Saturday, June 15, 2019

Protest against the extradition bill in Hong Kong

I read that the bill is to allow extradition of fugitives to Mainland China and elsewhere in the world.

The extradition law follow international norms.

This seemed to be a reasonable law. Why is there a strong protest.

Here are my views.

Wisdom of the Crowd

WOTC - Good nature person

What are the important qualities of a good natured person? The findings in this survey may surprise you.

WOTC - Bad nature person

What makes a bad nature person? See the results here. I observe that many Singaporeans fall into this category.

Be objective and keep an open mind

I like discussions in my Facebook page to be objective and non-personal.

There were some views that the Jewel is Changi is costly and wasteful and that it will soon be dead.

I visited the Jewel twice and was impressed with the waterfall. Business seemed to be quite good at the shops and eateries. The place is busy.

I do not write off the Jewel as a failure at this stage. However, I did see media reports that some of the shops are struggling.

I think that this observation is correct, but I am not ready to form any conclusion. I prefer to keep an open mind. I do not form rigid opinion based on unreliable facts.

I do not want to criticise the establishment for the sake of doing so.

Be respectful in giving comments

Some people criticise me for deleting comments that are not supportive of my views.

Their comments are not correct. I delete comments that:

a) are rude and disrespectful
b) pass judgment on my views, just because they have a different view
c) make personal attacks.
d) are irrelevant to the topic

Some of these people have the purpose of just criticising my view without any reason. I suspect that they are paid to do so. They work in a gang, or can I say in a brigade.

Some are just trolls, who enjoy making senseless personal attacks and criticism. They think that they are smart. They think that this kind of behavior is the norm in the internet.

Some people do post comments that are different from my view. They do it respectfully.

They share their facts and perspective without passing any judgment of me or my view. They help in contributing to a useful discussion of the topic.

Let me quote an example.

I posted a few observations that some directional signs in our MRT stations are confusing and difficult to follow.

I am not saying that the signs are totally bad. But I did imply that they are generally bad.

A few people shared their comments about being lost when looking for the exits in our MRT stations. These are supportive comments.

I do not mind if some people said that they did not have any difficulty in finding the directional signs or that our signs are generally helpful.

But I get some comments that are disrespectful and personal. These people said that my difficulty is due to old age or that it was my fault for missing the signs. Some even said that it was my post was intended to bring down the establishment.

These comments are deleted. In extreme cases, where their intent to insult is obvious, the writers are banned.

Friday, June 14, 2019

Wisdom of the crowd

Vote on these issues and win a prize

WOTC - Minimum wage

81% of the respondents to this survey said that the government should set a minimum wage to ensure that workers can earn above the poverty level.

Only 12% said that it should be left to the National Wages Council and 2% said that the minimum wage will cause problems for small businesses.

See the details in

WOTC - 5G licenses

Should the govt give 5G licenses free to the operators?

33% of the respondents agreed, while 10% advocate the current system of bidding for the licences.

The remaining 55% advocated two other approaches.

See the results here.

Security of jobs

In the future, jobs will become more uncertain due to globalization, trade disputes, economic recession, uncompetitiveness and other factors.

What can a country do to ensure that its citizens have jobs?

Here are my ideas:

Thursday, June 13, 2019

Unclear situation on CPF contribution

This is a shocking state of affairs. It reflects a low quality of the people in charge, up to the manpower minister.

Read the finding of this court of appeal.

The instructor worked for the club for many years. He did
not complain about non contribution of CPF. On termination of service, he complained to CPF Board about the non-contribution and the CPF Board asked the employer to contribute $417,000 in arrears of CPF.

Here are some issues:
a) Why is the arrears in CPF contribution so high - $417,000?
b) How can the CPF board take the position that CPF is payable when both the club and gym instructor have accepted that he was not an employee?
c) Who pays for the legal expenses for the case and the appeal?
d) Why is our law on CPF so unclear that the CPF Board does not even know how to apply it?

This is an example of an unsatisfactory state of affairs that has not been rectified for several decades.

How can our businesses be competitiveness if they are subject to this kind of uncertainty and uncontrollable costs?

Large scale demonstrations could lead to violence

In some countries, large scale demonstrations have led to violence and rioting.

To prevent this, Singapore makes it illegal for any public assembly to be held without a police permit.

This has stifled the constitution right of people to express their objection against bad laws or implementation of the law.

How can this problem be dealt with? I have a suggestion.

Wisdom of the Crowd

WOTC - Circle Line

Is it wise for the government to spend $4.85 billion on the final stage to complete the Circle Line.

10% of the respondents in this survey think so. 90% disagree.

See their reasons:

WOTC - President Trump

Is President Trump acting responsibly in the interest of America?

25% think so, but 75% disagree. See the breakdown at

Wednesday, June 12, 2019

Control over the internet

I am in favor of some control over the internet. This is to prevent the abuse of the internet by malicious people who wish to incite hatred and violence, or to harm other people.

I like to see control carried out in the following manner:

Unity in diversity

Some political parties insist that their delegates follow the policies that are decided by the parties down to the detailed level. This creates a bland atmosphere with everyone talking in the same way.

I prefer the concept of "unity in diversity". What do I mean?

Wisdom of the Crowd

Vote on these issues and win a prize.

Set these links in your browser

Some fans like my Facebook page, but they do are not notified of all the posts that appear in my page.

Facebook has an algorithm to select the fans to be notified.

If you wish to know all my posts, you should set my Facebook link in your browser.

I also provide the links to some of the popular websites that I managed.


Wisdom of the crowd


Monday, June 10, 2019

Ban on rare earth from China can be serious

This is my lay man's prediction, based on common sense and gut feel.

China now produces 95% of the world's production of rare earth.

The experts say that America can source for rare earth from other countries.

But it will take at least 6 to 12 months (just my guess), for the alternative sources to become commercial available. In the meantime, any ban from China will create havoc to America's high tech industries.

I believe that this can be more serious than what the experts say (i.e that America can get rare earths from other countries).

I expect that America and China will strike an agreement on their trade dispute at the G20 talk between Trump and Xi. So, you can expect the stock market to rebound.

After than, America will try to get rare earth from other sources and come back to another dispute during Trump's second term - assuming that he gets re-elected.

Big change towards electric cars

My friend, who has been in the business of selling spare parts for cars for several decades told me that the car industry will change drastically. In a few years time, all cars will be electric. The internal combustion engine will be replaced.

The electric car needs few parts. The big pyramid of suppliers that provide parts for the current cars will be totally replaced.

This led to my interest and study of electric cars. My finding agree with his view. All new cars will be electric by the end of the next decade.

Some countries have passed laws to ban the production of non-electric cars by certain dates.

We need to be aware of this big change.

Socialism with market characteristics

Many people have a strong opinion that communism is bad and that it has failed as a system of government. If any matter goes badly wrong, they use the phrase communism to describe it.

I share this conversation with a friend.

WOTC - Smart Nation project

I asked this question in the Wisdom of the Crowd:

What is your assessment of the Smart Nation project?

Here are the responses: (35 Votes)
63 % - A lot of money has been spent with little results.
26 % - It is a lot of hype but little progress.
11 % - It is making a big impact in creating innovation and productivity.
0 % - It is making a small impact. 

See the pie chart at:

CLick here to vote on the current issues:

WOTC - More children

I asked this question in the Wisdom of the Crowd:

How to encourage families to have more children?

Here are the responses: (38 Votes)
42 % - Provide free maternity care for mothers and free medical care for the child up to age 16.
37 % - Give the mother a monthly allowance of $500 for each child (up to 3 children) up to age 16.
21 % - Provide low cost child care in each neighborhood.
0 % - Improve the tax credits and tax incentives

See the pie chart at:

CLick here to vote on the current issues:

Sunday, June 09, 2019

Wisdom of the Crowd

Vote on these issues and win a prize.

Build relations and rapport within ASEAN

Singapore took the chair of ASEAN in 2018. PM Lee wanted to make a significant impact. He set it as a priority for that year. (At least this was the impression that I had).

He could not achieve much during the year as chair of ASEAN. It was disappointing. He did try his best.

I do not blame him for failing failing in this mission. It was difficult to get a grouping like ASEAN to work together.

It is easy for ASEAN to come out with high sounding statements than mean different things to different people. But nothing gets done with this approach.

At the least, I expected him to build personal rapport with the leaders of the other countries in ASEAN.

If he did make a statement that sounded offensive to the people of Vietnam and Cambodia, surely their leaders would have come out to calm the sentiments?

They could point out that LHL did not intend to show disrespect to the victims of the genocide. His statement should not be read in a negative way.

They did not. Instead, they made statements that are damaging to the future relations within ASEAN.

It is rather sad that the situation could get to be so bad.

Transparency over fees for remittances

Should banks be required to be more transparent in their fees for foreign currency remittances?

Someone said:
Regulators in many places have started cracking down on hidden exchange rate mark-ups. In February, the European Parliament voted for mandatory transparency in cross-border fees. Foreign exchange providers in Europe will have to tell consumers exactly how much they are charged in the local currency. Britain is considering similar legislation. In Australia, the Competition Commission began investigating hidden foreign exchange fees last year.

Read more about the issue here

Give your opinion respectfully

Most people give their views in the wrong way. It should their bad upbringing. It should be avoided.

Here are some different ways to pass an opinion.

Dealing with bomb hoax

Most people said that the authority should act on every bomb hoax, They want to play safe.

I am in a small minority who hold a different view. I said - use your common sense. Ignore the hoax when it is obviously a hoax. We should not be wasting public resources dealing with every hoax.

This letter deals with the high cost of dealing with a hoax, and it seems to be occurring more frequently.

I said - if there is a real bomb and an intent to blow up the plane, will the culprit inform the authority?

Were there any cases where the report turned out to be true, and a bomb was deactivated before it blew up?

I am not saying that we should ignore all cases. I am only saying that a senior person should exercise judgment about the report.

If there is a slim chance that it might be true, by all means do a search. But if it certainly smells of a hoax, do not waste resources and inconvenience passengers (imagine the missed connecting flights and screaming children), chasing after a hoax.

Anyway, I am sure to be in the small minority, but I want to say my piece.

Anyone is free to disagree with me, but they have to be respectful. They are not allowed to pass any personal judgment.

WOTC - Helping elderly people

I asked this question in the Wisdom of the Crowd:

How can the govt help poor elderly citizens?

Here are the responses: (36 Votes)
39 % - Give them a monthly pension of $500 a month for those above age 75.
39 % - Give them subsidized rental housing, food vouchers and free medical attention.
22 % - Give them a suitable job, which is not physically demanding, that pays $800 a month. 
0 % - No need to help those who spent their CPF savings rashly.

See the pie chart at:

CLick here to vote on the current issues:

WOTC - Worry for the future

I asked this question in the Wisdom of the Crowd:

What is your main worry for the future?

Here are the responses: (43 Votes)
33 % - The PAP will remain in power and continue its current policies.
26 % - The government continues to suppress the people and restrict freedom
23 % - Singapore will get more over populated.
19 % - The world economy will turn into a recession.

See the pie chart at:

CLick here to vote on the current issues:

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