The Rhetoric

“Otherwise it just becomes a handout – ‘Whether I do well or don’t do well, I just get pocket money from The Straits Times’.”
– PM Goh Chok Tong, insisting that only those poor children who perform well in school should receive pocket money from charity, Straits Times, March 18 2002

The Reality

“The bonus payments made by DBS to its directors in 2000 caused an uproar among its minority shareholders, the reason being that the DBS executives were paid one third more than the directors of HSBC even though HSBC made 10 times more money than DBS that year. At the annual general meeting of another company, shareholders pummelled the directors for a record 13 hours about the $1.63 million payout the directors gave themselves while the company posted a net loss of $13.5 million in the year 2000.”
– International Herald Tribune, May 12, 2001 and Straits Times, June 1, 2001.