Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Making NS Less Fuckup - Rebates! Subsidies!

The government is again cracking its small head on how to make NS less frustrating and fuckup. OK I buy the poison shrimp, and diplomacy with deterrence doctrine, and powering up in peacetime. But I still hate ICT, as I already can't fit into my new digi uniform and I hate IPPT. Although I know the importance - look at Kuwait 1990.The pussies there were smacked like bitches all the way into Saudi Arabia. Nobody is going to smack us out of out little red dot into the sea.

$3000 pumped into my CPF is nice at different stages of my NSmen journey, but the best of the best, not SAFRA vouchers, or free SAFRA membership, but tax rebates!

That is how it makes Singaporean men feel appreciated. Instead of the current tax relief now, make it tax rebate, tiered according to high key ICT, low key ICT, silver or gold IPPT score, rank and appointment. If I get a cap of $2,000 or higher tax rebate cap the year I do ICT if I am CSM or officer , plus extra $1,000 rebate after getting silver or more if gold for 2-3 years in a row, putting a price to NSmen responsibilities makes me motivated more and even Zen about it if I am hit with an ICT this year which I can't defer.

Oh, if I can't get tax rebates, then give me decreasing HDB housing grant subsidies for 2nd and 3rd HDB flats bought, even resale. Or free polyclinic outpatient consultations up to $300-$500 a year until we MR or reach the statutory age.

Where is the money coming from. I thought there were more taxable foreigners coming here to work? Am I putting a price to my NSmen duties, yes, and that is the new reality.

"Committee to Strengthen National Service" to be formed
By Dylan Loh | Posted: 11 March 2013 2140 hrs

SINGAPORE: Senior Minister of State for Defence Chan Chun Sing will lead a working group to see how servicemen's abilities can be maximised in fulfilling their duties.

This group will also look into increasing support for National Service from various groups, such as families, employers, schools, permanent residents, new citizens and the broader community.

Another group, led by Senior Parliamentary Secretary for Defence Maliki Osman, will look at issues on recognition and benefits for National Service.

The committee's goals are to strengthen Singapore, National Service, the Singapore Armed Forces, and to serve all Singaporeans.

It will comprise members with a good appreciation of National Service issues.

The committee's work should be completed within a year.

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Free Bus Rides OK, Monthly Travel Pass OK! More Operators How?

About time. Well, free bus rides is a great idea but you know it means public transport operators would pass the cost, and increase the fares for peak hours to compensate for the free rides in non-peak hours. That is interesting but as public transport companies are private companies based on profit, that idea would not sit well with shareholders. Monthly travel passes are finally here again so that is good. Why not weekly as well - as commuters want choices.

Nothing was said about old folks, those aunties and uncles who helped build our Singapore from dirt up to this modern international city. What should have been said is free rides for these oldies, or if not free rides in the government's co-pay mentality to beat back abuse, heavily subsidised fares then for the oldies. Ahem. I don't care about the poly kids whining about their lack of concessions compared to JC kids. Poly is tertiary education, so that means they can keep long hair, wear jeans to school and can smoke outside the school gates besides getting higher pay compared to JC kids when they enter the workforce with their diploma. So don't whine about JC kids getting concessions. It's apples and oranges.

The talking centres around fares and discounts rather than about true competition in public transport. Like more bus operators to compete with SMRT and SBS. If true competition is allowed, not this geographical divide and profit plot between SMRT and SBS, then fares would really drop. Minibuses running up and down Eastern, Northern and Western Singapore into CBD during peak hours would really bring ooomph into the public transport system. Who needs overpriced depreciating value cars when one has the Tiong minibus driver downstairs doing a non-stop from Simei or Clementi or Yishun to town? Lui is a retard as transport minister still.

Monthly adult travel pass being considered
By Jermyn Chow

THE high-level committee that is reviewing public transport fares is considering introducing a monthly adult travel pass.

Such a pass will help to cap monthly public transport expenses for average-income individuals or households, said Mr Richard Magnus, chairman of the Fare Review Mechanism Committee.

In a blog post yesterday, he also said that something ought to be done for children not yet in primary school who are taller than 0.9m - the limit currently set for free bus and train travel.

Polytechnic students and the disabled are also being considered for improved concessions, as are low-income earners.


MP proposes free travel on public transport before peak hours
By Saifulbahri Ismail | Posted: 05 March 2013 2001 hrs

SINGAPORE: Member of Parliament for Pasir Ris-Punggol GRC Janil Puthucheary has raised the idea of free travel on public transport before peak hours to change their travel patterns.

Speaking during the Budget debate in Parliament on Tuesday, Dr Puthucheary urged public transport operators to consider providing commuters free travel within a certain time period outside rush hour. This could reduce the crush during peak hour travel.

Dr Puthucheary noted that currently train operators give discounts to encourage commuters to travel early.

He said: "If we can afford it, have all travel on public transport until the start of peak hour, free? If that's too great a leap, then maybe for example, every weekday morning for 30 minutes or an hour, ending at 7.45am, commuters can travel for free.

"Will this distort behaviour? Yes, that's the whole point. This will attract more people to change their travel patterns, compared to any discount."