Guest Post: i dun unerstan u lah!: An exposé of Singapore and Singaporean retardation

Singapore FlagI greatly enjoyed reading the Single Dude’s articles on the pros and cons of Singapore. As a European business person I would like to expand a bit on the “Singaporean retardation” described in the cons article. When I arrived in Singapore I was absolutely shocked at the almost unimaginable retardation of the local Singaporeans. Given that Singapore is one of the wealthiest countries in the world and apparently has the highest number of millionaires per capita, I was expecting to find a mecca of high technology and efficiency but I was sorely disappointed. It’s true the center of the city is full of modern looking buildings and is very clean but aside from that Singapore has much more in common with “third world” countries than it does with it’s very  “first world” image.

Let me preface the anecdotes I’m about to tell by stating that the situations I’m about to describe are very much “business as usual” in Singapore and not extraordinary in any way shape or form. These are daily occurrences, not once in a month or once in a year occurrences. Also, please remember that Singapore claims to be an English speaking country, but as you will soon find out, that is a very unsubstantiated claim.

Singaporean Golddiggerism

An advertisement at a shopping mall that really exemplifies the gold diggerism of the culture

The first thing I would like to discuss is the experience of trying to hire a Singaporean. On one particular day last year I invited seven people to an interview. These were people that had all previously applied for the job online through a local jobs website similar to I gave them all more than 48 hours advance notice.  Of the seven: four did not respond at all, one wrote back and said they didn’t like the neighborhood (it’s centrally located serviced by 10 bus routes and one metro line), one didn’t like the time slot I offered and one confirmed by telephone. The one person who confirmed the interview did not show up and did not call or email to cancel. Please remember these are people that are supposedly looking for employment and applied for the job, not people I identified via a CV search and cold called. I can’t imagine not going to a job interview for a job that I applied for! And as I said this is not abnormal, these are very typical examples of what it’s like trying to hire a local in Singapore.

Local workers are often of much lower quality than foreign workers, and to add insult to injury they also cost much more. Businesses are forced to pay into superannuation funds (Central Provident Fund or “CPF”) for locals but not for foreigners; at the lower end of the spectrum this can make locals upwards of 50% more expensive to hire (these CPF contributions are currently capped for salaries of $5,000 and above). To pay a local around $2200 net costs me about $3000. To pay a foreigner $2200 net costs $2200 plus a much smaller than CPF “foreign worker levy“. I can easily find foreigners to pay $2200 net that are well worth $2200. Locals available for that price range are not even worth $1000 to me in most cases, in fact I have seriously considered hiring some local maids at the lowest possible salary to sit around and do nothing so that I can hire more foreign workers.  You see, to make matters even worse there is currently a government quota of 3 locals per foreign employee on an S-Pass (the employment pass for mid to low level employees).

Toilet Training for Adults in Singapore

Toilet training for adults

The Singaporean government has now decided that companies aren’t hiring enough Singaporeans, particularly in middle management (gee I wonder why!?!) so in their infinite wisdom they have decided to severely restrict employment passes for those making salaries below <$4,500 and to somewhat limit passes for those making between 4,500 to 8,000. Only those making above 8,000 can get an employment pass relatively easily and sooner or later that will probably become much harder too.

So the government economically incentivized companies to hire foreigners for years, and now that foreigners have become close to 40% of the population they want to stop this practice dead in its tracks and force people hire locals. Here’s the problem, besides the economic incentives, as described above, locals often aren’t employable. A Singaporean that costs me $3,000 out of pocket is not even remotely as good an employee as a foreigner I can easily find that is wiling to work for $1,500. My solution? No more jobs in Singapore – I’ll setup a shared service center in another country. Problem solved. It’s the same position Obama has put American businessmen with his retarded healthcare law, and that Hollande has put business owners in in France. “Oh you want further raise my costs for these already uncompetitive workers? No problem, I’ll just hire workers in other countries and/or replace them completely with automation.”

The one exception to all of this is the lowly “Work Permit”, these are not that hard to obtain because this is how they import people from impoverished countries to be maids, nannies and other forms of workers to do jobs that Singaporeans would consider themselves to be above no matter how desperate they were for work.  These are also the passes they issue to the construction workers who work for a pittance often live in squalor in the unfinished buildings they are working on our elsewhere on the job site in things that resemble shipping containers.  While perhaps this is not an example of local stupidity, it does indicate that Singaporeans have no qualms about taking advantage of impoverished and desperate foreign workers.

Before moving on, I would like to share with you some actual, verbatim communications I’ve had with job applicants. Only the names have been changed, to protect the guilty of course. Both of these communications came from applicants claiming to have college degrees and were requesting salaries of $2,800 or more per month. I could show you literally hundreds of communications just like these but I think that would be overkill.

Via e-mail:

From: Iris
Date: October 2, 2012

i will going to ur interview monday .. but wat is the until num ..

From: Company Confidential
Date: October 1, 2012

Dear Iris,

We are pleased to invite you for an interview as follows:

Date and Time: 8/10/12 5:00 PM
Venue: xxxxx
Tel#: 0000 0000

Please reply to confirm with us.

Yours sincerely,

Hue Jazz


Applicant: Hi I’m james suppose to come interview later .. cn ii check with u ur add is xxx orchard rd .. is it full add? No unit lah? N wat yr companie nam iS.. ? xxx orchard rd is very big lah!

Me: The full address is xxx Orchard Road.

Applicant: Den wat companie nam?

Me: Don’t bother, the job requires fluent English.

[Author’s note on the employment pass situation: If you do need to get a work permit for yourself or someone you want to employ, beware of the local scam artists that try to charge $750-$1,500+ to file an application for a Work Permit, S-Pass or Employment Pass (EP) – they are ripping you off.  Anybody that is even remotely competent can file an application in less than 30 minutes for a $20 fee either online or at any post office.  These scam artists try to trick you into thinking that they are offering some added value or that your chances will be better if they fill out the simple application for you – don’t be fooled, you are perfectly capable of submitting your own applications for yourself or your prospective employees and appealing the decision if necessary!]

I talk a lot about the stupidity of Singaporeans because its so severe and so obvious, but to add insult to injury I think there is a significant component of laziness too. I believe one of the most prominent causes of this is the Singaporean government because Singaporeans are really coddled and taken care of by their government. It’s true that Singapore is really expensive but the things that are expensive other than housing are luxuries (booze, cars, designer crap). Almost everything else is pretty cheap. If you’re a Singaporean, the government gives you subsidized housing with payments on a sliding scale according to your income. If you’re a citizen you can easily get by on less than $1,000 SGD per month without struggling for your basic necessities because the housing is so heavily subsidized. On the other hand, a foreigner in a menial job will make far less money for the reasons described above but faces a much higher cost profile because they do not get access to subsidized housing. In fact many of the retarded locals own these ghetto government projects known as HDBs and lease these shit holes to foreigners for absurd prices as a way to make income for little to no effort. Which brings me to another point: a huge portion of Singapore’s wealthy citizens are just “right place right time” real estate millionaires rather than some kind of entrepreneurial geniuses, a situation which is exacerbated by the fact that the government only allows citizens to buy the best of the best properties which is jut another subsidy that allows them to be both lazy and stupid while still reaping huge rewards. And if you think the rent is high here you should see the purchase prices – 40 to 50 years of rent is not uncommon to purchase a condo. Did someone say real estate bubble?

Here is a very incomplete list of other examples of “Singaporean retardation” that I’ve observed frequently all over town:

  • Toilet training signs for adults all over the city
  • They actually employ people in the metro stations whose job is to tell people to move away from the escalator when they get to the bottom
  • I frequently encounter middle aged people (35-50 years old) that cannot use a computer even for the simplest tasks
  • Banking (see below)
  • Extremely poor language skills – I find much higher levels of English in countries where English is not claimed to be a native or official language
  • Unreliable and poorly functioning technology of all types (see below)
  • Taxi drivers that don’t know where they’re going even on this tiny island
  • Inability to manage the supply of taxis – they are either under-priced, under-supplied or both
  • The emotionless, robot like behavior of the people and they way they chase meaningless, superficial, shiny trinkets (designer crap, overpriced status symbol cars, super overpriced bottles of booze, etc.)
  • Government subsidized HDB housing parking lots frequently full of $100,000+ cars (Why are these idiots subsidizing the housing of people that can afford to waste $100K+ for a car they don’t need!?!)
  • Ridiculous overuse of snail mail
  • A complete inability to do almost anything quickly, efficiently and accurately (see below)
  • The very very few things they get semi right are typically way over done (online banking security is a good example)
  • Anti-Chinese sentiment (see below)
  • “Singlish” is not a language, it’s very, very broken English that is totally incomprehensible
  • Horrendous service – From five star hotels to cheap restaurants some of the worst service I’ve ever experienced, incredible given the price of drinks
  • Outrage of modesty – they try to make this “crime” sound like an equivalent of rape or sexual molestation but you can be charged with it for simply verbally offending a Singaporean woman or brushing up against her the “wrong way” in a club (there are scam artists that try to entrap you too)
Toilet Training for Grownups in Singapore

Toilet Instructions

Now let’s talk about the banking. Given all the wealth here you’d expect them to have a really modern banking system, unfortunately you’d also be terribly wrong. Singapore has by far the worst, most retarded banking system I’ve ever had the displeasure of dealing with. It took my bank, one of the larger ones in town, seven working days to receive a wire from abroad. It took me three weeks to setup online banking. Setting up online banking required: filling out an online banking request form (in person at the bank), waiting for two separate pieces of mail (one which had to be signed for), sending back a signed original activation confirmation form by postal mail and then completing a lengthy online activation process which requires both a security token device and a local mobile phone number to receive additional SMS one time passwords (that’s right I needed a security token and one time passwords sent to my mobile!). The written instructions that were mailed to me explaining how to complete the final steps of the online banking activation process were blatantly wrong. After the whole thing was done and I received numerous confirmation emails and SMS from the bank letting me know I successfully setup online banking followed by a regular paper letter in the mail saying “This letter is to confirm you have successfully set up online banking” – there’s that overkill I was talking bout. Bank statements are only available online for three months, if they are older than that I have to make a request, pay a substantial per statement fee and wait a couple of days for them to get them to get those “old” statements out of the “archives”. It takes one to two business days to transfer money from one Singaporean bank to another. I could go on and on but I think this gives you a good overview of what Singaporean banking is like. If that’s not enough for you check out the bank code branch code clusterfuck, especially with UOB. Why they couldn’t just copy their more competent counterparts in the rest of the world and implement the SWIFT code scheme, or better yet IBAN is beyond me.

Singapore Convicts

Not sure what this is but it appears to be a government sponsored sign encouraging you and your children to interact with recently released prisoners!

Wherever technology is used, it’s used in completely idiotic, backwards ways and it’s poorly implemented. For example, Singapore has automated SMS, telephone and mobile app taxi booking services. Sounds high tech right? Wrong. If you try to book a taxi when one isn’t available at the exact moment you try to book it you will get an automated response that says “Sorry no taxi’s available now please try again later”. It was apparently completely lost on whoever built this system that all this wonderful technology could easily be used to queue the requests and then send a taxi whenever one becomes available which is what most people who would use such a service would actually want! Unfortunately they don’t’ do that, they just send an automated message “try again in 10 minutes”. Even more ridiculous is when ordering with operator assisted booking, you may wait on hold for 10 or 20 minutes if it’s a busy evening or holiday, the operator will then finally take your booking, but after you hang up you will often receive an SMS “sorry no taxis available, try again later”. Another example are Singaporean government websites that literally close outside of working hours.  A website that closes?  WTF?!?  My IT guy says that it’s actually more work to design a website that “closes” than to just allow it to function normally. We’re not even talking about submitting anything here, just checking a status!

Singaporean Government Website Closes Outside of Business Hours

You cannot check employment pass status online if the physical office is closed

I won’t get too deeply into the geeky stuff but suffice it to say that Singapore’s network interconnects with the outside world are so bad that all our critical business servers that serve Singapore must be located within Singapore. For the real geeks out there checkout how many hops it takes to go nowhere even still inside Singapore or just over the border as well as the tremendous jump in latency you get when trying to communicate with a network outside Singapore as opposed to inside Singapore even though “outside Singapore” is as little as 30 km away. There is plenty of fiber in Singapore so it shouldn’t’ be a bandwidth problem – probably just a completely retarded network topology coupled with some really shitty, outdated Chinese routers. The 3G is shitty, slow and unreliable also.

Common Sense

Common sense advice from the government regarding things you would expect everyone to know

The general incompetence and inefficiency is best observed in the slow, round about, error prone, low tech way in which virtually all business related tasks are accomplished: namely with long tedious forms requiring signatures (often originals), business registration numbers, ID card copies and company stamps. I know that this is a normal bureaucratic hassle associated with doing business in many countries for the initial setup of everything from a corporation to a telephone line but it doesn’t end with the setup in Singapore, far from it. The simplest tasks like adding a $20 per month value-added service to your telephone line require multi-page, paper forms, ID copies, signatures, stamps and then several working days “processing time”. More often than not they will get the requested changes wrong and require more forms from you and “more processing time” just to fix the changes they incompetently fucked up in the first place.  You’ll be lucky if whatever they fuck up doesn’t disrupt your business for a couple of days.  Once I requested a change of address on my credit card terminals; they spelled the new address wrong and broke our service entirely for three business days just because I asked them to change the address on the receipt.  Another good example is trying to signup for QuickBooks Online. Pretty much anywhere else in the world if you have a credit card and five minutes on your hands you can get signed up. Not in Singapore, in Singapore you must be a Singtel customer and you must have QuickBooks Online billed to your Singtel paper bill – you cannot pay via credit card at all. Kind of defeats the purpose of that whole “online convenience” thing doesn’t it? That’s not all, if you are not a Singtel customer you must become one first via a slew of other forms, signatures and copies of official documents about your business to get a “Singtel billing account” and only than can you sign up for QuickBooks Online only to be billed via a paper bill you will receive in the mail. It’s almost mind boggling how anyone could be so inept and incompetent at utilizing and implementing the basic technologies of our time and it is comical for anyone that doesn’t have to deal with it on a daily basis.

The periodic anti-Chinese backlash is something that I find to be a never-ending source of entertainment. From time to time the locals get all riled up about having too many foreigners in Singapore “stealing their jobs” and frequently they single out the Chinese for abuse. I find it to be incredibly funny when they choose all those “Chinese foreigners” to pick on because the vast majority of the resident population of this less than a generation old joke of a “country” is in fact Chinese, they are nearly 75% of the population!

Moving right along you can’t discuss Singapore without discussing the complete lack of anything that resembles a developed country in the behavior and the culture of the average person on the street. Those toilet training signs are probably very necessary. I’ve seen some horrific things in public rest rooms in Singapore, even in very upscale shopping and restaurant complexes.

Handicapped bathroom upstairs in Singapore

Handicapped bathroom upstairs

Other joys of Singapore are the public spitting and watching people blow snot rockets into the sinks in the rest rooms (that was a favorite of mine in my old office building). The behavior, the mentality, the culture is uncivilized and very third world. Sure there is an upper class like everywhere, but I’m talking about your regular, every day, average Singaporeans. Bad manners, no class, bad language skills, frequently lacking basic hygiene, lacking basic common sense, you name it. It very much feels like they just bused in a bunch of people from an uncivilized third world country and turned them loose in a big city.

I can’t help but wonder if some of this is caused by inbreeding. Citizens only make up a little over 60% of the population on this tiny island, which is currently equal to about 3.2 million people. But of that 3.2 million there are a lot of different ethnic groups that all stick together and mix very little, you have the Chinese and their Chinatown, Indians in Little India, Malays, Indonesians and others. By the time you break it down some of the individual communities are very small. The different groups hardly mix or integrate and all stick to their own little areas for the most part. And of course most muslims (of which there are plenty) will typically never be caught mixing with non-muslims. I’m really just speculating here but I really can’t help but wonder.  Besides the general lack of intelligence there certainly seems to be indicators of bad genes in many of the native populace such as bad skin, bad teeth and a huge prevalence of glasses and contacts (more than I can ever remember seeing elsewhere).

Toilet Training for Adults in Singapore

More toilet training for adults

Although the city does have it’s ultra modern center with high rise office buildings, you haven’t really seen Singapore unless you’ve seen all of it.  Besides the city center there are also disgusting, decrepit ghettos full of the aforementioned subsidized housing, broken down shop houses infested with roaches and rats, hourly rate hotels, cheap seedy restaurants that smell of rotting food, prostitutes galore and more.  The best example of one of these districts is definitely Geylang.  And don’t forget the infamous, “Four Floors of Whores“, that one is in the high rent district along with many other KTV bars which you can find any part of the city, high rent or not!  The Marina Bay Sands and One Raffles Place are not accurate representations of Singapore as a whole by any stretch of the imagination.

This article is getting awfully long and I could go on for pages more but I think you get the point by now. For the reasons outlined above and many more, I’m hereby terming Singapore the dumbest country per dollar of per capita income in a the world. Sure there may be some countries with a more retarded population than Singapore, but I don’t think it’s fair to compare places that are so poor they may be struggling with being able to obtain basic nutrition to the country that boasts the highest number of millionaires per capita. Outside of Wall Street and parts of the Middle East, you would be hard pressed to find more unearned and undeserved wealth than you will find in the hands of retarded Singaporeans.

Manuel adds

As predicted this article is starting a shit storm and we love it. Haters are a blog’s best friends. So far these are the place the article above has been linked. If you know of another one please let us know in the comments.

The Temasek Review
TR Emeritus
The Real Singapore
Singapore Expats Forum
My [Overpriced] Car Forum
Channel News Asia Forum
Asia One Forums

The comments being generated both there and here are predictably hilarious and we’ve archived them here.

Lastly found this cool article on “The Real Singapore” and linked it inline above where I felt it was appropriate.

Prostitution, Gambling and Bad Karaoke: The Real Singapore

Satire piece stating the same basic thing (although less vulgar and with less supporting details) where many of the people commenting don’t even realize it’s satire! Pretty funny.

Singaporeans biggest threat to Singapore’s growth

Classic, love or hate, nothing in the middle:

Love Hate

Favorite comments:

March 28, 2013 at 6:44 pm (Quote)
my sympathy to a sore loser who is moving on after so many donkey years of enriching his innards only to realised that my countrymen r retards! by saying so u r only putting up an excuse n consoling urself to the fact that ur pre-historic business models r outdated.
1) cant compete with those of newer FTs who have better ideas than urs. 2) cant compete with younger men at clarke quay.
3) with increased competitions ur business not as profitable.
4) cant take the heat, lose out to a bangla hunk n u will b leaving s’pore without ur partner
u had ur fill so b content.just go quietly. go to virgin territories n continue ur exploitations. make sure u dont end up in CDC of your next target

And nothing speaks louder than this one. You are a foreign investor that wants to start a business in Singapore and employ Singaporeans? Don’t bother, they think you are a blood sucking parasitic beggar.

March 28, 2013 at 7:55 pm (Quote)

ONE of a kind after sucking our blood and living of our nation he is talking COCK real ungrateful ARSE-HOLE.He is just a beggar after begging us for food to fill his hunger he is now bitting us.Please go and beg somewhere if you still remain in Singapore after next week you are just what i called a ARSE-HOLE BEGGAR.FUCK OFF and go beg somewhere you are just not welcome SICK PIG.

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  • Ammar Tours

    Thanks for updating us about service in Singapore. Really appreciated for your such post. Cheers!

  • Robin Pandian

    Singapore is the epitome of everything that is wrong with the world today. You have a bunch of entitled, pampered and ignorant idiots who think they should be treated like Kings and Queens. It’s most obvious when Singaporeans travel out of their country and realize that they’re nothing but specks of dust. And then they start throwing their toys out of their pram. I’m referring to mostly the large Chinese population but there are some spoilt Indians, Malays and Eurasians as well.

    As employees they’re mostly lazy and don’t have the drive or common sense to do better. They’re always looking for a hand out. I recently had a fresh grad ask me for a raise 3 months into a job cos she felt she deserved it – it was her first proper job, she was on a probation period and was a time watcher who barely finished her basic tasks on time. But she felt that she deserved to earn more?! Lol. Safe to say that was her last day.

    Truth is, it’s easy to pick on Singaporeans. I do it for sport sometimes. They’re not bright enough to survive anything intellectual.

    • jake todson

      you’re totally not wrong by picking on em. even the lower class citizens of this country felt the need to be really arrogant and whoever claimed that this “first class” badge of honor for this country deserves to be paraded around by people of this country well then they should be ashamed of themselves.

  • fuckofflah

    Singapore is by far the worst “wealthy” place I’ve ever been to. People are rude, expats are rude, everything is a hassle, just getting out of the city to get to Malaysia is a nightmare.

    You forgot to mention their moronic daily subway pass : you can only buy and recharge the daily pass at specific stations. Forcing you to buy two tickets just to get to those stations and get the said pass. And of course there is a small deposit needed for the pass. So when leaving make sure you buy those two extra tickets to get it back you fucking moron!
    If you tried to scam people you couldn’t do better.

  • kai

    #CTFD pardner
    sorry the fishing village didn’t live up to your expectations
    Man the fuck up, grow a pair & Deal with it.
    Theres bullshit everywhere in the world.
    As for robotic people – spot on. Thats why those of us with warm blood travel.
    Good luck and hope you get everything you want


    Singaporean Chinese are probably the dumbest and the ugliest among the Overseas Chinese who migrated out of China 2 to 3 generations ago… This is proven by the very fact for their hatred to PRCs, is like gooks hating gooks… stupidity at its finest…

    • A Singaporean Man

      no, its the hatred of their own heritaged PRC people and the love for islam related cultures like south indians and malays which is in fact poles apart from them

  • Vanessa from Singapore

    As a Singaporean, I’m so sad to say that much of this is true. Also being an Australian Permanent Resident, I’ve spent almost half my life in Singapore and the other half in Australia. When I moved back in Singapore a few years a go, I was so sad to see what a xenophobic, bigoted country it had become.

    I can’t comment on the intricacies of hiring of locals vs foreigners but Singaporeans fall well short basic etiquette (moving in on trains and buses, correctly using toilets etc), which is why we need signs in trains and toilets. Citizens complain about Singapore being a nanny state – well now you know why.

    In Australia, I hear comments from Aussies about foreigners, like Singaporeans, going to Australia to steal their jobs. I have heard Singaporeans respond saying that they are racist. But in Singapore, citizens blame the inflow of foreigners (from China and the Philippines) for poor behaviour on trains and toilets – which I don’t care how you try to spin it, it’s racist and a lot of Singaporeans can be racist. What personally ticks me off the most is that so many people have live-in help and you heard complaints dripping with distain about how crowded Orchard Road gets when they have their weekends off. So many of these people are away from home and only get one weekend off a month, and they are the ones who are really supporting Singapore.

    Singaporeans also like to complains that foreigners are coming in a stealing their jobs, which our author has already explains why. For me the reality is, regardless if you are in Australia or Singapore, if someone from a non-English speaking country, with lower education standards, can come along and steal your jobs, there’s something that you are not doing right.

    I still believe, maybe call it national pride, that there are some positives to our country, like the fact that food is cheap, public transport in accessible and that there is decent healthcare for its citizens. Schooling is tough, but it does give its citizens a leg up – although I recommend tertiary education outside of Singapore if you want to start developing some of your own thoughts. It is just very sad to see that we have developed a nation of citizens who feel entitled, who are bigoted and forget that we are all originally from a land elsewhere and that our forefathers shared the space, shared the work and came together in Singapore to make it what it is today.

  • Simon in Hong Kong

    Having lived and worked in SE Asia for the last 2 years, I can safely say that Singapore is my least favorite country of those I work across and travel within.

    I can attest to much of the retardation referenced in this article, and will add that the level of arrogance you will encounter is completely unfounded. Singaporeans like to think of themselves as ‘not Asian’ in many ways, looking down upon other countries in the region and kidding themselves they are every bit as good as the western countries they so desperately wish they were.

    Unfortunately I have to go back soon, I am looking forward to it even less than my trips to India and THAT is really saying something.

    • Wow, that is saying something!

  • Andre Flaco

    I traveled the world, I’m 26 years old I’m basically traveling non stop from age 21. Singapore is the absolutely shittiest placeIi have ever step in. I was suppose to be there 2 months for work, I have canceled my contract after 3 weeks, i had to get out of there .. Absolutely everything is true in this article. WORST SHITHOLE IN THE WORLD!

  • Go Back

    To Hell, demon beasts, from whence you came

  • Teuksora

    you guys should take a look at this, retardation at its best!

    Still Avail?? Hello? – Carousell. Singapore’s #1 breeding ground for inarticulate cheapos.

  • Rob in SE Asia

    True story illustrating how incredibly stupid Singaporeans are from today: A friend of mine is doing a lot of business in Singapore and he’s banking with DBS which is one of the largest banks in Singapore. Apparently they upgraded their online banking. My friend received no notice of this and when logging he was automatically directed to the new system. He couldn’t figure out how to generate his reports on automated collections (GIRO transactions) because everything had changed. He called up the bank and asked WTF? The bank said, sorry in the new system none of your GIRO collection data was or will be transferred. So in other words all of the customers he has setup automatic deductions for he has to setup all over again from scratch. Only in Singapore. The most annoying thing is that they don’t seem to realize at all how stupid they are compared to the rest of the world and how badly they do virtually everything. Nothing is even remotely first world once you get past the surface layer.

    • Teuksora

      yea, banking here is crap. they sent customers new chip ATM cards through snail mail and i didnt receive mine. called the bank and they told me they had a message on their system stating “customer to update address” but i wasnt informed at all. so they instructed me to update my address via internet banking and to call up again to instruct them to send me the new card. they’re so stupid i have no words for them.

      • Daniel Kevlar

        Kinda necroing (and somewhat related) but contacting the SingPass customer service has the automated answering machine tell me: (paraphrased) “It will take us 12 working days to mail you the new temporary password for your SingPass account.”

        So you’re telling me that A GOVERNMENT WEBSITE is going to MAIL a PIN to me instead of using the absurdly faster email? Good lord, maybe that’s why I’ve been waiting on hold for the past 4 HOURS to get them to change the phone number for a different SingPass account.

  • butthurt

    Yes we have to learn to be friendlier, civilised and more open. Yes the costs are ridiculous.

    No you do not put down an entire nation of people with such arrogance and poor taste. “turned them loose in a big city” Like third world citizens aren’t human. Almost sounding like a slaver surveying his ship there. Sure, we have a long ways to go, but culture is difficult to engineer or improve without the benefit of time.

    Here’s a suggestion Mike. Try to go about your business without looking down on everyone you meet and you’ll find your time here isn’t so painful. I almost want to believe you made this article so excoriating and provocative to generate ad traffic.

  • I can totally confirm this article and add that this must be one of the worst countries in the world to live in if you are single (unless you like to spend a lot of money on hookers that is) for the following reasons:

    1) Most of the girls here are ugly, no seriously – they are. You may be in a glamorous area and find a lot of hotties but for the most part finding hot girls in Singapore can be an arduous task. I have been at the tail of some trains and walk all the way to the front when it’s moderately full and not find a single good looking girl to talk to – not even one!

    2) Even if you manage to find a hot girl she is likely to be either uptight, stupid, shallow, boring, up herself or all of the above. I talk to a lot of women when I go to a new country, on the streets, on the mall, on the train and I ALWAYS manage to get numbers or at least strike pleasant conversations, here in Singapore you may as well hit your head on a wall to entertain yourself. You would think some girls here are either retarded or pretending to be by the responses you get to polite questions about simple things like “What’s your favourite restaurant?” Or “Can you recommend a good place to visit in this area?” And most of the time it feels like they are itching to get rid of you as soon as you start talking to them. I have even in a couple of occasions talked to girls that were quite unattractive just out of boredom and even though their body language implies they fancy you, they still cut you off quickly or walk the opposite way to get rid of you, it’s absolutely mental how frustrating it is to meet people (especially girls) in this country. There is no other Asian country that is like this. In Hong Kong, for instance it’s really easy to meet girls (or people in general) and strike friendly conversations or even get dates, here, forget it, you may as well get a boat to Indonesia on the weekends if you work here.

    People sometimes compare this country with Japan in how organised it is, clean and safe but I think that’s a load of shit. Singaporeans do things constantly by the book, they don’t have a vision like Japanese do and they don’t follow rules because of a sense of pride in a job well done, they just do it because they are scared and because of social pressure to make more money and to escalate socially.

    I wont say everyone is like this, As one of the very, very few rare examples, I met a really amazing girl over here, she was possibly one of the most beautiful girls I have ever met in my life and she was also really friendly, polite and clever (shame she was leaving the country the next day to meet her boyfriend in Europe, but I guess the good ones wouldn’t stay here) but for the most part, I can say 49 out of 50 girls you are going to meet here, it’s going to be shit. I even stopped bothering to approach girls and can’t wait to leave this country, such unbelievably boring people. I would have never thought it would like this.

    • Teuksora

      so agree with this. you need to understand that the majority (i’m referring to chinese) hailed from southern china. southern chinese are less beautiful when compared to the northen counterparts where they have really nice fair skin and beautiful features. northern chinese have got flat faces and dark skin. also, girls in singapore dress really sloppily (tank tops and slippers every damn where), many like to dress in black where in other countries they only wear black to funerals or maybe other solemn events. they’re also not articulate and are generally not street smart.

      • I agree that Chinese girls can be incredibly hot. There is also an incredible diversity of looks in China. Short, tall, dark, light, etc.

      • Datuk

        I don’t really agree with you. That’s typical excuse. Taiwan and Hong Kong have majority immigrants fin southern China too but they are way a class above in term of looks

    • Siti Noor

      Maybe, just maybe, you reek of desperation to get laid … :p

    • Joe G.

      Come to the midwest USA (not counting Chicago, Chicago is cool). I see maybe 1 attractive girl per week. Almost every woman is over weight. And there’s nothing to do here except go to bars. The good bars typically mean you have to drive there. Unfortunately, if you have more that a couple of drinks and get pulled over, you go to jail, maybe lose your job, and cannot get another job for 5 to 7 years.

      Thank you for your review. I imagine the Singapore girls aren’t as bad as you say, but I can image how stupid and lazy people can be. If you make it easy for someone, they never will try and do better.

  • Oh dear! I have no idea how I stumbled upon this article. I just can’t stop laughing. Is this shit even real “LAH”?

  • DanielW

    Brilliant article. Couldn’t agree more with the points raised. I’ve been here five years and I’ve had enough. Time to return to the first world. I hung around for the almost non-existent taxes but now even that can’t keep me here.

  • Pained

    Singapore is a third world country that pretends to be developed. All my friends who are actually raised here know that it is a third world/developing country. Stupid little microstate the size of a pimple on the butt of United States.

  • Pained

    Everything you wrote is 100% accurate.
    If I live here for a few more years, I will die. WILL.

    • Siti Noor

      Here’s a suggestion, leave. Now. Save yourself. Life is precious.

  • Leo tang fuck

    I love your writing. Having to live around a Singaporean is a joke.

  • Demetrios

    I’ve posted here before, but still felt like coming back to vent some steam and hopefully dissuade a few people who are considering moving to Singapore. I’ve already successfully convinced at least one person not to come. It’s now approaching three years that I’ve been here, and I’m waiting (very patiently) for another three years to go by before I can pack up my bags and leave. And it’s no secret that this is what most “people” here would be thrilled to see me do, of course sooner rather than later. At this point, I’m completely fed up with this obnoxious breed and finding it very hard to sympathize with their problems. It’s not enough that they reek of insincerity, lack any empathy, and talk and behave in a completely boorish way without any regard for courtesy, they also have to look down on any anybody that doesn’t act or behave like them. I’ve always been looked upon as an intruder here, and that’s never going to change, but on the plus side, I have it a lot better than others. A Bangladeshi or Chinese labourer working six and a half days a week at a construction site where serious workplace accidents happen every so often, will never be seen as anything other than a heathen and a miscreant in the eyes of many Singaporeans. Then, these people have to go blame their government and foreigners alike for all of their personal problems, which is absurd. Seriously! There are many who’ve had to go through the same strict education system, NS and the stress of growing up here, and never had the priviledge of studying abroad, yet end up perfectly decent, caring, intelligent and articulate individuals. This business of the government and FTs ruining their lives is such a pathetic argument. Then to add insult to injury, you have the National Kindness Movement posting ads everywhere, telling you to be gracious towards others. And then the endless team building activities at work, a huge fad in Singapore, where you’re expected to dress up in a silly uniform or put on a costume, play inane games and pretend like you’re having fun, around a group of people who wouldn’t give a s–t if you dropped dead the next day.

    There have been a recent string of unfortunate incidents that have brought more disharmony between locals and foreigners. But the latest one, which caused an uproar, says a lot. Some idiotic rich expat who went on to lose his job and leave the country was caught on video making disparaging remarks about ‘poor’ Singaporean people who take public transport while he drives a Porsche. Why should anyone even pay attention or acknowledge such stupid comments? Yet somehow they struck a chord with most Singaporeans, some of whom bothered to send this chode death threats. There have been many more hurtful comments voiced by rich expat types. But to people who are so fixated on wealth and see nothing in life beyond attaining affluence and status, a remark about them being ‘poor’ and not owning a car turns out to be the most egregious insult ever. Those wanting to move here should ask whether it’s all worth it…the safety, convenience, efficiency, generous salary and benefits, low taxes and good food, when these are the types of people you will be surrounded by.

    • Joel Long

      I’m not sure from whence these people you mention come from, although I highly suspect it’s the local population on the Internet.

      Demetrios, I don’t know if it’s fair, but there’s plenty of Singaporeans willing to earn their keep just as much as there’s plenty of Singaporeans thinking otherwise, and in the same vein there’s plenty of Singaporeans at the ready to blame Singapore on every bit of their misery.

      Let me show you a magic trick, though. Replace “Singaporean” with any nationality you can think of in Northern or Eastern Europe, and replace the “agenda(s) of the day”. Surprise, you have these combinations:
      …plenty of British people willing to earn their keep just as much as there’s plenty of British people thinking otherwise…
      …plenty of Americans willing to earn their keep just as much as there’s plenty of Americans thinking otherwise…
      …plenty of Spanish/Italian/Germans…

      I am sure by now that you’ve gotten my point. Won’t you agree that we’re always going to have dissidents ready to diss anything that doesn’t satisfy them, and such people exist all over the world? Surely, then, you would agree too that this is more or less a worldwide problem at present, this “feeling of entitlement” and “crisis of identity in the face of globalization”? =)

      • You need to go back to remedial English class.

        • Joel Long

          Reason being? I’m sure you understood me perfectly fine.

          • david.fields

            Asking that question proves that you should Wong.

  • Joel Long

    I can refute none of your claims, although I don’t really know how it is you see Singapore – on the people level or on the business level.
    I realize anything I say here now is actually kind of adding fuel to the fire you start; I shall be branded as pro-foreigner (cue fake horror face).

    Singapore is not exactly an orderly police state; we’re no North Korea. However, a lot of things we do in the name of progression and peace seems to be more on the “jump the bandwagon” mentality than actually trying to one up and do better.

    Try asking a Singaporean about SingPass, the government on-line service. We use it to deal with the government, and I have to tell you, every time I use it I forget the password. There’s no other fail-safe system, we have to visit a community club and get the people there to change passwords for us; we can’t submit on-line requests to change it and yada. It’s annoying, redundant, outright 1990s WWW with niceties plastered on the outside.

    Documentation? Last I recall, the guy who founded DropBox didn’t need more than a few forms to fill up for setting up a company. Singaporeans? We still need to visit in person, do all sorts of things that really shouldn’t matter but are apparently required… for show. Really.

    Oh, by the way, applying for higher institutions admission in Singapore is also a nightmare, there’s actually a stupid two-step process. First submit all related documents offline (instead of on-line), then verify any successful applications over a web page (so, um, really, what’s the point?)

    On the English-speaking side of matters, it’s mostly personal, but most Singaporeans I encounter in the blogosphere/online seem to like raising an argument in your face… by blathering through everything they say. In fact, I have encountered cases where their (often controversial) arguments completely contradict what they really mean, and it makes for days’ worth of confusion as I try to figure exactly which side of the argument they are really on. Doesn’t help that they write English the way you illustrated it, and really, what they write goes beyond the level of the “its versus it’s” argument; it’s fundamentally broken English.

    I’m a child at heart; I play massively multi-player on-line games lots, and the only reason I feel out of place is because employing perfect grammar often seems to get people to elevate me to god-like status, even though my English is nowhere near perfect. It’s perfectly understandable, that’s really all there is.

    Oh, not to mention the on-line world in Singapore resembles more of Will Smith’s Wild Wild West (than an actual Wild West); it’s taken seriously, but any other observer would just laugh. That’s you right now. *smirk*

    However, that being said… every country has its bad apples, and I’d like to emphasize that a lot of the smarter/wiser people are working outside the country. Problem is, the IT industry here is no good (thanks to the infrastructure) and the same goes for many of the knowledge-based sectors, and so those with more than a two-bit brain would have gone out to Europe, Japan or elsewhere for greener pastures; this is a brain drain nobody is really noticing right now. There’s a reason why the government is actively trying to entice people to go back to Singapore from the outside, and practically nobody budged; who wants to go back to a country where intelligent conversations are often swept aside, or branded politically destabilizing?


    This mollycoddling can’t go on.

    • Joel Long

      I recognize there are some severe run-ons in my statements. Trust me, they can’t tell.

  • Lonnie Chiu Wei

    Been living in Singapore for the past 10 years by way of California. I have to admit, many of the author’s points ring true. Had similar experiences on interviewing, employing and retaining Singaporeans. Also I have many Singaporean friends whom I can’t understand on email or SMS. Now here’s the good news: there are alot of good people who live here be they locals, PRs, “foreign talent”. More good news: it’s probably the safest place I have ever lived in and the education is good (not great, but where can you get great education these days?). Even more good news: most everything works (every lived in NYC? or Manila?).

    With all things being considered, even with the molly coddling, incoherent english, crowded subways, an a gameable system, I enjoy living here and will continue to live here probably till they kick me out.

    • Leaving

      You must be on drugs. Comparing Singapore to NYC is like comparing a rickshaw with a Ferrari.

  • I bet you are having fun with the responses but I still have to say this. We do not need arrogant pricks like you in Singapore, no matter how inferior you deem our people. Anti-Chinese? We’re probably more Anti-Pricks.

    • Joel Long

      Problem is he’s not entirely wrong. He wrote it in a provocative manner, but by no means are they factually inaccurate. Maybe, his words were embellished for dramatic purposes, but sometimes you have to make a point across with a blunt hammer instead of trying to sing your way through it.

  • Mike F

    As a Singaporean (born and raised), I find this article wildly amusing and – unfortunately – painfully accurate. However, much of the supposed “third world” behavior is the result of having more than a third of the population being fobs. Most Singaporeans, at least the properly educated ones, are rarely like that. I know it sounds awfully xenophobic, and perhaps even like a poor excuse, but it is what it is.

    Most accurate: Internet connectivity. As an internet professional, this is too true. Although fiber optics adoption is pretty high within the country, trans-pacific connection remains painfully slow. The main hubs in the region, mainly Taiwan and Japan, are just too far away.

    Least accurate: anti-Chinese sentiments portrayed as some sort of hypocrisy. Singaporeans, for the most part, do not identify ourselves based on our ethnicity. This is vastly different to other diverse countries, like the US, where minorities are usually eager to identify themselves by their ethnicity. We are Singaporeans first, chinese/indians/malays/white second. Also, the fact that the chinese is the majority race, means there is pretty much no impetus for us to make a point (like how asians in the west are always eager to portray themselves as “Azn”). It’s a subtle point, but seeing you’ve been around the world as well, it should be something obvious to you as well.

    I do hope that local Singaporeans will behave better though, be proud of their education and strive to be more civilized. 10 years of compulsory education, with English as the first language, and many can’t even produce a proper, legible email. That’s just inexcusable. The YouTube video you posted is only too true, a painful reminder that these people do exist amongst us, even if we don’t often get to see them. While the rich becomes richer (nothing wrong with that), the more disaffected citizens are just wallowing in their “ratchedness”, which is unacceptable. The government is doing what they can to improve and reduce the wealth-gap, and hopefully the situation improves.

    I don’t want to short-change my fellow countrymen/women though. When it comes to culture, everything is contextual, and once a perception’s been made, a lot of the contextual information is lost. I’d love to continue this conversation if anyone’s interested – god knows I’ve had it way too many times. Consider me a new fan to this blog, extremely useful for travelbugs like me!

    • Thanks for your comments, Mike. You seem to be a statistical outlier in your clear thinking and perfect grammar.

      • david.fields

        Unlike most Singaporeans

        • David Idiot

          well no one asked for your opinion did they?? Go back home to your guns and weed Johnny Smith you don’t have enough class to be on the internet

    • David Idiot

      To me , the real truth is that Singapore is a country that is filled with pricks , local and foreigners alike. I won’t say we can blame any particular group, be it locals or foreigners for our lousy culture and ridiculous social stigmas. Even though I am a Singaporean , I got to say that from my observation many foreigners start behaving like pricks when they see idiot Singaporeans doing so and when they see that this being Singapore where it’s safe and no one is going to physically attack them

  • Jasx

    I find it mildly amused at this blog. The author is simply a very impatient, negative, unattractive and down-on-his-luck foreigner, using this blog to write highly provocative articles to generate traffic to this site. One sentence sums it up – he simply cannot adapt to Singapore. My question is: If you are unhappy, just leave the country. Why bother staying on? We have way too many people living on this little island and I am sure your country is bigger than ours. Every single country has their own pros and cons.Guys, please be smart. By writing and responding to this article we are helping him. This shall be my first and last comment. I won’t waste my time on such blogs. There are a million better ones out there.

    • “I find it mildly amused at this blog.”

      The Singaporean public education system strikes again, lah.

  • thebeanstalkmyth

    The comment above is not written by a 16 year old. No one at 16 despite how educated they are use the word cohort. Despite the comment being somewhat well-written (if you consider the author to be 16), it is too simplistic to say that education or the Frederick Kelly-esqued standardize testing type of education is solely to blame.

    It could also be attributed to the fact that: Singapore is a young and developing nation despite the affluence; (and as the blog pointed out) parents are too focused on making money, chasing after meaningless shinny objects instead of taking part of the holistic education of their young. Also, since Singapore is just now seeing its 3rd generation- it is too much to expect them to speak proper English (check out the Americans, or the Brits or other native English speaking nations like Australia, NZ, etc. -a large number of their population can’t speak properly either.) (By the way, they also exhibit major forms of retardation (gun control, health care snafus, invasion of other countries, racism, etc.)

    Anyway some comments on other nations retardation: obesity -retarded & stupid, drug abuse and violence- restarted & stupid, you can go on and on… if you look at Europe and it’s neighbors and the near economic collapse- retarded & stupid.

    If you compare Singapore to these nations you will soon realize how young Spore is… and with age no matter how “wealthy” a county is… teething problems, learning curve, challenges are expected…until maturity. A country’s wealth is not a good enough indication or barometer for how their populace should behave in a certain way that is called “civilized”— in not so distant past, all the mature nations that we now call “educated nations “used to also have population who conquered in the name of religion, killed and pillaged for money, raped and sacrificed people, wore a robe and lynched their own, clubbed each other to death.

    So yeah, it is scary that this county has so much to growing to do, it’s population “near brut behavior” needs improving but at least they’re doing it in their subsidized homes, their 100K ++ automobiles and their not-so-perfect banking and transportation system but at least no one lost their homes from banking fraud, under regulated borrowing system and everyone gets home for a dollar despite of it being faulty… it beats taking a bus in Chicago knowing it may not come at all! Or getting shot at the train station.

    Lastly, on them being on smart phones all the time, not necessarily retarded… yes it is weird, annoying and anti-social… yet again, Singapore is young and most of it’s technology has leap frogged compared to develop nations that saw shifts and changes in technology evolution… it can be explained the way a child is fascinated with a new toy. Lay off on your criticisms of Singapore and instead start by helping this country through educating them as part of these society.

    I am not a Singaporean, I have been here for the last 7 years, my children go to local school and I admit, times I am frustrated but I do my best to teach every “retarded” Singaporean how to properly behave (sound presumptions and egotistical)… but presenting a problem without doing your share to solve it makes me think you are retarded yourself!

    • Ryan

      I am 16 you twat, just one of the more educated ones. But anyway. Why wouldn’t a 16 year old know the word cohort?

  • Colette Lim

    Singapore HDB flats/estates are ghettos? You either:
    1. have very high standards, or
    2. are visually challenged, or
    3. are legally blind, or
    4. you’re under the influence of substance abuse when you’re out and about in Singapore, or
    5. you’re highly delusional, or
    6. you’re out of your mind, or
    7. you’re all of the above

    Singapore employs an army of foreign workers to work as cleaners to keep it clean, so how can our housing estates be ghettos? And even if they were ever “ghettos”, they would be so only for a few hours before these armies of cleaners make everything clean and tidy again. If you want to run down a country and its citizens, please do it credibly, if not, you just come across as a very malicious and vindictive person. And if you have guts, you would have named yourself in this article instead of just being “Anonymous” while deriding and demeaning an entire city state and its citizens.

    No one in their RIGHT mind would ever describe Singapore’s public housing neighborhoods as ghettos especially when a subsidized public housing flat can cost you more than S$500,000 for only 110 sq metres of space. I strongly suggest that you tour the newer estates of Punggol and Sengkang if you’re still in Singapore and eat your heart out because the newer HDB blocks there can rival any private condominiums estates if not for the stigma of them being built by HDB for public housing and the lack of a gated entrance with a security post, the lack of a swimming pool, the lack of a club house and/or the lack of a tennis court.

    For those interested in the truth, do visit HDB’s website and check out the past sales launches of our public housing estates at to see how far off this article is and what HDB estates look like. And if “Anonymous” can be wrong and/or deliberately lied about something as simple as Singapore’s public housing where information about it is freely available on the internet, just imagine how far off he or she is about all the unsubstantiated allegations made in this article and what lies he or she spun just to run down Singapore and its citizens.

    The façade of HDB (Housing Development Board) apartment blocks are repainted every 5 to 7 years, and our Government/HDB renews these HDB estates on a regular basis through upgrading exercises or SERS (Selective Enbloc Redevelopment Scheme). In upgrading exercises, the Government/HDB improves the estates by building new amenities such as new shopping malls so that its citizens do not have to travel to Orchard Road just to get a spot of decent retail therapy, building of new lift shafts in the older HDB blocks so that lifts stop at every floor instead of selected pre-designated floors, building of common multi-purpose halls or areas, building/refurbishing of playgrounds, building of air-conditioned bus terminus/interchanges so that its citizens can escape the relentless heat and humidity of the tropics while waiting for the buses, landscaping of the common areas, etc…

    In SERS exercises, selected HDB apartment blocks are chosen for estate renewal, owners of HDB flats will be compensated for their existing flats at market prices and are given the first bite at selecting a BRAND new flat at SUBSIDIZED prices which will be built in the same neighborhood and ready for occupation in a few years’ time. Naturally, such blocks may not enjoy any major upgrading and/or repainting if their blocks have been just upgraded/repainted a few years ago while waiting for their new flats to be ready. They may look a bit run down but it’s really harsh to label such blocks as ghettos because the number of blocks involved in any SERS programs have never exceed 15, it’s usually between 3 to 8 blocks of flats.

    As the saying goes “ birds of a feather flock together”, thus, for you to have encountered truckloads of so-called “uncouth and backward” people in Singapore, you probably are uncouth and backward to some extent. With almost 40% of Singapore’s population made up of foreigners, what makes you think that the “uncouth and backward” behaviors exhibited belong to true blue Singaporeans? It could easily be anyone such as the likes of you, the very ones you described in your 18th paragraph:
    “It very much feels like they just bused in a bunch of people from an uncivilized third world country and turned them loose in a big city.” [for ease of reference, it can be found in the paragraph next to the photo with the caption “Handicapped bathroom upstairs”]

    • Pained

      Your suburban areas outside of the CBD area are indeed third world ghettos. The only reason you believe the claim of your government that your stupid microstate is a first world city is because you have never lived in a REAL first world country. I know its hard for you to understand. Before I left Singapore, I used to think like you. My mind and eyes were only opened after I left.

  • J-F

    It’s funny as I always assumed Singapore was a super-orderly police state. So this article comes as a shock to me… I mean, isn’t possession of drugs punishable by death? And chewing gum illegal? I guess you really never know a country until you set a foot in it..

  • Phua Ahmed

    i am Phua Ahmed, CEO Phua Ahmed Micro Firm, i give out loans to individuals and company at 2% interest rate if you are in need of loan, get back to me via email:

    • Even though this is spam I’m posting it anyway just to show how retarded this is. This guy thinks he’s going to find people to rip off in the comment thread here. LOL!

      • Siti Noor

        LOL Now, this is funny…
        That said, given how retarded you think Singaporeans are, and that Singaporeans read your articles, he might’ve had a victim or two.

  • Bob W

    Here’s another mainstream regular news article that proves the point of this article…

  • Demetrios

    It speaks volume about this country that there is something called the National Kindness Movement, which promotes gracious behaviour (read normal, civilized human behaviour) towards others. Straits Times even ran an article at the end of last year about the so-called Gracious Indexness, saying that it had fallen to an all-time low. What kind of people need a movement to instruct them on how to act courteously towards others?!?!?! Maybe people who spend literally 5 to 6 hours of their day, perhaps more, staring into a smartphone…and not for any productive purpose either. In which other countries on earth is it normal to see people walking down a street or eating a meal with their eyes glued on a small screen the entire time? I don’t think it’s a stretch to label this breed of ‘Ugly Singaporeans’ as sociopathic. And it seems as if it’s the obnoxious ones, and not the decent ones (and there are many), who are trying their hardest now to survive and multiply. LKY’s Darwinist vision isn’t working out very well…sadly. I don’t know what has to be done to save the moral fiber of this country, which is fast disintegrating. I’ll spare a thought for the local Malays though, who from my experience living here have generally been some of the most polite and well-spoken people I’ve encountered, ironically since they carry the unfortunate tag of being the most disadvantaged and ‘backwards’ of the three major ethnic groups.

    • Daniel Kevlar

      Sorry for necroing but I find it highly discomforting that Singapore NEEDS to tell people to be nice to one another and yet push the anti-Amos Yee campaign.

      You know, the shitstorm that was started because a kid badmouthed the deceased Lee Kuan Yew and got their kangaroo lawyers to financially execute the boy and his family?

      And this is coming from a local who has to deal with the locals on a daily basis, most of whom immediately back down when it’s obvious that I’m a dangerous person when angered and have anything with mass on hand.

  • Dear Charlie and Crew

    Our beloved Singapore Fagbagsters have proved themselves worthy here

    Look at all the retards queuing for a god damn plush toy!

    and here they are arguing with the manager of Mcdonalds because they were unable to get more plush toys due to the lack of stock

    God bless Singapore

  • Singapore Sucks

    If you would like a demonstration of what a bunch of pencil dick faggots Singaporeans are look no further than the Alan Shadrake case. Here is a man who’s only crime was to write about the barbaric, backwards, third world Singaporean legal system run by their dictatorship government and he was fined and jailed for it. Way to prove how backwards and retarded you are by jailing this man you fucking imbeciles. No first world country has such a corrupt, barbaric and backwards legal system. It’s like something straight out of the Arab World. Read about this guy in the PG version of this article here.

  • ryan

    Alright, so I’m a local born 16 y/o singaporean, I’ve lived here all my life, and yes this retardation like you said does happen quite often, and I’d say it’s because of education. Our education system is well and truly screwed up. First, at the tender age of 12, we sit for an exam called the PSLE, and then we get sorted into different schools according to our score. The problem here is, the system is extremely elitist, because if you get a good score (Say top 20% of the cohort) you get to go to the best schools in Singapore. There you get a proper education. However, apart from the top schools, the rest of the schools aren’t that good at all. So what you see here is a minority of the cohort getting the best education in the country (which isn’t that top class either way I would compare it to an average Scandinavian school where apparently education is really good). The other 80% of the cohort get sorted into schools that get progressively worse and worse until the bottom level.

    And I saw in your post you complained about the level of English in here which is yes quite frankly shite. Our education system has something to do with this. I’d say the students from the top 20-30% of schools can speak proper English like me (I’m from Raffles Institution which is one of the best schools in Singapore), however, as you go down the education ladder you get horrible standards of English much like the emails that you linked above.

    And the thing is, the people from the top 20/30%, like me, don’t work in the service industry. We work other jobs. The service industry belongs to Singaporeans who unfortunately cannot get other jobs elsewhere, from the bottom part of our education ladder. that is why you see this retardation phenomenon happening.

    It is kinda strange though, I went overseas to the US and UK for holidays and the service there was fantastic, like everyone in the service industry was intelligent and polite, compared to the service industry here.

    Anyway, it’s a sad fact that our education is so elitist and people who score low for their PSLE can’t get a good education, and it’s probably why you have the ‘retarded’ Singaporeans like you claim, the other class of highly educated Singaporeans (like me) who speak proper english etc. Yes I know I might offend people because of how elitist I sound, but such is the sad fact of life here in Singapore. You get to the top or you suffer.

    • Sounds like a reasonable and plausible explanation for a lot of it…

    • Mai

      Elitism at its finest. You are one example as to why SG’s education system is flawed. It is amazingly disgusting at how narrow-minded people from so-called elite schools churn out. In addition to that, you don’t need to be in the top 20-30% ranked school to speak proper English.
      People need to understand that in SG, English is a language of communication that is not always used at homes thus, there will definitely be people who are not as eloquent.
      Of course, with meritocracy( if it is even legit at all to begin with), those who are “better off” naturally get better education henceforth better job.
      It is easy to comment so much about the country and ten systems in place. Obviously we have a long way to go considering that we are a young nation and there are people who fail to see flaws in the system.

  • PM

    The comments especially when sweeping or broad brushed would apply to any country, not just Singapore. Americans speak bad English and spell badly….if anyone cares to admit.

    Regarding the experience with recruitment, welcome to the real world of the current attitudes across the world, It is the same in India, and many other more growing economies….nothing unique to Singapore. To call Singaporeans retarded, then let’s call everyone who practices such bad behaviours retarded. [every part of the world included.]

    The reality of doing business in another country [I have a business in Singapore and India and I am a Singaporean] is always about cost, culture, talents, and management acumen. I will never accuse Indians of retardation though the degree of frustration of doing business in India is multiple times more than in Singapore. India is a commonwealth nation and try expecting English out of everyone.

    As one commenter said, those who are not fluent in English will out talk you in another language. The fact that you failed to admire about Singapore is fine but your opinion and that of the select few who have expectations not met show more about your attitude than our nation’s.

    I have lived in the west and worked there, and now operating in India besides my home country….what i see are people who genuinely want to integrate and accept local practices or people who want to milk the system to the max and when that fails, the sour-grape syndrome shows.

    Your long article with so much vitriol speaks volumes about you too…

    Sincerely Singaporean, warts and all…

    • Americans are certainly pretty stupid but you cannot say with a straight face that they demonstrate anything like what’s been demonstrated in the comments here. Likewise the incompetence and retardation demonstrated by the job applicants is truly over the top. You are an apologist.

      • PM

        “You are an apologist.” You seem to like to label people….

        Sounds like you have appointed yourself the ‘Judge, Jury, and Executioner’ and I might add the ‘law’….. you set the standard? Your experience with hiring, like i said is the same experienced, if not worse, in India….nothing unique to Sg.

        • Of course it’s worse in India! Please post average salary figures in India versus in Singapore. Also India does not claim English as an official language. Even though you seem to be able to converse in English your comments are just as stupid as the rest.

          • Expat Boss

            Let me help him out because I’m sure he’s either too incompetent to do the research or will be too chicken shit to post the results. You heard it here first, from a Singaporean: In India the hiring process and related retardation is the same as in Singapore maybe even a little bit worse. So if that’s the kind of poor quality you can expect up front from both places let’s check some salary figures:

            Average salary in India: 5,729 INR ($124.55 SGD) per month

            Average salary in Singapore: $3,000 SGD per month.

            So in either country you can expect low quality, barely literate applicants, but in India it will cost you 4.2% of what it will cost you in Singapore. And let’s not forget the important distinction that Singapore claims English as an official Language while India does not. That’s a pretty sad commentary on the state of affairs in Singapore.

          • Dude

            Some of you are really stupid. English is not an official language of India? Please do a simple Google search and you’ll see that India DOES claim that its official languages are Hindi and ENGLISH. Mr. Pfister is as ignorant as any other typical American.

  • White guy

    I’m an FT living in Singapore for the last three years and I can say this: Singapore by and large is awesome for me – I get paid a shitload, everyone is about 3 years behind my industry so I’m a super star without trying, although I have few Singaporean friends (not for lack of trying) I have plenty of friends from neighboring countries, travel outside of Singapore is close, cheap and awesome. My career, should I ever choose to leave, is in great shape. I live in a ridiculous apartment filled with every stupid toy I can imagine and I have a pool that gets near year round sun.

    I agree with the locals, if you can’t handle the bullshit (which is present in every country, just in different forms) then go home. Simple lah.

    Get rich, get a tan, get laid, go home and continue life in a country that makes sense. Singapore isn’t reality.

    That’s my plan anyway.

  • IndonesianStudentInSingapore

    Oh, and I always thought to myself this: “Singapore is a country with good infrastructure, but low moral culture.”

  • IndonesianStudentInSingapore

    Well said, author. Been here for almost 3 years and I pretty agree with 90% of what you said here. You could have made your point without being offensive though, but let’s face it: where’s the fun in that? Heheh.
    I’ve read many articles in the net about Singapore and their hate on FTs, and their general argument in a nutshell is: they don’t have to compete in the workforce, especially with foreigners, since for some reason they are entitled to jobs. I mean, I get that citizens should get some kind of priority, but if what the author writes is true (and I am inclined to believe it is, based on observation), then at least try and earn your jobs, Sinkies.

    On a side note: after living here for 3 years and going to many different restaurants, hawkers, food courts, malls, etc. I can say that Pinoys always have better service. They actually smile and act like they care. Singaporeans on the other hand, act like they’re too good for you. Hell, I’ve actually been scolded by a cashier many times. That’s not something you would expect when ordering a drink or something in any other place in the world, but this is Singapore, and if nobody has been irrationally rude to you here, you haven’t really lived in Singapore.

  • Guy

    More Singapore Retardationnews

    – Either this is pure childish or there are some seriously retarded singaporean out there.
    – singaporean unhappy with their bonus. The fact that they already got a bonus is something that they shouldn’t complain about.
    – The most idiotic comments made by a singaporean minister.
    – I don’t know what to say about this one. It’s one of the most ridiculous and idiotic thing that a singaporean can do.

    Enjoy… !!!

  • Yet Another Tired Expat

    “To Manage/restructure employees for better productivity/ to improve level of standard”

    Isn’t that just a euphemism for fire all the Singaporeans and hire foreigners?

    • Guy

      My mistake.. I didn’t put the complete picture and hence may gave the wrong impression.
      Basically, fire the useless one; and keep the smart ones.

  • Yet Another Tired Expat

    A few comments. First to all the dumb, yet arrogant Singaporeans that keep repeating the same old tired things like “if you don’t like it leave”, “why are you here if you think Singaporeans/Singapore is so stupid”, there is a simple answer to that. A HUGE number of the expats here fall into one of two categories (which may have some overlap):

    1.) Their company made a unilateral decision to move their headquarters to Singapore and did not consult the employees, if they wanted to keep their jobs they had to move to Singapore.

    2.) Their company made them an offer they couldn’t refuse, not only a huge pay package but in many cases covering their housing and outrageously priced cars as well.

    And the reason expats are so highly paid is clearly because there are no locals that can do the jobs. I mean, how stupid do you have to be to see these obvious facts?

    • Guy

      You’ve missed point 3. Which is the reason I am here.
      3) To Manage/restructure employees for better productivity/ to improve level of standard.
      The local singaporeans simply cannot do their job properly; so I was sent to re-structure the company branch in Singapore.
      Fired a few dumb-asses and replace them with more efficient home grown talent (non-Singaporeans obviously).

      Why I accepted it? Let’s just say, the company believes that I am the right person for the job and they gave me an offer that I couldn’t possibly refuse.

  • Guy

    More retarded Singaporean story…

    Singaporean watch porn in public transport and got himself into a fight. [Is this retarded or what?]
    Singapore .. a third world country with a first world country mask donates $50,000
    Apple… a company donates $8 Million.
    Cartoonist arrested over drawing… What the heck…

    4. Who’s the retarded douche who came up with the 14 days notice before a strike? Real Dumb-asses… It beats the purpose of the strike. The employer simply find a replacement in 14 days. Now.. that’s real retarded..

    “Objective behind 14-day strike notice

    Mark Chan, counsel for drivers Liu Xiang Ying and Gao Yue Qiang, added on to the alleged discrepancies in the CLTPA and said that the act “does not require the prosecution to prove the intent behind calling a strike. If you don’t give the notice, that’s it: it’s illegal”.

    “The objective and the intention behind not giving a 14-day notice must come into play,” said Chan, noting that the act is one of public order and thus, the strike’s intent must be proven.

    A 14-day notice must be given by persons who want to apply to hold a strike.

    Chan said that, based on Parliamentary speeches made by Lee Kuan Yew and David Marshall in 1955, the CLTPA is targeted at clamping down on “topengs” (agitators) and “hotheads” who may disregard negotiations intended to be held during the 14-day strike notice period. Thus, Chan asserted that his clients did not fall into these categories.

    “The CLTPA is silent under the objective test. Other than it saying the strike is illegal because no notice was given, there should be another test: for the prosecution to prove that the intention of the accused was for purposes other than to arrive at a collective agreement,” said Chan.”

  • Mr Lucky

    You should come to China… every Mon to Fri at 9-9:30am I have to listen to a man outside my office hoick up what must be several buckets of something quite gross and spit it out for 5 minutes… Then when I go to the bathroom to do my morning business I have to inhale heavy acrid smoke from the chain smokers working in other companies on the same floor. If I’m lucky, I can listen & smell a chain smoker taking a dump and yelling on the phone to someone, about something… it’s no wonder I’m slowly going insane.

    • Yawn

      I get culture shocked everyday in Shanghai..
      1. 8 people cramped in the gents smoking non stop in 5 star hotel or shopping malls
      2. Man stops the car in the middle of the road arguing with the driver inside ignoring him
      3. Spitting is a norm, just don’t get unlucky that day
      4. No body queues

      While in Singapore, they
      1. Talk so loud in trains that I think they are all deaf and I will be next
      2. Sit and squat everywhere including outside the entrance of a shop
      3. Very unhygienic practices especially in F&B

      and the lists goes on..
      Maybe you think Singaporeans are not gracious, but we are improving year by year and to compare it to nations like japan, paris, is unfair as our nation is barely 50 years since independence.

      • Jane

        Your observations about what people do in Singapore:
        1. As far as I’ve experienced, it seems like only middle-aged chinese women talk loudly like they’re yelling at each other, and not only in trains. Other races (Indians and Malays, regardless of age and gender) don’t at all.
        2. Are you sure that’s in Singapore, or would that be in certain parts of Sg, where the PRC migrant workers congregate?
        3. I agree about many places – especially when they leave cutlery exposed, upright, with the surfaces standing up, for customers to rummage in, and we don’t know where their hands/fingers were, prior to massaging the cutlery.

  • Starving Financial Artist

    Too funny. So despite it’s rampant prostitution, illegal shops, hourly rate hotels, open sewers, rat and roach infestations and dirty disgusting restaurants so gross they make you want to vomit… Geylang is not a slum or a ghetto. Open sewers by the way can actually be found all of over Singapore, just not in the very center with the big high rise office buildings, elsewhere they’re pretty common place. It’s not only disgusting but it’s a real hazard because you can easily step in them and break a leg.

    In other news a $140K 3 room flat in one of the most expensive cities in the world is “not subsidized”. OK.

    Oh yea, and how could I forget this one: “It is a fact that Singaporeans build this nation”. No Bangladeshis and others that are about one step above slaves built (and continue to build) Singapore. Check it out, you’ll often find them living in shipping containers on construction sites.

    Curious if the OP considers Baghdad a war zone or a nice vacation spot for families.

    • Yawn

      So a country without prostitution is a 1st class country ? or without rats and roach? or hourly rate hotels?
      Come on , tell me which 1st class nation do not have prostitution and these? As a fact in every city, there will be men looking for sexual activity to relieve stress and have fun, that is the same as the most conservative countries in the world. Unless you can name me one country that doesn’t. To bring prostitution to the streets and letting all men know this is where you fix your urge *discourage underground and illegal activities.

      Sometime when you want to rant, use your brain 1st with sense. if geylang is a slum , why do so many people and celebrities visit the famous eateries there? I’m sure you are missing a piece of nightlife culture in geylang.

      What I have mentioned is that $140K 3 room flat is *subsidized. Only to singaporeans/pr earning below $10K combined. I wonder if you can understand. And $140K is in immature estate. Does that sound sane to you? So keep whining that you can’t afford a flat in SIngapore and want to live here. Wishful thinking.

      There is no use to quote one sentence and flame on it.. it doesn’t event explain anything but immature and childish.
      One simple answer, where are the Bangladesh in the post war. Who rebuild the nation. Who build the 1st HDBs? no Bangladesh. Just us.
      After 30 – 40 years, our nation has grew so much and so fast that foreign workers flock in to work for less than 1/2 the salary.
      And its not only in Singapore, it happen to new york, hongkong, switzerland, dubai and so on. How about you go to Dubai and see how the locals treat the indians and bangladesh? You be shocked, really shocked.

      So if you are so holy and kind, how about offering your house to some bangladesh to stay? Just say yes, my bangladesh friends will love to.

  • Yawn

    “I was expecting to find a mecca of high technology and efficiency but I was sorely disappointed. It’s true the center of the city is full of modern looking buildings and is very clean but aside from that Singapore has much more in common with “third world” countries than it does with it’s very “first world” image.”

    I was thinking just replace the word Singapore to Hong Kong, Shanghai, New York, Paris.. you probably get the same “over rated” hearsay from people who haven’t been really working or on long stay in the “1st world” cities. But rest assured, I’ll get culture shocked in every city and at least to say I will NOT see shyt on the pavement, extreme noise and air pollution, spitting, man arguing with cab driver in the middle of the road?? pickpockets, knocking into you without apologizing, been rude and racist in retail shops and service line and the list goes on.
    But just to make sure you understand, Singapore is much safer to live in and there are no slums. Try to debate on that.. These are the 2 key factors that always never fails to impress my foreigner friends who visit Singapore.

    “Local workers are often of much lower quality than foreign workers, and to add insult to injury they also cost much more. Businesses are forced to pay into superannuation funds (Central Provident Fund or “CPF”) for locals but not for foreigners; at the lower end of the spectrum this can make locals upwards of 50% more expensive to hire”

    I am not sure which sector are you referring to, however if that is the case, why is Singapore hyper blooming with so many foreign companies setting up here? Low tax ! The policy is in place for quite a while and life goes on for many companies. You will probably appreciate when half of your Filipino team goes on leave on christmas and the singaporean is still working. Or in any case your foreign worker has to take 2 – 3 weeks leave to go back to their country in case the flood sweeps off their house. Have you consider that? I have experience that throughout many years and I’ve realized you can depend on a Singaporean covering for their foreigner colleagues. Diversify! A full team of foreign workers may not seems as ideal unless you are a cheapo. At this point, I am stating foreign workers , not talents.

    “If you’re a Singaporean, the government gives you subsidized housing with payments on a sliding scale according to your income. If you’re a citizen you can easily get by on less than $1,000 SGD per month without struggling for your basic necessities because the housing is so heavily subsidized. On the other hand, a foreigner in a menial job will make far less money for the reasons described above but faces a much higher cost profile because they do not get access to subsidized housing. In fact many of the retarded locals own these ghetto government projects known as HDBs and lease these shit holes to foreigners for absurd prices as a way to make income for little to no effort. Which brings me to another point: a huge portion of Singapore’s wealthy citizens are just “right place right time” real estate millionaires rather than some kind of entrepreneurial geniuses, a situation which is exacerbated by the fact that the government only allows citizens to buy the best of the best properties which is jut another subsidy that allows them to be both lazy and stupid while still reaping huge rewards. And if you think the rent is high here you should see the purchase prices – 40 to 50 years of rent is not uncommon to purchase a condo. Did someone say real estate bubble?”

    I kind of laugh at this rant, as its too one-sided and basically not true in many ways. Citizens are the foundation of this building nation, why should we not have a edge over foreigners? It is the same in many countries, especially in middle east. How about mentioning medical coverage in Taiwan? And retirement plans?
    If you acknowledge that HDBs are shit holes (I use “pigeon holes” and its bigger than hongkong and tokyo pea hole), why even bother to rant since we are pretty stuck with it to have a roof over our heads. And we’ve never used it as a investment or income 10 years ago, it was YOU , foreigners that are the demand and we simply supply to all these poor fellows, but it was YOU and your same fellow mates who are willing to pay $800/mth for the shit hole. Well that is the trend set by YOU not us, you cant go against the trend, you know.
    Housing probably is the only advantage we have for citizens, our retirement and medical policy kind of sux

    Well I can’t even explain (not defend) in details of other points of your rant that doesn’t make sense to me. I have got to work and i am a hardworking Singaporean who work with foreign talents everyday for 9 years and get to know their culture day by day.

    • Lowly Expat Slave

      Oh dear why u have to make so easy… those other cities u list especially Hong Kong are actually real city, nice, fun interesting. But anyway u say:

      “No slums.” I say u Geylang Rd.

      Lazy “Filipino team goes on leave on christmas” I give u “Chinese New Year” where “official” holiday is only two days everything basically closing down for 1-2 weeks and people run around beating drums like fool for a month. Also Hari Raya with all the muslims fasting not eating for a month and become more lazy and slow than usual.

      “I have got to work and i am a hardworking Singaporean who work with foreign talents everyday for 9 years and get to know their culture day by day.” Yet here u are during work day making comment in internet.

      Singaporean can get a 3 room flat for just S$140K while foreigners must to pay S$1 – S$2 million for same size. U say this is don’t make life much easier and lazier as compared to foreigner?

      • Yawn

        beg your pardon? Hong Kong has the most obvious slums seen ! Well I bet you don’t have real hk friends there or visited their house.
        It’s really sad at how old their apartment and cramp is it. filthy as well. It reminds me of Singapore in 1960s. When they visit a 5 room flat in Singapore, they are amazed and couldn’t stop praising that it’s so big and feels like a condominium. Culture shocked? Have you seen the slums in paris that is similar to bangkok? Parts of New york city where certain race dominate, burn homeless people alive when i was there, subway stations that you never alight , alleys you never want to take shortcuts.

        I really dont see geylang as slums, slums in definition place never frequent visited, house homeless and illegal immigrants live in spaces build out of zinc roofs. Its full of eateries, your red light entertainment, durian and dim sum, pavements are well build with busy traffic, 10 mins from mrt. Plenty of shophouses, HDB and condos. Doesn’t mean geylang, a red light district is less develop than toa payoh consider .. a slum ??? that’s really narrow minded.

        “Lazy “Filipino team goes on leave on christmas” I give u “Chinese New Year” where “official” holiday is only two days everything basically closing down for 1-2 weeks and people run around beating drums like fool for a month. Also Hari Raya with all the muslims fasting not eating for a month and become more lazy and slow than usual.”

        Seriously , you shouldn’t be in a multi cultural country or praise hong kong when they take 3 weeks rest in Chinese New Year & QingMing.
        How about WTF these caucasians need to take 2-3 weeks leave back to their home before christmas to next year for countdown? Offically Christmas is only 1 day not including Boxing day. Why do they need to take leave for 1-2weeks? Get the point? Respect their culture.
        How about splashing water at everyone and everywhere for 5 days in Thailand?
        By the way the muslim do eat during fasting, approx 7pm – 7am, so does Hindus pratice fasting for thaipusam

        ““I have got to work and i am a hardworking Singaporean who work with foreign talents everyday for 9 years and get to know their culture day by day.” Yet here u are during work day making comment in internet.”

        By the way I am self employed, my timing is flexible. I guess you are indeed a lowly expat slave, you won’t understand. no pun intended.

        “Singaporean can get a 3 room flat for just S$140K while foreigners must to pay S$1 – S$2 million for same size. U say this is don’t make life much easier and lazier as compared to foreigner?”

        Err you know foreigners do not have the same benefits as Singaporean right? Why will you have the idea that a foreigner life is easier and lazed than a SIngaporean? Hello? I dont get your point.
        My ancestors came to Singapore in early 1900s , went through the war, men have to serve national service, we went through tough time and mothers (grandmothers now) and young girls work in construction to rebuild singapore without “foreign workers”. Many immigrant to neighboring countries and only the handful remained, and populate and work and populate…
        Men have to serve 2.5 years of National service + 13 years of re-service. We do know how to handle a rifle and drive a tank on top of our daily desk job. You really think you can come in yesterday and claim the same benefit that was given to us progressively?

        1. If every single foreigner who comes in to work, is able to get a HDB for $140K(thats too low actually) the whole of china, indonesia, phiilipines, malaysia blah blah will flock to Singapore. Can’t you already see the issue now?

        2. In times of war, disaster, major political change, who are the 1st ones to leave the country, Foreigners.
        Look at dubai, they left their luxury car on expat terms at the airport and left for their country, car loans still on credit. And trust me it will happen again if there is a bubble again.

        3. In addition, most people want to get a mature estate with good schools and amenities that cost above $350K – $450K to start a family. That takes 25-30 years bank loan for lower – mid income category for SUCH A SMALL PIGEON HOLE for the NEW BTOS! I hope you have compare the new BTO and the ones 5 years ago. How is this Easy for SIngaporeans ?

        4. It is a fact that Singaporeans build this nation. Now that the country is matured and progressing profusely for the past 10 years, foreign workers take over and fill up these positions at a much lower wage tier because of the currency difference. This is happening EVERYWHERE , including switzerland. My friend from Switzerland says that now their locals are all skilled workers, the construction & service line are foreigners from Portugal, Russia, Italy. And the locals do not like them from “invading their space”.

        Again no pun intended. Just need to educate narrow minded people.

  • Outsider

    I’m really enjoying the comments made here. And to the owner of this blog, congratulations on the traffic you are getting – adsense ftw

  • TheMysteryOfAmericanArrogance

    Here is a shining example of American intelligence:
    The Pentagon mistook a female African leader to be the PM of Singapore. And by the way, didn’t Sarah Palin say that North Korea was an ally? Get educated and get passports, you folks from the USA, before you call others retarded.

  • Ang Mo

    Questions for “HairyRedMonkey” and all the others posting derogatory comments about “white people” and the “bankrupt west”, etc.

    1.) If white people are so inferior why are whittening creams all the rage in India and throughout Asia? In Singapore specifically how come so many of you imbeciles walk around with umbrellas on sunny days just to be a little bit whiter?

    2.) If white society is stupid, inferior and bankrupt why are you doing your best to copy it as best you can in your big cities like Singapore? Why are you basing your economies on the same failed practices that bankrupt the west: central banking, fiat money, fractional reserve banking, over-weighted financial sectors, real estate bubbles, low interest rates and more?

    I gotta say I’m highly amused!

    • Anon

      1) Only a fool will walk around around S’pore without an umbrella. You can get skin cancer with too much exposure to the afternoon sun.

      2)We do not copy white society wholesale idiot. We are just taking the best practises. Are we bankrupt? Is our central bank politically affected? Do we have massive bubbles that cause a recession for more than 3 quarters?

      Get your facts right before you start babbling.

      • Ang Mo

        Wait wait… this is too good to be true, you claim the umbrella thing is about “avoiding skin cancer”? AHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAH AHHAHAHAHAHAHA And the skin bleaching cream? Does that reduce skin cancer too? AHAHAHAHAH.

        No you’re right about not copying everything, you only copy the worst parts (can see how you might mix that up with your little pea brain). And only the biggest fool could brag about “not having massive bubbles” while Singapore has less than 2% mortgage rates and purchase prices often equal to more than 40 years of rent. Thanks I needed the laugh!

        • Anon

          Have fun cos we will have the last laugh. In fact we are all having the last laugh at you now. Who is in recession now?

          • Thomas

            Are you really so mentally challenged that you can’t see the obvious? Namely, that hoards of foreigners are here taking advantage of your current boom and low taxes and will flee the city immediately as soon as you have an inevitable downturn and take all the profits with them? Do you really fail to understand that economies are cyclical? Do you fail to recognize that Singapore’s economy is a carbon copy of all of the worst aspects of those that crashed and burned the hardest- as “Ang Mo” and others already highlighted: ultra low interest rates, a plain and obvious real estate bubble and an extremely bloated financial and banking sector? Whenever it finally happens the Singapore crash will be horrific. And without any real country behind them to ball them out the consequences will be even more brutal. Given the arrogance and ignorance of the average citizen, I can’t say they don’t deserve what’s obviously coming sooner or later. In the mean time, I and others like me will have moved on to the next easy money low tax or no tax haven. We English speakers like to call that “poetic justice”.

    • HairyRedMonkey

      It’s not actually the color of your skin…it’s the weak upbringing and general stupidity of whitey…

      you mention whitening cream etc etc.

      so why does whitey like baking in the sun just so he/she can be brown and wrinkley??

    • vaticancameo

      Question for you – why don’t you know how to spell ‘whitening’?

    • vaticancameo

      There are very few comments from Singaporeans here that speak derogatorily about white or ‘western’ people, so nice try with that red herring Ang Mo. My problem with the commenters here insulting Singapore is that they are stupid, arrogant, and entitled, not that they are white, if they are indeed white.

      All of you whining here about Singapore are just crying wolf. Nobody forced you to work in Singapore. You came here and set up your business here because it is a good opportunity. You are not entitled to a profit. You are certainly not entitled to own a business in a country in which you have no citizenship. Don’t cry about the cost of hiring people. Deal with it. And if you can’t, you’re welcome to find greener pastures.

      Only stupid people choose to live and work in an environment that is unproductive or unpleasant. If you feel so strongly against Singapore but work here, you are only confirming that YOU are retarded.

  • Y

    I’m a Singaporean yet I totally agree with this article. Encountered so much retardation that I decided to leave, for good.

    • Guy

      Good on you.. I can see that you are living a better life. (Otherwise you would be back in Singapore).. 🙂

      • define irony

        ‘Good on you.. I can see that you are living a better life. (Otherwise you would be back in Singapore).’

        And you’re here in Singapore because….

        • Guy

          Lol.. for your information. I am in Singapore because I’ve been posted here (temporarily) because the local singaporeans couldn’t do their job properly. To be honest, I wanted to pick up my bags and go after my first 2 months in Singapore.
          Yeah, unfortunately, I have the been nominated by my company to have the honor of cleaning up the mess that the retards made in singapore. Nevertheless, I’ve fired most of the retarded locals singaporean (off course I keep a few good ones worth using) and replaced most of them with more capable individuals. Now that my work is pretty much done, I am counting down the days when I can leave this swamp land/dump – No offence… By the way, whilst I am in Singapore.. I did manage to get a chance to get my hands on about 6 – 7 private condominium that I am going to sell to earn me extra pocket money.. 😛 – Hope this answers your question. 🙂

  • Guy

    This article actually supports the main article and is a perfect example of Singaporean retardation (must read):

    In case, these retarded morons have taken down the images.. I have uploaded them here:

    The main point is: Singlish is not a language; so the author is spot on retarded singaporeans and the perfect reason why employers should NOT hire some singaporeans. Why you ask? Because they are simply retarded. They want high pay and they have problem mastering basic English.

    • Good one. Another link to the same basic thing: Singaporean Job Interview

    • vaticancameo

      As an aside – why is there so much texting going on between employers and potential employees? Contact them by email or phone, give them an address, a time and a work phone number (not cellphone) to call in case of emergencies. And if they don’t show up, they don’t have the job. You should be able to tell from the email or phone call if they speak/write well. Don’t offer an interview if their command of the language is terrible.

      • Guy

        In case you missed it; each of those are separate conversations between employers and potential employees. 🙂
        Observe, how each employer did not respond after receiving an SMS with broken English? I assume that the employers only found out about the language limitation when they requested him/her to come for an interview via SMS.

        • vaticancameo

          I did not miss it. Employers should not be giving out their cellphone numbers and hiring by text. Unprofessional.

          • Guy

            Here we have a perfect example of a dumbass and a singaporean retard. Here we are talking about the response/language of the retarded potential employee and he goes on to talk about the medium of how the employer communicates. Regardless, whether the employer going to respond via email, phone call, even air mail; if they are getting a response with broken English (retarded Singlish); do you think it would have made a difference. Read between the lines.

      • Why are the potential employees so retarded?

    • vaticancameo

      What you’re doing is called a case study, n=1, or anecdotal evidence. You probably never took a science class, so let me make this simple. You see one person who doesn’t speak English well and run around screaming that Singaporeans are all stupid. And of course, you’re the kind of person who would immediately break down and cry upon the shocking! shocking! realization that not all Singaporeans speak English like native English speakers. Are all you jackasses here who insult Singapore fluently bilingual? Cut the BS.

      Also, I don’t know if you understand this concept, but intelligence and fluency in a language are DIFFERENT things! As for your dumbass stories, I think stupid people are attracted to you, your friends and the shitty low-paying jobs that your so-called ‘businesses’ (probably 2 idiots in a home office selling lame shit online or buying gold, producing just enough profits for you to travel every weekend and attempt to get laid) generate, so your perception of Singapore is a little skewed.

      P.s. The title of this blog or site is “How to live like a rockstar, find the girl(s) of your dreams and do it all for pennies on the dollar.” But all the contributors bitch and moan about the work ethic of Singaporeans. Too bad no Singaporean wants to work for you for pennies on the dollar so you can live like a rockstar. Maybe they’re too smart for that.

      • Thomas

        Judging by the comments, especially quoted above and the links to Singapore websites and forums and the comments there it’s more like n=100s or n=1000+. It’s not just the lack of language ability it really is the stupidity. The quoted above is an excellent example, he calls foreigners that bring know how, investment and the desire to start a business and employ Singaporeans “beggars” that are sucking Singapore’s blood. That’s not an uncommon sentiment or thought process in Singapore either. Only someone who is truly stupid could think like that, poor language skills or not. You are a pathetically delusional defender of all things Singapore. Every day examples abound but to you they either don’t exist or they are “isolated incidents”. I hate arguing with idiots, first they drag you down to their level and then they beat you with experience. Congratulations you beat me on experience.

  • Pissed Off Foreigner

    I also agree with the writer about the whole hiring thing. The way these people approach the job search is more like they’re searching for a vacation spot or a new hobby. “20 minutes away? That’s too far from my home.” “I don’t like that location.” “Those hours are not good for me.” “That interview time is not convenient for me.” “I looked on a map I’m not going to come to the interview.” What the fuck? It’s a job, it’s work that’s why you get paid to do it. It’s not a hobby and it’s not a vacation. Foreigners are hungry for jobs, locals couldn’t give a shit. I’ve never seen job seekers with less of a sense of urgency about finding a job in my life, it’s truly shocking.

    I say all the angry backlash just points to fact that the article hits a lot of nails right on the head even if it goes way too far in many respects and is full of a lot of uncalled for insults.

  • Pissed Off Foreigner

    For all those that deny the phenomenon of “Singaporean Retardation”, I would like to present exhibit A from just a few minutes ago on April 18, 2013: Singtel, a Singaporean mobile operator that claims 400 million customers across Africa and Asia randomly decides to close their offices at noon on a Thursday for a “company event”. That’s right. I urgently needed to do something for my company so I called their “Business Customers Hotline” (1800 – 763 1111) only to get a recording saying “Our offices are closed today at noon for a company event, please press 8 to leave a message and we will call you back Monday” (Seriously? Fucking Monday!?! It’s Thursday today!). I press 8 anyway. “Sorry mailbox full.”

    This isn’t some mom and pop shop this is a huge corporation and this how Singaporeans think it’s OK to do business. “Fuck you customers, we’re going on vacation till Monday, have fun!” Welcome to Singapore.

    • Thomas

      OH OH, me too!!! Can I tell a story about Singaporean retardation? I even have one related to telephones and it involves both Singtel and Starhub!

      My phone was stolen. I had a prepaid Starhub card I’d been using for a year. Why was it prepaid and not a contract you might ask? Well because Starhub told me they can’t move a prepaid to a contract and at the time I got the number I didn’t have the documents required for a contract, only a prepaid but it was linked to my name and passport. So anyway when I reported the theft I told them the only thing I care about is getting my number back, I need it back, it’s critical. They said “Sure no problem, go to a Starhub store.” I asked them to mail it, of course this was too much for them to handle. So here’s what happened:

      1.) Went to the star hub store, they told me it’s impossible to get the number back.

      2.) Demanded the manager. “OK it’s possible but you must port your number to Singtel or M1. Take this slip of paper to Singtel or M1 and they will do it in 24 hours.”

      3.) Me: “Are you serious? OK fine.”

      4.) Go to Singtel and now that I have the documents, better get a contract to avoid this disaster in the future. “Can not.” You must port to a Singtel Prepaid first and then wait 7 days and then come back to the store and convert to contract.

      5.) Me: “OK Fine, just do it!!!!!”

      6.) Singtel: “OK wait 24 hours and it will be done.”

      7.) Receive SMS: “Your port request is in process.”

      8.) One hour later: “Your port request was rejected, contact your old provider.”

      9.) Call Starhub: “Oh yes, it was rejected because we deactivated your number. We can reactivate but we need your identifying information and then you must wait an hour.” Me: “Why the fuck did you do that when I told you the most important thing was to get my number back as quickly as possible.” Starhub: “I don’t know.”

      10.) Call Singtel: “We cannot do that again you have to come back to the store.”

      11.) I go back to the Singtel store, the moron working there this time says I have to buy ANOTHER sim to try again. At this point I don’t believe anybody actually knows how to do anything but for $15 I just want this thing settled CORRECTLY.

      12.) Now waiting to see how they can fuck this up this time, it’s been a day already.

      Watching Singaporeans try to perform the simplest most commonplace tasks is like trying to watch a million monkeys at a million typewriters trying to come up with the complete works of Shakespeare. Sure they might get there after a million or so years but only through dumb luck and definitely not through any skill, talent or knowledge of the task at hand. And it’s true despite the glimmering metropolis looks of the city (at least of the center area), they are at least a decade behind in technology and/or their ability to utilize technology, maybe more.

      Same thing happened to me in Latvia once. You know what it took? ONE phone call. “Hi I lost my sim but I really need that number can you help me?” “Sure no problem, we’ll have it couriered to your house tomorrow.” “Wow awesome, thank you so much!” And they did, and it worked.

      This story is indicative of life in Singapore in general, it’s not a statistical outlier by any means, it’s just how shit works here, or rather doesn’t work.

      • vaticancameo

        It sounds like there’s an obvious solution staring you in the face – Latvia must be a great place to work. It seems like a magical wonderland.

        • Thomas

          Expected and typical Singaporean response: “Don’t point out how incompetent and stupid we are, if you don’t like it leave.” If only everyone would call your bluff. I predict Singapore would be back to muddy swamp status in less than a decade.

          • vaticancameo

            You are pointing out isolated incidents and pretending they are the norm. If it really was the norm, you or whoever should be working in wonderful Latvia. That is logic, pure and simple.

            If Latvia is a wonderful place, go there. If the Philippines is great, go there. Predict whatever you want and then move your ass home. I predict that you are an asshole and your asshole-yness will increase by 10% per annum for the the next 5 years.

          • Thomas

            Oh no not isolated by any means, absolutely illustrative of average every day life in Singapore, absolutely spot on. In the end it took over a week including:

            13.) Another visit to Starhub
            14.) Another couple hours of phone calls
            15.) Another visit to Singtel
            16.) Waiting two more days

            I can tell similar stories all day but I can see it is pointless. The mentally challenged locals will just write back denying the existence of such things or claiming they are “isolated incidents” (that is if they can write comprehensibly at all) and the expats all already know so what’s the point?

    • Guy

      Hahaha.., likewise.. I want to tell you a story about Singaporean retardation as well…

      1) I joined M1 for my mobile and mobile internet. At the time, I was renting a place close to CBD on level 2 (in a 4 storey tall apartment).
      2) When I got home, I noticed that the signal was unstable (keeps dropping to 2 bars every now and then; and even so the data transfer rate is much slower than a dial up) [Third world country with first world mask].
      3) So I decided to give M1 Customer Service a call.
      4) First call goes through a machine; deep enough into the menu and at the end it told me my selection is invalid and hung up on me.
      5) Decided to call the second time but this time, I press Sales and ask them to redirect me to the right department.
      6) M1 [Simplified]: Picks up the phone with Singlish: How may I assist you today?
      7) Me: “My Internet connection is very slow at home; even slower than a dial up.
      8) M1: Could you try it next to the window?
      9) Me: “I’m near a window but there’s no improvement”
      10) M1: Could you try to go outside of your apartment and look for an open space
      11) Me: I went outside ~ “Yes, it appears to be much faster outside”.
      12) M1: “Sir, it appears that the internet is unable to access your apartment”
      13) Me: “huh? So what are you guys going to do about this? At this speed, its virtually unusable”
      14) M1: “If that’s the case, could you use the internet outside the apartment”
      15) Me: Hung up the phone.

      I was simply amazed at the level of stupidity. What was he suggesting? I can only use my internet outside my apartment?

      Anyway, bottom line after much argument with a few managers there (more singaporeans moron who are incompetent at their work) ; they finally gave me a direct email to the CEO office and a foreginer responded within 15 minutes and offering me a technician to install an additional antenna to boost the signal and speed of the internet. S#it will always be S#it.. it can never turn to chocolate.. 🙂

  • Another Amelican

    Looks like CNBC has the same basic thing to say about Singapore less the profanity and insults… I can say that this is a pretty accurate assessment among expats of the labor situation in Singapore. The government makes rules that create an artificial demand for permanent resident and citizen workers and those candidates grossly overvalue themselves, their skills and their qualifications. The job market is basically turned upside down in Singapore because of it. Locals bounce around from job to job with minimal motivation. Most just want a place to park their ass in an air conditioned office until someone offers them a hundred or two hundred bucks more per month to park it somewhere else. There is plenty of affordable, capable and hard working foreign labor available already in Singapore, you just can’t hire them. I’m sure this will end well! Sad state of affairs.

    • vaticancameo

      Umm, excuse me, but every country makes rules to value their own citizens over foreigners in the job market. That’s the point of having citizenship. If you could flood the US market with Indian and Chinese engineers and scientists no American engineer would ever have a job. So stop crying about having to pay Singaporeans a fair market value for the work they do, which is already less than what you would have to pay an American or European to do the same job, Unlike foreigners from countries with a lower cost of living and weaker currency, we don’t have the luxury of working for lower pay, saving the SGD salary and then going home to buy cheap property, cars, etc.

      • Another Amelican

        No you just don’t get the point. There are myriad available jobs that Singaporeans either aren’t qualified for or don’t want or both AND there are many ready and willing foreigners to take those jobs. This isn’t a question always of people “stealing jobs” this is a question of jobs that nobody wants and the government getting in the way of filling them. That won’t be good for the economy in the long run. I also concur with the author that Singaporeans are often (not always but often) of much lower quality then their foreign counter parts yet demand significantly higher wages.

        It’s really getting off on a tangent but there are a lot of unemployed Americans that have real skills and talents, there aren’t a lot (hardly any) highly skilled Singaporeans running around jobless with no prospects and nothing to do unless it’s all their own fault. The US has >20% unemployment (not the government lies but the real numbers). And as to your quip that if we let in unlimited Indians and Chinese that no Americans would have a job it’s not true. A lot might loose their jobs but Indians and Chinese have an undeserved and exaggerated reputation for being more intelligent than average. It’s only the absolute cream of the crop of the more than 1 billion of each that get counted in those IQ and academic statistics. The ones that go abroad and get into top schools that is not the profile that is AT ALL representative of the population at large. Nobody is out there giving IQ tests and SATs in proportionally equal numbers to truly average Chinese and Indian citizens. The US has a great deal of complete morons but it also has some truly talented minds like those of us that are over here running shit in Singapore. In case you guys haven’t noticed, foreigners don’t just do the shitty jobs you don’t want, we’re also the ones in charge of a tremendous amount of what’s going on here.

        Regarding Indians in particular, I find them to be similar, but nearly as bad as Singaporeans in the areas of logic, problem solving, working independently, being creative, etc. Good workers if you tell them what to do (unlike many Singaporeans) but no ability whatsoever to think outside the box. Indian business tycoons are the exception not the rule and the same goes for Singaporeans, but even more so.

        • Anon

          Another typical fool that believes in creativity. Sure, creativity is important but the world only needs few of such talent. You only need one Bill Gates to create millions of jobs. How creative do you want your restaurant severs to be? Great poets or artists? Maybe you want them to be able to stand on their heads while they serve you your food with their feet. Is that creative enough for you?

          • Thomas

            You heard it right from the horse’s mouth folks: Singaporeans don’t believe in creativity, it isn’t necessary and you are a fool if you “believe in it”. Only Bill Gates needs creativity. If I hadn’t lived in Singapore I wouldn’t believe these comments are not a joke!

            Re: The restaurant servers, maybe they could creatively come up with a way to do their jobs properly! Price adjusted, Singapore is home to most horrific hotel and restaurant service I’ve ever experienced in my life.

        • vaticancameo

          A few points directed at both Amelican and the author of the post.

          1) Anti-immigrant sentiment exists everywhere, it is not a uniquely Singaporeans issue and exists for understandable reasons (check out the shrill anti-illegal immigrant rhetoric in the US).

          To some extent it is always unfair because immigrants are often hardworking and risk-takers. They may potentially create new jobs as business owners of if they have skill sets that locals don’t have. But there is also a good reason for it. It exists because when foreigners come into a country in such large numbers that they cannot assimilate into the existing culture, it destroys the existing culture, identity, language norms, etc. And if they are willing to work for a lower wage for jobs that citizens want, they drive down wages for citizens. Singaporean citizens make up only 60% of all the residents of Singapore currently, while in the US, that number is closer to 85%. There is some basis for the feeling among Singaporeans that they are being diluted out and their home is no longer their home.

          2) You are trying to have it both ways, you want the infrastructure and policies of Singapore, yet you want to pay (for example) Filipino wages.

          I respect Filipinos so this is not meant as an insult to them. If Filipino workers are all excellent and Singaporeans are all lazy, why not move your company to the Philippines? More economically developed countries have higher cost of living, higher standards of living and hence higher wages. If you want the benefits that come with working in those countries, be prepared to pay higher wages. That is a reality that businesses must accept. Of course foreigners from less developed countries are willing to work for less than locals. Call centers and manufacturing jobs have not left the US because Americans are ‘lazy asses’ and ‘retards’, but because Americans wages cost more than Indian and Chinese wages. Similarly Singaporean wages are higher than that of foreign counterparts in Asia. Don’t insult Singaporeans just because they demand higher wages.

          3) As for your claim that foreign business owners make a disproportionate contribution to Singapore. That is sometimes true but not always. If foreigners come to Singapore and start businesses which only create the kinds of jobs that Singaporeans don’t want, I would argue that their contribution Singapore (i.e. to the Singaporean people) is minimal, although of course, they also pay (low) corporate taxes and buy goods and services from other Singaporean businesses.

          4) Remember that you are a guest of Singapore and that Singapore is your adopted or host country. The fact that you run a business does not entitle you to be contemptuous of the very people who allow you to live and work here.

          Some government services may be inefficient (though probably still more efficient than many US govt services), some services may work differently from your home country. That is not an excuse to insult Singaporeans or Singapore. I’ve stood in line at a DMV in the US for an hour before getting to the seating area which was only 10% filled and called to a window within a minute. Why? Everyone had to stand in line while one person handed out ticket numbers and gave them the forms to fill. Stupid? Yes. Does that mean I should rant about how retarded Americans are? No. Also I’ve known foreigners in the US who had to leave to switch their visa type and got stuck waiting for over a MONTH for the visa to process. US government services can be inefficient too, but the author rants about an MOM website for employment passes that closes after 8pm. Boohoo. Contact the website administrator and give them your feedback.

          5) You pretend that US wages are not ‘artificially high’ as you call it because the US government regulates immigration of skilled foreigners. It is, and this is something all developed countries have to do to some extent.

          The top 1% of over 2 billion Indians and Chinese make at least 20 million people and the US currently has ~ 8 million jobs in STEM fields. Right now, a quarter of high tech start-ups in the US have immigrant founders, mostly from India or China even though foreign-born people are only ~15% of the US population. So yes, if all of the 20 million were allowed into the US, they would out compete and out perform almost all American born scientists, engineers, etc and take their jobs, although they would also create jobs with new start ups. Immigration to the US is restricted much more stringently than immigration to Singapore. It is not as if Singaporeans are violent xenophobes who don’t allow any foreigners into the country. 40% of residents of Singapore are non-citizens!!

          6) The claims that Singaporeans don’t want many jobs. This may sometimes be true. But often, they don’t want them because they pay enough. Here’s a radical new idea: sell more of your product or service instead of trying to cut costs. Hire Singaporeans for jobs at a Singaporean wage. I guarantee you there are Singaporeans who speak English very well. You clearly haven’t found them or attracted them as potential employees. I wonder why? Stop blaming everyone else for everything and look in the mirror. If there is truly no option to hire Singaporeans, go ahead and set up your shared service center somewhere else, and/or try to inform government policy on the issue.

          7) Banking in Singapore. I’ve done online banking while I’m in the US, and the online system is easy to use, customer service is better for Singapore banks because you can get a real life person on the phone almost immediately unlike BoA in the US. I agree it would be better if online statements were complete for Singapore banks. Again, not something worth calling Singaporeans retards for. Talk to your bank about this.

          8) The idea that Singaporeans have it easy and are ‘coddled’. As I explained, Singapore has the 6th most expensive real estate market in the world (NYC is 8th), and have no option of moving to a cheaper suburb. If the middle class ideal is to have a home and a car, or at least just a home, it is much harder for Singaporeans to achieve that on equivalent dollar-value wages as in the US. Some Singaporeans may have $100K cars in while living in ‘subsidized’ housing, but they paid at least $500K for that ‘subsidized’ housing, and have a 20-30 year loan on both the car and the house. Singaporeans spend more money on a nice car because a nice apartment would cost $1 million.

          9) About Singaporean ‘ghettos’. Come on. You want to compare US ghettos to Singaporean ‘ghettos’? Don’t even start. I’m not trying to insult the US either. I love the US and the American people. But all countries including the world’s only superpower have their faults, and I think you are blowing Singapore’s problems out of proportion.

          10) Anti-(China) chinese backlash in Singapore. Race is not the same as nationality. Foreign born chinese may have different values, cultural norms, habits, and different conceptions of what Singapore is. I’m don’t condone any kind of prejudice, but there is a cultural difference between Singaporean Chinese and China Chinese. Singaporeans tend to think of Singapore as a multicultural nation distinct from China and separate their national identity from their ethnic identity whereas China Chinese tend to think of Singapore as a culturally and linguistically Chinese nation, maybe like another Hong Kong or Macau. Just like Americans of all racial backgrounds have a common American identity distinct from general ‘white’ culture if there is such a thing, Singaporean born Singaporeans have a shared Singaporean identity distinct from chinese culture. It therefore irks Singaporeans to be though of as part of China, or a culturally Chinese country by either China Chinese or foreigners from other parts of the world such as yourself. There is also a perception among Singaporeans (I’m not sure how true it is, I have no data), that many of the very aspects of Singapore that were criticized in the post such as dirty bathrooms, people who don’t speak English or choose to speak Mandarin instead of English, etc. are more attributable to new immigrants as opposed to Singaporeans, and that they therefore violate many Singaporean norms and give Singaporeans a bad reputation because people can’t tell China Chinese from Singaporean Chinese.

          I really think you’re just mad because you can’t attract quality employees to your company and yet pay them a below-market wage. My suggestion, budget more for salaries, do a better job of of looking for employees. Contact the university department administrators of fields you are looking for (if that is allowed) to see if they will distribute your job ad to graduating students. Do a better job searching for quality candidates and compensate them well. And it would definitely help if foreigners/ immigrants to Singapore such as yourself try to assimilate and adapt themselves to our culture instead of insulting us and yet feeling entitled to be here. Learn some basic respect and people skills.

    • Blaeux Mee Goreng

      Although harsh and perhaps a bit over the top. I do have to agree with almost everything that was written perhaps retard/retardation is harsh and completely politically incorrect, having been here for over half a decade I have experienced this and a lot more. I have experienced a lot of good things, but these have unfortunately been outweighed by negative experiences.

      Although most is being interpreted as a “generalisation”. When a situation occurs so many times in various circumstances, which experienced by almost all, can it really be considered as a “generalisation”. I find it odd no-one has commented on the extremely poor driving ability, which definitely is a true reflection of laziness. It is an extremely stressful experience driving here (if you can afford it). It is only once I travel back to a westernised society when it truly becomes so obvious. Drifting between lanes, no indicator usage (it is called an indicator for a reason), no looking in the blind spot and almost side swiping you on a daily basis save by the horn. Does it take so much effort to use the indicator and have a look over your shoulder for a brief moment to make sure there is no-one next to you? Lucky the speed limit is so low. I used to live on East Coast and I have seen more car pile-ups on the ECP in a year than I have in my entire life anywhere else in the world.

      As for shallowness. Just one drive down to the residential area’s of Sentosa gives you an absolute true reflection of this. You will be lucky to find 1 out of 50 landed properties that actually have a garage. Why would that be? Well judging by the large amounts of Ferrari’s, Lamborghini’s, McClaren’s et al on show, it is purely to be able to flaunt your wealth to the open public. You will also find most of these people around during the normal working hours in their casual clothes driving their Porsches and Audi’s. Of course this not an exclusive issue to Singapore. But I think you will find that most of the successful millionaires in other countries are absolute workaholics. Of course same exists here and there are plenty that do work extremely hard and deserve their wealth, but most definitely in a much lesser capacity. It is very much a right place, right time situation here.

      And how about you find anywhere else in the world where you will find 4 Louis Vuitton shops within a 2km strip like you do on Orchard Road. Some will say it caters for the tourists. But most of the tourists I know don’t really do much shopping on Orchard road, more so just go to check it out. Completely materialistic. Which I guess is also perhaps understandable because there is not much else you can do with your money here.

      Speaking about housing bubbles and undeserved wealth. A friend of mine once lived in an apartment that exchanged hands 4 times in 1 year. Someone please tell me how this is healthy? He had to live with constant viewings coming by for potential new buyers. Understandably in the end just broke lease and walked from his obligations. Where else in the world would a residential property exchange hands 4 times in 1 year and can someone also please tell me how such wealth creation is deserved and the result of hard working citizens rather than just out of pure luck.

      Yes the foreigners have it good here in some cases. But they are lured here with the perception of low tax, but are forced to spend that on inflated residential rental properties, basically forced to send their children on to extremely expensive international schools, expensive nights out on the town and in the end aren’t far better off than they would be on lower wages and higher taxes elsewhere. Yes the Singaporeans here can say you aren’t forced to be here so get out. Which is correct. But the Singaporean government has done a fantastic job at enticing the majority of the companies in my choice of career path to move their business here and it simply isn’t as easy as just packing the bags and leaving. I would loved to have bought a property here years ago. But for anything decent you need to spend upwards of $1.5mill which is still going to be an apartment the size of a shoebox. Which is ridiculous, but the monthly repayments are not so bad compared to rent. But hang on I need to fork out 20pct of that as a deposit. So in the end am forced to rent.

      It’s quite ironic that the vast majority of lower end jobs $2000-$4000 monthly are reserved for Singaporeans and PR and they don’t want them. My wife wants to work more than anything to contribute to the monthly expenditures. Only she can’t because she hasn’t got the previous experience to be considered as skilled to be getting the job in the bracket which is high enough to attain a work permit as a foreigner. So she feels like she is wasting away her life here.

      The helpfulness of the majority here especially in the service industry is a disgrace to say the least. A couple years ago on Valentines day I went to buy flowers for my wife at a shopping centre near the raffles hotel, I knew the shop was nearby where I was but couldn’t see it. I walked into a shop and asked the assistant politely “Excuse me do you know where the flower shop is around here?”. After 5 years here the reply would not surprise me today. “Dunno”. It was 2 doors down. Seriously? You spend 8+ hours a day in a shopping centre and you are too lazy to tell me it is 2 doors down because it isn’t your job to do so? I absolutely hate this. In almost any other country even with people that barely speak English if you ask for directions the vast majority of people will attempt to assist you. But due to the extreme lazy nature of people here, if it isn’t part of their job mandate or in their interests to assist you its a lot easier just to say “dunno” or simply “no”. Because “Just 2 doors down that way” would have absorbed a lot more energy and mental thought process.

      The laziness definitely is a problem that stems from a young age, where living without a maid is almost less common than living with one. These maids do absolutely everything for the children/families, it is of course no wonder why when everything is handed to you on a silver platter from birth why a laziness creeps into the general society. To completely exploit cheap foreign labour to make this country what it is today and then complain about foreigners is completely laughable.

      Last week I was driving to work and listening to the Power 98 breakfast show, which is cringe-worthy at the best of times (as is almost all Singaporean commercial radio). They started talking about this head that was found hanging from a tree in East Coast Park. Turned out to be from one of the Bangladeshi workers. Then they started to make jokes about it and laugh. This here shows the total disregard of respect from Singaporeans and lack of any gratitude at all for what these exploited cheap labourers who work their absolute ass off from sunrise to well past sunset for a measly $50 a week to build their apartments and amusement parks and shopping centres and office buildings and nice roads, all of which they are directly financially benefiting from in vast amounts of wealth. I probably should have been shocked at their attitude towards this poor man. But again after half a decade here, sadly I wasn’t. Can you imagine the uproar that would have been going on had that been a local? Then again, with all the news censorship perhaps there wouldn’t be.

      My largest problem here is the extortion. The old he slapped me on the ass, I am local, I will drop the charges if you settle with me for $10000 trick. What does this stem back to? Laziness of course and not wanting to work hard for a dollar. These aren’t just stories. This is definitely real, it happened to someone I know who left the moment after he got his passport back. Not in admittance of guilt by any means. But how is a man supposed to explain to his wife and children he is up for charges of sexual harassment even without any cctv evidence or witnesses and just one person’s word versus another. Where the locals is the only side which seems to be seen as having any truth in it? Obviously most wouldn’t risk getting locked up for 2 -5 years for something they obviously haven’t done when their word here means nothing and just end up settling outside the court. Which these bludging skanks are completely aware of. In most countries extortion carries a much harsher penalty than a slap on the ass (not that I condone such behaviour).

      On I guess an irrelevant point I read a comment earlier about the huge percentage of the population that have glasses, will just comment this is something that has been identified by the government and something they are working on. There is a study going on with a group of young students now that have a more outdoor based education in order to verify whether the issue to the poor eyesight is directly caused due to the hugely indoor dependent lifestyle that is had here. This of course no fault of the people but more so due to the climate. Which I fully understand and perhaps the number 1 reason I want to leave this country as I have young kids and any outdoor activities here are almost unbearable. So it is not hard to understand why most local children grow up indoors in front of the TV or the Computer in the comfort of air conditioning. If only the water was cleaner and we could actually spend time at the beach without being intoxicated by the incredibly polluted and oil infested sea water.

      All said mostly negative, I am not exactly in a rush to leave tomorrow, because they are also doing a lot of things right here and I have met plenty of Singaporeans that I do very much enjoy the company of and will keep as friends for the rest of my life.

  • vaticancameo

    I got tired of this rant before I got to the end but you are clearly a whiny asshole. I’m a Singaporean who has lived in the US for over 8 years and I can honestly say you are being an overdramatic crybaby. I have had no problems with my banking. Singaporeans are definitely not lazy, and the so-called subsidized housing for Singaporean citizens is still as expensive or more than what people pay in most cities in the world, even large cities such as new york.

    • Note: Anybody that calls $500K SGD three bedroom apartments “as expensive as New York” is a total idiot.

      • Anon

        Stop fisting yourself to idiocity. Obviously he is refering to public/subsidized housing in New York which cost a lot less. Don’t forget to include ppp you fool. In NYC you could buy a co-op at $52/sft. Please tell me where I can find such prices in Singapore. That type of prices was so 50 years ago. Maybe you are still living in the past.

        • vaticancameo

          Thanks, Anon. I wasn’t referring to public housing in NYC, even private housing prices there may be on par with ‘subsidized’ HDB flat prices. But yes, factor in PPP and govt-subsidized housing prices in NYC, and it’s obvious that Singaporeans don’t have a sweet, ‘coddled’ life. Also New Yorkers can move to the boroughs if they can’t afford the city, but Singaporeans don’t have a cheap suburb to move to – it’s a city-state-country.

          I don’t want to feed a troll, but I can’t stand people who don’t know shit but run their mouths as if they’re experts on Singapore. This comment is for the Singaporeans who are so eager to agree with the jerk author of the post that we are ‘retards’ – grow a damned backbone.

      • vaticancameo

        Check your facts, idiot. You can get a 500K SGD apartment in NYC too.

        • Another Amelican

          LOL. That’s in Harlem you idiot. Do you like being robbed, beaten, raped and shot? If so that home is for you! Also note the low price and long time on the market with no takers (nearly one year!).

          • Anon

            At least you have a place to consider; beggars can’t be choosers. If NYC is too expensive you could always move away to a cheaper state in the US. We don’t have the option here. Also if you find too expensive to buy you could rent a place at around $1k in a safe neighbourhood.

          • vaticancameo

            That’s beside the point, idiot. It’s in NYC, and it goes for < 500K SGD. Which raises another important fact – Singapore's low crime rate. You're not going to get robbed, beaten, raped or shot in Singapore. The fact that you might be a victim of crime somewhere in NYC is not Singapore's problem and irrelevant to this discussion. And aside from all your drivel, the housing market is Singapore is more expensive than NYC.


          • For normal thinking people a house in the middle of a super dangerous ghetto is not a valid comparison to a clean safe house.

      • vaticancameo

        Manuel Pfister, you said “Note: Anybody that calls $500K SGD three bedroom apartments “as expensive as New York” is a total idiot.” WRONG, you are the idiot.

        Most expensive real estate markets in the world: Singapore #6, NYC #8 (Knight Frank, 2012)

        So don’t go off on crime in harlem. Irrelevant. Normal thinking people don’t go off on tangents when they realize they have their FACTS WRONG.

        • Comparing apples to oranges you cannot get equivalent housing for less in NYC, period. Also, manhattan doesn’t have <%2 interest rates on mortgages which makes the payments on a property of similar value much higher.

          • Good News

            Psst Pfister, your horse died 10 posts ago. You’ve clutched enough straws to rig up a hut in NYC’s affordable quarters though….

          • We just need some New Yorkers to put your idiocy in perspective comparing a central SG three bedroom with an unsaleable property in Harlem.

          • vaticancameo

            First, why are we discussing housing prices? Anonymous (the author of the post) thinks Singaporeans are lazy and stupid because their lives are too easy – the Singapore government coddles them by providing subsidized housing which he thinks is very cheap. This of course is a ridiculous argument, because Singaporeans pay some of the highest prices in the world even for subsidized housing. I stated this fact and compared prices that ‘coddled’ Singaporeans pay to that of New Yorkers, who are not obliged to pay high NYC or manhattan real estate prices since they can move to the other boroughs or other parts of New York State or any city within the United States. Note: NYC refers to all 5 boroughs. But to make a more stringent comparison, let’s first look at Singapore vs Manhattan.
            Proof that Singaporeans have to deal with a high cost of living and pay real estate prices on par with NYC, perhaps even Manhattan (whether they live in subsidized housing or not) below. To compare apples to apples, you must compare subsidized housing in SG to subsidized housing to Manhattan and non-subsidized housing in SG to non-subsidized housing in Manhattan. To be even more fair, you must compare SGD prices to USD prices. Furthermore, you should consider prices in the non-manhattan boroughs of NYC because New Yorkers can live in the other boroughs and commute to manhattan which Singaporeans cannot do (also, the other boroughs are part of the city of New York, just ask Mayor Bloomberg). Plus, Singapore is both a country and a city, which means a better comparison would be Singapore vs USA not Singapore vs NYC, where we compare the prices in Singapore to the average US city, say something like Seattle.

            1) Is the housing market in SG more expensive than Manhattan according to an objective expert who has done research?
            Yes. Knight Frank, 2012. Most expensive housing markets in the world: SG -#6, NYC – #8

            2) Anecdotal evidence – On the low end: For subsidized housing in SG vs Manhattan (the most expensive borough of America’s most expensive city), can you get a studio apartment for 250K Singapore dollars (=~ 200K US dollars)?
            Yes in Manhattan. E.g. USD175K studio near central park
            Yes in SG. E.g. SGD210K studio in Boon Lay

            3) For a family: Comparing subsidized housing in SG to Manhattan , can you get a 3 bed apartment for SGD550K (=~ USD445K)?
            Yes in Manhattan. E.g. 3bed/2ba USD195K, 993sq ft, central harlem
            OR 3bed/1ba USD234K, 931 sq ft, fort george

            Yes in SG. E.g. 3bed/2ba SGD500K , 1303 sq ft, yishun

            4) Comparing private housing in SG vs Manhattan (America’s most expensive city), can you get a 3 bedroom condo for less than SGD600K (=~ USD485K)?
            Yes in SG. E.g. 3bed/2ba condo in Pasir Ris SGD580K , 915 sq ft
            Yes in Manhattan. E.g. 3bed/2ba in Fort George USD234K, 913 sq ft

            5) Wait a minute, why are we using SGD prices for housing in Manhattan when New Yorkers earn in USD? Can you get a 3 bed private condo in SG for SGD500K, or in Manhattan for USD500K? Yes, see above.

            6) But Manhattan workers can live in the other boroughs and commute to Manhattan which Singaporeans can’t do. Can you get a <500K USD 3bed house/condo in the boroughs?

            Yes in non-manhattan boroughs of NYC.
            Cheap: E.g. 3bed/1ba USD185K in parkchester (Bronx)
            Mid-range: 3bed/1.5ba USD305k in new lots (Brooklyn), 1186 sq ft
            Expensive: 3bed/2ba USD495K in prospect lefferts gardens (Brooklyn), 1566 sq ft

            7) So you can work in Manhattan and live in a 3bed condo in the Bronx for 185K, that’s nice. Can I pay SGD 185K or even USD 185K (230K SGD) for a 3bed SUBSIDIZED apartment in Singapore?

            Nope. The cheapest option I found was this SGD 312K 3bed/2ba 754sq ft flat in Jurong West

            8) How about if we compare subsidized SG prices to an average city in the US, like Seattle for the cheapest 3bed housing?
            Seattle: USD165k for 3bed/1.75ba 1163 sq ft
            SG: SGD312K 3bed/2ba 754sq ft flat in Jurong West

            9) What’s the median price of a 3 bedroom subsidized (HDB) flat in Singapore?

            Between SGD414-770K. Note that for HDB flats, ‘4 room’ refers to 3 bedrooms, the living room is counted as a room.

            10) So can we conclude that Singaporeans have too easy a life because they get to pay for cheap, ‘subsidized’ housing and are ‘coddled’?
            Most definitely. But only if you’re also stupid enough to think that all 300 million Americans except MAYBE the 1.6 million who live in Manhattan are similarly coddled by the market forces and/or government subsidies that allow them to pay less than Singaporeans for real estate. And don’t forget about all the other coddled people in all other parts of the world who pay less for housing than Singaporeans, except for those in Monaco, Hong Kong, London, Geneva and Paris. So yes, if Singaporeans are coddled by low housing prices, so are roughly 6.8 billion other people in the world.

          • LOL! Comparing Singapore to a country the size of the entire USA. Priceless!
            I didn’t see the part in your long blathering diatribe where you compare the tax rate of Singapore for $100k <5% and NYC ~%50.

            Please also point out where you can buy a $140k home in NYC (if you can find one) for less than $500 cash out of pocket? And why if as you say the price for a 3 room flat is $500k does the government website use an example with $140k purchase price? Are they so hapless and incompetent that they haven’t updated their website since property values went up the last 350%+?

            But anyway let’s say you’re right, Singaporeans have it much worse than everybody else, they’re not at all “coddled” by the government. What is your theory to why so many are so stupid? Just look at the comments here, especially the ones posted before the few showed up that could actually string together a meaningful sentence? I think 400+ comments generated by 50,000+ page views is a statistically significant sample size and a huge proportion of those that left comments are obviously complete morons. What do you say to defend this?

          • vaticancameo

            I can’t reply to your comment below so I’ll apply to this one. I compared SG to NYC and also SG to USA because Americans can move to cheaper cities within their countries and Singaporeans can’t. Duh.

            The $140k is for BTO flats. I.e. those that don’t exist yet. You pay less because you wait ~2 years to get it. Resale flats are more expensive, but you get them now.

            As for the stupidity, I think you and your friends have made a lot of stupid comments and posts. To your question about the stupidity of comments, I would guess that only idiots read your idiot friend’s blog. I accidentally stumbled on this crap from reddit Singapore and I regret that I have wasted my time on this.

            But I think the most important question of all is, WHY ARE ALL OF YOU STILL LIVING IN SINGAPORE? Why do you bitch and moan and whine and yet still stay? Find a better alternative like the Philippines or US or UK or Australia or Somalia for your business if it’s so terrible.

          • Singaporeans can easily live right over the border in Malaysia and that’s a really cheap country, one of our favorite budget vacation spots in fact. So many of those that work in New York live in New Jersey but they don’t get anything like the savings you get by going to Malaysia… duh.

            Singapore and I regret that I have wasted my time on this.

            Why do you keep coming back and posting more stupid comments day after day? Come on tell us why is Singapore so full of stupid people. The comments on this article alone, along with the many other links posted by other readers prove this point. So what’s your theory?

          • Thomas

            So you’re telling everyone that a $140K SGD 3 bedroom home (waiting list or not) that one can pay less than $500 per month to eventually own is not incredibly and ridiculously subsidized? Wow, fail! That is insanely cheap and insanely subsidized housing, not just the purchase price but the payment plan too. I can’t think of any major world city anywhere that you can expect to own a nice 3 bedroom flat for a $140K SGD and then pay only $500 per month on the loan. In the US even with the best possible credit you’re going to pay at least double that on a 30 year mortgage. Stop making a fool of yourself. Besides as rightly pointed out elsewhere the subsidies on housing are not just explicit (the HDB scheme linked above for example) they’re implicit in the outrageously low <=2% mortgages.

          • vaticancameo

            Manuel Pfister, Charlie Bushmaster, Amelican and all you other idiots here. You have still not explained this. If Singaporean workers are so stupid and Singapore is such a terrible place to live, why do you choose to live here?

            The fact is that the options here are good for you. Low corporate tax, better infrastructure than less developed Asian countries and lower wages than the US and Europe. If living in Singapore was not a good deal for you, you would already have left. Your stories are exaggerations or selective memory.

          • Charlie and I don’t live there. Seems pretty obvious from the comments that people live there for low taxes, ease of making money (maybe because of the incredibly low quality of the competing job applicants?), because their companies moved them there (they may not have even been part of that decision) or some combination of the three. Can’t you read, comprehend and draw logical conclusions for yourself? Seems like you can’t.

            You still haven’t answered my question about why so many are so stupid and illiterate. You cannot deny this fact it is proved just by the comments here and on the other sites linking here. Not everyone, but huge numbers.

  • Uniquely Singapore

    The comments are hilarious. Keep them coming! Definitely prove the author’s point.

  • Daniel

    I am a Singaporean and I have lived in singapore for the last 18 years.

    For the record, I couldn’t agree more with this post to a certain extend.

    Also, whoever is leaving such comments clearly show how much “Singaporean” you really are. In other words, or to put it simply, you`re just proving the authors every aspect of his points in his blog post.

    I would suggest to clearly reflect on yourselves before commenting. Even as a local Singaporean born and brought up here. I couldn’t agree more with the author.

    I`ve been overseas for the last 2 years simply because of some of the reasons stated above.

    • Anon

      I see. So you agree that you are retarded.

  • Just Sayin’

    I just gave a reply to one of your earlier posts, and then a friend calls my attention to this piece of drivel from you!
    The only thing I’m wondering here is: Are you a wind-up artist intent on stirring up trouble within the Singaporean community? OR
    Are you really the shallow bigoted swine who really believes the crap he’s sprouting?
    I won’t dignify the points you made about the poorer segments of the local population with a reply, but considering that your writings have already made a name for itself in the expatriate community, would you prefer if I attach a copy of your inflammatory posts to the attention of the Prime Minister, the Minister for Law/Foreign Affairs as well as the Minister for Home Affairs? I’m sure they’d be delighted with your lurid descriptions of their Singaporean character, and hell, you might be really glad to be offered the opportunity to defend your assertions in the local media in the clear light of day too! If that’s the case, just say the word and it would be my singular pleasure to humor you in this regard. For now, a good day to you sir!

    • Maybe you should convene a special session of the UN Security Council to discuss it.

      • Just Sayin’

        You and what army? In your wet dreams dumbo…Fat boy may be obnoxious as hell, but he’s a clear and present threat to everyone around, so yeah, he’s elevated himself to the UN level, now what significance are you beyond the local level? So you’re just another douchebag desperate to get some attention (times are THAT bad heh?), maybe you should just get it, though I don’t think you’re capable of handling whatever comes thereafter, especially when they shine the lights on yer’…

        • Charlie Bushmeister

          Obviously, sarcasm is lost on you.

          • Just Sayin’

            and obviously, you’re rather thick. Given enough rope, you’ll hang yourself. Du bist ein mieser stricher, labertasche auch…

        • IndonesianStudentInSingapore

          HAHAHAHA he’s being SARCASTIC, you idiot! Oh god, thanks for the laugh dude.

  • Po Pimp


    ** I’ve seen some horrific things in public rest rooms in Singapore, even in very upscale shopping and restaurant complexes. Other joys of Singapore are the public spitting and watching people blow snot rockets into the sinks in the rest rooms (that was a favorite of mine in my old office building). **

    is because of this:

    ** the vast majority of the resident population of this less than a generation old joke of a “country” is in fact Chinese, they are nearly 75% of the population! **

    How long did you live in Singapore and never figure that one out?

    • But then a significant portion of those 75% Chinese would have to also be Singaporean citizens so what’s your point?

  • Cr Lim

    Living in Singapore, I disagree with many of your points, I think you do not see the full picture, or are just ignorant. In short, you have solely dug out all the horrible aspects about Singapore, and left behind all the positive aspects. Have you been in other areas of the country, where there are so many pleasant things to talk about?

    Anyway, who are you, without much understanding the country, to criticize it this horribly? It just brings you across as a bitter, unsatisfied person that grumbles about everything in the world. In fact, I find it a horrible waste of my energy to even respond to you.

    Have a pleasant day

  • I’m an American of Indian descent, and have lived in Singapore for the last two and a half years. First, I will say that the author could have made his points without denigrating the entire society. Many educated Singaporeans would agree with some of your assessment, and the discussion would be more civil if you had avoided being blatantly racist. However, you would not have attracted much attention without the hyperbole.

    In my experience, the vast majority of people globally are of lower IQ so it’s not fair to single out Singaporeans as exceptional in this regard. As a businessman, I have operated in the US, Singapore, Thailand, Malaysia, India and the Philippines, and I have had personnel frustrations in all of these places. Singapore is not unique, nor is it better or worse. I have interviewed hundreds of “retarded” Americans, many of whom were basically illiterate, lied on their resumes, never showed up for an interview, etc. This is par for the course in business and is a global phenomenon.

    As far as Singaporeans being coddled, I would check you facts. The US and EU have much wider social welfare systems than Singapore. Filial duty is the main social safety net here, not the government. Criticizing their buying habits, whether it relates to cars or luxury goods, is a strange critique, who are you to say what people should spend their money on? Frankly, the car situation makes a lot of sense. Tax high income earners and subsidize mass transit. It actually works.

    As far as your outrage over habits and hygiene, I would recommend that you visit a public restroom in Spain, or walk in the streets of Paris without stepping in dog shit. Better yet, try visiting a restroom in an English pub, if you can do that without feeling like vomiting then you are truly exceptional. Walk on the streets of San Francisco at night without being accosted by a homeless person or stepping in bum shit. Isn’t that supposedly a first world city? It happens to be where I’m from, and I can say, unequivocally, that San Francisco is not on par with Singapore as it relates to hygiene, infrastructure, housing, education, or any of the other measures you have used to define the society.

    Fact. Singlish is a language. Unless you are a linguist, you have no basis upon which to opine. You may not like the language or understand it, but it is a language.

    Like any major global city, Singapore has a range of issues to deal with, from wealth disparity to education, to social stigmas, etc. To label ninety percent of the population as “retarded” only speaks of your own innate racism and fear. This is a global city that offers opportunities to those immigrants that have the time, patience and energy to make it happen. If you have given up in frustration after just one year, I can predict that you will be a failure at whatever you choose to do.

    Oh, and don’t hide behind anonymity. Grow a pair and own your identity.

    • We’re still waiting for somebody to point out what exactly is racist. Offensive yes, racist no.

      And also, what kind of an idiotic statement is it to say “the vast majority of people globally are of lower IQ” – by mathematical definition 49.999999% of people must be “above average” and it only gets better from there.

      I don’t have a lot of experience in Singapore but after visiting 40+ countries I can tell you that different countries absolutely fall on different sides of the bell curve and to varying degrees. Denying that means you are either full of shit and pushing an agenda or you are lying about your experience. There’s no middle ground there.

    • Vuil Uil

      There is nothing worse than the urbane Indian who, having escaped the seething mess and mass of India, now think he is a ‘smart man’ and can comment on the world. Especially if he is an American too. Then the arrogance knows no bounds.

      Only an Indian could not mention Indian toilets when critiquing global toilet habits. Nowhere – let me repeat nowhere – has more filthy toilets than India. Before take off Air India runs a video on proper toilet use, but it is no use. They somehow miss the hole when shitting. Must be a Hindu custom. I’ve been in a sort of pub in Srirangapatna with a furrow on the one side leading from the toilets. And the liquids and solids slowly flowed down the furrow while locals – oblivious – kept on drinking.

      So on that score I have to agree. Singapore toilets, while messy, are reasonably decent by world standards. Despite Advani’s claim I would argue that most Western countries toilets are an improvement though there are certainly in the Mediterranean regions still some ‘shit holes’. If you’ll excuse the pun.

      Now let’s tackle Singlish. It is not an official language and is discouraged by the government who argue that it makes Singaporeans look backward. And indeed holds back their employment prospects. Here from Wiki:”Singlish is commonly regarded with low prestige in Singapore. The Singaporean government and many upper class Singaporeans alike heavily discourage the use of Singlish in favour of Standard English.”

      My experience working in SIngapore (IT/telco) is that locals ‘know what they know’ and nothing else. They seem to lack any thinking outside the box. The smarter ones follow instructions, but creativity is not their strong suite which probably accounts for the incredible inefficiency of the banking and telco there. Nobody has thought to improve anything. They just go along with what is, without any thought for what can be improved.

      Of course, Advani pulls out the old standard of all people of color – racism. If you think anyone is not smart, why you must be racist, what else can it be. Could it be – ahem – that some groups are (forget the politically correct here) smarter than other groups. I can list many groups that show generally lower intelligence, but in case Sameer calls me a racist (I’m a white guy) I’ll avoid being more specific. Despite the clap trap taught in the US not everyone is the same. Some run better, some are stronger, some are taller, some are prettier and some are even smarter. Claims of racism won’t change that fact.

      Funny enough my experience was not that the Singaporeans were particularly dumb – retarded is such a loaded word – but rather they were really very uninterested in anything other than acquiring the latest consumer crap: the Gucci bag, an iPhone, or a shiny car. They weren’t retarded so much as astonishingly shallow. Many that you spoke to seemed to have not interest or aspiration beyond being a consumer of – very definitely – name brand goods. Poorer folk purchased the knock offs. But they all seemed to have no inner life, nothing much of interest other than showing off to friends and relatives. (I still recall the fat little SIngaporean, maybe 20, climbing out of his Ferrari in from the Temasek Towers and looking desperately to see if anyone noticed him. He walked around and around the car until he caught the eye of some giggling school girls. Only then did he move on. Such behavior, while no uncommon, is particularly pronounced in SIngapore. )

      Now the anonymity: well you see Mr Advani in the modern world people like you – brown or at least not white – have discovered a powerful technique of shutting down discussion. How? Simple. You just accuse any white you don’t agree with as being racist. So we are forced to hide behind a cloak of anonymity.

      (I fully expect you to claim I am racist – without knowing anything about me.) As a famous British writer once said. “In the modern world it will soon be better to be a rapist than a racist”.

    • User

      Sameer- my background is similar to yours and I see where you are coming from, 2.5 years is too short a time though, I have been here for 15 years and only started really integrating with locals a couple of years ago.. Once you do you will be shocked at the quality of the average guy, for a start try the opposition websites, you will then understand what the author is talking about … The poor logic, broken english and sense entitlement is appalling
      To avoid misunderstanding I am in no way rationalising the author’s offensive tone

    • Vuil Uil

      Sameer – late I know, but thought in the light of your post a while back referencing racism (that ever so easy line for many third worlders to use) you’d be interested in this recent survey from the Washington Post.

      it appears that India tops the list as the most racist country in the world. Congrats at last it has come first in something. Here’s hoping you see the post.

  • Darren

    This post is actually intended to be a reply to ‘mickeyvee’ post on 31st march at 14:03. Also, I shall try to answer some of the comments made by others in this post.

    Firstly to mickeyvee, I would like to apologize for my very late reply. I have been really busy with my work with all the developments around the world (Cyprus bank bailout, change in China’s leadership, India Supreme Court decision against Norvatis, etc). It has been a really tough week for me with lots of critical milestones that could affect the future of my portfolio. The Euro crisis is really challenging and has certainly affected my mood. That coupled with those cynicisms from certain foreigners certainly did not help. Upon re-reading my previous post I admit that I had been rather rude as well. Well, I do apologize for being rude but I still feel that it was justified as it was meant to be targeted at those ‘superior beings’. As you all can see from the comments, Singaporeans mostly react with proportionality. Hence in this reply to you, I shall try to be more cordial (not because you were polite but because you are my neighbor).

    1) While English may be proclaimed to be the language of instruction in schools … and our first language, it must be remembered that most Singaporeans in general speak their mother tongue at home. This is a similar situation in India where most speak Hindi at home and with their peers. The government has the right to say that English shall be our first language but whether that happens on the ground is a separate issue. Hence as the businessman, the onus is on you to scout and check whether that is true or not. You cannot afford to accept things at face value. Since that English is as you mention is the medium of instruction … , then would it not be technically the first language of Singapore? However, even if in reality the generally population cannot speak English properly, are you able to claim that English is not the first language? Well you can’t because it is officially recognized by other countries. An analogy to this explanation is the sovereignty of Palestine. The UN recognizes Palestine as a sovereign state. But do the people of Israel see is as a state? If you are an Israeli, would you recognize Palestine as a country? Certainly not. Now, this is all purely hypothetical. I do not mean to offend any Israeli or Palestinian. In the same context, while English is the first language, the de facto first language of most Singaporeans is their mother tongue (Chinese, Malay and Tamil). Singlish is then used as a “glue” that gels us together. As it is influenced by all the three languages and based on English, no one can say that they are at an unfair disadvantage. This is one of the cornerstones that meritocracy in Singapore is based on. No one has an unfair advantage and hence in theory the playing field is more level. Singlish is one of the very few shared culture that Singaporeans all own. Hence do expect us to be very protective of it. We are undoubtedly a very young nation with a very short history. As mentioned by one extremely discerning commenter, in Asia, the things that are said do not matter as much as the things that are not said. Asia is still a fairly conservative society and hence many things are still best left unsaid. Anyway, in Singapore such issues do not need to be explained as most Singaporeans are discerning enough to understand them without being told.

    2) MNCs are thriving in Singapore due to many reasons. At its most basic level, a business needs land, labor and capital. Singapore has the necessary infrastructure (land), a robust financial sector (capital) and a large pool of talented workers. We do import a lot of labor, ranging from low skilled to high skilled workers. I do not denigrate foreigners mostly. In fact, I am very thankful that they are still coming, especially the low skilled ones. As most Singaporeans have at least a poly diploma, it is very hard to find a Singaporean who is willing to do those low skilled jobs. Now, Singapore’s economy is quite highly regulated, with the government attempting to steer it towards a knowledge based economy. However, in every economy, there are always a number of low skilled jobs that cannot be ‘outsourced’. Some classic examples are cleaning and construction. While these jobs are shunted by most Singaporeans, these jobs are critical for the economy to run smoothly. To solve this problem, the government is very lax in the regulation of such workers. In fact this has resulted in declining salaries of low skilled workers. This is something that most are benefiting from.

    I am not xenophobic and did I even mention cost of living? What disgusts me is this certain foreigner. I am sure that all my fellow Singaporeans will agree with me that foreigners, who do not even have any sense of respect for the locals, is not welcomed here. Firstly, as a foreigner (or as the US labels as ALIENS), you are obviously a guest. Is it an appropriate behavior for a guest to demand similar benefits as the host’s children (Singaporeans in this case)? Next, is it right for the guest to lambast the host for being retarded and to insult the host? This is downright outrageous behavior. Now there is a distinct difference between a criticism and an insult. Please do not insult us and then brush it off as a “constructive criticism”. Singapore has been very welcoming to foreigners already as compared to other countries. Hence, as I mentioned previously, if the author finds it such a chore to conduct his business here he is more than welcomed to leave. The root word of civilization is civil. If these foreigners cannot even be civil to the locals then why should we welcome them? Also, remember that Singapore aims to be a civilized, gracious and inclusive society. Hence, why should we welcome these uncivil foreigners when they will only impede our progress towards being the society that we Singaporeans want? Singapore has not progressed so quickly without reason. We achieved it out of sheer determination and by casting off our stumbling blocks. Thus the (over?)zealous pleas for the certain foreigner to go back to his home country. On behalf of my fellow Singaporeans, I would like to apologize for being seemingly inhospitable. It is just that we are very quick at recognizing the dark spots that could impede our progress. To the other foreigners who are civil, I would like to thank you all from the bottom of my heart for being such great guests. You all are doing a great job here in making my home a vibrant and cosmopolitan city. I would also like to thank those foreigners who have devoted their time and money to help the needy in my society. Your generosity is much appreciated.

    3) Alright, on the hindsight I think I have been too quick in insulting you and I shall apologize for that. It is certainly not my birthright to do so. I wrote that as I was pissed off that you could actually use a survey that is totally irrelevant to prove your point. It simply shows that you disrespect me in the sense that you think I am stupid enough to be bought over by your argument when your evidence is invalid. Fine. Different people have different standards in their work and I have very high standards. I cannot stand it when my staff says things flippantly without regard for its accuracy. Due to the nature of my work, such comments when interpreted wrongly could potentially result in significant unwarranted losses. I shouldn’t have judged you based on my standards. However, I am sure that you will agree with me that people with low standards should not be counted as FTs, right? This would mean that my government is too lax.

    I said that a business does not operate in vacuum but is a recipient of shared culture and intellectual wealth and is accountable to the community. Why should this mean that private companies should close shop just because their taxes are paltry? I meant that a business should think about all stakeholders and not just shareholders. A business is indebted to society and hence should do something in return for society. Perhaps Corporate Social Responsibility is an alien concept to you? Think of those great businessmen like Lee Kong Chian and emulate them. I believe that all Singaporeans yearn for an inclusive society where no one is left behind. Shouldn’t business have a social responsibility to start some of these initiatives?

    I didn’t say that the government shouldn’t bother with taxpayers. In fact, they do. Look at the MAS ruling on second-hand cars. Also, US is not taxing companies to their eyeballs. US is able to tax at such a high rate as it has a large market. Companies are more than happy to operate in the US market. Of course they do complain of the high taxes. Why not? If they do complain and the government does reduce taxes, they will be able to make more post-taxed profits. In fact, the US is pretty smart in this aspect – outsourcing. Doesn’t it make sense to outsource all the low skilled jobs and keep the high skilled ones at home? This will help raise the national average rate assuming that labor is perfectly mobile. However, due to their relatively large population of low-mid skilled workers, they are facing quite a bit of trouble. I believe that the Singapore government is thinking of outsourcing too. However, unlike US, outsourcing might just work out pretty well here especially when the general population becomes more educated.

    Which university did I go to? As for that I graduated from one of the best business schools in the world, according to forbes.

    4) Hong Kong came into the picture because someone else brought that up. My last point wasn’t actually directed to you.

    You mentioned that you are from Malaysia? I am totally surprised by your questions. I thought most well educated Malaysians would have known all these by now.

    Now I shall cover some of the points that were mentioned in the comments by other commenters.

    A) Someone mentioned that we are a self-proclaimed 1st world country. I would like to point out that we have NEVER taken such an initiative to do so. I mean I would be no less happy even if Singapore is classified as a 3rd world country. In fact, as a tax payer I would be even happier. Do you honestly think that we want to be labeled as a 1st world county? If you do then you are dead wrong. Being labeled a 3rd world country makes more financial sense for the government for many reasons. For example, as a 3rd world country, we will be eligible for ‘development aid’ but as a 1st world country we are expected to OFFER such aid. In the event of a natural disaster, as a 1st world country we are also expected to provide aid… The list goes on. That was why the government wasn’t that keen on calling ourselves a 1st world country when we will not only lose those ‘privileges’ but be expected to provide them to a 3rd world country. I am sure the government did try pretty hard to convince the UN and all the other countries. But with a 1st world GDP per capita, the arguments will soon get old. Hence it wasn’t out of choice that we call ourselves a 1st world country. Of course, there are some fringe benefits like national pride and stuff like that but I don’t think it was worth it.

    B) Our weapons are obviously imported. We are a very pragmatic society. While we do import most of our military equipment, we do produce some of them in-house. For instance, ask those Special Forces people overseas which country produces the best bullets. Most will agree that Singapore made bullets are the most reliable. The R&D costs of developing these advanced weapons often run into the billions. Thus it makes no sense for Singapore to waste good money on it. Why bother when we can buy it from the US? It makes more economic sense as we do not need to undertake the risk of such costly projects. We might even be able to get them at below cost price to boot. Those in the Defense/Foreign Affairs ministry are actually very smart. We know that US needs and wants to have a strong military presence in Asia-Pac (to counter China obviously) while we want the protection of the US at the lowest possible cost to guarantee our safety. What better way than to befriend them? At the same time, we are also friends with China. Result? We get the protection of two big countries. As we are a small country, we do not pose any threat to either China or US and we have good working relationships with them. Now, guess who is going to benefit again?

    C) Some claim that there is no freedom of speech in Singapore and that Singapore is too uptight over our media. While it is true that we are not as ‘liberal’ as the US, most are quite comfortable with the restrictions. Singapore is a small society with a very short shared history. We are probably not able to withstand the harm that can be caused by the media if we adopt US like rules. By the time we have some light after the heat, irreparable damage could have been caused. For instance, the fault lines in our society, along racial and religious lines could be easily exploited. As we have no single unifying factor we are in some sense a fractured but whole society that is riddled with many fault lines. These fault lines have been exploited before by some neighboring countries before but I hope that this will never happen again.

    D) To those extremist who are misinterpreting the desire of the general population, we are not planning to kick out all the foreigners. We just want to be more selective in choosing the right ones. No hard feelings if you don’t get chosen okay?

    E) Someone mentioned that Singapore is a de facto dictatorship. I shall just point out that Singapore is a city state with no major geographical, economic or demographic variation. It is a relatively small city, probably similar to San Francisco where you also see uninterrupted hold on power by one party. Some suggest that in city politics, as long as the party performs, it is possible for it to retain power for a long time. I am not saying this in support of the current government but rather from an academic viewpoint. In any case, public policies and politics do affect business decisions.

    Finally, to my fellow Singaporeans who have supported me (especially cg86), I offer you my warmest heartfelt thanks. I am pleasantly surprised that many Singaporeans are defending ourselves for what we believe in. Singlish is, always and will be in our blood forever regardless of race or religion or where we are. It is a part of our meager shared culture that we all cherish. Singlish actually helps breed camaraderie among us and it shouldn’t be trivialized by the government. At least now instead of discouraging it, they are encouraging us to be able to code switch. Anyway those Ang Moh Lang damn ti ki right? Think they so smart. Catch no ball then only know how to complain like crazy.

    For the benefit of the anonymous writer, I have asked my secretary about the banking situation. He suggested that you could try DBS treasures banking. The rates are very reasonable and affordable for the kind of service that they provide. Also, regarding the latency issue, you could lease a line from Singtel and that should solve the problem. However, it might be quite costly depending on the size of your business.

    PS: I am only writing in proper English for the benefit of those who aren’t able to understand Singlish. Who says we can’t code switch?

    I didn’t bother proof reading it so there are bound to be errors. Happy spotting, for those of you who want to dwell on such inconsequential stuff. I really can’t be bothered with proving that I am more proficient in English than you are.

    • I can’t even be bothered to read that long-winded claptrap, much less hunt for typos, dude. How about some brevity?

      • Can’t bother?

        Can’t be bothered to read why bother to reply. Are you nuts or retarded?

    • Ann

      Heartfelt Ditto Thanks especially for the pride in Singlish from a fellow Singaporean. Love the phrase code switch!

    • Vuil Uil


      I did read to the end. There weren’t any typos I could see so, bravo (did your secretary check it). But the posting was tedious to read. Are you familiar with the term verbal diarrhea?

      The post was way too long and so readers invariably lose the thread. You kept slipping in asides to show how important you are. Actually quite embarrassing. Big deal. You do portfolio analysis, have a secretary and went to a good school. Woo. Woo. Keep up the good work Darren. (Sadly you make the articles point; Singaporeans seem to live to show off.)

      Go well with your fancy goods.


      • Darren

        My reply was in my personal capacity and I see no reason to ask my secretary to check it for me. I could be succinct but it only works for the rare gems on this board. I am merely trying to be comprehensive as there seems to be a need to baby feed certain members for them to get the full picture. Sadly, for all their big talk they didn’t seem to get the idea from my earlier posts. There seems to be an inherent bias against SIngapoeans by certain foreigners that love to scrutinize, criticize and insult us for whatever we do. As for which school I went to, it was a reply to mickeyvee who asked. This post was as I said, a reply to him regarding my previous post.

        There is also a certain group of people here that is very keen on bashing. Hence I am just stating my arguments in a way that covers most ground so that I do not need to re-explain them. It might have been an overkill for some but probably not for the moderators here who are keen on picking on trivial issues. Notice that when he can’t refute my arguments, he stooped to complaining that my post is too long. I agree that it was long but it is all thanks to people like him. Previously, one of them even accused me of being semi-literate. Seriously, am I?

        You shouldn’t use wiki to find out what is happening on the ground. As I have mentioned previously, the government is no longer discouraging Singlish but encouraging code switching. I myself have no qualms over my colleagues using Singlish as long as they are able to code switch when the situation demands for it.

        ‘Singlish is commonly regarded with low prestige in Singapore.’ Currently that is considered to be an elistist view and such views are discouraged here.

        Your point that we live to show off. I am sure that what we say could be easily misconstrued as showing off when we are merely stating our achievements to prove the author wrong that we are retards, especially when our achievements can only be achieved in their dreams. For that I do apologize. I do not live to chase material goods but if you work hard, such fruits will come naturally.

        You mentioned that I kept slipping into asides but I don’t think I did when I presented my arguments. I was simply explaining to mickeyvee the reason for my late reply of around a week. I think that it was only polite for me to do so. For the record, I do not do porfolio analysis and I will not elaborate further least I am accused of showing off. I am surprised that my casual comment of my secretary was jumped upon. I guess I shall be a lot more sensitive in my future comments; for the benefit of people like you.

        • Vuil Uil

          Even your `short`reply suffers from verbal diarrhea. Pompous, show-off-y and rather full of yourself. Nobody in the modern world writes in the manner you have used. It`s reminiscent of a badly written Victorian novel. For a while I scratched my head to think where I`d seen this style before. Then I remembered.

          I did a contract a few years ago in Africa. I worked with a charming fellow who had English as a second language. He spoke English well, but as if to show how well he spoke, he would write long tendentious sentences when a few to the point words would do. It made him look foolish.

          Alas, you posts remind me of his style. It makes you look foolish. Perhaps you are not aware that the image your writing projects – whether it is true or not – is of a third-worlder trying desperately to be a first-worlder. It just does not fly. Consider brevity and clarity over pomposity.

          PS. You say with regard to Singlish, “Currently that is considered to be an elistist (sic) view and such views are discouraged here. “ Come on Darren who are you kidding. Singapore is the most elitist show-off place I have ever lived in. If it is discouraged they`re doing a pretty poor job of it.

          • Anon

            Badly written victorian novel eh? Which country do you come from? Singapore uses UK english not US.

          • Bazza

            Anon, Victorian novel is from UK.

  • Amelican in SIngapole

    You really are pretty dumb too aren’t you? I told you the argument with the staff over bank checks and signatures happened at UOB not POSB.

    And no other bank I’ve ever been to empowers their moron low level employees to act as self-appointed hand writing experts when they have a customer in person with their ID in hand. Are Singaporeans really so stupid as to make a statement like “It’s your fault for not getting your signature right”? The more you write the more I agree with the author of this post.

    “Anyway parking money in SGD is mainly for a conduit of funds when investing in the region, if you’re really into business why would you care about what interest you get on 500K? “Business entertainment” expense parts of our neighboring nations already go into sums of 200K or more.”

    What kind of a nonsensical statement is that? I can’t even figure out what you’re getting at with that mangled broken English statement above but if you’re suggesting anybody in “real business” doesn’t give a shit about leaving some money sitting around for no purpose at low interest rates you don’t know anything about “real business”. Big businesses have entire treasury departments that, among other things, move excess cash around all the time just to earn a few points better yield even for relatively short periods of time.

    Who said I’m “investing in the region”? Why should I have to put $500K – $1.5 million in a bank just to get the kind of service I would get on a free checking account in the states with $50 in it?

    You are way too stupid to argue with any further, I hope others are taking note here of what it’s like trying to bank in Singapore.

    -In the words of a local their largest consumer bank can’t be trusted with more than $50K

    -To get reasonable service you should deposit $500K or better yet $1.5 million at way less than 1% interest pa and only at UOB because the other banks are for peasants

    -It takes three bank employees a half hour to fetch you a bank check

    -You can be at your bank in person with your ID and some entry level bank employee will argue with you about whether your signature is yours

    And when you complain about how bad it all is some dumbass Singaporean will tell you it’s your fault for not being able to sign your own name properly. Hilarious!

    • poor Ameleecan

      What’s that? You haven’t received the memo from our banks that debit card applicants are not entitled to a complimentary bottle of CRISTAL just for signing up with them? Newsflash in case you’ve just come out of a coma:
      there’s a whole mob of tax-dodgers from the west and money launderers from the east just banging down the doors of the financial institutions in Singapore, begging for a spot to stash their multi-millions that our banks have more money than they know what to do with. Save yourself all that administrative paperwork, best hide your savings under the mattress since you probably are wanting of a garden to bury it in… The nerve of these local banks!!

      • Whatever, dude, accepting dirty money is the main business model of Singapore.

        • Can’t Be Bother?

          Whatever, CB, you live to criticize otherwise you will die. Singapore just provide you this life line; so don’t forget to say “Thank You”

          • Lifeline my ass. I’m not living in Singapore, and I doubt I ever will, because of all the aforementioned reasons. I don’t need Singapore and I won’t feel bad for it when the global Ponzi collapses and SG is out of a job.

  • New Singaporean

    I think that the author raised some valid points. I remember arriving in Singapore a decade ago being utterly frustrated that what the banks mean by “online application” was actually “fill form online – print form – sign hard copy – snail mail to bank”. I have my fair share of gripes about Singaporean service.

    On the other hand, I have grown to appreciate many things about Singapore. Landing in Changi Airport after weeklong biz trips always feel comforting. Where in the world do you find an airport where the whole touchdown-immigration-customs-taxi queue routine takes a mere 15 minutes? And these are not many cities of this size where you feel safe walking on the street alone past midnight.

    As for the standard of English… I mean, c’mon, anglo-supremacy is so last century. The world’s largest economies today, where so many European slumpdogs flock to to do business, are non-English speaking. While fluency in English is nice to have, it is by no means the only measure of being a developed society.

    We may not have the most efficient, most digitally savvy banks here, but at least our banks don’t wipe out 10% of citizen’s savings accounts to bail the country out of deficits.

    As for the toilet training signs… I distinctly remember seeing signs teaching users how to properly pee in a squatty potty in Tokyo’s Narita Airport. I don’t understand how that shows that Singaporeans are any less civilised.

    I am a first generation Singaporean here and have lived in several countries in my short life. And in my two decade long career in Singapore, I have worked in GLCs, MNCs, SMEs, and the civil service. I’ve seen way too many Western imports who might otherwise not make it in their own countries, and expect to come to Asia to revel in some kind of colonial luxury, only to be shocked that Asia has moved on, and it takes more than skin colour and fluency in English to compete in our society. The FTs who are genuinely talented do well for themselves and train up the locals. The FT-wannabes are left disillusioned and bitch in a blog like this, making a huge fuss about why Singapore is not like their (western country of origin).

    • That’s a pretty good point, but we are no fans of the West either. There are some pros in SG but a lot lot lot to improve.

    • Why does it seem lost on everybody that Singapore is catching flak for the bad English because they so loudly proclaim English is an “official” language. None of the other countries do that so in those cases it’s not appropriate to complain about their terrible English but with Singapore it’s absolutely fair game. Between the comments here and the times I’ve passed through Singapore myself I can agree that the language skills are horrible and calling English an “official” language in Singapore is just plain false advertising.

      • Anon

        English is just one of the four official languages. If the person you encountered has bad English, he/she should be proficient in another.

  • A reader mailed in this hilarious satire piece that seems to be so close to the mark that it’s generating a lot of angry comments from people who take it seriously. LOL! Singaporeans are the biggest threat to Singapore’s growth.

  • Guy

    Just throwing fuel to the fire: 🙂
    1. Is Singapore racists: YES SMRT Bus Driver Protest
    2. Is Singapore a dictatorship: YES 4 Jailed ex-SMRT bus driver jailed, beaten and sent back home
    3. DO YOU NEED 14 days notice before going on Strike in Singapore: YES Same article as above – Search for the number 14. Makes me wonder whether Singapore understood the term strike. :P.
    4. Here’s a blog written by your fellow Singaporean: Must Read 1001 Reasons Why I hate Singapore


    Bah typical white guy rant.

    • Where does it say he’s white? Can you point that out for me?

      • OH MY NAME

        No. I am a little busy right now, McPfister

  • As one of the moderators I feel like I have to chime in and point out that the vast majority of comments criticizing the author for publishing an article anonymously have fake names and fake email addresses; I find this highly amusing. Not only that but what kind of moron would publish such an article in their own name anyway – what good could possibly come of it?

    I’m also curious why Singaporeans think all caucasians have red hair, kind of funny since red haired individuals are definitely a minority among caucasians/whites. Pretty stupid.

    • OH MY NAME

      as one of the moderators of the most stupid racist blog on earth, you find people commenting to be stupid? Surprise, kid!

      • Wow, that’s quite an accusation coming from someone from one of the most racist countries on earth, India.

          • Guy

            Very well said and what what that guy’s (OH MY NAME) problem. I guess Indian have trouble distinguishing racism and perspective/opinions. I have seen lots of issues with Indians; they may be many but most with low quality (mostly construction workers, unemployed, beggars and such). Over the past one month alone, I’ve seen rapists stories in India, sexual assault Sexual Assault in Melbourne by an Indian and a lot more. SO before you (OH MY NAME) make any stupid comments; get your facts right. May be I’l write an article one day (Quantity over Quality in India – which is the truth); There’s more construction worker and the unemployed compared to the ‘quality’ ones.

        • OH MY NAME

          thanks for the info about my country but we are taking care of those problems and most of our kids are not monkeys with guns, Charlie Buckminsterfullerene.

      • Criticizing a nation is not racist dumbass.

        • OH MY NAME

          Arent we past that age where we could win arguments by posting links from internet. The difference is that ‘i am not racist’ and you are. Nothing to do with my country or yours. Hard to accept right?

          • OH MY NAME

            And I can build a library out of Australians/Westerners racism. It’s a part of history. india’s is subtle. Don’t bring your high-school troll logic here. Youtube videos and internet reports it seems.

          • Keep em coming. Your own “retardation” is pretty amusing for us too wherever you’re from.

          • Vuil Uil

            OH MY NAME: Please explain why you are not a racist. Any fool can make a statement: “I am not a racist“.

            But I wonder, I truly wonder, how well you really perform in real life. My experience in Mumbai and Bangalore is that many Indians are racist. They just don`t know it.

            I recall sitting in a BMW in Bangalore – owned and driven by the CEO of one of the companies I was consulting to. The car was filled Indians – all wealthy and successful – and me. We were having a good old laugh when suddenly there was a knock on the window. A poor woman (as only the poor in India can be) with one eye and one arm and a baby on her side begging for money outside the car.

            The car went quiet. Nobody said a thing. Everyone looked straight ahead until the poor creature went on her way. It was tragic and nobody lifted a finger to help or give any money. Eventually I attempted to give her a few rupees, but was stopped. They`ll all want money then. The crowd in the car said. And anyway she was of a low caste. Blah, blah, racist, blah. Indian racism. Certainly not subtle. In fact very in your face.

            No other culture has such an utter disregard for human suffering. So don`t, just don`t, give me any crap about racism, just because you don`t like what people write does not give you license to claim, tritely, that you are not a racist and that someone else is (because you disagree with a post). I`d like more information on your virtuous life before I believe your vacuous – I am not a racist – claim. And your pronouncements that someone else is.

            On my frequent visits to India I have yet to find a charity, or orphanage or self help organization started by Indians. Ninety percent of the time charities in India have been started by whites (those terrible racists). Where I live they TV ads are always soliciting for donations to help the Indian poor – leprosy, poverty, the usual thing. When last did you, clearly affluent enough to afford the Internet, donate to an Indian charity for, say, leprosy.

          • Ouch.

          • Anon

            How is that racism Vuil? My friend, racism can only be commited by one race against another, NOT between people of the same race. Ha, you for all of your self-proclaimed intellengence can’t even make this distinction. Keep your comments coming. Let’s experience your inaptitude through them.

          • Well, call it what you want, but people of a darker skin color in India get treated like shit. Racism or whatever it’s called, it’s pretty evil.

    • Pot much?

      “I’m also curious why Singaporeans think all caucasians have red hair, kind of funny since red haired individuals are definitely a minority among caucasians/whites. Pretty stupid”

      You really wanna go down that path…”whites”?

  • Here is another question… does anyone in Singapore actually acknowledge that Singapore is a de facto dictatorship? I mean, there is no such thing as a democracy where a single guy runs it for 31 years followed by some other insider for 14 years and then the first guys son. WTF? I found some stupid chick’s blog where she was asking all kinds of stupid questions like “Why doesn’t life get better for the average citizen?”, “Why do cars cost so much?”, “Why does the government keep doing things against the interests of the voters”, “Why does a piece of paper to giving permission own a car cost more the car itself” and on and on. Come on, Singapore is an even more thinly veiled dictatorship than the US where they at least pretend to have two parties! And regarding the car issue, dictatorship or not, isn’t it obvious to even the slowest of minds that the government wants to discourage car ownership?

    • Guy

      Bingo… That’s what I’ve been saying for all these time From the way I see it, singapore is under a dictator regime. Look at its PM; earns SGD $2 mill to run a small country whilst its people suffer(Auntie’s and Uncle’s; in their retirement age working in hawker center and such). Sounds a lot like North Korea if you ask me. I am completely with you on this one. Look at how closed minded and low educated some of these singaporeans are with their comments. Accept the hard truth; don’t just listen to all the things that you want to listen to.

    • New Singaporean

      India – ostensibly the largest democracy in the world, has been ruled by several generations from one family. Not saying it’s right. Just saying it is not unique to Singapore. What’s more – the brand of participatory democracy SG and India have, which you think is a thin veil of de facto dictatorship, is *British*.

      • Well maybe but at least in Britain they pretend like they are changing rulers from time to time.

  • Shaun

    To the author: you must really need attention, and unfortunately you seem to be getting it here. As an ang moh who lives in Singapore and loves it here, I just can’t figure out what could possibly possess you to write this inflammatory piece? Did you think that external criticism of a whole nation would suddenly result in collective introspection? The only success you have had here has been to make all ang moh look arrogant, that’s it. Thank you for that. You have made my life so much easier by further encouraging an already growing anti-foreigner sentiment. While I personally hate any form of censorship, maybe you should shut your mouth and think about what you’re doing before you do it. Every country has issues mate… and yes, maybe if pm Lee said “hey, let’s improve our standard of English ” then there might be more development there, but if this comes from you, then guess what? Your opinion will only inflame tensions and do nothing. Please, think next time… and use tact.

  • Amelican in Singapole

    I’m finding the arrogant attitudes of many of those Singaporeans that were able to respond thoughtfully and literately to be pretty shocking in their content (I’m not even going to comment on all the barely literate ones). “We’re too good to respond to an online ad”, “We can’t be expected to work in anything but a top company”, “Maybe the office is in a bad neighborhood, we wouldn’t work there” and so on. So arrogant and such an attitude of superiority. Is it really such a buyers market for job seekers right now? If so that won’t last. And if Singaporeans are so above entry level to middle management office jobs why not let foreigners who want these jobs take them? What’s wrong with making ~$36K per year in an entry level office job as a fresh grad? That’s how much I made for my first job in a big city in the US and I went to a decent university. Do average Singaporean fresh grads really expect to start at the top instead of working their way up? I’m reading a lot of “screw foreigners they’re stealing our jobs” (here and elsewhere) and then immediately followed by “we’re above these kind jobs”. What stupid, arrogant and blatant hypocrisy.

    Furthermore I’m also amused at those who poke fun collapsing Western economies as if Singapore is totally immune from economic downturn forever. Singapore sure looks like a bubble economy to me if there ever was one what with the hugely inflated real estate prices that sell for huge multiples of rent during a period of rock bottom interest rates. It’s like none of them have ever been educated about what went wrong to collapse the western economies like the US for example and the popping of the housing bubble. I haven’t compared the statistics but I would venture a guess just off the top of my head that median housing prices are probably a higher multiple of median household incomes in SG now than they were in the US in 2007-08 and I do know for a FACT that the interest rates on mortgages are way lower than they ever were in the US. That’s not all there is about SG that’s analogous to some other collapsing (or already collapsed) economies in the world – what about the hugely over sized and over weighted banking and finance industry. If there’s one thing many of the recent financial catastrophes have in common it’s over sized banking and finance industries. Think you all need to re-read the article linked below and really think about it carefully:

    The last thing I’d say is, in general, give the arrogance a rest – a massive proportion of everything that’s being done (and has been done) in Singapore is due to tremendous amounts of foreign investment and foreign talent as well as big corporations relocating to SG for low taxes. Without these factors Singapore would be just another swampy Malaysian island. Get off your high horses you look ridiculous.

    • Australian in SillyPole

      I completely agree with you. Singapore wouldn’t even near be what they are today without foreigner, foreign investment and foreign talent. For all I know, singapore would be just another forest or some swamp. I truly find some Singaporeans to be arrogant; thinking that they are above foreigners. Their arrogance is already way beyond reasonable.

      The other time, I overheard some dumbass singaporean talking about how the mining industry in Australia is a ticking time b0mb because eventually the resources will run out. What a really dumbass statement. Does retarded singaporean think that mining is the only source of income for Australian government? Australia got thousand times more resources and products to export than sillypore. What’s singapore’s income? ERP Gantry or COE? And now they try to reduce cars? Not to mention the property bubble.

      Singapore is truly a third-world country with a first-world mask. There’s no mistake about it.

      I wonder if all foreigner should pull out their investments and talent; whether singapore turns back into a swamp or simply just a ghost town.

  • Singaporean

    Truth in many grounds, disagreements in some.

    1) Racism (as opposed to xenophobia) is not prevalent. Malay, chinese and indian do mix really well. I’ve got friends of all ethnicity, and we go through same national service, braving through sweat and tears. This is one thing i must disagree. And chinatown, little india are just tourist spots. Locals don’t frequent there because it’s totally not a representation. See those jades on sale in Chinatown? Only foreigner will buy it and think is a ‘chinese’ thing. If i gave you a dollar for finding a local with things bought in chinatown, i will not be any poorer than i am now.

    2) Efficiency. Paperworks are a bitch, but it’s necessary to keep things as official as possible. Having worked in many countries, sg is the fastest i’ve seen. The author’s point on banking systems is totally invalid because it’s not true. One visit to bank can get your ibanking and other bank issues settled. There are paperwork but staffs are trained to highlight essential fine prints to note. Locals will trust the tellers, but if you don’t you are free to bring the fine prints home. This is a different practice from your country whereby your bank perhaps don’t even give you the fine prints. You will only see them when you are doing legal. The author should be more cautious in this.

    It is good to know that Singapore is only a 48 years old country. Those age 45 and above once used to live in kampungs (the author will never know about this). The Singapore 48 years ago is VERY different from what it is now. And the percentage of people who once lived in kampungs are still relatively high. It’s not surprising to see people who spits and launches those snot rockets. Habits die hard, but the trend is decreasing. You are from europe, I don’t know where you are from but surely there are some blacksheeps? I once went to europe for tour and i constantly worry about my safety. My bag was cut open once but I was lucky that my wallet is in my pocket.

    The author is really biased. Online sentiments are biased too. For best understanding, travel down here and take a look.


    • Amelican in Singapole

      I don’t want to comment about the rest of it but I find the banking to be incredibly retarded compared to other places. Too much paper work, paper mail, signatures, confirmations, etc. For example POSB (one of the biggest consumer banks in SG) randomly deactivated my debit and insisted they had to send me a new one because they said someone tried to use it even though the card was in my possession the entire time. This involved waiting for the card in the mail, then waiting for a separate piece of paper with a pin and then going to an ATM, finding a special “activate card” sub-menu on the ATM and typing in my pin, birth date and ID card number just to activate it but the kicker was that there were no instructions provided in either piece of mail about this whole stupid process. Calling the bank and pressing 3 to talk to the “debit card department” connects you to a random operator that can’t help because it’s the “credit card department” (seriously, the phone menu isn’t even right). It’s like banking from the 1980’s just with web sites (which all have pretty shitty online banking, by the way).

      Another shocking display of banking stupidity occurred when I was trying to make some simple transactions at another bank in person. It took three employees to figure out how to create a bank check and when I signed all the forms they insisted that my signature wasn’t right even though I was there in person with my ID. I signed three times and they insisted it wasn’t right. At that point they turned their computer screen toward me and showed me my signature from the day I opened the account and said “Can you make it more like that?”. Needless to say, the bank employees are often painfully stupid.

      Any Singaporean that’s defending the banking system here is only doing so because they haven’t banked in a developed country (or even many undeveloped countries) outside Singapore where things are far more reliable and streamlined.

      • Another Singaporean

        No country’s banking system is perfect (except maybe Switzerland even then …) Lets list down my experiences for banking in “developed” countries

        Commonwealth Bank Australia – Issued me a credit card with a wrong name but I used it anyway to pay some urgent bills, but their call centre refused to even take my call when I tried to pay the bill and clear up the name issue as the names differ on the card (duh), 2nd time they forgot to process for 1 month a cheque payment I got after selling my car, it was a big amount and the experience of having to sort it out was not pleasing. And they charge you 5 AUD per month for admin (though they don’t do anything) plus withdrawal fees per atm transaction

        Citigold Australia – Wire the wrong amount of funds against written instruction and telephone confirmation, this happened twice. Another time they screwed up the account number despite performing a telephone confirmation, luckily for them the funds bounced back which is lucky for them.

        Citibank UK – to open an account you need to make a branch appointment, but the branch phone number is withheld on the internet and the call centre refuses to divulge them, nor can they make an appointment on your behalf. Alternative make an appointment at the branch yourself and make a return trip after.

        Abbey National UK (now Santander) – Using one application form they manage to open two account for me and freeze them at the same time due to their error, after trying to resolve for 3 months gave up and submitted a new form with the same details for a new account and left the 2 to die a natural death.

        Are these developed countries or what? I won’t even digress into their other inefficiencies i,e interbank transfers, queue time etc.

        One thing that does piss me off about the banking system here is the amount of tokens I got for various banks, and how I have to keep getting the annual fee waived every year for the credit cards which is something not practiced in UK. Its a scam

        I reserve my comments for the rest of the article which is a biased Singapore basher anyway

        • Vuil Uil

          The only explanation is that the Aussies were racist since my banking experience there (ANZ) was a piece of cake. Can’t speak for Citibank, but Abby National and RBS was fine with me. But hey, I’m a white guy so go figure.

          So there you have it. You must have suffered from racism – though I am puzzled since many bank tellers in the UK are of Indian extraction.

      • This a very typical Singaporean experience you describe.

        • Another Singaporean

          Only for the tokens and credit annual fees that annoy me, other then that never faced anything of the sort within the SG banking system. Like I said its not perfect but it works a helluva better then the ones in some so called “developed” countries

          Wiring funds across banks in Australia takes 3 days to clear, withdrawing anything above 2000 over the counter requires advance notice to the bank before you turn up unless you visit the main branch. In Singapore transfers across banks take a day or worse case 2 via Giro, if that doesn’t cut it withdraw 10K in 1,000 notes or 100K in 10K notes (even small UOB branches can accommodate the 1K notes transactions), fits in the pocket and you can deposit it immediately at the bank of your choice.

          I hardly doubt a typical Singaporean performs the Bank transaction I do, but when it comes to banking Singapore offers the flexibility and efficiency in a part of the world where moving funds can be a very challenging affair. Its really up to ones self to ensure they can make the most of it, IMO its mind boggling why people are stuck at simple issues.

          Also for the above post (Mr Amelican)
          Maybe your debit card got skimmed, its very common practice in Europe and rather then have you moan about your cash missing later the bank decided to be pro-active (maybe too pro-active) and cancelled it first.

          As for your signature, the bank would have warned you to make sure your signature is consistent when you opened the account. Whats the point in having a signature if its not consistent? I suggest you change your account to be a thumbprint account instead? These days the ink can be wiped off in a tick and it will save you the hassle in the future.


          • Amelican in Singapole

            I can’t comment on Australia because I’ve never banked there but I have banked in >10 other countries and Singapore is the worst. You are an apologist. Your banks are appalling in the service and efficiency departments. Pretty much everyone else has figured out how to do business and banking in the 21st century but Singapore has not. Any country that’s doing banking less effectively than Singapore is just the next biggest loser. Get real.

          • Another Singaporean

            Banked in >10 countries wow impressive, then again actually saying is one thing why not give some examples? I provided you UK and Aust examples purely because I assumed it made more relevance to your earlier statement below, but I also maintain banking facilities in many developing nations including an ex-soviet satellite state nation which has some pretty good e-banking services for a state its age. But no where near 10.

            “Any Singaporean that’s defending the banking system here is only doing so because they haven’t banked in a developed country (or even many undeveloped countries) outside Singapore where things are far more reliable and streamlined.”

            Another thing I failed to mention is why on earth would you open a POSB account? It’s the largest consumer bank purely because it serves the mum and pop stores of Singapore, all expats I know open an account with UOB so unless you like rubbing shoulders with half of Singapore I do recommend you open an account there. If you have 500k open a privilege account and skip the queues, if you got 1.5M even better you get served tea and coffee and they will fill out your remittance form for you. Personally I wouldn’t trust POSB to handle anything above 50K, DBS hrmm maybe but UOB is the preferred choice.

            I’m hardly being an apologist but people with lack of knowledge blaming the system is really annoying, like why would you go to Peacocks in the UK for a good fashion outfit? Sure its serves the populace but for a totally different reason.

            Additionally the signature on the form needs to be the same not because the front counter staff can’t verify you but the form goes back to the back office and they need to verify against something in the system, if something goes wrong why should the counter staff put their jobs on the line for doing you a favor? Is this being apologist?? Its simple banking protocol in any professional bank not just Singapore.

          • Amelican in Singapole

            No, banking incompetence in Singapore is pretty similar across the board. I’ve accounts in many banks, POSB was just the most recent example I could think of off the top of my head. The second anecdote I described with the three dolts who couldn’t figure out how to make a bank check actually was at UOB.

            Besides what kind of a complete idiot would park $500K or even worse $1.5 million in account that pays virtually no interest just to get free coffee? And the fact that you have to actually go to the bank personally and/or courier papers with original signatures back and forth is just another testament to how bad, slow and inefficient Singaporean banking really is.

            OCBC, UOB, DBS it doesn’t matter – there is a courier coming to my office to deliver or pickup papers at least once a week and often times more frequently. I’ve got bank accounts in other countries where I literally have to visit the bank or provide even one original signature less than once per year.

            And yes it is being an apologist, Singapore banking is horrifically slow, incompetent and inefficient. Look what a testament you are making to my point when you say in your own words you wouldn’t trust Singapore’s largest consumer bank with a paltry $50K. You said it for me right there. Done with this conversation, if you like having your time wasted by Singapore’s banks continue to enjoy it, there are plenty of options.

          • Another Singaporean

            The fact you pulled out POSB as the main example shows its your biggest bugbear, the only reason why I have that account is because I had it since childhood. I cannot imagine what person would fly all the way down to Singapore and open an account in what is more suited for Singaporeans as their main savings accounts (Its called Post Office Savings Bank in case you were not aware, I will stress on the savings bit meaning remittance is not their speciality)

            Who ever said the funds had to be parked in SGD? Anyway parking money in SGD is mainly for a conduit of funds when investing in the region, if you’re really into business why would you care about what interest you get on 500K? “Business entertainment” expense parts of our neighboring nations already go into sums of 200K or more.

            You claim to do perform banking operations in excess of 10 countries yet have to get down and dirty with the staff at POSB (Its POSB for God’s sake what do I even need to stress this for LOL), Argue with the counter staff when you can’t get your signature right (its your own damn signature FFS), these factors alone shows that you’re unfamiliar in the territory of banking research and well signing your own name.

            You can’t even negate my points about negative banking I brought up in UK and Australia (your words not mine see below instead of skirting around it), nor the fact that your moaning is really no ones fault but your own, What can I say this conversation really is over.

            “Any Singaporean that’s defending the banking system here is only doing so because they haven’t banked in a developed country (or even many undeveloped countries) outside Singapore where things are far more reliable and streamlined.”

  • Ng Wee Kiat

    I’m wondering what is the entry requirement and job scope of your job opening? I’m pretty sure you were inviting the lower class Singaporean idiots to work for you.
    I’m pretty sure there are tonnes of us who actually speak proper English and have a decent etiquette for communication purposes.

    Sad that you’re unable to experience the better side of Singapore, I’m glad you’re leaving my good lad.

    Let this be known that while there is a great level of dissent in Singapore, dissing on our country on such a scale is an invitation to be slapped. Of course this is a relatively ‘free’ country, you’re free to write what you wish, so are we 🙂

    Every country has her own flaws albeit Singapore having a lot -hidden/covered up or not-, do let me know where you’re from and I’ll be happy to dig the dirt on your country.

    A Singaporean who have seen a bit of the outside world.

    • Ng Wee Kiat

      … and for the record, I am DISGUSTED with my fellow Singaporeans and their poor social etiquette. I do feel ashamed of being a Singaporean.

      What I am taking issue here is your generalization and stereotyping of all Singaporeans.

      I feel that you’re just another European frog in a well. (google that if you have no clues)

      Culture shock ? Yes. Sucks that you can adapt to change.

    • Po Pimp

      I inferred from the article that the job posting did not even include the company name. How professional is that? The author is going to get bent out of shape because someone is checking the name so they know they are at the right place for their interview? What a jackass.

  • kill me softly

    lol, I must admit, this article is hilarious. and the truth sometimes hurts..
    I have never been to Singapore or know much of anything about the country, or its people and culture, but after reading this article I did some research on Youtube of videos made by Singies to try and get an idea, then I read 40+ comments here.. and I have to admit, I totally see the authors points! and believe me when I tell you, I have Nothing at all against Singies.
    OK, you can all shoot me now! lol!

    • HairyRedMonkey

      “lol” ? sound like a giggling 12 yr old…..and btw…what are Singies?.

  • anothersingaporean

    Using a monster type job application system? What a joke, professional firms use headhunters or talent agencies to recruit for staff. Those free online job adverts are suited more small budgeted companies, pay peanuts get monkeys get the point.

    “Other joys of Singapore are the public spitting and watching people blow snot rockets into the sinks in the rest rooms (that was a favorite of mine in my old office building). The behavior, the mentality, the culture is uncivilized and very third world. Sure there is an upper class like everywhere, but I’m talking about your regular, every day, average Singaporeans. Bad manners, no class, bad language skills, frequently lacking basic hygiene, lacking basic common sense, you name it. It very much feels like they just bused in a bunch of people from an uncivilized third world country and turned them loose in a big city.”

    Good point public spitting is a nono, we should save the spit for the likes of yourself. Prob save them snot too, a snot for a snot I say

  • Mayu

    As much as I enjoyed Anonymous’ post, I find the comments by readers even more entertaining. I have no idea if the posters realised it but the more they flamed the author (e.g. telling him to GTFO, using profanities, insulting his business acumen etc.), they are inadvertantly portraying all the qualities that have been written in the post itself. It would have been more intelligent to take an objective stand instead of getting all defensive and emotional over someone’s opinions. Besides, I have seen massive amounts of anti-foreigner sentiment posts (pretty insulting to be exact) in other forums and blogs by Singaporeans so isn’t it only fair that foreigners are given the chance to voice their views as well?

    I have met several Singaporeans who told me of their bad experiences in other countries (e.g. Australia) due to racism. Turning the equation around, aren’t the locals doing the exact same thing now and on an even larger, much vocal scale. I am unable to fathom the mentality that foreigners must only stand at the receiving end of insults simply because they did not possess the same nationality as locals do. This is superior complexity at its worst.

    • Another Anon


      Superior complexity is everywhere, no less in Singapore. Just don’t forget that 40% of the residents here are currently not native, another 20% are new immigrants and I am a new immigrant too. I can understand how they feel.

      But, foreigners staying here are a lot of safer, their wealth and property are protected. Have you been bitten up or being throw stone at out of nowhere while walking on the street in Manchester or Brisbane?

      Here, you are free to vent whatever you wanted and still nobody touch you, and guess what. Low Tax and still get government fund and goodies for startup company.

      Did I just hear wrongly someone is complaining or these goodies are still not enough and want some more freebies. Try that in Australia and see what do you get as a foreigner and you turn the equation around again. Tomorrow you will notice more foreigners being attacked on the street and their house / office being smashed.

  • Joey sez

    Brighter it seems than most descendents of non-coolies according to the World Economic Forum rankings. How’s your country doing?

  • Basic economics

    I stopped reading after the author threatens to take his business elsewhere. Haha what a joke. This guy obviously doesn’t understand how the free market works. Please just leave. Guess what is gonna happen when you leave? Another company that can make a profit without paying 1,500/mth will come. And when people really need jobs, they will upgrade themselves and adapt. Does 40% foreigners sound okay to you? What a silly excuse for a businessman. Don’t embarrass yourself. You do realise your major problem is that your business is probably not enticing enough to attract workers that actually are interested. Maybe, just maybe, your experience might be attracting a certain segment of the working population.

    Imagine u set up a cleaning company and then base your entire experience of Singaporean workers on the locals you try to hire. That’s not very smart is it?

  • Makapok

    I think the author is plain racist. He probably doesn’t know it, but he is.

    He seems to think that a non-western country has to have an astonishingly advanced society in order to occupy top spots in country development rankings. Can’t a country’s success just be built on sound economic decisions and policies? This is akin to the author saying that an Asian person has to have unusually well-developed personal attributes/connections to be well regarded in a western society, rather than attributing the success to hard work and good choices.

    Also, Singapore is located in the heart of South East Asia (SEA) and is an Asian country, and should be measured against Asian norms, so the author shouldn’t really be, I use the word, “disgusted” at the level of Singapore’s civil society. Singapore is not the West, and shouldn’t be compared to western norms.

    • Just curious… how is someone that only speaks negatively about “Singaporeans” (note: not a race) and who speaks positively of Filipinos a racist? Just curious.

      • Anon

        Are you suffering from mild cognitive impairment? The author discriminates against the malays. The mere fact that he doesn’t mingle with them suggests that he is a racist. (If he did, he would have realised that he was wrong.) For the record, most Singaporeans of different races do mix with each other. Almost every single Chinese person that I know have attended a Malay wedding once and have many great Malay friends.

        • Where is there a discriminatory statement against Malays in particular? Must’ve missed it. Anyway, is “Malay” a whole separate “race” from everybody else in Southeast Asia now? Sorry I didn’t go to a liberal arts college and major in sociology so I’m ignorant of such important matters.

          • Can’t be bother?

            Ignorant is not an excuse when one walk with his eye & ear shut and with his brain inside his ass into a foreign country. Just as your friend above “Pot Much” assume all Singaporeans are ignorant to think all Caucasians have red hair. And you and the author assume all Singaporeans speak your English.

            Guess you two make a Tango 69. Which of you want to be on top position? But never mind, it does not matter, it is 69, flip whichever position you want.

          • HairyRedMonkey

            sorry about your educational choices..

            so are you like a English tutor or Not-for-profit worker in Singapore?..or maybe you are doing something in the performing arts industry…

        • HairyRedMonkey

          hahaah..whoever made this guest post is a very sore foreign salaryman who is feels his life is completely meaningless when faced with the sheer wealth of “undeserving” Singaporeans….I feel his hopelessness but he just comes across as very bitter..

  • WOW

    I’ve been living in Singapore for almost 3 years.

    In order to value a country we should look at the well traveled people and not the immense majority. I’ve lived in Spain, France, the UK, visited many other countries and all of them can be criticised (if we look at the immense majority) above all The UK or even Spain :-). The difference will be marked by this smaller % of traveled people…

    CONCLUSION -> Start travelling and experiencing things abroad wherever you are! It will help you, your country and everybody!

  • get real

    well-written article. truth hurts that’s why people people protesting. a truly nany state where you go to your MP for everything like to avoid paying a fine, getting a place in kindergarten, letter of recommendation for a job, taxi licence, etc etc to complain about your neighbour or if the old folks home is sited too near your flat. what you get after years of conditioning is people who just cannot think or lazy, expect others to do the dirty work, think thee whole world revolves around them , always think there is a loophole(lobang) or shortcut to get things done easily(lazy man way of thinking. a good example is literally buying China atheletes for olympics medals and calling them singaporeans only for them to run back to China when the dough runs dry ala LJW), etc. even the MSM is guilty of bragging, No 1 here and there. driving skills are the worst in the world eg turning without signalling or occupying two lanes orhogging no wonder alot of them get killed when driving overseas or get cheated. LOL readuiing the article

    • a good example is literally buying China atheletes for olympics medals and calling them singaporeans only for them to run back to China when the dough runs dry ala LJW)


      driving skills are the worst in the world eg turning without signalling or occupying two lanes orhogging no wonder alot of them get killed when driving overseas or get cheated.

      Only been to Singapore passing through before but it was long enough to notice that Singapore definitely does not have the worst driving skills. In my personal experience that one is Egypt. Imagine if everyone behind the wheel of any type of motor vehicle constantly had a death wish and that might give you some insight for what it’s like there. Also they do not understand the accelerator is analog device, for them it’s digital (on or off).

  • ahbutthen

    Europe’s colonial days are over. Get that into that thick skull of yours. If you don’t like it here, pack up and go home. If Europe is so great, solve the stupid sovereign debt crisis for once. The world is sick and tired of Europe’s incompetence in solving their own problems.

  • Donny

    haha…who is this “anon” sourgrapes little prik….c’mon..don’t be such a pussy…tell us who you are.

  • John

    Is it not ironic that the writer bemoans bad English, when the article he wrote is full of it? I may be a grammar nazi, but whether to use “A” or “AN” depends on the SOUND of the first letter. So he (or she) is not “A Europe” but “AN European” business person. There are so loads of missing punctuations throughout the article too.

  • Mea

    I’m Singaporean, and unfortunately I agree with some of the points listed above.
    However, I wonder if the exchange that took place between you and those potential candidates were real, or are they even Singaporeans, let alone one with a college degree.
    None of my friends speak or write that way, even those with only a secondary school or high school certificate.
    Granted, they make mistakes, but I do not think I have seen or heard anyone of my friends being totally incomprehensible that way.
    Not turning up for an interview IS unusual, especially if one does not inform the company.
    I have had situations where I had several interviews at different companies on the same day which clashed, all I had to do was call and let them know, then rearrange.
    Not at all difficult to do when one is polite. Why would anyone destroy the own image that their trying to sell BEFORE they turn up for an interview truly baffles me.
    I have however, had some horrible experiences with local-owned SMEs.

    In my opinion, Singapore is simply taking advantage of many foreigners who choose to work here. The lower skilled workers are being paid peanuts, and their employers having to pay high levies who sometimes ill-treat them, them getting the short end of the stick is an understatement. This is especially prominent in the construction industry (the actual industrial work where people build the buildings, fit the pipes, mix the cement), which most Singaporeans shun. Most seem to be brought up with the mentality that jobs that these are reserved for the outcasts of society, and one should only find jobs in large offices of banks. Many people here look down on people who have such jobs, thus not improving the chances of such industries hiring Singaporean workers. There are so many things wrong with their on so many levels. In my experience, even as a country with a developed economy, Singapore’s building standards are slack. Some who hold degrees never had any hands on experience and make poor decisions causing many unnecessary problems as structures age. Yes, everything wears and tears, but some of these problems happen just 6 months after construction! And I’m referring to more expensive houses like condominiums and other private estates. Paying so much for shabby work is simply infuriating.

    I do agree with the state our service industry is in. Some other ridiculous processes include how certain online procedures require you to print a file, write on it, then fax or scan and email it back. This totally defeats the purpose of using less paper. The vision they are trying to achieve by using technology for convenience and efficiency is contradicted by many similarly poor systems. The 3g networks is so slow, one may as well not bother with it. Why implement and set up a 3g network that barely works?

    Also, I can’t dispute the spitting in public part. This is something more common among the older generation, which is also common in China. Ignoring one’s personal space seems to be some form of culture here as well. People bump into each other without apologising, and to make things worse, some glare and respond rudely.

    Public housing is not cheap, in my humble opinion. But that’s a whole other argument.

  • Oxford

    I’m not Singaporean, but I’ve spent several months there and have lived abroad for several years. I can confirm that the author is a dumbass.

  • E

    Oh fuck you, seriously. You’re downright pathetic, and unrealistic.

  • Are you by any chance an Aspie?

    Bizarrely Mr Crab’s syntax reads like one who received his formative education from around these parts despite his protestations of how proverbially pwned he has been by us locals. Man up about your Asian roots (probably a Tiong as well) instead of hiding behind this “euro business person” screen. Take a leaf from this site’s moderator, Fister with a P, who goes about calling others “retard” and “ugly bitches” but is still game enough to display his mugshot.

  • Thank you for taking the time to write such a insightful and detailed article. I find the section on job interviews most enlightening. I’m a Singaporean but I hope I don’t get complacent enough to forget basic business etiquette.

    I agree that we are unabashedly spoilt by the government. Not going to add to much on that since I personally find it wonderful. I see no fault when Singaporeans try to exploit the system and milk it to their advantage. For example, renting HDB to foreigners as passive income. You think this encourages us to be lazy and stupid but I don’t find working towards financial liberation stupid at all.

    If we can get on with little effort because we can, who’s a fool to resist. People often fail to see the ingenuity required behind comfortable laziness. In this world, not everyone is smart or wise enough to be lazy.

    I have worked with and managed people from different countries and cultures. I believe every nationality has something to offer and something working against them, somewhat influenced by the education system and culture in their home country. You need to fit them correctly and furthermore, assess them individually. You can’t expect a Monkey to swim. Stereotype casting all your candidates as retarded is a sure way to fail and one of the worst attitudes to have as an employer. It is your responsibility to find the right candidate for the job, when you can’t, don’t blame the population. It’s like having no friends and blaming the human species.

    So you decided to spit on the hands that feed you and set up a shared service centre. Sounds familiar…

    What I find most disgusting about Singaporeans, is how they are completely blind to all the good the government have given them. Credit where credit’s due, you nailed the xenophobia sentiments brilliantly.

    “The periodic anti-Chinese backlash is something that I find to be a never-ending source of entertainment. From time to time the locals get all riled up about having too many foreigners in Singapore “stealing their jobs” and frequently they single out the Chinese for abuse. I find it to be incredibly funny when they choose all those “Chinese foreigners” to pick on because the vast majority of the resident population of this less than a generation old joke of a “country” is in fact Chinese, they are nearly 75% of the population!”

    This is why I hope that after you’ve completed your assessment of all the flaws in Singapore, you will give some thought to all the good this country has to offer too.

    Case in point, Geylang offers some of the best food in Singapore. There is no conspiracy to hide the place from tourists, it is served by a few major metro stations. In fact, to borrow your quote… “If you haven’t seen it, you haven’t really seen Singapore at all.”

  • cg86

    I suppose the author and mods who are so anal about the standard of English (or perceived lack there of) here in Singapore should take a look at how the English Language is butchered by “native English users” from all around the world: (I’m making an assumption though. Don’t mock me for that. :P)

    Sure, we use Singlish. But in this country, you don’t see common grammar mistakes using “your” as “you’re”, “they” as “their” or “tare” as “tear”.

    Mods and other commentors too. Everyone is entitled to their opinion about something, and everyone is entitled to whine/complain/vent. Like I said previously, if the author, mods and commentors included can’t accept the fact that people have their other side of story, there’s really nothing much one can do about it.

    Singapore is a small country that is being forced into accepting what was “given” to us, whether we want it or not. Growing up in a plastic-mould environment where everyone is expected to think in a strict set of rules and regulations results in such a society now. I’m not saying this is justifiable, but this is my country, and each country has their own set of social and cultural issues.

    I’m pretty sure you will face problems, wherever the business is located in, even your home country. And wherever you come from, there’s another angry, frustrated businessman with a 5000 word essay drafted in his chest waiting to explode in a website. You have the option to leave when you’re done bearing with all these angst you face. Quite a number of us don’t so the angst is transferred elsewhere. If the mods decides that such a provoking complain is worthy of publication, the mods should not be cynical about the comments that react to the insulting tone of this complain.

    You wanted to light a fire mah, so get ready for some heat lor. Don’t say I never warn you hor.

  • AfSe

    Sigh…dude dude…u really need help..stop complaining so much and learn to adapt…if not,pls go back to your country…

  • afa

    I lived in Singapore for many years and (of course) some of what the author says is true (from his/her perspective), but I think the retard may be the author as they expects another country to behave exactly like their own. Different countries have different cultures and different expected norms – that is one of the things that make other countries so interesting. Not realizing this and expecting it all to be just like you want it is a bit …. well, retarded. And if all the countries were the same and worked in the cookie cutter fashion the author wished – the world would be a far less interesting place. I think that the author should try to understand the culture and try to work with it rather than hate it and rail against it – good luck to them

  • Ron

    We’re all assuming this person is white.


    Way to go, Singapore.

    ‘Casual racism’ was missed out of the article, i guess, because they knew that we could illustrate that point perfectly well in the comments.

    Hook, line, sinker.

    • Lois

      Well, he did say he was European business person, so there is a higher chance of him being white than some other race

      • Not so much as it used to be and anyway it’s pretty stupid to say “He’s from Europe so he must be white”.

        • Supposedly retarded Singaporean that fails to comprehend English

          Oh wow! You are absolutely brilliant!

          *Your ingenious thought process*

          Mohammed is the top English baby boy name in UK. UK is part of Europe so this trend is also true in Europe. All muslims must be non-white as white men cannot convert to Islam. As this is the current trend now, 20+ years ago the trend must have been the same.

          It is time you revisit causality in your English class or god forbid, IMPROVE your comprehension skills.

          Also he wrote businessman NOT businesswoman. Seeing that he can accuse us for having poor English skills, I would expect him to be very precise in what he says.

          PS: I hope you can understand my broken English. 🙂

          • Completely stupid comment. You’re saying there are lots of white men converting to islam and implying that they name their babies Mohammad (the most retarded religion of all time, by the way)? Where? Data please. Anyway Europe is full of non-whites and pretty much everybody knows that, it’s a growing trend not a shrinking one.

          • Supposedly retarded Singaporean that fails to comprehend English

            I didn’t say that there are white man converting to Islam. I am saying that YOU claim that there are fewer white man as Mohammad is the most popular name now. That is absolutely stupid. While Europe is full of non-whites, who is still the majority there?

            Also you claim that the author could be a woman. Your proof please.

          • You are really are an idiot.

            1.) European does not equal white.

            2.) There are a growing number of non-whites in Europe.

            These are facts. Therefore assuming someone is automatically white because they are from Europe is a stupid assumption.

          • Supposedly retarded Singaporean that fails to comprehend English

            I am talking about probability here. While your 2 points are valid, there is still a higher percentage of white adults compared to non-white adults. Hence the probability that someone from Europe is White is higher than if the person is non-white. I am not assuming but rather going by probability. Similarly, isn’t is quite safe to say that most Singaporeans are Chinese?

            Also your proof please that the author could be a woman.

          • It’s not relevant if he’s white or not and it’s not something you can reasonably conclude from available information. Nobody cares that you think the majority of people are white in Europe (which is probably true but there are certainly pockets of Europe where the majority is non white). You’re making stupid comments and stupid assumptions about something that isn’t even relevant in the first place.

          • Here’s some more of those racist white guys from London:


        • Another Anon

          @ Manuel Pfister on your reply on ” April 3, 2013 at 09:08 – Not so much as it used to be and anyway it’s pretty stupid to say “He’s from Europe so he must be white…”

          Went through your replies earlier and it seems like you suffer from the ASS_U_ME symptom.

          Isn’t kind of Moron or Retarded or really STUPID of you and the author keep picking on Singaporeans English despite you know English is not our native language and mother tongue……

    • Oops!

  • David C

    This is an amusing little article that got me miffed at first, but tickled later. I won’t be bothered to rebut the author, I mean, everyone is entitled to his / her views, but there are somethings that I believe happen for a reason.

    Banks – All banks in Singapore will open accounts instantaneously. As long you’re local. Foreigners need to go through deeper levels of checks, so I reckon 3 days isn’t unfair. We also have easier access to credit lines / credit cards vis-a-vis a foreigner. This is due to the law and typical risk management rational. Ditto with other companies such as Telco, or even Utilities. Foreigners pay more for a deposit due to the fact that they are a higher flight risk.

    Poor Language – I tend to agree that there are too many Singaporean who speaks Singlish. There are many people who actually speaks very good English as well, but from the crowd that the author is trying to hire from, I’m not really surprised. Honestly, if the author want better, more well educated Singaporeans, they will start at $3.5K onwards for fresh grads. Not really $2K guys. The $2K guys are typically ITE or Poly grads who are in their early Sub 20s, who are lesser educated and typically do have lesser linguistic ability as compared to your typical Uni Grads.

    One of my biggest peeves is using text language in formal, or even semi formal environment. But that’s a trend everywhere, including countries where English is the native language. But I don’t see this as a linguistic ability. More an issue with respect. But having said that, youths will be youths.

    I do hope TS will enjoy his / her stay in Singapore, and hopefully meet with better people 🙂

    • Mel

      I digress from the main article some of the comments here are thought provoking…. or just provocative.

      Poor Language – I tend to agree that there are too many Singaporean who speaks Singlish. There are many people who actually speaks very good English as well, but from the crowd that the author is trying to hire from, I’m not really surprised. Honestly, if the author want better, more well educated Singaporeans, they will start at $3.5K onwards for fresh grads. Not really $2K guys. The $2K guys are typically ITE or Poly grads who are in their early Sub 20s, who are lesser educated and typically do have lesser linguistic ability as compared to your typical Uni Grads.

      Wow. 3.5k for fresh grads? Um… irregardless of the university, some firms are paying fresh degree holders at 1.9k… Uni grads who go in after their As only have official 6 months internship work experience if they aren’t hard working enough to go get more work experience. As an employer you won’t even pay them 3.5k unless you’re in a bank. This is reality there are plenty of stingy employers out there who claim they don’t have enough to pay you. It might be true as industry profitability varies.

      $2K guys are typical ITE or Poly grads who are in *Mid 20s – not sub 20s. It’s true Poly and ITE students don’t have a syllabus that has heavy writing involved hence they have less flair for English as a language. But as a Poly grad I proofread Uni students from local uni’s essays and let me tell you they aren’t exactly masters of the language like you think they are.

      Who are you to call it typical of these Poly and ITE to have ‘lesser education’?

      By the way a lot of people choose the poly route because they have a firm interest in what they want to pursue, be it design, communications, business etc. It actually is a smart choice if they are determined to work hard instead of failing, obtaining a poor A Level score and settling for a University course that isn’t their choice.

      Anyway as a late 80s-early 90s batch before SUTD or SIT appeared you get an entire cohort fighting to enter only 3 universities (NUS, NTU, SMU) … which doesn’t make sense does it? On top of limited course choices, class sizes and of course the allowance of foreign students/scholars —> The University’s cash machine. Even those non A level diploma holders with perfect GPAs to enter these Universities find it difficult to earn a place where they have the pre-exsisting knowledge to go further – to have the opportunity to grow and contribute more to the field they are familiar in.

      It made me wonder if the Government had planned to have 2 Universities at first (before SMU) because they want to have all students duke it out in true-meritocratic style to sieve the real ‘elite for education’ or because they just have bad planning and didn’t expect they needed more universities to accommodate population. I would say they have poor foresight.

      Overall reading most of the arguments here I can’t help but notice that most unhappiness stem from poor policies. Enough said. The author expresses his views and some of it are true no need to get all defensive and even stooping to his level of making bigot remarks.

      If anyone here wants to even comment or rebut him, please don’t give him the benefit of laughing at your expense by asking him to go back LOL give him some kind of thought in your replies.

      “go back to your country” isn’t going to help him realize anything if you think he is ‘wrong’ about his views.

      • What a thoughtful and well-written comment. Cheers.

      • David C

        Wow. 3.5k for fresh grads? Um… irregardless of the university, some firms are paying fresh degree holders at 1.9k… Uni grads who go in after their As only have official 6 months internship work experience if they aren’t hard working enough to go get more work experience. As an employer you won’t even pay them 3.5k unless you’re in a bank. This is reality there are plenty of stingy employers out there who claim they don’t have enough to pay you. It might be true as industry profitability varies.

        I’m a hiring manager and I can tell you grads are no longer $1.9K for the longest time ever. Anyone who still harness for $1.9K fresh grads are simply trying their luck and I wish them good luck.

        $2K guys are typical ITE or Poly grads who are in *Mid 20s – not sub 20s. It’s true Poly and ITE students don’t have a syllabus that has heavy writing involved hence they have less flair for English as a language. But as a Poly grad I proofread Uni students from local uni’s essays and let me tell you they aren’t exactly masters of the language like you think they are.

        Who are you to call it typical of these Poly and ITE to have ‘lesser education’?

        From a lingustic ability perspective (which the TS attacked) it IS lesser education. Coming from Poly background myself, I gotta admit that this is a fact, not otherwise. Poly students like myself don’t go through GP, heck, we can even fail EL1 at O Levels and still qualify for both ITE and or Poly. We can’t say the same for A levels. From a rigorous education perspective, ITE is lesser than Poly, Poly is lesser than Uni. This is a fact. Not one that I like, but unfortunately a fact of life.

      • Eldric

        Based on this:,

        I think it is really unfair to expect fresh grads to accept $1.9k out of university. Its below the 25th percentile for everything except music. Hence if you pay that much, kindly expect to get graduates of that quality.

        6 months working experience. Hmm yes, everyone doesn’t have working experience when they graduate. What did you expect? Instead of teaching students we send them to work? Sorry, its university graduates you’re hiring right? Not vocational institute right?

        I do have to agree that some university students have an abysmal command of the english language, in particular the capability to make an implausible claim and to cite a source which then turns out to claim something else.

        Oh yes, about poly/ITE education being lesser. Its true for some courses. I’m a computing student. We have some in our cohort who come from poly. The top 10% thereof. You may expect top students who have 3 years of programming background to beat us hands down? Nope. They suffer hard (actually everyone except those who breathe computer science/math does). Mainly because of the lack of (non-“calculate this”) math they go through during poly. Yet all these are required for any non-trivial work let alone research.

        The goals of polytechnic education and university education are quite different. Pick the right person for the right job. And be prepared to get what you pay for.

  • Feelsgood

    Hahahha. I am sure that what the foreigners in your country thing of you. Grow up.


    Dear Sir,

    As a Singaporean, I am thankful that you have constructively criticised so many areas that Singapore needs to improve. Your comments will go a long way to make our ‘retarded’ country a better place.

    How about now sharing where you are from so that we Singaporeans can write detailed essays about how great your country is?

  • Jhon Edward

    Lol… the author sounded so Singaporean, complain and complain. He have not been to China, Myanmar or Indonesia yet… Get tricked and burn for real…

    If you think what you experience is shit, wait till you try other countries… Not all system is perfect. You take it or find alternative or leave it.

    If you not happy, just leave Singapore. Why the hell are you even here in the first place? Why leave your own country? No one force you to stay. You expect everyone to change for you? NUTS…

    People like you are selfish individual, living with losing battle and self worth value. Any other country you go to, you will just continue with your complaining and even more complains.

    I wish you are not a leader/boss because of such a poor attitude and vision. If you want everything to go your way, go and play “The Sims”.

    If i were you, i will just shut the fuck up and work on solutions/ideas that will get me richer. If Apple CEO Tim Cook were to THINK like you, he would have exited CHINA market long ago and bring the company stock market down…

  • i m white n i fukded asian chik LOLE

    [Moderator’s note: Published here for informational purposes only]


  • anon

    Having read this article (Of course I read it. Why else would I be commenting), I must confess that I, in most part, feel the same way as you. Having spent the last ~10 years of my live in the US, it’s appalling what retards I come into contact with on a daily basis. Bonus point? I’m working at a institute of higher learning so the people I come into contact with should at least figure to be amongst the better ones in their cohort or the creme of the crop. Personal responsibility it pretty much a non-starter. Trying to find someone to commit to a project is impossible. English is too a non-starter. The slang teenagers use these days? Their be no comparisin I tell ya.

    tl;dr People in the western hemisphere also have no work ethics and are not self motivated enough to do a job right. It all depends on which level of competency you are looking at. Then again given the author’s rant on ObamaCare… lets just leave it that facists corpocrats are not the best people to have comment on societal issues.

  • Stuart Hisband

    I’m not Singaporean, or affiliated to Singapore in any way, but I can’t help but think… leave if you hate it so much.

  • Micheal G Groshong

    As an American looking in….my take is that Anonymous is an ex-pat Republican and very little else to say for himself. No doubt Singapore’s style of government would be distasteful for him considering his capitalist attitudes. As for his comments about the people in the streets of Singapore, well, that behavior, or something similar, can be found in cities in the USA too. Yes, the behavior is just as crass as well as seen at locally at WalMart.

    As for spoken English, the author here seems to forget there are some places in New York City and in Louisiana ( just to name two) where the language seems to disappear and is incomprehensible to the “outsider”. As for the spelling used in the e-mails or phone texting, obviously he has not encountered the level of English spelling and grammar used commonly when texting.

    On other comment: the “owners” of this blog jumped and down with glee at the number of “hits” the article received. That too says something. Here in America, that is called, “stoking the fire” and really unnecessary even if some comment in the article were accurate.

    My thought the delivery of the article reduced it to a “bagful of fart”.

    • Clint Westwood

      Dude, what kind of drugs are you on and where can I get some? Since you call out “Republicans” indicating right off the bat you are too stupid to see outside of the whole left/right scam they have going on in the US to keep the proles entertained, I can tell immediately that you’re none too bright. But let’s set that aside for a moment, since you immediately use “Republican” in the context of an insult that must mean you’re a “Democrat”, which must mean you believe in the left wing media’s caricature of all republicans as the evil rich guys that don’t believe in human rights. Singapore’s governmental style should be their wet dream – ultra low taxes, freer capitalism than the US, super harsh penalties for everything, total authoritarian control of everything, etc. Again what the fuck are you smoking and where can I get some? If this guy is an “ex-pat Republican” he should be creaming his drawers over Singapore’s “style of government”.

      • Olivia

        Why would a ‘Republican’ want “super harsh penalties for everything, total authoritarian control of everything”? That is not what they stand for in theory. You need you educate yourself. I’m not even American (I assume you are).

        • Clint Westwood

          Funny it seems like you that plainly and obviously needs an education. I said “the left wing media’s caricature of Republicans” not “Republican” or “Conservative” citizens or voters. You obviously were not able to differentiate that from “Republicans” whatever your idea of “Republicans” might be as a non-American. I hate to say it but the left wing crazies often portray the Republicans that are actually in charge somewhat accurately although it is not an accurate portrayal of the average “Republican” or “Conservative” voter and what they claim to stand for. This is not an endorsement for “Democrats” or “Liberals” either because they are just as bad with war mongering and are bankrupting the country faster than ever. The US is a lost cause anyway though because all those that still vote at all are like Michael; they think a vote for “Team Red” or “Team Blue” makes some kind of a difference in a country that’s so hopelessly bankrupt, mired in foreign military misadventures and is one step away from a totalitarian police state.

  • Lee

    Can the author disclose which perfect country he/she comes from?

    • There is no such thing. But some places are definitely better than others.

  • ethan28

    Author has got no guts to even write his name, bollocks. I won’t even bother to read his wall of text. If you dare say something stand for it. Don’t hide behind Mummy’s skirt. Pussy.

    • Clint Westwood

      Says “ethan28” (sorry, couldn’t resist).

    • Who the fuck are you?

      • Donny

        I am your father…at least that’s what you mom told me.

  • Jen

    A university graduate wouldn’t go about applying for jobs on sites like Those who do, couldn’t have much qualifications and their fluency in English could have left much to be desired. If you would like to look for better quality applicants, I suggest you look else where, or contend with sub-standard applicants. Do understand that the reasons why a foreigner seems to be better quality than a local (we’re looking at a $2200 job here) is because high quality graduates in the countries you mentioned couldn’t find a job at home, and so they are looking for opportunities in Singapore. $2200 would seem like a lot to someone who comes from say Philippines, when you convert the money back to their currency. It would be much more than what any fresh university graduate could earn back home. $2200 for a ‘high quality local graduate’ simply doesn’t cut it. Especially when there are companies out there hiring local graduates for a much higher salary. Why would they short-change themselves? It is all about supply and demand, you see. If you offer a higher salary, the supply of higher quality applicants increases. I am sorry that you met with such unpleasantness when trying to hire locals. Please understand. Although the fact that the boy/man didn’t know your company name also tells us that he did not in fact know what he is applying for. So don’t act so bewildered when these people are not being as co-operative as you think they should be. The job you are offering them might not be what THEY are looking for, too.

    As a Singaporean, I am deeply offended when you implied that our ‘retardation’ was due to inbreeding and that different races absolutely do not mix. If you truly thought so, then I am afraid the Singapore that you are referring to and the Singapore I am living in are two different countries. My friends are of different races and that mix is most prominent in schools. The reason why the official language is English is for people of different races to communicate without language barriers and I’d like to say that it is working out very well. The Indians do hang out in Little India—they can get specialty foodstuffs there and they do have quite a selection of Indian fare and clothes. The same is with Chinatown. My family and I go to Chinatown only to get our new year goods (snacks/clothes/food/drinks) and some other things. But we integrate more than you think. My neighbours are Indians and we get along splendidly. We are often invited to their house for meals and vice-versa. Do you know that our housing system in HDBs (you’ve named them ‘ghetto government projects’) is designed so that there is a right mix of races on every floor? Schooling is compulsory in this ‘uncivilised’ country, and my classmates are from different races. One of my best friends is a Malay.

    I don’t know what other ‘ghetto’ places you’ve visited (there frankly aren’t many in Singapore), but most Singaporeans have not visited Geylang, myself included. It is a place where any decent Singaporean know NOT to go, unless you’re looking for the kind of things you mentioned. It is a haven for foreigners looking for ‘job opportunities’ though. 🙂

    Extremely poor language skills, you say? Well, most people I’ve spoken to at least have a basic grasp of the English language, and basic tasks like buying food and getting around is fairly easy. We don’t have the best English, but at least we are understandable. Do you need to be fluent in English to survive in Singapore? No. Do you need to be able to speak English to survive in Singapore? Yes. There you have it. I use Singlish with my friends—it is much more informal that way. But I also understand that I have to use proper English for different settings. Any one who has been through our education system is at least able to speak in proper English. Those aged 40 and above might have a poor grasp of the English language because lessons in the past were conducted in their respective mother tongues.

    Again, I don’t know which ‘ghettos’ and ‘shit holes’ have you been to, but HDBs nowadays are modern, well-equiped and clean. They can be comparable to private property and have beautiful interiors and exteriors. Do google it up! And these are pretty much ‘business as usual’ too. Perhaps the older housing estates and shop houses are not as well looked-after, but these are subject to upgrading works as well. I am sorry that you expect houses with cheap rents to look like luxury housing, which they are not. An average rental for a 4 room flat is about $2000 with a decent location. Even after ‘subsidies’, HDBs are still costly and can come up to $1m nowadays. Let’s compare it with Malaysia, which has a relatively similar cost of living (not really, everything there is cheaper), and you can get a luxury two-story house at $500k with a prime location. Singaporeans can only buy a new HDB once in their lifetime, so that they cannot abuse the system and profit from these ‘subsidies’. Do explain how the government allows us to buy the ‘best of the best properties’. I want in too! 🙂 Condominiums and landed properties are open for everyone (for those who can afford it), so I hope that you will be able live there someday and get out of the ‘shit hole’ you find yourself stuck in.

    My English is not the best, so I hope you can look beyond it to understand my point. If you find me rude here, please understand that I am not usually like that and that I have been taught manners in this ‘uncivilised’ country. It’s just that some things really get me defensive especially when it is not true and so obviously biased. I agree with some of your points—certain things may take long to process and many things require a lot of procedures. Singapore is named 8th in Bloomberg’s business survey, so if it is THAT hard to manage your business here, I cannot imagine what it is like in other countries.

    • D

      Wow, most Singaporeans have not visited Geylang including you? You are missing out! Food and characters galore. Definitely a place any decent Singaporean should explore away from the sanitised environments we are so used to.

      • afa

        don’t listen to this person – dun go Geylang, it is not nice, you will hate it, got people of loose moral values there, and too many bars, and the makan is too spicy, and it smells of Durian, plus some more got roaches too, – better you stay in the CBD

  • D. Becker

    Your grammar is absolutely perfect. “The first thing I would like to discuss is the experience of trying to hiring a Singaporean.”

    Why your argument is invalid:
    1. Retards are everywhere. You are merely singling out some of your bad experiences and extrapolating it (representativeness bias). What’s your sample size? What’s the frequency? The Singaporeans that I’ve worked with are some of the smartest, most insightful people I’ve ever met (also representativeness bias, but you get the idea).
    2. English isn’t actually the native language of Singapore. You don’t go to Italy or China and expect them to speak perfect English — the same applies to Singapore. When in Rome, do as the Romans do. If you don’t like the culture, then why not go home instead of inciting hate online?

    Basically all your problems with Singapore can be found almost anywhere in the world Gold-diggers? Foreigners stealing jobs? Are you serious, bro? You think the US or Europe doesn’t have these kinds of people?

    D. Becker
    Princeton University ’13

    • H. S.

      Awesome, someone sane has finally found the root cause to all this hate. Humans are too emotional, but I would last expect Singaporeans to sound nationalistic.

  • dude

    my gosh all the singapore defenders spewing out fancy-dandy english to portray themselves as sophisticated and upper class… diam la!

    • cg86

      Eh… some Singaporeans can really write well mah. Don’t like that lah.

      Anyway, that form of English is not “fancy-dandy”. I’d only classify Shakespearean English under that description. The commentors are simply writing in proper English. It’s not them trying to sound sophisticated or atas. It’s just simple English.

  • Alex

    I’ve l stayed in the UK for the past two years now and funnily enough the standard of English that is spoken and written there is far from perfect as well. and the behaviour? brits falling over and exposing themselves, vomiting on the streets, peeing at shop fronts, basicallly being a complete mockery and embarrassment to the human race in general is commonplace behaviour. when you are in Rome, do as the Romans do. stop complaining about Singaporean behaviour, you are in a foreign country, it’s ridiculous of you to expect the nation to pander to your expectations. either learn to adapt or please, go home.

    and wow, singaporean laziness? thats an unexpected one. singaporeans are known to be uncreative and inflexible but I can proudly say that the Singaporeans I know are a hardworking bunch and are in complete contrast to those you have encountered. my grandmother for instance is 74 this year and still works, not for the money but because she “would feel weird just sitting at home”. my parents and many of my friends’ parents have given up on family time and work late into the night and on weekends- is it fair to call them lazy? who are you to judge what people work hard for? even if it is for material comforts what gives you the right to judge someone else’s motivation?

    it is incredibly rude, as well as inaccurate to call Singaporeans retards. academically, Singaporean students regularly win international academic competitions, top Ivy League, Oxbridge and red brick schools, take a look at the IB results, a majority of the perfect scorers come from Singapore.

    and the banks… I’m not going to go too much into it as I’m not an economics student but bank transactions taking 3 days? um many bank to bank transfers are instantaneous- I really wonder what banks you are using. many foreigners also prefer Singaporean banking services as they are known to be secure, the tiresome system is a downside but something many are willing to endure.

    Singaporeans do suffer from xenophobia but this is not uncommon in countries all over the world. furthermore the number of Foreigners in Singapore increased rapidly in a very very short amount of time, giving the locals very little time to adapt or get used to the situation.

    calling us out for bad skin, teeth and being myopic? well done sir, I have been completely won over by your argument- I’m sure you’re an adonis yourself who comes from a nation of supermodels.

    I’m not going to take this article too seriously as it seems to have been written by a white man suffering from white man supremacy, angry with a nation proud enough not to clamour at his knees. I will not say Singapore is perfect, as a growing nation we still have a long way to go, but I refuse to feel ashamed of my fellow Singaporeans. as a nation we have much to learn, in general our English is, well, not great and our government does baby us too much but calling us out in such a manner is certainly not going to help matters. also, remaining anonymous? just goes to show how much of a pansy and how hypocritical you are, happy enough to stay in a country you hate and are so disdainful of. rather than suffering in a country full of retards why not consider moving your company to perhaps the Philippines or China seeing as you hold their workforce in much higher esteem. kindly take your superiority and condescending attitude elsewhere.

    and to the select few Singaporeans, please stop the white worship- you are only feeding the ego of men like these.

    • H. S.

      IB? Which school are you from Alex? Well-written commentary.

  • Anonsgean

    Well my first response was (aside from the usual outrage and anger, I as a Singaporean am supposed to feel) was, “wow.. talk about unrealistic expectations…”

    Which genius informed you that Singapore was a first-world country? While I would say that to call us third-world would be a tad insulting on us (as a comparison may I suggest you visit a slum in Mumbai?), to call us first-world may be stretching the truth a bit too far… On your point on having the most millionaires per capita, last I checked being full of rich people wasn’t a criteria to be a first-world country (If you do find proof suggesting otherwise, I would be happy to apologize unreservedly). We are like the second cousin from the countryside newly arrived in the big city, with a few rough edges here and there. As a nation, we are but 50 years old, so I would say give us some time. Maybe in another 50 years, if we still exist, we may be a first-world nation but not now. So adjust your unrealistic expectations downward and just enjoy what the city has to offer….

    I have to admit I do take some offense at your comments about retarded Singaporeans for the extremely unscientific way you go about proving your point. To claim that majority of Singaporeans are retarded just based on anecdotal evidence seems rather dubious. A more scientific method would be finding the median IQ of us retarded Singaporeans and showing how it meets some generally accepted definition of being retarded. (I would point out I am not claiming Singaporeans are/ are not retarded, just saying your method is retarded, and being the person making the claim that we are, burden of proof lies on you)
    To accept your methodology would allow me to dispute your allegation by raising my own experiences amongst my select group of friends as proof otherwise. I would point out that majority of my social circle do not exhibit the behavior you mention and are employed in jobs that required them to compete against applicants from the Oxbridge’s and Ivy’s of the world, sometimes not just in Singapore but also on their home turf (rendering your point that companies being forced to hire Singaporeans moot). These people work for the McKinsey’s, the Google’s, the Goldman’s of the world in choice positions, to call them retarded would seem a stretch by any measure of imagination. But can I then extrapolate my personal experience and claim that the majority of Singaporeans are not retarded? Personally, I wouldn’t go that far…. Same argument holds for laziness, if the same Singaporeans are deemed hardworking enough to be hired by firms who can cherry pick from the world’s talent pool, the case that they are lazy seems rather weak….
    On the issue of inefficiency, I am not sure if you are a student of economics, but any student will tell you the problem lies with incentives. The companies or people are not being incentivized to provide you the service you desire… A simple thought experiment, if you had $20 million in assets with the bank, I’m pretty sure your online banking wouldn’t have taken 3 weeks. A simple threat to move the money would probably have gotten it done in a snap. Don’t have $20 million, then too bad you’re stuck with retail banking, just like how us lesser mortals who can’t afford to fly business are stuck in cattle class. Internet speeds wise, my firm runs everything out of servers in the US and if the latency was as bad as you claim, we wouldn’t get anything done. May I suggest you look at your service provider or choice of service package?
    To hammer home my point, companies are not here to make your life easier, they are here to generate profits. They will make your life easier insofar as it generates more profit for them but never forget which drives which. Simply put does Comfort, a taxi company, give a crap that they’re system isn’t user friendly? No, as long as there are drivers willing to rent taxis from them they make profits, so why invest in a more user friendly system? In the grand scheme of things the fact they own 50% of the entire fleet in Singapore, are the only company offering electronic payments through NETS, and other economic moats , probably ensure their profits with or without a user friendly system.

    On the issue of Singlish…. It is debatable whether it qualifies as a whole new language but at the very least it should qualify as a local slang (much like how the word y’all is associated with the mid-western region of a certain country, like is associated with a certain hair color and dubya is associated with a certain ex-president). It is just too bad for you that our slang has words of different languages thrown in making it harder for a non-native to understand. If I moved to the above mentioned mid-western region and did not understand the word y’all, I would either have to adapt and learn the local slang or move someplace else, ditto for someone in Singapore. To expect an entire city to change their slang to suit mine seems the height of arrogance in my humble opinion.

    Finally, on you coining us the dumbest country per dollar of per capita income, same issue mate, not scientifically proven. Run the numbers to prove it or stop making unproven allegations as though they were fact…

    • H. S.


  • asd

    LOL so much anger here. The author sounds butthurt. Continue arguing guys im sure it will be great for you

  • V

    I might agree with many of the points that you have raised, but I think you’ve failed to acknowledge the fact that no country is perfect and there are many other similar cases of “retardation” in countries all over the world. Having lived in the UK for some time, some examples I can raise are young people getting pissed drunk at clubs ‘for fun’ and ending up with alcohol poisoning and/or a hospital stay overnight hooked up to IV fluids; people living off state benefits of over GBP20,000 a year and refusing to get jobs; people who dress in miniskirts and heels for a night out and threaten to sue after slipping on ice/snow; people who buy automatic weapons and machine guns; extreme cases of bullying of racial minorities and children with disabilities; the list goes on.

    Furthermore, it is not only in Singapore that you find places such as those “ghettos” that you have so vividly described. I don’t think it is an phenomenon exclusive to Singapore. At least I don’t feel like I’m about to get jumped, robbed and/or raped any moment when I walk in even the seedier parts of town. In cities like London, Paris and Barcelona, I am constantly on the lookout for pickpockets and robbers – even in the shiny, nice parts of town. That’s something I don’t have to do in Singapore. I can walk home at 2am and feel safe.

    One thing I definitely disagree with, however, is your claim that the difference races do not mix, and simply stick to their ghettos. I am not sure what evidence you have to support this (simply seeing Chinese in Chinatown and Indians in Little India all the time is not great evidence) but I think that most Singaporeans have friends from different races. I am Chinese, but I have Malay friends and Indian friends. Inter-racial marriages are not unheard of, and are pretty common. I’ve myself have attended Malay weddings. My non-Chinese friends visit the homes of their Chinese friends during Chinese New Year, and the same goes for Hari Raya. Hate-crimes are rare, almost unheard of.

    And I don’t think bad genes resulting in myopia and the need for glasses is necessarily evidence of retardation in Singapore. Nor is every single Singaporean stupid because of a select few whom you had the misfortune of stumbling upon.

    It’s comments like that that really made me grimace when I read the article because well, even if I agree with several of the points that you made, it was extremely painful to read such remarks that lowered the credibility of the rest of your entry. It was because of the derogatory tone of your article that so many have been angered (thus the angry expletive-ridden and even crass replies, though, to be honest, I have read many such replies by people of different nationalities from all over the world. It’s not just Singaporeans.). The use of terms like ‘inbreeding’ and ‘retardation’ was well, extremely inappropriate and insensitive.

    So, yes, I did agree with your article. But did the criticism have to be delivered in such a manner? IMHO, no. I am saddened that your experience in Singapore is so negative, but I think it is not a generalisation that should be applied to Singapore as a whole.

    I hope that you do get to experience the ‘nice’ part of Singapore some day. It is not without flaws, but I think it’s not as bad as you’ve made it out to be. There are worse places to live.

    • H. S.

      No country in the world can begin to describe the true Singapore.

  • Babs

    I am a Singaporean student and I can’t help but agree with this article. Technically speaking, I am a foreigner and when I was in Primary School my command of the English language was sub par to that of my classmates. However, nowadays when I compare myself to the true-blue Singaporeans, they seem pretty pathetic. They can’t pronounce words very well, they don’t know the difference between they’re and their and they can’t write situational or expository pieces without a “fool-proof” structure handed to them by their teachers. How could a foreigner like me accomplish such a feat? I have never accepted any English tuition in this stifling town and yet, I have a better grasp of the English language compared to them. I just really dislike how our teachers have broken down our syllabus into small little formats and structures for us to memorise. It almost seems as if memorizing is the key to the city.

    • White Boy Trasher

      Your comment is invalid, on the grounds that you’re just a spiteful foreigner trying to find acceptance in Singapore. Don’t bother replying to this thanks.

      • A Singaporean

        /Someone’s/ xenophobic today.

    • Jen

      I am sorry to see you take up citizenship even though you’re not happy here. Here’s hoping that you live happily and that the ‘pathetic’ ‘true-blue’ Singaporeans you have surrounded yourselves with are happy with you too. 🙂

    • H. S.

      Many kids in public schools use their mother-tongues at home and among their peers, leading many to think that getting-by exams in school is good enough. Unlike you, they don’t have the right exposure to care much about getting English right, or at attaining a pristine mastery. Just think of Japan. That still does not represent everyone, as many teachers here in Singapore would still bash you for using poor grammar, and for bad-articulation or uninteresting pieces of prose.

  • White Boy Trasher

    So what’s your point with this article? I’m sure there are bad eggs in every nation. You might want to take a look at this before you claim that Singaporeans are “retarded”: And that was from a cursory search.

    You seem to mix around with the lower rungs of Singaporeans, and job applicants pass off on opportunities to join your company. I’m sure that says more about your company than Singaporeans. Are you working lower management in a shitty company? Seem like it.

    I study in London, and all year round I hear of Singaporeans topping cohorts in their universities. And I’m not even talking about mid-level red-brick universities. I’m talking Oxbridge, Imperial, UCL, LSE, etc., in courses as diverse as law and mathematics. It’s funny that the people you claim speak “very, very broken English” are trashing the Brits at their own game.

    Bottom line, Singapore has the “highest number of millionaires per-capita”. Don’t be jealous you ain’t one, kiddo.

    • FYI

      Had a lot of thoughts about this, but I think I’ll just sum it up to:

      1. Singapore is somewhat internally stratified to different rungs, roughly based on capability. The poster above referred us to a link with high-achieving Singaporeans. You would probably enjoy their company given their sophistication, proficiency in English, intelligence etc. But I’m confident that they would be expecting JP Morgan/ Bain/ Magic Circle level of employment.

      2. Assuming you did not spend your time with the aforementioned circle of Singaporeans, it is understandable that you find the segments of the population distasteful. To the Singaporeans in this thread, I dare say that the creme de la creme of you are unlikely to enjoy the company of those Singaporeans the author has described either. If the author wasn’t a foreigner, I’m guessing this would have broken down into an elitist Raffles/HCI versus polytechnic debate again.

      3. In every other country that has simultaneous generations who have lived through different stages of economic development, I think one is inevitably going to find crass and distasteful behaviour in the older generations. I personally agree that there is a proportion of the population that (in my opinion) needs etiquette training. But perhaps that’s the precise reason why they have staff chaperoning people to other sections of the train and why they have so many signs and rules. You can’t assume the population already has that etiquette drilled into them and perhaps when these rules finally instill that etiquette in them, then both the rules and ungraceful behaviour will naturally be gone.

      4. Nevertheless, some of the author’s observations can be quite constructive when viewed objectively. I have no means of verifying the veracity of the Singaporean malfunctions stated, but if it is indeed true, I certainly hope Singaporeans would be less defensive and more open about improving the standard of service there.

      • H. S.

        The most honest piece of opinion yet.

  • Landon

    It’s funny how much you think you know Singapore given how little you actually do. By the way, you seem to be a pinoy in disguise……

  • kokanaden

    hei fug chius man whu do chiu tink chiu r huh fugging harry angmoh rambutan cum steel our stinkyporian job, eats our food and golden cheesepie gers. go back to ku ku cluck land america whre chiu belong manz,

  • G

    Dear Anonymous,

    While I think some of your substantive points are undoubtedly true, I think you make a lot of unfair generalisations about the country, and this really highlights just how ignorant you are. It is true that Singapore and her people suffer from many shortcomings, but the condescension and sense of entitlement that your article reeks of really makes you no less cultured than the average Singapore. I’m pretty sure this also come through in the fact that you are unable to write a critique without peppering it with swear words. Surely this is something any literate, educated person is capable of?

    That said, to my fellow Singaporeans, please stop embarrassing yourselves and your country by posting sub-standard, grammatically awful responses here. It really only serves to prove his point.

  • R W

    I agree with everything in the article. I left Singapore at the tender age of 13 so I could grow my wings and be free. It’d suck to be cooped up in an awful island full of uncivilised people. I’m still young, but I’m going to take the plunge and ditch Singaporean citizenship. Adieu! You shall not be missed.

    Ps. I’m loving it where I am. Everyone is so liberal and confident of themselves.

    • SPG

      I confess I find it hard to imagine a 13 year old precocious enough to appreciate the multifarious deficiencies relating to financial red tape, housing woes and watering-hole interactions that the original author raised in his article. Consequently I find it hard to believe your agreement with “everything in the article” is founded upon anything more than prejudice and assumptions, seeing as your escape at 13 spared you the horrors of having to experience Singaporean hardship first hand. Either way, as a Singaporean, I feel entitled to add – you, sir, shall not be missed either.

      It would suck, I concur, to be cooped up in an awful island full of uncivilised people. Thankfully – and I might qualify that I make this comment only after having lived several thoroughly enjoyable years in the UK, and elsewhere – that is not what our island is. I’m glad you are loving it where you are. I might not love every second of life in Singapore, but I love my country enough to defend it (foolishly? naively? Perhaps – but what would patriotism count for if it were not all that and more?) against unwarranted, unfair, and unwelcome attack.

      • White Boy Trasher

        I think I love you SPG.

    • Jen

      Did you leave the country on your own, or did you leave because your family is moving abroad? I find it hard to believe that a boy at the ‘tender age of 13’ is able to singlehandedly decide to leave a country just like that, so don’t make it sound as though it was for you to ‘grow your wings and be free’. I am happy where I am, too.

  • Christopher

    Agreed on the myriad issues Singapore faces and probably will continue to face for decades down the road. Heck, I see those issues in myself, and can only improve on them as best I can. Agreed on the caustic and very rude tone, attitude and approach of the author. Coloured lenses, oh those coloured lenses. When you go overseas, there will always be very weird things you observe, because culturally you haven’t been used to them, and something within automatically writes the people who exhibit them off. Something completely rude and uncouth somewhere is socially accepted and even celebrated somewhere else. Take burping and Japan. Who defines the norms of human behaviour? Just look within the own family to see that everyone has a different opinion on how things should be done, said, settled. Meanings are in people, not words, or behaviour, or circumstances. Not defending or making excuses for failings, but as some have astutely brought up, there are always two sides to any coin. Do I agree with a lot of your points? Beyond a doubt. Has it however also left me quite pissed off? Unfortunately yes.

    Any medium that is set aside for or condones such harsh and bigoted opinion cannot be healthy for anyone at all. We all have many many more constructive things to do with our lives. I enjoy humour a lot (I do mean a lot) and I do see a humourous side to the authors’ post, but for the most part it was very distasteful and can only, as some have stated, incite hatred and dislike where there really doesn’t need to be hatred and dislike. We are ALL bigoted and opinionated, whether we admit or not, myself very much included. The difference is whether we can recognise it and choose to quell it before it gets out into public space, keeping only the positive and trashing the rubbish. I myself chanced upon this website by chance and am mortified by the derogatory manner, attitude and form exhibited. In any society, culture, populace, or clique of two, there will always be tendency towards the herd mentality. I see it exhibited here by Singaporeans all the time, in various forms, in various audiences, on various platforms, and I see it very much so exhibited by some of the foreigners here. Singapore is a woefully imperfect society, just like every other society on this earth. As long as human beings are involved things do tend to head south after a while. It’s a dastardly destructive and ugly earth we’ve got ourselves going here (mainly because of ourselves), but it also happens to be the most beautiful and breathtaking thing ever on this spot in the universe. There are countless flaws, but there also are countless things to give thanks for and find beauty in as well. I find myself disgusted many times by the exact same behaviour you speak of in my own society, and I find myself many times falling into that same rote behaviour because of the environment and way of thinking (or not thinking) I was brought up in. It takes conscious, consistent effort to break through and seek to improve. However I don’t find the need to rant and ridicule in the way you have, Mr. Author. It is utter disrespect to the peoples of the land you have chosen to take up residence in, and that is an area you will need to work on positively. I hope you do manage to see the many things Singapore is uniquely positioned to offer though, as it can only benefit you, your readers and those around you.

    Personally I love Singlish because it is a unique aspect of what it means to have been brought up in Singapore. If you were born and bred here (something few people have control over) perhaps you might speak in exactly the same way we do, and think (or not think). However I’m able to know when to use Singlish and when to communicate properly in terms other people might be more familiar with, because of the family I was born in and the strata of society I’ve “mingled” with growing up. Not elite but definitely not neighbourhood. At different times and stages I have found myself discriminating both the elite and neighbourhood because of my own bigoted and narrow views, having grown up in so-called middle-class. Unfortunately, because of the background and upbringing of the majority of my countrymen, many of them are unable to switch between Singlish and English, or lack the mentality to get themselves to such a stage. Just because my country claims English as its first language doesn’t automatically undo its history of being a migrant country of descendants with hundreds of years of speaking Teochew, Hokkien, Cantonese, Mandarin, basically dialect. It impacts the rate and quality of uptake of the English language, and something you might need to consider before systematically trashing our ignorance. Simply because of the way our society and economic situations have panned out, most of our society falls into that Singlish-as-English category. It might be a regrettable aspect, especially for those hailing from distinctly Anglicized countries, and one one acknowledges readily if one were to be objective about things, but one that certainly doesn’t deserve ridicule. Frustration, yes, disappointment, sure, but ridicule, no. Sure, it’s awesome to make fun of people, situations and things (I particularly enjoy poking fun at myself, friends, situations around me, because life is a lot more colourful when you’re not uptight), but if it descends to the level of condescension you have allowed it to, then I think it is entirely uncalled for. Have I allowed my own humour to grate and rub people off the wrong way before? Definitely, and I very quickly get the sense of that, but I learn.

    Hope you learn too. This will help you on the way to becoming a better human being, because I think that’s what our green (slightly less green nowadays) earth needs more of. Cheers everyone. 😉

    • H. S.

      Thanks Chris. Out of all the comments, the author should have picked yours as the best. This at least would have indicated introspection on his part. Instead, he goes about to pick another poor commentary to incite an inferno. What’s his agenda? Does this website give payouts for every click or visitor “earned”?

  • J

    I’m a Singaporean and I cannot agree more with this article. I was working in China for a few months last year and to be honest, most deucated or in fact all educated people do behave and express themselves way way way better than Singaporeans. Even until now, it has been 7 months since I came back, I just can’t wait to go back in a couple months time, I still feel gutted at Singaporeans and the Singapore society as a whole, no sense of punctuality, can’t even understand basic instructions (guess that is why there are toilet instructions hahahaha!), rowdy, does not take pride in their work, thinks the country owe them a living (WAKE UP your bloody idea!!), work place must be near home, cannot wake up early for work, the work place is too far from where I am living (not talking about from the extreme east to the west but half that distance!, sides how big is this Island!, I have colleagues back in China traveling couple hours just to go to work daily and they are always in office way before work starts!) and the list goes on.
    But thank goodness there is still some good, productive and helpful people in Singapore but i think those barely make up 20% of the local population.

    I guess this is the reason why Singaporeans based overseas just refuse to go back ‘home’. A fellow Singaporean working overseas once told me this, ‘Singapore is good to look at from the outside but it is extremely ugly inside’.

    • H. S.

      Which part of China were you at? China is a big country where each province feels different culturally. This information is needed to place your comments in context.

      I do however have to say that your last paragraph holds some truth.

  • Lyn_Lyn

    Hey Anonymous

    You’re making me paranoid about any spelling/ grammar errors that might have me flung across across the pile of retarded Singaporeans you’ve met. I’m still battling with myself after reading your article. Much of it strikes a chord and mirrors my frustration when I meet some Singaporeans – like when I stopped and asked a middle aged Singaporean on Orchard Road to help me take a photo and he glanced at me, shook his head in fright of some sort and scampered off.

    I struggle to find reasons or justifications for why many people in Singapore are as you describe yet I am certain these are growing pains and are further magnified by the small size of the country – we don’t have second/third tier cities and villages where the less educated/ exposed live, work and play in and so you are are as likely to bump into an MBA grad as you are a mechanic. Actually more likely to meet mechanics given the higher incidence rate of mechanics…

    Also, I think our poor English skills make us an easy target because these mistakes are glaringly hard to miss – if you will, in some ways it’s similar to someone who turns up at an event really really badly dressed – you can pick them out from across the room. I once famously said that bad English is like bad breath, but then, I was also young. So anyway, I can’t speak for all the idiots you’ve met but I’ve often been surprised at how much more logical/ credible these people are when conversing in their own dialect/ Mandarin. By the same token, some of the Aussies/ Americans I run into sound perfectly normal until you are a paragraph in and realise they are not actually making much sense or as trivial as one can be.

    I take your expose to be a bit of a rant, justified by the reality that you’ve come face to face with. Nonetheless, my feelings are a bit hurt that you haven’t tactfully ended off your article with some of the nice things that you’ve discovered about SIngapore and its people. It’s brutal honesty, of the brutal sort. For the remaining time that you do stay in SIngapore, I hope that you won’t be too dismissive of the retarded Singaporeans you come across because apart from the grand ole face of the “Ugly Singaporean”, they are just individuals with feelings and families and you could really end up giving one helluva bad day. And who needs a bad day, really.

  • Ah Kow TAN VII

    Oh wow, an argument on the Interwebs!

    Everyone, please, chill and go have some tacos or something.

  • A Singaporean

    I loved this article although I should be enraged by it…

    This article shows what Singapore has to change. For me, a student and a part-timer working in a cafe, I think I do understand where you are coming from. I cannot defend Singaporeans, because I have no idea who are “Singaporeans” anymore. I have friends whose IC starts with F and G but they were born and bred in Singapore; however, you also have Singaporeans who got their citizenship because they are FTs at first. *angst against the latter*

    Firstly, I have to show the injustice of getting a job from a Singaporean’s perspective. Foreigners coming here to work will be more hardworking and better skilled because they came to Singapore for this purpose and they already possess certain skills to be confident to come here. However, if you were to give a job to a Singaporean, this Singaporean has a family to spend time with, friends, everything. Whereas, the foreigner can whole-heartedly make his job the centre of his life. Most often, employers look at The Job Commitment, not the employee’s holistic life. As an employer, a foreigner would definitely work in my favour compared to a local (isn’t it the same everywhere?). I have to say that Singaporeans here are already at a disadvantage on job reputation here.

    Then again, I cannot discount what you say about laziness. It is true that Singaporeans has adopted this awful culture, and i THANK YOU for pointing it out. Many Singaporeans should learn how to work hard. However, I have various perspective on this. Perhaps, Singaporeans do want to work hard.. at first. That was until they got exhausted trying to compete with the foreigners for jobs. They despair when they see themselves being discriminated for being “lazy” when a foreigner is hard-working. The working environment is made such that it makes it easy for Singaporeans to say “why bother?” Whose fault is that? I can name a few. The Singapore Government who has allowed FTs to be seen as treasures, the organizations whose focus is always on KPIs, the employers for fearing the system and imposing nonsensical policies on their subordinates, and the organization again for emphasizing on ridiculous and useless details and thereby compromising the work-life quality of the workers. Locals quit first because they have a support system (family and friends) in Singapore. Foreigners quit when they get the amount they are content with (so they get out after getting what they want), leaving Singapore a shortage of good workers. This contributes to the high turnover rate which cause REALLY BAD working environment- everyone trying to take advantage of the employer (be it a person or an organization). Even a decent worker who has entered this job environment has to fight dirty for survival. No one wants that to happen, but it’s happening.

    However, there is also the true laziness. This bunch of Singaporeans are the ones who just want to “shake leg” and expect money to grow on trees for them to spend. Most of these bunch of people are the youngsters (or adults who are still in this younsters’ mindset) – which is what a “Perfect Safe Easy Comfortable Disneyville” has bred. They know nothing about survival, heard-working and being a decent person. They are the most narcissistic bunch. Every country has them, but I have to admit that Singapore has bred the most because of its perfect environment. This article, I hope, is targeted to this bunch and I sincerely wish for them to WAKE UP. They are destroying the reputation of Singaporeans and depriving of decent Singaporeans, who wants to work and survive, have a family and settle down!

    Singaporeans used to be that decent. That’s how we began, right? We had to work hard for this convenience and “perfect” environment that you see as a tourist. Singapore has met a generation who squanders and they are trying to compensate it with foreigners and other measures which had actually made things worse. But I believe that if Singaporeans realize this, and realize what they have cannot be taken for granted, Anonymous, Sir, I think you would have a much better experience in Singapore.

    • A Fellow Singaporean

      Just wanted to say I really appreciated your response! Cheers

    • H. S.

      It also shows that the current mandatory National Service has not made boys “WAKE UP” to become real men. Thought that this aspect is one of the desired side effects versus a professional army.

  • Singaporean

    Why bother giving this Anonymous guy the attention he craves? He’s obviously too scared to post his real name up and hides behind monikers on the forum whilst calling Singaporeans names. I bet my bottom dollar that he wouldn’t dare to say all this stuff in public with his real name behind it.

    Just ignore. It’s a mad dog in the corner yelping.

  • Singleporean Dude

    The contributing author of this article isn’t actually that well-informed and definitely suffers from “white-man-is-holier-than-thou” syndrome. A large amount of anecdotal accounts and not-fully represented facts taints the credability of the piece, which is a shame since I’m onboard with his sentiments. Of course, this being an article found on the internet and obviously non-journalistic in nature, I’m not going to be too hung-up over the embedded bias.

    Ignoring the possibility that the author has only been exposed to a certain segment of society (hiring workers at around $2000 doesn’t suggest many local public university graduate employees), he is still seemingly oblivious to the idea of social stratification, which would totally exist in a country with a Gini coefficient of 0.478 (as of 2012). He also seems to ignore the presence of similarly distasteful social undesirables back home (he never makes clear which European country he originates from), which are prevalent in any and every country. This does not make a fair representation of the comparative level of retardation in Singapore, only showing that, yes, Singapore is a country with its share of retards.

    Just to elucidate a little on the anti-Chinese rhetoric; there is a significant difference between having a Chinese ethnicity and a Chinese nationality. The problem with the author’s understanding is either one of his problem handling the semantics or regrettable indifference on his part with regard to distinguishing racial from national identity. Just as Swizterland has four ethnolinguistic groups, Singapore similarly has several culturally distinct groups, of which the Chinese form a majority. The Chinese diaspora in the early 19th century saw heavy emigration to regions such as Thailand, Vietnam and Peninsula Malaysia (Malaya at the time), the latter of which Singapore was considered a part thereof. Subsequent assimilating into local society spawned a hybridized culture incorporating aspects of both local and Chinese habits and customs, and in the case of Malaya/Singapore, the results of said assimilation is evident to people who actually understand the local culture. The Peranakan and Straits Chinese today are distinct identities, very different from Mainland Chinese. If the author was so inclined, he might see similarities in the aforementioned example of Switzerland (with Swiss Germans being different from Germans from Germany), or even in the divergent evolution exhibited in Darwin’s finches/ the Galápagos finches (albeit culture divergence more so than diverging species).

    Were the author to revise the representation of his substantiate support for his opinions, this article would undoubtedly be a fantastic read worthy of inclusion in the International Herald Tribune. Alas, it is destined to languish in the dregs of the Internet: The Single Dude’s Guide to Life & Travel and its comments section.

    Happy reading.

    • H. S.

      Thanks for bringing up the Gini coefficient. Almost forgotten about that since the school days.

  • Corporate Mystique

    Hey, Anonymous! Reading your post did not leave me in stitches, but rather with a deep sense of sadness for my adopted country. Having based my businesses here for the better part of the past two decades, I have observed this increasing sense of “entitlement” among the younger graduates the local universities produce. Higher pay and better benefits would be perfectly fine if the skillsets and determination brought to the table were commensurate, but I’ve found far more hunger and drive to improve oneself among local staff in the other regional economies my company operates in.

    My one wish is for Singaporeans to look deep into themselves to see this as a critical are for change, rather than blame the bulk of their country’s ills on the convenient bogeymen represented by the army of foreigners in their midst. They forget often times that the ‘parasites’ they lambast, and constantly admonish to leave, are net taxpayers, thriving despite having access to subsidies or using services accorded to locals.

    Please change, Singapore, there are (economic) forces at work beyond your shores far stronger than what your O/A Levels and nice degrees were made to withstand. Or become irrelevant.

    • Frustrated Returnee

      Corporate Mystique, am a Singaporean who have spent the last decade working and living in Beijing and Shanghai, and have to say coming back to Singapore is one of a “cultural” shock to me. Then again, your point about increasing sense of “entitlement’ among the younger graduates is present in many of the fast-developing nations, China included. Many of the younger graduates I interviewed and hired in China behave the same way. Not to say what’s right or wrong, it’s just a different generation.

      I do have grouses about the quality of education in Singapore though. It’s just too regimented and really doesn’t prepare the students beyond what’s needed in exams. I too, fear that my children will end up irrelevant if we are to stay here for their education. There are far too few other options I can take up as a citizen. I was prepared to put my children in an international school offering IB at pre-school and primary grades, but alas, I was told I can’t because am a citizen! My only option is public schools, let the child go through the runts, take the tests and exams, develop myopia, just as I was forced to, 30 years ago. It worked back in those years but I know it’s not working anymore in our society today. Chinese students outshine Singaporeans when it comes to exams – they’re just a lot more driven and competitive than we are. For them to enter college in their country they have to be the cream of the crop, the top 2% of their cohort. Imagine being the top 2% in a land of 1.3 billion people. And if Singaporeans can’t beat the Chinese at this game, then the least Singaporeans can try is to be more creative and entrepreneurial. Alas, our nation has a looooooong way to go in this realm. I worry for the next generation.

      • cg86

        You’re not the only one. The concept of school is not learning, but memorizing. 10 years ago, I had an English teacher in my school describing us as CPUs. We read the data, copy it in a floppy disk and spit it out at the end of the year. Nothing was learnt except that straight As will earn you a moment of glory on results day.

        • I find this to be a problem with educational systems world wide, just to varying degrees. The western education gets both worse and more expensive every year.

        • JZ

          I totally agree with you cg86. I find it painful and funny when students start to do PHDs and realise that there is absolutely no format or memorizing to do. That is when they realise that no matter how many As they had, it is not going to be of any use in writing their thesis. Personally, I think that they need to be taught creativity. However, as an educator, I understand that it is really difficult to teach/nurture creativity. Some just simply don’t seem to have it while others seem to have it all bottled up deep within them.

          • H. S.

            Thank you corporate mystique. I think most MNCs in Singapore have poor hiring managers who pick whoever the universities say are entitled. Their selection system fails to find your kind of motivated individuals, but instead is biased towards crafty graduates that sound great on paper and in interviews, with little of the kind of substance you are looking for. HR fails to see that their sheer confidence upfront is actually backed by an “I am entitled” attitude. That is why I have the preconceived notion that MNCs should be avoided at all costs for people like me, even though I graduated among the top in my cohort. Even in college, I would rather work with students with slightly poorer grades but a better strength of character, and thus a better long-term potential. I think you guys overlook the underdogs, at your own peril.

  • Linda

    Finally, someone who sings the same tune, taking the time to point out my frustration here in Singapore! In case any one goes criticizing (hey, that’s what we do best, though, a fine line between an intellectual statement, and an uncouth blabber from the illusory inflated ego), I am a fellow Singaporean.

    I try to limit myself from the public, and smile to myself in the face of undesirable situations that never fail to disgust me so bad, it shakes my love for humanity -of course, in some of the rare occasions, I thank my lucky stars in having brought me to witness the (declining) beautiful side of my fellow countrymen. (Yet now, even on the Internet, I get bombarded by them -I mean look, are y’all not mostly educated, yet you could not recognize the poorly written comments with irrelevant points of argument?)

    If only I could pull away from my physical family ties, and move out of here!

    After all, it is my country, and a place where all my loved ones live.

    Which brings me to this question for the writer:
    Why are you still staying put here, despite your unhappiness?
    I would pack my bag and leave for the sake of my sanity if I have a choice like you.

    One more thing, although I agree hands down with what you’ve written, I beg to differ on your one particular statement with regards to us being able to live with $1000/ month because of the heavily-subsidized housing. I do not think that would suffice for a proper living, what with the rising cost of basic necessities and public transportation; moreover, my family has got to pay $2000/month for the housing loan of the 4-Room Flat we are now squeezed in.

    From what I am aware, that same amount could pay for the full monthly rental of an old house on a private ground that has at least 4 bedrooms for non-locals, of which, the space could be further divided for the living of a maximum of 8 people.

    True that locals get more privilege from the government (which country does not practise the same?), but I’m very sure, it’s not as much as you think.

  • Welcome to Singapore! I think the employment situation you described is a result of Singaporeans having too many options for jobs. The use-by date for your general Singapore worker is short, so they really need to be very careful in what job they actually take up.

  • Haiku for no motherfucking reason

    astute observer,
    why stoop to outright hatred?
    drink beer and chill la.

    • Clint Westwood

      It is a little over the top isn’t it?

  • tpb

    English is taught in schools but it is not actually a “native” or national language. There are many many different types of schools in singapore, some teach in chinese some teach in malay and some in english. Malay is the national language and other languages and dialects are spoken in abundance. Singaporeans speak “Singlish” it is creole( definition a language born out of an island)…same way people from liverpool speak and behave differently to people in London.

    As for gold diggers? ask any girl in the world if she wouldnt mind a nice wardrobe and some nice shoes.
    As for the taxi service? Try living in Australia where you don’t know where and when the taxi will come and theres no such thing as booking ahead. ( well in Perth at least)

    Sound sounds like you just have no idea whats going on and have lost your way around a city you do not understand..good luck with your business. Sounds like you need help.

  • leonard

    I’m true bred singaporean and lived in US for couple of years.. So I can totally related the feeling you are getting thru now.. No doubts what you mentioned is true and totally agree with you however I guess it hard for some of my countrymen to stomach during these “transition period” Singapore is going thru. Singlish is a broken English and no want can doubt about it and it not a right way to do conversation but is the best in Singapore context… So why not try to adopt to it than try to do “save the world”? I’m sure you can totally understand the diff between right & best here..
    On crapy singaporean empolyee… I have to agree with that because I’m seeing the same from some of my countrymen.. However you may have to factor in that most of us does not have the right exposure or experience to perform his/hers so call expertise.. Then again – Is your job to either find the right or potential guy to fit the role…
    In any case, I agree we as a country seem to be a 3rd world inside but 1st from outside.. Sorry to say this but this is Singapore for us and either we all try to make things better or move out to elsewhere.. There’s a saying do what roman does right? Is not about what’s right or wrong over here but what’s best for everyone.. Good luck!

  • anonymous

    well, why should we even bother about what this guy has to say. if he has that much to say about singapore, imagine what he has to say about everywhere else on earth, or worse, his own country! (why else did he leave it for Singapore)

    im not here to attack any one. my main point is that singapore isnt any worse than any other country. in fact, things here are actually more efficient than in many other countries, from my knowledge. Everyone has flaws. so why label singapore as if we are the only flawed country? I could come up with an entire list of flaws of the western world and then it seems like the western world is flawed. blah.

    And more importantly, who is he that we should actually care what he says?

    Hence, I really dun see the point of writing a whole long article of grievances except maybe to instil in the writer some moral superiority

  • Gab

    As a true Singaporean myself, I cannot help but agree some of the points were mentioned in the commentary such as the red tapes of business related tasks and bad language skills (in general) but the speculation of inbreeding, indication that we have bad genes seemed so far-fetched. It is also rather amusing to see “retardations” being uttered so many times. I am quite sure there are more civilised and educated Singaporeans that you have not come across. For the job interviews, I could not agree more that these interviewees lack the basic courtesy of showing up for an interview and informing the hirer using proper English. In my opinion, most Singaporeans went through the same education system and unknowingly influenced by each other with similar thought processes and behaviours. Singapore is a lawful and systematic country, sometimes with too many rules to follow which results in the “retardation” over the short number of years since independence. But it is also the set-thinking that enables this country to be so successful with its policies so long as the leaders of this country made the right decisions. Being entrepreneurs are not in our DNA except a few which are far and between. However, I do find it smart that Singaporeans are reaping rewards from the real estate situation if the objective is just to achieve monetary gains. However, my point is there are always 2 sides of the coin that one should see.

  • Proust

    Brilliant. Now do Malaysia

  • octopi

    A lot of ink has been spilt on this issue. Some of what’s said in this article is true, others is just complete trash.

    Before you make any comments, the first thing you got to ask yourself is, do I give a shit what this misanthrope has to say? Would I give a shit about him in real life?

    I don’t. I feel kinda sorry for him actually.

    And since I don’t give a shit about what he says, I’m actually not really offended about what he has to say about my hometown.

  • Karuna

    I would love to meet the person behind “Anonymous”. Great article, isn’t it? Definitely an award-winning. It has helped the world and Singapore so much.

    Since you have so much guts and angst in you, be bold and show your true self. Why hide behind a name? It is sheer pity, not knowing the genius behind this masterpiece.

    Pointing out the mistakes/negatives/obvious sure require a lot brains. Make it as loud as you can.

    Re-post it to every website you know. You sure know your stuff. You aren’t doing enough.

    Who, in the world, could match the wits and eloquence we see here in this article? You have so many supporters. Wow!

    Pop some champagne and celebrate. You guys, including the moderators, deserve a pat on the back. It is as if you wrote the Bible and found a holy grail.

    Such grace, gratitude & kindness! Wow! Heavenly. Your ancestors must be damn proud of you.

    • Clint Westwood

      We didn’t repost this anywhere, others did that without our request or even permission, although we don’t mind.

  • LOL

    It’s interesting how critics from larger countries belittle Singapore & Singaporeans and yet want to live, work and do business here. It’s almost as if they come from fault-free nations themselves.

    • J

      What’s that I spy? A little ad hominem?

      Be as it may that the author is probably from a country that is less than faultless – but that does not make Singapore and Singaporeans any less nasty.

  • Clint Westwood

    Holy cow! Most read and most commented article ever!

  • White Trash

    “I believe one of the most prominent causes of this is the Singaporean government because Singaporeans are really coddled and taken care of by their government.”
    ” If you’re a citizen you can easily get by on less than $1,000 SGD per month without struggling for your basic necessities because the housing is so heavily subsidized.”
    Go home European trash, you obviously haven’t been doing your homework before coming here as an employer. Shame on your poor business skills. Also, your grammar isn’t that great either and I quote “I received numerous confirmation emails and SMS from the bank letting me know I successfully setup online banking”. Sorry, was there a “had” missing somewhere in there, on top of awkward phrasing?

    “Horrendous service – From five star hotels to cheap restaurants some of the worst service I’ve ever experienced, incredible given the price of drinks”
    Considering how infested with foreign trash like you, many from 3rd world nations to boot, I wouldn’t be expecting world class service. You want good service? Go back to wherever you came from. No loss, really.

    Why are you really here? Obviously you think our foreign workers from the 3rd world nations are way more suitable for you jobs. Why not set up your company there?

    Have you ever wondered if you got blown off by your interviewees because they received way better prospects than what you’re willing to offer?

    You’re obviously as unhappy as we are. Why don’t you pack up and leave? We’ll both be happier then, won’t we?

  • ChinnyReckon

    Personally I don’t think any forms of the word ‘retard’ should be used as an insult.
    Otherwise a very interesting article.

  • singaporeanloh

    manuel pfister – are you manually fisting your own hole, is that what you mean?

  • Mimi

    hire this retard.

  • MeIsSayingEngrish

    While so much is true, it is only fair to say that all countries have their own cultural habits, what might be a norm to one maybe an act or retardation to another; these action are even frowned upon by locals. This is more apparent when a country tries to jump up the economic ladder too quickly which results in the locals not ‘developing’ fast enough to meet with the times.

    However what I do not understand is how can someone afford a house with $1,000/month. Housing is priced at an average of $500,000 with a down payment of 20%, how can someone with a measly $1,000 income buy one, forget about buying, renting a room would cost you $800-$1,200 a month. With that kind of income, the individual would probably have to work for 500 months without eating and other necessities, worse part is, you only own the house for 99 years. Yes, the property is not rightfully yours. Secondly, the reason why people are buying cars that costs $100,000 is because that is the average price for an average salon car. It isn’t like any other country where you can get a car for $10-20,000.

    • J

      >Housing is priced at an average of $500,000 with a down payment of 20%
      Really now, are you forced to buy a resale flat? Is a $350,000 BTO flat not good enough for you?

      >It isn’t like any other country where you can get a car for $10-20,000.
      Look at any other city with similarly high population densities, New York, Hong Kong, London – the cost of car ownership is similar, when you factor in the price of owning/renting a parking space.

      God, I hate my countrymen.

  • ChioMei

    +1 on the John Galt analogy, Anonymous

    • Jane

      On the contrary, he really thinks way too highly of himself to compare himself to John Galt? Hilarious.

      • Atlas Shrugged is a total piece of garbage.

        • Clint Westwood

          I think it’s a great book.

      • Anonymous

        It’s like Singaporeans have no ability to comprehend anything that is not stated in absolute crystal clear literal terms. Similes, figurative statements, metaphors, analogies, etc. all seem to beyond their understanding and comprehension. Pretty obviously I was using John Galt as a metaphor for entrepreneurs in general.

        • John Galt is a Cry Baby and So Are You

          By you, explicitly stating you are John Galt as a metaphor, you have devalued the character created by Ayn Rand.

          For goodness sake, you are nowhere near. To make it worse, it is fictitious to begin with.

          John Galt is a crybaby and so are you.

          As what Richard Eskow beautifully wrote:

          “Ayn Rand tries desperately to stack the deck in favor of her petulant, whiny, and selfish character by having him leave the public education system at age twelve. Later he attends the “Patrick Henry University.” (“Give me liberty or give me death”? Subtlety was never Rand’s strong suit.) Even so, somebody taught him to read and write – and somebody taught them.

          After school’s out our massively brilliant philosopher/engineer hero (For some reason another character’s catchphrase comes to mind: “Wile E. Coyote, super genius”) joins a car company and designs the revolutionary motor of the future. And when they collectivize the car company – because, hey, that happens all the time, right? – he stops work on his motor and goes into hiding.

          (To anticipate the obvious Galtian riposte: Yes, the government temporarily ran the car companies, saving lots of jobs after your guys broke the economy. These car companies are doing great. The government rescued banks and didn’t run them. Those companies are doing badly and costing us jobs.)

          So let’s recap: John Galt learned to read and write at the government’s expense. He survived childhood without dying from some mass epidemic, thanks to government public health efforts. He avoided being poisoned to death by improperly prepared foods – beef, poultry, milk – or killed by defective machinery – in a car, bus, elevator, or train, for starters – because of government regulations.

          Then he got a great job with people who, like his friends and allies, enjoyed the same benefits. And when something happened he doesn’t like, he cut and ran.

          Some hero.

          Galt’s climactic speech is a rhapsody of self-entitled victimhood, even after Rand goes to great lengths to make him a comic-book superhero. ”

          Sure thing, you are just like John Galt – pathetic. Great job!

          • Warning: retarded “the government is the solution to everything” liberal above.

  • Lebbitfoot

    Oh! and smiling isn’t very big either! When I was serving tables before, a lot of people asked if I was Indonesian or etc but not local…

    Once I asked why… and the guests replied: “Oh! Well, the other local servers don’t seem to be smiling a lot so we thought you were foreign!”

    *LOL* I was deemed a FT before too! Talent just for smiling!

  • WhyArePeopleAlwaysSterotyping?

    The writer is just being cynical, ignorant, getting frustrated over things he can’t understand and extremely childish. I don’t even bother to say why because it’ll be too lengthy. I don’t know why you are here when things are so bad to you. Probably manpower cost in your country is way too high, not to mention about employees not even willing to work overtime when needed even if you pay them to, because of the ridiculous tax they will be paying eventually. In a nutshell, you are just acting like a baby.

  • Walk By

    Haha, I think this line describe Singaporean most “Singaporeans are indeed quite dumb… and stubbornly defensive.
    So the point is, improvement is almost impossible”

    • FYI

      I totally agree with “Walk By”.

      I thought the author might have undervalued Singaporeans or portrayed their faults disproportionately. But when I read the slew of personal attacks by (I think) Singaporeans here, it gives off a really bad and unfavourable impression too.

  • Kane

    Amusing article. While I can concede that there may be grains of truth in everything said above, I would like to reiterate that most of your article is based on personal experience and not substantiated with proper statistics. To call a large group of people stupid without rigorous academic paperwork to back it up is not objective. Generally, we do not see intellectual and political figures drawing such broad conclusions about the qualities of a people. Perhaps it is because they are of lesser minds or of weaker heart than our most esteemed author? Coincidentally, by making such flawed commentaries, there is a tendency to attract equally crude retorts, thereby flooding your comments section with the sort of comments that one often finds in the yahoo news website. Why anyone would enjoy doing this for their own sake, or their websites, is beyond my understanding.

    One has to question the motive of the author:

    is this an attempt to please your readers with a cheesy article pumped with cliche stereotypes? If so, your website is unfortunately a cesspool of mostly halfwits shouting at each other (as moderated by you). Are you trying to position yourself as a contrarian? Or perhaps you just want to pull up your search rankings? Notoriety isn’t exactly a good form of self-advertising, and there are better public intellectuals to listen to.

    By the way, this is one of those websites that remind me of the white supremacy forums one sometimes encounters while surfing the web; not a very wise way to market your website.

  • Worried Singaporean

    Seriously the author have not been meeting with other Singaporeans, other than the bad one or just being bias. I too work with lots of foreigner, don’t mean they are all talents. Yes they are cheaper in terms of cost, as compare to their peers in their country they are doing very well, hence they accept the lower salary and work very hard. As they know they will have a pot of gold after sometime due to the exchange rate as well as the investment they have been doing in their home country. The main differences between us is that our fore fathers came here mostly without a choice and is prepared to settle down in this country. Thus the interaction between other races in Singapore merging into one over time, Singlish is developed. Having a local language is common everywhere else in the world, e.g between big states in China they do have their local slang, is a sense of identity which most people will agree that we can easily identify one of us overseas by just opening our mouth. No matter we are Malay,Chinese, indian etc. the common language bonds us.
    We are base on a immigration society, over time we become Singaporeans. If you want to be one of us, try to mixed less among your own group. More interaction is the way to go, the problem in Singapore is there are too little of us to even interact. Hence the view are one sided, i have foreigner(major population in Singapore China,India,etc) friend told me that his/her senior brainwash them when they first enter Uni, that we don’t like them and made them keep a distance from us.

    It is just a vicious cycle, for Singapore’s future. Hope someone or some government body recognise the problem.

  • Soon2bCibilized.

    I’d assume the author is a European as he said he is a European business person? Please pardon the daft and retarded Singaporeans. We are still a young nation. We still need to learn from the glorious nations of Europe. After all, wasn’t it glorious Europe who had conquered, colonized, raped, pillaged, plundered, robbed the world and enriched themselves through the merciless exploitation of the rest of the uncivilized world. Please pardon us for we are still learning to grow out of our neanderthal and uncivilized phase. Once the rest of the world have conquered, colonized, raped, pillaged, plundered, robbed the world and enriched themselves through the exploitation of Europe, I’m sure we will then learn to become more civilized and intelligent. I’m hopefully that in time, we will become as civilized as the nations that many here have used as examples, such as the great US of A, UK and Australia.

    Please bear with us.

    p.s. pardon my bad English.

  • leewsdaniel

    As a Singaporean, I found it really hilarious. Had a good laugh at some of the ‘crude’ behaviour of my own country.

  • eebs

    This article makes me sad. It makes me sad because a lot of it is true. What makes me even more depressed, is the fact that a large majority of Singaporeans are too proud to even consider that maybe there’s something that they can take away from this; that maybe there’s some truth in this that they need to reflect on.

    I am a Singaporean that has CHOSEN to work in the hospitality industry. I do it because I love making people feel welcome. I love problem solving. I love meeting people from all walks of life. I love food, and I love sharing my food with others. I worked part-time in restaurants all through university (in Australia) and after finishing with first class honours, decided to go into cheffing full time. I haven’t looked back since.

    Singaporeans think that the world owes them something, and this is particularly true for the younger generation. They think that just because mummy and daddy have money, they can do whatever they want and talk to people however they want to. They think that just because they have an expensive car, or wear branded clothes and watches that they can order people around and throw hissy fits at an establishment for no justifiable reason other than ‘I pay your wages’. I don’t appreciate people bullying my staff, and honey… you can take that 10 dollar bill somewhere else.

    It comes from a lack of civic mindedness or reciprocity. It’s the confusing of individuality and selfishness, of knowing your rights versus feeling entitled. Singapore has gotten so rich, so fast, that its people don’t even realise that what makes a civil society is not money… but civility, and dare I say hard work. The Singapore that I grew up in and loved has made way for one where there is paranoia, where nobody trusts or respects each other enough to even call to cancel an appointment.

    Are we so spoilt for choice that we have forgotten our manners??

    • H. S.

      Yes. But not because we forget, but because we don’t care.

      When the hawker centre cleaner can push a stinky cart clumsily, and not say sorry or excuse-me, and get away with it, it just teaches kids that manners aren’t real like their teachers said. I understand the cleaners have a tough job, but who doesn’t in countless other countries? Managers of cleaners and other retail jobs should demand push-ups for bad behavior, or other forms of discipline according to age.

  • Mofos

    Hi writer. You’re either real unlucky or you’ve a knack for attracting these sort of things. But in all honesty you do seem to care about Singapore this much that you have to write with a measure of personal vendetta/vitriol.
    Be that as it may, I won’t argue nor disprove most of your points. In fact I do agree that English is poorly spoken here by most Singaporeans. A random sampling of various internet forums will make me blind, if I try to say otherwise.

    This may be because some Singaporeans are settling into the idea that China and India are becoming important markets, and hence speaking those languages is more important. I would concede that not all Singaporeans are effectively bilingual, but I’m suggesting that the efficiency in English may be hindered because we speak a few languages. Same goes for other countries – in fact in my work experience (mostly with Filipinos), yes some of the foreigners speak decent English, but it isn’t too much better than the Singaporean standard. The balance between two languages I say is arguable better than most countries – my German colleagues have a joke that English speaking countries (UK, US, Australia, NZ etc.) can’t speak more than a second language. German humour.

    Other points, such as the highly unprofessional interview decorum highlighted are very shocking to me. As you’ve cited empirical evidence, allow me to share my own too. My peers and I have always dressed appropriately, come punctually, be courteous if we decline an interview (Singapore is not a very big job market, so it pays to do so). My peers and I are an eclectic mix of lowly educated to degree holding professionals. Just saying, but going off topic, I’d be greatly entertained though to hear more of such stories

    I’m not writing to argue with you, and neither have I disproved all your points. Though some are subjective such as the inbreeding causing a prevalence of myopia. Most Singaporeans are mostly only “3 generations old.” To suggest a small gene pool you are right; but we’re still not marrying our cousins.

    We’re not the most efficient in practice, and there is a lot of form filling everywhere in this island. Technology doesn’t always work, because it never does, not only in Singapore. The local bank systems may be perceived to be inefficient, but we hardly get frauds right? 3G or 4G is slow and sucks, yes. All in all, the Singapore system isn’t working smoothly. It ain’t perfect, but it’s home to me. And somehow… despite all this inefficient retardedness, how quite a number of Singaporeans need a kick up their ass – the Singapore system seems to work whilst other parts of the world are finding their systems collapsing.

  • Lebbitfoot

    Alamak! As usual, people getting worked up for the slightest tickle. This anon or ang moh is not totally wrong in what he said mah, relak lah people!

    As quoted, “as AN Singaporean”…OMG! I literally “fainted” at that! Not that my “england” (english) is that powerful (honestly just trying to use a more “power” word than just plain good). Afterall, I am not that highly educated.

    So, let me just K.I.S.S (locals just love their acronyms) as to how I view my fellow country people….

    – love to talk big
    – talk without thinking
    – pretend to know everything
    – narrow minded
    – can criticize people but people cannot criticize them ( this is OH SO TRUE! Why so defensive lah?!)
    – not considerate
    – exaggerating matters

    As for housing, everyone has their own standards. For a low-skilled local, take home pay about 2k; I am glad I got my HDB a few years back, price is now doubled! We have our own struggles lah, the ang moh can cut us some slack.

    This has been an interesting read and would have love to ramble on if only I was not trying to type this on my tiny iPhone!!! *LOL*

    • Nice comment.

      • Lebbitfoot

        Thank you for brushing my grammar mistakes under the door… I still like to BLAME it on the iPhone! ( another to add,
        ever ready to push blame to others or sitting on the fence )

        • Your grammar is not officially “correct” but it it 100% understandable and quite funny also.

          • Can’t Be Bother?

            Come on, you are in ASIA countries. If we get the grammar all correct, we will be the queens’ descendants and you will be the retarded. Bloody global racist

          • By the way, the standard English phrase is, “can’t be bothered”, not “can’t be bother”. I guess you’re succeeding in your attempt to bring the English language down to your level.

    • H. S.

      Does no additional comment here mean that Singaporeans generally agree with your 7 points?

  • 12

    Haha…the author findings is awesome. Some half truths in what he says. However, as a person, he is pretty much a clown. I love clowns. I think i am going to hire you to do a stand-up comedy for my dog’s birthday party. Maybe you can get him to bark since you are so good at doing that. For a good argument, please get more data to prove your point. Getting a few emails and bank statements to prove your point is not valid. Kindly get more data and do an econometric analysis to indicate any form of correlation. Do look up some econometric textbook so that you can be on your way. I look forward to your reply.

  • jj

    Firstly, thank you for this highly entertaining piece of article. Some points I could certainly relate to and some were maybe downright rude. We’re not all that dumb; you called us “idiots” and that’s just downright mean, materialistic, and very importantly, a citizen cannot get by on LESS than $1,000 per month – unless one’s a hermit. I tried (not by choice) and failed spectacularly.

    My mom will happily give you a breakdown of the amount she spends when she goes to the wet market weekly – which will tragically backfire on me because she’ll try to manage my finances next. I’m quite sure I overspend so I’ll be a bad example. I’m entirely dependent on our “world-class” transportation to travel from home to work and everywhere else in this tiny island – which is around $350 a month. Housing isn’t the only thing we pay for so you do have to include other factors before claiming something incredulous like “easily get on by less than $1,000 a month without struggling”. Honestly, that was about the only thing in your article that irked me – which is quite apparent since I’m going on about it quite passionately.

    I am of course utterly appalled at the applicants who responded to you. That was repulsive! I’m not going to defend them. Give me a Taser gun and their addresses. Or a huge dictionary to smack them over their heads!

    I’m not going to delve into the banking, IT and telecommunication infrastructures because you probably went to hell and back with all the disruption and what not.

    I’m from an interracial family; I assure you no inbreeding here. And for you to make such a crass remark reflects quite poorly on you sir, shame on you. Yes, you are speculating. Chinese in Chinatown, Indians in Little India and Malays (let me insert Geylang for you)? That’s quite absurd!

    You do know there are neighbourhoods in Singapore APART from those mentioned above right? You affectionately call it Ghetto I suppose. You probably have a chauffeur since you’re a successful businessman – and I’m not being sarcastic) but if you visited our average neighbourhoods, you’d be able to see the Indians drinking cheap booze under the block, the Malays “lepaking” which means relaxing (I think) and the Chinese… Okay, I’m not sure what they do. But be prepared to see more Chinese… Singapore is Chinatown if you think about it. So you haven’t REALLY seen it all if you think we segregate ourselves.

    Bad skin, bad teeth and a myopic population? Really? That’s how low you’re going to stoop? I shan’t dignify that with an answer or argue with you on that because I respect Mark Twain and he once said never argue with stupid people because they’ll bring you down to their level and beat you with experience. I’m not calling you stupid, I wouldn’t dream of it, but you’ll beat me on ignorance.

    You know, up till I went to China, I’d whine about the toilets in Singapore. After having to NOT pee for 6 hours and dying of thirst due to obvious reasons, our toilets are ok. Not exceptional, but ok. You know how you mentioned snot rockets here? Well, picture projectile diarrhea and blood…everywhere in abundance. This was the ladies restroom! To say it was a traumatising experience is an understatement. So I got out of there pronto. Which is what we do when we don’t like the living conditions. Why are you still here putting yourself through so much pain. Be kind to yourself!

    Your average Singaporean

    • H. S.

      This was hilarious.

      “I am of course utterly appalled at the applicants who responded to you. That was repulsive! I’m not going to defend them. Give me a Taser gun and their addresses. Or a huge dictionary to smack them over their heads!”

  • Jason

    As a Singaporean, i kinda enjoy your take on my country. I can’t agree that you are 90% right, I’d say 50%. The internet banking, the toilet training for adults (haha.. i didn’t think of it that way, and now i do.) and taxi services etc are quite to the point. However, some points to note, 1) public housing is nothing quite like “ghetto” unless in some older areas like Geylang (which prolly, you hang out alot in?), and is not heavily subsidised. On the contrary, the government is making a hell lot of money just by selling public housing. Damn! 2) It is also not not possible (in general) to get by with 1000/month in Singapore, like you said. I dun need to explain much, but you could really ask any Singaporean on the streets. 3) the anti-foreigner sentiments stems from failed policies, a problem that is created by the government than a real dislike for foreigners.

    Other than that, good read.

    • Anonymous

      Disagree about housing. The government isn’t “making a hell of a lot of money” by selling public housing, they’re subsidizing it by selling it way below market value. HDB’s are something like 1/4 the price of equal size condos even though the condos are nicer that’s a lot cheaper. If I own a piece of real estate that’s worth $2 million and I sell it to a family member for $500,000 I’m not “making a hell of a lot of money” I’m subsidizing my family member to the tune of $1.5 million or 75%.

      And I guess I should clarify when I said “get by without struggling for basic necessities” that should read as “get by without struggling for food and shelter”. I can see that is being misinterpreted a lot here but I guess it’s not surprising in a country full of people living in government subsidized houses while owning >=$100,000 cars.

      • oldbread

        The argument is.actually useable if the govt didnt grab the land off the people in the first place. .
        Not to mention why cars cost $100,000 here.

        A lot do actually struggle on basic necessities like food. Really.

        But this group isn’t usually seen by the general public.
        I heard of a story that need verification for those who know about it

        An entire block.of govt flats, lit with orange candle light because they simply can’t afford electricity .

      • Jason

        Hey Anonymous, it depends on what you mean by subsidised. Our government could have built the flats for 100K each and claim that the flat is worth 500K, sell for 300K while making 200K and call it subsidised. There’s this other way of subsidy (which our government didn’t adopt) which is to build for 100K, sell for 50K and subsidise anther 50K. That’s what i call subsidy. And up till this stage, our government still refuses to disclose the actual cost of building a HDB flat.

        Also it is natural that a HDB should be cheaper than a condo because 1) it is PUBLIC HOUSING, 2) in your own words, NOT AS NICE.

        Also, HDB flats are now costing as much(recent sale concluded close to a million), sometimes even higher than condos, FYI. Although the sale is in the second hand market, you think our government dun get a cut out of the sale? No tax? Kidding!

  • Tim Lee

    The comments left here are amusing. It’s like the haters are just blinded by a mutual hate for any form of Foreign Talent be it beneficial or otherwise to our country. All they seem to do is prove to readers that the points you made are true.

    I too am Singaporean and I agree with most of the points you made. Granted, there are some points that seemed fairly bias, but in the grander scheme of things, your observations are valid. I hope that things would change somehow in the future.

  • Tania
  • Erika

    So hilarious to read all this. Sucks for Mr. I-am-European when his puny ego is devastated. While I am not defending the country, it is so interesting see our anonymous writer’s frustration when he can’t fuel his superiority.

  • Mimi

    I guess everyone is entitled to their opinions as long as it does not harm anyone physically. Great article but one-sided, I suppose. I am a Singaporean and can relate what you said. Social engineering at work here, dude. Anyway, we are a young country, like you said. We have a long way to go. Older nations are moronic too, you know.

    I hope I wrote in the ‘perfect’ English required by you.

  • Tania

    The poor quality of foreign imports has contributed greatly to the declining standards of this tiny island.

    “Local workers are often of much lower quality than foreign workers, and to add insult to injury they also cost much more.” – Well, I can assure you this is definitely not true with regards to the IT industry.

    “I’ll setup a shared service center in another country. Problem solved.” – Please do so. Thank you.

    “If you’re a citizen you can easily get by on less than $1,000 SGD per month without struggling for your basic necessities because the housing is so heavily subsidized.” – How about lowering expectations for your company’s profits? You can easily get by on less than, say S$2500, per month without struggling for your basic necessities even though the housing is not subsidized. Let’s face it, the costs of living is rising for everybody, everywhere. The days where you can “easily find a foreigner that is wiling to work for $1,500” will not last forever.

    Racism? It exists everywhere. Take a good look at the racists chants from spectators in football games across Europe.

    “Horrendous service – From five star hotels to cheap restaurants some of the worst service I’ve ever experienced, incredible given the price of drinks.” – Chances are the service crew are not locals. Not trying to shift the blame here but there are indeed many foreigners holding various positions across the service industry.

    “simply verbally offending a Singaporean woman or brushing up against her the “wrong way” in a club” – Your girlfriend is a “wh*re”. Is this acceptable to you?

    To be fair, you’ve made valid points such as bad English, subsidized housing when people can afford S$100k cars etc. However, this is our way of life. Had been, has been, will be. Why are you here in the first place?

    Singaporean-bashing seems like a growing trend among the foreigners here lately. For the self-proclaimed “FTs” who have so much to complaint about, do yourself a favour already – go home.

    Last but not least, let’s pray that all the countries around the world will take in foreigners indiscriminately like Singapore. Amen!

    • User

      Tania- it is precisely because of reasoning such as yours that the author calls singaporeans retarded, don’t you realize that Singapore is just a high quality government made up of the best and brightest that is pulling up the moronic masses, there is a reason the govt has allowed so many foreigners in and it is not because the locals are talented and intelligent

  • abccc

    i see you got a nice RAP going on there.

  • oldbread

    The author’s problem stems from one simple problem.
    He can’t start his busness in Philippines , you can of course, but it simply goes against reason to do so when the talented filipinos are fleeing en mass. Not to mention the laws on sharing and the local conditions on hiring a local guard.

    But really, unless you’re an established industry leader hiring thousands , its unlikely anyone cares about your threats to pull your business out. Locals might even dare you on your threat.

    As for singaporean workforce. The ones youll find more , how should I say, better Value for money? Are generally the ones who are in technical positions and are actually using them. not service lines. Especially those with useable hands on skills. But they don’t get paid well. Jobs which require you to sit there and enjoy the air conditioning seem to pay better.. … .. Any non specialist jobs seem to be around to accomodate those in it for passing time .

    Pay comes first. Employment isn’t considered a career. Simply a place to park your body before someone offers $100more to jump. So if you’re hiring for a job that is not specific in technical skill set be prepared for this since everyone else is paying that or more. And offering a nearby work place too.

    I haven’t actually encountered any issues in starting a business here. Things are pretty straight forward but probably because I’m not a multi million dollar business. I skip procedures where I deem them redundant.

    But really why are you complaining about not being able to hire foreign labour in a foreign land where you’re a foreigner ?

    You make it sound like Singapore is responsible for making it easy for you to make it big here.

    • Anonymous

      You got it wrong. I don’t care all that much. It’s frustrating but just like everyone trying to run a successful business I will have to overcome whatever challenges I face. If I can’t get what I need here I’ll go elsewhere. It happens to be really easy for me to run a skeleton crew in Singapore and do everything offshore. I’m just surprised that since there are already a lot of foreign people floating around in Singapore that are already here, are qualified and want my jobs that I can’t just hire them. They’re not stealing the jobs from the Singaporeans – read the comments, Singaporeans that are illiterate are too good to take jobs off – they’re “top talent” from “top schools” who can’t be expected to even look at a lowly online job add.

      So I can hire people here and we can all pay into the tax system and spend money in this economy or I can do that elsewhere. I am shocked at the apathy, the poor language skills, the unqualified applicants and the bad attitudes. This may serve well for the cream of the crop as long as Singapore is still booming but during Singapore’s inevitable next economic downturn let’s see what happens.

      • oldbread

        that’s rubbish really, you actually do hear about the mindfuckary that people received from top talents from the top schools here. So I personally don’t buy that bullshat about how talented nus ntu people are.

        An ex company I was with was ran by uneducated managers who managed to increase the sales every year . Their reasoning was simple, as long as staff don’t create infighting, offer reasonable services be polite and keep rolling on word of mouth recommendations and sales will go up.
        Then the new boss took over with his great talents , definitely nus or ntu and the sales started going downhill every year.
        Perfect english , I’ll dare say he makes you look retarded but his talents did worse every year.

        I laugh everytime i think of how far their 100million gets every year because of all the talents he hired.
        They actually did more then 100mil previously so I’ll say the talents are actually shrinking the company.

        The cream of the crop will usually have the chance to leave and not come back. Far too many made it big overseas and find no reason to come back I don’t know of any talents that work for $2200
        good ones either cost way less or far more.

        And from my understanding. The newspapers might give you a better chance at hiring better staff. This isn’t europe. The general public aren’t that connect . And the ones that do aren’t the ones you want to hire.

        Like the lady I mentioned , she was paid far less than what she’s worth. And she’s working there because its comfortable. And for those they don’t really do online job ads.

        For anyone else you can just hire off the streets, like I said, you’re just a place for them to park their bodies til the next better place comes with a higher pay.

        And from my understanding of the tax system, you definitely pay less, way less compared to europe. To enjoy the security and pay such low taxes yet expect first world earnings who in their right mind won’t call you a leech ?
        Imagine if singapore were to ask for similar taxes and like philippines pass a law that states equity must be held by a citizen.
        People come to singapore to do business, not to contribute. And that strictly speaking makes anyone who hires foreigners leeches.

        Back then the general population accept this as part and parcel of life. Malaysians were viewed as cousins.
        But when you earn $800-$1200 and are told you have to buy a $100,000 flat lol… and foreigners come in and tell you singapore is good for business and your govt tells you this is good for you…… I’ll say, a leech is the best label you can get called.

        In vietnam they call you a robber baron and burn your factory down.

        The economy downturn is actually felt strongly currently by those at the bottom. They don’t enjoy the benefits of strong economy but are told they should bare with it for the sake of everyone else. And to add insult to injury they are told singapore is running out of citizens but for them to qualify forincentives they have to stop at two.

        So my dear sir, you are a leech. The only way you won’t get called a leech is to visit any country and simply start a soup kitchen.

        • Jane

          Spot on. Most astute comment so far. Obviously the article writer will have nothing to say about this, because it would be either above his level of understand, or it would hit where it hurts. I suspect it’ll be the latter.

        • H. S.

          B2B sales is something that NUS or NTU doesn’t teach well. The country is simply too young to form theory out of local anecdotal evidence. In fact, graduates might be worst off in sales after university, since sales by its nature is non-regimental. Graduates must still humble themselves and learn from the old-hand.

  • Jane

    I agree with you “bringing in barge loads of black money”. And all your gripes about the bureaucracy in banking are spot on. What’s your view on the Singapore govt and the real reason why people like you are here? I read from one of the comments that expats like you, are for the govt’s tax (even though it may be lesser than your own country’s). So what’s your view about the Sg govt especally regarding the “bringing in barge loads of black money”. How do you think it will end? Perhaps the owners of the site might like to comment too. Manuel?

  • Traveller

    I would love to know which country the authur orginates from. I supposed it’s full of highly intellegent people like him and no retards, unlike Singapore. I would like to visit this place and judge for myself.I would also like to see how good the so called “native” speakers converse in English.

  • V

    How erroneous. You know something? If you don’t like Singapore, go back to where you came from. It’s so deathly simple. I’m not saying to go back just because I want to say it out of spite to you. But really, if you don’t like a place you’re at, move on. Just by spilling a massive rant in a blog entry style does not change anything. I’m pretty sure this rings true: If where you’re from isn’t any better/safer and has it’s own set of problems, then you’d best be cock sure you’re not from around here on earth to be saying things about the people of another country that YOU have set foot on. Make sure you’re something of an Asgardian. And from this English-speaking Singaporean who feels absolutely sorry that you haven’t had the opportunity to meet and interact with some very whip-smart Singaporeans, screw you and your Singaporeans-speak-bad-English claims. Screw you all the way back down the carpark into oblivion.

    Here, have my middle finger too. _|_

  • ProudtobeSingaporean

    This article appears to be nothing more than an effort to infuriate and incite a negative response from Singaporeans. Yes, some part of your article may be accurate. But for the most part, it shows only one side of the story. To the other foreigners who have openly mocked Singaporeans who have commented, I can only think of the phrase pot calling the kettle black.

  • sophia
    Check out his posts. He’s just here to antagonize. What a retarded way to get attention! Odds are he is a bigot with narcissistic personality disorder. Our government really ought to conduct mental health checks on the people they let in.

  • Gerald Chan

    I guess what you need to understand is Singapore is a country as well as a city that grew from third world to first world in a relatively short amount of time. The resulting interactions creates a lot of pressure that causes our people to develop a defense mechanism against that pressure, ie Singapore Retardation aka numbing themselves to the pain. Also, evolution theory was suppose to weed out the weaker ones but modern ingenuity made it possible for more people in history to survive and even thrive, hence, more dumb people I guess. This happens almost everywhere in ‘first-world’ countries. What I think your entry seems to suggest is that such an occurrence of people with differing capabilities and intelligence is a travesty. However, this cannot be further from the truth of because there will always be dumber people around as long as there are smarter people, it is biology. There are smart dogs and silly dogs but we all love them the same because we understand that not everyone is built the same. It would appear you don’t understand this simple thing which explains your angst. Your opinion is similar to how every religion is claiming I am going to hell for believing in them. meh. Great points made but zero balance.

  • Funny Sai

    Makes one wonder why the author isn’t packing his/her bags already. If the cheapskate author bothered to read through his/her own article again, he/she will probably realize that his/her own stupidity is just as severe & obvious

  • cg86

    Sadly, I can’t find enough in myself to disagree to some of the points listed in that very lengthy post. Having said that, I do disagree to some of them.

    It is truly amusing at how narrow-minded some of the comments seemed; It seemed as though any Singaporeans (E.g.: Darren) who attempted to show his arguments the presumed-retardation of my country will face comments laced with cynicism and thinly-veiled insults.

    For all the implied self-righteousness these commentors would care to give, I suppose some part of your prestigious native English education is lacking the understanding of the idiom “there are two sides to every story “. If you must regard the unfortunate experience you have as the ONLY side of your Singapore story and disregard what my fellow countrymen is arguing/discussing, by all means, no one is stopping you.

    However, do continue with these implied or explicit insults, please. It is highly entertaining and shows an interesting insight to the wonderful lack of EQ to the way you regard people who stands on a different part of the world than you.

    Many businesses are moving their business to China and Philippines. You are sincerely welcomed to move your businesses and services there too. (No, truly. I meant no sarcasm at that) Wouldn’t it make much more business sense to hire these “foreigners” in their home country, where the overall manpower costs are exponentially cheaper?

    I must applaud Darren for his patience and efforts in justifying his arguments though.

    On another note, I must commend the author, and many other commentors with really beautiful-sounding English last names on embracing the complaining nature of Singaporeans. 😉

  • Frank Olafsen

    I am an european foreigner, living in Singapore for 5+ years. I just read the article. I don’t like it at all. It was written to infuriate, to anger.

    It was written to went someone’s own frustration. It just makes things worse. Completely counter-productive and dangerous. And every foreigner will be in a worse situation because of it. It is pure provocation, oil to the fire.

    While I might agree with some of the things in the article (and disagree with others), the issues itself are irrelevant. It is very easy to write up a list of shortcomings like this of any country, especially if you watch a foreign place through the colored glasses of your own culture.

    This article will not help to solve or amend anything. It was never meant to do that. It was only meant to provoke. And this alone makes the whole lengthy post valueless.

    • Yes, it’s our job to just ignore shit and sweep it under the rug so everything stays as retarded as possible. Why discuss something and try to fix it when you can just throw up your hands. Dumbass.

      • Frank Olafsen

        We should discuss the problems. We should also try to find ways to improve things. If by no other means, then by showing good example. See the comment from “Bemused Singaporean” for an example of a language and an opinion worth discussing.

        But name-calling, insulting, senseless criticism never helped to improve anything. The article doesn’t try to improve anything. It just complains and insults. That takes away most of the merits that it might have had.

        For me, it reads like someone anonymously vented out years of frustration in public, hoping for a strong reaction, so he can amuse himself. Kind of like taking revenge for his years of suffering. Because of that, I find it useless and harmful.

        • oldbread

          On the contrary , I am glad people like him pop up every now and then.

          The average singaporean is so daft they can’t think for themselves and think of the world as a loving peaceful place. Trust their lives in a system that exploits them and tells them its for their own good.
          too soft and kind(naive) to deal with people from other places.
          Singaporeans would only mouth complains and move on when others would protest out in affirmative action and lynch people in public.

          And in peace the gluttonous slowly collaspe inwards . Without people like him , malays suffer from discrimination in job seeking And different races fight among themselves when religions come up, especially islam.
          (And in case anyone wondered, no I’m not malay)

          “Xenophobia” has one surprisingly positive side effect in uniting everyone.

          But really, when I see the average singaporean getting hired for $600-$1800
          I really do wonder where he get all these $2200 gems ?
          I personally knew one lady who had to fill in and run most of the place for her $4000 manager at $1400. Order stock,handle complains testing for customers, mentoring juniors.
          And her manager told everyone she’s lucky to have a job lol. And tells her she should be punished for asking to have a flexible work schedule for taking care for an autistic child.

          If you’re getting$2200 for rubbish you obviously need to look further than

          • Anonymous

            If I found somebody like that I would happily hire them for a lot more than $1,400.

    • H. S.

      Finally a foreigner who sees the harm of this article. Frank, I think you would be able to write a new article that is honest, yet 10 times better than Sir Anonymous’. Would you?

  • iW

    Hey Nameless Guy who posted this article!

    I am a Singaporean, born and raised and I would like to, on behalf of all my peoples, apologise for your less than enjoyable interaction with the local indigenous population. Don’t get me wrong, I love my country (it’s the only one i have!) and I do feel a certain vulnerability when I see my country described as a nation of retards. But I do see and understand how you as a business owner have had to deal with repeated disappointment while looking for even semi-competent, professional and likeable employees.

    I have to admit that Singapore has many flaws that foreigners like yourself can pick out easily. Most of the things you described probably come from a view that is informed by 60 plus countries and a lifetime of rich experiences. I respect that, and would say that that probably gives you a very good vantage point to see the things you have so rightly observed. Even though like you, I wish my country was more “civilised” and “less fulll of morons”, I suppose I have in my mind not just where I wish we were (and we need to be), I am also aware in a little way where we have come from. We are less than 50 years old as a nation and have achieved somewhat of a miracle. I am not one of those to say then that we have really actually achieved anything yet. But not so long ago, we indeed were a nation of mostly foreign uneducated labourers, bundled together in a nation that was struggling for its very survival. Many of these original pioneers are still alive and they are the ones who appreciate most what Singapore has become. Many of them were, like you said, uneducated and uncultured. They did not have the benefits of the “civilised” cultural capital that many western nations inherited (and it could be said, squandering). Most of us, even me, have grandparents who could not read, but worked hard to bring up children so their futures could be better than theirs.

    I am not offering a defense, as none exist that could excuse or explain the utter irresponsibility and sense of entitlement that younger Singaporeans seem to have. I also know that many of them only know how to blame others for their lack of significance and have not the moral or professional compass that would help them navigate these troubled times ahead. I believe the government is trying hard to fix these but many of these things arise because we indeed transited, at least on the surface, from a third world into a first world country. We have the infrastructure, the processes and the externals, but within us, the core of “normal” (and I guess for you, retarded) Singaporeans, we have yet to catch up.

    I am blessed to have gone to a school where I hope I learnt some form of basic English and hopefully I can express myself in a way that is understandable. I know that Singlish really can be “appalling” to the Others, but I would venture to say, though it is not “right” in its grammar and spelling (in fact, totally atrocious and non-existant), it is a “language” that is very close to my heart. It has expressions that go beyond the meanings, but express the culture and the heart of us as a people. In many ways, this seemingly disgusting abomination is one of the few things that we do have as a people that we can say is not imported, but has evolved as we have grown. It may be, that it does reflect where we are as a general populace but I am not one to shy away from the fact that we have a long way to go to be a “first world” people because you can have first world exteriors, but building the cultural, intellectual and moral capital of a people takes a lot longer than the 47 years we’ve had.

    Many of us who grew up in this modern wonder of the world have no idea how we got here or what we did to deserve this country. In fact, we don’t know it to the point where we are the ones tearing it up ourselves. Such is the reality of rapid growth. All the points you made about why Singaporeans should be “thankful” or at least aware of what is being done for them are always heavy on my heart. We are often thankless, clueless and grace-less. But I am hoping we can become better. If I don’t believe that, who will? 🙂 I certainly hope you would continue to believe that there are good Singaporeans out there to “mine”, but that is hardly an expectation I could have of a non-Singaporean. You are most right to take it as you see it and that is the “truth”. For me, I also have a truth that shouts that Singapore has come very far and indeed has a long way to go. I will try my best to be one of the Singaporeans who can do her proud and maybe even, through some serendipitous encounters with some disgruntled foreigners, become a beacon of a semblance of a whiff of a shadow of a whispered prayer of a tiny ray of fragile hope that Singapore can be, and is getting better through each undeserving generation. You speak what is true to you. I hope it will not be the truth in 10 years. No guarantees that we will be better or that we won’t be a complaining, spectator, entitled, souless people but who knows 🙂

    I agree that Filipinos really do make Singapore a better place. For that I regularly honor them and thank them. Many of them are wonderful to befriend and have a level of service and cultural engagement to native English speakers that many local Singaporeans cannot match.

    I too wish I could view bank statements more than three months. What’s up with that? 🙂

    I certainly do not wish that foreigners all go home. Many of you make Singapore better. More competitive, more vibrant and more cosmopolitan. I apologise for all Singaporeans who can’t say anything else accept “balik kampung”. That is hardly a rebuttal to any of the valid points that non locals see in us. What I would like to ask for is a little more understanding and grace on the part of the more educated and cultured foreigners that we are who we are and if you could suspend that sense of ridicule, judgement and offense, you could be pleasantly surprised sometimes 🙂 Each person has a story, has a life, has each their own dare I say valid lives they have lived, many through struggles and much pain. While that does not necessarily make us less “retarded” in terms of professional conduct and efficiency, it does possibly soften the retarded label and opens a window of compassion and understanding. I have had many heart warming conversations with taxi uncles and cleaning staff who could never have a coherent conversation in English, but whose lives singularly lived for their children’s happiness and their kindness in their poverty inspire me and shame me.

    In the midst of all the mud, there is sometimes gold, and the patient and hopeful find it. Maybe you just don’t have time in the midst of flying in and out but who knows? I am hopeful for you too!

    Thanks for sharing!

    • H. S.

      If only Singapore had more sensible people like you.

  • daftsinkie

    Have to agree with some of your points, especially with the uncivilized 3rd world mentality and behaviour of many sinkies. However, I strongly disagree when you say our housing are heavily subsidized. Obviously you’ve been misled our PAP’s propaganda!

  • S

    I absolutely agree. I’m Singaporean. Too sad. Lived here all my life.

  • pancakes

    Well it is true some Singaporeans can’t speak English properly and haven’t got enough skills. But you want to know where all the real talent is? They studied overseas in the Ivy League or in the best universities in Europe and are working in top jobs back in your home country or serving in the civil service. Naturally a middle tier company like Mr. Anon’s would get left with the scraps. And in my opinion, stop talking about other countries having smart people or whatnot when the economy in the States as well as Europe is in such a mess and the ‘smart’ people can’t fix it.

  • My opinion on Singapore is very much like the Chinese Central Government’s take on Mao’s reign. 51% good , 49% bad.
    I love Singapore, but I agree with most of the things said in the article above.
    Aside from the most bitter and twisted hardcore pursed-lips constipated face Singaporeans – most would nod and shrug to most of the points made in this article.

  • Lim Lao Beh

    I know why U are keen to employ Filipinos. That’s because you can screw the gals in the workplace and at the clubs for free. Go back to your hellhole…you are not welcome in SG!

  • CH

    I think while many of your observations are accurate, there is little need for you to be so condescending or harsh. The challenges Singapore faces are very different from many other developing nations. We are a very new immigrant country made up of disparate communities. The bulk of people are Singaporeans today are by and large descendants of those who left their homelands without skills or assets to seek a better future in a place they feel no loyalty towards. Trying to shape a cohesive, coherent narrative of who a Singaporean is or what the country should be requires more time and resources, and engaging in more public discourse and building consensus. Singapore hurried through development on a mass scale since the 1960s and what we are looking at today is just the result of a social engineering project in its infancy. The question is whether more can be made of this place by its people, and in which direction we will go, rather than what is failing at the moment.

    • M

      oh man, this this this. I mean honestly, the article was pretty hilarious, and the grievances mostly legitimate (my personal pet peeve about annoying singaporeans is people choosing to sit on the outside seat in the bus and making it harder for other people to get a seat – why the fuck would you be such a cuntbag to your fellow countrymen?!), but the tone and the utter “superior white men” thing resonating through the article is pretty gross.

      I think that despite the huge flaws that the singaporean society has (that us as singaporeans mostly acknowledge to be huge issues that should be dealt with), there is still warmth in this country. Nice hawker uncles and aunties that give you extra toppings on your food when you smile at them or are a frequent customer, singaporeans genuinely wanting to give up seats to the elderly/pregnant on mrt trains, people returning the phones that I lose at public places…ultimately I’m still glad to be in this safe and stable country, and I think the author should really give singapore a chance. we’re still working things out, give us time, and most importantly, if you want us to change, then help us out instead of just flaming the country that just got independence not even 50 years ago.

  • Son of Serangoon

    One-sidedness of the article aside, I wonder what business the author runs that it would attract such a dearth of talent. I won’t dispute that there are a substantial number of incompetent people out there in the workforce, but surely there’s another side of the story to explain why he seems to be getting responses (in the hundreds!) from the bottom of the barrel.

  • Rene

    I am utterly disgusted by this loud-mouthed neanderthal!

    1. If where you came from, had great people, service and attitudes – you would never be in Singapore – because that country/countries would have continued to be prosperous and great. The reason why Europe, US collapsed is because the nations had become too arrogant, lazy, demanding and greedy. Who in the world cries wolf and demand for help when they have been greedy and lazy for years and sit like petulant child when Merkel refuses to relent?

    2. Seriously, I wonder if you are self-deluded or you actually am a retard yourself – since you have already determined that Singapore is worthless – why not shift your business to Pinoy-land or anywhere else where labour is cheaper and allegedly of much better quality? Do it and prove your points – action speaks louder than words. I wish you will not take the coward way out – instead let our government know your disgust with us, disclose your name and businesses – so that we can release you from your agony. Go on….I dare you….rather than spit venom, try swallowing your filth. I wish you well.

    3. We can go on and on about the merits and negatives of different countries and never finish. Singapore clearly has our own faults – most Singaporeans would hardly disagree with that, the nation is going through an identity crisis and we know it – we are trying to find our way out but we are doing something about it. But we do not take kindly to people who spew venom and expect to get away with it, you do not come to our country and lash out at us and think its mighty fine. IT IS NOT!

    • Sucks when we’re right, doesn’t it?

      • SPG

        We’ll let you know when you actually are.

  • D

    Regarding Singlish, it would be what I use to communicate with a fellow local. To an “ang moh” I would use proper English. Most of the locals I know would be flexible enough to switch modes of language communication as necessary.(and faking an accent to speak to the “ang moh”) Perhaps you are just not meeting the “right” Singaporeans. Anyhow I do agree the written communication through SMS and emails can be horrid at times with the truncated words and shortforms which causes images of retardation but I wouldn’t label this offense uniquely just to Singapore.

  • Singland Powderful

    I agree with pretty much everything you say, except the anti-Chinese sentiment.

    Although most Singaporeans can trace their roots back to China, it was a pre-Mao, pre-communism China. Our forefathers did not have the privilege of commie brainwashing and book burning, etc.

    That’s my excuse, anyway. What’s yours (for abandoning your superior homeland, then dragging your skid marks down our Orchard Road)?

  • Naatasha

    Wow. I am a Singaporean and I absolutely agree with alot of the things said here. Which is why I actually left the country and am now based in Sydney. I remembered returning home after my study in Australia to find a job as a materials engineer with much frustration. Mind you, I am actually the sort that replies to phone calls and emails and shows up for my interview. But to my dismay, my interviewers looked at me (I am Malay btw.) and said they needed a Chinese who could speak Mandarin for a position as an engineer. SERIOUSLY? what is the point of having English as our first language/ the language for commerce? and when I did find a job, meetings were constantly in Mandarin and the discrimination in work places were atrocious. However, I wouldn’t blanket the problems over Chinese or Singaporeans or Foreign Talents for that matter. Its the class you attract I suppose. Like, is your company an MNC / well known? What is the title of the position you offer? What is the minimum qualification required for this job? What is the layout of your ad? These matter in what kind of “talents” you attract. Maybe you need to get proper HR personnel to help you with hire? (Just a suggestion of course). However, uncouth behaviour unfortunately knows no boundaries and span across all race, religion and creed. That goes with stupidity, racism, ethnocentrism, irrational behaviour, prostitution and rudeness. I don’t know which part of Europe you came from– maybe Sweden or Norway — but I must sympathise with you for having the misfortune of ONLY interacting with ugly Singaporeans. Singapore is a beautiful country, even with the foreign talents. And as a Singaporean, I have no qualms with FTs in Singapore. Hell, we are a nation built on immigrants. That’s our roots! We are fast paced and a little ruthless and with Mandarin dominating the economic scene and various industries, people like me have to migrate. But that’s Singaporeans for you. Anything for progression. 🙂 So a tip for you to have a more enjoyable experience in Singapore, is to TRY to forget your pre conceive notions of Singapore and Singaporeans and take Singapore as a different place- not an Asian “Europe”. I mean You’d be surprise, with an open mind maybe you’d find Singapore not too bad. If you ask me, its not that Singapore is bad. It’s that its different. I remember how I used to see only flaws in Australia when I first came here but that quickly dissipated once I embraced where I am instead of wishing where I was. Here wishing you happier days ahead. Yours truly, a true Singaporean.

    • oldbread

      Madame…. you are surely mad to consider returning.

  • 12

    Kindly allow me to explain. For instance, if a local is paid $3000 a month, the employing firm is required to contribute 16.5% of the worker’s monthly salary into the worker’s CPF ( Central Provident Fund).

    • anon

      Ok, so just pass the cost on to the employee by setting the nominal salary to 0.86 * real salary.

    • I guess you haven’t worked in North America where you’d be paying at least 25% and up to 51% of your salary to income tax pigs.. so of that 3k job, you’d be taking home roughly 2k.. try to swallow that for a lifetime.

  • Anonymous

    I’ll make one more comment and then I’m going to bow out. I said my piece. My take is that the vast majority of foreigners agree. Of the Singaporeans literate enough to even form a coherent response, some agree and some just make a bunch of excuses or throw insults that my business must not be worthy of quality applicants instead of addressing the horrific quality of the applicants.

    I notice that the apologists don’t read very carefully either or if they do their comprehension is not good. There are a number of comments indicating good Singaporeans are “above” and that they only apply “direct to companies” or work through recruiter. First, I didn’t say I used, I said I used local Singapore job sites like Secondly, I did say I also tried recruiters and very frequently the recruiters were Singaporean themselves and just as bad as the job applicants. They routinely sent absurdly unqualified applicants that didn’t match the job description provided at all.

    Next, my complaints about English are not about minor grammatical errors. Nobody expects flawless English from someone that speaks it as a second language. The point is that it’s not unreasonable to expect at least an intermediate level of English from a country that very loudly boasts and brags that they speak English as an official or first language. That point seems completely lost on the two guys who admittedly can write well but seem more interested in bragging about their wealth and ability to point out inconsequential grammatical errors. In case it wasn’t clear- I don’t give a damn about grammar, I give a damn that somebody can communicate effectively in English, written and spoken and that they understand English communications, written and spoken. I would have that thought that would be obvious. I really feel like 90%+ of the local responses only serve to prove my point but everyone is free to make their own call.

    I also want to say that I found it hugely entertaining reading on TR Emeritus how many locals view foreigners who come here with money, knowledge, a desire to start a business and maybe even hire them as “blood sucking” parasites biting Singaporeans who are in Singapore “begging”. For the record, I’ve never begged for anything in Singapore, not even once if you can imagine that! I’m sure that mentality will serve Singapore very well in the future.

    “ONE of a kind after sucking our blood and living of our nation he is talking COCK real ungrateful ARSE-HOLE.He is just a beggar after begging us for food to fill his hunger he is now bitting us.Please go and beg somewhere if you still remain in Singapore after next week you are just what i called a ARSE-HOLE BEGGAR.FUCK OFF and go beg somewhere you are just not welcome SICK PIG.”

    I didn’t think I needed to explicitly state it this but I didn’t come here with some preconceived prejudice against Singaporeans. Far from it, I came here to start a business(es). I would have been more than happy to hire locals. The problem is that the locals are both more expensive and less competent than many of those competing with them both inside and outside of Singapore. It’s just the way it is. Singaporeans seem to want to call me “too cheap to hire top talent” or something along those lines but the reality is why would somebody pay more to get somebody to do something that someone else can do better for less? There are those people all over Singapore but I can’t hire them because of the government regulations, so I’ll hire them elsewhere. I don’t need top talent I need office drones and mid level managers. Technology and my business is such that I can place them in Singapore or outside Singapore. Because of the bad attitudes and the lack of qualified applicants I’m choosing outside Singapore. It’s that simple.

    So many of those that responded that are functionally fluent in English also seem to be self-proclaimed “top talent” from “top schools” that are too good for me or my job (never mind they don’t know what it is) and even too good to, god forbid, even consider looking for a job on a jobs website. OK, if that works for that type of person now fine but I don’t want that type of person and I’m not prepared to pay for them. I suspect though that attitude is afforded by the following factors: currently Singapore is booming, the government makes it a necessity to hire a certain number of locals and right now there are tax incentives for companies to stay in Singapore that often times outweigh the bad deal that is the local labor pool. Wait till Singapore finally has an inevitable downturn and these people will either be unemployed or signing a different tune. Even if I was looking for someone to groom as a top level manager I wouldn’t take someone with that kind of attitude. I would take someone who is hungry for the job with a “what can I do for the company” attitude as opposed “what can the company do for me”. That’s another thing I forgot to mention. Singaporeans will hop jobs like nobody’s business even to gain a paltry raise – no loyalty!

    To all those that say “fuck you go home”- lol! I and others like me aren’t going anywhere- Singapore is profitable for us for whatever reason. The question is will we maximize our use of the labor pool here to do what we need to do, or will we keep as small a foot print as possible and use outsourcing and shared service centers in other lands. For me the choice is clear, even without the incompetent local labor pool real estate prices in Singapore have become beyond absurd. It will probably be of huge benefit for me after I get past the initial headaches of setting up a new office in a foreign country with the required infrastructure.

    Enough on that though. I think everyone who is going to “get it” “got it” a long time ago and those that haven’t never will.

    Also entertained that the following baseless claims and assumptions have been made about me:

    1.) I’m white – I never said that and not everybody in Europe is white, trust me.

    2.) English is my first language – I never said that either, lots of people in Europe don’t speak English as a first language.

    3.) I’m racist – Quite the contrary when questioned on race I specifically said I don’t care about race and I in fact don’t. Anyway, I think it’s Singaporeans that are the racists who love to categorize everyone into as many subgroups as possible. As far as I’m concerned you’re all Asians (except the Indians which do warrant having a “race” of their own) and I have nothing against Asians. I rather enjoyed my time and the people in many other countries in Asia.

    4.) I’m Filipino – Re-read the article, I’m European, I stated it in the first paragraph.

    • Jane

      The only reason that you are bowing out of this debate is that you cannot answer my question about what you think of the Singapore govt, and your comment about “barge loads of black money.” Come on, be a brave European, little one, and answer the question about “barge loads of black money”. Or have you suddenly thought about Shane Todd and are running scared and a coward? Must be. All you Europeans from the dear continent have always been cowards, and leaving the Americans to pick up the mess you’ve made in other people’s countries.

      • Anonymous

        I answered that question above. Can you read as well as you can write? Are you suggesting that the Singapore government is now murdering anyone who criticizes them now? That’s a pretty ridiculously stupid thing to say and that wouldn’t be very good for business either so I doubt they are that dumb or even have time to worry about such trivial matters. Shane Todd definitely appears to have been murdered though, but it wasn’t for pointing out the incompetence of Singaporeans on a blog. Maybe you should read the story before making stupid comments.

        [Moderator comment: Original answer to the question “How do you think it [barge loads of black money] will end?”]

        That’s easy. “Badly” and “Like Cyprus”.

        Singapore’s financial asset to GDP ratio of 7.7 is not sustainable. It’s all rainbows and sunshine during the boom years but as soon as there is a downturn look out!

        I will be here to say “I told you so”.

        • Jane

          Nope. You only answered the question, ‘how do you think it will end.’ You did not answer the following: “What’s your view on the Singapore govt and the real reason why people like you are here? I read from one of the comments that expats like you, are for the govt’s tax (even though it may be lesser than your own country’s). So what’s your view about the Sg govt especally regarding the “bringing in barge loads of black money.”

          You have lots to say about other things in Singapore, but what have you to say about some questions above. 1. about the S’pore govt 2. about the real reason you are here (as someone has said, for the govt’s tax) and
          3. most of all, you have not answered my question of “barge loads of black money”. Remember, the average S’porean is retarded and stupid. They don’t know what is this “barge loads of black money.” You, as the enlightened European should well…enlighten the unfortunate natives. They are waiting for a white knight like you to save them from their own yellow peril.

          • Anonymous

            Um… we’re here to make money and enjoy the low tax rates. I’m indifferent to the government, some good (low taxes), some bad (bureaucracy, quotas). You can Google black money and maybe add +Switzerland, +Cyprus and +Singapore if you are two dim witted to catch my drift.

        • Jane

          Your last post at: Anonymous
          April 2, 2013 at 10:51 – funny how there isn’t a ‘Reply’ button thingy. You obviously don’t want to address the issue of the S’pore govt and what you said about “barge load of black money”, isn’t it? But what puzzles me is how do you manage to take out the ‘Reply’ button such that I now have to reply to you in the comment that’s probably above this?

          That means you wrote all this, as the page owners, right? Not as some ‘anonymous’ contributor. What’s there to be afraid of? Especially as you’ve said you are “indifferent” to governments? Are you afraid of LKY and his son? Are you actually based in Singapore while doing your singledude travel in the region? Afraid of the reach of S’pore’s ISD? You know something that we don’t? That you’re only here to comment so boldy about the region, is because you’ve cut a deal.

          So where’s the reply button? And can a mere anonymous contributor have the ability to take out the reply button? Surely only a moderator can. And why dont you just write it in the name of Charlie Bushman, sorry, I mean meister? Finally, you still haven’t answered by question about “barge load of black money” and they fact that you’ve mentioned ‘too dim witted to catch my drift’, perhaps I’ve pushed some buttons? Are you catching MY drift then? lol. “barge loads of black money”. Why don’t you say it to the old man. 🙂

          • Clint Westwood

            There’s a lot of us authors, editors, contributors and guest posters here at SDT but for sure anonymous guest posters don’t have access to modify the website code. Not to mention you must be insane or at least have extreme delusions of grandeur if you think anyone is going to waste their time modifying the code just to force your idiotic comments one space lower on the page. No, the website has a hard limit on how many levels deep the comment replies can go and after that you just can’t reply anymore. That limit is applied evenly and without prejudice to all comments across all articles site wide. You really must be a serious dumbass to think that anyone would modify the code just for you.

            Lastly, Anonymous’ answers seem pretty clear to me but I’m just one of those stupid native English speaking westerners – what do I know.


            Clint Westwood
            SDT Webmaster

        • Jane

          Why get so annoyed, Clint? I’m just asking a question about something that has puzzled me. But come on, you mean anonymous has answered my questions about “barge loads of black money”? No he hasn’t. Why don’t you make my day, and enlighten me, then. We Asians, especially Singaporeans are too stupid and retarded to know what that means. Please, please. Do make my day!

          • Clint Westwood

            You’re just being an annoying obnoxious idiot. Add something meaningful or be marked as spam. Your question was answered.

    • gy7

      One little know fact is that most of the top talent from the top schools will enter the PSC. The PSC offers them a very cushy remuneration package that few firms can match. Coupled with a fast track promotion, the best (read President Scholar) can very easily be earning literally hundreds of thousands annually at around 30 yo. By around 40, some will be the leaders of Singapore stat boards (read CEO/CFO/Board members). At this stage, they will be easily be earning at least a million bucks annually. Do you honestly think that your firm can beat that?

  • Bemused Singaporean

    Disclaimer : I’m a true blue Singaporean, born and bred, grew up living in a HDB flat, attended local schools and all that. For years the education system tried to drum it into me that what we have is the best and how other countries love to emulate us (just read the Straits Times. It’s always chockful of such chest thumping bragging editorials). As a Singaporean and a male no less, the government would have you believe that you are indeed fortunate to have been born into this utopia. One that you should be proud to dedicate your prime years towards providing free labour for government vanity projects at their whim and the reward being some pithy sounding words mouthed by an overpaid minister.

    I cannot find anything in the article to disagree with. In all brutal honesty I cannot label the points expounded even as hyperbole. Singaporeans have been coddled and pampered for generations to believe that they are a cut above their neighbouring countries, even on par with the best in the world when the sad truth is we are nowhere near it. We can’t think for ourselves, we do not question why and we have been conditioned to obey over the years. We are unable to innovate and resort to copying slavishly what others have created and even then, not even well. It is no accident that Singapore doesn’t have a single global brand to boast of besides its airline and even then, SQ has not been tops for years, maybe even a decade (I’ve not bothered tracking cos’ honestly, who cares??).

    I was fortunate to get a job posting in Cambodia a few years back. While others may react with pity or sympathy at such a “hardship posting”, I actually count my work experience there one of the best in my life and I say this having just finished a 2 year stint with a global MNC company with its Asian hub based here in Singapore. Cambodia may be backward to most, its people poor and illiterate but I learned more about being gracious, humble and grateful for life’s simple pleasures and rewards more than two decades spent chasing the “Singapore Dream” has ever taught me.

    Your obvious disgruntlement over hiring or rather, TRYING to hire locals made me chuckle. Local “graduates” here possess an over-inflated sense of their self worth and capabilities. A fresh graduate with NO working experience (not even part-time because she claimed she spent term breaks studying hard. Yeah right, pampered spoilt brat much?) demanded a starting salary of $5,000. She also claimed to be a fast learner and espoused a firm belief that she would be able to contribute after having learnt the ropes from the company / me. I sweetly told her then she should be paying me for training right? The backwards mentality that the onus should be on employers to impart skills. enable invaluable knowledge transfers and divulge industry secrets is baffling. That overweening sense of self-entitlement, that one should be HIGHLY paid to learn at the employer’s expense is why many Singaporean undergraduates regard internships as a school-mandated chore and not priceless learning opportunities.

    My current and previous staffs are no better. Crafting a basic email is beyond the capabilities of most Singaporeans; despite being a senior director I find myself having to play nanny by writing a template for my supposedly NUS-trained staff and even then, emails get forwarded without a care or thought to important C-suit level clients, some with competitor names and confidential information left intact. I would love to brush this off as isolated cases but the sad truth is, majority of Singaporeans are really not worth their salaries and oft times I feel guilty of this myself. My only saving grace is I try to read as much as I can, get critiqued and improve.

    I blame this on a mind numbing culture perpetuated by the brain dead government-backed media, one that prizes shallow cheap forms of entertainment over any other artistic or cultural pieces of work or content. An unthinking populace is one that is least likely to question authority or self corrupting governance; it’s no wonder why subjects such as World History or Literature is devalued and deemed as not worth taking up by most.

    • Thanks for a very smart comment. I feel bad that I am so impressed by your grammar and clear thinking. Singapore needs many more people like you.

      • Can’t Be Bother?

        And definitely less of you C.B.

    • Guy

      Now where is that Like button. By far, this is one of the most well-constructed response; compared to the rest of the others who chose to criticises the author with the low level language and insult. The article was written based on reflection and experience and I do agree with all of it; now if you disagree with it; can ask yourself: WOULD the author of this article; took whatever time it took him to write this long article just for the sake of insulting Singaporean? Have you ever considered that perhaps that there’s indeed a problem with some of the things in Singapore; from the perspective of someone not from Singapore. It’s a pity that majority of Singaporean who responds with aggression are seemed to be closed minded. Think Bigger at the very least… For your information, I am neither Singaporean or someone from Europe. Believe me but, I was sent to Singapore by my firm; to better handle the local staff here (not by choice); because the locals employed here are expensive and inefficient; sadly but true (about 2 years ago now), I had no choice but to replace them with foreigners from Malaysia, Indonesia and Philippines after interviewing so many locals. Most of the locals demand; ridiculously high salary package whilst bringing in almost zero experience; bottom line, those new staff operate more effectively at much lower costs. Finally, sadly but true, without foreigners, Singapore wouldn’t be as flourished city as it is today.

      • H. S.

        Wow… This is the crux of the issue that the local government is facing. Singaporean-first, but at what cost? PM Lee has a lot on his hands.

        Maybe that’s why the government is planning so many novel alternative universities, like Singapore Management University, Singapore University of Technology and Design, and NUS-Yale humanities university, to foster better graduates that are educated, and not just trained. Only proper education can make a PMET.

        Sadly, with everyone wanting to be a PMET, businesses with low-skilled administration work will have to move out of Singapore, or employ 100% automation. The sad irony is that the government e-services themselves are still staffed by hundreds of such low-skilled paperwork-processing staff in the backend. Can’t blame why our online services must close after-hours as these systems were built many years ago (more than a decade), with the flawed presumptions (and resistance) from that era when the rest of the world did not even know government can be online.

  • Shruti Gupta

    I am not a Singaporean and as a foreigner who lived in Singapore, I can agree with a lot of what you have said. However, comments mentioning inbreeding as deduced from bad skin, bad teeth and need to wear glasses, completely takes away from your article lending a xenophobic touch.

    Also, completely beside the point, but none of the traits that you have mentioned are published side-effects of inbreeding. You have also called third-world people “stupid” and “uncivilized” which reeks of ignorance. I can completely relate to the bad experiences that you’ve had in Singapore, but saying that 90% of them are stupid, is again very ignorant. You have not met 90% of Singaporeans. Even if you take a smaller sample to base your findings on, you don’t know enough kinds of people to have a homogeneous sample. I know it was obviously an exaggeration to make a point, but generalizing a country and calling it stupid can never be a sensible statement. If you corrected those points, I do think that this can be seen as an article with valid arguments and not a childish rant.

    Not for anyone else but only to enrich your own experience to the maximum, I would recommend that you try to meet well-rounded locals and you’ll find enough local people with brains who see the same flaws in their society as you do. I know this article was specifically talking about the “retardation” (surely you can be more p.c. than that) of Singapore, but I hope you have managed to open your mind wide enough to also enjoy the amazing experiences that Singapore has to offer.

  • jason

    First and foremost, i am a true blue Singaporean. The author isn’t wrong in his evaluation of Singapore. Nevertheless, not all Singaporeans are the same, just as not every American is the same as George Bush. =)

    This article could do with a little bit more objectivity injected into it.

  • I wouldn’t say that I totally agree nor disagree with the author in all aspects. He has raised some valid points in his articles and some points which sadly, is just his experience. I have has the opportunity to be on both ends of the hiring phase (interviewer and interviewee) and agree with some points but I’ve also had many cases where I was spoilt for choice of good possible local hirings but had to choose but one.

    It could be just the job position he has advertised for. But I feel his pain in that example. I have has some interviewees do that to me as well.

    However, I definitely disagree with his take on banking. I like the 2FA or 3FA. 2FA and 3FA _are_ internationally recognized ways of securing your internet banking. I mean, even with them, hackers have been known to been able to hack into accounts and transfer your daily limits out. And the author is begrudging the banks for it? Seriously ?

    Readers should really read the good parts and perhaps learn from it, and laugh off the bad parts as hilarious, they really are. The way some bad comments are worst than the 13 year old girls I used to educate however, the good comments are worth thinking through about.

    It should also be noted that the article seems to filled with a level of frustration which led to him/her writing this article.

    But. Thanks for writing this article, especially for the comedy and yet thought provoking moments.

  • Gad

    I am an Singaporean and i feel that many points that the author made are true but to typecast all Singaporeans as dumb is just ignorant. Many of the traits or behaviors mentioned are a result of the education system. I definitely feel offended but everyone is entitled to their own opinion so to each his own. I would however like to make a few points

    – It is definitely not cheap considering the average wage of a Singaporean and we technically do not own them (99 year lease)
    – As Daren mentioned, there are many restrictions when it comes to buying public housing e.g. family nucleus, income limit.
    – The government basically uses public housing to lock us down in Singapore. Hard to migrate when you’re saddled with 30 year mortgages.
    – The gap between private and public housing is narrowing and isn’t that large
    – Lastly, four room flat doesn’t mean a apartment with 4 bedrooms but rather 3 bedrooms instead

    – Seriously i feel its flawed. It’s commonly remarked that Singaporeans are not educated but trained instead.
    – Do also note that only 27% of each cohort is admitted into local universities so not everyone you meet is a local uni grad (nothing against private degrees)

    – I have nothing against foreigners but the sudden surge is overwhelming for most people to bear

    – There are many Singaporeans, especially older ones who are working in those industries that you mentioned (cleaners etc) and they are also exploited. e.g. local cleaners earning $600 a month.
    – Yes I’ve met fellow Singaporeans who don’t have a good grasp of the English language despite having degrees but they tend to come from native language speaking families.

    And yes, my English is probably not up to your standards. This isn’t a grammar class anyway but more of a discussion.

    PS: By the way. I’m not good enough to be one of the 27%.

  • ivan

    Wow, what a ghastly human being you are haha. Really I was pretty floored by your cloistered 19th century imperialist attitude to another non-European country. Seriously if I met you in person, I would be incredibly tempted to shove a jackboot so far up your arse that seven shades of shit would adorn your computer screen. Then you you’d have a pretty nifty desktop image of your mum. Cheers.

  • DDT

    Singaporeans aren’t angels but I can’t help feeling that the entire writeup stems from his frustration of having to pay for getting-raped-in-his-arse-price for drinks. One sore alcoholic FT– Too many the likes of him we have seen. no?

    • Actually we’ve found cheap wine in SG but still are looking for intelligence.

      • SPG

        That might be. But it would seem your searches in the mirror likewise proved fruitless.

        The comments generated by this article might have been fertile ground for productive and ‘intelligent’, as you say, discussion. I can’t help but be dismayed that the undoubted verity of certain points raised is overwhelmingly, and to your complete discredit, overshadowed by the abrasiveness and sheer arrogance with which they were put across.

        I am sorry that your experiences have not been with the most gracious of Singaporean hosts. Yet you, Anon, and you, Charlie, can hardly claim to be gracious guests either. The incidents described in the article reflect badly on our country, certainly; equally, your complaints and attitude reflect badly on yours.

  • Applicant: Hi I’m james suppose to come interview later .. cn ii check with u ur add is xxx orchard rd .. is it full add? No unit lah? N wat yr companie nam iS.. ? xxx orchard rd is very big lah!
    Applicant: Den wat companie nam?

    I genuinely laughed out loud. xD Thanks.

    • Can’t Be Bother?

      Don’t laugh and be compassionate and encouraging to the applicant, he just try to earn a living. Some Indian still use hand to clean the ass after shitting despite there is toilet paper. Still remember the food poisoning case by the Indian Rojak store that cause few deaths?

  • anon

    “To pay a local around $2200 net costs me about $3000.” This is extraordinary. Elaborate?

    • anon

      Sad that my comment is getting buried 🙁

  • z

    The writer writes an article full of deceit and lies obviously a disgruntled foreigner very likely a pinoy. If an employer wants to hire only foreigner there is no need to go to singapore, there’s 99.99 % the rest of the world to goto

    The writer is anti singaporeans obviously because he/she can only work with his/her own tribe, this kind of persons should be shot

    if the writer smear singapore in this manner, the writer’s own home country is obviously a bigger and smelly shit hole

  • z

    this article is full of full of deceit and lies obviously a disgruntled ft very likely a pinoy If an employer wants to hire only ft there is no need to come to sg, there’s 99.99 % the rest of the world to goto

    The ft is anti singaporeans obviously because he/she can only work with his/her own tribe, this kind of ft should be shot dead

  • You are not quite wrong… Singaporeans are indeed quite dumb… and stubbornly defensive.
    So the point is, improvement is almost impossible, and politically, we are shaking very hard.

    I won’t say Singaporeans are hopeless workers; they are people who can work, but are not given proper training and the society simply ignores that by crap mentality that work is work… not about ambition or personal interests, and the top have the final says no matter how crappy things are. This happened or could be happening in SIA and other related entities. Singaporeans simply have too many excuses for being dumb, and they will mock someone who has more brains only because they luckily made more money or in the position to make more but being totally useless at the same time. So in a way, yes… Singapore is very stuck, and eventually situation is going out of control and whines go very very loud from many quarters… although the whiners are also part of the dumb problem.

    Many will call you losers and bla bla bla instead of working on what you mentioned; especially the government bodies. They are so well paid that anything they will try to dump to the media dept to deal with defensive dummies, and if the dummies make more noises, maybe they will change… but since they are paid high not because they are talented, they simply can’t change and perform…

    In a way, you are quite right… Singapore has a cool habit of wanting you to pay high for Singaporeans because of crazy idiotic Meritocracy based on exams and reputations and bla bla bla but they just can’t perform, nor have the will of flying higher with the company.

    On the other hand, will (eg) your company has proper training and guidance for people like myself… who want to fly higher but have to get paid for the high cost in Singapore? Which is why you are mocking Singaporeans… are you yourself willing to risk paying higher to groom a nobody to somebody? Or are you simply hoping to fill the tiny island with the entire poor population who will ask for lesser while calling Singaporeans dumb?

    It’s not low cost as you think… For every cent of subsidy, in a tiny market, it quickly multiply into a inflation of multiple folds… That’s because in Singapore, the whole allocation of resources is a big mess. Which is…

    You yourself are also clueless and not perfect. So… In a way, Singaporeans are dumb, you could be quite dumb as well. So am I. It all depends on who is the judge…

    • mickeyvee

      Take your first paragraph and your last paragraph, and we might have the answer to your queries. You sound a little self-contradictory there, friend.

      Taking a quick look through your blog, you seem to have a distaste for ruling party and yet you can’t seem to shake out of the so-called legacy of the ruling elite. You know that legacy, the one many government critics level against the PAP: Dependency.

      So, yes, Singapore is very stuck, and yes, whiners are also part of the dumb problem. And I’ll say it again, the problem is dependency.

      Since when was it incumbent on job providers to risk paying higher to groom a nobody to become a somebody? Sure, it may be work culture in some companies. But to make it compulsory for private enterprises to groom nobodies? Imagine that. The government you elect imposes on all Pte Ltd’ the need to hire 4 nobodies for every 1 qualified person in the company.

      Friend, your hope is not with companies. Where is the entrepreneurship spirit? You’ll have to do it yourself, mate. If your high-flier ambitions are dependent on the generousity of companies, I’ve got bad news, friend.

      • It’s actually like fishing… You probably don’t realize certain things.
        There is nothing self-contradictory.
        I know your strength, I capitalize on it for my benefit, I know you are dying… and I am prepared to take over…
        As for your bad news…
        When I was in China, business owners are more keen on providing junior China born employees opportunities to groom them then going to get foreign experts.

        Their thinking is very simple, they want a loyal team of managers for their own empire who are groomed from nobodies to somebody and compete directly with foreigners without the need of dependency on foreigners.
        Which also answer your problem about dependency. LOL~

        The problem is basically like this…

        If nobody is going to do anything about grooming talents from nobody to somebody… then yes, entrepreneurship so be it… hence, these nobodies will time the fall of the somebodies and rise to be somebodies.

        My high flier ambition is, technically speaking, dependent on smarter employers…

        The reason why so many local companies remain small is very simple… they capitalize on cheap cheap cheap but they can’t expand to the powerful size to take on the big names, simply because they don’t groom nobodies. So they paid so much to get more from cheapness and they can’t expand because they simply can’t fight with the price the biggest players are paying the top brains. They can’t compete for the top brains, they don’t or can’t groom the top brains, they become the low in the eco-system…

        When I enter politics later… I’d redo the entire equation. Singapore has the basis, but without the brains. LOL~

        Look at PM Lee people are whining against… Why can’t he deliver? Why can’t he change? He has all the branded folks money can buy… but none of them have brains for governance. LOL~

        Say… if every ’employer’ is as you suppose so, the bad news will be good news, for Singapore is small, and if employers can’t grow, they slack and lag, and hence… Singapore is declining. The situation will grow so serious when political stability won’t support economic stability, and the nobodies such as Li Lilians will rise. I am refering to, of course, the Li Lilians who can actually govern.

  • Anon

    Hmmmm. I think you should be calling your lawyers in case the S’pore government decides to sue you for your slanderous remarks. Keep in mind that they have never lost any legal battle before in any country worldwide.

    • The Singapore government sues anonymous bloggers with servers (and domains) in other countries in foreign courts for writing opinion pieces? That sounds like just another thing to add to the list of retarded things Singaporeans do… It also sounds like extremely pussy and effeminate behavior: “Don’t talk about what’s wrong with us or We’ll sue you.”

      • Jane

        It’s most certain pussy and pooftah. As is the colour pink. Pink shirts and all.

      • Anon

        I am sure they don’t sue others for writing opinion pieces as long as they are true. However, in this case, it is cleary slanderous and defamatory.

        • If your government starts an international lawsuit over this blog article that would be the ultimate proof of “Singaporean retardation” right there.

  • AlexTheCard

    Sorry, typos, should have said ‘thinking’ not ‘think and ‘this word works just as well’ .

    Add ‘indifference’ to the list of HK experiences.

  • AlexTheCard

    After think about this after posting, using a real-world incident, of which I have had many and yet another just yesterday, is what “Anonymous” uses the “R” word for, but I’ll just call “Clueless”.

    This word words just as well and is as descriptive.

    For example, go into most stores (like Electronics stores) and ask some basic questions and you will see the word Clueless personified. In a head-shakingly unbelievable way. But stick to their uninformed guns they will and try to discuss things they know nothing about, fooling no one but themselves.

    I never got this when living in Hong Kong – I got arrogance, rudeness and disinterest, but not cluelessness.

    • Anonymous

      Clueless does not convey what I’m trying to describe. I’m trying to convey substandard intelligence, low IQ- as far as I know “retarded” is the appropriate technical term although maybe I should have prefaced it with “mildly” or “borderline”. I don’t mean to insult people born with much more serious problems, I’m just stating an observation – a huge percentage of the locals running around this city seem to be of below average IQ and I haven’t been able to come up with any other working hypothesis that makes sense. If you want to debate nature versus nurture be my guest. I don’t know and I don’t care.

      • smtsmt

        Dude, you know, you make a lot of good points — I was even willing to turn a blind eye to your hyperbole — and then you go and write this comment. It is about as intelligent of a comment as the “if you don’t like Singapore, why don’t you just leave” defense. Esp given the availability of studies like this if you simply google:

        (yes, i know this post is four years old at this point)

  • AlexTheCard

    I hear you Anon, but maybe if you had a brother or sister with Down’s, or were unfortunate enough that you and your wife had a child with Down’s you might make some effort to find a better word to use.

    It’s your blog and you can do what you please with it, and I won’t appeal any further, but it really grates to read that.

    Having said that, I agree with most of what you write. And I’ll contribute my own findings, which will only serve to compliment yours.

  • Another Anon

    This forum motto “The definitive single men’s guide to travel and lifestyle: How to live like a rockstar, find the girl(s) of your dreams and do it all for pennies on the dollar™ ”

    Looks like old US solider going to Vietnam looking for free sex and old colonial British / Dutch / Spanish wanted to be treated like a king in a foreign land. These old habits or bad traits or what we call the DNA are indeed deep rooted in some of you such that you still have the mentality that ASIA is place for your “free girl for free sex” and “free partying”

    Sorry to say that to you the Dude and Retarded here, Singapore isn’t really a good place to do that. May be you can try “Marsian” or your own country.

    A prostitute in everyway is a lot more profession than you self righteous and self pro-claim supremacy. If you are born in a country of truly culture right and your upbringing are indeed a true gentlemen, then the words come out from you mouth will be of gentle yet positive way. But looks like you are not.

    • Your Singaporean retardation must be impairing your reading comprehension. We routinely preach avoiding hookers and Singapore is definitely full of hookers. If you’re looking for hookers Singapore is actually a great place for that. It’s a stupid place for everything else related to fun and party though.

      • Another Anon

        Yap, majority of hookers are foreign import ( with licensed ) and freelance ( unlicensed ) to satisfy foreigners. Otherwise molest and rape crimes will go up. Local hookers are too expansive ( make sure you remind the author, otherwise he will complain again the local Hooker’s service are poor and cannot speak Englishman’s English ). But I guess you properly can find the freelance of your type among yourself here which are coined by your slogan “find the girl(s) of your dreams” …. Free Sex No Paying …. Aids Coming.

        One girlfriend is never enough for you isn’t it?….. Expect a virgin and loyalty from the girl you slept with ( perhaps even free lodging & free condom when visiting her ) but yet discard her when game is over. How many holes will satisfy your dick’s desire?

        There is no loyalty, family value of your type and yet you load of theories and big lashing on Singaporeans. As what some other commenters have pointed out, you are here to evade the tax from your own country and trying to make some money out of here if you can. So please remember to say “thank you” to Singaporeans for letting this to happen for you.

        How can a nation full of moron and retarded can provide fun and party atmosphere to a outsider like you unless you are also a moron too to appreciate the fun and party provided by the moron / retarded nation? Are you RETARDED or WHAT?

  • Another Anon

    Hi Anon and MickeyVee:

    I am a Malaysian turn Singaporean myself. You are properly right about some Singaporeans that behave this way and perhaps the business that you operate or the job that you seek ( for MickyVee ) are in contention with similar trade and businesses that require same categories of employee.

    If your trade are in the niche and really require talented employee ( or you being the talent the employer sort after ), then you will be paying the international top rate salary.

    As what you have said yourself, MickeyVeee, you want to judge Singapore as advance first world and developed country, then you must understand that at top of pyramid, the real talents are very few. Unfortunately, this is what the Elite run Singapore government said and preached and but not what the Singaporeans think and experience. So if you believe what they said and make this assumption and you get yourself into ASS_U_ME situation. It is like saying Malaysia Boleh but only to relate UMNO with Anwar’s Ass.

    I read with above that some said they better off hire Philippino than Singaporeans. It depends on which industry that you are looking at. But there are always a good and bad. Unfortunately my Philippino employees team f**k up the whole show ( claiming everything can do but never do, just cover up with paper ) and I have to get the Singaporeans team to clean up the mess.

    Not too long, I attended one year specialist engineering course which I seen many national attending. In my group, there is India Indian, Myanmar, Indonesian, Malaysians, Singaporeans, China Chinese etc. As this course require the candidates to have relevant working experiences, so most of us are so call profession in our trade for sometime before we are accepted.

    During course work and projects, I see that many of them are very hardworking, but there are also some that always waiting to put their name in for the project works without wanting to do anything so that they can pass the examination. Unfortunately, in my class, the India Indians and the some Myanmar classmates did that, To certain extent, two of the India Indian demand that the project group must put his name whichever group he wanted and the other claim he is too busy. At this point, the Singaporeans and Malaysian classmates still accept their name to be in.
    Take note my mentors are from India, China and local and they noticed of these.

    Similarly, I have a chance to meet some of the most talented scientist from the government agency. From the same country ( not to mention where ) these scientists came from ( but from difference department ), one team was really talented and up to the mark and very humble. While the other team was outright rude by addressing people in full name and forcing their “scientists” opinion on us, to the extent when I disagreed, one of them walk to my sit during the meeting trying to force upon the idea on. So how is it possible that for the same breed of people from the same country, you have two difference type of people

    I am not defending Singaporeans but it is indeed that some Singaporeans also f**k up, unfortunately that you have meet them. But there are also great Singaporeans that truly humble and very talented.

    I hope when you blasted at Singaporeans, you first look at yourself whether you are the top 20% of the elite or talents in your own country. If you are not, you are just the normal 80%. When you come to Singapore to do business or seeking employment and thinking that you are helping Singaporeans, you will get it totally wrong.

    All you are helping is paying tax to the Singapore Government because they make you believe that you can make good money ( that is why you are here isn’t ) out here. But if you can do that in your own country, why you want to be here in the first place?

    So for the author, you are certainly in the wrong place to do business; not at least you have the wrong mind set. If I go to your country to do business, can I tell your government that I prefer to hire Singaporeans or Malaysians because they speak the language that I understand and they are of the same culture that I come from?

    Why do you judge others in the country that you wanted to do business and using their resources ( I presumably selectively because the tax in Singapore is very low and the Singapore government give you freebies as startup including hiring low cost labour ? )…. You should try that in Hong Kong or perhaps in Philippine instead; or may be in JB. But please be reminded that in these countries, you will face difference problems there native to their countries system, culture and policies.

    May god bless you and family. Have a great weekend.

    • I hope the author will respond in depth but this comment reads like it was ran through Google translate…

      • Another Anon

        What exactly is that you want to get out from staying in Singapore or doing business here?

        As before, if I go to your country to do business, can I hire my own fellow country men from South East Asia only instead of your country men? Or do I blend into your country culture and align to your government policy since your country is the host and I am a guest and visitor?

        I would have to respect your country law, immigration and employment policies, isn’t it? I cannot expect your government to bend the rule simply I am doing business in your country. Exxon Mobil, Rolls-Royce etc are no exception but yet they are able to cope well with the hiring.

        But If you cannot cope with the employing and hiring, it imply that you seriously are incapable and incompetent of running a business.

        As a sensible and cool headed business person, I do not think that one will be grumbling like OLD SENILE and RETARD person, spending all his /her time complaining like an old lady or old men all day long.

        Looks like you are just a clone or paid writer by some authority ( be it foreign or domestic ) to stir up the emotion here. And properly the opinions of Singaporeans that you published here was picked up from the ran through from Google search.

      • H. S.

        If you thought that Singapore English is bad, wait till you see English from some non-KL parts of Malaysia (like the above). Every country have their own weaknesses.

        • The difference is that Malaysia doesn’t scream to the world that English is its official language… Calling Singapore an English speaking country is a really bad joke and the comments here alone prove that.

          • Can’t Be Bother?

            Being a moron and retarded is excusable, but being ignorant is worst of all. Singaporeans never say that Singapore is an English Speaking Country, but official propaganda did so. Didn’t you know that Malaysia and the rest of South East Asia will tell you the same story – Our country also speak English too? How stupid can you be to believe in Official Propaganda – You born yesterday or what?

    • mickeyvee

      Dear “Another Anon” (I’ll refer to you as AA and the original author as Anon),

      I can’t say I am in a position to speak on behalf of Anon, but I would like to address some of the points you raised to him and myself, if I may.

      First and foremost–and please forgive me if I sound arrogant–but, looking at your language skills, your asking of us to consider if we’re in the 20% elite group seems a little rich.

      Believe me, the “ass u me” assumption that I make runs through all strata of society. Singaporeans from all rungs of the socioeconomic ladder are very condescending towards Third World immigrants, and this is particularly true the higher the level of one’s socioeconomic status. It has nothing to do with being in the top of the pyramid. Of course there are exceptions to this case, which I conceded in my previous rant, and, of course, I don’t claim that this is uniquely a Singaporean experience, but it IS more pervasive in Singapore.

      Oh, and good luck trying to make your case in English when you’re trying to raise a complaint or make queries as many locals no speaker gud Engrish, which goes back to Anon’s point questioning the claim that English is Singapore’s first (and native) language.

      I think a consideration that often gets overlooked/taken for granted is that Singapore is a metropolitan city state. It’s supposedly easier to develop, manage, detect problems, and affect changes in such a small country. Society is supposed to be more homogenous because the distance between high society in the CBD and the Heartlands is only a few miles, a few minutes by taxi. It’s supposed to be an international city.

      But I digress. The primary thing I take issue with is your assertion, as follows:

      “So for the author, you are certainly in the wrong place to do business; not at least you have the wrong mind set. If I go to your country to do business, can I tell your government that I prefer to hire Singaporeans or Malaysians because they speak the language that I understand and they are of the same culture that I come from?

      Why do you judge others in the country that you wanted to do business and using their resources”

      1. The wrong place to do business? The World Bank ranks Singapore as one of the easiest places in the world to do business; it is supposed to be conducive for businesses to operate in this country. Anon’s demand that Singaporeans speak the language that he understands (and speak it well) is totally within reason because English *is* the country’s first language. It’s like going to China, which professes to speak Mandarin primarily, and trying to hire China-Chinese employees who, miraculously, botch and butcher Mandarin like there’s no tomorrow and then you turn around and blast the employer for trying to impose that Chinese speak proper Mandarin. Silly, much?

      2. Of course Anon is within reason to judge others in the country he operates in. Why? Because in Singapore, the private sector drives the economy, and guess what? Private companies need to make sounds business and economic decisions to benefit and grow their companies. This much is obvious. But common sense isn’t so common, isn’t it? Of course Anon is free to pick and choose the type of employees would best serve his company’s priorities. He is not running a charity. And, so what if he consumes the country’s resources? (I don’t really understand that point, though). He provides work opportunities to locals. He pays taxes to IRAS which benefit locals. On top of that, he enriches the landlord of the premises where his offices are located (which again is probably owned by a local). He spends on rent, loan premiums, food, drink, petrol/maybe even a car, all of which are taxed, again, to benefit locals. Now I know a lot of Singaporeans are wont to say that foreigners don’t have a birth right to be in Singapore. I respect that. But I urge you to differentiate between mere job seekers and job providers. Anon is the latter.

      I second Mr Pfister’s request for Anon to respond in depth to these past few comments from all of us 🙂

      • This is the entire point as I read it and it seems like they just don’t get it.

        • Darren

          You claim to have conducted biz here and yet you failed to realise that English is NOT S’pore’s first language? No wonder you are not that successful. English is merely an official language. Singapore has 4 official languages – English, Chinese/Mandrin, Tamil and Malay. Chinese is still the most widely used language in Singapore. Now, you were saying?

          Next, I shall insult you further by referring you to this link.
          You call yourself a business man and yet you just take these results as presented? Simple common sense 101: ALWAYS check the methodology of the survey before using the results. In this survey, labour quality is NOT a measure and it is the same for ALL countries. Anyway, if the quality of labour is so poor here please explain why so many MNC are able to thrive here? I wonder which uni you received your training from especially when you can talk about common sense when you are actually devoid of it.

          While I do agree that a biz is not a charity, it does not give you the right to disrespect anyone. Do remember that a business does not operate in vacuum but is a recipient of shared culture and intellectural wealth and is accountable to the community. The paltry taxes that you pay here is way lower than what you will need to pay in the US (or other countries like Europe). Hence, do not feel entitled as you are not. Running a biz is about playing within the rules and making the best out of them. If you are incompetent at it then you will just become obsolete and join the ranks of those who are suffering from structural unemployment. Also, with increasing demand from other foreigners to come here, it makes no sense to keep you when there are legions of better talents out there to tap on. Hence it is in my best interest for me to encourage you to leave and make space for the other more deserving foreigners who want to come here to make money and to serve. Please do oblige me by leaving and never come back.

          If you think you can make it in Hong Kong, then by all means please go there. I do know from experience that Hong Kong is a very tough place for entrepreneurs (that can’t speak the local language) to succeed. Many of the westerners there that I know are all mostly working for foreign banks that want to have an outpost near China.

          • mickeyvee

            Darren, sorry for getting your knickers in a twist. Since you have taken the effort to elaborate on your position in four paragraphs, allow me to respond in kind.

            1. “Singapore adopted English as our first language in 1965, establishing English as the language of business, of government and as the language of instruction in all government mainstream schools. English is also the medium for communication and negotiations with our neighbouring countries.”

            I guess the good minister had erred woefully. Or perhaps he was lying? Or maybe you’re wrong.

            2. Why are MNCs thriving in Singapore? Perhaps it’s due to all that imported labour, those darned “FTs”, you’re so keen to denigrate (alongside the other capable Singaporeans, of course). Or maybe it’s more complex than that? A combination of political stability, low taxes, strategic location. I wouldn’t know; you’re the expert, the one with “intelectural wealth”. But don’t worry. They’ll all up and leave soon, what with all the xenophobia and the rising cost of living there, believe me. Then, you, Darren, will be a happy man.

            3. Oh then by what right do you have to disrespect me, then, Mr. I-Shall-Insult-You-Further? I get it. It’s a birthright thing, yes.

            I guess all the private companies should close shop then since their taxes are so paltry. Silly me. It seems like government should not bother with the voice of taxpayers too since their taxes are so paltry. Or you would rather go the way of the US (as per your analogy), taxing companies to their eyeballs, hence why all their jobs are being outsourced abroad. Look how that is working out for them. Which university did *you* go to?

            4. Umm, I’m not sure how Hong Kong came into the picture. But I’m sure even a simpleton like can see that the comparison is apples to oranges.

      • Another Anon

        Hi MickeyVee / Manuel / Anon:

        a.) Are Singaporeans descendants of white Englishman?
        b.) Do all Europeans speak English?
        c.) Do all Wales, Irish and Scottish speak Englishman’s English?

        As what my UK classmates have warned me before I travel to Wales and Scotland, do not expect all the native to understand and converse in English. I thank them for this advice and it has serve me well, not only traveling in Wales and Scotland, but also in greater Europe.

        Perhaps the author may want to identify himself which country is he from so that instead of coined himself as European, just name the country and town which he comes from. At least to separate himself from my Europeans friends from German, Swiss and Sweden that understand English in Singapore is an official language; but not the native and mother tongue of Singaporeans.


        You are from Malaysia right? Are you a BUMI or Indian or Chinese or Mixed? Within BUMI, not all converse in Bahasa Melayu, right?

        I am sorry that the Singapore government and the world bank mislead you into believing all the flashy data of Singapore. Unfortunately, > 80% of Singaporeans do not speak or communicate in normal English. Is this acceptable to you and you friends?

        We communicate in a mixed language so that we understand each other, base on our handicap or limitation in English? Can you and your friends accept?

        I apologize if there is illusion from the Singapore government and World Bank or otherwise media propaganda that Singapore is 1st world country but Singapore is really not there? Can you and your friends accept?

        You or your friends can demand what your want or like from Singapore government but if Singaporeans cannot give it to you, can you and your friends accept?

        Can I as a former Malaysian, demand that Malaysia government gives non-BUMI a fare chance of success in live as a citizen in Malaysia? And can I demand that they do not put a BUMI director in my company so that I do not need to paid him monthly director fees and annual dividends since he is not working at all? And can I ask that English as the teaching medium for my kids and that they respect my mother tongue?

        Majority of the ASIA countries welcome investors so your good friend Anon are one of them. Malaysia properly has the same level of foreign investment last year if not higher than Singapore. He can choose to go to your country and invest but properly he knows that he has to face the obstacles above. So base on your argument, he is a private investor he should have the same right in Singapore should he invest in Malaysia, do you think this is possible without your BUMI uncle putting their hand into his pocket and have minimum BUMI working in his company?

        You know the answer to these and perhaps you can position yourself to better understand that in each country, they have their own set of law and rules to follow.

        Singapore is no more than 700 sq km with 40% of the population foreigners, the other 20% are new immigrants. and may of them distinctly do not converse or have English as their 1st language or mother tongue.

        If you and your friends can understands and accepts these facts, then you do not need feel angry, cheated or complaints any further because Singapore it really not WHAT YOU THINK IT SHOULD BE.

        You and your friends are just a by passers with no morale nor ethical attachment to this small little RED-DOT fate. Singapore do not really need you, nor your friend type of investor here because the basis of learning to respect and accept and merge into the locals are not here. It is at most make some money, for convenience and perhaps some law protection ( very certain that you friends or you can own 100% of your own company and property here, but it will not be possible in other South East Asia without partnering the locals )

        You can continue to voice how RETARDED Singaporeans and how unhappy you are with them. But wouldn’t it be easier and happier if you and your friends let them go by leaving this country and leaving this RED-DOT out of your mind. Why continue to torture yourself or UNLESS YOU ALL ARE AS RETARDED AS SINGAPOREAN?

        But if you like to continue this bashing game, then I as the HOST, welcome you aboard, you are just about now Half a Singaporeans…..

        Once again, sorry for my very poor English, but in Mandarin, the above can be sum up as 入乡随俗,随意而安

        Have a great weekend

        • Your English is not great but obviously much better than the average response. Your comment is long and rambling. I got bored and fell asleep after the 2nd paragraph. Sorry.

          • Another Anon

            Hi Manuel:

            As what Darren has said, your English is neither up to the mark (五十步笑百步) as compare to average Singaporean and I am below the average; I take this as good comment.

            Sorry my comment bore you but the 2nd paragraph is reserved for ex-Malaysian Brother MackeyVee.

            By the way, would like your comment on the following whether do you find the English written is sub-standard:

            To see a world in a grain of sand
            And a heaven in a wild flower
            Hold Infinity in the palm of your hand
            And eternity in an hour

  • Scott

    Interesting post. I went to Singapore on vacation with my parents awhile ago and I thought the videos that show a bomb blowing up in the Subway pretty weird. Fear tactics work well over there I guess. Newton’s circus has pretty good food though.

    This is unrelated to the post but I just moved to Australia from the States and was wondering if you guys have any tips. Search results dont come up with anything. Brisbane to be specific anyways. I walked down on block during busy hours and I saw more beautiful women in that time period than the past two years where I lived in the states. Unbelievable.

    You guys have loads of stuff on SE Asia which is great since Australia has cheap flights to there but just curious if you have anything on Australia itself.


    • Sorry dude, we’ve never been to Australia. Some day hopefully.

      • Scott

        Thanks anyways mate. Great material on here.

  • mickeyvee

    Dear Anonymous (can I call you Anon?),

    Couldn’t stop laughing; hilarious article. I’m from Malaysia and I must say that everything you’ve said jives 100% with what I’ve experienced and observed in The Most Modern Southeast Asian Nation™.

    The goons who cannot take your criticism and are wont to kick all the foreigners really are a lost cause. Kick out all the foreigners and let’s see how well the SGD fares in the Forex market, and as you and I know the strength of the Dollar underpins the robustness of the Singaporean economy, affording them a lot of First World infrastructure, amenities, and luxuries that they’re so proud of. Dollars and cents aside, how about defense? How much technology–hardware and software–is imported from other (usually Western) countries, the defense technology that forms the solid foundation of your Total Defense concept? Almost all of it! Wither foreign influence and bilateral relationships? It is by virtue of foreign influence that you have so many F15SGs, F16s, and Tigers, not to mention the pilot exchange training programmes, training with US Rangers, so forth and so on. So many countries have their eggs in your basket, why do you think your neighbours only pay lip service to going to war with you? Because the Seventh Fleet is pretty nearby, that’s why.

    And, If they are so keen on kicking out the lowly third-world-smelly-uncouth migrants, I’m afraid that the locals might finally have to, horror of horrors, wash their own $100,000 cars, do their own laundry, and take up the back-breaking manual labour jobs to build stuff. Perish the thought! Of course, if a local uni grad were to become a bricklayer, it wouldn’t be a stretch of the imagination to guess that labour wages in Singapore would cost more than New York’s. Let’s see how that works out for the property prices you’re so keen to bitch about.

    One of the key things I felt you, Anon, missed out was the angle on entrepreneurship and business. As you mentioned in your article, you were a business owner. The mob was so keen to crucify you even though you are a job provider and pay taxes to the government to the benefit of the locals. They don’t seem to understand that you didn’t set out to discriminate against Singaporean applicants when you set up shop, and they can’t get it through their thick skulls that no business owner would hire lousy staff at a high price. Instead of venting their disgust and anger at the low-quality talent pool, they seem to think you’re the problem.

    You see, Anon, I’ve long wondered why Singaporeans, the native, true-blue, NS-serving, passport holding, flag waving types, rarely venture into business (the younger generation, especially). They have the greatest advantage, receive the most incentives and have the easiest route into starting and running a business in such a business-friendly country that is so well-connected to the world, but most would rather settle for a salaried position. Talk about a waste of opportunity! I’m keen to get your take on this phenomenon.

    Don’t get me wrong, my significant other is a local and I visit the island quite regularly. There are things that attract me to the place and there are things that don’t. One of the major things that don’t is that Singaporeans are quite fond out trying to outdo one another even in supposedly casual settings, especially amongst strangers. It’s like the competition never ends. And yes, of course there are plenty of nice locals that are warm and friendly, but believe me those are few and far between.

    Oh, and since we’re on the topic of job applications, I can safely say that I have no desire to work in Singapore. I’ve been to many interviews there and I can report that all the interviewers I spoke to–all the locals, that is–are ducking fumb. Many are cold, cheap, rude, intrusive, and did I say cheap? I remember one particular interview where the interviewer’s first words out of his mouth were, “You have an interesting name. What race are you?” and went on to spend the next 5 minutes trying to unravel my ethnic background. I also remember a certain director at a major multinational group that asked me to come in and talk to him about a role that was available. The office was downtown, it was an effort to get there and it was raining that day. His only question, literally, was to ask me if I had public relations experience when my CV clearly stated I did not have it. Oh and I can’t forget that one time where one director asked me if I supported any environmental causes, to which I replied in the negative because I often found such causes to be mired in emotionalism. To which the director dropped this gem: “Oh, then I guess you’re not religious since religious people tend to be emotional and irrational.” Be that is as it may, what the eff, man, where are the equal opportunity employment regulations?! Suffice to say I’ll continue with my entrepreneurship in Malaysia and service select Singaporean clients from a distance.

    Okay, I don’t want to ramble on any longer. Anon, I would really love to hear more about your observations and experiences if you can spare the time. And to Singaporeans reading this, before you flame me (can’t say I would care if you do), I just want you to know that the reason why articles like Anon’s exist is because we hold you to a very high standard, one which you claim to live up and aspire to, by virtue of your incessant chest-thumping that Singapore is an advanced, modern, First World, and developed country.

  • Offshoreoildude

    The descendants of coolies…. might not be brighter than coolies….

  • AlexTheCard

    Your stories are generally very accurate and glad to see someone positing these, as maybe more locals read these than the “expat” forums and that way, maybe, just maybe they may learn something.

    A request – please, please stop using the “R” word – you use it waaayy too much. It is extremely offensive, there are other, better words to describe these kinds of people, and some people have these people in their families or similar tragedies.

    Keep up the posts!

    • Anonymous

      Well, if you have a better term in mind I’m all ears, however I must say: it’s meant to be offensive! I offended that someone can claim a college education and fluency in English and write communications like the above when applying for a professional white collar job (even if it is entry level). I am offended that people apply for jobs and refuse to show up. I am offended that the people are not only uncompetitive but they then stand in the way of others that are ready willing and able to do jobs they cannot or will not.

      Also, I think it’s a true and honest assessment. I actually believe, based upon experience, that a huge proportion of the local population fits the clinical definition of borderline mental retardation. There is no other way I can square my experience with reality. If someone else has an explanation I’m all ears but my current working hypothesis is that a huge proportion of the Singaporean population significant below average intelligence levels. And please don’t give me some bullshit phony statistics that say Singapore is actually above average – all governments lie and manipulate statistics, especially Singapore’s. Anybody that has spent a week or more on the ground in Singapore would scoff at the notion that Singaporean’s are of above average intelligence if not laugh uncontrollably.

      My entire first year here was nothing but a series of rude awakenings. Nearly daily I experienced what I thought were the most extraordinary acts of stupidity I’d ever witnessed… and then that process repeated itself again and again. I’m still shocked once in a while. It’s not limited to a language barrier either, even when you’ve got someone to translate that doesn’t change the horrendously stupid behavior you will witness daily.

      I’m continuing to enjoy the blow back that only serves to prove my points further, especially here:

  • amused

    Oh boy, if the difference between blowing a nose and blowing snot rockets warrants a correction, then this guy is one petty, petty piece of something. Why are people engaging with him? He’s on his way out of Singapore because as we like to say, CMI, lah!. let the poor sod be. The Pinoys will throw him a pity party and then stab him in the back

    • Well I’m convinced that the author is correct on this particular part of his critique of Singapore and you helped him prove his point. You openly and publicly admit you make no difference between blowing your nose properly into a tissue discretely and standing above a public sink in a public restroom in an office building and shooting projectile snot out of your nose into it. Win for anonymous!

      • Jane

        Why are you getting your little spaniard tights in a twist about the comments of amused? It’s very unbecoming of a moderator, you know, lol.

        • Karuna

          For all I know, Manuel Pfister is the same person behind Anonymous.

  • This just in: expats brand the article above “100% accurate”.

    “A distillation of all the things (negative) that we have all encountered with Singaporeans.”

    “Holy crap. talk about 100% accurate. I’m book marking this so I can just pass it along next time someone asks me “Well what’s wrong with Singapore?””

  • Anon

    Not trolling here, but what’s wrong with blowing your nose in the toilets? I see people doing the same in USA, UK, and Australia.

    • Anonymous

      Not blowing their noses in the toilets, blowing snot rockets into the sinks! See Snot Rocket on Urban Dictionary if you’re not familiar with the term.

      • Anon

        If blowing mucus from your nose into your fingers and washing it down with tap water counts as a “snot rocket”, then this is not uncommon in those countries I’ve mentioned. It seems to be common practice in the public toilets of just about every country I’ve visited.

        • Not in civilized countries (and that includes UK, US, Australia, etc.), it’s disgusting and considered horrifying and revolting public behavior. You are doing a great job of proving the author’s points.

          • Anon

            All I’m saying is that I’ve seen this behaviour a number of times in UK, US, and Australia, all of which I’ve lived in for at least 5 years. I’ve seen it in other countries besides these three as well, but I haven’t lived in those other countries for sufficiently long to make a complete judgement.

            And I don’t see how I’m proving the author’s points when:
            1. I’m not even Singaporean
            2. I’m not making a normative judgement about the correctness of such behaviour but an observation based on my own experiences in other countries.

            If anything, comments like yours prove the degree of over-generalisation that is quite clearly seen in the author’s comments.

          • I’ve been all over the world and I’ve never seen that behavior commonplace. Don’t know what kind of ghetto shit holes you’re hanging out in or where you found them. Nice to know you find this socially acceptable behavior though.

          • Anon

            As I said, “I’m not making a normative judgement about the correctness of such behaviour but an observation based on my own experiences in other countries.”

            Right or wrong, it’s what I’ve seen in those countries, and no, it wasn’t observed purely from “ghetto shit holes” although I’ve been to such places as well. Nice to know you’re one of those people who has a tendency to make sweeping generalisations like the author of this article.

          • You’re full of shit then. People simply don’t do that in the US or the UK. It’s horrendously uncivilized behavior.

  • Hilarious, another article where a Singaporean whines and complains about foreigners and then a and a foreigner puts him directly in his place. Hilarious!

    This forum seems to have a few people who see the light.

    Love this comment:

    The Philistine
    Points: 69 / Power: 12

    Re: Foreign Trash Thinks SG is Mentally Retarded
    Sinkies are generally quite retarded. They are possibly the only people in the entire world who vote in scum to screw them and then complain about the scum screwing them. It is pretty much like a woman who is going to get raped and instead of fighting/running away, turns to offer her would-be rapist a tube of KY jelly and then complain that she is being brutally raped.

  • Darren

    It would seem that you have failed to meet with the right Singaporeans then. FYI most of the well educated people in Singapore seldom go to places where foreigners visit because drinking is just not our culture. In addition, the mere fact that you have only met ’emotionless’ people shows what kind of person you are. Most Singaporeans tend to only open up to people they trust and value. Have you also considered the fact that they are deliberately choosing to ignore you because you had unwittingly offended them or for other reasons?

    You mentioned that Singlish is simply just bad English. Well, looks like you are buying what the government is trying very badly to sell to Singaporeans to no avail (at least the money that they spent on such propaganda has some effect albeit not on the intended audience). Singlish is certainly a language of its own right. It is probably one of the most difficult language to muster with its many subtle nuances as it is really a combination of many languages – English, Teochew, Cantonese, Tamil, Malay and others to a lesser extent. As its grammar is influenced mainly by the languages listed above, you would need to have some basal understanding of those languages before you could even attempt to understand it; something that foreigners more often than not lack. I guess the only other form of English that remotely resembles Singlish is South African English (SAE). Would you consider SAE to be bad English just because you do not understand it? If you do then all I can say is that you are naught but a pompous twat. To further emphasize this point, allow me to supply you with this link to a youtube video.

    Finally, if you are unable to comprehend Singlish, the least you do is to explain that you do not understand and request politely for the person to codeswitch to what you deem as proper English (UK English or whatever you have in mind). Also, it is worth noting that older Singaporeans tend to be less educated than their younger counterparts and may only possess a rudimentary knowledge of English.

    On your grievances of our banking sector, I would say its just too bad. Rules are there for a reason, to ensure the integrity of the system and prevent fraud. While I do agree that the long wait time (as you so claim) is certainly unacceptable, I have not personally encountered such problems. I have been able to settle everything that I needed very quickly. I completed the setup of online banking in less than half an hour and never waited for more than a day for wires to get processed. If you do value the time saved then it did be best to get invited to join private banking for free or pay for it.

    You pointed out that the government is subsidizing the housing of people that can afford to waste $100K+ for a car they don’t need. I shall not go into whether they need a car or not as that is very subjective, but I will disagree on the subsidy. If you are truly an intelligent business person then you would have realised immediately that it is not really a subsidy. Personally, I have always lived in a private property so I would not claim to be an expert on public housing but I will give my two cents worth of it. First and foremost, the housing that the government provides is public housing which suggests that they are heavily subsidized. However before jumping hastily into such conclusions we must first look at the govt’s pricing strategy. Firstly, only those earning less than $10k is eligible and one would need to be married or over 35. Next, flats are being priced according to the resale market where 4-room and above can easily be from $500k to even one million . Finally, based on the market price buyers may be granted a housing grat of up to $40k. This means that a 4-room (est 90sqm) would be going at around $460k. Subsidised housing at $500per square feet? Wow! Isn’t that nice? So will you consider this as subsidizing housing? Well most don’t and I totally agree with them. This is just another way for the government to make money.

    In S’pore, the land used to build public housing or more commonly know as HDB is state land, which means it doesn’t cost the government a dime to use it. In the past, the cost of HDB was based on the cost of building the flat. Then they have cleverly added in the “cost” of the land too, inflating the price of the flat. Now, the last I heard was they are planning to use the resale value which is much higher than the previous price which includes the cost of the land. Now is this really subsidizing or did you just fail your economics in uni? Of course the main aim of public housing is to provide “affordable” housing for the masses but it also means that they need to subsidize it. Hence the conundrum that these smarty pants policy makers have is to make it look like a subsidy and still be able to make a tidy profit from it (or so it would seem based on their policies). As these policy makers know that Singaporeans find it highly desirable to own a house the price elasticity of demand is very inelastic so raising prices would not be an issue. Also, they are the ones controlling the supply of the different flats. In any case, HDB is certainly a merit good and the way it is priced can technically be considered as a subsidy for those who get the grant but isn’t in reality. Seeing that buyers of resale flats, due to their greater number of years of experience, tend to earn more than first time buyers, this grant is just simply nothing more than third degree price discrimination. I have tried to explain it in the simplest manner I could and I hope that you will be able to see the light.

    Since you do not seem to be successful enough to not suffer all those poor service and be more than happy to rant mindlessly, all I can say is I hope to see less of such people like you who are so full of themselves. Thee who do not think and accuse others of being retarded. There are many intricacies in life that you need to realise exist before you are able to respect the way things are being done in a certain manner. Many people love preaching ‘when in Rome do as the Romans do’ and yet they are only willing to do that at a superficial level. If you want to succeed in S’pore you will need to have MAJOR changes in your character and attitude. While it was an interesting read, there wasn’t really anything new but it did elicit quite a lot of laughter from my friends. To think that you criticise us of our lack of critical thinking when you are the one that is woefully lacking it. It would have been more constructive if you offered solutions to the problems after you have truly understood them and not bases on this superficial understanding. The main criticism should be that S’pore is a country that puts class and status before meritocracy despite what the govt claims. Also, what is written on paper is correct and true but it is what that isn’t written that truely matters in S’pore especially for policies.

    An FYI again, few Singaporeans actually go to those ‘Ghettos’ you mentioned as they are frequented mainly by the mainland Chinese. Also, most of the time those spitting and snotting are the mainland Chinese again. You probably did not know this but once the govt actually had such campaigns to ‘educate’ them featuring mainland Chinese only and it resulted in a major backlash. Hence to be more politically correct they started using Singaporeans instead. Thus our dislike of the mainlanders. This once again shows the extent of your ignorance and it only reflects badly on yourself. When you don’t understand the situation regarding those ‘Chinese foreigners’ its best to find out more before sticking your neck out. Oh and it did also be good if you can rid yourself of that air of superiority cause you are not superior to anyone.

    • Anonymous

      Ah, a semi literate response that actually tries to make some contrary points rather than proving mine through completely illiterate retarded blabbering. I will respond point by point.

      Maybe I’m not meeting the right Singaporeans

      I meet with all kinds of Singaporeans all the time in all capacities, from all walks of life, young and old. The common thread is that 90%+ are completely stupid. No the young are not better than the old, they are just as illiterate and uneducated if not more so. In fact I would probably say the old are much better, they’re not so lazy and they have legitimate reasons to have a language barrier because they may be older than this made up “country” and it’s supposed “official English language status”. Ironically where I see the smartest and hardest working people is doing things like running hawker stalls – virtually the only good service in the city. True they might not speak English well or at all but they may be older than the farce of “English as a official language” anyway. Running a small business is not easy and it’s a lot of hard work – you cannot be a complete moron and make it work especially when there is heavy competition. I have the most respect for the bottom rungs of Singaporean society that higher class Singaporeans look down their noses at while writing illiterate job applications for white collar jobs they aren’t qualified for.

      Hang out with Singaporeans? Why would I want to do that – I avoid them as much as possible and there is a thriving expat community here such that it’s easily possible. In social situations Filipinos are way more warm, friendly and fun to be around plus they are easier to communicate with. Yes every country is going to have some smart people, it’s inevitable. But outside of a truly third world place where you can literally blame stupidity on lack of nutrition to the brain, I’ve never come across a larger collection of completely stupid people than Singapore and I’ve been in over 60 countries.


      Trying to defend Singlish almost makes me want to stop reading right there. But I will anyway since there are so precious few even semi-literate responses. Let me start by saying whatever black people speak in the US, try as they might to get it defined as a new language (google Ebonics, appallilng!) it isn’t. If I go found a random new “country” on a tiny island somewhere and I bring with me a small child’s level of Chinese and 50 years later everyone in my little kingdom speaks broken Chinese, I haven’t founded a new country that speaks Chinch (Chinese/French?) I’m just speaking a retarded, broken non-language. Stop that shit or continue to be a source of entertainment for the rest of the educated world. Your government is absolutely correct on this one. Everyone is laughing at you, not with you!

      And another thing on that note, if you want to declare this retarded non-language to be your standardized way of communication so be it. But don’t claim English as official or native language here – it’s not, the level of English comprehension both written and spoken here is horrific!


      Blah blah blah, unfounded defenses. Fine, you think the over security and delays are good. To each his own. How about the fact that I can’t get electronic statements online for more than 3 months of history? This is more than a decade behind the technology of most of the rest of the world. I can make statement inquiries going back years on my smart phone for virtually any other country I bank in. Face it, your implementation of technology is backward and inferior.

      Subsidized housing

      You deny that the government subsidizes housing yet you prove my point. $500K for a four room apartment is incredibly cheap. My three bedroom in far from a prime and desirable neighborhood sells for $1.8 – $2 million at the moment. It’s also about 1000 square feet. For the math challenged Singaporean my housing costs four times what yours does.

      Subjective necessity of a car

      You prove my point about Singaporean shallowness and materialism when you say whether a car is a necessity or not is subjective. It’s not. A car is a luxury and more so in Singapore than most of the rest of the globe. Singapore is tiny, it has public transport that is very cheap that covers everything and taxis are comparatively cheap to everything else. If you’re not a taxi driver, a car isn’t a necessity and saying otherwise makes you sound like an idiot.

      Back to the housing again though, you say the government is “inflating” the price of the flats but again your lack of understanding of basic economics is showing. If the government tried to sell the flats at the price you think is fair the demand would go up and the waiting lists would be so long you’d be unlikely to get one in your lifetime. HDBs are subsidized and under priced compared to the rest of the market. That government limits the pool of eligible buyers also helps to hold the prices down not inflate them. Real estate for foreigners is way way higher. Consider yourself lucky that HDBs are such shit holes and foreigners can’t buy them otherwise the price would likely be a lot more than it is now! I would venture to say there isn’t an HDB flat block in the city that a foreign investor wouldn’t gladly buy for every penny of what the government claims the purchase price is (for citizens only of course) in order to tear it down and build a luxury highrise. You should thank your lucky stars the government gives you these HDBs otherwise you’d be priced right out of your own country!

      You also failed to mention the government subsidized, CPF-backed, mortgages people can get on these HDB flats!

      Since you do not seem to be successful enough to not suffer all those poor service and be more than happy to rant mindlessly, all I can say is I hope to see less of such people like you who are so full of themselves.

      I don’t know what this clumsy poorly worded sentence means but it seems to be claiming that I am unsuccessful. Whether I’m successful or not is not really relevant and I do not care if you believe I am or am not successful. In this paragraph you go on to make unsupported claims about how I am wrong and how Singaporeans are great and critical thinkers and I’m just an idiot. OK but how did I get in the position of owning a business and being able to hire all these great and wonderful critical thinkers that cannot string a coherent sentence together even on a job application?

      An FYI again, few Singaporeans actually go to those ‘Ghettos’ you mentioned as they are frequented mainly by the mainland Chinese.

      Another one of those “Those Chinese guys over there aren’t like us we’re better attacks”. I don’t really care what you have to say along those lines, the point is Singapore’s carefully presented public image is not an accurate representation of Singapore as a whole. And as to your continued claims that it’s only the “mainland Chinese” that are uncouth, unkempt and unhygenic, that’s total bullshit. I’ve done plenty of business in China and I know what China is like. China is a developing country, it’s got its ups and downs but all in all I like China and Chinese people a lot better than Singaporeans. It’s not as easy to do business there though. I know who is a local and who is not, it’s not a secret. For one thing you idiots use your national IDs for everything and it says right on them who is who.

      Thank your for helping (mostly) to further prove my points and being literate enough that others can understand you.

      • Darren

        Gosh! You are such a cheapskate! Didn’t I say previously that if you want better service you should go for private banking. If you can’t afford it then S’pore is NOT a suitable place for you. You claim that you can only get electronic statements that are dated 3 months ago yet I am able to access those that are more than 3 years ago. Which bank are you using or are you so cheap that your bank if providing you such pathetic service?

        You claim to be so successful and so on yet even if you sell your 3-room you for $2 million you will not even be able to buy my garden. At best you will only be able to buy my mini koi pond. S’pore is not for the likes of you. Furthermore, you seem to be unable to register that HDB has many restrictions. I am NOT eligible for it due to my salary. HDB is meant to be for the masses and S’pore does not need foreigners like you. HDB is meant to be affordable and try convincing the public that $500k is affordable when the typical household is earning approx $5k a month before taxes.

        What kind of small biz do you even own that you have to resort to The best talents in S’pore are only willing to work for the best. It goes both ways you know, dummy. How much do you pay your staff? Besides, the expats that want to come are hardly concerned about trivial issues like cost of living. Try moping to my yachting buddies and see what they tell you. If you are unable to survive here and have that many complains then go to other places where you afford. You are more than welcome to leave.

        • zzm9980

          Funny that the only literate negative response to the article comes from someone who had to quickly devolve into letting us know just how rich and successful he is. And I’m sure he worked quite hard to get there. Oh wait:

          “Personally, I have always lived in a private property”

          Meritocracy indeed! Just another spoiled brat who spring-boarded his career off daddy’s wealth, which itself was likely made by being one of the lucky ones government policy benefits at the expense of the rest. I don’t blame him though, I’d defend the Singapore that gave me and my yachting-buddies such a comfortable life also.

          • Darren

            Firstly, I am glad that you can recognise a literate response when the author who wrote this article isn’t as literate as what he claims. His article is also riddled with grammar errors (based on UK english); except that they are that glaring errors. For example, “even more ridiculous is when ordering…” Whatever happened to your perfect pristine English? Also, there is a general lack of proper punctuation at times and some sentences are technically not sentences. Now I never claim to possess perfect English but since the author is so critical of others for not being perfect then he too should be held to the same standards. In fact, the foreigners have more reasons for having a better standard of English than me especially when they are only fluent in at most 3 languages. In comparision, I am fluent in around 10 languages. I try to ensure that I am fluent in the languages of the countries that are in my portfolio. Please tell me that it does not take hard work to master these languages. Learning how to read and Japanese was propbably the most challenging thing I have done so far. Could the same be said of you?

            Secondly, I was merely pointing out that S’pore is only interested in attracting rich and talented foreigners who have already made it; not those who are trying to make it big here.

            Next, I see no reason why I should be penalised for being born into a rich family. It is not as if I can choose my parents. Tell me that you will not live in a private property if that is where your parents stayed in. Its time for you to stop living in a well and to stop being a sour grape. Meritocracy is simply a concept that we Singaporeans strongly believe in. While there is no perfect way of applying meritocracy, I think the government has done a fairly good job in leveling the playing field for most people. If you think you have a better solution then share it with us. Everyone can moan and complain but it is only the special ones who can provide us with the good solutions. Also, I have been financially independent ever since I graduated from uni and have never asked or expected my parents to spring-board my career. In fact, that would be down right unethical and I would never accept such an offer. In addition, I also do give them money as it is something that is expected in an Asian society and I have also encouraged them to give my ‘inheritance’ back to society. I am sure that the money would serve the poor better than it would for me.

            Finally, I am living in a private property due to my own effort and not because of my parents. I am able to reach there because I do not spend my life getting pissed but rather into my job. Please do also explain why I am a spoiled brat when I have had excellent grades in school when I was studying and have always performed well in my job. While I do not consider it an entitlement for me to be rich, all these will come naturally when you put in the effort. Lastly, many of my yachting buddies are foreigners too but they do not complain like you people do. Instead, they are able to make any situation work for them. I have never seen them bothered by any laws regarding biz before. Hence I am very grateful to have friends like them and be able to learn from them. Perhaps that is why they are able to thrive while you are merely surviving.

        • Anonymous

          Oh yes, another part of the Singaporean mentality. If someone expects or demands what is an absolutely routine service everywhere else sometimes you are told “you have to pay extra for that” if you can even get it at all. What we’re talking about here are basic services common place on free personal checking accounts in the developed world and in Singapore you’re telling me that means (supposedly) private banking which costs extra. I won’t get into a further debate on the issue, Singaporean banks are slow, incompetent, bureaucratic to the extreme and lacking in commonplace services. If anyone doesn’t believe me just try it, I guarantee you it will be the most incredibly stupid banking experience of your life.

          You claim to be so successful and so on yet even if you sell your 3-room you for $2 million you will not even be able to buy my garden.

          I am successful because I don’t make stupid decisions like buying real estate when it’s in a bubble. An apartment here sells for 40-50 years of rent. It’s a bad investment. I don’t have a big one because I want to spend as little time as possible in Singapore and am only here to work. – I leave town almost every weekend. I’d rather spend my money on things that are important to me. But you, a typical Singaporean, only care about showing off your wealth and bragging. Luxuries in Singapore are some of the most overpriced in the world. Luxury cars cost four to five times what they cost elsewhere and luxury apartments are similar. In any event Singapore will have a massive real estate crash sooner or later, <2% mortgages and purchase prices that are 40-50 years of rent aren't sustainable. If you want a lesson in what a housing market crash looks like see the US circa 2007-08.

          What kind of business do you own…

          What kind of business I own is irrelevant. I am not looking for Singapore’s top talent I’m looking for some office drones. If I wanted top talent I would get it for a better price by importing them under an EP P1 obviously. I just wrote an entire article about how stupid and overpriced Singaporeans are, why would I hire them when I could have a young foreign professional that is much more capable for a lower salary? In the entry level to middle management category recruiters have not produced better results than self-placed ads and recruiters are often stupid Singaporeans themselves. Anyway this is all a moot point there is plenty of cheap, ready and willing labor inside and outside of Singapore, they’re just not Singaporean Citizens (or even PRs).

          As I said before I’m making a killing here and I’m surviving just fine. I’m just appalled at how stupid the Singaporean people are and how unwilling they are to work for reasonable sums. Nearly every Singaporean grossly over-values himself or herself. A singficant portion of whatever value a Singaporean employee does have is grossly inflated by the road blocks that the government put in place to hiring foreigners. Without those Singaporeans would probably be 50% unemployed. I had a guy apply for an entry level position. He spoke and wrote the same broken English like everybody else. He came to an interview and told me how he wanted to be a manager, and wanted equity and a salary of $6,000 per month. When examined his qualifications and experience I learned that for the last year he tried and failed to be an entrepreneur and prior to that he was drawing a salary of $3,500. He applied for the job via a broken English SMS. I interviewed him just for entertainment. This absolutely typifies the Singaporean job applicant for mid to low level roles.

          The comments on the other sites are even more priceless than here. I recommend the moderators archive them. Apparently the majority of Singaporeans view foreigners that come to Singapore to invest in starting a business and maybe hire some Singaporeans as blood sucking parasites who are begging for a living. I’m sure that type of culture will bode well for the future development of Singapore. For more on that see Detroit!

          As to when I will leave, I will leave when it’s no longer profitable to be here but not before. Keep increasing the restrictions on foreign workers if you want to get rid of me and others like me but be careful what you wish for. I think zzm9980 hit the nail right on the head about you too.

          • Darren

            You just simply sound very sore that you are unable to make it here as well as you thought. Car prices are expensive because they are meant to be expensive to keep congestion down. The government never promised you to be able to afford a nice big luxury car. If you are really here and have great business sense then you would have heard a certain minister saying that a Lexus is good enough here. You don’t need Bentleys or Mclarens here. Besides it did be idiotic to want a sports car here when the speed limit is 90km/hr on highways. Many of my peers have such cars overseas for this reason.

            Firstly, Private Banking is free and has always been free for me. I have never paid extra for such a sevice and many other banking service charges are also waived for me. In S’pore and in many other places like London, the rich always pay less than the masses. If you think that it is unfair, you are most welcomed to campaign against it but I doubt this practice will change anytime soon. At least you might be able to benefit the masses here rather than complain about them.

            As for housing, I am not bragging but just simply trying to help you see things in perspective. (If I wanted to brag I would have told you my exact net worth.) Obviously to a household of 4 with a monthly net income of $5k, a $500k HDB flat is expensive. Similarly, you would consider my home is riddiculously expensive but to me it is a steal. I have many friends internationally and I like hosting them when they come to S’pore. Besides, even if the property bubble were to burst it means nothing to me. It is not as if I need to sell my house or anything. In any case, the value of my home is merely a small percentage of my net assets.

            Now on to hiring. Every country has their own laws to hiring. I would say that London and the Scandinavian countries have stricter laws on hiring foreigners. Years back, you can only hire them for a maximum of like 5 years I think. (I am not too sure what is the current law there as that is no longer part of my portfolio.) You complain about labour laws regarding hiring Singaporean. Wait till you go to Italy. It is practically punitive to fire a local there. Hence for that reason I have never ventured into that market.

            In conclusion, you are nuth but a small player that we can definitely do without. You do not need to wait until your biz becomes unprofitable before going back. You should have gone back eons ago. It is totally stupid of you to stay at a place that you do not like. You only have one life and should live it to its fullest. But wait! Wouldn’t that be an idiotic move given the current situation? The Eurozone is still in recession and it has yet to reach the nadir. Hope you have fun there and don’t come back. Arigatō!

          • You’re criticizing the author’s grammar and you write a sentence like “Besides it did be idiotic to want a sports car here when the speed limit is 90km/hr on highways.”? Personally, I’d label that “retarded” also.

          • Darren

            As I have said in my earlier post, I never claim to possess perfect English but since the author is so critical of others for not being perfect then he too should be held to the same (high) standards. Similarly, before you open your fat mouth to criticise, did you not realise that you should have added yet after the and? Its high time that you stop being a hypocrite. While I do admire your amiable aim of defending the author, I think you should do something about your own grammar first or lack thereof. As you claim to be a native speaker, then you ought to have a better grasp of English than someone you claim to have sub-standard English. Furthermore, English is not the only language that I use in my work. I use around 5 other languages too.

          • As the moderator I’m not going to allow the discussion to devolve into flame war over typos. There is a clear difference between someone who makes a few careless errors but is still 100% understandable and readable and this:

            March 28, 2013 at 6:44 pm
            my sympathy to a sore loser who is moving on after so many donkey years of enriching his innards only to realised that my countrymen r retards! by saying so u r only putting up an excuse n consoling urself to the fact that ur pre-historic business models r outdated.
            1) cant compete with those of newer FTs who have better ideas than urs. 2) cant compete with younger men at clarke quay.
            3) with increased competitions ur business not as profitable.
            4) cant take the heat, lose out to a bangla hunk n u will b leaving s’pore without ur partner
            u had ur fill so b content.just go quietly. go to virgin territories n continue ur exploitations. make sure u dont end up in CDC of your next target

          • Jeff

            Manuel, could you kindly explain why the sentence “Besides it did be idiotic to want a sports car here when the speed limit is 90km/hr on highways.” is wrong? I can’t find any grammatical error in that sentence. Unless you are using some other deviant forms of English, it seems pefectly fine based on UK English.

          • Are you joking? What is that British ebonics?

          • Darren

            As I mentioned previously, I was talking about the precision of grammar, punctuation and style of writing. If you still think I am talking about typos this time, it is time for you to see an ophthalmologist. I am not interested in flaming anyone. Instead, I am merely pointing out that the standard of English of you and the author leave much to be desired for what you guys claim to be your first language. It is undoubted inevitable to have a few errata here and there but this?

            “There is a clear difference between some makes a few careless errors but is still 100% understandable and readable and this”

            “between some makes a few careless errors”?

            Jeeze that is something that I am willing to accept if it came from my Japan office but from you? A true blue, self-proclaimed native speaker?

            This is clearly not a typo. You actually have to make a conscious effort to type out those words in that perculiar order that makes no sense. What does that statement means anyway? Perhaps you meant “There is a clear difference between making a few careless mistakes that is still 100% understandable and this”.

            Do not think that Singaporeans are a pushover in English, especially when I am definitely more proficient in it than you. Nearly every single comment that have been made to reply me contains some grammatical error. It seems that these “careless mistakes” are either innate or just simply excuses. Also, you are actually proving my point so I guess I should thank you for that. Danke.

      • Jeff

        Hahaha! I could totally die from laughing! Look at your own standard of English.

        “If I go found a random new “country” on a tiny island..”

        You should go brush up on your grammar before you start condemning others for their poor standard of English. You are only making a fool of yourself you hypocrite. You know you are such an idiot! You claim that he (Darren) is semi-literate when you are actually worse than him. At least he got his grammar right. You are simply embarrassing us with your pathetic standard of English. You ought to stop looking at the speck of dust in the eyes of others but become aware of the plank in your own eye.

        • What does “knnbccb” mean in Singlish

          How about this gem:
          “I won’t get too deeply into the geeky stuff but suffice it to say that Singapore’s network interconnects with the outside world are so bad that all our critical business servers that serve Singapore must be located within Singapore.”

          “Suffice it to say” for someone who professes to be affronted at Singapopore’s level of English proficiency, constructing a coherent grammatical sentence seems to be quite a struggle for you as well. Guess we can rule out UK as your country of ORIGIN or that you hold a college degree then.

          If “simply verbally offending a Singaporean woman or brushing up against her the “wrong way” in a club” -where darkness and inebriation should logically work in the favour of even the muggiest cur from the scrap yard- gets YOU into strife, I’ll take you at your word that you know one or two things about “inbreeding”.

          Most of your comments brook little argument from this local, so please take your lucre and the first flight out of here and don’t forget to spread the word on your way out, unless of course you too are regarded as “reject” in the country where you claim citizenship (euro my arse) and need to eke a living in the land of retards, then by all means ,whinge away.

      • Singaporean from a string of top schools

        Dude. Top talents do not go to We apply directly to companies we want to be in.
        You are obviously not a top company since you face so much trash.

        • Singaporean from a string of top schools

          The only time we go to is when we are gullible young high school kids.

      • Singleporean Dude

        With regard to the author’s obsession with denouncing Singlish as a “retarded non-language”, and suggestion that we read up through links on Google to establish what Ebonics are, I suppose the author regards Singlish as little more than vernacular English. Which is fair enough, though I would venture to suggest that English itself is a language based heavily on extensive use of loanwords, and once upon a time was probably considered a “retarded non-language” to the Germanic people who, when not busy slaughtering Romans, were very taken with debating the etymology of their own written and spoken word. I will provide an authoritative source for easy reference: “”

        It is evident that the contributing writer has intelligence and no small measure of integrity for sticking to his guns and maintaining his opinion in the comments section. It is unfortunate to see instances where his racism peeps through. His defences in claiming to being otherwise are sadly even more racist than his initial musings.

        For instance, his rebuttal of “as far as I’m concerned you’re all Asians (except the Indians)” shows greater levels of racism than if he had simply said “you guys have squinty eyes and look funny”. The various Asian people/groups can be broken down into fairly distinctive cultures, and to blatantly ignore this is fallacious to the say the least. It is not racist to identify the differences between races, but it is racist to not embrace our differences, giving unequal accord and treatment on the basis of racial differences.

        I think it is terrible to play the racial card, and in the author’s defence, to focus unduely on this detracts from the greater part of his message. However, it does lead one to wonder if an underlying current of racism exists, not by nature of the things he’s written, but by the nature of his assumptions in its undertaking.

    • Jeff

      Manuel, you gormless pikey. I will point out that English is used in the UK for a longer period of time than in the US. You are just a digusting piece of racist swine. US just merely copied and simplified our version of English to become what you are using now.

    • H. S.

      Darren, thanks.

  • LocalAlwaysRight

    Beautiful and well-written article. Doesn’t need a genius to observe how unusual this country operates and how ungrateful the citizens in response to what their government has provided for them.

  • J M

    The exact same thing can be said when I went to the USA. There are stupid people everywhere.

  • MoonCake

    Firstly what the hell are you doing here if you complain so much. GET OUT!! GET THE HELL OUT!! GO HOME! Secondly since you are only employing foreigners for your business here you are of no use to us, citizens. Take your shit business somewhere and we won’t miss you. Stop being a parasite on our system. You are a bloody shameless hypocrite in wanting to earn profits here as Singapore provides you a conducive environment and yet complaining like hell. GET LOST!

    • Anonymous

      It’s absolutely comical how far above your head the entire point flies. It’s not those of us who come here and bring technology, industry and jobs to your country and then spend our earnings on your outrageously priced and over taxed booze, cars and other luxury items – it’s you who are the parasites. You will be back to third world swamp status tomorrow if all the foreigners left today. You know it, I know it, everybody knows it – that’s why Singapore has a +/- 40% foreign population. You’ve got the low level foreigners to be your maids, servants, nannies, construction workers and you’ve got your high level foreigners to bring investment, technology and know-how. You are the parasite. The low level foreign workers work like slaves doing the jobs you’re not willing to do, the high level foreign workers bring what you don’t have and do what you can’t do. At the bottom of it all, this is Singapore’s dirty little secret. And as far is the banking goes, is some of that incompetence maybe even on purpose so you can throw up your hands when somebody starts asking questions about one of those dump truck loads of black money you’re bringing in by the barge load?

      Particularly given the level of technology available today, businesses are more than ever supranational organizations – they will go where the best deal is. As soon as Singapore’s offer is no longer competitive on balance with what other nations offer the business will flee Singapore faster than you can blink. Singapore offers low taxes, an excellent location, reasonably good infrastructure for the region and a huge shipping port. Human capital has never been Singapore’s forte but they made up for it by allowing the foreign businesses to import the workers they needed with relative ease. If they continue to reverse their position on that, believe me another developing nation will start romancing the large multi-nationals currently headquartered in Singapore and they will be gone so fast it will make your heads spin. You will be begging the foreigners and foreign businesses to come back!

      • That human capital is not Singapore’s forte is against all government propaganda making Singaporeans believe that with their ridiculous amounts of (sub-standard) schooling, they are an asset by default. The harsh truth is that our education system has failed us miserably whilst our propaganda driven media has drilled into us a sense of entitlement resulting in -bada bing! – the useless Singaporean who expects to live in a penthouse suite and drive a Mercedes by 30 – funding this all by getting rid of the foreigner now living in his penthouse and taking his job.

        Also, I never understood the anger towards all foreigners- why do Singaporeans hate the poor Bangladeshi worker building their subsidized housing? WHY??? Hmm, perhaps because they are retarded.

        It’s not necessarily their fault that they are lazy and retarded. It comes from never being encouraged to look after oneself. From believing things get done because … someone else does it. Singaporeans behave like spoiled rich kids that have been born into a family fortune, which is in some ways is what has happened. And like all family fortunes, it will eventually, one day, be squandered away.

        That said, not all Singaporeans are retarded – the best ones leave – due to the lack of social freedom, or start their own businesses – and yeah, they also prefer to hire foreign workers.

        I’m Singaporean, the friends I’ve seen this shared by are Singaporean, and most of us believe it is the hard truth. Well, the inbreeding bit might be pushing it a bit too far…. although considering the amount of propaganda since the 80s to get people to marry within similar social brackets, it’s not altogether *too* fanciful.

  • John Tan

    As much as i hate to admit, i have to say that what you mentioned in this article are mostly true. I am a Singaporean as well. I do have one question, you know, our government loves statistics and compare even within Singaporeans, like Singaporean Malays are like this, Singaporean Chinese are like that, and Singaporean Indians are like this.. get it? So i would like to ask, in most of your experience you encounter, are they Singaporean Chinese, Malay, Indians or Eurasians? And during your experience in Singapore, have you encounter all of them and what do you think of each racial category in terms of habits, attitudes, politeness, etc as compared to the foreigners you have personally met.

    Additionally, how do you differentiate between a local Chinese, a Malaysian Chinese, an Indonesian Chinese, a Bruneian Chinese and a Chinese from China?

    • Anonymous

      I have not made a big effort to keep score among races it’s not really relevant to me and I don’t care. What I do notice in a very big way is the difference between those with an IC number starting with F or G and those that start with S. The former are, on average, more motivated, more professional and willing to work for way less money. They are much more likely to show up to an interview on time, dressed professionally and with a reasonable to excellent level of English language ability. The latter frequently ignore interview requests outright (even to jobs they applied for!) and if they do respond they frequently show up late or not at all. Their English level is atrocious along with their professionalism and qualifications (or complete lack thereof). They have unrealistic expectations about salary and work hours. Quite simply, they are not competitive. I could find 10 Filipinos I would love to have working for me in a week, not only that but I would enjoy having them as colleagues and even socializing with them after work. I literally (and I’m not exaggerating) am considering hiring Singaporeans to do NOTHING other than to be on my payroll so that I can hire more S-Pass holders if the minimum wage is sufficiently low (haven’t researched that yet) but the problem with that plan is that they’re not giving out many S-Passes anymore and the S-Pass is attached to the employer so even if I find someone already here with an S-Pass I’d have to apply for a new one and it would likely be denied.

      Quite simply the Singaporeans that are in the entry level to middle management level job market are totally uncompetitive. They only reason they’re making it is due to government mandate and because Singapore is booming right now. And quite simply I’m just going to outsource or offshore all nonessential job functions because of it.

      I commend you for being able to admit there’s any truth in my article – that’s more than 90%+ would admit. I’m also more than willing to trash my own country but that’s another article entirely and the boys that run this website may have already been there and done that.

      When somebody writes a comment like this:

      March 28, 2013 at 6:44 pm (Quote)
      my sympathy to a sore loser who is moving on after so many donkey years of enriching his innards only to realised that my countrymen r retards! by saying so u r only putting up an excuse n consoling urself to the fact that ur pre-historic business models r outdated.
      1) cant compete with those of newer FTs who have better ideas than urs. 2) cant compete with younger men at clarke quay.
      3) with increased competitions ur business not as profitable.
      4) cant take the heat, lose out to a bangla hunk n u will b leaving s’pore without ur partner
      u had ur fill so b content.just go quietly. go to virgin territories n continue ur exploitations. make sure u dont end up in CDC of your next target

      it just makes me want to go even further. But when somebody actually acknowledges some of the things that are going on I can’t help but feel a bit guilty for saying it even though I feel it’s true. I’m just venting my day to day frustrations and giving my own personal view of the whole picture. Maybe I wouldn’t be so harsh if I didn’t feel that the positives were so commonly exaggerated, misconstrued and distorted.

      I feel like most of the responses only prove my point. All the complete idiots that say “If you don’t like it here go home” or “Haha your business is failing” (see quoted above) did not even read and comprehend what I wrote. It has nothing to do with whether or not I “like it here”. I am making a killing in business here with very little effort other than having to deal with my own frustration and stress due to the all the things I mentioned above. I will continue to operate one or more very successful businesses in Singapore and I will outsource as many jobs as possible to other countries that have willing, capable and affordable employees – full stop. People can write broken English insults that have nothing to do with what I’m saying all they want but I will still be laughing all the way to the bank as I export what could be their job to another country. I’m sure they will be busy complaining on Facebook about the foreigners that stole their jobs.

      I feel like the perfect analogy here is John Galt and Atlas Shrugged – I wish all the foreigners would go home just so I could see the hilarious outcome and people begging for the foreigners to come back and fix everything in no time flat. Who is John Galt? I’m John Galt and I’m not hiring anymore thanks to the bad attitudes and the stupid regulations and quotas. If people really want me and others like me to leave they will have their way sooner or later but for now I’m staying.

      In the mean time I’ll be running my business and trying to figure out ways to “build down” while maximizing revenues instead of building up by hiring Singaporeans.

      It’s not a race thing, it’s a Singapore thing so far as I see it. Maybe I’ll have a different view in a couple more years. What I think and feel is constantly evolving and this is just what was going through my mind at the particular moment I wrote this.

      • Karuna

        Seriously, are YOU a Producer or a Parasite? Think again.

        For goodness sake, for you to state you are John Galt, you have devalued the fictitious character that Ayn Rand has created.

        Most parasites of the highly subsidized classroom know this – In Greek mythology, Atlas holds up the world.

        In the book “Atlas Shrugged”, one of the characters asks another, “What would you tell him?”

        “To shrug.”

        I quote what Richard Eskow wrote beautifully:

        “….Shrugging while holding a heavy globe on your neck and shoulders is orthopedically unsound and could lead to severe cervical spine injury. Anyone with a rudimentary knowledge of physics knows that the easiest way to unload a heavy planet by simply standing up straight.

        When was the last time you stood up straight? You, like John Galt, have been benefiting from government services all your life. The upstanding thing to do is to acknowledge that fact, and then man up and pay your fair share.

        John Galt learns how to read and write at the government’s expense. He survived childhood without dying from some mass epidemic, thanks to government public health efforts. He avoided being poisoned to death by improperly prepared foods – beef, poultry, milk – or killed by defective machinery – in a car, bus, elevator, or train, for starters – because of government regulations.

        Then he got a great job with people who, like his friends and allies, enjoyed the same benefits. And when something happened he doesn’t like, he cut and ran.

        Some hero.

        Galt’s climactic speech is a rhapsody of self-entitled victimhood, even after Rand goes to great lengths to make him a comic-book superhero.”

        That sums it and this character looks really like you, the author of this article. Great job John Galt!

  • Your idiot

    Not happy, just stay in your country.

  • Will Pack later

    Ha hA HA Singaporeans think they are evolution’s gift to humanity. Maybe they evolved too much they became retarded ha ha ha ha ha Love it when they blame everyone else except themselves

  • thumba

    I am Singaporean and I completely agree with you – most of my countrymen behave like third-world idiots, and that’s because the vast majority are a generation or three removed from their illiterate farmer/ pirate/ convict labourer origins. English is to them a shoddily-imparted alien language. The non-retards come from a select clutch of schools (all far older than Singapore the independent political entity), are concentrated in government/ some professions, and generally do not need to answer job ads placed by bewildered expats shocked at the average Singaporean’s unique attributes.

    • Cheers to you for that. I openly admit that many westerners are complete idiots too and that the US has become a nation of complete morons.

      • thumba

        Morons are everywhere – it’s just here there’s less space to dodge the hordes and their semi-coherent online abuses (in badly-typed “Singlish”… though can a mangled form of a language be mis-spelled/ uttered/ represented/ whatever when it’s already debased?).

      • Me

        No country is perfect, and no citizen body is perfect. Manuel Pfister, get your own country/countrymen/issues in order before you criticize others. You are in no position to call Singaporeans retarded. And I highly doubt those email and sms correspondences are authentic. You probably made them up, don’t you have anything better to do in your life? Your ridiculous diatribe just reflects what a shallow, ignorant and disrespectful lowlife you are. I cannot fanthom how you are even in a position to hire others. Why not you go face a wall and reflect for maybe the next century, before you start throwing out another kitchen sink of falsehoods to flame another country.

        • Why don’t you go whine about it to the author? We routinely mock our homelands, go see other articles posted here. Learn how to read!

          • Mike

            Dear Manuel

            I appreciate that you do possess the capacity for self deprecation, but the simple fact remains that not everyone is capable of retaining such objectivity especially when the country being insulted exists amidst a crescendo of xenophobic sentiment.

            Nonetheless, I do appreciate the author’s criticisms of Singapore, although I can confidently say that it might be analogous to having a bad day, albeit a consistently awfully extended one. The kind of days when nothing goes right: The alarm clock is broken, the toast is burnt, the cat did one in your shoe etc.

            I appreciate how the author possesses the sentiment that Singaporeans do not work as diligently as their foreign counterparts. Indeed, it has been a relentless accusation of mine that Singaporeans have grown up amidst affluence and economic growth with a paternalistic government to boot, and have thus developed a sense of entitlement that pervades every single aspect of Singaporean life.

            I do not stand here today with an air of hypocrisy, and attack these criticisms.

            And yet, I love Singapore for what it is, a hodgepodge of cultures in a country that is constantly fluctuating. (I would not say developing, since we seemed to have reached the top of the roller coaster)

            I would like to invite you, and the author, to come to Singapore for another visit, away from the watering holes at Robertson Quay and the Orchard Road stretch, away from the sanitized business district, and into the areas which define Singapore. I have hosted friends from European countries such as the United Kingdom, (which I suspect you are from) Germany, Denmark and other European countries, and they have all had a most pleasant time in Singapore. This invitation stands.

            Thumba, you are an elitist asshole and the only reason why you are complaining is because you are unable to reach above your social strata and achieve the wealth that would elevate you above these ‘morons.’ You are doing Singapore and the people educated in these ‘select clutch of schools’ a great disservice, and disgracing yourself in the process.

    • loki

      And I second that. I too, am utterly disgusted with the behaviour of some of my fellow countrymen. It is true that many, if not the majority, are uncouth retards who cannot string a sentence together. It is also true that the non-retards come from a very select group of schools which a far larger proportion of the population have little access to.

    • Anon

      I wholeheartedly agree with thumba and Pfister on this. The vast majority of Singaporeans are idiots (for more examples read some of the comments from fellow Singaporeans, they can’t even argue for their cause with proper English!). I believe the best way to sum up Singapore would be to say that it is a first world country with a third world mentality. However as with any democracy, none of this will change as the majority will continue to vote for and allow fellow idiots to run the country. It is definitely a matter of time before Singapore implodes on itself and I am trying my hardest to get out of there before it does! I recommend you do the same too.

      That said, on a more positive note, there are worse countries to be in (take a look at Malaysia/Indonesia where your race pretty much determines your opportunities) and if you are a tourist, I think Singapore is definitely a great place to visit as a stepping-stone into Asia.

  • Uniquely Singapore

    Someone put your hilarious article on TRE so be prepared for the usual anti-foreigner online lynch mob.

  • Jean

    by the way, not all caucasians know English well. I once asked for unchilled mineral water at an ice cream shop at Brisbane. The staff asked me:”You mean you want the hot one?” “Yes I want the hot one please” That’s my reply to her.

    • “Unchilled” is a pretty retarded way to ask for a warm, hot or room temperature water.

      • Jean

        The last I checked “unchilled” is not a retarded word. Otherwise it won’t exist. Perhaps it is to a retarded one.

        • I’ve never heard a native speaker use the word “unchilled” and it’s not in my dictionary.

          • English has many ways to describe a certain term. Cold could be chilled, refrigerated, cold, cooled for example. How a person wishes to use the term is up to him or her. Just like if “unchilled” is not in your dictionary, doesn’t mean its not in others. Some respect might be nice, but I guess thats not in your dictionary either.

          • Automatic Pfister

            Manuel Pfister – the definitive replacement for all dictionaries near you. Because if he isn’t familiar with the word, it must not be a real word. Would that be filipendulous to say? Who knows, Manuel’s not familiar with that word either.

        • Vishaal

          Seriously man, are you high? Lol. Unchilled (if it even exists in your weird personal dictionary: can refer to the water either being at room temperature, moderately warm or hot. So in retrospect, he was just clarifying your order, isn’t that right? Some reflecting needs to be done here.

  • Jean

    hahahahhaha.. Did you realised that you’ve inevitably adopted a singaporean attitude: complain, complain, complain and its amazing despite your complaints, you are still breathing our air. Go back to where you come from and we will be much happier. One less caucasian to compete with our rice bowls.

  • Des

    Mr Anonymous,

    If you are unhappy with Singapore, why are you there in the first place? Do you feel conned by whoever that bring you to Singapore? If this is the case, i have an advise for you. Please go back to where you come from as there is no need for you to bear with those people whom you think are retards.

    PS: I am a Singaporean who is fed up with the overcrowded population. So you are willing to leave to make Singapore a litte less crowded, you are more than welcome

    • Anti-foreign-retards-like-this-author

      Well said.

    • Why bother?

      You sir, are the epitome of why this blogger thinks Singaporeans are retarded. Look at your grammar.

      • SG

        In agreement.

  • Nicholas MOSES

    I think it was Eamonn Fingleton who said that what is NOT said in the Far Eastern countries is as important as what IS said. My Organizational Behavior teacher was Chinese and told us of his surprise when he learned that Orientals have the reputation in the West of being “sneaky,” indirect and vague with their assessments of people and situations. (There may be many reasons for this: one explanation I personally find compelling is that it comes from the deep influence of Buddhism on East Asian philosophy and culture, even among people who do not explicitly identify as Buddhists. However, as a Westerner and non-academic I do not pretend to know enough about Buddhism or Asia or even to be capable of penetrating deeply enough into Buddhism to learn enough to test this hypothesis.)

    The example Fingleton gave to this end was the Japanese economy, widely reputed a “basket case” in the world for much of the past 20 years. Yet Japanese living standards have remained quite high and Japan has continued to innovate; for comparison, neither was true of basket-case (and formerly First World, though more in the analogous sense to the extent that we can use this term to describe a pre-Cold War situation) Argentina from the 1930s to the arrival of the Dark Days of Perón (or afterwards, for that matter). Fingleton explained that Japan wasn’t actually doing so bad by objective measurements but had an interest in heavily accentuating the less positive news in order to allay geopolitical suspicion and/or attention.

    These details about Singapore seem to reveal a similar “sneakiness”: a country that is painted as wealthy, productive and innovative, which is true if one looks at generalized figures encompassing the whole resident populations (which as we all know includes many people who are not of Singaporean nationality and might well never consider themselves part of the Singaporean national experience). Lurking underneath the cosmopolitan veneer is a different story altogether…

    • Anonymous

      Great comment. The economic statistics fraud is even worse than you’re stating though. Not only do they count many of the wealthy foreigners but they exclude all of the poorest workers. This is over one million people which is >=20% of the population. Imagine how good any country’s economic statistics would look if you chop off the poorest 20% and add in your richest foreign residents. The types of pass that allow you to be counted along side the Singaporean are essentially given exclusively to high earners.

  • Anonymous

    Also, nearly everyone I was talking to there and there were English-speaking whites. My interactions with Actual Singaporeans were almost exclusively with people Doing Their Jobs — and doing them well mind you — but I was only asking questions that they were already being asked every week. No creative problem solving needed.

    Be careful who you assume is Singaporean. Many, many people you assume are Singaporean may actually be foreign workers. In restaurants and hotels chances are more likely that you’re dealing with a Filipino than a Singaporean, especially if their English is good and they are good at their job. Filipinos absolutely dominate the hospitality industry in this region and they’re very good at it whether it’s a high end hotel or a relatively basic eatery. Filipino’s have a reputation for being very hard working, having comparatively excellent English to many other Asians and being very warm, friendly and courteous.

    What I can tell you is that after a week of “exciting and interesting frustration” in Vietnam, the morning after my arrival in Singapore found me suddenly depressed. The place is very well-organized and -engineered. I commend them for their achievements — seriously — but what that ends up meaning is that living there requires NO THOUGHT. I expected to love such a vacation from hassle, but in actuality I didn’t. Being deprived of puzzles or challenges or danger left me unexpectedly bummed out, sleeping until noon.

    Agreed, I love exploring the surrounding countries in the region.

    It’s Southeast Asia, but the Disneyland Version. Everything’s thought out, everything predictable, no surprises. No wilderness, no darkness, no risk, no danger. This MUST have a LOT to do with Singapore Retardation. It’s like that big cruise space ship in the movie Wall-E. As a fellow on Sex and the City (yeah yeah sue me) said about fashion models: “They do have brains. They just don’t have to use them.”

    You describe the center and the tourist attractions but did you explore all of Singapore?

    I think they manage to keep limping along, not exploiting technology, because the Singaporeans follow directions Just So Damned Well. Yes, stuff requires forms, but the forms DO get processed correctly, eventually. Compare this with here in the States, where we flock to Online Everything because HERE, computer databases don’t fuck up NEARLY as much as human employees do. Over there it’s the flipperoo.

    I disagree. They routinely screw it up either way. When you experienced people doing things “so damned well” you were probably dealing with foreigners and not realizing it.

    And don’t even try with the ladies there. Their birth rate is so damned low that every decent gal in her twenties has THREE well-earning mofo’s in their thirties, chasing her around and making her offers. And thus the low birth rate, and thus, and thus, and thus.

    Agreed, the SDT boys nailed it when they described the gold digging in the pros and cons articles. Empty-headed, robotic, emotionless, shallow, superficial gold diggers!

    If what I want is both life satisfaction and a good chance at marriage, it’s important that I AVOID places of extreme domestication and convenience. Where shit’s chaotic and a little dangerous, suddenly PRESTO, I as a man have something valuable to offer. In Perfect Safe Easy Comfortable Disneyville, a dick and a wallet is all I ‘got.


    I also want to point out that every single element of Singapore Retardation is job security for every western migrant two chooses work there.

    Their retardation is your indisposability.

    Definitely agree!!! This place is absolutely there for the taking for anyone with two connected brain cells as long as you can get permission to be here which can be challenging if you don’t have money or someone that’s willing to pay you a substantial salary, at least on paper. I plan to retire a millionaire long before I hit 40.

    • Mister Grumpus

      All good points, sir.

  • Mister Grumpus

    I also want to point out that every single element of Singapore Retardation is job security for every western migrant two chooses work there.

    Their retardation is your indisposability.

  • Mister Grumpus

    I just got back last month from a week in Singapore (and other places too). I didn’t have any of the difficulties that our friend here had, but then again I was only a tourist consumer, and not trying to get anything DONE.

    Also, nearly everyone I was talking to there and there were English-speaking whites. My interactions with Actual Singaporeans were almost exclusively with people Doing Their Jobs — and doing them well mind you — but I was only asking questions that they were already being asked every week. No creative problem solving needed.

    What I can tell you is that after a week of “exciting and interesting frustration” in Vietnam, the morning after my arrival in Singapore found me suddenly depressed. The place is very well-organized and -engineered. I commend them for their achievements — seriously — but what that ends up meaning is that living there requires NO THOUGHT. I expected to love such a vacation from hassle, but in actuality I didn’t. Being deprived of puzzles or challenges or danger left me unexpectedly bummed out, sleeping until noon.

    So just for THAT, I’m super-glad I went, because that is some valuable self-knowledge right there.

    It’s Southeast Asia, but the Disneyland Version. Everything’s thought out, everything predictable, no surprises. No wilderness, no darkness, no risk, no danger. This MUST have a LOT to do with Singapore Retardation. It’s like that big cruise space ship in the movie Wall-E. As a fellow on Sex and the City (yeah yeah sue me) said about fashion models: “They do have brains. They just don’t have to use them.”

    As for bureaucracy:

    I think they manage to keep limping along, not exploiting technology, because the Singaporeans follow directions Just So Damned Well. Yes, stuff requires forms, but the forms DO get processed correctly, eventually. Compare this with here in the States, where we flock to Online Everything because HERE, computer databases don’t fuck up NEARLY as much as human employees do. Over there it’s the flipperoo.

    And don’t even try with the ladies there. Their birth rate is so damned low that every decent gal in her twenties has THREE well-earning mofo’s in their thirties, chasing her around and making her offers. And thus the low birth rate, and thus, and thus, and thus.

    This finally leads to the deepest point I can think to make:

    If what I want is both life satisfaction and a good chance at marriage, it’s important that I AVOID places of extreme domestication and convenience. Where shit’s chaotic and a little dangerous, suddenly PRESTO, I as a man have something valuable to offer. In Perfect Safe Easy Comfortable Disneyville, a dick and a wallet is all I ‘got.

  • anon1

    brunei is just the same. this is what happens when you have hot climate, huge government welfare, and a culture of laziness. they are so relaxed they couldn’t give a shit

  • Uniquely Singapore

    Hilarious. You know the real Singapore!

    • sg

      no he doesn’t. this is such a shallow and inaccurate analysis of Singapore without appreciation of the deeper trends of her history. utterly unfair

      • Why bother?

        SG’s history is completely irrelevant here. We’re talking about contemporary issues.

        • khooster

          Contemporary issues are very often created by situations that have occurred in the past. Knowing what happened previously allows you to understand why things are the way they are now. You might not agree with the way things are, but it IS important to understand why they are this way.

          There are just as many Americans and British people with bad english as well. Please dont tell me that the Scottish or Welsh speak good english. And please dont dare say that ebonics is a language either.

          I don’t disagree with a lot of what was written, but it is a very unbalanced write-up.

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