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More adventurous than the average bear

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Monday, March 26, 2012

Links - 26th March 2012

"Life is like playing a violin in public and learning the instrument as one goes on." - Samuel Butler


Inequality may lead to rage against the machines - - "We are in the midst of a technological upheaval; and financial rewards are flowing to the elites who create and control the new machines. Almost everybody else is threatened – including sophisticated bank executives at Citi and WellPoint’s healthcare analysts... Even if displaced workers do find jobs, will these jobs be dignified? A society divided between master-programmers and servants may not appeal to the servants, who will be the majority. But neo-Marxist visions of burger flippers on the barricades seem a touch too paranoid. In the 19th century, the shift from farm to factory was decried as dehumanising. But the supposedly alienated proletariat soon morphed into proud welders and machinists and today it is the decline of factories that is perceived as a problem. The lesson is that attitudes adjust and job status is elastic. There may be real unhappiness during the adjustment phase, but eventually the nannies of yesterday will be the respected childcare professionals of tomorrow. Cooks will turn into executive chefs. And so, in the last analysis, Watson’s most enduring impact will be to accentuate the trade-off between equity and growth"

Best Chinese style nasi lemak? - "There really are two schools of thought when it comes to nasi lemak: those who think that nasi lemak is a Malay dish and they like it that way, while there are others who like the Chinese style because they can order luncheon meat with it. Traditionally, the Malay style nasi lemak is cooked in a steamer. It is also known as nasi lemak kukus and in general, they would use the local Malaysian grown rice instead of the Thai Hom Mali (Jasmine) rice. The Chinese style, on the other hand, uses Thai rice as we are so used to eating it."

5K Obstacle Course Zombie Race - Run For Your Lives - "Protect your brain and run for your life. This is one race where your legs giving out are the least of your problems. Run For Your Lives is a first-of-its-kind event, one part 5K, one part obstacle course, one part escaping the clutches of zombies — and all parts awesome."

Stop This Absurd War on the Color Pink - "The world is full of electromagnetic radiation, and the only intrinsic properties that this radiation possesses are physical ones such as wavelength and intensity. Color, on the other hand, is all in your head"

z4ds6.jpg (JPEG Image, 2669 × 3559 pixels) - "Draw your best friend!"

Some Bangladeshi boys are toy boys for S'pore women - "Several of the 10 Bangladeshi foreign workers whom TNP spoke to yesterday said they could not afford to have girlfriends here as they have families to support back home. Many also labelled the Filipino and Indonesian maids who try to befriend them as "gold diggers". Mr Makbul, who has worked in the construction industry here for 10 years, said: "Some Bangladeshi men in Singapore often go to Lucky Plaza to get lucky with Filipino maids on Sundays. "If they prefer Indonesians, they will go to City Plaza in Paya Lebar"... this reporter asked him how he knew so much about these women. Mr Makbul, who has a wife of three years in Bangladesh, looked a bit uncomfortable and pondered for a while before replying: "My friends told me about them. I'm a married man. I don't fool around""

Maids say Bangladeshi workers are the ones who hit on them - "the charm of male foreign workers sends 46-year-old Gena into a fit of giggles. The Filipina admitted that she found them attractive, but turned coy when asked what she liked about them."

Hougang by-election to be called, date undecided - "Mr Lee said that the Constitution reflects a political philosophy that emphasises stable government, and the view that in elections, voters are primarily choosing between political parties to be given the mandate to govern the country, rather than between individual candidates to become MPs... "if we are in this situation today, it is because the Workers' Party has caused this situation to happen knowing the consequences""
In that case, the merits (or lack thereof) of individual candidates don't matter...; if the situation had not been caused to happen, even more hay would've been made

Invisible Children founders posing with guns: an interview with the photographer - "I can’t bring myself to watch the video. I found all of their previous efforts to be emotionally manipulative, and all the things I try as a journalist not to be. After the peace talks in 2008, they put out another video, and I saw the footage used in these videos blending archival footage with LRA and SPLA and videos of them goofing off. It was the most irresponsible act of image-making that I’d seen in a long time. They conflated the SPLA with the LRA. The SPLA is a government army, holding weapons given by the government, and yet they did not create any division between them and LRA. That’s terrible... People who have lived [in Uganda] for years, bona fide aid workers who have studied foreign policy and other relevant fields like public health, who are really there because they are trying to solve problems — they see Invisible Children as trying to promote themselves and a version of the narrative. Most Ugandans also think they are ridiculous. They say “Invisible Children! They seem pretty visible to me.” Even the name is so loaded... The LRA isn’t even active in Uganda anymore, so we’re getting the issue to the spotlight with so much misinformation"

Faced with Kony 2012 media storm, Invisible Children hits back at critics - "“Daring Kony in a mocking way like this ... could either make Kony weaker or stronger - the later is more likely to happen,” Ugandan blogger and media consultant Javie Ssozi wrote in an email Thursday. “I wonder whether [the filmmaker] thought through the consequences of using such words before he used them! I want Kony captured but not through use of provocative statements which could cause more harm than good!” Detractors say that the charity over-simplifies the situation and relegates to the sidelines Africans who will be “saved” by foreigners. They question the group’s finances and criticize their willingness to work with the Ugandan military, which Human Rights Watch blames for torture and repression. Supporters counter that the awareness being raised by the video is too important to be lost to controversy... The group acknowledges that barely one-third of its budget goes to on-the-ground programs"
"Awareness" - the solution to all the world's problems!

Entire nation of Kiribati to be relocated over rising sea level threat - "

'Sexist trousers' spark Twitter row - "Madhouse, a nationwide chain of discount men’s clothing stores, was branded “shameful” and “outrageous” by hundreds of Twitter users yesterday, because of the label’s washing instructions to ‘Give it to your woman’"
How many feminists does it take to change a lightbulb?

Last Suppers Recreated - "The results range from the understandably ambitious (John Wayne Gacy's shrimp, fried chicken, fries and strawberries feast) to the chilling (Victor Feguer's single olive)."

CAMERA: Exposing False Zionist Quotes (Quote Busters) - "Did Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon vow to burn Palestinian children and rape Arabic girls? Did former Israeli leader Menachem Begin refer to Palestinians as “two-legged beasts,” and did another Israeli leader declare that all Arabs must be killed unless they are willing to live as slaves? No, but given the number of Web sites repeating these allegations, it is easy to see how this nonsense has gained credence. Indeed, the attribution of invidious statements to Israel’s leaders has become a popular stratagem among Israel’s enemies. Many are fabricated, taken out of context or otherwise manipulated to present a distorted, negative view of Zionist intentions and actions. Propagated on the internet, some of these misquotes eventually make their way into opinion columns in campus newspapers and even, on occasion, the mainstream press."

News Keeps Getting Worse for Vitamins - - "many people gobble down large doses of vitamins believing that they boost the body’s ability to mop up damaging free radicals that lead to cancer and heart disease. In addition to the more recent research, several reports in recent years have challenged the notion that megadoses of vitamins are good for you. A Johns Hopkins School of Medicine review of 19 vitamin E clinical trials of more than 135,000 people showed high doses of vitamin E (greater than 400 IUs) increased a person’s risk for dying during the study period by 4 percent. Taking vitamin E with other vitamins and minerals resulted in a 6 percent higher risk of dying. Another study of daily vitamin E showed vitamin E takers had a 13 percent higher risk for heart failure... Despite a lack of evidence that vitamins actually work, consumers appear largely unwilling to give them up"

the visible problem with invisible children - "Imagine that today you heard about what happened in NYC and Washington DC on September 11, 2001 for the first time. You were shown a video of footage from that day. You saw the planes hit the towers, you heard President Bush’s address, you saw the Pentagon wreckage, you watch in horror as you see people plunge to their death, jumping from the burning towers. Now imagine that you are inspired by this disaster. You want to something to help. What if you went to NYC today, expecting to see piles of rubble to clean up? What if you went, expecting that there would be thousands of people in the streets crying, looking for loved ones? But what would happen when you arrived and discovered that there was none of this, but a whole host of other problems?... Self centered American kids are flying around the world to change it. The catch is they don’t know what they are doing or where they are going. They are blindly making a problem worse by throwing thousands of dollars at something they don’t understand"

Happy Words Trump Negativity in the English Language

Women Happier in Relationships When Men Feel Their Pain - "Believing your partner is trying to be empathetic more important to relationship than actual empathy"
Lies and illusions - what relationships are based on

Another WP MP Pritam Singh accused of ‘copying’ the works of others in his parliamentary speech - "Another Workers Party MP Pritam Singh has been accused by netizens for ‘copying’ the works of others after fellow party colleague Chen Show Mao was slammed for reproducing an article written by a ex-civil servant on his Facebook page without giving due credit."
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