The Messiah Saga: Some men just want to watch the world burn

14 Nov

The Second of September 2013 will not hold as much significance to the everyday anarchist, but this is the day, we here in Singapore, experienced a pre-mature second coming of “The Messiah”. Announcing his arrival with a bang by defacing the website of a pilfering pastor’s wife, “The Messiah” dished out old testament-esque justice; squashing a heresy born of china wine and boob jobs.

Many of us, even the most peace loving hippies, cheered a little inside. Afterall, Sun Ho and Kong Hee weren’t exactly close contenders for people of the year awards. But as “The Messiah” wandered the wilderness, temptation started to set in. Lucifer’s original sin of pride proved too powerful a force. “The Messiah” went on a hacking rampage across cyberdom, hacking a Spanish website to publish an FAQ list that nobody asked for, defacing the website of a childcare centre that nobody cares to go, and inserting a little shout-out in a town council portal that honestly, nobody knew existed.

Of course “The Messiah” preached his gospel at each location. Thou shall not make themselves false idols; Thou shall not harm babies under your care; and Thou shall not blame external factors . As these warning went unheeded, a succession of terrible judgments descended upon us.

Youtube warnings of impending doom and suffering. Swarms of ‘planned maintenance’ engulfed us into darkness. A surfaced gospel of IDA that points to The colours of our pharaohs crossed into “eating soft rice” people. Oh how the people rejoiced with each wave of web-driven anarchy.

As the veil of darkness has been lifted, “The Messiah” is proven to be false. James Raj Arokiasamy, a skinny and bald middle-aged man with outstanding drug-related offence charges, was arrested in Kuala Lumpur with the assistance of the Royal Malaysian Police. To stretch my much laboured Christendom metaphor one last time, now begins the typical cries of conspiracy and opacity at the Sanhedrin:

  • “James Raj is just a scapegoat.”
  • “James Raj is not mad”
  • “The Kangaroo courts will fix him and M Ravi”
  • “The ST is spreading fear, uncertainty, and doubt”
  • “The arrests raises more questions than answers”

Jeez … give your brain a chance to catch up! Whether or not James Raj is as psychologically unstable as his lawyer, is besides the point. “Was it a hack or wasn’t it?”, is a legal and technical issue based on evidence and impacts the appropriateness of the charges. “Is there a larger conspiracy?”, is an opinion dependent on how much garbage (masquerading as ‘analysis’) you choose to consume. The likes of “Sir Nelspruit” and “A Singaporean in Australia” come to mind, but they deserve no further mention.

Back to James. As man, he is of little significance. He will get his time in court (and some alone time with Ravi), and any sentencing he receives will get its fair share of heckling. But as symbols, “The Messiah” and “Anonymous” are not going away anytime soon. Worshiped like Geek Gods with every magnanimous click, hacktivists will continue to be cheered in the spirit of anarchy and “dishing it up to the Man”.

Till of course their actions cause tangible damage to our lives, and we start to ask ourselves, are they not mad men who just want to watch the world burn?

Image

Magicians and Demons: One Man’s Crusade Against Moral Decrepitude

18 Sep

Image

Pastor Lawrence Khong of Faith Community Baptist Church is trying awfully hard to claw back some limelight from his fellow spiritually-assaulted contemporary Pastor Kong Hee. In fear of poor take up for his latest self-described ‘world class’ magic show, Lawrence Khong has been busy alienating as many segments of society as he possibly can.  Afterall, in showbusness, no news is bad news, and there is no such thing as bad publicity.

Early in the year, ESP Khong ambushed ESM Goh Chok Tong during his walkabout to demand to keep Section 377A of the Penal Code.

We affirm that the family unit comprises a man as Father, a woman as Mother, and Children. This is the basic building block of society, a value foundational for a secure future, a premise fundamental to nation-building.We see a looming threat to this basic building block by homosexual activists seeking to repeal Section 377A of the Penal Code.

Failing to convince ESM Goh at his home turf, Lawrence sleight-of-hand Khong gathered this LoveSingapore church network to seek comfort from Min Law K (not for Krishna) Shanmugan.

Later in the year we hear about how the Apostle Khong dismisses a pregnant female staff that had an affair with another church employee.

At the end, we were left with no other option but to terminate her with just cause on the grounds of her continued involvement in this illicit relationship,” he added, explaining that adultery was against the teachings and doctrines of the Bible.  It has to do with maintaining a high moral standard for those who are in Christian ministry and leadership. This is for the protection of the members.

Speaking of protection of members, the Shepard Khong of 4 ponies had his membership suspended by the Singapore Polo Club, leaving him nowhere to house Twilight Sparkle, Applejack, Pinkie Pie and Rainbow Dash!

Not short on reserve holy spirit, he returned to his pet peeve of adultery and homosexuality in an recent interview the the Straitstimes.

It can be argued that it’s none of your business, since I take it in my home. I know people have different opinions. But in my view, there are certain things that are basically harmful to society. The homosexual lifestyle is not a normal lifestyle. I believe it is.

If I had been in a position to oppose the legalisation of prostitution or adultery when it was being done, I would have fought it with all my might. Adultery fractures the family.

By now it should be apparent that Khong the Baptist is a principled man.  Adultry is abhorent, and homosexuality is an abomination of choice. Beastiality with ponies is bad, and what happens in the privacy of the bedroom is a threesome between you, your partner and God.

Based on above, surely an illicit affair with a PRC waitress is as ludicrous as the God Particle, as outlandish as the gospel of Judas, and as inconceivable as a prostitute wife for Jesus.

NEA-AHTC Saga: why there is more to come

11 Jun

Looking at the NEA-AHTC stand-off, I would say that the true victim is not the hawkers themselves, but the desire to communicate.

It begins with the analytic bias of ‘anchoring’, in which both NEA and AHTC are guilty of formulating all assessments and conclusions from initial pieces of information.

NEA latched on to two communiques: a letter from AHTC property manager Mr Tai quoting the cost of scaffold erection, and one from WP MP Faisal appealing on behalf of hawkers at Blk 511. Both signaled to the NEA that AHTC was trying to get the hawkers to foot the bill for scaffold erection.

The WP on the other hand focuses on an email exchange between NEA’s Chin Peiyun and AHTC’s Pradeep with reference to the cleaning of Blk 538. Incidentally Mr Tai was carbon copied. This exchange signaled to the AHTC that the Hawkers Association would make the necessary arrangements for the scaffolding.

Everything goes down hill from here, with both parties refusing to budge or except responsibility for what was effective a simple failure to communicate properly.  Both sides lack the integrity or the kahunas to admit as such.

Some see this saga as a political move by the PAP to trip up AHTC and make the WP look less viable as an alternative ruling party. Well, that thought would surely dominate the thoughts of some PAP cadres, but I wonder if this over-reaction over a trivial matter was somewhat a pre-emptive strike by the PAP to what it thought was another AIM missile being fired at them from the WP.

Like an elephant that has been conditioned to fear a tiny man with a stick and to respect the boundaries set by a flimsy piece of rope around the ankle, the PAP is operating with a heightened seige mentality as it fears being further ridiculed or out-ed by a crafting WP media strategy of deploying public opinion. Because even if the PAP had all the right facts, the domain of public opinion is their achilles hill, and the WP is well aware of this.

So what does this mean? Well, expect more public dispute between Government entities and WP entities all the way up the the next election. And many more misinterpreted emails and letters.

Gilbert Goh: The Riddle That Remains Unanswered

22 Apr

This is an interesting series of posts on Gilbert Goh, by the ever divisive Sammboy.com character, Scroobal.

It most succinctly tells the tale of a man whose intentions continues to baffle . A man whose past is filled with questions. A man whom  nobody really likes (outside of SP circles), but carries a newly-minted political pedigree that can no longer be ignored …….

=================================================================================

This character has certainly intrigued me beginning in early 2011 when he wrote an account on how he met KJ prior to joining Reform Party. It was a very interesting article as it appeared that the candidate was heavily courted and that he was interviewing the boss and not the other way around. I was wondering who this guy was that KJ seemed desperate to recruit and thats the impression he gave me.

This was followed by an equally interesting account of the exit from RP. Then the post GE comments by GMS about this chap followed by TFBH’s comments and GMS’s retort.

Gilbert Goh Keow Wah had in 2008 left with his wife and a child to start a new life in Sydney on the back of his wife’s migrating visa. He has since come back a few times and is now permanently back and is no longer holder of any visa. He also recently became a divorcee while his wife and child have become PRs and reside in Sydney. What is interesting is that while in Australia temping, he wrote articles encouraging emigration and even asked Singapore to cast its net wider and not just bring in PRC and Indian Indians but other nationalities as well. Here is an example of one letter he wrote to Today.

About racial harmony, respect and tolerance

Date : 30 July 2008

TODAY – Treat foreigners the way you want to be treated?

30 July 2008

Letter from Gilbert Goh Keow Wah,
Sydney, New South Wales

WHENEVER I read about the challenges facing permanent residents and work permit holders in Singapore, I have mixed feelings, for I am a Singaporean who has just left the country to live and work in Sydney. So far, in Australia, I have yet to face any of the discrimination of which I have been warned. But, I feel how foreigners in Singapore may feel and hope that the locals will welcome me, and not see me as a threat to their livelihood.

In Sydney, I have seen a medium-sized company of about 100 employees boasting people of 10 different nationalities.

Such a diverse workforce not only allows creativity to take place but also creates respect and tolerance for one another’s culture and religion.

There are two distinct nationalities settling down in Singapore: the Chinese and the Indians. They have formed almost 75 per cent of all our foreign talent for the past five years.

Many are competent professionals who are deserving of their residency in Singapore, but their cultural habits and working attitude are not much different from the local Chinese and Indian workforce. There is not much diversity they can bring to the workforce. In order to boast a strong cosmopolitan work force, our Government needs to cast the talent hunt search wider, from Europe, Africa, the United States and so on.

But, no matter where they originally come from, Singaporeans must welcome such foreign talents, which is what good global citizens should do. At the very least, we must not give them a hard time. For, one day, you may end up working and living abroad. Just like me.

So why the sudden change. 

It also appears that Gilbert did learn one thing while in Australia – how to focus on a cause, put it on a platform of charity but use politics to drive the agenda. This is common place in the US, UK and all the western countries. It is perfectly acceptable in these countries and have long being established norms of society. Except for the US, where all charities must send their accounts to the Tax authorities and their submitted returns are available for public scrutiny, most countries do not require the transparency and they need not reveal much though some do it publicly.

In essence, Gilbert is no politician but has realised that politics brings tremendous benefits to his charity and thus plunged into it. Politics gives him the platform and the forum to raise his profile and that of his cause.

 

So is this good or bad?

Credit must be given to Gilbert for picking unemployment and underemployment amongst Singaporeans as his cause celebre. It is probably the result of his friends, associates and acquaintances whose age group has been the most impacted as a result of the influx of cheaper foreign labour. He had a ready reservoir of experiences from those of his age group and they would also be his ready followers. Only a fool would not realise that the employment situation facing locals is a direct result of the govt poor manner of handling entry of foreigners into Singapore and into the workplace.

A charity and a highly credible cause and now the profile lifting avenue – politics. Thus his entry into RP, then NSP and GE 2011.

So what does Gilbert bring to the table that those in the opposition cannot? For one, he is not bound by the CEC of a political party or any other form of constraints faced by a political party. He is a member of NSP but he is not acting as a politician or acting for NSP. But it does help his cause to be associated with the opposition. Yet he is a free agent. He therefore cuts across political parties, any form of association including NGOs.

So what are the dynamics where the NGOs are concerned. Singapore NGOs are typically very focused, disciplined and tend to avoid any form of deviation. Those that dable in politics tend to well educated and socially of a higher order. Strong with their principles but careful who their associates are. Some bordering on the champagne socialist mould. They also prefer move only on published materials and actions are very much evidence driven. Siew Kum Hong’s outburst is quite telling.

Siew Kum Hong’s Outburst

So Gilbert has managed without the manacles of the local society’s norm to outmanoeuvre everyone and lead the most successful civic protest in the nation’s 47 year history – the 6.9M white paper protest on 16 Feb 2013 at Hong Lim. It made the news across all the world’s new agencies.

In essence he has nothing to lose and so much to gain.

 

So is he doing the right thing. 

The latest unhappiness is over the speaker’s list for the upcoming May Day Rally. They all want to be part of it, they want their views to be considered and their suggestions taken up. It is not going to end. They also are realising that he is using opposition politics and politicians for his own cause and grabbing the headlines.

Then there is also the inevitable – his charity and the accounts. Questions will be asked and he has to be more transparent.

He also has to understand that he cannot use the opposition parties and those who stepped forward and not acknowledge their contributions. He needs to know that Hong Lim Park is the result of the Chee and the SDP. WP and SPP also made massive inroads since 1991 and the Govt is not vicious as in the past. Most importantly he has to understand that he cannot do this alone for much longer.

 

Now for the big picture:
The cause is just, the pressure must continue to be applied and the Govt must act in the interest of its fellow Singaporeans and not hold the GDP as the God to be worshipped.

Gilbert Goh: Transitioning From Singaporean to Aussie?

10 Feb

Gilbert Goh is an interesting fella that not many people know about. He is the sort of character that is easily forgettable. One that operates as a champion of underdog causes. Someone that strangely appears on your facebook feed from time to time, and leaves you wondering, “where have I seen this name before”.

Sometime in Apr 2012, Gilbert Goh called for a nationwide boycott in May 2012 against companies that hire “more than 10 people and 80% of them must be foreigners – even though they are permanent residents”.  Back then, Yahoo Singapore Newsroom promoted Gilbert’s call to boycott which targeted chain establishments such as Breadtalk, Mcdonalds, Crystal Jade…etc. After protests from these businesses, Yahoo Singapore was quick to clarify that:

“We’ve reached out to the companies named here and also to the Ministry of Manpower, and we understand that these establishments are compliant with the 50% dependency ratio requirement that is in place, and this in turn will also be cut to 45% in due course. It is possible that the foreign workers Mr Gilbert Goh could have seen previously at these outlets were PRs, who are not counted as foreigners, which could explain his sentiment.

There was however no apology by Gilbert for his damning and unfounded insinuations. Rather, a defiant Gilbert clarified that “many critics have also slammed me for being xenophobic but if being patriotic make me looks like one then I have no choice here.”.

Patriotism is indeed a fine personal trait (but reckless patriotism blinded by one’s prejudices, is ‘xenophobia’, no questions about that).

Which is ironic, considering that Gilbert Goh himself spent a few years in Australia, Sydney, and from what I read online, a place where his wife and child currently reside (Oh no, the Australians have no issues with Asians and embrace their presence wholeheartly, not!).

“While living in Australia, there is this free spirit that inhibits most of us staying there and I thoroughly enjoy the cosmopolitan culture and care free attitude.” – Gilbert Goh

Convenient to enjoy the ‘cosmopolitan culture’ when you are part of the reason for that cultural mix. Back in Singapore, diversity to Gilbert is four-letter word and the result of a three-letter political party acronym.

But I hear from the grapevine that he spent CNY dinner alone. With the current state of his marriage (shhhhhh, sensitive topic), it is apt that he facilitates a Singapore Support Site for the Divorced (but I hardly think “steadymarriages” is an appropriate name for the group).

The most aptly named group that Gilbert Goh heads is of course Transitioning.org. This is the group that is organizing the Speakers’ Corner event “so Singaporeans just come out and unite together to save ourselves! Say NO to 6.9 million population!” (an event i am sure has created a little stir in the pants of the MIW).

Gilbert Goh is indeed transitioning (but not in the Pinkdot/377A way). Defender of the unemployed, the cyber-bullied and the divorcees of the Singapore. A politician, a philanthropist, and a patriot? He sure transitions alright. … Next stop, Australian PR?

Mai Luan Luan Gong Leh: Teo Soh Lung Say JI member is political exile

12 Oct

Today, Teo Siao Lang really make me confused. She say cannot anyhow arrest 2 JI member because they fled Singapore in 2001 before ISD went around rounding up the JI.

She okay or not? Two senior JI members, trained to be ninja kamakazi warriors in Afghanistan,  fighting for number one bad ass AQ terrorist organisation, can be pardoned because they managed to escape capture? Oh they VOLUNTARILY come back so we forgive and forget?

With this special logic, MSK is political exile twice over. How dare the ISD keep him in detention! Don’t you know he is Singapore’s Dalai Lama? Why stop there, Took Leng How, murdered Huang Na, escaped to Malaysia, chose to return home too.  He must be Singapore’s Thaksin Shinawatra?

I stand corrected. Last year I said every-mother-son agrees with terrorist being locked away. Apparently granny Teo disagress!! Can’t really blame her. She is still stuck in 1987.

 

From facebook.com/TeoSohLung

[…] MHA’s press release claims that both Abd Rahim and Husaini “were senior members of the Jemaah Islamiyah (JI) terrorist organisation. They had undergone terrorist training in Afghanistan with the Al-Qaeda terrorist organisation in 1999/2000. They had also been actively involved in reconnoitring several potential local and foreign targets in Singapore for the purpose of a terrorist attack. Both men had fled Singapore in Dec 2001 soon after the commencement of the security operation against the JI and took refuge overseas. While on the run, Husaini was involved in the plot led by Singapore JI leader Mas Selamat bin Kastari to hijack an airplane destined for Singapore and crash it into Changi Airport in Jan 2001, to retaliate against the disruption of the Singapore JI network.”

It is clear that if Abd Rahim and Husaini had not fled Singapore in Dec 2001, they would have been arrested and may still be in prison today. They fled and became political exiles but chose to return home after 10 years. Their arrests serves as a reminder to all political exiles that returning to Singapore may cost them their freedom no matter how long their exile is.

The allegation against Abd Rahim and Husaini is not that they are present JI members but that they were senior members of JI. The ISA is thus used as if it is a piece of criminal legislation where an offender can be prosecuted for offences committed decades past. The grave distinction however is that under the ISA, there is no charge and no trial.

As in the past, MHA’s press release and the press reported the arrests of Abd Rahim and Husaini as if the two were guilty of the serious crimes alleged against them. They “were two senior JI members” and went to Afghanistan for “terrorist training with the Al-Qaeda terrorist organisation.”

 

 

Amy Cheong’s Seven Habits of Highly Annoying People

9 Oct

Image

Habit 1 – Be Proactive

This is the ability to control one’s void deck area. Solution is Self determination, choice, and the power to Kao Peh on Facebook. Remember must take responsibility for your choices and the consequences that follow.

 

Habit 2 – Begin with the End in Mind

Concentrate on using the best vulgarities and shortest sentences to convey maximum dissatisfaction with karaoke noise and loud bantering. It is important to clarify your deeply important character values.

 

Habit 3 – Put First Things First

Prioritize, plan, and execute your week’s tasks based on importance. If sleep is first priority, get fired so can sleep more.

 

Habit 4 – Think Win-Win

Genuinely strive for mutually beneficial solutions. Getting fired equal more time to sleep, NTUC looks social responsible, and got one more job vacancy to help reduce unemployment.

 

Habit 5 – Seek First to Understand, then to be Understood

Emphatic listening to understand that void deck weddings cost more than $50. When you listen, people will reciprocate and call for caring atmosphere.

 

Habit 6 – Synergize

Combine the strengths of Internet community to work together to force NTUC to fire you. This helps achieve goals no one person could have done alone.

 

Habit 7 – Sharpen the Saw

Balance and renew your resources. Run to Perth to undergo physical renewal, meditation, and spiritual renewal. Come back stronger and well-rested.

Yawningbread or Yawningletter?

27 Sep

On 14 Feb 2012, Alex Au of Yawningbread.wordpress.com received a letter from law firm Allen & Gledhill for false and scurrilous comments targeted at Mr K Shanmugan and Foo Mee Har. Satisfied that a formal letter writing approach was adopted, Alex wrote, “I take Shanmugam’s word on this matter.  I have withdrawn that comment as requested.”

On 06 July 2012, amongst his pile of bills and magazines, Alex Au was most annoyed to see yet another unexpected letter. This letter was from the Attorney General’s Chambers – not as frightening as a letter from Allen & Gledhill but worryingly nonetheless. This time, Alex Au went one up from spreading false and scurrilous rumours to ‘scandalising the Courts of the Republic of Singapore’. An angry Alex Au decided to remove his posting and plaster the apology letter, written in a civil service style, onto his blog wholesale.

It is obvious that letter writing, retractions and civil service style paragraphing are sore points for Alex Au. What irks Alex Au more than anything else is that he feels the archbishop’s retraction letter was authored by a third party. In his own words “What was out of character was the abrupt withdrawal of the first letter to Function 8 through means of a letter sent by registered post and written in curt, civil-service style.”

Is this really about transparency? Alex Au just wants the Archbishop to come out and say “I have been arm-twisted by the government into retracting my letter”, or “I have realised my mistake and accept the retraction letter drafted by the government”.

No my friends, it is about power. With the power of a letter, Alex Au drops all allegations against K Shanmugan and Foo Mee Har. With the power of a letter, Alex Au believes he misrepresented facts concerning Woffles Wu.

So what is different this time? This time the central figure is a powerful clergyman who committed a terrible sin against God and apparently homosexuals; namely, Coitus Interruptus! By withdrawing his support for Function 8 just prior to climax, the Archbishop interrupted the civil society orgasm that promised to birth a child of double-barreled heritage. A child that will repeal the laws what prevent Alex from lying with man and beast.

In the eyes of Alex Au, there should be no grey area when it comes to political speak. Like a true blue bureaucrat, he prefers everything in black and white. How else can you explain his obsession with LETTERS? My advice to Alex is to leave the ‘bread’ to the unbrandedbreadnbutter, and change your URL to “YawningLETTER.com”.

Image

**Disclaimer: The authorship of this blog post, and the view and intentions represented herein, are entirely my own. I reserved the right to retract this blog post at a later date should I received a letter in the morning.

Alex Au, F8 and Maruah gangbanging Catholic Archbishop

21 Sep

Since a few days ago, civil society groups civilly arm-twisted the head of the Catholic Church in Singapore over his flip flop decision to back Function 8 and then his later decision not to. Archbishop Nicholas Chia said that he reflected on his initial decision and retracted it for the sake of social harmony in Singapore as his intentions might be misinterpreted. But Function 8 kept saying he must publish the letters.

In between the lines in this saga, the govt persuaded or arm-twisted the Archbishop. However, he is the Archbishop and he could have faced off the govt if he wanted to as he has the moral authority and a huge constituency to back him. The govt would not be stupid to arm-twist him. The Catholic community is not just the size of one small Pasir Panjang church. It is the largest Christian community in Singapore, especially if you count all the Pinoys as maids, service staff, nurses and IT engineers here. If push comes to shove, the Catholics locals and Pinoys combined can really push hard and fast just after one fiery Sunday sermon, and I’m not talking about the prosperity gospel Kong Hee kind of fiery. The big reason why bigger religions should stay out of politics.


Besides, if Archbishop Chia insisted on putting his foot down and wave his staff, it would split PAP solidarity apart. Catholic PAP members and MPs or if there are any now since George Yeo left, ministers, might instinctively side with the spiritual leader of their flock. He cannot be arm-twisted. Persuaded with reason was more likely.

Archbishop Chia in the end decided to go with the govt after that lunch or tea chitchat, mindful that Function 8 was steering the Catholic church into a langgar with the govt. This similar langgar failed to materialise in 1987 because the Archbishop then was also wary of the implications of the church taking a stand on political leanings of a group. Anyway, at least half of Function 8 were members of that 1987 group. Deja vu!


Was the Archbishop weak? No, he was responsible in a way separating religion from politics as much as he could. You want to see the church lobby the govt on abortion?  However, to the disappointed groups like Function 8 and Maruah, yes he was weak lah! They thought they had the Archbishop in the pocket but now he did a u-turn at their expense. That’s why Alex Au wanted to sabo the Archbishop by leaking the confidential letters to make the head of the Catholic church look bad. Anyway, Alex is against religions and its leaders who block his 377A repeal dream and saw this as a chance to poke that Archbishop and the govt at the same time mah.

Function 8 and Maruah are now behaving like spoilt brats. At the end of the day, it is the Archbishop’s decision lah. Function 8 and Maruah had their chance to win him over. The Archbishop then made his choice. Function 8, Maruah and Alex should have respected his decision and be gentlemanly, not bitch about it.

Splurging on National Day Parades

13 Sep

Gerald Giam asked a good question. How much was spent in the past national day parades.


Could the money have been better spent, yes, no, maybe. The elusive answer depends on whether Singapore can afford to spend the money and what was the opportunity cost. For example, how much should be spent on charity, helping fellow needy Singaporeans. So if $20.6 million was spent in 2010, money literally burnt away on fireworks and gaudy displays, how much of that should have been spent on approved charities or welfare programmes, or subsidies in conservancy fees. The list goes on and on.


I’m not saying that money spent on national day parades are a total waste of money, although it is cool and populist to do so. Really, it depends on how much was spent and on what. One misleading comment was by this blogger Singapore Notes who writes good stuff most of the time, but this time slipped slightly. All of us have our bad days I know.

Amidst the doldrums of worldwide financial meltdown in 2008, $14 million was still splurged (record high in that year), not a single cent was trimmed to entertain the VVIPs who were hosted to exclusive cocktail parties while the common folk make their way home in the over crowded trains and buses.

Firstly, the financial crisis hit the news in September with AIG’s troubles among those at the forefront. So money was squandered away before the 2008 global recession exploded. Secondly, it depends on what was spent regardless of recession or not. Spending on national day parades means money pumped by the govt into the economy – into production, transport, materials, advertisement and the entire supply chain. SMEs benefit. Big evil corporations benefit. National day parades are capital injections into local businesses and the economy is stimulated temporarily. Spending more money on national day parades especially during recessions are even more important. When the private sector holds back in such dark times, contracting the fragile economy even more, it is up to public sector spending to pump back confidence into the economy.


The real probes into national day parades and spending is whether the deals were transparent and without corruption. This is a point that Singapore Notes was nonetheless sharp to point out.

Without a detailed accounting, we are unable to tell if the procurement for top dollar items were approved along NParks procedures and similar standard operating guidelines.

Which companies won the tenders for supplying goods and services to the big birthday party that is getting boring year after year? The GLCs would usually win the tenders,  like SFI for providing food to “volunteers” and those conscripted to help out in the parades. I did NS and ICT enough to know that if it is SAF and food, it is SFI. However, these GLCs outsourced and subcontracted out the goods and services anyway, spreading the money around. So with the splurging or squandering of taxpayers money on national day celebrations worth it or not, is an argue until cows come home mental masturbation deadend.  The more pertinent concern is if the money was spent in a fair and transparent manner, and if it stimulated local businesses besides the GLCs.

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.