Singapore for Singaporeans?

General comments and chit-chat, or tell us how we can improve KiasuParents.com

Singapore for Singaporeans?

Postby ChiefKiasu » Thu May 17, 2012 6:27 pm

The people want it.
The politicians say it.
The economists dread it.
And the press loved it.

Amid the chaos that reeks of intoxication, xenophobia and opportunism that resulted from the wreckage of the Ferrari crash over the weekend, it appears that the simmering discontent we natural-born Singaporeans have, over being elbowed from what "rightfully" belongs to us, is finally coming to a head.

"Singapore for Singaporeans". What does it really mean? In its literal sense, it seems to imply that Singaporeans must be given first rights of refusal for everything Singapore, especially when there is a shortage.

First rights to register in Primary Schools.
First rights to good jobs in Singapore.
First rights to that empty seat in the MRT train.

It makes perfect sense. After all, it is our country. Non-Singaporeans should respect our way of life, and abide by our rules and regulations, which are mostly made in good sense, such as "Don't Drink and Drive". (Of course, there are exceptions, such as "Don't Chew Gum and Ride" because it makes us look like "cows".)

But herein lies the fallacy of those very 3 words. If Singapore is for Singaporeans who expect to "own" the fruits of the labour of Singaporeans, then we must be prepared to accept these fruits, no matter how bitter they may taste.

I rejoiced when I heard the news of Singapore rejoining the Malaysia Cup. But try as I may, I could not recapture the zest and excitement in following the Singapore team through its matches. Gone were the days when I followed with extreme pride and admiration of the exploits of the Sons of Singapore: Quah Kim Song, Fandi Ahmad, Edmund Wee... I know they are not the best in the world, nor even close to being the best, but they are ordinary Singaporean, and so they represent me: an ordinary Singaporean. I celebrated when they succeeded. I cried when they failed. For me, that's what Singapore is: a group of people who never say die, even though they know they maybe outmatched and outclassed by their opponents. No one gets to put us in our place, but ourselves.

I remembered the pride I had when we had our National Stadium, and the awe and joy of being in it to watch the National Day parade. It's not the best in the world, nor even close to being the best. But it is ours. It is Singapore's.

We are immune to all these now, being plugged in and aware of the on-goings in other countries. Universal Studios' in Singapore? I've seen better in Orlando. Marina Bay Sands? Ho-hum. Been there, done that. And I don't feel the same kind of pride with our China-imports winning table-tennis championships. Of course this doesn't do justice to the gallant efforts put in by those athletes. But it is just not the same.

We are always hungry for the best, and we want it right here, right now. We do not believe that we ourselves have the capability of achieving the best, so we do what all savvy businessmen will do - outsource the job. We'll bring in people who are the best, so that we can short-cut our way to success. It's a sure-win formula - fastest time-to-market, greatest agility in responding to changes in demand.

The penalty we pay for always looking for quick-wins is our loss of identity, our sense of belonging. It is true that blades of grass survive better than old oaks because they can bend in acquiescence to strong wind. It is also true that nobody remembers blades of grass, but everyone remembers the old oak tree that fell during the last thunderstorm.

For those who believe that doubling Singapore's population with FT is the solution to the long-term viability of our country, I will counter that it is actually a short-term solution that could do irreparable long-term damage to our social fabric, if it has not already been done.

To date, what new innovations do we, as Singaporeans, really have to be proud of? SIA and PSA? Sure enough, but they are successful by virtue of support from the government as they operate key economic infrastructures. The only companies worth mentioning are Creative and Trek, and both have their fortunes severely diminished over the last 10 years. I don't recall the government making any effort to encourage Singaporeans to buy Creative products, despite it being a true-blue Singaporean company. These are the trailblazers who have cut a path for us, only to see the path overgrown with weeds due to our lack of support in following that path. We lament our lack of entrepreneurs and talent, so we import. Yes, import and use foreign talents we did, from football players to bank CEOs.

And yet, no company will ever outsource the development of their IP to 3rd parties on market contracts. IBM did it back in the 80s with a small project involving a toy called the "personal computer" just so they can put up-start Apple in its place, and almost died a decade later when they lost control of the very innovation they gave birth to. No, it is difficult to trust an outsider to design and build solutions for you that you will be eventually dependent on for your livelihood. Apple recognised this because it has learnt its lesson much earlier from its first battles with Apple II clones. Few companies are more anal than Apple when it comes to controlling the secrecy of its devices from engineering to marketing.

In short, I am not against FT in Singapore. On the contrary, I welcome them as people we can learn from, but not people that we can depend on, because these people will simply pack up and go when push comes to shove, leaving us holding the baby. But it IS our baby after all, and as KiasuSingaporeans we all want the best for it, because it is up to us to bring it up the best we can.

So borrowing from the Kennedy-ian phrase "ask not what the country can do for you, ask what you can do for your country", perhaps it is time that we as Singaporeans do a bit of soul-searching. Instead of thinking that Singapore's goodies should only be for Singaporeans, let us ask ourselves: what can we, as Singaporeans, do for Singapore? What can we do to recapture the pride of being a Singaporean?

It is not about going to climb a mountain buck naked or hanging a phone in our cleavages during the world cup just to get famous (though I do remember Paraguay because of that :) )

It's about doing things together as Singaporeans, to create a new Singapore identity that we can all subscribe to and feel proud about. It's about not looking down on the achievements of fellow Singaporeans. It's about giving our first right of refusal to Singaporean-made products and services, to give our fledging entrepreneurs a chance to at least grow. They may not be the best now, but they may never be the best if they are always in the shadow of someone else perceived to be better.

I want my children to be Singaporeans who are as proud to be Singaporeans as I used to be, not because of the achievements of our fathers, but of achievements that they create themselves. I want my children to know that they can be world-class and compete with the best, as long as they are willing to put in their heart, sweat and tears.

The question is not about FTs eating our lunch. The question is whether we even know what it means to be a Singaporean.

Let us all be Singaporeans, for Singapore.

ChiefKiasu
Site Admin
 
Posts: 15221
Joined: Mon Sep 03, 2007 9:16 am
Location: Singapore
Total Likes: 319


Re: Singapore for Singaporeans?

Postby looking4Tutor » Thu May 17, 2012 7:00 pm

For awhile I tot I was at Hougang open field listening to rally. Good message.

looking4Tutor
BlueBelt
BlueBelt
 
Posts: 341
Joined: Mon Feb 07, 2011 4:05 pm
Total Likes: 4


Re: Singapore for Singaporeans?

Postby matrix0405 » Thu May 17, 2012 7:17 pm

Chief, this is your rally speech ar? If yes, I vote for you.
Support the part where u mentioned what it means to be sinkapoorean. Many has lost that pride and identity.
So for the moment, S for S is nothing more than a Public Relation statement.

matrix0405
BlueBelt
BlueBelt
 
Posts: 329
Joined: Wed Jul 30, 2008 10:56 pm
Total Likes: 0


Re: Singapore for Singaporeans?

Postby ChiefKiasu » Thu May 17, 2012 7:21 pm

matrix0405 wrote:Chief, this is your rally speech ar? If yes, I vote for you.
Support the part where u mentioned what it means to be sinkapoorean. Many has lost that pride and identity.
So for the moment, S for S is nothing more than a Public Relation statement.


Lol... if I become HG's MP, I will have a no-closed-door-policy for residents. Everyone must keep their doors open for their neighbours to go in and borrow sugar. You sure you want me to be MP?

ChiefKiasu
Site Admin
 
Posts: 15221
Joined: Mon Sep 03, 2007 9:16 am
Location: Singapore
Total Likes: 319


Re: Singapore for Singaporeans?

Postby Way2GO » Thu May 17, 2012 7:26 pm

*Applause...applause*
Bravo Chief, well said.

On a sidenote, u sure u remember Paraguay or specifically, Larissa?
I was also rooting for Paraguay to win d World Cup, so I cld see more of Larissa! :rotflmao:

Way2GO
KiasuGrandMaster
KiasuGrandMaster
 
Posts: 4494
Joined: Fri Nov 13, 2009 6:33 pm
Total Likes: 4



Re: Singapore for Singaporeans?

Postby Way2GO » Thu May 17, 2012 7:28 pm

ChiefKiasu wrote:

Lol... if I become HG's MP, I will have a no-closed-door-policy for residents. Everyone must keep their doors open for their neighbours to go in and borrow sugar. You sure you want me to be MP?


If only u swear u will not turn out to be another YSL! :laugh:

Way2GO
KiasuGrandMaster
KiasuGrandMaster
 
Posts: 4494
Joined: Fri Nov 13, 2009 6:33 pm
Total Likes: 4


Re: Singapore for Singaporeans?

Postby ChiefKiasu » Thu May 17, 2012 7:30 pm

Way2GO wrote:*Applause...applause*
Bravo Chief, well said.

On a sidenote, u sure u remember Paraguay or specifically, Larissa?
I was also rooting for Paraguay to win d World Cup, so I cld see more of Larissa! :rotflmao:


You are right. It was Larissa I remembered. I actually thought she was from Puerto Rico until I Googled :oops: Well, nice seeing her again :evil:

ChiefKiasu
Site Admin
 
Posts: 15221
Joined: Mon Sep 03, 2007 9:16 am
Location: Singapore
Total Likes: 319


Re: Singapore for Singaporeans?

Postby ChiefKiasu » Thu May 17, 2012 7:32 pm

Way2GO wrote:If only u swear u will not turn out to be another YSL! :laugh:


And since Larissa can be such a distraction to me, swearing would be unwise at this point. :evil:

ChiefKiasu
Site Admin
 
Posts: 15221
Joined: Mon Sep 03, 2007 9:16 am
Location: Singapore
Total Likes: 319


Re: Singapore for Singaporeans?

Postby Chenonceau » Thu May 17, 2012 8:35 pm

KSP Party Rally? I think I am in love. :love:

Chenonceau
KiasuGrandMaster
KiasuGrandMaster
 
Posts: 4872
Joined: Fri Dec 10, 2010 11:57 pm
Total Likes: 19


Re: Singapore for Singaporeans?

Postby Mawar » Thu May 17, 2012 9:04 pm

Well said!!

I like the part about learning from FT, not having to depend on them. I welcome and embrace diversity but I refuse to be smothered in the process.

Mawar
KiasuGrandMaster
KiasuGrandMaster
 
Posts: 1187
Joined: Wed Aug 10, 2011 2:50 pm
Total Likes: 11


Next

Return to Recess Time