Tuesday, June 29, 2010

World Cup Girls

World Cup Girls


World Cup Girls

Posted: 29 Jun 2010 10:25 AM PDT

World Cup supporters from around the globe. It's a beautiful game…

Facebook video by Fen. And World Cup theme song Wavin' Flag by K'naan.

World Cup Girls from YeinJee's Asian Blog


Asian teams out of World Cup

Posted: 29 Jun 2010 10:04 AM PDT

All four Asian representatives have bowed out of the 2010 FIFA World Cup.

Japan and South Korea have made themselves proud by advancing to the last 16 round, but that's as far as they could go as both teams were eliminated at that stage… with Japan unfortunately lost to Paraguay on penalties.

There are encouraging signs for Asian teams at this World Cup, but it's still obvious that we are far behind the traditional footballing continents, i.e. Europe and South America. We might catch up someday in terms of techniques and tactics, but the physical disadvantage is something that's difficult to overhaul.

It's ironic though, that football is still arguably the most popular sport in the Asia region despite our lack of global success.

Asian teams out of World Cup from YeinJee's Asian Blog


the government fear cartoonist?

Posted: 29 Jun 2010 09:33 AM PDT

will be off to harvest haven in gopeng, perak for retreat for 2 nights, 3 days, thus no blogging from me for 2 days. am going to leave you with this  funny cartoonby zunar.

if you guys are not living in a tempurung, you'll be aware of the news of zunar's cartoon books being banned by the govt.  (zunar is the cartoonist for malaysiakini). the reason, the govt. gave, believe it or not, was that 'the contents  can influence the people to revolt against the leaders and government policies; the contents are not suitable and detrimental to public order.'

ya allah! cartoons can cause the people to revolt? wow! new found weapon eh?

it is with that reasoning that zunar came out with the following cartoon. (btw, malaysiakini had planned to take the govt. to court for the ban, and zunar himself had spoken up. see below).

Malaysiakini

Malaysia , the land of cartoons
Zunar
Jun 29, 10
11:03am

OPINION Most of my cartoons are drawn based on local issues. Therefore, it is not a surprise that my cartoons are not well-known outside Malaysia. Foreigners may recognise my drawings, but they never get the joke.

Whenever the government bans my books and magazines, the decision becomes widespread news locally and internationally under such headlines as 'Malaysia bans political cartoons critical of government'.

I believe many people across the globe must have laughed when they discovered the grounds of themost recent ban. Home Ministry secretary-general Mahmood Adam said the cartoons are a threat to national security!

I can accept it if my cartoons are barred from appearing in mainstream newspapers such as New Straits TimesStar or other government-controlled newspapers.

But to ban my books and to threaten my readers and vendors with up to three years' jail or a fine of up to RM20,000 is an act that truly reflects 1Funny Malaysia.

I have received many emails from people in countries like Australia, Canada, Taiwan and the US, requesting copies of my books, with notes like: "p.s: Your book is so funny. I laughed before I read it."

Malaysians are exposed to many funny things in daily life. Just turn to the national news on television and one cannot stop laughing at statements by the prime minister and his cabinet ministers.

Nobody could hold their laughter when the PM once placed the holy Quran on his head and issued a denial of involvement in a criminal case.

And it was funnier than the Raja Lawakcomedy show when he negotiated for votes using taxpayers' money by saying "you help me, I help you" – even if the Election Commission and the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission saw nothing wrong with this.

Now, if a sergeant has the expertise to steal a jet engine, imagine how much more of an expert our majors or generals would be. Yet none of them represented Malaysia in the Scorpene submarine deal – instead it was political analyst Abdul Razak Baginda! Ha, ha, ha!

I once thought that the reason behind the collapse of the ceiling in the Kuala Lumpur court complex was due to too much laughter at the judgments delivered. (Sorry for exaggerating.)

Duty to deliver


It is quite common that, from time to time, the works of political cartoonists are banned around the world, but this action has been limited to cartoons in newspapers and magazines. 

And how many of these decisions were because the subject poked fun at the government or was critical of the government?

This happened to Thomas Nast who constantly knocked William M Tweed, the leader of Tammany Hall, the political machine that controlled politics in New York. But that was in the middle of the 1860s!

US congressman Jack Kemp has pointed out that a transparent government will acknowledge the role of political cartoonists. He indicated that even on a bad day, we have to admit cartooning plays an important role in a free press.

Even when the government is savaged by a clever cartoon, we might still laugh at the aptitude or the art of the cartoonist.

It's a duty for me as a political cartoonist to expose the corruption of the BN government, to draw subjects that fail to be highlighted by other cartoonists – subjects such as Altantuya Shaariibuu, the Scorpene deal, Apco or the conspiracy against Anwar Ibrahim.

The more corrupt the government is, the more creative I will be. Malaysia is a land of cartoons… and its cabinet ministers are comical characters in disguise.

So don't blame me; politicians provide the jokes – I just transfer them onto paper.

————————————————————————————————–

ZUNAR, whose full name is Zulkiflee Anwar Ulhaque, is a political cartoonist who contributes to Malaysiakini.



Program Jejak Akar bersama KEMAS dan JKKKP Sg Daun Tengah

Posted: 29 Jun 2010 09:14 AM PDT



UMNO BN Pengkhianat Negara

Posted: 29 Jun 2010 08:50 AM PDT

Pemimpin Umno-BN Jadi Agen Serah Kedaulatan Negara

Ahli Parlimen Umno-Barisan Nasional didakwa menjadi agen negara Brunei dan Singapura apabila bertindak menyokong dalam isu menyerahkan kedaulatan di kawasan tuntutan bertindih di sempadan negara.

Ahli Parlimen Pokok Sena, Datuk Mahfuz Omar dalam sidang media di lobi parlimen petang tadi berkata beliau kecewa dengan sikap pemimpin Umno-BN yang menyokong tindakan kerajaan yang menyerahkan kedaulatan negara dalam isu Blok L dan M, tanah milik Keretapi Tanah Melayu Berhad di Tanjong Pagar serta isu Pulau Batu Putih yang juga telah diserahkan kepada kerajaan Singapura.

"Kerajaan Umno-BN tidak serius dalam isu mempertahankan kedaulatan negara. Jelas dalam isu Blok L dan M serta tanah KTMB, kerajaan Umno-BN nampaknya tidak mempunyai ketegasan.

"Nampaknya negara kita dalam bahaya apabila pemimpin Umno-BN menjadi agen kepada negara Brunei dan Singapura kerana menyokong tindakan kerajaan itu," katanya.

Mahfuz turut mempersoalkan apabila kerajaan Umno-BN berbangga dapat mempertahankan batuan tengah di dalam perebutan Batu Putih yang hasilnya untuk nelayan menangkap ikan tetapi dalam masa yang sama kita tidak dapat mempertahankan Blok L dan M yang memberikan keuntungan lumayan kepada negara, begitu juga dalam isu tanah KTMB di Tanjung Pagar yang dipajak oleh kerajaan selama 999 tahun di wilayah Singapura.

Tambahnya, Dalam isu tanah di Tanjung Pagar, kerajaan juga tidak terhalang dalam membangunkan tanah tersebut tetapi apabila kerajaan membuat perjanjian 60:40 dengan kerajaan singapura, tanah tersebut katanya lagi bukan menjadi hak kerajaan Malaysia tetapi menjadi hak Singapura.

Manakala Ahli Parlimen Balik Pulau, Yusmadi Yusof pula berkata Pakatan Rakyat kesal dengan dasar luar kerajaan yang hanya mementingkan ekonomi sekelompok pemimpin Umno-BN.

"Isu blok L dan M bukan isu ekonomi semata-mata tetapi adalah berkenaan keselamatan negara kerana apabila Ahli Parlimen Kota Belud bangun mempertahankan atas dasar keuntungan yang sanggup menggadaikan maruah negara contohnya dalam isu lesen judi.

"Dalam isu pertindihan di sempadan kita mempunyai hak kedaulatan di mana kita lihat pendekatan yang berbeza dalam isu pertindihan dengan Thailand yang diselesaikan mantan Menteri Luar Negara, Allahyarham Tan Sri Ghazali Shafie dengan mengadakan perbincangan sehingga membentuk satu 'Joint Authority' yang memberikan keuntungan di samping menjaga maruah negara.

"Kerajaan Umno-BN nampaknya mengamalkan sikap dan dasar yang salah dengan menyerahkan kedaulatan negara yang merugikan negara," ujarnya lagi.

Yusmadi juga membidas sikap pemimpin Umno-BN yang hanya mementingkan keuntungan negara yang menyebabkan banyak lagi kawasan bertindih negara akan tergadai.

Pakatan Rakyat dalam pada itu kata beliau menyanggah jawapan Timbalan Menteri Luar Negeri, Datuk Richard Riot Jaem yang tidak konkrit semasa membentangkan perbahasan Rancangan Malaysia Ke-10 yang menurutnya telah menyebabkan kedaulatan negara tergadai. -TVS

Ulasan GB



Bank of America Merril Lynch: Malaysia 'young and poor' by 2030

Posted: 29 Jun 2010 08:38 AM PDT

Taming My Cravings

Posted: 29 Jun 2010 08:27 AM PDT

Pent-up cravings are dangerous. They make me eat more than I should in moments of weakness, break my low-protein diet and cause me to worry no end if I had caused my kidneys more damage. Most of those cravings are for meat dishes, if not meat then food high in purine and those that make me itch.

After 6 years of attempting to carefully watch my diet, I still succumb to temptation every now and then, especially when Wuan and I make trips to Ipoh and Penang. There are simply too much good food in these two places to ignore. It is in Ipoh that I usually eat a little more than I should. Invariably, Restoran Wong Koh Kee is the one place that always make me eat more than I should.

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Hutang FELDA Melambak Setelah Najib Pegang Kuasa

Posted: 29 Jun 2010 06:41 AM PDT

FELDA Global Venture Holdings menggunakan tunai simpanan (cash reserves) dan berhutang secara besar-besaran, untuk menjalankan merger dan akuisisi di luar negeri. Lebih-lebih lagi, pembelian perusahaan-perusahaan ini dijalankan dalam keadaan tidak bersedia, tanpa penelitian dan penyemakan peneroka FELDA tentang bagaimana dana ini digunakan, dan maklumat terperinci berhubung pelaburan ini.

Demikianlah perubahan yang membimbangkan dalam FELDA, setelah Najib Razak menyandang jawatan Perdana Menteri, menurut sumber dalaman FELDA.
Beliau memberitahu MerdekaReview, FELDA memperlihatkan perkembangan yang membimbangkan, setelah Najib Razak menguasai FELDA sepenuhnya, terutamanya apabila FELDA Global Venture Holdings ditubuhkan pada tahun 2007.

"Sebelum Najib masuk, kami (FELDA) tidak pernah bertindak sebegitu pantas dalam pembelian perusahaan (merger dan akuisisi). Setelah beliau masuk, terutamanya selepas penubuhan FELDA Global Venture Holdings, pembelian perusahaan di luar negeri dijalankan dengan begitu giat sekali," kata sumber maklumat.

Malah, beliau menambah, keputusan pembelian perusahaan atau pelaburan ini bukannya hasil perbincangan dalam FELDA, tetapi arahan politik. Lebih-lebih lagi, dalam kebanyakan masa, hanya beberapa orang dari pihak atasan yang mengetahui maklumat terperincinya.

Beliau menambah, Najib menjalin hubungan yang erat dengan FELDA sejak beliau menyandang jawatan Timbalan Perdana Menteri. Kekerapan Najib muncul dalam mesyuarat FELDA bertambah dari purata dua bulan sekali, sehingga sebulan sekali sekarang, bahkan kadang-kala, dua minggu sekali.

Apa yang menarik, Najib telah mengalihkan FELDA ke bawah Jabatan Perdana Menteri setelah beliau dilantik sebagai TPM pada tahun 2004. FELDA diletakkan secara langsung di bawah bidang kuasa dirinya.

Strategi radikal dalam pembelian perusahaan

Sumber maklumat ini meluahkan keresahan pihak dalaman FELDA, "Kami menganggap projek merger dan akuisisi (yang dijalankan FELDA Global Venture Holdings) tidak harus dilakukan dengan tergesa-gesa, sekurang-kurangnya nilailah dahulu hasil projek pembelian perusahaan sebelum terus kepada projek yang selanjutnya... Bukannya asyik beli sahaja."

Lebih penting, pembelian ini dijalankan tanpa persediaan yang mencukupi dalam FELDA sendiri, iaitu tidak mengambil kira sama ada mereka mampu untuk menanganinya. Misalnya, FELDA Global Venture Holdings mengambil alih kilang pemprosesan minyak kelapa sawit di luar negeri, yang mana perusahaan utamanya adalah penghasilan produk yang mempunyai nilai tambahan, sementara bahan mentahnya (iaitu kelapa sawit) dibekalkan melalui projek peneroka FELDA. Pada hakikatnya, FELDA sendiri belum bersedia untuk memenuhi keperluan kilang pemprosesan yang semakin bertambah.
Pelaburan di luar negeri

FELDA Global Venture Holdings ditubuhkan pada Disember 2007, tetapi hanya diumumkan struktur organisasinya pada Julai tahun lalu. Tiga buah anak negeri di bawah FELDA Global Venture Holdings termasuklan Felda Global Ventures North Amerika Sdn. Bhd, Felda Global Ventures Indonesia Sdn. Bhd dan Felda Global Ventures Middle East Sdn. Bhd.

Setakat ini, pelaburan di luar negeri oleh FELDA Global Venture Holdings yang diumumkan termasuklah pembelian Syarikat Twin River Technologies di Amerika Syarikat. Selain itu, FELDA Global Venture Holdings turut mencari peluang pelaburan dalam bidang perladangan di Indonesia; di samping terlibat dalam pelaburan di Timur Tengah.

Sebagaimana yang diketahui, apa yang diumumkan ini hanyalah sebahagian daripada pelaburannya. Pada hakikatnya, syarikat ini telah menerokai pelaburan di Brazil, India dan Amerika Syarikat. Tetapi, pelaburan ini masih dalam keadaan menanggung kerugian.

Selain itu, FELDA telah menggunakan tunai simpanan (cash reserves) dan berhutang untuk menanggung pembelian perusahaan di luar negeri ini. Lantaran daripada itu, tunai simpanan FELDA menunjukkan pola pengurangan, malah menanggung hutang yang besar.

"Pada awalnya, ketika FELDA mempunyai banyak tunai simpanan, sesetengah elit menuduh bahawa wang ini tidak dikendalikan dengan baik, dan seharusnya digunakan untuk melabur. Namun, pelaburan seharusnya mempunyai perancangan jangka panjang, bukannya melabur secara tergesa-gesa. Kini, tunai simpanan yang tinggal tidak seberapa, kerana telah digunakan untuk merger dan akuisisi."

Sumber maklumat ini berkata, "Saya bersetuju dengan Tan Kee Kwong (bekas Timbalan Menteri Tanah dan Pembangunan Koperasi), bahawa FELDA pada asalnya tidak berhutang, tetapi terlebih berhutang pada masa sekarang."

Baru-baru ini, kerajaan Najib mengakui bahawa tunai simpanan FELDA telah berkurang dari RM4.08 bilion pada tahun 2004 kepada RM1.35 bilion pada tahun 2009, dengan pengurangan pada kadar 67%. Selain itu, Tan Kee Kwong pernah mendedahkan bahawa FELDA memiliki aset bernilai RM7 bilion, dan tunai simpanan sejumlah RM4.5 bilion, malah tidak berhutang, sebelum Najib mengambil alih FELDA.

Sebelum ini, media melaporkan bahawa FELDA sedang merancang untuk menerbitkan bon yang bernilai RM6 bilion, sebagai sebahagian daripada penstrukturan semula FELDA. Angka ini sama dengan pengumuman FELDA Global Venture Holdings bahawa mereka merancang untuk melaburkan lebih RM6 bilion untuk memperluaskan perusahaannya.

Pembangkang mengkritik bahawa Najib dan Mohd Bakke Salleh yang bakal menjadi Ketua Pegawai Eksekutif Sime Darby, harus bertanggungjawab terhadap pengurangan tunai simpanan secara mendadak dalam FELDA. Sumber dalaman FELDA mengesahkan bahawa setelah FELDA melantik Mohd Bakke Salleh sebagai Ketua Pegawai Eksekutif FELDA Global Venture Holdings pada tahun 2008, merger dan akuisisi mula dijalankan dengan giat di luar negeri.

Peneroka FELDA diketepikan

Di samping itu, sumber maklumat ini menyatakan bahawa beliau tidak bersetuju bahawa peneroka FELDA diketepikan ketika keputusan pelaburan ini dilakukan.

"FELDA memegang 100% saham FELDA Global Venture Holdings, tetapi peneroka FELDA tidak boleh turut serta, dan tiada hak untuk mengetahui dan mengundi dalam FELDA Global Venture Holdings. Jangan lupa, kilang pemprosesan kepala sawit yang dibeli FELDA Global Venture Holdings itu, kelapa sawitnya dibekalkan peneroka FELDA. Daripada 800 ribu hektar ladang yang dimiliki FELDA, 50% daripadanya dimiliki peneroka FELDA. Tindakan ini (mengetepikan peneroka FELDA) telah merampas hak yang seharusnya dimiliki mereka," katanya.

Menurut laporan media, kerajaan hanya memindahkan 49% saham FELDA yang dimiliki kerajaan ke FELDA Global Venture Holdings ketika ia ditubuhkan, sementara 51% saham yang dimiliki peneroka FELDA terus dikekalkan dalam FELDA. Peneroka FELDA memegang 51% saham melalui Koperasi Permodalan Felda, yang terdiri daripada 110 ribu orang peneroka FELDA dan 22 ribu orang pekerja.

Dengan kata lain, walaupun FELDA menguasai 100% saham FELDA Global Venture Holdings, namun peneroka FELDA yang merupakan pemegang saham besar (51%) telah diketepikan dalam proses membuat keputusan dalam FELDA Global Venture Holdings.

Menurut laporan The Malaysian Insider semalam, National Association of Felda Settlers' Children telah menggesa agar Suruhanjaya Pencegah Rasuah Malaysia (SPRM) menyiasat sama ada dana FELDA telah disalahgunakan. Pengerusinya, Mazlan Aliman berkata, seandainya Timbalan Menteri Jabatan Perdana Menteri Ahmad Maslan enggan memberi penjelasan berikutan pengurangan tunai simpanan FELDA, maka pihaknya bersedia untuk membuat laporan kepada SPRM dan balai polis di setiap negeri pada bulan depan.

Minggu lalu, Ahmad Maslan menafikan bahawa pengurangan tunai simpanan FELDA disebabkan salah urus, malah menafikan bahawa wang ini disalahgunakan. -MR

*Neo Chee Hua ialah Assistant Editor MerdekaReview, edisi bahasa Cina. Diterjemah dan disunting oleh Lim Hong Siang dari teks asal.


Hilangnya Arah Qiblat

Posted: 19 Jun 2010 09:03 AM PDT


Britain, France, Germany use torture intel: HRW

Posted: 29 Jun 2010 07:15 AM PDT

Britain, France and Germany use foreign intelligence obtained through torture in the fight against terrorism, a new report from Human Rights Watch said Tuesday.

The use by three heavyweight European powers of information from secret services in countries that routinely rely on torture was damaging the reputation of the entire European Union, said the rights group.

"Berlin, Paris and London should be working to eradicate torture, not relying on foreign torture intelligence," said Judith Sunderland, Western Europe researcher for HRW.

"Taking information from torturers is illegal and just plain wrong."

The report 'No Questions Asked: Intelligence Cooperation with Countries that Torture' found:

"The actual practices of these leading EU states contradict the EU's anti-torture guidelines, which make eradicating torture and ill-treatment a priority in its relations with other countries."

The use of such intelligence obtained under questionable circumstances "damages the credibility of the European Union", added HRW.

Intelligence services in the three countries lack detailed instructions on how to assess and respond to information from countries that torture, said the rights group.

Torture-tainted information has been used in criminal proceedings in France and Germany, despite domestic and international rules banning the use of such evidence in proceedings, said HRW.

"France, Germany, and the UK can engage in necessary intelligence cooperation without undermining the global torture ban," said the rights group.

"To do so, they must make genuine inquiries of countries that provide information to determine whether torture was used to obtain it."

- AFP  SOURCE:Britain, France, Germany use torture intel: HRW



The hype of the hybrid cars???

Posted: 29 Jun 2010 06:56 AM PDT

As a young man with eyes on beautiful sports car, I adore the exquisite looks of Lamborghini Gallardo Balboni, Bugatti Veyron Pur Sang, and Ferrari F430. On the other hand, as an engineer, specialising in sustainable processing, I am inclined to take a look at the Toyota Prius and Lexus Hybrid.

However, the current usage of these hybrid cars is only as a 'fashion statement' by A-list Hollywood celebrities. The point of driving a hybrid over there is not to save the planet but to be seen trying.

When hybrids first went into the eye of the world, mile-per-gallon estimates float around uncontrollably as people rushed to the dealership to get their 'piece of the pie'. Toyota claims Prius looks like and performs like a normal car but delivers 50% better fuel economy. In my opinion, that's not exactly spot on.
Furthermore, think about this. If you remove the heavy electric motor and the batteries from a Toyota Prius, you could have save so much weight that it would become more economical and therefore even kinder to the environment. I mean, I don't know about others, but that is just my logic.

I'm not saying that is the hybrid cars are bad. I'm just a little bit concerned for the consumers as the advertisement for these cars are more often misleading than not. We as consumers shouldn't be settling for this; we deserve better.

SOURCE:The hype of the hybrid cars by Ahmad Faiz bin Abdul Razak

"The estimated fuel-efficiency rating using the U.S. EPA combined cycle is: 50 mpg-US (4.7 L/100 km; 60 mpg-imp).
The Prius becomes the most efficient car powered by liquid fuel available in the U.S. in 2009, based on the official rating. ………The official UK fuel efficiency data for the Prius T3 is: Urban 72.4 mpg-imp (3.90 L/100 km; 60.3 mpg-US), Extra Urban 76.4 mpg-imp (3.70 L/100 km; 63.6 mpg-US), Combined 72.4 mpg-imp (3.90 L/100 km; 60.3 mpg-US).[54]"
Not sure where the figure 45mpg for the prius comes from and how the proton car's 41.2mpg figure come from too. Just curious, are they rated based on the same test cases?


Hutang FELDA Melambak Setelah Najib Pegang Kuasa

Posted: 29 Jun 2010 06:51 AM PDT

FELDA Global Venture Holdings menggunakan tunai simpanan (cash reserves) dan berhutang secara besar-besaran, untuk menjalankan merger dan akuisisi di luar negeri. Lebih-lebih lagi, pembelian perusahaan-perusahaan ini dijalankan dalam keadaan tidak bersedia, tanpa penelitian dan penyemakan peneroka FELDA tentang bagaimana dana ini digunakan, dan maklumat terperinci berhubung pelaburan ini.

Demikianlah perubahan yang membimbangkan dalam FELDA, setelah Najib Razak menyandang jawatan Perdana Menteri, menurut sumber dalaman FELDA.
Beliau memberitahu MerdekaReview, FELDA memperlihatkan perkembangan yang membimbangkan, setelah Najib Razak menguasai FELDA sepenuhnya, terutamanya apabila FELDA Global Venture Holdings ditubuhkan pada tahun 2007.

"Sebelum Najib masuk, kami (FELDA) tidak pernah bertindak sebegitu pantas dalam pembelian perusahaan (merger dan akuisisi). Setelah beliau masuk, terutamanya selepas penubuhan FELDA Global Venture Holdings, pembelian perusahaan di luar negeri dijalankan dengan begitu giat sekali," kata sumber maklumat.

Malah, beliau menambah, keputusan pembelian perusahaan atau pelaburan ini bukannya hasil perbincangan dalam FELDA, tetapi arahan politik. Lebih-lebih lagi, dalam kebanyakan masa, hanya beberapa orang dari pihak atasan yang mengetahui maklumat terperincinya.

Beliau menambah, Najib menjalin hubungan yang erat dengan FELDA sejak beliau menyandang jawatan Timbalan Perdana Menteri. Kekerapan Najib muncul dalam mesyuarat FELDA bertambah dari purata dua bulan sekali, sehingga sebulan sekali sekarang, bahkan kadang-kala, dua minggu sekali.

Apa yang menarik, Najib telah mengalihkan FELDA ke bawah Jabatan Perdana Menteri setelah beliau dilantik sebagai TPM pada tahun 2004. FELDA diletakkan secara langsung di bawah bidang kuasa dirinya.

Strategi radikal dalam pembelian perusahaan

Sumber maklumat ini meluahkan keresahan pihak dalaman FELDA, "Kami menganggap projek merger dan akuisisi (yang dijalankan FELDA Global Venture Holdings) tidak harus dilakukan dengan tergesa-gesa, sekurang-kurangnya nilailah dahulu hasil projek pembelian perusahaan sebelum terus kepada projek yang selanjutnya... Bukannya asyik beli sahaja."

Lebih penting, pembelian ini dijalankan tanpa persediaan yang mencukupi dalam FELDA sendiri, iaitu tidak mengambil kira sama ada mereka mampu untuk menanganinya. Misalnya, FELDA Global Venture Holdings mengambil alih kilang pemprosesan minyak kelapa sawit di luar negeri, yang mana perusahaan utamanya adalah penghasilan produk yang mempunyai nilai tambahan, sementara bahan mentahnya (iaitu kelapa sawit) dibekalkan melalui projek peneroka FELDA. Pada hakikatnya, FELDA sendiri belum bersedia untuk memenuhi keperluan kilang pemprosesan yang semakin bertambah.
Pelaburan di luar negeri

FELDA Global Venture Holdings ditubuhkan pada Disember 2007, tetapi hanya diumumkan struktur organisasinya pada Julai tahun lalu. Tiga buah anak negeri di bawah FELDA Global Venture Holdings termasuklan Felda Global Ventures North Amerika Sdn. Bhd, Felda Global Ventures Indonesia Sdn. Bhd dan Felda Global Ventures Middle East Sdn. Bhd.

Setakat ini, pelaburan di luar negeri oleh FELDA Global Venture Holdings yang diumumkan termasuklah pembelian Syarikat Twin River Technologies di Amerika Syarikat. Selain itu, FELDA Global Venture Holdings turut mencari peluang pelaburan dalam bidang perladangan di Indonesia; di samping terlibat dalam pelaburan di Timur Tengah.

Sebagaimana yang diketahui, apa yang diumumkan ini hanyalah sebahagian daripada pelaburannya. Pada hakikatnya, syarikat ini telah menerokai pelaburan di Brazil, India dan Amerika Syarikat. Tetapi, pelaburan ini masih dalam keadaan menanggung kerugian.

Selain itu, FELDA telah menggunakan tunai simpanan (cash reserves) dan berhutang untuk menanggung pembelian perusahaan di luar negeri ini. Lantaran daripada itu, tunai simpanan FELDA menunjukkan pola pengurangan, malah menanggung hutang yang besar.

"Pada awalnya, ketika FELDA mempunyai banyak tunai simpanan, sesetengah elit menuduh bahawa wang ini tidak dikendalikan dengan baik, dan seharusnya digunakan untuk melabur. Namun, pelaburan seharusnya mempunyai perancangan jangka panjang, bukannya melabur secara tergesa-gesa. Kini, tunai simpanan yang tinggal tidak seberapa, kerana telah digunakan untuk merger dan akuisisi."

Sumber maklumat ini berkata, "Saya bersetuju dengan Tan Kee Kwong (bekas Timbalan Menteri Tanah dan Pembangunan Koperasi), bahawa FELDA pada asalnya tidak berhutang, tetapi terlebih berhutang pada masa sekarang."

Baru-baru ini, kerajaan Najib mengakui bahawa tunai simpanan FELDA telah berkurang dari RM4.08 bilion pada tahun 2004 kepada RM1.35 bilion pada tahun 2009, dengan pengurangan pada kadar 67%. Selain itu, Tan Kee Kwong pernah mendedahkan bahawa FELDA memiliki aset bernilai RM7 bilion, dan tunai simpanan sejumlah RM4.5 bilion, malah tidak berhutang, sebelum Najib mengambil alih FELDA.

Sebelum ini, media melaporkan bahawa FELDA sedang merancang untuk menerbitkan bon yang bernilai RM6 bilion, sebagai sebahagian daripada penstrukturan semula FELDA. Angka ini sama dengan pengumuman FELDA Global Venture Holdings bahawa mereka merancang untuk melaburkan lebih RM6 bilion untuk memperluaskan perusahaannya.

Pembangkang mengkritik bahawa Najib dan Mohd Bakke Salleh yang bakal menjadi Ketua Pegawai Eksekutif Sime Darby, harus bertanggungjawab terhadap pengurangan tunai simpanan secara mendadak dalam FELDA. Sumber dalaman FELDA mengesahkan bahawa setelah FELDA melantik Mohd Bakke Salleh sebagai Ketua Pegawai Eksekutif FELDA Global Venture Holdings pada tahun 2008, merger dan akuisisi mula dijalankan dengan giat di luar negeri.

Peneroka FELDA diketepikan

Di samping itu, sumber maklumat ini menyatakan bahawa beliau tidak bersetuju bahawa peneroka FELDA diketepikan ketika keputusan pelaburan ini dilakukan.

"FELDA memegang 100% saham FELDA Global Venture Holdings, tetapi peneroka FELDA tidak boleh turut serta, dan tiada hak untuk mengetahui dan mengundi dalam FELDA Global Venture Holdings. Jangan lupa, kilang pemprosesan kepala sawit yang dibeli FELDA Global Venture Holdings itu, kelapa sawitnya dibekalkan peneroka FELDA. Daripada 800 ribu hektar ladang yang dimiliki FELDA, 50% daripadanya dimiliki peneroka FELDA. Tindakan ini (mengetepikan peneroka FELDA) telah merampas hak yang seharusnya dimiliki mereka," katanya.

Menurut laporan media, kerajaan hanya memindahkan 49% saham FELDA yang dimiliki kerajaan ke FELDA Global Venture Holdings ketika ia ditubuhkan, sementara 51% saham yang dimiliki peneroka FELDA terus dikekalkan dalam FELDA. Peneroka FELDA memegang 51% saham melalui Koperasi Permodalan Felda, yang terdiri daripada 110 ribu orang peneroka FELDA dan 22 ribu orang pekerja.

Dengan kata lain, walaupun FELDA menguasai 100% saham FELDA Global Venture Holdings, namun peneroka FELDA yang merupakan pemegang saham besar (51%) telah diketepikan dalam proses membuat keputusan dalam FELDA Global Venture Holdings.

Menurut laporan The Malaysian Insider semalam, National Association of Felda Settlers' Children telah menggesa agar Suruhanjaya Pencegah Rasuah Malaysia (SPRM) menyiasat sama ada dana FELDA telah disalahgunakan. Pengerusinya, Mazlan Aliman berkata, seandainya Timbalan Menteri Jabatan Perdana Menteri Ahmad Maslan enggan memberi penjelasan berikutan pengurangan tunai simpanan FELDA, maka pihaknya bersedia untuk membuat laporan kepada SPRM dan balai polis di setiap negeri pada bulan depan.

Minggu lalu, Ahmad Maslan menafikan bahawa pengurangan tunai simpanan FELDA disebabkan salah urus, malah menafikan bahawa wang ini disalahgunakan. -MR

*Neo Chee Hua ialah Assistant Editor MerdekaReview, edisi bahasa Cina. Diterjemah dan disunting oleh Lim Hong Siang dari teks asal.


India, child marriage married mass

Posted: 29 Jun 2010 06:46 AM PDT


Mamta, 7, right, stands with her husband Santosh, 11, at a mass marriage at Chachoda village in Rajgarh town, about 155 kilometers (96 miles) from Bhopal, India, Sunday, May 16, 2010. Even though child marriages are illegal in India, they are still held particularly in small poverty stricken villages.

Although prohibited by law, India continue to be celebrated child marriagesEspecially in the poorest villages . In these photographs Prakash Hatvalne , some of the children joined in marriage last May 16 in the village of ChachodaAt Rajgarh , about 155 km from Bhopal.


The Cost of Despotism By David Pryce-Jones

Posted: 29 Jun 2010 06:22 AM PDT

Let's consider Iran and Saudi Arabia; imagine for a moment what life in either of these leading Muslim countries must be like. Both are in the grip of Islamist ideologies, rivals because the one is Shia and the other Sunni, but both have the common property of promoting fantasies so far removed from human reality that they have to maintain police states for the sake of enforcement. The costs are terrible.

Where Iran is concerned, it is hard to be accurate, but human-rights organizations identify at least 50 people who have been hanged in the month of June alone, and at least 30 more were hanged in May. Several victims have been hoisted for execution on a crane, and in public, too. A photograph on the web shows ten men in Ghezel Hesar prison standing side by side on a scaffold with a noose round their necks, in effect torturing before killing them. The victims are accused of drug trafficking or rape, though Abdolmalek Rigi, aged 26, was hanged like his brother before him supposedly for leading an armed Sunni group in this Shia dictatorship. Were the two brothers really guilty? Their confessions on television followed closely the model of Stalin's show trials: The old Communist accusation of "enemy of the people" neatly morphs into "enemy of God." Ayatollah Khamenei has just reprieved 81 political prisoners, but another 450 are said to be held in detention without trial. Babak Heshmat Saran is just one of them. A student, he went to demonstrate on the anniversary of last year's stolen election, was picked up by the police, and has disappeared ever since.

It's also not clear how many people have been publicly beheaded this year in Saudi Arabia. But daily existence brings its cruelties and absurdities, especially through the deranged view held there about the relationship between the sexes. A young woman at a college was taken ill. The ambulance men arrived, but were refused entry because they were men. While they were all prevaricating, the woman died. Elsewhere, the police arrested a group for having a mixed party, and sentenced 15 of them to prison and flogging. One woman, a minor, was sentenced to 80 lashes, enough to disfigure permanently, even to cause death. Saudi women are allowed to be in the company only of male relatives, but a sheikh who is also an adviser to the ruling family has found a way to get round this prohibition. According to his fatwa, women who come into contact with unrelated men have to breastfeed them, whereupon they are considered members of the family rather than potential lovers. The big disputed issues of the day in Saudi Arabia are whether the man should suckle directly, which might prove erotic, or whether the woman should express her milk for him into a glass, and what is to be done about women who do not lactate.

In previous times, the view here would have been that, if Iranian and Saudi despots set up a society that depends on murdering or denaturing their subjects and making laughingstocks of them, so be it, they're the losers. That won't do now. Iran and Saudi Arabia are extending their range and influence among us, and though their Shia and Sunni ideologies are at loggerheads, both are making universal claims that no free individual could possibly accommodate. Failure to confront them would leave civilization itself the loser.National Review


Racist remarks "Chinese were immigrants": No action taken

Posted: 29 Jun 2010 06:21 AM PDT

PETALING JAYA: The MCA is shocked that no action is being taken against the Prime Minister's former aide Datuk Nasir Safar, who was earlier accused of making racist remarks at a 1Malaysia seminar.

MCA publicity bureau deputy chief Loh Seng Kok said some form of government action should have been instituted against both Nasir and former Bukit Bendera Umno chief Datuk Ahmad Ismail.

(Ahmad sparked a public outcry after his alleged remarks that Chinese were pendatang or immigrants, during the Permatang Pauh parliamentary by-election in 2008. He was suspended by Umno for three years but the suspension was lifted in December last year.)

"This is to serve as a deterrent to other Malaysians from wantonly categorising individuals, irrespective of nationality or ethnicity, with derogatory terms," Loh said in a statement here Tuesday.

He said failure take action would only embolden other racist-bent Malaysians to espouse bigoted views and then conveniently apologise for their statements.

Loh said the reasoning that the labelling of Chinese and Indians in Malaysia as pendatang referred to economic migrants, and not locally-born Chinese or Indians, was flawed and unacceptable to public sensibilities.

"It is insulting to our ancestors, who contributed tremendously to the growth, development and wealth of our beloved nation," Loh said.

He said it did not matter if the labels were meant for economic migrants, and that Malaysian Chinese and Indians were offended by it.

"It is paramount that guidelines with definitive parameters are established as to what form of content, be it verbal or publication or public policy, is tantamount to inciting racial ill-will and sedition," he said.

He said it was now not uncommon for mankind, irrespective of country of origin, to venture abroad for economic opportunities or legally settle down in other continents for foreign direct investment, higher salaries or experience.

"The application of the term economic migrants is an insult to all individuals working overseas, away from their own country," he said.


Asylum for Yousef

Posted: 29 Jun 2010 06:17 AM PDT

Mosab Hassan Yousef must have encountered nearly everything on his unlikely journey. But surely he never ran across anything as stupid as the American immigration bureaucracy.

Yousef is the son of Sheikh Hassan Yousef, a Hamas founder, and was groomed to follow in his father's footsteps. At the age of 18, he purchased some machine guns and planned to join the terrorist organization's militant wing. But he was arrested with the guns, and during a stint in Israeli prison, he had a change of heart — and joined Hamas as an undercover agent of the Israeli intelligence agency Shin Bet after his release from prison in 1997.

In that capacity, he prevented dozens of terrorist attacks, including suicide bombings and assassinations. Shin Bet agent Gonen Ben-Itzhak, who worked with Yousef for a decade, has broken his cover so he can testify in U.S. immigration court on the informant's behalf. The Israeli newspaper Haaretz says he was the country's "most valuable source in the militant organization's leadership," and credits him with the arrest of Fatah head Marwan Barghouti and Hamas members Abdullah Barghouti and Ibrahim Hamid.

In 2007, he came to the U.S. and applied for asylum. The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Service denied his application in 2009, on the grounds that he provided material support to a terrorist organization. This is madness.

The department bases its argument on Yousef's autobiography, Son of Hamas. In it, he reports that when Shin Bet agents showed him pictures of Hamas members who were suspected of involvement in a March 2001 bombing, he told the agents that he'd driven some of the members to safehouses. Of course, this is the kind of thing that spies do routinely — assist the enemy when asked, especially in small ways, so as not to blow their cover. Common sense indicates that our material-support rules don't apply to support that's provided — at the behest of a U.S. ally — within a broader attempt to bring down a terrorist organization.

If Yousef returns to the West Bank, he risks execution. Obviously, DHS doesn't believe he's a threat, or it would detain him; in fact, the FBI has advised DHS that Yousef is not a threat. He has converted to Christianity and has become vocal critic of Islam.

Yousef has a hearing tomorrow at which a judge will decide on his appeal for asylum. This shouldn't be a complicated call for the judge or anyone else — Yousef deserves asylum. If our immigration system can't distinguish between him and a true terrorist, it's more witless and perverse than even we imagined. By the editors of National Review


Saudi Textbooks: Still Teaching Hatred by Nina Shea & Bonnie Alldredge

Posted: 29 Jun 2010 06:14 AM PDT

Saudi royals are regularly hailed for their philanthropy. Their fans should take a closer look at the content of the kingdom's 1–12 education.

Saudi Arabia's King Abdullah will be received by President Obama in Washington today, nearly two years after the deadline by which the kingdom's educational curriculum was to have been completely reformed. As the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom wrote to the president last week, "This promise remains unfulfilled."

According to Arab News, the U.S. ambassador to Riyadh, James Smith, described this White House visit as a "very important" meeting, directed toward coordinating efforts to confront terrorism. The test of its seriousness will be whether President Obama uses the occasion to personally press King Abdullah to finally keep his pledge of textbook reform.

Saudi textbooks teach, along with many other noxious lessons, that Jews and Christians are "enemies," and they dogmatically instruct that various groups of "unbelievers" — apostates (which includes Muslim moderates who reject Saudi Wahhabi doctrine), polytheists (which includes Shiites), and Jews — should be killed. Under the Saudi Education Ministry's method of rote learning, these teachings amount to indoctrination, starting in first grade and continuing through high school, where militant jihad on behalf of "truth" is taught as a sacred duty. These textbooks are used not only in Saudi Arabia but in Saudi-funded schools around the world.

King Abdullah has presided over some welcome counterterrorism measures, such as last month's long-overdue fatwa — issued by the Saudi clerical establishment, the Council of Senior Ulema — condemning the financing of terrorism as a criminal act. But, as Treasury Undersecretary Stuart Levey, America's top financial-counterterrorism official, reminded us in a recent op-ed, despite progress in thwarting the financing of al-Qaeda, "a more difficult strategic battle remains."

Levey stressed the primary importance of directing our policy at preventing people from embracing violent extremism in the first place. He warned, "Among other things, we must focus on educational reform in key locations to ensure that intolerance has no place in curricula and textbooks. . . . [U]nless the next generation of children is taught to reject violent extremism, we will forever be faced with the challenge of disrupting the next group of terrorist facilitators and supporters."

The primary "key location" is undoubtedly Saudi Arabia. The kingdom is not just any country with problematic textbooks. As the controlling authority of the two holiest shrines of Islam, Saudi Arabia is able to disseminate its religious materials among the millions making the hajj to Mecca each year. Such teachings can, in this context, make a great impression. In addition, Saudi textbooks are also posted on the Saudi Education Ministry's website and are shipped and distributed by a vast Sunni infrastructure established with Saudi oil wealth to Muslim communities throughout the world. In his book The Looming Tower, Lawrence Wright asserts that while Saudis constitute only 1 percent of the world's Muslims, they pay "90 per cent of the expenses of the entire faith, overriding other traditions of Islam." Continue here to Page 2 of the National Review....


The Lunch Box!

Posted: 29 Jun 2010 05:50 AM PDT

Trying to find good & healthy food when you're eating out in this country is like trying to find a needle in a haystack. In fact, it would be easier to look for needles in haystacks ... really!

Some of you may know I've turned over a new leaf and started down the road towards a healthier lifestyle. It's been nearly three months since both wifey and me decided to head down the road of getting fit and healthy again and I must say we're both enjoying it so much that we're wondering why we didn't start this sooner.

My lifestyle has changes by quite a huge chunk from the old days where anything goes (forgive the pun)  to a complete 180 degrees. These days I'm much more health concious. I've stopped eating and doing a lot of the unhealthy stuff I used to do back then. I wish I had 'woken' up earlier and started this change in lifestyle but 'it's better late than never' or so the saying goes.

The results speak for themselves. I'm so much more healthier, so much more fitter than I was three months ago. The aches and pains are gone. The body feels revitalized. And I need a whole new wardrobe cos all my clothes are getting way too big for me.

But trust me, it took a heck of a lot of determination, discipline and strength to down this path, not to mention the sacrifices I had to make which were all for the best. I used to be a glutton who just loves to eat, all the unhealthy kind of food at that. I had tons and tons of snacks stashed around the house and I would be munching on them perpetually while watching TV.

I've long since given all that up and have resorted to eating very much more healthier food. And that's where my predicament really starts. I can't seem to find any places out there dishing out the kind of food I want to eat. These days whenever wifey and me go out, we always have problems trying to find somewhere where we can eat the kind of healthy food we want. We'd walk and walk and there wouldn't be a single shop serving good healthy food.

And when we do find a place that's catered to us, it would be bloody pricey. Darn, being healthy is expensive, especially when it comes to food. So we mostly buy the stuff we need and end up cooking at  home. Even when I go to work I'd have trouble finding healthy places to eat for lunch that I would resort to bringing power bars to work to keep me energized.

But yesterday, wifey suggested that maybe I need to eat more than just power bars for lunch since I run every morning and she says I'm burning up more calories than I'm putting in. She suggested that maybe I should prepare my own lunch from home, at least that way I could make sure it was healthy.

So yesterday we went to the mall and bought one of those La Gourmet thermal food containers to put my lunch in. I was a little reluctant actually cos I'm the kind of guy who will not carry wifey's handbag even let alone a lunch box! There goes my manly macho image.


And so this morning, wifey prepared me a container full of broccoli, cauliflower, black peppered sauges sprinkled with a little spaghetti sauce and I carried that little thermal food thingy to work like some nerdy little fellow ... hahaha ... and it came in a little checkered not so manly looking bag even! LOL!


I never thought I'd live to see the day I actually carried a 'lunch box' to work! I was pretty reluctant to even take it out and eat from it and after some 'persuading' from wifey over the phone (which was more like a threat of getting walloped on the head if I didn't utilize it) I actually enjoyed it. It was the first time I ever managed to eat the kind of healthy food I wanted. I enjoyed it so much that I'm already enthusiastically planning tomorrow's lunch menu ... LOL!

By the way, has any of you ever heard of an e cigarette? I know I haven't. How do you even smoke an e cigarette? Do you need to get online to smoke one? We're getting more technological these days that even cigarettes are going online ... LOL!
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ADUN PKR Bongkar Umno Kota Raja Ambil Tanah

Posted: 29 Jun 2010 05:37 AM PDT

Ahli Dewan Undangan Negeri (ADUN) Sri Muda Mat Suhaimi Shafie, bakal membongkarkan penglibatan beberapa individu dalam Umno Bahagian Kota Raja yang didakwa mengambil tanah di sekitar Kota Kemuning, Taman Sri Muda dan Jalan Kebun di Klang.

Antara individu terbabit termasuklah Ketua Wanita Umno bahagian Kota Raja Nahar Ahmad dan Ketua Puteri Suhaila Mat Zin.

"Saya ada maklumat lengkap mengenai hal ini. Saya akan bongkarkan penglibatan Ketua Wanita dan Ketua Puteri Umno yang terbabit dalam kes pengambilan tanah ini," katanya ketika dihubungi Free Malaysia Today hari ini.

Namun ketika ditanya mengenai bila pembongkaran itu akan dibuat beliau berkata "Saya tunggu masa yang sesuai dan akan bongkarkan secara berperingkat-peringkat," katanya.

Menurutnya lagi selain dua individu berkenaan, pegawai kerajaan dan para penyokong Umno didakwa turut terlibat dalam pengambilan tanah itu.

Sementara itu, Suhaimi berkata tindakan Umno Bahagian Kota Raja yang membakar akhbar rasmi Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR) Suara Keadilan kelmarin sebagai mencari publisiti murahan.

Beliau menyifatkan tindakan itu sebagai menutup kelemahan Umno bahagian terbabit, yang kini malap dengan menuduhnya dan ADUN Kota Raja Dr Mariah Mahmud tidak membawa sebarang pembangunan di kawasan berkenaan.

Biadap dan kurang ajar

"Mereka bersikap biadap dan kurang ajar. Malah tindakan mereka seperti kebudak-budakan….ternyata mereka melakukan tindakan sedemikian hanya untuk mencari publisiti murahan.

"Ada sesiapa kenal Ketua Umno Bahagian Kota Raja? Umno Kota Raja langsung tidak bergerak malah mereka pernah ditegur oleh Ketua Penerangan Umno.

Mereka nak tutup kelemahan dengan buat tindakan membakar Suara Keadilan dan menuduh saya dan Dr Mariah dengan tidak melakukan sebarang pembangunan selama kami menjadi wakil rakyat," katanya.

Sebaliknya beliau mempersoalkan tiada sebarang pembangunan dibawa wakil rakyat Barisan Nasional (BN) sepanjang empat tahun lalu.

"Saya tanya mereka balik, apa yang ADUN BN dulu buat? Empat tahun duduk tiada buat apa-apa. Zaman saya baru ada pasar, masjid, balai polis, pusat perniagaan untuk kami bangunkan,"
katanya.

Dalam pada itu, beliau turut menafikan akan menyaman Umno Bahagian Kota Raja seperti dinyatakan dalam blog Pisau.Net.

Malah satu sidang media yang dijadualkan tengah hari tadi seperti laporan laman blog itu juga ternyata palsu.

"Saya tidak mengadakan sebarang sidang media tengah hari tadi dan saya menafikan untuk menyaman Umno Bahagian Kota Raja terbabit. Laporan dalam laman blog itu ternyata palsu," katanya.

Ulasan GB

Tahniah YB. Begitulah hendaknya semua ADUN dan MP Pakatan Rakyat. Tangkas dan pantas menjawab serangan musuh.

Jangan jadi seperti beberapa kerat Yang Berhormat yang lesu. Rakyat kini membuka mata mereka seluas-luasnya terhadap setiap gerak geri YB terutama Pakatan Rakyat. Mereka meletakkan harapan yang tinggi kepada PR untuk menerajui negara selepas ini.


MIND BOGGLING AND EYE OPENING INFORMATION

Posted: 29 Jun 2010 04:34 AM PDT

By now, the inbox of many readers would have one common item. It is such a shocking piece of news that I am sure cyberspace would be ablaze with this revelation. Of course, one might say that Malaysians have become kind of used to bizarre news. We have missing jets, submarines that cannot dive, roofs that collapse, payment of RM400m interest for RM1.6b Eurocopter purchase, and many other controversial expenditure that are too long a list to put up here and too depressing to read.

And then today, the shit hit the fan.

Where?

Simple.

CLICK HERE and read all about it! Fasten your seat belts before you do ok? But then again, what can shock Malaysians???

Take care and have a pleasant evening.


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