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!

"Our government is like a baby's alimentary canal, with a happy appetite at one end and no responsibility at the other. " - Ronald Reagan
Was he referring to Malaysia? Seems so apt...

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, January 31, 2012

Loh Gwo Burne is more than a one-term politician

"The article below is by Loh Gwo Burne of the Lingam tape fame. I didn’t know he can write so well."

Press Release issued by Kelana Jaya MP on 9 January 2012 at Petaling Jaya

The Remarkable Anwar Ibrahim

This is not an article about Dato Seri Anwar Ibrahim's sodomy trial. But in case anyone is interested to hear my two-cents worth on the trial, I have two questions. How many people do we know who have actually been charged with sodomy? And do you think if Dato Seri Anwar will be charged if he were not an opposition leader?

My answers are 1 and NO.

Furthermore, for those paying attention during the VK Lingam video, would have heard Anwar’s case being mentioned. What does it mean? It means the BN government would go to great length to ascertain that Anwar will be put behind bar until his political carrier expires, if not for his entire life. On that fateful day Lingam revealed to my father and myself that Mahathir and his political cronies had planned an umno led coalition be cemented in power as long as time could be projected, and in the name of Malaysian prosperity and peace, Anwar must be destroyed. In this conspiracy all sectors of government including the civil service, judiciary, and police will be under their direct or indirect control and influence! The reach of this conspiracy even extends its reach into the private sector. The financial system in the country be manned by trusted cronies, Petronas and its agents guarded by friends and family, the private power suppliers, utilities, media, trading companies, precious little was spared. One man stood to threaten the conspiracy, so he must be destroyed.

And what will happen on the 9th of January? I think all the cards are with the conspirators. If recent trends are any indication, then I think Anwar will be found not guilty, to buy some good will. Instead moving the grounds of execution will be moved to the court of Appeal (probably after the elections). But all the cards are with the conspirators, we can but wait.

With that out of the way, I want to talk about my observations about one of the most remarkable person I have had the pleasure to encounter and spend time with. He is my boss, but I will try to be objective. So let’s make it clear that Anwar is by no means perfect, only Umno Barisan Nasioanl is perfect and does no wrong, so Anwar from time to time makes mistakes. The important thing is that he admits it.

The Inspirational

The first time I met Anwar Ibrahim was about 4 years ago together with my father. I was never an Anwar fan, also I am a skeptic by nature making me someone quite difficult to convince. I have lost all hope for Malaysia, and like many Malaysians have decided to move abroad. I was in a very good place in my life. Anwar struck me with his warmth and modesty. He spoke at length on his beliefs and his political vision for Malaysia. He spoke about his views regarding race relations and international relations of Malaysia. He spoke at length about his mistakes and what he learnt during his ordeals. When i left the meeting i left with a change of heart. I left the meeting loving Malaysia more.

For the first time in my life i felt hope for Malaysia. I realised that there is something worth fighting for. Suddenly i started to see everyone as malaysians instead of just Malay, Indian, Chinese, Dayak, etc. I was inspired to see hope for our nation and its people...

Anwar inspires. Anwar inspired with his sincerity and conviction. Anwar inspired with his vision. And directly and indirectly millions were inspired. Just five years ago, who believed that our nation was standing on the verge of change? Who would believe that the mighty Umno would need to start listening to the rakyat?

Of course Anwar was not the only source of inspiration. But at a time where some tremble at the sight of the moon on a green flag, and others who hurl insults at the sight of a rocket. He more than anyone else was the glue to bind us all together. He more than anyone else led us to each other, and today together we stand at the brink of a regime change in Malaysia. Without Anwar, how many would have believed we would have even got this far?

The Resilient

The remarkable thing about the survey which registered 51% liked our prime minister, while 39% likes Anwar. A friend commented that PR should be worried since Najib apparently was more popular than Anwar. But I offered a reversed conclusion that it is BN who should be concerned. Why? Simple. For four years you have all the kings’ horses and men, all the newspapers, radio, cybertroopers attack one man. You went so far as to dig out the old play book and charge him with sodomy. You even have a crony get his own brother to impersonate this man in a porno production. All these while, all the mainstream media treats everyday as "denitrify our prime minster day". Even going as far as to issue official national sermons for friday prayers telling all good muslims to offer undivided loyalty and obedience to our great Prime Minister and friends. After four years of this and you find you are only 10% ahead, wouldn't you be worried?

In other words we need to appreciate one thing. Anwar is extremely resilient. Anyone else subjected to this intensity of abuse would have thrown in the towel long ago, anyone else would have fallen ages ago. Yet, Anwar still stands tall and strong.

In fact through the waves of onslaughts directed at Anwar, I have never seen him visibly affected. Except during Zahrain’s fallout. For the first time I could see Anwar visibly sad, more from the lost of an old friend I sensed. Despite the unrelenting assaults, which would have crippled entire armies, Anwar still stands tall and strong, “this is because of the hard work and support from all of you” he would say. But in truth is we are the ones that should be thankful.

Not only because he continues to give us hope and inspiration, he also provides us shelter and protection. Imagine if there is no Anwar to draw the waves and waves of onslaught by the powers that be. Imagine if all the PR leaders and YBs are subjected to what Anwar has to face every day, how many more of us would have fallen? How many more would have thrown in the towel? He stood there and drew the majority of heat upon himself, so the rest of us can collectively work towards the goal of a better nation.

The Remarkable

Sometimes a nation produces a person who is destined to shine not only within their nation, but on the international stage as well. Someone that will make our nation shine that much more brightly(Some might try, some might imitate, but you can’t pretend to be Princess Diana). We in Malaysia are fortunate to have produced such a remarkable person. But it is also unfortunate that we choose to allow him to be shackled and weighed down. Or should I say that it is unfortunate that so many of us decide to stand by and allow him to be shackled. But remarkably Anwar remains firm on his love of Malaysia and its people, remains determined to spend his life and blood in building the nation into the great nation we know we can become. He believes we can, I believe we need to.

Today our nation remains rooted unable to break free from being decidedly mediocre, but the truth is we are mediocre by choice rather than due to any disability. To a large extend this is where our Government has decided is the best place to be. And for 55 years there have been nothing the people could have done about it. In a way we chose where we wanted to be. When the BN government was bulldozing the so called "peaceful" assembly bill through parliament, in spite of the widespread objections from the people, a BN YB said that the Barisan Nasional is passing this bill with the mandate of the people and if you don't like it then take over the government in the next elections if you can. The Remarkable Mr. Anwar Ibrahim says we can, do you hear him?

Released by Gwo-Burne Loh
Kelana Jaya MP

Link

Monday, January 30, 2012

Optical Illusion


The flat floor in a computer games store somewhere in Paris.


When you're feeling down...

this Orange might be able to help...


while listening to this song... never mind that this is under Apple Records label...

Conscience

It is amazing how conscience could affect people for years. It was not even about hurting another person physically, just an old debt. I was told about this Malay factory worker, Ramli. When he first got his hand on part of his EPF money, he recalled owing a grocer some Rm70 for many years! So off he went, to look up the man to repay his outstanding debt. The man must have already written off the amount and was glad to receive the money. In fact, he was more affected by Ramli's sincerity.

On the other hand, I was told of certain people who made good in later life, but were more concerned about buying up properties and new cars so that they can show others of their rise in social status. But if old debts were conveniently forgotten, people would start to talk behind their backs, especially those creditors. As the saying goes, 'The best way for someone to remember you is to borrow from him'!
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E-Mail Tracker Programs

The man who sent this information is a computer tech. He wrote:

By now, I suspect everyone is familiar with snopes.com and/or truthorfiction.com for determining whether information received via email is just that: true/false or fact/fiction. Both are excellent sites.

Advice from snopes.com VERY IMPORTANT!!

1) Any time you see an email that says "forward this on to '10' (or however many) of your friends", "sign this petition", or "you'll get bad luck" or "you'll get good luck" or "you'll see something funny on your screen after you send it" or whatever --- it almost always has an email tracker program attached that tracks the cookies and emails of those folks you forward to.

The host sender is getting a copy each time it gets forwarded and then is able to get lists of 'active' email addresses to use in SPAM emails or sell to other Spammers. Even when you get emails that demand you send the email on if you're not ashamed of God/Jesus --- that is email tracking, and they are playing on our conscience. These people don't care how they get your email addresses - just as long as they get them. Also, emails that talk about a missing child or a child with an incurable disease "how would you feel if that was your child" --- email tracking. Ignore them and don't participate!

2) Almost all emails that ask you to add your name and forward on to others are similar to that mass letter years ago that asked people to send business cards to the little kid in Florida who wanted to break the Guinness Book of Records for the most cards. All it was, and all any of this type of email is, is a way to get names and 'cookie' tracking information for telemarketers and Spammers -- to validate active email accounts for their own profitable purposes.

You can do your Friends and Family members a GREAT favor by sending this information to them. You will be providing a service to your friends. And you will be rewarded by not getting thousands of spam emails in the future!

Do yourself a favor and STOP adding your name(s) to those types of listing regardless how inviting they might sound! Or make you feel guilty if you don't! It's all about getting email addresses and nothing more.

You may think you are supporting a GREAT cause, but you are NOT!

Instead, you will be getting tons of junk mail later and very possibly a virus attached! Plus, we are helping the Spammers get rich! Let's not make it easy for them!

ALSO: Email petitions are NOT acceptable to Congress or any other organization - I.e. Social security, etc. To be acceptable, petitions must have a "signed signature" and full address of the person signing the petition, so this is a waste of time and you are just helping the email trackers.
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Saturday, January 28, 2012

Another world record for Malaysia?

No, not this one, which happens to be world's most confusing roundabout...

The Magic Roundabout in Swindon , England , was constructed in 1972 and consists of five mini-roundabouts arranged in a circle. Its name comes from a popular children's television series The Magic Roundabout. It has been voted the fourth scariest junction in Britain .


But this one, the size of Tun Dr. Mahathir's ego...


Not many people realize this when they are driving around Putrajaya, especially near the Prime Minister's office. Try to clear your mind and observe while you are driving, and you will soon realize that you are indeed driving along the potentially largest roundabout in the world. Malaysia Boleh!

The main reason people don't take note is because they tend to think it is just a hill. The circumferential length of this roundabout is approximately 3.4km, and the road that circumvents it is Persiaran Sultan Salahuddin Abdul Aziz Shah.
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Don't Laugh Out Loud


In the U.S. they invented a machine that catches thieves; they took it out to different countries for a test.

In U.S.A itself , in 30 minutes, the machine caught 20 thieves;

In UK , in 30 minutes it caught more than 50 thieves;

Spain , in 30 minutes it caught 65 thieves;

Ghana , in 30 minutes it caught 600 thieves;

Malaysia , THEY CAUGHT NOBODY... because in 15 minutes the machine was stolen!

I told you not to laugh!!!

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Friday, January 27, 2012

Mr. Bean, you've got a lovely daughter...


This could almost destroy your belief in hereditary theory...

Who'd have guessed who her father is?
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The flying car is here...


For more info and maybe place your order:
http://www.terrafugia.com/
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USA's President vs Malaysia's PM : Malaysia wins...

in terms of employing more people and therefore spending more, in relation to its population...

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Poor translations as a source of entertainment?

It is a given that we will come across badly translated English text now and again. The good thing is it will make the visiting reader chuckle... like this one...



A chuckle is quite close to a smile, and I think it is better than a frown because of displeasure.

I find Malaysians are segmented in terms of language. There are those of all races who speak English at home but not their own mother tongues. Then there are those who speak Malay, Mandarin or dialects, Tamil, and so on, but uncomfortable with English. But most can understand English or Malay, even though not fluent in speaking the language. So it is common to speak, say English to someone, who would reply in Malay. This reminds me of Empat Sekawan which started years ago, as a radio or Redifusion comedy and went on to television shows, starring Hai Yang, Hon Ying, Lai Meng and Wong Ho. Each will speak his or her dialect and the others will reply in his or her own.

Many people are able to spot mistakes in translated subtitles, eg. from English to Bahasa Malaysia. Off hand, I can remember classic ones: 'Fire!' (as in using guns) which was translated to 'Api!' (which means fire, as in the burning kind). Then, 'Have you lost your marbles?' (as in 'are you crazy?' which was translated literally to, 'Kau dah hilang guli ke?' Some incorrect translations involve numbers. For example, in Cantonese, 'yat marn' means '10,000'; 'sarp marn' means '100,000'; 'yat park marn' means '1,000,000'. Often, 'yat marn' was translated to mean '1 million'.

For those who know a bit more English, they are able to spot mistakes in pronunciation. For example, some retired teachers still pronounce 'facade' as it is spelled and not 'fersard'. Another difficult word of French origin, bour·geoi·sie. noun \ˌbu̇(r)zh-ˌwä-ˈzē\ is often pronounced as 'bugis'! Some made deliberate mistakes for fun, like 'barbress' for lady barbers or better known as hair stylists. Perhaps, it adds colour to our cosmopolitan society to make it more interesting. Why not?

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Thursday, January 26, 2012

CNY: Sellers' market in coffee shops

With influx of relations from out of town, restaurants and coffee shops are packed with customers. Even newspapers ran out earlier than usual.

For those with unpleasant experience of having to wait for seats, longer wait for food, and generally poor service, they avoided such places during the first 3 days, for example. Today is the fourth day of the new Lunar year, and many had returned to KL or other places of work on the second day. Yet the crowds remained.

During normal days, at familiar places, we were given special treatment like ordering a pot of hot water for our own Chinese tea leaves, after our round of tea or coffee. We are charged between Rm1 and Rm2 for a few topping up. Today, at Yong Fong in Pusing, we were politely told by Yong that he could not entertain us because he had turned down other such requests, even those who did not bring their own tea leaves. Reason was simple: to prevent customers from sitting too long at the table after their meals! Most food stalls added extra Rm1 or so to their normal charges. Basically, because of the greater demand, it was 'take it or leave it'. What a difference! ...especially when we know under normal circumstances, some shops or stalls were crying out for business because there are actually too many shops serving limited number of customers, going from one shop to another daily.

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The intrusive Stranger?

Or, Stranger who overstayed his welcome?

A few years after I was born, my Dad met a 'stranger' who was new to our small town.

From the beginning, Dad was fascinated with this enchanting newcomer and soon invited him to live with our family.

The stranger was quickly accepted and was around from then on.

As I grew up, I never questioned his place in my family.

In my young mind, he had a special niche.

My parents were complementary instructors:

Mom taught me good from evil, and Dad taught me to obey.

But the stranger... He was our storyteller.

He would keep us spellbound for hours on end with adventures, mysteries and comedies.

If I wanted to know anything about politics, history or science, he always knew the answers about the past, understood the present and even seemed able to predict the future!

He took my family to the first major league ball game.

He made me laugh, and he made me cry.

The stranger never stopped talking, but Dad didn't seem to mind.

Sometimes, Mom would get up quietly while the rest of us were shushing each other to listen to what he had to say, and she would go to the kitchen for peace and quiet.
(I wonder now if she ever prayed for the stranger to leave.)

Dad ruled our household with certain moral convictions, but the stranger never felt obligated to honor them.

Profanity, for example, was not allowed in our home - not from us, our friends or any visitors.

After our long time visitor stayed longer he became more daring however, and even got away with four-letter words that burned my ears and made my dad squirm and my mother blush.

My Dad didn't permit the liberal use of alcohol but the stranger encouraged us to try it on a regular basis.

He made cigarettes look cool, cigars manly, and pipes distinguished.

He talked freely (much too freely!) about sex.

His comments were sometimes blatant, sometimes suggestive, and generally embarrassing..

I now know that my early concepts about relationships were influenced strongly by the stranger.

Time after time, he opposed the values of my parents, yet he was seldom rebuked...

And NEVER asked to leave.

More than fifty years have passed since the stranger moved in with our family.

He has blended right in and is not nearly as fascinating as he was at first.

Still, if you could walk into my parents' den today, you would still find him sitting over in his corner, waiting for someone to listen to him talk and watch him draw his pictures.

His name?... We just call him "TV".
He has a wife now....we call her "Computer".
Their first child is "Cell Phone".
Second child "I Pod".

I suppose, now we can't even live without him and his family around!
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Tua Pek Kong temple at Pasir Panjang, near Sitiawan

I first heard about this tourist attraction when in a Pusing coffeeshop. I was told there are organized tours from Pusing which include lunch. Fellow retirees decided to make a trip by car which I did not join in. But I had a look at the brochure and have a rough idea how to get there.

Today, wife said, 'Why not make a trip to the temple and see what it's like?' At the KFC junction in Sitiawan, we turned left towards Kg. Koh, a place which we used to go to for seafood meals. Past Kg. Koh, I looked for Jalan Pasir Panjang on the right, which was well sign-posted. We also saw a sign to Kuan Yin temple which reassured us that we were on the right track.

We could see many cars going in as well as coming out, presumably from the temple. Though there was a kenduri nearby, most cars were indeed heading there. We decided to park near a field next to a building under construction, well away from it to avoid getting caught in the traffic jam. It was a long walk and there were hundreds of cars parked all the way there! There were more cars in the car park within the compound next to the sea. I was actually bothered by the idea that the locals, especially the Malay residents, might complain about frequent traffic jams, especially during public holidays. I found it amazing that a temple with some granite statues and basic landscaping could attract such a large crowd. But among the visitors, most are devotees who actually prayed, which explained it.

There was a section which is named 'Taman Monyet' or Monkey Garden, but the Chinese translation was actually Fruits Garden! It is a man-made concrete pathway crudely constructed without any consideration for conservation of the mangrove trees, as evidenced from the dead trees on both sides. Rubbish thrown by inconsiderate visitors could be seen floating in the water. No monkeys nor fruit trees could be found, which wasn't surprising.

I searched the internet and found the following report which helps me in explaining...

NST: The gods must be happy at Tua Pek Kong
http://www.nst.com.my/streets/northern/the-gods-must-be-happy-at-tua-pek-kong-1.9931

Even with my limited knowledge, I think I can explain or find fault (in italics) in the following excerpt from that article:

"Taking centre stage is the gigantic Da Bo Gong (Tua Pek Kong) statue, along with statues of Jiu Tian Xuan Nu, Yu Nu, Guan Yin Niang Niang, Jin Tong, Wu Guan, Wen Guan, Qian Li Yan, Ma Zu, Shun Feng Er and Hu Ye.

Below these statues, on the cement courtyard, are 24 smaller statues of various Chinese demigods who are said to have mystical powers. (These are actually known in Cantonese as 'yee sup sei hau' or 24 examples of filial piety; as a kid, I used to see them in calendars sponsored by a paint company, and the most memorable example was that of a mother allowing her aged and poorly father-in-law to suckle her milk, at the expense of her baby!)

Outside the courtyard are statues of a monkey, pig, horseman, and a man with a staff of demigods.

At the right side of the main temple are nine statues lining the sides of the garden path leading to three man-made caves containing three small deities." (There are actually 18 statues, representing the 18 Immortals (btw, not the gang by that name!).


Link

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

CNY Greetings from our neighbour


Each time we leave our house unguarded, something like this could happen. Note the freshly cut trunk of this bougainvilla. This poor tree has a history of abuse by this uncouth person.

A few years ago, we found the plant missing! Later it was found near the junction, in front of the Indian temple multi-purpose hall. I took it back and planted at the same spot. With recent happenings, I am now suspecting he was the culprit when it went missing! So far, the plant had been subjected to weedkillers twice on separate occasions, which showed after a few days with dried leaves...

Now, he went a step further with cutting down the plant. Our patience and refrain from acting tit-for-tat has been taken as being weak I suppose. But I am taking the following advice...



Redefining Action Hero: Bill Gates is Better Than Batman (Infographic)


Correction : Update Much thanks to Matthew Herper at Forbes for pointing out that the vaccine Bill Gates spent $200 million to rescue was in fact for malaria, and not for polio as the infographic previously stated.
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A priest who never lies

A young woman on a flight to Ireland asked the priest who sat in the seat beside her, 'Father, may I ask a favour?'

'Of course child. What can I do for you?'

'Well, I bought an expensive woman's electric hair dryer for my Mother's birthday That is unopened and well over the Customs limits, and I'm afraid they'll confiscate it. Is there any way you could carry it through Customs for me? Under your robes perhaps?'

'I would love to help you, dear, but I must warn you: I will not lie.'

'With your honest face, Father, no one will question you.'

When they got to Customs, she let the priest go ahead of her.

The official asked, 'Father, do you have anything to declare?'

'From the top of my head down to my waist, I have nothing to declare.'

The official thought this answer strange, so he asked, 'And what do you have to declare from your waist to the floor?'

'I have a marvellous instrument designed to be used on a woman, but which is, to date, unused.'

Roaring with laughter, the official said, 'Go ahead, Father. Next...

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Ah Cheap Kor's BR1M

shows opportunistic use of public money being distributed through BN political party service centres and party functionaries...

Anil Netto: It's raining money III: How it is channelled

Let's hope the recipients know it is public money which they are entitled, and not be obligated to the politicians distributing it.
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Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Sodomy II: Judgment and Appeal

Either it was good judgment and therefore, bad to appeal; or bad judgment and therefore, good to appeal. Similarly, either there was political interference or no interference, not both; it is ludicrous to claim credit for a good judgment (as if there was political intervention), and then claim the appeal by prosecution after a good judgment as no intervention and declare that it was independent of political interference...

Excerpt from Kim Quek's Appeal against Anwar's acquittal a fatal error:

U-turn has damaged Najib

With these words still ringing in the ears, it therefore came as a shock that the Attorney-General had filed a notice of appeal against the Anwar acquittal on Jan 20.

Even more shocking was Najib’s complete dissociation with this appeal the next day. The New Straits Times quoted him as saying that the appeal was something strictly between the complainant and the Attorney-General, and has nothing to do with his government and Barisan Nasional (BN).

Extending this rationale by Najib, it must follow that high court judge Mohamad Zabidin Mohd Diah’s decision to acquit and discharge Anwar should have even less to do with him, the BN and the government. Then on what basis was Najib claiming that judge Zabidin’s decision was proof of the extensive political reforms that he purportedly had carried out for the country?

Isn’t it obvious that when Najib claimed the verdict as proof of his reforms, he was in fact telling the world that (a) he had undue control over the investigative and judicial process, (b) he realized it was wrong in exerting such control for illegitimate political purposes, and (c) he had agreed to cease such interference as a step toward restoration of democracy and rule of law?

In fact the whole world knew as much that it was political persecution right from the very beginning of Anwar’s ordeal three and a half years ago. He was savagely arrested and subsequently charged without an iota of evidence, save for the complainant’s obviously dishonest claim. Otherwise, why shouldn’t the world have expected rather than be shocked by the verdict?

It is high time that Najib and his colleagues move out from their self-induced delusion that the people do not know. It is for their own good that they do not misjudge the extent of the people’s awareness of the truth in this Internet age of instant information.

If there is any message that we can read from this latest move to appeal against Anwar’s acquittal, it is that this appeal is proving for the umpteenth time that Najib’s words are not to be trusted; and it also shows up once again that his so-called political reform is more an illusion than reality."

More:
http://english.cpiasia.net/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=2296:appeal-against-anwars-acquittal-a-fatal-error&catid=178:yong-thye-chong&Itemid=193
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World's longest cross-sea bridge

China has opened the world's longest cross-sea bridge - which stretches five miles further than the distance between Dover and Calais.

The Jiaozhou Bay bridge is 26.4 miles long and links China's eastern port city of Qingdao to the offshore island Huangdao.

The road bridge, which is 110ft wide and is the longest of its kind, cost nearly £1billion to build.

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2009748/That-bridge-far-Worlds-longest-sea-bridge-opens-traffic-China--hold-title-years.html#ixzz1kKnvS0ic


GBP 1 billion seems cheap when compared with our shorter ones, like Penang Bridge and Penang's second link. Even if built much cheaper, political patronage (Federal, not State) would ensure we always pay more for the contracts and the people suffer more in their daily use.
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Bill Cosby: I'm 83 and I'm tired...

I'm 83. Except for brief period in the 50's when I was doing my National Service, I've worked hard since I was 17. Except for some some serious health challenges, I put in 50-hour weeks, and didn't call in sick in nearly 40 years. I made a reasonable salary, but I didn't inherit my job or my income, and I worked to get where I am. Given the economy, it looks as though retirement was a bad idea, and I'm tired. Very tired.

I'm tired of being told that I have to "spread the wealth" to people who don't have my work ethic. I'm tired of being told the government will take the money I earned, by force if necessary, and give it to people too lazy to earn it.

I'm tired of being told that Islam is a "Religion of Peace," when every day I can read dozens of stories of Muslim men killing their sisters, wives and daughters for their family "honor"; of Muslims rioting over some slight offense; of Muslims murdering Christian and Jews because they aren't "believers"; of Muslims burning schools for girls; of Muslims stoning teenage rape victims to death for "adultery"; of Muslims mutilating the genitals of little girls; all in the name of Allah, because the Qur'an and Shari'a law tells them to.

I'm tired of being told that out of "tolerance for other cultures" we must let Saudi Arabia and other Arab countries use our oil money to fund mosques And madrassa Islamic schools to preach hate in Australia , New Zealand , UK, America and Canada , while no one from these countries are allowed to fund a church, synagogue or religious school in Saudi Arabia or any other Arab country to teach love and tolerance.

I'm tired of being told I must lower my living standard to fight global warming, which no one is allowed to debate.

I'm tired of being told that drug addicts have a disease, and I must help support and treat them, and pay for the damage they do. Did a giant germ rush out of a dark alley, grab them, and stuff white powder up their noses or stick a needle in their arm while they tried to fight it off?

I'm tired of hearing wealthy athletes, entertainers and politicians of all parties talking about innocent mistakes, stupid mistakes or youthful mistakes, when we all know they think their only mistake was getting caught. I'm tired of people with a sense of entitlement, rich or poor.

I'm really tired of people who don't take responsibility for their lives and actions. I'm tired of hearing them blame the government, or discrimination or big-whatever for their problems. I'm also tired and fed up with seeing young men and women in their teens and early 20's be-deck themselves in tattoos and face studs, thereby making themselves un-employable and claiming money from the Government.

Yes, I'm damn tired. But I'm also glad to be 83.. Because, mostly, I'm not going to have to see the world these people are making. I'm just sorry for my granddaughter and her children. Thank God I'm on the way out and not on the way in.
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Is lizard cold-blooded?

Or have we been using the word 'cold-blooded' wrongly to describe people who do things 'without feeling or emotion'? The following story could be true... but I personally find it hard to believe the 10 years...

"This is a true story that happened in Japan.

In order to renovate the house, someone in Japan breaks open the wall.

Japanese houses normally have a hollow space between the wooden walls..

When tearing down the walls, he found that there was a lizard stuck there because a nail from outside hammered into one of its feet. He sees this, feels pity, and at the same time curious, as when he checked the nail, it was nailed 10 years ago when the house was first built.

What happened? The lizard has survived in such position for 10 years!!!!!!!!!!

In a dark wall partition for 10 years without moving, it is impossible and mind-boggling. Then he wondered how this lizard survived for 10 years!!! Without moving a single step - since its foot was nailed!

So he stopped his work and observed the lizard, what it has been doing, and what and how it has been eating.

Later, not knowing from where it came appears another lizard, with food in its mouth. Ah! He was stunned and touched deeply. For the lizard, that was stuck by nail, another lizard has been feeding it for the past 10 years... Imagine... it has been doing that untiringly for 10 long years, without giving up hope on its partner.

Think, will you do that to your partner?..."


Link

Monday, January 23, 2012

Gong Xi Fa Cai



Greetings from grandniece, Jun, in London:


Can you spot her mum, in this pic with the cast in HSBC advertisement in UK?


Link to the advertisement video clip:

Sunday, January 22, 2012

More Malays joining DAP?

Recent examples of high profile Malay personalities joining DAP: Datuk Mohd Ariff Sabri Abdul Aziz ( blogs politically as Sakmongkol47, former Pulau Manis assemblyman), another political blogger, Aspen Alias (a Negri Sembilan Umno veteran), and now Hata Wahari (former president of the National Union of Journalists (NUJ) and former editorial staff of Umno-owned newspaper Utusan Malaysia)... seems the start of a trend towards multi-racial politics...

Malays Joining DAP: The Sign of Racial Politics’ Demise

What Say You - Mengapa Saya Masuk DAP ? - Hata Wahari

I think it would be nice to have more Malays joining DAP and more non-Malays joining PKR to make the respective parties more multi-racial.
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Do you notice more expectant mums around?

The other day, I noticed two expectant mothers working in a coffee shop in BG Perdana. 'Productive' place I thought, but soon I realized that one of the reasons was due to the wish for Dragon babies among Chinese in particular. With the Chinese, the impact of 'kiasuism' in anything always creates magnified effects, resulting in greater demand for certain products or services. Businessmen are likely to provide the supply and make good profits. Very predictable indeed. The other point is that when it comes to mainland Chinese, the sheer number would overwhelm even the best of planned services.

Excerpt from a news report:

"Lee says she tried to book a maternity bed at her gynaecologist's hospital soon after she found out she was pregnant, but it was already too late.

"I couldn't get my preferred private hospital to deliver even though I'm willing to pay and both me and my husband are Hong Kong residents," she says.

"Some friends told me I should start registering my Dragon baby girl for kindergarten - it's like a fight for hospitals, a fight for schools. I have to remind myself to take it easy."

Mainland mothers accounted for 38,043 out of 80,131 births in Hong Kong last year.

In the last Year of the Dragon in 2000, the number of births jumped 5.6 per cent from the previous year, according to official data.

In anticipation of a baby boom the government has tightened entry rules, stepped up border controls and capped hospital places for mainland mothers.

Mainland women have reportedly taken to smuggling their precious cargoes into the territory under baggy clothes, or renting Hong Kong apartments in the early stages of pregnancy to avoid detection.

Some desperate women have even resorted to waiting until the last minute to force their way into Hong Kong emergency wards. Hospital authorities say emergency births tripled last year.

"The issue is far more complicated than we imagine," says Cheung Tak Hong, head of the obstetrics department at Hong Kong's Prince of Wales Hospital, a government hospital near the Chinese border.

"The system just cannot cope. The increase in the manpower and facilities just cannot catch up with the demand from China. There are far too many pregnant women from China coming to give birth in Hong Kong."

The doctor, who is a spokesman for the Hong Kong Obstetrics Concern Group, says mainland women are putting the lives of themselves and their babies at risk.

"They have no bookings, we don't have their records, we don't know them beforehand and all of a sudden they come here in advanced labour. That puts a lot of pressure on our staff," he says."

Source:
'Dragon babies' stretch resources



Link

Saturday, January 21, 2012

BR1Mming with mixed feelings

As the results of the applications for BR1M (Bantuan Rakyat 1Malaysia) were known by batches, there were expressions of joy from those who were successful, as well as discontent from those who were rejected. Instead of making people happy, it is creating resentment among friends. One even commented that he would take pictures of those who own big detached houses and luxury cars, yet successful, while his was turned down, even though both husband and wife are pensioners. The most common complaint was not knowing whether pension is treated as income, because some combined pensions exceed Rm3,000 per month. For those rejected, some were wondering if it had anything to do with past incomes which exceeded the threshold. What about ownership of properties and shares of public listed companies which earn rental incomes and dividends? Again, we cannot prevent some who complained whether it had anything to do with political affiliation!

I cannot help comparing the unfairness of some who do not deserve, yet getting the Rm500, with those who were eligible before, when government paid Rm625 each to car owners who owned expensive Mercedes, BMW or Audi, just because the engine capacities were below 2,000 cc!

Someone has commented that such distributions of cash periodically are like 'giving out fish instead of teaching them how to fish'. Rm500 could mean a month's wage to some, or a few days of food expenses to others. A pensioner joked that he actually saw a group who got their money at the local 4-D shop, punting for more windfalls!
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Clannish

According to the freedictionary.com, 'clannish' is an adjective,
"1. Of, relating to, or characteristic of a clan. 2. Inclined to cling together as a group and exclude outsiders."

A niece of mine started a closed group in Facebook for our extended families, starting from my parents. Soon after, a well meaning friend in my FB list posted the following...
While most people would think being clannish is unsuitable in our modern society (refer to the above definition), I can safely say that our efforts are more towards establishing contacts among our extended families so that the young ones know each other as well as know who their elders are.

Some relatives, even siblings, are not in good terms with each other, so any notion of a clan with selfish intentions to keep business and other opportunities within the group could not be further from the truth. It is more a desperate attempt to know who our relatives are, to avoid an embarrassing situation when meeting one, to be told by another, an outsider, that we are actually related!

Sometimes, it is laughable when I read about complaints about nepotism within a political party, when given another situation, a job applicant could actually jeopardize his chance when he mentioned to the prospective boss that he knows his brother or sister! ... Simply because they were arch enemies. By extension, this could happen within a dialect or race, when some people could actually prevent another from being selected on a fair basis without prejudice. In other words, instead of bias towards the applicant, he or she would be prejudiced against. This is often referred to as 'crab mentality' where others within a race would prevent another from achieving greater success.

Anyway, by posting some old pictures, I was encouraged by comments from nephews and nieces who expressed surprise that they had never seen them before! So, their children are likely not to know their grand uncles and grand aunts, not to mention great-great ones! A niece actually photocopied a picture of her parents' wedding and displayed it in her shop!

I was only 4 years old when this pic of my eldest brother's wedding was taken, too young to know.
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It makes sense... at night

I mean, those black spots on the wall...

Kaunas, Lithuania.
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Friday, January 20, 2012

Things worth knowing by coffee lovers


Dancing goats
Legend has it... Ethiopian shepherds first noticed the effects of caffeine when they saw their goats appearing to become frisky and 'dance' after eating coffee berries.

Originally, coffee was eaten. African tribes mixed coffee berries with fat which formed edible energy balls!

The rise of Islam contributed greatly to the popularity of coffee. The religion prohibited drinking alcohol, but coffee was considered an acceptable drink.

All coffee in the world grows in the coffee belt (The 'bean belt' is the area between the Tropics of Cancer and Capricorn). Hawaii is the only state in US that grows coffee...

Still interested in knowing more? ...

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Why there is a need for Sex Discrimination Act...

Often, matchmaking agencies advertise openly 'free registration for ladies'. This makes commercial sense because they need more ladies to introduce to men who have to pay to register!

Anyway, UK is pretty strict on sex or racial discrimination, with relevant laws like Sex Discrimination Act, 1975 and Race Relations Act, 1976.

As for sex discrimination, soon after it became law in 1975, a cheeky advertisement stated something to the effect: 'Wanted: bricklayers with chest measurement of at least 36 in. and able to work topless in summer'! It was clearly worded to prevent flouting the law, yet able to prefer men only.

Years ago, there was a coloured student who saw a 'Room to let' sign outside a house. When he enquired, he was told by white house owner that it was taken up. He could not believe it and asked a white friend to enquire, and sure enough, he was given details! Under the Race Relations Act, the house owner was guilty of racial discrimination.

Recently, there was a suggestion for a Race Relations Act in Malaysia, and supposedly to be based on the one in UK! How could this be possible, knowing full well how serious the British take race equality, even if it was on paper? Unless and until we are ready to treat every citizen equally, this is virtually impossible. ... Another example of form over substance which our leaders like to conjure to fool foreigners.
Link

Our own First Lady and First Bloke?


Link

It's so easy to fix UK's economy

Dear Mr. Cameron,

Please find below our suggestion for fixing the UK 's economy.

Instead of giving billions of pounds to banks that will squander the money on lavish parties and unearned bonuses, use the following plan.

You can call it the Patriotic Retirement Plan:

There are about 10 million people over 50 in the work force.

Pay them £1 million each severance for early retirement with the following stipulations:

1) They MUST retire.
Ten million job openings - unemployment fixed

2) They MUST buy a new British car.
Ten million cars ordered - Car Industry fixed

3) They MUST either buy a house or pay off their mortgage -
Housing Crisis fixed

4) They MUST send their kids to school/college/university -
Crime rate fixed

5) They MUST buy £100 WORTH of alcohol/tobacco a week .....
And there's your money back in duty/tax etc.

It can't get any easier than that!

P.S. If more money is needed, have all members of parliament pay back their falsely claimed expenses and second home allowances.

If you think this would work, please forward to everyone you know.

Also...

Let's put the pensioners in jail and the criminals in a nursing home..

This way the pensioners would have access to showers, hobbies and walks.

They'd receive unlimited free prescriptions, dental and medical treatment, wheel chairs etc and they'd receive money instead of paying it out.

They would have constant video monitoring, so they could be helped instantly, if they fell, or needed assistance.

Bedding would be washed twice a week, and all clothing would be ironed and returned to them.

A guard would check on them every 20 minutes and bring their meals and snacks to their cell.

They would have family visits in a suite built for that purpose.

They would have access to a library, weight room, spiritual counselling, pool and education.

Simple clothing, shoes, slippers, PJ's and legal aid would be free, on request.

Private, secure rooms for all, with an exercise outdoor yard, with gardens.

Each senior could have a PC a TV radio and daily phone calls.

There would be a board of directors to hear complaints, and the guards would have a code of conduct that would be strictly adhered to.

The criminals would get cold food, be left all alone and unsupervised. Lights off at 8pm, and showers once a week. Live in a tiny room and pay £600.00 per week and have no hope of ever getting out.

Think about this (more points of contention):

COWS

Is it just me, or does anyone else find it amazing that during the mad cow epidemic our government could track a single cow, born in Appleby almost three years ago, right to the stall where she slept in the county of Cumbria?

And, they even tracked her calves to their stalls. But they are unable to locate 125,000 illegal immigrants wandering around our country. Maybe we should give each of them a cow.
------------------------------------------------------------------------

Also,

Think about this ... If you don't want to forward this for fear of offending someone -- YOU ARE PART OF THE PROBLEM! It is time for us grumpy old folk of Britain to speak up!

Link

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Landed property is still the best investment

I wish to refer to an article in The Star http://biz.thestar.com.my/news/story.asp?file=/2012/1/13/business/10251555&sec=business on the late Tan Sri Lee Yan Lian's lands being put up for sale.

The reserve prices of the 5 pieces of land mentioned totalled a whopping Rm415 million! The fact that Tan Sri died as early as 1983, I presume his estate was maintained for 28 years! In most cases, distributions were done soon after death, and the difference in value would have been substantial indeed!

According to the report, a 7,239-sq-ft land in the prime location of Jalan Bukit Bintang, Kuala Lumpur has a reserve price of RM50mil. (Rm6,907 psf!) The land is currently occupied by The Malaysia Hotel; 276,832 sq ft in 4th mile Old Klang Road (near the Pearl International Hotel)has a reserve price of RM90mil. (Rm325 psf); The other three parcels are located in Petaling Jaya: A 265,245-sq-ft plot in Jalan SS23/15 in Taman SEA has a reserve price of RM150mil(Rm565 psf); 82,715 sq ft in Jalan SS2/64, which is currently used as a car park, is going for RM100mil. (Rm1,200 psf); a vacant 84,315-sq-ft land made up of seven plots with old bungalows on two plots in Taman Tan Sri Lee Yan Lian in Section 16 has a reserve price of RM25mil. (Rm296 psf). I have included the price psf in brackets, based on the reserve prices.

I can still remember having attended an interview by Kingsley Yuen (LYL's son-in-law), at Lee Yan Lian Building, on Jalan Tun Perak (Mountbatten Road before) in 1971!

One of LYL's companies, Ban Lee Sdn Bhd, developed Taman Kepong Baru, Dr. Tan Chee Koon's constituency then. A number of my relatives bought shophouses and houses there.

United Garden, off Jalan Kelang Lama, is another of LYL's project. I am sure there are others elsewhere not mentioned.

If I am not mistaken, a part of Section 14, Petaling Jaya, was also developed by LYL. The two-roomed single-storey terrace houses were sold at below Rm10,000! Now, a similar house in its original condition is asking for Rm400,000! I thought Wisma LYL next to Section 14 belongs to them, but was told otherwise.

Anyway, to put in perspective, the properties now available for sale can be described as remnants of LYL's vast property holdings held for housing developments. In terms of value, I think his personal worth (in Ringgit) at the time of his death in 1983 was less than the total value of these remnant pieces offered for sale now! Just to show how much property values had appreciated over 28 years, partly because of inflation. Holding power makes a lot of difference. A generation of holding on to properties could make the rich become super rich!
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A dad's wish... comes true...


Pinched from Zorro unmasked, who pinched from Ai Luan, who pinched from Pepsico... Louis Koo acted too.

It might make those who are going to miss their reunion dinners because of work or travel... a bit guilty.
Link

You know you are too old when...



Link

Reunion dinner

Chinese celebrating Chinese New Year will try their best to make it for family reunion dinner on the eve of the Lunar New Year. This year there is no 30th but 29th which falls on Sunday January 22. Many employees try to take leave (if necessary and if possible) to make the whole of the following week off work. Even employers feel it is better to close for additional days knowing full well their business associates and customers or clients are likely to be off.

Anyway, Chinese restaurants are cashing in on reunion dinners. According to a friend who read it in the Star, East Ocean is having 5 sessions of dinners! Just imagine: starting from 5 pm, every hour until 9 pm. This is crazy and for those who had experienced low quality and poor service during such rush hours, they are opting for home dinners instead. It is so much easier to order items like roast pork, roast duck or other special items to supplement dishes which can be cooked at home. The latest commercialism arising out of this is that there are caterers specializing in popular dishes like shark's fins soup or just about any item you wish to be delivered or collected. This is getting popular because most people are put off by the waiting at restaurants, and having to rush through meals because people are waiting for your seats! Not the best way to enjoy reunion dinners. Anyway, home should be the right place for reunion anyway.
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A Christian analogy

There once was a man named George Thomas, pastor in a small New England town.
One Easter Sunday morning he came to the Church carrying a rusty, bent, old bird cage, and set it by the pulpit.. Eyebrows were raised and, as if in response, Pastor Thomas began to speak....

"I was walking through town yesterday when I saw a young boy coming toward me swinging this bird cage. On the bottom of the cage were three little wild birds, shivering with cold and fright.

I stopped the lad and asked, "What do you have there, son?"

"Just some old birds, "came the reply”.

"What are you going to do with them?" I asked.

"Take 'em home and have fun with 'em," he answered. "I'm gonna tease 'em and pull out their feathers to make 'em fight. I'm gonna have a real good time."

"But you'll get tired of those birds sooner or later. What will you do then?"

"Oh, I got some cats," said the little boy. "They like birds. I'll take 'em to them."

The pastor was silent for a moment. "How much do you want for those birds, son?"

"Huh ?? !!! Why, you don't want them birds, mister.

They're just plain old field birds. They don't sing. They ain't even pretty!"

"How much?" the pastor asked again.

The boy sized up the pastor as if he were crazy and said, "$10?"

The pastor reached in his pocket and took out a ten dollar bill. He placed it in the boy's hand. In a flash, the boy was gone. The pastor picked up the cage and gently carried it to the end of the alley where there was a tree and a grassy spot. Setting the cage down, he opened the door, and by softly tapping the bars persuaded the birds out, setting them free. Well, that explained the empty bird cage on the pulpit, and then the pastor began to tell this story:

One day Satan and Jesus were having a conversation. Satan had just come from the Garden of Eden, and he was gloating and boasting. "Yes, sir, I just caught a world full of people down there. Set me a trap, used bait I knew they couldn't resist. Got 'em all!"

"What are you going to do with them?" Jesus asked.

Satan replied, "Oh, I'm gonna have fun! I'm gonna teach them how to marry and divorce each other, how to hate and abuse each other, how to drink and smoke and curse. I'm gonna teach them how to invent guns and bombs and kill each other. I'm really gonna have fun!"

"And what will you do when you are done with them?" Jesus asked.
"Oh, I'll kill 'em," Satan glared proudly.

"How much do you want for them?" Jesus asked.

"Oh, you don't want those people. They ain't no good. Why, you'll take them and they'll just hate you. They'll spit on you, curse you and kill you. You don't want those people!!"

"How much? He asked again.

Satan looked at Jesus and sneered, "All your blood, tears and your life."

Jesus said, "DONE!" Then He paid the price.

The pastor picked up the cage and walked from the pulpit.

Link

Making sense of our lives

Wise men say... only fools rush in...

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

How an idiot got into Heaven

Three men: a philosopher, a mathematician and an idiot, were out riding in the car when it crashed into a tree. Before anyone knows it, the three men found themselves standing before the Gates of Heaven, where the Devil was standing nearby.

"Gentlemen," the Devil started, "Due to the fact that Heaven is now overcrowded, it was agreed to limit the number of people entering Heaven. If anyone of you can ask me a question which I don't know or cannot answer, then you're worthy enough to go to Heaven; if not, then you'll come with me to Hell."

The philosopher then stepped up, "OK, give me the most comprehensive report on Socrates' teachings," With a snap of his finger, a stack of paper appeared next to the Devil. The philosopher read it and had to conclude that everything was there. "Then, go to Hell!" With another snap of his finger, the philosopher disappeared.

The mathematician then asked, "Give me the most complicated formula you can ever think of!" With a snap of his finger, another stack of paper appeared. The mathematician read it and reluctantly agreed it was correct. "Then, go to Hell!" With another snap of his finger, the mathematician disappeared too.

The idiot then stepped forward and said, "Bring me a chair!"

The Devil brought forward a chair.

"Drill 7 holes on the seat."

The Devil did just that.

The idiot then sat on the chair and let out a very loud fart. Standing up, he asked, "Which hole did my fart come out from?"

The Devil inspected the seat and said, "The third hole from the right."

"Wrong," said the idiot, "it's from my asshole."

The idiot went to Heaven.

Link

Monday, January 16, 2012

Another take on NFC

If not for arrogance and penchant for luxury, NFC could have escaped the radar of the critics.

Instead of buying luxury condominiums in Bangsar and Singapore, the directors should have bought large tracts of land which would serve their primary purpose of breeding cattle. Had they bought land instead, they would have benefited from substantial appreciation in value.

Even with my simple mind, I can think of tracts of land divided into individual farms which could be rented out to individual farmers, on condition that they rear only cattle. Just imagine the image to any outsider who does not bother to check out the real deal. Or...

Instead of the reduced number of cattle from 8,000 to below 6,000 heads, they could have bought more cattle which could have given a favourable impression that they were doing the right thing. For say, Rm30 million, they could have bought 30,000 heads of cattle at Rm1,000 each, or 10,000 at Rm3,000 each, depending on the current price. I bet substantial increase in number would have silenced some critics, after all we are dealing with public perception.

Hypothetically, having a soft loan at 2% pa interest, the directors could have just borrowed from the government and put in FD at a conservative 3% pa, and enjoy a yearly Rm2.5 million in net income without doing anything. If a claim that the loan repayment does not set in until the full Rm250 million has been disbursed was true, then borrowing Rm249 million (just short of 1 million), they could have almost Rm7.5 million yearly! Enough for decent company cars and directors' remuneration. Just to show how ludicrous government aid could be easily abused if not properly monitored. (It has been reported that the loan at 2% pa is repayable over 17 years starting from 2013, after a grace period of 3 years, instead of the above notion 'that the loan repayment does not set in...' It is still a damn good deal by any standard.)

Recent statements by PM and other ministers did not make sense. What people expect from 'assets are frozen' is when bank accounts are frozen and directors effectively suspended from their positions and duties while the company is being run by someone appointed by the government and investigations are being carried out. But according to NFC official, it is 'business as usual' and the only thing frozen is probably the beef!

The NFC case has caught the attention of many people because of its ease at getting a large amount of soft loan at incredibly favourable terms, which was misused to pay overgenerous directors' remuneration, buy luxury car and condominiums. NFC has caused envy among fellow Malaysians. No doubt it is likely to be a liability to BN and a good point to use by PR in the coming general election. If the directors' rationale for buying condominiums is good investments, then everyone of us would like the government to lend us the money to do so.

By the way, the following could be a true story which shows financial returns from investment in property could be so rewarding. Maybe the directors of NFC were wise in this sense, but not when it involved public funds meant for a specific venture...

A Singapore millionaire, LKA, who secretly maintained a mistress in Hong Kong, bought a posh sea view apartment (in his own name) for her to live in, plus gave her a monthly allowance of US$5,000. The house cost him about US$700,000 in 2005. The affair lasted for 5 years.

He sold the house this year for $3.8 million, after they broke up. A quick calculation shows that after 5 years of a fling with the woman, he still had a net gain of $2.8 million plus 5 years of FREE SEX.

When his wife found out about this, he offers the $2.8 million to her. But she was still not happy ..., and she was very mad at him and gave him a big mouthful... She yelled at him at the top of her voice and said... "BLOODY IDIOT, STUPID FOOL" !!! ... Why the hell didn't you keep TWO MISTRESSES !!!!


Link

'Never the twain shall meet'

According to Wikipedia:

'The Ballad of East and West' is a poem by Rudyard Kipling. It was first published in 1889, and has been much collected and anthologised since. Its first line is often quoted, sometimes as an example of Kipling's attitudes to race and to the Empire; but those who quote it thus often completely miss the third and fourth lines. It is worth quoting the refrain which opens, and closes, the poem in full:

Oh, East is East and West is West, and never the twain shall meet,
Till Earth and Sky stand presently at God's great Judgment Seat;
But there is neither East nor West, Border, nor Breed, nor Birth,
When two strong men stand face to face, though they come from the ends of the earth!

This may be read as saying that 'it is indisputable that geographic points of the compass will never meet in this life, but that when two strong men [or equals] meet, the accidents of birth, whether of nationality, race, or family, do not matter at all - the Asian and the European are equals'.

According to dictionary.reference.com:

'The culture of the West ( Europe and the Americas) will always be very different from that of the East ( Asia). ( Twain means “two.”) This saying is part of the refrain of “The Ballad of East and West,” a poem by Rudyard Kipling.'

As an English literature dropout, I was reminded of the quote when I first saw these two pictures showing meetings of contrasts:

Skagden, Denmark, where Baltic Sea and North Sea meet...

Favelas of Brazil: contrast poverty with wealth...

How long does it take for certain items to decompose?

I wish we can involve everyone in efforts to recycle things. I am particularly surprised and disappointed that we do not have people interested in recycling glass, which takes over a million years to decompose!

Think before we leave things to decompose...

Paper Towel - 2-4 weeks

Banana Peel - 3-4 weeks

Paper Bag - 1 month

Newspaper - 1.5 months

Apple Core - 2 months

Cardboard - 2 months

Cotton Glove - 3 months

Orange peels - 6 months

Plywood - 1-3 years

Wool Sock - 1-5 years

Milk Cartons - 5 years

Cigarette Butts - 10-12 years

Leather shoes - 25-40 years

Tinned Steel Can - 50 years

Foamed Plastic Cups - 50 years

Rubber-Boot Sole - 50-80 years

Plastic containers - 50-80 years

Aluminum Can - 200-500 years

Plastic Bottles - 450 years

Disposable Diapers - 550 years

Monofilament Fishing Line - 600 years

Plastic Bags - 200-1000 years

Glass - 1-2 million years
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Obama-Najib tete-a-tete

author unknown (we have a number of good 'made-up' artists, maybe someone could enlighten me); treat it with a pinch of salt while you have a good laugh; as for its authenticity, only if you believe the President and our PM are on first-name terms...

Obama: Mr PM, I’m still curious … Did you actually plan to call for a snap election on 11-11-11?
Prime Minister: Of course, but I missed it due to unforeseen reason (*sigh*)

Obama: Gee, it must be very important for you to miss it since the date was your lucky number. I wonder what could be so serious.
Prime Minister: It was my fault really ─ I’ve forgotten that 11-11-11 was also another auspicious date for love couples. So Auntie Rosy somehow insisted we must romantically spend some times together. One thing leads to another and you know … by the time I realized it, it was too late to announce it (*grin*).

Obama: So, since you missed the date, does that mean it will be next year?
Prime Minister: Don’t be silly, it’s just some numbers. Besides, there is still 11-12-11, 11-1-12 or even 11-11-12. I can still make a surprise after the UMNO general assembly later, you know. So it could be this year after all. It’s so funny to see how the opposition and my enemies within UMNO keep guessing when I’ll call the snap election.

Obama: Talk about UMNO general assembly, wouldn’t it be too dangerous to let your, you know, your enemies attack you?
Prime Minister: Oh! You meant the 3M team? Worry not, Auntie Rosy already despatched a messenger to the old man that if he wish to see his son becomes future Prime Minister, he better STFU (shut-the-fuck-up) or else Auntie Rosy would personally give some Birkin handbags to Anwar’s wife. So the old fox got the message crystal clear.

Obama: That’s brilliant. But did it goes well with the other team member? You know … your deputy?
Prime Minister: Aha, that fella … Well, what’s the hottest talk-about issue now?

Obama: Well, of course the ”Lam-Boo” (Lembu) … I mean, the CowGate … I mean, the NFC (National Feedlot Corporation) scandal, of course.
Prime Minister: Precisely, you don’t think I delayed the release of the audit report for no apparent reason, do you?

Obama: Jesus Christ, it was you who started the fire, didn’t you? But I don’t get it because I thought that woman would not think twice about licking your yellow pair of boots to get Senatorship.
Prime Minister: Yes, she definitely would do that but she would lick it twice as fast my enemy’s boots too. So I need to send a message, just in case she was thinking about stabbing me at the back. That “Cowboy” would definitely think twice about revolting against me. Hey, I’m very skilful in this area, you know, after the 1987’s Team-A and Team-B fight.

Obama: Of course, I believe I was briefed about that somewhere. So, I supposed this year’s general assembly would be another boring event, huh?
Prime Minister: Nope, it would be the ultimate and final ring to bash the opposition before I call for the general election (*oops*). So, the Chinese will get whacked, the Indian will get whacked, Anwar will get whacked and whatnot. Most importantly I would be able to see my true supporters before I finalise the candidates. Heck, I may even do a cabinet reshuffle right after the general assembly. So I think my pair of yellow boots will get super wet (*proud*).

Obama: No worry Mr PM, I’m sure your boots would get cleaned up every minute. But seriously, are you ready for a snap election? What about the Chinese votes?
Prime Minister: Fuck the Chinese ─ majority of them are already with DAP but fortunately there’re still many stupid Chinese who actually bought the idea of 1Malaysia. I was surprised to see the power of Facebook and Twitter. Believe it or not, a huge number of young Chinese actually like me especially my 1Malaysia scam as if I was serious about it. Gosh, I just like my country ─ there’re fools everywhere, you know. So unlike 2008 general election, I have bigger slice of Chinese votes with me now.

Obama: And the Indians?
Prime Minister: Aha, the Indian, they have been divided for good ever since those HIndraf troublemakers were put into ISA, brainwashed, threatened and released thereafter. Seriously I was wrong when I thought the Iban and Kadazan in Sarawak were the stupidest. At least they exchanged their votes for cold-cash. But the Indian, you just need to promise them peanuts and they would come hugging and crying to you as if you’re Mahatma Gandhi. Their votes are ours, bro.

Obama: How about the Malays then?
Prime Minister: Hahaha, this people are the easiest meat of all. Remember how Mahathir tricked that old senile Nik Aziz into the “Hudud” trap? One thing you’ve to learn is how to play the Malay’s sentiment and emotion. Religion is the short-cut to get their votes, as simple as that.

Obama: Very interesting, Mr PM. But that Anwar keeps on drumming about corruptions everywhere he goes, even to the toilet cleaning lady. Aren’t you worried?
Prime Minister: Of course not, silly. You see, Malays are least disturbed about corruption otherwise they would have kicked that old good-for-nothing Mahathir long time ago already. Most of them consider corruption as “Rezeki”, just like luck or jackpot, you know, like those slot machines people keep on pulling that you see in the casinos.

Obama: Oh yes, I played that before but I hate it because I lost my 100 bucks super fast. So, what’s the best way to swing the Malays votes, besides playing the religion cards since the racial cards doesn’t work anymore now?
Prime Minister: Well, SEX, of course ─ that’s why I won’t be sending Anwar behind bars anytime soon, because I still need to slap him with more sex allegations, if required, to keep the dance going. Hmm, thinking of sex, I consider myself lucky not to be caught with my pants down like that Chua Soi Lek, during my Port Dickson trip some years ago. I would be dead meat if there’re video recordings of me doing that “naughty things”, you know what I mean?

Obama: This is awesome. But how do you address the issue of escalating cost of living? You gotta solve Malays’ bread and butter problem, don’t you?
Prime Minister: That’s easy, my CREAM, I mean KR1M (Kedai Rakyat 1 Malaysia) works like a charm. Just get that Mydin fella to push some leftover, I mean low-quality products at extremely cheap price and they would be treating me like a God ─ bunch of fools, aren’t they?

Obama: Impressive Mr PM!!! Oh, one more thing (*act like Steve Jobs*). What if the opposition does win the next general election with simple majority?
Prime Minister: That won’t happen, Obama, because we’ve put in place hundreds of thousands of “friendly new voters” after the illegal workers registration, just like the Project-M in Sabah. We’ve police, army, election commission, judges, rulers and whatnot behind us. We can’t possibly lose the general election. Even if we lose by simple majority, we’ll buy them back within hours after the result. There’re still many political prostitutes within opposition camp, you know, like that Hee-Apa-Nama?

Obama: (*laugh*) … Yeah, heard about that frog. But what if there’re not enough frogs to switch to your sides? That would be disastrous, won’t it?
Prime Minister: Hmm, we’ll drag our feat on the official election results and create smokescreens and diversions. We’ll get the King to proclaim us as the winner anyway.

Obama: My goodness, that would make many people furious and they may take to the street. So … (*was interrupted*)
Prime Minister: Aha, that’s where my new (*proud*) “Peaceful Assembly Bill” comes into play. I was so proud of my latest strategy that I couldn’t sleep for two nights. Even Mahathir was so proud of me he kept calling me to congratulate me. I can’t possibly think of how the people can demonstrate when the proposed Act bans street demonstrations while prohibiting public gatherings in petrol stations, hospitals, fire stations, airports, railways, land public transport terminals, ports, canals, docks, bridges, places of worship, kindergartens, schools, dams and reservoirs.
Furthermore, with the 30 days notice required prior to the assembly, the police would have more than enough time to comb every rat’s hole and arrest the organisers, so another Bersih-like protest cannot possibly happen. And … blah blah blah

Obama: (*yawn yawn*) … that’s a genius plan, Mr PM. But what if the people uprising do happen because of such suppression? You know, the one like the Middle East …
Prime Minister: Stop being ridiculous. We’re not like the Middle East and that means the Malaysian people are still very naive about true demonstration. Simply put, Malaysians people are still very naive about true demonstration. Malaysians do not have the stamina for massive and days of protests. They can only stand for a couple of hours. After that they would need to go back for their dinner and watch their Akademi Fantasia. They’re too pampered to miss their TV or Astro shows or mamak’s session to sleep on the streets.

Obama: (*speechless and impressed with the Prime Minister’s intelligence*)



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My choice of household tips...

from a list forwarded by a friend, based on my personal experience:

Using bread tags as cord labels...


Way to fold fitted bedsheet...


Putting each bed linen inside its own pillow case...


Using a stocking to cover vacuum hose when looking for tiny items like screw or earring...


Using a velcro strip to hang soft toys...


Using hotel shower cap to hold shoes before putting in bag...


Last, but not least, using gutters for planting vegetables (as a subtle hint to my neighbour)...

Different takes on MCA

While MCA believes they can oust Guan Eng from Bagan...

I happened to joke recently about MCA, that it should get itself listed on Bursa Saham Malaysia, as a last resort. MCA has always been described as a 'Towkay' political party because of some Chinese successes in business as a result of political connections. However, it is increasingly seen as losing its relevance as a race-based party, just like Umno and MIC. But over the years, MCA has become financially strong, despite some setbacks when Multi-Purpose Holdings faced financial problems and needed some big names like Lee Loy Seng and Robert Kuok to provide confidence. Now MCA's assets, like The Star for instance, must be worth billions. Recently, following Najib's example, MCA on its own has been distributing Rm100 to senior members. Some claimed, even new senior members could apply to be members and get the Rm100! In other words, getting paid to be members. Well, just in case the GE 13 spells doom for the party politically, there is always the option to go public on our stock exchange! Alternatively, liquidation and distribution to members could mean a one-time windfall to them. Could this be an investment opportunity for new members?
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Sunday, January 15, 2012

Efficient Chinese way

"I have 3 demands or I'll kill the boy..."


Negotiators assess the situation from next door...

Head Negotiator In Position ...

Negotiations begin...

and Negotiations concluded!


The cost of the bullet £0.25.

As a comparison with UK's humanitarian way:

In the UK they would shut the street down for 48 hours;
Take 48 hours to talk him out of it;
Spend £5 million giving him a fair trial; and
Pay his food and lodging for life AND give him a vote!

At the end of his sentence, if a foreigner, he is likely to be given an air ticket plus allowance as part of deportation procedure! No wonder UK is in dire straits.
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