10m population – Crossing the line of diminishing return

Liu Thai Ker’s keynote address at a forum organised by the Business Times of SPH in collaboration with Singapore Institute of Building Limited yesterday (31 Jul) is drawing unusual flaks in the social media. He is singing the same sick mantra of growing population for economic growth and wanting more immigrants in the little island. More than 160 comments (in TRE) have been posted in the thread about the 10m population that Liu Thai Ker said was needed for Singapore to be a sustainable country. If this belief is true, Singapore would have perished long ago and all the small countries should not exist.

The netizens were not angry with Liu Thai Ker personally. But for him to repeat this folly is just unbearable. And they are looking for a scapegoat to vent their anger. Liu Thai Ker was in the right place to take the blows. To have 6.9m or 10m or 20m is just a matter of adjusting to a life in a more dense piece of rock. Can, sure can. The people would also become denser or be condensed.

It is not a matter of can or cannot. It is a matter of whether the people want to go down that road. It is not even a matter of being sustainable or not sustainable. There are many schools of thoughts on this and no one is wiser. It is not an absolute solution that we go this way or we will perish. Come on, is there a genius out there that can be sure of this, that there is no other ways?

By the same belief, I would not even grant it the privilege of calling it a logic, the Australians must be dumb to have so few people in a continent bigger than China, India or the USA and with a population of about 20m. The economists for growth will be screaming ‘fools’. The architects and property developers will be shaking their heads for the lost opportunities to build more buildings and fill up the land with more people. Wonder who is crazy?

Why do we want to keep building and building and to add more and more people into this piece of rock? What for? Oh, economic growth!  We have gone pass the law of diminishing return when every extra effort will give smaller and smaller returns. We are in a new level, a level when every extra effort, or increase in population, will lead to an increase in pain. The more people we put into the island, the higher will be the cost of living, the stress on the socio eco system, the infrastructure and the demands on the people. It will lead to more stress and more pain, on the people and on the systems and structures.

Those who are living in the confines of 50,000 sq ft properties would not know or feel that this is happening. Some wise crackpots are even telling the people that living in 600 sq ft flat for a family of 4 or 6 is fine, no drop in the quality of life. We used to have that kind of environment in the 50s and 60s, 8 or 10 people living in a cubicle. That was the quality of life. They escaped the squeeze by spending time outside the cubicles. Today the people are better off with aircon comfort in shopping centres and the great pubs and nightspots.

The people are saying they did not want this kind of squeeze. Why should their lives be screwed by a few people who want to push this belief through, even got it rubber stamped in Parliament? The govt has heard the cries and the felt the anger. But it seems to choose the deaf frog way, not wanting to listen and now we have a line up of snake oil sellers paraded to sell this koyok of more population. Who is the crazy one? The people must decide on this. The people have rejected the PWP. If the govt wants the moral authority to carry this through, it must call for a referendum before destroying this island for the Singaporeans and their children. Turning a deaf ear is not a solution. This is the people’s call, not the call of a handful of individuals, and definitely not the call of snake oil sellers.

Kopi Level - Red again. 


Anonymous said...


Rb, here's a song in the future that may be sung in commemoration of sinkies existence:

There was a time people said it won't happen but it did.

There was a time we could not have let it happen but we did.

We build a cuntry, clean and rich.

Reaching out together for 3rd world fake FTs.


This is 3rd world cuntry. This is foreign land.

This is aliens' future. This is Sinkies life.

This is Dodo extinction. These are the aliens.


SINKIELAND the foreign land, belongs to aliens all.

Foreigners United marching together as One.

We have come and gone, our common destiny.

SukaSukaLand forever, a cuntry for ALIENS FREE.


This is 3rd world cuntry. This is foreign land.

This is aliens' future. This is Sinkies life.

This is Dodo extinction. These are the aliens

Anonymous said...

"The people have rejected the PWP."

Tiok, the people have rejected the PWP, and more so Liu Thai Ker's call for 10 million population.

But does that mean the people also reject PAP and willing to accept the opposition as govt?

If not, does it really matter even if Liu Thai Ker had called for 20 million population? Or even 100 million?

When the opposition is not ready to be govt, whoever or whatever said or not said is no use lah.

So let Liu Thai Ker or even Teochew Ah Hia or whoever say what they want lah.

Majority people (Sinkies lah) will only vote for a party which is ready to be govt and also enabling these Sinkies to make money.

Anonymous said...

Smart Sinkies are very scared that a opposition govt may announce lst thing that there is no more money in the CPF, and also become much harder to make money in Sinkieland than in Timbuktu.

Luckily for PAP and smart Sinkies, smart Sinkies are the majority Sinkies.

Chua Chin Leng aka redbean said...

The Dodo song is great. Just like the female judge in the clip in the post 'Tastefully Offensive' said, her children will be singing the song at home.

This 6.9m and 10m million thing is just a mind bending trick. If more snake oil sellers were to come out and say 10m, 20m or 30m also can, then 6.9m will become a good discount, a steal.

Slowly it will sink into the minds of the Sinkies that 6.9m is nothing compares to 10m or 20m. Just keep blasting into the minds of the daft and unthinking. They will come to accept it.

Anonymous said...

Just keep blasting into the minds of the daft and unthinking. They will come to accept it.
RB 11:17 am

Blast or no blast, got difference for daft and unthinking Sinkies meh?

Especially when such Sinkies at most are only 40% of all Sinkies?

Chua Chin Leng aka redbean said...

When nuclear energy was on the card, the thought of a 10m population was highly feasible. Fukushima has scuttled the plan. The high oil price and the dependency on an uncertain supply must be a very critical factor for the planners to think otherwise.

Only the dead stubborn would still think of going to 10m. An oil crisis would mean closing down of everything and with that kind of population to feed and support, pandemonium will hit the street when there is no electric power.

The whole city will collapse like a pack of cards. Power, water and food are so critical to support a big population. The jokers think it is so easy to support 10m people. Our S$ very strong. What if it becomes banana currency?

Think and hear only the good stuff.

Anonymous said...

Rb: // This 6.9m and 10m million thing is just a mind bending trick. If more snake oil sellers were to come out and say 10m, 20m or 30m also can, then 6.9m will become a good discount, a steal. //

Very well said.

All these snake oil sales talk typically label the price 30 million when it is 4 to 4.5 millions.

Then they give some " BIG DISCOUNTS " and offer at 10 millions.

YEW thought YEW had a steal of " 66% discount ".

Actually, YEW OVERPAID more than 100% for an OVERPRICED snake oil.


What said YEW?

Anonymous said...

Is This Bait & Switch ?

You all hated LHL for his 6.9 million.
Now you all will hate Liu Thai Ker for his 10 million.
And then you think LHL’s 6.9 million is reasonable.

And you forget that our population is now @ 5.4 million.
And population density = 7,540 per sq km.

6.9 million or 10 million.
Both are unacceptable.

You have to vote Opposition.
Or your children will not have a chance.
You don’t have a choice.

Anonymous said...

Anon 1151 / You have to vote Opposition.
Or your children will not have a chance.
You don’t have a choice. /

Anon 11.51am, your salesmanship is easily 100 times more scary than the 10 millions guy.

Anon 11.51 am made opposition sound more terrifying than current Leegime.

Based on such salesmanship, current Leegime sound more palatable and benign.

Anonymous said...

Rb: / Kopi Level - Red again. /

Maybe change rb to gb, green bean?

Kopi everyday become green?

But here everything red: red dot, red lanterns, red light........

So, kopi red or green, mb still better stick to color theme red?

One theme sure endless kopi.......

Red lantern aka RL = Prostitution?

Sure a lot of kopi ( $$$$$ )

Age old proven.....

But for those with souls, red bean still sounds better than red lantern no matter how much kopi red lantern type of loose loose moral principles can rake in.


Anonymous said...

Liu Thai Ker is in the Business of Building Architecture, so, typical of any businessman, he wants business. The higher the population the more money he makes. With easy money he can live in big houses in Sin and anywhere else. Maybe, his offsprings are domiciled in Oz, Canada, UK and elsewhere. Anyone knows?

Anonymous said...

"The higher the population the more money he makes."
Anon 4:21 pm

100% tiok. That's exactly what smart Sinkies do.

Make money and vote PAP in Snkieland, and perhaps domiciled in Oz, Canada, UK and elsewhere. The air there is cooler, fresher and space bigger, tio bo? And with lots of money, even better quality of life lor.

So why would smart Sinkies want to join opposition to fight PAP, u tell me lah?

Anonymous said...

Anyway not many who advocate the 6-10 millions thing will be alive to see the sinking of the rock

Anonymous said...

Another old man who wants to leave behind a legacy of misery for young Singaporeans.

Anonymous said...

Let's see.

Per capita GDP $100,000 by 2030.

Multiply by 10,000,000 population.



GDP in 2030 $1 Trillion!

Anonymous said...


Jiak Buay Liao!

For the multi-millionaire ministars.

Anonymous said...

Will some poor folks end up sleeping in cages?

And some rich folks owning buildings after buildings?

But GST @ > DOUBLE current 7%?

Is GST @ 20% possible by 2030?

Welcome to the future 10 millions City of Two Tales:

The super rich owning many buildings?

And the super poor living in cages?

With GST @ 20%?

COE @ $1 m?

ERP@ $50 per gantry?

Never say never?

Anonymous said...

Mark my words, those who wish for 6.9 million or 10 million would most likely already have properties in foreign countries. When the time comes for them to leave this overcrowded Singapore they would be happily settled in their foreign heavens.

Chua Chin Leng aka redbean said...

Say if they sold off their properties for $100m, how long would it last if not managed well?

Always reminds me of Alaska. Sold, money spent, the land is still there and will last until end time.

Anonymous said...

North Vietnam fight the America:-

One step backward(less than 6.9M)

Two steps advance(from 6.9 to 10M)

This was how America lost the war!

No body will come to your help if by
now you still do not wake up!