Friday, December 31, 2010

A new year begins : 2011

Wishing all my readers a happy new year.

May 2011 bring you excellent health, good luck and much happiness!

To all my readers, thank you very much for your support.

My special thanks to reader "bow" for his untiring support and frequent comments.

Thank you "bow"!

To all humans in the world

Following is a letter to his child from a renown Hong Kong TV broadcaster cum Child Psychologist. The words are actually applicable to all of us, young or old, children or parents!

My children
I am writing this to you because of 3 reasons.
1.Life is unpredictable, nobody knows how long he lives. Some words are better said early.
2.I am your father, and if I don't tell you these, no one else will.
3.What is written is my own personal bitter experiences that perhaps could save you a lot of unnecessary heartache.

Remember the following as you go through life:
1. Do not bear grudge towards those who are not good to you. No one has the responsibility of treating you well, except your mother and I. To those who are good to you, you have to treasure it and be thankful, and ALSO you have to be cautious, because, everyone has a motive for every move. When a person is good to you, it does not mean he really likes you. You have to be careful, don't hastily regard him as a real friend.

2. No one is indispensable, nothing in the world that you must possess. Once you understand this idea, it would be easier for you to go through life when people around you don't want you anymore, or when you lose what/who you love most.

3. Life is short. When you waste your life today, tomorrow you would find that life is leaving you. The earlier you treasure your life, the better you enjoy life.

4. Love is but a transient feeling, and this feeling would fade with time and with one's mood. If your so called loved one leaves you, be patient, time will wash away your aches and sadness. Don't over exaggerate the beauty and sweetness of love, and don't over exaggerate the sadness of falling out of love.

5. A lot of successful people did not receive a good education, that does not mean that you can be successful by not studying hard! Whatever knowledge you gain is your weapon in life. One can go from rags to riches, but one has to start from some rags!

6. I do not expect you to financially support me when I am old, either would I financially support your whole life. My responsibility as a supporter ends when you are grown up. After that, you decide whether you want to travel in a public transport or in your limousine, whether rich or poor.

7. You honour your words, but don't expect others to be so. You can be good to people, but don't expect people to be good to you. If you don't understand this, you would end up with unnecessary troubles.

8. I have bought lotteries for umpteen years, but I never strike any prize. That shows if you want to be rich, you have to work hard! There is no free lunch!

9. No matter how much time I have with you, let's treasure the time we have together. We do not know if we would meet again in our next life.

Your Parents

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Littering problem due to non enforcement of by-law

Littering is a filthy habit.  It just demonstrates the type of low mentality of the perpetrators.  There are many types of litterbugs.  From the innocent young to the ignorant elderlies.  There are also those who can think well which even include the well-educated intellectuals.  Others are the uncultured, ill-mannered individuals.  Some are just plain innocent like the little children who have not been taught by their parents not to throw rubbish everywhere.  As for the elderlies, many of them are beyond advice due to their ignorance in public decorum and general hygiene.  However the majority can be taught to abide by the rules; even by force, just like the Singaporeans.  So it all boils down to FULL-TIME ENFORCEMENT. Nothing else.

The MPPP (The Penang Island Municipal Council) is increasing littering fine from RM50 to RM250.  It's not that RM50 is too little a deterrent.  It is the NON ENFORCEMENT of the fine that is the cause of the littering problem.  I would feel the pinch of RM50 fine each time I am caught.  Of course you can never catch me littering because I NEVER litter.  What's the point of this increase, when it is not going to be enforced??
Why not increase to RM2500? It's not going to work.
Recent comments:

bow said...
Raising the fine amount is like saying if you are rich and can afford to pay the ticket, you don't have to go to jail. On the other hand, if you can't shelve out the money, then you go to jail. I am sure Penang government will love to raise the fine to $2,500 or $25,000 if possible, it has nothing to do with effective enforcement or not, more at generating revenue for the state treasury. The state government is getting greedy each day, not a good sign for PR supporters.

Justin Choo said...
I am sure the Penang state government is sincere. As I said, the RM50 has not been enforced effectively. Also we must be aware of the cancer of corruption; here it's only the petty corruption of some low-level "officers".
Enforce the law effectively even with the RM50 fine, then no more littering. The amount of fine can easily pay for the wages of the enforcers. They can employ part-time workers and not having to be MPPP full-time workers. That will work better, and also cost effective.

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Press Statement On "Buddha Relics" Exhibition


The Malaysian Buddhist Consultative Council (MBCC) do not support “The Buddha Relics & Tibetan Antiques” event held at Stadium Putra, Bukit Jalil, Kuala Lumpur from 23/12/10 to 1/1/11 organised by the “Malaysia Kadhampa Buddhist Association”.

The Buddha relics are the remains of the Buddha and they are highly respected among all Buddhists worldwide. As the Buddha relics are very rare and precious, the discovery of any Buddha relics would receive world attention. In addition, any claim of discovery of Buddha relics must be verified by recognised Buddhist masters and even scientifically by archaeologists and scientists.

Thus, the Malaysian Buddhist Consultative Council would like to inform the Buddhist disciples and the public not to support such event nor to attend the relics expo. The MBCC is unable to verify the authenticity of its Buddhist lineage.
In addition, the MBCC do not agree with the practice of any party who circulate the proclaimed “Buddha relics” commercially either through sales or donation.

The Malaysian Buddhist Consultative Council is consisted of Young Buddhist Association of Malaysia (YBAM), Buddhist Missionary Society Malaysia, Sasana Abhiwurdhi Wardhana Society (Sasana), Malaysian Fo Guang Buddhist Association and Vajrayana Buddhist Council Malaysia (VBCM).

Best regards,
Sek Chin Yong

马来西亚佛教咨询理事会不认同 嘎档巴总会









May the Blessings of the Triple Gem be with you and your family always.

With Metta,
Young Buddhist Association of Malaysia

No.9, Jalan SS25/24, Taman Mayang,

47301 Petaling Jaya, Selangor.

Tel: 03 - 7804 9154/7

Fax: 03 - 7804 9021


Also connect YBAM at Facebook

Friday, December 24, 2010

'Saving is sin, and spending is virtue.'

What do you think about that?  After reading the article below, please follow me to find "some fools to save so that we can borrow from them and spend" !!!
Especially this season to be merry....Merry Christmas to all my Christian readers!!

Subject: Japan saves, America addictive cycle

Crazy logic?

Well, it makes sense......

A crazy world indeed!

Interesting article written by an Indian Economist

Japanese save a lot. They do not spend much. Also, Japan exports far

more than it imports. Has an annual trade surplus of over 100 billions.

Yet Japanese economy is considered weak, even collapsing.

Americans spend, save little. Also US imports more than it exports. Has

an annual trade deficit of over $400 billion. Yet, the American economy

is considered strong and trusted to get stronger.

But where from do Americans get money to spend? They borrow from Japan,

China and even India.

Virtually others save for the US to spend. Global savings are mostly

invested in US, in dollars.

India itself keeps its foreign currency assets of over $50 billions in

US securities. China has sunk over $160 billion in US securities. Japan's

stakes in US securities is in trillions.


The US has taken over $5 trillion from the world. So, as the world

saves for the US - Its The Americans who spend freely. Today, to keep

the US consumption going, that is for the US economy to work, other

countries have to remit $180 billion every quarter, which is $2 billion

a day, to the US !

A Chinese economist asked a neat question. Who has invested more, US in

China, or China in US? The US has invested in China less than half of

what China has invested in US.

The same is the case with India. We have invested in US over $50

billion. But the US has invested less than $20 billion in India.

Why the world is after US?

The secret lies in the American spending, that they hardly save. In

fact they use their credit cards to spend their future income.

That the US spends is what makes it attractive to export to the US.

So US imports more than what it exports year after year.

The result:

The world is dependent on US consumption for its growth. By its

deepening culture of consumption, the US has habituated the world to

feed on US consumption. But as the US needs money to finance its

consumption, the world provides the money.

It's like a shopkeeper providing the money to a customer so that the

customer keeps buying from the shop. If the customer will not buy, the

shop won't have business, unless the shopkeeper funds him. The US is

like the lucky customer. And the world is like the helpless shopkeeper financier.

Who is America 's biggest shopkeeper financier? Japan of course. Yet it's Japan which is regarded as weak. Modern economists complain that Japanese do not spend, so they do not grow. To force the Japanese to spend, the Japanese government exerted itself, reduced the savings rates, even charged the savers. Even then the Japanese did not spend (habits don't change, even with taxes, do they?). Their traditional postal savings alone is over $1.2 trillions, about three times the Indian GDP. Thus, savings, far from being the strength of Japan, has become its pain.

Hence, what is the lesson?

That is, a nation cannot grow unless the people spend, not save. Not just spend, but borrow and spend.

Dr. Jagdish Bhagwati, the famous Indian-born economist in the US, told Manmohan Singh that Indians wastefully save. Ask them to spend, on imported cars and, seriously, even on cosmetics! This will put India on a growth curve. This is one of the reason for MNC's coming down to India, seeing the consumer spending.

'Saving is sin, and spending is virtue.'

But before you follow this Neo Economics, get some fools to save so that you can borrow from them and spend !!!

Best PMR Results?

The Staronline Reports:

PUTRAJAYA: A total of 30,863 out of 439,456 candidates scored straight As in the 2010 Penilaian Menengah Rendah (PMR) examination, an increase of 2,675 students from last year, making this the best PMR results in four years.

Does this mean anything?  Well, education director-general Datuk Abdul Ghafar Mahmud attributes this to  "hard work by students and schools as one of the reasons".  You mean, before this there wasn't that "hard work"?  Beats me.  Sorry to be cynical. 

GE coming anytime.  Must make all the parents very happy.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Akim and MCLM

Akim who? 

Akim is the acronym for Angkatan Keadilan Insan Malaysia, "metamorphosed" overnight by Zaid Ibrahim. I can't get over it when I saw shots over the tv news.  Those pakciks standing around Zaid looks like farmer representatives and kampong headmen.


Malaysian Civil Liberties Movement.  Big intellectual guns like Haris Ibrahim and Malik Imtiaz Sarwar, and of course RPK.

Well I supposed you have read the news. So you knew already. 

Is it mere coincidence that the two parties surfaced at the same time?  What can we make of these two events?  The obvious is that these people are no longer holding hands with PKR.  Both call themselves the Third Force.  Unless they can manouvre a diplomat coorperation with Pakatan come next GE, they are all going to be The Spent Force, The Foolish Force... foolish losers, helping BN laughing all the way to Putrajaya again.  This is not a laughing matter. The curse of split votes.

RPK in his Youtube MCLM forum said people like me are just being negative.  He said MCML acts as a repairman.  According to him, MCML members will offer themselves as candidates for elections into Parliament under the opposition banner.  If this is the strategy, I wholly support MCLM. 

Otherwise, what are we going to do?  Maybe register another party, and call it the Cry Baby Pop Pop Party!

Monday, December 13, 2010

Wikileaks not related to Wikipedia

Do you know Wikileaks is not related to Wikipedia?

Below is the confirmation by Wikimedia Blog :

What’s in a name? In the case of ‘wiki’, lots of things.

December 9th, 2010

Anyone who’s been watching the news will have heard about Wikileaks by now. Wikipedia shares the generic “wiki-” prefix in its name, but there’s no relation. Occasionally even major news sources like the BBC get this wrong, which can lead to serious confusion, even when it’s quickly fixed.

If anyone has a claim to the word “wiki”, it would be the Hawaiian people. In the Hawaiian language, wiki means “quick”. The words “wiki wiki” on a shuttle bus in Honolulu inspired software engineer Ward Cunningham to name a revolutionary piece of software – the “WikiWikiWeb” – in 1995. This software allowed people to instantly edit web pages, collaboratively.

Wikipedia was created six years later, based on the same principles. By that time, the word “wiki” was used already by a ton of different wiki software implementations. Today, you can go to the “WikiMatrix” website to compare them all. They have names like Wikidot, TWiki, or Wikispaces. Moreover, there are many, many content websites that use “wiki” in their names. Among them are Wikihow, Wikitravel, WikiAnswers, and Wikia.

Most of these projects are completely unrelated to Wikipedia. Wikipedia is operated by the non-profit Wikimedia Foundation, which was founded by Jimmy Wales in 2003. The Wikimedia Foundation operates a number of other free knowledge projects: Wikimedia Commons, Wiktionary, Wikibooks, Wikisource, Wikiquote, Wikispecies, Wikinews, and Wikiversity. It also organizes and supports development of the MediaWiki open source software.

The names of Wikimedia’s projects are trademarked. The word “wiki” isn’t: anyone can use it. Wikileaks and most other projects with “wiki” in their name have no relationship with us. If you see news organizations making this error, please email them or post a comment pointing to this blog post.

This entry was posted on Thursday, December 9th, 2010 at 20:31.

Friday, December 10, 2010

The generous vegetable seller

Someone sent this email to me.  I like to share this with all of you:

(Wed, Dec 01, 2010 Reader's Digest)
The generous vegetable seller

by Esther Liang

After the morning hustle and bustle, the atmosphere at Taitung county's Central Market quietens as every stall shuts for the day and their owners return to the comfort of their homes.

A lone lamp shines on a vegetable stall. With head bowed, Ms Chen Shu-chu silently sorts out the vegetable leaves as she waits for the occasional afternoon customer.

Decades of hard work have caused the fingers on her right hand to curl and joints to swell; her feet have deformed slightly.

Ms Chen leads her life with a daily routine. Waking up at three in the morning, she makes her way to the vegetable wholesaler and sets up her stall, which she tends till seven or eight in the evening.

Being the first to arrive and last to leave, the other stall owners have fondly given her the title of "market manager".

In the dark and damp market, Ms Chen, nearing her 60s, holds the stall her father left her dearly. Yuan-Jin Vegetables is her everything.

With her vegetables selling at "a bundle for NT$30 (S$1.30), three bundles for NT$50", she earns only marginal profits.

Yet, her frugality has allowed her to donate about NT$10 million towards various charitable causes, including helping schools, orphanages and poor children.

The selfless generosity of a woman with such humble income has placed her under the international spotlight.

In March, Forbes magazine named her one of 48 outstanding philanthropists from the Asia-Pacific region. A month later, Time magazine selected the year's top 100 influential people and she emerged under the Heroes of Philanthropy category.

Fellow Taiwanese and Oscar- winning director Lee Ang wrote her entry personally. "Money is worthy only if given to those in need," he quoted Ms Chen. He also wrote: "Amazing, but of all she has given away, her greatest gift is leading by example."


Despite the honour of receiving the Time award in New York, gaining global recognition, and a personal meeting with President Ma Ying-jeou, all Ms Chen really cares about is her vegetable stall.

If not for President Ma and the Foreign Minister personally convincing her to go, she would not have agreed to visit New York, as she felt that "this is not a competition and I did not win anything".

Amid the frenzy of applying for a passport and preparing for the visit, her main concern was that her regular customers would not get their vegetables.

Ms Chen has become a celebrity in Taitung county. The local authorities decorated her stall with congratulatory posters and banners hailing her as the Pride of Taitung and the Model of Philanthropy.
There are fans who turn up at the stall with a vegetable basket and a camera, hoping for a picture with Ms Chen.

Despite all the attention, she remains humble. "I have done nothing extraordinary and anyone who wants to can do it.

There are many other charitable people; we just don't know about them," she said. Ms Chen, who is unmarried, added: "I do not place great importance on money. When I donate to help others, I feel at peace and happy, and I can sleep well at night."

She also feels for the poor, having experienced hardship in her younger days.

Born in 1950, Ms Chen lost her mother after completing her primary-school education. Her mother was admitted to hospital because of difficulties in labour and the family had to pay an insurance of NT$5,000 before medical attention could be granted.

Ms Chen saw her father asking their neighbours for money, but it was too late to save her mother. The eldest daughter in the family, Ms Chen had to grow up overnight.

She gave up her studies and dedicated her life to helping at the vegetable stall.

When she was 18, her younger brother fell sick and the illness dragged on for over a year, gradually depleting the family's savings.

Doctors suggested that the family send her brother to Taiwan National University Hospital, but they could not afford the fees.
Mr Huang Shun-zhong, a teacher at Ren-ai Primary School, started a donation drive.

Unfortunately, her brother could not be saved.

After experiencing the kindness bestowed upon her family, Ms Chen made up her mind to help the poor once she was able.

When her father died 17 years ago, Ms Chen, a devoted Buddhist, generously donated NT$1 million to Fo Guang Shan Monastery.

In 2000, she donated NT$1 million to her alma mater, Ren-ai Primary School, to set up an Emergency Relief Fund to help poor children obtain financial help.


Assisting in the setting up and maintenance of the fund is Mr Li Guo-rong, who teaches Ms Chen's nephew.

In 2001, Mr Li had a plan to build a library for the school and estimated the cost to be between NT$4 million and NT$5 million.

When he approached Ms Chen, in the hope that she might contribute NT$50,000, Li was shocked when she said she would fund the entire project.

The school was sceptical, but Ms Chen was determined.

In May 2005, the two-storey library was completed and named Chen Shu-chu Library in honour of the "Vegetable Market heroine" alumnus. She had donated NT$4.5 million.

Ms Chen's ability to donate such large sums of money has led many to ask: How can a mere vegetable seller earn so much?

"Spend only what you need, and you'll be able to save up a lot of money!" said Ms Chen.

Since 1996, she has donated NT$36,000 to help three children in the Kids Alive International organisation.

To achieve this, she explained that she empties her loose change into three little cardboard boxes at home every night.

"This is a simple act that anyone can do, isn't it?" she said.

Ms Chen leads a very simple life without any luxuries. She does not have any desire for material gain nor any form of enjoyment.

Work, she said, is her enjoyment. "I love my work. If I didn't, would I be able to work 16 hours a day?"

All she needs is food and a place to sleep. Everything else is a luxury. She does not buy expensive clothes as "I do not socialise much, hence, there is no need for such beautiful clothes. The clothes from the roadside stalls are good enough for me, and, even then, I like to bargain".

Her daily meals cost less than NT$100: a bowl of vegetarian rice and a bowl of noodles for NT freeze whatever that cannot be finished, spend another NT$20 on a can of gluten and add that to the rice with some hot water.

"This becomes porridge and is very tasty," she said.

She also sleeps on the hard floor, a habit from her younger days when she started working at the vegetable stall.

The comfort of her warm bed made getting up early to go to the wholesaler very difficult, especially during the cold winter months. Hence Ms Chen made up her mind to sleep on the cold floor, where she would not run the risk of being late.

Has business improved after winning the award? "Business is as usual," she said. "I still need to sell my vegetables. Not much has changed."

Advertisers have approached her to film commercials; financial managers have offered to manage her finances and other well-wishers have offered to donate money. She rejects these advances politely.

"It is easy to return borrowed money, but difficult to return a favour," she said.

"I have to be very careful in handling money matters," she added. Even when customers tip her, she refuses to accept.

"Buying from my stall is already a form of support," she explained.

The only commercial Ms Chen was willing to take on was for the Bureau of National Health Insurance, in memory of her beloved mother. She requested all shoots be done beside her stall so as not to affect her business.

The only payment she was willing to accept was a black T-shirt given by the Bureau.

Since her return from New York, Ms Chen has been working even longer hours. She has a new goal: To collect NT$10 million to set up a Chen Shu-chu Bursary aimed at helping poor children pay for school fees and medical bills, things she could not afford as a child.

"All I need is to sell a few more vegetables, save a little more money, in addition to a number of insurance policies that are near the end of their term. A lot of people are also willing to donate. I am sure there won't be any problems," she said.

Mr Li, who treats Ms Chen like a sister, said that setting up the bursary is actually a good way to let her retire from selling vegetables and start influencing society with her reputation, in the hope that there will be more generous "Chen Shu-chus".

As for Ms Chen, she said: "My philosophy in life is simple: If doing something makes you worried, then it must be a wrong thing. If it makes you happy, then you must have done the right thing. What others say is not important."

She is content with what she has and feels that as long as she "lives a life she wishes for and does the things she wants, that is good enough".

(To read about Ms Chen Shu-chu and three other Asians who deserve special mention, pick up the December issue of Reader's Digest. It will hit newsstands on Friday.)

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Former DAP strongman, Fan Yew Teng dies

                                                                     (Picture from Din Merican)
For the younger generation, the name Fan Yew Teng would not ring a bell.  If I am not mistaken, he was the youngest MP ever.  MP for Menglembu, but was disqualified when he was slammed with a RM2,000 fine for publishing a "seditious" speech in the Rocket.  For this he even lost his right to Parliamentarian pension.

Fan Yew Teng, activist and former DAP member of parliament, passed away at the Bumrungrad International Hospital in Bangkok Tuesday after battling cancer.

Fan Yew Teng was one of my DAP heroes.

May he rest in peace. 

You can read more in The MalaysianInsider: and Din Merican:

Monday, December 6, 2010

The mousetrap

A mouse looked through the crack in the wall
to see the farmer and his wife open a package.
"What food might this contain?", the mouse wondered.
He was devastated to discover it was a mousetrap.

Retreating to the farmyard,
the mouse proclaimed this warning :
"There is a mousetrap in the house!
There is a mousetrap in the house!"

The chicken clucked and scratched,
raised her head and said, "Mr. Mouse,
I can tell this is a grave concern to you,
but it is of no consequence to me.
I cannot be bothered by it."

The mouse turned to the pig and told him,
"There is a mousetrap in the house!
There is a mousetrap in the house!"
The pig sympathized, but said,
"I am so very sorry, Mr. Mouse,
but there is nothing I can do about it
but pray..
Be assured you are in my prayers."

The mouse turned to the cow and said,
"There is a mousetrap in the house!
There is a mousetrap in the house!"
The cow said, "Wow, Mr. Mouse. I'm sorry for you,
but it's no skin off my nose."

So, the mouse returned to the house,
head down and dejected,
to face the farmer's mousetrap
. . . Alone.. .. .

That very night
a sound was heard throughout the house
-- the sound of a mousetrap catching its prey.
The farmer's wife rushed to see what was caught.
In the darkness, she did not see it.
It was a venomous snake
whose tail was caught in the trap.
The snake bit the farmer's wife.
The farmer rushed her to the hospital.

When she returned home she still had a fever.
Everyone knows you treat a fever
with fresh chicken soup.
So the farmer took his hatchet to the farmyard
for the soup's main ingredient:

But his wife's sickness continued.
Friends and neighbors
came to sit with her
around the clock.
To feed them,
the farmer butchered the pig.

But, alas,
the farmer's wife did not get well...
She died.
So many people came for her funeral
that the farmer had the cow slaughtered
to provide enough meat for all of them
for the funeral luncheon.

And the mouse looked upon it all
from his crack in the wall
with great sadness.

So, the next time you hear
someone is facing a problem
and you think it doesn't concern you,
remember ---

When one of us is threatened, we are all at risk.
We are all involved in this journey called life.
We must keep an eye out for one another
and make an extra effort
to encourage one another.


Thursday, December 2, 2010

Beware of combination-numbered padlocks

Do you use the combination-numbered padlock, especially for your gates?  Well; if you forget the combination numbers, don't panic.  This is how you open it, faster than using the combination numbers!  The only snag is others can also open it!

View the youtube video below to learn how.

(If no youtube picture, just click the play button.)


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