Imported inflation or inflating prices?
Our secret of fighting inflation is to let the price hikes flow down to all levels. Then we pump in the money, raise salaries or give handouts to the people. This theory seems to be sold and have been accepted by our leaders. So price control is out of question. Let all the prices to rise. Don't worry, there will be handouts every year. Two points to note. Are the price hike really imported and beyond our control or they are self manufactured by profiteers for some obscene reasons? The second point is that inflation will always come first and the handouts one year later. And while handouts are being given, one year late, inflation continues to rise. Giving handouts are reactive and never enough. Many basic necessities like rice, water and food, need not rise so much given our strong dollar and cheap imported water. The reason and the extra taxes placed on the price of water is obscene. And we are inflating the cost of education by throwing money after the so called best lecturers or most expensive lecturers. Do we really need to buy the best from the world? Can we have second or third best or only a few really good ones? Not only that we cannot afford world class prices, Ah Meng's children will still come out as orang utangs even if they are taught by the best brains. The failure of Haw Par Villa, Tang Dynasty and Sentosa was evidence that Singaporeans were not or could not pay outrageous prices. Are we serious in wanting a world class transport system with world class prices? Looking at the profits of transport companies, they can do well with lower prices if profit is not the only reason for their existence. Instead of privatise, return them to the govt as essential services to serve the people's interest instead of a few shareholders. Then ERP, imported inflation? Rentals and property prices, pressured by external factors to go up? Medical fees, really must go up so high? Many of these high cost items are self created and self inflicted. And the poorer people have to bear the brunt of the pain. And comes budget time, we give them a few pieces of 'koyok' or a bill few good pills and all thinks everything is ok. For things that are really caused by external factors beyond our control, fair enough, we have to find ways to live with it. For high cost of things that we have full control and consciously pushed it to the people, we can do more to avoid them. Not everything is due to imported inflation but we inflate the prices ourselves.