Pensions Must be Absolutely Abolished

I saw this from Winkingdoll's Facebook feed sometime back. Oh by the way, CONGRATULATIONS to the doll for her marriage. It has been quite a few years reading about her sad chapters of her love story. Fortunately it was one of those story with a happy ending.  I hereby wish her everlasting bliss and good home cooked meals. 

Whenever the Singapore government talks about the urgent need to inflating a population to support the current greying one, the nagging question in my mind asks, "Who will support the larger greying population of the future?" The question is simple but you will never hear an answer from any politician in the world, much less our world class ministers. Because the answer requires a politician to be blatantly honest, which isn't reasonable to be expected of them. The answer cannot be the same as the solution for today - by getting an even larger population to support the forcefully inflated population of today. You don't need a scientist to tell you that not only that isn't sustainable, it is neither desirable or sensible as well. 

So, why are we still going ahead with it? If I am an elected politician in Singapore and I am allowed to be brutally honest, I'll tell Singaporeans, "I don't give a fuck. Which of you are still around after 50 years anyway and why are you giving a fuck?" However, I have to be a socially responsible, amiable, lying hypocrite in order to to be paid $174,000 (or $495,000 I am Prime Minister) for life after my retirement from politics. Only a fool will work against that.

There are some members of the brotherhood, the soothsayers, who claim that the Singapore Prime Minister is actually a cheap hire, as he costs every Singaporeans only a few dollars a year - which is lower than what we typically pay for charity every month. That's as good as telling us swallowing diluted poison everyday is ok because it isn't strong enough to kill us. The members of the brotherhood conveniently left out the fact that the Singapore Prime Minister is not the only man Singaporeans have to fork out a few dollars a year per head for. Do not forget his colleagues, his retired ex-colleagues and batches of future colleagues who will be on pension. I doubt the brotherhood will like to tell us how much Singaporeans are paying per head at the end of the year because it wouldn't sound cheap anymore, enough to feed a low income family for a few months, easily.

Pension is no longer applicable for the average Singaporeans. Why should there be an exception for anyone else, unless there is an acceptance that a politician is a higher being, instead of simply another vocation, another job. A politician is one when he is elected by the people and a commoner when he loses an election. He is just an able man, not royalty and rightly so. Why should a man like any of us be paid dividends when he is retired from a job that the common people elected him to perform?

There are only a few means of passive income that we know off. I am not going into the degree of "passiveness" here but the common ones will be such as rental income, investment dividends, selling rights of a patent or from royalties of previous work done such as writing a book or a song. The common factor of any passive income is that there must be some form of hard work done previously, well enough to yield long lasting return. The yield is determined by how society views the worth of the work done. If you invested in a property nobody wants to rent, you get no returns. If you write a book that nobody wants to read, it doesn't get re-copied and return no royalties. 

How then, does pensioners justify their humongous payout for the rest of their lives? By the policies they crafted when they were in office which improved the lives of the people? If so, can we get the politicians to pay Singaporeans for lives for the policies that worsen the lives of the people? Politicians in Singapore are already paid on the upper tier of the bell curve when they are in office. There is absolutely no reason a pension system should exist. If there is any, it is only fair that only good work recognised by the payers is rewarded, just like any form of passive income. Above all, our leaders constantly urge all Singaporeans to be prudent, to plan for their own future and to take care of themselves and their families. Why should the same people, who are in a much better position to practice what they preach, be taken care by the population then?


  1. The lawmakers are there to make law that works for themselves not the people. We live in a world full of lies.

  2. My father was a civil servant ( not the administrative kind but hands on) who worked for 35 years for the government, but he was forced to sell the entire pension entitlement at retirement at for a lump sum payment (of which a large amount have to goto CPF) at an indexed rate chosen by the government

    No choice there. Most nation building pioneers who started working for civil service after Singapore was born in 1965 were affected by this retrospective policy in early 1990s which is enacted by the time they are fit to retire at 65

    1. IIRC, the same thing happened to MOE's pension scheme for teachers.

  3. Thanks for the kind mention and well-wishes. We're still in our "honeymoon" stage. (f)

    I think the above image from Facebook feed is based either on the Australian or Canadian situation. The source is "Fukitol Real".

    The Canadian situation can be surmised below.

    I'm not against pensions, e.g. the Canadian/Quebec Pension Plan, which every working Canadian/Quebecois pay into and benefit from in modest amounts.

    I'm just against pension systems which are skewed in its benefits/payout disproportionately to those already wealthy, powerful and privileged. E.g. I would be ok if the retired Canadian politicians get a pension at the official pensionable age like everyone else, AND:
    (a) at median pensioner's amount, or
    (b) calculated based on the CPP/QPP a non-politician who paid the same amount into CPP/QPP gets at retirement.

    As you've illustrated above, the Singapore pension scheme for its whiter-than-white politicians is unsustainable, especially since they do not pay into it and the amount is based on their astronomical pay. The questions that remain unanswered are:
    1. Who pays for these (already highly-paid while working) politicians' pensions?
    2. Why those paying for these politicians pensions are not receiving an equitable public pension themselves?