Thursday, January 24, 2008

Qualified immigrants shun Singapore.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

The news media Asiaone reports on Wed January 23, 2008 the story "It's S'pore's gain even if 30-40% of immigrants settle here: MM Lee".

In the story, Lee Kuan Yew finally admits that it is becoming increasingly difficult to persuade foreign skilled workers and professionals to settle in Singapore. He admits that capable Singaporeans themselves are leaving Singapore for good. Although foreigners come to Singapore to take up temporary jobs, he admits most do not wish to make Singapore home. Therefore he says, he will be happy even if 30 to 40% of Chinese and Indians decide to settle permanently there. He does not talk of other foreigners such as from the West. Therefore it can be assumed that almost no one from the liberal west likes to live in Singapore.

He admits that many foreigners use Singapore as a stepping stone for the west; meaning they never wanted to live in Singapore at any price; their goal being America and the west. Since Singapore is desperate to welcome foreigners, since educated Singaporeans themselves are leaving in droves; these short stay foreigners use Singapore to acquire some skills and leave for the West on the first plane out.

Although he admits that he loses some skilled Singaporeans; in fact not just some but many; he claims Singapore gains far more. But he conveniently does not elaborate on the quality of these Singapore gains. If he is counting the unskilled Bangladesh, Indian and Filipina domestic workers to make up the sums, he is of course right. But if we are thinking of high quality skilled professionals and managers; no foreigner in such a category would want to stay.

Lee keeps repeating that he would be happy if 30% to 40% of those who come stay. Yes it is true, some stay, but with the quality of those that stay, I can assure Lee Kuan Yew that not just 30% but 100% can be made to stay. All you have to do is to to give the half rate half qualified unemployed Indians, Filipinos and Bangladeshis visas and Singapore will have all the people they need. Only thing is, they won't be able to take Singapore anywhere.

In the report Lee had said that in 1987 when Singapore established the Institute of Molecular and Cell Biology, of the 200 people, only 20 were Singaporeans. I have heard that there are now very few foreigners and the Institute that he speaks of is not now doing very much. I can tell you the reason for this. In 1987, there were some very highly qualified foreigners, because of Lee’s ability to dupe the foreign media into believing Singapore was respectable. Problem is, after a little time in Singapore, they finally began to see what Singapore is; a one party dictatorship. Soon after realizing this, most foreigners left; I mean highly talented foreigners. Some mediocre foreigners who are unable fit anywhere else have had no choice but to stay. These are the foreigners that Lee is actually talking about.

He then says that America attracts Europeans and so on; just as he says Singapore does. It is a terrible insult to the Americans to be compared with Singapore. If the Americans were in the habit of suing their opponents for defamation of character, at the drop of a hat, like Lee does; I am sure the Americans would have collected heavy damages! Singapore is not America. America is a free, proud and democratic country with free elections, an independent judiciary, a free press and the rule of law. Singapore is not like America. If comparison is needed, it is more like Laos.

Let me tell Lee Kuan Yew why he is not able to attract capable foreigners. Capable foreigners are able to go where ever they want. And the reason for emigration is not just for money alone. It is to live a good life, a free life, a life where your rights are protected, your children are protected from being caned and hanged. In other words a free country. A country where an individual can rise on his own merits; not because he is a card carrying member of Lee Kuan Yew's People’s Action Party.

You see, all educated able foreigners have heard of machine called a computer. They have also heard of such a thing as the Internet and what is more, they know how to use it. Armed with this knowledge, they can read like anyone else that Singapore’s strongman Lee Kuan Yew, goes around with a knuckle duster and a hatchet in his bag. Anyone who crosses him will be lured to a cul de sac where he will finish them off. (For those who are unfamiliar with Lee Kuan Yew, the “hatchet man”, he actually said in Parliamentary Debates that if anyone crossed him he will lure his opponent to a cul de sac and there finish him off with a hatchet which he always carries in his bag!)

They have also heard of Singapore Judge Belinda Ang who awards defamation of character judgments of half a million US dollars, in favor of strongman Lee against his political opponent Dr. Chee Soon Juan without even getting off her chair, within 5 minutes, in her private chambers and not hearing Dr. Chee at all! This is what is called Summary Judgment, Singapore style.

They have also heard that Lee Kuan Yew has recently made up his mind that it is only fair to pay himself and his friends in high places no less than $3.7 million per year. Not satisfied with this, and just for the fun of it, he has just recently threatened to increase his salary to even higher amounts not to be outdone by the late Columbian drug lord Pablo Escobar!

The capable foreigners have also come to Singapore for visits and have been surprised to see that almost all Singaporeans have no opinion on any political matter; eventually discovering that this apathy towards political matters is out of fear for the knuckle duster hatchet man Lee Kuan Yew.

And then you have Dr. Chee Soon Juan. He writes his blog everyday and fearlessly tells the world what sort of a silly place Singapore really is, which by the way, the capable able foreigners read. And then there is my blog, Singapore Dissident, where I identify myself and describe this silly place called Singapore. A place which I describe as a one party state, where the judiciary is corrupt, the politicians corrupt, where the media is state controlled, a place not much different from North Korea; the only difference being that you cannot escape North Korea whereas you can from Singapore. Foreigners read my blog too. And then there are hundreds of other blogs who truthfully describe Singapore to be just another dictatorship with one party rule.

And as if all this is not enough, you have Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch, Freedom House, Reporters without Borders and all manner of respectable international organizations who say the same thing, which is this; Singapore is nothing more than a bluff. A place where a corrupted dictatorship continues to remain in power by bribing the judiciary, the press and every other organ of civil society.

I know this much. Capable skilled and well read foreigners from Australia, New Zealand, India, Europe, South Africa and the world over know this much too. So they will not come.

You can of course bring in as many thousands of South Indian scaffolding and construction workers as you want. For them, any place is better than where they are.

And lastly let me tell Lee Kuan Yew this. Australians and Europeans among others do sometimes go to other places to work and live. But unlike Singaporeans who leave, they love their own native countries and would always want to go back if and when they decide. Whereas Singaporeans leave Singapore because they hate the sight of Lee Kuan Yew and the life they were forced to live in Singapore. A life of bondage under a totalitarian one party rule. They are delighted to leave Singapore and unlike other Europeans and Australians, want nothing more to do with Singapore. There is a great difference there.

Yet again, Lee Kuan Yew who has admitted that he governs Singapore by wits alone has yet again deceived you. He is comparing apples with oranges. A New Zealand immigrant to the USA is totally different to the Singapore immigrant to Australia.

The New Zealander loves his country. The Singaporean hates it, never wanting to look back again.

Gopalan Nair
39737 Paseo Padre Parkway, Suite A1
Fremont, CA 94538, USA
Tel: 510 657 6107
Fax: 510 657 6914


Anonymous said...

It may indeed be very strange and extremely sad for a person to leave the country of his birth and then also to hate it simply because of a very selfish and self centred individual.

Those who have left Singapore permanently are the true patriots for they have not given in to the disgusting ways of this one man.

Anonymous said...

The Old Man was responding in a Q&A session to a participant who wanted to know how Spore became a Top Ten country in intellectual property.
He replied, "Foreign talent." Totally well off the mark but an orchestrated Q&A to hoodwink a wide-eyed & ignorant audience. Anyone with a reasonable IQ would have pick off his point. 1st of all, Spore hardly has any intellectual properties - no leading research institutes or corporations. 2ndly, how does foreign talent drive intellectual property gains? The truth is they don't. The reality is that intellectual property originates either from research oriented universities or corporate-funded vehicles. Eg. Massachusetts Institute of Technology and John Hopkins Medicine are universities dedicated to scientific and medical research respectively. Xerox PARC in Palo Alto is a corporate funded research vehicle which was responsible for PC innovations like Graphical User Interface (GUI)used in today's Window environment; computer mouse; laser printing,etc.
It's the environment and not the individual that is responsible for intellectual property developments. In any cutting edge environments, a liberal, free & tolerant setting is key. Has Spore any of the above? It has neither a liberal, free nor tolerant atmosphere. Researchers will remember the case of Professor Simon Shorvon. Prof Shorvon's website left out his time in NNI Spore in his bio. Others included University of Warwick, UNSW's aborted campus, aborted John Hopkins JV, etc. In short, Old Man's answer was utter rubbish! However it's the way that he perversely lies to the world & the latter laps it up as truth.
In another press statement, he mentions Spore being a knowledge based economy (KBE) & how Chinese & Indians help it along with their cultures that place great emphasis on knowledge. Bullocks! Spore is not a KBE. The knowledge that he is talking about is not knowledge but academic excellence. He was also rather harsh on the Malays, saying that they did not initially have that same culture {of academic excellence)...but then added, "today, there is a new Malay generation that has 'learnt to compete'." Utter lies, Spore Malays developed their own exclusive economy - eg. Eastpoint Mall at Simei as they have been so discriminated that either they remained an underclass or they run businesses catering exclusively to their own as survival.
Old Man heard criticisms from the Saudi Arabian General Investment Authority governor Amir Al-Dabbagh who said Singapore companies are not aggressive enough, he replied: 'This is a new country for us. We don't speak their language, we don't understand the intricacies of the system and we got to know where are the advantages we can go into which will be needed by them.'
Again terrible lies by Old Man! There are Spore Muslims who knows Arabic and been to Mecca many times. A lame excuse by Old Man.
He added 'It's how you manage those reserves [Saudi Arabia's oil],' he said. 'You're not going to build new cities all the time, you'll have to learn to invest in them judicously worldwide.' I shudder when he mentions "invest". After the subprime debacle, investment is a dirty word. If I were the Saudi ruler, I would keep my oil in the ground rather than investing the proceeds worldwide. Why? Oil becomes more valuable as time goes on whereas paper investments can go seriously bad eg. Citibank, Merrill Lynch, UBS & now Soc Gen.
He also had the cheek to teach the Saudis "... that the country must educate its total population including the women, in a way that does not upset the social balance. It should also try to retain its foreign talent." Old Man has knowingly deprived his own people of higher education & he goes to Saudi Arabia lecturing them on importance of education. Hypocrite!
Old Man's has got a serious preoccupation with foreign talent. That term has become so embarrassing that even his PM son rarely uses "foreign talent" in the press these days preferring to use "immigrants" or "foreigners". Why? Singaporeans have observed that the "foreign talents" don't seem particularly talented in Spore. Such continual use of "foreign talent" also alienate native Sporeans by implying that locals are not as talented. Sporeans have sarcastically refer to Peidu Mamas as "foreign talent" as they are not only excellent home wreckers but also very bold prostitutes operating openly in HDB estates & Chinatown.
The bottom line is that Old Man is really getting senile. He thinks he is a great statesman but he is out of touch with reality.

Anonymous said...

Old Man delivered his speech during the Global Competitiveness Conference held in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. From the subsequent press write-ups by Spore mainstream media, three points that he made revealed his increasing irrelevance to the real world.
A constant preoccupation by Old Man. Spore has more foreign talent than she'll ever need. Trouble is that they don't seemed particularly talented other than (a) being a home wrecker and/or very aggressive prostitutes [Peidu Mamas]; (b) carriers of interesting and exotic virus eg. Chikungunya fever & recent Prima Deli food poisoning; (c) providing interesting CSI cases with them hacking off one another leaving the remains in bags for CSIs to piece back together. In 10 years, Spore thru its foreign talents have had expanded the red light districts from traditional enclaves of Geylang & Jalan Besar to HDB estates & Chinatown. Also, foreign talents have brought in more exotic diseases to provide our bio-tech industry with communicable diseases to solve.
For some strange reasons, Old Man equates academic excellence with knowledge. Knowledge is definitely not academic excellence - if it is, Bill Gates would not have been successful as he dropped out of Harvard. While Steve Ballmer would be since he's got a Harvard degree. Yet Ballmer reports to Gates who employed him as his CEO. This proves academic excellence is not equivalent to knowledge. Bill Gates dropped out of college to pursue his dreams & founded Microsoft. Ballmer got his degree & ended working for Gates who didn't have one. Just because Old Man was academically excellent during his time doesn't mean that this would hold true today. Many entreprenuers set up their companies without the benefit of a degree - they just got their life education outside of formal educational system.
Another preoccupation of Old Man. In today's complicated world where a bank [Soc Gen] can lose US$7.2bn in derivatives trading. Global Banks like Citibank, Merrill Lynch, UBS & Morgan Stanley can write off huge chunks of their shareholdings from the subprime debacle. Also, his daughter-in-law investment record doesn't give much comfort - Micropolis, Shin Corp, etc to Sporeans. If UBS CEO couldn't even explained the extent of the subprime losses to shareholders, what do you think a 80 year old man could do?
I rest my case!

Anonymous said...

Below are 3 GENUINE Foreign Talents who came to Spore & their subsequent bad experiences:-

Dr. Lingle is an economist & a Senior Fellow in the European Studies Program at NUS from Sept '93 to Nov '94. His visit ended abruptly after he wrote an article which appeared in the International Herald Tribune. In his article, he inferred that some regimes in Asia thwart criticism by relying on a compliant judiciary. Within two weeks, he was subjected to consistent police harassment & interrogation - prompting his resignation from NUS and his quick exit with only a carry bag and notebook computer. The Govt seized all his property and sentenced him to jail in absentia. In March '96, the High Court was asked to order Dr. Lingle to pay over $300,000 in damages for libel. In judgement, Justice S. Rajendran awarded $70,000 in libel damages against Dr. Lingle. This despite his article only suggesting measured criticisms of political repression in East Asia and did not even mention individuals or countries by name. Dr Lingle was found guilty of scandalizing the judiciary and for libel. Since leaving Spore, Dr. Lingle has subsequently written several articles & books on his Spore experience & its flawed political system.

Dr. Shorvon is a Professor specializing in clinical research in epilepsy. He arrived in Spore to head a research position in the National Neuroscience Institute (NNI) in 2001. His research brief was to focus on genetic factors in Parkinson’s disease. In 2002, he was accused by the NHG of violating patients' rights and altering their treatment. Although he accepted NHG's findings at that time but has since said undue pressure was put on him. NHG wrote to him offering a choice of accepting the findings or facing a full public inquiry headed by a judge, which might have led to criminal proceedings. He signed a letter stating he accepted the report and its conclusions, he said he did so under threat of being reported to the police and he would not be permitted to leave Spore, “as by then he was most anxious to do so, unless he signed such a letter.” He signed and left. He was succeeded as director of the Neurological Institute by Dr. Lee Wei Ling [no guesses to her relationship to Old Man]. But that wasn’t the end of of Dr. Shorvon's troubles. A subsequent inquiry by the Singapore Medical Council was convened. Dr. Shorvon refused to participate, partly on advice of counsel that the medical council had no jurisdiction and also because “by now Professor Shorvon had, rightly or wrongly, come to the view, given his experiences, that he was not going to receive a fair hearing in Singapore and that the result was a foregone conclusion.” A subsequent medical council 10-day hearing predictably confirmed Dr. Shorvon's "foregone conclusion". The SMC demanded that his name be removed from the register of UK medical practitioners, that he be censured and that he pay costs, which he did under protest. That got the General Medical Council, UK's equivalent of SMC, involved. The GMC screened all the Singapore proceedings and documents and referred the case to a professional conduct committee. Ultimately, the independent expert evidence supported Shorvon. The GMC concluded that it was unable to prove that Dr. Shorvon was guilty of any misconduct and in 2005 ended the proceedings on their side. The SMC would not accept GMC's views and went to the British High Court, where a Queen ’s Counsel – the very elite of the British legal profession – was hired by the SMC charged that they were there to “stop Professor Shorvon from getting away with it.” An independent witness for the GMC said he would not dispute what he called “the clear-cut facts of the case,” but said the alleged offenses were so minor that they weren’t worth bothering with. He added, " the level of serious professional misconduct, I cannot find anything here that should cause serious concern about Professor Simon Shorvon.” The British High Court effectively ended SMC's pursuit of Simon Shorvon. With that vindication, Singapore has discovered that other countries don’t share their idea of what is legal and proper. As a fellow scientist noted, "It is hard to avoid the conclusion that Dr. Shorvon fell victim to internal power". To his credit, Dr. Shorvon has graciously avoided bad-mouthing Spore, totally erased the time he spent in Spore from his bio and concentrated on his research work. However, in a close-knitted global medical research community, his professional persecution will never be forgotten. The four-year dispute was a serious blow to Singapore’s hopes to be an international center for biomedical research and for attracting top researchers here. Despite all its advances, Singapore is still very much a third world country when it comes to justice. This saga clearly demonstrates the abuse of power and a vindictive nature to ruin a professional career. [also see Capt Ryan Goh]

Capt Goh was Malaysian-born but lived in Spore as a Permanent Resident for 26 years. He was an airline pilot for SIA and a union representative for ALPA-S. In 2003, Old Man accused him of being the "chief instigator" behind the move to sack the SIA pilots’ union leadership after it had approved pay and job cuts during the SARS crisis. It was the majority of pilots who were unhappy with the union’s concession and they voted out the union leaders. The new union team which included Capt Goh was to confront SIA management in forthcoming union negotiations. He was then accused of threatening industrial peace in SIA - with affecting Spore's interests. Old Man revealed that Capt. Goh had obtained Australian PR, bought a house in Perth, moved his family there - after selling his Spore flat implying he was prepared to run should things go wrong. Following his involvement in the union dispute, the Home Affairs Ministry declared that he was an ‘undesirable immigrant’ and his PR status was immediately revoked on Mar 20, 2004. As an ‘undesirable immigrant’, he was kicked out of Spore for good and needed special permission to re-enter. He would also not allowed to work in Spore. He left Spore on May 1, 2004 [ironically on Labour Day] for Perth where his wife and two sons live. After leaving SIA, Capt Goh had trouble finding work as a pilot despite applying to several international airlines. He had not been flying for a while and his licence was expiring. Capt Goh was in Spore on Oct '04 for his licence renewal from CAAS and to use SIA flight simulator for his ‘recurrency practice’ and ‘base check’ after being forced from Spore. Later, 3 SIA pilots were implicated & went before a SIA inquiry panel. They were suspected of helping Capt Goh to use SIA’s flight simulator for his renewal test. The pilots who helped him faced SIA disciplinary action ranging from a warning to suspension to ’summary termination’ meaning an immediate sack. If they are instructor pilots, they could lose their instructor status. No specific charges were laid at the pilots. Subsequently. they were sent formal notes reminding them to be more mindful of company procedures. It was another deeply troubling saga of a vindictive nature.

The 3 cases are deeply troubling examples of foreign talents in Spore who inadvertently crossed the path of the FamiLee. The merciless, vindictiveness & pettiness nature of the FamiLee's response shown towards them are nothing short of inhuman and cruel. Yet Old Man has the cheek to continue to implore for foreign talents to populate Spore is not meritocracy but idiocracy. Those who come, beware!

Anonymous said...

Power Corrupts, Longevity in Power Corrupts Latitudinally and Longitudinally as well as Absolutely !Unlike Good Vintage Wine that comes with Age,Power with Old Age Corrupts and Rots the Man in such Straits! Retirement ASAP is called for and leave with a well earned legacy,or else it might evaporate by staleness and malaise of the people under such rule !
Shocked and Awed Spore Quitter and Squatter !