Friday, September 10, 2010

Foreign Gripes

Senior Minister Goh Chok Tong can be a real pussycat when foreigners Gripe. His Mr Hyde persona is reserved for mild mannered Singaporean sheep.

The EP holder who initiated the "Singapore to Expel 10% of Permanent Residents" thread in ExpatSingapore wrote these in the closing lines of his post:
"As an example, I cannot imagine the best way to start a life-long loving commitment and marriage is for the marriage proposal to be:  "Marry me, or I will kill you". " Singaporeans have been arrested for using a less provocative metaphor.

Goh has to be seriously engaged in back pedalling now, trying desperately to swallow his own ill conceived words, "If they don't (take up Singapore citizenship), then their PR will not be renewed." Especially when his short sightedness nets truisms like this from "an English speaking highly paid professional":

"And there are of course the pragmatic reasons. The piece of paper called a western passport is not just a travel document that opens doors around the world but is also a medical insurance policy, giving me free health care in my homeland if I choose to take it,  a social welfare card giving me access to varous social welfare benefits, a pension plan for when I am old, and an education subsidy for my children giving them the right to study in Universities back home (and in our friendly neighbour) at a highly subsidised rate.
 If Singapore Inc thinks that any rational human being would give all that up for a Singapore passport, they need to tweak their grip on reality very fast."

But the letter in TODAY from Peter Wadely is puzzling. He lives in Singapore because "I have a Singaporean wife and two Singaporean children". While affirming that "Singapore is my home and I feel loyalty to Singapore," he simultaneously declares for the record, "I am not Singaporean and never will be... Nothing will ever change that". So will his son, who he (claims) is preparing to serve National Service, point his SAR 21 in the right direction? Pity the poor Mrs, "So what am I? A convenient USB port?"

Jurong GRC MP Halimah Yacob is not discouraged. She feels PRs eventually make up their minds if they want to take up citizenship, "Otherwise, we would have a situation where they would stay just to have the best of both worlds."

The lesson from this latest Goh gaffe, and one which Singaporeans should learn from our foreign friends, is best phrased by Kubes:
"Threats don't tend to work well with people who have choices, especially when one of the options is to remove all choice."


  1. mountain bear9/10/2010 1:07 PM

    The open door policy for new citizens and PR's reveals the 2 year NS for what it is: an inconvenience that can be done away with!

    First generation PR's and citizens are not expected to do national service. Why? Because NS is not viewed as a carrot but a burden and as a disincentive to becoming a citizen. And so the removal of NS or any kind of NS is supposed to be a sweetner to the foreigner who is thinking about being a citizen. And this is not really fair to the average hard working Sporean who has delayed gratification for a better tomorrow.

    The average Singaporean sacrifices 2 years of his life in NS and several weeks in reservist training. He now sees to his astonishment a group of people who are excused from the sacrifices he has made. He also notices that the children of these new citizens and PR's send their kids away when they are served notices to sign up for NS. The first generation PR and new citizen meanwhile continue to enjoy the privileges of life in Singapore.

    So if NS is considered not important to the aspiring new citizen or the first generation PR, then why on earth should a Singaporean consider it important to give 2 years of his life to NS? Why should a Singaporean sacrifice and struggle in NS and reservist training to provide security for the new citizen and the first generation PR who've been excused from NS?

    The solution is not to impose the 2 year NS commitment on new citizens or PR's but to see the inconvenience of a a 2 year NS commitment. A 2 year commitment to do NS is an inconvenience. Lower the NS requirements to maybe a year or less and get everyone to do it!

  2. We need a big change. We cannot continue to be a hotel for these talents.

    1. eugene nirvan anthony ("desafindo"/"nirvan44")1/01/2017 11:29 AM

      @anonymous dated 10 Sept. 2010, 1315 hours:

      Are they even "talents"?

    2. eugene nirvan anthony (Applecross WA 6153)1/01/2017 11:30 AM

      Typo: "desafinado"

  3. To be precise, they are non-talents.

  4. A few words from a foreign passport holder got him liked a cat on a hot tin roof.

    And Singaporeans have been subjected to his many policies and admonishments since he became a cabinet member holding the high offices.

    Do Singaporeans see the difference ?


  5. Some of these PRs head companies employing Singaporeans among many others. So by saying "marry me or you go", they will indeed go and close these companies and set up shop somewhere else.

    I'm sure 'we' will continue to suck up to their toes by renewing the blue card without questions.

  6. SM Goh is only regurgitation what the garmen have been doing for a while now persuading PR to take citizenship under different guises. Nothing new at all but judging from the huge reaction, the papies has their hands full to clear up their gaffe.