The following edited article was sent to me by Patriot in response to my yesterday’s blog post “Pls fly our National Flag” – a regular reader of my blog. He has requested me to publish it. He is now in his 60s. All opinions are his. I may not necessarily agree totally with what he said.
“I would like you to know that I feel sad, disappointed and hopeless with our incumbent rulers.
I was born in a poor farming family. We were so very poor that the floor of our wood and attap house was bare earth. We did not have electricity and water supply. Just like our neighbours, we were fine with our living conditions.
I had four other siblings, except me, the rest never went beyond primary school. I however dropped out at secondary four. Though we were financially poor, we had plenty of food that money may not be able to buy nowadays. We were never short of food then.
Back then, we had lots of meat – duck, chicken, pork, turkey. We also had fresh live fish that were jumping about from the sea. We had fruits ripen on the trees. And we also depended on them for a meagre income cuz they were sold at fraction of today’s prices. My elder siblings’ children were all taken care of by my grandparents and parents. They were never in the care of non-family members. We served our elders their meals all the time. Those good old days as I remember vividly were under the British Rule.
Then we got resettled by compulsion from our sprawling village to the modern high rise pigeon holes.
My wife and I with only a monthly income of less than one thousand dollars, together we raised three grown-up children. We bought a 900 sq ft 4-room flat at Bedok South for only $18,500.
Today, my children are middle income professionals. My grandchildren are sent to Infant Care followed by Childcare. They fall sick so frequently that it pains me to see them suffering unnecessarily. Their parents are always working late into the early morning and frequently have to travel on overseas assignments and attend meetings etc.
Even though they do not have to live in squatters like I used to and they drive their own cars, their children and themselves almost always have all their meals outside. They have too little time with their own children. Oh yes, they do own branded stuff and they have more than what we old folks had back then in the good old days. But, they do not have much free time and are always in a rush. Instead of happiness, I see ever more stress and increasing pressure in them.
The first 40 years of my life and that of others were filled with camaraderie at home, workplace, and almost everywhere else. The care and sharing were naturally spontaneous, no campaigns needed. Healthcare and education were then almost totally free of charge.
Over the last two decades, I began to worry for my old age. My Camel Brand Cigarettes has gone over 11 times in prices and still keep rising. The 10 cents per cup of coffee or tea has gone up by as much as 10 times and that 4-room flat has gone up by as much as twenty times or more. What’s even more dire is that inflation which was unheard of before the 80s or too insignificant to mention then is now running at over 4% to 5% yearly.
Do you understand the pain that much of the current problems are brought upon us by our rulers’ policy with no remedy in sight?
The PAP has failed the us. The old cannot retire, families are slaves to debts (expensive flats), school leavers cannot find jobs, older workers get replaced by cheap foreigners. So many university degree holders driving taxi. Our 47th National Day is approaching. How to celebrate? What to celebrate?” Unquote