2/27/2009

Right to know or right not to know?

We have heard the huge losses of Temasek's investment, all $58b! Now, don't ever poof poof this as small change. It is a very huge sum of money. What about GIC? How much has it lost? Rumours and speculations are that it has lost more than $100b! Given the $550b portfolio that it was managing then, it is unlikely that it can escape the meltdown with less than 30% loss. Do the citizens have the right to know how much we have lost? Or shall this be kept under veil in the name of secrecy or professional expediency? Is it acceptable not to tell the people how much we have lost? Is this the people's money? If so, can we ask and be told of the real numbers? Or shall we be complacent and just trust that the money is in good hands?

68 comments:

Anonymous said...

If it is the people's money, the people can demand to see and be presented with the accounts. Those demands have fallen on deaf ears. That is enough proof that the money does not belong to the people. In fact the way that the govt has nonchalantly dismissed citizens' concerns regarding the money shows that we are treated as merely employees in Singapore Inc. 'nuff said.

Anonymous said...

I think we can talk for the next 1000 years about whether the money in GIC is the people's money or not and they will still ignore us.

Citzens do have a right to know, but the one whose hands are on the money can always refuse to let them know. Excuses can always be made up in all shapes and sizes, so don't bet on getting an answer.

Just do what you think is the right thing when the next election comes. You may at least have a chance to get your answer sooner.

Lost Citizen

Dog said...

My laoChaBo had convinced me that the people's money are no more the people's once they are given to any organ or corp. Towncouncils own their money they collect from customers or residence. GIC & Temasek own the money given them by the Gahmen who collects service-fees, simply called tax, from every consuming sporean.
If gahmen, the ruler is not answerable to its subjects, why should GIC, Temasek, TC, etc explain their doings to serfs.

redbean said...

the citizens have been doing the right thing in every election. be assured that they will still do the right thing.

and yes, better don't waste time talking about money that is not ours.

knn, why am i so like dat?

Matilah_Singapura said...

> What about GIC? How much has it lost? <

No one will know. It is no one's business anyway. The money is 'sunk money'.

> Do the citizens have the right to know how much we have lost? <

No. They didn't have a say when the money was taken off them, they never had a say in how it was invested or spent... so no, they don't have a right to know. (Too much of this "rights" stuff. There is only one right: the right to be left ALONE)

> Is this the people's money? <

No.
End of story

Anonymous said...

The government should convene a Commission of Inquiry and dig into details and establish rules.

The ppl elected the government and therefore the elected officials need make representation.

Unfortunately the ppl running GIC is also the government.

So...

Senior Citizen said...

Of course I've the right to know! I also know I've the right to vote!And the right to have all my CPF at the age of 55! But the PAP has cheated me all these years!!!

redbean said...

hi senior citizen, welcome to the blog. seniors like us can only mumble. without teeth, we can't speak too clearly and neither can we bite.

good thing we can still grumble and make a nuisance of ourselves. i think we have earned the right to be unreasonable and difficult. : )

Jaunty Jabber said...

I think "they" have to rights to not let us know while we know we have the rights to know.

redbean said...

haha, jaunty, you a speaking like a politician.

Jaunty Jabber said...

Learn from the elites, is good for us.

Continuous learning. Learn to Continue.

Matilah_Singapura said...

anon 1200

> The government should convene a Commission of Inquiry and dig into details and establish rules. <

If you can't trust the government to be transparent and be truthful at all times, how can you trust the government to police itself and seek to be truthful?

Senior Citizen

> But the PAP has cheated me all these years!!! <

I'm sorry to be the bearer of bad news. The PAP didn't cheat you, because it is impossible to cheat an honest man.

I take it you are an honest person... right?

The point I keep emphasizing and re-emphasizing is this: They Are The Government — They Can Do ANYTHING They Like, For Any Reason They Choose

and of course the old truism:

THE PEOPLE (aka Sheeple) GET THE GOVERNMENT THEY DESERVE

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