Singaporeans are sometimes accused of complaining too much. Life may be perceived by some people as 'good' or 'very good' in Singapore and those complaining are just doing so because they like to do it or have something against the wonderful PAP govt. I think you can just shatter this myth easily looking at numbers from the a recent UBS survey.
Here is a Business Times report on the survey[Link].
1. "Singapore workers have to slog longer to earn enough money to bite into a Big Mac. Its price is equivalent to about 36 minutes' worth of work, 14 more than three years ago."
2."It shows that the country is among First World economies in prices but not necessarily in wages".
3. "With pay increases not keeping pace with price hikes, purchasing power is squeezed. Singapore has declined 10 spots to the 50th position, behind cities like Bratislava in Slovakia, Johannesburg in South Africa and Kuala Lumpur in Malaysia.
4. "Halimah Yacob questions the survey's validity".
5. "'The figures may be right, but the conclusion could be wrong" - MP Seah Kian Peng
You can go through the report in detail[Download here]. The numbers clearly shows that that our cost of living has risen much faster than our wages. We have gotten worse compared with other Asian cities such as KL, Seoul, Hong Kong etc. When interviewed by Business Times, MP Halimah said govt measures ranging from Workfare Income Supplement for low-wage earners, to rebates and subsidies in healthcare, education and housing help people to cope much better. Did she forget that the govt also implemented means testing that will significantly increase the cost of medical care for Singaporeans? Did she forget that the cost of housing has escalated by 40% in 3 years as govt subsidy remains more or less the same? Workfare? Most of us don't qualify and you don't envy those who do because at their income level life is just miserable in Singapore.
And there are plenty of things that has gotten worse that is not captured in the report. Buses packed like sardine cans, MRT carriages with seats removed, congested roads, decreasing job security etc. Overall life has gotten worse for most people in Singapore. It is hard for PAP MPs to understand this because their lives have not gotten worse. The PAP leaders have denied almost every problem Singaporeans raised. When the cost of housing rose, they insisted that it was still affordable so they did nothing - they blame Singaporeans for being too fussy and obstinate about location and size of flats. When Singaporeans above 40 (now above 30) find it hard to get jobs - they tell you to moderate your 'unrealistic' expectations and take any job that pays you anything....joblessness is also the fault of Singaporeans. When we tell them that utilities especially the cost of electricity is too high, they tell us to cut down on our usage if we can't afford it. ....it is again the fault of Singaporeans, they are using more electricity than they can afford. So this is what we pay this govt the highest salary for - to tell us to solve our own problems?....worse still to create problems for us to solve?