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sundaymorningstaple
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Xenophobia

Postby sundaymorningstaple » Fri, 25 Apr 2014 12:02 pm

Just ate up my morning at work. It's long (2hr 14 min) but a good discussion. Worth the time.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YZLlvc9rviM

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Postby Brah » Wed, 28 May 2014 11:01 pm

Well I haven't and probably watch that clip, for reasons stated in my last post (in Fortan's Personal Space thread ftopic102145.html ), came across this today:

https://sg.news.yahoo.com/singapore-act ... 47576.html


The EI of the comments is marginally better than some other, similar articles.

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Postby earthfriendly » Thu, 29 May 2014 2:25 am

After filtering out those comments that were using the mobish xenophobia platform to let off steam, I found these.


"The pioneer generation leader were good. They rule with thier hearts and mind trying their best for her people. The present leaders rules with their heads and heart glued for achievement, accolades and praises. "

"But why do we keep harping on foreign talent and make them sound like a big deal as though locals have no talent? If locals have no talent, there is something very wrong with our systems and policies then. "

"If they’re not interested in taking care of Singaporeans, I’m not interested in hearing what they have to say about foreigners."


Whether it is the pioneer generation or present day government, they have used the govt-knows-what-is-best-for-you approach. Hence campaigns like Two Is Enough, mass relocation to HDB dwellings, eradication of dialects and mother-tongue language schools into the standardized English-medium schools. Now that China is emerging, people are encouraged to learn Mandarin again :) . For a while these policies worked well as it had lifted people out of poverty and political discords.

But really at the core, people want to have autonomy and have control over their own lives. Nobody likes to be constantly told what to do. It is a universal need. Self-determination. Many policies have a common theme, the economy, making the citizens feel side-stepped. They are humans and cannot be easily manipulated like some robots. It does not have to be this way but Singapore is a country that had superseded itself economically whilst making people feel their social needs have taken a backseat. People will push back and in this case, the govt's foreign workers policy.

This is not about blaming the govt or weather they have the right policies in place. We all have constraints that we need to work with. Hindsight is always 20-20.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------

http://daneshd.com/2010/03/05/boy-or-gi ... is-enough/

https://sparrowsandsandcastles.wordpres ... -kuan-yew/

Many Chinese-speaking parents were deeply attached to their language and culture. They could not understand why their children were allowed to be educated completely in Chinese under the British, yet under their own elected government had also to learn English. But for better job prospects many sent their children to English schools. These conflicting pulls provided fertile ground for agitation.



My elder sisters attended Chinese school but when it came to my enrollment, my family needed to decide between a (Chinese) school within walking distance or an English medium school that I needed a bus.

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Postby Brah » Thu, 29 May 2014 9:07 am

As I often do, I agree with your post.

I've said it before, I'll say it again, and the quote below is a good example of how designating foreigners as "talent" automatically puts people's backs up simply by that stupid term's inference - by calling A <something> has a soft implication of B as <not> <something> * which of course is not the case.

It's very judgmental. It adds no value and does more harm than good.

Those of you from other forums reading this - remember, this is your term, it is not a foreigner's term, and in any other country that has foreigners, they are called exactly that - foreigners, not talent.

Why people insist on perpetuating this divisional term, someone smarter than me will have to answer. As long as it is used, the division will continue.

Surely, some are more talented than others, and any inherent talent they may have does negate any talent that others may have.

In some cases this about the numbers of people needed, not their capability. In other cases, it's about filling gaps that were not good fits in the first place, such as in the service and F&B industries, which frankly are better now with a mix of people in those roles than it was only a few years back.

But....at the risk of contradicting all of the above, that is not to say that bringing in experts and /or fresh perspectives, different experience sets where they are needed does not have merit. From what I have seen, it's needed here.

earthfriendly wrote:"But why do we keep harping on foreign talent and make them sound like a big deal as though locals have no talent? If locals have no talent, there is something very wrong with our systems and policies then. "


*strange, the editor would not let me put "not something" in brackets without doing it as "<not> <something>"
Last edited by Brah on Thu, 29 May 2014 9:15 am, edited 4 times in total.

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Postby earthfriendly » Thu, 29 May 2014 9:09 am

Who coined the term? I don't believe it is the citizen.

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Postby Brah » Thu, 29 May 2014 9:13 am

earthfriendly wrote:Who coined the term? I don't believe it is the citizen.

Brah wrote:........ someone smarter than me will have to answer.....

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Postby x9200 » Thu, 29 May 2014 9:41 am

It is likely over the line, whatever we do it has to be the best or include some added value. You don't invite ordinary foreigners to work here. There would be no value in it. They have to have this something what makes them non-ordinary thus worth inviting. We are attracting only the best people from around the world.

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Postby sundaymorningstaple » Thu, 29 May 2014 10:49 am

x9200 wrote:We are attracting only the best people from around the world.


Seriously? Surely you jest!

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Postby JR8 » Thu, 29 May 2014 10:57 am

The term ‘Foreign Talent’ is a political term and was presumably coined to justify the presence of one element of foreign workers here. The term is certainly clumsy, and arguably divisive; might ‘Foreign Specialist Workers’ be closer to the intent?

I agree that one persons talent does not somehow ‘negate’ the talents of another, it seems a rather silly suggestion. An accountant is not somehow ‘better’, or ‘worse’ that an architectural draughtsman, or a bricklayer that can build an perfectly true 10 storey high wall, they just have different talents.

The economy of SG is evolving rapidly, up the ‘value scale’. The finance sector is maturing, and now we’re seeing moves towards film production, hi-tech, and high-end hospitality. This is a very small country and when these industry-sectors are developing it seems to make sense that niche talent is imported for a few years, in order to get a local operation up and running in a way that will readily interface with global expectations and standards. Part of that process is hiring locals with the potential, and training them into the roles. Example: Gambling was illegal for many years in SG, and then they opened MBS. Q. Where were they going to find specialist professional croupiers, table operators, and floor supervisors? – A. Quite clearly not domestically.

This is by no means unique to SG. The Japanese car-makers in Europe did and do something similar. They launch a new plant, pack it with JPnese experience, and then hire locals, to produce goods of the required standard. You’ll see it in the Severn Valley/Bristol area of the UK, and also the Dussledorf area of Germany*. [Note to self: I do not recall the locals being bitter or angry about this].

The equation seems quite simple to me. You’re a bank, you want to start trading Bongo-Wongo-Reverse-Straddle Swaptions out of SG. It’s a totally new product for the SG market. Either you need to bring in Foreign Specialist Workers to get the department set up, and local staff in place and trained, or, 'oh dear, is that going to be too socially divisive? ... we’ll put it in HK then', same time zone so it matters little.

In a possible reverse parallel, you could ask why the SAF send their pilots to train in the US...


* http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Japantown

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Postby PNGMK » Thu, 29 May 2014 7:08 pm

In China I was always called 'Foreign Expert' - much friendlier and closer to the mark.

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Postby Brah » Thu, 29 May 2014 9:35 pm

earthfriendly wrote:Who coined the term? I don't believe it is the citizen.

Thought about this. While I agree it is unlikely that the average person came up with that, now that it is in the lexicon it has become common usage for just about everyone not foreign.

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Postby sundaymorningstaple » Thu, 29 May 2014 9:50 pm

I think it was originally coined by MOM to differentiate between EPs and WPs back in the '80's.

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Postby earthfriendly » Fri, 30 May 2014 10:06 am

Of all tyrannies, a tyranny sincerely exercised for the good of its victims may be the most oppressive. It would be better to live under robber barons than under omnipotent moral busybodies. The robber baron's cruelty may sometimes sleep, his cupidity may at some point be satiated;but those who torment us for our own good will torment us without end for they do so with the approval of their own conscience.

C.S. Lewis

:wink:

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Postby the lynx » Fri, 30 May 2014 10:10 am

earthfriendly wrote:Of all tyrannies, a tyranny sincerely exercised for the good of its victims may be the most oppressive. It would be better to live under robber barons than under omnipotent moral busybodies. The robber baron's cruelty may sometimes sleep, his cupidity may at some point be satiated;but those who torment us for our own good will torment us without end for they do so with the approval of their own conscience.

C.S. Lewis

:wink:


Pretty interesting to note that Lewis is the author of the famous Mere Christianity, The Problem of Pain, Miracles and The Screwtape Letters.

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Postby earthfriendly » Fri, 30 May 2014 10:19 am

Nope I don't, I only view the quote in its own context, without referencing it to his religious belief or lifestyle :) .


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