Apr 1, 2007

Heads I Win, Tails You Lose


Back in November last year, on my old blog, I had already posted some thoughts about the then-impending salary increase for PAP ministers. The post is remarkably topical today, so I reproduce an excerpt here. Click on link below to read the original post in full.

Elections Are Over! Time to Raise Ministers' Salaries!

".... It must be fun being a minister. Because unlike the rest of Singapore, you'll never have a bad year.

What do I mean? Well, let's say a cardiosurgeon in Singapore does very well in his career this year, makes a lot of money and is the top-earning cardiosurgeon this year.

Next year he may not do so well. Maybe he will have fewer patients. Or perhaps he just won't have so many complicated cases, so he has to charge less for doing simpler surgeries. Consequently, he will earn much less.

That's life. Some years are good, some years are not so good.

Ministers, however, have no such problem. Their salary is pegged to whoever is earning most, in a given year. When our top cardiosurgeon is earning a lot, the ministers will peg their salaries to him. When our top cardiosurgeon has a bad year, the ministers will just drop him out of the list.

They will then peg their salaries to some other doctor for whom 2007 does turn out to be a great year (eg the most successful neurosurgeon or oncologist in Singapore, for example) ...."

68 comments:

Anonymous said...

not only that if the government coffer's does not have enough to draw from they can always increase GST to help the poor. Then reward themselves with peanuts for being compassionate.

palmist

Anonymous said...

Well the PAP did promised "MORE GOOD YEARS"...

Anonymous said...

And 66.6% foolishly assumed it was more good years for them... Ah silly kids.

Radikaz said...

This gov is absurd and in facts they are very much a liability to the nation. They created so much wastage and display governance inefficiency.

instead of making costs lower to retain businesses and contain escalating costs, they went around hiking civil servant's salary, up the GST and then place so much task forces effort to look at how to help the poor and needy by offering rebates, blah blah where the whole food chain of issues can be resolved simply optimising cost of governance.

Talk about efficient governance, my foot!

Anonymous said...

there is ony one word for it: shameless. and in typical pap style, to substantiate their rightful claim for higher salary, they would pull out a poster boy to illustrate their case in point. it used to be dr ng eng hen, who have 'sacrificed' pay cut since joining politics. yeah right. what about about measuring power in monetary term?!

Anonymous said...

I do hope that they can chnage the faces once in a while,otherwise it looks like the same small group of ministers,every now and then, declare that they are paid below market rate and subsequently hold a private meeting to decide the % of raise to be rewarded to themselves.

It really does sound like a big joke,does it not?

Anonymous said...

The only practical advice for the poor to get by in singapore is to think very carefully who they vote for if they ever get to vote.

Anonymous said...

HAPPY APRIL'S FOOLS!!

geriatric_eunuch said...

It's darkly amusing that all the earnest commentary here and elsewhere, ranging from intelligently thought-through to helplessly enraged to complacently silly, are for the moment as likely to effect change as pissing in the wind. The scheming minds that devised amongst other things, a one-way upwards-only salary escalator, understand this only too well and so should we. That is why moral or ideological considerations are invisibly small blips on their radar and lip-service is the flavour of the year. That's real politik. Or Asian values if you prefer. In Marx's immortal words Those are my principles. If you don't like them, I have others... - Groucho Marx, that is.

That's not to imply that the status quo will remain immutable for the forseeable future, of course.
It's taken a while but even erstwhile believers are beginning to appreciate the dangers of a dictatorial ParanoidAnalParty that is the creature of one rather creepy, ruthlessly repressive control-freak who openly prefers fear to love so long as he gets his way. He's spent half a century selflessly holding you in his arms till you can feel his disease, so Singaporeans, hold your nose, kiss the appropriate ass, and comply for now.

Realistically, barring a catastrophic global event, not a lot is about to alter in the political landscape until He-Who-Does-Not-Like-Returning-Empty-handed smiles his deadly smile, crooks a finger and invites a certain authoritarian dog in the manger to go count daisy roots. Then the rot will surface. Dear Vivian's plaintive cry The most potent impact that the new media will have on politics is that, politicians will find it impossible to lie in the future. The truth will always be out there, because somewhere, someone has the facts, or has seen something, and will publish it. may yet return to haunt his chosen party.

Pick Mr. Wang's brain for whether it'll then be a win-win, win-lose, lose-win, or lose-lose situation and go place your bets in our brand spanking-new casinos, ladies and gentlemen. But at least stasis will, hopefully, not be an option.

Anonymous said...

Best of all, the ministers give themselves a ridiculous pension that no doctors or CEO will ever have, the same kind of pension the ministers will call "WELFARE".

Best-er still, some ministers refuse to quit, and so decide that they will pay themselves an obscene pension, and an obscene salary at the same time. Dont see that in the pte sector.

Best-est of all, despite all the obsecene freebies, many still deem it an absolute must that their off springs must be funded by public scholarships.

Anonymous said...

I wonder why, with all the means testing for health care and hand outs, why no means testing for scholarships? Because most of the children getting them are from "elite" families? reeks of selfishness..

f.s. said...

1. Since the minister's pay is pegged to top-earners, it is not surprising that our govt is so focused on attracting more foreign talents to the country.

2. Also, as a result of pegging their pay to top earners, the PAP govt has a perverse incentive to create a very volatile economy.

This, we can see this in the ever-increasing income disparity in Singapore.

(Those who are familiar with the black-scholes options pricing model will understand that the govt can profit by merely making the economy volatile.)

3. To solve the above two problems, ministers should peg their salary to the average income of singaporeans (instead of top earners). Of course, feel free to multiply that by a factor of, say, 100.

f.s. said...

btw, Low Thia Khiang had also raised this idea long ago (May 4, 2006)...

http://www.channelnewsasia.com/stories/singaporelocalnews/view/206579/1/.html

"He suggested that ministers' salaries be pegged to the income of the lowest 20 percent of Singaporean households with a multiplier effect. "

Anonymous said...

Well, as my foreign talent colleagues like to put it as legalized corruption.

Anonymous said...

MORE GOOD YEARS!!

Where do i sign up? I want to earn 2.2 million a year. I sure dont love my ministers but i'd love being one.

doesn't everyone? heh.

Anonymous said...

Well, what do you expect when you allow employees to set their own salaries?

"..... and they should be earning $2.2 million, according to the Public Service Division."

Anonymous said...

Guess what?

"Ms Chua will be paid $5 million with a base monthly salary of $75,000 if she meets targets set by the board."

This method would have been more logical and acceptable wouldn't it?

Much better than cherry picking.

Anonymous said...

As I have said before, it is very hypocritical of our leaders on one hand to advise the unemployed that it is better to have a job with a lower pay than not to have a job at all!!!. But on the other hand, the Gahmen is now trying to reward themselves with a drastic pay increase for themselves without any valid and justifiable reason.

To add more insult to injury, they are pegging themselves to salaries of the top professional earners. It's like taking a shortcut to enrich themselves without actually having to go through the sheer hard work which these top professionals have toiled to earn their present keep.

Furthermore, the way it seems, the present Gahmen leaders still have not explained to the people on the huge financial losses incurred by Temasek. Do these hign salaries come with free perks such as immunity from making financial blunders and mistakes on public funds?

Anonymous said...

Look at Mr LSS's article today...

http://www.todayonline.com/articles/180929.asp

He said something about raising ministers' pay is timely? If there's no good or bad time as he say, then why timely?

I guess alot of us are not being anti-govt but just anti-ANYTHING that is unreasonable and ridiculous

Anonymous said...

morons. who doesn't enjoy a pay raise huh? everyone from cleaners to church ministers also hope for more money( that's why they cahoots with the devil seated at the TOP of the temple).

there is no right or wrong, claimed the amoral one who molest young nubile minds, as a raise is a raise or if you even call it a raise at all because, the difference in raise can be between not adding real value to your existence( for the low salary workers) and from luxury to ecstasy( the opium of pay for the already rich )

totally absurd!

Anonymous said...

Actually I don't see why is this such a big issue...

So what if our ministers earn those millions. Even if they don't earn it in the public sector, they probably will earn it in the private sector.

Do you seriously want somebody who is prepared to work free to run the country? Or do you want someone earning 300k to 500k to run the country? Like perhaps George Bush.

I can tell you there are many people out there who earn 300k to 500k and given their current pay, they wouldn't want to run the country. They would tell you it's not worth the work.

But shouldn't any minister work for much lesser for the benefits of the nation?

Yeah right. Why don't anyone of us serve NS for 5 years for the benefits of the nation.

Given the perverse nature of Singaporean, we would also think 500k is too much for a minister.

We complain about minister's pay rise, because we are not able to earn that same millions and perhaps we didn't get a hefty pay rise recently.

It's just human nature.

Anonymous said...

Anon @ April 2, 2007 11:45 PM - you sound like a pappy living in Ivory Tower ..

Anonymous said...

with possibilty of more foreign riches wanting to take up citizenship here due to warm open door policy to a safe place here, it will be a no-brainer that the top 48 private professionals is changing often and their total pay level is going to get higher. for example, i remember reading recent news on local billionaires on the world forbes list, one of our singaporean billionaires is a chinese who i believe before becoming singaporean, made his fortune from the booming china economy.

i wonder if he is going to replace the last 48th top private earners, and join the ranks of banker wee cho yao of uob or engineer/manufacturer sim wong hoo of creative?

would this not ensures top civil servants a safe pegging pay that always stays high and higher from globalisation while the local poors are encouraged to face the brutal truth of pay cut?

becos this chinese turned singaporean billionaire major source of income is foreign earned from biz from overseas and booming china economy, a large portion of his income used in the pegging pay structure is therefore derived from overseas and do not give a god representation of the local economy and the state of affairs and well-beings of the people here?

to be more fair, pegging should be measured at local source earned income rather than a combination of both local and foreign sourced earned income.

what do u say?

Anonymous said...

April 2, 2007 11:45 PM

Partly, yes. However, it's just bad PR to announce raising of salaries soon after raising of GST. Also, we believe that salary should be linked to performance. Take that however you wish.

whybegay said...

Mr Wang, have you read Sunday Times reports on the high earners of Singapore?

Lawyers top the list at earning 4.62 million for 2005, doubling from previous years.

4.62 freaking millions for lawyers!

Aren’t lawyers the symbolism and the service people of justice and fairness in society? Why are they taking so much money to do their honourable job?

4.62 freaking millions!

I think you better tell your lawyers and yourself to take a paycut, in order to close the growing income gap. Lawyers as the fighters of justice and fairness of society should set a good example. Otherwise people would think that they are more into their profession for the money rather than for the work of justice.

What is 1.2 million compared to 4.6 million? Lawyers are not even in charge of the complexities of running a large company. They can even be freelancing and work at their own time and choose their own cases for their entire career, not like poor ministers of the government, they have almost no time to spend with their family.

So Mr Wang, go and tell your own lawyer friends and yourself to be role models and help to close the income gap first, before you target some other strangers you do not know. Otherwise people would think you are showing biased treatment to your own kind and not following the high standards that you set for others. Then where is the showing of justice and fairness that lawyers should exemplify?

4.62 freaking million. It is enough money to buy a few ferraris, lamborginis or condominiums in one year. But these people don’t even need to hire bodygueards for their job.

4.62.

4.62 said...

Hello my name is 4.62!

And I say that MM Lee who was a lawyer has already taken a paycut from the 4.62 millions that other laywers earn!

4.62

f. said...

Whybegay,

I have no problem at all with the PAP salary if their pay are set in a free market (ie, top money for top people is fair, as in the case for top lawyers).

Two questions for you:

(1) How many of our PAP ministers will quit if we do not give them a pay rise?

(2) Are you that naive to believe that elections are free and fair in Singapore?

Anonymous said...

whybegay,

your arguments suck, and you know it.

It's hard to argue why PAP should decide their own salary. This is inherently a conflict of interest.

To be fair to society, the govt can propose that the next batch of govt ministers have a pay increase (ie, after the next election).

Anonymous said...

"Are you that naive to believe that elections are free and fair in Singapore?"

So are u of the opinion that if the elections are actually not fair and not free. We shouldn't and can't do anything about it?

"How many of our PAP ministers will quit if we do not give them a pay rise?"

My guess is that if the PAP does't channel their former ministers to GLCs (probably as a retirement reward) These ministers will be too afraid to throw themselves into the real cut throat commercial world to actually prove their worth. In the commercial world you are assess every year (or every six months) on your performance. Not like a ministry where (generally) a minister's policies are assess comes the next election.

Anonymous said...

Enough already!

You gotta pay for talent!

The ministers have super IQs and it is insulting to them to earn less than CEO's in the private sector.

I say we can't pay them enough.

I would plumb for USD 250 million for PM for each term of 5 years.

If that dimwit Beckham can earn that sort of money, our ministers with super IQ's and have such heavy responsibilities like leading a nation of ungrateful losers and whiners deserve no less.

You think easy izzit?

When they retire, statues ought to be erected in deep gratitude for their truly brilliant and heroic efforts in leading this little Red Dot.

So there!

Tripod Cheerleader

6.42 said...

Oh look, Kitana that supposed "free-speech" advocate has deleted my post about lawyers' high salary from her blog. I wonder whether she is a free-speech or a free-will advocate?

4.62 millions earned by top lawyers is in the past, now is 2007 therefore top lawyers have increased their earnings to 6.42 millions!

6.42.

GoodMeat said...

Wow those lawyers must have justified their pay by benchmarking it to the other sectors. Definatly did not work for it. Probably didn't even go to law school. Maybe dance dance hip hop, praise some budget then use toilet humor as reference.

When do we get to see some cosplay? Not all Singapore teens are into hiphop leh.

Anonymous said...

Next year some of those lawyers may not do so well. They will cease to be the top earners.

The PAP ministers will promptly say, "Aha!" and peg their salaries to the new top earners next year (who could be doctors or investment bankers).

It's a no-lose situation, for the PAP ministers.

Anonymous said...

Hope it is not redundant to state here that the Ministers need no approval from the people to increase their own pays> The Issue of pay increases for Ministers boil down to one criterion for justification and that is CONSCIENCE> Assuming that the Ministers together with the people(citizens) are all affected by globalisation and other reasons> It is a known fact that the middle income and lower income earners are the most adversely affected> It is also common knowledge that those above forty year old face structural unemployment and great difficulty in finding job> Conversely ministers in Singapore are not only having million dollar incomes annually< they are about the only category possessing the "IRON RICE BOWL"> There was once a cabinet member who returned to private sector but for only a very short while> He rejoined the Cabinet and currently is a top civil servant> Other than the said isolated case< were there any minister resignation? Back to CONSCIENCE< supposing globalisation causes more damages to the people without "iron rice bowl"< does it not mean the CONSCIENTIOUS Ministers work towards and it is their duties to help their citizens? Can they award themselves a lower pay increase of say five to ten percent? My opinion is that they can and it is conscionable that they do so!

6.42 said...

Conscience sure beats smarts.

People say don't need to take so much money from the people, quit from the government, take up a higher paying public sector job, migrate and shake leg retire.

Then government would be left full off "social workers" like TT Durais and his minions.

TT Durai for prime minister!

Conscience sure beats smarts!

At least there is still conscience Ms Bhavani in government who can say, "Where are the constructive suggestions besides all the whining?"

Anonymous said...

Anon April 3, 2007 1:53

"Partly, yes. However, it's just bad PR to announce raising of salaries soon after raising of GST. Also, we believe that salary should be linked to performance. Take that however you wish."

Anon April 2, 2007 11:45 :

There will never be a good time to announce the salaries of minister at any time. Perverse Singaporean will still complain.

Performance of the ministers could be based on many benchmarks, perhaps the GDP Growth, perhaps the reserves, perhaps many others which I think the Singapore Government as a whole has done well, amongst them those opposition parties and NMP.

Anonymous said...

Constructive suggestions? They are paid to ask for suggestions???

Anonymous said...

Anonymous April 3, 2007 11:48 PM

Expert cherry picker aren't you?

What about Shin Corp? The increasing income gap? RI and HCI losing to UWC?

See, I can pick just as well.

Anonymous said...

6.42 @ April 3, 2007 1:44 PM

Don't say I side anyone, but hor, go visit the YPAP site and count the number of comments they have deleted.

Those guys are champions when it comes to deleting comments ok!

Anonymous said...

government always says that IF their minister were to go private sector they can get better pay.

Even if these ministers go private sector...there are no pensions nowaday. I think most of them rather stay in government sector

Drew and Napier = $6.42 m said...

If you people think you can run the country better than PAP, by all means go and start your own party with charitable social workers and make Singapore an utopia.

Complain will not get one anywhere, it just makes the person look weak, pathetic and lack of intelligence and influence.

There is no one who is more charitable and talented than the PAP who would run the country? I guess the inferior complainers have minds that are unripe and sour.

The PAP does not run on nagging and complain juice nor threats and scares you know. I'm sure you people can't be that uncivilised?

If you people think you are really of higher intelligence and calibre than the PAP, give them instructions on how to improve running the country, and then take it over from them. Not sit down with a remote control without batteries and crooked antennae. haha.

But no. continue to offer complain juice. The world does not run on complain juice fyi to you all nor by eye or staring power.

Moving atom by atom using Observer's effect cannot move mountains. At least lift a hand or spend some real energy thinking on how to improve things instead of being lazy.

Anonymous said...

Fellow Fans of Wang

Do you notice a new line of counter-argument being used here by PAP's cyber-war of the minds team.

They're saying that people here are complaining, whinging, tearing their hearts out etc etc over the soon-to-be-announced ministerial pay increase BECAUSE they are jealous/envious they can't get their minister's pay.

So you see, they're saying that the fault lies with you for being jealous (although it is taxpayer's money being used to pay the ministers). Diversionary tactic

Anonymous said...

Please, no one is saying that the PAP ministers need to work for free.

But is a 55% further increase really justified? They are already earning higher salaries than any minister in any other country in the WORLD.

It's truly sad ... The PAP ministers keep saying that they will only work for money, that there is no other way. Yet their grand plan for helping poor Singaporeans is the "Many Helping Hands" movement luanched by Dr Vivian - where they expect AVERAGE Singaporeans to help POOR Singaporeans - for free!

Anonymous said...

http://theonlinecitizen.com/2007/03/28/pap-and-the-people-a-return-of-disaffection-revisited/#more-266


Re - read

"The third outcome — and the most disheartening — is the bewilderment and disenchantment of the small pool of dedicated Singaporean volunteers in charity and community work, which will result in the pool becoming even smaller, firstly because these volunteers will now see very little in the way of inspiring example and secondly because they are unlikely to be replaced by a younger generation brought up on the raw economic imperative."

Anonymous said...

PAP. Just peg your minister's pay to the top 10 best paid leaders in the world and the people will happily accept it.

The top 10 best paid politicians in the world!!! How is it so difficult for you to accept this!!!

I'm sure our hawker centre cleaners would be more than happy to be paid according to the top ten best paid cleaners in the world. And accordingly our clerks, our security guards, our soldiers, our bus drivers, etc.

Come to think of it, every worker/employee/citizen in S'pore would be very happy if their salaries are peg to the world's top 10 of their respective profession!!!

WHY CAN'T YOU!!!

geriatric_eunuch said...

"PAP. Just peg your minister's pay to the top 10 best paid leaders in the world and the people will happily accept it."

Haha, nice try! Vote to REDUCE their income? Yeah, right. P i g s . w i l l . f l y.

* G_E slides glass of "complain juice" over to Anonymouse... *

Meanwhile, grinning insincerely over in the blue corner:

Labour chief Mr Lim Swee Say is confident that more Singaporeans "will come to accept and realise" that the move is for their benefit. [TODAY 2-4-07]

So said Mr Lim, who is also the Minister in the Prime Minister's Office, explaining to workers the rationale behind the imminent pay hikes for ministers.

Now, what is it about the phrase "for their benefit" that you don't understand? It's a fait accompli folks, just like the casinos and GST hike, it's a decision made long ago in heaven. So what if you don't like it right now? Not a damn thing you can do about it so don't come crying to us about YOUR problems, just go suck on a lemon or something. All that remains is to get the shouting over and done with early in the term and in 5 years time 66.6% will have forgotten what the fuss was all about anyway, just as they've always done. And if they haven't, why, that's nothing that a couple of billion in upgrading and S'pore shares won't fix, right?

Cynical but pragmatic. Buying the loyalty of minions always works for how many would refuse a huge jump in pay on the grounds of conscience, eh? In 5 years, top dogs will pocket the thick end of 6-12 million dollars, lesser dogs at least half-a-million, so what's not to like?

Yep, you lazy, complain-juice-drinking, no-account, talentless bozos, it's all just bleedin' sour grapes. So STFU and get your freakin' shoulder back behind the wheel, you idle good-for-nothings. It's for YOUR own benefit.

Anonymous said...

When Ministers last said they were awared of the Wealth Divide and its ramification< were they sincere when they said they will look into the Disparity? As I see it< ministers are mired more in their own incomes than concerns for their citizens> The GOVERNMENT needs to be reminded that it is causing the rises in costs of living and NOT market forces that caused them> In fact an open market tends to lower costs of most products and produces due to competitions> On the one hand IT(THE GOVERNMENT) causes hardships and on another hand THE MINISTERS WANT TO BE REWARDED FOR THEIR WORKS> I implore the Ministers to conscientiously ask themselves whether they have fulfilled their duties to the citizens?

Anonymous said...

someone once suggests to peg part of ministers' pay to the bottom 20% of Singaporeans. Perhaps it is time to reconsider this option.

Also, wonder how many of the top earners in Singapore are Singaporeans? Should non-Singaporeans be filtered off the list?

moomooman said...

I think many of us are beneficiaries of our government.

When you earn your what you are earning now, it's the indirect result of our government initiatives.

For example. I would think Mr Wang is earning big bucks for what he is doing. The reason why he is able to do what he is doing, is because of liberal policies and favourable banking acts that attract these banks to set up their base in Singapore. This create jobs and demand outstrip supply. Mr Wang lands a high paying job. He invest his surplus into shares perhaps, this send the STI to record high. Other retail investors benefits. He perhaps invest in a property. This creates income to agents and lawyers and banks. These institution in turn hire more people to work.

And if you are not one of those beneficiaries. For example.. if your income dip in the last 2 years ... that explain why we are here complaining about the minister's pay rise.

Anonymous said...

consider this: what if we reject 'unreasonable wealth' - which obviously benefit a selected few - and opt for 'reasonable wealth', hopefully, enjoyed by many instead?

what if more are saying, i want a balance; i don't want to scale mountainous heights; compete to our deaths so a privilege few will get to indulge and reign at the top nor do we want to be at the other extreme bottom of the valley feeding on rich man's crumbs or be at their mercy?

what if more reject the concept of 'talents' created to enrich a few and would rather prefer a more equal recognition to talents accorded as a single complete entity?

so wealth yes - who doesn't want to be 'wealthy' - but without a clear definition of the kind of wealth we are pursuing, we maybe building on the wrong foundation. however, if the wealth generated comes from the richness of the soul, this kind of wealth maybe more sustainable and equitable. unfortunately, we may have created wealth out of the poverty of the soul and exalted the numbers beyond a point that do not add substantive value to our existence?

latching on to an unrealistic asperation maybe more 'good years' for some but certainly, not for many on the bitter receiving end of remuneration?

Anonymous said...

Woohoo! Civility indeed! Some people are losing their cool and calling others green-eyed whining monsters. And issuing the usual why do you DIY challenge. How to DIY when they keep clinging on and refuse to let go?

Now I know why the grassroots civil servants have to submit set quotas of suggestions to the management every year. Because somewhere up there, they have run outta juice.

Lemonade anyone?

Anonymous said...

It is incredible to find the extend of mediocracy continued beyond the classrooms in such a self possessed society.Ican never conceive the creative dispossession to reinvent an order of natural debilitation. However, the profusion of diabolical regression shall retain a dominant preposterousness that would inevitably corroborate a cognoscenti infection of grandeur misapprehension you think?

Anonymous said...

There is no debate
The decision's been made

You can go on and on
Rant and rave if you may
Does it matter
What you say
For another four year
I do what I may

A semblance of democracy
Therein lies the irony
When what also matters
Is Show me the money!

Anonymous said...

Anonymous April 5, 2007 1:51 AM said...

> It is incredible to find the extend of mediocracy continued beyond the classrooms in such a self possessed society.Ican never conceive the creative dispossession to reinvent an order of natural debilitation. However, the profusion of diabolical regression shall retain a dominant preposterousness that would inevitably corroborate a cognoscenti infection of grandeur misapprehension you think? <
_____________

Wha-huh?

What jabberwocky and twaddle!

I am desiccated with mortification.

This extemporaneous verbiage has all the tarradiddle and blatherskite of an antediluvian troglodyte.

So there!

TC

Anonymous said...

Ask not what the country can do for you, but what you can do for the country

whh said...

True, if ministers' pay don't go up, the private sector should not expect imminent 'benefit' from their entry.

Also true, even if S'pore became a liberal democracy, those who want to migrate will migrate cos to them a good country is run by white people, never mind that their opinions will matter as little over there as back here.

The point ? Be up-front about your intentions and real beliefs if you want others to be up-front about theirs.

On rhe issue at hand, it's not really about how much ministers get paid as what the heck they do after getting that pay. Pay them more for the same old 'can't be helped' explanation for falling or stagnating incomes, sinkie employment prospects as you age and up-no-down costs ?

lisais said...

Anon @ April 2, 2007 11:45 PM:

You are such a fucking obvious PAP plant. Why don't you guys adopt a real identity for once.

le radical galoisien said...

Oops, I forgot to sign off my sister's account first. Blogger is annoying.

le radical galoisien said...

"Actually I don't see why is this such a big issue..."

Of course not. You're a fucking PAP plant. You're blind to the outcry of the nation.

"
Do you seriously want somebody who is prepared to work free to run the country? Or do you want someone earning 300k to 500k to run the country? Like perhaps George Bush.

I can tell you there are many people out there who earn 300k to 500k and given their current pay, they wouldn't want to run the country. They would tell you it's not worth the work."

Then they should not run the country. Your use of "run the country" also reveals your bigoted, narrow-minded concept of democracy. You think government is all about "RUNNING the country". What happened to representative government? Why can't the citizens run their own country?

Because the upper class PAP plants like you fear the masses, that's why.

"Do you seriously want somebody who is prepared to work free to run the country?"

You chee bai leh. You're using a loaded question here. Logical fallacy++

I don't want a select oligarchy to run the country. I want representatve government. Do shut up.

Please tell me what's so special about Lee Hsien Loong that I should give him millions of dollars every year when he has done NOTHING to address the needs of the people.

I am aware ministers hold some important critical function, but I have yet to see the results of whatever they are doing. Do you know why? I cannot give the government the benefit of the doubt. It's because the government lacks TRANSPARENCY. I don't know what the hell they're doing in Parliament. The newspaper doesn't report it. The Parliament could pass laws stripping us of our civil rights and perhaps it gets updated to Singapore Statutes Online but it wouldn't be shown in the paper. I have no idea what the hell our ministers are doing or what possible worth they could have to the country, so yes, I question their salary.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous April 5, 2007 10:24 AM

Agree, the money-minded leaders should ask what they and potential leaders can do for the country instead of what the country can do for them :D

Maybe then, we can have real progress.

We can learn alot from the Koreans too, how to have the "jeong" spirit. People gave up their prized possessions voluntarily for the good of their country during the 1997 financial crisis. That will only happen if we stop thinking of only what we can get and if he leaders are worthy of our trust and support.

Anonymous said...

Fret not fellow Singaporeans! This land we love will always be ours regardless whoever runs it> Unless nature takes it away or one chooses to run onto an oncoming MRT Train< we will survive! If Singapore does have Supreme Talents and Great Benevolent calibres< they should consider helping Timor Leste< Sri Lanka and other countries to make them safe and prosper> Once those countries are helped< I am sure they will reciprocate to ensure our prosperity> Our supreme talents will also prove themselves and remain in world history for a long long time> It is a globalised world and our leaders should venture beyond our shore to lead us into globalisation!

Anonymous said...

Unlike the laymen, the gahmen and ministers never ever face competition from globalizaton, FT and sort like that. And that's why they are pampered into thinking they are very important and indispensable to Singapore. They are a league in their own because no one come even closer to them as they are the only party ruling, only person benchmarking ? Benchmarking ? Against who. Well against top earner in country. But how about their work ? As comparable to a office cleaner !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

simplesandra said...

moomooman said: "And if you are not one of those beneficiaries. For example.. if your income dip in the last 2 years ... that explain why we are here complaining about the minister's pay rise.

No, when some people earn enough and money isn't a problem to them, they begin to yearn for something more self-actualising. Unfortunately, some people just won't.

Warren Buffett pledged $37bn to charity; at 84, MM Lee is still talking about raking in millions--get the picture now?

anon wrote: "It is incredible to find the extend of mediocracy continued beyond the classrooms in such a self possessed society.Ican never conceive the creative dispossession to reinvent an order of natural debilitation. However, the profusion of diabolical regression shall retain a dominant preposterousness that would inevitably corroborate a cognoscenti infection of grandeur misapprehension you think? "

Oh my... stay off the mushrooms, dear. ;-)

Anonymous said...

I think the ministers should peg their salary increase to the performance of Singapore economy. It's only fair that their pay correspond with the growth of the country. So if the economy do well like 8-9%, then they can get 8-9% increase and if the economy don't do well, then they get lesser. It's more reflective of the work that they do to improve singapore's economy and global standing. Salary increase should be incremental instead of a large and nearly 100% jump.

Anonymous said...

I may be wrong but i think the logic for the pay rise is partly driven by the fact that the government want to ensure ministers will always earn more than any MPs in order to attract capable MPs to leave their high payig jobs and to take on the full-time minister's post if they are being called upon...

I think as a MP, they are being paid only ALLOWANCE, NOT SALARY! Hence, they are able to continue with their high paying jobs and seat on various company board as director etc..Hence, their take home pay = MP's allowance + Salary of their jobs + Director fees etc etc

As a minister, i think they have to give up their high paying jobs and can't seat on any board as directors etc etc..Hence, their only take home pay = 'minister's pay'

As a result, a minister may end up earning less than what's a MP can earn!

CORRECT ME IF I THOUGHT ON THE ABOVE ARE WRONG!

Well does that provide a better reason and justification for the pay rise to the ministers??

Of course, it does not mean that i am supporting of the pay rise too..!

Anonymous said...

Anonymous April 10, 2007 3:20 PM

The pay increase applies to ministers as well as MPs, so it does not really serve the purpose you have highlighted.

The reason given by LHL is that their salaries have lagged behind those in the private sector, not that they earned less than MPs.

In any case, ministers are not necessarily restricted by the fact that cannot hold Directorships because their are many perks and other benefits that they get in addition to the basic salary.

Anonymous said...

It is a sad day for Singapore!

They forgot "more money in one's packets does not make a character stronger..."

Anonymous said...

"CORRECT ME IF I THOUGHT ON THE ABOVE ARE WRONG" You are likely spot on that Ministers are envying MPs!