5/08/2012

Miserables don’t rebel



I posted an article yesterday with the title ‘Miserables rebelling’. Actually it is not a true reflection of the situation. The miserables are very happy, contented with the warmth inside a boiling kettle, like the frogs. They are oblivious to what is going to happen except fearing that outside could be very cold.

The people who are speaking up are far from being miserables. Ngiam Tong Dow, Lim Chong Yah, Tommy Koh etc etc are very well endowed financially. They are the elite and are having a great life. Why are they speaking up? It must be a matter of conscience, of a sense of justice. They are very secured people that need not step out to brave the storm. They could remain in the comfort of their cocoons, shielded from all the noises, all the inequalities, and live very comfortably in their own world. They did not have to put up with small flats do not affect the quality of life stupidity. They did not have to squeeze for a standing place in a crammed train or bus. They need not be irritated by the unwashed and smelly workers. They need not worry that a COE is $100k.

The fact that they are speaking out is a sign that they did not like what they see. The injustice and inequalities in the society must have become too stark and unbearable. In our kind of political system, it takes not only a man of conscience and passion to want to right a wrong for the good of people and country. It takes a very brave man to do that. In the case of Lim Chong Yah, he is will to have his salary frozen for the next three years. He and all his high earning relatives and friends would have to do so if his recommendation is implemented. Yes, putting the money where the mouth is, and lead by example. “If I don’t go down to Hades, who should go instead?’

25 comments:

Anonymous said...

I agree with the general tone of the article but was there really a need to talk about "unwashed and smelly workers." Presumably you are talking about unskilled menial labourers. It sounds very dehumananising and cruel. So many of these workers are exploited and grossly underpaid after paying close to ten grand for the privilege of even working here. Their living conditions are medieval if you look at the cramped, diseased and filthy quarters provided by their employers. You think they like living in such conditions? Are construction workers taking Singaporean jobs? I agree that the construction industry needs to be overhauled so that far fewer workers are kept for longer, receive better training for better productivity. This is a win win for everyone. Numbers go down, foreign workers are better paid with more bargaining power. But please don't go and insult these poor guys. It's in very poor taste to look down on a fellow human being who might not smell like roses because he has been spending all day in the sun building our infrastructure for 2 dollars an hour with only a short lunch break inbetween to eat his rice with watery curry and nothing else.

Anonymous said...

If Singaporeans,especially men, take on these unglamorous or third world jobs, they may have to purchase their wives overseas if they want to start a family. More of our attas women will marry angmohs because they wont marry down and what would happen to our demography? More foreign cross pollination? Which ever way you look at it, foreign workers are here to stay for quite some time so better get used to it.

Chua Chin Leng aka redbean said...

You are absolutely right to say that it is not really the fault of the smelly workers. The jams due to the influx of 1m foreigners are also not their fault. It is the policy and the policy makers that gave us the shit.

The flooding of a first world city with 50% of third world inhabitants is the biggest contradiction in public policy making, and very disgusting. If a country aspires to be first world, like an individual aspiring to be rich and cultured, it must go all the way, not just selective corners rich and the rest poor. And it is sick to expect the clean and well dressed to squeeze with the smelly and unwashed in public transport. Whose sick idea is that?

If we want a first world country, it must filter down to the workers as well. They too must be raised to be first world workers, better paid and better with personal hygiene and living condition. It is not acceptable to say that they are poor and like that, so the clean must tolerate them. They must be educated to be clean and live a better quality of life like the better of.

To be clean and washed is not a difficult thing to do. Poor people can also be clean and washed. Poor people can also have dignity and pride. They have to be uplifted to a higher level of existence, a better life. One unspoken benefits that they gained by being in a first world city is to know what life can be, what is cleaniless and orderly, that they can change their life for the better. If they did not learn these and return to be smelly and unwashed because the city folks tolerated them, then they are the losers.

What is happening is not their fault in many ways. They are being exploited in every ways. But one thing, or a few things you cannot take away from them, their pride and dignity. And they need to be educated to have pride and dignity in themselves.

Our big scheme of things has failed in this country. The policy makers are saying that they need $1m to live decently and the workers need only $1000 to be happy. They need their 10,000 sq ft landed properties and the workers can make do without suffering a lower quality of life with 650 sq ft of space.

Similary it is not right to say that we need to be clean and the workers can be smelly. The earlier this fact is made known to the workers, that it is unacceptable and it is for their own good, the better. It is an ugly truth that must be made known. No, we must not tolerate rubbish and live with rubbish. And I will tell that to the ministers.

Anonymous said...

In English football.
When the manager of the football team strings together a long losing streak.
Kind of like a series of ongoing fiascos that just don't seem to want to go away in a small country.

The football fans will start to chant to the loser manager "You don't know what you are doing."

Chua Chin Leng aka redbean said...

My apologies if I sounded harsh. But this is an education in life that the foreign workers can learn for free, free tuition of what is a better life, and they better learn for their own good. Tolerating them in their dirty way is not helping them. It is like telling them it is ok to be smelly and dirty. It is not.

Veritas said...

Elites breaking ranks will be a more mortal threat to their fellow elites fraternity than KPKB of peasants. Singapore will only have hope if our elites speak out against social injustice. Instead of asking people to "endure failure, to improve themselves", or preaching neo-liberalism or market fundamentalism, rebel elites point to a exploitive system, and call for collective effort to abolish them.

This shows that some Singaporeans elites are kind. I wish to point out the other kind of elites who are the most scumbag in the world. The Indian elites represented by Brahmins seeing the sufferings and exploitation of peasants, not only keep mum, but they accuse the peasants doing evil things in their past life.

Next these high caste Indians praise their oppressor that enslave the people--that making peasants suffer, these slave master help them to cleanse their Karma.

The Indian elites are the most wicked and heartless in the whole world. Today PAP are importing their scion (high caste Indian) in large number, hoping that these racist can help to enslave Singaporeans.

Anonymous said...

The shame is not on the smelly and dirty workers.

The shame is on the people who measure their self worth by the size of their bank account.
These people will call Mother Teresa a dirty and smelly worker.

The shame is also on citizens who vote such money loving people into positions of power and leadership.
Do we really want such people to "represent" us in parliament?
- to represent our values to the whole world?
- to be a beacon of values for our children to emulate?

Anonymous said...

There is little credibility attached to rich and successful folks or those already with full stomach speaking out for the under class or under privileged.

First, sell all then open mouths. Can?

No right? The convictions of the rich are not deep enough to cut through the thick wall or fortress of the kings and queens they pay homage to. The rich rebel at best tickles itching ears and perhaps, a little more crumbs fall off the rich man's table,

Chua Chin Leng aka redbean said...

The communists said, to be rich is glorious.

The new christians said, to be rich is a blessing and God blesses the good with riches.

People aspire to be rich, to live a better quality of life. We cannot blame anyone for pursuing the good life.

What is regretable and disgusting is to rob the poor to fill their coffers when the coffers are already filled to the brims.

Anonymous said...

The fallacy, trap and the price to pay for this envisioned "good life" is to be like them. Can we, all, be like them? Is it possible? Where do you hope to land in the pyramid of the rich? At the exclusive top enjoyed by the few, the narrow middle section or the wide base of the dissatisfied and living dead?

Anonymous said...

Who is willing to sell out? Ngiam,Lim,Tommy?

I think you can find them sipping morning tea at the shangri la.

Anonymous said...

You don't come out of Egypt and die in the desert in you know. Are you fools?

Matilah_Singapura said...

I find it really difficult to be miserable in Singapore, and taking the idea further, I think tht you have to work really hard on fucking up your own head to be miserable.

In other words, to be a miserable spirit in Singapore takes really hard work. You have to fill your head with all sorts of shit -- mostly about all those other imperfect people who are not up to ==>> YOUR <== god-like standards.

In addition, to ensure you become and remain a miserable asswipe you must eat bad hi-fat hi-carb (high GI) food, don't sleep, don't exercise, be nasty to everyone all the time -- those "lower" on a social rung than you get an extra bit of cuntiness, and practice animal cruelty on every cat and dog you encounter (without being caught of course).

Then you can be miserable. Guranteed.

And you will deserve to be miserable.

Then you have just the right emotional state to "rebel".

Good luck with that ;-)

Anonymous said...

Thinking with your asshole again Matilah? lol

Anonymous said...

Don't pray pray ok....his asshole dripping with curry. Haaaaa

Anonymous said...

Their way out is to increase productivity. Sounded like Pharoah.

Anonymous said...

Productivity in the Prime Minister's Office.

How many ministers are there?
The so-called Minister in the Prime Minister's Office.

I know there are 2 deputy ministers.

Anonymous said...

If they don't even give a hoot to these men of stature, why would they listen to ordinary folks?

They know best. Let them burn

Anonymous said...

Hi RB,

Informative Doc on how Greece was sold off to the banksters ...

CATASTROIKA - Privatization of the Commons

http://www.dailymotion.com/video/xqhns7_catastroika-english-subtitles_shortfilms?start=0

Its a Greek doc with English subs, how the common wealth of a nation state is sold(stolen)into private hands

Nothing is scared anymore and everything has a price even our common/public space and our common dignity/decency ?

Irony was, i grew up in Commonwealth Crescent or Tanglin Halt 16 Stories .... I miss those days of real common/wealth and community

Below is their first doc called Debtocracy, to get a better view of their Rebellious Miserables

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qKpxPo-lInk

Don't have much hope for Serfsgapore if the 60% wont unplug from the PAPtrix

Bengster: You know, I know this steak (Productivity) doesn't exist. I know that when I put it in my mouth, the PAPtrix is telling my brain that it is juicy (FTs) and delicious (More Jobs).

After 12 years (of GDP Growth), you know what I realize?

[Takes a bite of steak]

Bengster: Ignorance is bliss.

Anonymous said...

Point is, you are still alive

Anonymous said...

Mr. Chua, before you presume that foreign construction workers smell bad because they don't have personal hygiene standards and have poor habits I invite you to actually talk to them or visit some of their housing conditions. I believe there is a shelter for some of them who are injured and have been abandoned by their companies near the maxwell area.

Many of these foreign workers are not rural villagers. They are urbanites in their home countries. If not they would not know the smattering of English that many do nor would they be able to borrow so much money to come here.

Please understand that usually 20-30 men are packed into tiny rooms with one absolutely filthy toilet. Because they are moved around alot and are transient, it is very hard for them to come together to make sure that the area is clean, because they come in at different times and new people keep arriving. Access to toilets and showering times are also very limited thanks to these appalling conditions.

Perhaps instead of insisting that these guys adopt proper hygiene we should be insisting with the Ministry of Manpower that they ensure that contractors provide adequate facilities and give workers enough time to use them.

Anonymous said...

Long story short I suggest we shift the argument to revamping the construction industry and apply more pressure to the Ministry of Manpower to:

- limit numbers
- improve worker conditions and hire more highly skilled workers for higher pay in safer conditions
- encourage innovation and skills upgrading ( our construction industry is still using 30 year old labour intensive methods because wages are so low. Far behind the industries of other developed countries)

Until the construction industry is forced to change it's shoddy standards, the seething underbelly of exploited construction workers is here to stay. Numbing us over time to our collective conscience.

Chua Chin Leng aka redbean said...

Anon 7:47,
Fully agree with you that the conditions are appalling and who are the real culprits. Anon 7:52 knew as well.

We used to have a very smelly Spore River. We made sure nobody dirties it. We could clean that act and it is a river with dumping across the island.

Construction is a dirty industry. They wrapped up a building 40 storey tall like a christmas present to keep the dirt inside. They made is compulsory to wash the wheels of lorries coming out from the site to keep the roads clean.

They neglected completely to keep the workers clean and allowed them to mingle with other office workers or people at leisure. There must be regulations to make the companies provide decent washing facilities and ensure that no dirty workers leave the premises like no dirty trucks leaving construction site.

Would they do it? As you said, the workers are being exploited and treated like rubbish. So they don't care if they smell. I am not blaming the workers for it.

Many things can be done to improve their conditions and hygiene.

Matilah_Singapura said...

The basic problem with the (old) construction industry is the short term thinking so prevalent amongst the contractors of olde tymes.

Nowadays with a better educated bunch, better infrastructure and support networks, bosses are realising that a healthy, happy well-rested workforce is a more productive workforce. You, as a boss or owner will have a more profitable business, gain a sterling reputation from customers and workers.

As humans are emotional creatures, selfish by nature, those who are able to moderate their primal impulses and engage in short-term thinking for immediate gain and gratification tend to "win" in the long run.

A few more of these short term thinking contractors need to be sued, fined and go out of business.

Capitalism is not only about getting the best bang for your buck from suppliers and workers as a boss. Bad enterprises, bad bosses and shoddy entrepreneurs need to go out of business, eat the shit they create and die.

I shed not a tear for fucked up entrepreneurs. Fuck them all with a rusty blunt knife.

Anonymous said...

Time to create a minister to look after the affairs of foreign workers. Only 3 million bucks more a year.