Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Plentiful Maids & Measuring Standard of Living in SG

Supporters of the hybrid regime(paid world's highest salaries) likes to compare SG to less developed countries & urge sinkies to be grateful. What a warped logic. If you paid so much more for business class seat, do you expect an economy seat outcome?

Economist Chang Ha Joon raised an interesting point that a country's per capita income is less accurate as an indicator of standard of living if there is high income inequality.

Instead of comparing to lesser countries which the supporters of the hybrid regime likes to do, let's compare to other 1st world developed countries. We'll use the GDP (PPP) which is Purchasing Power Parity as the indicator measuring standard of living which economist Chang said is a better indicator than GDP per capita itself.

GDP (PPP) converts incomes of different countries into a common measure of living standards. All figures are in US$ extracted from wikipedia's GDP (PPP) 2012 by International Monetary Fund.

Comparing with Nordic countries
Gosh! Look at their (PPP) incomes dropping so much & yet Sillypore can go up. What's going on?

Reason for Sillypore going UP is because:

  • Sillypore depends a lot on cheap foreign labor such as maids, waitress, bus drivers, technicians etc
  • With those cheap services, citizens have more buying power.
  • Yet Sinkies are most unhappiest in the world.

As economist Chang pointed out about high income inequality though he didn't cite S'pore, here in SG much of populace suffer depressed salaries which means only a small portion enjoy greater purchasing power at the misery/poverty of the masses. Hence it is a contributory factor as to why sinkies are unhappiest in the world according to an independent survey by Gallup.

Reasons for Nordic countries DOWN a lot is because:

  • Expensive service workers such as waitress, bus drivers, technicians etc
  • With expensive services, scandinavians have much reduced buying power.
  • Yet scandinavians rank high up in happiness.

With no depressed salaries & tight limits on cheaper foreign labor, the GDP (PPP) is a lot more reliable for the general populace.

Comparing with Swiss standard of living & other countries sinkies would migrate to
Gosh! Again we see reduced purchasing power & the strange thing is these are the countries sinkies would migrate to.

Why down for the other countries? Same reason as nordic countries - expensive service workers & tight limits on cheaper foreign labor.

I've included Switzerland as the peasants were promised a Swiss standard of living by the hybrid regime. But according to GDP (PPP), we have already way exceeded the goal. However as i explained above - SG's dangerous income inequality screws the whole thing up.

USA's 2012 figures are a bit of an anormaly which i've included. Economist Chang cited an UP disparity for 2007 figures in his book resembling like SG & USA suffers from very high income inequality which he explains. His explanation is what i've learnt to explain SG's UP anomaly here.

Look at the comparisons with other rich developed economies again & you'll realise that the citizens living in those countries hardly if ever rely on maids. It is only Sillypore with abundant maids.

Service workers are expensive in those 1st world economies & they don't have a liberal policy of letting in cheap maids to let their middle class citizens live like kings & queens. Again the anomaly of sinkies migrating to countries where maids are expensive & hard to hire!

Middle class sinkies get to live like kings & queens with cheap maids/servants from 3rd world nations at their beck & call. Never did they realise that the hybrid regime would turn against them by flooding in cheaper foreign workers from 3rd world nations to replace the jobs of the middle class citizens. Karma.

Slogging Long Hours for High Standard of Living
The long working hours are omitted from the gdp figures that the hybrid regime loves to tout. By allowing in plentiful numbers of maids to do housework, the hybrid regime figured they can get the peasants to slave away longer at work. Less time for leisurely pursuits, exercise & family/friends is not something i would consider high standard of living.

High income inequality effectively shuts down GDP (PPP) of US$60,799 (S$75,336) as a measurement of standard of living in SG. There are other non-income factors to consider in measuring the well-being of a society.

Another pathetic outcome when compared to Nordic countries -
Sinkies: 19% Thriving, 75% Struggling, 6% Suffering

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Karma Strike an Elite's Son - Foreign Workers Stealing Business

Karma strike an elite's son.

From supporter & blind ignoramus of the foreign labor policy:
"...I was always a huge supported of foreign (white collar) labor here in Singapore. While I know these people are surely not indicative of a huge population of expatriates, it does make me rethink whether or not these new arrivals are really grateful for the opportunities they are being given here or are they all just so self-centered that they don’t care about things like professionalism, integrity or even right & wrong."
until he got badly bitten himself.
I have been completely disgusted by the unprofessional & possibly criminal actions by 3 former employees (coincidentally, all foreigners).
  • under our employment, allegedly worked to divert business away from us & to their new agency.   
  • Allegedly, they lied to my business partners, misrepresented our agency & even lied to clients. 
  • Allegedly, they were, while still drawing salaries from us, selling their own services & poaching Ate’s clients.

Although it is not mentioned whether the 3 employees are workers from China, i've blogged about the dangers with regards to cheaper foreign labor with their unsavory habits/work culture compared to the largely docile sinkie workforce.

  • May 2012: I wrote about economist Graeme Maxton's warning about perils of Cheap Chinese Workers? Got Hidden High Price.
  • Nov 2012: Strike action in S'pore by some bus drivers hired from China.
  • Oct 2013: Retribution strikes the son of an elite's business employing foreign workers.
  • ????    : ?????
  • ????    : ?????
  • ????    : ?????

TRE published an article Tommy Koh’s son: FT employees poached my clients which i'm duplicating below as the article might be lost if TRE shuts down later. It is important as fellow sinkies are advised to print out the article on TRE to use as cover page for their resumes.

Don't bother sending online resumes or job applications. It is practically a futile approach as computerised sorting using keywords:

  • Sinkie male with National Service obligations -- delete into recycle bin.
  • Sinkie female just married or with newborn baby - delete into recycle bin.
  • Sinkie with ill elderly parents to look after - delete into recycle bin.

The hiring person might go through the motions of calling a few sinkies for interview for 'consideration'. But so long as you are sinkie, we are disadvantaged not just with the above factors competing with cheaper foreign labor with no family, little friends & able to slog long hours.

The situation has deteriorated to the extent that the Ministry of Manpower has called for Fair Consideration Framework (FCF). Some netizens dubbed FCF as Foreigners Come First as it is just a cosmetic approach which doesn't solve the underlying issue.

Fair Consideration Framework - onus is on sinkies to print the article to use as cover page for resume. If the hirer wants to go ahead knowing the dangers of cheaper foreign labor, then so be it. Interview process is a 2 way street. Workers are screening their employers as well. Remind the employer if is it fair to him

  • if foreign cheaper labor steal his business?
  • if foreign cheaper labor falsify accounts?
  • if he/she wants to suffer same fate as Tommy Koh's son?
  • other savory habits pointed out by economist Graeme Maxton

Sinkies need to rise to the top of the pile. Not sink into the pile.

Monday, October 28, 2013

Heart Ware Not Needed, Cog Labor Will Do

People are our most important asset are an overused cliche especially among big corpserations. Instead of treating people as a resource that is hard to duplicate among its competitors, many big corpserations regard them as cogs. Mindless cogs are easy to copy/duplicate but a group of inspired/motivated humans created corporate culture is hard to duplicate.

Sillypore's government-linked companies which make up to 60% of the economy are a good example. As i blogged about cog labor punished for taking initiative on the 22nd, it was highlighted by The Real Singapore a day later on 23rd how come the bus drivers don't give a damn?

Where got heart ware? Cogs have no heart. Humanity is not rewarded.

Why give a damn if you're considered cog labor & punished if taking initiative? Other reasons further compounding the already downward spiraling situation are:

  • Top management dole out cool sounding titles like bus captains instead of paying decent wages - cheapskate.
  • Bus drivers may not be highly schooled but they're no fools as they know they are lowly paid (blogpost- Malaysia Bus Drivers Decent Wages. Sinkie Drivers 3rd World Wages). Even cheap labor drivers from China know they are unfairly treated else some would not have striked late last year.
  • Pretty much deadend job as Sillypore government-linked companies emphasize paper qualifications for promotion.
  • Management aka scholars knows best attitude. Hence feedback are often treated as 'noises'/complaints.
  • Keep low profile & 'bochup' since feedback treated as 'noises' may get one 'marked' for early termination.

These type of rot is not just confined to the public transport companies. Government-linked companies make up 60% of the economy so these undesirable corporate practices/mindset are experienced by many peasants (including myself) working or having worked before in GLCs. While they can largely monopolize the local captive market, they often get trounced competing in overseas markets with their 'buggy' software.

It partly also helps to explain why the military generals & paper scholars infest the government-linked corpserations. They lack the heart ware to survive in the private sector as their policies would lead to a mass exodus of customers.. The omission of heart ware explains why the standard of living on this tiny island is deteriorating year after year.

Friday, October 25, 2013

Repairing Backrest of Chair & Punctured Bicycle Tubes

Long time visitors would have notice that i have not blogged with any personally taken pics for more than 1.5 years. That's because my digital camera is spoilt. And the 2 megapixel lens on mobile phone is too grainy to be of any use.

$8 for 16 megapixel camera
In blogpost Half Ass Approach in Salvaging Plunging Morale Among Sinkie Males, i suggested using the vouchers for groceries. Well, i found a better use for the $80 vouchers by using it to buy the Canon A2500 entry level digital camera on sale at $88 ($88-$80). Canon website list the retail price at $149.

Furthermore, it comes with free 8GB 30mb/s SD memory card & camera case.

Moving Up the Value Chain
Long time visitors may have realised also that the quality of blogposts have gotten better ever since the camera got spoilt.

When the easier way out is shut off, you'll just have to adapt to a higher level. It is also the case with Google as i've blogged in What Google's Homepage Can Teach S'pore's Overpaid Ministers.

  • No digital camera --> Being forced to blog at higher level.
  • Google Homepage Zero Ads --> Forcing itself to operate at higher level for profits.
  • Close floodgates to cheap foreign labor --> Being forced to productivity gains through automation route.

Google has done it, i've have gone through it myself. The most expensive government in the world - Sillypore govt can't do it despite being paid millions. Being paid the highest in the world yet taking the easy route & inflicting hardship on the peasants compared to other 1st world governments.

Anyway, back to the reuse & repair topic. Now with a camera i can show with examples. Repair & reuse is not just about saving $$$. It is the amount of energy resource that went into producing, packaging, transporting the item as oil prices nowadays are around triple-digits.

We ought to reduce our carbon footprint besides saving $$$. Throwing away something that can be repaired without much difficulty is wasteful.

Chair Repaired With Badminton String
Backrest of the chair broke on one end due to its thinly welded metal plate. Luckily there's a hole. Thickness of broken badminton string can be just nice in threading through holes to secure things. Once done & knotted, pull both ends of string with pliers to tighten the string.

Clothes Hanger in Shower Room
The spare wall mount with its big mouth. To fix the 'big mouth' i stuff badminton grip patch in attempt to plug it.

Bicycle Tyre Tube Patching
I'm an idiot at repairing punctured holes at first. Why idiot? Because i didn't follow the rubber glue instructions & always apply the patch while the rubber glue is still wet as that is what we always do when sticking paper to paper. Apparently rubber glue doesn't work like paper glue.

In the end i have 3 spare tubes instead of 1 since i don't know how to fix the punctures. Is only when i throw out the paper glue mindset that i managed to fix them all.

  1. Sand punctured area.
  2. Apply rubber glue on sandpapered area.
  3. Let it dry completely!
  4. Apply patch & apply pressure for 1-2mins
  5. After like 1hr, inflate tube & leave it overnight to check for leaks.

3 patches (orange rims) )for the 3 punctures suffered on the tube pictured above. All patched & quality checked with no leaks after inflating & hanging it on the door knob for 3-4 days.

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Bus Driver Punished for Using Initiative to Correct Mistake

Another example demonstrating cog labor instead of human labor. In its drive to grow gdp at all costs like cancer, the 'humanity' to a large extent has been lost. An army of mindless cog labor to follow instructions - standard operating procedures. No need to exercise initiative -humanity.

When workers are treated as cogs instead of humans, surely the results(blogposts) are:

Standard operating procedures for safety are to be followed. The problem is those workers who lull themselves thinking by being obedient & follow instructions will ensure they would have a job. If mindless robots are cheaper you can expect that mindless robots would replace the mindless cog labor.

Sillypore's Hybrid Regime Profit Strategy:

  • If cog labor gets expensive - open floodgates & flood in lots of cog labor.
  • Can't afford to automate or don't want to - open floodgates & flood in lots of cog labor.

Just follow/blindly obey instructions = cheap salaries will suffice until automation makes it even cheaper.

Upper half of the reply is apologizing for the driver of bus 168 who has been driving the same route for 2 years went off route. The main gist is with the lower half (screenshot above).

Show initiative (humanity) without waiting for instructions = punished

What the public transport company just did is advertising to its entire staff that showing initiative to remedy the mistake will be punished. Henceforth the staff would just adopt a can't be bothered attitude(bochup). I wouldn't be surprised if this is the same 'corporate culture' infesting the ministry of home affairs thereby allowing a limping terrorist to escape & can't even catch him.

How to Strike Without Breaking the Law
The incident taught the workers how to strike without breaking the law - just wait for instructions. In a big corpseration, many things can go wrong & standard operating procedures can't possibly cover everything. If everyone wait for instructions from higher up......

The incident also shows the mindset of top management in control via standard operating procedures. Control freaks which i will illustrate using Adolf Hitler.

Control freak - Adolf Hitler
Adolf Hitler often had late night meetings with his staff generals & as such slept late & woke up late. D-Day on the western front happened in pre dawn when Hitler was sleeping. The generals in charge of the panzer armies (tanks) wanted to launch a counterattack before the allies could establish a beachhead. That's initiative but Hitler was asleep & only with his personal approval can the tanks be unleashed.

No generals dare to tell Hitler to wake up for fear of being punished('corporate culture'). When Hitler finally woke up in the late morning to give instructions, it is already too late.

The bus driver treated as cog is not just symptomatic of 1 company. It is symptomatic across vast swathes of the local economic landscape given that overwhelming number of workers are bochup, 'zombie' & low job satisfaction.

So much for promoting tourism.

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Super Sizing Public Costs By Fast Food Industry

Previously i blogged about the pathetic wages of fast food workers in Ditched Fast Food. 6.5 years & counting.

Now, 2 days ago news came out that just McDonalds alone cost the american taxpayers US$1.2B per year in public assistance as those fast food workers have problems raising even 1 kid. Besides being unhealthy junk food, this gargantuan in super sizing public costs is another reason why we ought to boycott fast food restaurants that are spamming like weeds.

Spam, spam & spam. 6 McDonalds within 3km radius of where i'm staying:

  • 2 in clementi central
  • 1 in S'pore polytechnic
  • 1 in west coast park
  • 1 in king albert park complex
  • 1 in National University of SG

What is good for the fast food companies is not necessarily good for the country be it USA or SG. Look at the obscene multi-million CEO salaries compared to its workers who can't even properly afford to raise 1 kid. Certainly those junk food companies can pay more to their poorly paid workers given the nice profits they earned.

Shareholders Vs Stakeholders
This is an extremely good example of maximizing shareholder value by squeezing workers dry while having the rest of the country (taxpayers) to pay the tab in terms of subsidizing the low wages through public assistance. Is no wonder that USA & SG compete with each other for the dubious honor of highest income inequality among developed economies.

With the flooding of cheap foreign workers from 3rd world nations in the last couple of years, the income inequality in SG is even worse than America. Just last month i've blogged about Illegal Hawkers - Peasants are Tenacious & Entrepreneurial that peasants (illegal hawkers) aren't giving a hoot about warning tickets & the lame state propaganda report that crime is at 29 year low.

CEOs paid outrageous salaries while having the rest of the peasants suffer the costs. Notice how creepily similar it is to SG's hybrid regime as they copy blindly...

Copying USA Blindly
Ronald Reagan started the ball rolling by dismantling worker unions. We can see from the chart that % Workforce in unions took a sharp dive & along with it the middle class incomes nosedived from 1981. This is exactly what Sillypore's hybrid regime copied blindly as we don't see other continental european developed economies like Germany, France, Netherlands doing it.

Today the co-called workers union in SG is an absolute joke as it is known for its supermarkets instead of protecting workers welfare. Trade union supermarkets that generally have higher prices than private sector Sheng Siong supermarkets - another joke.

Make good companies grow stronger, make bad companies go broke.

These fast food spamming like crazy outlets:

  1. selling unhealthy junk food.
  2. making the peasants suffer.

Are you gonna boycott these fast food restaurants?

Related blogpost:
Ronald Reagan started the mess & stagnation in USA, which is why Jimmy Carter Is the Last Great Modern American President

Sunday, October 13, 2013

Better Energy Efficiency Is Useless Without Overall Consumption Decline

Red Arrow -> Record no. of recipients for this year's energy efficiency awards

A common approach to high oil prices is better energy efficiency to reduce usage. According to economist Jeff Rubin, better efficiency has often led to increased energy usage thus making the situation worse. He cited the example of better materials, design of cars & aircraft bodies & engines bringing the cost of travel down.

As the cost of travel gpes down, it becomes more affordable to the masses which led to increased driving & flying. Hence Jeff Rubin stresses the point that we ought to focus on energy consumption for a car/plane over its lifetime.

To make it simpler we just need to look at our lives. Many of the electrical appliances in our homes have energy efficiency certifications/ratings. Those appliances now are more efficient compared to many years ago but we are actually consuming more power.

  • Instead of analog camera with film, now a hell lot more pictures are taken with digital cameras as cost/picture have shrunk to negligible level.
  • Instead of 1 computer, some families now have 1 computer & 1 laptop.
  • Instead of 1 dumbphone, many people are now smartphones addicts & more are buying tablets.
  • Instead of cable activated gear shifters for bicycles, electronic shifters have appeared on the market.
  • Instead of simple watch, expect people wearing power hungry iwatch in the future.
  • Instead of simple glasses, expect people wearing power hungry google glasses in future.

With those examples listed, we are going to be using more energy over our lives compared to our parents lifetime although we are using devices more energy efficient compared to our parent's lifetime.

The hybrid regime can enhance energy efficiency in whatever ways they want to make the country more energy efficient to deal with the threat of triple-digit oil prices which will hurt the regime's businesses greatly. However in the bigger picture, it is clear this tiny island nation is consuming more & more energy.

High energy prices will lead to the hybrid regime's demise, there's no escape.

Related blogpost:
- Algae as Biofuel, Not Crops As We Ain't Enough to Eat

Saturday, October 12, 2013

German Army Peak Oil Study - Doom for the PAP

I've written quite a few blogposts on oil & this is an important issue which i will continue to blog about. In November 2010, the German Military released a study on the effects of Peak Oil. This 10min video summarizes that study:

For the peasants living on this tiny island, we can look forward to the demise of the domination of the hybrid regime(PAP; People's Action Party). The latest news is that 30% of consumers in Singapore say that they will have to make significant spending cuts in other areas to cope with rising food prices. 30% of people struggling is a 'low' figure since we know the hybrid regime with its media control & propaganda would avoid publishing the higher figure.

The hybrid regime cannot control the global oil market & hence it can't manipulate supply & demand. To understand why the hybrid regime is doomed, try picturing oil depletion rates & rising consumption as 2 ends of a matchstick - both ends burning.

Chris Martenson's scary example isn't just a scenario, but a reality for many exporting countries
Suppose we have a hypothetical country that produces 3 million barrels of crude oil per day, consumes 1 million barrels per day & exports the balance of 2 million barrels a day. All things being equal, it can export those 2 million barrels year after year. But now let's suppose that its oil field is declining due to depletion issues at a modest 5% a year. After 10 years, instead of 2 million barrels a year, this country can now only export 0.89 million barrels of oil a day, or less than half the prior amount. The missing balance has depleted away & it cannot export what it doesn't have. Now comes the kicker: 

Let's further suppose, quite realistically, that this country increases their internal demand for oil at a rate of 2.5% a year. What happens to exports in this case, where internal demand is rising & production is falling?

1 end of a matchstick burning - 5% decline in global oil production
Consumption at steady rate is a fairy tale in the developing countries. Without rising energy consumption the developing nations economies cannot grow bigger.

2 ends of a matchstick burning - 5% decline + 2.5% increase in consumption
2013 to 2035 is 22 years.
Let's be conservative:

  • More than double by 2035 --> double by 2035

To achieve doubling in 22 years would require 3.2% increase/year. In simpler terms, if your salary increases 3.2%/year, after 22 years in 2035 your salary would be doubled.

Instead of 3.2%, we'll use Chris Martenson's 2.5% as a conservative figure.

In year 10, exports have shrunk to 642,000 barrels which is just 31% of the original 2M barrels of oil. With dwindling supplies, i've blogged that Malaysia & Singapore Preparing for High Oil Prices .

Peasants have seen how high demand + limited supplies of public housing orchestrated by the hybrid regime have propel housing prices to absurd levels. Similarly when high oil prices lead to rising food prices, we can expect >50% of peasants to toss the hybrid regime out at the polls.

There's no escaping doom for the hybrid regime. A brighter future awaits the peasants thereafter.

Saturday, October 5, 2013

1st World South Korea Vs Rotting Singapore

Lots of video watching for this blogpost to appreciate the widening gap between progressing South Korea vs rotting S'pore.

To start off, let's listen to what South Korea's first female president told the US congress. Listen from 3:18-4:29 what she told the US congress:
Credit goes to korean people who built the country up.

Not like S'pore's old man who keep spouting credit for building SG up & publishing book after book after book. The more he publish the more SG slides down to 3rd world.

Singapore & South Korea are among the 4 asian tiger economies, the other 2 being Hong Kong & Taiwan. South Korea started worse off than Singapore due to the korean war. Today South Korea is in the lead as some even dubbed it as the 'Germany of Asia' with its manufacturing prowess.

South Korea is the only country in Asia to export supersonic aircraft. Japan though technologically advanced, is constraint by its pacifist constitution (WWII aggressor). Singapore has evaluated South Korea's supersonic jet trainer with competitors from Italy & Britain but didn't choose it. The Italians won the jet trainer tender. Nevertheless south korea's jet trainer has been bought by neighboring Indonesia.

South Korea's supersonic jet trainer is featured prominently in their country's 'Top Gun' movie last year. I've earlier blogged about it - R2B: Return to Base Theme Song; S Korea's 'Top Gun' Movie.

All the below videos open in new window. Switch to full screen, max sound & HD to truly appreciate.

South Korea Black Eagles Aerobatic Team Manuevers - 20mins
This is the jet trainer South Korea tried selling to S'pore.

My admiration for South Korea's progress has risen even more since watching the movie. How come? You need to watch their military parade which was held 4 days ago.

Airborne Segment - 12mins
I've never seen such awe inspiring display before. Got a pretty female paratrooper at 11:32 & 2-3 more to left of her.

Armor Segment - 9mins
Look at the giant street screen-got sign language. Notice UN armored vehicles among those in front of the column. Both are signs of 1st world mentality.

Taekwondo Segment - 8mins
Exciting part is in 2nd half where you'll witness the domino/wave of taekwondo effects.

Airpower Segment - 6mins
Sure a heck lot of helos & aircraft mustered for the display.

I've never been to kimchi land. The only exposure i've got is watching korean movies (no dramas) & the above clips. Nevertheless, peasants like me are startled to the widening gap. The quality of south korean movies put S'pore's state controlled media to utter shame. There's no love for S'pore nor any pride for this tiny island with the rot happening in the past couple of years. How many people still fly the S'pore flag to celebrate national day?

Strange thing is i feel the pride of the south korean people.