A timely intervention
This incident happened about 40 years ago, when good men were in the govt looking after the welfare of the people. In the heart of the Singapore River was all the trading activities, and a few rice merchants were forming a cartel to corner the rice market. They wanted to make huge profits by controlling the rice trade and price. The consequence was that the masses, the common folks, would be at their mercy, paying whatever price they demanded for rice. The govt stepped in, ticked them off, ostracised them, and set up Intraco with the main purpose of keeping the price of rice and essential food affordable, not charging at market price and no need for subsidies. Just simple cost plus some profit. No need to explain until face green green and nobody believe any word spoken. The people till now are still benefitting from this timely intervention, and the price of rice did not go spiralling up to a point of being painfully affordable. Those were the good old days with good and selfless people in charge and caring more for the good of the people. They were paid well, but not extravagant. These were the good records of a good govt that is for the people. After all the kpkb in cyberspace, we are having two assurances, one from Chok Tong and another from Mah Bow Tan. How would these turn out? As long as the bidding for land mechanism, market pricing, 'subsidising market price' policies are not changed, nothing will change. The price of properties will continue to spiral upwards. And the new mantra is that micky mouse flats or shoe boxes are good for living, a new lifestyle, and cheap too, at half a million for 400 sq ft. Looks like the goal of a Swiss standard of living has been modified to a Hongkong standard of living. Could we hope for a timely intervention like 40 years ago?