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02 May 2019
Movement for change
Suggestion View - 237
Looking beyond self interest

It is a common behavior for most people to consider a matter only from their self interest. They are not aware that other people have interest that are different from their own interest. They seem to think that their interest is the only right perspective.

A good leader will be able to see the issue from the perspective of all the parties that are involved. 

A broad minded people will be able to see the issue from the perspective of other people.

When an issue affects other people but not oneself, it is a common behavior for a person to be not interested in that issue. They do not care that the other people are affected unfairly.

For example, 34,000 people are affected by the Hyflux debacle. Some people are not affected because they were lucky. They were not approached to invest in the securities. 

Some other people were not affected because they made the wise decision to avoid it.

But these savvy people expect other people to be just as savvy as they are, and to take the decision to avoid a bad investment. They may not realize that the other people may not be as savvy or as lucky.

Many people take the view that the affected investors were greedy to earn a higher interest rate. They make this unjustified judgment without taking the trouble to understand what had actually happened that caused Hyflux to collapse.  

This is an indication that the unaffected people are only interested in their own self interest. They do not bother about any harm happending to other people. 

If are to provide a better life for everyone, including ourselves, we need to take an interest in the common welfare, including the welfare of other people. This is called solidarity. In return, the other people will take an interest in looking after our own welfare. 

Tan Kin Lian


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