Wednesday, January 31, 2007

A new begining, risky but rewarding

Yes! I am now in Melbourne.

I unabashedly proclaim myself as a QUITTER (a term coined by SM Goh).

Good riddance then.

I may not have found a job yet. Yeah, I am taking a big risk which makes no sense in a Singaporean culture/thinking where everything has to have a bottom-line dollar and profit or positive financial figure tied to it (yes, I know I am worth just a figure to you).

If everything is to be spelt out and given on a silver platter, where is the sense of adventure then? How do you 'teach' creativity, thinking out-of-the-box? How do you encourage the entrepreneurial spirit, the dare-discover-the-unknown factor in a venture? The first move is always to step out of your comfort zone.

And we wonder why there is the brain drain.

Anyway, this draft was in my blog for at least 4 months. I hardly even have time to publish it! So here goes:

"Did the government ever cared that for the past 4+ months (the Dec holidays included), I have been working my butt off?!!

I have been going home late after 9pm approximately 3-4 times a week! I hardly see my daughter (now that she goes to pre-school for >3 hours) because she sleeps early by the time I reach home.

I have also noticed how she began to distance herself from me. I come home weary, tired and grumpy. Think a bear with a sore head. I shout at the least bit of irritation or when things don't work out well for me.

Let me spell it out to you clearly: Your labor law sucks! So do your pro-creation carrots-dangling-with-sticks-behind-your-backs policies! Even if I have the means and finance, I will not have another child. And it's not that I don't have the means.

Go figure."

Come to think of it, instead of having really good pro-creation benefits (see Japan, France, etc.) to increase the birthrates and to encourage mothers to stay at home, foreign talent becomes the Singapore answer - to fill in the gap of low birth rates and 'cheaper' labor.

And the result? Singaporean citizens will pro-create less!

Why? It's a chicken and egg thingy.

The more the government employs foreign talent (no offense, rather I feel they do contribute to the society. Personally, it is not the foreign talent issue but the policies supporting it. Anyway, I digress...), the less secure a citizen feels. The less a citizen feels secure, the less he will think of raising a family in Singapore.

And the government brings in more foreign talent. They will pro-create more than a Singaporean couple. This in turns make a Singaporean citizen feel unworthy.

And so he leaves.

So it goes on in an endless cycle.

Except that the foreigners will take the money and leave. 10 out of 10 colleagues I have asked and know of don't want to take Singaporean citizenship.

Well, I have taken the blue (or is it red, but who cares) pill. Let's see how it works in AU. The only thing that matters is - I have more time for my family.

This is something Singapore cannot provide me.

Sunday, January 28, 2007

Questions, little answers

Article from ChannelNewsAsia:

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Parliament raises President's pay — Derrick A Paulo

PARLIAMENT has approved increases to the President's pay and household expenses at the Istana, but lowered the amount budgeted for personal staff and other services.

Minister of State (Finance) Lim Hwee Hua told MPs yesterday that the increases were "in view of higher bonuses and higher expenditure on utilities".

The President's pay, also known as the Privy Purse, has been revised to $2,661,700 from $2,507,200, while his entertainment allowance for the fiscal year 2006 is now $132,000, up from $117,000.

The amount set aside for expenses at the Istana also rose to $1,301,500 from $1,108,500.
As part of the adjustments, expenditure on personal staff and special services was lowered. This went down by $8,800 for personal staff, and by $28,300 for special services such as the purchase of cars and office equipment.

The changes passed without questions or debate.
Questions with few answers:
  1. Is the GST hike really used to help to the poor? Or is it part of the whole picture that I have not seen - pay hikes?
  2. Are the ministers pay going to follow suit?
  3. Has anybody's pay increase by so much a margin?

Like it or not, when the government gave the bonuses to the public, I have already prepared myself that the ministers' pay will be next.

Also, I've decided to remove the p65er blog link. It's going nowhere. Neither are my feedback or the public comments.

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Can you handle the truth?

What is the truth? The government says you can't handle the truth. It's like these diggings (thanks to Mr Brown) that make X-Files episodes interesting.

Can you see the discrepencies in the report? See how the article was 'conveniently' snipped by the ChannelNewsAsia.
  1. CNA (using search engine) article

Now see other reports:

  1. International Herald Tribune article
  2. The Edge article

Even more scarier:
The ChannelNewAsia 'article' in the search list cannot be found anymore in the 15 Jan, or even 16 or 17 Jan archives! It was 'conveniently' un-archived.

Another good read with the same very questions burning in my heart:

  1. theonlinecitizen

Talk about mee siam mai hum episodes: