Same challenges different responses

Leong Chun Ying has taken over as the new head of Hongkong. His maiden speech was about tackling the immediate challenges facing the island, high property prices, high income gap and social harmony. These are exactly the same problems that Sinkies are facing. And the Today paper has frontpaged the thoughts of Chan Chun Sing on the same issues yesterday.

The problems are recognized but how the govt is dealing with them can be filtered from Chan Chun Sing’s comments. Taking care of the low income and making sure they have enough to get by is relatively an easier issue to resolve. Raising productivity and increasing social transfers to ensure a basic standard of living for low wage earners will do the trick, and they will have enough to buy milk powder and other basic necessities. It is the aspirations of the highly educated Sinkies that are difficult to deal with. To the latter, it is how much more to have, I think, that is worrying. They need to own assets worth several millions before they are satisfied. For the lower income, they have little or no aspirations. Really?

Let me summarise, helping the rich getting richer is difficult, ie, no answers. Helping the poor with their basic needs is easy. Just make sure they have enough to eat and money to buy milk powder. They will survive. Some are doing very well with $2000 a month income. Why should those earning $5000 be complaining? So $2000 should be enough, afterall $1000 can already buy HDB flats. $2000 must be a luxury.

Now I understand why the income gap will not be narrowed. It is relative and matter of perception and lifestyle. Many can live on $2000. So what is the problem? In Hongkong, Leong is going to listen seriously to the voices and complaints of the people. Here, the income gap can simply be explained away as part of progress and nothing can be done. So is housing prices. Now what is the Hongkie govt going to do to narrow the income gap and high property prices? I don’t think they are going to say the same thing, or the problem is too difficult to resolve.

I think the Hongkie govt will have serious problems trying to solve these if the super talents here could not. The Hongkies did not claim to be super talents and are not drawing super talented pay and can be excused for being not so clever.


Anonymous said...

The Hong Kong Chinese have 5000 years of civilization as foundaction, what do Sinkies have?


Anonymous said...

Leung is going to listen to the people of hong kong because on the day of his swearing in, 100,000 native hongkongers are on the street protesting to make sure this incoming CE will not screw up their article 23 - on universal suffrage while the other 100,000 mainlanders are celebrating the fireworks.

The foreigners are rejoicing, but the local natives are protesting. So can Singaporeans march on the street so that your CEO has no choice but to 'listen" to you? What do you think?

Matilah_Singapura said...

The guy made his dough on HK property.

Oh, the irony!

Anyway, good choice. HK is the capitalist dream city. May she always stay that way and prosper more!