"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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Monday, December 09, 2013

Links - 9th December 2013

SHOCKING Facts About Our CPF in Singapore! (Part 2) - "why is there a discrepancy in the interest earned on our OA and SMA? In fact, do you know that according to the Ministry of Finance, our “CPF monies are invested in bonds that are issued and guaranteed by the Singapore Government“. So, if that’s the case, if our OA is also invested in the bonds, why is the interest rate on our OA pegged to that of the the major local banks? Shouldn’t it be pegged to the bonds that our CPF are invested in? If so, shouldn’t our OA and SMA earn the same interest rates of 4%... GIC earns an interest of 6.5% (Chart 4). Temasek Holdings earns an interest of 16% (Chart 5)... According to the Asian Development Bank Institute, “To the extent the Government earns a higher rate of return on the CPF funds than what it pays to members; there is an implicit tax on CPF wealth. This tax is likely to be fairly large and regressive, as low-income members are likely to have most of their non-housing wealth in the form of CPF balances. This vividly illustrates how political risks (i.e protection of political power) and non-transparency can arise in an individual account system“... "As the long-term annual inflation rate in Singapore is about 3.0 percent, the guarantee does not even preserve the principal in real terms”... the reason why Singapore was ranked so poorly at 117th is because “of its chosen financial arrangements, which sought to achieve objectives other than those related to social security“... The Asian Development Bank Institute had also said that, “Singapore’s method of investing the balances meant for retirement financing is contrary to best international practices concerning pension fund management, and have the potential to generate high political risk. Such concentration of savings in the hands of non-transparent, non-accountable agencies (i.e. GIC and Temasek Holdings) also distorts the savings investment process and could lead to inefficiencies in the structure of asset returns. The development of the financial and capital market may also be adversely affected due to such concentration on savings, and due to the use of CPF as a substitute for mortgage financing. The method, however, is consistent with Singapore’s monocentric power structure, and strong tendency towards social engineering and control”... CPF is effectively a tool created to efficiently take money from the people for the government’s own investment, without giving the full returns back. Compare this with tax, where the government is obliged to return the tax deducted from the people back to the people, in ways of expenditure."

Learn how to have great sex with a man and remain unattached just like him! - "The trick is the cuddle, NO CUDDLING! After the hot sex with your guy, give him a kiss, and excuse yourself to the bathroom. After the avoidance of the cuddle it is now time to leave or have him leave, absolutely no spending the night either, this also creates attachment. Lastly if you do like the sex and you are having fun, limit the time you see him, this will give your body the chance to get rid of any hormonal attachments that you may have been building up. Men have been able to have this guiltless unattached pleasure for centuries, now it’s time for a woman to enjoy a little unattached fabulous sex herself."

China pays 2 million to monitor Internet - "Many of the employees are simply performing keyword searches to monitor the tens of millions of messages being posted daily on popular social media and microblogging sites"

Married Men Cheating on Ashley Madison - Why Married Men Have Affairs - "There is something haunting about these men. They are here because they no longer feel a certain strain of sexual excitement coursing through their veins, and Ashley Madison, in many ways, is a quick fix. Simply by signing up, they're back in the world of seeing a name in an inbox that makes your pulse thump. They relive the passing-notes part of early love, when futures seem flexible and bright and your life looks the way you imagined it, like you are the star of your own movie and not the production assistant on your family's documentary... "I love having our friends over, but when everyone goes home, it's just us again. She's really great, she's really pretty. I just miss not knowing how my night is gonna end." Gesturing toward me and the whole of the bar, the women looking for men and the men looking at women, he says, "I miss this"... This composite man likes scotch. He drinks it on the rocks, but only if he drinks at all, because he might also drink only water. He is a lawyer and a professor and a doctor and an engineer and a caller of birds, and he went to college but he didn't have enough fun. He plays golf and he works out but he has a belly he didn't have in college, when he was having more fun. This man has children and is married to a beautiful pronoun. She adores the kids and is an excellent partner. They have sex once a week, once a month. On his birthday she did what he wanted in bed, but he thinks she treated it like doing laundry"

Yay genderform! - "There are exactly 947 options here, and a total of 1.1896×10285 or 1.1 quattruornovemgintillion possible combinations, more than there are elementary particles in the universe. If each option were a computer bit, it would take 119 bytes to encode a combination.
Send any suggestions for sex, gender, or orientation terms to genderterms at kreativekorp dot cjb dot net. Send any flames, hate mail, or homophobic/transphobic crap to /dev/null.
I will not attempt to define all these terms, since no English words could do any of them justice. The exact meaning of each one is undefinable, and there probably isn't an exact meaning anyway, since some of these even differ among people. Similarly, I've included a lot of words that could be considered synonyms; the connotations of each term, however, are slightly different, and some people may identify with one and not another."
This doesn't seem to be satire

The Privilege Tournament - "Privilege: so sweet to have. But even sweeter to not have. Privilege has its benefits, but the lack of privilege confers that sweet, sweet moral superiority. With that in mind, we have decided to determine who, exactly, has the least privilege of all... Here, we will pit eight categories of non-privilege against one another, tournament-style. Each round, the least privileged will advance. At the end, only a single category of non-privilege will be left standing. Or, more likely, unable to stand."
This doesn't seem to be satire either

Check Your Privilege - Android Apps on Google Play - "Are you a white, straight, cisgendered male? You may not know this, but you are a bad person. You have what we call "privilege". Some people aren't as lucky as you, and you should remember this every second of your blessed existence. There are homeless black transexual blind ginger autists living in the middle east that aren't as lucky as you.
This application is a short survey to assess your privilege level...
What's New
Version 1.2
- Social sharing to Facebook and Twitter
- Display privilege level bar
- Schedule notifications to remind you to check your privilege
- Developer privilege enhancements displayed for less privileged users
- Audio privilege for sight disprivileged users
- Design tweaks"
In the screenshot: "Your Privilege Level: 100. Privileged. Remind me in 1 day. Need help being offended? Share: [Facebook] [Twitter]

Counting the cost of forgotten passwords - "Up to 80 percent of calls received by helpdesk staff are from end users who've forgotten their passwords -- and with each support call costing organisations around £15, the problem is not as trivial as it may sound... The 2002 NTA Monitor Password Survey recently found that the typical intensive IT user now has 21 passwords, with some heavy users maintaining up to 70 passwords"
Quite sure the cost of forgotten passwords exceeds that of 'insecure' ones

- "Knight Frank Pte Ltd is appointed to auction variety of items for the Singapore Government Statutory Boards and its Agencies. Items going for public auction range from motor (saloon) vehicles, garbage wagons and mini-buses. It also includes liquors, wines, IT and office items, Info-communication equipments, cameras, generators and even branded items... We will sell by Public Auction Brass Cartridges, Vehicles (Vans and Saloon cars), Confiscated and Unclaimed items, IT and Info-communications equipments, Generators, Bicycles, Jewellery, Watches, interesting branded items, etc... Brass Cartridges (starts at 10.30am) Branded Items like Ray Ban, Oakley, CK, Gucci, Chanel, Nintendo & other interesting items"

Pair of Islamic converts joined 'Muslim patrol' to impose Sharia Law in London confiscated alcohol and threatened to stab non-believers

Sex and brains: Vive la différence! | The Economist - "In her view, the cross-talk between them in women, suggested by the wiring diagrams, helps explain their better memories, social adeptness and ability to multitask, all of which benefit from the hemispheres collaborating. In men, by contrast, within-hemisphere links let them focus on things that do not need complex inputs from both hemispheres. Hence the monomania. When it comes to the cerebellum, the extra cross-links between hemispheres in men serve to co-ordinate the activity of the whole sub-organ. That is important because each half controls, by itself, only one half of the body. Hence men have better motor abilities—or, in layman’s terms, are better co-ordinated than women. Dr Verma’s other main finding is that most of these differences are not congenital. Rather, they develop with age"
I'm sure some people seize on the fact that they develop with age to blame socialisation. But then, secondary sexual characteristics only develop with age too. Maybe if my parents had dressed me in dresses, I'd have a better figure today

Chinese Swear Words | Chinese Language Blog - "For some reason, there are plenty of insults in Chinese having to do with eggs. This may have something to do with one particular insult that goes back to the Song Dynasty: 王八 (wáng bā) – This can be translated roughly as “bastard.” Be careful when telling a cab driver that you want to go to an Internet bar (网吧 – wǎng bā), as this word has similar pronunciation. In Chinese, 王八 is slang for “tortoise,” and as a tortoise is associated with promiscuity, this word basically insults someone’s mother/grandmother/etc. This brings us to the use of the character for “egg”...
混蛋 (hún dàn) – As this translates as “mixed egg,” it means that someone’s mother mated with two men in quick succession, thus meaning that the person has two biological fathers...
滚蛋 (gǔn dàn) – A “rolling egg,” you can use this to tell someone to piss off. Alternatively, you can also say 滚开 (gǔn kāi). I use this to ward off hawks and beggars on the streets, especially around big tourist attractions where they refuse to leave you alone...
卖豆腐 (mài dòu fu) – “Selling tofu” is used as a euphemism for prostitution. As such, be careful when you go to the local vegetable market to inquire about whether or not they sell tofu. Maybe it’s best to just ask – 你有豆腐吗? (Do you have tofu?)...
牛屄 (niú bī) – For some reason, “cow vagina” means “f***in’ awesome” in Chinese."
I finally know why in primary school Mandarin teaching material, the boys stuck pictures of tortoises on each other

Cow slaughter to carry 7-year jail term in Madhya Pradesh - "Besides, the onus would be squarely on an accused to prove that he did not do it... The earlier punishment for killing a cow was 3 years in jail and a minimum fine of Rs 5,000. The amended Act provides that no person shall slaughter or should cause to slaughter a cow or offer for slaughter any animal belonging to the cow progeny, by any means."

Neville Longbottom is the Most Important Person in Harry Potter—And Here’s Why - "Neville is a perfect example of how one single ingredient in the recipe can either ruin your casserole (or stew, or treacle tart, whatever you like), or utterly perfect your whole dish. Neville is the tide-turner, the shiny hinge. And all because he happens to be in the same position as Wormtail… but makes all the hard choices that Pettigrew refused the first time around. Other characters are in similar positions, but none of them go so far as Neville. None of them prove that the shaping of destiny is all on the individual the way he does."
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