An incompetent leadership is plaguing Singaporeans today but ironically, without having to vote in a multi-party government or so as the PAP claims. According to the recent pearls of wisdom by Ministers like Grace Fu, Singaporeans will have only themselves to blame for every social issue. In a dialogue with Yew Tee residents, PAP Minister Grace Fu fails to see the inadequacies government policies have to overcome social issues. Instead of taking responsibility for Singapore’s most severe social issues like income inequality and falling birth rate, the newly appointed Senior Minister of State fundamentally attributes social issues to Singaporeans’ values. Although most Singaporeans are not giving birth today due to a fall in purchasing power and affordability over government-controlled HDB prices and cost of living, Grace Fu apparently doesn’t think the high cost of living in Singapore needs fixing and is less a factor for the falling birth rate. When peoples’ priorities are ultimately influenced and affected by government policies, it is contradicting to absolve policies of their responsibilities and blame the people for misplacing family values below that of self-sustainability and survival.
The falling birth rate reflects that Singaporeans are largely responsible adults who will not bring their children into the world if they are not able to provide for them. In the anti-welfare state, the government is not going to raise any Singaporean’s child or make housing affordable for Singaporean families. When a recent survey by the Jobstreet.com found out that 9 in 10 Singaporeans work past their official working hours, is this yet another social issue the PAP government claim their policies could not overcome and the reason why people are spending more time at work than at home is one of such “misplaced” personal values?
Other developed countries in the Europe and the US do not face a falling birth rate because of the adequate socialist welfare system their governments enforced. When workers are underpaid, exploited or forced to frequently work past their official working hours, their workers’ unions and representatives will stand up for them to organize negotiations or even strikes to fight for better remunerations. These first world countries’ governments do not blame their people’s values for the social problems, instead they do their best to facilitate a better environment through policy formulations and a robust regulatory framework reviewed upon consistently by elected lawmakers of different political affiliations. Singapore’s PAP government is far from such competency, and they are probably at best the better of the third world governments in South East Asia.