"“If you’re the best today, strive to be better. If you’re better today, strive to be ‘betterer’ and if you’re ‘betterer’ today, strive to be ‘betterest’ so that over time, Singapore’s service standards can just keep getting better, ‘betterer’ and ‘betterest’" - Minister Lim Swee Say
The PAP leaders have this habit of pointing out what they think is wrong with Singaporeans and demanding Singaporeans improve themselves. However, when Singaporeans suggest much needed improvements to our transport system, our public housing and flood control mechanisms, the first thing they do is deny there is something wrong and once the evidence become overwhelming and there is no way to deny the facts, the 2nd thing they do is blame something else (other than their policies) for the problems we face. The PAP leaders who are paid the highest salaries in the world should be the ones to do a "betterer" job....why is Minister Lim asking Singaporeans workers who endure a 3rd world wage structure (see article here ) to improve. Lim Swee Say should improve his English and stop using words like betterer. He should be calling for improvement of the transport system so that workers can get to work more comfortably to start the day fresher and more productive.
All of us should thank SMRT CEO Saw for being so honest. She admitted that her goal is not really the comfort of passengers - she is okay with the situation so long as they are not crushed. She later admitted that the trains crowded but she can't do anything about it without compromising reliability or safety. Actually, there is something else she can't compromise and that is the shareholders' profits and dividends ...of course the SMRT can extend the length of each station and expand the number of carriages for each train, of course the trains can be upgraded to increase frequency and shorten waiting times. But all that requires her to use shareholders' fund and the increase in revenue is unlikely to compensate for expediture since the demand for MRT service is fairly inelastic. Like I said, I don't blame her...she is only doing her job to take care of the interests of shareholders. There is no point trying to argue with her anyway since she has already shown all her cards and admitted that the trains are crowded. You look at the whole system, together with the COE + ERP and you realise the entire transport system will not evolve to improve the standard of living greatly in the coming years. Our COE system is an example of system that will lead to great unhappiness and dissatisfaction. This bidding scheme is one in which a scarce resource (cars) is allocated based purely on a person's ability to pay rather than his needs. A millionaire's son gets a car for partying while a lower middle income father with a handicapped child cannot afford one as he struggles with other medical costs. This system causes great mismatch between needs and allocation. You superimpose this COE system onto Singapore's income distribution which is the most unequal in the developed world and you get plenty of dissatisfaction with the system.
2 days ago, Minister Tharman talked about the govt aim to raise the median income to $3100 from $2400[Link] by 2020. To me, that is a rather meaningless goal because it may not translate to any improvement in living standards. What is the use if 5-room HDB flats go for $1M at that time, or our MRT trains reach crush point and medical costs which has been rising much faster than income continues to escalate.....The problem with Singapore has never been a lack of GDP growth. The problem is the income gap and raising median income without narrowing the income gap will solve nothing. If the income gap keeps rising, cars and better homes will just continue to move out of reach of most Singaporeans.
If you want things to improve in Singapore, there is not much point complaining or giving feedback to the PAP govt. Just like the SMRT, it must have taken thousands of complaints and plenty of feedback over the years....but is constrained by the system to operate in a certain way. Similarly, your life will not improve if the system in Singapore does not change. If you give in to Minister Lim Swee Say's demand for workers to be faster and cheaper, you will not better your life much...you will end up working faster, harder, cheap ..'betterer' for the rest of your life perhaps even not being able to retire until the day you die. The best way to improve your life is to improve the system and the way you do that is to bring in the people whose interests are aligned with yours into parliament.