Archive for the ‘Davian Lee says’ Category

Hougang resident files court application for PM Lee to call by-election – Smoke Screen? – by Davian Lee

I must be on a bloody roll today. Picked out a news coverage from Yahoo! Singapore – this time their journalistic endeavours must have gotten the better of them. Please refer to the link below.

So here is an article that talks about a court application supposedly filed by a Hougang resident calling PM to call for by-elections in Hougang in the next 3 months.

According to the article “The 42-year old part-time cleaner, Vellama D/O Marie Muthu, filed the application via her lawyer M Ravi.”

The article then goes on to mention that “Vellama is the sole breadwinner for her family of two daughters and an alcoholic husband deemed unfit for work. She is also supporting her 77-year old wheelchair bound mother and her 52-year old diabetic sister. All are dependent on her meager monthly salary of $300.”

So here is the deal…a woman with a meager $300 salary, saddled with a whole host of problems including a alcoholic husband and a wheelbound chair mother, is able to instruct a lawyer to file this application. How on earth is she going to pay for the lawyer. Unless M.Ravi (yes the same lawyer who threw things at journalists during a press conference) has agreed to do this pro-bono.

Doesnt this just sound so fishy? Is Madam Vellama really doing this out of her own intentions or is she being instructed and financially supported by the party in blue to file this application.

The Worker’s Party have successfully used the by-election decoy to deviate the burning questions thrown at them questioning the party’s integrity in handling the Shin Leong issue. You can fool us once guys but you are not asbout to fool us again! We still need answers as to whether YSL’s affairs were known to you before the elections and why wasnt action taken against him.

Perhaps someone should file an application calling for WP to produce some answers as the residents in Hougang have been cheated.

As for Mdm Vellamma, as much as I can empathise with her. But she is not alone in this. She can always turn to the covering WP MPs from neighbouring Aljunied. You have 5 MPs now for the price of 1! I am very sure that they can still offer assistance to you.



Yahoo Singapore :


Source Link




First World Parliament but where is the Integrity? – by Davian Lee

Being a first world parliament seems to be the buzz word for political parties but no one really knows what being first world really means? Worst still, in particular one political party is finding it difficult to reconcile fundamental principles such as integrity and credibility let alone being able to grasp more abstract concepts such the “first world”.

First the scandals and affairs and now plagiarising! Why did Chen Show Mao use someone else’s article ? Why is he keeping quiet again ?

Former high-flying civil servant Donald Low posted a really interesting Facebook note called “Vikram Nair’s flawed economics”.

Shortly after, Show Mao posted his own Facebook “Economics 101” update. He said some friends had written to him. But it read – word for word – almost exactly like Donald Low’s article!

In response to criticism of Show Mao, Donald Low posted a comment: 

“Donald Low’s FC Just to clear the air, I sent these comments to a few people, including Show Mao, and said they should feel free to use these without attribution. So I have no problems with the post not mentioning the source. Later on, I turned my comments into a note which I posted on my FB page. Perhaps I should have told Show Mao that I was doing that so that he can point his update to my note. My apologies to all.”

Why did Chen Show Mao use Donald Low’s article without giving credit? In good universities (including NUS, NTU, SMU, UniSIM, Oxford, Harvard and Stanford), it is proper to give credit even when the original author waives the right. Even Wikipedia asks for credit to be given !And Chen Show Mao isn’t exactly a half-baked “scholar” from PRC.

This may explain why Show Mao is sometimes quiet and a bit generic in Parliament but has such good material on Facebook. Maybe he has a small army of uncredited writers. It is hard to tell when he uses material without giving credit.

I am very disappointed with Show Mao. I had expected First World standards of academic transparency. A man of his CV shouldn’t feel the need to deprive good writers of recognition. Is this what Wei Zheng would have done? 😦

I am also worried about Donald, who used to be one of the brighter minds in the civil service. His Facebook page has followers. It is no longer viewable to everybody. 😦 😦

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Hopefully WP or Show Mao has not intimidated Donald into silence. It would be a great loss to online discourse.

Did Chen Show Mao purposely “sabo” Donald by not attributing (even though Donald’s article was obviously uploaded already), so that Donald would have to publicly support Show Mao? Is this what Wei Zheng would have done? Maybe Donald is CSM’s alter-ego? With so much twists and turns, this is indeed turning out to be a full length drama serial with the biggest ingredient found lacking – integrity and credibility

Whatever happened to Chen Show Mao, Our Man Of Tomorrow? Where is our Wei Zheng? 😦 😦 😦

Vikram’s “Flawed Economics”

Donald Low on CSM’s page


Link :


Investments in Social Capital? But how do you fund it? – by Davian Lee

Donald Low’s note is a very interesting lecture on the importance of social returns and the importance of social capital. However, it does not answer the fundamental question. If you want to spend more, you must surely explain how you want to fund this spending. I think when committing to future spending of any sort, should a responsible government think about how it is going to fund them?

This simple question applies to :

a) social investments (the Government has many, such as public education, workfare, comcare, medifund, subsidised HDB) that it is hoped will strengthen our society or provide benefits valued by our society (eg preserve social mobility, help the poor to uplift themselves) or that may even yield economic returns or reduce costs in other areas;

b) economic investments that it is hoped will yield economic returns (or eg in wages or other incomes), or may even yield social benefits (by improving the quality of jobs and allowing broad-based improvements in economic welfare) Many expenditures will it is hoped yield social benefits. The Government is doing more to enhance social mobility and improve the welfare of the elderly, and seeks to justify them and to ensure we will be able to fund these programmes.

There is a good question in what Donald Low posed in one part of his article, which is a different argument from much of the rest of his article and CSM’s: “The central fiscal question is always “how should we allocate and prioritize our scarce resources?”

This is very different from giving a lecture on social returns, or on the returns from human capital. Or saying now that every expenditure sorts itself out or that “social spending is no more or no less “self-funding” than other types of government expenditure”.

PS: I also note that Mr Chen Show Mao did a bit of editing of Mr Low’s note that made the points confusing or just plain wrong – eg replacing Donald’s point that ‘from an accounting viewpoint” every expenditure is the same cost in the period it is spent (ie a brilliant observation that $100 today equals $100 today regardless of what it is spent on) by saying that from an economics viewpoint, there is no conceptual difference between any expenditure – which is embarrassingly wrong.

Link :!/note.php?note_id=257630124318597

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