Monday, 25 February 2013

Political Blues

WP has released their "Blue Paper" as a counter to the Government's White paper.

Devadas does a critical review of their Blue paper here.

I shall not rehash his critique.

But I thought the line: "Kitsch slogans hung on a line of wishful thinking" was an apt description.

As well as the observation that:
the WP population paper... is actually a cupboard empty of original ideas. All its policy recommendations are borrowed ideas from existing or proposed policies of the PAP. Boosting the Total Fertility Rate (TFR), raising the Labour Force Participation Rate (LFPR) of women and keeping the elderly employed and active are policies that have been in place for several years.
In other words,  it is exactly the same as the PAP's proposal... but DIFFERENT!

Monday, 18 February 2013

The WP are pulling figures out of their ARSE.

Why I say the WP are pulling figures out of their ARSE.

Almost as a reflex (almost, because I suspect they checked what the people's reaction were first before) they said a populist-advised "NO!" to 6.9m, and then they went on to counter propose a 5.9m projection. Based on what?

Based on giving Singaporeans what they want!

And what do Singaporeans want?


And the WP said, "No Problem! No further increase in Foreign Labour. We don't need them. If we FREEZE foreign workers, we can use local labour to make up the difference. We just need to INCREASE the labour force participation rate!

"The Labour Force Survey 2012 found that there are 418,000 economically inactive residents of working age, of which 90,000 are willing to work. This is a valuable pool of labour that can be tapped." 
(From WP website).

Really? Just like that and they can keep the population down to 5.9m?

Thursday, 7 February 2013

What check? What Voters want, and what they actually get...

WP wants to check the PAP. They want voters to vote for them, to send WP MPs to parliament to check the PAP.

The Voters want their lives to be better (as defined by voters, not PAP). They want government policies to better reflect their concerns, and their needs. They vote WP, hoping that it will mean changes for the better.

Low Thia Khiang realised that there is disjoint between what the WP can do, and what the voters expect them to do.

Wednesday, 6 February 2013

Extract from Gerald Giam's parliament speech - WP alternative population projection

[Taken from WP website.]

6 Feb 2013
"We will target to increase our local labour force growth by up to 1% per year from now until 2030. We should strive to keep our foreign labour force constant between now and 2020, depending on our success in growing the local labour force. It does not mean that we shut the doors to foreign workers. Instead, new work passes will be issued only to replace expiring work passes or to supplement shortfalls in the local labour force. Companies will have to find ways to hire more Singaporeans.

["Companies will have to find ways to hire more Singaporeans." Wow. Good thing WP tell those companies to hire more Singaporeans. The PAP tell them, they won't listen one!]

Saturday, 2 February 2013

What WP must do next

The win by WP's Lee Li Lian in Punggol East by-election was the second best results the WP could have hoped for.

The Best result for the WP would have been a credible loss - taking over 40% of the votes, but losing marginally to PAP.

This win was bitter-sweet.

While it is always good to win, there are consequences for the win. It is another Town Council to run, and the WP may be resource-challenged to run yet another Town Council.

At least that's the theory my colleague has.

On a wider issue, WP is concerned that perhaps the voters are expecting too much and had to dampen or manage their expectations. WP chief is worried that voters may expect the WP to turn things around now that they have 8 MPs in Parliament. And if WP don't deliver, those voters will turn around and "bite" them.

WP (and most if not all opposition parties) simply take the position of "opposing" the PAP. But the WP can no longer do this. In the early stages, an opposition party can simply oppose for the sake of opposing, to simply ask the ruling party, "is there another way?"