muslims? obviously it does. but does it allow the muslims to demand the non muslim not to eat pork? where is the line drawn? it is reported in the press that a cleric said the danish paper's caricature was not done for press freedom but to offend muslim. does this distinction means that if it is done not to offend but say for a genuinely decent purpose like the teaching of islam, would it then be ok for non muslims to use images of the prophet? when does the sensitivity of muslims stops and why should non muslims be subject to the same restrictions as muslims?

2/02/2006

banks are not for poor people

we used to have a people's bank or a poor man's bank. it started as a poor bank and accept poor man's money. even school children's pocket money of a few cents and pasted as stamps. that was how the poor man's bank started. today this poor man's bank has forgotten all the poor men who helped to build it up into a rich bank and becomes a rich man's bank. it does not welcome children's little savings anymore. or it does but make sure that it is more than a certain amount. and any poor man who thinks of putting a few hundred dollars into the bank may end up with no money after paying administrative fee for having too little money in his bank account. instead of earning an interest, the bank levy a fee for putting too little money there. this is the price of progress. no money no talk. the poor man's bank now would not even want to know you. so poor people with a few dollars of savings better keep it under their pillows or in plastic containers and hide them somewhere at home. would there be a day when the banks go back to woo the poor man? ingrates?

not govt's responsibility to help the poor

we have heard this statement many times. it is not the govt's responsibility to help the poor. the govt will only help the poor when there is a surplus in the budget or in the govt's investment. is such a position acceptable to the people? what is the role of the govt towards the poor of the country, assuming that there is no surplus to be given away?

the poor indians in singapore

There are many complaints and unhappiness among the Singapore born Indian community. Tamil phrase: "Mattam mana allu" English translation means the old man Lky is a lousy cheapskate fellow. Tamil phrase : "Mavan vanthe methevangalum othevee saye oode mathan avanum oothevee saye mathan" English Translation : The "son" Lhl is a more cheapskate fellow than the father, he also wont help the others much and does not let anyone help the other's much also Tamil phrase : "Lalle velai vangete adimai yakirvanu" English translation: They make use of you do the work for them and make you a slave and pay you very little or play games and don't pay you at all or give useless gimmicks. What is going to be done to help livelihood of the "groups" and societies of Singapore particularly among the Singapore born Indian community ? Where is the action required, where is the help, where is the closure on unresolved problems , where are the results ? Who or which People should be held answerable ? Jason Vincent i have extracted a part of jason vincent's article posted in soc.cul.spore. what jason has posted is that the indian community is feeling very neglected by the govt. he even suggested building 2 shopping centres and several other facilities for the indian community. now this is a problem isn't it?

wage gap will continue to widen

there is this peculiar practice in singapore that will ensure the wage gap will continue to widen. it is entrenched in the system. the more important or senior a person becomes, he can expect to be appointed to many chairmanship positions or figure head positions and be paid extremely well but without much to do. some of these positions are just honorary, but still pack a huge pay packet. so it is very easy to earn several chairmanship pay and leave the job of running the company to the professionals. what a nice perk! how then can the wage gap gets narrower? it cannot be helped? is it? this is what unequal distribution of wealth is all about. you got more money, people give you more money. and what's wrong with that? why can't these important jobs be really important and the incumbent has to contribute time and effort to justify his huge pay so he can only assume one position and more can be pass around? but then there is a dearth of talent in this nation where the high density of people with high paper qualifications are found to be lack of talent. so only a few rare breed have the talent to receive such easy remunerations. do these positions really need highly qualified people in the first place? but, come to think of it, there is nothing wrong. this is the natural order of things. even a genius will tell you that it is perfectly normal and the correct way to do things.

2/01/2006

why should govt act to ensure political freedom?

a straits times forumer, teoh chin leong, asked this question after commenting on catherine lim's article on political freedom. he said catherine lim has not answered this question? i was taken aback by his question. did he mean that limited freedom is accepted and the people must give good reasons for the govt to allow political freedom? isn't political freedom the people's basic right and any govt curbing political freedom is taking away the right of the people? is this the mindset of singaporeans? so well bred to be obedient, to be restrained. even accepting that they should be limited political freedom when freedom was theirs in the first place. such mindset concedes that it is ok for one's political right to be taken away. teoh chin leong did discuss a little on the need for political freedom. but his conclusion is that singaporeans are not ready for political freedom, that political freedom must be conditional on an educated society and a people who can discussed dispassionately on political issues. i am very sad to think that educated singaporeans think this way. how many countries can boast of a literacy rate higher than us? how many countries can boast of a concentration of people with tertiary education like us? if we are not an educated society, who is? the sheep will be led to the slaughter. and all they can say is bah bah and bah.

crooked bridge: lets be good neighbours

badawi has confirmed that the half bridge will be built. it is in their interests. they know what is good for them. let them build the bridge whatever way they want it. lets be good neighbours. we shall not engage in any dispute or hot headed argument over the bridge. we shall not make a protest or take them to the international court. we shall not make any comment in response to johore mp shahrir samad calling us stubborn. we shall not even reply to him to explain who is stubborn. we shall just keep quiet and let it be. and we hope by doing so, giving them our blessing, they will leave us alone and build their bridge.