Tag Archives: Lee Hsien Loong

Pro-PAP site Mothership.sg thinks Singaporeans are stupid.

Dr Chee Soon Juan   Dr Chee with Aung San Suu Kyi in 1998

Dr Chee Soon Juan wrote a co-op piece on The Wall Street Journal on 27 November 2014 titled ‘A New Vision for Singapore‘. He repeated his call for PAP to conduct  free & fair elections and release the press from government control to allow true debates by Singaporeans at this crucial juncture in Singapore’s history. Continue reading Pro-PAP site Mothership.sg thinks Singaporeans are stupid.

PAP supporters don’t understand internet

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(Photo: Channel NewsAsia – Lee Kuan Yew gave a series of talks on radio in 1961 to explain the Communist threat)

I am amused by the number of posts and Facebook pages created by PAP supporters on the internet, specifically Fabrications About the PAP, Fabrications Led by Opposition Parties, and Shut Down TRS.

All of them revolve around rallying for public support to shut down alternative media websites such as The Real Singapore, All Singapore Stuff, TR Emeritus and The Online Citizen.

Pro-establishment supporters are not familiar Continue reading PAP supporters don’t understand internet

Do Muslims in Singapore condemn ISIS?

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(Photo: The Straits Times)

Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong spoke in Asia-Europe Meeting in Milan last week and affirmed Singapore’s intention of becoming a partner in a global coalition in countering the escalating threat of ISIS.

Lee specifically mentioned this is a battle against terrorism and a long haul strategy to secure the safety of Singapore and her citizens as ISIS ideology and recruitment methods are very effective in attracting foreign fighters to join its ranks, ironically, by using the media tools invented by the West.  The Singapore authorities have already detected Singaporean extremists who are fighting for ISIS. I doubt we need these extremists Muslims back in Singapore to spread their wayward views.

Lee did not lay out detailed plans about Singapore’s potential involvement. His speech was simply an assurance to the world that Singapore does not condone terrorism. The theme of the Asia-Europe Summit was “Responsible Partnership for Sustainable Growth and Security” and it is politically correct for Lee to express intentions that is beneficial to Singapore and her global partners.

Despite the lack of details,  Muslim Singaporeans in “I am Against Pinkdot” Facebook group have already jumped the gun and assumed that Singapore will send her F15SG fighter jets to bombard their ISIS “Muslim brothers” and ranted about American imperialism & their military industrial complex.  Syed Daniel even said that the coalition are cowards who dare not send in group troops.

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(Screen captures: Syed Daniel’s Facebook page)

He went on to explain the “difference between not supporting ISIS and supporting the coalition to bomb Iraq and Syria” because he is concerned about the health ill-effects the bombardment could bring to the civilians in Iraq & Syria. But in his carefully worded emotional appeals, he has never once condemn the atrocities of ISIS but instead chose to highlight that Singapore may be a focal point for terrorism and the cons for joining the coalition. He has also omitted the fact that ISIS fighters are hiding within civilian compounds.

In my earlier post, I wrote that the Singapore Armed Forces appear to have a distrust towards Singaporean Malays but postings by Syed Daniel justifies SAF’s manpower policies. Singaporeans in the past have expressed discontent over the suppression of discussion that is deemed religiously or racially insensitive in nature but the free flow of information also help Singaporeans to understand the underlying reasons for certain policies.

If Singaporeans such as Syed Daniel do not condemn ISIS, then I am curious what are their views of ISIS. Some even went on to the extend to suggest that the beheading videos by ISIS were staged by the CIA.

When David Horowitz asked a Muslim student in University of California San Diego pointedly whether she condemn Hamas, he got a non-committed response possibly due to fears of reprisal from her own Muslim community. Is that what Singaporean Muslims fear as well?

admin-we-are-against-pinkdot(Syed Daniel is the Administrator of “We are Against Pinkdot” Facebook group, an anti-LGBT group.)

I believe moderate Singaporean Muslims need not have the fear of speaking out against ISIS and extremism groups because their practice of moderate Islam is different from the hate that extremism groups are preaching (unless they think otherwise).  I still have faith that moderate Singaporean Muslims do not regard ISIS fighters as their Muslim brothers.

 

The Hong Lim Park protesters were lucky

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(Photo: The Straits Times)

Last Saturday (27/09/2014), Han Hui Hui and Roy Ngerng continued their series of protest against the PAP governance of the CPF system, a social safeguard which has received some praises worldwide.

I think the main grouses with CPF system are the lack of control over ones’ hard earn monies and the increasing minimum sum that left some elder Singaporeans disillusioned. Seasoned financial professional and TOC veteran editor Leong Sze Hian has tried to dissect and critic the CPF system but he has hit a black box.  His protege Roy Ngerng tried but became a martyr after a blog post he wrote that criticized the CPF system crossed the line and alluded that Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong was corrupted.

Han Hui Hui and Roy Ngerng then began a series of Hong Lim Park rallies to gather support for Roy’s legal defense against Lee Hsien Loong and increase awareness of the alleged opaque CPF system. Together with other protest movements that are held regularly at Hong Lim Park, #ReturnOurCPF protests have become ordinary and it has lost its novelty. It is not surprising that interests have waned.

Just when you thought that the protest on 27/9 is going to be another ear-piercing shouting match, Han and Roy have shocked Singaporeans by hijacking a YMCA charity event meant for the disadvantaged and special needs children at an adjacent lawn . Several short video clips have surfaced which showed the protest organisers’ incivility but these clips may have portrayed an inaccurate picture of what had happened on that day.

The bombshell landed when a 17 minute video surfaced which showed Roy and Han have marched towards the YMCA stage three times and disrupted the performance on stage with their unruly behaviour. PAP junior Minister Teo Ser Luck who was the VIP for the YMCA event has become the target of Roy & Han when they screamed into the loudhailers demanding him to “Return Our CPF”. Some of the supporters of Roy & Han have even gotten physically close to Teo and displayed signs of aggression.

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Were these supporters a physical threat to Teo? If they were, did Teo’s bodyguard fail in their duties by allowing these aggressive protesters to congregate near Teo? Isn’t the role of the bodyguards is to ensure the safety of the junior Minister? What are the security implications?

Had the VIP been a heavyweight minister such as Ng Eng Hen, or K Shanmugam, these aggressive protesters might have been pinned down, arrested and the situation would have turned chaotic.

Here is the full 17 minutes video:

Is this year’s National Day Rally a reflection of pessimistic outlook for Singapore?

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(Photo: Yahoo Singapore)

In this year’s National Day Rally, PM Lee told Singaporeans that everyone should have equal opportunities in the workforce regardless of their academic qualifications. In his presentation, he singled out individuals who had rose through the ranks in the private sector despite their lack of paper qualifications.

I doubt non-degree workers can rejoice as the system and values are too entrenched within the society so the very top who have studied hard in their teenage years will scoff at Lee’s attempt to placate the green-eye crowd. Neither should degree holders be too concerned that they were being placed on the same level of non-degree holders.

Ostensibly, Lee is trying to show appreciation for the non-degree holders and blue-collar workers who have the hands-on skills and helped to shape the Singapore economy with their sweat. Most are are drawing a much lower salary compared to the management executives.

Lee raised the concerns of degree gluts that is happening now in Taiwan, South Korea and China but he is careful not to highlight the potential issue of salary exceptions.

He has probably anticipated that Singapore is going to have difficulties keeping up with the salary expectations of new graduates.

Let’s take a look at the tuition fees for semester 2014/2015 for our three full-time unis: NUS, NTU and SMU.

  • SMU students are required to pay $11,000 of tuition fee annually.SMU FEES
  • NTU students are required to pay $7,850 annually.
  • NUS students are required to pay around ~$8,000 annually.

These numbers are inclusive of government subsidies and the amount varies depending on the course but those are base figures.

A full-time 4 years course with direct honours cost a Singaporean between $31,400 and $44,000 depending the institution he or she goes to.

This means most Singaporeans have to be burdened with study loans upon graduation and that requires them to secure a good paying job to service these loans. Assuming a SMU grad services $1,000 monthly, a very conservative calculation tells you it takes at least 3.5 years to redeem the loan.

With such burdens, our local grads cannot afford to take up $3,000 per month (or less) jobs in SMEs or start-up which are unable to provide good job security or dish out good bonuses.

It is more preferable for graduates to join government sector, MNC or financial institutions which have deep pockets to satisfy their aspirations and allows them to be relieved from the burden of study loans sooner.

I believe PM Lee is not confident that Singapore will have sufficient number of good paying jobs for our undergraduates who are going to join the work force a couple of years later with a heavy burden.

With an uncertain global outlook, it is better to make the non-grads and grads compete against one another now to benefit the economy as much as possible before the tsunami hits.