Saturday, September 12, 2015

General election is over. Here is another place for you to vote

The general election is over. For many people, the actual results do not reflect their views or the ground sentiments. This could be a "freak result".
Here is another chance for you to express your views directly on the issues that concern our lives. Take some time now to vote on these issues. By increasing the votes, this website can be more credible.

Friday, September 11, 2015

What if the PAP is voted out of power?

Mr Tan
Suppose the nightmare scenario happens and the PAP is voted out of power, how will the coalition government find the capable people to form the government? The alternative parties do not have candidates who can fit into the roles of ministers.

I have anticipated this problem earlier. My answer is given here.

All the best for Chee Soon Juan

Five years ago, when most people consider Dr Chee Soon Juan to be untrustworthy, I wrote a blog to present a positive view of him.
One of my friends, who is working for the establishment, wrote to say that I was "brave" to express this view, but he supported my view.
Today, the public perception of Dr Chee has changed tremendously. He is now seen in a positive light. Many people hope that he will be elected into Parliament. I agree with this view.
I wish all the best to Dr Chee and his family.

The citizens have to play their part

Dear Mr. Tan
I saw that you were trying hard to promote the Wisdom of The Crowd website.
It is a good platform to get the views of ordinary people on the issues that you have created.

However, the website still gets insufficient response.
By now, you should know that Singaporeans like their views to be heard, but they are too lazy to express their views in a responsible manner.
Do you agree?

I have to agree with you.
It is a bad culture that our people has developed over the years.
But I have to blame the PAP for creating this bad culture.

However, we have to remain positive and confident.
Maybe, by being persistent, more people will realize that they have to come forward and cast their votes on these issues.
More people will make the website more credible in conveying the wisdom of the crowd to the people who from the next government.

Register here to cast your vote

Direct Democracy - Wisdom of the Crowd

Singaporeans have a chance to cast a vote only once in 4 years, and they are asked only one question - who do they want to be their Member of Parliament?

The person that they voted may not even attend Parliament regularly or speak in Parliament. This person, who is supposed to represent the views of the citizens in his constituency, may not even meet the voter for four years.

Surely, this is a very poor system?

There is another choice for citizens. You can give your vote directly on issues affecting your life and the future for you and for your children.

You can give your vote on the issues in the "Wisdom of the Crowd" website,

Here are the issues that you can vote on. These are the hot topics not only for the general election but also for our future.

To give your vote on these issues, you can register here:

After you have registered, you will go directly to a page. When you select "Vote", you will be shown all the issues that you can vote on.

You can read the reason for and against each issue before you cast your vote. You can also give your reason for your vote.


Join "Wisdom of the Crowd" and let your vote count. And you can vote on specific issues.

Prohibition on Cooling Off Day

Mr. Tan
The prohibition of campaign activities during cooling off day and election day DOES NOT APPLY to "the transmission of personal political views by individuals to other individuals, on a non-commercial basis, using the Internet, telephone or electronic means".
Does this apply to Facebook?
My interpretation of this rule is that it is okay, so long as you are
"an individual" and not a candidate.
But I am not sure about "other individuals". If A send to B, it is okay. But if A publishes in Facebook and it is ready by the general public, it is not clear whether it is still okay.
Anyway, since it is unclear, let the police decide. If they tell me that it is not okay, I will ask them if they are acting against a few hundred thousand people in the same category.
This law is badly written. It is not clear.

Thursday, September 10, 2015

Difficult to run a small business

My friend, who run a small business said. It is difficult to be a boss of a small business. When he falls sick, he still have to come to work. His workers will be happy to send in their MC and take the time off.

He does not make enough profit. The expenses are high. The revenue is difficult to come by. He has to compete hard to get the business and his margin is small.

This year, the "stupid" government gave two extra holidays to celebrate SG50 and for polling day. It is okay for them to give holidays, because they have plenty of money. But, he has to pay his workers for the holidays. Where is his business coming from?

I agree with him. It is tough to run a small business. 

Swing of votes - general election 2015

This article shows the votes for the PAP in each constituency in the general election held in 2015.
When the results are announced for each constituency from 11 pm tomorrow, I will be able to calculate the swing of votes and predict the number of seats that will be won by the non-PAP parties, i.e. the alternative parties.
I will post my findings in my blog and Facebook. Watch my "prediction" here.

How to participate in a "mini-referendum"

The Wisdom of the Crowd website allows you to vote on issues affecting our future and the future of our children. This is similar to the referendum that is carried out in Switzerland every three months. Take this opportunity express your views, so that the collective view can be viewed by the policy makers.

You can register  here:

If you registered earlier, you can sign in here:

If you forgot your password, you can click on"Forget Password". You can get an email to reset your password.

After you sign in, you can click on "Vote". This shows all the issues that you have not yet voted. So, you can vote for them one at a time.

Please cast your vote now, and also encourage your friends to cast their votes on these issues. We need more votes to give stability and credibility to the results show in this website.

You can view the pie charts of the issues here:

Issues affecting our future

Look at the pie charts of the votes for the various issues here:
Register here to cast your votes and win an e-book worth $4
Today is cooling off day. No rallies to attend. So, it is time to hear your views on the important issues facing our future.

Wednesday, September 09, 2015

Wisdom of the Crowd

The "Wisdom of the Crowd" website contains several issues affecting our lives and the lives of our children.

You can view the pie charts of the votes from this link

To submit your vote on these issue, you can register here

After voting on 5 issues, you will get a free copy of the e-book on medical bills for the elderly

Cooling Off Day

Cooling-Off Day 

The eve of Polling Day is designated as Cooling-Off Day, a day when election campaigning is prohibited. This 24-hour campaign silence period is to give voters some time to reflect rationally on issues raised during the election before going to the polls. 

There are some exceptions to the prohibition of campaign activities on Cooling-Off Day: 
  1. Party political broadcasts on television;
  2. Reports in the newspapers, on radio and television relating to election matters;
  3. Approved posters and banners that were already up, and lawful Internet advertising that was already published before the eve of Polling Day;
  4. Books previously scheduled for publication;
  5. The transmission of personal political views by individuals to other individuals, on a non-commercial basis, using the Internet, telephone or electronic means; and
  6. Such activities or circumstances as may be prescribed by the Minister.

Minimum wage and minister salaries

Should we have a minimum wage in Singapore? Should we pay high salaries to ministers?
These are two new issues for you to vote in "Wisdom of the Crowd".

Stranded with wine investment

Dear Mr Tan,
I am a stranded wine investor with Assets Wine Management (AWM) and Australian Wine Index.
I am served a Writ of Summon from the lawyer of CWT for the outstanding payment for the storage of my wines under AWM.
I would greatly appreciate if you can advise me of what I can do.
Thank you for your kind attention.

You can sell off the wine investment and take a loss. Or talk to other investors and see what you can do collectively.

Policyholder was shocked to see the high distribution cost

Dear Mr. Tan,
I would like to seek your advice on personal finance.

Recently i met up my insurance agent to discuss about long term investment ( retirement, education for kids).  I was offered something like, save for 10 years, pay out at the age of 65 years old for 20 years.

The return is guarantee 3% plus bonus add up to total of 4.75%. When i look at the product info, what caught my eye and surprised me is the distribution cost. For total premium paid of around 200k, the distribution cost is around 13,000, which is around 7%! I think it is way too high!

When i showed this concern of high fee to my agent, she sort of like saying, dont envy of what they are paid, cos of the effort and trouble they all experience as agent ( which i do not totally agree).  And she is saying this is the norm and what is available in the market.

I believe what she offered is not the only option. I was considering DIY regularly purchase ETF. I only worry if i could consistent have the return of 3%.

What do you think about my situation? Is there anything I can do? Thank you very much.

I have seen many benefit illustration of this type of product. The product is bad for consumers.
I agree with your that the distribution cost is too high. If you study the effect of deduction, you will be shocked at the amount that is taken away from your accumulated premium.

Read this book to understand what this "effect of deduction" means.

We need a fundamental change in the old policies

Over the past week voters have heard the various rallies by the parties, most have proposals unlike the PAP as they only focus on local amenities etc.

Mr Tan, just wonder what is your objective view of GE15?  Will it be good for Singapore if PAP win all the seats?

I hope that opposition will get 40 seats as PAP need to get the message that citizens come first and their leaders need to be 100% hands on.

It will be good for the alternative parties to win 15 to 20 seats, maybe more seats.

We need an active Parliament where the law makers meet regularly to discuss and debate the concerns of the people.

There are many issues that need to be addressed. We cannot have a Parliament that meets only occasionally to rubber stamp the decisions of the cabinet. We cannot have law makers who do not attend Parliament and who hardly spoke in Parliament.

We need more law makers who will treat this job as their full time job.

It is important for voters to vote for the alternative parties, so that the wish of an active Parliament can be achieved in this general election.

There is very little risk of a change of government in this general election. We can only aim for a change in the composition of Parliament.

A stronger representation of the alternative parties in Parliament will pass a strong message to the incoming government that the people want to see a fundamental change in the old policies.

To LHL: That's what you have done!

It is ironic for Lee Hsien Loong to tell the voters - "Don't write cheques that your children must pay".
This is precisely what he has done over the past ten years. By increasing the price of housing and the cost of living, he has made the next generation of Singaporeans pay for the wealth of the current elites in Singapore.

Your Life and My Life/ Too Many foreigners

Someone sent this email to me.
From a friend, true story, like to remain anonymous:

GLC appointed foreigner as CEO.
CEO appointed his fellow foreigners as senior management.
Singaporeans forced to resign or sacked.

Senior management (foreigners) engaged his fellow foreigners as employees.
More Singaporeans edged out.

Most foreigners employees are underqualified but got his PR or even
citizenship easily from MOM with middle management (foreigners) help.

Singaporeans that stay, dare not to take sick leave when sick and
annual leave. They suffered low annual wage increments.
Difficult jobs assigned to them, credits goes to foreigners.

The same story are repeated in many GLC, MNC and many private firms.
This is your life and my life.


Wrong to describe LHL as PM Lee

Lee Hsien Loong. If you believe in me, support my team. Link
Reply - sorry, I don't!
It is wrong for Channel News Asia to refer to him as PM Lee, when he is not acting in the role of the caretaker prime minister. In this situation, he is just one of the candidates in this general election.

Vote for change - our goal is to have alternative voices in Parliament

This PAP candidate warns that opposition parties can't get along. Link

He is missing the point. The alternative parties are not aiming to form the next government.

They want to be represented in Parliament to voice the concerns of the people and to debate and pass laws that reflect these concerns.

We need to change the system of governance in Singapore. We need to have a Parliament that is more active in discussing and debating government policies and passing the laws.

We need law makers who are able to spend more time in their work in discussing issues in Parliament and in discussing the concerns of the people. Preferably, they should be full time law makers. At the least, they should not have a busy full time work.

It is time to vote for a change, for the future of Singapore, for the future of our children.

Tuesday, September 08, 2015

Register - Wisdom of the Crowd

You can register here to submit your votes for the Wisdom of the Crowd website:

After you sign in, you can vote on the issues by selecting the "Vote" menu.
After you have voted on 5 issues, you will receive the e-book "Medical Bills for the Elderly". This book sells for $4, so you earn a prize of $4.

You can view the pie charts of the votes on the various issues from this link:

Dr Chee Soon Juat should be voted into Parliament

40 people submitted their vote on Dr. Chee Soon Juat. 90% said that he should be voted into Parliament.
The public standing of CSJ had increased significantly in recent years. He is more popular than Tan Jee Say or Kenneth Jeyaretnam.

Unreasonable requirement for a travel insurance claim

The policyholder bought a travel insurance policy. He was pick pocketed in St. Petersburg, Russia. His hotel helped him to lodge a police report. The report was written in the Russian language.

When he submitted the police report to support his travel insurance claim for the loss of his belongings, the insurance company required him to obtain a translation of the police report into English to be made by a "certified Russian translator".

He was not able to find this expert. He was also unhappy to bear the cost of translation (if he could find this expert). He felt the requirement was unreasonable.

I agree with him. He has fulfilled the requirement to obtain a police report. The insurance company, which was an international company, could have access to their own translators. If they needed an external expert to make the translation, they should bear the cost.

The standard of claim handling in Singapore is deplorable. I am helping the policyholder to find a Russian national to make the translation. If this is rejected, I will help the policyholder to file a complaint.

Sunday, September 06, 2015

All political parties are now at par

Channel news Asia has the headlines: Highlights: Opposition rallies on Sep 6

This is not acceptable. Does this media know that Parliament has dissolved. There is no government now (only a caretaker government), and no opposition? All political parties are at par.

A government and an opposition will only be formed after the general election on Sep 11.

The headline of "Opposition Rallies" is not fair, and is not correct. This kind of unfair labeling has to stop.

Swiss standard of living - not about money

30 years ago, the first deputy prime minister promoted the vision of “The Swiss Standard of Living”. He was thinking about the material aspects – about money, about GDP.

We did not achieve this goal. Instead, we got a high cost of living, but not a good standard of living.

But, there is another aspect of the Swiss way of life that is not about money. They have a government that truly listens to the people, that truly respects the views of the people.


Every three months, the government in Switzerland organizes a referendum to ask the people for their views on several social and economic issues.

They study the votes of the people on each issue and take them into account when they formulate their government policies and pass their laws.

Do you want a government that listen to the people, like in Switzerland?

What type of government do we have now? We have a government that is not in touch with the people, that makes its decision in the ivory tower, and then push these bad decisions on the people.

We have a government that brought in large number of foreign workers and immigrants, and did not realize even the impact on the people, until much harm had occurred.

Many citizens have lose their jobs to foreigners. The cost of housing and the cost of living have increased sharply. Our trains and buses are crowded and break down often. There are long queues in hospital.

Do we still want to continue with this style of government? Or do we want to see a change?

Vote for change

Mr Tan,
Will Singapore get into trouble if the PAP lose this general election?
If the PAP loses this election, Singapore will still get along fine. There is no need to worry. Do not believe the fear mongering that are passed by people with a vested interest to remain in power.
It is not likely that the PAP will lose power in this general election. This may take a few more years to happen.
But, if voters have the courage to vote for the alternative parties, we are likely to have a more diverse Parliament, comprising of MPs from many political parties.
This will encourage debate on the government policies and discussions on the issues facing the people This will produce better results over the long term.
While decisions will be made more slowly, they will be better decisions. The decisions made in a hurry without proper discussion have been bad for Singapore during the past years.
Have courage. Vote for change.

Wisdom of the Crowd - why this title?

Wisdom of the Crowd
The writer of a popular book by this title observed that the collective views of well informed people tend to produce the best decision. 

Swiss Referendum
The citizens of Switzerland are asked to vote on several issues affecting their lives every three months. The results of their votes guide their government in formulating its policies and passing the laws for their country. 
We created this website to allow the people of Singapore to vote on issues affecting our lives and the future of our children.

You can view the issues, including the reasons "for" and "against" each issue. You can then submit your vote and give your own reason.

encourage your friends to give their votes as well. If more people vote on these issues, the results will be more credible.

How to vote
To cast a vote, you have to register in this website. Each person can only vote once for each issue. You can change your vote at any time.

After submitting your vote, you can see the result of the votes on that issue. You can also read the reasons given by other people for their choice.

Intelligence Quiz Book

Mr. Tan
I remembered a few years ago, you wrote a book containing the puzzles called the Einstein Quiz. Where can I buy the book now? Is it available in the bookstores?
You can order them online here. It is the book in purple color called The Intelligence Quiz.

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