Thursday, August 30, 2012

Where Lee Hsien Loong’s Heart is.

As I witnessed today, a senior citizen working humbly as a cleaner of a huge shopping mall stuffed with the most expensive brands in the heart of our shopping district, PM Lee Hsien Loong’s message of “feel for our fellow human beings” rang in my ears.

Hope. Heart. Home. These were the themes for our National Day Rally this year. Brought to you by LHL.

He highlighted the importance of “heart” when he touched on the subject of recent growing xenophobia among Singaporeans, urging local citizens to “feel for our fellow human beings” which the “human beings” specifically refers to the foreign nationals on our shores. His choice on the “heart” as part of the NDR rally struck a chord in me and moved my heart especially.

For my heart moved towards the fact that the current achievement of our nation is a collective effort from our first generation leaders and our senior citizens. Our nation prospers while the youths and health of our 1Gen leaders and senior citizens fade away. Our leaders are entitled pensions for their twilight years, our senior citizens deprived. My heart quivered but LHL’s?

His heart feels apparently more for foreign nationals, for they are part of “our fellow human beings” while my heart goes to our senior citizens who are abandoned by their very own country in which they made to prosper. And this is the same country that has grown into the richest nation in the world in terms of GDP.  

When our country legislate “filial piety”, and filial piety disguised as a means to dump the cost of caring for the elderly onto the next generation, it fails to repay its gratitude to our senior citizens to which it owes its success to. Gratitude could come in the forms of greater subsidy for medical care or curbing inflation (please lah! Enough of the excuse that inflation or anything else is inevitable!) or provisions of affordable nursing home. Affordability that is pegged to our median income.

This is NOT welfare but a noble demonstration of appreciation of an inclusive society with a “heart”. Nevertheless, the past and existing policies contradict the kind of heart which LHL hold, I am afraid only reserved for his foreign nationals.

If only LHL could extend his “feel for our fellow human beings” towards our senior citizens, one of the sources of contributors towards the GDP figures which his big fat bonus is highly-dependent upon.

At the slightest call for more social net provisions for our citizens, LHL would slap us instantly in the face with higher taxes. Despite enjoying more years of budget surpluses than budget deficit, or when he could afford higher proportion of expenditure for defence than our education and healthcare, or when he overlooks the astronomical amount of losses incurred by GIC and TH that could be channelled purposefully into our healthcare. Whenever dollars and cents are involved for his citizens, LHL’s heart would shy away. Our misfortune to note that our citizens do not fall into the decimation of LHL’s “fellow human beings”.  

LHL’s heart bled at the damage of Singapore’s international reputation as a result of our xenophobia. When Singaporeans were being labelled as dogs by our taxpayer-funded foreign scholar Sun Xu, LHL’s reticence pained my heart too. Singapore’s reputation, closely associated to LHL’s reputation as a leader, is of utmost concern to him; when it comes to Singaporeans’ reputation, he joins in the bashing of our people earnestly. A clear demonstration from LHL that foreign nationals and overseas foreigners are “fellow human beings”. And complete submission from our citizens to all the foreign nationals is expected.

On the plights of our citizens due to the never-ending influx of foreigners who LHL invites, he chose oblivion. His heart goes for the rich and poor foreigners which either group would bring in the dollars and cents, directly in terms of investment or indirectly in the form of cheap modern slavery for beefing up profit margins for businesses and government coffers. Thus the unlimited supply of cheap foreign labour for MNCs, SMEs and all kinds of businesses and easy PR status given to dubious quality of talents and even to the likes of hawkers. When it comes to welfare for local citizens who are being squeezed out in terms of jobs and infrastructure, LHL’s heart is always elsewhere.

Singaporeans are expected to feel for foreign nationals as “fellow human beings” while we ourselves are merely digits. LHL apathetically slammed the call of imposing minimum wage for our low-income workers who have been to subject to falling real income throughout the decade in ensuring better profit margins for international and local business owners at the expense of low-income workers. Ironically too, ministerial salary moves in the reverse direction of the wages of our low-income workers and jumps by a huge proportion of a 14 % rise in 2000 and a 60 % pay rise for ministers in 2007.

All of the above is only a handful of the realities which our non-elite citizens are treated by the same leader who flaunted about a compassionate heart on our NDR right before the eyes of his own people. Inevitably, his words moves my the heart of an abysmal disgust.

Whichever shapes LHL attempts to disguise his heart, his policies betray him too easily. It is far too apparent that his heart or compassion or whatever name he chooses to call it, could only be located in the laps of dollars and cents.

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Procreation. The Hoax.

"If we go on like that, this place will fold up, because there'll be no original citizens left to form the majority, and we cannot have new citizens, new PRs to settle our social ethos, our social spirit, our social norms." Lee Kuan Yew

The issue of threat is ON...again. Falling birth rate of this nation is on the face of the intimidation card. From LKY’s mouth this time, one of the many mouths of the long queue of politicians orchestrating a campaign to blame Singaporeans for low fertility. Or to convince Singaporeans the need for further widening the door for foreign influx.

Falling birth rates, ageing population, local workers over-selective on jobs causing vaccum in certain industries, reliance on domestic workers, local workers lacking relevant skills….are merely different wordings on the intimidation card with an underlying message:

“People! Like it or not, the door for foreign influx will open even wider. Full stop. ”

Even if all our citizens were all hurdled into a corner to procreate like sheep for the survival of our nation, but humans require 8 months for births and another 18 years at least before these lambs babies can turn economically productive. Can the politicians wait? Evidently not. The policy-makers need the cheaper foreign influx more than the average citizen does to line up their deep pockets.

In the 80s, in the name of the nation, a 2-child policy was introduced to curb population growth and penalties landed on those who did not abide. In the 90s, in the name for the nation again, the policy was reversed. The cry for procreation continued into the 21st century, yet yielding little results, therefore exhibiting nothing more than a feeble attempt and little interest from the politicians to tackle the issue from the core.

Since 2000, our population has risen by 1.1 million, a 25% increase to the population before the turn of the century, ie. an addition of 1540 people to every square kilometer of our land area. By 2012, we suddenly realize this figure translates into actual human existence on our island that eats, sleeps and excretes like anybody else. They bring with them their cultures, languages and social habits. It is the average Joe who has to rub shoulders with most of them whilst the policy-makers will be tucked away in their secluded palaces.

LKY threatened us earlier this Feb during a Chinese New Year celebration although in a different packaging, marring the CNY atmosphere with his words. He associated Japanese’s stagnant economy with their reluctance to open up to foreign immigrants. His understanding of the Japanese economy seemed puzzlingly shallow and it is understandable if you notice his excessive eagerness to handcuff every single problem of a nation with foreign influx as the key.

A closed-door immigration policy would result in a stagnant growth; an open-door immigration policy would solve an aging population issue. See? They are both pointing coincidentally towards the same direction of endorsing a foreign influx. Singaporeans fear slow growth and at the same time, they will not be able to procreate sufficiently in the short term to arrest the ageing population issue. Either way points towards the need of foreign influx. At least, that is the case if we look to where the politicians are pointing. But we can definitely choose not to be misguided.

Think back to 1995 where our population then was a mere 3.5 million, was our economy in rags? Compared to our current population of 5.1million, did we see more elderly scavenging for disused cardboards or slogging at food courts/toilets, more tissue vendors, CCTV installed at HDB estates, more active loan sharking and prostitution (sex slavery is happening now) activities, more pawn shops or quick cash facilities than now?

We might not be living in paradise in 1995 before the foreign influx tap was turned on, we had enough of our own problems that needed attention than to handle new additional problems brought in by the foreign influx.

It is utterly futile to address the problems highlighted by the politicians as their hidden agenda is clear as crystal--to import more foreign nationals. No amount of constructive suggestions could satisfy them. Being the crème of the crème, our politicians are smart enough to tie every problem with a foreign-influx-solution. Even to the extent of bringing in foreign nationals to spur the locals’ hide. I will not be surprised if I were to wake up tomorrow to find a fallen tree in my estate and be told that that is a direct consequence of my opposition to undiscriminating foreign influx.

Logic and reasoning fall apart completely in the face of monetary benefits. Foreign influx boosts GDP directly, benefiting specific groups of citizens/people and exclusive to the average citizens. The inconvenient truth is not about how much procreation suffices. But to protect the interests of those who benefit the most from the foreign influx.

I do not doubt the intelligence of our politicians and their abilities in problems-solving. However, sad to say, their hearts are elsewhere. And that is lethal to the welfare of our citizens.  

Monday, August 13, 2012



起先,把波尔图(Porto)与法国另一个盛产红酒之地波尔多(Bourdeux)混淆。实际上,波尔图地区所酿制的是加烈后的红酒,比红酒更烈、更甜。那便是异于典型红酒的波特酒(Port Wine)




















Thursday, August 09, 2012

Singapore fast becoming the table tennis squad it created

A horrifying sight. Beholding Singapore’s entire table tennis squad made up of China-born female and male table tennis players. 
Emptied the locals from its table tennis squad and stuffed it with end products from China. Purely for raising the international profile of Singapore in sports. Apparently, a victorious game at the Olympic is of immense importance for the government whilst its peasants think otherwise.

Now, the HORROR of this squad is that the same approach, ie. the replacement of locals with instant imports, does not confine strictly to the realm of sports only. It has taken place some number of years ago and it has accelerated in recent years, at every aspect of this country. And when all local peasants are effectively displaced or disempowered, who will stand to benefit from this? Not the peasants of course.

Chiding Singaporeans’ contemptuous attitude towards the act of buying sportsmen, Acting Minister Chan Chun Sing’s reiteration of the end justifying the means betrays the deep-seated values of our leaders.   

“Let’s not just look at where people come from. It’s not just where people come from that we should be concerned with, it’s also what they’ve done for the country.”

As many indignant Singaporeans have mentioned, no one has complained about the lack of Olympic medals. This issue was not even raised during the rallies of General Election. Therefore, these so-called “desired outcomes” are cast by our wiser-than-saints political leaders, where the benefits rarely filter down to the common peasants, or the country. Mind you, the peasants do make up the bulk of a country, not only the political elites.  

As far as Mr Chan and his co-hort are concerned, his definition of a country excludes the peasants. Whatever benefits him and his co-hort will ultimately benefit the country (excluding the peasants).  

Statistically speaking, foreign nationals already constitute 40% of Singapore’s current population. Well, that is what the official statistics offer to show. It did not reveal the figures of newly-converted citizens.

On the ground, as a local-born citizen, I feel on the contrary more like the 40% of the residents on this island. My recent encounter at a local shopping mall, asked by a foreign sales rep where I came from, reveals the extent of foreigners on this island. To be mistaken for a foreign national in my home country! What are the chances?

Our population rose from 3 million to 5 million in two decades, almost doubling. It creates tensions and unhappiness between locals and foreigners in recent years at the pace and the quality of influx. And no way will the government stop just at 5 million. Recent population report seeking feedback from citizens shows the attempt to inflate the population further while trying hard to appear to be appeasing its people under the disguise of a feedback.

Our table tennis squad epitomizes the way this country is managed. Using foreign imports to achieve objectives solely meant for the economic and political benefits of the government. Using material gains to lure ravenous economic migrants and allowing an unlimited pool of these people to come scavenging for the monetary opportunity. Never mind about the outflow of these opportunists as there will always be a ready pool of other opportunists to fill up the vacuum.

If money could solve a problem, then it is not a problem at all. Those who had their share of economic reaps could take flight; those who have not will be kept rewarded for their submission.

Money could silent any undesirable dissidence.

It is those who cannot be bought over by pure monetary rewards are the ones whom the government is fearful of as it cannot exert total control over them for its own good.  

Local-born Singaporeans now account for less than half of the population. The day for Singapore to become this 100% imported table tennis squad will not be long from now. We can condemn the current and former batch of leaders vehemently for such policy. But the person who should take the ultimate blame is none other than ourselves. For who have condoned these actions for so many years at the ballot box to allow these political creatures to ruin lead our country? 

The worst of all, we chose reticence and oblivion when there were those who tried futilely to salvage our country.  

In short, we will reap what we sowed in due time. 

Happy National Day for now.

Tuesday, August 07, 2012

Singapore’s Olympic Medal and the Instant Fish

Instant fish. Add water and they swim.

Another Olympic individual medal won. A bronze medal that is brought back by China-born Feng Tianwei this year, in table tennis women's single. After a lapse of 52 years. The very first and our very first silver Olympic medal was earned by Tan Howe Liang in weightlifting event in 1960.  

Congratulations to Feng Tianwei, for her hard work, determination and dedication to this sporting event. She should be proud of herself and be applauded for the achievement. She did it afterall, not us.  

Feng came to Singapore in 2007 as a ready-made table tennis player and was fast tracked to Singapore citizen in time for showcase in the Beijing Olympics 2008. In short, she was a direct import to churn medals for Singapore at international level and for that single purpose she serves. It makes no difference even if she has lived here for more than a decade or has integrated well. It is a bare fact that she was b(r)ought over for a purpose.

This bronze medal cannot come at a more convenient time for the Singapore government as an endorsement to its undisclosed intention of opening up our country further for foreign workers/talents. Even after controversially pumping in 2 millions of foreign nationals into our already space-constraint island and workforce, thrusting millions of foreign nationals upon the citizens, the number of foreign nationals is still far from satisfactory for the government who is bent on further foreign imports.

The media propaganda mechanism wasted no time in spinning about Feng's victory, blatantly claiming it as Singapore's. Ministers and MPs too jumped readily onto the bandwagon of national pride, cuddling their baby--foreign talent scheme.  

Honestly, I am really happy for Feng's success at an individual level.

But to see our flag flying at the Olympics because of her is embarrassing and a disgrace. No, Feng did not embarrass or disgrace us but the persons who went ahead of employing mercenary to play sports under our flag did. It bares their pathetic shallowness of the understanding of true victory. It is a humiliation to the spirit of sports. People who supported the idea of buying sportsmen and women to play under our flag devalue the purpose of Olympics too.

We have to stop and check the purpose of winning at the Olympics. Would we be equally convinced by the quality of sports demonstrated by the UAE if they were to win all the events with the best athletes purchased across the globe? Would the number of medals that they accumulate be able to ascertain their excellence in sports?

There is nothing shameful about losing in a match but to win unscrupulously, it is.

For medals themselves cannot claim victory. Some sportsmen won medals yet lost in the way they won. And one can be victorious in a defeat too. Just look across the straits, what Lee Chong Wei, a home-grown badminton player of the minority in Malaysia has achieved. Though failing to clinch the gold, but in the least, Malaysia supported him. For us, we were simply dumped and the easy path of buying better players to win for us was chosen instead.

Globalization has seen a rising number of non-native athletes representing their adopted nations at the Olympics, such as the likes of Mo Farah, born in Somalia, representing Britain; Nigera-born Francis Obikwelu for Portugal where both were naturalized before their athletic talents were uncovered in their respective adopted countries. However, they were not imported directly like Feng Tianwei into Singapore.

And yes, we do see China-born ready-made table tennis players representing other nations but often a mix of local and ready-made players in the participating teams, not to the extent of Singapore where both women and men teams for London Olympics comprises entirely of China-born ready-made players. What is the value of such a medal won by an imported team for Singapore?

Look at our exhilarated MPs, ministers and president over the newly-minted medal. These are the leaders of our country and people. Clearly, as it can be seen, from their expressions on “our victory”, they are the kinds who value only outcome. Anything else is worthless. Precisely why Minister Khaw Boon Wan has apathetically told our people to get out of his sight and retire in Malaysia if they cannot afford retirement in Singapore. And surely they will not hesitate to discard their people to produce their desired outcome. They could do that for a worthless medal, they could do that for anything else.

Whilst Lee Chong Wei’s country stood behind him in his sporting event, our very own leaders turn away from their own people to foreign imports who could increase the possibility of winning at the Olympics. Or in other words, a higher return for the funds invested in sports.

I am not in the least ashamed that we cannot produce quality local talents to compete at international level and not to mention the fact that there is no pressing need to achieve that. And neither is winning at the Olympics a matter of life and death for us. Why are our leaders so infatuated with an Olympic medal? Does NOT winning a single medal bring the downfall of our people? Or the country would go to drains without an Olympic tinted medal?

 I see more glory and honour in sending our home-grown talents to compete and lose than to buy a player to win for us. If we cannot clinch the victory ourselves, what is the purpose of winning?

It is the fact. Our government is constantly looking for instant success. Akin to instant fish. Add water and they will swim for you.

Embarrassingly, the culture of instant success permeates every level of this country. Rootless trees to create overnight vegetation, instant imports of expertise from abroad instead of grooming locally, building casinos to create jobs, open the flood gates to foreigners to boost population growth. And buying athletes to win at sports. If only we could buy instant ministers from abroad who are value for money for our Cabinet.

Then that would be fair.