Thursday, June 28, 2007

A study of United Kingdom and her ex Crown Colony

1. Ministries
Of course, every country has its own unique needs for various ministries, but i feel that Singapore introduced duplication of work by creating MICA and MCYS whereas UK has only 1 ministry for this (Department of Culture, Media and Sports). This 2 ministries serves basically as propanganda tools for the nation. By having 2 ministries, theorically propanganda control is effectively doubled. Propaganda Ministries serves to control information, whether visual or aural, to the interests of the Nation.

2. Trend of past elections

Whereas the UK has a relatively large opposition party (large enough to elect a shadow cabinet...) since time immemorial, Singapore does not have one. Ever since the communist crackdowns, the elections has been dominated by PAP's victory from 1968-1987, until WP's Jereyetnam won a single constituency. Because Singapore never had a viable opposition in the first place, the dominant party has the potential to do things unchecked.

3. Entrenching nature of GRCs

The creation of GRCs allows the incumbent to reelect easily as they usually have more funds than the opposition and a GRC allows him to bring potential newcomers who wouldn't be interested in politics in the first place. The UK, with a population of 60 million sees no need of implementing GRCs and yet Singapore has to.


4. Unions and Politics
Because political parties usually have their own trade unions, in the UK this has come to mean that by electing the party into office, you are also securing your worker's benefits. In Singapore's case, because there is only 1 legal union, the NTUC, which is formed from PAP loyalists, this will mean that opposition parties cannot have their own unions as support, leaving with the elections as the sole way of expressing dissatisfaction.

5. Culture
Whereas the United Kingdom has a rich culture from England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland, solidified over the years through war, religon, laws and time, Singapore has nearly none of those. We have not experieced Civil War before, as we descended from a being a colony and a state in Federal Malaysia. We do not have strong cultural markers that makes us Singapore, being here only because we are born here; in the United Kingdom, people of their Home States have a rich cultural heritage that has survived through the ages (including Roman invasions).

This post reflects the views of the author after browsing through the various wiki links when he was reading on the United Kingdom's constitution. In no part was the author trying to criticize anyone.


References:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cabinet_of_the_United_Kingdom http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Category:Ministries_of_the_Singapore_Government http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Department_for_Culture%2C_Media_and_Sport http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ministry_of_Information%2C_Communications_and_the_Arts_%28Singapore%29 http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ministry_of_Community_Development%2C_Youth_and_Sports_%28Singapore%29 http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/MPs_elected_in_the_UK_general_election%2C_2005 http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Trade_unions http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/National_Trades_Union_Congress

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Mr Brown is now PM

At 1448 GMT yesterday (2248 SGT), the Chancellor of the Exchequer Gordon Brown became Prime Minister of the United Kingdom.

Speaking to reporters outside 10 Downing Street, PM Brown promised that he will do his utmost and swiftly entered his new residence.

Full text from the BBC:

"
I have just accepted the invitation of Her Majesty the Queen to form a government.

This will be a new government with new priorities and I have been privileged to have been granted the great opportunity to serve my country and at all times I will be strong in purpose, steadfast in will, resolute in action in the service of what matters to the British people - meeting the concerns and aspirations of our whole country.

I grew up in the town that I now represent in Parliament. I went to the local school. I wouldn't be standing here without the opportunities that I received there.

And I want the best of chances for everyone. That is my mission - that if we can fulfil the potential and realise the talents of all our people, then I am absolutely sure that Britain can be the great global success story of this century.

As I have travelled round the country and as I have listened and I have learnt from the British people - and as Prime Minister I will continue to listen and learn from the British people - I have heard the need for change. Change in our NHS, change in our schools, change with affordable housing, change to build trust in government, change to protect and extend the British way of life. This change cannot be met by the old politics.

So I will reach out beyond narrow party interest. I will build a government that uses all the talents. I will invite men and women of good will to contribute their energies in a new spirit of public service to make our nation what it can be.

I am convinced that there is no weakness in Britain today that cannot be overcome by the strength of the British people.

On this day I remember words that have stayed with me since my childhood and which matter a great deal to me today. My school motto: I will try my outmost. This is my promise to all of the people of Britain. And now let the work of change begin.

Thank you."

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Tuesday, June 26, 2007

The Goondu Times

Tuesday, 26 June 2007

Brown names key people for cabinet

Mr Brown, in an closed interview conducted with our reporters, has named several people in key ministerial positions. Brown said that by placing these people in office, his vision of making Singapore a happy society can be accomplished.

Minister for Laughter - Dr Siao Ka Peng
Haha 2010 Committee - Mr Rofl Mao
Minister for Union Groups - Mr Smiley Smile

Associated Buggers - In case you haven't noticed, this story is fiction

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Monday, June 25, 2007

The Goondu Times

Monday, 25 June 2007

Brown to become Prime Minister on Wednesday

Mr Brown, of mrbrownshow fame, will be invited by the president to form a new cabinet on Wednesday, after he has secured a majority support from his party.

On his party grounds yesterday, Brown thanked his supporters and said "It is with humour, pleasantry and a great sense of drollery that I accept the privilege and the great responsibility of leading our party and changing our country."

He also pledged to take Singapore to new heights by introducing new laws that will encourage citizens to joke and make Singapore a happier society in general.

Associated Buggers - acutal news article here

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Sunday, June 24, 2007

Lia & LIA Collection Album

Just gotten this yesterday ^_^

I didn't know the special version of Last Regrets featured in the Shiori Arc was sung by her. But anyway it rocks.

Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting

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Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Cost of living

First, an extract from RedBean

We are progressing

We have over taken New York as the 14th most expensive city to live in. The rate of this climb is short of meteoric. From 46th in 2004, we leapfrogged to 34th and then 17th and today 14th.

Our next target is Hongkong, currently 5th. We only lost out in rentals. Our public transport cost is already almost double that of Hongkong and our hamburger meal is $1.50 more. Maybe we have already over taken Hongkong as the report was probably based on last year's data. The phenomenon rise in our property prices and rentals is beating all records. If we have not beaten Hongkong yet, we are very close.

By the time we are 6.5 million, the top slot will definitely be reserved for us. Then we can tell the world we are number one again.

Followed by an extract from
Littlespeck

General measures

Firstly, cut down waste. I think we can do it with some of the expensive goods or services without suffering too much effect.

Secondly, Be selective. Avoid the places that overcharge. Look for alternatives. Don’t give them your custom.

Thirdly, share things with friends and relatives whenever possible instead of buying or renting.

All this steps could mitigate the current dollar erosion in Singapore, but it will not improve your standard of living.

By Seah Chiang Nee

7% GST in kicking in from July 2007, but all major coporations, many of the GLC linked companies and essential services have already increased their prices. And in due time, we will probably increase the GST yet again. If memory serves me right, the GST will eventually rise to 10%. All this cost increases with stagnant wages for the lower middle class, how much can their $1 stretch to?

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Sunday, June 17, 2007

Housing Boom?

The Straits Times reported for 2 days in a row (Friday, Saturday) of homes being sold at record high prices. And the Sunday Times has continued followed up by having an interview with the National Development Minster, Mah Bow Tan.

Among the facts available, the bit that got me was that this year is the largest number of development sites released by the government since 1997. Since 1998 was the year the economy bursted, so does this mean that the same may happen again?

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Monday, June 11, 2007

Anime, File Sharing, Law and MNCs

A timely comment from Jason Miao on file-sharing

http://anime.miao.us/archives/2007/06/11/1099/#more-1099

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Saturday, June 09, 2007

Random thoughts

All things are relative, but humans seek to find an absolute answer to simplify their understanding.

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