The Online Citizen

Four Fallacies about the Singapore Welfare State

September 28
17:31 2011

excerpted from Social Dimension Online:


The last and possibly most damaging case against Western-style social welfare is that it is financially unsustainable and will eventually bankrupt the state. At a seminar on Singapore’s Central Provident Fund (CPF) last year, a senior politician likened European pay-as-you-go pensions to political Ponzi schemes that were never going to pay up on their promises. This view is misinformed. It is true that pensions constitute the heaviest fiscal burden among all sources of social spending in Europe and have come under pressure from population ageing and economic stagnation. But this area is complex and dynamic. Research done at the London School of Economics has found that reforms in recent years have addressed policy constraints to different extents across Europe and in some cases have put pension systems back on a more sustainable path. The reference to Ponzi schemes is also disingenuous because it fails to recognise how these pensions have helped many generations of older persons in Europe avoid poverty and retire with a sense of financial independence and personal dignity. Sociological studies have shown that these pensions often enable older adults to contribute to their adult children as they look to establish their own families and careers. In contrast, the majority of elderly Singaporeans are compelled to rely on their adult children for financial security, even though retirees are likely to have fewer children in future. Can we say that either system is more sustainable?

The weakest argument against the fiscal sustainability of Western welfare is probably that it led to the current economic crisis. It did not. The current economic crisis gripping Europe may be due to many things, such as negligent regulation of banking practices or even inherent flaws in modern capitalism, but it was not due to the welfare state. The misperception may have arisen from the sweeping cuts to welfare spending that countries have made. But in this case, the site of treatment does not indicate the source of ailment.


Read the rest of the article HERE.

 
  • lim

    I think people are less concerned over what something is called than the impact it has on society.

    Whatever the welfare system is called in the US or Europe, it would be difficult to spin this as a successful system in today’s climate to the average man on the street.

    The debt created in both Europe & US due to differing spending priorities is a fact. That does provide a contrast to the managed debt system eg social security scheme like CPF.

  • lim

    In the US, the 401k is nearly bankrupt due to political bickering leading to differences on how the deficit is to be funded. In our CPF system, there is no such issue, although it is necessary to prevent lump-sum withdrawal and raise the draw-down age to ensure the solvency of the system in future, which is straned by the ageing population. Many countries have raised the draw-down age to 65 or 67. Singapore should raise it to 70 at least, given our lower fertility rate.

  • Titiana Ann Xavier

    The masses are denied welfare as the government has brainwashed the people into believing it to be unsustainable.

    Returning CPF in toto allows Singaporeans to start small businesses. The people are enterprising enough and do not need welfare. Only PAP ministers need welfare with their million $$$ salaries and pensions.

  • Father of Steven Kho aka Sissy Kho

    @ Lim

    Who are you to comment on US and Europe? Are you the Finance Minister there? Where is your credibility? As for CPF contribution by Singaporeans, everyone knows what going on. We don’t need you to blow PAP trumpet. Btw CPF nowadays is for HDB payment given high housing prices. Basically CPF money for retirement no longer apply to the masses now

  • yeoman

    The weakest argument against the fiscal sustainability of Western welfare is probably that it led to the current economic crisis. It did not. The current economic crisis gripping Europe may be due to many things, such as negligent regulation of banking practices or even inherent flaws in modern capitalism, but it was not due to the welfare state. The misperception may have arisen from the sweeping cuts to welfare spending that countries have made. But in this case, the site of treatment does not indicate the source of ailment.

    —————————————–

    precisely!

    the US financial crisis is a direct result of the ‘GREED IS GOOD’ WALLSTREET mentality so prevalent amongst TOP HONCHOS and the ‘SUPER-RICH’.

    LET’S not forget that while it is the GREEDY N CALLOUSNESS of RICH WALLSTREETERS which created the FINANCIAL DEBACLE AND BANKRUPTED MANY ONCE giant corporations,it is the POOR MAINSTREETERS WHO have been called upon to HELP nurse the USA and ailing american comapnies to LIFE?

    It is pethetic that amongst the countless of millionaires and BILLIONAIRES,only ONE WARREN BUFFETT decided to call on PREZ OBAMA to ‘tax’ more from the SUPER-RICH?

    europe’s problems is not unlike that of USA.

    ALL has got to do with so-called ‘COST-CUTTING’ which basically BOLIS DOWN to CUTTING SALARIES AND JOBS of ordinary core citizens and putting those ‘savings’ into the pockets of the ‘SUPER-RICH’ thmeselve.

    by virtue of the economics law of MULTIPLIER EFFECT,this ‘cost-savings’ which KILL JOBS – even in SUPPOSEDLY HIGH gdp SINGAPORE – REDUCES THE ACTUAL ‘DISPOSABLE’ INCOME of ordinary citizens which would otherwise be ‘spent’ to create a spiral in economic ACTIVITIES AND THUS,ECONOMIC GROWTH,REAL ECONOMIC GROWTH,NOT SOME GOD-FORSAEN HIGH GDPs that only put mor emoney into the pockets of the ‘super-rich’ who only ‘HOARDS’ THEM?

    LET THE WORLD’S LEADERS AND THE SUPER-RICH begin to understand BASIC ECONOMIC LAWs and apply them like what the wise WARRE BUFFETT is trying to do?

  • PUTHUCHEARY AVOIDED NS

    To author of the article: all sounds logical. Try arguing it out with the 35%-supported elites. Nothing is going to change unless the other 65% show their hands or force the changes. The elite live in gated houses (protected and insulated from the rest), they go different classes of hospital beds, they send their children abroad and their daughters marry ang moh, they make sure their children are well taken of, they regard the rest of Singaporeans as not so smart and must be kicked in the asses: Do you seriously believe the welfare state is anywhere in their must-do list? Good try. Semantics does not fill an empty stomach and neither do the entrenched want to share their spoils.

  • Poper@SG

    Suppose CPF is a bank and I put my savings into it.. What right does the bank have to hold my savings until I’m 70? Meanwhile, inflating is hitting me at 4-5% while the stupid bank give me 2% interest.

    Mind you, CPF is not a bank! It’s just a repository for our savings. Unfortunately, TH and GIC is losing our (public) money into failed investments while raising the withdrawal age indefintiely.

    It’s not difficult to ponder why.

  • eaglefly

    WELFARE FOR MIW, NOT DAFTS !!!!!

    LOOK AT THEIR PENSION SCHEME, WAGES,

    ALL FOR THEMSELVES AND CROYNIES, STOOGES, PUPPETS,,,,,,NOSE BROWNERS

    GO ON, VOTE FOR THEM 2016, MAYBE YOU CAN BE INCLUDED IN THEIR SCAM, RIP;PING THE NATION, PLUNDERING THE NATION,

    ” DRY “

  • Libran

    The CPF system has failed Singaporeans, without doubt. Today Singaporeans do not have enough to retire on. They are having their precious little hard earned money locked up involuntarily by the govt., and are having to wait until 65 to collect their puny monthly payouts, which cannot keep up with inflation. Meanwhile many of them have lost heir jobs or are forced to take early retirement without anything to survive on.

    Under the CPF system, the PAP short change by paying us a low rate of interest. The CPF system also allows the PAP to manipulate the system to push up property prices by it up for property investments. This caused Singaporeans to spend too much on housing, leaving little to retire on. Meanwhile the sharp spike in property prices only benefit only the PAP govt. and the rich property developers.

  • A reponse

    Lim, u truly live in an ivory tower. I have so much to say to you but I do think it would be pointless…

  • Teh Tar Lek

    @Father of Steven Kho aka Sissy Kho

    Wah you didn’t realized that this “Lim” is actually your own son Steven Kho?

  • lim

    This postgraduate student is from the London School of Economics, an insitution that is of doubtful credibility. It would be more credible if he were from NUS & NTU, which are among the world’s best universities. Whatever is said in this report is thus discounted.

  • lky

    “This postgraduate student is from the London School of Economics, an insitution that is of doubtful credibility. It would be more credible if he were from NUS & NTU, which are among the world’s best universities”

    Gosh! horrendous! i’m speechless

    footnote:
    “There are currently 16 Nobel Prize winners amongst LSE’s alumni and current and former staff, as well as 34 world leaders and numerous Pulitzer Prize winners”

  • calibri

    Lim, you floored Lky with your logic.

    Stupendous.

  • Godwin

    “The masses are denied welfare as the government has brainwashed the people into believing it to be unsustainable.”

    So if the “masses” are granted welfare, who will actually fund it?

  • Titiana Ann Xavier

    So if the “masses” are granitic welfare, who will actually fund it?

    Who is funding the million $ salaries and pensions for the goddam PAP ministers?

  • Lim got any degree?

    Fully discounted and dismissed his crap

  • Kumar

    This article too cheem for sgporians who are mostly bochap. To them where got time? Better eat char kway teow.

  • Godwin

    “Who is funding the million $ salaries and pensions for the goddam PAP ministers?”

    They are not “masses”.

    Even if you cut their pay by 90%, how much does that translate to per person for the “masses”?

  • popcorn

    If Temasek Holdings stop distributing generous Ang Pows abroad like Father Christmas, the billions lost would translate much to per person for the “masses”.
    Who is funding UBS losses? GIC.

  • Titiana Ann Xavier

    They are not “masses”.

    Even if you cut their pay by 90%, how much does that translate to per person for the “masses”?
    ——————

    How about a meal at a hawker centre? Or you think your goddamn ministers and asslickers should deny them this little bit of welfare because it is unsustainable? The masses are funding the salaries and pensions of these goddamn ministers and a meal is surely not too much of welfare being given.

  • Father of Steven Kho aka Sissy Kho

    @ Teh Tar Lek

    I should have know it ealier

  • PAP MAN

    Titiana, is Popcorn your bf?

    I hope not. Don’t disappoint me ok.

  • Godwin

    “How about a meal at a hawker centre? The masses are funding the salaries and pensions of these goddamn ministers…”

    If the “masses” qualify for free lunch, then for sure they are not “funding the salaries and pensions”, right?

    So the “masses” get a free lunch, and the remainder who are still working got to fund their free lunch AND the ministers’ salaries and pensions? How to sustain?

  • Titiana Ann Xavier

    If the”masses” qualify for free lunch, then for sure they are not “funding the salaries and pensions”, right?

    So the “masses” get a free lunch, and the remainder ….
    ———————–

    Even if you cut their pay by 90%, how much does that translate to per person for the “masses”? This goddam idea will pay for one free meal for the masses. Sustainable?

  • Godwin

    Cutting the ministers pay by 90% will not solve anything. It is better to maintain their salaries at current levels so that we can attract the brightest talents to lead our country.

    Very often, the “masses” who are in a difficult position brought themselves into it. They did not study hard in school, did not get good jobs, did not constantly upgrade their skills. It is not the gahmen responsibility to clear up the mess for these people. They should not get a single cent from us taxpayers.

  • Gowdin

    “This goddam idea will pay for one free meal for the masses. Sustainable?”

    Actually, GCT already told you: 3 plates of char kway teow per person per year.

    Happy? Enough?

  • Godwin

    Sorry, I checked – he said 5 plates.

    That was 2000, but their salary increased since, and so did the population… still, cannot be one meal a day for “masses”, right?

  • Gowdin

    And for those who can’t even afford 3 plates of char kway teow per year, they must really be pathetic. They are not worthy of the gahmen time.

  • Godwin

    Please don’t confuse ministers salaries & welfare state. They are separate issues. We need to pay our ministers well so as to attract the best talent to our gahmen. That is why no other gahmen in the world is as qualified & efficient as ours.

  • Godwin

    Sorry, sorry. The INCREASE in 2000 was 5 plates per person.

    Now even if you multiple that by 10 times, it’s still only 50 plates per person per year – one plate per week, not every day.

    My point is: even though they are paid obscene wages per person, divided by “masses” also not much per person lah. Cut their pay 90% alone won’t do – more money is needed. And that money come from where? People who continue to work and pay taxes instead of getting free lunch.

  • Godwin

    So please study hard & work hard, instead of always asking our gahmen for handout if you want to be respected. Our gahmen got no time for such nonsense.

  • Titiana Ann Xavier

    Godwin or Gowdin whatever…

    This is the main reason why the PAP will continue to lose the support of the masses. Blaming the masses but living in opulence on their sweat and blood. Surprise that no asslicker told Woody Goh that 3 plates oops it is 5 plates of char kway tow are not sustainable. At least Woody Goh has a bit more heart than his asslickers.

  • Godwin

    “And for those who can’t even afford 3 plates of char kway teow per year…”

    How many are there? “Masses”? Enough to justify a “welfare state”?

    Stop using the plight of a small percentage of people to advocate for liberalisation of our welfare system lah.

  • Godwin

    “This is the main reason why the PAP will continue to lose the support of the masses.”

    So if the 40% of “masses” want to receive welfare, then the 60% who don’t must feed them? Sustainable?

  • Titiana Ann Xavier

    Don’t allow sycophancy to muddle thinking. A free meal is far from creating a welfare state. Pinky is doing a review of ministerial pay while asslickers are defending it. Asslickers cannot be smarter than Pinky. Pinky should know better. The masses are right. His asslickers are talking kok.

  • Godwin

    If you give a man a fish, you feed him for a day.

    If you give a man a fish a day, why would he want to learn how to fish?

    Who will have to do the fishing and not be able to keep all he catches because part of it must go to those who do not fish?

    By all means cut their pay – but don’t muddle things by saying that that will be able to provide free meals to “masses”, or that the difference should go towards welfare.

  • lim

    Hi everyone,

    Just wanted to highlight that there are 3-4 different lims here. If you’re addressing any of the “lim”s, suggest you also highlight the pic eg lim with the speckie which is me.

    That way, we can identify who to respond.

  • Titiana Ann Xavier

    90% pay cut from ministers’ salaries and pensions is surely enough to sustain a free meal at the cooked food centre for the masses. Many of the 60% who voted PAP did receive some welfare like free meals and drinks for attending their rallies. The 40% who voted against the PAP are not all from the poor masses.

  • Godwin

    “90% pay cut from ministers’ salaries and pensions is surely enough to sustain a free meal at the cooked food centre for the masses.”

    How many are the “masses”? How many days of free meal a day?

  • Godwin

    At the end of the day, the poor lack the ability to further themselves but blame our gahmen. Like that fair or not? Do they deserve any handout? Of course not!

  • Libran

    When the PAP pays itself the highest rewards in the world (among politicians), it is immoral. What makes it all the more immoral is the fact that it has failed to deliver. It has failed to build a nation whereby true blue Singaporeans can be proud of. It has sold its soul for money. It has sold the long term interests of Singaporeans to foreigners just so that it can show GDP growth and reward itself handsomely. The standard of living of Singaporeans have gone down. Congestion, pollution, high cost of living, dilution of identity and resources, wide income gap, you name it, we suffer it.

    So to all the people who say things are alright in Singapore, open your eyes, or perhaps go for a eye examination.

  • Titiana Ann Xavier

    One million dollars can buy 500000 $2 meals. That is a lot of fish. It is heartless to begrudge poor fellow Singaporeans one small fish when the ministers are eating abalone. Pinky knows that a fish a day keeps his detractors away. That is why he is advocating pay cuts to share one small fish with the poor masses. Teaching the poor masses how to fish takes time. In the meantime they need to eat.

  • Godwin

    “One million dollars can buy 500000 $2 meals.”

    Sure.

    But buy 500,000 people 3 meals a day for a year = $1 billion a year.

  • Libran

    Not everyone is born with equal ability or opportunity. If we consider Singapore a nation and a big family, the only way for this nation to thrive is to build a more inclusive society. That means the able and rich helping the lower rungs who nevertheless perform essential roles in society. We need the cleaners, the cooks, the plumbers, etc., and we need to ensure that they have enough to survive on, and thrive.

    Imagine if Godwin’s lowly anus were to clamp up on him, his good (or bad) brain might die as a result of toxins building up within his body.

  • Titiana Ann Xavier

    It is not fair that the greedy ministers wallow in luxury while the plight of the poor masses are ignored. The PAP government knows it will be committing political suicide if it continues to get feedback from their PA, RC and CCC asslickers. A little welfare for the poor masses goes a long way to winning votes. But asslickers will never learn the art of fishing for votes. They are good with their tongues only.

  • Godwin

    “Imagine if Godwin’s lowly anus were to clamp up on him, his good (or bad) brain might die as a result of toxins building up within his body.”

    Is that all you can say? You can call me whatever name you like, but our gahmen has never been wrong, and will never be wrong. Welfarism will only lead to higher taxes. I am not willing to give anymore handout. Everyone must solve their own problem, don’t expect gahmen handout.

  • Godwin

    “It is not fair that the greedy ministers wallow in luxury while the plight of the poor masses are ignored.”

    But we’ve already seen that even if we cut their pay by 90% we still can’t afford to feed 500,000 people every day.

    “A little welfare for the poor masses goes a long way to winning votes.”

    In other words, buy votes using our tax money? I don’t think that’s right.

    “We need the cleaners, the cooks, the plumbers, etc., and we need to ensure that they have enough to survive on, and thrive.”

    No, we don’t owe the cleaners, the cooks, the plumbers… or for that matter the doctors, the lawyers, the bankers a living – they should all earn their keep. Sure they perform essential roles in society – that’s why they get paid for their work. In fact, these people are the ones who pay taxes, not rely on welfare. You are conflating the issues here.

  • Teh Tar Lek

    @ Godwin

    “If you give a man a fish, you feed him for a day.

    If you give a man a fish a day, why would he want to learn how to fish?

    Who will have to do the fishing and not be able to keep all he catches because part of it must go to those who do not fish?”

    —————

    Steven, some advocate to teach people how to fish and must continue to improve fishing skill…..like the fish pond owner.

    Then the fish pond owner control entry to the fish pond……

    The fish pond owner allows those who intend to sell their catch cheap…….and return home when they made enough and live happily ever after…….

    Others are denied entry because they intend to sell their catch at market rates in order to pay for the high cost housing, food, transportation etc…..

    They are allowed in only when they are willing to lower their pricing….but these are highly skilled fishermen who master their trade with the best teacher…..and then continue to upgrade their skills……Now they find that they are “over-priced”……all the time listening to advice of the fish pond owner.

    Hey, the fish pond owner then said that there are available spots for fishing but some fishermen are too picky….No choice, if no one fish, I got no income……so let in more cheaper fishermen……

    If you got no fish, blame yourself hor…..Let you in and pay more for your catch? Forget it…. Irony is that the fish pond belongs to all the shut out fishermen and they help build the very pond that they have no access now…..

    So can I expect my own pond to extend me a help hand?
    Sorry, that’s handout and a no no…..

    Can I take out my past savings? Again no…..because you will squander them and come back for handout…..

    How then am I going to survive the now? Your own business?

    Hope this fishing story is fishing interesting to you.

  • Titiana Ann Xavier

    Nobody is suggesting 3 free meals a day. But if any asslicker would like to do so, the poor masses will be eternally grateful. The poor needs help. Only a very stupid government will deny help. Pinky apologized for mistakes made. This is one of them. Incidentally, the $60 billion loss by the government could have provided 3 free meals for 500000 for 60 years.

  • Godwin

    Nobody is saying that the fish pond is very well-managed, but if you say the pond managers should be given 1 fish instead of 10 and that the difference is then enough to feed everyone, then I think the maths is salah lah.

    If the pond is not well-managed and some people catch no fish, doesn’t mean we must force the fishermen who catch fish to give away their ctach, right? Like that who will work hard to catch fish?

    By all means sack the pond managers or cut their fish-entitlement, but forcing productive fishermen to give up a share of their catch is not a fair solution to some people not catching fish.

  • Titiana Ann Xavier

    Pinky used money to buy votes with the Growth and Share. Highfalutin and self-righteous asslickers should tell Pinky to stop this unethical practice. Better still return the money for redistribution to the poor masses. I dont mind if my tax money is used to provide a little help for the poor. The heartless will no doubt disagree.

  • Godwin

    I agree using tax-payers’ money to buy tax is wrong. If gahment got enough money, tax people less, then if they got heart like you want to help the poor, they can do so of their own free will. Welfare is just forcing productive people to help, while the gahment claims credit and win votes.

  • roooster

    Some people who cannot catch any fish may want to rob the other fishermen. This selfish behaviour leads to anarchy. The fish pond owner can help. Give a few small fish away for the sake of peace and stability. His business will not go bust with a little charity. Just like Warren Buffet.

  • Godwin

    “Some people who cannot catch any fish may want to rob the other fishermen. This selfish behaviour leads to anarchy… Give a few small fish away for the sake of peace and stability.”

    So if robber every day come to your house and threaten to beat you unless you give him money, you give him money or you call police? Or use money to hire security?

  • KTK

    Yes, the welfare state has failed only because the Governments there went too far on welfare, they spent beyond their means. That is the only critism
    you can place on them and not on the “welfare state” per se.. But they didn’t spend on themselves. They spent for the good of their citizens.
    We on the other hand are left to fend for ourselves although we have one of the
    highest per capita income in the world
    (or do we?). Surely we have enough money
    increase subsidy on HDB flats, hospital
    costs, transport, etc. Don’t be a Scrooge, have a heart.

  • Godwin

    Actually, welfare state is like pond managers rob the productive fishermen, keep some fish for themselves, give the rest to those who catch no fish, then claim credit for managing the pond well…

    Liddat the catch-no-fish-but-get-free-fish will continue to vote the same managers, while those who kena robbed everyday will decide just to catch no fish and get free fish…

    Eventually no one catch fish, everyone starves.

    http://singaporeansays.blogspot.com/2011/09/how-welfare-culture-evolves.html

  • Libran

    The problem is the PAP govt. soaks up too much money from the people (profiteering from land sales and HDB flats), and begins to think it is so smart. Now that it has so much money, it thinks it can afford to dabble in the financial markets, and try to make a quick buck, and then reward themselves even more handsomely ( maybe tens of millions p.a., as what a CEO of a GLC developer did). But alas, that is not where their forte is. Their forte, or job, is to govern Singapore to the best of their ability, making sure that private enterprises thrive in Singapore, there is law and order, and equal opportunity to all, young or old, rich or poor.

    As I have mentioned before, the govt. should just quit business, and invest our hard earned reserves in a well diversified basket of sound govt. bonds and gold. This way, it should be able to build a more inclusive society, with the savings from doing way with overpaid and overstaffed investment teams, and savings from all the losses they have made.

  • Titiana Ann Xavier

    Welfare is not forcing productive people to help. The poor old uncles and aunties picking cans and cardboards to sell are productive too. A little welfare aid for the poor is an act of kindness and charity. It makes humans different from beasts. It is the duty of the government to ensure a more equitable distribution of wealth among its citizens. That is good governance. Selfishness and avarice have no place in a first world country.

  • roooster

    The only people who came knocking at my house are asslickers asking me to vote PAP. You might be the person whom I showed my middle finger.

    Is everyone starving in Singapore? Fear-mongering is a despicable tactic used by brainless koksuckers.

  • Enough

    @ Titiana Ann Xavier
    @ Godwin

    When bof of u going to end this debate?

  • Godwin

    “Welfare is not forcing productive people to help.”

    Welfare is funded by taxes. Taxation is enforced by law. therefore, welfare is forcing people to help.

    “The poor old uncles and aunties picking cans and cardboards to sell are productive too.”

    They are. More backbone than those who don’t help themselves and expect hand-outs.

    “A little welfare aid for the poor is an act of kindness and charity.”

    Welfare is forced, charity is given freely.

    “It is the duty of the government to ensure a more equitable distribution of wealth among its citizens.”

    I disagree. I think the gahment don’t have a mandate to redistribute wealth from those who have earned it to those who haven’t.

    I think the gahment’s role should be limited to “making sure that private enterprises thrive in Singapore, there is law and order, and equal opportunity to all, young or old, rich or poor”. Equal opportunity to catch fish, not equal entitlement to fish caught.

  • Libran

    To people like Godwin, I’d like to say that the PAP not only does not practise even a little bit of welfarism, but it actually robs from the poor. How? By the mass importing of cheap foreign labour to rob the poor of a decent livelihood. Why does it do this? So that it can reward itself handsomely and sell land and HDB flats at inflated prices!

  • Godwin

    “When bof of u going to end this debate?”

    LOL.

  • Godwin

    “To people like Godwin, I’d like to say that the PAP not only does not practise even a little bit of welfarism, but it actually robs from the poor.”

    I agree PAP practises quite a bit of welfarism, as the article already shown us.

    I don’t agree that letting in cheap labour is robbing the poor; you can in fact argue that NOT letting in cheap labour is robbing the employers of their potential profit based on a lowe labour cost.

  • Godwin

    When I was in Vietnam, a handicapped 7-year old asked me for handout. I said get lost. I will not give a single cent to those “supposed” in need, not to mention our able-bodied people in Singapore. The biggest attraction in Singapore is the low taxes we pay. Want to increase our tax just to fund welfare? Wait long long lah. Not gahmen responsibility to feed everyone.

  • Libran

    As the market stall holders say, the PAP govt. gives the people one dollar, but takes back two dollars through other means, like raising the GST, HDB prices, transport and mediacal costs, etc.

    The influx of cheap foreign labour benefits the MNCs, the rich developers, the GLCs the most while most Singaporeans suffer. Foreign companies and foreign workers remit most of their income home, so the high GDP numbers don’t benefit Singaporeans. There are now calls by economists to construct a better measure of progress, such as a GHI (gross happiness index) rather than refer to an outdated and erroneous measure like the GDP.

  • Titiana Ann Xavier

    Asslickers see it as forcing. Government see it as duty. Kind people see it as charity. No government in a first world country will dare to do away with welfare. Try telling Pinky to stop subsidize for medical care, education, conservancy charges, etc. Willy nilly the government is committed to some forms of welfarism. Pinky will probably tell you to suck it if you disagree.

  • rooster

    You are showing your true colour: a heartless and shameless Singaporean who has no kindness at all. I hope all handicapped people in the world will condemn you. Change your name to DOGwin.

  • ah kow

    too much power corrupts
    try yr best to equalise n hv balance of power

  • Enough

    @ Godwin

    hello bro, u lose. Haha

    @Titiana Ann Xavier

    u go girl!

  • ah kow

    lky says loss one grc, sub sub sui
    obviously he as usual is too arrogant to admit defeat of one SIGNIFICANT GRC.
    this may be the beginning of the END
    ppl especially the younger ones are no longer daft.
    he is now desperately gathering support from new citizens, ie the mass intake of untalented but cheaper n grateful future supporters.
    if all true blue singaporeans that cares for their children’s future bond together n kick these power crazy team OUT, i see little hope for born n bred sinkaporeans

  • calibri

    Words of wisdom shared by Steven Kho, under other users’ names (lim, godwin).
    ————————————–
    lim28 September 2011
    This postgraduate student is from the London School of Economics….

    Godwin29 September 2011
    Cutting the ministers pay by 90% will not solve anything. It is better to maintain their…

    Gowdin29 September 2011
    And for those who can’t even afford 3 plates of char kway teow per year…

    Godwin29 September 2011
    Please don’t confuse ministers salaries & welfare state…

    Godwin29 September 2011
    So please study hard & work hard, instead of always asking our gahmen for handout….

    Godwin29 September 2011
    At the end of the day, the poor lack the ability to further themselves but blame our gahmen…

    Godwin29 September 2011
    “Imagine if Godwin’s lowly anus were to clamp up on him, his good (or bad) brain might…

  • Peter Sellers

    A brilliant article, in the Singapore context and deserves to be widely circulated.

    I take it Mr Ng is an ex-civil servant :)

  • iVOTEahMENG

    Godwin is a pap lacky dog since day 1..
    ~PERIOD~

  • Titiana Ann Xavier

    @ iVoteahMeng, you came in late…

  • iVOTEahMENG

    Godwin29 September 2011
    Cutting the ministers pay by 90% will not solve anything. It is better to maintain their salaries at current levels so that we can attract the brightest talents to lead our country.
    ……………….
    alvin chua..you are still aroun?
    pap ministers most talented?
    you meant zorro liked limsiasuayed?

  • iVOTEahMENG

    Titiana Ann Xavier29 September 2011
    @ iVoteahMeng, you came in late…
    …………….
    i came in late becaused i was hospitalize on a touched and go…
    just discharged from hospital

  • Disgustedbabyboomer

    Aren’t our politicians already on welfare? They made the rules to enable them to collect pension together with fat salaries when the people’s CPF money has become an illusion to collect.
    Fallen and retired ministers are richly rewarded with well paid positions in GLCs while jobless citizens don’t even get to see soup kitchens.
    This is the government to 60% blindly voted into power again.

  • Titiana Ann Xavier

    @ IVoteahMeng, what happened? What touched and go? So are you ok now?

  • calibri

    iVOTEahMENG29 September 2011
    Godwin is a pap lacky dog since day 1..
    ~PERIOD~

    And Steven Kho is a leftist troll.
    Or maybe he’s you in disguise.

  • BUT IT’S OK TO GIVE 8-MONTHS OF GDP BONUS PER YEAR TO THOUSANDS OF TOP CIVIL SERVANTS ANNUALLY

    .
    .
    BUT IT’S OK TO GIVE 8-MONTHS OF GDP BONUS PER YEAR TO THOUSANDS OF TOP CIVIL SERVANTS ANNUALLY.

    MAXIMUM AMOUNT OF ALMOST SGD 3-MILLION PAID PER PERSON.

    ??????????????

  • RANK N FILE CIVIL SERVANTS DON’T GET PENSION

    @ Disgustedbabyboomer

    Pension in civil service all scrapped, except for top civil servants up tp ministers.

    ========
    QUOTE-
    Disgustedbabyboomer 29 September 2011

    Aren’t our politicians already on welfare? They made the rules to enable them to collect pension together with fat salaries when the people’s CPF money has become an illusion to collect.
    Fallen and retired ministers are richly rewarded with well paid positions in GLCs while jobless citizens don’t even get to see soup kitchens.
    This is the government to 60% blindly voted into power again.

  • iVOTEahMENG

    Titiana Ann Xavier29 September 2011
    @ IVoteahMeng, what happened? What touched and go? So are you ok now?
    ………………
    touched and go meant..within the 24 timeframe..me body either burnt out and st peter will collect me soul..
    yes i am ok now for the time bein as long as i adhered to the pills..lots and lots of pills

    kumar
    yes alvin chua would 1st 2 hold your cpf @ all cost$, but he would not let me hold /managed his little posb account
    ………………
    calibri
    are you INSULTIN my mentality or tryin to get flamed by me? sick or no sick…
    do i need 2 used another nick?
    you bloomin italian ninkumput…
    go jarga the pope..you are a good swiss guard…

  • Titiana Ann Xavier

    @ IVoteAhMeng,

    Get plenty of rest ok. If you’re not feeling well. Take it easy…

  • Kumar

    iVOTEahMENG,

    “Steven Kho” may be impersonating “Godwin”, but I also remember “Godwin” post from the past. He used to boast he was a businessman who contributed extnsively to charities. Now, he is clearly against all forms of welfare coz that mean higher taxes for him. On other hand, by contributing to charities, he gets tax deduction. So, obviously for “Godwin”, to hell with the peasants.

    As for “calibri”, he is “Godwin” partner for 69. “Godwin” can’t get enough of his own mama, so “calibri” becomes his second sex toy.

  • iVOTEahMENG

    Titiana Ann Xavier29 September 2011
    @ IVoteAhMeng,

    Get plenty of rest ok. If you’re not feeling well. Take it easy…
    …………
    thank you..you might make pap man jelous with rage..hee hee

    kumar..calibri is also goodwin as well..all in 1…
    he merely think by usin a davinci nick..make him tom hank…
    unfortunately calibri is worst than forest dumb…

    wah all me adhoc clients refused to see me dropped dead…still waitin patiently for the urgent jobs…..chialut…28 days mc also bor parkay

  • Titiana Ann Xavier

    @ IVoteahMeng,

    Haha, pap man is crazy anyway…

  • calibri

    calibri
    are you INSULTIN my mentality or tryin to get flamed by me? sick or no sick…
    do i need 2 used another nick?
    you bloomin italian ninkumput…
    go jarga the pope..you are a good swiss guard…

    It looks like your hospital trip was unsettling.

    No need to be testy. Why so cranky if it isn’t true?

  • Robert Teh

    The key issue here is not about danger of welfarism. It is about use of fear tactics so as to allow the autocrat to charge people for all costs to make profits for the government at the expense of people.

    It is clear that by the constant use of fear tactics, Singapore is no longer a country interested in looking after the interests of the citizens.

    It is run like a commercial entity where every service of government is aimed at producing profits for the state.

    Is it morally or legally right to use welfarism as an excuse to levy all services at full or near full market prices e.g. transportation, utilities, healthcare, housing, education, and all the other essential services?

    What happen to all the taxes paid by people? Are there not assets and lands paid by and belonging to people and paid by them with their own monies. Are not lands belonging to the people for the purpose of providing essential government services like housing, utilities, transportation, education ..?

    If this is the system of government, then why should people pay taxes. Taxes should be withdrawn instead of being used to pay for million dollars’ salaries to the ministers?

    So the title of this post is not correct. It should be “Should Singaporean continue to pay taxes when government is levying extra fees up to full market prices in running the country?

    Our leaders are not clear about the basics of nation building.

    President Tony Tan should address this matter when signing financial bills and appointments of key government officers.

    Read people’s continuous feedback against the right of government to charge people housing and transportation and essential services at full or near full market prices through its GLCs.

    The basics of nation building should be debated in parliament to avoid creating a monster that is interested in claiming success through sucking monies instead of looking after the needs and aspirations of citizens.

    Dear fellow netizens, please do not fall for all the falsehoods spread like danger of welfarism. People do not expect and have never received any welfare from the current one-party domination. They are being victimized by all the falsehoods and not knowing enough of the wrongs done to them.

    It is time to change our basics of nation building from one that is run on falsehood to one that is fair and accountable to the people.

  • Libran

    Robert Teh 29 September 2011

    The key issue here is not about danger of welfarism. It is about use of fear tactics so as to allow the autocrat to charge people for all costs to make profits for the government at the expense of people……….

    —————————————–

    Well written. Agree with you 100%.

  • iVOTEahMENG

    calibri
    It looks like your hospital trip was unsettling.

    No need to be testy. Why so cranky if it isn’t true?
    i ear from rumours that you are the sister of alvin chua?
    is that true?
    why do you worry bout my hospital xperiences?
    do YOU fear death?

  • calibri

    LOL I think you need more rest before continuing your career on TOC.

  • welfare man

    A Singaporean rented flat from A SINGAPOR PRs who are working in Australia. The rental is more than 2k and it is a 4 room flat in TAMPINES. Last week the SPRs told the SINGAPOREAN who has a wife and 9 year old child to vacate the house and the SINGAPOREAN pleaded with the SPRs to allow him to stay till the end of the month as his deposit he had paid will take care of this month rental dues but the SPRs told that their house is not an orphanage and the SINGAPOREAN had made a report to the TAMPINES AREA OFFICER and found out tht the flat is illegally sublet. WHAT IS HDB GOING TO DO ABOUT THIS CASE AND WHY DO HDB SELLS HDB FLATS TO PRs who are working in OVERSEAS and it is time to think the FATE OF SINGAPOREANS . PRs who are buying HDB FLATS SHOULD NOT BE ALLOWED TO RENT THE HDB HOUSES . Many PRs are not living in Singapore but renting their flats to HELPLESS SINGAPOREANS and making a PROFIT and I HOLD HDB RESPONSIBLE FOR THIS SILLY MISTAKE WHEREBY A SINAGAPOREAN is at the MERCY OF FOREIGNERS and I urged the GOVERNMENT TO TAKE SERIOUS ACTION AND GIVE BACK OUR HOUSES TO US.

  • yeoman

    welfare man

    hi my fellow sinkie
    you made a valid observation here.

    it is frustrating to see how our PAP govt pander to FTs and even their ‘grannies’ and ‘puppies’ by taking our jobs and offerring to them despite their lesser qualifications and low productivity whcih has been OFFICIALLY proven.(AND,THAT’S WHY THEY HAVE TO RE-DO A NATIONAL PRODUCITVITY CAMPAIGN?).

    WE,true blue sinkies,have foot the ‘bill’ for our NATION BUIDLING which must also include JOBS,PUBLIC HOUSING,EDUCATION/SCHOOLS,HEALTHCARE/HOSPITALS AND OTHER ‘INFRA-STRUCTURES’ like our road system etc.

    now,’WHO’ are ENJOYING all these ‘costs’ we paid for NATION BUILDING including our ‘national security/NATIONAL SERVICE?

    is it a guy like DR PUTHUCHEARY and all his india indian ‘kakis’ and all other FTs or is it thta OLD BENDED WOMEN who used to help BUILT our HDBs and other amenities but now have to eke out a few dollars collecting ‘RUBBISH’?

    is it our own kids who are receiving FREE EDUCATION or is it some FT-KIDS who even get free lodging n pocket money when our own poor singaporean kids got to take shelter at SEMBAWANG PARK ‘ILLEGALLY’ or at the ECP AND GO ‘HUNGRY’ wihtout food or water?

    we make it a ‘TABOO’ to offer some decent level of SOCIAL SECURITY to our very own disadvanatged n marginalised singaporeans but we are apparently very ‘generous’ IN OFFERRING HELP to some other people’s kids?

    a decent level of SOCIAL SECURITY is not at all unachievable for a country with decent levels of ‘RESERVES’.
    we find it so HARD to offer a little help to our own IMPOVERISHED but we even ‘squander’ the same ‘reserves’ on other people’s ailing banks and ‘SIPs’?

    i rather not have ‘PANDAS’ at the ZOO but have our own poor n needy- INCLUDING THOSE MADE JOBLESS BY THE FT POLICY – receive some kind of DECENT PUBLIC ASSISTANCE ?

    yes,we are not and cannot be a ‘WELFARE STATE’ except when it comes to dishing ‘WELFARE’ ot some FOREIGNERS?????

  • Supporter

    Please take some of the CPF contribution and turn it into a tax to pay for welfare. I strongly support that.

    Thank You

  • TheWayForward

    Property rights, civil rights, and labour protection do not apply to foreigners.

    This is the new Singapore.

  • iVOTEahMENG

    calibri29 September 2011
    LOL I think you need more rest before continuing your career on TOC
    ……………
    i worked for TOC?
    so when is TOC gonna give me the petty ca$h payout for my hospital treatments?

  • Puzzled

    To people who think like Godwin who think
    “gahment’s role should be limited to “making sure that private enterprises thrive in Singapore, there is law and order, and equal opportunity to all, young or old, rich or poor”. Equal opportunity to catch fish, not equal entitlement to fish caught.” Then I don’t why we should waste tax payer money on such a big pool of super expensive world- class- talents in our government.

  • Robert Teh

    A tip of iceberg of cost saving is already well demonstrated by doing away with MM and SM posts from the super-inflated cabinet.

    More savings are still possible such as the second ministers, ministers of state, parliamentary secretaries and town council mayors.

    Conventional property/facility managers can easily do the jobs of Town Council Mayors and at the same time prevent abuses of common areas by PA.

    All the savings could come to a substantial amount that can be better invested to provide jobs in new start-ups and creating import substitution industries to lower our costs of living.

  • Panache

    My best advice concerning welfare:

    “Help them to fish. Don’t just give them fish.”

    Any form of government ‘welfare’ or social scheme introduced in Singapore should be:
    - targeted (means testing)
    - enabling (fishing skills)
    - temporary (explicit expiration date)
    - sustainable (funded liability)

    What none of us want to see happen:
    - Perfectly healthy people living on welfare benefits for 10 years or more, and thus effectively unemployable (in UK)
    - Exploding Medicare cost because of the ‘ah gong pays for it, not me’ syndrome (in US)

  • crooked captian

    Why do we need 90 MPs? How much does one MP cost the government? Salary for 6 years followed by a lifetime pension. Sounds like buying loyalty to me.

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