Thursday, April 05, 2007


So, I am a visitor in the country of Singapore and I often do not comment on the government here. But this post is different. Now, I could lose my permanent residence permit for this post as I am sure it will be considered treason. I could spend time in jail for speaking out against the current prime minister and his policy decisions. I guess I should say that I think Lee Kuan Yew has finally succumbed to old age and has lost all touch with reality.

The "elected" officials of government in Singapore are getting a tidy raise. These largely ceremonial positions, wherein the ministers attend parliament, get up and state very Pro government positions and never give an opinion that is contrary to that of the "stated" policy will now earn over 1million Sing dollars a year. Yes boys and girls One MILLION dollars. The ministers do not ever make policy decisions, they do not (generally) run in contested races, they are all most entirely members of Lee Kuan Yew's PAP party. So, just so you fully get it. You dress up in your finest attire (unless you are the prime minister and then you wear an open front shirt with a gold jacket, because HIS salary of more than 2 million Sing (1.3 mill US) just isn't enough to buy a tie), sit on your ass in parliament, drive around and cut ribbons at the opening of the newest shopping malls. You are not required to make a hard decision, you are not required to justify any small decision you may make, and you are not allowed to do anything that might reek of discordance with the rest of the government. BUT, you do get paid for this job. Yep, to the tune of over a million dollars Sing. (About 600 K US).

Now, the funny thing is these ministers are underpaid. Lee Kuan Yew says that these Ministers deserve more money. They need it because the job they do is so thankless.

AH, but here my friends is the rub. Singapore does not believe in social welfare. If you are old, you get “workfare”. If you are truly old or infirm and can no longer work you lazy ass 80 year old that has had a stroke… we are going to give you a monthly stipend. We are generous, we care about your needs. Go live on 290 Sing a month. Pay 100 a month to share a one room (not one bedroom) one ROOM apartment with a stranger, take 30 dollars and pay for your utilities and spend that other 160 Sing on those silly little items like… OH HELL YEAH THAT’S Right-FOOD!

So, you poor aren’t worth more than 10 Sing a day, but we rich MPs are with
$2777.00 per day. See we need more money to live in our big houses and drive our Mercedes and dine on thousand dollar Beluga. You poor, you had better work hard because we can’t afford to feed you, you need to earn it yourself.

See. Most of the time I like my adopted home. But this pisses me off. A disparity of 2767 dollars a day. Something is not right.

For another person’s take


Jenny said...

I had no idea that the government was quite that corrupt, or that the government officials were paid that much. It's unbelievable, and sad too.

Kristy said...

Yeah, ironically, they are trying to eliminate "corruption" by setting high salaries!

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