Thursday, 28 January 2016

NCMP and the Opposition

PM Lee has proposed several changes to the Singapore Constitution in line with the call from the Presidential address to Parliament.

One of the proposal was to give Non-Constituency MPs (NCMP) full voting rights on all parliamentary matters. And to increase the number of NCMP to a maximum of 12 (less the number of elected opposition MPs).

In April 2011, I had said that NCMP should be given full voting rights on all parliamentary matters. At that time the number of NCMPs was (and still is) limited to 9. The new amendments to the constitution would raise that to 12.

Back then, the WP attacked the NCMP for not having the full rights of an MP.

Tuesday, 26 January 2016

Conversation - To catch a terrorist

"Wah liao! 27 Bengalis terrorists in Singapore! Are they sure there is only 27? What if they miss some? These foreign workers are just causing us trouble!"

"Actually, I want to know how did the ISD find out about them? Is there an ISD officer who speaks whatever language these foreign workers speak, and was able to infiltrate their group and learn that they were planning terrorists acts back in their own home?"

"Aiyah! This is an easy question. Remember when the Chinese and Taiwanese Presidents came to Singapore to have a meeting?"


"And some Taiwanese were trying to enter Singapore to protest the meeting? But kena stopped and turned back at the immigration. They didn't even get to enter Singapore! And a few managed to enter Singapore earlier, but on the morning before the two Presidents were supposed to meet, the Police picked up those Taiwanese from their hotel rooms and brought them to the police station where they were questioned for so long, that by the time they were released, the two Presidents had completed their meeting!"

"I didn't read this in the papers..."

"It was big news in the Taiwanese papers when the protesters went home and complained to their newspapers! But same question: how did the Singapore Police know who to stop at the airport, and who to pick up at the hotel? Taiwanese Police gave them information!"

"So for the 27 would-be terrorists from Bangladesh..."

"The Bangladeshi police or spy must have given info to the SG police, lah! You think our police so clever ah?"

Wednesday, 20 January 2016

Conversation - on bonuses and the economy

[Note: this conversation happened some time in early Dec 2015.]

"Civil Servants to get 0.65 months year end bonus. Last year was 0.8 months, The year before was 1.1 month. Every year, the bonus is lesser and lesser. Next year if  can get 0.5 months, will be lucky! Maybe even lower."

"Aiyah! Harng Zheng Pai. But what goes down, will come up one. Don't worry!"

"I'm not sure that it will come up so easily. The world is different today, from say, the early 80s."

"Eh, since when you become civil servant you care so much about their bonus."

"The newspaper report civil service bonus because it is a good gauge of how much bonus people should expect. How much bonus civil servants get is an indication of how well the economy is doing. Of course every sector will have their own idea of what is a good bonus, but the civil service bonus is a good "pow-ka-liao" indicator of how we are doing."

"OK. but no need to be so pessimistic right? I worked so long, I can tell you from experience, it is all a roller coaster, it goes up, it comes down, then it goes up again."

Singapore Perspective 2016 - First reactions

Could also be called, "How we met our future Prime Minister".

Ho Kwon Ping said it was a "Beauty Parade of Potential Prime Minister". My friend wanted to skip to the Swim Trunks portion of the pageant.

Kudos to Chan Heng Chee who when asked to give her final summary, simply said "Amen."

Bilahari took the cue when it was his turn and said, "thank you."

Ho Kwon Ping went with the zeitgeist (it was past 5 by then).

Earlier, when the moderator toss a question to the panel and asked if they wanted to comment on a question or the answer given by Minster Heng Swee Keat, Bilahari leaned forward quickly and answered, "no".

Saturday, 2 January 2016

Review: Charlie Chan Hock Chye

You may know about the controversy concerning Sonny Liew's graphic novel "The Art of Charlie Chan Hock Chye" - The National Arts Council revoked its funding ($8000) for the graphic novel just before the launch, causing the publisher to returned all the funds disbursed, as well as print stickers to cover up the acknowledgement of the support (now revoked) of the NAC for the publication of the graphic novel.

The reason for the revocation of the grant? The imaginary/speculative history undermines the authority of the Govt.

Well, I got to read the graphic novel recently, and here are my thoughts on it.