Donovan Choy

Why The Answer To Climate Change Is Not Going To Come From Government

Why Government Isn’t The Answer To Climate Change In response to a contribution on TODAY by Adam Smith Center Director Bryan Cheang on the recent climate rally in Singapore, one writer kindly offered a rebuttal of his own. According to his own bio, Bertrand Seah is a political science graduate in NUS and a member…
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The Problem With Singapore’s First Climate Rally

The Problem With Singapore’s First Climate Rally Environmental activism today is in vogue. Climate change protests have been going on for years in the West. Yet it was only this past weekend where the importation of such Western-style activism to Singapore’s shores saw an officially organised, wide-scale effort. For that reason, it is worthwhile considering…
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Why Be Sceptical of Big Government?

Sometime back, I spoke in a talk about the politics & economics of climate change. When I brought up the dishonesty of Climategate (surprisingly, only 1 out of an audience of 30-40 heard of it), the impression that some got was that I was attempting a broad-sweeping smear of the progressive environmentalist agenda by the…
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A Historical Impact of the Internet on Democracy

There is no rest for the Big Tech corporations of today. A growing animosity toward Google, Facebook, Apple and Amazon has gained mainstream traction, seen by increasingly louder calls by activists and politicians from across the political spectrum to regulate tech markets. This phenomenon – commonly referred to as “techlash” – is a bipartisan policy…
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A Peculiar History of Coffee And Sex

New technologies and inventions are often met by the public with great distrust. It’s not hard to see why. Humans have a natural propensity to fear treading new and unknown terrain. We fear the perennial gale of Schumpeterian creative destruction; the disruption to existing market structures, displacement of existing jobs, or the potential hazards it…
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In Response to Donald Low

Donald Low responded to my piece from yesterday. In his response, he now concedes that the concept of market failures is given coverage in introductory econ classes. But I’m afraid this was not the impression given to his readers from his original co-authored article, which in my opinion gave more the impression that Econ 101…
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Econ 101 Does Not Only Justify Free Market Policies

In a recent Straits Times article, Benjamin Goh and Donald Low warned readers against the use of simplified economic theory in informing public policy. They point out that economic proposals such as free trade benefiting society and the minimum wage reducing employment may in fact simply be expressions of ‘the speaker’s ideology or dogma’, and…
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The Myth of Chinese Privilege Racism in Singapore

The Straits Times reported on Tuesday (29 Jan) that ‘race activist’ Sangeetha Thanapal was being investigated by the police for a Facebook post upon her return to Singapore this year. The post in question was from last April. It alleged that Singapore was a ‘terribly racist country’ where minorities are systematically marginalised. Are her claims…
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What America Could Learn from Singapore’s Social Welfare System

A common libertarian view when it comes to welfare is that the role of the state should simply be restricted to providing a safety net. Such a basic net would guard society’s most economically vulnerable against falling through the cracks. Milton Friedman proposed a negative income tax as a way of encouraging the poor to…
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Nudging: Should We Be Wary of the Latest Fad in Behavioural Economics?

Behavioural economics has gained plenty of traction in the past few decades. The concept of ‘nudging’—popularised in the 2008 bestselling book Nudge: Improving Decisions about Health, Wealth and Happiness by Richard Thaler and Cass Sunstein—is well known in the political sphere and even to non-economic students. With Thaler being awarded the 2017 Nobel Prize in Economics and Sunstein…
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