Wednesday, August 02, 2006

Transport fare hikes

First taxi fare hikes. Now public transport fare hikes.

So what's new again? As expected after elections. Whenever the General Elections (GE) is near, the government will give a legalized 'ang pao' (economic package, soften-GST-blow package, progress package, etc.) to the citizens to 'win' their votes.

And again, most Singaporeans are suckered into it. In my opinion, it is mostly the pre-65ers under Father Lee's rule. Those who actually believe that the government can track the names of the voters and their families. Thus an elderly father may vote the incumbent party, thinking that his son (who works in the civil service) will not be penalized for promotion or bonus.

I must admit though, that people are beginning to catch up, as seen in the last GE. No wonder the government targeted the post-65ers. Even a SG$100 million carrot cannot change the hearts of the people who voted Low TK and Chaim ST in again. It is a good thing some people still have integrity. Kudos to you! You know who you are.

Also the so-called strong mandate at 66% is totally rubbish. Everyone knows 1/3 of Singaporeans are unhappy with many of the current polices. And the figure could have been worse if there had been more more challenges instead of walkovers.

So my words to the those who who did not vote from their hearts and are now complaining about the fare hikes:
Suck it up - you deserve it!

Actually I can predict some of the upcoming hikes:
  1. Utilities
  2. HDB carparks
  3. Conservancy charges
  4. GST @ 7%
  5. ERP charges

And the same old replies:

  1. Increase in oil prices
  2. Increase in the Singaporean combined household income
  3. It has been X years since price revision.
  4. It is inevitable. Read here.
  5. Singapore economy needs to keep with the global economy and inflation
  6. The increase is not much. Media will then:
    - Swarm us with the living standards comparison in major cities like New York, Paris vs Singapore, OR
    - Publish accounts/testimonies of people who regretted migrating and how they had missed Singapore and the affordable living standards, OR
    - Inform the citizens to look at the BIGGER picture. The price of a stability, the clean government, the plenty opportunities, etc.
  7. Nothing comes free, the price of freedom. Er, right...

Sometimes I wonder why they even form the PTC (Public Transport Council)? It's like the Workers' Union being run by the government. Hmmm wait, bad example. Out-going in 2006 NTUC secretary-general is minister Lim BH, who will be handing over to Lim SS, also a minister. What gives?

While surfing for the members of the PTC, I chanced upon a website. (warning!) Read at own risk here. I am not liable for the contents therein.

And to top it, the maximum increase is 1.7%. Doesn't take a rocket scientist to know how much the public transport operators (SMRT, SBS, TransIsland, etc) have proposed the hikes to be. It is as if they have already decided it last year.

Want to know something I have been trying to figure for years? How come I have never been interviewed in any surveys? I have been around for at least 30 years, with 15 years knowing what policies are and how they will affect me.

And yet, the Straits Times publishes statements like for example:

  1. XX% of the people agreed that a fare hike is due. It's been YY years since the last hike.
  2. XX out of YY people interviewed believe that the economy is doing very well
  3. XX% of the people believes the government will bring the people into the new decade, solve national crisis, etc

I have no idea where the numbers come from. Amazing but true.


Anonymous said...

sgp drivers are quite jia-lat : no patience ( horning ), drive slow on fast lane ( no brains ), parking ( inconsiderate ).
as for problematic colleague, just ask her to come back to you tomorrow and walk away. doesn't do you any credibilty to blast at her in front of others even if you're right.


Anonymous said...

OMG it's uncanny!! We actually blogged on similiar theme about the same time..