I am not sure how long these people have stayed in Australia to be able to make such comments. I have been in Australia for 14 years and these are my observations.
FTs in Singapore contribute to society but over here, we are letting in so-called asylum seekers who do little to contribute to society but instead form their own cliques in different suburbs. If you compare the FTs in Singapore and Australia, they are both the same in that they do not try to integrate. So the situation is not unique in Singapore.
Centerlink payments are still made even if you do not actively look for a job. All is required is a charade that shows you are looking for a job. There are a million and one people rorting the system. And for those of us who work and are middle income in Australia, we are supporting at least 3 jobless bums. Think of all the teenage mums over here that insist on having more children but does not want to work. They know they get paid for being a cow.
As for workers over here, tell me which worker would like to work harder or smarter? At the end of the day, people over here know that they have an almost iron rice bowl, due to the unfair dismissal laws. If you start a business, hires someone who is crap at their work, you can’t sack them. You have to first warn them (1 year) then if they do not improve, manage them, meaning teach them how to improve and give them time to improve (1 year) and then re-assess again (1 year). By then the damage is already done. What are you going to do about someone who is now entrenched in your company but is still a crap performer? Carry on paying them to do a poor job?
What about the minimum wage? Does that not create a greater imposition on the employer? How about penalty rates? Or annual increments? Do we care if the company fails here? Well, we do because we lose our jobs, but hey, so long as it is trading, people will still demand their increment, even if the company is losing money.
Over here, people have no respect for the law. How often have there been reports of police, ambulance or other essential services people being assaulted. How safe do you feel to go out alone at night in Kings Cross, Richmond or Northbridge?
Singapore may have its faults but tell me which country doesn’t. Do I regret leaving Singapore? In some ways I do. For the safety and security, the excellent education system (though very pressurizing), the cheap food, government subsidized housing and believe it or not, NS. I don’t regret leaving for a better quality of life, fresh air and working conditions.
But seriously, can we have our cake and eat it too? Be thankful that the PAP is pro-active, compared to the government over here, which is re-active. In Singapore, roads are built to lead to housing estates. Here housing estates are built first, then think about building the roads.
Having said all that, I have come to accept Australia’s faults and failings and try not to compare it with other countries as I think we can do a lot worse, even compared with Singapore.
To those thinking that by moving here you could do a lot better, I say good luck to you. The grass is not always greener elsewhere. Just because you have come from Singapore does not mean you are entitled to anything. Coming over would now mean that you are the FT that is taking away Aussie jobs. Welcome to the Singapore FTs’ shoes.
*The above was first posted as a comment on The Temasek Times.