For some westerners, Singapore is a thorn in their side

biodegradable-gum

The article here, “By gum, the west is wrong about Singapore”, by Joyce Hooi, ( The Straits Time, 28th Mar 2015), drew blood.

It reveals the often patronising and condescending attitude and the double-standard westerners take towards Asian countries.

But in Singapore, they are suddenly faced with a city more polished, organised, efficient and less corrupt than their own countries, right in the heart of Asia.

Singapore is an anomaly in their eyes. A thorn in their side.

Advertisements

good bye, Sir!

lee-kuan-yew-cries

忧国忧民…Mr. Lee Kuan Yew breaking down in tears announcing Singapore being kicked out of Malaya (ca Aug 1965).

Often, when I think about the education I have received, and that of my siblings, my peers, and our ability to maintain a good standard of living in the global context, and my being bilingual — I am thankful for my parents, who have worked hard to provide and guide, and how that was facilitated and made possible due to the foundation and infrastructure of Singapore — built by our pioneer generation, led by this giant of a leader, an iron-fisted man way ahead of his time.

We won’t be where we are without Lee Kuan Yew. Forever thankful 饮水思源

…….. based on Justice and Equality?

Image

The Singapore National Pledge

We, the citizens of Singapore,

pledge ourselves as one united people,

regardless of race, language or religion,

to build a democratic society

based on justice and equality

so as to achieve happiness, prosperity and

progress for our nation.

I think our ministers, who are in the stratosphere in terms of the salary they are getting, should remember to say this pledge every morning before they set out to make policies.

“based on justice and equality?

Seriously. My ARSE.

And how do I justify my words? The 40 % voted against our government in our last election would support what I say..

The blogosphere is choke full of the issues Singaporeans are facing and the injustice dealt upon them, especially the middle-lower income folks. There are issues with immigration and our foreign blue-collar workers and associated appalling human right abuses with the Ministry of Manpower being either incompetent or derelict in their duties. We favour expatriates over our own in terms of employment. Our government gives them perks and licks their arses. The inexcusable negligence over the maintenance of our metro ( SMRT) system leading to serious disruption to transport services (repeatedly). The unbelievably inefficient public transport ( buses and taxis) — people who can’t afford cars suffer in their commute to and from their insufferably long hours of work ( Singaporeans work the longest hours in the world!)

What’s worse is the government’s and civil servants’ ( I lump them into one, which I am not supposed to usually, but in this case, they are in bed with each other) self-righteous, high-handed, arrogant and condescending attitude. They have lost touch. They have no empathy nor compassion. Not all of the ministers, but many of them. And they are compelled to toe the party line. Not serve its people. It is a tough job for sure, but if you are getting paid tens of thousands per month, you better cut the mustard.

We have one of the world’s largest income gap too (some say we are no.1) . But we are no.1 or no.2 in terms of GDP and wealth. Go figure if our progress and prosperity is based on justice and equality. And happiness … for whom? Not the average heart landers. Not when your pride and joy, the Gardens by the Bay requires a $20 entry fee. And your F1 is only reserved for the hoighty-toighty to mingle and watch big fancy cars burning up airplane grade fuel, while the ‘commoners’ suffer the inconveniences of the severe noise and road closures. Sure, we are better off than third world countries materially, but this come at severe social costs.

Check out yawningbread or mr. brown. And many other blogs. You will find them. I am not eloquent or patient or cool enough to write about them

May the powers there be come to their senses before I lose whatever respect and gratitude I have for their past effort in bringing Singapore to where it is today.

 

why not singapore sling for WTA?

Gun-toting sports writer

I read tennis.com regularly. I played “competitive” tennis for a while many many years ago ( I played for my high school and my military unit while in national service). I wasn’t that good.

It was in the 80s, when Lendl, McEnroe, Connors, Boris Becker, Martina and Steffi and Chris Evert were in their heyday.

I still follow the news. I like Steve Tignor’s and some other writers’ blogs and views. They have good perspectives and fair opinions. But Peter Bodo always rubs me the wrong way. I googled for a photo for this blog and almost instantly, the search led me to this photo of Mr Bodo. Quite uncanny I must say, especially if you were to see what I have written in my draft already. ( nothing against hunting per se, just saying)

And this is his awful latest. Yeah, he has his opinions, but his views are just often snide and chauvinistic and skewed. It is about the Women’s Tennis Association year-end championship moving to Singapore ( Singapore won the bid over London and New York) in 2014.

He tangentially, though with unsavory intentions, needled Singapore’s authoritative government, corporal punishment ( caning) and anti-chewing gum law. Don’t you think I don’t know what you meant to say, Mr Bodo. Just sour grapes NY lost the bid.

And why not “Singapore sling”? Just because we say no to chewing gums, we have an iron-fisted government and we cane criminals?

Well, I say yes, because at least in Singapore, we worry a little less about some gun-toting maniacs shooting Serena or Maria. We don’t have the National Rifle Association promoting and defending gun ownership; we don’t have rifles available for purchase in Walmarts; we don’t have rifles made for kids; and we don’t have a democratic government fighting tooth and nail and lost to a rich, powerful gun lobby. (Just about a month ago, the US government was unable to pass a law which allow for background checks on people wanting to own guns.) ANYONE can own guns in the USA.

Yeah, the gun lovers have always been pulling the US government by its testicles. They still do.

So, I think at least in Singapore, kids are more at ease going to school, the public has the FREEDOM in our authoritative state to walk about in the dark without the fear of being shot at. And may be the WTA could spend less on security and we won’t use armoured vehicles to bring Serena and Maria to our indoor stadium.

I think it is a right and freedom, to not feel threatened constantly by firearms while you live your daily lives.

I think Peter Bodo’s brand and idea of democracy, just like many people of the west, is a be-all and end-all liberty and freedom. But people lose that right to feel safe. I don’t think that is true freedom. That, I called, is wanton, irresponsible and decadent.

Freedom without confines means being lost.

Pete Bodo, quit your bigoted moral high horse. Stop harboring suspicions and skepticism of the rising east, like so many of your western sport-writers colleagues when anything spectacular comes out from Asia. That is the true premise for your spew.

I am not pro-Asia, but pro-fairness.