12/22/2011

Cheryl Fox - Get Real and hard

I happened to watch this programme hosted by Cheryl Fox on 20 Dec. It was about the housing scheme for the old and lonely. We have this scheme where the oldies are allowed to rent HDB flats at a concession rate of something like $26 pm where two oldies could share a one room flat. They could find their own flat mates or the HDB could fix them up if they could not find one.

$26 monthly rental each is a steal. How to find such low rental when every flat costs several hundred thousand bucks? Even people on public assistance would be able to afford to pay $26 as they get something like $400 pm from the govt.

The programme Get Real, showed a few of the tenants and how they live their lives sharing the flat with strangers. There was a 65 year old guy living with a granny who is more than 90. And there is this guy in his 60s or 70s living with another guy who is much older and have all kinds of oldies problems, unable to control his urine, difficulties in moving, and this guy took upon himself to look after him, feed him, wash him and clean up the mess he is creating, without getting paid a single cent.

The other guy who is with the granny, he just tolerates. The granny is in a world of her own, with poor personal hygiene and her room smells. What to do, there is nothing that the guy could do. He just lives with it.
The two guys were extreme examples of tolerance and compassion. They understand. They know the other parties needed help but were helpless.

I wonder how many of such folks are living on their own in such conditions? Okay, please don’t be patronizing by saying they are losers and deserve to be where they are. With the high cost of living, many will fall into this category in a matter of time, no money, can’t work, weak and feeble, economically useless, and no one to look after them.

The children, if they have, would have serious problem looking after them as well. Our social economic structure is designed to have both average Sinkie parents working. Where are they going to find the time looking after their old folks? And there are also space constraints in the little flats. Where to put the oldies when they have growing up children? Average sinkies don’t live in big 20,000 sq ft bungalows.

So how, put them in old folks homes? You think it is so cheap, so affordable? Many would cost them both their incomes. So how? How much does it cost to upkeep one such loser that is completely dependent on others to help them to live longer?

I think the pension of a minister could take care of at least 1,000 such folks. It definitely would not bankrupt the country to take on this function for sure. It is a case of value. Who shall take care of them and if the rightful caretaker can’t as they too are in dire straits, who else?
Some say depends on Charity Shows and the public for more donations. Some say the President can help to raise funds. Yes, depends on the public and their money to support these people who are blessed with long lives. Is the money in our national reserves not public money?

Where is the dignity to grow old? Shit, people in such state better don’t ask for dignity. It is between a one room flat, a nursing home or the road side. What do they expect?

21 comments:

Matilah_Singapura said...

The excuse that "life is so hard I can't look after my aging parents" doesn't quite cut it with me.

If we are lucky, we all get to live to old age. In between young adulthood and old age is usually about, say, 50 or so years -- more than plenty of time to get one's shit together. This includes being nice to people in your family and extended family.

I say tbis because I suspect a significant number of those oldies to have been insufferable assholes in their younger days, and now by a cruel stroke of nature's probability, live to a ripe old age where they are helpless and now have to depend on others, but too late for them -- they have cruelly wounded and hurt the ones closest to them. They blew it. They sabotaged their own dignity.

I didn't see the program, however from what redbean states, it seems ok. The rent is cheap, and these folks can live.

I don't see a problem. So in my mind, why make a problem when there is none there? In fact, I think the problem (growing old and destitute) is handled quite well

Anonymous said...

The last person you want to share the flat is with someone who enjoys spilling curry onto his bed.

Costly detergent will drain all the resources away.

Anonymous said...

All the HDB millionaires better pray they did not fall sick and kenna hospitalised. We have a perfect world class system that guarantees they will be bankrupted and live in $26 rental flats if they did. This is the fate of many lucky Singaporeans who could live to 70 or 80 years.

Chua Chin Leng aka redbean said...

I agree with Matilah that many of them were assholes, exactly like everyone of us. We will wait for our turns to take their places.

I would like to beg the Housing Minister to build more of such flats and be ready when more and more lucky Singaporeans will come and occupy them. I am giving him advanced notice and he has no reason to say he did not know its coming.

Anonymous said...

they need to supply more tissues

Anonymous said...

Why doesn't the state bring them to church so they can sow their little seed money in return for health,wealth,favors and power?

Nothing is impossible with God and the greatest is love. Surely love conquers all?

Now get me the clinex.

Anonymous said...

redbean,
If you think this housing situation is bad.

What about the Straits Times report that 10% of Singaporeans will have mental health problems in the future as the population ages.

Imagine sharing your future rental flat with a senile Matilah Singapura.

Chua Chin Leng aka redbean said...

When I look at the few ageing tenants, I say, what is happening? These may be people who have messed up their lives. It is their faults. But do we want them to live their last few years in that way? Is our country so poor that we cannot afford to let them live decently and be taken care of?

And anyone who utters, who do you want me to do, give them 1 rm flat, 2 rm flat or nursing home, such people shall not be in govt to look after the people. The heart is not there.

There will not only be 10% of mad people, there will be 30% more with dementia and senility to cope with. They will be crawling all over the place.

The future is frightening. Lock the door and don't step out of the flat.

Anonymous said...

Quote :" And anyone who utters, who do you want me to do, give them 1 rm flat, 2 rm flat or nursing home, such people shall not be in govt to look after the people."

Hahahahaha..... thanks RB... I know who you are referring to ... , can spell vivian ?

Chua Chin Leng aka redbean said...

Sorry, I mean 'what' and not 'who'.

Anonymous said...

Yes, they shld hav seek help fr the churches, they will never run out of sympathy and charity. Jesus will be their eternal savor. M-S will definitely agrees.

Anonymous said...

How can you say that 'a significant number of those oldies to have been insufferable assholes'? Even if they are 'assholes' do they deserved to live out their life like that? I am very sure there are a portion of them that are in that situation because of situations beyond their control. @Matilah Singapura, you will one day be old

Anonymous said...

Matilah will never grow old or suffer this kind of fate. Mind you, his ma is still a virgin.

Matilah_Singapura said...

Ok anon motherfuckers. As usual, you talk out your arses.

As a broke student, I worked in nursing homes. I can say with a fair degree of certainty that some oldies lived good lives as good people, and there are others who are insufferable pricks.. and not because they have dementia or are senile.

I found that IN GENERAL the "nice" oldies had more visitors more often that the others.

Human nature expresses itself in every age. We have the capacity to be nice or an asshole. Human nature is predictable, but specific actions are not.

I once saw this dude in a wheelchair PUNCH a woman also in a wheelchair directly in her face. They were both about 80 year's old. Human nature. Primate behaviour. Don't delude yourselves!!

kayangmo said...

With the current pace or rate of cost of living in Singapore, I wonder how many people can actually retire or have enough to live comfortably or even just simple food and sufficient medical funds, without burdening their children.
Not many.
Therefore the govt introduced family laws that forces children to take care of their parents, while many old parents will choose suicide rather than burden their already broke children (broke because the high cost of living and low salaries).

Singapore is doomed for many people, unless you are part of the elite earning big bucks. Don't expect them to give you a handout.
LKY has stated and restated this many times.

Chua Chin Leng aka redbean said...

Hi kayangmo, welcome to the blog. The rich poor divide is ugly. No one is unhappy about the rich having a good life. But people are unhappy because their lives are going to get worst as we go forward.

For every child being born, the parents must be ready to come out with at least half a million to see them thru university to become taxi drivers. For every person to start a family, he must be prepared to cough out at least half a million to get some free space in a small HDB flat.

Imagine those families with half a dozen children! My god, what is life going to be for them?

Anonymous said...

Fret not, the END is nearing.

Anonymous said...

Fret not, the END is getting nearer by the days.

I_Get_Hard_On_Cheryl said...

oops...This is the M-S in me that's talking

Matilah_Singapura said...

She was more jambu when she was younger. This IS matilah talking :-*

Anonymous said...

@Matilah_Singapura
Ever wondered what made the 80 yr old "dude" punch the 80 yr old woman? Punching a fellow elderly sounds like a downright atrocious behaviour alright but what made him what he is to do such a deed?

If shallow labelling and empty finger-pointing is a trait in your blood, perhaps you shouldn't be working in a nursing home. It's perverse.