Saturday, December 19, 2020

Thursday, December 17, 2020

Redeem the Temasek Holdings masks

 Temasek Holdings allow people to redeem the mask by scanning their NRIC or entering the number manually.

This has led to cheats who redeem the masks illegally.

I disagree with the approach. I will allow people to redeem the mask by scanning the NRIC but will not the manual entry of the NRIC.

It is easy for a cheat to enter the NRIC of another person illegally, but it is more difficult for them to use their NRIC for scanning (although it is not impossible).

Everybody has the NRIC. If they lose it, they should get a replacement. They should use the NRIC to redeem the mask. If they forget the NRIC, come back another day.

This is my common sense approach.

Why insane ministers think differently?

A short position in Moderna

 Moderna is one of the top candidates for the covid vaccine.

I held a short position in Moderna on 2 Dec when it was at $142. I felt that the price was too high. It was a bad decision. Moderna increased by another 20% to $169.

The short position was rather small, so I made a loss of about $3,000 (SGD) during this period.

What happened after that? Shhhh, here is the answer.

Wednesday, December 16, 2020

Labor shortage amidst high unemployment

 I received this message from the Ministry of Manpower. It is addressed to me as an employer.

I am disappointed that we need to bring in work permit and S pass to lease "labor shortages" when we have so many people, including graduates, who are unemployed and have to work as delivery drivers and private car drivers.

Our manpower ministry need to find a solution to this broken down system.

Dear employers

As a result of the stable COVID-19 situation in Singapore, and the strong public health measures and testing capacity that have been put in place, there is now more room to accommodate the entry of work pass holders to ease manpower shortages.

Accordingly, the Ministry of Manpower (MOM), in consultation with the Ministry of Health, Ministry of National Development and Ministry of Trade and Industry, will adjust its processing of new Work Permit and S Pass applications of workers across all sectors to better support businesses.

Applicants and employers must continue to meet all prevailing work pass conditions, such as quotas and qualifications criteria, to be considered. All new or returning Work Permit and S Pass holders must also comply with the prevailing border measures, including obtaining entry approvals from the relevant government agencies, undergoing pre-departure tests (PDT) and being subject to Stay-Home Notices (SHN) upon arrival in Singapore.

Employers are advised to familiarise themselves with the additional requirements and responsibilities to bring pass holders into Singapore before seeking entry approval from MOM. More details about the entry approval for foreign employees and SHN requirements can be found in the list of frequently asked questions.

Why is bitcoin so valuable?

 Why is bitcoin so valuable? I give my view here, but you don't tell others, OK?

Monday, December 14, 2020

Currency and store of wealth

 Which of the following is a currency or a store of wealth of both?

* US dollar
* Gold
* Bitcoin

Wisdom of the Crowd - New Issues


1. Should we stop safe entry recording?

Vote in

Improve temperature scanning

I support temperature scanning as a strategy to control the spread of the virus.
We can build up the infrastructure to allow people to be scanned a few times each day and to go for a covid test if they have a temperature above 37.5 degrees.
At present, the temperature scanning is done mostly by guards. The scanning can be done by self service kiosks that can be located at bus interchanges, MRT stations, malls, markets and commercial buildings.
A person who has a high temperature should be advised to go to a special clinic to carry out a covid test. These clinics should be made available in many locations, e.g. at community centers. They can be manned by specially trained staff.
Instead of asking people to carry out temperature scanning, it is more useful for these people to be trained and deployed to carry out covid tests.
These special clinics can also carry out the tests for essential workers. They can be tested at frequent intervals. They can also carry out the tests for people who are identified by the Trace Together platform to be close contacts of infected persons.
If we focus on temperature scanning, we can drop the practice of safe entry recording. This practice is largely wasteful and useless and diverts attention from the more important work.
Some people argue that safe entry recording and its associated contact tracing can identify people who are asymptomatic. The temperature scanning works only with people who have developed symptoms of possible covid infection.
In my view, it is safe to stop the safe entry recording. It is largely useless in identifying the asymptomatic cases. This can be evidenced by the hundred of million of safe entry records that have been taken. I suspect that very few of these records have resulted in successful contract tracing.
I also hold the view that the asymptomatic cases are mild and do not spread the infection. There is a very low risk in ignoring this useless and wasteful activity.
I might be wrong in holding this view. It is for the people in charge to demonstrate that the safe entry recording is producing useful results. So far, I have not seen any report on this matter.
Here is a summary of my proposal:
* Provide unmanned kiosks for people to take their temperature scanning
* Set up special clinics for covid tests at many convenient locations
* Stop the safe entry recording.

Accountability and transparency of government

 I created this platform to discuss practices that can improve the accountability and transparency of a government.

I will show examples of how other countries adopted practices that promote this goal.

Here are some examples.

* Some countries broadcast their discussions in Parliament. A good example is the United Kingdom where the MPs can ask questions to their Prime Minister. There proceedings are recorded and can be viewed by the public.

* Some cities conduct public hearings and allow their citizens and interested parties to give their views on public works.  These hearings are available for viewing by the public.

* A few years ago, I saw some video recordings of proceedings of the city government of Jakarta. It shows their deliberations on decisions taken by the city government. These recordings were welcomed and seen by their citizens.

I believe that these practices improve accountability and transparency and the trust of the citizens towards the government. The government can use the Internet effectively to build this trust.

Do you agree?

Blog Archive