Thursday, August 24, 2017

Alliance between Uber and Comfort

This is how I see the alliance between Uber and Comfort.

Uber fought against Grab and seemed to have lost the battle. Grab was able to get more riders to join them due to their attractive promotions. More drivers also joined Grab, as they get more business.

Grab is bleeding. But they seem to have deep pockets (thanks to big funds from Temasek).

Comfort is also losing out in this competition. Fewer riders are calling them or using their apps.

Through the alliance, Uber can reach out to more drivers. But Comfort could have done it on their own without Uber. Comfort has already developed a mobile app, which should be working well.

The real issue is - who can give the generous promotions that Grab is now giving and continue to bleed to gain market share?

The danger of this business strategy is that the riders will accept your promotion, but they can easily move to your competitor when you stop your promotion.

Most customers would check Uber and Grab for the best price and take the best offer. I am one of them.

This kind of cut throat competition is not good for the market in the long run. I expect that it will be more regulated after the initial period.




A softer approach

Do we have a wise government? In my view, NO. Here are my reasons.

Li Shengwu posted a comment that we have "a litigious government and a pliant court system". Although it was in a private post, it did get into the public domain and was probably read by tens or hundred of thousands people.

The government has to act. How did they act?

They sent a strong legal letter with harsh demands. This is not the correct approach for a first time offender.

They should have sent a soft letter to point out that the remarks were offensive. Li Shengwu would probably have agreed to remove these words. It was a mistake. Most people would have made similar mistakes.

I do think that Li Shengwu is recalcitrant or deliberately looking for trouble.

The matter would have ended there. The government would have been seen to be wise and would have achieved the goal of getting people to respect the law.

Instead of the soft approach, the government made harsh demands for an apology. The terms of the apology were humiliating and not appropriate. They amounted to "bullying".

I hope that the people in power realize that there is a better way to deal with this kind of issue in the future.

Performance trend - agencies and ministers

The performance trend of the agencies and ministers is now showing interesting, useful and reliable results. The trend does go up and down, depending on the public sentiment.

Take a look at
http://www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg/ChartJS.aspx

Wisdom of the Crowd - new issues

Here are the new issues for you to vote.

a) Do you agree with the explusion of Prof Huang Jing?
b) Do you prefer PayNow to access your bank account or an e-wallet?

Vote in
www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg




Wednesday, August 23, 2017

Bad service from Singapore Airlines hotline

In a Facebook post, Goh Meng Seng described his frustration in waiting for 30 minutes for the SIA hotline to pick up his call. Many people posted their comments describing the same frustration with their bad service.  Link

I have contacted the top management of Singapore Airlines on several occasions in the past to offer my service to improve their hotline and call center. They were not interested.

When I was in NTUC Income, I was able to get all calls answered within 3 rings, i.e. 1 minute. I think they are still able to maintain this standard today.

The NTUC Income call center handles a few thousand calls every day. I suspect that it is as busy as SIA.

It is sad that the top management of SIA does not pay attention, and the service quality can drop to very bad levels, leading to loss of several millions of dollars of revenue.

As a result, SIA has lost its top position in quality of service. It has even become unprofitable for the first time in his history.




Wisdom of the Crowd - new issues

Here are the new issues for voting:

a) Do you agree with the move to cut down sugar in soft drinks?
b) What is the likely cause of the collision between the US destroyer and the oil tanker?

Vote in this website and win prizes.
www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg

Wisdom of the Crowd - results

Here are the results of the voting in The Wisdom of the Crowd.

a) Do you agree with the proposal for public transport to go cashless by 2020? (53 Votes )

A majority of the Crowd is not supportive of the change to cashless.
http://www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg/chart.aspx?ID=223

b) What is the best way to help the elderly poor in Singapore? (50 Votes )

A large majority prefers a monthly pension to be give to the aged above 75 subject to a means test.
http://www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg/chart.aspx?ID=224

Vote on the current issues and win a prize.
www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg






NTUC Income Guaranteed Life annuity


A consumer sent me the benefit illustration and asked if it offers a good return.

The consumer, age 65 male, invests a single premium of $300,000 and receives a guaranteed monthly annuity of $1,181.40 and a non-guaranteed addition that depends on the investment return of the life insurance fund.

The detailed analysis is shown in the PDF
http://www.fisca.sg/ArticleDisplay.aspx?ID=507

Tuesday, August 22, 2017

Wisdom of the Crowd - results

Here are the results of the voting in The Wisdom of the Crowd.

a) Why is the Singapore Sale no longer great? (60 Votes )

40% said that we are doing the same thing for too long.
http://www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg/chart.aspx?ID=221

b) Will the United States take a first strike against North Korea? (52 Votes )

Two thirds expect the issue to be resolved peacefully.
http://www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg/chart.aspx?ID=222

Monday, August 21, 2017

Are gold medals authentic?

Someone asked if the gold medals awarded at the South East Asia games are "authentic".

I searched Google and go the following answer regarding the Olympic Gold Medals.

Quote:
The last series of Olympic medals to be made of solid gold were awarded at the 1912 Olympic Games in Stockholm, Sweden. Olympic Gold medals are required to be made from at least 92.5% silver, and must contain a minimum of 6 grams of gold. All Olympic medals must be at least 60mm in diameter and 3mm thick.
Unquote.


I guess the gold medals in the SEA games have a lower gold content.

Wisdom of the Crowd - results

Here are the results of the voting:

a) Should Singapore keep the mandatory death penalty for drug traficking? (48 Votes )

The majority like the death sentence to be made non-mandatory and reserved only for serious crimes.
http://www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg/chart.aspx?ID=220


b) Will there be a contest for the reserved presidential election? (57 Votes )

A large majority expect a walkover. Sorry no public holiday.
http://www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg/chart.aspx?ID=219




Wisdom of the Crowd - new issues

Here are two new issues for you to vote in The Wisdom of the Crowd.

a) How well did PM Lee perform at the ND Rally?
b) Do you agree with the three long term issues raised by PM Lee at the ND Rally?

Vote in
www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg

Sunday, August 20, 2017

Win these prizes

Vote in The Wisdom of the Crowd and win these prizes.
http://www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg/page/115

Wisdom of the Crowd - new issues

Here are the issues for voting today.

a) If President Trump is impeached, what will he do?
b) How can we help older PMETs to keep their jobs or find new jobs?

Vote in www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg

Saturday, August 19, 2017

Wisdom of the Crowd - new issues

Here are the new issues for you to vote:

a) Is it wise for Li Shengwu to leave Singapore to prevent being detained for the court hearing?
b) What should Desmond Kuek, CEO of SMRT do, following the frequent breakdowns?

Vote in
www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg

You can win the following prizes by voting:
www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg/page/115

Wisdom of the Crowd - results

Here are the results of the voting in The Wisdom of the Crowd.

a) Why do the experts plan a curved bridge for the RTS between Singapore and Johor Bahru? (48 Votes )

You can view the answer in:
http://www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg/chart.aspx?ID=217

b) Is it proper for the Johor Sultan to object to the design of the bridge? (46 Votes )

Three quarters of the respondents respect him for taking interest. It will force the planners to explain their reason for this decision.

http://www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg/chart.aspx?ID=218






Friday, August 18, 2017

More efficient to pay directly into a bank account

Due to an oversight, I did not bank in a cheque within six months. It has expired.

I requested the payer to send me a replacement cheque. They wanted me to mail back the original cheque to them.

What for? The mail will take a few days to reach them. In some cases, it got lost.

This is an example of the wastefulness and inefficiency that is quite common in Singapore. In other countries, it is common for payment to be made by internet transfer to the payee account, instead of writing cheques.

I know of an insurance company in Indonesia that make claim payments directly into the bank account of the claimant.

Australian Senate

Instead of an Elected President which has now become very messy, we should consider the Australian system of a Senate that has significant powers to review major decisions taken by the government.

Here is a description of how the Australian Senate works.

Quote:
The Australian Senate is the upper house of the bicameral Parliament of Australia, the lower house being the House of Representatives. The composition and powers of the Senate are established in Chapter I, Part II of the Australian Constitution. There are a total of 76 senators: 12 senators are elected from each of the six states (regardless of population) and two from each of the two autonomous internal territories (the Australian Capital Territory and the Northern Territory). Senators are popularly elected under the single transferable vote system of proportional representation.

Unlike upper houses in most Westminster parliamentary systems, the Senate is vested with significant power, including the capacity to block all legislation, including Budget and Appropriation Bills, initiated by the government in the House of Representatives, making it a distinctive hybrid of British Westminster bicameralism and US-style bicameralism. As a result of proportional representation, the chamber features a multitude of parties vying for power. The governing party or coalition, which has to maintain the confidence of the lower house, has not held a majority in the Senate since 2005-2008 (and before that since 1981) and usually needs to negotiate with other parties and Independents to get legislation passed.[4]

Senators normally serve fixed six-year terms (from 1 July to 30 June), unless the Senate is dissolved earlier in a double dissolution. Following a double dissolution half the state senators serve terms ending on the third 30 June following the election (i.e. slightly less than three years) with the rest serving three years longer. The term of the territory senators expires at the same time as there is an election for the House of Representatives. There is no constitutional requirement for the election of senators to take place at the same time as those for members of the House of Representatives, though the government usually synchronises election dates.

Unquote

Wisdom of the Crowd - new issues

Here are the new issues for your vote.

a) Will you avoid attending high profile, crowded events?
b) Who is the smartest and most capable minister in Singapore?

Vote in
www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg




Wisdom of the Crowd - result

Here are the results of the voting on these issues.

a) Why does the experts plan a curved bridge for the RTS between Singapore and Johor Bahru? (48 Votes )

The answer is found here:
http://www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg/chart.aspx?ID=217


b) Is it proper for the Johor Sultan to object to the design of the bridge? (46 Votes )

A large majority of the Crowd support the action taken by the Johor Sultan.
http://www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg/chart.aspx?ID=218

Vote on the current issues, and win a prize, at
www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg

Thursday, August 17, 2017

Why I invest in Forest City

Mr. Tan,
I read that you bought a unit in Forest City. What are the advantages of Forest City compared to other developments in Johor?

Reply
First, I must warn you that the price of Forest City is 20% higher than the top end developments in Puteri Habor. So, Forest City is expensive.

The key advantages of Forest City are set out in this marketing email:
http://tankinlian.blogspot.sg/2017/08/marketing-pitch-for-forest-city.html

My choice for Forest City are based on:
1. Within 1 hour drive from Second Link.
2. Located in a separate island away from the rest of Johor.
3. A futuristic city.
4. Suitable as a holiday home for my children and grand children.




Wisdom of the Crowd - new issues

Here are the new issues for you to vote:

a) Will you be watching the National Day Rally on television?
b) Are you excited about the Smart Nation initiative?

You can vote in
www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg

Wisdom of the Crowd - results

Here are the results of the voting in The Wisdom of the Crowd.

a) Will the construction of the Kra Canal pose a big threat to Singapore's economy (43 Votes )

The results are quite worrying for Singapore. The Crowd thinks it will happen in the forseeable future.
http://www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg/chart.aspx?ID=215

b) Should new citizens and permanent residents be required to serve National Service? (43 Votes )

The Crowd sends a very strong message to the government. 95% said that new citizens and permanent residents should be required to do National Service, like our local born.
http://www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg/chart.aspx?ID=216

You can vote on other issues at:
www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

A smart way to introduce innovation

Here is a smart way to introduce innovation. I hope that the people responsible for Lee HL's Smart Nation project will consider these simple suggestions.

http://www.tankinlian.com/ArticleDisplay.aspx?ID=1404

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

Make Singapore into a Smart City - the practical way

Here are some simple suggestions to make Singapore into a Smart City quickly and make an immediate and useful impact on the lives of the people.

We should use technology that are already proven and practical. They can be implemented easily and quickly and at very low cost.
http://www.tankinlian.com/ArticleDisplay.aspx?ID=1403

Smart Nation - a big disappointment so far

This is proof of the incompetence of Lee HL's government and on the minister in charge of the Smart Nation project, Vivian Balakrishnan.

They make a lot of hot air and grand promises but achieve very little. Most of their fancy projects did not take off the ground.

They need more practical people to run this Smart Nation initiative.

http://www.channelnewsasia.com/news/singapore/commentary-singapore-s-smart-nation-vision-blurry-without-a-9122400?cid=emarsys-cna_20170815_0125_CNA+-+eNews2+-+Morning_newsletter_15082017_cna&sc_customer=10b49691-b4ce-46cc-9e58-1e4cec0f9b99&sc_src=email&sc_llid=142740&sc_lid=58549441&sc_uid=22K6jmHe3A

Wisdom of the Crowd - new issues for voting

Here are the new issues for voting:

a) What is the best way to help the elderly poor in Singapore?
b) Do you agree with the proposal for public transport to go cashless by 2020?

Vote in
www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg




Marketing pitch for Forest City

Mr Tan,

I am Nurul from Forest City and I am wishing you and family are doing great where ever you are.

Here I would like to share with you the details and payment method as you are required to by pdf, not all the information i can have it because some of them will be write in S&P agreement that customer sign

*Advantage of Forest City*
1) Free Hold Property
2) No Inheritances Tax
3) New CIQ by land and sea to Singapore
4) City with a lot 5 stars and renowned facilities and amenities
5) Green and Smart City with no vehicle on its surface
6) 15 Mins away to future High Speed Rail (Station at Nusajaya)
7) Surrounded by world second biggest mangrove forest reserve
8) Duty Free Zone area
9) golf course resort will be design by Jack Nicklaus and opened at the end of this year
10) smart community ( smart home + smart security)
11) World-class medical services (MJ Group)
12) international school : Shattuck St. Marry's School (opened in August 2018)

Thank You and Have a Nice Day.

Wisdom of the Crowd - results

Here are the results of the voting in The Wisdom of the Crowd.

a) Will there be a contest for the Presidential Election? (49 Votes )
Two thirds say that it will be a walkover. Sorry, no public hoilday. There is a small chance that Dr. Tan Cheng Bock will win his appeal.
http://www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg/chart.aspx?ID=213

b) Should a by-election be called for Marsiling Yew Tee GRC after Halimah Yacob steps down? (46 Votes )

Three quarters said that a by-election should be called. They gave two reasons.
http://www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg/chart.aspx?ID=214

Vote for the current issues at
www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg






Monday, August 14, 2017

Buying an apartment in Forest City

I have recently purchased an unit in Forest City. It is 1,200 sq and cost about SGD 450,000 or about $400 psf. This is 20% more expensive than high end apartments in Puteri Harbor but is about one third of the price in Singapore.

I know that it is difficult to find a tenant or to sell my unit in the future, because there is massive over supply of apartments in Iskandar.

I was surprised that the apartments are selling quite well. I was earlier offered two apartments of 1,800 sf. I did not confirm it within 1 week and they were booked by other buyers.

I did not mind. My wife said that 1,800 sf is too big. So, we opted for the smaller size apartment.

An experience property agent who markets apartments in Puteri Harbor told me that Forest City has developed much better than most people expected. The sales reported by Forest City came from real buyers.

There is restriction on transfer of currency from China to Malaysia, but the buyers from China found a way to get round the restrictions. So, the sales have resumed.

I also read a report from Hong Kong that China had relaxed some of the restriction, but the details are not clear.

One advantage of Forest City is that it is half hour drive from the Second Link. There will be a separate CIQ which will reduce the clearance time. This makes Forest City a good choice for a second home or a holiday home.

The developer planned to bring an international school, a hospital and other business activities to Forest City. If they materialize, it will be good for Forest City. But they do not, Forest City is still an attractive concept.

If you have some spare money lying uninvested and wish to visit Forest City, you can contact me at kinlian@gmail.com.






Perfomance of Government Agencies

How does the Crowd rate the performance of these agencies? Apart from MRT, the performance of the other agencies improved in the latest week.


Find our more at
http://www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg/ChartJS.aspx



Wisdom of the Crowd - new issues

Here are the new issues for you to vote.

a) Will the United States take a first strike against North Korea?
b) Why is the Singapore Sale no longer great?

Vote in
www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg

Performance score of senior ministers

Here are the performance scores of the senior ministers.


Wisdom of the Crowd - Results

Here are the results of the voting in the Wisdom of the Crowd.

a) Will Li Shengwu be convicted of contempt of court? (51 Votes )
45% said "yes". But 55% said "no" for various reasons.
http://www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg/chart.aspx?ID=211

b) Why don't the two governments introduce joint clearance at the causeway and 2nd link? (44 Votes )

The answer looks bad for both governments.
http://www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg/chart.aspx?ID=212

Vote on the current issues in
www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg

Sunday, August 13, 2017

Wisdom of the Crowd - result

Here are the results of the voting:

a) Professor Huang Jing is expelled for being an agent of influence for a foreign country. Which country? (51 Votes )

The answer may surprise you!
http://www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg/chart.aspx?ID=209

b) How should Li Shengwu respond to the action taken by the Attorney General on contempt of court? (47 Votes )

The answer is quite divided.
http://www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg/chart.aspx?ID=210

You can vote on the current issues and win a prize.
www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg

Saturday, August 12, 2017

Provide dedicating parking zones for shared bikes

I suggest that the government should provide dedicated parking zones for shared bikes as part of the public infrastructure.  They should be located next to bus stops, MRT stations and shopping malls.

The users should be required by regulation to leave the shared bikes at the docking stations. This will allow the shared bikes to be docked in an orderly manner and also help other users to locate them.

It will help to promote the use of shared bikes and encourage the users to exercise as a healthy lifestyle habit.

Review the Privacy and Data Protection Act

The Privacy and Data Protection Act (PDPA) was passed in 2012.

Over the past five years, I have been asked to give my consent for my personal data to be collected by the organization whenever I call their call center. If I have to submit a form, I am also asked to read several praragraphs explaining that I have to give my consent for the personal data to be collected.

I have encountered the request for consent a few hundred times.

Surely, this consent is not necessary and could be dispensed with?

If I call a call center or submit a form, I know that my personal data will be used for that transaction. Do I have any choice at all? If I do not give my consernt, how can I get the service that is needed?

This request for consent was caused by the requirement of the PDPA. It states that "Organisations may collect, use or disclose personal data only with the individual's knowledge and consent (with some exceptions)".

I suggest that th requirement for the customer consent be removed.

It can be quite tiresome for the customer to spend a minute to hear this message, when they have to worry about getting the request or transaction to be accepted.

Friday, August 11, 2017

Wisdom of the Crowd - results

Here are the results of the voting in The Wisdom of the Crowd.

a) Should taxis be allowed to deliver goods for ecommerce companies? (50 Votes )

Majority say "Yes".But other voters have some concern. Find out more at:
http://www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg/chart.aspx?ID=207

b) Is Lee HL practicising double standard when he did not sue his siblings for defaming him? (53 Votes )

More than half says "Yes". Find out the views of the others at
http://www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg/chart.aspx?ID=205

c) Will US sanctions against Russia lead to a trade war or serious conflict? (47 Votes )

The views are varied. Find out here.
http://www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg/chart.aspx?ID=206

Give your votes on the active issues in
www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg


Thursday, August 10, 2017

Lee HL's style of government

I am unhappy with Lee HL's governemnt. They refuse to engage the public on issues of public interest, made odd decisions, and even refuse to explain their decisions to the public.

Here are some examples:

a) Design of the curved bridge between Singapore and Johor Bahu (Thank you Tuanku for bringing it up).

b) Why did it take 7 years to discuss this issue between the two governments and end up with an odd design.

c) Why did they charge Li Shengwu for scandalizing the court when many people like Kenneth Jeyaretnam had made stronger statements and were not charged?

d) Why did they expel Prof Huang Jing for "being an agent for a foreign country" when he was apparently doing his job to talk to people and get inputs for our government.

e) Why do they consider a person who has been involved in a senior positon with their party for 20 years considered to be suitable to be elected as an independent president?

Lee HL's highly paid ministers and civil servants must think that the ordinary Singaporeans are idiots. They are right. 70% are idiots for voting this kind of government.

Wisdom of the Crowd - new issues

Here are the new issues for your voting

a) Is it proper for the Johor Sultan to object to the design of the bridge?
b) Why does the experts plan a curved bridge for the RTS between Singapore and Johor Bahru?

Vote in
www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg

Wisdom of the Crowd - results

Here are the results on the voting at the Wisdom of the Crowd.

a) What will happen to President Donald Trump? (54 Votes )
The top choices are that he will complete one term or will be impeached.
http://www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg/chart.aspx?ID=202

b) What will America do about North Korea? (47 Votes
Nearly half of the Crowd thinks that America will continue to ask China to deal with the problem. The next choice is a limited military strike.
http://www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg/chart.aspx?ID=203

You can vote on other issues and win a prize.
www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg






Superannuation in Australia is better than CPF

Check this video out

https://vimeo.com/145196703

Look how easy it is for me to make investment switches for my own superannuation investment and how much control I have over how my money is invested.

Look also at how much returns I'm enjoying. Depending on the fund I choose returns can be anything from 3.4% p.a. for Bonds up to 16.99% p.a. for Global Environmental Opportunities (e.g. renewal energy and its related areas).

CPF is a ponzi fund by comparison. With CPF you get no choice I believe. And a terrible ROI of 2.5% right? I don't see ANY benefit at all with CPF. They make it complicated to access information and it's rigid rules mean that you essentially have no power to decide how your money is invested.

Superannuation in Australia is fantastic by comparison.

Also the website of my super fund shows me the returns over time for the one dozen or so options I get to choose from. I am able to vary the time period and see the graphs adjust immediately. I take note of the peaks and troughs and decide on which investment option based on my own stomach for risk and return.

Most of the investment options are very well managed and therefore I choose the one with the highest returns. When that fund falls, the other funds also fall with it but the fall is mostly similar in magnitude. The gains however can be double for the same period. So over time, I actually gain more by investing in a "higher growth" option.

This particular super fund I'm with has been voted Australia's "best super fund" for a number of years. The competition among super funds also results in better investment products and scrutiny from consumers and super fund consumer groups.

I hope you find this insight useful.

Wednesday, August 09, 2017

Singapore Johor Bahru Rapid Transit System (RTS)

The Singapore Johor Bahru Rapid Transit System (RTS) will be operational by 31 Dec 2024, i.e. 7 years time. It has already been discussed for 7 years since 2010. I wonder if it will really be completed by the deadline or will be further delayed by more discussions.

When it is operational, I expect that it will take the people who now travel by buses and train. There will be a joint clearance (I hope) so the time spent at the checkpoints will be reduced considerably.

In 7 years time, I will be 76 years old. I wonder if I can still travel to Johor Bahru? I also wonder if I will still be around?


Performance of ministers and agencies

The performance trend of ministers and agencies are now starting to show reliable results. The trend has stopped falling and is now moving slightly upwards for a few ministers and agencies. We now have sufficient number of votes (average of 200) to give a reliable indication.

http://www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg/ChartJS.aspx

Among the agencies, bus performed best with a score of 48. MRT performed worse with a score of 18.

Among the first group of ministers, DPM Tharman has the highest score of 56. The lowest scores are for PM Lee with 23 and Khaw Boon Wan with 20.

Among the second group of Ministers, Lim Hng Khiang has the highest score of 33 (but the score keeps dropping). The lowest score in this group are for Lim Swee Say with 23 and Chan Chun Sing with 21.

Among the third group of ministers, Tan Chuan Jin has the highest score of 33. The lowest score goes to Grace Fu at 21.


Wisdom of the Crowd - new issues

Here are the new issues for you to vote and win a prize.

a) Will the construction of the Kra Canal pose a big threat to Singapore's economy
b) Should new citizens and permanent residents be required to serve National Service?

Vote in
www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg




Wisdom of the Crowd - results

Here are the results of the voting in The Wisdom of the Crowd.

a) Why does the government take so long to reduce the jam at the causeway? (57 Votes )

The Crowd does not know the real reason. The answers are quite mixed.
http://www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg/chart.aspx?ID=200

b) Will a joint immigration clearance help to reduce the jam at the causeway and second link (57 Votes )

Over 90% said that this is a good idea. It is a wonder why our highly paid civil servants and ministers are unable to see it and to work with the Malaysian side to implement it. We have incompetent leaders.
http://www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg/chart.aspx?ID=201

You can vote on the current issues in
www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg

Tuesday, August 08, 2017

Follow the German system

Many young people opt to get a degree because the pay of a graduate is much higher than a non-graduate. We now have a situation that there are too many graduates and not enough good paying jobs. Many graduates are unemployed or have accepted part time or low paying jobs. The supply and demand has gone out of balance.

Germany has a better way to deal with this challenge. They encourage young people to become apprentices and get the skills and work experience of their vocations. The apprentices earn an allowance through their work and spend half the time attending schools specific to their vocations.
After completing a 4 years apprentice, they earn a salary that is slighly lower than a graduate. The difference is about 10 percent.

Germany has a strong economy because its workers have skills and experience and are able to command high pay.

Monday, August 07, 2017

Wisdom of the Crowd - new issues

Here are the new issues for you to vote.

a) Will there be a contest for the Presidential Election?
b) Should a by-election be called for Marsiling Yew Tee GRC after Halimah Yacob steps down?

Give your vote in www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg

Vote on the other issues and win a prize.
www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg/page/115

Reserved presidential election - three possible outcomes

There is a strong likelihood that the presidential election will be a walkover. This is how the Crowd will respond to the walkover.  20% will accept the outcome. 80% will be unhappy and will show their displeasure in one of three ways.
http://www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg/chart.aspx?ID=181

If there is a contest between Halimah Yacob and Salleh Marican, this is how the Crowd would vote. 71% will spoil their votes and the remainder will be split between the two candidates. Halimah will get more votes than Salleh.
http://www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg/chart.aspx?ID=139

If there is a contest between Halimah Yacob and Abdullah Tarmugi (a former minister), the spoilt vote will reduce to 60%, but Abdullah will get 7 times the votes given to Halimah. Perhaps he is perceived as being independent and more suitable than Halimah.
http://www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg/chart.aspx?ID=186

Transport minister's statement is absurd

Transport Minister asked the journalists to fix the MRT breakdown, if they are so smart. (75 Votes )

80% consider his statement to be absurd.
http://www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg/chart.aspx?ID=199

Halimah Yacob as candidate for reserved President

Just out. Here are the results of the voting on the question - "Will you accept Halimah Yacob as a candidate for the reserved Presidential Election? (71 Votes )".

Only 10% say "Yes". The others said "No" for several reasons.
Find out at:
http://www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg/chart.aspx?ID=198

Sunday, August 06, 2017

Acting for a foreign country to influence our foreign policy

I am quite puzzled about this accusation that the Prof Huang Jing is "acting for a foreign country to influence our foreign policy". (Disclaimer: I do not know Prof Huang Jing).

We need various sources of reliable information to conduct our foreign policy.

Our ambassadors are based in foreign countries and they have to talk to leaders and influential people (including think tanks) in those countries and convey their views to our government.

They also have to convey our government's views to these leaders and influential people, and get them to be on our side, i.e. to influence their foreign policy in our favor.

Similarly, the ambassadors of other countries based in Singapore have to contact our leaders and influential people. They will also have to convey the views of their government to our leaders and influential people and get our people to understand and be supportive of their foreign policy.

All these activities are part of diplomacy and should be treated as normally acceptable activities.

When our influential people get the feedback, they should pass them to our government leaders. It is the job of the government and foreign minister to decide on foreign policy after getting these feedbacks.

Surely our foreign minister is able to handle and evaluate the feedback? Surely Prof Huang is doing his job to provide the feedback to our government? Surely all feedback is meant to influence our foreign policy?

What did Prof Huang did wrong?


Wisdom of the Crowd - new issues

Here are two new issues for you to vote.

a) Will Li Shengwu be convicted of contempt of court?
b) Why don't the two governments introduce joint clearance at the causeway and 2nd link?

You will get this prize after voting on 10 issues.
www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg/page/115

Click on "Vote" to submit your vote.

Saturday, August 05, 2017

My view about the statement by Li Shengwu

Li Shengwu, the nephew of PM Lee, posted a comment that we have a "pliant court system". The Attorney General has taken a proceeding in court against this comment, which is alleged to be a contempt of court.

I consider this statement to be just a personal opinion. It is not interfering with the administration of justice. It is not directed at any specific judge.

This statement does not seem to fit into the offence of scandalising the court, as explained here:
https://en.wikipedia.org/…/Offence_of_scandalizing_the_cour…

Quote:
In Singapore, the offence of scandalizing the court is committed when a person performs any act or publishes any writing that is calculated to bring a court or a judge of the court into contempt, or to lower his authority. An act or statement that alleges bias, lack of impartiality, impropriety or any wrongdoing concerning a judge in the exercise of his judicial function falls within the offence.
Unquote.

Mr Li 's statement refers to a "pliant court system". It is the opinion of one person. Most thinking people will form their own opinion, based on their own experience and information from many sources. They are not likely to be influenced by the opinion of a single person. I do not think that Mr Li's opinion had that much of an influence, with due respect to him.

By taking this action, the government and Attorney General are now caught in a bind.

If the court finds the statement to be offensive, it might reinforce the belief of a pliant court system. If the court finds the statement to be just a personal opinion, it might show the court to be independant. It is ironic.

It is best for the Attorney General to drop this case and let the matter rest. Mr. Li had already corrected his posting and clarified that he did not intend to bring the court to disrepute.

Wisdom of the Crowd - results

Here are the results of the voting on these issues:

a) What are your views about the haze caused by forest fires in Indonesia?

Most respondents are unhappy with the limited action taken by the Indonesian authority.
http://www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg/chart.aspx?ID=196


b) Do you accept the 2020 target on rail reliability set by the transport minister? (76 Votes )

Most respondents are unhappy with the approach taken by the transport minister.
http://www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg/chart.aspx?ID=195

c) Do you like the Privacy and Data Protection Act (PDPA)? (63 Votes )

Most respondents do not like the PDPA.
http://www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg/chart.aspx?ID=197




Wisdom of the Crowd - issues for voting

Here are the issues for your votes.

a) Professor Huang Jing is expelled for being an agent of influence for a foreign country. Which country?
b) How should Li Shengwu respond to the action taken by the Attorney General on contempt of court?

Give your votes in
www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg

Friday, August 04, 2017

Opt out of Eldershield?

Hi Mr Tan,
Do you think Eldershield is necessary since we already had Medisave and Medishield? I am thinking of opting out

REPLY
Here are the articles that I have written about Eldershield.
http://www.fisca.sg/Article.aspx?Keyword=eldershield

You have to join FISCA to read these articles.
www.fisca.sg/register.aspx

Voluntary no-pay leave

Singapore Airlines has to reduce its cost. It is now offering voluntary no-pay leave. This is a good approach to tide over a difficult period. It is also good to allow people to have more free time, if they can afford to take a reduced pay.

http://www.channelnewsasia.com/…/singapore-airlines-offers-…

Crowd votes on the issues involving Aljunied Hougang Town Council

Here are the results of the voting on two issues involving the Aljunied Hougang Town Council.

a) Is it proper for an independent panel to be appointed to look into the lapses in Aljunied Town Council? (71 Votes )

Only 13% agrees with this approach. The remainder does not agree.
http://www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg/chart.aspx?ID=194


b) Is the proper for the independent panel to sue the Aljunied MPs to recover the improper payments? (72 Votes )

Only 3% agrees with this action.
http://www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg/chart.aspx?ID=193

Click on the links to view the results.

Click here to vote on the other issues that are still active.
www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg

Thursday, August 03, 2017

Wisdom of the Crowd - new issues for voting


Here are the issues for your voting:

a) Is Lee HL practicising double standard when he did not sue his siblings for defaming him?
b) Will US sanctions against Russia lead to a trade war or serious conflict?
c) Should taxis be allowed to deliver goods for ecommerce companies?

Give your vote in www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg
You will win a prize for voting

Wisdom of the Crowd - results

Here are the results of the voting under The Wisdom of the Crowd.

a) What will you do if the elected President is a walkover? (64 Votes )

Only 20% will accept the results. The remainder will protest against the walkover in several ways. It will reflect badly on Lee HL.
http://wisdomofthecrowd.sg/chart.aspx?ID=181

b) Is it proper for Halimah Yacob to be accepted as a candidate for Presidential Election (70 Votes )

Only 6% find her suitable. 50% consider her to be unsuitable for one of a few reasons. The others said that she should not be elected through a walkover.
http://wisdomofthecrowd.sg/chart.aspx?ID=182






Do not be misled by this kind of dishonest sales marketing

Hi Mr Tan,
Recently an representative from X (an insurance company) approached me who trying to is sell a unit trust plan that allows investor to collect dividends til death (Sounds interesting, so is it the case if everybody buy this then no need CPF LIFE?)

Read the details of this policy and my reply here.
http://www.fisca.sg/ArticleDisplay.aspx?ID=504

I advised the consumer - DO NOT BE MISLED BY THIS KIND OF DISHONEST SALES MARKETING.

Wednesday, August 02, 2017

Wisdom of the crowd - Results

The results of the voting is now available for viewing.

a) Why does the government waive the levy for employment pass holders? (66 Votes )

62% said that they should introduce the levy for employment pass holders. The other 38% identified 2 reasons for the government's decision to waive the levy.
http://www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg/chart.aspx?ID=192

b) Why do employers prefer foreigners when Singaporeans are willing to do the job? (69 Votes )

61% said that foreign workers are cheaper. But the other 39% gave other reasons.
http://www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg/chart.aspx?ID=191

Give your votes on the these current issues:
www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg






Tuesday, August 01, 2017

HDB flats have no value at end of 99 years

Only 18% consider it fair that the value of HDB flat wil be $0 at the end of 99 years. The others felt that this is unfair. You can read their reasons here.
http://www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg/chart.aspx?ID=174

Wisdom of the Crowd - new issues

Here are new issues for voting:

a) Why does the government take so long to reduce the jam at the causeway?
b) Will a joint immigration clearance help to reduce the jam at the causeway and second link

You can submit your vote at
www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg

You can win a prize for voting.

A little know secret can help you to earn much more

Young people should pay attention to this little known secret.
It can help them to get much more from investing their savings for retirement.
If they buy a bad financial product, a large part of the accumulated savings will be taken away.
If they know this little known secret and invest in the right product, they can keep most of the accumulated savings for themselves.
http://www.fisca.sg/ArticleDisplay.aspx?ID=497

Monday, July 31, 2017

Performance Trend for ministers and agencies - update

The performance score of many ministers and agencies continue to drop with the latest scores (30 July), but there are some exceptions. Who are these exceptions?

After viewing them, click on "Submit Your Vote" to express your views.
http://www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg/ChartJS.aspx

Vote these issues

Here are the active issues that you can vote on and win a prize.
http://www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg/active_issue.aspx

Wisdom of the Crowd - Results

You can view the results of the voting on these issues:

a) Should the government provide regulations on shared bikes? (59 Votes )
22% said that this should be left to private enterprise but the others identified the areas that should be regulated.
http://www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg/chart.aspx?ID=190

b) Where is the best place to leave a shared bike, e.g. Ofobike? (66 Votes )
Nearly half said that the bikes should be left at designed places.
http://www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg/chart.aspx?ID=189

c) Do we have to pay high salaries to attract talented people into politics? (62 Votes )
Only 5% agree with the current policy of paying high salaries. The other 95% strongly disagree.
http://www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg/chart.aspx?ID=187

d) What do you think about the collapse of the PIE viaduct? (58 Votes )
A large majority blame the government agencies for the collapse.
http://www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg/chart.aspx?ID=188




Sunday, July 30, 2017

Should I move to an Integrated Shield plan?


Mr. Tan
I am now insured under Medishield Life. An agent asked me to move to an Integrated plan. Should I move?

REPLY
You can find the answer here
http://www.fisca.sg/ArticleDisplay.aspx?ID=503

Wisdom of the Crowd - issues for voting

Here are the new issues for you to vote:

a) Would you accept Halimah Yacob as a candidate for the reserved Presidential Election? 0
b) Transport Minister asked the journalists to fix the MRT breakdown, if they are so smart.

Vote here:
www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg

You will win a prize for submitting 10 votes.

Walkover for the reserved Presidential Election?

There is a strong likelihood that the reserved presidential election will be a walkover. How does the Crowd feel about it?
You can see their views here. Lee HL should worry about the outcome.

http://www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg/chart.aspx?ID=181

Saturday, July 29, 2017

Deplorable reply from transport minister

Transport minister Khaw BW held a media briefing to announce the rail reliability target for 2020. The journalists asked him some questions about the current train breakdown in Singapore.

The minister chided the journalists. He said that it is not easy to fix the engineering problems. He challenged them to try to solve the problem if they are so smart.

I find the minister's remarks to be deplorable. The journalists are required to do their job as journalists. They are not supposed to be experts in engineering.

The transport ministry, the Land Transport Authority and the train operators are supposed to employ the engineering experts. They are supposed to identify the problems and to find the solutions.

The correct benchmark is the breakdown frequency of other train systems around the world. Do these train systems break down as often as has happened in Singapore. Some of these systems are older than our train system.

If our engineers are not up to mark, the transport minister should look for other engineers to fix the problem. He should not rely on journalists to give him the solution.

It is absurb for the minister to speak in this manner.

Sad to say, this is the quality of the ministers and the top officials that are appointed by PM Lee HL to run Singapore. It seemed that paying top salaries, in the millions of dollars, does not provide the answer.

We do need a change of government.

Wisdom of the Crowd - results

Here are the results of voting on these issues:

a) Was PM Lee's attendance at the G20 meeting good for Singapore? (65 Votes )

This is what the Crowd thinks. It does not look good for PM Lee.
http://www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg/chart.aspx?ID=175

b) Do you accept that HDB flats will have no value at the end of the 99 year lease? (71 Votes )

Only 18% accept this outcome to be fair. The remainder felt otherwise. Look as their reasons:
http://www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg/chart.aspx?ID=174

Friday, July 28, 2017

Should I buy an integrated Shield plan?

I have often been asked - should I buy an integrated Shield plan and which should I buy?

My answer is simple.

If you are affluent and well off, you can buy an integrated Shield plan. Your total life time cost could be much higher, but it does not matter, because you can afford the high premiums and you want the best for yourself. You are also able to choose your own doctor to treat you.

But, if you are not well off, you should read the following article.
http://www.fisca.sg/ArticleDisplay.aspx?ID=502

Changes to PDPA

It looks like the Privacy and Data Protection Act (PDPA) has led to cumbersome outcomes. The proposed changes to the PDPA seeks to address the unnecessary obstacles for business to operate efficiently.

I have a lot of complaint about the PDPA. It is supposed to help consumers. But it turned out to be causing stress to consumers.

For example, if I telephone a company, I get a lot of unnecessary mesages.that give stress to me. I have heard the same message a few thousand times. Each time, it takes 1 minute of my time.


I still get marketing calls from overseas. The PDPA is supposed to stop these calls. But it is not working.

http://www.todayonline.com/…/companies-may-use-customers-pe…

Has the problem caused by haze reduced?

Has the problem caused by haze reduced in recent years? Give your views here.
www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg

Reserved Presidential Election

Who will you vote in the President Election - Halimah or Abdullah? (64 Votes )

If Adbullah Tarmugi, former speaker and former minister, stands as an independent candidate against Halimah Yacob, endorsed by PAP?

View the results in
http://www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg/chart.aspx?ID=186

Thursday, July 27, 2017

Give your votes on these issues concerning Aljunied Town Council

Here are two new issues on Aljunied Town Council for your votes.

a) Is it proper for an independent panel to be appointed to look into the lapses in Aljunied Town Council?
b) Is the proper for the independent panel to sue the Aljunied MPs to recover the improper payments?

Give your vote in www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg

Performance of ministers and agencies

It is quite worrisome to see all the lines going down. They measure the performance of the ministers and agencies. As more people started to vote here, the results are dropping, dropping.

At some point, the results will turn up. But meanwhile, it keeps moving down.

This will be worrisome for Lee HL as well.

http://www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg/ChartJS.aspx

You can click on "Submit Your Vote" and your vote. Hopefully, your vote will be more positive and help to turn the trend up.

You can win a prize after submitting your votes on all the ministers and agencies.

Wisdom of the Crowd - results

View the results of the voting in The Wisdom of the Crowd.

a) What cause the high divorce rate in Singapore (63 Votes )
The results are quite surprising. Look and see for yourself.
http://www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg/chart.aspx?ID=183

b) Will the dispute between India and China over the Himilayan terrirtory lead to armed conflict? (60 Votes )
The results say - no war.
http://www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg/chart.aspx?ID=185

c) Which is your favorate TV channel (60 Votes )
Wow! 67% hardly watch TV. This is bad for the TV stations.
http://www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg/chart.aspx?ID=184

Submit your votes on the current issues and win a prize.
www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg

Look beyond the Workers Party MPs

Someone said that the lapses by the Aljunied MPs (from the Workers Party)  in running the town council will give a bad name to the opposition parties. The voters will be afraid to vote for opposition parties in the future.

I disagree with this view. In fact, I empathise with the Aljunied MPs. They were given a very difficult task.

When the WorkersPafrty won over the Aljunied constituency, there were faced with termination of contracts by the existing contractors, the termination by the managing agent and the withdrawal of the town council computer system.


They have to find alternatives within a short time. If not, who is going to clear the rubbish and clean the estates?

I cricitize the PAP government for creating this terrible state of affairs. It is terrible for them to make the MPs handle the work of the town council and to get a system where the existing contractors can hold the new MPs to ransom.

I find it deplorable for the PAP government to behave in this manner, without regard for the interest of the residents and ignoring their wish for a change in the people elected to represent them.

All this manipulations will not contribute towards improving the lives of the people and addressing the issues that they face in their daily lives.

I hope that the people all over Singapore will remember who is responsible for creating this mess and not be fooled into criticising the Aljunied MPs, who did their best under very difficult circumstances. Let us look at what cause this bad situation to arise in the first place.

Tuesday, July 25, 2017

New issues for voting

Here are job related issues for voting in The Wisdom of the Crowd.

a) Why does the government waive the levy for employment pass holders?
b) Why do employers prefer foreigners when Singaporeans are willing to do the job?

Vote in www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg

Monday, July 24, 2017

Display the Sequential Stop Number in Bus

This email is sent to Mr. Khaw Boon Wan in the Ministry of Transport. Will I get a reply or will this suggestion be totally ignored?

Dear Minister,

I enclose a suggestion for your consideration.
Please pass it to the Land Transport Authority.
Please ask your assistant to acknowledge receipt of this email.
Thank you.

http://www.tankinlian.com/ArticleDisplay.aspx?ID=1392

Bought an unsuitable life insurance policy

Many young people approach me for advice AFTER they have bought a life insurance polity that they find later to be unsuitable. It is already too late. Here is my tip on what they can do.
http://www.fisca.sg/ArticleDisplay.aspx?ID=499

Wisdom of the Crowd - results

The voting on these issues are now ready for viewing.

a) Is the law applied fairly in Singapore? (69 Votes )

Half of the Crowd said that we have two standards. This is really sad.
http://www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg/chart.aspx?ID=179

b) Should a person be charged for describing our court as being "pliant". (69 Votes )

More than half said "no". They gave their reasons.
http://www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg/chart.aspx?ID=178

You click here to vote on the current issues:
www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg




Sunday, July 23, 2017

Tips for young people - should I continue my life insurance policy?

I have often received an email from a young person who bought a life insurance policy recently and now have second thoughts about the policy. They asked me for my view on whether they should terminate the policy.

I find it difficult to answer this question.
Read more.
http://www.fisca.sg/ArticleDisplay.aspx?ID=499






Avoid the same mistake made by this young NS man

Dear Mr Tan,
I had bought a Pruflexicash policy in March this year. I was told to listen to their talk for a 5 dollar NTUC voucher, therefore felt more obliged. The adviser talked to me about many benefits of the policy including showing me the percentage difference between investing in the bank compared to their savings plan.
I have already given 10 months worth of premiums.

After having financial difficulties recently due to NS, I realized that i had made a big mistake after going online and finding out many flaws with the plan. I realized i did not really understand the plan. and I could have used the money in a better way.

Currently, I have told the adviser i want to stop the plan but she told me I would have to surrender the money already collected. I am financial difficulty and don't know how to get the money back. If there is any advice you could give I would be very thankful.


Dear
There is no way you can get the money back. You have lost all the 10 months premium.
You can see if you will lose more by continuing the policy, or if you can get some of it back after two years.


Tip
For young people who have not fallen into this trap. it is best to avoid it. Here is a little known secret that can change your financial future.
http://www.fisca.sg/ArticleDisplay.aspx?ID=497




Replace the disastrous BTO system for building HDB flats

The BTO (build to order) system is very stupid. It is very bad. It forces familes to wait for another 3 to 4 years to get married. By that time, they will be in their mid 30s.

The waiting time could be reduced to less than 1 year, if the government builds the HDB flats in advance.

There is little risk of building in advance with public demand. There is a guaranteed demand for 20,000 new flats every years. In a recession, this demand may slow down but only for a year or so. The pent-up demand will take up the over supply when the economy turns around.

Read more about this common sense approach here:
http://www.tankinlian.com/ArticleDisplay.aspx?ID=1390

CECA was a disaster for Singapore

DPM Tharman had said it. "Wrong to have free flow of people".
He is admitting that the free flow of professionals under the CECA (Comprehensive Economic Cooperation Agreement with India) was a big mistake. In fact, a disaster.
But, he did not say who was responsible for this disaster. The PAP never admit their mistake.
The biggest mistake is to appoint inexperienced people to run big ministries and government agencies. The people who negotiated the CECA agreement probably fall into this category.

Quote:
Singapore has been one of the strongest advocates when it comes to the free flow of goods and services, but there must be limits to the movement of people.

Otherwise there will be less push for businesses to be more productive, and "more fundamentally, you become a society where people don't feel it's their own society", said Deputy Prime Minister Tharman Shanmugaratnam yesterday at an economics forum in India.

"This is a reality not just because of (President Donald) Trump in the US or Brexit in UK. It is a reality all over the world,'' he said when asked a question about tighter restrictions on Indian professionals moving to Singapore.
Unquote

Wisdom of the Crowd - new issues for voting

New issues for voting in The Wisdom of the Crowd.

a) Should the government provide regulations on shared bikes?
b) Where is the best place to leave a shared bike, e.g. Ofobike?

Vote in
www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg

Win a prize by submitting 10 votes, 20 votes, etc

Saturday, July 22, 2017

Is this a beter method to buy the STI ETF?

Dear Mr Tan,
I wish to seek your opinion on a concept for buying STI ETF more profitably.

Currently, there are a few Dollar-cost averaging monthly investment plans by different financial institutions. On a fixed day of each month, the financial institution will buy shares/ STI ETF on their customers' behalf. For Poems, it is on the 18th of each month. For OCBC, it is on 22th of each month.

Since they buy the shares in bulk on the 18th and 22th on each month, it is logical that the STI will rise slightly if their buying volume is high enough. This is especially so as most of the shares that they offer for their monthly investment schemes are blue-chips and STI ETF.

If I were an long-term investor who buys STI ETF on a monthly basis (based on Dollar-cost averaging), will i get to buy it at a slightly lower price of say 0.5% a couple of days before the 18th of each month?

Find out the answer here:
http://www.fisca.sg/ArticleDisplay.aspx?ID=498

Wisdom of the Crowd - new issues for voting

Here are the new issues for your voting:

a) Do we have to pay high salaries to attract talented people into politics?
b) What do you think about the collapse of the PIE viaduct?

Constructing a viaduct

Look at how Singapore construct our viaduct. Well, one viaduct had collapsed during construction.

http://www.channelnewsasia.com/…/pie-work-site-accident-cra…

Watch this video to see how China constructs its viaduct. It is so sad, that Singapore had remained so backward under the PAP government.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T7hdo9tL6u0

We have to change the way that Singapore is governed.

A little known secret can change your financial future

I wish to share with you a little known secret that could change your financial future.

Most working people do not know how to invest for the future. We should not blame them, for their main focus is work hard at their job and to earn a good income. They do not have time to become financial experts. They should not spend this time, unless they take it as a hobby, and have plenty of time to spare. Most people have too many other things that they have to take care of in their daily lives.

So, they rely on financial experts to handle their investments for them. In most cases, the end up investing most of their savings in a life insurance policy.

A life insurance policy is a good way to invest long term savings. But it has one serious drawback that most ordinary people are not aware of.

I want to share with you a little known secret that can change your financial future.
http://www.fisca.sg/ArticleDisplay.aspx?ID=497

Wisdom of the Crowd - voting on Uber

These results are ready for viewing.

a) Is it risky to book a Uber car? (55 Votes )

Passengers are getting concerned about the recent accidents involving young drivers.
http://www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg/chart.aspx?ID=177

b) Should there be a minimum age for private hired car drivers? (59 Votes )

A large majority prefer the setting of a minimum of two years driving experience or a minimum age of 30 years.
http://www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg/chart.aspx?ID=176




Thursday, July 20, 2017

Should I terminate my PruFlexicash?

Dear Mr Tan,
I am a student who bought th PruFlexicash insurance plan, 11 months ago. And I am wondering if I should terminate the policy. Can you please advise me? Thank you!

REPLY
Read this article
http://www.fisca.sg/Article.aspx?Keyword=PRUFLEXICASH
Watch the videos here to learn how to get a better financial plan for your future.
www.tankinlian.com/video.aspx




Build HDB flats in advance of demand

Singapore has a unique system of building public flats. It is called the BTO system. This is a stupid system, designed by a stupid goverment.

Why do I say so?

Here is the answer:
http://www.tankinlian.com/ArticleDisplay.aspx?ID=1390

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Wisdom of the Crowd - issues for voting

Issues for voting

a) What cause the high divorce rate in Singapore?
b) Which is your favorite TV channel?
c) Will the dispute between India and China over the Himilayan terrirtory lead to armed conflict?

www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

Scandalising the court

If someone says "we have a pliant court system" and it is his honest opinion and he says it without malice, should he be charged for "scandalising the court"?

Suppose many people hold this opinion, but they are not willing to say it for fear of being charged, does this reflect a sad state of affair for our country?

My personal view is that most of our judges do act independently and fairly. However, they are some occasions where I am very disappointed with the judgment. Am I scandalising the court in expressing this honest opinion?

What is fair criticism that is a defence against scandalizing the court?

I found this passage in the case where author Alan Shadrake was charged under this offence and found guilty.

For example, in Ambard (which is often cited as one of the seminal cases with regard to fair criticism), the key passage in Lord Atkin’s judgment (delivered on behalf of the Privy Council) is as follows (at 335):

But whether the authority and position of an individual judge, or the due administration of justice, is concerned, no wrong is committed by any member of the public who exercises the ordinary right of criticising, in good faith, in private or public, the public act done in the seat of justice. The path of criticism is a public way: the wrong headed are permitted to err therein: provided that members of the public abstain from imputing improper motives to those taking part in the administration of justice, and are genuinely exercising a right of criticism, and not acting in malice or attempting to impair the administration of justice, they are immune. Justice is not a cloistered virtue: she must be allowed to suffer the scrutiny and respectful, even though outspoken, comments of ordinary men.

Wisdom of the Crowd - view these results

Here are the results of the issues that have just closed.


a) Can we promote neighborliness through a WhatsApp group (55 Votes )

The views are quite mixed.
http://www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg/chart.aspx?ID=172


b) Who has LKY's skills in diplomacy, pragmatism, prudence, astuteness, mental faculty and strength? (64 Votes )

The results are quite surprising. The majority said "None of them". But the next highest vote goes to someone that I did not expect.
http://www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg/chart.aspx?ID=171

c) Did the government handled the closure of Sungei Road Market well? (56 Votes )


The results reflect badly on the government.
http://www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg/chart.aspx?ID=173




What constitutes "scandalising the court"

Does a statement that we have a "pliant court system" fall within the offence of scandalizing the court?

I believe that it does not. This statement is not directed at any specific judge in the exercise of his judicial function and is not interfering with the administration of justice.

It should be treated as a fair criticism under freedom of speech.

From Wikidedia.

In Singapore, the offence of scandalizing the court is committed when a person performs any act or publishes any writing that is calculated to bring a court or a judge of the court into contempt, or to lower his authority. An act or statement that alleges bias, lack of impartiality, impropriety or any wrongdoing concerning a judge in the exercise of his judicial function falls within the offence.

The High Court and the Court of Appeal are empowered by section 7(1) of the Supreme Court of Judicature Act (Cap. 322, 2007 Rev. Ed.) to punish for contempt of court. This provision is statutory recognition of the superior courts' inherent jurisdiction to uphold the proper administration of justice. The Subordinate Courts are also empowered by statute to punish acts of contempt.

Although Article 14(1)(a) of the Constitution of the Republic of Singapore protects every citizen's right to freedom of speech and expression, the High Court has held that the offence of scandalizing the court falls within the category of exceptions from the right to free speech expressly stipulated in Article 14(2)(a).

Some commentators have expressed the view that the courts have placed excessive value on protecting the independence of the judiciary, and have given insufficient weight to free speech.

In Singapore, an "inherent tendency" test has been held to strike the right balance between the right to freedom of speech and the need to protect the dignity and integrity of the courts.

To establish the offence, the claimant must prove beyond reasonable doubt that the act or words complained of have an inherent tendency to interfere with the administration of justice.

The inherent tendency test has been held to be justified by the small geographical size of Singapore, the fact that there is no jury system and that judges have to decide both questions of law and fact, and that the test renders proof of damage to the administration of justice unnecessary.

Although Singapore law does not set out the sanctions that may be imposed for contempt of court, it is accepted that the courts may impose reasonable fines and imprisonment. To decide what punishment is appropriate, the culpability of the offender and the likely interference with the administration of justice are considered. The only defence available to the offence of scandalizing the court is to prove that the allegedly contemptuous act or statement amounts to fair criticism, which involves showing that the criticism was made respectfully and in good faith.

Monday, July 17, 2017

New issues for voting

Here are the issues for you to vote:

a) What will you do if the elected President is a walkover?
b) Is it proper for Halimah Yacob to be accepted as a candidate for Presidential Election

Give your vote in www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg

Wisdom of the Crowd - results

Here are the results of the voting on these issues.

a) What are your views about the personal attack by the Deputy Attorney General on Dr. Tan Cheng Bock? (89 Votes )

65% say that the conduct of the DAG should be condemned.
http://www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg/chart.aspx?ID=166

b) What are your views on the court's decision to reject Dr. Tan Cheng Bock's challenge? (81 Votes )

58% say that the court should act independently and say that the change is unconstitutional.
http://www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg/chart.aspx?ID=167

c) What should Dr. Tan Cheng Bock do now about his political goal? (76 Votes )

Over 70% said that he should join an existing political party or form a new party.
http://www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg/chart.aspx?ID=168






Sunday, July 16, 2017

Comedy of the Elected President

Three decades ago, Mr. Lee Kuan Yew had a horrifying thought. What would happen to Singapore if one day, another party came into power and the Peoples' Action Party was kicked out of government.

He devised the concept of the Elected President with custodial powers on the use of past reserves and on senior appointments into the public service. This was intended to come into operation in the event of a change of government.

After President Ong Teng Cheong was elected as the first Elected President, things did not went as planned. President Ong was diligent in carrying out his duty. Although he was formerly from the PAP, he felt that it was his duty to check on the actions of the current PAP government. The relationship between President Ong and the government soured.

Act 1 of the comedy was an Elected President checking on the current government, that was not intended to be in the plan.

President S R Nathan was elected unopposed as the Elected President for the following two terms. Other candidates who were willing to stand for election were declared to be not qualified, i.e. not meeting the stringent qualifications specified in the constitution.

Act 2 of the comedy was an Elected President, who was supposed to have the direct mandate of the people, being elected unopposed, through a walkover.

The presidential election in 2011 was a watershed. Apart from the government supported candidate, three other candidates stood for election. It was a four corner fight. The winning candidate who was endorsed by the current government was elected with only 35.2% of the votes, which was only 0.3% higher than the second candidate. There was no provision for a runoff election

Act 3 of the comedy was an Elected President whose authority was supposed to come from a direct mandate of the people, assuming office with only 35.2% of the votes.

In the run-up to the presidential election in 2017, the government was adamant in continuing the comedy of the Elected President. They changed the constitution to raise the bar for qualification as a candidate and provided for a reserved election where all of the candidates have to come from a certain ethnic group.

Act 4 of the comedy was the concept of a reserved election in a country where the people live in harmony regardless of language, race or religion.

The change to the constitution also provided for increased powers given to the appointed members of the Council of Presidential Advisers. The government did not trust the Elected President and felt that they need to have another body to check on the Elected President.

Act 5 of the comedy was that the unelected members of the Council could override the decision of the Elected President in some specified instances. Their role went beyond advising the president

There is the likelihood that the next Elected President will be returned unopposed through another walkover. It is also possible that this Elected President, who was supposed to be appointed from a reserved ethnic group, may not be truly representative of that ethnic group. There are many mixed marriages in our multi racial society.

Act 6 of the comedy will be an Elected President who qualified through a reserved election turning out to be not purely from that reserved ethnic group.

Enjoy this comedy.

Worker Party Community Fund Walk

I joined the Worker Party Community Fund walk this morning. The event was well attended. It was also well organized with many activities following the 2.5 km walk.

All the WP MPs participated in the walk. I had a good chat with Low Thia Kiang, Chen Show Mao, Png Eng Huat and Faisal Manap during the walk. I also said hello to Pritam Singh.

I posted a few short videos of the walk. The participants had an enjoyable time and good fellowship.

Wisdom of the Crowd - new issues

Here are some issues for you to vote:

a) Should a person be charged for describing our court as being "compliant". Lee Hsieng Yang's son has used the description of "a compliant court system" in a recent posting.

b) Is the law applied fairly in Singapore?

Give your vote in www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg




Saturday, July 15, 2017

Premiums for private Shield plans are very expensive

I have often advised older people to avoid the integrated Shield Plans that covers A class or private hospitals.

The reason is - the premium is high and is likely to go much higher. These plans will become very expensive, and will be unaffordable to older people.

This article explains what is happending.
http://www.businesstimes.com.sg/…/the-good-the-bad-and-the-…

Should the government take over the running of Eldershield?

The results for this issue is now ready for viewing:

a) Should the government take over the running of Eldershield (long term care insurance)? (89 Votes )

The majority said yes. View their reason in:
http://www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg/chart.aspx?ID=164

Friday, July 14, 2017

Why does the MRT break down so often?


I learned that the MRT system can breakdown due to
a) signal fault
b) track fault
c) power fault
d) train fault

I want to add the following:
e) passenger fault (why you all want to take train the same time?)
f) nobody's fault (the system just suka suka break down)
g) engineers fault (why you can fix the problem?
h) management fault (how can? we are top scholars! )

Self destruction of capitalism

Listen to this economic update by Prof Richard Wolff about capitalism's self destruction. You will understand why the current economic system cannot last long.
http://www.democracyatwork.info/eu_capitalism_self_destruct…

Is it safe to ride on Uber?

Recently, there is another fatal accident involving a Uber car. Will this discourage you from booking Uber? Should there be a minimum age or driving experience for Uber drivers?
Give your views in www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg

Thursday, July 13, 2017

Causes of MRT breakdown

I now learn that the train breakdown can occur due to:

a) signal fault
b) track fault
c) power fault
d) train fault

http://www.todayonline.com/singapore/morning-rush-hour-commute-ewl-hit-2-different-faults-wednesday

What I am unable to learn is - why are these faults occuring now, when the system was running well for over 30 years?

Could it be due to

a) equipmment failing due to age
b) over loading of the system
c) poor maintenance
d) lack of engineering know how?




Wisdom of the Crowd - view the results

Here are the results for the issues that have just closed.

a) Do you agree with the remark of DPM Teo Chee Hean that we are all sons of Lee Kuan Yew (128 Votes )

60% felt insulted by this statement.
http://www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg/chart.aspx?ID=162

b) After watching the Parliamentary debate on 38 Oxley Road, which statement best reflects your view? (127 Votes )

63% said that Parliament is the wrong platform to discuss this issue.
http://www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg/chart.aspx?ID=163

Wisdom of the Crowd - view these results

Here are the results of the voting on the issues that have just been closed.

a) Are you happy with the debate in Parliament on 3 July? (127 Votes )

More than 70% are quite dissatisfied with the debate.
http://www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg/chart.aspx?ID=161

b) What is your opinion of PM Lee during the July 3 Parliamentary session? (129 Votes )

Over 80% have a negative opinion.
http://www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg/chart.aspx?ID=160

c) Do you agree with the views of Goh Chok Tong on 38 Oxley Road? (139 Votes )

Nearly 70% consider his statement to be too biased.
http://www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg/chart.aspx?ID=159




Tuesday, July 11, 2017

Wisdom of the Crowd - Foreign policy strategy

The voting on this issue has now closed. You can view the result:

a) Should Singapore continue its foreign policy on speaking for the rule of international law? (121 Votes )

The majority of the Crowd said that we must change our foreign policy strategy.
http://www.wisdomofthecrowd.sg/chart.aspx?ID=158




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