3/20/2015

CPF – The bugging issue that everyone turns to look the other way


To all the foreign visitors to this blog, the CPF or Central Provident Fund is not a govt pension scheme. It is the life time savings of an employee, money deducted directly from his pay to be kept in the CPF and originally legislated to be returned to the contributors when they reached the age of 55. The return of all the money in the fund to their rightful owners was not a problem until recently when the rules were changed by the govt.
 

Several changes were made primarily to delay the amount to be returned to the rightful owners and the creation of other sub accounts to retain the money for as long as the govt so decided in minimum sums schemes that amounted to several hundred thousands of dollars. A minimum sum of $155k must be left in the CPF when the contributors reached 55 when he is allowed to withdraw his savings. Used to be a complete withdraw from the CPF with nothing left inside. Another minimum sum in a Medisave account for a sum of $43,500 must also be left in the CPF. This will be raised to $49,800 in a new subaccount called Basic Healthcare Scheme and will be retained till the member dies or the amount is used up, whichever is later.
 

With minimal protest from the people, a number of unprecedented protest rallies were held to opposed these changes at the Speakers’ Corners, the govt gets bolder and introduced compulsory life annuity insurance and medical insurance schemes that the people must pay for from their life savings in the CPF without the people’s consent. The govt is acting as if it has the approval or right to do what it wants with the people’s life savings of a life time. These changes meant that the contributors could hardly withdraw anything from their life time savings when they reached 55, now extended to 65.
 

What is the problem? No one, no a single academic, the legal counsels or Members of Parliament, has questioned the ethical and moral justifications for the govt to act in this way, to touch the people’s life savings. Legally the govt can change all the laws it wants with a 2/3 majority in Parliament. But changing the laws does not remove the principle of private ownership of properties and assets, in this case the people’s life savings.
Is it morally and ethically acceptable for the govt of the day to touch the people’s life savings and decide when and how much to return to the people, how the money should be spent on insurance policies that the people did not consent to?
 

The silence of the elite, the legal professions, the law makers and the academics and all the civic organizations can mean one thing. There is nothing unethical or morally wrong for a govt to touch the people’s life savings and to decide how to spend them.
 

If this is the case, then there is no case to talk about. What moral rights does the govt have to touch the people’s life savings without the consent of the owners of the money? Why are all the elite and professionals so reticent about this? Do they think the govt has crossed the line by making all these decisions on the people’s life savings? Or are they afraid to even think about it, and talking about it is taboo?
 

No? Nothing wrong with it? Are there any intelligentsia in the city state? Where is the conscience of the intelligentsia on a major issue like this? All daft, deaf and dumb? Where are the outspoken elite of this first world city state? Don’t they have anything to say about this?

24 comments:

Anonymous said...

It is the people's money, stupid.

Anonymous said...

Why are all the elite and professionals so reticent about this?
RB

Hahahahahahaha.

Why? For obvious reasons lah.

Now assuming u are an elite and professional, a successful one and not those jobless PMEs lah of course, have and can make lots of money, so much so that your CPF money become peanuts in comparison, why would u not want to be reticient? Why would u want to challenge PAP or worse join the Sinkie opposition to do so, u tell me lah?

Why

Anonymous said...

"There's desire for alternative views, but basically Singaporeans want the PAP to govern Singapore."
Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong said in an interview with Singapore journalists in January 2015

Anonymous said...

....but basically Singaporeans want the PAP to govern Singapore.
PM Lee

That's why with Sinkies wanting PAP to govern Singapore, smart Sinkies do not see any use of alternative views, although there is a desire for it, eg so many want to read and comment on RB's blog.

Anonymous said...

"There's desire for alternative views, but basically Singaporeans want the PAP to govern Singapore."
Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong said in an interview with Singapore journalists in January 2015

I don't think this is true anymore.
With duds like Desmond Kuek/SMRT breaking down every other week ... it is timely reminder to 60% Singaporeans to vote for alternative solutions.

Anonymous said...


You are first world**.
He/she is first world**.
We are first world**.
Everything here is first world**.
Our cpf is first world**.

**(very sorry lah...what is "first world")

Matilah_Singapura said...

@ facts-not-straight, redbean:

>> Central Provident Fund is not a govt pension scheme. It is the life time savings of an employee

Actually it is all of the above, and none of the above.

You forget that you've left out the component of GOVT CPF TOP-UP, which means they have an "interest" in the account. The "savings" are also partly from the workers. The rest of the monthly deduction is contributed by EMPLOYERS into the workers' respective accounts.

But I just forget about all that with a simple wave of the hand. I don't even need a magic wand to do the waving.

CPF is a tax funded ponzi scheme---with a few dispensations here and there---for e.g. to buy property---to give it a "gloss" of ownership by individual members.

CPF is lawful. Which means if you claim the dough in the account, you better be able to make a LEGAL CASE. Name calling and anyhow-hantam-your-own-logic simply won't cut it.

Got reality check?

agongkia said...

Just wonder how many Sinkies contributed the so call CPF.
Its our kind employer who contribute. They are the one who will be shamed by cpf with letters written to their staff claiming they have not contributed cpf if they face difficulty paying in time.
Besides late interest n compound fine they may even have to attend court. How many ever attend court n charge for not paying cpf except as an employer.
So how to say its our money.
See the response at HLP. It shows that many understand n agree cpf is a tax.
If they pay you.you condider Heng to have sotongs.
Even if they Cheongkong all.Its fair.
Garmen is good.They have Sinkies welfare in their mind.

agongkia said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anonymous said...

Ponzi: noun
Ponzied: verb

Anonymous said...

"....a number of people leave their money in their CPF "instead of withdrawing it all when it comes to their retirement age.
They don't get a lot of publicity, they don't jump around at Hong Lim (Park), but they quietly know it's a good deal"
Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong, speaking to the Singapore media in Berlin...

Matilah_Singapura said...

Here's an example of a prayer some of these sheeple of Hong Lim Park will be praying:

"Dear god,

Please be merciless and make that fucker Lee Kuan Yew suffer.

Please be merciful and get back all my CPF money.

Amen"

:-)

b said...

Each time they have a change, they should introduce a new CPF version so the money contributed under the old cpf version is still subjected to old cpf rules and those contributed under the new cpf version is subjected to new cpf rules. I cannot recall the latin word for this law.

b said...

All the monies of the gov belongs to the people. The gov is the custodian not the owner. This is a rePUBLIC not monarchy.

Anonymous said...

It's a LeePublic.
Since every Singaporean has a claim on the Singapore Reserves.
Then maybe Singaporeans should be replaced with Aliens who have no claims.
Either force the Singaporeans to emigrate or wait for the Singaporeans to die off.

Matilah_Singapura said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Matilah_Singapura said...

@ b:

>> All the monies of the gov belongs to the people.

No, it doesn't belong to either. It belongs to The State. (Which is why it is called Sovereign Wealth). The govt is a temporary manager. The individuals which make up the people are also temporary beneficiaries of the sovereign wealth, but they have no claim over it.

However The State is forever, and has the authority and LEGAL POWER to control anything and everything in its defined territory...unless it fails, which is unlikely.

Anonymous said...

Because in Singapore everyone is afraid and self censure. We criticize the PRCs so much to make us feel superior, but lack the balls to stand up for our own rights and btw our property and savings. Say what you want about mainlanders, at least they have the balls to stand up for themselves and think for themselves however misguided. Singaporeans still worship there has-been British masters and anybody who is white.

Anonymous said...

My cover version for the "foreigners", on your great article on this subject.

=========================

To all the foreign visitors to this blog, the CPF (Central Provident Fund) is not a govt pension scheme.

It is a “forced” contribution or saving from a part an employee’s total salary throughout his working life. (While the occasional contributions from the government, rare and minuscule. The “interest rate” for these savings sub-par)

When CPF was first legislated, the intent was to return this accumulated amount to the contributor when they reached the age of 55. This is no longer the case. In recent years, CPF rules were constantly changed by the govt.

The nett effect of these changes was a delay in returning this accumulated amount to the rightful owners when they reach age of 55. These changes involved schemes, whereby sub accounts (with dedicated purpose) were created requiring a minimum sum to be maintained in each of these sub-accounts.

A minimum sum of $155k is now needed for the main account in CPF when the rightful owners reach 55, before he can withdraw any balance. In the sub-account for medical purpose, a sum of $43,500 must be maintained, and now will be raised to $49,800.

Despite a small number of unprecedented protest rallies held to oppose these changes at the Speakers’ Corners, the people were largely passive. This made the govt bolder and introduced even more schemes eg compulsory life annuity insurance and medical insurance schemes.

The people must now pay for these new schemes with savings in their CPF, even if they do not wish to. As a result hardly anything can now be withdrawn from their lifetime savings when they reached 55. Even then, the withdrawal age is now being raised to 65!

Why not a single academic, legal counsels or Members of Parliament, questioned the ethical and moral grounds for such schemes which in actuality, affects the people’s own life saving and how they like to spend their own money?

Of course the government can legally change or implement laws, (they just need a 2/3 majority in parliament), but does it exempt them from not respecting the principles of private ownership of properties and assets, in this case the people’s life savings?

Is it morally and ethically acceptable for any govt of the day to decide when the people’s life savings should be returned to them and how the people should spend their own life savings (not to mention, without their consent)?

Why the silence of the elites, the legal professions, the lawmakers, the academics and all the civic organizations? Does it mean that there is nothing unethical or morally wrong for a govt to ‘commandeer’ the people’s life savings and make unilateral decision on how to spend them?

Or this is actually a taboo that they are afraid to even think about it, le along speaking about it?

Otherwise, is it that there are no ‘intelligentsia’ in this city state? Or that there is a real lack of conscience, empathy or sense of right or wrong, on an issue like this? Or we are really all daft, deaf and dumb?

The usually outspoken elite of this first world city-state has nothing to say about this?

patriot said...

Do allow this lowly educated layman tries to offer a response to Anon 8:49 am above.

First, whatever Schemes implemented so far hardly affect the SUCCESSFUL RICH FOLKS.

Secondly and MOST CRUCIALLY, Sinkies AS A WHOLE, are fearful that ROCKING THE BOAT WILL SINK IT.
SINKIES BELIEVE they have no where to go, THEY CAN ONLY SURVIVE IN THIS TINY WELL. OUT OF IT, THEY WILL PERISH.
I THINK IT IS A FACT THAT CAGED ANIMALS DO NOT SURVIVE IN THE NATURAL WORLD. SINKIES ARE CAGED FOR 50 YEARS AND MORE, SO YES, THEY DEPEND ON THEIR KEEPETS TO STAY ALIVE, HENCE, NO INITIATIVE BY THE MASSES TO REASON WITH THE MASYERS THEY HAVE CHOSEN ALL THESE YEARS. EXCEPT FOR A HANDFUL.
WE SHALL ALL PERISH WHENCE THE BOAT CAPSIZES DUE TO POOR CAPTAINSHIP(LEADERSHIP). OR WHENCE THE CAPTAIN HIMSELF DIES.
patriot

Anonymous said...

WE SHALL ALL PERISH WHENCE THE BOAT CAPSIZES DUE TO POOR CAPTAINSHIP(LEADERSHIP). OR WHENCE THE CAPTAIN HIMSELF DIES.
patriot
March 21, 2015 9:11 am

Poor patriot.
Kena brainwash until he believes himself to be useless without the "captain".
If Germans living in Nazi Germany after World War Two can survive without Hitler ... then Singaporeans can do so much better because our country has not been bombed into oblivion by Allies and Russians.

patriot said...

It was a blessing that Sin was given Independence by the British. The Chinese inhabitants here could have been wiped out by THE JAPANESE IMPERIAL ARMY HAD THE ATOMIC BOMBS NOT DROPPED AT HIROSHIMA AND NAGASAKI.

patriot is lucky too to be born after THE JAPANESE IMPERIAL ARMY WAS STOPPED FROM THEIR HEINOUS RAMPAGE ON THE CHINESE RACE.
BUT,
not too lucky that he(patriot) gets some people who worked for THE JAPANESE IMPERIAL ARMY TO RULE AND LORD OVER SINKIES AND DECIDE THE DESTINY OF SIN.
Nevertheless, I do quite enjoy living given the blessings of good health, ignorance and foolishness.

I believe that nature is not perfect ad beings must live with aberrations of nature. However, do make existence to the Best one can do.

天生我才必有用。

patriot

Anonymous said...

A bred of traitors beget leaders of traitors.

All for one and one for all is the lame of the game.

Hoping against hope with eyes closed, nose pinched and ears shut is the lamb of the game.

Betrayal is the name of the game.

Anonymous said...

CPF - from now on should be known as

CON PEOPLE'S FUNDS