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Thread: How to make Singaporeans happy here??

  1. #61
    Member Sispecho's Avatar
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    Default Re: How to make Singaporeans happy here??

    Quote Originally Posted by night86mare View Post


    so you mean if i go to a good jc, i can do somersaults for 2 years of jc, and nothing else, and still end up in a good university! wowowow!!!! i shall make sure my kid gets into a good jc next time and then train him to somersault for 2 whole years.

    if he doesn't end up in a good university then, does that mean that i can pm you to ask for a refund?
    Ok brace yourself its going to be one long grandmother story here:

    I was from a neighbourhood school. My kakis are all the football-playing ones and none manage to pass their 'o's to go JC except me. I go to a neighbourhood JC, but realised that there are many people who already have 'clicks' from their past relationships from their previous school. Whats best is that they have friends from their past school who are in other JCs. I don't as not many from my sec school manage to get a place in a JC. So those with contacts can share material which can be quite useful in your 'A' levels. I dont have anything much to offer them to make them share their material with me but i make good use of what i have and some of the more charitable friends i made in my JC who willingly shared knowledge and material with me.

    I had to adapt to the new environment in school, which the other students seem to be having little problems adapting. That was rather stressful, but by good luck and God's grace, i did ok for my 'A's to get a place in Uni. In the army i started to learn new things that i didnt get a chance to. I didnt have the internet back in JC so all my dealings with the internet are limited to the use on school library's computers. But in the army i started to surf the net while doing Duty Officer and in the army i managed to make good contacts. I also had my first camera then which i treasure very much. It was a coolpix 4600. My grandmother saved up enough for me to get a new computer, and i was very very happy to see the photos from my camera.

    when i was in Uni i was still new to computer-related stuff, and i begin to be more familiar with the internet. But not familiar enough to really understand what the hell is happening in NUS with the heavy internet reliance for administration matters including module registration things. It was a bit overwhelming but hey i admit the blame for not putting enough effort to understand the whole system in school. My contacts in NUS was limited.

    As i live with my grandma, i had to work to get my pocket money. I worked sometimes a few jobs at once, and was coping well at school too. I was happy in my first few years, and it was then that i started to be more familiar with photography, learning from an uncle of mine who shoots. He gives me some readings which taught me a few things in photography. My girlfriend, who was working, had trouble with her job and school, and as we share our funds together, what affected her affected me as well, and that was then when i started to do badly in school.

    I started to spend more time outside school. My girlfriend found a job and then I started to gain my footing. But i had to take a heavier workload to meet my expected graduation date. I tried to take on too many and had limited success, or failures. And it was then too that i had news that my girlfriend had a weak womb and there was a high chance she could not conceive later on. The doctor strongly suggested to conceive. ASAP. In my 4th year in school, I married my present wife. Now she is pregnant, but then she lost her job again unceremoniously, but luckily for us her good performance caught the eye of a few notable people and she got another job real quick even though pregnant.

    Now, im still in school so guys wish me luck for my FINAL FINAL FINAL FINAL exmas end of this month.


    I know its a long winded story, but i guess i want to make a point that it is real hard to consider everything here a REAL meritocracy, as not everyone share the same path they have to go through in life. In my area of study (sociology) ive met people whose starting line in the rat race in singapore is way, way behind me. Everybody's experience is different and our background can have a strong influence of the path we have to go through.

    Cheers
    Last edited by Sispecho; 3rd November 2010 at 12:55 AM.

  2. #62
    Senior Member Leong23's Avatar
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    Default Re: How to make Singaporeans happy here??

    Quote Originally Posted by Sispecho View Post
    Now, im still in school so guys wish me luck for my FINAL FINAL FINAL FINAL exmas end of this month.
    All the best to you and glad that you're able to overcome all odds and stay focus in your belief.

  3. #63

    Default Re: How to make Singaporeans happy here??

    Quote Originally Posted by Sispecho View Post
    I know its a long winded story, but i guess i want to make a point that it is real hard to consider everything here a REAL meritocracy, as not everyone share the same path they have to go through in life. In my area of study (sociology) ive met people whose starting line in the rat race in singapore is way, way behind me. Everybody's experience is different and our background can have a strong influence of the path we have to go through.

    Cheers
    thanks for sharing your story, and i fully comprehend where you're coming from.

    i don't agree with every point that you say , for example, sharing of material leading to greater academic success. but that said, at the end of the story, could you share how you think this can be overcome in any way? i think this is something worth thinking about.

    i agree that no one has an equal starting point. to claim so is undoubtedly silly. there are people who have more access to opportunities, contacts by birth. there are also people who have a greater talent for academics and benefit more from the singapore emphasis on this aspect.

    what's more important is - are you stuck?

    there is a difference between meritocracy and equal distribution. meritocracy involves giving equal opportunity to succeed, i.e. a poor person has the chance to break free of that mould; whereas equal distribution (which you seem to be mixing with meritocracy) involves making sure that everyone gets a similar starting point, which is unattainable, if you ask me. how would you ensure this? for example - there are people who are more sociable, there are people who are less sociable. if you view the clique issue as a problem, are you going to make our educators force the students to talk to one another - i would think that is quite artificial and would not serve any purpose or achieve anything sustainable. even if we take this to the highest level and snatch all children from their parents when they are young, and place them into school camps where they are given the same food, same treatment, same lifestyle... how would you ensure that they are all on equal footing all their life? meritocracy involves differentiation, and thus the two cannot really be married - though yes, there should be a safety net of some form.

    in any case, i applaud you for overcoming the odds, and wish you every success in your life. based on what i read , you have great determination, and i'm sure your wife and you will be a happy family in the long run.
    Last edited by night86mare; 3rd November 2010 at 01:15 AM.

  4. #64
    Member Sispecho's Avatar
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    Default Re: How to make Singaporeans happy here??

    Well,thats the only thing i have left so to give up on it is like giving up on everything i work for.

    I accept that i was a bit unprepared for the life at NUS in the early days. I was naive to think it was just like JC. The whole internet thing was a bit hard for me to digest but perhaps i could have done better. I also spend little time at sch.

    And I think meritocracy IS about having the same starting point. If people have money, getting a degree is much easier than those without. If people have money, starting a business is much easier. People without money will most likely be stuck.

    But in some ways things have been evened up as well. As a member of the community I get some subsidy from Mendaki from my studies, and that really really helps me A LOT in terms of future fees to the study loan i take. But then again, even the way they assess the eligibility for the subsidy leaves much to be desired.

    Btw, it sounds silly, but things have turned out for the better since i got married. Its a blessing in disguise i feel. We get more time together yet save more money living in the same house.

  5. #65

    Default Re: How to make Singaporeans happy here??

    Quote Originally Posted by Sispecho View Post

    And I think meritocracy IS about having the same starting point. If people have money, getting a degree is much easier than those without. If people have money, starting a business is much easier. People without money will most likely be stuck.
    i think it's clear that we disagree on the definition of meritocracy.

    but even if i concede the point, don't you think your concept of meritocracy is utopian at best?

    how would it be equitable to ensure that everyone has the same starting point? let's say that person A has worked hard his entire life, and he's made a load of money coming from poor roots. now enter person B, who had the same roots, but did nothing much with his life. he's still poor. meritocracy (to me) is the fact that person A is able to move on from being poor. but to you, it's taking the difference between person A, and passing it to person B.

    i acknowledge the existence of a person C, who has worked hard, but wasn't able to break free. but i don't think it is fair to redistribute wealth to such a degree - some form of redistribution is perhaps in order in the extremities to ensure that no one falls off the edge. but what you are proposing is a level distribution!

  6. #66
    Member Sispecho's Avatar
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    Default Re: How to make Singaporeans happy here??

    Quote Originally Posted by night86mare View Post

    there is a difference between meritocracy and equal distribution. meritocracy involves giving equal opportunity to succeed, i.e. a poor person has the chance to break free of that mould; whereas equal distribution (which you seem to be mixing with meritocracy) involves making sure that everyone gets a similar starting point, which is unattainable, if you ask me. how would you ensure this? for example - there are people who are more sociable, there are people who are less sociable. if you view the clique issue as a problem, are you going to make our educators force the students to talk to one another - i would think that is quite artificial and would not serve any purpose or achieve anything sustainable. .
    I agree that in this society it will be foolish to ask for the same starting point for EVERYONE. its just a utopian dream that cannot be attained. So for those who think that they are much maligned by the situation, well take a step back to think. If you want to complain, fine. I guess its voicing your democratic rights, but PLEASE DO make plans. Dont just sit there and hope someone will make life easier for you.

    But i guess if everybody understands the situation this way, then it will make things easier for everyone involved. The Wee Shu Min saga shows the arrogance of the elite which i find needless and unnecessary for the many other people who struggle here.

  7. #67
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    Default Re: How to make Singaporeans happy here??

    Quote Originally Posted by night86mare View Post
    i think it's clear that we disagree on the definition of meritocracy.

    but even if i concede the point, don't you think your concept of meritocracy is utopian at best?

    how would it be equitable to ensure that everyone has the same starting point? let's say that person A has worked hard his entire life, and he's made a load of money coming from poor roots. now enter person B, who had the same roots, but did nothing much with his life. he's still poor. meritocracy (to me) is the fact that person A is able to move on from being poor. but to you, it's taking the difference between person A, and passing it to person B.

    i acknowledge the existence of a person C, who has worked hard, but wasn't able to break free. but i don't think it is fair to redistribute wealth to such a degree - some form of redistribution is perhaps in order in the extremities to ensure that no one falls off the edge. but what you are proposing is a level distribution!
    Yes I totally agree. its NOT UTOPIAN AT BEST. It IS a utopian aspiration. In my eyes, it is an irrational aspiration that requires irrational decisions from the individuals in the community to make it sustainable. It all sounds like a bed of roses but nobody else has a plan on how it is going to work. But just do be aware that without any attempt to align ourselves with this aspiration, its gonna be hard for a few people out there and its going to be dangerous if left unchecked.

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