Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Evils of Welfare in Singapore!!!

"Welfare has been treated like a dirty word in Singapore--and rightfully so" - PM Lee said.
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I guess that is why they use all other words like Workfare and Comcare that are not found in the Oxford Dictionary. No wonder our poor folks get confused when they go and look for welfare they get this dirty look and they are turned away because technically there is no welfare. Wonder if that was what happened to Mr. Tan.
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I totally support PM Lee's assertion that welfare will totally fiscally destroy us. It will plunge us all into poverty and drown us in deficits. Some of you will say that almost every single 1st World country including our perpetual competitor Hong Kong give out welfare to the poor without hurting their competitiveness. But they are different. Our competitiveness is build mainly on cheap labor and low wages ..and not driven by entrepreneurship, creativity and private enterprise. Whenever we go into recession CPF is cut, wages are frozen ...it is always low wages that bail us out everytime there is a recession. We are different from other 1st world countries:
  • There are no independent unions to protect low wage workers because the PAP tells us that is a bad thing.
  • There is no minimum wage to ensure that those who have full time jobs are paid enough for basic subsistence.
  • There is minimal retrenchment benefits because PM Lee said that you have to make it easy for businesses to fire workers so they won't hesitate to hire.
  • Businesses can import labor easily to keep labor costs down. There are no rules that they have to show they cannot get locals first before they hire from overseas. They can well hire foreigners just because they are younger.
  • Basic utilities such as power, water and transport are run by profitable govt linked entities who can easily raise prices to maintain profitability.

Think about it. You combine the 5 things above and the lack of welfare. What kind of system do you get? A uniquely Singapore system that favors business growth above everything else.....more progress, more GDP growth, more millionaires, higher prices. See how wonderful a system we have for the power elites that rule over us.

When labor is not cheap and not importable like in Singapore in the early 1990s, it encourages better management of labour which are treated as a precious commodity that has to be motivated, trained and retained for the long term. These days workers are treated like expendables ...always on short contracts, readily retrenched. I guess the PAP govt just wants to make life more interesting for us by giving us more challenges and job changes so we get some variety in our boring lives.

See how important it is to preserve this system like what our MM said. For him and his elites, this is the system worth preserving.

So after debating in parliament for 3 days over this topic of poor Singaporeans, the grand conclusion is GST has to be increased to 7%. Nothing else will change. ...still no minimum wages, no welfare, etc. Thank goodness the system is preserved. I was worried with all those heart rending speeches by elite PAP MPs and the great show of empathy...and show of sympathy for lesser Singaporeans something in our system will change....but nothing did change. ...only the GST changed.

Singaporeans are so lucky to be governed by an enlightened govt. One that is always worried about how the evils of welfare will undermine our work ethics and make us lazy. It is for our own good that we have no minimum wage for basic subsistence so that we are always motivated by the hunger to succeed ...by hunger I mean real hunger the type they have in N. Korea. This system is maintained for our own good. That is why they need to control the Internet, eliminate people like CSJ and ban FEER, because there is only one TRUTH in Singapore and the truth is the PAP always work for your best interest. Even if you don't like it, they have rules to make sure you cannot protest, so you don't waste any time and spend more time watching TV and shopping.

33 comments:

Anonymous said...

Well written and agreed that we are dead lucky to have the system maintained and unbreakable? What can be done...for every non-elite Singaporean to find out what will be best for them Especially for the next generation.

Anonymous said...

It is a dirty word? And what Low Thia Kiang said is even dirtier? And this comes from the man who says our public service is dirt cheap, but the cohort of Ministers are the highest paying ministers in the world. Who did not brush him teeth that morning when he made that statement?

sad man said...

I agree that more can be done for the poor. Kindergarten teachers need a higher pay. Social workers need a higher pay. More need to be done to help the poor. Just make sure all the 2% GST increase is given to these causes and Govt accounts for it. Not to higher minister pay, R&D, water treatement plants etc etc.

Anonymous said...

All over the world and throughout the ages, there are always poor people. And peasants must be the majority to make nation viable. The better educated understand this and knows the necessity of continually increasing the pools of poor fellow citizen.
Look at USA and the other 1st world countries! They have welfare but the poor still create troubles regularly.
We not have welfare but poor never create troubles. Only troubles come from netizens who if can have so much time to spend online are certainly not poor.
Conclusion is we do have the right way to control the really poor.
Even MRT can help contain this problem by allowing people to jump on the train track.
Also there is a solution coming from Johor. The poor can go live, work and play there at half price and no GST. And still get the aid package arising out of 7% GST, I hope.

Anonymous said...

i totally agree with your big picture here!

Long live PAP PAP YAA!!!

Anonymous said...

We must really thank the 66.6% of Singaporean for such a "progressive" nation. Progressive in prices of Bus, MRT, Electricity and now EVERYTHING. Thank you PAP for making us progressive

Anonymous said...

For the record, I am totally against opposition parties in Singapore because they are plain stupid. They have no idea what a great government we have here! But surprisingly though, they predicted this one correctly - ie. the GST increase after the elections. Hmmm... wonder how they know?

vesance said...

Hmmm... wonder how they know?

Guess they are not "stupid" afterall LOL.

LuckySingaporean said...

anon,

It was just a lucky guess. It is just coincidence that GST is raise just as the Opposition predicted.

The WP also 8 years ago brought up the issue of the "new poor". The relentless squeezing of the middle class so they too 'feel' poor.

All this is timebombs and poisons planted by the WP. The WP has jinx us with such dire predictions ...that become true by fluke.

Anonymous said...

Gahmen says they need increase to fund more government spending.

Have they taken a conscious effort in cost cutting?

Anonymous said...

Cost cutting as in spending $10k to paint graffiti on a drain?

sapmme said...

If you are a nobody, you WILL be left behind...

Well done! Raising a regressive tax like GST and call it for the improvement of the poor...

PTUIII!!!! I spit on stinking pappy dogs

Anonymous said...

in order to help the poor and elderly, PM Lee said it's a necessity to raise the GST now since it's 'good times'.

I wonder. It's like robbing a poor of their 100% stuff so that they can give back to the poor , say 5%? (I'm overestimating the giving back by the way)

damn. by the way, what's so good about the times now?

like lucky mentioned, those 5 points hit bulls' eyes.!

what a great party we have. thx to the 66.6% - (oh ! by the way, dunno how many percentage of 66% are walkover constitutions... so TECHNICALLY it's only a minority percentage who supported them. WOE!!! we are ruled due to the choice of the minority!!!! WTF?)

Anonymous said...

Why are we complaining? Government already said that welfare state is no good for Singapore. You just have to look at European countries. Most of them are welfare state to certain extent. But, there is only dinosaur there! We have Asian Tigers here. We do not have beggers on the street like those in European countries or even in US. We don't see any poor people here but certainly do know that the number of millionaires are increasing every day. We need to progress to a millionaire state rather than a welfare state. Don't we see that long queue at toto/4D stations? Future IR will be an additional venue for creating more millionaires. We should really think of having more IRs so that we can progress more rapidly to a millionaire state.

Capt_Canuck said...

I would have to agree with Lee on this case. Left to Singaporean own devices you guys cant be trusted. I mean, look at what happened when Singapore first formed independantly. You had riots in the street and people died. Left to your own devices of freedom and thought you guys tear the country apart. You need leadership, dicipline, a father figure telling you what to do or else you dont work and build a rich nation, you turn slothful, lazy and fight amongst yourself. Only reason you have racial/religious harmony is cause it is against the law to have an opinion of your own.

So, just be glad that someone as powerful minded and sure speaking as Lee took control of your country and turned you into the rich person that he is..I mean, Singapore is.

Hmm, Lee unites the waring clans of Malay, Indians and Chinese to form a strong nation...William Wallace joins the waring clans of Scotland to drive out the British and form a strong nation. Guess that would make Lee the William Wallace of Singapore. Wonder what Lee would look like in a tartan skirt, waving a huge two handed sword screaming "they will never take our freedom!!!! That is MY job!!!!"

Anonymous said...

This is a strong testimony of the efficiency of having one person be Prime Minister and Finance Minister.

freemason said...

anony 4:11 two posts above:
yes it is best to progress to a millionaire state. Marvellous solution ! Get rid of the poor & other undesired elements by eliminating them slowly, reduce public housing & its occupants to rubble by inflating then busting, keep astronomical high end housing prices to draw in the wealthy who will then overtake the place. Fantastic ! just turn it into a uneedli stinkapor island country club ! bravo !

Red Dot Specials said...

Does the PAP use George Orwell's 1984 as their training manual? Maybe someone should publish a revised edition to include the PAP's doublespeak...

Anonymous said...

PAP uses the Matrix model.

Anonymous said...

Why is there no debate on this GST increase at all in Parliament? So much for their effort of getting more input from the people. The last I know is that all the articles in the online ST forum has been removed. How is this 2% helping the poor? I am sure the government knows how many of the poor did NOT get the progress package because they could not read and have no TV to understand what is going on? I am quite certain that a larger portion of the 2% will be spent on useless committees and paperwork (not to mention high salaries for those who hardly do anything).

math teacher said...

if you earn $5,000 a month and got a raise, now you earn $7,000 a month. this is 40% increase.

5% -> 7% is a 40% raise my friend!

don't be goondo and think it is just a "2%" raise (2/5 x 100 = 40%).

Anonymous said...

$$$ Video @ http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=62NOErWc0sA

Anonymous said...

Honestly, I don't understand what's wrong with taxing the richer population in Singapore, except that probably the ones paying those taxes are the ones setting the rules.
And I also dun believe that the GST raise can help the poor. Like said, some of the better ways to help them is to ensure they have a job advantage over the foreigners and a minimum wage. I dun understand why they are so supportive of some bosses paying peanuts to their workers, of course they dun believe themselves to be monkey.

Anonymous said...

I keep hearing about min wage. We are the product of our system. Would you or the guy next to you push for a min wage for your maids? why not? And that is the way it is in Singapore. No compassion. I read about maid working for 1 year without wages so as to repay their agents back home, and I realise all Singaporeans (66.6%) supports that system, and the indentured slaves live in constant fear of being sent back to their country if they do not buck up. Fair? iF 66.6% feels it is ok to screw the maids and down trodden, it is not surprising we get the govt we deserve, and the MPs we deserve. And the govt continues to have a big maid levy, keep it in the coffers and raise GST. I am frustrated.
TC

Anonymous said...

i just read that in Macau, the government received huge tax gains from the overwhelming gaming money thats coming in.

What is the Macau govt doing with the money? they announced doubling welfare spending, introduce a minimum wage.

their social security expenditure is 16.5% of govt budget.

Now - with us coming up with Casinos, why cant we use the money made to handle social welfare? rather than raising the GST?

Anonymous said...

I guess more poor ppl will be jumping onto MRT tracks liao...

But if u can afford to live in Singapore... U r 'definately' not poor. Everything needs $$$, even when u die u oso need $$$ to cremate yourself.

Regressive taxes like that doesn't help the poor la... Maybe the word regressive tax doesn't exist in dictionary??

After all, a few K is only PEANUTS to some what... Mr Durai can feel free to take it & build toilets @ a non profit charity org...

Wonder if tax payers $$$ will be used to really help the poor and I eagerly awaiting what will be the blueprint cos there's no way that the GST is gonna remain @ 5% no matter how much peasants like us whine. I hope it is not going to more renovation just to make Singapore look better... --"

"$80 million funds will be pumped into your lift upgrading if u vote for me" . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Anonymous said...

agree wholeheartedly with the article and some of the comments! (:

compared to other countries, singapore only spend 3% of our GDP on healthcare. hahaha. and the ministers enjoy the highest pay, thanks to themselves.

our money always goes into making singapore even better, to attract tourists and more investors etc for a better economic growth. we have "sydney's opera house" (aka esplande) and london's ferriwheel.and later we're going to have IR resorts. wow imagine the money dat goes behind building such things COMPARED TO the money spent on the welfare of the people.

what a great contrast. i seriously doubt the extra 2% is entirely going to help the poor.

Anonymous said...

it is true that singapore has the highest number of millionaires. yes, i guess most of it contribute to the fact dat the gov's pay just got raised.

and does it seem ironic to you that everytime it's just PAP discuss pointlessly, set the rules and then that's it. shush shush no talk from the people at all. where's our democracy?

singapore have poor people and beggers on the streets too. and they're quite a common sight. who is helping those people??????

Anonymous said...

I've lived in several other countries: China, Malaysia, Indonesia, USA. I was a resident for several years on each country above before residing here permanently.

All I can comment, honestly, is: you are lucky to live in Singapore.

Anonymous said...

Ummm... all I can say is that your understanding of economics doesn't seem to be very well developed. Short term for certain people is inevitably very different from long term for all of society.

For example, it is a completely untrue to think that minimum wages are all that keep the unskilled from a subsistence existence. Free markets work because competition does its job on all sides - employers have to compete for workers too, and all it takes is one factory owner to pay a little more in order to attract the best people and get the best results for their business, for all of them to have to do the same.

In the long term, no business can sustain a very high difference between the marginal product of labour (amount of extra revenue for each extra, say, hour of labour) and the wage level. As a result, all minimum wage laws do is to create unemployment for the most unskilled in society.

Anonymous said...

I think you are dead wrong. Singapore must not follow the western welfare state model. Take a look at the US and UK. Their governments are bankrupt. The US has trillions in debt. Their Social Security (their version of CPF) is broke. They don't have enough money to pay the baby boomers when they retire. I suppose they can try to borrow from China or print more money.

Currently their unemployment is offcially 10%. But the real rate is even higher - 17%.

The health care systems in the US and UK is so bad. The US spends about 13% of GDP on health care. The UK spends about 7%. Singapore spends only 3$. Guess who lives longer? Singaporeans.

Do a google search. Singaporeans have life expectancy of 82 as compared to about 78 for Americans and British. Of course, other factors like diet play a part. But WHO has has ranked Singapore's health care at 6th best in the world. This is far higher than the US or UK. This is inspite of the fact that Singapore spends less on health care!

Again, do a google search if you don't believe me.

Health care is cheaper here. Don't think its free in the UK even though NHS gives free health care. Nothing is free. In the UK, taxes are higher to pay for the 'free health care'. GST (called VAT) is 17.5% in the UK. Top rate of income taxes is 50% compared to 20% in Singapore.

Also, you could wait as long as one year before you get your 'free' operation in the UK. Again do a google search.

Education is better here. Boston College ranks Singaporean kids as best in the world for math and science. Again, do a google search if you don't believe me.

Crime rate is lower in Singapore than in the US or UK. So we get better health care, schools and security. What's the cost for all this? Singapore government spends 15% of the GDP to provide all these and other services. This money must come from taxes and we all want better service with less payment. What sort of spending does the UK and US government do?

The UK spends 50% of GDP and the US government spends 35% (both federal,state and local governments) of GDP. Bottom line, They spend more and give lousier schools, health care and police force work. Singapore's government at only 15% of GDP gives better service and at a cheaper price. Cheap and good. Singapore has a cheap government - if you look at the big picture.

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