Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Oh Yes Virginia, There Is A Minimum Wage

The argument offered by Minister in the Prime Minister's Office, Lim Boon Heng, for not having a minimum wage for low income workers is that it could push up the price tag on Singaporean workers, and in turn make it harder for them to find jobs. In order words, the bottom feeders should continue to subsist on peanuts (think President Carter, not Mrs Goh Chok Tong), forever dependent on the crumbs like the Workfare Income Supplement (WIS) handouts hamstrung by loads of qualifying conditions. Don't forget to read the fine print.

The reality is that minimum wage exists in Singapore. The minimum starting pay for a cabinet minister is $1.5 million, regardless of not being backed by a single ballot cast in his name, not possessing prior track record in political office, or inexperience in managing a budget for a national mega project. The minimum for a senior minister is $3 million. You know what the top dog pays himself. And there are the minimum wage levels for permanent secretaries, superscale officers and a whole catalogue of fat cat civil servants. The only number applicable to a low wage earner is the foreign worker levy, which is strictly enforceable by law.

The last time Liim did a great disfavour for Singaporeans was to cut the CPF contribution rate, based on his expert understanding from a PERC (Political and Economic Risk Consultancy) report that Singaporean workers are paid more than Americans or Australians. PERC's managing director Robert Broadfoot justified its findings in that it was based on the peception of business leaders it surveyed. Colored, no doubt, by the likes of compensation heavyweights like Lim himself.

Meanwhile, paltry GST Credits and Senior Citizens Bonus payments are the only indications of a pumping heart in the cold machinery of governance. Apparently the last largesse for the senior citizens was posted to their Medisave Account, so that that grandpa can't even use it to buy moon cakes for the grandchildren, or heaven forbid, pay for the entrance fee to Resort World Sentosa.


  1. Come to think about it, it's really hypocrisy of the highest standards.

    With that kind of obscene pay for our Ministers, we can settle for a full cabinet of several Obamas to replace all our Ministers with spare Ang Pow money for everyone during every Hari Raya, Deepavali, Christmas and Chinese New Year !

  2. It's only human nature. If you have the power to decide your own pay, are you going to be shy about it? The fact that our ministers are the highest paid politicians in the world by a huge margin shows how arrogant they are treating their constituents with contempt.

  3. Ho come sinkapooreans are so naive ? How can the laymen kip comparing their incomes with the rulers, its like questioning the king. And so wat if they give you a minimum pay but you cannot find any employment ? Okay, let say most people are employed with a minimum wage but they(rulers) raise the costs of everything in their charges, housing, transportation and healthcare etc. Wat's the point of having minimum wage then ?

  4. arrogant? typical asians, always accepting all sorts of shit. that's why we americans love asian workers. keep on working hard you peasants.

  5. Yes, Gringo, screw the locals. As long as PAP is in power, you are welcome to do so.

  6. What exactly does this Lim guy do as a Minister
    w/o Portfolio in PM's office? If he paid mil $ just to handle aging issues, then what
    is the MCYS for.
    A waste and misuse of public funds when the Cabinet is loaded with many unnecessary positions (SM< MM M w/o portfolios)

  7. thanks to you sinkie chinks, we gringoes enjoy crapping here, playing your women, before we return back to our homeland. if you chinks really want change, stop complaining, grow some b*lls or eat some tiger's or bear's heart.