Chia Ti Lik’s Blog

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GST Hike Propaganda (Letter to ST Forum Page)

The Saga of the GST Hike continues. The press is unrelentingly offering support to the PAP Government’s initiative. Over here, i wage a war against one sided information and skewed perspectives. This is my letter in response to Article at Page 6 Sunday Times yesterday 19th November 2006.


GST Hike Propaganda (Letter to ST Forum Page on 20th November 2006)

The article at page 6 of Sunday Times 19th November 2006 by Ken Kwek is referred to.


Lending support to the Government’s GST hike gig, the article reveals that Mika Sampovaara, a Scandinavian quitter is able to – earn the same and have more time for a better life in Singapore by fleeing from the heavy taxation levied by a welfare state. These are some points to put the article in proper perspective.


1.                  The Scandinavian quitter was a high-flying economist, stock analyst and broker in his own country. He was placed at the top income tax bracket of 60% taxation rate – in short the Viking was part of their elite!


2.                  The average Singaporean will never earn close to the Scandinavian elite. This then begets the question of whether this example of a Scandinavian quitter has any relevance to the situation faced by the people of Singapore.


The article simply validates our suspicions that Singapore is fast becoming a haven for elite foreign quitters. This certainly was not what Singaporean voters wanted when they voted for the ruling party in the recent elections.


The elite Scandinavian quitter feels he has more than repaid his country (which he benefited from under the welfare system) just because he has paid 5 years of income tax at 60%.


How should the average Singaporean feel in having to stay and continue to pay 7% for all consumption for their entire lifetime here where in a non-welfare state?


Proportionately, the average Singaporean will pay far more than the elite Scandinavian quitter. As this means Singaporeans are more meek and compliant than our imported talent. The Government ought to rethink its obsession with flooding Singapore with foreign quitters.


In any event, if citizens’ fleeing their country for greener pastures is any form of measure Singapore’s administration would fail dismally, by this yardstick, in comparison to Finland’s.


For once, someone must get the message across into the thick skulls of the leadership that when Singaporeans ask the Government for a social safety net, we do not mean the Scandinavian model of welfare assistance. Singaporeans are too meek to make demands, Singaporeans would be too happy if the government were less greedy i.e. take less & spend less.


The PAP government should cease using the Scandinavian welfare bogeyman to frighten Singaporeans into accepting their twisted logic for further increases to their costs of living.


The fault in Singapore’s system is that the prevalent and uncritical support of the Ruling party empowers it to push through detrimental, unpopular and illogical policies, which hurt all Singaporeans including their supporters, a result of the arrogance leading to high-handedness and a lack of compassion for the people.

Singapore’s problems cannot be solved by this theatric GST hike and its supporting accompaniment because:-


1.                  Increasing consumption tax hurts the poorest people hardest and only serves to widen the income gap. This must be avoided.


2.                  all help schemes, however well intentioned, require resources to administer its disbursements and therefore are inherently inefficient and inevitably waste public resources. This is worse when the criteria make it difficult for the needy to qualify.


3.                  if the Government is really sincere about helping the masses, it can do more to lower the cost of living and certainly not continue to act to make it worse.


4.                  the Government should raise resources by cutting wastage and lavishness in its own administration. This will come across as being more resourceful. Simply raising tax indicates having lesser abilities.


The elite in Scandinavia are made to bear the heaviest burden – rightfully so. Singapore’s masses are on their way to bearing the bulk of the nation’s burden if they do not indicate their displeasure to the PAP in no uncertain terms at the next general election.


The challenge of administering a country is one of the highest calling and it does not augur well if the attitude of the PAP Government is to race others to the bottom.


Until the next general election, this 1st World Government still has opportunities to prove its worth (and cost) by producing policies which better the lives of the Singapore people.

Singapore will be better off without the GST Hike.


Chia Ti Lik


November 20, 2006 - Posted by | Politics


  1. So Mr Chia is hoping tht our elite will leave S’pore for greener pastures (lower tax rates) elsewhere?

    Comment by laksa_soup | November 20, 2006 | Reply

  2. Going by Mr Chai’s argument we will chase away men like Ron Sim, George Kuek (founder of Breadtalk) & Sim Wong Hoo. All these are budding entreprenuers who belong to that top tax bracket. If we are a welfare state, would these entreprenuers be happy if we are to tax them so heavily? They must be wondering for whose benefit am I working so hard for, end of the day I don’t get to enjoy the fruits of my own labour while the other chap sit idling and enjoying it on the other end. Hence we are forcing succesful S’poreans to quit S’pore to go elsewhere (jus t like tht finnish economist). Is this the picture Mr Chia would like to see? If he is may I whats his intention?

    Comment by laksa_soup | November 20, 2006 | Reply

  3. No rebuttals from Mr Chia? Highly unlikely afterall he’s a lawyer, shld be well trianed in debating right? I would assume he agree with me then lol.

    Comment by laksa_soup | November 21, 2006 | Reply

  4. Thank you for writing to us. We do appreciate your making the effort.

    We receive 70 letters on average each day. Limited space means we can publish only about a dozen every weekday.
    This means having to make often-difficult editorial judgments on which letters to publish.

    We regret we are unable to publish your letter, and hope you will appreciate the constraints on space we face every day.
    We hope you will continue taking an interest in the Forum Page.

    Yours sincerely

    Ms Noor Aiza
    for Forum Editor
    The Straits Times

    Comment by ST Forum Page | November 22, 2006 | Reply

  5. Chia assume he own ST, every letter he sent to them must be accorded TOP PIRORITY. If his letter is not published, he would accuse them of pro PAP and “anti opposition”. Tht ST is out to blackout critical letters to the establishment. Very sad to say this is how a party quitter opreates, as if he’s entitled to prefrential treatment over others. As if other’s letters are not as important as his. If Chia wants every letter of his to be published I would advise him to buy some space in ST. Thank u.

    Comment by laksa_soup | November 22, 2006 | Reply

  6. Come on lah. Don’t jump the gun okay.

    The PAP govt has not said what it will do with the extra money from the hike yet, who so eager to shoot them?

    You mean the PAP will neglect the growing number of poor and rising discontent. The PAP did not stay in power for 4 decades missing key issues such as these. The fact you get to read about it in the media means the problem has been identified by the PAP and they are working intensely to solve it. They want to do it at a minimum cost to the govt and retain.

    As a former opposition politician, you should be happier if the PAP did nothing, they will lose votes in the next election for sure. But the PAP is not so stupid to do nothing.

    Comment by Lucky Tan | November 22, 2006 | Reply

  7. Lucky Tan and me will be branded as “PAP Lackeys” by Chia. Of cos openly he dared not call us tht, privately among friends, WP members or deep down in his heart…….

    Comment by laksa_soup | November 23, 2006 | Reply

  8. My goodness laksa, you have missed the point entirely. Apart from that, your throwing caustic remarks at Chia does not help either. Don’t assume Chia is afraid of you. You are simply being ignored by him.

    Lucky, I’m eager to see what the govt comes up with too. From doing some thinking though, the odds don’t look good that the solution they have in mind will be adequate.

    Comment by Laksa, please have some manners. | January 25, 2007 | Reply

  9. Laksa all I can say to you is, empty vessels make the most noise. Cliche? You should know, you are full of it. Please read the letter properly then shot of your orifice you call a mouth. Oh forgive me, you must be one of those installed by PAP to counter negative comments. Yeah, I know you are just doing your job but in the future, find something more graceful as you sound very childlike and maybe you could be a nursery care giver?

    Comment by Banshee | February 3, 2007 | Reply

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