Monday, March 19, 2012

Who they trying to kid this time.

No one will be denied medical treatment: Gan
He pledges to keep costs manageable
ST Online 19 Mar 2012

The Government intends to keep health-care costs manageable and nobody in need will be denied medical treatment, Health Minister Gan Kim Yong said on Sunday.

His pledge, coming after his ministry announced plans recently to double its yearly health-care spending to $8 billion over the next five years, was made at a dialogue in which participants continued to express worries about health care.

Among other things, they cited their concerns over rising subsidised consultation fees at public hospitals and the prices of quality medicine.

Mr Gan said that Singaporeans can expect health-care costs to keep rising, especially if patients want better outcomes from newer technology.

No one will be denied, yes but Kim Yong did not say how much will there charge you? Nor what kind of service they are going to give you.

Also he did not mention how long will you have to wait for your treatment at public hospital? In fact I think they hope you will die first so they don’t have to treat you but hey they DID NOT deny you treatment you just die while waiting for it.

To me this is just another story the Elites came up to pacify the peasants.

For years we are facing with rising medical cost and shortage of class C hospital beds. Why? Because our medical system has turns into a profit making one.

Yes Kim Yong may be right that no one will be denied medical treatment but he did not mention what kind of treatment you will be receiving and how long you need to wait to be treated and what is the cost.

In Singapore the more you pay the faster and better service you get and if you are the Elite you can jolly well afford to go to a private hospital and get your heart by-pass done the next day while the men on the street has to wait 4 hours at the polyclinics just to get to see a doctor.

In fact Kim Young is telling you directly that you have to pay more to get good service in the above articles

Don’t give me crap that this cannot be done, I personally experience cheap, good, efficient treatment in Taiwan and to be honest I was pleasantly surprised.

Friday, March 16, 2012

Myopic tunnel vision by these idiots.

Disruption seemed to be better managed, says Minister Lui
Mar 16, 2012

Compared to the train service breakdowns in December last year, yesterday's North East Line (NEL) disruption - which was due to faults discovered before the train services began - seemed to be better managed, said Transport Minister Lui Tuck Yew.

SBS Transit's larger fleet of buses, which could be activated to ferry affected customers, and the smaller number of stations involved helped alleviate the situation, said Mr Lui.

So did the lessons learnt from the disruptions on the North South Line - operated by SMRT - on Dec 15 and 17 last year, which resulted in the two train operators working closer together.

"Even if there's a situation that affects lines run by SMRT ... we could see an improvement on the situation compared to the past," said Mr Lui, who was speaking to reporters outside Dhoby Ghaut MRT Station (picture) where he was assessing the situation.

There were announcements informing commuters about the disruption, unlike in December when announcements were made only on the affected lines, he noted. Since then, SMRT and SBS Transit have also come together to allow free travel on bus services that serve affected MRT stations during a disruption, in addition to the bus bridging services.

During yesterday's disruption, commuters could travel on SBS Transit's 124 or SMRT's 190 services for free - but commuters were generally unaware of this, Mr Lui said. "We need to do a better job to make sure that people know that there are other services that are also free," he said.

Mr Lui pledged that the authorities and the operators would carry out a thorough check on the entire NEL for symptoms "that may point towards other problematic areas along the line".

But he added: "The feedback and the update that I have gotten from my people in the operation centre is that they believe that it is confined only to the stretch between Outram and HarbourFront."

I think Tuck Yew is missing the point.

Yes there is definitely an improvement the ways the transport operator handle this incident but the question is, WHY IS THERE A DISRUPTION IN THE FIRST PLACE?

Now MRT disruption seen to be a norm these days and SBS Transit and SMRT must explain why this is so.

Lack of maintenance? Cost cutting? Lousy design?

Is there anymore underlying problem that are waiting to disrupt the system and are all angles covered to prevent future disruptions?

To me all these checks should have been done long ago when the first disruption happened. I guess they are still trying to save on the maintenance, worst still they don’t know what underlying problems are there in the system.

This is what you get for putting “yes man” who only care about profit as CEOs.

Tuck Yew is going to F them for giving him bad publicity now.

Thursday, March 08, 2012

No public transport fare adjustments this year BUT......

No public transport fare adjustments this year
07 March 2012

SINGAPORE: There will be no public transport fare adjustments this year as the fare formula undergoes a review, says Transport Minister Lui Tuck Yew.

And where bus services are concerned, commuters can expect significant improvements by end-2014, as capacity is ramped up with the government-initiated S$1.1 billion Bus Services Enhancement Programme (BSEP).

Public transport operators will also be subjected to higher service levels than those meted out by the Public Transport Council (PTC).

Speaking in Parliament on Wednesday, Mr Lui said the current public transport fare formula is due for review this year for implementation in 2013.

And while the review is ongoing, there should not be a rush to implement this year's fare adjustments.

He said this is even though the public transport operators are facing significant cost pressures, especially on their bus operations.

Minister Lui said he had discussed the matter with PTC chairman Gerard Ee, who agreed to suspend this year's fare adjustment exercise.

Instead, the new fare formula, which will be ready in 2013, could take into consideration the fact that fare adjustments were not made in 2012.

Mr Lui said he intends to appoint PTC member Richard Magnus to head the committee for the fare formula review.

Mr Lui said that Mr Magnus, having joined the PTC recently, will bring a new pair of eyes and a fresh mind to the task.

The fare review committee will seek views widely, study the possible options and propose improvements to the framework for the review exercise.

Minister Lui said the outcome of the review should be a framework that continues to achieve a good balance between affordable public transport fares and sustainable public transport operations and which continues to ensure productivity and efficiency.

The committee will complete its work within a year.

Meanwhile, public transport fare concessions will not be extended to the disabled and polytechnic students just yet. This is because there will be no fare adjustment this year, said Minister Lui.

Alex Yam, MP for Chua Chu Kang GRC, said: "The explanation that polytechnic students are tertiary ones have been oft-quoted and used. However, this perceived issue of semantics and of administrative pegging has been hardly palatable for many. As more and more of our students aim for poly education, their choice in education should not become an inequitable one when it comes to transport fares."

Mr Lui replied: "Now that senior citizens have been granted their full-day concessions, the next groups that I am sympathetic to are the disabled and polytechnic students. However, I urge Members to be patient as not all of these requests can be addressed immediately or entirely within a single fare revision exercise."

Concession hours for senior citizens were extended as part of the 2011 fare revision exercise.

Mr Lui also revealed that a survey conducted by SIM University (UniSIM) in October 2011 had shown that the overall satisfaction with public transport services fell slightly from a year ago, with the decline in satisfaction levels for bus services being more significant.

But commuters can soon expect improvements.

There will be more buses on the roads. Over the next five years, operators will pump in 250 buses while the government will fund 550. Overall, 70 percent of the 800 buses will be added over the first three years.

Mr Lui said: "It will take some time for the new buses to arrive, for supporting infrastructure like bus depots and bus parks to be built, and more importantly, for the PTOs (public transport operators) to aggressively ramp up their recruitment of bus drivers. By the end of 2014, with 70% of these new buses in operation, there will be tangible and significant improvements across the bus network."

Of the 550 new buses the government will pay to add, about 300 will go towards reducing crowding and improving the frequencies of existing bus services, while 250 will be for new bus routes.

Operators will also be expected to deliver higher service levels, beyond the current Quality of Service (QoS) standards required by the PTC.

Firstly, operators would have to ensure buses are less crowded during peak hours. Minister Lui elaborated: "The PTOs (public transport operators) will be required to reduce the loading levels for all basic bus services from the current 95% to 85%.

"Commuters can expect about 10% more capacity along the more crowded stretches of bus routes during peak hours. With more buses injected to spread the load, bus frequencies will also go up. Overall, this will mean shorter waiting times for commuters during peak hours, a higher likelihood of getting onto the first arriving bus, and a more comfortable ride."

Secondly, the PTOs will have to improve the peak-hour frequencies of feeder bus services. 95 percent of all feeder services must operate within 10-minute scheduled intervals or better and the remaining 5 percent, within 15-minute intervals compared to the current 30 minutes.

These must be sustained over two hours during the morning and evening peaks.

Thirdly, the PTOs must improve the frequencies of trunk routes.

While the focus in the initial years will be to improve service levels for existing bus services, commuters can also expect better connectivity.

40 new bus routes will be progressively added over the next five years, typically in new towns like Sengkang, Punggol and Yishun.

The new routes are also expected to enhance local connectivity in towns.

There will also be eight more parallel bus routes running along MRT lines and expressways to connect major towns to the city centre. Six have been identified so far.

Minister Lui also said his ministry will look into what more can be done to make MRT stations and major bus nodes more accessible for the elderly and disabled.

He said construction works for lifts at pedestrian overhead bridges next to six MRT stations will be completed by the end of next year.

The stations are Aljunied, Bishan, Khatib, Kranji, Sengkang and Yew Tee.

Hurray? Nah not from the Men In Whites.

In the first place why the used fare adjustment and not fare increase? I never see the fare go down anyway.

What they are trying to con us is that they already raised the fare for buses and train and taxi last year so this year there will no more fare adjustment. Not even downward.

And please note that the new formula will kick in in 2013 and therefore I am pretty sure they WILL be a significant fare increase.

In fact there should be a fare reduction due to the poor performance of SMRT and SBS.

The Minister himself also said that there will be only significant improvements by end-2014, so shouldn’t the fare be freeze or reduced till then?

Why the poor commuters has to face fare increase for the same old lousy services while the gahment are pumping in tax payer’s money to help these profit making companies?

And I am pretty sure there will be another big increase in 2014 because that is 2 years before the election in 2016 and people will tend to forget things that happened 2 years ago.

So people do be careful what the government is trying to tell you especially when they are saying half truths.

Friday, March 02, 2012

More stupid speech by Men In White

DPM Tharman outlines strategies to tackle inequality among citizens
01 March 2012

SINGAPORE: Deputy Prime Minister Tharman Shanmugaratnam on Thursday outlined four strategies in Parliament to tackle the issue of inequality among citizens.

The first strategy is to grow the economy, so as to raise income levels across all segments.

The second strategy aims to preserve and enhance social mobility starting from young.

Another strategy is to encourage a partnership with the community through voluntary welfare organisations and community development councils and lastly, to redistribute wealth among Singaporeans.

Mr Tharman said: "We will have to redistribute through a fair system of fares and tax benefits to provide significant benefits for the low-income group to keep up and upgrade, but avoid placing excessive burden on the middle income group. (This system) is there in all our budgets, including this year's budget."

As for the low income, Deputy Prime Minister Tharman Shanmugaratnam said there are already schemes in place to help them.

These include the Workfare and Comcare schemes as well as the enhanced housing subsidies.

Mr Tharman said these are major interventions made in the last five years and these measures are not new.

"What do taxes mean, and what do transfers and benefits mean over a lifetime for a low-income household? If you add it all up together, you'll find that for every dollar that a low-income household pays in taxes, they get back S$4 in benefits from workfare, housing benefits, healthcare benefits to education subsidies. This is a simple expression of how progressive our system is. Everyone pays some taxes because everyone should contribute to a better Singapore. But the low-income group gets back much more in benefits to support work, education and housing.

"In the last five years, the transfers we've provided to the lower income group, net of the taxes they pay, which is basically GST, and transfers net of taxes amounted to almost 20 per cent of their incomes. It is a significant increase from the previous five years. So, we've moved significantly in the last five years through a range of interventions towards addressing the issue of inequality and building an inclusive society. This is not new. This is not post-GE 2011."

But Mr Tharman added that benefits and transfers given to the low income must not end up as disincentives.

MPs like Mr Ang Hin Kee and Mr Edwin Tong had raised concerns about making sure Singapore does not end up a welfare state.

Mr Tharman agreed, saying that the government should be careful when it comes to giving out benefits.

He said the government has to be focused in its intervention strategies and these include addressing social mobility at the early stage and helping the lowest wage workers.

He said: "There are incentives effects if you provide too much benefit when your incomes are low. It is the natural workings of society. It's not that people are trying to gain on the system. It is natural human behaviour that you have an incentive to stay where you are and not upgrade or you will start losing your benefits. Every society has found this to be a problem.

"As you expand benefits, more people try to stay within the group that gets the benefits instead of upgrading beyond that threshold. We got to be quite careful, and preserve that drive to do better, learn a new skill and move your family up because that drive at every level of society defines us. It's not just the most talented people or the most educated that have this drive. It is actually that drive among ordinary Singaporeans that defines us. Let's not lose that and this means being focused in our interventions as we go ahead."

While extending benefits to those who need it, Mr Tharman was also cautious about suggestions to extend the Special Employment Credit scheme (SEC) to more groups.

These include homemakers, ex-offenders and single mothers.

Though he said Dr Lily Neo's suggestion to extend the SEC to those who did not attend special education schools would be addressed by the Ministry of Community Development, Youth and Sports in their Committee of Supply debate.

Mr Tharman said: "The SEC is a major intervention in the job market. Not everyone faces the same disadvantage because some homemakers move in and out of work and they're not necessarily at a disadvantage when they come back. I would be very careful about extending what is considered a major intervention, in favour of older workers to more and more groups."

Moving on to the middle income group, Mr Tharman said one strategy is to raise the real incomes of the sandwich class.

This, he said, will help them cope with the cost of living.

He shared that median households in Singapore have seen healthy income growth over the past five years, at an average of 3.2 per cent per year, in real terms.

"This 3.2 per cent growth is frankly quite rare over the last five years. In Hong Kong and Taiwan, it was negative over the last five years for median income growth in real terms. There was positive growth in South Korea but it was lower than us. Most developed countries had significantly lower median income growth over the last five years so we haven't done badly."

Another strategy to help the middle-income group is to keep taxes low.

Mr Tharman said this is a very important feature of Singapore's tax system, which is lower than most developed countries.

He gave the example of how a middle-income family which owns a car gets about 80 cents back for every dollar in taxes they pay.

And the benefits are more for those who don't own a car.

Mr Tharman said: "If you don't own a car, even as a middle income Singaporean, you get back $1.50 for every $1 tax you pay over your lifetime. There are very few systems that provide this. And for those who want to have a car for the convenience because they have a large family or with elderly persons who need ferrying around, it's still a very fair system. There are very few systems where for every $1 of tax you pay, you get 80 cents back over your lifetime for the average household."

Its pretty ironic for a million dollar Minister to talk about income equality isn’t it?

These idiots in the cabinet are quite good at making things super complex and trying to sell shit to you as goodies all just to maintain there own millions dollar pay checks.

To hell with all the schemes.

All they have to do is to do away with GST for basic necessity, reduce the cost of public transports and public housing, make utilities more affordable and have a better health care service.

This is all it takes to make Singapore a better place to live in.

And if a certain MP, who stupidly drank water from the water tank with the dead maid, is to ask where to get the money.

You just cut the bloody pay for the Ministers and MPs and increase the tax for the bloody top 10% earner in the country. These people have enough money to last 3 life times while some Singaporeans are starving to death.

This alone make me sick to the core.