Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Independent Entrepreneurs Make Good Citizens - Benjamin Franklin

I was reading The Politics Book by DK publishing & came across Benjamin Franklin saying independent entrepreneurs make good citizens. He sees entrepreneurship as a virtue only when it promoted the public good.

Health of a nation depends on the virtue of its citizens
Health of SG is currently cancerous. I've blogged about the cancerous economic growth. On virtue of its citizens, this aspect doesn't apply much to SG since around 60% of the economy is dominated by govt-linked companies which brings us to...

Aristocrats are conservative & unproductive
Remember what the old man said about us:
"Singaporeans have become less hard-driving and hard-striving. If native S'poreans are falling behind because "the spurs are not stuck into the hide," that is their problem."-Lee Kuan Yew

Instead of blaming us(peasants), it is what Benjamin Franklin said that the $M salaries ministers aristocrats & bureaucrats are conservative & unproductive. Their spurs are not stuck into the hide.

Classic examples of them being conservative & unproductive:

  • keep on jacking up rentals making businesses hard to survive.
  • build not 1 but 2 casinos to boost GDP instead of using innovation approach
  • collecting more road tolls by making traffic conditions worse

Hybrid Regime Doesn't Like Independent Entrepreneurs
Does the hybrid regime want more independent entrepreneurs to make good citizens? They are more interested in getting more captive consumers for their govt-linked businesses. We used to have many mom & pop businesses. Back then SG could be regarded as the golden age as it reflects what Benjamin Franklin said - independent entrepreneurs make good citizens.

By not building hawker centres for over 20 years, the hybrid regime doesn't want independent hawkers. It wants citizens to slave away at spam chain coffeeshops/food courts like kopitiam, koufu, NTUC foodfare etc. Likewise we see the same with the taxi trade. There used to be many independent taxi drivers (black color taxis). Now the hybrid regime wants cabbies to slave away in their govt-linked taxi companies.

Govt-linked Companies Discouraging public good
Now the economy is increasingly & dangerously made up of big corpserations with monopolistic powers. It leads to unproductive when one can easily jack up prices despite deteriorating services. How is this promoting the public good as what Benjamin Franklin said?

Which is why i have a growing distaste of big corpserations especially those spam chain businesses.


  1. Agree with the points raised. "Independent entrepreneurs" reminds me of how Taiwan builds resilience in its economy. :)

  2. Taiwan economy is more innovative/creative than SG. Their soap drama 爱 can go on for a few hundred episodes & still sustain viewership.

    You may have read about taiwanese students protesting the free trade deal(opening of service industries) with China. Those students already have a good example as in SG. Once open, PRCs would flood the taiwan market with their cheap labor.

    Another reason they may be worried is the State Capitalism practised in China. State companies offer special low interest loans to their own & then go taiwan compete. I find PRC businessman are way too good in making $$$ to the point of being unscrupulous. Even dead pigs sold in markets. Milk powder tainted with melamine. Gutter oil etc...

    I sympathize with the protesters.