Sunday, May 20, 2012

DPM Teo on Workers' Party Hougang by-election

Workers' Party Hougang by-election rally 

DPM Teo questions if Hougang voters being taken for granted 

Just some comments on the lines from DPM Teo
Mr Teo said the Workers' Party has now put up another candidate, and its secretary-general Low Thia Khiang is acting as if "nothing has happened" and is "pulling on the emotions" of voters.
 Shouldn't we just move on? Isn't that what we did when Mas Selamat escaped?
"If he was their best man, why didn't they choose him?" Mr Teo asked.
 Because he isn't the best man then. That's why he wasn't chosen.
"Is it possible that they are pulling on your emotions, and really taking you for granted?" Mr Teo questioned.
Singaporeans are being taken for granted. Just look at basic necessities like public transport. How does it feel to squeeze into a crowded train every morning? How does it feel to miss 2 to 3 trains every morning because you can't get onto it?
These include building more new flats to stabilise property prices and schemes such as the Workfare Income Supplement to raise the wages of low wage workers.
Talking about wages, I just read an article that infuriates me:
SMRT raises bus drivers’ basic salaries by 35%
I thought bus drivers were earning at least $2000. It was actually $1375 before other additions. This is just ridiculous. Like there aren't enough customers, I mean passengers, using the buses to pay for their wages. So where does the money go? More pay should be going to people who are actually doing the work rather than management. 

And the priority should not be on stabilizing property prices. It should be on lowering them.

Saturday, May 12, 2012

Education standards in Singapore unrealistic

Napier Road Centre, Singapore (26 September 2008) 
An ex-colleague of mine Ian Tan wrote an article for Today titled 'Standards are unrealistic' recently.

He said that the standards of Singapore education is too high. I agree.

Many parents who commented on that page also agree.

But MOE has the audacity to disagree, saying standards have remained the same. I guess that means Singapore parents are more stupid now.

There's no point in setting such standards so high that they become ridiculous. After all, most of the things you learn in primary and secondary school will be forgotten, except the languages.

The unrealistic standards create a stressful learning environment. It kills the passion to learn. The most important thing schools can impart to students is the passion to learn. When you force people to learn, it makes learning less attractive. You won't see a lot of people taking initiative to learn on their own. Or to take initiative, for that matter.

I want to make special mention on the point of problem solving as mentioned in the article. When you have kids that just follow stipulated route to finding answers, they won't be able to think creatively to solve problems in the future, in life.

Myopic Singaporeans

Girl with Spectacle

Just read an interesting article:
Why Are 90% of Asian Schoolchildren Nearsighted? From Doing What You’re Doing Now

Lots of young kids in Singapore are myopic. You can see them on the trains. They are everywhere.

It's easy to understand why it's so. Parents either don't have time to bring their kids out, or the kids would be too busy studying to go out.

Such is the life of a typical Singaporean kid.

Sunday, May 6, 2012

No point dissuading S'poreans already set on leaving

  I agree with one of the letter writers who wrote the title above.

There's no point dissuading Singaporeans who are set on leaving, or persuading them to come back. When they have reached that point, you've already lost them. It's not like they made the decision to leave overnight.

It's all the little push and pull factors that made them leave.

Look towards making the people we still have stay instead.

And yes, the $4 million dollar is wasted. No problem. Singapore is rich.

By the way, there's a good set of photos of Singapore Day 2012 on Flickr.

S’pore Day in New York a hit but will it bring home local talent?
New York to draw 4,000 on Singapore Day
No point dissuading S'poreans already set on leaving
Status Updates

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

From Old School to No School

Old School @ Mount Sophia
I was reading about the story of how Old School at Mount Sophia is being forced out of her home after spending more than a century being on the hill. The school has been there since 1887.

URA has decided not to extend the lease and now all the tenants have to move out by June 30, 2012.

All this is part of the URA's 2008 Master Plan. They have slated the site for residential development.

In other words, my words, the current Old School is unable to generate enough revenue in that prime piece of land to justify it being there. Selling property in that neighborhood is more profitable than having some group of people going about doing their art stuff.

It's like there's no where else in Singapore to develop property and this is the last place in Singapore.

In the distant future I imagine, Singapore will just be filled with housing blocks and shopping centres. The only places that will be preserved will depend on their ability to attract tourist.

Is that the Master Plan?

Old girls of MGS fight to save Old School on Mount Sophia 
No lease extension for arts enclave at Mt Sophia