Friday, January 22, 2016

If you are an American citizen, will you vote for Bernie Sanders as President?

Obamacare vs "Medicare for All"

President Obama fought very hard to get the Affordable Care Act passed in Congress. This Act has the nickname of Obamacare.

It has some significant benefits, namely:

a) Remove the restriction on pre-existing conditions
b) Achieve a net increase of 17 million people to be insured

It still has significant challenges, namely

a) 33 million people are still uninsured.
b) The insurance premium and deductibles have gone up
c) The health insurance companies have increased their profits significantly

Bernie Sanders have proposed a new scheme called "Medicare for All". It is a single payor system, i.e. the Government will pay the hospitals and doctors for health care provided to the insured people. This scheme will cover every eligible person.

What is the key difference between Obamacare and "Medicare for All"?

Answer: the role of the health insurance company will be removed. The Medicare will be the only insurer under this scheme.

This is a bold move. It is the right approach. By removing the private insurers under "Medicare for All", the cost of the health insurance is expected to fall by at least 10 to 20% (my estimate). This is the cost of marketing the insurance and the profit margin of the insurance companies.

There is still a role for private insurance to offer the top up or additional coverage on top of Medicare. This is the approach adopted in France.

Thursday, January 21, 2016

Medicare for all vs Obamacare

Bernie Sanders want to introduce "Medicare for All". Currently Medicare is available only for elderly people above 65 in America.

He said that, in spite of Obamacare, there are still over 20 million people who are not insured and the private insurance plans have high premiums and high deductibles.

He claims that his "Medicare for All" will reduce the cost to the working families by a few thousand dollars a year.

Hillary Clinton attacked him for undermining Obamacare (the Affordable Care Act) and said that she wanted to work to improve Obamacare, rather than to replace it with a new system.

What is the difference between the Medicare for All and Obamacare?

I will give a prize (e-book on Medical Bills for the Elderly) to the first person who is able to explain the key difference.

Complicated CPF contribution rates

Many people are not aware about the burden that the government give on small businesses on just paying the CPF contributions.

The CPF contribution rates vary by type of worker (citizens, permanent residents in the first, second and third year), by age and by type of income.

Here is a very complicated table.

It is not possible to show all the calculations on one page, so there are additional pages in PDF to show the calculations.

The small employer has to engage an accountant or to buy a software just to carry out the difficult calculation. Reading the instructions can give them a headache. The admin staff working for the small employer cannot manage the complication.

I once saw the CPF sends many booklets to the employers to show the calculation. They know the trouble that is being faced. But they do not want to tell the government ministers about the necessary trouble that is imposed on the employers and on the CPF staff.


Medicare for all

Bernie Sanders want to introduce a Medicare-for-all system in America to guarantee health care for everyone in America. This is to replace their current dysfunctional and costly health care system. He wants to follow the model in most advanced countries in Europe and Japan.

Singapore adopts the current health care system in America. If America change its health care system, Singapore will be among the few countries that follow an inefficient model.

Fortunately for Singapore, we do have a public sector that provides some form of competition to private health care. Our problem is that the public sector is following the bad practices of private health care in recent decades. There is still the opportunity to undo the damage that has allowed to rot our system.

Swing towards socialist policies

In the history of many nations, the people swing towards capitalist policies for a few decades and then swing towards socialist policies.

Each system has its strengths and weaknesses.

A capitalist system initially produces a vigorous economy. At its later stages, the income disparity widened and the rich became greedy. The people then voted for socialist policies.

The time has come for America to change towards socialist policies. They will elect President Bernie Sanders.

Best countries survey

Singapore ranked #15 in this survey, behind many European countries and Japan and ahead of China ans South Korea.

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

ST index falling to 2500

The ST index will be falling to my target to 2500 soon. It is likely to fall further. I will wait for 1 or 2 weeks before investing in the STI ETF for the long term.

Monday, January 18, 2016

GPRS communication protocol

I am looking for a developer who knows how to handle GPRS Communication Protocol to transfer date between a GPS Tracker and the server. If you are interested to develop this software, send email to

Change to the elected president system?

Ha! I told you so.
The PAP will scrap the elected president system.
It is round the corner (at least, that is my prediction).

Candidates give the same messages at various rallies

I have watched on Youtube several speeches given by Donald Trump and Bernie Sanders at their rallies in many states. They keep repeating the same points in all their rallies. So, it is not difficult for them, except for the hectic travels.

I just watched a few speeches by Hillary Clinton. Maybe, she does not speak as much as the other two candidates.

Hillary Clinton is still ahead in the polls

Does a convicted criminal try to kill the prosecution lawyer after leaving jail?

Just a joke:

Someone said: I once worked with a prosecutor who had obtained a conviction in a nasty murder case. The murderer swore he'd kill the prosecutor when he got out.

After the killer got paroled, I asked the prosecutor if he was worried.

"No," he responded with a smile. "I'll have plenty of warning. He'll try to kill his defense lawyer first."

US Presidential Election 2016

My first choice for President of the United States 2016 is Bernie Sanders. I like his economic agenda - to create jobs, to improve social security and health care, to give a minimum wage. He receives donations from ordinary people - the highest number of donations in the history of this election.

My second choice is Donald Trump. I like his approach in addressing the real issues that face America and his ability to get things done. He is self funding his campaign.

My third choice is Hillary Clinton.

Go to Youtube, type in the names of the candidates and watch their rallies.

Life of a hawker

Someone wrote this story:

I helped out my dad for a short period while he was a hawker. 
I have to say you feel more motivated to study hard, graduate and earn more money to care for your parents.
You feel stressed that your parents are extremely stressed out plus the fact that people who comment "how come so expensive" when they buy food from your stall gets on your nerves. 
You will see every weekday, after they close the stall, your parents doing lots of prep work and waking up early around 4am to bring food to the stall to prepare. 
Every weekend without fail, your dad will get up early to buy food in bulk, prepare them for Monday. Worrying about utilities, gas, food expenses stressing them out, my dad was in a mess, his temper was at its worst.
I washed my share of dishes. I hate washing dishes and especially hate getting dirty, but I had no choice. I had to clean the floor, learn how to sell economical vegetarian rice, memorise the prices and hope to give correct change.
But on the other hand, whenever my dad cooked food I like, I had first grabs. I got fatter due to eating all the time. Time spent with my parents after we closed the stall was nice, seeing my dad cycle while mum sat on the back seat of his bicycle made me want to find a guy like my dad (simple, hardworking, showing his love through actions not words).
Luckily the bad/good times didn't last, we couldn't afford to maintain the high rent, and moved out of the hawker centre. Life is a bit better with me working currently. I hope it lasts.

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