RH: ROBERT's ALMOST-COMPLETE ARCHIVE OF WORKS..... My other blog is "I came, I saw, I solved it" at http://i-came-i-saw-i-solved-it.blogspot.com/.......... Robert Ho REQUEST FOR STATEMENTS at http://roberthorequestforstatements.blogspot.com/2011/01/robert-ho-request-for-statements.html

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Saturday, February 17, 2007

An Unusual Challenge

An Unusual Challenge

Dear Leow Sui Lee,

This is out of your depth. I suggest that you forward our conversation to your superiors all the way up to Lee Kuan Yew. The ultimate decision and responsibility lie with him and his son, Lee Hsien Loong.

Of course, it will be out of their depth, too, since they are every bit as shallow and their minds as pathetic.

For consider, what I am asking is that my son be left out of the national service obligation. In return, I solve the problem of school stress, resulting in schoolchildren suicides, for you, once and for all.

All you lose is the service of one soldier. What you gain are young lives saved from suicide and generation after generation of mentally healthier schoolchildren, WITHOUT HAVING TO LOWER THE STANDARD OF SCHOOLWORK. If my idea were as simple as cutting content, homework, or reducing standards, I wouldn't call it an idea. I have higher standards than that. The obvious has never appealed to me.

Of course, Lee Kuan Yew and his son, Lee Hsien Loong, will have what they call 'principles' from which they may not budge. I will prove that 'principle' really means a stodgy, unimaginative, inflexible turn of mind that is unable to jump out of self-imposed grooves created by a dumb adherence to rules. In short, the typical go-by-the-book, follow-the-book-to-the-letter kind of approach to administration that typifies the PAP.

In the early days of the PAP, there were less rules, so it was successful. Then, after it became successful, it made rules. Now, it is imprisoned by the very rules that it has made. This 'regularisation' of the entire administration and society is precisely what makes Singapore a stick-in-the-mud uncreative society. Too many rules and the inability to 'creatively' bend or break them, in short. There are ways to bend the rules to give me what I want so that I can give you what you need. So THINK, if you all are capable of it.

Of course, if you refuse, I may still make my idea public.

I will need to do that for two reasons.

First, I will need to prove that my idea works, that it solves the problem.

Second, I will need to exact my pound of flesh for the PAP's refusal of my request. Meaning that I will only reveal my idea after there have been enough suicide deaths to weigh on the people's minds and hearts and the PAP's conscience. I will time the revelation of my idea just before the General Election after the coming one, that is, in 2005 or 2006. Then, voters will be able to see that my idea is a good one that solves the problem as I said it would, and ask why the hell the PAP didn't get it earlier. Then, let Lee Hsien Loong, who will be the principal leader then, explain to the grieving families and relatives of the suicide dead why.

You see, I can dance circles around all of you. If my ability were expressible in Chess, I would beat Deep Blue. But never mind. Enough boasting. I will gloat every time I read about schoolchildren suicides from now on. The more the merrier. The more, the greater the delicious moral dilemma for Lee Kuan Yew and Lee Hsien Loong. They may have to pay a price at the polls in the GE after this coming one. By then, Singapore will be a very different place. The PAP would have lost much of its arrogance and hubris due to a string of setbacks beginning this watershed year of 2001.

If you have nothing intelligent to say other than your usual officialese, don't bother to reply. I know the decision is not with you. It has to come all the way from the Cabinet. The blood of future suicide schoolchildren will be on their hands.

Robert Ho
1 Oct 01

----- Original Message -----
From: Leow Sui Lee
To: Robert Ho
Sent: Monday, 01 October, 2001 9:14 AM
Subject: Re: Quid pro quo?

Dear Sir,

1. Please refer to your email dated 26 Sep 2001.

2. As we have earlier explained, your son is liable for national service. If you wish to apply for deferment of national service for him, please let us know the purpose for requesting for deferment and we would advise you of the information/documents to be furnished for consideration.

Yours faithfully,

Leow Sui Lee (Ms)
Officer Commanding eServices Branch
Central Manpower Base
e-mail: lsuilee@starnet.gov.sg

----- Original Message -----
From: Robert Ho
To: lsuilee@starnet.gov.sg
Sent: Wednesday, September 26, 2001 1:51 PM
Subject: Quid pro quo?

Dear Madam,

1. Thank you for your reply below.

2. I have copied and pasted your reply to me (below) and used your email address found within your reply to address this email to you.

3. I have also pasted a news article that indicates the depth of a problem found in Singapore, that has cost young lives and blighted almost the entire school-going generation/s.

4. If you people consider the situation serious enough to desire a solution, I have one that will most likely work.

5. However, I have stopped giving free ideas, especially to people still engaged in hostilities towards me.

6. If you want this idea, which will greatly reduce school stress WITHOUT LOWERING THE PRESENT PRESSURE-COOKER STANDARD OF EDUCATION, OR REQUIRING A REDUCTION IN CONTENT OF SCHOOLWORK, then my son must not be liable for national service.

7. I am not interested how this is achieved; whether by allowing a renunciation of citizenship, changing the law on NS as it affects my son, or even changing the Constitution. Just do it.

8. After I get what I want, then I will give you what you want.

9. If you are interested, you know what to do.

10. If not, then you and the entire present and future school-going generations will just have to live with your choice.

Robert Ho
26 Sep 01

(Below is your reply to me):

Dear Sir,

1. Please refer to your e-mail dated 10 Sep 2001.

2. This is to inform you that as a Singapore citizen, your son is liable for National Service under the Enlistment Act. The holding of foreign citizenship does not absolve him from the liabilities under the Enlistment Act.

3. Under the Enlistment Act, he is required to register for National Service and apply for an Exit Permit to remain overseas at the age of 16½ years. He is also required for National Service Enlistment at the first opportunity after turning 18 years, unless he is deferred from National Service.

4. Since your son is between the age of 11 and 16½ years, he is affected by the Immigration Bonding Scheme if you are applying for a Singapore passport to enable him to stay overseas. Under the scheme, the parents are required to furnish a bond in the form of a bank guarantee to the Singapore Immigration & Registration. The quantum of the bank guarantee is a minimum of $75,000 or 50% of the total combined annual income of the parents for the preceding year, whichever is higher.

5. At the age the 16½ years, he is required to register for National Service and apply for an exit permit to remain overseas. He can be granted deferment to complete his present course of full-time overseas study provided the required Bank Guarantee is furnished to MINDEF. No further extension of deferment will be granted to him to pursue tertiary education unless he can commence the full-time University course before 17½ years old. The quantum of the Bank Guarantee is as stated above. Once the Bank Guarantee has been furnished to MINDEF, the Bank Guarantee which has been furnished to Singapore Immigration will be released.

6. We hope the above information is useful to you. You could contact Mdm
Tan at Tel no. 3733132 if your have any further enquiries.

Yours faithfully,

Leow Sui Lee (Ms)
Officer Commanding eServices Branch
Central Manpower Base
e-mail: lsuilee@starnet.gov.sg

-----Original Message-----
From: MINDEF Feedback Unit
To: cmpb
Cc: ho3@pacific.net.sg
Date: 11 September 2001 08:57
Subject: Fw: Feedback via Gov.sg

Dear Officer-in-charge (Central Manpower Base),

Please refer to the email below and kindly assist Mr Ho accordingly.

Thank you and regards

Judy Tan (Ms)
MINDEF Feedback Unit

----- Original Message -----
Sent: Monday, September 10, 2001 8:58 PM
Subject: Feedback via Gov.sg

On 2001-09-10 at 20:57:25,
The following information was submitted:
From Host:
name = Robert Ho
country = Singapore
submit_by = ho3@pacific.net.sg
message = Dear Sir/Madam,

1. We are a family of three consisting of myself, my wife and a 15 year-old son.

2. We are thinking of migrating to Australia.

3. My son was born on 4 Apr 1986 and is currently in Secondary 3.

4. If we leave after he has completed his 'O' Levels, ie. after Dec 2002, what are his liabilities with regards to national service?

5. Is he allowed to leave and if so, under what conditions?

6. Does he need to obtain Australian Permanent Residence first before he can leave?

7. If so, how does that change the conditions?

8. If he leaves for Australia and obtains PR, is he still bound by law to come back to serve national service?

9. What if he does not or is unable to come back to serve? Does that make him a criminal in Singapore?

10. What if, he becomes a Singapore criminal by not coming back to serve but subsequently obtains Australian citizenship, does he still remain a criminal liable to be charged any time he sets foot in Singapore even though he may now be an Australian citizenship?

11. Is there any monetary bond/guaranty/surety before he can leave? How much is it? How is it executed?

12. Under what circumstances will it be forfeited?

13. Please answer completely to every point I have enumerated point by point. Please feel free to elaborate.

Robert Ho
10 Sep 01

(Below is the article on the seriousness of the current problem):

Wednesday September 26, 12:06 PM

School-shy Singapore children suffer Monday morning blues

SINGAPORE, Sept 26 (AFP) -
It's official, in Singapore's pressure-cooker education system, children don't like Mondays. More and more are stricken at the start of each week with an illness identifed simply as "school refusal."

Pupils are increasingly complaining of stomach aches, headaches, nausea, fever and dizziness, according to KK Women's and Children's Hospital research published in the Straits Times Wednesday.

Even though the children are not physically sick, they are so desperate to avoid school that the symptoms of these ailments appear on Mondays.

The spotlight was thrown on Singapore's competitive education system following recent suicides of two girls, one aged 10 and one 12-year-old, because they did not perform well in examinations.

Surveys of nine to 12 year-olds in the city-state have found one in three say life is not worth living because of the fear of academic failure.

Five percent of all pupils in Singapore are now said to suffer from "school refusal," and the health ministry has brought in an Australian expert to study how Singapore's school system impacts on the health of children.

Doctor Jill Sewell, a child health specialist at the Royal Children's Hospital in Melbourne will spend a week visiting hospitals and talking to children before making recommendations to the ministry.

"These (school refusal) pains can be very real. But underlying these physical symptoms is deep anxiety," Sewell said.

She told the Straits Times that paediatricians in Singapore have identified stress and competition as the real problems among school children.