My biggest whinges about Singapore - are they justified?

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Global Citizen
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Post by Global Citizen » Thu, 30 Mar 2006 9:20 am

Wham wrote:Saint, Some years ago i politely asked some old singaporean man if he was vacating his parking spot as he was sitting there with the door open and appeared to be leaving and i was in need of a spot. The old Ba$tard yelled at me and said "who do you think you are? Don't you know you're just a guest." And i thought, "if this is the way you treat guests...."

Wham from reading all of your posts on this board alone, I seriously have to question if you mean polite when you say you asked politely. You seem to get all riled up if someone refuses to accede to your request. Refer to your other thread in Phuket. Right or wrong (and I probably would have let you through if only to get you off my back) surely you've learnt a thing or two about human nature and people after the travelling you've done. No two are created alike. Just because you asked, doesn't mean you've earned the god given right to get your way.


I then also realized that i probably pay more in taxes than he does. I DESPISE the stupid trap of calling us HUGE minority of Ex Pats "guests." We may be a small minority, but we pay an ENORMOUS % of taxes and without us so called "guests" this place would be in an economic depression. Furthermore, with the exception of a few Malays, we are ALL guests in the melting pot. So spare me the guest BS. I am a tax paying non resident soon to be a PR.

Tsk, tsk. You deduced all that from the fact that he's a local and you're an expat and automatically assumed that you earned more and paid more taxes. Even if hypothetically for the sake of argument, you do pay more taxes, so what? Nobody twisted your arm when YOU decided to move here and make Singapore your home right? You're living in a fool's paradise if you think this place would be in an economic slump if some expats choose to leave. The fact is there are many more willing to take your place. What Singapore does not need more of is the arrogant, boorish and attitude of entitlement that so many expats here seem to display.

As far as the guest bit, I say call me a guest anyday, just don't call me an alien. Honestly Wham, sometimes when I read your posts, I don't know whether to wring your neck or just shake my head in disbelief. You exude so much anger in your posts and you always seem to be operating at breakneck speed with your emotions.
BTW, here's a newsflash: New Yorkers don't exactly qualify for top marks in the good manners category either.
Last edited by Global Citizen on Thu, 30 Mar 2006 7:21 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Post by Quasimodo » Thu, 30 Mar 2006 10:12 am

ADH wrote:I raised my 8 points to try and understand WHY do people generally act like the way they do in Singapore (and not the reasons why I am leaving Singapore - the reason I am leaving Singapore is because my secondment finishes very soon).

It was not 'I think Sydney is far better than Singapore: discuss' nor was it 'these are the 8 reasons for me to leave Singapore - do you pity me?' nor was it 'compare and contrast taxis, nightclubs and trains in Sydney and Singapore'.


Well, ADH - you know that people here go off on tangents, or in this case expand on the original topic. But you do contradict yourself:
Clearly, some topics will overlap as different people raise similar topics and similar points are made
Anyway, you can't stop people from sharing their views and broaden the sphere of discussion.
Here just a few highlights of today's SMH:

Police chief calls shootings summit
By Les Kennedy and David Braithwaite
NSW Police Commissioner Ken Moroney has called a top-level meeting following a double murder in a Sydney street and a nearby drive-by shooting that left a family's fibro home peppered with bullets last night.

Ear bitten off in neighbour dispute

Bondi teenager's death 'suspicious'March 30, 2006 - 10:10AM
The death of a young Sydney man found on a footpath on Bondi Beach's main thoroughfare is being treated as suspicious by police.

Separate courts to deal with rapeBy Jonathan Pearlman March 30, 2006
SPECIALIST courts for rape cases should be set up to assist victims and reverse low rates of convictions for sexual assaults, the State Government has been told.


Image

Ok, this is a bit off topic, but possibly Singaporeans are the way they are because they don't have to worry about being bashed, raped or killed at teh drop of a hat.

Maybe, just maybe one's environment dictates how you are and can afford to be.
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Post by k1w1 » Thu, 30 Mar 2006 11:15 am

Quasi, don't do it to yourself!

Actually, I find when I've had a frustrating moment (or two), the best way to deal with it is to read the online newspapers from New Zealand. "Fave" picks of this week fresh off the NZ press:

* Mother has her finger bitten off and eyes gouged out by her son.

* Two year old child beaten/tortured over a seven week period and nearly killed by his mother's loser boyfriend, while his drug-fu@$ed mother watched. He is fighting for his life in hospital. (that one actually made me cry)

* A civil-minded man tried to stop some teenaged hooligans from spray-painting the art museum in Christchurch. They saw him, pulled him from his car and beat the bejeezus out of him.

Just horrific.

Quite frankly, I'll take some kiasuism in the lift any day.

Seriously, ADH: read the online papers. I agree with pretty much everything in your list, but the bad at home is waaaaaaay worse than the bad here. It's just easy to forget because you're not right in it.

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Re: My biggest whinges about Singapore - are they justified?

Post by earthfriendly » Thu, 30 Mar 2006 1:15 pm

ADH wrote:
1. Hacking and sniffing - I have had to sit on flights and endure sniffing every 10 seconds from Singaporeans around me. Why don't they just blow their noses? I know it's considered rude in Japan so why not just go to the toilet? Your body is telling you it does not want something to remain in your body hence it produces snot which you should remove. It drives me mad. Hacking as well cannot be healthy for the body and cause damage to your windpipe and is very rude, especially when done directly in front of you when you are eating...
A very delicate subject and let me try my best to discuss this in the most tasteful manner that my English language skill will allow.

Our whole family got sick about 3 weeks ago and as usual, I have still not recovered from it, though hubby and daughters got over it.

When I fall sick accompanied by severe coughing, I would be coughing for two months. In the past, I would go to the doctor and take the prescribed medication. It was not much help as the relief was very temporary. In less than an hour of the medication, you will hear my hacking cough again. What is worse is the huge amount of hmmmmmmmmmn, don' know the best way to call this but let's just call it phlemg, that my body produce while trying to fight off the virus (or whatever is bothering it). Tried all the strongest cough medication out there but they are of little help. In my worse days, I literally have to go to the bathroom every 10 mins (or even more frequent) to spit out the hmmmmmmmmmmmmmn phlemg.

There are many people out there whose body do not react the way mine does when it is attacked by the virus. I envy them for their strong immune system.

I understand that I can be unpleasant around company in this state and hence avoid going outside. In fact, I just declined a birthday party this Saturday. If forced to be in other's company, I try my best to be inconspicuous with my cough and throat noises. Sometimes it is hard as the body act up in whichever manner that I have no control over. I am lucky to be a stay home mom and not have to go to work in such a state of health. I can just imagine how annoying it would be for my coworker sitting next to my cube. I used to have a Vietnamese coworker who constantly need to clear her throat (some kind of health problem). She had apologised up front about her habits. I have no problem with it. The fact that she looked sparkling clean and hygenic helped a lot too.

However, my poor health is no reason why people around me should suffer. Personal and proper hygiene is important too.

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Re: My biggest whinges about Singapore - are they justified?

Post by dot dot dot » Thu, 30 Mar 2006 1:27 pm

earthfriendly wrote:
ADH wrote:
1. Hacking and sniffing - I have had to sit on flights and endure sniffing every 10 seconds from Singaporeans around me. Why don't they just blow their noses? I know it's considered rude in Japan so why not just go to the toilet? Your body is telling you it does not want something to remain in your body hence it produces snot which you should remove. It drives me mad. Hacking as well cannot be healthy for the body and cause damage to your windpipe and is very rude, especially when done directly in front of you when you are eating...
A very delicate subject and let me try my best to discuss this in the most tasteful manner that my English language skill will allow.

Our whole family got sick about 3 weeks ago and as usual, I have still not recovered from it, though hubby and daughters got over it.

When I fall sick accompanied by severe coughing, I would be coughing for two months. In the past, I would go to the doctor and take the prescribed medication. It was not much help as the relief was very temporary. In less than an hour of the medication, you will hear my hacking cough again. What is worse is the huge amount of hmmmmmmmmmn, don' know the best way to call this but let's just call it phlemg, that my body produce while trying to fight off the virus (or whatever is bothering it). Tried all the strongest cough medication out there but they are of little help. In my worse days, I literally have to go to the bathroom every 10 mins (or even more frequent) to spit out the hmmmmmmmmmmmmmn phlemg.

There are many people out there whose body do not react the way mine does when it is attacked by the virus. I envy them for their strong immune system.

I understand that I can be unpleasant around company in this state and hence avoid going outside. In fact, I just declined a birthday party this Saturday. If forced to be in other's company, I try my best to be inconspicuous with my cough and throat noises. Sometimes it is hard as the body act up in whichever manner that I have no control over. I am lucky to be a stay home mom and not have to go to work in such a state of health. I can just imagine how annoying it would be for my coworker sitting next to my cube. I used to have a Vietnamese coworker who constantly need to clear her throat (some kind of health problem). She had apologised up front about her habits. I have no problem with it. The fact that she looked sparkling clean and hygenic helped a lot too.

However, my poor health is no reason why people around me should suffer. Personal and proper hygiene is important too.
The hacking one constantly is exposed to here in Singapore has got nothing to do with people having a cold or the flu, it is just inconsiderate hacking in public for the sake of hacking as a bad habit.

Hope you get better soon btw!

Eric

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Post by earthfriendly » Thu, 30 Mar 2006 2:31 pm

Thanks, Eric.

You can't tell that I am sick, since I am into my third week. I had runny nose and all the symtoms of the common cold in the beginning. Now what's left is just a little bit of cough and lots of throat noises. Hope it goes away soon. No fun living like that :( .

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Post by Wham » Thu, 30 Mar 2006 9:06 pm

Global Citizen wrote:You're living in a fool's paradise if you think this place would be in an economic slump if some expats choose to leave.
GC,

1 - Please don't take me too seriously. It is not good for the health - but i assure you i was on good behavior - in fact was with my mother-in-law and we were all freaked out by how the old man reacted.

2 - Re the quote above - i assure you - i am right. Just take a look at who is paying all the high rents around Orchard Road. After you take out the thieves who have raped and pillaged the treasury of Indonesia, it is easily 50% ex-pats. Take away those ex-pats? You figure it out...

3 - Calling foreign workers either "guests" or "domestic servants aka economic slaves" - it is perverse. I am a "guest" but my maid is a "slave"... Honestly, isn't that just stupid? I bristle at the "guest" label because in so many ways it is just so wrong. If i am a guest, than please call the maids "economic guests."
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Post by Global Citizen » Thu, 30 Mar 2006 9:56 pm

Wham wrote: 3 - Calling foreign workers either "guests" or "domestic servants aka economic slaves" - it is perverse. I am a "guest" but my maid is a "slave"... Honestly, isn't that just stupid? I bristle at the "guest" label because in so many ways it is just so wrong. If i am a guest, than please call the maids "economic guests."

Ah Wham, a measured and civil response; quite refreshing and welcome at that. :wink:

For the sake of argument, lets say we renamed certain jobs held by foreign workers:

The garbage collector would now be called a sanitation engineer.

The maid a foreign domestic goddess.

Will it change their job duties and primary functions of employment? Highly unlikely. A maid is only a slave if one chooses to treat another human being as such.

I make no excuses for bad treatment of foreign manual labour and do not claim to have the solution to all problems either. All I can say is I try to live by the code of how I'd like to be treated as an employee. There are as many personalities as there are people in this world and the best I can do is to change my attitude first and set the better example.

Now about the alien bit in the US..... ? :?
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Post by EADG » Thu, 30 Mar 2006 11:24 pm

Global Citizen wrote: BTW, here's a newsflash: New Yorkers don't exactly qualify for top marks in the good manners category either.
not sure where you get your news, for someone with handle like yours this sounds somewhat less than 'global'

though it gets bantered around a lot, most Americans and real NYers know this convienent fallacy to be just that, always gave you more credit, GC

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Post by Quasimodo » Fri, 31 Mar 2006 8:56 am

EADG wrote:
Global Citizen wrote: BTW, here's a newsflash: New Yorkers don't exactly qualify for top marks in the good manners category either.
not sure where you get your news, for someone with handle like yours this sounds somewhat less than 'global'

though it gets bantered around a lot, most Americans and real NYers know this convienent fallacy to be just that, always gave you more credit, GC


:lol: When I was living in Chicago even they thoight NYers were 'special' in the unfriendly category - though you are obviously an exception - whereas Wham . . . :)
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Post by Global Citizen » Fri, 31 Mar 2006 10:52 am

EADG wrote:
Global Citizen wrote: BTW, here's a newsflash: New Yorkers don't exactly qualify for top marks in the good manners category either.
not sure where you get your news, for someone with handle like yours this sounds somewhat less than 'global'

though it gets bantered around a lot, most Americans and real NYers know this convienent fallacy to be just that, always gave you more credit, GC
EADG, does the truth rankle when the criticism is levelled the other way? How does speaking from my own personal experience rate with you and about the bit re. my handle. How would you know since we've never met?

I expected so much more from you.
One man's meat is another's poison.

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Post by dot dot dot » Fri, 31 Mar 2006 12:27 pm

Global Citizen wrote:
EADG wrote:
Global Citizen wrote: BTW, here's a newsflash: New Yorkers don't exactly qualify for top marks in the good manners category either.
not sure where you get your news, for someone with handle like yours this sounds somewhat less than 'global'

though it gets bantered around a lot, most Americans and real NYers know this convienent fallacy to be just that, always gave you more credit, GC
EADG, does the truth rankle when the criticism is levelled the other way? How does speaking from my own personal experience rate with you and about the bit re. my handle. How would you know since we've never met?

I expected so much more from you.
=D> =D> =D>

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Post by Wham » Fri, 31 Mar 2006 1:34 pm

GC, my point about the "guest" thing is that it has all the wrong implications. A guest is someone that you invite over and then expect to leave - which was the case here years ago - but i think it is antiquaited in that Singapore is on the threshhold of becoming a more Cosmoploitan melting pot (say liberalizing PR status for example) and that holding onto the Guest label slows down this process and created divisions.

Imagine if all other countries called foreign workers guests... It just wouldn't fly. In the US we would have: Illegal Mexican Guests, Green Card Guests, Most Welcome guests with lots of Money, Sons and Daughters of former Slave Guests, Descendants of the Guests who killed the Indians Guests, etc. Instead, we have a melting pot, and eventually all the illegals become legal and life goes on. All is know is that we don't go around pretending that some people are "guests."
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Post by Quasimodo » Fri, 31 Mar 2006 2:59 pm

Wham wrote:
Imagine if all other countries called foreign workers guests... It just wouldn't fly. In the US we would have: Illegal Mexican Guests, Green Card Guests, Most Welcome guests with lots of Money, Sons and Daughters of former Slave Guests, Descendants of the Guests who killed the Indians Guests, etc. Instead, we have a melting pot, and eventually all the illegals become legal and life goes on. All is know is that we don't go around pretending that some people are "guests."


Truth be told, mate, I really think it sucks big hairy ones being referred to as an alien in the US.
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Post by sundaymorningstaple » Fri, 31 Mar 2006 3:10 pm

especially that bunch camping down at area 51! :o
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