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Why ed prefers 'foreigner' dominance in SG economy

updated: 23 May, 7.25pm SG time

“A furore has been sparked on the internet over the recent spate of job listings which specifically indicate a preference for foreigners....With the recent influx of foreign talent into Singapore, there has also been an increase in the number of “foreigners only” job openings. Singaporeans have always been very accommodating towards foreigners, but action needs to be taken in order to prevent us from becoming second-class citizens in our own country. (The author is a final-year Arts and Social Sciences undergraduate at the National University of Singapore. He has been admitted to a Masters program at the London School of Economics.)” - satay club


Well, the Malays, Indians, have had to live with the 'Chinese preferred' and later 'mandarin-speakers preferred' racist nonsense long enough - and which had led to great underdevelopment amongst them. How about the chinese learning some empathy through this for a change eh.

...if I prefer the new foreigners over the so-called 'native-borns', it is so that they might judge people according to their technical merits in considering them for employment as opposed to if they prefer pork over halal.
The tables have turned, thanks to chinese self-absorption and apathy, and now, the Chinese have to face what the native Malay, and Indians, have had to put up with. The Chinese are now experiencing the '2nd class citizenship' problem - Though its unfortunate that the non-Chinese will thus be thrust into the 3rd class now. So what are you hoping for, that the 'native-born' chinese will get back their 1st class status? I didn't see you people banging on about it when the non-chinese were similarly disadvantaged prior to the influx of the new foreigners. Since that has never been much of an issue, it is plausible to the point of certainty that that is what is being hoped for. What a hypocritical joke.

I hope more 'foreigners' get promoted over the local chinese. Then, perhaps, they might not be biased when 'preferring' anyone. However, that's not going to be the case if the bulk of 'foreigners' are from China. If so, its back to square one for the non-Chinese - as was the case with the singaporeans' China-born ancestors and their progeny.

'Singaporeans' may have been 'accommodating to foreigners', but it seems, over the past couple of decades, that the local chinese singaporeans have not been accommodating in the face of local difference.

To the author: 'Arts and Social Sciences' undergrad? I wonder what they teach at your uni - or i have to wonder what you have failed to learn. For goodness sakes.


Furthermore:

Let’s not forget that when ‘foreigners are preferred’, they are not being ‘preferred’ mainly by foreigners or foreign companies, but by local or ‘native-born’ singaporean employers - many of whom are ‘native-born’ chinese. Let me spell it out. The influx of foreigners aren't being employed by the government mate. They are being employed by the so-called 'native-born' people. There is no rule stating that every local company or coffee-shop has to employ a particular percentage of foreign workers. The government may let the new foreigners in, but without employment by 'native-born' (mainly) chinese, coffee-shops, town councils, etc, etc, they wouldn't be coming in would they.

Secondly, when ‘foreigners’ are ‘preferred’, it is generally for their skills, or their being able to afford to be exploited more than ‘native-borns’.

Thirdly, when chinese were ‘preferred’ over the non-Chinese in the past and present, by singaporean chinese, it wasn’t because they could be exploited more, or because they were more skilled, but on a purely racist basis, or, because the chinese had been trained to kow tow to their respective employers, and all forms of authority.

In other words, the justification for ‘foreigners’ being ‘preferred’ is relatively more sound than when the local Chinese were ‘preferred‘ - though i’m certainly against the exploitation of foreigners. If that which is more justifiable (foreigners preferred for profit reasons) attracts more critique than that which is less justifiable(chinese preferred for racist or control reasons), then it is plausible to assume that the central focus here is on the welfare of the local chinese. So why would ed prefer 'native-borns' over the new foreigners?

In a nutshell, if I prefer the new foreigners over the so-called 'native-borns', it is so that they might judge people according to their technical merits in considering them for employment as opposed to if they prefer pork over halal. Additionally, the new foreigners have yet to be taught by the government and the people to ignore difference. So they might be more attentive to and appreciative of the existence of other cultures and perspectives - unless these foreigners are from China that is....as they already view singapore as a 'chinese country' (according to all I've spoken to personally) and may hence be as unbothered about difference as are the 'native-borns'.

Self-absorption never bodes well for intellectual progress or agility, be it at an individual or cultural level. Perhaps, the influx of new foreigners might help to temper this 'native-born' debility. If they are numerous enough to not be ignored, the 'native-borns' might be overwhelmed enough to not ignore them. Keep 'em coming.
A chinese scholar, on Taiwan television, (according to an account by a Chinese acquaintance of mine) once said, when comparing the Chinese in s.e.Asia, that singaporean chinese are the most stupid. (his words, not mine) If that is true, i can explain it with a number of reasons, but the most significant of which would be their being trained to ignore difference not engage in comparative and progressive analysis, and having a one-party/culture/media state. (At least, in China, the country is large enough to produce some differences, and has enough of a chaotic recent history to keep the mind vibrant enough.) This has become a 'generic' trait and has reinforced by the promotion of the Chinese and Chinese culture, the mother tongue policy over all others for quite a while now.

Self-absorption never bodes well for intellectual progress or agility, be it at an individual or cultural level. Perhaps, the influx of new foreigners might help to temper this 'native-born' debility. If they are numerous enough to not be ignored, the 'native-borns' might be overwhelmed enough to not ignore them.

Keep 'em coming mate. Keep 'em coming.



ed





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