12/15/2011

A little reflection on RAR

When something that is reasonable becomes ridiculous, or when something that is reasonable becomes so reckless. I chanced upon an old CNA report interviewing Chok Tong on the unhappiness over foreigners buying properties and driving up the prices. The quote is below.
‘Another radical suggestion put forward was to bar foreigners from buying private property but SM Goh noted developers would just build more high-rise private apartments to counter it.

"At the moment, our policy will be, condominium, private sector. They want to buy, let them buy because they actually bring in money for Singapore. They may not actually stay there but they bring in money.

"They buy from locals, locals are happy to get the money but it's not actually adding to space. In fact, that's actually ideal. They buy here, they don't drive cars, they don't live here, we just get their money! They're buying air!" laughed SM Goh.’


Actually Chok Tong got a point. If the foreigners are willing to bring in good money to buy air, why not? Our developers will be very happy and Singaporeans too will be very happy if they can sell their HDB flats to them as well. Now what is the cause of this happy problem?

The cause is so stupid and the solution so simple. Just build more and make sure citizens can buy their flats and at a really affordable price. And if citizens can then sell to foreigners, and buy again from HDB, citizens happy, foreigners happy, govt also happy. Every transaction will bring extra revenue to the govt in terms of stamp duties. The lawyers will be happy with the conveyancing fee, the designers and renovator will also be happy with more works. The buying and selling will find its own equilibrium when demand and supply balances out. Then buying and selling will slow down under the same economic and market forces.

See, it only needs a joker to stop building and want to earn as much from the citizens as possible and the happy formula failed. Make from foreigners not enough, still want to squeeze every penny from the citizens and refuse to build to exaggerate the supply and demand tension to justify higher prices to charge the citizens.

Why don’t the govt just liberalise the sale of all properties to foreigners(with higher stamp duties and some conditions, esp landed) and they only need to ensure that all citizens will get their public flats at citizen prices. A new status quo will be reached when the supply is there for the citizens(with limits on how many they can buy) and the demand by foreigners will also be limited by this supply. But make sure don’t anyhow give citizenship to every foreigner to buy public flats from HDB at citizen price. Let them be PRs and pay PR price and non citizen price.

The whole shit boils down to citizens not being able to buy affordably priced flats. If this is catered for, who cares if non citizens want to buy what and how high private property prices can go? Give the people a roof and the kpkb will end. But some sectors would want to protect the prices of their private properties and this could be why lesser public flats were being built. If only they care and make sure public flats are easily available to citizens, they could have the cake and eat it too, as long as the inflow of foreigners did not go crazy.

15 comments:

Matilah_Singapura said...

> > The whole shit boils down to citizens not being able to
buy affordably priced flats


No, that is patently FALSE. You are trying to start some shit whilst pumping up yourself as an added bonus.
Singapore is still one of the easiest places in the world to live. But not everyone can have 5000 sq ft or own.

Sometimes you have to go for smaller and pay rent and/ or share. So what? At least you have a roof and a bed.

1994~1997 Wah, same old story. People going nuts. 1998-2001 market collapse. HDB 4rm ~ $200k. Big exodus of foreigners. End of most exorbitant expat remuneration packages. Rentals fall. Condo in Orchard /Cluny/ Grange Rd $1500-2k. Free hold semi d in Bk Timah ~$750k. Buyer's delighted. Seller's haemorrhaging money.

I agree with Goh, but he continues to amaze. How can he make such a simple idea as "it doesn't matter who owns it as long as someone owns it" (I've been saying this all along) and come off sounding like an asshole... attempting to score some fake brownie points with the LS. (Local Sheeple)

I agree that more liberty in the market is good. The sooner HDBs are give full title of ownership, the closer to a true FREE MARKET in Spore real estate. Tinkering with markets never work out well. Someone will get burnt.

Similarly, basing ownership on some ficticious moral standard like invented "rights for locals" is not only morally repugnant but objectively ILLOGICAL.

Chua Chin Leng aka redbean said...

Nope, you are accepting the shit as the new normal. You are as good as agreeing to small is good. Land is limited and cannot have more cars but can more population.

The biggest fault is to let the demand, through crazy immigration, to grow uncontrollably and tighten the supply of flats by not building. This is simple economics 101, supply and demand.

How could people get away with such policies in public administration?

The citizens must not surrender their rights away as citizens, and it is their right to demand what they think is good and for the elected govt to perform as long as the demand is reasonable and attainable. This is democracy at work.

You stand for election to serve the people. You promise what you want to do for the people. The people decides to vote you in or out. You deliver, you are in. You don't deliver you are out.

Don't give silly exaggerated demands like a 5,000 sq ft flat. No reasonable Singaporean is making this kind of crazy demand. A ballpark demand like 4 rm flat at $200k for every first timer, and no craps about who can and cannot buy as long as they are first timers. This is a very reasonable demand.

Matilah_Singapura said...

No wrong. You stand for election to serve the cuntry and its republican constitution FIRST. Check the oath of office.

Serving the people is a concept which can only be done legitimately UNDER THE RULE OF LAW.

There are no "rights " like what you suggest. The only human right in reality is self ownership. Ie you own your life. Do as you please without encroaching on other people's right to self ownership.

Which means: there is no legal precedent to shut off the borders. There is no legal precedent to compel firms to hire less productive locals over better foreigners (for example. I'm sure most locals are great workers)

More freedom ensure that those who deserve to win, win. Meritocracy equals JUSTICE.

Matilah_Singapura said...

Summing Up

For Spore to prevail and sustain itself, the general idea is MORE individual freedom, LESS government interference. Ie you are free to succeed or fail according to your luck, your skills and your choices.

1. Open but well defended borders

2. Free labour market: bosses can hire and fire anyone for reasons they are not obliged to share.
Ie. Private property, privacy and obligations due to contract ONLY. No contact? Fuck off!

3. Defending meritocracy : ensuring that those who earn from their productivity get to keep what they own.
Ie. Protection of private property from the politically legalised theft that democracy often does. Democracy must be GUIDED.

4. Capitalism -- the best way so far to solve human problems. Capitalism incentivises problem solving, through the profit motive.
Both sides of the trade benefit due to self interest pursuits.

Buyers win when they solve their problems by buying the solution.

Sellers win when the buyers pay for solutions the sellers have on offer.

No government.. unless there's a breach of contract.

Chua Chin Leng aka redbean said...

My goodness, you are insane! Just one point will do. You don't own your life. The govt owns your life, at least when you are doing your NS or in active reservist.

Open borders, free in and free out? You are really mad. Even the Americans and Australians don't to it. Only equally insane govt will listen to you on this.

Meritocracy when practised fully is rule of the jungle. Arrrrgh, I give up. Some one got to roll you into IMH.

Matilah_Singapura said...

The cuntries like US and AUS have border policies their government s formulated to appease politically because of their out of control democratic systems/ welfare states.

Don't worry, even in places like US and Oz, there are people who believe that borders should be OPEN but WELL DEFENDED. ie if you come peacefully or to do commerce , you're welcome.

However, CONSTITUTIONAL REPUBLICANISM is hanging by a slender thread in Spore, and The Sheeple continue to sabo themselves.

Latest sabo: democratically elected president. This is very bad and unsafe. Presidential appointments should only be done by parliament. Democratic elected president is a recipe for GURANTEED DICTATORSHIP sometime in the future.

Meritocracy is not rule of jungle. Meritocracy ensures that if you apply yourself better than your competition, you win more in the game -- regardless of where you started.

If you want rule of the jungle, try totalitarianism or authoritarianism.

Yes, you are half right: under most modern political system you own yourself insofar as you are FREE TO LEAVE if you don't like the nation state's PARTIAL CLAIM on certain aspects of your life.

As far as I know, in most developed places on earth, you cannot escape from such "social contracts".. but you are free to leave.

Chua Chin Leng aka redbean said...

Now am I suppose to pop champagne to celebrate or what? This crazy man said I am half right, which is equivalent to get an A star from a weirdo professor who does not think anyone is good enough to get a C.

If you look at the constitution, our elected President roles is probably can be summed up in one sentence. How could he ever become a dictator? Go and read up if you want to know more about his duties.

All political systems are as shitty as the rulers running. Period. Unrestrained meritocracy is crazy and dangerous. Totalitarianism or authoritarianism can be better is the authority is benign and benevolent, not greedy and self serving.

Matilah_Singapura said...

Actually unrestrained meritocracy is THE ONLY SAFE WAY to ensure plurality of ownership and MAXIMUM INDIVIDUAL FREEDOM.

... However I don't expect redbean to agree. He's one of these "champions of mediocrity " -- middle way assholes so prevalent in Buddhism... another stupid religion (now motherfuckers are going to argue that Buddhism IS NOT a religion) that refuses to burn its scriptures.

Every thing mjst be equal. To ea h according to his need.. And creed. Average out the goodies.. Equal share of this and that... Fuck that shit lah. All yu end up with is everyone equally poor and miserable.

Chua Chin Leng aka redbean said...

In this tread, your persistence on biting on the merits of meritocracy and freedom of choice makes me wonder whether you are senile, naive or plain stupid. Of course the latter cannot be.

All social and political concepts are flawed in their assumptions and in the end results if they are practised to the word. Human beings are too diverse and different to fit into those models and the end game is self destruct.
Also, in practice, the selfish nature of man will not allow them to be practise as they should be.

You are not going to try to convince me that all the successful people are successful because of their merit will you? The smart asses will manipulate all kinds of systems and concepts to their advantage and benefits. Concepts and ideologies are only used and useful when they are useful to the power that be.

Matilah_Singapura said...

redbean:

Again you choose to make claims you cannot prove. And calling me names or trying (badly) to attack my intellect or lack of it does not at all strengthen your position/ argument.

It is far easier to "prove" claims of meritocracy/ freedom/ free markets because the DEFAULT POSITION is TO LEAVE THINGS ALONE AND NOT INTERFERE.

Everything you propose requires action or interference in some degree, yet you CANNOT/ WILL NOT PROVE the validity of those ideas.

Now, you must be tempted to call me more names or tell me how stupid I am...go for it. Your position is still WEAK. ;-)

Also, you hold an underlying assumption as "true". You say that left unchecked, in meritocracy or a free market a bunch of people will end up with all the goodies.

Although you cannot prove it (probably because it is wrong), let's say you are -- for the sake of argument -- right.

So what? So what if a bunch of people end up with all the goodies, if they work for it, and are able to conduct themselves with more discipline than the rest?

_So__fucking__what?

Matilah_Singapura said...

P.S. I am not trying to convince you of anything. Nor am I trying to "convert" others to my point of view.

I'm just one asshole with plenty of opinions on a network of billions of other assholes with opinions too -- many who are WAY SMARTER than a PSLE beach Bum like my self.

Do you seriously believe that I actually CARE if I'm RIGHT??

Fucking hell!

Chua Chin Leng aka redbean said...

The point is that all these systems will not last as history will repeat itself. Up to a point when the inequality is intolerable, the people will revolt and all will crumble to the ground. It goes on this way.

Any good system shall try to moderate the extremes to last as long as it can. Excesses will be excesses and will not be tolerated up to a point.

No, I don't think you care except for yourself. You are just screaming. Hey, I am screaming also.

Bloody hell: )

Anonymous said...

There is ONLY ONE SINGLE PROBLEM that plagues Sin and Singaporeans, and IT IS A FATAL PROBLEM! And that is, our rulers only know and want money!
They care not that jams and queues are everywhere people are wasting lots of times doing the most unproductive things. Neither do they care about having more space and nature for citizens to enjoy and be happy. THEY THINK ABOUT MONEY, TALK ABOUT MONEY AND WANT ONLY MONEY! AND THE WANT OF MONEY IS THE ROOT CAUSE OF SIN!

GOH CHOK TONG WILL NEVER BE SATISFY WITH MONEY AND HE WILL NEVER FIND HIMSELF HAVING ENOUGH OF IT, IT SEEMS. DITTO WITH HIS CABINET COLLEAGUES!

patriot

Matilah_Singapura said...

@redbean:

No, inequality by itself is not sufficient for a revolution.

Inequality is THE DEFAULT condition of the universe. When it comes to mankind, inequality means that we have litlle choice but to depend on each other to have our thousands of needs met, every second of everyday right through from cradle to grave.

Inequality ROCKS. The idea of meritocracy is based on inequality, and the iea is to INCREASE inequality by WINNING. If everyone was equal, there's no incentive to COMPETE. For our individualistic species, we need to compete as well as cooperate to "get shit done and solve problems".

So once again redbean is way off making claims he cannot prove. (what's new?)

Chua Chin Leng aka redbean said...

: )