Monday, July 18, 2011

PAP Govt : We can't run public transport efficiently....

Minister Liu and PAP MP, Josephine Teo,  have recently said that a govt operated public transport system based on cost recovery, as proposed by the Workers' Party, will result in inefficiencies that "will lead to higher costs, which will be borne by commuters, as well as a stagnation of service standards"[Link]. While there are many reasons to believe that govts can run public transport system well since there so many good examples, you better believe Minister Liu when he says he can't do it despite the PAP telling us they are an efficient govt - if he says the PAP govt can't operate the MRT more efficiently than Saw Phaik Hwa who had no prior experience running a transport company before she joined SMRT, you have to accept it. You cannot count on a solution to our transport system that depends on the PAP govt proving itself wrong.

Here is an interesting article: Why Taipei’s MRT trumps Singapore’s you should read. It compares the MRT systems of both countries. The Taipei MRT implemented safety doors for "above ground" stations years ago. It already has the "advanced"| signalling system that SMRT is implementing to allow greater frequency of trains to stations. It is run by the Taipei City Govt. Yes, it makes less profits than the SMRT but it delivers higher service quality. SMRT (+SBS Transit) which is profit oriented will hold back investments to improve service quality because it is a  monopoly - passengers don't have other cost effective option.

Singaporeans are unhappy with the public transport system. The PAP govt has to find a way forward to up service quality to improve the quality of lives of Singaporeans while keeping the cost to commuters down - the income gap and stagnant wages among a large segment of the populace makes fare increase very unpopular as it is seen as an exercise to maintain the profitability of these companies. I would even go further than the Workers' Party's  "cost recovery" model. If you can drastically improve the quality of life of Singaporeans by accepting some operational losses that can be recovered by using the massive gains in the COE system,  you can create much more "net happiness" and lower the demand for cars...an aspiration that cannot be met for most families in Singapore. While such schemes using cross-subsidies violate PAP's ideology, the large income gap and stagnant wages breaks many of PAP's "self-reliant pay for yourself" schemes. The PAP has to overcome its ideological constraints to begin solving problems faced by Singaporeans otherwise they will face greater uncertainty in the next elections.

42 comments:

Anonymous said...

Dear Lucky
Where on earth did you come up with the idea that the PAP regime cares about Singaporeans' happiness?

All Singaporeans will understand our place in Singapore society if we all repeat this mantra;
"PAP does not care about my happiness or safety."

Just accept this mantra, and you will understand our transport policies.

Sgcynic said...

Indeed, no one owes us a living, much less the PAP.

Anonymous said...

Capitalism as a religion dictates that a group of people acting selfishly is the one true way to achieve a better society.

There is no other way.

Even if the evidence suggests otherwise.

Because the evidence is :
- not representative
- populist
- incoherent with the economics of running a world-class transport system
- etc.

You see, everything boils down to this - what are the values of those at the top? Actions speak louder than words.

Anonymous said...

Why would they want to improve the public transport system (profits go to "shareholders") when they reap millions without doing anything? And don't let me even mention "ERP"!

Anonymous said...

"... otherwise they will face greater uncertainty in the next elections."

What uncertainty? The ultimate outcome in GE2016 is a non-PAP government provided daft Singaporeans (60%) have fully wake up and demanded for a total accountable and transparent government.

Also, if the government cannot run a public transport or other public services efficiently, why do we pay them millions dollars to be there? Whose idea? Any open debate? Or, just some personal beliefs from a bunch of elites in power? Shame.

Anonymous said...

"PAP Govt : We can't run public transport efficiently...."

You know, sometimes for things that are not nice to say but you have to say, you must find the best way to say it lah.

So maybe this is the best possible way the govt say it.

Any other way of saying may be even worse.

So just accept whatever the govt say lah, like it or not.

Do you have a choice till 2016?

Anonymous said...

The best of the comparison between the 2 rail systems is how much the transport ministers are paid.

Our multi million dollar minister said he cannot get it to run efficiently if he take this 'baby' back.

High pay gets you talents?

Anonymous said...

rex comments as follows,

i would add that the SMRT spent too much money on decorations in train stations. They put in expensive works of art, etc., to attract "Wow!"s (just like the musuem decision to buy $12 million dinosaurs)
It could do with more focus on the quality of the service.

Xtrocious said...

Anyway, it looks like the fare hike is a given, especially after GE's comments...

Heard on the radio today that the PTC (Paper Tiger Committee) said that it would also take "affordibility" into account...

While it sounds good, GE went on to say that surveys have found that we are spending less on transport as a percentage of our salaries...

WTF - we are spending less because everything else has gone up!

We now have to spend more on food, energy and housing...

And did he look at savings? (or rather the absence of savings)

Epic phail GE...

Anonymous said...

One more GRC besides Eunos would have got the message through effectively, but that's another story. Public transport would not be nationlised because it is a political hot potato. The trick is to hold the board and management of the 2 tramsport companies to task for their gross inefficiencies. Retailers shd stick to selling handbags and not try to be Thomas the Tank Engine.

Anonymous said...

In Singapore it is very easy to govern. You are not even allow to gather together to stage any street protest no matter how unhappy you are. You only can go to the speaker's corner and cry your heart out.
But why only one GRC is voted in?
Singaporeans you deserve what you wish for. It's too late now, baby. Wait another 5 years - "Tang Koo Koo Chu Uoo"

Anonymous said...

"SMRT (+SBS Transit) which is profit oriented will hold back investments to improve service quality because it is a monopoly - passengers don't have other cost effective option."

Lucky, the whole local transportation system is a monopoly
1. Car population controlled by COE. Do you find COE system in other countries??
2. Taxi companies controlled by big companies linked to government.

Anonymous said...

Lucky,
I disagree that using money from COE and ERP to subsidize public transport is a "cross subsidies". On the contrary, I think these monies should be used to improved public transportation.

The PAP had always maintained that COE and ERP are part of road management in Singapore, to manage the way people travel and driving pattern and what not.

To look at the grand scheme of thing, all these are part of the transportation management system in Singapore, by improving public transport, more people will shift from driving and so on....

But sadly, where have all these monies gone to? anyone knows?

Anonymous said...

We have to agreed to the Minister. Look at the example of the projects by SSC: The National Stadium and the Changi Racing track. Both are delayed. The hard truths could be there are no talents. Singaporean shouild look for Alternative quickly before it is too late.

A flat world.... said...

Destiny is in our hands
Change can happen only from within

The communication process is still very poor. If the 'cost recovery' model is not what they want, explain why.

Explain the philosphy ( again & again if neccessary ) why Singapore needs to have such an approach: profits vs efficiency

Define "efficient"
Define "quality"
Define "world class"

Stakeholders inlcude the citizenry and their views and aspirations.
It is not the exclusive role of business owners, investors.

Leadership means taking in the opinions and raw data of what is actually happening. We have more than 4 million people riding the "public" transport system. We have only 2 company's view.. their shareholders & board of directors.

In terms of numbers we overwhelm them.

In terms of numbers, the people overwhelm the ruling party.. yet, we cannot achieve what we want.

The only way the pyramid will crumble is shaking and shifting the base..

The apex is destructable... it can be rebuilt. Nothing is forever.

Anonymous said...

Good, make our lives more miserable please. Yo PAP, come up with more ridiculous excuses and policies. Keep doing it over the next 5 years. Have 2 or 3 ministers go on TV and say "You die is your business". Shiok, coz like that in 2016 PAP sure kenna voted out.

Anonymous said...

There is an editorial piece in today's Zaobao by former PAP MP Goh Choon Kang saying the transport minister's excuses are old and repeated ones, and the public service mission of our public transport operators are missing.

Anonymous said...

in corporate world, whoever who said such thing like cannot this or that will be sacked. this gov is just lazy and lousy. who needs a gov like that? where is the can do attitude? how can they be a good role model?

Anonymous said...

Lucky Tan and the opposition has to overcome its ideological constraints to begin solving problems faced by Singaporeans otherwise they will face certain defeat in the next elections.

Is it so difficult to get thru to u that PAP only understand the language of power and money!?!

Start raising funds and manpower for the candidate of your choice NOW!!!

Anonymous said...

PAP is getting more and more unpopular if they keep up with their belligerent behaviour. Time and time again, we have witnessed how the incumbent turned a blind eye to the overcrowding in the MRTs. They are so atas that they are not even appreciative of the overcrowding issue in the trains. Someone should do a decibel tests on the noise in the train tracks. Rides from all these old trains cars are unpleasantly jarring.

Anonymous said...

PM Lee said after the elections that he will be focusing on real wages. Then why this increase? Why is it, every time we voted for them, they jump the price hikes on us? Is this what the government means by raising real wages? Pray explain. Too much power and too much control has gotten into their heads. At this rate, the people of Singapore will resent them. Let me see, come GE 2016, the GDP will be record levels of double digit growths again?

Why do the 60% Singaporean have still not gottten their consciousness raised with regard to the incompassionate PAP polcies? It's simple.

The other 40% did not do a good job at raising the awareness of these 60% who are ignorant.

Anonymous said...

Actually for any business, to serve customer well by giving good service at low cost, it can be done.

Only thing is the company will make less profits!

But not nice for the company to tell the customer in this way, right?

And some more if a company has little or no competition, why need to make less profits?

Anonymous said...

power, influence, control can only occur when there is:

A) absolute tyranny
B) a mass of people supporting it

It cannot exist in a vaccum
It cannot exist when there is nobody

Go cast them all onto an island with no body around.. suddenly, no one to control, nothing to say that matters

Isolation of these people is the best medicine.. they need to feed onto others.. disallow that and they wither away.

De Leviathan @ Sg said...

The Million Dollar Salary Syndrome - Why PAP Could Not Work Like "a Bolt of Lightning" Anymore?

Read about Nanjing Metro :-

http://de-leviathan.blogspot.com/2011/04/million-dollar-salary-syndrome-why-pap.html

Anonymous said...

If the government claim they are not capable of running an efficient public transport service, then it is very obvious they dont have the capabilities to run a country.

Anonymous said...

Singaporeans run themselves very well, by and large hardworking and law abiding. So, there is very little that our leaders have to do except tax us. Such is how easy it is to run Singaporeans.

Anonymous said...

Don't blame the PAP gahmen anymore. The source of all these comes from the 61%daft Sinkaporeans who like to be f***ked by PAP. They are the ones who give free rein to PAP. You just have to suck your thumb, bite the bullet and wait for these people to die out or leave Sinkapore

Anonymous said...

The tragedy of Singapore's transport policy is one of expectation. Commuters expect quality, the operator expect profit, and it is obvious who gets the upper hand.

Anonymous said...

What PAP means is that they are not able to profit from the Singapore public efficiently.

They currently offload (which is PAP favorite method) the responsibility to PTC to increase transport cost so that they can be "blameless".

What to do? Singaporeans a bunch of trusting idiots.

Even the act of diffusing a bomb they tried to palm off to private individuals. Only when caught with the pants down only did they step in.

With such highly paid Ministers and civil servants, I call upon all living idiots (read Singaporeans) to adopt a zero tolerance policy towards PAP. Zero tolerance for failure or substandard actions or lack thereof. Failure to do so menas that we well deserve the idiot tag that PRC and PAP use on us.

With National day looming. I call upon everyone to be UNITED against all things PAP until they REPENT.

Anonymous said...

Have you given any thought how much publuc funds (tax/otherwise directly/indirectly) goes into these transport companies before they were "privatised"...

Whose blood, sweat and tears monies were these...

Karma will come. Now now...but sure as sure when death is at one's door.

You can cheat leegally or whatever...but death will still be there in the end.

And no matter you are the most powerful mortal or the most richest person on earth...death will still take you.

Instead of living life to the fullest...we have idiots whose idea of life is all about gathering finite mortal "wealth".

Stoopig greedy short term thinking/planning white clothed PIGS : )

I don't hate these low life scums...i simply dispise them for all the harm past, present and future they are causing...the day will come when they run screaming for help...i won't lift a finger to help them even i am able to...i won't they must pay...in spades...let us all die together at that point in time.

Anonymous said...

I don't whether Minister Liu and PAP MP, Josephine Teo will eat their words or feel shameful when they read what Taipei government can achieve in their government-run train transportation.

Anonymous said...

Minister Liu,

What exactly is your job description?

Anonymous said...

In case you guys don't know, the presidential election is likely to be set on 27 August, Saturday.

Anonymous said...

//
Minister Liu,

What exactly is your job description?
//

According to Mr Lucky Tan, Mr Liu's job is to be seen taking public transport a couple of times.

Or to quote Ms Kate Spade, their job is to listen and they have listened. Pls dun expect them to actually solve the issue.

Anonymous said...

//
Minister Liu,

What exactly is your job description?
//

According to Mr Lucky Tan, Mr Liu's job is to be seen taking public transport a couple of times.

Or to quote Ms Kate Spade, their job is to listen and they have listened. Pls dun expect them to actually solve the issue.

Anonymous said...

//
In case you guys don't know, the presidential election is likely to be set on 27 August, Saturday.
//

Tony Tan says he is in favour of "Singapore First" education policy. Lucky is happy with that. You can vote for Tony Tan.

Anonymous said...

ERP funds should definitely be used to help pay for public transport. Public transport should be subsidies from the massive taxes on cars that are paid.

The Pariah said...

Could the President donate half of his $4.2mn Presidential Pay to the Public Transport Council who can in turn make grants to the Bus/Train Operators to obviate the upcoming fare hikes?

2 million bucks - just loose change, eh?

That will buy the authorities some time to possibly re-think the Public Transport Model for Singapore.

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