The Rhetoric

“The NTUC Club’s Planet Paradigm, revamped at a cost of $750,000, offers a dance club, wine bar, noodle bar, pool hall, gaming gallery and jackpot. While NTUC Club’s Union Square has S&M Nights which see women in skimpy tops and short skirts dance to salsa and merengue.”
– Straits Times, Oct 7, 2001

“When completed in 2004, the 32-storey building at the junction of Raffles Quay and marina Boulevard will be the icon of the labour movement and a visible symbol of workers contributions to Singapore’s progress.”
– Straits Times, Mar 1, 2002, on the construction of the new NTUC centre which will cost $400m

The Reality

“The year-end unemployment rate hit a 15-year high of 4.7 per cent and is likely to exceed 5 per cent over the course of the year.”
– Straits Times, March 1, 2002

With 101,800 unemployed, NTUC spends $400 million constructing the “icon of the labour movement” and another $750,000 refurbishing their clubhouse? You do the math.

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