Death Penalty In Singapore

There seems to be campaigns inside and outside Singapore aiming to get us to remove the death penalty from our system. Reasons were given on why Singapore should drop this “barbaric” way of punishment and join the rest of the “civilized” countries that had removed death penalty. In this article, I will analyze those reasons based on sound engineering principles.

Many countries had removed death penalty.
An engineer will consider the above sentence to be incomplete. Since many countries had removed death penalty from their justice system, how have they benefited from such move? Do they enjoy lower crime rate? Do they have a higher standard of living? Do they enjoy higher economic growth? The bottom line is how will the removal of death penalty benefit us as the people who do not murder or carry drugs?

None of the advocates of anti-death penalty is able to provide us with any answer other than some empty slogans. The situations in those countries without death penalty show us that there is no benefit for the people in removing death penalty. The only difference I can think of is the increase in the cost of imprisonment. Think. When you lock up those murderers and drug traffickers in jail, you have to pay for their lodging, food and medical care. Who will pay for these? Tax-payers.

In this regard, I am glad the Singapore Government has enough common sense in not apeing others without thinking on the implication.

Statistic shows that death penalty does not deter crime.
The idea behind this statement is criminals like murderers and drug traffickers commit their crimes without thinking of the consequences. So whether the death penalty exists, they will still commit their crimes. The engineer’s respond is, so what? At least we can be sure that with death penalty, those convicted criminals will not be able to repeat their crimes.

Another important question is, will the removal of death penalty deter crimes? Will the drug traffickers stop bringing drugs to Singapore if we remove our death penalty? Common sense tells us that being nice to the criminals will not cause them to commit lesser crimes.

Therefore, the only valid reason for removing the death penalty is the guarantee that it will reduce crimes and make our streets safer. Until that can happen, the engineering way is to keep the death penalty.

Life sentence is just as effective as death penalty and more humane.
Some people say that keeping the drug traffickers in prison for life will also prevent them from repeating their crimes. Sounds good but the problem is, prisons are very expensive. When you keep people in prisons, you have to pay for their lodging, food and medical care. Not only that, you need to employ an army of prison guards to take care of the inmates. These things cost a lot of money. Who should pay for them?

Will those human rights organizations raise funds to help us to finance our prisons so that our tax money can be channel for better use? The answer is clear. Those people are only good in empty talk. They can talk a lot on morality, but when it comes to real issue like paying for the cost of their plans, they become very quiet as though we are obliged to pay for them.

As a tax-payer myself, let me share my personal views. I pay taxes because I have no choice. The law says I must pay my tax or face the penalty. I also cannot dictate the government on how to spend my tax money. However, I can understand that the lesser prisons we have, more of the government’s money can be channeled into healthcare, education, economic stimulus programs and other things that benefit the people.

The removal of death penalty means more of the tax-payers’ money will have to be channeled into providing free lodging, food and medical care for the drug traffickers and murderers. Why should I (and other law-abiding citizens) be forced to bear the cost of sustaining these criminals? I have no desire to pay for those scums. Being forced to pay for the welfare of criminals is not humane to me. This is the real injustice.

There is no U-turn in death penalty.
The basic idea is if the person is wrongly convicted and found to be innocent, it might be too late. After the person is hanged, you cannot unhang him and bring him back to life. This is a real problem.

From the engineering perspective, the issue is in the system of conviction and not the death penalty. There should be sufficient fail-safe mechanism in the justice system to ensure that only the truly guilty person be hanged. Of course, some people may say that since nothing is perfect, there can still be innocent people being hanged.

In response to such view, my answer is welcome to the real world. In the real world innocent people die every day. Let me give you an example. Many innocent people have died in road accidents. We can always improve on the road safety but there will still be innocent people dying in road accidents. Should we close down all our roads to stop innocent people from dying?

The answer is clear. We know that no matter how much we improve on our road safety, there is bound to be innocent people dying there. Yet, we still want to keep our roads because they bring us greater benefits. We are willing to accept the fact that some innocent people may die. This is the price we are willing to pay.

The same applies for the death penalty. There may or may not be innocent people being wrongly convicted but the benefits from it is far greater. If you have never been to Singapore, I invite you to pay us a visit to look at our streets by yourself. Compared to may countries, our streets are safe and drug free. Will we continue to be the same if we remove the death penalty? I am not willing to take the chance.

Death penalty is too harsh for mere drug trafficking.
Let me be personal here. I have a four-year old son. My desire is for him is to grow up in a healthy, safe and drug-free environment. If I ever catch any drug dealer trying to get my son hook to drugs, I am willing to volunteer to push the lever for the scum to be hanged. If there are 100 drug dealers, I am willing to do it 100 times. (Of course this is subjected to the authority’s approval.)

I am sure all responsible parents will share my sentiment. Nothing is too harsh when it comes to protecting your own family from being destroyed by drugs.

There are reports out there that says Singapore has the highest per capita hanging in the world. In my view that statement is irrelevant. If one person brings in drugs, we hang one. If 10 come in with drugs, we hang 10. If a million come in with drugs, we hang a million. We have the right to defend our families from being harmed by drugs.

This is war. We have made it clear that we do not tolerate drugs in our country. Anyone who still brings in drugs to harm us is effective in declaring war on us. We have the right to respond in kind. There is no nice way of killing people. Hanging is the most cost effective and humane way available. This is our weapon against the drug traffickers.

Forgiveness.
Some people say that we should learn to forgive those criminals and not to resort to eye for an eye type revenge. I agree. I forgive all the drug traffickers who are convicted in Singapore. However, that does not mean we must forfeit our rights to defend ourselves. We have promised to hang those who bring in drugs above a certain limit. If they fulfill their roles in bringing drugs to qualify for the death penalty, it is the authority’s responsibility to give the drug traffickers the reward they deserve – ropes around their necks.

Hanging drug traffickers is not eye for an eye type revenge. If we want to have an eye for an eye type revenge, we should tie up the drug trafficker and stuff him with all the drugs he carry. We do not do that. Instead we show the convicted drug traffickers mercy by giving them a quick death.

My stand is, I forgive all the drug traffickers who bring in drugs to harm my family. At the same time, I hope all the convicted drug traffickers will also forgive the people of Singapore of doing what we can to defend ourselves from their drugs.

Conclusion.
The above is not exactly exhaustive but I hope I have made my position clear. No matter what people may say about our death penalty, we Singaporeans consider it as the weapon of self-defense. Unless we can find better weapons, this weapon is here to stay. For those who still dare to defy us, we challenge you to come to Singapore with your drugs. We are ready with our ropes.

The Word Of God Is Sharper Than The Sharpest Two-Edged Sword

12 For the word of God is alive and powerful. It is sharper than the sharpest two-edged sword, cutting between soul and spirit, between joint and marrow. It exposes our innermost thoughts and desires.
Hebrews 4:12 (NLT)

In the above verse, we see how the Word of God describes itself. In this article, I shall look deep into these verses to discover the engineering properties of God’s word.

Verse 12 begins by describing the word of God is alive and powerful. In other words, it is not dead. It is alive and kicking. What does it mean? Surely, it cannot refer to the written word of God, which is the Bible. The Bible consists of paper and ink. In digital form it is nothing more than some electrons. Whatever the form, the written Bible is dead and inanimate. How can it be alive and powerful?

The truth is, Verse 12 refers to the word of God that are in our hearts. The words in the Bible are dead. They can only be alive and powerful when we read them and store them in our hearts through meditation and confession. Through meditation and confession, we develop faith. Faith is the tool that makes the word of God alive and powerful in our lives. This is how we make the word of God works in our lives. The truth that the word of God is alive and powerful is useless to us, unless we know how to utilize this power. Let me give you an example.

Consider the verse below.

9 You know the generous grace of our Lord Jesus Christ. Though he was rich, yet for your sakes he became poor, so that by his poverty he could make you rich.
2 Corinthians 8:9 (NLT)

The above verse tells us that at the Cross, Jesus died poor to make us rich. This means all Christians must be rich. Yet, many Christians are still poor. Why is that so? 2 Corinthians 8:9 is an inanimate verse. By itself it can do nothing to help us. Our role as Christians is to plant it deeply into our hearts, develop our faith in it and use our faith to make it work out itself in our lives.

To make it simple, we have to believe this verse is true even if there are many poor Christians in this world. Jesus chose to become poor at the Cross to make us rich. In fact, this is the only verse in the Bible that speaks of Jesus’ poverty. Other parts of the Bible describe Jesus as being rich. Jesus never had to work for wages. He never begged nor manipulated his followers for money like what the theological preachers are doing today. He even had a disciple to carry his wallet from him. On the day he was arrested, the clothes he wore was so expensive that even the Roman soldiers had to draw lots for it.

Yet, Jesus chose to be poor at the Cross for us to live rich on earth. This tells us how committed Jesus was in wanting Christians to be rich. So, are you going to honor him by desiring to be rich? If you do, you should let 2 Corinthians 8:9 to seep deep into your heart and make it a part of you.

In doing so, you are effectively releasing the word of God that is alive and powerful in you. You will surely be rich.

Heretics like theologians and doctrine worshippers will do anything to rob us of our faith in order to stop the word of God from working to its potential. However, as long as we put our trust in God and not on the heretics, they can never stop us from receiving God’s best in our lives. He who is in us is greater than he who is in the world.

This is how we make the living and powerful word of God to work for us. As I have mentioned in my previous writings, God gave us his word to be our tool for our prosperity. Our role as believers is to take this tool and use it to receive what we want. This is the basis of Christian life.

The second part of Hebrews 4:12 tells us that the word of God is so sharp that it can separate our spirits and souls thus exposes our innermost thoughts and desires. This means there is absolutely no need to be politically correct to God.

What are your desires? What makes you truly happy? Do you want a lot of money? Do you want to fly in your own personal supersonic jet? Do you want your own personal island? Do you want your children to be successful? Do you want your marriage to be happy? If you are single, do you want to have the life partner of your dreams?

Whatever your desires are, God knows about them. Tell him directly and ask him to help you to achieve them. You do not need to sugar coat them to make it politically correct. God is not impressed with such hypocrisy.

Let me share a personal testimony in this issue. When I shared in this blog that I want to be rich to help the poor, a doctrine worshipper wrote in to cast doubt on my sincerity. The idea is, I may end up getting rich to live like a king instead of helping the poor. I rebuked this heretic by declaring that I am not ashamed in wanting to live like a king. God knows my heart. Therefore he must also be aware that I want to live like a king. However that does not mean I cannot have any desire to help the poor.

So, when I say I want to be rich to help the poor, I am not trying to con God into making me rich. God has already made it clear in the Bible that he wants me to be rich. I love to be rich. When I have a lot of money I can do anything I want. I can live like a king in a luxurious palace, take up PhD in engineering and learn Jeet Kune Do. I can also fulfill my desire to help the poor.

I am not using helping the poor as a cover to be rich. I desire to be rich. Period.

In conclusion, be honest with God. Stop wasting time being politically correct. Tell God what you desire and ask him to help you.

Principles Of Bible Engineering

Throughout this blog, I have emphasized that God must be an engineer and if the Bible is truly the word of God then it must be an engineering book. The world around us and the contents of the Bible had verified my theory. The existence of the universe itself is the ultimate proof that God must be an engineer. If God is not an engineer, we would not have existed in the first place.

The Bible is filled with engineering truth. This means that anyone who wishes to learn more about the Bible should understand basic engineering. So, the right place to go is engineering schools. It is through engineering that we can comprehend true spirituality. The proof of this statement can be found all over this blog. The spiritual revelations that I received and presented in are all based on sound engineering principles. In this article I will share with you these principles and how they can help us to understand the spiritual realms.

Let us begin. There are 3 basic principles of engineering. They are:
1. Based on established scientific laws.
2. Always leans toward simplicity.
3. Must produce the intended results.

I shall explain in detail.

Based on scientific laws.
Engineering is not theology. In fact it is the opposite of theology. While theology is based on mindless superstition, engineering is based on established scientific laws. When I say “established scientific laws” I am referring to laws that are predictable and derived from systematic observation, experiments and study. Let me give you an example.

Until today, scientists have not discovered a way to predict earthquakes accurately. However, we know for sure what causes earthquakes. The relative movements of tectonic plates. These movements are based on Newtonian physics. There is no relationship between earthquakes and any type of sin like the legality of abortion. Whether a nation legalizes or bans abortions, it has nothing to do with whether earthquakes will happen there. This is science. The same goes every other natural disasters. Do not believe in theologians who tell you that some disasters are the judgement of God. Engineers do not believe in a perverse God.

So, when any disasters happen, you will never find engineers proclaiming God’s judgement on that nation for whatever sin. Those who proclaim the judgement of God after any disaster are not engineers but theologians, the messengers of demons from hell.

Engineers will instead study the phenomena scientifically and produce solutions. In the case of earthquakes, we know we cannot stop them from happening. However that does not mean we cannot overcome their effects. Today, engineers have invented ways to make structures resistant to earthquakes. This means we can have buildings and bridges that do not collapse when earthquake happens. They may not be perfect but they will keep improving.

This is what engineering is all about. We respect science and use it for the benefit of mankind. When our works fail, we learn from our mistakes and move forward to produce better results. We will never resort to the perverse level of theologians of using “Judgement of God” to cover up our mistakes. Unlike the theologians, engineers and scientists have integrity.

Always leans toward simplicity.
All else being equal, engineers always prefer the simpler option. Why? The more simple the processes and the structures are, the easier it is for us to execute it and less likely for mistakes to occur. Let me give you an example in this.

All modern buildings are designed and supervised by engineers. We do not physically build them. Buildings are physically build by construction workers who know nothing about engineering. How can these construction workers know what to do? The answer is engineers make it simple for them. As far as the workers are concern, they only have to follow simple instructions like putting item A into position B. The building will emerge from a series of simple instructions.

This is how we get things done. We break a complex mission into a series of simple tasks.

If you read the story of Jesus, you will find that his message was very simple. So simple that farmers and fishermen could understand him. Jesus attracted people to listen to him through the simplicity of his message. Not only that, even his solutions were simple.

When the people were sick, Jesus healed them. When they were hungry, he fed them. When Peter needed money to pay tax, Jesus showed him how to get money. Jesus had never told anyone that God do perverted things to people like giving them some thorns in the flesh to show his sufficient grace.

These are a few examples on the simplicity of Jesus’ message. Unfortunately, such simplicity had offended the theologians at that time. The theologians responded in conspiring to kill Jesus because they could not stand the result of his message. The rest is history.

Must produce the intended results.
Finally, engineers must produce the intended results. All the theories, principles, laws and doctrines we produced are useless unless they can produce the results we want. Let me put it in another way. If engineers do not produce results, we will still be living in caves.

The results may not be always positive but we do not give up. As mentioned above, we learn from our mistakes and move on. Throughout history, we have many cases of buildings collapsing but that does not stop us from building more. We do not move to the caves each time a building collapse.

Incidentally, this is how God behaves in the Bible. He always delivered his promises. God is action oriented. He delivered real actions and results. When he promised health, he delivered health. When he promised wealth, he delivered wealth. God is not afraid of being labeled as a prosperity preacher by the theologians.

This is the greatest fear of the theologians. They are terrified of a God who is able and willing to deliver results that can be objectively proven like health and wealth. As long as we focus only on things that cannot be proven objectively like peace, joy and treasures in heaven, the theologians are willing to tolerate us. However, if we dare to trust God for things that can be proven objectively like health and wealth, they are prepared to sink to any level to rob us of our faith. You can see a lot of their works in the internet.

This tells us that the truth of God being able to deliver results that can be objectively proven like health and wealth must be very dangerous to the theologians. God must be very pleased when we choose to trust him to deliver results that can be objectively proven.

Conclusion
I have presented the basic principles of engineering and they look exactly the same as the nature of God. The conclusion is clear. God is an engineer. You need to understand engineering in order to understand God.

Inheritance To Your Grandchildren

22 A good man leaves an inheritance for his children’s children, but a sinner’s wealth is stored up for the righteous.
Proverbs 13:22 (NIV)

When I was working in the financial services sector, I heard a successful financial adviser quoting this verse to justify the need for insurance. For some strange reasons, Proverbs 13:22 has been used to sell insurance. This leads me to wander, have the financial advisers joined forces with the theologians?

The truth is the above verse has nothing to do with insurance. The term “inheritance” in the Bible always refers to assets that are already in the hands of the person before he dies, not after he dies. Therefore, the heresy of Proverbs 13:22 being God’s will for good men to buy insurance is nothing more than collaboration between financial advisers and theologians. In fact, there are theologians who have become financial advisers and vice versa.

I have put this up to show you how the Theologian has never given up his efforts in theologizing (perverting) the truth. Unfortunately for him, there are also many Christians like myself who are still committed in the engineering truth of the Bible and reject the lies of theology. Let us move on with the engineering truth of the above verse.

The first part of the verse says a good man leaves an inheritance for his children’s children. Please note that it does not say a good man receives an inheritance from his parents’ parents. All of us would love to have rich parents or grandparents so that we have a lot of money. Unfortunately we cannot choose which family we want to be born in. If you happen to be like me who was born in a non-tycoon family you cannot expect to be rich no matter who dies in your family. You may even be envious when you see those born in rich families.

However, the above verse tells us that just because you were not born in a rich family, it does not mean that you cannot start a rich family yourself. God has given all of us free will. We do not have to be the slaves of our families, environment and even our genes. We have everything we need to live the lives we want. If you want to have a lot of money, good health and be very successful in everything you do, rejoice because you already have what it takes to get your there. They are in the Bible. All you need to do is to read the Bible, find out all the contents that can help you to get what you want and put them to work. This is what the Bible is designed for.

Back to the first part of the verse, the good man may not have a lot of inheritance because his parents and grandparents may not know much about the Bible. They may have deceived by the lies of theology that says God is a pervert who loves to make people poor and sick to show them his sufficient grace. As a result they did not get rich. However, just because the good man’s parents and grandparents were deceived by the lies of theology, it does not mean he himself must continue to allow himself to be deceived. He can exercise his free will to trust in the truth that comes from God.

When he does he will be so rich that he will not only have enough money to live luxuriously, he will have a lot of leftover money to pass on to his descendents as inheritance. So, do not fret if you were not born in a rich family. You can start a rich family now so that you children can live in no want.

At this point, I am sure the theologians will say that the inheritance is spiritual because spiritual inheritance cannot be proven. Theologians hate things that can be proven like health and wealth. Are they right? Let us look into the entire context. If the “inheritance” in the first part is spiritual then the “sinner’s wealth” in the second part must also be spiritual. Since when do the sinners have spiritual wealth? Since when can spiritual wealth be stored for somebody else? It is very clear that the ‘inheritance” and “wealth” in the entire verse are physical and can be proven. I have just exposed another lie of theology.

The second part of the verse tells us that a sinner’s wealth is stored up for the righteous. This is good news for those of us who have chosen to believe in Jesus. As believers, we are righteous by faith and the term “righteous” here is not an empty word. It comes with privileges. One of the privileges of being righteous is the position to receive the sinner’s wealth.

Knowing this truth, we should no feel jealous when we see sinners getting rich. God has promised to transfer their wealth to us. The next question is when is this going to happen? I do not have the exact timetable but I am sure this cannot happen in heaven. Why? Even Christians cannot bring our money to heaven. How can sinners to that? It must be clear that the transfer of wealth from sinners to the righteous must happen on earth. We will soon be very rich.

In conclusion, we should learn to trust God and make him the source of our prosperity. Let the theologians continue with their heresy. As for us, we choose to trust in God. We believe we will be rich beyond our wildest dreams.

Financial Toxic: Bond Funds

This is the third installment of my financial toxic series. In this article, I am going to look at something that most people like financial professionals consider as “safe”, bond funds. Bonds are considered safe because the financial textbooks say so but I am going to show you the opposite.

Before I move on, let me repeat my disclaimer. This article is an expression of my personal opinion. I am neither a licensed financial adviser nor a financial expert. I am only an engineer. Here is the difference: Financial advisers and financial experts are trained to obey everything written in their text books without question while engineers are trained to think and analyze logically.

Next, I shall set the definition on the topic itself. There are basically 2 types of bonds based on the credit ratings of the institutions that issue them. Investment grade bonds and junk bonds. In this article I shall focus entirely on the investment grade bonds. These are the textbook case of “safe” investments but in reality they are toxic and I will show you why.

There are basically 2 types of poison. Poisons can either kill you immediately or kill you slowly over a long period of time. Financial toxic can work in both ways as well. In my previous installment, I have explored on whole life insurance plan. Whole life insurance is an example of slow acting poison. You will not be bankrupt immediately after you bought it but in long term it sucks your money away which you could have put to use to grow at a much better rates. Your finances will die a slow death because of it. Bond funds work in the same way. It will kill your finances slowly but surely.

I shall address the characteristics of this toxic now.

Effects of inflation.
I suspect many people may ask on how can such a safe investment be toxic? Let me give you a magic word to explain it all – inflation. The higher grade the bonds are, the lower will be their coupon yield. So, if you opt for only the highest graded bonds, you will get the lowest interest. The interest will be lower than the rate of inflation. Even if the underlying bond issuers never go bankrupt you will still be poorer in terms of purchasing power.

Investing in bonds for long term is like buying a huge block of ice, put in under the cover of an umbrella under the tropical sun. The ice will not vanish in split second but you can be sure that it will only continue to melt. In long term, the ice will cease to exist. This is the same for bond funds. Inflation will eat away your assets. You may have more money but the amount of things you can buy with them will be lesser. This investment will only make you poorer.

So, if there are financial advisers trying to promote bond funds to you, ask them about the effects of inflation.

Some people may ask, “How about short term?” The answer is below.

Sales and management charges.
All mutual funds come with sales charges. Whether they are “front-loaded” or “backend-loaded”, they are still sales charges. This is the way financial advisers and insurance agents make money doing your “financial planning”. This is also a good opportunity for those who are good in sales to make a lot of money.

The existence of sales charge means you can never hold your mutual funds for short term. Let me give you a numerical example. Suppose the sales charge is 5% of the investment amount and you have invested $10,000. Out of the $10,000, $500 will go to the financial adviser as commission for his or her effort in getting you to part with your money. So your actual investment is $9,500. In order to break even in a year, your $9,500 investment must grow by 5.26% in that year.

Think. How likely is it for a low yielding bond fund to generate 5.26% in a year? In reality, the first few years of your investment is to make the money for your financial adviser. Therefore we rule out investing in bond funds for short term.

Capital appreciation.
Apart from coupon yield, bond prices can also enjoy capital appreciation. Bond prices are very sensitive to the prevailing interest rates. They move in opposite directions. When the interest rates go up, bond prices go down. When the interest rates go down, bond prices go up. It is a good idea to buy bonds if the interest rates are about to go down and sell bonds if the interest rates are about to up.

I have attended several sales talks for bond funds. In all the talks I have notice a common thing. All the presentations had various charts to show that the interest rates are always going down. Why? They are just doing their jobs in making you part with your money. By the way, they are not completely wrong. If you always tell people that the interest rates are going down the probability of you being right is 50%. You are right 50% of the time.

I challenge you to test out this theory of mine. Find any investment talk or seminar on bond funds and attend some of them. I can guarantee you that you will always see “proofs” on the interest rates going down. Don’t be too hard on them. They are just trying to make a sale.

Having said all these, I am not ruling out that bonds can appreciate in value but that does not mean the investor can benefit from them. The only way you can benefit from the appreciation of bond prices is for you to sell the bonds immediately after they have appreciated in value. If you leave them in your bond fund for long term, the value will drop again when the interest rates go up.

The appreciation of bonds prices is only beneficial for bond traders, not for investors of bond funds.

Conclusion
I have put up the above 3 points to show you the reality of bond funds. I hope you will realize by now that bond fund is a slow acting poison. It may benefit the person to sells it to you but it can only make you poorer. I doubt you can find this truth in any of the financial text books.

The rest is up to you. Who will you choose to trust, an engineer or a financial expert?