Mike Chowla


When I first arrived in Singapore, it felt like an epsisode of Black Mirror to me. The city is immaculate and has no traffic. Everything is very orderly and the denizens are all staring at their phones, particularly when riding the subway. After a couple days, I figured out almost every aspect of life in Singapore is influenced by government policy. Traffic is lite because cars are heavily taxed. Chewing gum is banned and littering fines are high. Alcohol is expensive due to high taxes. The net effect is a city that is well run, very orderly but missing both the good and bad aspects of urban chaos that define most cities.