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Speak Your Mind, Singapore!
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redbean



Joined: 07 Mar 2006
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Location: singapore

PostPosted: Mon Aug 15, 2016 8:19 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Schooling is “One of Us” and a “True Son of Singapore”.

By MIKOspace




Singapore’s First Olympic Gold – Going Back to School with Schooling



Joseph Schooling, a teen Singaporean with multiple ethnic heritage personifying the best of the country’s multi-cultural demography, has captured singular glory and distinction for his country, who is incidentally celebrating our 51st Birthday, with the country’s First Olympic Gold Medal at the 100m Butterfly Swimming Event at the Rio Olympics. He has also bested his idol the 22-Olympic Gold Medalist Michael Phelps into 2nd place shared with 2 other competitors by over half a second.



Singapore’s first Olympic Medal was won in 1960 by Tan Howe Liang who won the Silver Medal in the Weighting (Lightweight Category) in Rome, Italy. To date, athletes from Singapore have won a total of 5 medals at the Olympics including Schooling’s Gold. The other Silver and 2 Bronze Medals came from Table Tennis, respectively from the 2008 (Beijing) and 2012 (London) Olympics.



Schooling’s Gold Olympic Medal and Howe Liang’s Silver Medal struck at Singaporean national pride in a much more radically fundamental way – both of them are home-grown original Singaporean athletes.



The other Singapore Olympic Medalists - Li Jiawei, Feng Tianwei and Wang Yuegu – were formerly from China who adopted Singapore as their home country and thus became eligible to represent Singapore at the Olympics. For the record, Singaporeans have happily welcomed them as fellow Singaporeans and proud that they ended our Olympic medal drought in 2008.



In essence, Joseph Schooling is “One of Us” – a 3rd generation Eurasian Singaporean who is “a true son of Singapore” to quote his Father, Colin, in The Sunday Times. Joseph studied in Singapore’s top Anglo-Chinese School (ACS) for 8 years before going to the United States to pursue his swimming passion and studies.



Schooling’s Olympic Gold Medal achievement will revive debates as to whether we as a nation have done enough to consciously groom and develop local athletes. The same debates will also debunk our narrow obsession with academic excellence as the ONLY definition of human talent deserving of social investments and cultivation.



Gold Olympian Schooling did not have the benefit of the massive investments, to the tune of several thousands of S$$, that went to the National Table Tennis players who have very, very few homegrown Singaporeans. Singapore has paid beyond money, coaches and amenities to include our valuable and prestigious Citizenships in the desperate attempts by sports officials to ignore local talent development in favour of the easier method of buying ready foreign ping-pong talent to represent Singapore.



In ACS, Schooling benefitted from his School’s objective “to nurture all-round development and help students achieve their potential outside the academic field”. Another top elite school, RI, had 20 years ago decided to drop soccer from their list of games and co-curricular activities (CCA) because she had not been the soccer champion over the preceding years despite repeatedly producing the nation’s top students. Wonder what happened to the lesson “Don’t Quit” in their development of youth for leadership!



In ACS, the School Motto is “The Best is Yet to Be”. In 2012, Schooling finished badly, actually last, in Heat 5 of the 200m Butterfly Swimming event after Olympic Officials objected unfairly to his cap and goggles. He returned dejected and disappointed, but determined to go at it again by focusing on the 100m. His story is now Singapore’s history. Would he have been so encouraged if he were in RI instead of ACS?



As Singapore prepares herself to celebrate Schooling’s Olympian Gold Honour for Singapore, we should not forget the many Singaporean athletes who could have brought Singapore earlier to the Olympic Gold Medal if only they had been carefully nurtured, adequately funded and provided with the sports eco-system and infrastructure to grow into the stature of Olympian qualifiers, like we did for the National Table Tennis Team.



Athletic and all human talent development begin when young in schools. The wise adage “if you want life-guards, first develop swimmers” is so true.



Singapore can certainly afford to buy all the 2016 Olympic Gold and Silver Medalists, offer them “special” Singapore “Dual”-Citizenships; and I am sure there would be even more Gold Medals and “Majullah Singapura” refrains in the 2020 Olympics when they represent Singapore in Tokyo. This approach would certainly be meaningless and the accolades short-lived, as they provide neither impetus nor emulation model for the younger generations of Singaporeans. Again, we will be wasting our money and resources just to ensure the career promotion of certain sports officials.



From a helicopter’s view, there are the broader related issues of talent development in Singapore. Talent excellence must and should embrace to include as many forms of talent as possible, given Singapore’s only true asset being our human resource.



Many Singaporeans are receiving accolades as they excel beyond our shores as musicians, actors, entertainers, bankers, commodity traders, business men and women, inventors, researchers, entrepreneurs, logisticians, engineers, management consultants and University Professors. And then some. Yet, they are very seldom recognized nor cited for emulation locally simply because they do not belong to the “Scholar” Elites. Many Scholars however, having gravitated easily along pre-planned career paths, could succeed only within the protected environment of the Civil Service. Very few senior Scholar-Civil Servants are actually sought after by headhunters for the private sector.



True talent is visible to all, and the impact of real talent is to add value to benefit others, especially to encourage their fellow countrymen and women, as well as the coming generations not only by bringing honour and glory to Singapore, but to propel her to ever greater heights of authentic excellence and achievements in many talent domains.



The Schooling lesson to our educators, talent developers, sports officers and political leaders is to go back to School for a re-imagination of our talentscape and to re-calibrate the limitless talent possibilities of our children and their grandchildren, so as to have more Schoolings for Singapore.
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redbean



Joined: 07 Mar 2006
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Location: singapore

PostPosted: Sat Aug 20, 2016 9:34 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

F35 - The $114m wonder pill
The Americans are producing the so called state of the art warplane that can do everything except eating and shitting and is pushing it around to their allies to pay for it at $144m a piece, basic, minus the weapons systems that could be another $100m if the aircraft is not just to fly to show off but to do all the things it is supposed to do. I hope the Americans are not dangling this piece of toy as a Christmas for the children to say ‘I want, I want’, but actually twisting the arms of the allied countries to pay up or else?
Singapore was rumoured to be interested in 10 or 12 pieces of this wonder pill and in many occasions was rumoured to have made the order or closed to signing on the dotted line. In the ST on 11 Aug, it was reported that Singapore is still considering this deal and delaying it till a later date. One strange smell emits from this F35 episode. The Americans are never easy to sell their top end, state of the art, air superiority warplanes to anyone except themselves and a few extremely die hard allies. The fact that they are pushing so hard to sell this piece of toy to so many countries is something to ponder over with. Is it just a commercial piece of crap that they want to make the most money from, another bottle of snake oil? The Americans would always keep their best weapons system to themselves, not to anyone. Even the sale of the THAAD system to South Korea is for strategic reasons in favour of the Americans and would be fully under the control of the Americans. Why would the Americans be so generous to sell this wonder pill to all and sundry begs questioning. A can of problems? When a snake oil salesman says buy, run as far as you can from him.
Anyway, what are the reasons for a small little country to want to cough out billions to purchase 10 or 12 pieces of this aircraft and what can a few pieces do to improve the odds? Does Singapore really need such an expensive and sophisticated toy that should rightly be flown by a super intelligent robot, not an ordinary no talent Singapore boy? Or should Singapore than go all over the world to recruit foreign talents to fly these toys if it could not find enough Singaporeans to fly it?
Some of the considerations for Singapore to want to flatter itself with such a hyped piece of machine must be what Singapore is up against, the potential enemies and what they have that we don’t have and we need to be better than what the enemies have. Are our F15s good enough against the Russian toys of our potential enemies? If our potential enemies are buying inferior stuff and flown by not so able pilots, do we need to have these wonder drugs to be superior over them? Aren’t our F15s and our well trained pilots more than good enough to be on top of the situation? Do we also need to pay for the billion dollar system called THAAD?
Please take note, we are not the USA and our enemies are not the super powers and we need not be like the Americans to want to have the best of every military hardware to be the Empire. We only need enough to be an effective deterrence against little countries. We don’t stand a chance against the super powers even if we lelong the whole island to pay for all the F35s that we think we need to take on a super power.
Heard of prudence when spending public money? Let’s not behave like those boys and girls gambling with OPM, buy everything, everything is a goodbye, oops, I mean good buy, and hoping for the best. Lose money never mind, got more OPM to play with? Singapore has a lot of money to spend, money is not an issue?
Do we really need this wonder pill called F35?
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redbean



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PostPosted: Wed Aug 24, 2016 8:35 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Elected President – What is the truth?
Hsien Loong has said it many times. I did not say the govt said it many times because no one else seems to be saying anything about the impending changes to the process of electing the President. Hsien Loong gave three reasons for the changes to the rules. 1. The EP is not just ceremonial but has a very important function to guard the reserves and to approve senior appointments in the Civil Service and uniformed services. 2. The person qualified to be the President must be able to make difficult decisions on financial matters and a stringent set of criteria must be met like managing a multi million organization to the tune of $200m, top civil servants or ministers. 3. The system must be changed to allow minority Presidents to be elected.
The above are the official reasons for this big constitutional change to enshrine racial considerations and elements into the office of the EP when race will be a factor in choosing the EP. Racial politics enshrined into the constitution a good thing, a progressive or regressive thing?
The unofficial version or reasons for the changes to the EP process in everyone’s lips is about keeping Tan Cheng Bock out of the race. Whether one subscribe to this view, whether one believes this is the real reason, this is what everyone is talking about. True or not, depends on who you want to believe. If the govt is to amend the rules to bar the majority Chinese from the next EP election, saying that it is recommended by the Constitutional Commission, and applies this, then Cheng Bock would be locked out from the race and it would only confirm what the people feared and believed in.
And to add another barrier to people like Cheng Bock, the bar was raised higher, that the person must have managed an organization of more than $200m instead of $100m to take in inflation and the increasing value of the reserves. So Cheng Bock’s previous organization would not be big enough and thus not eligible. This reason may be too flimsy to hold water as the inflation should also applies to the value of organizations at different times. Thus Cheng Bock’s $100m organization then would be revalued to $200m at today’s value, if there is no nitpicking. He was eligible then and should be now.
So, what is the real reason for the changes to the EP process? It depends on who you are and who you want to believe. Oops, please ignore those jesters recommending that there should be more than one EP at one time. They think Singapore is their grandfather’s company and money is no problem, can anyhow pay. And they may also be thinking Singapore is the biggest country in the whole world, bigger than USA and China combined, so need a few flower vases in the Istana, and pay them by the millions because their jobs are more important and difficult than the PM and ministers running ministries.
I got this funny feeling when I think of these extraordinary criteria for a non executive president. Should not these criteria or more stringent criteria be applied to people wanting to be PMs and ministers, the people that really wield great powers in managing the affairs of the state? Or are the PM and minister’s jobs easier than the EP so anyone can become a PM or minister without having to run a $200m company, just manage a town council will do? Make sense?
Oops, I digress. How many of you believe in the Hsien Loong’s version for the need to change the constitution on EP? How many of you believe the talk of the town, that the changes are rushed to keep Tan Cheng Bock out of the Istana? This one not I say one, everyone is saying this is the real reason.
At this moment, one thing is looking quite certain. The new conditions would mean that Tan Cheng Bock would not be qualified to stand in the next EP. What are the bookies stand on this? 1000 to 1 that Tan Cheng Bock would not qualify?
I think the bookies would even chicken out on such a bet.
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redbean



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PostPosted: Mon Sep 26, 2016 10:41 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sports rewards – Equal for all sportsmen, including Masters Athletes
The one million dollar question is in everyone’s lips. Yip Pin Xiu’s gold medals in the Paralympics should stand shoulder to shoulder with Joseph Schooling’s gold medal in the Olympics. Both should be given the $1m cash award.
Paralympians faced greater odds because of their disabilities. And don’t blame them just because they are competing against a smaller pool of competitors. It is not their faults. They cannot determine how many competitors in the race. So don’t be sour grapes. Even though sports is not about money, but about competing, about sportsmanship, but if you give someone one million bucks, it is only fair to give the paralympians the same one million bucks.
The other argument for the Open Olympians is that they are competing in an open field, against anyone that chose to race, chose to compete, be it 10 year olds or 90 year olds, normal or with disabilities, it is an open challenge.
How about a little support for the seniors competing in such events? The seniors’ only handicap is their age and the ageing muscles that refused to behave like when they used to. They are in no condition to compete in the Open category with the younger guys. I tried, a 10 year difference, or even 5 year difference would mean a few seconds difference, unless one is super fit and running against an unfit younger man. How about allowing the seniors to compete in the Paralympics? Maybe the 35 year old Masters athletics would pack too much power. How about the above 60 or above 70 Masters athletics? Their physical conditions are very challenging.
I have competed in a few masters events in the 100m sprint for the 65 – 69 age group. Not many competitors but understandable. How many oldies could still run or do the 100m dash?
Oh, I am not asking for a million dollar reward in the World Masters Event. That would be asking too much. I have known Masters athletics that have been consistently attending and participating in international meets for more than 30 years but barely got a cent in support from the Singapore Sports Council. They have to pay every cent for everything, air fares, accommodations, food, supplements, training, medical assistance, all from their own pockets.
Would the Minister in charge of Sports, of Singapore Active, think about giving a little financial support to the Masters athletics to compete and to keep healthy. No need million dollar awards. These Masters athletics are doing it for sports, for the love of being active, and in the course of it, representing the country too. Oh, Singapore Athletics did provide the sports attire when the masters are competing in major international events. How about a little support in transportation/air fare and accommodation, for representing Singapore?
No need million dollar awards. But a little or small award would really be nice. What is Singapore Active waiting for when so much money are spent on other athletes and sports? The seniors need some encouragement in what they are doing, to stay healthy to compete in sports. The medicine and supplements to keep their bodies supple and functioning are not cheap.
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redbean



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PostPosted: Tue Oct 04, 2016 8:09 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

F1 curtain call?
11 races gone by and nearly $2b spent with the govt footing 60% of the bill, would the F1 race continue for another chapter? No doubt there are values generated from such high profile event to add some oomphs to this once labeled dull and lifeless city. With the changes in govt policies and the two casinos, cruise centres, Sentosa, the Zoo and Night Safari, would there be a need to continue to splurge a few billions for an event that, based on the latest race, losing its glitters? Attendance had fallen to a record low of 73,000 from its height of 219,000.
The bill of $150 million to organize such an event is real. The returns of $150 million incremental receipts is as good as extrapolation from a lot of intangible accounting. How much of the receipts would be translated to actual profits to offset the $150m of cost has yet to be added up. Assuming 30% was profit, that was only $45m, a far cry from the cost of $150m. A $150m receipt is NOT $150m profit!
The Singapore Race is now dubbed as the ‘crown jewel in F1’ by Ecclestone. Iswaran added that ‘there is a clear appreciation of the value that Singapore brings to F1, not just as a venue but in terms of the larger position of the sport and also as a business…’
Singapore has added value to the F1 event. There is no other place like Singapore to hold such a glamour event, safe, clean and efficient and convenient. Should not the F1 organiser be paying Singapore a fee instead of Singapore paying them a helfty $150 million? The big question should be who needs who more, who contributed more to the success of the event?
It is time Singapore appreciates its own value and not continue with the self deprecating thought and policy that we need them, like the foreign talent myth, that Singaporeans are daft, and trust that they need us more. Just hang up the phone and wait for them to call back. The worst case scenario is for Singapore to save $150 million that could be used for better things.
What do you think? Should Singapore continue to behave like the unthinking glory seeking adolescent, begging to be invited in, to be given a seat, and to pay whatever they asked, because papa got money to throw?
Grow up Singapore. You are not a third world little country that needs to pay for superficial glory, for a bit of noise on the streets. It is $150m a race to organize. It is public money that must be accounted for and carefully spent.
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redbean



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PostPosted: Wed Nov 02, 2016 8:15 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Globalisation is Good – Depends
Below is a comment by a blogger called Patriot, in TRE,
Patriot:
October 30, 2016 at 12:36 pm Patriot(Quote)
see the video link on Trump vs Clinton Presidency.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8QnRk7jpuJ0
Globalistion and free liberal import of immigrants threaten every nations jobs, identity, sovereignty and security .
Establishments, special interests groups and donors who supported globisation are reaping the nations wealth at the expense of the citizens.
Those who spoke against it are labelled as xenophobic and rebels.
Britain had dump globalization. Will US follow likewise?
70% SG pls wake up now . Save SG .

The US and Britain are closing their doors to immigrants and to globalization. Whether this is good or bad would depend on where you are coming from. To Trump and the Brits, globalization is bad, and that I also agree. But I would want to take another angle to view this position and say that globalization is not only good to the US and Britain and also to Europe but also a natural eventuality of history. And here are my reasons.
America does not belong to the Europeans or white Americans. It originally belonged to the native Americans. The white Americans called them savages or Red Indians. They massacred them and robbed their land to call it the USA for the migrants from Europe. See the point I am making?
The USA does not belong to the migrants from Europe. Thus, globalization, brining in more immigrants is not new. Every migrant has a right to be in this new country that the earlier migrants devastated and disemboweled of its original natives. It is open country now for every migrant. The early migrants and the new migrants have all the right to be in this ‘No man’s land’ robbed from the native Americans. My apologies to the remaining survivors of the native Americans that are now as good as non entities in their homeland. No one, not the early migrants, asked them if it was alright to bring in all the migrants to their country to replace them. Now there are so few of these original natives to make their voice heard, that this was and still is their land and they have a right to say No. But who cares? Did the white Americans bother to ask for their opinions, to protect their rights to their country, to massacre them?
The moral of the story, if one loses his country to the new migrants, forget about getting it back. The new migrants would take over and in the name of globalization, share the country to anyone they want. How is this related to Singapore? Are the Singaporeans also losing their country to globalization?
What about Britain and Europe? Look at history, Britain and Europe were built on the wealth and riches of the countries they conquered and looted. It is time they share their countries with the natives of those lands they conquered and raped. This is only fair right? This is pay back time for Britain and Europe. The wealth in Europe to a great extent belonged to the rest of the world, especially Asia, Africa and Latin America, including the Middle East of course.
So, be generous, return the favour, yes globalization is the right thing, to share your wealth and countries with the rest of the world. No one will accuse them of being traitors to their people and countries. They owed everything to the rest of the world and they are coming to Europe to take back what was theirs. Britain and Europe are just returning what they took in the past.
Do I sound logical, fair and just? I think it is historical correct. What you sowed you shall reap. But there will be those who said forget about history. It is the past. Let’s move on. Don’t be so sure. The fairest and most just natural law is what you sowed you shall reap. The Asians called it karma.
Is globalization good for Singapore and Singaporeans? It depends on whether you think this island is yours or if you are silly enough to give it away or daft enough not to know what is happening to your island. Then you deserve it when it is lost to globalization and to the new migrants.
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redbean



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PostPosted: Tue Nov 08, 2016 11:22 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Gunther Oettinger – You ‘slit eyes’ and ‘sly dogs’….
This is the 21st Century, and the world is getting smaller, but such racist remarks are still coming out from the mouth of not ordinary westerners but a Vice President of the EU, a German that thought it was ok to call Chinese ‘slit eyes’ and ‘sly dogs’. The Chinese would definitely be offended. Singaporean Chinese would not, I supposed, since they are Singaporeans and not Chinese, and definitely the bananas would nod in agreement with Oettinger, that Chinese are ‘slit eyes’ and ‘sly dogs’, bananas don’t have slit eyes and are not sly dogs.
Though under pressure from the threat of losing his promotion, he made an apology for his rude and racist remarks, his explanation actually made things worst. He said his remarks were ‘free from the liver’ or gut feel, not intentional to insult the Chinese, but just gut feel, if you know what gut feel meant. It is inside him, part of him, how he actually, really felt about the Chinese, a second nature reaction, nothing more, nothing less.
And he is not alone, he said, ‘his remarks merely reflected the colourful language typical of his home state, Baden Wuerttemburg’. Yes, he confessed and revealed that those were what his home state Germans are calling the Chinese, ‘slit eyes’ and ‘sly dogs’. He and his German did not intent to offend, just saying what they are saying all the time when referring to the Chinese.
This is his apology, appearing in the ST. ‘This was not my intention and I would like to apologise for any remark that was not as respectful as it should have been.’ How many Chinese would accept this as a sincere apology? Or would the Chinese said it is ok, he did not intend to insult, he was just saying things from his gut, all the Germans in his home town said it, it is common, normal, the Chinese are ‘slit eyes’ and ‘sly dogs’?
You fucking racist Germans. Please go to China and see how they would return the favour. But not to worry when you are in Singapore, we have no Chinese, only Singaporeans and they would not be offended, some may like it even.
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redbean



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PostPosted: Thu Nov 10, 2016 10:56 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Trump triump revealed the stupidity of Sillyporeans
I read this in Yahoo News,
‘A majority of Singapore residents — 84 per cent to be precise — would have voted for Hillary Clinton in the US election over Donald Trump, according to a survey commissioned by South China Morning Post and done by Blackbox Research last month.
The same survey revealed that “arrogant”, “unpredictable” and “morally unfit” were the top three character traits used by the Singapore respondents to describe Trump, who has just won the US presidential election.
Not surprisingly, many Singaporeans, including those in the US, were disappointed that the Republican defeated the Democrat nominee.’

And many daft sinkies are shocked that Hillary lost when the main media were rubbishing Trump and rooting for her. How could one see clearly when one is blind? The blinds that have eye defects are really not that blind as they have other organs to keep them informed. There are those that have eyes but chose to ask the blind to show them the way. These are the real blinds. Another more serious type of blinds are those that have eyes but refused to see, afraid to see, have no confidence in what they are seeing, and asked others to see for them and would believe when told that white is black and black is white.

How could the daft sinkies believe the media wholesale without questioning? The Brexit experience, the silly UN backed Hague Tribunal, and now, the US President Election, the media have been pushing their own agenda, telling half truths and lies. And many Sillyporeans just believed everything they read, even believing the evil woman is God sent, a lovely lady fit to be the President of the USA. I heard in a Channel News Asia programme on the Silk Road and the producer wrote the script that in the 1962 Sino India border war it was ‘China that invaded an unprepared India’ when declassified secret documents floating around confirmed that it was India that started the war and was well prepared with a special Army Corp formed for the war.

How could the Sillyporeans understand the plight of the working class Americans losing their jobs to foreigners and are getting poorer by the day, losing jobs and their pride? How could they understand the red neck Americans, the majority of the masses, and how they think and their perspective of the world? What Trump said, about immigration, struck a common cord in them. If they could understand they would not be conned by the lies and politically correct deceptions of Hillary.

It is actually asking too much of Sillyporeans to understand the USA and the plight of the common Americans when they could not see the rot in their own country and the plight of their fellow citizens. That is how daft Sillyporeans have become. They did not know what is happening except what they read in the main media, the bigger echo chamber of lies and half truths.
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redbean



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PostPosted: Mon Nov 21, 2016 8:27 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Rogue govt, poor leader and bad ideas
Singaporeans have been warned of the potential of a rogue govt in the future. And very likely it will come in a package, rogue govt plus poor leader and bad ideas. This is a standard package proven many times in history. The big big question is when will Singapore get its share of this package? It has to come, sooner or later, no country or civilization has been spared this fate. When is the delivery date?
So when will Singapore have to pay its due? Actually there is another point to consider. Historically, the people of the day, the leaders of the day, did not know that they had a rogue govt, a poor leader and bad ideas or policies. The govt of the day would think they are the best, of the best talents, led by the best and most clever leader, and the people believed so, and in the case of a democracy, elected them to be the rogue govt. A good example is the USA. Oops, the US is a bit different. This time they knew they are going to choose between the devil or the deep blue sea, but because of the system they are picking the best of the worse.
The crux of the matter is that no one knows that there is rogue govt in charge, or the people did not know they had a rogue govt. Oops, there are many angles to look at this point. It could be that the people knew but afraid to say so, and have no better choice to replace the rogue govt. Or in the case of a dictator, the people just have no choice unless they could successfully remove the dictator.
Then there is the illusion or delusion spun around the rogue govt and poor leader and bad ideas. It is in another way like the story of the Golden Calf. The poor leader could push out a golden calf and called it God, or the best thing to have, the best idea or best policy. And the ignorant masses, without knowing a thing, just pray to the Golden Calf. And the poor leader is helped by the conspiracy of the elite who either knew that the Golden Calf was a fake, only gold plated, but went along, willing to compromise their integrity and honesty and intelligence to go along with bad ideas, praising the gold plated Calf as the real thing. When a poor leader is surrounded by sycophants or so feared that no one dared to oppose him or his stupid ideas, then everything goes, good idea, bad idea, silly idea, all will be carried through as best ideas. No one is wiser. No one will know that they already had a rogue govt, with poor leader and bad ideas.
When would Singapore be fated to meet this dreadful day of a rogue govt, poor leader and bad ideas? Thank God we are still having the most brilliant and talented men and women in the govt, with good leaders and good ideas. Pray that this will go on a bit longer or forever. Pray that Singapore will not suffer the fate of the forces of history, that a rogue govt is in place, a poor leader is leading the pack, and the ideas and policies are bad for the people and the people are able to stop this from happening.
Very likely, like the fall of Empires, things will change gradually, like boiling the frog and no one will be wiser, to know what is happening and Singapore will be history… one day. This is the inevitable truth of history, unavoidable, just when.
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PostPosted: Wed Nov 23, 2016 8:32 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hsien Loong on collision course with Trump
Hsien Loong is pushing ahead with the ratification of the TPP and it was reported in the ST that the legislation will be amended to bring TPP into effect next year, with or without the USA, with or with lesser members in the pact. Hsien Loong’s position is very clear and very principled. The TPP is the magic to save Singapore’s economy and the world. It is about globalization, about free trade, free flow of immigrants, three principles that his govt stood for and will fight for.
On the contrary, Trump is against the TPP and vowed to kill it if elected. He said it yesterday that he would kill it on his first day in office. Trump is also against globalization, against free trade, against free flow of immigrants. The opposing principles of Hsien Loong and Trump are intractable. Both are very strong men with very strong heads and would not bend or make U turns when their minds are set. These are the stuff strong leaders are made off. Even if they make mistakes, they would stick to them and persevere.
We are going to see a contest of ideas between two great leaders of our time in Hsien Loong versus Trump. It is nothing personal, just about ideas, policies and principles. Hsien Loong finally has a huge battle to fight and this will be a testing time for Singapore, if it can really punch above its weight, to show the Americans, or at least Trump, that Singapore’s ideas of free trade, globalization and freedom of immigration are more superior than that of Trump.
Who would triumph in this contest would be decided by latest when either leadesrship ends and whether TPP is still alive, with the Americans in it or dead without the Americans in it. A draw would be when the TPP is alive without the Americans in it, with Trump unable to kill it but keeping the US out of it while Hsien Loong successfully carries the baby with the remaining TPP members in it. In a way this is a battle of leadership, who is the better leader to carry this baby and the rest of the members along. Singapore could rise as the new leader in the Asia Pacific region with Trump continuing with the isolation of the USA.
Just hope this will be just a contest of ideas and does not turn personal and ugly between Trump and Hsien Loong. If so, Hsien Loong would be at the losing end as Trump would be quite free with his flowery language while a decent Hsien Loong with his Cambridge root of aristocracy unable to match him. It is possible for Trump to show Hsien Loong his middle finger for that is what Trump is all about. But it is unlikely for Hsien Loong to return the rude gesture. It is just unacceptable in squeaky clean and correct Singapore culture for its god like leaders to do such a darn thing.
Maybe we will see Singapore sending a team of its best super talents to Trump’s office to explain to him how good the TPP is for the Americans and change Trump’s thinking that it is a disaster for the Americans. How could such a good scheme like the TPP be seen as so bad by Trump and so good for the Americans by Hsien Loong? Maybe they are looking at different sides of a coin or there are too many secret clauses that are not disclosed and Trump is still in the dark, and looking like an ignorant one.
Watch how this TPP show get its full run and how it will end with one of the two contestants turning out as the hero and the other a duck. This is a great opportunity for Hsien Loong to prove that he is a worthy successor to the Oracle and for Singapore to prosper to SG100.
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redbean



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PostPosted: Sat Dec 24, 2016 9:24 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Honour is priceless

I wanted to take a dig at Donald Trump and his appointees for diminishing their dignity by accepting incredibly low monetary rewards when they take up their posts on 20 Jan 17. Trump has declined his presidential salary which understandably is worth less than a peanut and instead opt to take a token pay of US$1. Some may find this action stupid, demeaning and insulting the great office of the Presidency of the USA. How can the responsibility and power of the highest and most important office in the world be worth US$1, or how could Donald Trump be worth US$1? He is worth even less than our cleaners. What kind of dignity is he going to garner, what kind of respect is he going to get when he met up with other heads of state and govt or with business leaders that earn in the millions? would Trump feel undignified, ashamed of his low pay, a meagre US$1? I am so tempted to buy him kopi if he visits Singapore. Poor chap, how could he afford Starbucks?

And his team of cabinet secretaries are mostly billionaires and multimillionaires. Take the CEO of Exxon Mobil, Rex Tillerson who has accepted the post of Secretary of State, our equivalent of Foreign Minister. Tillerson is being paid tens of milllions by Exxon but would suffer a huge pay cut in his new appointment, maybe getting something less than US$200k! He is just as insane as Trump to give up his millions, like all the other milllionaire appointees, to become political leaders. Why would these men and women willingly and honourably accept such a huge pay cut without claiming how much they have to sacrifice for the country? And they would have to face greater challenges in their new jobs, one of which is how to adjust their lifestyle with so little pay, how their family members would have to suffer for their bad decisions.

The only answer that I can think of is the silly concept of honour. These men and women are going to serve their country and see that as a great honour that is worth more than anything in monetary terms. Honour is priceless, even if they have to lose a lot of dignity for have a low pay. Yes, honour to some people may be just a useless aspiration that would not bring food on the table. But to these men and women, honour is everything they live for. They would not be caught talking foolishly about how great a sacrifice they have made for the loss of their income, ie money.

Honour cannot be measured by money alone. Honour is simply honour, priceless. It is something that either you have it or you don't. Which is more important, priceless honour or dignity that can be bought by money?

Shall I say dignity is more important than honour?
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redbean



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PostPosted: Sat Dec 31, 2016 9:13 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Singapore bought Australian land for military training
I read this in the statestimesreview. ‘Singapore is paying S$2.34 billion to Australia to rent over 200,000 hectares – the size of 4 Singapore land mass – in Townsville North Queensland for 25 years to test long-range missiles. The lucrative deal signed in October is however blocked by local farmers who refuse to sell their land.’
I must say this is any time a better decision than buying 12 F35s for about the same amount of money, 200,000 hectares or 4 times the size of Singapore or about 1 cent per sq ft. How would anyone think of spending $2.34 billion for 12 toys that could go kaput anytime and could be stored in a hangar half the size of a football field?
Singapore should negotiate for longer tenure, maybe 99 years, then we can have a small population of soldier boys and their families living in Australia to relieve the lost of land that would be built to house more foreigners. But our crazy policy of wasting land to sell to more foreigners, we have depleted whatever land for military use, to house our soldiers and military hardware. We have no room for our boys to defend our country. By the time they get back home with their hardware the island would have fallen, taken over. How can a country have its soldiers all overseas leaving a token force on home ground? Though the solution of acquiring land in Australia may not be ideal, as least it is a way out until the sickos understand what they are doing to our little island and why building and building more flats to be filled with more foreign bodies is a khong cum thing to do.
This temporary solution buys us 25 years of time and not to be held hostage or at ransom should countries hosting our facilities decided to up the rentals/usage of their land annually. And hope also there is no threats of war during this period. But 25 years is a flash in the pan and the problem arises again, just like our water agreements with Malaysia. When the landlord decides to up the fees or to kick our soldier boys out, then what, just like when we hit 6.9m or 10m, then what?
The solution must be more permanent and sustainable. Reclaiming land to bring in more bodies is like filling water in a pail full of holes and will lead to very serious problems in the long run, with more heads, more consumption but producing nothing, limited land, resources, water, energy, how could this be allowed to go on and on? It is a foolish formula, a game that fools will play and think they could get a way with it. But the fools need not have to answer for it as they would be long dead when the roof starts falling down.
Know the limitations of our land and resources and work within these limits is the only way to go.
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redbean



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PostPosted: Sat Jan 07, 2017 9:14 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

What is Wei Ling’s agenda or intent?
I don’t normally want to comment about the biggies and natural aristocrats, what they say or what they do. This is reported in the SCMP, ‘Xi Jinping’s anti-corruption campaign ‘to weed out rivals’, says Lee Kuan Yew’s daughter.’ This latest comment by Wei Ling about Xi Jinping’s anti corruption drive came as a surprise. I don’t remember Wei Ling indulging in international affairs, mostly about domestic politics, social affairs and about her father and brother, but this flash in the pan comment is getting all the attention in the social media especially in China.
Wei Ling must have known that such a comment is not going to be well received or quietly received in China. Wei Ling must also have known that relations between China and Singapore is at rock bottom and any fanning of fire or adding of oil would only make things worse.
Why would Wei Ling choose this moment to launch this remark at Xi Jinping? There are several angles to look at this moment of anger or utterance. One camp said she is supporting her brother, or at least not happy with China about the Terrex Incident. Another opposing view is that she is stoking fire and you don’t have to guess who would be burnt. I must be very sensitive here. These are not my views or interpretations, just what I heard. I have not even seen her full statement except a couple of sentences that appeared in social media.
Whichever view, the rage in China against Singapore could only mount instead of cooling down. Why, what is Wei Ling trying to achieve with this comment that is best not said, not at this sensitive time? It is politically wrong to say such a darn thing at this juncture when dark clouds are all over the horizon.
This is really puzzling. I can expect the retards involved in foreign affairs and diplomacy to say it but not Wei Ling. Now what? The elite, natural aristocrats, politicians, ambassadors or those connected to the leaders are not daft and know very well that what they said would be noted and would have consequences. They cannot feint ignorance, spoken in private capacity. My two balls are laughing.
The higher one perches on the tree top, the louder would be the voice and the further the noise would carry.
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redbean



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PostPosted: Mon Jan 09, 2017 8:33 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

There are merits in the American political system
The pro independence kids in Hong Kong have a serious contention about their lack of independence to elect their Chief Executive of preference. The Chief Exedcutive was shortlisted by China and they felt offended, short changed, as if the election of the Chief Executive of a country b the people is a universal democratic formula. Did they know that Singapore also inherited the same British democratic system and the Prime Minister was elected by the political leaders among themselves, not by the people? Singapore or Britain did not elect a politician to be the Prime Minister. The politicians elect among themselves.
The American system is different in that they more or less elected their President directly. There is a presidential election though it still has to go through a second election by an Electoral College of Electors or people’s representative to confirm the election by the American public. This is not what makes the American system particularly more democratic than the British system.
What is distinctive in the American system is that the elected President has a free hand to handpick the best men and women as his ministers to assist and support him in the running of the country. These men and women are the Secretaries or equivalent of Ministers, but not elected by the people, not necessary politicians. It goes for several other top appointments of the govt as well, including the judiciary and finance.
The key difference here is that these men and women are not elected by the people but experts in their own fields or at least are known to be experts in their professions related to the appointments. Notice the glaring difference between these Secretaries and the Ministers in the British system? The latter are politicians and not necessary experts in their ministries. The stark inadequacy of the British system is best seen at home when you have eye surgeon helming the foreign ministry, cancer surgeon helming the defence ministry, generals helming education, transport, internal affairs, etc etc.
The obvious Achille’s heel in the British system is that the politicians are politicians and not necessary experts or professionals and are put into ministries that they have no clue about, not train in, no expertise in but are expected to perform like they know everything. Some may perform, some perform hopelessly.
In reality, not many people are so talented to be experts in things they are not trained in or even in things they are trained in. Some may be good in passing examinations but unable to apply what they learned in schools. Politicians are politicians. Are politicians experts in managing ministries like defence, foreign affairs, health, education etc etc. In many instances politicians are like salespersons, good at presentation or presenting what they want to sell, or like actors/actresses but without the ability to do the professional stuff. They are not knows all.
There is a caveat here of course. Despite the obvious flaws in the British system when non practitioners or non experts are put to helm important ministries, Singapore is Unique. Our talents are super talents, at least by the measures of their multi million dollar salaries. And they really become experts overnight in the ministries they are put in charge. Even at the lower level they could become experts and advisers in all fields ranging from sports, arts, cultural, clans or trade associations.
This is the great difference in Singapore. Though everyone can see the weaknesses in the British political system, when put into practice in Singapore, it still works, or at least it works in the past and the momentum seems to prove that it is still working, for how long we don’t know.
Conceptually, the American system is more realistic and practical. The President picks the best experts of the respective fields to do the demanding jobs of the respective office. A general to head defence ministry, a finance experts to head finance, health expert to head health ministry etc etc. Logical isn’t it? Of course there are counter arguments that a soldier is bad to head the defence ministry and likewise a doctor to head health….
What do you think? Is there a need to modify our system to allow experts to head ministries that need and demand people with the professional or relevant training and experience to helm them? The American system has no mismatch problem. Ours definitely have, but saved by the abundance of super talents born to be knows all, to become expert in anything overnight. That is why we did not hear of mismatch in our political system, at least we never hear of any minister or politician being a mismatch in his job.
The British system is flawed and its derivative systems, if copied profusely, would be equally flawed. You not only did not elect the PM/Chief Executive, you have politicians of all colours trying to make the best of their appointments in ministries they have no expertise in.
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redbean



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PostPosted: Sun Jan 22, 2017 9:19 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Prime Minister's Speech Singaporeans waiting for...in the future

To the people of Singapore.

We, the citizens of Singapore, are now joined in a great national effort to rebuild our country and to restore its promise for all of our people. Together, we will determine the course of Singaporeans and Singapore, for many, many years to come. We will face challenges. We will confront hardships. But we will get the job done.


Today has very special meaning. Because today we are not merely transferring power from one administration to another, or from one party to another - but we are transferring power from the government and giving it back to you, the people.

For too long, a small group in our nation's capital has reaped the rewards of government while the people have borne the cost. Singapore flourished - but the people did not share in its wealth. Politicians prospered - but the jobs left, and the factories closed. The establishment protected itself, but not the citizens of our country.

Their victories have not been your victories; their triumphs have not been your triumphs; and while they celebrated in prosperity, there was little to celebrate for struggling families all across our island.

That all changes - starting right here, and right now, because this moment is your moment: it belongs to you. It belongs to everyone gathered here today and everyone watching all across Singapore. This is your day. This is your celebration. And this Singapore, your country.

What truly matters is not which party controls our government, but whether our government is controlled by the people. Today will be remembered as the day the people became the rulers of this nation again. The forgotten men and women of our country will be forgotten no longer.

Everyone is listening to you now. You came by the millions to become part of a historic movement Singaporeans have never seen before. At the centre of this movement is a crucial conviction: that a nation exists to serve its citizens.

Singaporeans want great schools for their children, safe neighbourhoods for their families, and good jobs for themselves. These are the just and reasonable demands of righteous people and a righteous public.

But for too many of our citizens, a different reality exists: Mothers and children trapped in poverty in our HDB estates; factories are no more; an education system, flush with cash, but which leaves our young and beautiful students deprived of all knowledge.

This carnage stops right here and stops right now. We are one nation - and their pain is our pain. Their dreams are our dreams; and their success will be our success. We share one heart, one home, and one glorious destiny.

The oath of office I take today is an oath of allegiance to all Singaporeans.

For many decades, we've enriched foreigners at the expense of Singaporeans; subsidised the defence of our country while allowing for the very sad depletion of our NS men; we've defended our borders while refusing to defend our citizens; and spent billions of dollars overseas on military training but no place for our soldiers at home.

We've made foreigners rich while the wealth, strength, and confidence of our people have dissipated over the horizon. One by one our citizens lost their jobs and left our shores, with not even a thought about the families that were left behind. The wealth of our middle class has been ripped from their homes and then redistributed to the foreigners and across the world. But that is the past. And now we are looking only to the future.

We assembled here today are issuing a new decree to be heard in every HDB estate, in every home, and in every office of power. From this day forward, a new vision will govern our land. From this day forward, it's going to be only Singaporean First, Singapore First.
Every decision on trade, on taxes, on immigration, on foreign affairs, will be made to benefit Singaporean workers and Singaporean families.

We must protect our borders from the ravages of other countries, stealing our companies, and destroying our jobs. Protection will lead to great prosperity and strength.

I will fight for you with every breath in my body - and I will never, ever let you down.

Singaporeans will start winning again, winning like never before. We will bring back our jobs. We will protect our borders. We will bring back our wealth. And we will bring back our dreams.

We will get our people off of welfare and back to work - rebuilding our country with Singaporean hands and Singaporean labour. We will follow two simple rules: Buy Singapore and hire Singaporeans.

We do not seek to impose our way of life on anyone, but rather to let it shine as an example - we will shine - for everyone to follow.

At the bedrock of our politics will be a total allegiance to the citizens of Singapore, and through our loyalty to our country, we will rediscover our loyalty to each other. When you open your heart to patriotism, there is no room for prejudice.

We must speak our minds openly, debate our disagreements honestly, but always pursue solidarity. When Singapore is united, Singapore is totally unstoppable.

There should be no fear - we are protected, and we will always be protected. We will be protected by the great men and women of our military and law enforcement and, most importantly, we will be protected by our Government.

Finally, we must think big and dream even bigger. In Singapore, we understand that a nation is only living as long as it is striving. We will no longer accept politicians who are all talk and no action - constantly complaining but never doing anything about it.

The time for empty talk is over. Now arrives the hour of action. Do not allow anyone to tell you that it cannot be done. No challenge can match the heart and fight and spirit of Singaporeans. We will not fail. Our country will thrive and prosper again.

We stand at the birth of a new millennium, to free us from the miseries of disease, and to harness the energies, industries and technologies of tomorrow.

A new national pride will stir our souls, lift our sights, and heal our divisions.

It is time to remember that whether we are black or brown or yellow, we all bleed the same red blood of patriots, we all enjoy the same glorious freedoms, and we all salute the same great Singaporean Flag.

And whether a child is born in the urban sprawl of Red Hill or the plains of Bukit Timah, they look up at the same night sky, they fill their heart with the same dreams.
So to all Singaporeans, in every estate near and far, small and large, from Tua to Changi, and from Woodlands to Tanjong Pagar, hear these words:

You will never be ignored again.

Your voice, your hopes, and your dreams, will define our Singaporean destiny. And your courage and goodness and love will forever guide us along the way.

Together, we will make Singapore strong again.
We will make Singaporeans wealthy again.
We will make Singapore proud again.
We will make Singapore safe again.
And, yes, together, we will make Singapore great again.

Thank you, Singaporeans. Thank you. God bless Singapore.

Future Prime Minister
Republic of Singapore


Acknowledgement: The above is a plagiarised speech of Donald Trump that is an inspiration to the American people and is something that Singaporeans would look forward to hear some time in the future. Special thanks and appreciation to President Donald Trump for borrowing his ideas and words.
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