Tuesday, November 22, 2011

no more after friday prayer protest? (at the mosque)

no more after friday prayer protest? (at the mosque)

no more after friday prayer protest? (at the mosque)

Posted: 22 Nov 2011 09:57 AM PST

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well, our brand new bill said so – the peaceful assembly bill (2011) states that no street protests are allowed, and bars any assembly in or anywhere within a 50 metre buffer zone around defined prohibited areas such as schools, hospitals and places of worship.

(from the malaysian insider)

by now we all are so familiar with the radicals muslim who go pray pray then come out get angry and hurl abuse – the infamous after-friday prayer protest! well, so with this bill tabled, does it mean we will see the end of the after-friday prayer protest? aww! no fun then. nothing to look forward to on friday.

well i hope the bill will not be passed (allow me the privilege to continue see the after-friday prayer protest) because if it is passed, after our mass in church, a group of us can't stand in front of the church too… because that might constitute as being in a protest within 50 metres of a church.

well well well, this peaceful assembly bill, which was tabled yesterday, is to replace the ISA.  remember najib's announcement that the ISA will be repealed? many of us were sceptical and fear that the new law to replace ISA will be worst… and we are right!  as pakatan rakyat said, this new law chokes liberty. so what was it again that our umno leaders had been telling us that our country is democratic? MY FOOT!! and worst this law all the more turn our country into a police state. (yes all the more, as it has been a police state already).)

as you will notice, from media here and there like malaysian insider and malaysiakini, many people had protest against this bill. i hope the bill won't be passed in parliament! the malayisan bar council had also spoken up against this bill.

note:  you can read the bill in full here (not sure if you need to be malaysiakini subscriber)

Umno government transforms to be more repressive

Posted: 22 Nov 2011 08:19 AM PST

National Human Rights Society president Malik Imtiaz Sarwar described the Peaceful Assembly Bill 2011 tabled today in parliament as even more repressive than before and offends the federal constitution.

dap islamic state roundtable 100807 malik imtiazMalik (left), a constitutional lawyer who represented the four Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia students' against section 15 (1) (a) of the Universities and University Colleges Act, said this was what he had gathered from media reports and told Malaysiakini in an immediate response on his views of the Bill, "It appears that the framework is even more repressive than before. The scheme of regulation is not consistent with the prime minister's promise of democratisation. Freedom of assembly is a constitutionality guaranteed right. Restrictions on that freedom must be reasonable and necessary. They must be proportional to the threat to public order that is sought to be avoided. How this bill is reasonable and proportionate is beyond me."

Myth Of Antibiotics For Coughs And Colds

Posted: 22 Nov 2011 08:00 AM PST

From BBC ONLINE: 18 November 2011 Last updated at 00:52 GMT Myth that antibiotics cure coughs and colds still rifeComments (318) Antibiotics "will not cure viruses" Continue reading the main story Related StoriesFergus Walsh on antibiotics
The drugs don't work - so what will?
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A quarter of people wrongly believe

Paper Castles In The Air

Posted: 22 Nov 2011 07:20 AM PST

The young indulge in building castles in the air whereas the rich and famous build paper castles! Recently, Sarawak Report carried an article HERE which said that "Chief Minister Taib Mahmud and PM Najib Razak have been trumpeting their economic policies in the light of plaudits given by an outfit called the Oxford Business Group."

According to Oxford Business Group's (OBG) regional editor, Paulius Kucinas (at this link), Sarawak remained an attractive destination for capital investments as it rode on the structural rise for commodities worldwide. At the launch of The Report: Sarawak 2011, he said that it provides in-depth detail on Sarawak' current economic outlook and what the future holds for the state.

The official Oxford Business Group site states that the report for Malaysia can be purchased at the cost of 130 pounds for the printed edition or 104 pounds for the digital edition which are available as soon as payment clears while print copies are shipped within 24 hours on business days. To receive the Economic Updates for the report, go to 'My Subscriptions'.

One puzzling fact though - Cost of the report  for Sarawak is 104 pounds but it is not stated as to whether it is the printed edition or the digital one.

For the report on Malaysia, one can opt to purchase individual chapters on Country Profile, Politics, Economy and Banking. For more information about the launching of the report in West Malaysia, check out THIS LINK.

I am not going to raise issues which have been comprehensively covered by Sarawak Report HERE (a must read for everyone!).

1. Why is the publication and writing of such reports given to overseas publishing houses? Surely our economy does not need more outflow of money for work that can be done by local publishing houses and writers!

2. Presumably, it must be quite expensive to have commissioned such reports. If indeed the intention is to give prospective investors more opportunities to discover more about Malaysia, surely a local publication would have ensured cheaper publications with better and more up-to-date data.

3. Working on the assumption that they wanted better quality writing for the reports to elevate their status, consider the following sentence taken from HERE and draw your own conclusions about the quality of writing. Do take note of the parts I highlighted in bold font and underscored:

Endowed with prodigious natural resources, including rubber, palm oil and oil and gas, Malaysia has expanded into manufacturing, services and tourism, and is seeking to move further up the value chain in industrial production.
So are they paying for quality writing? You be the judge!

The introduction to the report on Sarawak was written more stylishly. Check HERE. Excerpt:

Sarawak shares the island of Borneo with the Malaysian state of Sabah, the sultanate of Brunei Darussalam, and the Indonesian provinces of Kalimantan. Its 2.4m people are considered the most diverse of all Malaysian states, with a mix of indigenous Christian Ibans, Chinese, Muslim Malays, and many other ethnic and religious groups. The state's chief minister, Abdul Taib Mahmud, of the National Front party retained his hold on power by winning re-election in 2011, despite a strong showing by the opposition Democratic Action Party. Sarawak's economic growth has long depended on the three key pillars of oil and gas, crude palm oil, and timber exports. A host of new sectors are set to receive a boost, however, under the Sarawak Corridor of Renewable Energy (SCORE), which aims to develop the state's central region. SCORE will exploit Sarawak's 20,000 MW of hydroelectric potential, using this power to develop industries in metallurgy, aquaculture, food processing, information technology, and downstream palm oil and timber products.

4. Perhaps the authorities concerned can respond to the following excerpts taken from Sarawak Report:

The London HQ advertised on the company's website is in fact an office rental centre, where rooms can be let on demand. We were informed that the Oxford Business Group no longer has office space in the building, although "they sometimes still come in and out" .
However, the Editorial Director of these reports is none other than a former Editor of the UK's most ridiculed porn rag, the Daily Sport, which closed earlier this year.
Did they check out the background of the company to see if they are legit set-ups or dodgy shady outfits?

5. Can the authorities concerned explain whether the funding for these reports are from taxpayers' money?
How much did the whole deal cost? What is the justification for paying for such lavish embellishment of facts and window dressing of our economic state?

6. If indeed the ETP can transform and triple our gross national income and make the country part of the developed world by 2020, why then is there a need to spend $$$ unnecessarily to prop up their public image and blow their own trumpets which sound weak and feeble at the moment?

7. Recently, S JAYASANKARAN of Singapore Business Times wrote a stinging article which said:

The Auditor-General's recent report pointed out that Malaysia's national debt rose 12.3 per cent to over RM407 billion (S$165 billion) in 2010. The amount is equivalent to 53.1 per cent of gross domestic product. It's the second straight year that the national debt has exceeded 50 per cent.

The figure is a reflection of the spending spree the country went on to mitigate the effects of the 2009 global financial crisis. At its peak that year, the budget deficit rose to 7.6 per cent of GDP, the highest in two decades.

It has since come down to 5.4 per cent of GDP and the government projects that it will decline further to 4.7 per cent of GDP next year. But that may be overly optimistic.

Everyone knows why the debt has piled up: persistently high budget deficits over 14 years. But it is the pace of the rise that's alarming. Standout statistic: in the space of six years, total federal government debt has actually doubled from 2004. That way lies folly.

Malaysia's debt position is close to breaching legislative levels set a long time ago by Parliament. According to the Auditor-General's report, public debt from domestic sources rose RM41.76 billion to RM390.36 billion last year, while loans from foreign sources rose to RM16.75 billion, or up RM2.96 billion.
With such statistics, why are the authorities paying through their nose for such unwarranted window dressing?
Shouldn't the $$$ spent have been invested in other worthwhile projects that would DIRECTLY benefit our citizens without causing an outflow of money from this country?

Most alarmingly, S. Jayasankaran also said that according to the country's central bank, the national debt as at June 30, 2011 has risen to RM437 billion, with domestic debt amounting to RM421 billion and foreign debt at RM16 billion. He said that next year, it's estimated that the debt will breach RM455 billion - almost 54 per cent of GDP.

So is there any justification or rationale for building such paper castles in the air which could be easily blown away in any direction? And we have to pay for these 'props' that are supposed to give them a momentary feel good sensation? Good heavens!

Come to think of it, isn't this how our money is flying away? In any direction according to the whims and fancies of some?

MyVoice: My intention is clear

Posted: 22 Nov 2011 07:41 AM PST

My earlier posting MyVoice: Key bloggers on the sideline? gets quite a speedy response from the organiser. Yang Dipertua 1AGENDA Zul Azhar Cha left a reasonable comment to it. It reads:

Salam. Saya Zul Azhar Cha, Yang Di Pertua 1AGENDA. Untuk makluman semua rakan2 dan para sahabat, KMS1M adalah program NGO yg bukan diinisiatifkan oleh Kementerian. YB Dato' Mohd Sharkar dilantik Pengerusi kerana beliau adalah EXCO IT Negeri Pahang merangkap Ahli Kehormat Kelas Pertama 1AGENDA.

Program ini adalah insiatif 1AGENDA. Saya mengaku terdapat keciciran di dalam menyaraipendekkan tetamu jemputan. Kebanyakan yang dijemput (rakan2 Blogger) adalah melalui sms dan bbm.

Saya sendiri selaku Pengerusi Jawatankuasa Peserta dan Pendaftaran, terlibat secara langsung dengan kehadiran Peserta dan Tetamu.

Saya memohon maaf jika terdapat keciciran dan inisiatif Melancarkan MyVo1ce adalah untuk memastikan mesej dan networking jentera perlaksaan 'psiwar' pro BN digerakkan secepatnya.

Tidak terlintas untuk 'sideline'kan sesiapa dan mengakui ianya adalah kesilapan dan salah faham semata-mata.

1AGENDA mengiktiraf Semua rakan Penulis dan penggiat media sosial terutama rakan-rakan yang telah lama berjuang menulis untuk membantu mempertahankan dasar-dasar Kerajaan BN yang kita kasihi.

Kehadiran YB Menteri Penerangan adalah di atas jemputan kerana Program ini berkait dengan Kementerian berkaitan yang mengawalselia media sosial.

Saya akan membuat kenyataan akhbar untuk membetulkan kekeliruan ini.

Harap Maklum. Sekian dan Wassaalam.

My comment to his:

Terima kasih Sdr Zul. Saya sebenarnya menghargai dan memuji usaha pihak Sdr menganjurkannya tetapi saya masih berpendapat adalah lebih baik ia diusahakan secara bersama dengan KPKK kerana sebagai kementerian yang bertanggungjawab, ia perlu memikul fungsi utama atau 'lead role' dalam apa jua bentuk penyaluran maklumat. Saya juga sengaja 'menjentik' isu ini agar dijadikan sebagai 'wake up call' untuk semua pihak - KPKK, badan penerangan negeri, blogger dan pengamal media pro-kerajaan agar bersatu di bawah satu badan saja dan bukannya terlalu banyak badan yang mendakwa mewakili blogger tertentu. Bukankah lebih baik KPKK memikul tanggungjawab ini daripada membiarkan wujudnya pelbagai puak yang berkepentingan sendiri menjadi penyelianya? Alangkah elok jika semua badan dan kumpulan blogger ini bergerak seiring di bawah KPKK. Jika kita benar-benar berhasrat membantu BN dan Umno, maka tidak ada masalah bagi KPKK menghimpunkan penulis laman blog ini di bawah sayapnya agar memudahkan proses perbincangan diadakan sebelum strategi tertentu dikongsi untuk memperkukuhkan lagi fungsi media baru ini. Apa pun, bukan niat untuk menyinggung sesiapa. Usaha yang baik tetap dipuji, cuma ia sepatutnya boleh menjadi lebih baik lagi dengan kerjasama KPKK. Syabas kepada pihak Sdr.

PS: Thanks also to Jebat Berkokok

On The Air Live With Tim Abbott In Technical Difficulties

Posted: 22 Nov 2011 06:47 AM PST

Resonance104.4fm is the world's first radio art station, established by London Musicians' Collective. The non-profit community radio station broadcasts from Borough High Street in London. On Fridays at 3.30pm GMT, Tim Abbott hosts the half-hourly show called Technical Difficluties which touches on disability issues around the world. Tim (@lightchronic) and I connected with each other in Twitter through Zashnain Zainal(@bedlamfury), a mutual Twitter acquaintance.

Tim invited me to go on the air live interview with him in the show last Friday. That was my first one-on-one live radio show with a station in the United Kingdom. Among the topics we covered were my experience with disability, and the built environment and public transport in Malaysia. I made three pages of notes on the points that I wanted to share prior to the programme. In the end, I did not use any of them as Tim was very good in leading the direction of our conversation and made me feel well at ease to talk openly about those issues. Click here to listen or download the podcast.

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Updates here & there…

Posted: 22 Nov 2011 04:03 AM PST

While I was visiting Nasya at her home last Friday, a call came in from a number not registered in my handphone. From the number, I figured it could be from one of the government agencies. True enough, the call from an officer of the Welfare Department.

He asked me to confirm if Buddies would be sending anyone for the welfare grant cheque presentation in Batu Gajah the next day. Huh? He thought I would have at least heard about it. I had no clue whatsoever since we didn't get any letter. Anyway, he asked if we could send 2 reps, but since it was such short notice I could only confirm that I'd be representing Buddies.

And so yes, on Saturday I went over for the function officiated by the deputy minister for Kementerian Pembangunan Wanita, Keluarga & Masyarakat; and alhamdulillah additional funds for Buddies. The year 2011 had definitely been a good year for Buddies in terms of fundings.


On Sunday, a text message came in from an unfamiliar number -

"Salam. Anak saya dpt 5A. Klu dpt masuk asrama penuh camne?"

No names mentioned in the message and I didn't have a clue who it was from. I wasn't about to answer the question without even knowing who I was responding to, and so I had to ask first who that person was. Apparently the message was from Maya but the number was not listed in my handphone because she was using her husband's phone. Remember Maya? The lady who, after her iddah was over, married her late husband's younger brother, knowing pretty well she was HIV positive. Her late husband's family thought it was their responsibility to take care of Maya's well being since it was their family member who infected Maya with HIV. And since the younger brother was single and willing, he agreed to marry Maya.

Good to know that her daughter did well for her UPSR. Maya was worried that if the daughter gets offered to go to a residential school, they may not be able to fork out the expenses involved. The girl is under our sponsorship programme, so I told Maya not to worry about it. I personally really love to help out in cases involving children's education, especially when I see the children themselves showing an interest in their education.


On Monday morning, after my usual gardening routine, I realised there was another text message on my handphone, from another unfamiliar number. It started off with "Buat kehadapan mama fizah yg diingati…"

Huh?? Mama Fizah?? Couldn't recall anyone ever calling me mama! I read on and finally I figured out that the sender of the message was Anita. As far as I could recall she used to call me Kak. It was the lady at the temporary shelter home that she called mama. Of course, age-wise she's young enough to be my daughter but she never did call me mama before.

Anita now stays with her sister. Am not sure if she has already managed to get an identity card for herself or a birth cert for her son. We tried to help her before but she always came out with all sorts of excuses when we asked her to get her sisters to help get some supporting documents. She's back with her own sisters now, I do hope they will do something (if they haven't already) about her IC and her son's birth cert.


Last night Mrs K sent a text message asking if her children will be getting any help for next year's schooling. I told her that we still help out when it comes to children education. As always, Mrs K would always come up with even more questions – will they get bus fares, can she send the 2nd daughter for this, can she send the youngest daughter for that. This time I didn't bother to reply. If I replied, she'd probably think of something else to ask and may even ask for additional help which has nothing to do with her children's education. I will get to her when her turn comes.


Tomorrow I will be on clinic duty again. This time I won't be alone. A new trainee volunteer, a PLHIV himself, has agreed to join me for tomorrow's clinic…

Home Garden Best Products Part 50

Posted: 22 Nov 2011 03:52 AM PST

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