Have you noticed Singapore has produced quite a number of Generals every few years which will take up various positions in GLCs, Statutory Boards and such in the past?
For a small army which has NEVER fought a major war before to chunk out so many Paper Generals is rather amazing! If we were to count the "General - Army personnel" ratio, I bet we will be one of the HIGHEST in the world!
No wonder our Defence Budget is so high because we have to pay so many Generals as well as all other Colonels supporting them.
PAP government has followed its past traditions of giving out SAF scholarships and President Scholarships to the Top A Level students every year.
Yes, our Elitist PAP also select people based on A Level grades and you will be assured of good life ahead if your A Level results are one of the Best. PAP's flawed and extremely Elitist Meritocracy is determined solely by A Level grades which a 18 or 19 year old kids could get!
A friend of mine lamented in private chat over this.
In Economic theory, this is "crowding effect" of talents with bias tendency. And this is detrimental to the growth of our economy and private enterprises.
These Scholar-Paper-Generals (SPG) wasted more of their time in army for 20 over years before they were asked to leave and chuck into some GLCs or statutory boards. They have totally ZERO real life corporate experience but just helicopter into high position to lead any organizations assigned to them. Those who have been working in these organizations, amassing great amount of experience in the field, were passed from such promotions. I wonder how these people would feel, having a totally "Clueless Idiot" in the field to lead and tell them what to do! eg. The latest SPG former navy chief jumping into MOE to become Perm Sect.. Hey, he is totally clueless about Education!
The worst part is to have these SPGs to parachute into such important positions such as "Permanent Secretary" which has become rather "impermanent" nowadays! Every 2-3 years, Perm Sect will change. How could they have garnered enough experience and contribute to the Ministries adequately? In the past, we used to say, even if you put an idiot as a Minister or Minister of State, the Perm Sect will be able to run the show. But in the end, our Perm Sects are now totally lack of experience and "Half Barrel Filed"! it will be left to the mid-high level Directors of the Ministries to run the show! It will be extremely unstable and chaotic for these Ministries and definitely the sustainability of the whole system will be in question.
I do not expect a Perm Sect to stay in that position for more than 2 decades but definitely not this type of "touch and go" situation!
Short tenure for Perm Sect will create a serious problem. These people will only aim for SHORT TERM VISIBLE results but ignore LONG TERM beneficial planning! Just like the NOL saga! Selling assets off will of course create "huge value" for the government in the short term but what is the long term strategic implications?
Worse of all, the new Ministers may not even be well verse in their own Ministries as many of them have been "Merry Go Round" rotating among the Ministries... how could they possibly be contributing to the LONG TERM planning for the Ministries and Singapore as a whole with such short term tenure? It is seriously a situation of "the clueless leading the blind".
SAF has become a Waste Basket for "Talents". The current practice of SPG Elitism should be reviewed because it has proven to be detrimental to the development and growth of a Nation's economy by crowding out talents from private sectors as well as making them invalid to the corporate world after decades of "Yes Man" molding. We are starting to see the great harm that such system is doing to us now.
Goh Meng Seng