Moving to

I'm moving to Mostly.

I plan to use that site as a "self-marketing website" of sorts and to manage content in a way that I would otherwise not be able to do on blogger alone.

This blog will stay, ostensibly for more provisional ideas prior to refinement. I'll be gradually moving content (I still like) over to the other website. =)

Friday, September 21, 2012

Surveillance is Expensive...

Much has been said on the Function 8-ISD-Archbishop affair. Little of which I want to repeat.

The sequence of events, however, strongly suggests the use of state surveillance on either the Catholic Church or on Function 8. The use of such an apparatus is costly. Is there a national security case for this application of state surveillance resources? This should be made clear. Do we have a reason to fear Function 8 or the Catholic Church? Either contention sounds absurd. Or are we just overcapacity in the surveillance department and are disguising unemployment? Or is there an overcapacity that appears to be temporary, and we're allowing some ISD officers to practice?

The whole affair is highly suspicious.

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Goh Keng Swee on the Kind of Armed Forces Needed to Defend Singapore

"You are a Prime Minister but you have no army. How are you going to defend yourself?"
— Goh Keng Swee to Lee Kuan Yew, who had wanted a small part-time, low-cost militia

Goh Keng Swee understood that such a tiny force would be useless as a defence force. Thinking in terms of multi-period dynamics, he conceptualized a system where, each year, men of a certain age group would undergo full-time training and thereafter be part of a reserve force which would have their skills periodically refreshed. Should the need arise, an additional force perhaps more than five times the size of the full-time force might be called upon in the defence of Singapore.

Attribution: The above quote was lifted from The New Paper's Founding Fathers series.

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Goh Keng Swee on Class Conflict

Goh Keng Swee believed that class conflict was an outmoded 19th century concept. He believed that
    "When organized labour believes that it can improve its position only by downing the other side, disaster soon overtakes the economy."
- Goh Keng Swee (1968 address to NTUC trainees)

However, Goh Keng Swee also believed that employers had to treat worker's fairly given the implied concession from labour. On one occasion, he warned employers at the Singapore Manufacturer's Association that the "unthinking and unenlightened employer who pushes his labour force around" would be dealt with severely by the government.

Attribution: This content has been largely lifted from The New Paper's Founding Fathers series.

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Lim Kim San and Goh Keng Swee on the Separation from Malaysia

"In a way, it (the separation) was a bit of a relief. In fact, all around town, people were letting off firecrackers! Dr Goh said to me, 'Here I am so worried about our future. But look, the people are celebrating.'"
- Lim Kim San, recollecting events of the separation

In fact, neither Lee Kuan Yew, Toh Chin Chye nor S. Rajaratnam wanted the separation. Goh Keng Swee understood that differences between Singapore's values and those of Peninsular Malaysia were unreconcilable and prolonged union might lead to further bloodshed. Goh played a key role in convincing the Malaysians that the only was out was for Singapore to secede completely.

Attribution: This content has been largely lifted from The New Paper's Founding Fathers series.

Friday, September 7, 2012

Lim Kim San, Without Fear or Favour (Political Anecdotes)

Even before Lim Kim San became a minster, he volunteered to be the unpaid chairman of the fledgling Housing and Development Board (HDB). Under his charge, the HDB built 26,168 housing units in its first two years. In fact, the forerunning Singapore Improvement Trust (SIT), with many more architects and years of experience, built about the same number in its 32 years.

At that time, the Minister of National Development was Ong Eng Guan who Lim Kim San reported made things difficult for him. The non-cabinet member also had to deal with PAP politicians who demanded special treatment.

When Lim Kim San declined to give special treatment to the Queenstown constituents of Parliamentary Secretary for Home Affairs Lee Siew Choh, Lee reportedly asked: "What are you here for, if not to give priority to party supporters?" Lim Kim San replied, "I am here exactly to prevent misuse of position."

Attribution: This content has been largely lifted from The New Paper's Founding Fathers series.