Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Riding Oversized Bicycle to Save $$$

Note: Added picture of Joe Biden at Adam Hawker Centre. Problem with upload function prevented me from doing so. In fact i can't type in 'compose' mode & have to resort to 'html' mode to do the blogpost yesterday.

I had my first ride by an overseas organiser last year. It was a public holiday- Malaysia Day on 16th Sept 2012, Sunday. Ride day was on 17th, Monday which is a public holiday. The ride was part of Johor Bahru's Arts Festival & is a 18.8km leisure ride on the roads around downtown JB area.

Most Malaysian riders are mostly on fixie bikes (single gear) or entry level mountain bikes. Their currency, the Ringgit has less purchasing power compared to S'pore Dollar & thus generally Msians can't afford better bicycles.

This 9 year old(if i'm not mistaken) girl is remarkable in that she is clearly too small for her bicycle. This is how people in less well-off countries make do with fewer $$$ resources. In Sillypore, most parents would buy a kiddy bike & then buy adult size bike when kid is taller.

Look at her stretched out arms & legs. She did well on the 18.8km ride though.

  • How come Msians with lesser material possessions are happier than sinkies?
  • How come Msians are more engaged at work compared to 'bochup aka zombie' sinkies at work despite earning less?

With her mother at the only rest point along the 18.8km route.

After the alarming Gallup Poll results, Sinkies Need to Ask Themselves:
How is it that with sinkies buying & buying, piling & piling more material possessions, so many sinkies are unhappy? So stressed & strapped for time? Where's the progress in that? By buying & consuming more stuff?

Isn't it time to stop the fetishism on chasing GDP growth & start pursuing happiness instead? 1 way to start is to change via the election, the govt leaders stuck in the doctrine of grow GDP at all costs like cancer.

Monday, July 29, 2013

American Vice President Visit Hawker Centre - Tourist Attraction

US Vice-President Joe Biden decides to visit a hawker centre on a whim during his visit here last friday & bought lime juice.

How come don't he visit food court? How come don't buy Coca Cola or Pepsi? The answers explain why the hybrid regime is short sighted & chasing short-term profits. The stoppage of hawker centres building for 26 years in new residential areas brought hardship to the peasants.

Exacerbating the building stoppage, the ruling hybrid regime even demolished hawker centres. Hawker Centres Demolished (what i know):
  1. Margaret Drive Hawker Centre
  2. Dover Road Hawker Centre
The Sengkang Kopitiam aka hawker centre which is operated by a bullying corporation has shoved a shitload of hardship on Sengkang residents with high price of food to cover the killer stall rentals. Yet the Youth Olympics Games Overbudget Minister still got the cheek to say he preferred hawker centres to be run on a not-for profit basis, instead of commercial operators.

Triggering the Start That Something is Wrong with Ruling Regime
In the schooling days, i have a classmate moving house to Bukit Panjang. There is no hawker cemtre in that new residential area & i wondered why. Till this day, there is still no hawker centre in Bukit Panjang. Ditto likewise in new residential areas like Woodlands New Town, Jurong West etc. Why no hawker centres?

Is only later in life that i realise that the current ruling party are a greedy bunch. Don't Build Hawker Centre = Millions of Profits selling land for Condominiums.

Short Sighted & Chasing Short-term Profits
US Vice President visiting a hawker centre demonstrates that hawker centres are a local attraction. Tourists want to experience the local culture & food cooked by 'motivated' local small business owners. Do tourists care about spam businesses like MacDonalds, Subway, Food Courts staffed with 'zombies workers'? Yet it is these spam businesses growing like weeds over the years.

Being overly commercialised coupled with spam like crazy chain outlets do little to attract tourists who crave unique local flavor/delights at an attractive price.

- Sengkang Kopitiam Sq's Absurb Prices

Sunday, July 28, 2013

Singaporeans Among World's Top 10 Pessimists, Overbuying To Misery

Excellent use of infested shopping mall picture by Yahoo News in its article - Sillyporeans among world’s top 10 pessimists.

Sillyporeans need to ask themselves if buy buy buy, consume consume consume is gonna elevate their well-being. Certainly more material possessions make one happier but after basic needs are met, simply chasing more, more & more have resulted in negligible marginal utility. In fact Sillyporeans end up among top 10 pessimists.

Warning signs are already there: some Sillyporeans buy & buy till they are buried by their possessions & have to rent extra storage space, becoming slaves to their mountain of stuff. Are slaves optimistic?

"Work more, hurry more, worry more, bond less with others, grow more lonely & buy your escape from loneliness with more work & more 'growth'. This treadmill is getter grimmer."-John de Graaf

Gallup's survey result is nothing shocking. I have warned about the toxic effects accumulating under the hybrid regime's grow GDP at all costs like cancer approach.

Cancer spreading & spreading. Nevermind cancerous growth, can grow can already:

1 of the central themes of this blog is hyperconsumption in Sillypore. Shopping malls growing like weeds in this tiny island.  More & more malls = Less & less well-being. What i observed is that the script by the hybrid regime is to overwork the masses to turn them unhappy. Once unhappy the masses will turn to retail therapy to buy (yes, the damn GDP again) a bit of temporary happiness- vicious cycle.

Shifting Focus from Have to Be
"We've had enough of work more, enjoy less, pollute more, eat toxics, get cancer & increase GDP. How about we work less, enjoy more, have more friends & time for them, consume less, pollute less, destroy less, owe less, live better, longer & more meaningfully?"-John de Graaf

Sillyporeans need to vote to break the domination of this hybrid regime with its stuck mindset of growing GDP at all costs like cancer. Independent polls by Gallup indicate the situation is deteriorating in Sillypore over the years. We need to shift focus from Have to Be. Having more possessions is not making the masses happier. We need more time (not overwork) to:

  • Be a father/mother (not more time at work to up GDP)
  • Be a friend-physical face time (not more time at work to up GDP)
  • Be a citizen & not a consumer.... u guess it again... GDP

"Living more healthfully, simplifying our lifestyles so as to work less, pollute less, use fewer resources & have more time for each other & our communities. You could call it capitalism with a human face."-John de Graaf

Monday, July 22, 2013

Unaffordable Rates for Singapore's Running Event

Most sinkie boys dislike running. Me included that's why my exercises are cycling & badminton. Why? When running = physical fitness test in national service, it becomes a negative association being hammered over & over again since many sinkie boys fail their fitness test & subjected to military style remedial training.

Failures are in greater numbers in reservist units. In my reserve unit(company size) alone, the number of people who pass with $100 & above can be counted with one's fingers & toes. I pass with $100 & i train for it(dreadful experience) on the jogging path behind my place as failing it means even more pain for me with the remedial sessions & time wasted going there along with the congestion.

Even at affordable price of $12.84, i doubt many would sign up to run 21km. Embarassingly for me, i even have problem running 5km. I'm not alone... look at the number of failures in 2.4km run for the fitness test.

What i want to highlight here is the prices for public. At close to $70, the 21km is not considered an affordable price especially for the blue collar workers. Even the white collar which the hybrid regime views as blue collar also since easily replaceable with cheaper foreign workers are sweating over the $70 participation fee.

$70 = 1 working month of lunches (22 working days * $3 hawker meal)
$47 = 15 days of lunches at $3/hawker meal

$70 = Go Legoland in Johor($56), Malaysia (u can run in Sillypore but only 1 Legoland in Asia)
$47 = how unique is 10km run to pay this amount?

Remember that the Singapore Flywheel which touts unique experience on the giant observation wheel at $33 adult ticket went bankrupt. Even tourists find it a ripoff.

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Coming Collapse of Property Market in Singapore

No surprise to me when Moody downgraded S'pore's 3 main banks to negative from stable amid the property bubble & mounting household debt.

Although the monetary authority rebutted the downgrade, peasants of this island ought to be even more afraid given the recent haze situation whereby the authorities downplay the seriousness drastically & censoring/regulating the internet.

"Our particular brand of economy is based on ever increasing amounts of everything flowing through it. More $$, more debt, more gasoline, more cars, more minerals, more profits, more buildings, more clothes, more, more, more of everything."-Chris Martenson

Without energy, Nothing Moves
We live on a finite planet but our economic model requires limitless exponential growth. Current model of fossil powered energy are dwindling:
  • petroleum are burnt to generate energy --> Is gone
  • coal burnt to generate energy --> Is gone
  • uranium reacted to generate energy --> Is gone
  • natural gas burnt to generate energy --> Is gone
Even making solar panels & wind turbines to harness limitless energy require energy to be expended in petroleum to extract/refine/transport ores & we haven't touch on manufacturing yet.

Technology cannot reverse the process. Technology cannot create more uranium, coal, natural gas. Technology helps us in utilising it more efficiently & cleanly.

Grabbing dwindling resources

The hybrid regime has been growing the economy at all costs like cancer since the early 2000s. Does growth equal prosperity for the masses? Peasants have more material posessions than ever though much of it are bought on credit. However simply having more stuff doesn't make sinkies happy as surveys have shown.

Massive import of aliens squeezing into this tiny island in order to prop up the property market by the hybrid regime only buy itself some time because the 'coming wave' is too big.

Unsustainable debt levels + Dwindling reources = Property market collapse & economic havoc

Personally i look forward to the collapse of this cancerous growth model of economy. No doubt life will be hard as people have to adjust but life is already made harder by the cancerous economic growth.

Peasants ought to ask themselves:
  • Does growth equal prosperity?
  • What's the Economy For, Anyway?: Why It's Time to Stop Chasing Growth & Start Pursuing Happiness