Saturday, March 19, 2011

A clear and sensible speech

Dear Mr. Tan
Please post this link to a speech by Dr. Chee Soon Juan. He spoke with great clarity and sense. I find his speech to be inspiring.

Hard truths about ministerial wages

The Online Citizen GE2011

Dilemma of the Poor

Dear Mr Tan
Hope you can publish my experience for comment.

This morning I was at a food centre and an old lady in a wheel-chair selling tissue paper told me, "I saw government people giving presents to foreigner workers. Here I am struggling to survive."

I said with the election coming, shouldn't you vote opposition to change things."Can I vote opposition?" she asked with a searching eye. I said assuringly that government agencies that helped her would still be around if the PAP lost.

"I would vote PAP. I will have to vote for them till my dying day. I only hope they do more for us disadvantaged folks," the old lady answered with a sigh of resignation.

Herein lies the dilemma of the poor. They depend on the government for handouts, but are afraid a change will be for the worst. Better the devil you know than the one you don't.


Ad-hoc payment through the Internet

Here is my proposal for a convenient method of allowing ad-hoc payment through the Internet. I hope that the Monetary Authority of Singapore will consider it.

A journey of frustration - DBS Internet Payment

Dear Customer Service Manager of DBS Bank

I enclose a feedback for your attention. May I request that you send this feedback to your CEO, Mr. Piyush Gupta?
Please acknowledgement my request promptly. 

Dear webmaster of MAS
Please assist me to forward this feedback to your colleague in MAS that is in charge of regulating the banks.
I search the MAS website and could not find any person to send this feedback to.
Please acknowledge my request and tell me who you have forwarded it to.

Donate to the Japan Disaster Fund

Read here

I urge Singaporeans to donate to the Japan disaster through the Singapore Red Cross. You can donate through ATM or write a cheque.

Cheque donations made payable to the 'Singapore Red Cross Society' and sent to the Singapore Red Cross at 15 Penang Lane, Singapore 238486. You should indicate at the back of the cheque the following: Japan Disaster 2011, the name of the donor, contact number and address.

From today till April 13, customers of OCBC, DBS and United Overseas Bank can also make a donation via ATM, mobile and Internet banking. Donors can get more details by logging on to the banks' websites.

Friday, March 18, 2011

A mature person

I spoke to a German lady who married a Singaporean and had lived in Singapore for 30 years. She explained the key feature of the German education system to me. During her time, and that was 3 decades ago, she was selected to be in the "gymnasium" stream. Students who had the ability to think logically and abstractly were selected for this stream. This was the stream that went into university and, during her time, comprised the top 5% of each cohort.

On completing the gymnasium school, she received a Certificate of Maturity. Her school principal told her that shw was certified to be mature, which meant that she was able to think and decide on her own,  and to learn new things on her own. She was "mature".

I was impressed with this approach. It is what education should be. I find that our education system produced a different type of person, who is not confident of taking decisions and responsibility. Our education system do not produce "mature" people.

A university professor, who has taught for many years, observed that many Singaporeans mature when they are 40 years old. Before that, they were not confident and had to be told what to do. I agree with her observation about the (lack of ) maturity of Singaporeans. Some never mature at all.

Tan Kin Lian

Buying motor insurance directly

My friend wish to share his pleasant experience

Think of the poorest person

Dear Mr. Tan

How I wish to say this at each opening of our parliamentary sessions.

Think of the poorest person you have ever seen and ask if your next act will be of any use to him.
- Mahatma Gandhi (1869 - 1948)

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Talk at Tampines Regional Library

Title: Talk on Sudoku and Puzzles
Speaker: Tan Kin Lian
Date: 19 March 2011
Time: 3pm to 4.30 pm
Venue: Tampines Regional Library, Auditorium (Level 3)

You can register in advance by calling the Tampines Libary. The library also accepts walk-in participants on the day.

My puzzle books will be available on sale at 50% discount:

Complete set of Sudoku, Intelligence Quiz, Tangram, Shape Quiz: $14 (usual: $27.80)

SM Goh to S'poreans: Learn from Japan disaster

Dear Mr. Tan,
I posted an article in my Blog and in SGEP.
A response to "SM Goh to S'poreans: Learn from Japan disaster".
Will we stay a "kintaro-ame" nation, SM Goh?
[De Leviathan @ Sg]

De Leviathan

General election poem

Here is a poem by Ong Ah Beeabout the conduct of a candidate at election time. See SGEP or click here.

Monday, March 14, 2011

Book: Get value for your life insurance

This book is now available for purchase by mail. First copy is for $12 (postage free). Additional copies are available at $9. (You can buy for your friends).
See: (cover has been changed)

By cheque
1. Send cheque made out to Tan Kin Lian & Associates Pte Ltd
2. Mail cheque to 24 Sin Ming Lane #02-107
3. Write down you mailing address and number of books that you wish to order.

By Internet banking
1. Send an email to with your mailing address and number of copies
2. Pay by internet banking to DBS Shenton Way account no: 003-9045980

Act now. You can save a lot of money by buying the good life insurance policies and avoiding the bad life insurance products.

Tan Kin Lian

Taking care of the low income families

Here is an example of the view of a PAP MP and an alternative view:

The PAP's response is "Singaporeans are lazy and will take advantage of welfare". This does not reflect what I know of many Singaporeans - who are willing to work hard for a fair wage."  The PAP leaders should learn to respect and trust Singaporeans, so that the people can return the trust and respect to the leaders.

Complaining Singaporeans and leaders

Singaporeans complained. But they are following the bad examples set by the leaders. It is now a culture in Singapore. Read SGEP or click here.

Pointing fingers

I saw a letter in Today about the experience of a resident who lodged a complaint with the Police about a noisy motorist in the early morning. The policeman referred the resident to the Land Transport Authority (if this is a traffic offence) or to the National Environment Agency (if this is a noise pollution). This is finger pointing carried out to the extreme. It is an extremely bad culture that has developed in Singapore - following the examples of our ministers who also point fingers at each other. Why has Singapore reached this shameful state?

Tan Kin Lian

Robert Kuok's personal thoughts on wealth and capitalism

Robert Kuok is SE Asia's richest person. He shares his views on wealth and capitalism. Some of his thoughts have relevance to the current situation in Singapore (my interpretation, not his). See TKL website or click here.

When I hire staff I look for honest, hardworking, intelligent people. When I look candidates in the eye, they must appear very honest to me. I do not look for MBAs or exceptional students. You may hire a brilliant man, summa cum laude, first-class honours, but if his mind is not a fair one or if he has a warped attitude in life, does brilliance really matter?

I have learnt that the success of a company must depend on the unity of all its employees. We are all in the same boat rowing against the current and tide and every able person must pull the oars to move the boat forward. Also, we must relentlessly endeavour to maintain and practise the values of integrity and honesty, and eschew and reject greed and arrogance.

In capitalism, man needs elements of ambition and greed to drive him. But where does ambition end and greed take over? That's why I say that capitalism, if left to its own devices, will snowball along, roll down the hill and cause a lot of damage. So a sound capitalist system
requires very strongly led, enlightened, wise governments. That means politician-statesmen willing to sacrifice their lives for the sake of their people. I don't mean politicians who are there for fame, glory and to line their pockets.

Wealth should be used for two main purposes. One: for the generation of greater wealth; in other words, you continue to invest, creating prosperity and jobs in the country. Two: part of your wealth should be applied to the betterment of mankind, either by acts of pure philanthropy or by investment in research and development along the frontiers of science, space, health care and so forth.

Radiation up 400 times in Miyagi, new blast feared at Fukushima

Russia Today (RT) broadcasting from Washington, DC, is providing excellent coverge of the Japanese earthquake, tsunami and nuclear power meltdown.

Tsunami and Japan

The Japanese coined the word "tsunami" to describe the terror waves caused by an earthquake. They have experienced the tsunami many times during their long history.

In recent history, the word was borrowed to describe the terror waves that killed 300,000 people following the Sumatra earthquake in 2004. Six years later, the Japanese had the misfortune to experience the tsunami again. Quite sad!

Odd to Nature

Here's a beautiful power point about what nature gives to man, and what man does in return. See TKL Website or click here. 

Japanese tsunami and Singapore floods

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Cartoons by Wing Lee Cheong

How to invest $100,000?

How to invest $100,000? Here is how you can be financially savvy to make the right decision. See Ask Mr. Tan or click here.

Greed and Singapore

CNA and Al Jazeera

Happiness index - from the UK

The purpose of college education

To the Editor, NYT
The larger benefit of college is the development of critical thinking, which helps individuals identify and develop new work and business opportunities, manage personal finances, lead healthy lives, raise fulfilled children, participate in politics as informed citizens and obey the law.
This is why Americans need a college education.
Jack Herschlag
Upper Montclair, N.J.

Too much thinking, too little execution?

Sent by a citizen to the government's Cut Waste Panel

While it is silly to bring a chain saw into a forest and keep cutting down trees without knowing exactly which trees to cut; it is also to me an overkill when you have so many Ministers in the PMO doing coordinating work but not having enough officers at the lower levels to execute policies and understand the needs of the people. Example one --- you have coordination minister in the PMO on security but not enough police officers around to deter crimes. Case in point, slashing at downtown east leading to one death. Example two -- you have education coordinating minister but not enough teachers to reduce class size. Example three -- you have the brains setting traffic rules (like zig zags, double zig zags) but not enough traffic police and wardens catching the offenders.


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