Wednesday, July 30, 2008

A Bad Day for Local Blogosphere: The Blogosphere Can Be So Impersonal

Who pings and posts the above article? So unnecessary!!

I am first a friend, then a blogger. I am supporting my Kuching pals through this ordeal.

(UPDATE 31 July) to Xblogger: Thanks but no thanks. I don't need traffic from your link.
We don't live under a shell. Things leak out fast and swift whether we like it or not, this is a pretty close community (especially my reader circle). Bloggers and blog readers can suss thing out real fast. The only hypocrites in this sorry mud-smearing episode are those watching this unnecessary voyeuristic sh*te and snigger in the background.

I have been alluded to this case (and the characters in it) days before. But no specific reference was mentioned until that article came along. And the names got mentioned all over the blogosphere. So how to pretend ignorant and stupid?

Why countries should not be too anal: please follow the Thai footsteps

Lifestyle choice liberalization is not a bad thing. But strict, uncompromising moral codes are!

People are inherently nice and rational beings. People who commit horrific transgressions (rapes, murders etc) are often desperate people with no channels to vent their unhappiness or fulfill their basic needs (bad economy and cultural policies at fault here again!). Psychopaths are rare.

Saying TV and internet influence criminal behaviour is like saying gun kills. Bro, you do need a medium to pull that trigger la.

Strict, overly-regulated environments are often run and managed by people who do not place too much trust on the inherent bona fide nature of others. A big boo-hoo!!

Now check this out:

Thai school offers trans-sexual toilet

Disclaimer: I know I am making arm-chair arguments here, not backed by evidence. I am merely copying those people who handed down moral policies to us. If they have no evidence to support their strict moral rules, why should I?

The Truth and Secrets about Doctors and their Medical Training

I am about to set a dangerous precedence. However, if you've been a regular Sisuahlai reader, you are probably intelligent enough to know not to take anything too seriously here, that these views are personal, and importantly, to read between my lines. Here goes.

I am going to write another "medical" entry, perhaps faintly influenced by the recently leaked sodomy claim medical notes. This time, I want to let you in on some secrets about medical training and the workings of the average doctor's mind (or brain, if the mind is absent).

Most of us, if not all, have at least one unpleasant encounter with doctors. My experience is probably a little bit more biased, more exaggerated, as I had worked with them and occasionally supervised some of them. First, let's be clear: The reason some of you might find certain doctors unpleasant has nothing to do with the profession itself.

The medical profession itself is amoral. It does not differentiate good or evil. It is designed to detect and understand bodily disorder and then using proven scientific applications to restore the body back to health or comfort or simply prolonging life (usually as a mean to please loved ones). Sometimes, it may take the telepathic course of addressing health hazards or sometimes called preventative medicine. Basically, medicine is amoral.

Ok, now for the secrets.

SECRET 1: Doctors are not as clever as you think.
To be accepted into medical school, you are required to be an A star student (i.e. good at getting high marks) and to appear conventional. Eccentricity is a rarity in the medical world, that is why I enjoy watching House more than E.R.

You don't find many geniuses in the medical field, because if you are truly intelligent, you'd probably figure out that a lifetime of service is best reserved for people who enjoy routine. Geniuses and highly intelligent people just do not like routine - they get distracted and get bored too easily.

Majority of doctors are work-horses. Nobody doubt they could persevere if needed to. But most of the time, their work is not as cerebral as one might like to think. They just do routine stuff really well. Specialist doctors are doctors who are very good at their specific routines. When these people are required to think outside these routines, most will struggle.

SECRET 2: Any doctor would know that medical science is incomplete, but but it is still the best out there. But not many have the ability to convince patients to stick to proven evidence-based medicine.
Most of our modern medical treatment are non-curative in nature. The last discovery of a true medical cure for something was the antibiotics, and that was eons ago! Modern medicines however are good at masking symptoms, replacing discomfort with something more soothing and they are also good for altering numbers on scales (e.g. cholesterol level, blood pressure etc). This lack of cure in the medical marketplace has led many ignoramus seeking for alternative non-proven junks (herbal supplements, tablets with concentrated vitamins, liquid with ultra-diluted substances etc). Having doctors who are poor at conveying the right messages only serve to increase the sales of those junks. I blame doctors with poor communication skills for the massive alternative health market in Asia.

SECRET 3: Doctors frequently give diagnosis that they are most familiar with.
It is highly unlikely that you will leave the neurologist clinic with the diagnosis of fungal granuloma. The point is this, every doctor has their own strength. Just like you are better at certain subjects in school. Most doctors tend to adopt a quick-fix thinking based on what they encounter most. This subconscious approach blinkered them from other non-familiar diagnoses, even if highly probable.

SECRET 4: Medical school is not that tough! Easier to get a "Dr" title from medical school than a mentally-torturing PhD course
To pass medical finals, you need to display two essential things: the ability to regurgitate textbook answers under timed condition and to demonstrate the minimum level of maturity in front of examiners. You will hardly ever be given complex situation to solve. As long as you show that you are safe (do not harm patient!), it does not matter if you miss the diagnosis by a mile, they will still probably pass you. However, they will definitely fail you if you start acting weird and utter inappropriate words in your clinical exams.

SECRET 5: The knowledge is seldom wrong, but the attitude sucks.
A lot of sound clinical knowledge that a doctor gained are really through their actual working experience. So by the time they reach their 3rd or 4th year of hospital service, they are probably good enough to run a good thorough examination and telling you what could be wrong with your body. But not all will grow into likeable characters. The general public typically regard "a good doctor that we trust" as someone who can tell them stuff they want to hear and is approachable (easy to talk to) - even if the diagnosis given was wrong!! So for most, the attitude of their doctor ultimately decides how they manage their illnesses - not the doctor's experience or knowledge per se. Scary.

My personal definition of a good doctor is a suitably seasoned, healthy worrier that reads a lot. I don't ask too much.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Lesson on writing medical report and why I think doctors should avoid using the word SODOMY

My first reaction was sh*t. Someone had sent me a Private & Confidential medical document: Saiful Bukhari's medical examination notes prior to the police report. I need to destroy it and pretend I never read it.

Then later, as a matter of blog reading routine, I went to Raja Petra's site. He had disseminated the same information I received earlier, to the great blogosphere masses!

Of course. The medical document sent to me as e-mail attachment was in fact a copy & paste job from Raja Petra's blog. My nerves settled; the initial panic of receiving a document pertaining to one of Malaysia's hottest cases slowly turned to a quiet sense of triumph, for the country most outspoken politician.

I tried to decipher the doctor's writing. If it was difficult for a fellow trained doc like myself to read it, I say it is near impossible for the lay-person to make heads and tails of the scribble. Someone had kindly unscrambled the medical report for us mortals (I got it from Susan Loone's Saiful was never sodomised by Anwar entry):


But I really didn't see why the doctor must use the word SODOMY in his report when alleged sexual assault (or alternatively, alleged anal penetration without consent) will do the job nicely, and also sounds more clinically appropriate.

Personally, I would not have used the word SODOMY, I will let the lawyers argue about that later. As a doctor, I would be happy sticking to more familiar general terms such as alleged sexual assault, alleged forced anal penetration and the likes. Unless of course, I have been reading novels with plenty of SODOMY words in them and subconsciously flooded my head with that word, or perhaps someone had whispered the word to me over and over (and over) again. I would not have used the word SODOMY in my report because they are so many better alternatives. Professionally, for me, the word sodomy sounds too street and fit for lawyers, not doctors (wikipedia the word sodomy if you don't believe).

Anyway, on to something more purposeful...

I had written a few medical reports for the police in my short medical career. And let me impart some of my experience to budding doctors on handling assault cases and writing medical report for assault claims:-

(1) Every hospital should have a protocol for examination on raped/anally raped victim! Read them and familiarise yourselves with the law before touching the patient (in UK, rape victims go straight to the Police Doctor). Get a senior help if in doubt. If you are a very junior doc, you should never be involved in those cases in the first place. Take the advice of your medico-legal representative (every doctor should have one!) to clarify on the law if your senior on duty cannot be relied upon.

(2) In assault cases, you are expected to carry out a head to toe examination and document every little abnormality down. Never assume birth scars and never try to guess the age of injury. Write as observed. Do not form any assumptions during your initial examination.

(3) Do not put yourself in unnecessary legal predicament through poor choice of words. Use generalised descriptions such as ALLEGED ASSAULT; INJURY FROM CONTACT WITH OBJECT; PATIENT REPORTS DISCOMFORT IN _____ (anatomical location); etc. You get the drift. Try to avoid using specific adjectives in your report unless they are vital and necessary as part of life-saving measures; otherwise wait till the court demand for more specific answers later. You don't have to jump the gun.

(4) Do not hurry your job even if harassed by the Police. Your priority is your patient and his/hers confidentiality. The police cannot demand to see the medical report without consent from the patient; unless they have specific instruction from the court. Be firm with the Police. No one is above the law.

(5) If you can describe an event or injury clearly in few words, do it. No extra marks are given for lengthy prose.

Hope that helps.

Sunday, July 27, 2008

Anwar and the Teletubbby with Light Saber

I follow Anwar's speeches on Malaysiakini Youtube channel. But this image (in a recent gathering in Jasin) puzzles and worries me somewhat. A commentor said "teletubbies". I must go ask someone from Keadilan the reason for a masked bodyguard. Or it that only a parody of his recent overly zealous arrest?

Official government version:

Related reading:
I am changing my political persuasion for the better

Criticising people anonymously on blogs are cowards? (shared traits between bloggers and serial killers)

There are several reasons why certain bloggers prefer to stay anonymous. They can write scathing stuff on their blogs and take it for granted that they have this wall of anonymity protecting them; life must be good! to have an internet alter ego with immunity. This kind of luxury is not afforded in real life. So is it cowardly of bloggers to criticise people on blogs anonymously? Not many can get away with a hypercritical attitude in their day-to-day lives without some lash back and certain social isolation in retaliation.

That is why blogosphere truly works in mysterious ways.

But in a different sense, the blogosphere is also a godsend. It can be an effective outlet for pent-up anger and frustrations. Perhaps one day someone will come up with a scientific study to show that blogosphere can indeed reduce the number of serial killers. Better to commit murder in this virtual world called the blogosphere than the other alternative: real life.

Here I want to highlight some startling similarities between serial killers and some popular or full-time bloggers:

(1) They tend to be intelligent, with IQ's in the "bright normal" range
Ok, not all blogs are that intelligent. But on average, bloggers are a bright bunch. It involves: turning on the computer, logging into the net, write/scribble, hit the publish button (occasionally fiddle with the blog template) - that's pretty smart for the average human. But referring to popular bloggers, I honestly think it takes more than simple brain-power to make us read their stuff and to keep us coming back for more. It's either they have the gift of words or just good at appearing pretty/sexy/provocative in pictures. Either way, they are smart enough to hold our fickle attention.

(2) They do poorly in school and have trouble holding down jobs
School high-achievers will usually go on to get some form of university scholarship that will probably bond them to some corporate slavework for years. So that rule them out from becoming full-time bloggers or murderers who need to do the impossible task of juggling between work punctuality and finding schemes after schemes to kill people and hide evidence.

(3) They tend to come from markedly unstable families
A loving mom or dad does not automatically make their family stable. A stable family typically consists of a husband-controlling wife and a husband with a 9-to-5 commitment with little dispensible income. So bloggers, if your parents are like that, you have reason to smile: you are from a stable home.

(4) As children, they are abandoned by their fathers and raised by domineering mothers
You have reason to wipe that smile away now.

(5) Their families often have criminal, psychiatric and alcoholic histories
Your parents might be clean, what about your uncle? Yes, that one. It all run in the genes. Attention-seeking behaviour, unprovoked scathing remarks and unneccessary negative blog commentaries are all borderline personality disorder. So even if your uncle have reasons to be unsound, what about yourself, famous bloggers?

(6) More than 60 percent of serial killers wet their beds beyond the age of 12
I just smell my bedsheet - no incriminating evidence!

(7) They are involved with sadistic activity or tormenting small creatures
A fancy word for this is zoosadism. I wonder if talking negatively about xiaxue (a subject in is another form of sadistic activity?

So you might ask what is relevance to (some) anonymous bloggers; well, both got reasons to hide in order to continue their work. Just like one of the most lethal serial killers in modern times: Batman - the dark knight version.

Saturday, July 26, 2008

Bloggers are all friends: JUST SAY SORRY, MEAN IT AND MOVE ON

This has to be more interesting than Anwar V Shabeery (or any UMNO minister). 2 hot (questionable?) bloggers have taken their fiestiness to a whole new level. One asked the other to retract her statements and to apologise. The person withdrew her statements by removing the blog article and sent a LETTER OF APOLOGY. But in her latest entry, she said:
As you've maybe seen on Straits Times, I am NOT going to apologize to Dawn.
But friend, you just sent a letter with the title LETTER OF APOLOGY. In Hokkien there is a phrase for this.... BEI GAM GUAN.

There are big differences between having an opinion and making false allegations. But why is a letter of apology NOT an act of apologizing?

Just apologize and close this sorry chapter. I like you both and I do not want to see any losers in this saga. Be peng yius again, can?

Don't believe what ONE REPUBLIC said, it is NEVER too late to apologize.

Friday, July 25, 2008

How to boost your blog traffic overnight; and why we have so many free Chelsea-Malaysia football tickets on blogosphere (scared no one wanna see?)

SECRET REVEALED: Tap into China internet user market!

BEIJING, China (AP) -- China says its fast-growing population of Internet users has surpassed the United States to become the world's biggest, with 253 million people on-line at the end of June.

China's Web usage is growing at explosive rates despite government efforts to block access to sites deemed subversive or pornographic. The financial size of China's on-line market trails those of the United States, South Korea and other countries.

The China Internet Network Information Center said Friday the latest figure on Internet users is a 56 percent increase over the same time last year.

According to Nielsen Online, a research firm, the United States had an estimated 223.1 million Internet users in June.

According to CNNIC, China's Internet penetration is still low at just 19.1 percent. (now that is scary!)

But frankly, most of Malaysian and Singaporean bloggers don't give too much for traffic. It is those advertisers who are pestering and championing the need to boost readership bla bla bla. Hence, why do you see so many free Chelsea-Malaysia football tickets floating about on the local blogosphere (given away only after you have written glowing commentary on a product, which most readers and young bloggers do not touch or drink --- ahem, h******ken --- there I just cleared my throat).Everything is tagged to a product these days. Sooner or later, blogs will be all about product placement. Our biggest nightmare coming true, and I am part if it. Damn.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Amber is a nice girl

I am not a fan of rumours, so when I heard Amber Chia is releasing an autobiography, I cannot wait to "browse through" from start page to end page at a nearby bookstore. You see in the financial circle, I get to hear all kinds of stories, true and otherwise. I disagree with previous reports that she was a husband stealer (technically and legally, no such thing as husband stealing anyway, neh neh neh). One of them was Amber Chia at the Public Bank (annual?) dinner and a rendezvous with a corporate figure. I believe Amber is a nice girl, and will never do anything that will ruin her good reputation. I will support her Chris Crocker style if someone blast her. I mean it, I mean it.

To those who have nothing nice to say about Amber, don't say it. Leave her alone.

Regards xxxx, an Amber Chia Fan.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Future career for bright and smart Malaysians, yes, I am talking to you

Career advice from me, free of charge. This is what you should be aiming for...

Nuclear Energy/Uranium sourcing industry

Our oil and gas will not be able to support our country's energy demand for long. Malaysia is currently running feasibility studies on building a nuclear power plant as a future source of electricity energy. This nuclear dream will not materialise overnight, but by 2015 onwards, expect to see a surge in demand for nuclear physicists, engineers and safety officers (aka Homer Simpson) in Malaysia. And not many people will mess with you if you tell them that you control the national nuclear power plant - hence the added sexiness of power. I seriously believe this is a super-lucrative industry, and many retrenched Petronas workers (when oil and gas running out and not so hot already, so let these young geezers boast and brag about their Petronas position, because that won't last too long) will migrate to this one. To build a nuclear plant is obviously not cheap, RM10 billion for a medium size 1000 MW plant. Assuming the current administration in still power, expect some brotherly money leakages to subsidiary companies. So seniors workers may profit from many internal deals (corrupt mind required). But if Anwar succeeds to take over power and run this country, assuming he keeps his promises to run the country clean and fair, workers in this industry will still stand to benefit - through the rational process of increased competition and better wage structure. So win-win for nuclear workers whoever governs the country.

Frankly, it is better to have a non-corrupt government once we have a nuclear plant. I feel a lot safer that way. I don' want any mediocre tom, dick and harry to run it.

Islamic Finance

Non-Muslims are qualified to run this industry. You can be a Syariah-cum-Finance expert without becoming a Muslim. So this is an open industry. Middle Eastern/Gulf money (trillions and trillions) tend to seek out Syariah-compliant funds. So you could just be a simpleton analyst (or the much-loathed middlemen of any financial kind) working for a Middle Eastern intermediary in Malaysia, and you will be fed enough wealth to excrete petroleum through your other end. Take it from me, in this short life of yours, much of your career happiness depends on chance meeting and pure luck, and NOT brains per se. So position yourself in the great company of Gulf men. Look pass their costume and hirsute appearance.

Currently, experts are still ironing out important differences and disagreement within the global Islamic banking industry. What is Syariah-compliant in Malaysia today may not be Syariah-compliant in Kuwait. But don't be disheartened kids. By the time you reach Form 5, the industry will mature enough to reach some uniformity that you won't feel like you are leaving the chaotic life of school just to enter an even more chaotic existence in finance. Let me rephrase that. When you grow up, just join the Islamic banks.

Prime Minister of Malaysia

To school leavers and SPM-floppers, don't despair. Anyone who can form a coherent argument can do this job, so your mamak-stall conversational skills may not be sia-sia (wasted) afterall. The real requirement to run for PM office lies in your attitude, not intellect alone. I know many intelligent people who would make horrible PMs. Example, Dr House. I am being serious, Malaysia is lacking good future PM contenders. Our current stock of MPs just do not cut it for me. I want someone as gutsy as Tun M, as gabby as Anwar, and as gungho as Tunku to be my leader come 2020. If you are the one, please apply now.

Monday, July 21, 2008

How to write your own joke and then tell it with a straight face: The Terengganu Government Mercedes Case Study

MB on why Terengganu bought Mercedes cars (my comments, as usual, in RED)

KUALA TERENGGANU (the ever reliable Star): The state government has defended the purchase of 14 Mercedes E200 Kompressor cars at RM3.43mil for the use of its state executive councillors and senior officials.


Mentri Besar Datuk Ahmad Said said the state government had planned to purchase the cars for a long time now to replace its Proton Perdana V6 Executive fleet in a move to cut cost.

It's getting interesting.

“Please understand that the Proton Perdanas go through continuous long-distance journeys. It’s costing us a lot of money due to high cost of maintenance.

“We are not saying that the national car is not good (yes you are!) but in reality we are coughing up more money for maintaining the Proton Perdanas, particularly the gear boxes (easy scapegoat)” he said.

Ahmad cited the example of the Proton Perdana of state Commerce, Industry and Environment committee chairman Toh Chin Yaw, which has twice undergone expensive repairs costing RM50,000 within 36 months.

Solution: Interrogate the mechanic, the solution is not to spent on Mercedes. I am not suggesting anyone stealing anyone's money, but if I am evil and I hold the power to approve repair fee, I would mark up the repair invoice and split the profit between myself and mechanic. I do not recommend this immoral activity.

“In the long run, Mercedes cars are cheaper to maintain and could also save us fuel costs.

“This is the state’s long-term plan – we are farsighted. The cars could also fetch a high market price, when sold as second-hand cars.

“We studied all angles before deciding to buy the Mercedes E200 cars,” he added.

Sure, the nice angles and design on a Mercedes.

Ahmad also denied that the oil royalty money was used to buy the cars.

“In the first place we have yet to receive the oil royalties from the Federal Government.

“The funds to procure the cars were from our own coffers and has nothing to do with the oil royalties,” he said.

Isn't your coffers the Rakyat coffers too? Or am I missing something?

Sunday, July 20, 2008

I am changing my political persuasion for the better

I have previously stated that Pak Lah is a pretty good PM. Given his apparent sleep-mode style administration (as some have argued), a lot of positive changes unseen during the times of Tun M, are taking place. I pointed out media liberalisation as one of them.

But I am beginning to see some flaws in this thinking (i.e. my thinking).

Many of these changes are really forced upon the present administration. Hence, reinforcing the earlier sleep-mode governance argument. Presently, the government are able to license and regulate printed and broadcast media, but with the advent of internet and blogs, their grip on information control are slipping fast. So you see, the act of liberalising the media industry is not exactly a forward thinking government initiative - more like a last gasp decision to appear savvy and open, to rescue itself from dwindling popularity.

Blogs and the internet are disseminating views contrary to the official government-approved messages, as carried by mainstream media, and the administration are just watching haplessly from the sidelines. Fortunately for us (and unfortunately for them), they haven't figured an effective way to clamp down on blogs without hurting their post-8 March credibility further.

So I stand corrected. The administration is indeed sleepwalking itself into a dangerous territory. Many of their policies are simply knee-jerk reactions to the development around them - so that does not make good governance. That in fact, makes us look even more uncool for allowing and electing them to make decision on the country's and ultimately the Rakyat's future.

I stand corrected. (yes, it has taken me awhile to see it - but rather late than never- don't wanna be like the blinkered 51 years old government)

I seriously think we do have a viable alternative. I am changing my political persuasion before it's too late.

Related reading:

Why I believe Anwar is not guilty
The Unconvincing Email from "Saiful"
"Saiful" quit mail

Friday, July 18, 2008

30 minutes: That's right, keep it up, keep it up, don't be a pri, hey madonna, uh

KUALA LUMPUR (The Star): PKR de facto leader Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim would not have been able to turn up for his scheduled appointment at the city police headquarters on time.

Deputy Home Minister Datuk Wan Farid Wan Salleh said Anwar was supposed to have gone straight to the police headquarters here after his interview at the Anti Corruption Agency in Putrajaya.

“Instead, he was on his way home. He couldn’t possibly have made it on time.

“The police were just executing a warrant of arrest against Anwar,” he told reporters in the Parliament lobby on Wednesday.

Wan Farid was commenting on the arrest of Anwar, who was picked up in front of his house in Bukit Segambut for investigations after a former aide had lodged a sodomy report against him.

Asked why the police had not waited until 2pm before making the arrest, Wan Farid said: “What’s the difference between 20 or 50 minutes?”

“According to the information I received, he went voluntarily to the police car without any incident and that under police custody, he has given his full cooperation,” he said.

This is Wan Farid Wan Salleh.

He is a male.

He comes from Terengganu, land of the near extinct turtles (certain species).

He now works for the Government.

He has a nice smile. Sometimes he wears the songkok.

He is a diligent and obedient minister, doing what he is supposed to do.

He is the Deputy Home Minister.

He reacts responds when the newspaper people ask him question.

Someone asked him why the police had not waited until 2pm before arresting Anwar (Anwar had earlier promised to go to see Police at 2pm), he said:

“What’s the difference between 20 or 50 minutes?”

He is clever.

Because he is now famous for this quote.


The Irony of The Iron-Fisted

I am not accusing anyone of being a despot. History and past performances are the best judges.

I just like this ironical, most telling remark from our beloved Tun (screenshot from his blog).

He congratulated Pak Lah for allowing the live televised debate. Why congratulate?

Possible conclusions:
(Is Tun admitting that...?)

(1) Malaysian media is not completely independent. PM has the power to allow and disallow certain dissemination of information aka live debate with Opposition?

(2) Pak Lah is revolutionary? Congratulatory wish like this implies certain achievement for Pak Lah and his administration with regard to media liberalisation, which was unheard and unseen before (during Tun's time)?

You see, blogs can indeed reveal a lot...

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Dawn and Xiaxue are actually promoters of the same product! The winner is...

Welcome to the new (friendly?) popularity/traffic contest between Xiaxue and Dawn. Both were given the same product to pimp. Ha, ha... nice ploy Kotex. Maybe Kotex should consider giving the advertorial to a male blogger next time, we write more interesting stuff about female sanitary towels.

I don't like feuding (pretend or not) bloggers. It may make interesting reading, but I think it kills creativity in the long run.(I will give my reasons next time)

The winner in this contest: Neither Xiaxue nor Dawn it is Kotex.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

(Champion debator) Anwar arrested: First pictures

Not many can look this 'cheerful' going to the hospital to have a DNA test following a sodomy allegation. He's one cool dude man.
Concerned daughter and members of public/media...

Just before...

The night before...
More to follow...

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Copying from the best (is perfectly okay, I think)

8 lessons of leadership from Pak Lah Mendela

No. 1

Courage is not the absence of fear — it's inspiring others to move beyond it
No. 2
Lead from the front — but don't leave your base behind
No. 3
Lead from the back — and let others believe they are in front
No. 4
Know your enemy — and learn about his favorite sport
No. 5
Keep your friends close — and your rivals even closer
No. 6
Appearances matter — and remember to smile
No. 7
Nothing is black or white
No. 8
Quitting is leading too

Additional comment from SSL: Never let anyone fool you into thinking that he is doing his best, unless they have super concrete evidence like so... (click to enlarge the super-tasteless picture below- you've been warned)

you can still bail out (do not scroll down further)

now that is dedication and leading from back, side and all over....

Thursday, July 10, 2008

The quality of your blog is reflected by the quality of your readers' comments

Q E D. (click image to enlarge)

why we should not snub Innit even if it banned/snubbed us: the SSL "violin-music" story

Blogger Robin said...

innit ban you???

July 09, 2008 7:33 PM
Blogger Sisuahlai said...

Robin, that one you have to ask Timothy and his cool Nuffnang gang.

Oh, if you don't get replies from them, these posts might help you unravel the mystery.

Btw, it is still a mystery.

July 09, 2008 7:49 PM
Blogger Robin said...

i see...

July 09, 2008 8:27 PM

As much as blog aggregator would like us to believe that this is a community for us to share blog ideas, good or bad, they also have their idiosyncrasies and regulations. What is appropriate to us, might not be appropriate to their administrators. I have previously said that Innit belongs to Nuffnang, so really, I am fine (ok, grind my teeth a little maybe) with them setting the ground rules (whatever they may be). I am not bitter with the Innit ban, I am more puzzled by it if anything. Personally, banning bloggers from aggregator sites is counterproductive to the transparency culture that blogosphere is trying so hard to promote. Any notion that the ad agency is "bad for your health" could have been dealt with more amicably e.g. open discussion, and not silencing the blogger with ban and falling for the "I have been defamed" paranoia. (This is my suggestion, and I won't charge you a single sen for it, because I am nice like that.)

Back from 2-month Innit addiction rehab. SSL.

(Apologies for this ultra-boring entry about Innit. This will be the last one about the Innit's ban for the next 30 days, I am also very weary writing about it!)

Wednesday, July 09, 2008

What have you done now Bung?? (caught red-handed!)

From the Star: A HAND gesture by Datuk Bung Mokhtar (BN - Kinabatangan) during the question-and-answer session in the morning was a source of much dispute in the Dewan yesterday. (more here)

Bung Mokhtar maintained he had not made any lewd gesture as he had merely slapped the back of his left hand with his right palm.

“I don’t know what the interpretation of this is. I don’t feel I did anything wrong,” he told reporters.

The incident happened during the first half of the question-and-answer session, when Bung Mokhtar said there were more questions from the Opposition members listed down in the Order Paper compared to the backbenchers.

Now see this...

Now who is LYING??

Tsk, tsk, tsk...

Update 9 July 3pm:

Kinabatangan MP: Yes, I did it but... (from malaysiakini, Jul 9, 08 1:46pm)

Bung Mokhtar Radin (Kinabatangan - BN) today made an about-turn by admitting making an obscene gesture in the Dewan Rakyat during a dispute with some of Pakatan Rakyat MPs yesterday.

Maybe he just saw his pic on SSL. Maybe.

Monday, July 07, 2008

why this blog is the best of the best of the best...

Technorati indexes and ranks about 113 million blogs worldwide. That roughly translates to 1 blog to every 50 living humans. And to make the statistics appears even more impressive, Technorati ranking also includes blogs from popular sites such as MySpace. Basically, no blogs are spared - so the ranking is one hell of a monster ranking. So to be ranked top 1/100th on Technorati is rather cool. I never thought SSL can be that cool. To flatter myself a little bit more, SSL is actually ranked 170,000 among the 113,000,000 blogs out there (top 0.15th). Respect, to myself. That's creme de la creme. Yay.

Then I did a little anti-narcissistic reality check...

Mind you, 70% new blogs peter out within 6 months of starting, so the index now should really shrink to 33.9 million.

Out of the 33.9 million blogs, only 10% have regular updates - the rest, with less than 1 new blog entry a week, do not qualify as a typical blog. So that slashes down the index to 3.39 million.

3.39 million is not a lot. I also have to come to grips with the fact that out of these 3.39 million hosted on blogspot, wordpress, etc, some of them are actually bot-sites or trap links with the sole purpose of generating traffic. You google for Britney Spears pantless and will find some blog links with zero entry except flickering images of porns. I will give it a conservative value of 40% - so that reduces the number of real blogs to 2 million.

Out of 2 million, 1 million is non-English. I'm suddenly outside the top 1/10th English-blog ranking.

Sigh. How did I end up average?

"Then you must learn to blog like us."

Sunday, July 06, 2008

Rocker strips pants and bends down at audience at anti-fuel hike protest gathering (pictures of retribution included)

From the Star...

A singer stripped his trousers and showed his boxer shorts during a concert at the anti-fuel price increase rally in Kelana Jaya stadium (on) Sunday.

The lead singer of rock band Carburettor Dung was halfway through a song at about 7pm when he dropped his pants and exposed his boxer shorts.

His antics resulted in the audience hurling abuses and throwing bottles at him. Security volunteers had to escort the singer and his band members off the stage while event organisers tried to calm the crowd.

LESSON: Don't mess with an already unhappy and disgruntled crowd.

Images from Hard-T.

Ouch! Why is he biting the guy's peepee?
more pics here

Thursday, July 03, 2008

Unluckiest man! (warning: terrible pictures of misfortune)

Do you remember that scene from Kungfu Hustle, where Stephen Chow's character got stabbed three times? That has to be the funniest scene ever, because we simply love the combination of arrogance, pain and misfortune - in movies.

Well, I have found another character that tops his misfortune. This character is none other than the French footballer Djibril Cisse. And this is no movie.

Left leg...

Right leg...

Now that is unlucky.

Wednesday, July 02, 2008

how blogging creates unnecessary bitching armageddon that will probably end in tears

The blogosphere is very rich with poor blogging ideas. And people with inflated self-image (e.g. me). I have been following the cat calling the pussy, cat (or something about a pot and a kettle) battle on the internet. One particular blogger sees herself as a proper blogger and accuses the other of being a desperate wannabe, talentless schmuck (among many things). The "talentless schmuck" did not take it on the chin, instead she went to see a solicitor. And the result is....

...we won't be seeing this kind of classic shot for a long time, if ever!!

Can you two still be friends, please? This is so unnecessary.

best, most honest, interview ever...

The independents should really rule the country... :) Check out this interview published in today's NST.

At the parliamentary debate on the government’s efforts to address inflation on Monday, sole Independent MP Datuk Paduka Ibrahim Ali stood up and really let rip; firing salvos at the government and opposition benches.

Q: On Monday, you seemed very angry with all the Members of Parliament. Why?

A: I expected the debate to concentrate on the price hike. But when they start debating, I saw it divert. Speeches became political -- accusing each other on matters not related to the price hike.

Everyone brought up issues that had already been said in Parliament and this took up time.

So, when petty things cropped up, and people still repeat what was said before, I became a little bit angry. That's why I stood up and spoke my mind.
They said, "We have to go on an austerity drive. So, the government cut 10 per cent off cabinet members' entertainment allowance."

I don't like it. Especially when there were accusations against others, and I know the accuser's background.

If you want to accuse others and say "You are morally no good", you must make sure you yourself are good. If you want to say that people are dirty, you must make sure you are really clean.

So, when I listen to members from the government bench or opposition bench accusing this and that, yet at the same time I know their background, I cannot take it.

If you live lavishly, in a big bungalow, where did you get the money? If you do business, how come you can make so much profit? "Sama saja lah!" (pot calling the kettle black). That's why I said, "Don't talk, lah. Because I know your background."

I didn't intend to create trouble or make people angry. I just wanted them to do their job.

We should value the time of Parliament and be focused.

I did my homework for the debate. I couldn't say what I wanted to say, because the debate went off-course. If in Parliament people are professional, then you will follow the trend.

If the trend is a hoo-hah kind of trend, we will also become hoo-hah. That's why I became angry.

Q: What did you expect from the MPs?

A: That first we would discuss whether or not there is a price hike globally, and whether, since we are an oil-producing country with a small population, is it justified (to raise the price of petrol).

I wanted to look into how we decide whether Petronas money is being properly managed.

"Properly" doesn't just mean during Pak Lah's time (as prime minister). It can even mean during (Tun Dr) Mahathir's (Mohamed) time. Without fear or favour.

We should have concentrated on whether the way the government is restructuring the subsidy is the correct thing to do. At the moment, the government is implementing this follow-up action in an ad-hoc manner. There is no holistic plan.

Because of the hoo-hah, the debate touches a little bit on this, a little bit on that, and we don't achieve anything.

Q: Were you for or against the price hike?

A: I'm quite in between. I agree there's a price hike globally, and don't intend to politicise the issue.

But even if there's a price hike globally, I want to know what the government will do to overcome this problem.

As far as the price hike is concerned, it should go gradually, not shocking like what happened. The way the government announced it was not proper.

The news leaked out about 4pm and the cars were lining up so long at the petrol stations that some of the car-owners couldn't observe the Maghrib (sunset) prayers.

There should not have been a leak. So, at midnight, the government should announce that the price hike takes effect in the morning, so there won't be a rush for the petrol pumps.

Q: Are the tax rebates sufficient?

A: I don't think so.

We are debating the RM900 wage. But someone sent me an SMS, saying even those who are earning RM2,000-RM3,000 cannot survive.

I used to pump RM100 worth in my car, and it would bring the petrol gauge needle to three-quarters the tank. Now, it's below half.

So, you can imagine how it is for a family - not only the house rental, or house loan repayment, car, and children's needs.

So, earning RM3,000-RM4,000 is meaningless.

In America, Britain and other western countries, if the petrol price goes up to $7 a litre it's okay as their per capita income is high.

In Singapore, it's US$8,000-$9,000, but for us, it's US$2,000. How can that be enough?

Q: Have you been receiving a lot of SMSes on this?

A: More than 1,000.

I've been quite rational about this. Although I sympathise with the issue, when there were demonstrations, I didn't participate.

Not that I'm the type to be afraid. I've been to (jail under the) Internal Security Act twice.

I understand the price hike is global, but I'm not happy with the way the government handled the matter.

I don't want to go down to the street to protest an issue I know there's justification, because that's just looking for publicity. That's why I criticised the four PKR members for cycling (to Parliament).

I told Gobalakrishnan, "Debate professionally."

Sometimes, you can have a political gimmick. (But) I told Gobala, "Things like this must be thought out properly. Now you cycle to Parliament, the four of you, as if you are telling the nation you are the only group who are fighting.

"I came here today with a car. As if I don't fight like you are fighting. So, you are unfair; you are purely looking for publicity."

I'm more interested in getting the input, the proposals and putting them to the government.

If the government doesn't take all 10 proposals, then at least one or two can be accepted.

Then I'd feel happy that I've done something for the people.

There is a time for protesting, like last time, when we were students. Now, you've been voted (into Parliament) by the people, so, now you have Parliament as a venue.

For those who are not MPs, they don't have a venue, so they can go and demonstrate.

We should give the government some time first and see what it can do. If after six or seven months it's still not working, then we take another step.

Demonstration is the last resort.

Q: You said neither the government nor opposition MPs are in a position to talk on this point, because they all receive allowances.

A: Yes. For example, the Constitution allows a person to contest both parliamentary and state seats. So, a person contests and wins both seats, and is also made the menteri besar.

Do you know how much travel cost is incurred by an MP?

I put my address in KL, so I don't claim travel expenses. I only claim air-fare if I go back to my constituency. The rest I don't claim.

But, if a person wants to claim, with laundry included, all in, he gets RM12,000 a month from Parliament. If he holds a state seat too, that's another RM8,000. So, combined, it's easily RM20,000.

This applies to all MPs. Just the ordinary members. So, imagine if you are a menteri besar.

And then, someone said he flies economy class. That's all.

If I were a chief minister, I'd give my Parliament salary to orphans. Then baru class.

But if it's only to the point of flying economy class... Sometimes, when business class is full, you have to fly economy, whether you like it or not.

It's no big deal. Cheap publicity.

So, it means he attacks the government to show, "I'm a chief minister, but I fly economy."

That's not a good thing to do. It's too small a gesture. It should be more challenging, more tangible.

The same as riding the bicycle. If you want to show you are really opposing the price hike, then really sacrifice, do something people can see and feel the effect. Otherwise, it's no use, it's purely political.

Q: MPs fly first class or business class every weekend. It adds up. Wouldn't it also help if all MPs resolve to only fly economy class?

A: Yes, I agree. That's what I'm trying to say.

I remember, when I was a deputy minister for a while. That's when I realised, no wonder people like to be a minister.

Even if you have a salary, if you go on official duty to certain areas, if there's mileage, you can claim!

If a minister goes to officiate a parent-teacher association meeting, you can claim. If you go to a coffeehouse, even though there's no government business, if all your political friends come around you and eat, you sign and you can claim.

At Hari Raya you have an open house. I thought, "Wah! Open house. I never do this."

I'm not saying I'm very good, but on these things I'm quite cautious. As a former student leader, I feel shy.

I went to the open house of a deputy minister. Two thousand people! I looked at the canopy - fantastic! If it's RM15 per head, you calculate how much that is.

Some open houses cost RM50 per head. So, RM30,000-RM40,000 is spent on a Hari Raya gathering.

Q: All this is claimable?

A: Yes. But only if you are the minister, deputy minister or MP. A political secretary also gets a lot of perks. A car, a driver, laundry. But only when parliament is in session.

But a minister and deputy minister gets allowances for house, maid, driver - all sorts of things. And then, every year, a holiday.

That's why Pak Lah could announce a cut in the holiday allowance - only in Asean and only for three persons. Last time, how many?

I didn't do this, so that's why I dare to talk.

For instance, a person is entitled to one holiday a year with his family.

And this is how a scam can work: I bring 15-20 supporters with me. They take a room in a hotel in London or wherever, and the bill is made out to me.

I can take five or six rooms, but the room details are not disclosed. It's all my friends staying. And paid for by the government. A real abuse.

How could I say all this when I only had 15 minutes?

I wanted to come to Parliament and give a good factual speech. But time constraints and this hoo-hah hoo-hah. So, that's why I feel so upset, and I also hoo-hah hoo-hah.

So, I go back to my old days, which I wanted to change. But the environment doesn't allow me to.

Q: You said, if government wants to save money, do it properly.

A: Do it properly means, prudent management. Celebrations, festivals. A 10 per cent cut on entertainment allowance is not enough!

Is it noble for us to say, "This year, even though there's going to be Hari Raya, there will be no Hari Raya gathering at the house, the government will not pay for the minister or deputy minister"?

I talked about the Jabatan Hal Ehwal Khas (Jasa) under the Information Ministry. They are gathering all the (Umno) ketua cawangan (division chiefs), according to state.

Some states send two, three thousand people. They come to Kuala Lumpur and stay in hotels. The speakers are Pak Lah and (Umno information chief ) Muhammad Muhammad Taib, and they talk on Umno.

Jasa said, "It's not a campaign; we invite these people to give talks on price hike, all the current issues."

That's fair enough; but why didn't you invite others, like non-government organisations from Kelantan, Terengganu, Kedah?

This is what resulted in Umno being defeated in these states. BN has the power, but the people rejected it, because these are the things they object to. Hotel, transport - all paid for by Jasa.

Celebrations. So many celebrations, like Hari Merdeka, the launch of Labour Day or whatever day. You will see thousands of people brought into KL from various agencies. And it's all paid for by the government.

Gatherings: The prime minister visits the state and officiates a factory. The MB wants to impress upon the PM that he is a terror punya menteri besar (a good MB). So, when the PM comes, 5,000 supporters turn up, and the PM thinks, "You are a good MB."

Do you know how much is spent on transportation, food, tents?

They think doing this shows the public supports the government. But, at the end of the day, it becomes the other way around.

I've been overseas many times and I've attended quite a number of functions organised by the government where their ministers and even the prime minister is present.

No bunga manggar! So simple. When they have a conference, there are no corsages or rosettes for the VIP, and no kompang. And the VIP don't care if the press don't come.

Just shake hands with people and go. And they only eat a little bit, no lavish spread.

But, at the end of the day, they won the elections.

There is no point in having a big function, spending a lot of money, but the stomach of the people is empty.

You belanja besar (spend a lot of money), but people feel now semua harga barang-barang naik (everything goes up).

At the end of the day, election comes, you lose.

So, it doesn't matter that it's a small programme, or that it's not glamorous. But (what matters is) the people feel okay.

Malaysians are very kind.

They get angry because the price of goods go up, and there's not enough money. When they look at their leaders living lavish lives, driving big cars, they become angry.

But if they see their leaders are suffering too, then they are not angry. Sama-sama (everyone suffers together). This is very important.

But here, leaders nak tunjuk aje (just want to show off). Nak tunjuk glamour, tapi actually kalah (want to be glamourous, but actually lose).

Never mind if there aren't a lot of people at the functions. As long as the people are more happy.

When government offices have their gathering, everyone is forced to attend. If they don't attend, it will be recorded. So, they go.

But look at teachers. A lot of teachers, when they work with the government, they support BN. Once they retire, all support opposition. Why? Because they were forced last time. If we hadn't forced them last time, they wouldn't be angry with us.

It doesn't matter if they don't come for the gathering, as long as, at the end of the day, they vote for BN.

The approach is wrong.

Q: The other very interesting question you raised was whether the government or the prime minister really understands what people are going through on the ground. Now why would you say that?

A: Firstly, the motion on Monday should've been presented by the prime minister, but it was put forward by Domestic Trade and Consumer Affairs Minister Datuk Shahrir (Abdul Samad). But this is a major issue. So people want to listen to a reply by Pak Lah.

The prime minister should present the motion by having a plan.

And Parliament should have allowed three or four days to debate, instead of just one.

With Malaysian people, if it's been explained properly and the government really has a justification, they will accept it.

Kalau zaman susah pemimpin jalan kaki, rakyat jalan kaki tak apa.

Kalau zaman susah pemimpin naik kereta, rakyat kena jalan kaki - ah, rakyat mengamuk.

Now you look at us - give money, take people for meals, carry people around in a bus and have them meet Pak Lah and when we ask if they are sure they will vote (for the government), they reply: "Sure!"

And then what did they do?

How are we going to determine that this will not happen in the next election?
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