How should we judge a government?

"If you're not careful, the newspapers will have you hating the people who are being oppressed, and loving the people who are doing the oppressing." - Malcolm X

In Malaysia, if you don't watch television or read newspapers, you are uninformed; but if you do, you are misinformed!

Why we should be against censorship: Publicity is the very soul of justice … it keeps the judge himself, while trying, under trial. - Jeremy Bentham

"Our government is like a baby's alimentary canal, with a happy appetite at one end and no responsibility at the other. " - Ronald Reagan


Government fed by the people

Government fed by the people

Career options

Career options

Prevent bullying now!

Prevent bullying now!
If you're not going to speak up, how is the world supposed to know you exist?

MyCen News

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Some questions and unwittingly witty answers

What a coincidence... last Saturday, I asked a couple (doctors) about percentages and illnesses. For example, if it runs in a family that 30% will get cancer, does it mean in a family of 10, after 3 were diagnosed as having cancer, the rest can rest assured that they will not get it?
The following seems similar...

Patient : "What are the chances of my recovering doctor?"
Doctor : "One hundred percent. Medical records show that nine out of ten people die of the disease you have. Yours is the tenth case I've treated. The others all died".

Teacher : "Sam, you talk a lot !"
Sam : "It's a family tradition".
Teacher : "What do you mean?"
Sam : "Sir, my grandpa was a street hawker, my father is a teacher".
Teacher : "What about your mother?"
Sam : "She's a woman".

Teacher : "What do you call a person who keeps on talking when people are no longer interested?"
Pupil : "A teacher".

Teacher : "Which is more important to us, the sun or the moon?"
Pupil : "The moon".
Teacher : "Why?"
Pupil : "The moon gives us light at night when we need it but the sun gives us light only in the day time when we don't need it".

MARY : John says I'm pretty. Andy says I'm ugly.What do you think, Peter?
PETER : A bit of both. I think you're pretty ugly.

MAN: You remind me of the sea.
WOMAN: Because I'm wild, romantic and exciting?
MAN: NO, because you make me sick.

BOY: May I hold your hand?
GIRL: No thanks, it isn't heavy.

GIRL: Say you love me! Say you love me!
BOY: You love me.

GIRL: If we become engaged will you give me a ring??
BOY: Sure, what's your phone number??

GIRL: I think the poorest people are the happiest.
BOY: Then marry me and we'll be the happiest couple.
Link

Good Buy 'Mom'

A young man shopping in a supermarket noticed a little old lady following him around. If he stopped, she stopped. Furthermore she kept staring at him.

She finally overtook him at the checkout, and she turned to him and said, "I hope I haven't made you feel ill at ease; it's just that you look so much like my late son."

He answered, "That's okay."

"I know it's silly, but if you'd call out 'Good bye, Mom' as I leave the store, it would make me feel so happy."

She then went through the checkout, and as she was on her way out of the store, the man called out, "Goodbye, Mom."

The little old lady waved and smiled back at him. Pleased that he had brought a little sunshine into someone's day, he went to pay for his groceries.

"That comes to $121.85," said the clerk.

"How come so much? I only bought 5 items."

The clerk replied, "Yeah, but your Mother said you'd be paying for her things, too."

Bet you thought this was going to be a tear jerker.

Link

Najib is good at using public funds for own image

I can still remember a few years back, to counter Anwar's visit to UK, Nottingham University was used to encourage Malaysian students from all over UK to gather there for games. Just imagine the costs of providing coaches and other expenses involved there. If not for study commitments, who would not be tempted for such free travelling to visit places with everything provided? So Khairy's statement about public funds not misused rings hollow:

REMBAU, 30 MAY, 2011: Public funds were not misused for the 2011 One Million Youth Assembly held last weekend, Barisan Nasional (BN) Youth chief Khairy Jamaluddin Abu Bakar said today.

He said the assembly was a government program and did not involve any political party.

"I believe the one million youth came voluntarily to take part in all events held during the three-day program. The opposition is making this an issue because they were worried of the great response from youths," he said.


If there were actually one million youths present, we can imagine the costs involved in this BN image and support building initiative: Rm10 each would have costed Rm10 million; Rm100 each, Rm100 million; your guess is as good as mine.


The following view by Kim Quek is more credible:

No political party is entitled to defend Putrajaya
Excerpt:

"There is something disturbing in Premier Najib Razak’s repeated and frantic calls to defend Putrajaya. The latest, when he was addressing youth at the World Youth day gathering in Putrajaya on May 28.

After asking the youth “Will you defend Putrajaya with me?”, and getting a positive answer, he then shouted: “Defend Putrajaya! Defend Putrajaya! Defend Putrajaya!”

His equally paranoid call on an earlier occasion was during the recent 61st Umno general assembly when he shrieked: “Even if our bodies are crushed and our lives lost, brothers and sisters, whatever happens, we must defend Putrajaya”.

Any novice to this country must have imagined that Malaysia must be facing an imminent foreign invasion, otherwise, why should its prime minister be exhorting so earnestly for the defence of its administrative capital?

But we Malaysians know that this is not a case of foreign invasion, but a reflection of the sick mentality of the incumbent political power which has ruled this country without interruption for more than half a century.

Umno has held on to its hegemony for so long that it cannot differentiate between what belongs to the party and what belongs to the people."

Link

Monday, May 30, 2011

PAS is not only acceptable to the Chinese...

but supported financially by someone in Perak! Mr. Koon Yew Yin walks the talk by donating Rm100,000 to PAS to help Pakatan Rakyat win back Perak in the next elections.

"When Nizar was first appointed as Menteri Besar many non Malays, including I, were apprehensive of PAS but as time went by, Nizar won the approval of the non Malays. During that period of uncertainty, I wrote an article to appeal to the Perak Sultan to dissolve the State Assembly so that the people could vote again to choose the Government of their own choosing. Although the Sultan has the right to dissolve the State Assembly he did not do it. Allow me to reproduce the relevant excerpt of my article on this issue which is especially pertinent in view of the coming elections...."

"Finally, I am optimistic that PAS with its progressive and multi-racially and multi-religiously oriented leaders such as Dato Seri Nizar is up to the challenge of working with fellow Malaysians of all races and religions to bring about the positive change that is badly needed in Malaysia."

"To show my confidence in PAS, I would like to make a donation of RM100,000 to the party to be used to support its work in the coming elections."

* Speech on occasion of PAS fundraising gathering, Ipoh (May 28, 2011)

More where that came from:
CPI: Can PAS help bring about change in M’sia?
Koon Yew Yin
Link

Nothing is really free these days...

Received this warning from a niece:

There is a syndicate of criminals presenting themselves as sales promoters who are giving free key-rings holders at gas stations or parking lots.

The key ring has a tracking device chip which allows them to follow you.

Please, please don't accept them. They select their seemingly well-to-do potential victims and if you accept, then you will be in for their tricks.

The key holders are very beautiful hard to resist accepting, but remember you may end up paying more than the key holder, including the risk to your life.

This freebie comes with chip attached!
Link

If BN can solve this puzzle...

it can rule forever.

3 men go into a motel. The man behind the desk said the room is $30, so each man paid $10 and went to the room.

A while later the man behind the desk realized that the room was only $25, so he sent the bellboy to the 3 guys’ room with $5.

On the way, the bellboy couldn’t figure out how to split the $5 evenly amongst the 3 men, so he gave each man $1 and kept the other $2 for himself.

This meant that the 3 men each paid $9 for the room, which is a total of $27, add the $2 that the bellboy kept = $29.

What happen to the other $1 ???

I think there is no need to solve the puzzle, just use the formula!
Link

So different from RPK's take on Balinese Hindus

I was with some relatives when the subject of travel led to Bali, Indonesia. The few instances which they experienced or heard from others were ways of cheating, so different from unexpected honesty which RPK had experienced and written in the following article:

Malaysia Today: The proof of the pudding is in the eating

For example, those who have experienced it, advised others to exchange your Ringgit in Malaysia instead of Indonesia. In Indonesea, after counting and re-counting the Rupiahs, you will discover being short-changed! Maybe, we are not used to counting millions in cash! Just to give an idea of the big difference in value: One million Rupiahs is only USD120 or Rm360. So to become a billionaire in Indonesia, you need only USD120,000 or Rm360,000!

When travelling in a car, someone might knock on your car window offering to sell you a copy of a Malaysian newspaper. But you are likely to get photocopy of say, front page of The Star online version but the rest inside consist of Indonesian newspaper!

More serious was the joke that it is better not to report to the police if something had been stolen in your hotel room. After the police investigation, more things are likely to be missing!

I suppose a lot depends on who you meet when travelling. Generally bad impressions of a country or island would be the result of frequently repeated bad incidents which would need a long time to change. But for all the good impressions of a place, just one nasty incident is enough to put one off.
Link

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Why I am not exercising like some others...

and rather have my daily naps...

CAN YOU EXPLAIN?

1. If walking/cycling is good for your health, the postman would be immortal.
2. A whale swims all day, only eats fish, drinks water and yet is fat.
3. A rabbit runs and hops and only lives 15 years.
4. A tortoise doesn't run, does nothing ... yet lives for 450 years.

AND YOU TELL ME TO EXERCISE!

But then again, if we use logic, we should also eat shit because millions of flies can't be wrong!
Link

MBS Sentul old boys reunite

Just spoken to my ex-classmate over the phone, (Low Han Bon lives in Perth, Australia), and he asked me whether I have read last Friday's The Star about MBS OBA dinner given in honour of Datuk Venugopal, the out-going President of OBA for the past 28 years! But what really caught me by surprise was when he told me, among other things, that Paul Chan, co-founder of HELP, is also an ex-student of MBS Sentul! My two daughters were ex-students of HELP and I did not know this!

"Another significant event of the day was when Datuk Dr Paul Chan president and co-founder of HELP University and a former student of Sentul MBS, announced that HELP University would provide 10 scholarships to Sentul MBS students.

Scholarships will also be extended to teachers who wish to further their studies at HELP."

More in The Star 'Sentul old boys reunite

Link

Casual dressing by 'Walmartians'






Link

Understanding English as spoken by some in China

... those not well trained.

"TANJOOBERRYMUTTS"...

By the time you read through this YOU WILL UNDERSTAND "TANJOOBERRYMUTTS"...and be ready for China .

In order to continue getting-by in China , we need to learn English the way it is spoken...

Practice by reading the following conversation until you are able to understand the term "TANJOOBERRYMUTTS". With a little patience, you'll be able to fit right in. Now, here goes... :

The following is a telephonic exchange between maybe you as a hotel guest and room-service today...

Room Service : "Morrin. Roon sirbees."

Guest : "Sorry, I thought I dialed room-service."

Room Service: "Rye . Roon sirbees...morrin! Joowish to oddor sunteen???"

Guest: "Uh..... Yes, I'd like to order bacon and eggs."

Room Service: "Ow ulai den?"

Guest: ".....What??"

Room Service: "Ow ulai den?!?... Pryed, boyud, pochd?"

Guest: "Oh, the eggs! How do I like them? Sorry.. Scrambled, please."

Room Service: "Ow ulai dee bayken ? Creepse?"

Guest: "Crisp will be fine."

Room Service: "Hokay. An sahn toes?"

Guest: "What?"

Room Service: "An toes. ulai sahn toes?"

Guest: "I.... Don't think so.."

Room Service: "No? Udo wan sahn toes???"

Guest: "I feel really bad about this, but I don't know what 'udo wan sahn toes' means."

Room Service: "Toes! Toes!...Why Uoo don wan toes? Ow bow Anglish moppin we botter?"

Guest: "Oh, English muffin! !! I've got it! You were saying 'toast'... Fine...Yes, an English muffin will be fine."

Room Service: "We botter?"

Guest: "No, just put the botter on the side."

Room Service: "Wad?!?"

Guest: "I mean butter... Just put the butter on the side."

Room Service: "Copy?"

Guest: "Excuse me?"

Room Service: "Copy...tea.. meel?"

Guest: "Yes. Coffee, please... And that's everything."

RoomService: "One Minnie. Scramah egg, creepse bayken , Anglish moppin, we botter on sigh and copy ... Rye ??"

Guest: "Whatever you say."

RoomService: "Tanjooberrymutts."

Guest: "You're welcome"

Remember I said "By the time you read through this YOU WILL UNDERSTAND :
'TANJOOBERRYMUTTS' ......and you do, don't you! :-) :-)


Link

Saturday, May 28, 2011

What Osama's neighbours said


(Take this with a pinch of salt) What Osama said before:

China is the world's only country we absolutely cannot mess with.

al-Qaeda terrorists had made 8 attacks on the Chinese with the following results:

One person was to explode a bomb in Beijing Xizhimen (the main northwest gate of Beijing) but he lost his way in the three-dimensional traffic bridge;

One person in Shanghai was to take a bus to explode a suicide bomb in the bus, but it was so crowded he could not get into a bus for two hours;

One person was to bomb a supermarket in Wuhan, but found that the bomb remote control was stolen;

One person wanted to bomb government buildings in Chengdu, but was stopped at the door by the security staff and arrested as an East Turkistan separatist, and was beaten and interrogated;

One person succeeded in bombing a Hebei mine, with hundreds of people dead and wounded, and then returned to the al-Qaeda center, but even after six months, failed to see any news reports on the success of the bombing he was considered by the organization to claim a false victory and was executed (this is the most pathetic!);

One person had tried to bomb Guangzhou , but as he came off the train, a motorcycle robber (flying car robber) snatched his bag (containing the bomb) from him;

One person who arrived in Xi'an lost contact, and was later found at the hospital in a state of coma. Doctors said it was the result of him eating not only "black-hearted" food products, but he also drank fake alcohol, and would possibly turn into a "vegetable" (vegetative state);

Later, bin Laden tried to send a female terrorist to blow up Hainan Island, but she was cheated into prostitution!

If you believe these, you would believe many other things!
Link

About Maids: Singapore is a fine city

There are several simple reasons why many Singaporean employers are reluctant to give their maids a day off.

You see, if the maid runs away, the government will fine the employer $5,000. If the maid commits a crime such as shoplifting, the government will fine the employer $5,000.

If the maid is caught having sex with someone, the government will fine the employer $5,000. If the maid gets pregnant, the government will also fine the employer $5,000.

If you didn't know any of the above, then either you do not employ a maid, or you didn't read the small print of the Manpower Ministry's work permit conditions.

Many employers are afraid that if their maid has a day off and gets into trouble, the employer will not only have to solve the trouble, but also have to fork out $5,000 as a free gift to the government.

Intuitively, this smacks of gross unfairness. The employer gets punished not for something he did, but for something that somebody else (the maid) did. Furthermore, once the maid leaves the employer's residence, the employer has no way of monitoring where the maid goes and what she does there.
Link

Ins and Outs of using Gadgetry

by David Pogue in The New York Times

This article was published in our local The Star on May 26. I find it useful and I am sure those using the latest gadgets would too.

Excerpt:

"I’m not trying to insult America’s clueless; exactly the opposite, in fact. How is the average person supposed to know the essentials of their phones, cameras and computers? There’s no government leaflet, no mandatory middle-school class, no state agency that teaches you some core curriculum. Instead, we muddle along, picking up scattershot techniques as we go. We wind up with enormous holes in our knowledge.

...that it’s time to publish the first installment of what should be the Big Book of Basic Technology Knowledge — the prerequisite for using electronics in today’s society. Some may seem basic, but you’ll probably find at least a couple of “I didn’t know thats!” among them.

(Some which I find more relevant to us) :

• If you travel overseas, you may return to a smartphone bill for $5,000 or more, thanks to the staggering international Internet fees. (You might not even know your phone is online — if it checks e-mail every 15 minutes, for example.) Despite many well-publicized horror stories, some people still don’t realize they should call the cellphone company before traveling to buy a special temporary overseas plan.

Cameras
• Your flash is useless if the subject is more than about eight feet away. Turn it off. (This means you, concertgoers and football fans.)

• If you erase photos from your memory card accidentally, you can still recover them if you haven’t used the card since. For about $30, you can download memory-card recovery programs; Google “memory card recovery” to find them.

App phones
• On iPhone, Android, BlackBerry and Palm/H.P. phones, tap the Space bar twice at the end of a sentence. You get a period, a space and a capitalized next letter, without hunting for punctuation keys.

• Also on those phones, you can type dont, wont, youre, didnt and so on. The phone adds the apostrophe to those automatically. (But you’ll have to learn the difference between it’s and its.)

• On a BlackBerry, hold a letter key down to capitalize it. The Web
• You don’t have to type “http://www” into your Web browser. Just type “nytimes.com” or “dilbert.com,” for example. In Safari or Firefox, you can even omit the “.com.” In Internet Explorer, you can press Ctrl+Enter to add “.com,” or Ctrl+Shift+Enter for “.org.”

Editing Text
• You can double-click a word to highlight it. (You don’t have to drag the mouse across it, in other words.) You can triple-click a word to select the entire paragraph.

• When you see highlighted text — in your word processor, for example, or in a Web browser address bar — you don’t have to delete it first. Just start typing.

• Sick of how Word automatically creates clickable links, boldface words, indented bulleted or numbered lists and other formatting as you type?

The on/off switches for these features exist, but they’re well hidden. In Word 2010 (Windows), open the File menu; click Options, Proofing, AutoCorrect Options, then AutoFormat Options. On the Mac (Word 2011), open the Tools menu; click AutoCorrect, then AutoFormat As You Type.

Source:
http://finance.yahoo.com/news/Ins-and-Outs-of-Using-nytimes-2870919015.html?x=0&.v=1%20
Link

Friday, May 27, 2011

Understanding women and men...

we are simply born different...

Link

How we could avoid problems in awarding scholarships

When PM made a statement that all those who obtained more than 8As in the SPM examination will get scholarships, it seems so straightforward. Yet, again there are already accusations of discrimination in awarding scholarships! I can understand if the problems arose because of insufficient places for all those who qualified, but according to Human Rights Party's letter to PM, there was a case of one with 12As whose first choice is Medicine in an overseas university but given a Diploma course in Animal Husbandry! If this is not an insult, I don't know what is.

I would agree with YB Tony Pua that if JPA cannot do it fairly, then Talent Corp should be given the task. Besides trying to attract highly qualified Malaysians back, Talent Corp should also prevent those with excellent results from being attracted by Singapore and other advanced countries. In fact, prevention might take a longer time but it is definitely cheaper and more relevant than offering incentives which did not take into account the 'push factors' such as in the unfair award of scholarships.

If our people have yet to be able to accept meritocracy in the award of scholarships, then a compromise could be struck by offering scholarships to all who achieved more than 8As regardless of race, and additional scholarships should be created to cater for those which the government has to help as provided for under the Constitution. If interviews are likely to create suspicions of favouritism or discrimination, then the results of the SPM should be accepted without question. If there are cases of students who excelled because of reliance on rote learning and not intelligence and critical thinking, then blame it on the examination system.

Link

What a difference political power makes

I can still remember Umno facing financial difficulties because its foreign loan from Japan ballooned because the Yen appreciated against the Ringgit sharply (by at least 50%, more like 100%). Dr. Mahathir admitted that the North-South Expressway was used to help Umno out of its dire straits. There was no question of impropriety nor corruption by abuse of power.

PKR is now feeling insecure because of likely tenancy problems arising from its landlord's financial problems. Having seen many HK movies and serials, could this be a result of the landlord being 'punished' for having PKR as tenant? Businessmen can easily be affected by politicians with an axe to grind? I can still remember Dr. Tan Chee Khoon complaining about some of his supporters losing their transport licences because of their overt support.

PKR facing eviction from HQ
Link

Sex video by post: why not use Myemail?

My first thought when I read the Malaysiakini headline:

Sex video by post: Any decency left?

... was, 'better still, use Myemail' when government has citizens' email addresses whether they want it or not.

By not taking action against the Sleazy Trio, this latest method of dissemination of porn is most despicable. The police, in particular, is shown to be powerless, yet Hishamuddin found it right to tell Bersih to keep their house in order first before demonstration. Bersih would have been irrelevant had there been fair elections in the first place.

The recent ordeal of a young lady who was robbed of money by a policeman at a roadblock near Pudu jail comes to mind, among many other more serious incidents involving police under his watch.
Link

Where there is a need, there is a way...

My childhood was spent without proper toys, making do with what were available. For example, we make 'cherry guns' by using rubber bands to tie a small piece of wood (trigger) to a bigger piece (roughly in the shape of a pistol or rifle) and using unripe wild cherries as 'bullets'. So I can understand what made this guy to improvise on the bicycle frame...


But this is so natural, in an emergency...

... must have had some training before, judging from his nonchalance!
Link

1Malaysia, but may I know your origin please?

"The new application forms for entry into local universities issued by Unit Pusat Universiti (UPU) for this year makes a mockery of Najib Tun Razak’s 1Malaysia concept to unite all races.

Former Perak Bar Council chief M Mathialagan said: “Previously, there were only four columns to indicate the race of a university applicant – Malay, Chinese, Indian or other races.
“But now these four columns have been further sub-divided to include hundreds of sub-races that is mind-boggling and makes a mockery of the 1Malaysia concept,” said the outspoken lawyer.

He said the Malays have been subdivided into six categories: Bugis, Boyan, Banjar, Jawa, Jawi Pekan and Minangkabau.

The Indians are sub-divided into eight categories: Malayali, Punjabi, Sikh, Tamil, Telegu, Malabari, Indian Muslim and Orissa.

The Chinese race is sub-divided into 12 categories: Cantonese, Foochow, Hainansee, Henghua, Hokchia, Hokchiu, Hokkien, Khek (Hakka), Kwongsai, Teochew, Kongfoo and Hylam.

The Orang Asli (Peninsula) are sub-divided into eight categories: Jakun, Negrito, Sakai, Semai, Semalai, Temiar, Senoi and Penan.

The Sarawak population has the largest number of sub-divided races (57) while Sabah’s population is sub-divided into 36 categories...."

Source: FreeMalaysiaToday: ‘New varsity forms a mockery of 1M’sia’
Humayun Kabir | April 15, 2011


Someone commented:

Hey!! The form has forgotten to mention the Mamaks as a sub-group that want to be included as Malays even though they are of Indian origin; just so they can get all the perks and goodies from the Gomen.

Then what about the Eurasian (Brits), Eurasian (Portuguese), Eurasian (Spanyol), Eurasian (Dutch), etc. Where do they stand?

Hey, but the good side of this is, first the Malays have finally admitted through the University forms that they are not originally from Malaysia, they are also "Pendatang" because its Indonesia where all the Bugis, Boyan, Banjar, Jawa, Jawi Pekan and Minangkabau come
from.

2nd the Mamaks who have been trying to be so Malay then the Pandatang Malays themselves have now been relegated to where they actually belong, under the "Indian: category.

Our history could have been drastically different: Dr. Mahathir could have been President of MIC and Samy Vellu, his Deputy.
Link

Thursday, May 26, 2011

(Will the real Slim Shady) Please Stand Up...

every hour at least, for your own good...

Wake up Malaysia!

If only we are able to excel economically, as well as in certain sports. For example, badminton and squash, in which we have undisputed world champions. Just like sports, when we think we are progressing, we have to take a look at our competitors to see whether they are progressing more or less than us. How good are we, when we progressed by 10%, the others progressed by 50%? Or when we increase productivity arithmetically while others increase geometrically?

Economically, we seem to remain static, or walking on the spot, while others run, according to the following article in UCA Sibu site:

"I wonder you feel the same as me ; all the sudden I realized friends and relatives around me seems to get less and less.

Those years when the New Year drew near, all sorts of gathering appointments almost completely filled the diaries, but this year seems so quiet.

Even in normal time, phone calls become less and less, face to face meet up also become much less.

Perhaps, everybody is busy with their own things, or perhaps, nowadays people prefer to stay in.

However, it is not entirely like this, thinking further, actually old friends and relatives are not around any more. God bless, they are still alive and well, they just left the country, Malaysia .

They have gone to China to set factory; Ah Wang quit his engineer job and migrated to Australia to set up his little food store business, Ah Fong left the local University went to Hong Kong as a lecturer. 'Frog' went to Taiwan to pursue his second career life. Others went to America , England , even Indonesia ...

At first, I thought these are individual cases, but gradually, people around me realized the same, these are not individual cases but a general symptom of our society. They are not small numbers but pretty big indeed.

Department of Foreign Affairs released the figures earlier, it confirmed the situation is real.

From March 2008 thru September 2009, a total of 300,000 Malaysian migrated to other countries, among them 200,000 left between Jan - Aug 2009. (in 8 months)

Cumulatively, 2 million Malaysians migrated, this figure is close to the number of Indonesian workers in Malaysia today.

The difference are, those migrated are mostly professional and middle class people.

They have many reasons to leave: pursue career development, for the future of their children, in search of better life and environment... In one sentence, they lost hope of Malaysia .

50 years ago people said: Malaysia is very good, better than Hong Kong and even Japan .
30 years ago people said: Malaysia is not bad, comparable to S. Korea and Taiwan. (No mention of Hong Kong and Japan any more).

20 years ago people said: Malaysia can do lah, at least better than China and Thailand (Cannot compare with Taiwan and Korea lah)

10 years ago people said: No matter how bad Malaysia is, cannot be worse than Vietnam and Indonesia ok-lah. (China is already in a different category).

Today, the economic growth rate of Vietnam and Indonesia already far exceeded Malaysia , Social activity and intellectual development of the country is also better, the gap between us and them is closing up.

Why worry? there are still Philippines , Cambodia and Myanmar behind us.

However, according to an economist who recently surveyed Philippines, he think in 20 years' time, Malaysia can replace Philippines to become the World exporter of Malaysian maids.

Over half a century, Malaysians live in the big old imperial housing complex, closed up and survive on properties left behind by the ancestor; continued to consume up social resources, wasteful, and drove away talents; they never talk about competitiveness, totally neglected productivity, and hated meritocracy.

When Asia economic storm hit in 1997, Malaysia closed their doors, thinking we beautifully avoided a disaster, they even think of themselves as genius, being able to handle the situation so well.

However, just look at other countries in our neighbourhood ; they stood up, faced the storm, and walked out of the storm. They overhauled their system, improved the processes and marched forward ; they moved up to a new level. And Malaysia , still walking on the spot . . !

Dear Malaysia , it's time to wake up !
We are very very late now !"

Source:
Link

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Overhanging TVs should be disallowed...

where there are tables and chairs underneath because they create unnecessary risks to customers and the public.

(This was taken at the Pharmacy of the Specialists wing of Ipoh General Hospital. Notice at the far end, there are 4 persons sitting under the television set.)

Once, a friend and his wife was having a meal in a Chinese restaurant in Batu Gajah and despite plenty of available tables, they were sitting underneath an old television set. I felt compelled to mention about the danger but did not. A few days later, I met the restaurateur's friend and told him about it. Then a couple of days later, I met him again and he said 'Sui hou' (Cantonese for 'mouth which speaks of bad luck') because a restaurant employee was slightly injured when he tried to adjust the set and the whole thing crashed on the table below. Luckily, nobody was seated underneath it.

In Batu Gajah, outside a Malay restaurant (corner shop, same row as KFC) there is an old tv set which has a cage to prevent theft, but never been used for a long time. Each time I walked along the corridor, I avoided it.

In Ipoh, off Jalan Kuala Kangsar, the corner coffee shop (opposite the BMW showroom) has a tv set and dvd player on the wall. Below these items, is a small bed for a child to sleep during business hours.

Link

Obama could have been O'bama?

Just kidding. But he definitely has his roots in Moneygall, Ireland, according to this great, great, great, grandfather story...

Obama visits family roots in Ireland

He is not alone, having ancestry in Ireland. The other US Presidents (more recent ones) include John F Kennedy, Ronald Reagan, George W. Bush (2 Bushes presumably), and Bill Clinton?

According to Wikipedia, Bill Clinton stands out as...

'42nd President 1993-2001: He claims Irish ancestry despite there being no documentation of any of his ancestors coming from Ireland'!

More in Wikipedia:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Irish_American#American_Presidents_with_Irish_ancestry
I thought only Singaporeans are Kiasu!
Link

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Felda borrows Rm6 billions from EPF?

It does not seem right. With land appreciation over the years and current high prices for fresh fruit bunch of oil palm, even without doing much, Felda should be reaping bountiful harvests and its settlers becoming millionaires. Yet, news or is it rumour has it that Felda had to borrow from EPF!

Settlers group wants Felda to explain RM6b loan from EPF

Dr Tan Kee Kwong asks: NOW, WHO IS THE TRAITOR?
Link

Man donates land worth Rm4 million for road project in Penang...

and I think the least the state government can do is to name it after him! This might be a novel way to encourage others.

"A BUSINESSMAN has donated a 0.8ha plot of land worth RM4mil in Mak Mandin to the state government to construct a 500m-long road linking Mak Mandin and the Raja Uda township.

Datuk Goy Chiap Thuan of Chiap Thuan Holdings Sdn Bhd said he decided to give away the piece of land as it was for a worthy cause.

“The purpose is to build a new road to help divert traffic flow, especially from the busy Jalan Raja Uda.

“And, I did not have any earlier plans to develop this vacant land, which was covered with undergrowth,” he said after Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng inspected the road’s construction work in Butterworth yesterday." ...

Source:
The Star
Wednesday May 18, 2011
A RM4mil gift to Penang
Link

Don't go bananas on bananas?

We live in a confusing world. One moment we are told the wonderful goodness of bananas, the next we are told to be careful, according to the following article forwarded to me:

Let's be cautious.......

At the rate of RM 2/- a dozen, death is being sold nowadays in our markets. My request for everybody is to be vigilant.

Friends, we all love bananas and we eat a lot of them, but the bananas available in the market are forced ripe by dipping in water mixed with Carbide. The consumption of these bananas is 100% sure to cause Cancer or some other infection in the stomach. Therefore such bananas are to be avoided totally.

But, how does one recognize the bananas ripened with the help of Carbide?
Bananas which are ripened naturally are dark yellow and there are small black spots here and there on the bananas and the stalks are black. While those which are forced ripe with Carbide are lemon yellow and their stalks are green and moreover they are clear yellow without any black spots.

Now, what is Carbide and how is it harmful? Carbide is a chemical which if mixed with water, emits heat and the heat emitted by a Close tank mixed with Carbide is even more than that emitted by a LPG Cylinder, so much so it can be used for Gas Cutting (which means the calorific value is so high that it can replace LPG gas).

In the same way, when the bananas are dipped in the water mixed with Carbide, the gas gets absorbed into the bananas and they get ripe. However, the banana vendors are not that literate and so they do not know the exact proportion of Carbide to be used for a dozen of bananas.

As a result they end up using excess quantity of Carbide which gets absorbed into the bananas and ultimately enters our stomach. Due to this excess use of Carbide, Tumors can be formed in our digestive system.

So, next time you purchase bananas, make sure you select the naturally ripened ones.

My post in 2009:


Link

Monday, May 23, 2011

Such an easy question, why can't I get an answer?

Elvis's Easy Question comes to mind.

From Malaysia Insider: Muhyiddin stumped by one question — Ali Kadir

Excerpt:

MAY 5 — Poor Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin. There he was talking about the fight against corruption at some national integrity event and about how it was a jihad to tackle graft, when he was left floundering by a simple question.

Datuk Ibrahim Saidun of some think-tank wanted to know why government was not taking action against politicians who lived beyond their means.

“They drive luxurious cars and live in big houses,” he said.

Actually, this is a question many Malaysians would like an answer to: How come so many ministers and politicians are living beyond their means, and why the MACC is blind to this.

There is no way Muhyiddin could have answered that question honestly. Not when he and other ministers are dead set against declaring their assets.

So let me answer that question posed by Ibrahim.

“The government does not investigate politicians living beyond their means because it would mean having to take action against Cabinet ministers, mentri besars, chief ministers and other senior politicians.

“This will surely put Umno and Barisan Nasional out of business. In addition, taking action against politicians living beyond their means would increase the workload of the MACC and complicate matters for Abu Kassim and his colleagues because they are only interested in small fish.


Link

We cannot even imitate, let alone emulate Japanese efficiency

30 years ago, we looked East towards Japan before, advised by Dr. Mahathir. But like everybody else, we probably only see the sun every morning instead.

Japan fixed cracked roads in 6 days, rest of the world drop jaws

The amazing things about Japan at times really made us respect them. The culture and the ethics of the Japanese are things worth learning. When the 8.9-magnitude earthquake hit Japan, their roads cracked, and cracked roads are stopping or slowing down transportation of food and supplies to critical areas hit by the tsunami. Therefore Nexco Japan, the company that is responsible to repair the affected roads and highway of Kanto area. It took the company mere six days to repair and reconstruct a terribly damaged Kanto Highway, and the pictures speak for themselves.

China is governed by scientists, what about the US?

... and what about us, our country called Malaysia, aka Bolehland?

"Did you know that China is governed by scientists? Yes, both the Chinese President and his Premier are engineers. In addition, 8 out of China’s top 9 government officials are scientists.

Now, let's compare that to the US, where Congress has 535 legislators, with only 22 of them boasting any kind of science or engineering backgrounds.

Basically, scientists govern China because the populace admires them - unlike in the States where celebrities seem to attract the most attention." ...

"And although the US boasts some of the greatest academic institutions, the doors seem to be locked to American students.

According to Forbes, 70% of PhD engineers in US universities are foreign-born, which prompted Microsoft co- founder Bill Gates to note that "half of this country’s doctoral candidates in computer science come from abroad."

This trend affects the "real world" too. In 2009, more than 50% of US patents were issued to non-US companies, while China replaced America as the number one high-tech exporter."...

Source:
China is governed by scientists, what about the US?

In Bolehland, we are still debating on whether Science and Mathematics should be taught in English; wondering why students are tempted by 'tiny dot' neighbour in the south, and other advanced countries; and whether non-Malays and non-Muslims have been given too much 'rights' and yet ungrateful in the way they voted!

Link

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Why I think buffet is bad for most of us

Generally, most of us would opt for a buffet meal if there is a wide variety of foods and we are in for a 'pig-out'. Some would even calculate that we can 'eat our money's worth of foods', so those on a strict diet or under medical advice to cut down on eating are generally frown upon.

There is a Cantonese saying, 'yan chut cheen, lei chut maeng' or 'others pay money, you pay with your life'. Discerning eaters would be selective in their choice of foods - selecting items which are not usually eaten in their daily meals.

As expected, eating too much is detrimental to our health. The following was forwarded to me:

In Today's Dr Lee Newsletter Issue:

What's wrong with eating too full?

"The more you eat, the sooner you die. The lesser you eat, the longer you live."

This is what Dr Lee always says in his health talk.

He also mentions, "Eating too full causes all sort of health problems such as hypertension, diabetes, stroke, etc."

Why eating too full is so harmful to your health? What can you do about it?

Mice experiment

To see how eating habit affects life span, a professor from University of Texas did an experiment on mice.

For 1st group of 100 mice, he let them eat without any restriction, just like a buffet meal.
The 2nd group was fed only 60% full.
The 3rd group was given food without restriction too.
But this time, he reduced protein content to half.

After 2.5 years, guess how many mice were still alive out of 100?

* 1st group (eat without restriction) - only 13 mice was alive. Opsss...
* 2nd group (eat 60% full) - 97 mice was still alive. Only 3 mice died.
* 3rd group (eat without restriction with protein cut half) - 50 mice still alive.

What can we learn from these results?

Firstly, eating too full is really harmful to your body.
Secondly, eat 60% full if you want to live longer and healthier.
Thirdly, taking too much protein is harmful to your body too. We don't need so much protein after all.

Overworking body

Imagine having a small family car. Instead of using it for short travel between home and office, you use it for long distance travel between different cities every day.

Instead of using it 1 hour a day, you use it for 10 hours a day. Instead of driving at 70 km/h, you always speed up to 170 km/h, hitting engine's red line.

Can you estimate your car life span? Do you expect having various problems with your car after a short time? Driving your car at high speed for a long time is like always eating too full. You force your body to always work at its red line.

Do you know digestion is the most demanding work for your body?

Think about the organs involved such as your mouth, stomach, liver, pancreas, duodenum and intestine.

Think about the length of digestive tract from your mouth to intestine.

By eating too full, your body zaps up much of your energy for digestion. Otherwise, this energy may be used for other purpose such as enhancing your immune system. Do you realize you become very tired easily after a big meal? That is the sign of your body working hard to digest all the food you take in.

If you eat an extra bowl of noodle, your pancreas has to produce extra insulin hormone to process the extra carbohydrates you take. Your liver, stomach and intestine also have to produce extra enzymes to digest and process specific nutrients from that bowl of noodle.

Therefore the more you eat, the harder your body has to work to process it. Of course, we must eat to survive. But we don't have to eat that much!

If you drive your car slowly and handle it gently, you can use it for a long time. But if you always floor the accelerator and drive like a rally driver, you know the consequence on your car life span.

Side effect of eating

Your car engine burns fuel to move your car and bring you to anywhere you like to go. As a result, the engine produces exhaust smoke which is toxic. It must be dispersed out from your car. Similarly, your body cell burns nutrient for energy to survive. In the process, it produces free radicals. Since free radical is toxic to your body, it has to be neutralized and expelled.

"Just metabolizing food especially fatty and carbohydrate-rich fare causes the body to produce free radicals, which attack cells and can promote the development of chronic conditions including heart disease, diabetes and cancer," says Ronald L. Prior, Ph.D. Of course, your body can control free radicals in small quantity. But the more you eat the more free radicals your body produces. Without adequate control, these free radicals easily attack your body cells and eventually cause all sort of diseases.

Good eating habit

After knowing the harmful effect of eating too full, what's your choice?
Do you want to live longer, just like the second group mice in the experiment?
Or do you want to risk ending your life earlier, just like the first group mice?

If you wish to live longer, here are some tips you can follow:

1. Always eat until 70% full. Do not exceed 80% full. You may want to stop eating when you feel slightly full.

2. Avoid having buffet style meal which makes it harder to control how much you eat. Instead, prepare the food you want to eat in a plate. After finishing it, don't add anymore food.

3. Leaving the dining table earlier may prevent you from picking some extra food to eat.

4. It is always a good idea to prepare lesser food in the first place. Some people are afraid of having not enough food for everyone. Actually, lesser food is beneficial for everyone. In a restaurant, order in small amount first. You can always add in some extra order if necessary.
But if you can get by with the original smaller order, that's great.

Remember this: You have higher chance of overeating if you serve more food on the table.
You have better chance of not overeating if you serve less food.

5. Avoid stuffing your fridge with ice cream, chocolate or other dessert. You cannot eat what you do not have.

6. When someone prepares a big plate of food for you, look at it first.
Ask yourself, "Do I want to stuff it all into my stomach?" If your answer is no, just put aside some food to another empty plate first. After finishing your food, look back at the extra food on that new plate. Say to yourself, "Phew! Luckily I didn't stuff that portion into my stomach."

7. When you get too hungry before your meal time, just take some fruit instead of heavy meal.

The tendency to overeat is very high for modern people.

Do you know most monks only eat twice a day ? They wake up at 4am, meditate and say their prayer. Later they have their simple breakfast at 7am. Before 12pm, they have their lunch.
That's all for them. They eat no more after that. No tea break. No dinner. No supper. They still look strong and energetic. Of course, we don't have to eat like them. But it reminds us we can eat less and stay healthy. So remember to eat only 70% full if you want to stay healthy.


Link

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Just being pragmatic...




a Cantonese equivalent which comes to my mind is being 'chi chuk' which I would translate as 'be contented and not to expect too much'...

(This sign is hanging on a wall in our house, to remind me)

There is also another Cantonese phrase, 'Chi Leong' which I would interpret as 'to know who you are, know your capabilities as well as your limitations, in your expectation of things'. But then again, there are all kinds of people in life, and especially where a person's ego is involved.
Link

The real origin of the Bikini

... had nothing to do with the hydrogen bomb exploded in the Bikini Atoll, Pacific Ocean...

"But while we should all rejoice for the invention of the bikini, the car engineer and the fashion designer were only rediscovering it. In fact, the two piece bathing suit was already being used in the greco-roman world, back in the third century AD."

Even a Geek can create Android marriage proposal


A dude from Jersey named Jon C. Hodgson wanted to propose to his girl of several years, Meghan, in a memorable way. He ruled out the things like a Jumbotron and skywriting as done already and wanted something cool. He settled on making his own app and then having it drop the big question in for him. Jon had a problem though; he didn’t know how to make an app for an Android device.

He turned to App Inventor and his girls love of her HTC Incredible and Harry Potter to seal the deal. He created a quiz app that had terms and conditions and official photos from the coming Harry Potter move. He told his girl that it was a quiz to win free tickets to the premiere of the film while they were out to dinner.

She started answering the questions and the last one was “The Question.” It read, “Meghan, will You Marry Me?” with yes or no boxes down below. This sort of reminds me of a version of those notes you pass along in grade school to the girls you like. If you are wondering, Meghan said yes and the wedding date is set.

Source:

The more you know, the more you realize how little you know

... or more likely, the more confused you will be...

My friend forwarded to me 10 Biblical facts that everyone gets wrong. In it, references were made to Top 10 Misconceptions about the bible http://listverse.com/2008/04/20/top-10-misconceptions-about-the-bible/ ; 15 Factlets most people get wrong http://listverse.com/2010/12/13/15-factlets-most-people-get-wrong/ ; and so on and so forth.

In other words, the information we get depends on the source, subject to corrections and interpretations by different people. Sigh.

Here is an example:

Contrary to popular belief, Adam and Eve were expelled from Eden not because they ate the forbidden fruit of the tree of knowledge of good and evil, but in order to prevent them from eating from the tree of life (both forbidden trees are in Genesis 2:9) which would have made them eternal. God doesn’t like competition! Here is the verse (Genesis 3:22-23): “And he said: Behold Adam is become as one of us, knowing good and evil: now, therefore, lest perhaps he put forth his hand, and take also of the tree of life, and eat, and live for ever. [23] And the Lord God sent him out of the paradise of pleasure, to till the earth from which he was taken.”

Link

Why the Mayan Calendar stops at 2012


So we assume our world will end in 2012?
Link

Friday, May 20, 2011

Simple Logic always leads to the Truth


But sad to say, cases of political significance in Malaysia have a way to defy logic!

For example, Saiful did not shit for more than two days, yet it was alleged Anwar's DNA could be found deep in his you know where. Someone compares it with 'looking for a needle in a haystack, but presto, it was found!
Link

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Pulling in the bird...

it is so easy for this dog...

http://www.break.com/index/little-dog-gets-frisky-with-chicken.html

it is also easy for some men, yet so tough for some of us seniors...

I'm at the gym the other day and I hear this from an older man, not in the best physical condition, who asked the trainer:

"I want to impress that beautiful girl over there. Which machine should I use?"


The trainer replied: "Use the ATM machine outside the gym."


Link

Problems with living near a secondary school

I have just told off a group of students, believed to be from SMK Sultan Yusuf, Batu Gajah because it is the nearest. Just moments ago, I heard sounds of broken glasses and I had to come out and tell them to think before breaking bottles on the road outside our house. Just days ago, I had to pick up pieces of a broken beer bottle.

I tried to mind my own business even though sometimes I felt I should do something about different groups of students who would hang out, smoking and chatting even during school hours. I know it is a no win situation because students are known to be really troublesome but I would draw a line as far as broken pieces of glass is concerned. Sigh.

Link

People with talents are in demand...

they have choices, and certainly more than able to decide for themselves where they can find security, financial rewards and job satisfaction.

When I was in secondary school, a teacher asked why China exported high grade rice and imported low grade ones. I was able to answer that it was to earn foreign exchange! Of course, China since the sixties, has transformed into a formidable world power. They are now able to import talent and luxury goods.

What we are seeing in Malaysia is the result of political policies over the years which effectively drove away talent and attracted labourers instead. Though we too recognize the problem, the basic problems remain and Talent Corp will remain another 'form over substance' in our denial.

"The USA Today reported that the Silicon Valley is facing a talent shortage as many Chinese and Indian talents have returned to their native countries.

US President Barack Obama is aware of the seriousness of the problem and he has promised to revise the immigration law. He said: "We don't want them starting an Intel in China or France. We want them starting it here."

Obama's remarks have brought up a universal truth, namely the competition among countries is, essentially, the fight for talents. If the US wishes to continue being the world's superpower, it will then need to win the talent war.

Meanwhile, Malaysia, a country with an ambition to become an advanced country by 2020, is facing severe challenges in the global talent war. Two weeks ago, World Bank senior economist Philip Schellekens painted a picture of the current Malaysian brain drain situation:

*The number of Malaysian emigrated overseas is high, with a conservative estimate of about 1 million last year. It has in fact surged by four times over the past 30 years. One-third of them are highly-educated skilled personnel.

* Malaysian talents emigrated mainly to Singapore (54%), Australia (15%), Brunei, the US (10%) and the UK (5%).

* The brain drain problem is serious, with two among every 10 highly educated Malaysians choose to leave the country.

* Emigrated Malaysians are mostly Chinese, accounting for 60% to 88% of the total number. Among those who have emigrated to Singapore, 88% of them are Chinese, 6% are Malays and 5% are Indians.

* In contrast, 60% of foreign immigrants received only primary or lower education.

"However, in response, the authorities would either simply deny the accusation that the bumiputera policy has led to brain drain or ask the people to ignore the racial remarks while extreme racists are beating the drums.

How would talents return to a country which has failed to recognise the crux of the problem and eradicate racist remarks?

We do not deny that the Talent Corporation has made much effort to attract talents. However, the long-term residence permit is not their sole consideration to return. Also, they would not return just because of better incentives and lower tax rates.

In fact, they are looking forward to a more open, transparent, tolerant and fair system. Clearly, the government still needs to take stronger and more powerful political actions, as well as show a clearer and more effective commitment!"

Source:
Fighting for talents by Lim Mun Fah
Translated by Soong Phui Jee
Sin Chew Daily

Meanwhile, as usual, PM's rhetorics are not matched with actions by those who are tasked to implement policies...

Wee: Officers failed to award scholarships according to govt criteria
Link

Film making in Siputeh, Perak

SP wondered what film they were making in Siputeh and the mystery has been solved with this report in Malaysia Chronicle:

You can't blame Mark Lee and his co-star in Petaling Street Warrior, Yeo Yann Yann for feeling a little giggly. She's got stuffing in her bra and he plays her husband in the martial arts comedy.

"My enhanced boobs are heavy," chuckles Yann Yann while taking a breather on the fim set in Siputeh, Perak. "My padded bra slipped during our intimate scene!"

Being a funnyman that he is, Mark teases, saying "Don't worry dear, I've seen bigger boobs than yours. Yours are only bigger than Big S (Taiwanese actress Barbie Hsu), but smaller than Small S (her twin sister, TV host Dee Hsu)."

The chemistry between the two crossover stars - Yann Yann is Johorean, whereas Mark is Singaporean - are so strong that Petaling Street Warrior is poised to be yet another good collaboration between Malaysian and Singaporean talents.

"Everyone has a highly challenging role in this movie," enthuses Yann Yann, who has earned critical acclaims across the Causeway via her theatre project, Thunderstorm and TV series like Right Frequency, A-Go-Go Princess and The Iron Lady...

More:

By the way, the following appears to be the origin of the word 'Boob'...





Link

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Some myths propagated by self-serving politicians

Myth No.1: Water shortage
So far, we have not seriously looked into conservation measures, like harvesting rain water (abundant at times) and controlling unnecessary wastage. Until we have tried our best, we should not consider ourselves as facing water shortage soon. We can still afford to have people using a running hose to wash cars, water plants and washing floors. Leakages (including water theft) in the water distribution is estimated at around 40%, if not mistaken.

Myth No.2: Energy shortage
So far, we have not looked into alternative sources of energy like solar, wind, as well as not having tapped exhaustively into easily available water sources. Yet we are told that we need nuclear energy before we run out of energy sources!

We are so fortunate in having a tropical climate, unlike those temperate countries where heating is a real problem to prevent hypothermia. At worst, we face only feeling uncomfortable without air-conditioning or electric fan.

We have yet to resort to a campaign like in Britain's 'Save it' where everyone is being told to save electricity, wherever and whenever possible. We can still afford to have youngsters, especially, leaving their electrical devices on at all times, not to mention the larger scale waste of having buildings lighted up just to boost egos.

Myth No.3: No more space for landfills
We have yet to make full use of Re-cycling methods to reduce most of our solid waste, yet we are being told that we require unhealthy incinerators. Just separating wastes into glass, plastic, paper, organic and non-recyclable, and presto! we have reduced the bulk of our waste. Re-cycling being profitable, properly segregated waste will have no shortage of takers or even buyers.
Link

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Helen Chuah, the new Mayor of Colchester


EVERY Colchester mayor makes a bit of history.

Each person to take on the esteemed role of Colchester’s first citizen adds to a tradition dating back hundreds of years.

But when Helen Chuah becomes Colchester mayor on Wednesay , she will be making a special piece of the town’s history.

Helen will become the first Colchester mayor who was born outside the country.

And the honour is making news across the globe.

The Leaking Duo: Birds of a feather...

get together of course!

When Julian Assange of WikiLeaks team up with Raja Petra of Malaysia Today, we look forward to a flood of information which we are not supposed to know, according to those who do not want us to know.

More:

Raja Petra teams up with WikiLeaks' Assange
Link

Monday, May 16, 2011

How Art Harun describes Ibrahim Ali...

When you spook yourself...most apt I thought...

Link

Former MP of Batu Gajah passed on

Datuk Chian Heng Kai, a former MP of Batu Gajah (elected in 1974) passed away in Muar today after a long struggle with liver cancer.

My knowledge of BG did not go as far back, so it was news to me that he was MP then.

Source: Malaysia Chronicle:
Former DAP vice-chairman, MP dies after battle with liver cancer
Link

Sodomy II : Here we go again...

even though expected, it is no less disappointing... with our present leaders, and our systems...

Sodomy II: Anwar ordered to enter defence

Link

How to improve English

Much had been written on this topic over the years, as our standard of English declines alarmingly, according to educationists, employers and government leaders.

From my experience, it was a rise and fall of English standard: parents used to be illiterate or poor in English language; some sent their children to English schools and even England where they could compete with the locals without being handicapped by the medium of instruction. But with the general decline in standard of English now, some children's command of the language could be worse than their parents! We can trace the problem lies in our education system where there was a major change in emphasis from English to Malay or Bahasa Malaysia mainly because of nationalistic objectives.

To improve, I think a 'carrot and stick' method could be helpful. We know that English is very important in information technology and international trade. Yet, some parents refuse to recognize this fact and prefer to send their children to Chinese or Tamil schools where they are likely to clique among themselves. As for national schools, the lack of emphasis on English is evident in the language not made compulsory for SPM, the examinations for Form 5 students. Believe me, the best way to make students improve any language is to make it a compulsory subject. The students and parents will ensure that they will put their mind and money where it matters.

If good job prospects do not entice them (future, not immediate), we should make the study of English interesting with the aid of computers (common now), and create incentives by rewarding those who achieve good results. We need good teachers with excellent command of the language and they could be found if only they are offered competitive remuneration. Language also needs practice to make perfect, so the students should be made to use it as much as possible. Over to you, Ibrahim Ali!



Link

American Idol finalist Scotty's Big Surprise

This reminds me of the local busker at St. Paul's Hill, Malacca, who was singing a Lobo song, and got the surprise of his life when Lobo himself joined him!

"Top 3 "American Idol" finalist Scotty McCreery first made an impression auditioning with, and then repeatedly singing, "Your Man" by Josh Turner, aka the "baby lock them doors and turn them lights down low" song. As Scotty's "Idol" star has soared, his audition song choice has turned out to be the best publicity Josh could ask for. So when Scotty returned to his hometown of Garner, North Carolina, this weekend for his big homecoming event (an "Idol" top 3 tradition), Josh repaid the favor by bumrushing the stage during Scotty's welcome-home concert, giving Scotty the surprise of his life."

Source:

Link

What we expect from the ultimate phone...

YouTube - My New Phone
Link

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Of Political Frogs and Toads

According to Kidzone.ws (just to have some basic information):

“Many people don’t know the difference between frogs and toads. They are quite different animals, although they belong to the same animal group.

Frogs:
Need to live near water;
Have smooth, moist skin that makes them look “slimy”;
Have a narrow body;
Have higher, rounder, bulgier eyes;
Have longer hind legs;
Take long high jumps;
Have many predators;

Toads:
Do not need to live near water to survive;
Have rough, dry, bumpy skin;
Have a wider body;
Have lower, football shaped eyes;
Have shorter, less powerful hind legs;
Will run or take small hops rather than jump;
Do not have many predators. Toad’s skin lets out a bitter taste and smell that burns the eyes and nostrils of its predators, much like a skunk does.”

In politics, we have come across politicians who switched party affiliations being described as 'frogs'. If we described those who jumped from PR to BN as frogs, then how shall we describe those who jumped from BN to PR? Both jumped, so both should be described as frogs. But I wish to differentiate them as frogs and toads, the latter obviously the uglier version.

In our political scenario we have seen many turncoats who were originally members of PKR or DAP. But then again, some may argue that those in PKR are mostly ex-Umno, so how should we classify them?

We have come to a stage in our political development, quite close to achieving a two-coalition system whereby a new coalition, Pakatan Rakyat is viewed by many as capable of ruling the country if given the chance in the next general election. So close yet so far, judging from the unceasing problems created by BN for PR leaders.

Some have described this political fight as 'Good vs Evil' or 'Them vs Us' or whatever descriptions we wish to use, and depending on which side of the political divide we are in. Of course, nobody would claim to be on the Evil side!

But there are some facts which we cannot simply ignore. The ruling party has all the power at its disposal, over the vital institutions like Parliament (could suspend MPs, even the Opposition leader); Judiciary (higher courts tend to ensure BN victory); Attorney General's Chambers (selective prosecution and persecution); Police (bias enforcement of law); Election Commission (members are not from heaven and a minister admitted they are bias towards BN); and others. Furthermore, the Executive in the Prime Minister can make or break a billionaire, for example. So whoever is in his good book stand to gain and those not, stand to lose.

While BN is ruling the country, isn't it obvious that anyone who decides to leave an opposition party for one of BN's was tempted by goodies offered? No one would believe otherwise. The usual reason (read excuse) of 'I have no more confidence in Anwar Ibrahim or whoever, depending on his party affiliation, is usually taken with a large pinch of salt.

Similarly, for anyone who is leaving the BN for one of the PR parties, we can assume that he has had enough of the charade and wish to join the true struggle for the good of the nation. This is quite obvious because though he might have been offered an important position in a party, there is nothing at this stage to show that PR is going to rule after the next general election. There are high risks for that move, and a lot of work, patience, and stamina required. Some are even under severe stress in the course of their work.

I would describe those who jumped from BN to PR as frogs, and those who jumped from PR to BN as toads. Frogs are better looking than toads, jump higher than toads (take bigger risks), and they have more predators (eg. Death and other threats)!

We can notice differences between supporters of BN and PR too.

Ceramahs by BN leaders are often attended by people who are obliged to go (eg. civil servants), people who are cajoled to go, with transport and allowances provided. Those ceramahs by PR leaders are usually attended by people who came on their own, and even donate to the party!

Even during elections, there are basic differences. For example, as election agents, those who worked for MCA were paid Rm50 each while those who worked for DAP were volunteers!

The differences between BN and PR are pretty obvious, as different as frogs and toads! I am sure even kids can tell the difference now.


Link

1Care for 1Malaysia: care for all or for cronies?

I believe many doctors are concerned by the '1Care for 1Malaysia' proposal, judging from the mass forwarding of the article in The Star on April 24, 'Health for all' by Dr ONG HEAN TEIK, Dr HANIFFAH ABDUL GAFOOR & Dr S.P. PALANIAPPAN.

Excerpt:

"In theory, this scheme will save consumers from having to pay out-of-pocket for their primary healthcare, and, thus protect them from excessive healthcare expenses.

In reality, the new company may become a middle man profiting from patients and their caregivers, with the result that healthcare costs go up, standard of treatment may drop, and the public is burdened with a new healthcare tax."

Source:

Saturday, May 14, 2011

How victim used Prey to track his missing laptop

"Betabeat is back with another edition of modern justice.

Back in March we brought you the story of Mark Bao, the serial entrepreneur who tracked his laptop thief and released humiliating videos of the culprit doing the rubber band dance on Youtube.

Last night a live drama played out on Twitter, as Sean Power, a tech author and consultant, used the free software program, Prey, to track his stolen laptop, which had disappeared, along with a birth certificate, health card, cell phone and cash, from a New York City bar while he was in town on business (consulting for startups Etsy and Hunch.)

From back home in Canada, Power remembered he had the software, and two days later says he watched remotely as the "thief" took a photo and uploaded it to Flickr.
That helped Power figure out his name and location: Oficina Latina, on Prince St., in Nolita. It was one of the bars he'd visited.

Twitter followers watching Powers tweet about the drama soon figured out the culprit was actually a part-owner in the establishment...."

Source:
Don’t Steal Computer From People Who Know How To Use Computers – Part Deux!

Link

Michelle Ng did not forsake her generation...

will you forsake yours?

"I thought long and hard about it — if the path that I’m going to walk will cause my family to turn against me, if the path that I am taking will leave me with huge financial burdens, if the path that I take will be so hindered such that, at the end of the day, I wouldn’t be anywhere near what I intend to achieve, is it worth it?

My parents told me: “Michelle, you’re a smart child. Get a job overseas. Don’t come back.”

I thought that the suggestion had merit and, at one point, gave huge weight to it. Law enforcement in Malaysia seemed hopeless. So they say, “one man can’t change the world”.

I went through a tough battle with myself. My mum had a point. If the system was already corrupted, and if you are going to work in the system, you’re not going to get anywhere. Logically, I thought to myself — the only way to achieve my dreams will be to change the system. And the only way to do that was, well, politics.

I thought myself crazy for a moment. I felt that everything would be working against me if I went into that field. I am a Chinese, Christian, female. Who would want to hear what I say? I kept this to myself for a long time. I didn’t dare say anything to anyone for fear that I will be made fun of.

But since making that decision, it has rested well with my soul. I felt good about it.

In 2009, when I held office in the Malaysian Society in LSE, I was approached to organise a talk in LSE for Anwar Ibrahim. For the safety and wellbeing of the community I represented, I felt that it would have been suicidal to say yes to organising this event. Surely, since his release from prison, he will inadvertently draw a huge crowd with hugely varying interests and opinions. I made my stance clear to his organising committee, but directed them to the right sources so that they can organise their event in LSE nonetheless."...

YES could sneak on you...

until too late!

My son warned me with this information though it was me who warned him earlier not to get carried away using YES (without a package):

1 May, 9am
"How ironic. YES! mobile gets a nasty letter from me cc-Ed to consumer association today and then my line gets barred. After all the promo 1 month ago for them. Sigh. Thank god I still have digi broadband. How can I use up rm700 + in month and a half of data. Double sigh."

11 May, 1pm
"...24GB in 2 months cost more than RM700+, if Yes don't respond soon, I'm going to report to FOMCA!"

Still awaiting the end result of this case.


Why I think the charges seem reasonable but not the way YES entraps their customers:

Rm700 divided by 0.09 (9 sen per minute), we get 7777 minutes; 7777 divided by 60, we get 129.6 hours; 129.6 hours divided by 45 days (month and a half), we get 2.88 hours (per day)... which seems perfectly normal for an average user, but highly costly for someone who did not realize it!

As a comparison, using the Digi Prepaid Internet, for Rm2 a day, we get unlimited usage for the day. For Rm2, we get to use YES for only 22.2 minutes! Of course, the big difference would be the speed which depends presumably on MHz or MegaHerz or Ghz (1000 MHz equal 1 Ghz), which high-speed users need. To be fair, YES has packages which works out reasonably and competitively. But I expect many would be caught when they have yet to sign up for specific packages, without realizing the sums involved. YES's 'no statement, use as you like, with minimum Rm30 charge per month' seems like a trap to those unwary.
Link