Thursday, October 7, 2010

The Rich, the Poor and the Corrupted

It seems like after 2 senior officers were found cheating the SLA of $12 million dollars, 2 more men have been hauled to court for their alleged involvement. This shouldn't come as a surprise.

I mean, while corruption is nothing new in Singapore, the usual gifts were just a few hundreds to a couple of thousands, and some will settle for just sexual favors. It'll definitely take more cooks to pull off such a big case of $12 million dollars fraud. In fact, 4 men might still be a stretch.

Some may wonder, is it worth it? The most senior of the four, Koh Seah Wee was already a deputy director with SLA's Technology and Infrastructure Department, holding on to a golden rice bowl with super high pay till he retires, so why the corruption? Because he wants to be the Rich and be able to play with a Lamborghini, some Mercedes Benz cars, a property at Axis@Siglap and some unit trusts.

Everybody thought that in Singapore, there are 3 classes. The Poor, the Middle-class and the Rich. Unknown to most, there are actually 2 now. The Middle-class species is already extinct long long time ago. Some of them have evolved into the Rich, but majority of them have become the Poor.

It was purely environmental factors that have driven the Middle-class down the route of extinction and becoming the Poor. Loss of jobs due to companies restructuring/employing foreign talents, ever increasing daily expenses like education for the kids, expensive public and private flats and high house loans, car loans and ERP charges.

So we can't really blame the 4 men in SLA. They're merely going down the course of nature, trying to evolve into the Rich, in a shorter time. Something that I've secretly wanted to do since I was a kid.

I remember watching a Hong Kong film of how a poor police inspector becomes real rich simply by being corrupted, starring Andy Lau and based on a real story. It really inspired the young me and I immediately rewrote my composition "What do I want to be when I grow up", changing from astronaut to policeman.

But when I finally grew up and graduated, I didn't join the Home Team. Because I then realised that becoming a policeman means sitting in a little neighbourhood police post and doing paperworks of children or dogs running away from home. There is just not enough big mafias and Yakuzas in Singapore to earn corruption money from.

However I was not smart enough to foresee that in the new Singapore, every outsource opportunity is a corruption waiting to be discovered.

Well, I blame it on Singapore's film industry! Why didn't any film maker thought of making the film "Corruption Not Enough" about the hero working in a statboard, or some charity organisation or some religious hospital? We don't even have to pay Andy Lau big bucks to be the leading male because we can use Jet Li who is Singaporean now!

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