[MyAppleMenu] Apr 24, 2011

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Sun Apr 24 18:59:00 EDT 2011


**** New MacBook Airs And The Circle Of Life <http://www.macworld.com/article/159443/2011/04/murdered_macbook_air.html#lsrc.rss_main>
Jason Snell, Macworld

MyAppleMenu Reader

**** Book Review: 'Trillin On Texas' <http://www.latimes.com/features/books/la-ca-books-calvin-trillin-20110424,0,2467477.story?track=rss&utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+features%2Fbooks+%28Los+Angeles+Times+-+Books%29>
Scott Gold, Los Angeles Times

Calvin Trillin is alternately poet, historian, satirist and journalist in this collection of reports on the Lone Star State.

**** The Spoiler By Annalena McAfee – Review <http://www.guardian.co.uk/books/2011/apr/24/spoiler-annalena-mcafee-clark-review?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+theguardian%2Fbooks%2Frss+%28Books%29>
Alex Clark, The Guardian

A witty and entertaining debut about two very different worlds of journalism.

**** The Neurosis Racket <http://www.tnr.com/book/review/bossypants-tina-fey>
Laura Bennett, The New Republic

Neurosis and comedy make a natural pair. The former is often a type of pathological self-awareness, and nothing breeds a sense of comic irony like obsessive doubt and social maladjustment. Woody Allen, Richard Lewis, Larry David: all Jewish men from whose brains you can almost hear the constant whir of anxious introspection. Tina Fey may seem like an odd addition to the mix, fresh off a meteoric rise from frumpy nerd to glamorized cultural icon posing semi-clothed on the cover of Vanity Fair. But this—the overwhelmingly male tradition of the funny neurotic—is the legacy she proudly joins in her new book, a collection of biographical riffs on puberty, parenting, and being female in a male-dominated field.


**** The Track Record That Matters More <http://theonlinecitizen.com/2011/04/the-track-record-that-matters-more/>
Andrew Loh, The Online Citizen

The question is not whether one’s performance in handling municipal issues entitles one to being re-elected. The real question, and a more significant one, is the track record of an MP’s performance in Parliament – whether he spoke up adequately for his constituents, whether he discharged his responsibilities to the full, what were his input in debates, the substance of his argument for or against any legislation or policy, etc.

**** GE: WP Unveils 4 More Candidates <http://www.channelnewsasia.com/stories/singaporelocalnews/view/1124448/1/.html>
Channel NewsAsia

**** GE: Battle Of Words Continue Over Workers' Party Slogan <http://www.channelnewsasia.com/stories/singaporelocalnews/view/1124470/1/.html>
Hoe Yeen Nie, Channel NewsAsia

WP chairman Sylvia Lim said contrary to criticisms levelled by law minister K Shanmugam, the WP's MPs will block government bills only if it's against the national interest. The Workers' Party said it wants to ensure accountability and to prevent Parliament from becoming a rubber stamp for policies.

Addressing comments that the Workers' Party sought to block all government bills, party leaders pointed out that they had supported PAP policies in the past, such as the Workfare schemes and the push for productivity.

On PM Lee's comments in a recent interview that both Mr Low and Ms Lim did not contribute much to Parliamentary debate, Ms Lim said their contributions were on public record and clear for all to see. Mr Lee had also said Mr Low did not respond when deputy prime minister and defence minister Teo Chee Hean spoke on civil service pay scales, to which Ms Lim replied that the speech was made during the Budget Committee of Supply debates, and Mr Low was prevented by Parliamentary procedures from responding.

**** Papsicles 4 <http://yawningbread.wordpress.com/2011/04/23/papsicles-4/>
Yawning Bread

As for the PAP’s new candidates, I half suspect they can’t get past the first question — why the hell are you even in politics? — because the honest, hand-on-heart answer is not suitable for public consumption: Because we were invited to tea, and once we had sipped from the cup we could not refuse.

**** Remarks By PAP Members Made To Confuse S’poreans: WP <http://theonlinecitizen.com/2011/04/remarks-by-pap-members-made-to-confuse-s’poreans-wp/>
Ko Siew Huey, The Online Citizen

WP chairman Sylvia Lim said that their concept of a First World Parliament had already been clearly articulated at the launch of their campaign slogan, and that the latest remarks by the PAP members were made to confuse Singaporeans about the WP’s intentions.

WP secretary general Low Thia Khiang made the distinction between having a strong government and a strong system of government: “Strong system of government means that if the government fails, you have another government to be able to take over. That would give you more political stability and a more secure future than depending on one government.”

**** Rationalising The Warning Signs <http://theonlinecitizen.com/2011/04/rationalising-the-warning-signs/>
Joseph Teo, The Online Citizen

Is this then sufficient evidence of groupthink in the PAP government? Perhaps it merits further study. The evidence might suggest, however, that it has been exhibiting at least one of the symptoms – that of rationalising warnings that challenge their assumptions.

Even though their own data showed that their position was wrong, they ignored it, and only used it to justify their position rather than using it to understand the world in which we ordinary Singaporeans live. This failure to use statistics correctly, coupled with their failure to link cause and effect, and the failure to understand basic economics calls for a new way in which we should run our country.

**** Three Local Myths <http://theonlinecitizen.com/2011/04/three-local-myths/>
Sudhir Thomas Vadaketh, The Online Citizen

There exist several political axioms in Singapore that discourage people from voting for the opposition. These have been passed down from one generation to the next and are rarely debated. But with elections round the corner, it is worth now asking—which are actually myths and which are true?

**** GE2011 Scare Tactic By The PAP <http://yawshinleong.blogspot.com/2011/04/ge2011-scare-tactic-by-pap.html>
Yaw Shin Leong

**** PAP Has Lost The Moral High Ground... <http://singaporemind.blogspot.com/2011/04/pap-has-lost-moral-high-ground.html>
Diary Of A Singapore Mind

In the 2006 elections, the main problems/issues faced by Singaporeans were income inequality, rising cost of living (housing + healthcare+transport), structural unemployment. stagnant wages, and the negative effects of the large foreign influx. Today every single one of these problems has become bigger and more serious - Singaporeans face the same issues in the 2011 elections and the PAP again promises to do something about them if we vote for them. Of course, after the elections, they may deny that any of these problems exists or say it is not the responsibility of govt or blame it on their favorite bogeyman these days - globalisation.

**** The Election Fault Lines <http://mysingaporenews.blogspot.com/2011/04/election-fault-lines.html>
Chua Chin Leng, My Singapore News

**** GE: SDP Unveils Lineup For Sembawang GRC <http://www.channelnewsasia.com/stories/singaporelocalnews/view/1124536/1/.html>
Channel NewsAsia

The Singapore Democratic Party is fielding James Gomez, John Tan, Jarrod Luo, Mohd Isa Abdul Aziz and Sadasivam Veriyah in Sembawang GRC.

Dr Gomez said the team fielded in Sembawang is not an "A" team but a "people's" team. He said the party selected candidates whom they felt can talk to and connect with residents in Sembawang.

**** Open Letter To Shanmugam And Indranee Rajah <http://whyliddat.wordpress.com/2011/04/23/open-letter-to-shanmugam-and-indranee-rajah/>
Why Liddat?

Gridlock is merely a sign that no single party can ram policies down the throats of people without first engaging in thoughtful and serious debate addressing the concerns of various constituencies. Gridlock will not happen when there is meaningful dialogue, compromise and accommodation. Gridlock will not happen when MP’s leave their egos aside and focus on the needs of the people.

I believe that the opposition have their hearts in the right place. Can you claim the same for the PAP?

**** Of Raids And Reserves <https://chaptertworeload.wordpress.com/2011/04/23/of-raids-and-reserves/>
Aaron Ng, Chapter Two: Reload

Since most HDB flats are bought by Singaporeans, Mah is essentially saying that Singaporeans should not object to high land costs and pay more for new HDB flats to contribute to Singapore’s reserves. Since most HDB flats are financed by the retirement reserves of individual Singaporeans, Mah seemed to suggest that taking more money from the retirement reserves of ordinary Singaporeans to fill the reserves of the Singapore government is the right thing to do.

**** If Nicole Seah Has No Grassroots Experience, What About The New PAP Candidates? <http://kentridgecommon.com/?p=11324>
Christopher Ong, The Kent Ridge Common

**** What Video? SDP Candidate Asks Vivian <http://www.straitstimes.com/BreakingNews/Singapore/Story/STIStory_660591.html>
Esther Teo, Straits Times

Singapore Democratic Party candidate Vincent Wijeysingha on Sunday asked Minister Vivian Balakrishnan to state clearly what is the video that he has said will raise 'some very awkward questions,' and which the SDP is supposed to be 'suppressing'.

**** Election Buzz A Minority Interest <http://yawningbread.wordpress.com/2011/04/24/election-buzz-a-minority-interest/>
Yawning Bread

I do not see a lot of difference between the electorate sketched out by this survey and that which existed in 2006, new media notwithstanding, though I would love to be proven wrong. As political researcher Derek da Cunha recently described in a recent talk, about 40 percent are reliably pro-PAP, 35 percent swing voters and 25 percent reliably anti-PAP. Of course, these are very rough estimates and will vary somewhat from constituency to constituency.

Nevertheless, this is the uphill task facing opposition parties: How to get a majority in any constituency, starting with only 25 percent solid support and only a smallish bank of swing voters. If your heart lies with them, then please offer your help. Volunteer. Donate.

**** GE: SM Goh Takes On NSP's Challenge On Accountability <http://www.channelnewsasia.com/stories/singaporelocalnews/view/1124579/1/.html>
Imelda Saad, Channel NewsAsia

Singapore senior minister Goh Chok Tong said he is accountable for the policies put in place at the time when he was prime minister. Mr Goh was responding to the National Solidarity Party's comments that their team at Marine Parade will take on Mr Goh on the issue of accountability for national policies in areas such as housing and transportation.

Mr Goh said: "Of course, I think as Prime Minister, as Senior Minister, I will be accountable for what I did surely, so I'll be very happy to hear what they have got to say.

**** Behold The Valuer <http://singaporedesk.blogspot.com/2011/04/behold-valuer.html>
Singapore Notes

We are not told what accounting principles The Valuer is guided by, or how market conditions are determined. All we know is that The Valuer is appointed by the Selected President, whose tenure depends on the guy who gave him the recent $890,700 pay rise. At the sole discretion of The Valuer, large sums end up mysteriously in The Reserves, another Secretive Entity. The only part of the web spinning that is transparent to the electorate is that public housing owners are stuck with near private property sticker prices.

**** General Election Deja Vu! <http://singaporegirl.wordpress.com/2011/04/24/general-election-deja-vu/>
Food Fuels Me To Talk...

**** Dr Balakrishnan, Please Don't Panic <http://yoursdp.org/index.php/news/singapore/4756-dr-balakrishnan-please-dont-panic>
Singapore Democratic Party

Dr Balakrishnan is clearly clutching at straws and pulling up issues that are of little concern to Holland-Bukit Timah voters. So why is he doing this? He knows what he is up against a formidable SDP team comprising of highly qualified professionals, a team that is competent, constructive and compassionate. He also knows that he cannot run on his record which has YOG written all over it and he cannot campaign on his party's policies which the people are very upset with.

He therefore has only one option: Distract the voters.

**** Khaw Boon Wan: The Pathological Liar <http://singaporeelection.blogspot.com/2011/04/khaw-boon-wan-pathological-liar.html>
Singapore Election Watch

Mr Khaw should step forward and clarify what he said in 2009 instead of accusing others of putting words in his mouth as most readers will have the impression that he is asking Singaporeans to live in nursing homes in JB based on the Straits Times report.

**** LKY: Bring More FTs In <http://singaporeelection.blogspot.com/2011/04/lky-bring-more-fts-in.html>
Singapore Election Watch

**** PAP May Contravene Parliamentary Elections Act By Displaying Its Flags In Public Before Nomination Day <http://singaporege2011.wordpress.com/2011/04/21/pap-may-contravene-parliamentary-elections-act-by-displaying-its-flags-in-public-before-nomination-day/>
Singapore Election 2011

Singaporeans should write in to the Elections Department to complain against this flagrant infringement of the Parliamentary Elections Act.

**** 'Clear That Even The PAP Doesn't Speak With One Voice' <http://www.todayonline.com/Singapore/EDC110424-0000140/Clear-that-even-the-PAP-doesnt-speak-with-one-voice>
Lin Yanqin, Today

If the coalition government in power in the United Kingdom now works well for the country, an alliance between two opposition parties in Singapore could work just as well, said Reform Party (RP) chief Kenneth Jeyaretnam.

**** Say No To MIW Attempts At Threatening And For Sustaining Their Own Narrow Self-interests <http://singaporeelection.blogspot.com/2011/04/say-no-to-miw-attempts-at-threatening.html>
Singapore Election Watch

**** Do Your Part To Avoid Walkovers <http://yawningbread.wordpress.com/2011/04/01/do-your-part-to-avoid-walkovers/>
Yawning Bread

Volunteer to be a proposer, seconder or assentor for an opposition party on Nomination Day.

**** TOC Editorial: Vivian Balakrishnan Needs To Come Clean On Video <http://theonlinecitizen.com/2011/04/toc-editorial-vivian-balakrishnan-needs-to-come-clean-on-video/>
The Online Citizen

The onus of stating what video he is referring to and why voters should take it into consideration lies squarely on the shoulders of Dr Balakrishnan. If, as he suggests, this video is relevant to the choice voters will be making, the least Dr Balakrishnan can do is state exactly which video he is referring to and explain its relevance.

The SDP’s explanation is that Dr Balakrishnan is clearly rattled by the caliber of candidates the SDP is fielding against him in Holland-Bukit Timah GRC. This might hold a grain of truth.

The SDP’s Holland-Bukit Timah slate is easily the most impressive slate the party has fielded in recent memory. The Straits Times went so far as to call it a “rejuvenation”. It boasts a senior civil servant with more experience of the way government works than Dr Balakrishnan in the form of Mr Tan Jee Say, an effectively bilingual and publicly recognizable psychiatrist and former grassroots leader in the form of Dr Ang Yong Guan, and the man who went toe-to-toe with Finance Minister Tharman Shanmugaratnam and who has come across as a candidate of substance and gravitas, Dr Vincent Wijeysingha.

**** Homophobia In The General Elections <http://thinkingbetterthinkingmeta.blogspot.com/2011/04/homophobia-in-general-elections.html>
Sam's Thoughts

There is no point engaging in dialogue with bigots with rhetorical questions such as "what does his/her sexuality got to do with his/her work?" because homophobes will always use the sexuality card, in the most frivolous, irrational and ridiculous of ways, just to deny gay Singaporeans the right to participate, be represented, or simply be acknowledged or respected.

Even if, given the benefit of the doubt, these twitter accounts were meant to be satirical, it continues to play on the negative beliefs people have about gay people and continue to perpetuate homophobia in our nation.

These are the terrorists who demonise fellow human beings just because they are perceived to be different, further stratifying, segregating and dividing our society.

**** NSP's Nicole Seah Gets 'Rockstar' Treatment <http://www.straitstimes.com/GeneralElection/News/Story/STIStory_660657.html>
Andrea Ong, Straits Times

Ms Seah has captured the attention of many online, with comparisons being made between her and the People's Action Party (PAP)'s own youngest candidate, 27-year-old Tin Pei Ling. Ms Tin, who has been criticised for appearing immature in interviews, is likely to stand in Marine Parade GRC led by Senior Minister Goh Chok Tong.

On Saturday, SM Goh spoke about implementing a buddy system where the more experienced MPs would partner the new candidates at their meet-the-people sessions. Incumbents Fatimah Lateef and Seah Kian Peng would 'buddy' new faces Ms Tin and former army general Tan Chuan-Jin respectively. NSP president Sebastian Teo said this was an attempt by the PAP to divert attention from Ms Tin. 'I think they are just trying to avoid a one-to-one straight competition, that's why they are putting two in one pair... They are trying to divert focus from their young candidate,' said Mr Teo.

**** LTA And SLA Responsible For Badly Screwing Up Singaporeans <http://singaporeelection.blogspot.com/2011/04/lta-and-sla-responsible-for-badly.html>
Singapore Election Watch

Don't con the public.

Mah Bow Tan and Raymond Lim....you and your managed services are the Disasters of Singapore and sad to say being part of PAP...PAP is seen as a disaster too. Shame on you ...big corruption cases in SLA under your noses too! What were you doing? Busy counting money?

**** Reply From ST: Give Me A Choice, ST <http://thinkhappiness.blogspot.com/2011/04/reply-from-st-give-me-choice-st.html>
Think Happiness

I cannot accept such a state of affairs as your reader, since I expect you as a newspaper to be fair. In such a situation, you should give readers like me the option of not reading your propaganda-driven reports.

You allow your readers, for example, to suspend their subscriptions temporarily when these readers go away. I cannot see why this flexibility cannot be extended further to cover the elections period.

**** The Singapore Political Scene Has Irrevocably Changed <http://paulcbc.wordpress.com/2011/04/24/the-singapore-political-scene-has-irrevocably-changed/>
The Craftsman's Forge

Whatever the results come 7th May, this 2011 elections is truly the tipping point for Singapore politics. I believe this will see the turning of the tide against the PAP as the single dormant political party, and the emergence of multi-party politics in Singapore.

**** Two Personalities And The Economic Debate <http://tankinlian.com/admin/file.aspx?id=480>
Tan Kin Lian

Later, I read Mr. Tan Jee Say reply in the website of the Singapore Democratic Party. Mr. Tan said, “I never said that we should completely phase out manufacturing in Singapore. I proposed in my paper that we should not continue to give incentives to bring in more manufacturers but rather to expand our services industry."

It is quite unfair for Mr. Lim Hng Kiang to put words into Mr. Tan’s mouth and to attack him so strongly, and for the attack to be prominently covered in the Sunday Times. This lowered my respect for the minister and for the mainstream media. The facts do appear to be distorted. I decide to mention this point in my blog, as I think that Mr. Tan Jee Say’s reply will not be adequately covered in the mainstream media.

**** Reluctance To Debate: An Ironic Statement At This Time? <http://threeinonekopiguy.blogspot.com/2011/04/reluctance-to-debate-ironic-statement.html>
Three In One Kopi Guy

Since the incumbents are so interested in calling out the opposition on various issues about their manifestos and alternative policies, they should agree to such a debate to let Singaporeans know once and for all why the opposition is not credible, irresponsible etc etc. Hiding behind their mainstream media outlets and skirting a direct confrontation of words shows weakness and lack of confidence.

**** Great Feelings About Nicole Seah <http://stageofdancingbutterflies.wordpress.com/2011/04/24/great-feelings-about-nicole-seah/>
Vivien's Secret Garden

After reading up on the both of them, I feel that there is simply no fight. Pitting these two against each other, Nicole Seah will certainly triumph. The sentiments that I get from the interviews I have read is Nicole Seah is much more driven to make changes, more matured and sincere. She gives you the feeling that she has a burden for change and is determined to see it through, unlike Tin Pei Ling.

**** GE: WP Rebuts Mah On Housing Polices, Introduces More Candidates <http://www.channelnewsasia.com/stories/singaporelocalnews/view/1124605/1/.html>
Hoe Yeen Nie, Channel NewsAsia

The Workers' Party (WP) chairman Sylvia Lim has dismissed Mr Mah Bow Tan's assertion that her party's proposals on housing would crash the market. She said the proposals are confined to new flats, which cater to a limited market, and so will have limited impact.

The Workers' Party said its proposal to price new flats according to median incomes will have a "minimum impact" on the resale market, because the resale market attracts not just first-time homebuyers.

**** GE: RP Checks Out Unhappiness Over Clementi SERS <http://www.channelnewsasia.com/stories/singaporelocalnews/view/1124611/1/.html>
Ryan Huang, Channel NewsAsia

A group of residents in Clementi have expressed unhappiness over the Selective En bloc Redevelopment Scheme (SERS) whereby the government identifies old blocks for redevelopment. Some residents reached out to the Reform Party, which has plans to contest the wider West Coast GRC.

**** Heads I Win, Tails You Lose <http://yeejj.wordpress.com/2011/04/24/heads-i-win-tails-you-lose/>
Yee Jenn Jong

If the voters wish to have a change, then that’s their democratic right as well. There’s no need to scare voters by painting a negative image of the alternative camp. With the PAP’s strong party machinery and self-proclaimed good track record, there’s nothing the ruling party should fear about a freak result.

Voters need to consider if they wish to make their voices heard. Yes, by all means think carefully if you trust the party and the candidate(s) in the alternative camp being presented to you. But do not let fear be the factor that influence your decision.

**** SDP Hits Back At Balakrishnan Criticisms <http://singaporeelection.blogspot.com/2011/04/sdp-hits-back-at-balakrishnan.html?utm_medium=twitter&utm_source=twitterfeed>
Singapore Election Watch

If this is what the MIWs are portraying to us now: busy slamming proposals which can better the lives of the people, we can forget about them listening to us the people if they continue to enjoy unbridled political hegemony.

**** Families Of Death Row Inmates Gather At Private Forum <http://theonlinecitizen.com/2011/04/families-of-death-row-inmates-gather-at-private-forum/>
Joshua Chiang, The Online Citizen

These are six separate cases and prior to the forum, some of the family members were not aware that other people shared their plight. But by the end of the evening, one thing became alarmingly clear – the death row inmates all came from a relatively disadvantaged section of society.

**** 摇摆在合法赌博与合法腐败之间 <http://newasiarepublic.com/?p=27796>
New Asia Republic

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