Even for the 66.6% who voted for new gardens and fountains around their estate, what the PAP managed to achieve this year is simply unparalleled. I can't think of another year when so much was accomplished in so short a time. US$10B for UBS, US$5B for Merrill...no other govt has been able to toss a few billions into troubled foreign banks while asking its old, sick and disabled to live on 2 meals a day under its Public Assistance Scheme. That was a final act to top of a year of grand achievements.... even by PAP standards, it has been a great year:
1. Finally justice for our suffering elites. The minister pay hike must be the single biggest achievement of the year. It has been too unfair too ridiculous for our ministers to have to make such a painful sacrifice for so long. Since there is no minimum wages for low income workers why should there be a maximum wage of our top elites, the ministers.
2. GST hike to 7%. GST hike is to help the poor. The poor who pay no income taxes feel left out -unable to contribute to the govt coffers so that it can do great things like buying stakes in UBS & Merrill Lynch. The GST hike is to help the poor contribute more to the govt so they don't have feel left out of their grand achievements.
3. Price hikes on everything. Yes, the govt was very concern that the slight pay increment you got at the beginning of 2007 might undermine your work ethics and they know you were very troubled by that extra money which you don't know what to do with. You don't have to worry any more - through a series of price hikes, that extra money has disappeared. In fact, the inflation rate which is at a 16 yr high probably ate up more than your increment. Now you have to work harder to make up for the inflation. You should be happy you haven't lost your work ethics this year.
4. People & more people. This is the year of population expansion. Singaporeans refuse to have more babies as cost of living rises but that is no problem for the PAP govt. They can always import. ...and import they did. Our population has been pushed to 4.68M. I guess they PAP has more than enough capacity to serve Singaporeans. Although our hospitals, roads, housing and buses have become more crowded, it is a simple matter of raising prices to bring down the demand. That is why ERP, bus fares and taxi fares have to be increased to reduce the congestion and overcrowding. As I understand it, PAP govt feels that it still has alot more capacity left to serve so more people will be brought in.
5. Annuities. Yes I know many of you are eagerly waiting for details of the scheme. I have no doubt the PAP govt will implement it. Singaporeans living beyond 80 yrs will be an unacceptable economic burden for the PAP govt in the coming years. While it has money to risk in troubled foreign banks, giving govt aid to 80 yr olds to keep them alive is an unthinkable idea. Singaporeans have to learn to pay for the trouble they cause by living too long - it is too much for them to expect the PAP govt to do something for them when they are too old to even walk. The PAP has figured out better use for its money like putting them in troubled American banks and telcos in neighboring countries.
2007 shows the PAP at its best. Singaporeans are lucky to have such a capable govt and can look forward to many more good years ahead....