Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Value of Singapore’s reserves

Came across the following findings online about GIC and Temasek Holdings and found them to be pretty interesting (not to mention worrying). After all, it would take 56 man-years to produce a dollar-and-cents value of Singapore’s immovable assets (real property) alone. Do a Google search to verify the facts and then form your own opinion.  

Highlights of Temasek:

Significant losses known publically – Suzhou, Micropolis, Shin Corp, Chartered Semi, UBS/Citi/Merrill Lynch/Barclay/BOA, ABC Learning Center, Stuyvescant Town, China Aviation Oil etc etc.

Temasek changed reporting currency to USD in Apr 2011.

In 2011 ex-President Nathan has said Singapore reserves were used 27 times – what were these 27 times?

Job Credit Scheme was luanched in 2009 with the approval of the president to tap into reserves. It paid out about S$5B to employers to cope with the financial crisis – no prizes for guessing who the largest private sector employer in Singapore is (hint Temasek – Singtel, Singapore Technologies group, SIA, NOL, Keppel group, Sembawang group, SBS Transit, Capital Land/Mall etc). Does this look like raiding the public reserves?

Singapore has AAA credit rating – please also remember these very same credit rating agencies gave CDOs triple A ratings which blew up in 2007. Credit ratings certificates have the same worth as toilet paper.

The core team of PAP are paid millions – if you are paid S$2M a year and your family is enjoying the wealth, will you dare to rock the boat or will you be aligned to PAP and become another Yes-man?

The husband is CEO, the wife is CFO (Temasek) – this is a red flag for most auditors. And the CEO to be quit briefly after joining Temasek!!! big red flag?!

CPF funds lock in – raising withdrawl age, minimum sum, now mandatory annuality scheme purchase, dropping Special Account interest from 4% down to 2.5% in 2011 (but claims Temasek generated returns of 18% compunded annually!).

National assets sold – 3 power plants etc. Would a cash-rich country need to sell of strategic national assets like power plant to foreigners?Did the seller promise the buyer that they can increase charges whenever they like so that the seller gets a very high price? have you check why household utility bills in Singapore are among the higest in the world?

If you hide the name Temasek and mention all the facts to any accountant or auditor – they will tell you there is almost 100% probability there is fraud in the company.

Saturday, May 09, 2015


Sunday, March 29, 2015

Debunking the deification of Lee Kuan Yew's legacy

There has been a great deal of debate about whether Lee Kuan Yew single-handedly transformed Singapore from a fishing village into a first-world country and plenty of postulations that without him, Singapore will not be where it is today.

Without going into historical details (because history is like a bad case of Rashomon on an endless loop), there is actually a simple litmus test to debunk the deliberate deification of Lee Kuan Yew's legacy by unreliable narrators.

Unfortunately, the test probably works best for those with children (or at the very least, have some experience in mentoring responsibilities).

Here's how it goes: I want you to read the sentence below out loud.

Without me, my child will not be where he is today.

Ok, say that out loud again. This time with a straight face.

Without me, my child will not be where he is today.

Sense something wrong?

True, you've probably contributed much to the current state of your child (whatever that may be) through providing financial support, food and a roof above his head, and hopefully some parental love along the way.

But if people were to attribute the success (or lack thereof) of your child entirely to you, they are essentially undermining the growth potential that is inherent in every child and the hard work that the child has put in. To give credit to just one man is also to ignore the contributions of many people who may have a hand in guiding your child to where he is today.

Does that make sense to you now?

So let's give credit where credit is due, but there is no need to put Lee Kuan Yew on a pedestal.


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