"Malaysia Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad and the Sultan of Johor are seen in a blue Proton Saga... "When asked whether there is any tension with the sultan, Dr Mahathir said: “No, I don’t see anything because I went to see him and he drove me to the airport. I don’t want to comment on the sultans because if I say anything that is not good then it’s not nice because he is the sultan”"

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Saturday, October 23, 2010

Links - 23rd October 2010

"The problem with any unwritten law is that you don't know where to go to erase it." - Glaser and Way


Interlopers Run Amok: Guys Crash Road Races for Women - ""You take out the testosterone and these events are kinder, cleaner, gentler and sweeter," says Robert Pozo... Men can register for these races, as footnotes on the event websites note. Technically allowing guys to run avoids legal spats, pleases charity sponsors whose fund-raisers are often male and engenders a magnanimous spirit. But these races tolerate rather than welcome male participants... Goodie bags often contain feminine-cut T-shirts, along with swag like perfume samples, chocolates and pink sandals. One race is giving away feather boas and tiaras... Other men see a target-rich environment. "If you want to meet fit young women, it's hard to beat"... "We're making this race so girly that men won't want any part of it""
It's fine to exclude men, but naturally, there is an outcry at the reverse; this is one of the few times I agree with Jezebel

A Thai Region Where Husbands Are Imported - "While the men — many of them retired and living on pensions, many disappointed in their lives and marriages at home — may be seeking an emotional connection, the women are generally motivated by economics, said Mr. Prayoon, who provides counseling for mixed couples. “For some ladies it is just money, money, money,” he said. “Getting married has become a business more than love. People want to improve their social status. Sometimes these ladies spend the husband’s money, use it all, then he’s cut out. There are many cases like that.” Even though many men are retired and living on a fixed income, they are expected to help support their wives’ extended families, beginning with a dowry of several thousand dollars"

Campaign finance: Corporate money and elections - "A 2002 paper by three MIT political scientists... finds that campaign contributions have little influence on candidates' political actions, which are overwhelmingly determined by party and by the convictions of voters in their districts. (They restate a provocative 1972 question by political scientist Gordon Tullock: "Why is there so little money in political campaigns?"...given that an investment of a few million dollars could, one imagines, affect billions of dollars in government spending.) They argue that political giving is not a form of vote-buying, but a form of political participation... senators are very responsive to the views of the richest third of their constituents, somewhat responsive to the views of the middle third, and utterly indifferent to the views of the poorest third"

"Rushdie Rules" Reach Florida - "Shariah... insists that Islam, and the Koran in particular, enjoy a privileged status. Islam ferociously punishes anyone, Muslim or non-Muslim, who trespasses against Islam's sanctity. Codes in Muslim-majority states generally reflect this privilege; for example, Pakistan's blasphemy law, 295-C, punishes derogatory remarks about Muhammad with execution... A 2003 decree ruled the Bible suitable for use by Muslims when cleaning after defecation. Iranian authorities reportedly burned hundreds of Bibles in May. This imbalance, whereby Islam enjoys immunity and other religions are disparaged, has long prevailed in Muslim-majority countries"

When God Sanctions Killing: Effect of Scriptural Violence on Aggression - "Aggression increased when the passage mentioned God, especially among participants who believed in God and in the Bible. These results suggest that scriptural violence sanctioned by God can increase aggression, especially in believers"
"Pro-censorship lobbyists generally ignore that fact and instead claim that it is proven that portrayals of violence in the media cause violence. Frequently, either no evidence at all is cited, or it is incorrect, or highly questionable at best. Of course, this is intended to encourage a belief that the solution to violence in society is to ban depictions of same (although they do not call for banning of the Bible)"

6 Romantic Movie Gestures That Can Get You Prison Time

Beijing, China: What one girl does when it's hard to find parking

Killing Tynt’s “Read More:” Clipboard Copy Hijacker With The Adblock Plus Plug-In For Firefox - "I hate Tynt. If you’ve ever copied text from a Web page, then pasted it, only to find a mysterious “Read More:” link inserted at the end of the text you copied, you just ran headfirst into Tynt... Fortunately, I was able to put an immediate end to Tynt’s “Read More” clipboard copy highjacking in Firefox with Adblock Plus"
Addendum: Tynt is not the only site that does this. Other culprits I found were po.st, so I added a "*po.st/*" filter, and sharethis.com. The Economic Times uses "clipboardupdatescript"
Or just: Disable Clipboard Manipulations in Firefox - this screws up sites like Facebook and Quora though so NoScript might be better

YouTube - Muslim girls collide with Hans Teeuwen - Subtitled - "Everything with a certain status has a certain power. Power always tends to corrupt, and has to be ridiculed. If you can't do that anymore, you get creepy situations - a dictatorship or something... An insult is for some people a truth they do not wish to hear. 'We cannot discuss that because it could be construed as an insult'...You are pretending that sensitivity and aggrievedness is a religious privilege. If I watch TV I feel annoyed, insulted. But you develop a shield for these things. That is what you do in a free society... A moment ago I heard someone say that homosexuality is a sin. A moment ago someone walked away because of a mini skirt. All these things are also very insulting"

The Meat Eaters - "The continuous, incalculable suffering of animals is also an important though largely neglected element in the traditional theological “problem of evil”... The suffering of animals is particularly challenging because it is not amenable to the familiar palliative explanations of human suffering... Suppose that we could arrange the gradual extinction of carnivorous species, replacing them with new herbivorous ones. Or suppose that we could intervene genetically, so that currently carnivorous species would gradually evolve into herbivorous ones, thereby fulfilling Isaiah’s prophecy. If we could bring about the end of predation by one or the other of these means at little cost to ourselves, ought we to do it?"

MI6 'used bodily fluids as invisible ink' - "He "heard from C that the best invisible ink is semen", which did not react to the main methods of detection. Furthermore it had the advantage of being readily available."

Why Corporate Leaders Won't Abolish Performance Reviews - "The performance review, a practice that is as destructive and fraudulent as it is ubiquitous. And despite all the evidence — despite the fact that almost every person reviewed and every person reviewing knows it is bogus — corporate bosses do nothing to hasten its demise. They won't even acknowledge they have a problem."
Addendum: Keywords - 'performance review'

Why Companies Should Insist that Employees Take Naps

Jailed, fined for bribery bid - "A SINGAPOREAN was sentenced to a day's jail and fined RM10,000 (S$4,291) for trying to bribe a traffic policeman with RM50... Tay offered RM50 to constable Muhammad Afizi Salleh for not issuing a summons despite the policeman advising him not to do so"
He got caught for bribery in Malaysia because the operation was being monitored by the Anti-Corruption Commission. Too bad he couldn't take a hint

Unhear it - get that damn song out of your head! - "We created this site for those of you that have a song stuck in your head and you can't get it out no matter what you do. Using the latest in reverse-auditory-melodic-unstickification technology, we've been able to allow our users to “unhear” songs by hearing equally catchy songs. So really all we're doing is making you forget your old song by replacing it with another one... sorry"

Hamas claims West Bank killings as direct peace talks set to resume - "The statement from the armed wing of Hamas, a group that opposes any dialogue with Israel, said the “Qassam Brigades announces its full responsibility for the heroic operation in Hebron”... “Hamas blesses the Hebron operation and considers it as a normal reaction to the occupation crime and a proof of the failure … to abort the project of resistance”"
The difference between Hamas and Israel: Israel doesn't celebrate the deaths of Palestinians

S’poreans shedding clothes, and inhibitions - "He gets more requests from women to do nude shoots than men... According to Ian Ong, owner of Mr & Mrs Smith, an upscale sex boutique in Bukit Timah, its workshops teaching people how to please their partners in the bedroom are always fully booked... Some areas are still no-go, though. In the world of media and advertising, it is hard to find Asian models willing to pose in bikinis or lingerie, much less go nude for a magazine photo shoot... “I do find it strange that the models are willing to go out in a skimpy top, sometimes without a bra, but are not willing to go nude for their professional work”"

Shaanxi Normal University Tests Female Standing Urinals
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