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ELSON: That “Greatest Love of All” song must have been buzzing somewhere in Heng’s head during his Budget 2017 speech. There’s so many goodies aimed at making the world a better place for the young here. You know, because the children are our future. And hopefully they don’t screw things up. For starters, there’s even more help for housing under the CPF Housing Grant scheme, which gives...

ELSON: Of course, Finance Minister Heng Swee Keat didn’t put it his way during his Budget speech this afternoon, but essentially for Singapore workers, it’s “upgrade your skills and adapt to a new and changing economy. Or die.” That’s why the government has incentivised workers with skills training, with the aim of helping them take on new roles in an economy which is...

RONALD LEE: The 32-metre Tembusu tree that collapsed on Saturday was one of 40 heritage trees in our Botanic Gardens Standing for 270 years now, the tree featured heavily in our bid to get the Gardens recognised as a Unesco World Heritage Site. It’s so iconic that it even has a place on our S$5 notes. In short, it can’t simply be allowed to collapse unless it was deliberately destroyed due to...

TAN JEE SAY: 5 economic ministers for so little GDP growth Singapore economy grew the slowest among Asian countries in 2016, prompting Reuters to call us “the new sick man of Asia”, a title that the Philippines held for many years in the past. In 2017, the new sick man is not expected to recover and will continue to register the lowest growth rate in Asia again. Yet we have so many ministers supposedly...

OFFBEAT PERSPECTIVES: Leow Yangfa – Registered social worker and Executive Director of Oogachaga will answer all the HORNY (*cough cough), oops I mean “HOT” questions that many curious Singaporeans have always secretly wanted to know, but lacked the balls to ask the LGBTQ community straight-in-their-faces: #1 Why do “gays/lesbians” seem less masculine/feminine than straight people? YF: Gender...

OFFBEAT PERSPECTIVES: Chinese privilege is something that I used to find it very difficult to understand in Singapore for two reasons: (1) not being in the shoes of the minority or/and disadvantaged races and (2) what does privilege mean in a meritocratic society where you are not judged based on your racial background but your ability to achieve? For the first, this is being complemented by the...

Looking back at Singapore 2016, this really was a year of super cock-ups, with each one closely matching the other in terms of sheer numbskull-ish behaviour (except for you, SMRT). That’s why we had a much harder time deciding on the eventual Redwire Awards winners compared to 2015. But ultimately we had to choose. So after many rounds of Tiger, here’s our choices… (1) Scandal of...

ELSON: Ownself check ownself – boleh? Apparently not in AMKTC. While Ang Mo Kio Town Council chairman and MP for the GRC, Ang Hin Kee, has assured residents (and Singaporeans on the whole) that MPs have made it a point to personally check on projects, the question is why are there in-built flaws in the system which they have turned a blind eye to. CPG employee Victor Wong was allowed to be appointed...

RONALD LEE: He had the charm, the grace, and even a lucky name. And win in Punggol-East SMC did Charles Chong You Fook (“got luck” in Mandarin). It looked almost impossible, but the PAP man laid the smackdown on the WP’s Lee Li Lian and left her with a tearing face full of Punggol-East dirt. But was the decision to send a sick Lucky Charlie a sign of the PAP’s desperation, and even irresponsibility? Veteran...

OFFBEAT PERSPECTIVES: Why does the above video remind me so much of Singapore? (*raised eyebrows) [How our “democratic” mainstream media-political system works in 7 examples] 1) Mainstream media definitely does not act – merely as  PAP’s the government’s mouthpiece.  Hmm..If even Hillary Clinton is in doubt, there’s no more to doubt.  The airtime given to opposition parties during...

After a long year spent disturbing everyone from the aunty on the street to the Ah Huay in parliament, the Redwire team will be going on a week-long “corporate retreat” to rest and recharge. Well, not really a corporate retreat lah, more like a break to some ulu resort island to enjoy the sun, sand, beer and bikini babes. You know, because nothing boosts morale of the troops more than...

HAROLD CHAI: Checks by authorities have revealed that the concrete sunshade that toppled in Tampines in September was missing reinforcement bars (those things inside you don’t see that are meant to keep the thing from collapsing). It was the only one in the surrounding area missing those reinforcement bars, and now that BCS is investigating where this was due to the contractor breaking building...

ELSON: The Manpower Ministry says that Singapore’s resident unemployment rate is 3 percent this year – its highest since 2010. Reading further into the data, you discover that unemployment rate for Singapore residents between 25 and 64 years old is 19.7 percent. This is almost similar to the 19.5 percent in 2015. I’m worried about this 25-64 age group, simply because this is the...

DZAR ISMAIL: My friend, a teacher had mixed feelings about the PSLE results today. A Foundation student he taught, managed to get into the Express stream. His parents beemed with pride, came up to my friend and cried. They apologized profusely. Why? Sometime early this year, they lodged a complaint to the school principal because they felt that my friend’s teaching skills were not conventional....