Leon Perera and Firuz Khan for WP

Two big names were on the Workers’ Party list of candidates for the GE. Leon Perera, 44 and Firuz Khan, 48, are two good catch that would do a lot of good to the WP. This is only the beginning and if they could present another 10 or so such candidates before the GE, the WP is in serious business. With more professionals joining the party, it means that the party is able to attract serious minded people to join its rank to challenge the ruling party.

If the other opposition parties could also do the same and attract similarly qualified candidates, the battle ground is going to change dramatically this time round. And the voters cannot complain of not having any choice. Those who had been voting for the ruling party out of no good choice but wanting to vote otherwise would now have no problems making their choices.

It is now very interesting to see how many more professionals the opposition parties could bring out this time to give the PAP a run for the money. Could we see a real battle in the making and not another round of walkovers or underweights bashing against the PAP machine? I think it is going to be exciting.

PS. Perera has a double first class from Oxford. He was a former head of an EDB division, a high flyer in his own right. He is now CEO of Spire Research and Consulting.  Firuz is in the banking and retail industry and a council member of WP's Youth Wing.

Labour Day Protest – Protect the Singaporean Workers

Gilbert Goh is holding a Labour Day Protest tomorrow, 1 May, at Hong Lim from 4pm to 7pm. According to him this year’s theme is Protect The Singaporean Workers. In his message on this protest he said, ‘We will also publicly shamed companies on that day which have a history of errant discriminatory employment records.’

The main issues undoubtedly will be ‘the influx of foreigners who have robbed us of our rice bowl, the lack of proper representation when there is a contractual dispute with the employer and the perpetually-low wages which ensure that Singaporeans continue to struggle in our small city state crippled by ever-rising cost of living.’

Gilbert also wants to ‘remind all our participants that this is a protest and not a rally or picnic – we need you to come prepared to shout and raise your fist at the errant pro-employer policies of our government.

Don’t bring your picnic mat or sun glasses but do bring along your voice and anger so that we will roar together as one body and that people’s power will be on show for one more time!’

Gilbert needs all the support the people can give him by being there. It would be a big let down if after working so hard over the years and the turnout is poor. Would Singaporeans be motivated and inspired by the work of this lone soldier soldiering tirelessly to promote their interest and the well being of all Singaporeans and march with him?

PS. Please note that there is another protest rally on 3 May at 3pm at Hong Lim led by Leong Sze Hian.

In celebration of the Indian elites

Never in the history of Singapore has the Indian community been so prominent as the ruling elite of this island. The era when Indian elites were the most prominent was during the early days of independence when we inherited the whole govt and bureaucracy from the colonial govt. In those days, the govt and civil servants were either British, Eurasians or Indians. Their commonality was the English Language. The colonial govt used English as the language of officialdom.

The Chinese and Malays were less familiar with the language with the Chinese mainly educated in Chinese medium schools. Only the babas who had been here longer would be educated in the English medium, but not really of great proficiency. The Chinese were mainly in commerce and trading or in small businesses, in a world of their own, with the lower sector contributing to the labour force.

The prominence of the Indian elites was in a way third grade, with the British occupying all the top jobs, the Eurasians having the leftovers and the Indians the crumbs. Still, being chief clerks in the Her Majesty’s Service was big deal in those days.

When we were given Independence, many of the top civil service jobs automatically went to the Eurasians and the Indians. They were the educated elites. Chinese educated elites only came into the picture later. Gradually over time the other races also graduated from the English stream, with graduates from the University of Singapore being available to the civil service and govt. The spread was more reflective of the composition of the races with meritocracy as a pillar for attaining high office.

Today, the fruit of meritocracy has ripen and we are seeing the best of the races rising to high positions in govt and the civil service. And the Indians have proven to be exceptionally talented, and surpassing the achievements of the early Indian pioneers. In Finance, we had an Indian Finance Minister who is also a Deputy PM and touted to be the next PM. The MAS is also headed by an Indian elite and the top national bank is also helmed by an Indian, albeit a new citizen. And not to forget, the Indian elites are helming most of the foreign banks in the island.

In the Ministry of Law we have an Indian Law Minister, an Indian Chief Justice, and now an Indian Attorney General. It would be full house if the Solicitor General is also an Indian elite.

Kudos to the Indian community for producing so many top ministers and civil servants at the same time. Kudos to our meritocratic system for being colour blind and allowing the best of talents regardless of race to rise to the top of their profession. Soon it will be regardless of nationality.

This is a golden era for the Indian community.

Oh, before I forget, with the Oracle in his twilight moments, the only thinker left in the island is also an Indian elite. All this can only be attributed to the wisdom of Hsien Loong. He has surpassed Chok Tong and LKY as the best PM the island ever had, at least in promoting meritocracy regardless of race and nationality. He cannot be accused of being partial to the Chinese or discriminating against the minority races.

Kopi Level - Green


USA signing another defence pact

Signing military pact is about the only thing left that the Americans can do well. It has nothing else to offer to the world except military might, the ability to incite and start wars, to intimidate, to threaten and conduct regime change. It has been doing this since the end of WW2, professing peace but starting wars and conducting wars across the world.

Yesterday it signed another defence pact with Manila and officially claiming that ti was not meant to contain China but knowing very well why Manila needs this military pact to back its outrageous and foolish behaviour against China. Obama also cited US defence treaty to defend Japanese territories, including territories in dispute or not part of Japan. For all intent and purposes, no one is believing what the Americans are saying and everyone is very clear the intent behind all these military pacts. Do not be surprised if a proposal for another military pact with Malaysia was on the table during Obama’s meeting with Najib.

China is furious and justifiably so. The military pact with Manila would simply embolden Aquino to be more reckless to take on China in the South China Sea. This military pact would only raise tension and the likelihood of a military confrontation between China and the Philippines.

China should not waste its time trying to be diplomatic to assuage the Americans from supporting the Pinoys. That is their intent and they will go all out to encourage the Pinoys to provoke the Chinese in the disputed islands. Both the Japanese and the Pinoys have the Americans behind them and would be more trigger happy to harass and attack the Chinese ships in the disputed seas. Regional tensions would only increase with the Americans claiming right of action to defend their military allies.

Did the Red Indians say white men spoke with fork tongue, or should it be changed to black men speak with fork tongue? With a bankrupt economy, the Americans have nothing left to offer except weapons of war.

SDP announcing its first candidate for the GE

Chee Soon Juan will be standing as a candidate for the SDP in the next GE. He has completely discharged his bankruptcy obligations after losing several libel suits against the PAP politicians. It has been a long time since he stood for a GE, best known or remembered when he challenged Chok Tong with the call, ‘Where is the money?’ or something like that. And that was followed by the sagas of postage fees and taxi fare claims when his professor had to take taxis to confirm that his claims were not in order. The thing that prevented him from standing in past GEs was his bankruptcy status due to his inability to pay the compensations awarded to those who brought suits against him.

Chee Soon Juan is back. Actually he never left. He was watching from the sideline or sitting at the benches, acting as manager or coaches to his team in every GE. How would the public view his return to the political fray? What were the wrongs of this man that had kept him away from political office for so long? He is no Anwar Ibrahim and less controversial in many ways. Would the voters take his past as a price he had to pay for being in politics at the wrong time when politics was vicious and ugly? I am not sure if it is less vicious and less ugly today. Only time will tell.

How would the PAP handle him this time with the old guards out of the way? Would Chee face the likes of LKY and Chok Tong again and go through the same political ordeal one more time? Or has time changed and the political climate is more stable, more mature and less vindictive and more civil? The PAP would likely put every obstacle they could find in his way to keep him out of Parliament. And they would have a lot to say about Chee Soon Juan. The only thing that matters is whether the voters would believe them or would even view them in favour of Chee.

There are many good things to talk about this man as a politician, tenacity, believing strongly in his cause and mission, offering an alternative formula to the current mantra, a no fly by night operator or fair weather politician. He would not go away after a defeat. He comes back fighting. Above all, he is a great orator and would give all the great debators in the PAP a run for their money in Parliament.

Would the people see the good things in this man to send him into Parliament? Or would they believe in the PAP narrative of Chee Soon Juan and turn away from him?

Kopi Level - Green

How many PAP candidates will stand down in the next GE?

In every GE PAP will take the opportunity to do some self renewable with some veterans or non performers being replaced. In the last GE 24 new candidates were introduced while 18 were retired. How many new candidates would be introduced this time and how many would be retired? Given the 87 seats to be contested, the numbers are likely to be quite similar plus or minus a couple.

Assuming the same 24/18 combinations will be used again, let’s see who would be the likely candidates to miss the party this time. The new faces are more difficult to have a few except for the inner circles in the PAP. As for the 18 to let go, can we consider that 6 had been let off during the last GE, ie one from Hougang and 5 from Aljunied GRC? If this be so, then only 12 more will be retired this time.

The obvious candidates would be LKY, Chok Tong and the three ex ministers of Kan Seng, Mah Bow Tan and Raymond Lim. That would bring the numbers left to 7. Anyone got any inkling of any MP that has been perpetually absent from Parliamentary sessions? That would be a good indication that they would not be fielded and thus don’t have to make their presence felt.

Another good possibility would be the veteran MPs like Charles Chong, Teo Ho Pin, Inderjit Singh, Seng Han Tong and Arthur Fong. If these 5 are out then it would be left with 2. Maybe PAP might want to take out a few more if they have enough new candidates to fill in. I think the new faces in the last GE would probably be allowed to stay on for another term and they can be counted out from the retirement list.

This will leave a few not so old faces like Yeo Guat Kwang, Alvin Yeo, Lily Neo, Irene Ng, Ellen Lee, Jessica Tan, Denise Phua and the popular Lim Wee Kiat and Baey Yam Keng for consideration for the last few retirement slots.

What do you think? What? Vivian? Did anyone say Vivian?

Kopi Level - Green. Nearly turn Blue.


Chong Kee Hiong - PAP introduces a high flyer

I thought after the last GE PAP will be pulling more grassroot leaders to stand in the next GE. Now we are seeing another of PAP’s elite in Chong Kee Hiong as a potential candidate. His academic records and CV are typical of the kind of quality expected of a top notch PAP candidate. This one is another minister grade candidate for sure. He came from RI, a scholar and a high performer.

The bloggers are having a bit of misgivings on the thoughts of this elite. A post in TRE quoting an interview with ST two years ago highlighted the disappointment he had when he got one academic prize instead of two at Primary 5. He scored top marks in Mathematics and Chinese but the Math’s prize was given to another student with half a mark lesser than him all because the teacher taught he had won one prize too many. ‘I didn’t argue with the teacher but I was very upset. The fact that I still remember it with such clarity shows that I am still disturbed by it…The episode went against the idea of fair play and meritocracy.’ The quotes were posted in the TRE article and claimed ST as its source.

I can understand how a Pri 5 kid felt when a prize he deservedly won was taken away from him. This Chong has all the right to be unhappy. Now, why was this reported in the ST as claimed in the TRE article? What kind of image would be projected because of this incident and how the public will view it? For the less talented masses, one thought is likely to be, share share a bit lah, why want to win so many prizes. To some elite, this is unacceptable. Meritocracy is meritocracy, it is about the best getting the best. They worked for it, they are talented and deserved it.

Somehow I got this nagging feeling that Chong or the ST was misquoted. The self centred elitist tag is not a comfortable one to wear for a person seeking political office. In politics, there are more to it than just black and white or getting what one is entitled to or deservingly so. And I am very sure this Chong is politically smart and sensitive enough not to make such a statement in public and draw unfavourable flaks.

What is happening?

Is SMRT a private or public company?

‘(Reuters) - Singapore's SMRT Corp Ltd , the operator of the city-state's main rail network, asked the government on Wednesday about a financing framework which would reduce its capital expenditure, The Straits Times reported….25 Apr 14

SMRT has previously expressed interest in changing to a financing framework that was introduced by the government in 2010. Under this system, the government would own the assets, and be responsible for replacing them. This would free SMRT from having to incur huge capital expenditures on asset replacement.’

I dunno what to make out of this latest call from SMRT. The SMRT was built using public fund. It then went private, got listed and run as a profit making business. In the meantime, the money spent on the infrastructure, the land, did not become part of the computation of cost. And SMRT has been making millions annually and paying its management staff handsomely because of the great profits.

With this new development, with the govt bearing the cost of assets and asset replacement, SMRT could run an operation without huge capital expenditures and thus can register huge profits. How real is this profit? Is there anything wrong with this new formula? Where on earth can one run a private profit oriented business with the major part of the cost taken out of the equation, to be paid by the govt?

Who eventually have to pay for the cost and who will be benefitting from the profit without capital expenditure and asset replacement? Should SMRT be returned and run as a public service, a stats board?

How much do you know of your CPF nomination?

It was meant to be a simple straight forward procedure to make a nomination for someone to inherit whatever savings that is left in your CPF upon your demise. And the nominee will simply be presented a cheque for all the cash balance and the account closed. Someone has raised a query on why some of the deceased’s CPF balance is being transferred to his Medisave Minimum Sum Account. I have made an enquiry with the CPF and awaiting their reply on this matter.

When I wrote an article posing this new development, I also discovered that actually there are many changes to the issue of making a nomination and the complexities on how the savings of a deceased will be distributed. Effective 1 Jan 2011, there is a new scheme called the Enhanced Nomination Scheme, ENS. According to CPF’s website, I quote,

‘Previously when a member passes away, the Board will distribute his CPF savings to his nominees as a lumpsum in cash according to the proportion indicated in his nomination form.

The new ENS option enables CPF members to transfer their CPF savings to their nominees’ CPF accounts when they pass away, subject to the prevailing Minimum Sum limit and Medisave Contribution Ceiling (MCC).’

I went through the explanations in the CPF website and am still confused by the number of variations that could take place once a member elected the ENS. I am also not sure how the Minimum Sum limit and Medisave Contribution Ceiling comes into play. I would need some time to try to figure out what these changes meant and how they would affect savings of a deceased when returned to the nominee/nominees.

What about those who made a nomination before 1 Jan 2011? As in the case mentioned above, how did the transfer into the Medisave Minimum Sum thing comes into play? Is it a voluntary choice or it is a change made by the CPF without the consent of the deceased and nominee? I am still not clear on this. If this is a new thing, that the Medisave balance will be transferred to a nominee’s Medisave, it will be a no ending transfer from one Medisave to another and to another. I am waiting for CPF Board to reply on this. And I hope this Medisave Minimum Sum does not affect those who made a simple nomination to receive all payments in cash, every cent of it without having to transfer some money into the Medisave Minimum Sum.

There may be people who for some reasons chose to have the balance of a deceased’s savings transfer to their CPF accounts and may subsequently also to their nominees CPF accounts. I can’t think of a good reason to want to do so.

This CPF nomination to receive the balance of a deceased’s savings is getting to be a very complicated matter indeed.

Kopi Level - Yellow

SGX – Reality sets in

Jeremy Grant wrote ‘Singapore exchange losing out to regional competitors’ in the Financial Times on 23 Apr 14.

‘Singapore’s equity market is looking increasingly unloved. Last year the city-state’s stock exchange suffered the indignity of being overtaken in terms of trading volume by its Thai counterpart, knocking Singapore into second place in southeast Asia for the first time. More recently it was also overhauled by Japannext, a relatively small trading platform that competes with the Tokyo bourse.

This makes SGX, the Singapore exchange, Asia’s ninth-largest share market – a frustrating state of affairs for an exchange that prides itself on being “the Asian gateway” for investors in the region.

Singapore’s problems – a combination of low trading volume, or liquidity; relatively high transaction costs; and a dearth of big-ticket initial public offerings – were highlighted on Wednesday when SGX reported a 22 per cent fall in net profit for the third quarter….’

Is it surprising that the SGX is going down into the longkang as a failed stock exchange? People in the industry knew this long ago but the media has been hyping about how successful it has been with increasing volumes in derivatives and all kinds of shit except the real business of stock trading. And many who are supposed to be doing something to right the wrong are pretending to be Rip Van Winkles.

There have been a slew of measures rolled out by the SGX and every time it was touted to improve the trading volumes, improve liquidity, good for small investors, and the ridiculous no lunch break to extend trading hours for more volumes. We all know that it did not get better but worst.

So, how long would this myth of a fantastically successful stock market, the best managed in Asia, the financial centre that is doing roaring business going to go up in dust? When would the govt face the reality that things are in shit and the SGX is already in the intensive ward? This thing did not happen yesterday. The writings were on the wall a couple of years but everyone turned the other way. No one wants to know, no one wants to lift his little finger, no one wants to take responsibility but only prayed that the magician would continue to pull little rabbits out of his hat. Are there still rabbits left in the hat for the show to go on and everyone clapping for an encore?

Do they know what is happening, what is the cause of the dying stock market?

Kopi Level - Yellow


The books that I would want to write

There are so many books that I would like to write about the golden years of Sin City. And many people too will be writing their books on the same topics with some being the originators of these fascinating stories. They could even call them autobiographies.

No, I am not going to write about making my first million in rupiahs. Too many people have written on that. The very first book that came to mind is ‘How to run down a profitable and sound public transport system.’ It is not easy, like they said, when something is running well and smoothly, it will take an exceptional talent to run it down, or maybe a dud to do it in his best. In the latter case, it will be so easy with the dud thinking he has really done an excellent job.

The second book is likely to be ‘How to run down a vibrant and profitable stock market singlehandedly.’ This is a much more difficult task to do compare to running down a train system. To run down a stock market, you must not only have a list of fictitious but grand money making schemes, but must convince those people who think they are very smart that the silly schemes you have hatched are really good. Having a brilliant scheme to convince smart people to go along is elementary. Convincing smart people with fictitious and destructive schemes and to have them going along needs the talent of a genius. The only time when you don’t need a genius is when the smart people are really gullible idiots in disguise. Then the job will be a piece of cake.

The third book, this must be more difficult than the above, ‘How to rob the people’s life savings without them knowing.’ The difficulty of this book is that in the former two, you only need to convince a few people to believe in you. That is not difficult when they themselves did not know what is happening or did not want to know what is happening as long as they can spend time counting their money. To con all the people in a saving’s scheme is not easy. And it is not easy to turn a good saving’s scheme into a monster, a life taking scheme when people have to commit suicide to get their money back.

In this third book, with millions of people having a vested interest to want to protect their money, it is not easy to pull wool over their eyes to prevent them from seeing or knowing what is happening to their money. And you need to keep doing it everyday and make them believe their money is still there when it is not there. For the moment they know their money is gone, everything will fall flat.

My fourth book, ‘How to sell a country right before the eyes of its people.’ In terms of difficulty level this must be above all the three books combined. No one has ever done this in history. Some tried and were killed as traitors. Actually I am wrong on this. There had been many cases of traitors in the history of China for conspiring with foreigner powers. The Ming Dynasty fell because of traitors working with the enemies outside. The Song Dynasty also had the same fate when an idiotic general chose to follow orders blindly, without question and refusing to question, and left his post to allow the enemies to overrun his troops leading to the fall of a dynasty. But some people honoured such idiots as role models of blind loyalty to the emperors.

In modern cities, selling a country is much easier as long as you have a willing citizenry that would not protest, happy to follow instructions or orders, willing to believe the leaders, and lost the ability to think and unable to see when things go wrong. This book is going to be very interesting and would likely be written by many historians in the future.

Come to think of it, there are many people more qualified to write such books as their biographies. It would be instant best sellers, something like ‘kiss and tell’.  Just imagine if the authors actually engineered the downfall of a public transport system or a stock exchange and live to tell the stories. Every book is a fertile material for a Hollywood movie.

Kopi Level - Green


Brave Sinkies commit suicide for their children

ZI Mo wrote in the TRE about his friend of 30 years, at 57, chose to hang himself after a business failure that left him penniless. But his main reason as stated in his suicide note was to withdraw his $200k savings in his CPF to support his two school going sons. Only death could he get access to his CPF savings.

Another blogger commented that one of his best friends jumped from his HDB last year due a $30k debt. He left behind a wife and two daughters and more than $200k in his CPF.

Let’s hope that their last wishes were fulfilled and their CPF savings all went to their families and nothing is being held back, like some being transferred to the beneficiary’s medisave minimum sum account. I stand corrected on this, but so far I have been told that this is the case and not all the balance in the CPF will be paid out in the case of death.

Is this suicide thing going to be a trend and one of the sad ways for a down and out Sinkie, jobless and penniless but with a few hundred thousand in his CPF savings, and killing himself is the only way to release the money to his loved ones?

Many PMETs are living precariously the moment they lost their jobs to a foreigner and find it hard to get another job. And to make matters worse, many have school going children and a housing mortgage to service.

Welcome to the richest city state in the world when one out of two citizens is a millionaire on paper. More such tragedies are in the pipeline.

My advice to those people meddling in people’s life savings and having designs on the money these people have saved for a life time to serve their private agenda, please do good, do more good, and return the money to the rightful owners. You do not know what the invisible hand will do to you next. Do not intentionally cause tragedies to others for your private amusement and vested interests. Go and squander your own money no one will care. When you start to mess around with other people’s money, like the two suicide cases mentioned, you have blood in your hand.

Repent before it is too late. Beg for mercy when you still have time.

Kopi Level at the moment is red.

UOB – The solid local bank

Wee Cho Yaw has spoken, UOB will grow organically and will not join the acquisition frenzy. Neither will UOB join the ‘foreigners are talent’ fad and go on a mindless recruitment to replace local talents with foreign ‘talents’.

Many banks with foreign CEOs are impatient to prove their worth and to justify their fat salaries. Acquisition to grow the bank is a simple way, instant trees, instant fat. The only issue is the cost. But many would not mind paying the Singapore Premium in the acquisition trail. What is the problem? Everything is OPM and if the acquisition is successful, more salary hikes and bonuses. If fails, it is OPM, just take the golden handshake and walk away. It is simply head I win, tail you lose.

Mercenaries have no qualms about spending OPM to make that strike. They need to justify their worth and pay fast. And they work to make sure they get more pay and fast. They invest for quick profit.

Another type of mercenaries is the fund managers. They invest because they have too much money in their war chests, all OPM. They can’t keep their money in the biscuit tins. They must put them to work, to work for them and for the shareholders. When fund managers invest because they need to invest and not when there is a good buy, you can be sure they will invest even in shit.

Wee Cho Yaw said it, UOB would look out for opportunities but only when the buy fits and the price is right. He is not going to be a bloody fool paying huge premiums just to join the bandwagon and be on the news that UOB is also doing the right thing. A solid conservative banker does not gamble with his money and has no need to rush to spend it. Every cent he is spending must be meaningful, not eventful.

 And UOB is going to be a local bank and would not be open to the exploits of foreign mercenaries. He has appointed Hsieh Fu Hua to replace him as Chairman. He is not angmoh or foreigner crazy. He does not have a crush like an 18 year old going gaga with anything novel. This is a solid banker that runs his bank like a bank, not a casino.

With a local talent team, is the UOB doing less well than those under foreign mercenaries?

MH370 – What happened to the mangosteens?

After searching for more than a month in the Antarctics, they are still unable to locate the mangosteens. But who cares, or why would anyone be interested in the mangosteens? Are they worthless, no owners? Or have the rightful owner of the mangosteens already collected them and put them under safe keeping?

The mangosteens, 4 tonnes of them, heavier than a 3 tonner, were casually mentioned by the Malaysian authorities and quickly forgotten as inconsequential. Were they so innocent? It is a fact that the mangosteens were not in season in Malaysia. Where were they from, who was the owner and where were the mangosteens going? Does anyone want to know what is this ‘mangosteen’ thing? It is so obvious that the mangosteens were not mangosteens. What were they? Why were the Malaysian govt not even interested to find out?

Let me suggest a very simple theory on the story of the mangosteens. They were the forbidden fruits. The Malaysian Govt were tipped off on the mangosteens. They were told of a scheme to retrieve the mangosteens by the informer. The Malaysian Govt went along. The flight MH370 was allowed to fly as scheduled not to alarm anyone. The air traffic controllers went through routines and everything was normal.

At the border of Malaysian and Vietnamese airspace, the aircraft took a dip and disappeared from radar with its transponder switched off. It then turned west, climbed back to normal cruise level and flew all the way to Butterworth airbase under full radar contact, landed, unloaded the mangosteens and all the passengers, and flew off just like another MAS aircraft.

After that all the disinformation appeared that the aircraft had headed to the Antarctics either on auto pilot or flown by a suicidal pilot. Both did not make any sense. And somehow the aircraft could send out blips to satellites to let them guess where it was or going. And conveniently they applied the Doppler Effect for the first time to masturbate such information and concluded that it must be going to the Antarctics when the aircraft could have landed in Butterworth with all its mangosteens delivered to whoever that was behind this hoax.

The aircraft could now be flying daily under another MH callsigns all over Malaysia and its foreign destinations. Where are the pilot and co pilot? Are their families raising a ruckus on their disappearance, grieving or unable to grieve, or life was normal at home?

Just a very simple theory of the mangosteens that came from no where, going nowhere, no one wants to know why or where.

And here comes Obama, the President of an Empire, calling on Najib to say thank you for your assistance. We are now friends.

The above is all my imagination that is good enough to be turned into a movie.

Kopi Level - Green


Are NSmen really daft?

Apparently many people in high places think so. In the news today some are talking about giving the NSmen a stake in country to fight and die for? Just wake up huh? When we first became an independent country, not yet a nation, the first and foremost thought in the minds of the founding leaders was to give the people a stake here through home ownership. That is as simple as ABC. But through the years, people got lost in the maze of money and decided that citizens need not have a stake, like a flat in the country, to want to fight and die for the country. The NSmen are so daft, just order them to fight they will fight even if they don’t have any stake here.

How many citizens who have done NS are deprived, banned, from buying and owning a flat from HDB but forced to buy from in the resale market, and allowing foreigners to make a pile from them? Is this not sickening? Who forced our citizens to make foreigners rich by buying their public flats just to have a place to live? Why are citizens deprived from homeownership in their own country, the country they are to defend and die for while foreigners and new citizens could happily buy public flats?

No, the NSmen are not daft. It is the policy makers that are daft. And they still think that they could enjoy the good life, living in sprawling landed properties while the NSmen would be so daft to fight and die to protect them. The NSmen today are as highly educated as the daft policy makers. Many are even more qualified than them. You mean these highly qualified NSmen cannot think like these fools?

Why are many highly qualified Sinkies leaving this island? Dunno, don’t want to know? And some think they are very wise, to go overseas to attract our citizens to return to this island. What can you offer to them to return? Why should highly qualified Sinkies return to pay a ransom for a dog’s kennel call private condo when they could use half the ransom to buy a sprawling landed property overseas?

Why would NSmen who are prohibited by law from buying public flats want to fight and die for this country? So difficult to figure out? I think so, when the brain is only the size of a pea. Fortunately, after nearly 50 years of sleeping, some have awaken and remembered that this basic need for a home, for a stake in the country is the foundation to build a nation. You cannot build a nation of daft NSmen who have nothing and would be stupid enough to die for those who have plenty.

Japanese Imperialism: The mask and gloves are down

The Abe Administration is not going to hide anything from their intention to revive Japanese Imperialism. They have taken so many actions to defy and provoke China and the Koreas with the backing of the Americans. The condescending attitude to the Americans, hands in glove with the Japanese, cannot be hidden anymore. The Japanese knew very well that the Americans would have to go along with them if they want the Japanese to be a part of their pivot to Asia to counter the rise of China. The Americans are now the willing master to let the Japanese rearm and to become another big military power like its past. It is a marriage of the American mafia and the Yakuza.

Abe has repeatedly been provoking the Chinese and the Koreans over the territorial disputes and claiming that those islands were Japanese. He has led a movement to rewrite Japanese history to erase its invasion of Asian countries and the barbaric records or killings and lootings of these countries. The comfort women that Japan forced onto Asian women were to be rewritten as Asian women volunteering to be prostitutes to Japanese soldiers. The Nankin Massacre would be whitewashed as fake or nothing of that sort.

The visits to the war criminals in Yasukuni Shrine have been revived and will become a routine ceremony to honour war criminals, Japanese military aggression and invasion of its neighbouring countries.

Japan will be allowed to play a bigger military role in the region including fighting on the side of American allies. Abe’s latest move was to set up a military base in the southern most island near Taiwan and the disputed islands of Diaoyu/Senkaku.

The Japanese pacific constitution will be amended for Japan to resume its Imperial past and be a military power.

The conniving Americans are in this with the Japanese up to their necks. The USA has unleashed the most aggressive war dog of Asia to take on China and is not holding it back. The Japanese have been given the green light to take on China and the Koreans. Hopefully that would be all, and not the rekindling dream of the Japanese Empire over Asia.

With the aggressive and ambitious Japanese on the loose, and with the Americans behind them, war in Asia is only a matter of when. Japanese Imperialism and remilitarization is on the go. China cannot afford to be soft while the Japanese keep on advancing in every front to challenge its influence and to hold on to the loots of war time Japanese Imperialism. The two Koreans too would be in the cross hairs of Japan’s military expansionism.

The message of the 150 lawmakers visiting Yasukuni is simply that they are proud of what they had done during the Second World War, no shame and would do it again. Asia is waiting to be on fire.

The message from Obama is that the Americans would support and protect its allies, in this case Japanese expansionism. On the other hand he would want China to betray its allies and restrain them, in this case North Korea.

Kopi Level - Yellow

The AEC or Asean musical chair

When the Asean Economic Community comes into effect it will turn the employment scene in Asean into a game of musical chairs. So far we have been assured by ministers in Parliament that there will be no free flow of professionals to work in any Asean country. If that is the case then the musical chair game may not work. If it is in the same nature as that of CECA with India, then this game will be played ten times more vigorously.

All the PMEs and workers would want to find a job in Sin City. With the relative high pay and excellent currency exchange rates, it is a sure win situation for every Asean country workers to get a job here. So when the music is played, all will be rushing for the Singapore chairs. When the music stops, every Singapore chair will probably have ten players sitting on it. The rest of the chairs would likely to be vacant waiting for takers.

And who will be left standing? The Sinkies of course, and it is unlikely for them to take up the empty chairs in the other Asean countries. The music can be repeated over and over again and the end result will be the same, Sinkies will be left standing and with many chairs from the Asean countries not taken.

Don’t ask me why it will end up this way, but this is how the game of musical chairs will be played. Sinkies’ idea of putting a piece of tissue paper to chope their chairs would be greatly disappointed. The foreigners would not play the same rule. They would throw away the tissue papers.

Kopi Level - Yellow


The richest man/woman in history

It is not Bill Gates or Warren Buffett. It is not the Sultan of Brunei or any of the oil sheilks in the Middle East either. It is not some kings or monarchs of an empire. It is not King Soloman either. I know what you are thinking. No, dead wrong.

Adam and Eve, they owned the whole mother earth and everything on it. They owned the mountains and oceans, and all the living things and resources in them. They need not fear of running out of fish or food. No fear of running out of minerals, commodities or energy sources. They lived a life of plentiful.

We are considered the richest people in the world. Every one in two Sinkie is a millionaire. We have everything money can buy. We think we are rich. Everyone think we are rich. Are we? Why are we told to cut down on the use of water, don’t bath for too long? Don’t waste petrol or drive cars, take public transport, cycle will be better. We are told not to waste food as food and resources are depleting. We may run out of fish in the ocean and food crops not enough. Why?

They are all kinds of organizations and kind souls telling everyone to save mother earth as we all over consuming and exploiting the resources, fossil fuel will run out, we burnt a big hole in the sky. We need to stop polluting the environment, we need to grow green. Why? Are we rich, very rich? Oops, sorry, the message not to waste or over consume is meant for the losers. You think the rich cares? You really think they are saving mother earth and are conscious of their destructive habits?

We have plenty when we were 200,000, 2m, 3m. No one told us not to waste food and resources. No one told us to cut down on usage of water or what we eat. No one was worried that the ocean was running out of fish and the land out of food crop.

Now we are rich, damn rich, and we are 5.4m going to 6.9m and not going to stop there. When we hit 6.9m, what have we got to forego, how many cups of water will be the ration, how many bowl of rice day, meat on alternate days, no cars except for the very rich. Everyone cycles around, and everyone a multi millionaire.

So? Are we richer than Adam and Eve? They don’t have motor vehicles, no TV, no smart phones, no aircon, no modern convenience. But they have the whole world to themselves.

I don’t think anyone wants to be Adam and Eve and owns the whole world. And I doubt anyone wants to be a multi millionaire when he has to ration what he eats and drinks and how many cups of water to bath in a day. Where is the right balance, 3m, 5m, 6.9m or 10m or more? Do you want to be rich but have less and with less ration to live on? Do you need Earth Days, Light’s off day? Do you need greenpeace, green movments, ….?

We have 7b people sharing everything on earth when only Adam and Eve used to share them. And for the 7b, actually only a few are sharing the earth while the rest are only having as much as the land below his feet of the air around him.
How rich are you? How many people you want to share your little piece of rock?

PS. This article is to gives an idea on how far we have come as a civilization and how we have diluted the share of our resources from 2 person, hypothetically or theologically, to nearly 7 billion people worldwide, and distributed disproportionally. And in our little island, how we are sharing everything with 5.4m when we were less than 3m. And of course the sharing is very unequal and that makes it more painful for those who are getting less than enough to get by.

Kopi Level - Green

Your CPF savings absolutely safe even after you die

Many of you have dutifully made a nomination for your CPF savings upon your death and feeling very comfortable and secure about it, believing that your nominated beneficiary will enjoy a windfall as a result. This is what the CPF Board says when it happens,

‘If a valid nomination had been made, the beneficiaries will receive the deceased’s CPF monies and assets, which include the following:

a) CPF savings in the Ordinary, Special, Medisave and Retirement Accounts, if any.
b) Discounted SingTel (ST) shares, if any.’

So, feeling very good and assured that your money will go to the person you willed to receive them. Yes, your beneficiary will receive the money left in your CPF. But he/she will not be able to on a shopping spree and say what a nice chap you are. Only the CPF will be smiling. He/she can only smile at the CPF statement saying your money has been moved into his/her account from your account. There is a debit and a credit. No cash transfer!

Get the picture? They don’t get a cash cheque. They will get a paper transfer, and depending on their age, their MSS, they might not be able to touch the money, don’t ever think of spending it. Your CPF savings will remain in the CPF, from one account to another account, and remain there, absolutely safe, untouchable. This is what is going to your last few dollars in your CPF savings after you saved for a life time. No one is going to spend it.

Is this good news or bad news? Should the money of a deceased be cashed out, a cheque sent to the beneficiary to enjoy the last few dollars the loving spouse or parents willed to them? Why should it remain in the CPF, albeit in the beneficiary’s account?

How can you let this happen? How can you accept the govt doing this to your life savings even after you pass away?

What does this mean? What is happening? Your CPF not your money? CPF, please clarify and confirm on this and please inform the people when this change was made, and by who?

PS. I hope I am wrong on this.TRE or any aggregator, please do not post this in your site until more details are available. It is confirmed that the Medisave portion is not returned according to Alex Tan.

Kopi Level - Green


MH370 – When the show is over

More than one and a half months of frantic and fruitless search for MH370 in the Antarctics have proven nothing. Not a trace on MH370 or a piece of debris. The families of the victims are starting to question the purpose of this search, was is a joke, or was it a planned or misguided search into a wrong area, a red herring from the start?

Have all the victims and the govts been misled into a foolish exploration of the Antarctic Ocean when they should be looking somewhere else for MH370? The conspiracy theory is gaining more credibility, that this elaborate scam or espionage was conducted to serve someone’s agenda, and in the course of its execution and the need to hide its trails, everyone is made a fool of?

If all the information given from day one was to disinform, to misinform, to fool everyone to look into the Antarctic, a cruel act of deceit and treachery, should the people involved in the disinformation and misinformation be prosecuted for such a wicked crime devoid of compassionate and human kindness when there are hundreds grieving and waiting for the loved ones to return?

Should an enquiry be conducted on how the information was disseminated that were untrue or sheer fabrications with flimsy level of credibility but pushed through as the truth, as real evidence to mislead everyone on a wild goose chase? Anyone has any doubts about the information provided and wanting to know the source and the whys while the passengers and the aircraft are still no where to be seen?

Sampan sinking? NO?

The answer is no, or not yet. Our Sampan is still looking good and still good to load in more and more passengers. It is like Noah loading the animals for a journey instructed by God. Fill them up! The captain is very confident that this Sampan would not sink even if it is loaded with 6.9m, and more when the need comes. Maybe by then another hull will be added to turn it into a catamaran, safe, stable and sound.

The South Koreans did not have an unsinkable catamaran. And they did not have a good captain too. And the tragedy is still unfolding with a target of at least 300 innocent school children on the death list. Obviously the captain was confident that his ferry would not sink. It was is good condition and plying daily through the Korean sea to Jeju from the mainland. It was a routine trip. All system go. Even if a trainee or assistant was at the helm, nothing drastic could go wrong. And the passengers of teachers and students have great faith in the captain, his crew and the ferry to provide a safe journey to their paradise island.

There was a bang. The ferry either hit something or something exploded. Nevermind, the captain was in charge. He told everyone to remain calm and stay where they were. Do not panic, do not rush as it would be dangerous doing so. The captain could not see anything serious like the sinking of the ferry on his radar. He probably thought it was a minor problem. There was time.

There was plenty of time to evacuate the passengers. The ferry was sinking slowly. Yes, the captain had all the time in the world to mount an evacuation, to get the passengers to put on their life vests like the drill before the journey. The captain had all the time to lower the lifeboats. There were 46 of them.

No one could see the danger ahead. The teachers and students remained calm and stayed where they were told. Some were in the lower levels and in their cabins. And the ferry continued to sink. No one panic. No one could think of the worst, not even the captain. And the ferry continued to sink, and even with half the ferry on its side, it was all calm. The passengers remained in their cabins, having full faith in the good judgement of the captain. And the ferry continued to sink. And the captain still did not call for a full evacuation. And the ferry continued to sink, with nearly all its obedient sheeples inside their cabins, all waiting for instruction from the captain to evacuate. 

They did not know, I think, that the ferry was sinking. The captain did not tell them so. Some were still in the dining hall having their breakfast. And the ferry sank.

Where was the danger? Where was the early warning or signs of a big mishap on the way? No? Everything is under control, trust the captain and his crew. The ship was not going to sink and bring its passengers under.

The rest is a very sad story. The moral of the story? How much shall you trust your captain? How much can you trust that the Sampan will not sink? How much must you trust yourself, your own judgement, that when things are bad, it is bad. Get out when you can to save yourself. Let the captain sink with the ferry. But the captain was too smart for that. He left the sinking ferry in time to save his own skin.

PS. The final reply by the crew of Sewol when told by the maritime traffic control. 'Make passengers wear life jackets and get ready in case you need to abandon ship' is 
'It's difficult for the passengers to move now.' Think 2030!

Medical fees, getting what you pay for?

‘…according to a study by the University College London (UCL), which was commissioned by the British General Medical Council (GMC) – the equivalent of the Singapore Medical Council (SMC) in Singapore.

It found that half of all foreign doctors in UK do not have the necessary skills to work there. However, they were allowed to practise there because the competency exam is too easy.’ TRE Editorial.

The above shows the quality of the UK medical profession and it also says that they are willing to compromise on the quality of the foreign doctors to make up the numbers. Half are substandard! By this act it puts the British public at risk when they seek medical treatment from these substandard doctors. And it is callous and irresponsible for the British Medical Council to admit such doctors to practice on their patients. They just did not know how substandard is substandard and how many patients are put to unnecessary risks or actually mistreated by these doctors.

In the case of the Singapore Medical Council, can we believe that it will do the due diligence, and unlike its British counterpart, only admits those that are on par with our own doctors? It has to be or else we would be exposing our own people to the same level of risk and mistreatment by substandard doctors like in UK. Anyone who is privy to the high academic and professional standard demanded of our locally produced doctors will know that we are having our best of the best as doctors. On this count alone it is fair to say that the foreign doctors are unlikely to meet the same standard as our very own, or at least many would not be. If they are of that kind of quality, they would be in UK or US. Is this a fair conclusion?

If the foreign doctors admitted here are as good as our own, then we can sleep in peace. I just got this hunch that it is not the case. And those who were rejected by UK would be here trying their luck. This is a layman’s perception and need not be right. Our Medical Council will definitely enforce the highest standard and criteria to admit any foreign doctor to practice here. It would be grossly unfair to our citizens when so many of our straight A students were rejected from medical schools only for the Medical Council to bring in substandard doctors from outside. We can’t be so stupid right?

And it is not only a matter of stupidity. No responsible Medical Council would allow substandard doctors to treat our people. On this count I believe we are in good hands. The second problem of a substandard doctor is the money we pay them. We are paying damn good money, first world medical fees. How can we pay so much for substandard doctors that are not worth a cent? In medical practices, a substandard doctor is a bad doctor and can kill instead of heal. Yes, not worth a cent. Think of the nightmare a healthy patient walked out from a substandard doctor with more problems, wrongly diagnosed, wrong medicine prescription etc etc and ended in more serious condition?
One thing the govt or the Medical Council must guarantee to the public is that any doctor certified fit to practice must be good, and in our case as good as our own doctors. If the gap is too wide, then the patients should not be made to pay the same medical fees. You pay for what you get and not anything they shaft it to you.

Are sinkies getting what they pay for? Should there be a fee difference for being treated by different quality doctors? Are Sinkies being shortchanged?

Kopi Level - Green


Piling on the accolades for Sinkies

The Sinkies are earning more medals or titles for themselves. An event like the Pinoy Independence Day has heaped on several more titles or tags onto them. Other than the infamous daft and xenophobic titles, the new tags for the Sinkies are disgraceful, bigots and embarrassment.

This will bring the tally to 5. I may have missed out on a few more. While the Sinkies are earning new titles, at the same time many old titles were lost or forgotten. No longer were tags like hardworking, disciplined, well trained, knowledgeable, honest, etc etc be associated with the Sinkies. Oh, now I remember another new medal, lazy, to make it 6. This is a strange tag pinned on a very vigorous people, yes, vigorous, is no longer a virtue of Sinkies. Sinkies are simply lazy, and choosy for jobs.

But when I asked the PMEs, many said they are not choosy at all. They would do any job even with a huge pay cut. And come to the worse they would become taxi drivers, picking up ladies of the nights and drunkards and smelly and unruly passengers as part and parcel of their job. For this they can’t be choosy I am sure.

As for the tag of laziness, I think this only applies after their formal education as many of them are straight A students, so cannot be lazy right? Or unless they bought their papers from the street vendors. I have not walked the streets, can anyone tell me if Sin City has started to indulge in this lucrative trade as well?

Other than these two tags, I think the rest must be true. So welcome to this global city of daft, xenophobic, disgraceful, and embarrassing bigots, and very lazy Sinkies.

Pinoy Independence Day – An opportunity for the Little India COI

With 200,000 Pinoys living here and all very patriotic and wanting to celebrate their Independence Day, a public place is only a natural choice as the turnout would be big, like our National Day Celebration. And this one would not only be celebrated by the Pinoys but also by their friends here, the Sinkies and most of all the India Indians and Bangladeshis. Many Pinays have boyfriends here who are foreign workers. Now, with 200,000 Pinoys and 500,000 Indians/Bangladeshis, actually more, the crowd at Ngee Ann would flow into the streets. It may be a better idea to close down Orchard Road on that day to accommodate the crowd. I am sure there will be a joyous celebration for all the participants.

Just a little word of caution, with so many bad vibes spreading in the net, there could be a little staring incidents happening, or some loudmouths may spew some unacceptable vulgarities, or some guys, from anywhere, could be ogling at the Pinays and annoyed the boyfriends. What I am saying is that when there is such a huge crowd of foreigners first time celebrating in a public space, just be prepared for some rowdy incidents and be prepared to nip them in the bud before they escalated into a riot like Little India.

Here the COI of Little India riot could come in handy. There were differences in opinions as to how the Police handled that situation and actually caused the riots to escalate. There were many suggestions by the COI that if the Police were to react in certain ways, more forceful, more authoritative, more assertive, firing warning shots, charging at the crowd to arrest the leaders, there would be no riots in Little India.

This Pinoy Independence Day actually presents an unique opportunity for a possible mob incident to happen. While Little India riot cannot be repeated, in this case the COI could test the Police to put their recommendations on how to deal with a mob into action. Get the Police fully prepared as to what the COI thinks would be an effective way to handle a mob and to kill a riot before it flares up. It is rare that such an opportunity can be present to make a rerun of a real event. Not that there will be a mob rioting. But the Police can be prepared to deal with the situation in the best way possible, the COI way.

This will be an exercise to test and prove the effectiveness of a strong and assertive Police in the handling of a riot, if the opportunity presents itself. It will also settle once and for all the two opposing doctrines of the Police and the COI on the best and most effective way to handle a mob.

What do you think?

Kopi Level -Green


The formula is just not right

The cost of bringing up a child in the neighbouring countries is so much cheaper than in Sin City. We are talking about anything from $500k to a million from cradle to adulthood. How much would it take to bring up a Chinaman, and India Indian, a Viet or a Pinoy? A fraction. How much would a university education cost in these countries compare to an education in school? Incomparable.

When a graduate from these countries landed a job here, he is going to earn real Singapore dollars. And for every 10 years spent working here, he would have earned enough to last him 30 years when he returns home. I think I have to exclude China from the formula as their city living makes working here no longer meaningful.

In the case of a Sinkie, he would need to work at least 10 to 15 years to cover the cost of his upbringing. And he would be left with another 15 years or so to work before he is relegated to the underemployed PME brigade. By then he would be in his 50s and no longer employable except being self employed if he is lucky.

The big problem is that he is going to live another 20 or 30 years and have to cope with the high cost of living and medical expenses during his last remaining economically unproductive years. What does this mean? It says that during a Sinkie’s last 15 years of economically active years he must earn enough to support himself for 15 + 20/30 years, or simply he must earn 2 or 3 times his needs in this short span of time.

In the case of a FT who came to work here, his income will allow him to live for 3 times the duration, or to enjoy a full retirement. In the case of a Sinkie he needs to earn 3 times his income before he loses his jobs if he is to enjoy his retirement.

The formula really works against the Sinkies. Exceptionally high cost of growing up, but relatively low income, inadequate to see him through his retirement. In the FT case, low cost of growing up but needing only to work one third of his life in Sin City and will have enough to enjoy the remaining two third of his life in retirement.

Did they say the cards are stacked against the Sinkies? Everything he earns is just enough from hand to mouth except for the top earners. And where got enough to set aside to last his remaining life in the supposedly retirement phase? Most Sinkies will never earn enough or save enough for retirement unlike the foreigners.

Pinoy Independence Day, a demand for more space

With 200,000 Pinoys working in this city, their demand for more space for social and leisure activities is only natural and expected just like the increase in population from 3.3m to 5.4m and the coming 6.9m. No one can fault the Pinoys for wanting more space to live and enjoy their stay here. We can’t squeeze them into dog’s kennels right? As a good host, we need to be more gracious and generous and share our space and amenities with them.

We have already done this. We are giving a lot of space to the various foreign communities living here, all 2m of them, Race Course Rd/Little India for the Indians and Bangladeshis, Chinatown and Geylang for the PRCs, Golden Miles for the Thais, Peninsula for the Myanmese, Joo Chia for the Vietnamese, and Lucky Plaza/Botanic Gardens for the Pinoys.

We must also have foresight, to be able to project their needs into the future. The more they grew, the more space they will need. And this will apply to the other nationalities. By the time our population hits 6.9m, the foreigners would definitely need more space to live comfortably. We cannot be so selfish to deprive them from having more space. The current demand for a place to celebrate the Pinoy Independence Day is only to be expected.

And why not, our Sinkie population will shrink further, so we don’t need so much space for ourselves in the future. Let’s be mentality prepared to cede more space to make our guests feel they are welcomed, and it will reflect very well on us.

The need for more space is only a small step forward. There will be more social and otherliving needs, like a TV channel for their native programmes, newspapers, and maybe more signages on the streets in their languages. They may need to be represented in Parliament in some ways so that their interests will be protected. We can either have NMPs or MPs specially tasked to protect them.

Oh, I think they are already being encouraged to integrate with us and joining RC activities and may even become RC members. With such a huge presence, they cannot be ignored. Their interests cannot be ignored. As their presence is proportionally increased, more resources would have to be diverted to meet their needs. And as our presence is proportionally decreased, lesser resources are needed for our citizens. There will be a new balance and a new status quo developing natural and everyone will be happy, to each according to his needs. In politics they termed this as proportional representation. Caveat, in most countries, proportional representation formula applies only to citizens of a country. In our case, we are no longer a country or just a country in the making, and foreigners are already regarded as locals, so citizenship is no longer a criteria to demand for more space and representation.

What do you think be you a gracious Sinkie or xenophobic Sinkie?

Tales of a vigorous people and less vigorous people

In the days of the four Asian Tigers referring to the economic success of South Korea, Taiwan, Hongkong and Singapore, their successes were attributed to having a more vigorous people, a population that was disciplined and with very hardworking ethic genes. It was this gene pool that made the difference between their success and the struggling economies of their neighbouring countries made up of less vigorous people.

Of the four tigers, three are still roaring away. One has outdone the rest by becoming the most vibrant and most expensive city in the world. The only odd thing is that the vigorous people are no longer vigorous anymore. And they have to import less vigorous people from neighbouring countries to sustain their economic growth. It is quite a strange biological phenomenon that the genes of a vigorous people can deteriorated to such a poor state in a generation. Could it be due to bastardisation with less vigorous people? I don’t think so. Bastardisation could bring out the best of the two sets of genes. Of course the recessive genes could become the dominant genes.

The only logical conclusion is that the neighbouring countries suddenly have turned vigorous. Their genes could be genetically modified, I supposed, to become more vigorous than the genes of the Sinkie pool. But if true this is also going to be another biological wonders. Gene pools do not make dramatic changes over a generation. They would evolve gradually with time. Also, the people of the neighbouring countries are still deemed to be less vigorous around the whole world except in Singapore. When competing with the Sinkie gene pool they are now regarded as better.

My conclusion is that it must be both, the degenerating of the Sinkie gene pool and the relative improvement in the neighbouring gene pool relative to the Sinkie gene pool that make the Sinkies less vigorous than them. And I think it would not be difficult to compile some empirical data to prove that this theory is true, that there is a strong case of a vigorous gene pool that turned bad in one generation.

The Sinkies are no longer a vigorous people, or at least they are less vigorous than the people of their neighbouring countries.

Kopi Level - Green


PME taxi drivers

Our highly qualified PME taxi drivers are going to be touted as another great career choice in this most expensive city in the world.  And it could be real if the taxi fares are raised to the levels of western developed countries. Then being a taxi driving ‘boss of your own’ would make some sense, when taxi drivers could be among the high income earners.

In reality our unemployed or underemployed PMEs are exactly like the so called foreign talents here. These FTs are the unemployed and underemployed PMEs of their home countries. There were not enough good jobs for them and there are so lucky to have this global city to offer them employment and paying them so well relative to their top earners at home. Many of the junior or middle executives working here could be earning more than their ministers or top civil servants. No need to imagine those that are in senior management, all thanks to the high exchange rates and the high salaries being offered here.

There is a glimmer of hope that our PMEs could discard their taxi driving and becoming FTs in the neighbouring countries when the Asean Economic Community Agreement is signed. Then our PMEs can flood the streets of KL, Jakarta and Manila for FT jobs in these cities. Be nice to the Pinoys if you want them to be nice to you when you seek jobs in Manila ok.

Actually our PMEs could do the same in the big cities of India with the CECA in place. We have heard that our professionals are in high demands overseas and being rejected or not in demand in this global city would not be a problem as there are plenty of good opportunities elsewhere. With the AEC, they could be earning big money in these foreign cities. Just don’t convert the currencies to Sing dollar and everything will be fine. They could be earning millions and millions in rupiahs, rupees and pesos. If they are not happy with these currencies, there are the dongs, the kyats, the ringgits or Thai bahts that may give better value.

There is hope for all the unemployed and underemployed PMEs in all the Asean countries to play the game of musical chairs. Only fear is that when the music stops, all the Sinkie PMEs will be standing.

The NMP dream team

If only this is possible, having a dream team NMP from the social media. In reality this is unlikely as the bloggers in social media are just too loud, talk too much and will be a pain in the neck if they ever get into parliament. Why would they want these loudmouth bloggers to give them some headache when they don’t need to?  Still then, if they really want committed and sincere citizens that have the affairs of the state at heart and are thinking and talking about them daily, without being paid, where else can they find them other than the social media?

Let me imagine what the NMP dream team would be like if the bloggers have a choice. Leong Sze Hian, Roy Ngerng, Alex Au, Vincent Wijeysingha, Chris K, Oxygen, Christine Lim, Cynical Investor to name just a few. Kenneth J, Tan Kin Lian and Gilbert Goh too would make it to the team but they would likely contest the next GE and enter by the main door. And there is a FT in Christopher Balding to consider too. We are so in love with FTs and including one will be just so nice.

With such a team in parliament, PAP would definitely be at their best, no more on leave, busy, no time to attend parliament, and cannot afford to doze off either. It may even devote a handpicked team to take on the NMP dream team, but not necessarily their first team. The first team would be too lethal, a cold steely stare would be enough to deal a deadly blow to the NMP dream team. Let’s just speculate a few names for the PAP task force against the NMP dream team. Lee Bee Wah, Irene Ng, Hri Kumar, Vikram Nair, Lim Wee Kiat, Janil, all great PAP debaters. And for good measures PAP might want the team to be helmed by a minister to give it the ballast. Iswaran would be more than enough to take on this task, and watch out for his southpaw. Fatimah Lateef did not and took a full body blow recently.

It would be a wonder to watch the two teams fight it out in parliament and I am sure the TV ratings would shoot through the roof when parliament is in session. It would beat all the Channel 5 or Channel 8 dramas hands down. Unfortunately this can only happen in dreamland. There would not be any NMP dream team or PAP task force to do mortal combat in parliament.

Kopi Level - Green


Independence Day – A political interpretation

The objections to the Pinoys celebrating their Independence Day in a public area like Orchard Road have drawn out sympathetic responses from some Sinkies. Even the ST did not miss the negativity of the outcry and came out with an editorial calling for a curb on anti foreign rantings. Many Sinkies are still adamant that such a celebration should not be held in the streets of our city but in private or within the compound of an embassy.

An Independence Day is a political statement of a nation of people breaking free from the oppression of colonialism or an external power. Every country is proud of their Independence Day, and the Pinoys are no exception. Should we allow or support such a celebration in Orchard Road? We have many very open minded Sinkies who would not mind and may even ask what is the fuzz all about. And they would look at it unkindly to Sinkies who tried to make a big issue out of it and calling them narrow minded and old fashion backward patriots, out of touch with the reality of a new globalise world.

Are there any merits to those who objected to such a public celebration by a tribe of foreigners in the heart of our global city? Put it in another way, how would we view it if the Malaysians would to celebrate their Independence Day at the Padang and with speakers standing at the steps of City Hall shouting, ‘Merdeka, Merdeka!’ How would the Sinkies feel if the PRC Chinese or the India Indians would to do the same?

Or how would the Malaysians or our neighbouring countries feel if Sinkies would to celebrate our National Day in the heart of their cities and shouting ‘Merdeka, Merdeka?’ Politically speaking there is some sensitivity involved and some subtlety in the meaning of celebrating an Independence Day in a foreign country. Are they implying that they are now independence from us, the City that hosts them, that they could do anything they want here as free and independent residents?  Of course they don’t mean it.

What is the political message? Today we allowed the Pinoys to celebrate their Independence Day openly, would we also allow the other tribes to celebrate their Independence Day here as well? Are we being too uptight? Or should we be the generous host, the global citizens, opened minded, sophisticated anything goes as long as it is fun, and let everyone have a good time, to celebrate their Independence Day in our streets?

What do you think?

PS. Yesterday my pageview hit a new record of more than 12,200 in a single day. But somehow it did not translate to more kopi.

Be proud to be in the Internet Brigade (IB)

The temperature in cyberspace has been rising recently with the presence of more IB participants and activities. And this is likely to go on and increase in tempo as we approach the GE. What is unusual is that the IBs are pretty shy people, all hiding behind anonymity when they crashed through the blogs to attack their victims.

There are many reasons for the critics of govt policies to remain anonymous. Everyone knows the reasons and they are forgiven for wanting to remain in the dark. What about the IB? While the critics are likely to be of the same genre as those characters in the Water Margin classic, and fearing persecution, there is no such fear among the IBs. In fact they should be very proud to be associated with the ruling party, the govt, and doing the right thing, working for the good of the people. They should be like PAP members, wearing the PAP badge prominently on their chests, stand up and be recognised. Walk with heads held high in pride, not in shame.

Why is there a need to be anonymous, acting like cloak and dagger stuff? Are they not proud of what they are doing? Or are they doing something slimy, cannot see the light, something that they are ashamed of, too embarrassing and demeaning if found out by their parents or spouses or children, for being members of the IBs?

Cannot be right? They are on the right side, on the govt’s side, and they should be very proud of their deeds and who they are working for. The govt is not the gangster or the devil that it is a shame to be seen with. The govt is on the bright side, the critics are on the dark side.

The critics have all the good reasons to put on a veil. The IBs must have all the good reasons to stand on the rostrum to tell the world who they are, right? No, they are not doing the right thing? They are devious, sinister, vile, despicable, and that is why they fear being recognised and are ashamed of what they are doing? How can?

I would like to address this same question to the IBs and their patrons. Is it so shameful and disgusting to be IBs that it is necessary to hide under the veil of darkness? There are fears of the darkside, not the side of light. Be proud of what you are doing and what you are fighting and defending. No need to be shy, no need to be ashamed, no need to be ‘pai seh’. You may be given a National Day Award for a job well done. Transparency? What is that? Cheng hu is always good and tiok mah.

PS. By hiding behind anonymity, are the IBs admitting that what they are doing is wrong, unacceptable, unethical and dishonourable?

Kopi Level - Yellow


What is happening to this ten tribe country?

We are quickly turning into a country of ten tribes. And we are so proud of it. This will materialize in 2030 or earlier when we invite enough foreigners to boost our population to 6.9m. By then it is not inconceivable that we may have 10 official languages with the new tribes demanding for recognition of their languages and cultures. We may have ten different TV channels to cater for the interests and needs of the ten tribes as well. Good for the economy and the media industry and there will be more celebrities to mingle with and ogle.

As we are preparing to walk down this road of being a global city with people from all over the world calling this fabulous city their home, it is important to change the mindset of the Sinkies to be more open and receptive of foreigners and their way of life. The barrage of attacks in the internet against the Pinoys wanting to celebrate their Independence Day is very unbecoming and cannot be tolerated. How can Sinkies be so anti foreigners?

According to Mathew Mathews, a senior research fellow at the Institute of Public Policy Studies, the Sinkie attackers thought the Pinoys were taking over their space, their favourite and pride, Orchard Road, by celebrating their Independence Day right in front of Ngee Ann City. But the foreigners are already everywhere! Sociologist Paulin Straughan from NUS was quoted in the media to say, ‘there is no justification for such behavior, and that it is worrying.’

Indeed there is no justification for such xenophobic behavior. Indeed it is worrying. How are we going to achieve 6.9m if the foreigners find that they are not welcomed and refused to come? How are we going to make our ten tribe nation a reality if the people cannot tahan foreigners celebrating their national or independence days here? We should be encouraging them to do so and we can have 10 national days to celebrate the whole year round. Very good for tourism and very good for the economy for sure.

And don’t forget about water festivals and whatever farmer’s festivals to add on to our colourful cultural fabric.  Singapore will really be a fun place for the foreigners and also for the Sinkies, if they are opened minded enough to share their little island with them. We must be magnanimous, think global, think that we are having a world city and not a little village in Southeast Asia. We must aspire to be international citizens, starting by being a ten tribe nation first. Once we get used to be like ten tribes and feeling comfortable with it, the next change will be easier. And we can have all the best talents and richest people living among us. Just watching them and serving them will be a pleasure.

PS. Matilah Singapura will be very happy with this article as I am sharing his views of what this island should become. It would be a pity that the Pinoys cancel their Independence Day celebration in Orchard Road. We should have more national day celebrations by all the tribes that have become our citizens. They can invite our ministers as VIP guests to their functions. We will be really a city of celebrations, a fun city.

Do we need more nationalism or internationalism? Or why want to think small and be nationalists when we can think big and become internationalists? What do you think?