by Goh Meng Seng
There was a massive outcry over Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong's National Day Rally on his 'advice' on how to adjust to the rising cost of living.
The best weapon against rising cost of living is to increase our salaries. However, despite People's Action Party's boast about higher growth of Singapore's Gross Domestic Product (GDP), the salaries of Singaporeans have hardly caught up with the inflationary pressure - that is the crux of the matter.
Instead of solving the problem of inadequate rise in income, or for many people, regression of income due to underemployment and job mismatch, PM Lee and his ministers tried to downgrade our living standards from First World to Third World!
We would expect the citizens to progress in quality of life as the nation progresses from a developing country to a developed country status. But what PAP is trying to do is to persuade Singaporeans to live with or to downgrade to Third World standards of living while continuing to give them million dollar annual salaries!
The truth is, while our GDP growth might have reached "First World Per Capital Income level", the reality is that our purchasing powers had in fact deteriorated over the years due to the constant increase in prices. In reality, it is due to the influx of cheaper foreign labour and more Multi-National Companies (MNCs) parking and registering their profits here in Singapore without creating substantial well paid jobs for Singaporeans.
The artificially boosted GDP growth does not benefit Singaporeans much.
Thus, it is really laughable for a self-serving ruling party which hold the country at ransom to demand the highest salaries paid in the world for political appointments to try and lecture Singaporeans to cut down on managing expectations and frugal spending by lowering our quality of life!
Giving us irrelevant 5-cent or 10-cent saving tips such as going to hawker centres, using public WiFi to save data usage, do not really contribute to much savings at all for a household!
Lamenting how people are owning air-conditioners and mobile phones as the source of higher cost of living without addressing the real cause of increases in the taxes on water, electric tariffs and eventually GST!
More importantly, it is downright hypocritical to lecture Singaporeans about cutting their cost of living via lowering quality of life when PAP government go on a spending spree.
We have seen all sorts of infrastructures from HSR, Terminal 5 (which we don't even know how expensive it is going to be) and $16 million thrown into an "international party" between two leaders which yield no substantial results!
It is really sickening to me and reminds me about Animal Farm. The Pigs will live a luxurious lifestyle while constantly lecture the other animals to live a frugal life, over-worked till death.
If this is the First World Government Singaporeans wanted, then they really deserve the Third World quality of Life PAP wanted them to live - No mobile phones, no air-conditioning, the lowest quality milk powder for your baby, eat at hawker centres and not restaurants (while they could play golf and drive most expensive cars in the world). No progress in life but only work to give the Ministers Top World Pay and money to splash on expensive projects of Grandiosity to glorify themselves as 'great' leaders.
Our forefathers had worked hard to bring Singapore from Third World to First World country, but only ended up to justify the top pay for 4G PAP Ministers who are bringing us back from First World to Third World, while maintaining the highest political salaries in the world.
Singaporeans, are you happy now?