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Sandered out, Trumping in; Mandate done: 11/9 US Election 2016  November 10, 2016

Posted by @Karen_Fu in change, Leadership, US president, USA.
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What is expected by most people who hoped for a Clinton victory, flipped.

When Bernie was asked out, we should know way better that Trump might win. A tip over the scales in many parts of the States flipped the blue out with the red in. It showed the true state of situations in the States and how much was trusted after Sanders was asked to concede during the nomination.The problems are so dire with commoners, mainly the underprivileged, that the ruling party was shown out. And that should not have been overlooked.
The issue is when you take off the kind, you should know that things will no longer be the same.
Lesson learnt: do not  take advantage over the well meaning folks who are neither power mongering nor greedy. Cos when you do, the power of the votes will show you in.

People’s problems must be addressed, social issues must be sensitively handled with action. These are the fundamentals of any election victory. It is also a fact that when commoners are not in a good state of affairs will want a change of governance. It has always been the rule.
Welcome to the new world power and probably a radical change. Coming January, Trump is now going to be the most powerful person with the money and political influence combined.These are the main essence to get things done without just the talk on paper, but real action; especially in the hands of someone who  doesn’t actually need to bend to any ordinary human being or power.
As we read on after the historic election, we should know better too who are the genuine folks for the people. There is always a reason why things happen. So let this be a good lesson. It might not be as bad as we think. Stocks first fell but later stabilized showed this stability for now. 欺善怕恶的世界可能从此得到启示。Perhaps the world that is usually cowering down before the powerful and mighty will heed the lessons better. Not a bad day if it is so.  @Karen_Fu

National mourning. March 28, 2015

Posted by @Karen_Fu in National Mourning, Singapore.
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Today will be a historic day for people who come to mourn of a fine geostrategist, leader and a very wisely creative nation planner. I am very glad I eventually made it to the wake at the Parliament House.

I also think I should count myself lucky to get a much cooler weather and a much shorter wait. Much shorter than anticipated by many others. I had thought they wouldn’t allow me to go to the Padang because I reached the MRT station only at 7.40pm and it was far from the Padang. I really sprinted. Together with the bunch who came in at the same time, we ran against the final call to the wake.

Finally made it yesterday running after time. I had thought I wasn’t going to make it because it was really a little too late but I decided to try. Reached City Hall at around 7:40pm, brisk walked to the Padang before reaching one of the tents to wait for our turn to head for the Parliament House. The walk was longer running from Raflles City to crossing the roads to reaching the Padang. But the incentive was they allowed us to walk straight into the Parliament House thereafter via security check before being briefly whisked in afterwards. It was worth the time. Waiting time was less than 3.5hours from 7.50pm to 11.10pm. 3 hours and 20 minutes to be exact. Much shorter time than what I was expecting. And it wasnt hot at all. A lot of food was unexpectedly there. The stranger surprise was they actually have food for me when I am still having some food sensitivities. The officer near City Hall MRT station kept telling me to run and it was worth the rush. I heard some one saying it was tougher than BMT (basic military training) and it drew a laugh. If you want to go, and if you really have the heart to go; somehow you will be there even though you may think it was almost impossible to reach on time at all. To tell the truth, I had wanted to give up because the time was too tight. Very glad I decided to give it a go.

While in the waiting tent, the volunteers and the SAF people kept moving around asking if we were hungry. I didnt expect any food at all. But they seemed to be worried that people may get hungry all the time. First, it was the apples, then it was the drinks. Soon after it was pasta, then it was bread, ice cream, crackers, biscuits and all. It came to a point that it became even comical. Even the kids were quite surprised but none of them were greedy to eat up everything. I was looking on in amazement. It showed care and I was told a lot of the food was donated by different organizations or even from individuals-very generous. I am still wondering who gave all the food though. At one point they were giving away one loaf of freshly baked bread to one person. They asked me if I wanted it. I didn’t because I wasn’t hungry. I looked at it and it wasn’t any kind of bread, it was a multigrain with rye flour (I think). It wasn’t cheap either, which made me thought who would give such a generous donation during the wake.

Thankfully it was a cool evening. Imagine if you would head there in the afternoon. I bet there were people being sent to the hospital for heat stroke. Yet thousands are willing to risk the weather to pay their last respects. I have never seen such a national unity before. But I do worry one thing: imagine the area was attacked, and there was a need to have such tents around to save lives, would we have the space? The cramming population is one of the agendas that I cannot agree in a time when terrorism is rampant in the world. Then again, it seemed to be ignored.

When it was our turn to move out of the tents, everyone cheered. We went through the security system very quick. Before we knew it, we were filing into the wake area.

Filed past the late Minister Mentor’s casket at 11:10pm. A sense of anguish came. You wouldn’t feel that much until you reach the feet of the casket. Then you know how much you lost. It is a fleeting moment of a life time that makes you think about life and how life could treat a person; and how some people could be so nice or mean to one another. To me, it is a sense of motivation. I am not a giant, but I can strive to do good in other modest ways. If those were the obstacles he faced and pass, then I should try to pass mine.

Everyone has their own set of problems and monkeys to face. It is only a matter of effort, wit and time to master the art of problem solving and dealing with different factors (or rather characters) in life. The process is the most difficult but we must learn to take up the challenge. For those who resort to small ways to get their goals never actually win and they are never become great people. At least they were never even a good person to start off with.

The week of mourning has been very reflective on a personal level. It rekindled the national issues and history. It opened up insights about life and it reminded me that a making of a nation and indeed anything always involve persistence and discipline with a take of very witty humour. RIP Minister Mentor, I salute thee. -@Karen_Fu

The Giant who transformed Singapore Lee Kuan Yew (换天的巨人李光耀) Quick reflections 2 March 28, 2015

Posted by @Karen_Fu in human quality, Leadership, Singapore.
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Whilst running for time, I jot some random thoughts.

*Frugality and the social makeup of a country*

Just surfed online for the news to learn that India has just announced they will have a national mourning on the 29th, which is a pleasant surprise to all Singaporeans including me. Leaders of many other countries are sending either their diplomats or turning up in person to pay their respects to the late Lee Kuan Yew. I also came across the facebook pages to read about frugality of the late Lee Kuan Yew. In fact in his time and our forefathers’, they were very thrifty people whose savings outweigh their expenditures. Today, frugality is even scorned at. If you do shop and observe, you would agree with me that pondering twice before buying anything is no longer that much seen as a virtue. But spending right on the dot is. That’s one of the social change here, which I see it as a problem. And you know what I’m thinking? We should worry and quickly make amendments in the mistakes that created a society that is no longer as frugal, as safe, as efficient as in the past. The country is wealthy but we have new set of problems that involves a higher crime rate, materialism, selfishness and rising social economic problems such as gambling addiction. Not to forget a rising problem of extramarital affairs and broken marriages. Tomorrow, many will line up along the streets to wave final farewells to the late #LeeKuanYew, where the gun carriage will go before it reaches it final resting place. As of now, people are still streaming in to pay their last respects. No one this far has garnered this kind of influence far and wide, both nationally and internationally. He was an extremely intelligent strategist whose aptness to change was impressive. His humour was natural with the words were concise and sharp to the point. He was highly creative and original in coming up with ideas to survive in a time where no one wanted us. We were poor, a land of ‘coolies’ and a land where poverty and illiteracy plagued the country. It was a different set of problems. He had the best of people’s whose common goal was to survive in any good possible way they can. The plans for public housing, national defence and foreign investments all came into the scene quick. He had the most frugal ministers who were willing to stay in the country to contribute the lives with low pay. The sacrifice of our founding fathers like Ong Pang Boon, Rajaratnam, Goh Keng Swee, Hon Sui Sen, Barker and all were just some of the most motivated leaders around. People were far more modest, and way more thrifty. Fundamentally, people were just plain nice. It wasn’t competitive but social peace was better in the 70s right through the late 90s.

*Our Lost National Treasures-their sacrifice*

Both our national treasures Teresa Hsu Chih and Founding PM of this country Lee Kuan Yew are gone. The fact they both paid their lives to this country in turn makes the people cherish them despite the differences. The kind of personality that shines through in a very positive note when they strive to make lives better for others. Both of them had humour in their own natural wit and original wisdom, which is usually simple in style, deep in thought, but wide in perspective. The former was a silent giant, the latter a roaring one. Either way, both were very unique people who are our national treasures.

The Founding PM of Singapore, the architect of modern Singapore has passed away on the 23rd March and I have been following the remarks and the commentaries online and offline. While in his lifetime, he had made mistakes, I think the contributions outweigh the mistakes by a heap. No one is perfect and to see what kind of people who made the negative remarks, I’d say they have their opinions we too need to respect. However, I doubt we have another leader like him and for that very matter our future isn’t that secured anymore given the current new set of woes. SG50 will somehow become a mourning event and 2015 a black year for all- at least in Singapore it is. Looking at the passing giant, and the current state of affairs. It makes logical sense to say the moment when former founding prime minister Lee left politics, the place was no longer in the kind of order that we were all used to (notably the public transport). So people cannot say he didn’t contribute. Rather, we should say that we are loosing ground that is set by a very disciplined and intelligent leader. No one’s perfect. The contributions of building a nation outweighs his flaws. For this matter alone, I worry the kind of people we have now.

*Comments on Lee Kuan Yew online on Facebook et cetra*
*The people we have today*

When I skim read some comments during the time he was critically ill, there were some negative remarks of the founding Prime Minister. Personally I don’t think we as human beings should judge. But I do believe life has its ways to handle with the deeds of a person. We have only the need to focus upon what is good and keep the partial views aside. I wrote this on Facebook which I will share here:

苍天功罪分明 #life #thought in #chinese #in The heavens differentiate merits and demerits

有恶报恶 Every evil begets evil

有恩报恩 Every merit begets merit

功德回功德 Positive rewards repays positive rewards

善业报幸福 Charity gives happiness

恶业回凶报 Evil deeds pay bad retributions

Whatever the merits or demerits, let the mandate of the heavens decide. I think we have far more problems to handle in a changing world. The social environment has changed. Economics have changed and we need to find that optimal level to sustain our lives. I think that should be the priority now. No one is perfect. Everyone has got their own way of executing tasks. There are times I do not like the autocratic way and at times I do not condone certain policies that appear to be elitist and often I had this sense it was all materialistic and practical. But to reflect back on what he had done to survive, we cannot deny the facts he put in his life into it. He had to do it and he did it. All that load of nation building, to contrary belief was not easy. Imagine you had nothing but only over two million people with a country that is low in international profile. You need people who are more than able to convince others to invest in us and to grow. You need to be creative and innovative when it comes to policies and diplomatic strategies. If he had failed, he would have to perish with our predecessors and the bunch of us offsprings would not have been born here. Everything was slick and span. His astuteness in situations and his sense of speech was incredibly concise. No one is like the late Lee Kuan Yew- a gifted strategist, a unique charismatic downright go-getter. For someone who came from nowhere, to show unusual guts and humour, he was quite actually quite a madman in his days.

I have been thinking a lot since the 23rd. Watching on the news, reading about the founding PM Lee Kuan Yew. The comments made offline and online made me wonder about the people we have today. The actual people I have come to meet and the people whom I have interacted. Times have changed as well as the kind of people we have. I worry. So what kind of nation are we having now? It is so different from the 70s 80s 90s when times were not as sophisticated. But people then were far more real and kind. The very reason why Singapore has bee so blessed is because if the kind of people we had: honest, hardworking, intelligent, far sighted and very very determined. No country this tiny can even survive and be this respected by big countries. The time when we loose able and good people is the very time this country shall perish. And for this very reason alone, I think we need to be constantly on our toes. Perhaps we need to radically change social atmosphere.

*A man of unique character and a staunch Chinese*

I always believe he was more Chinese than me. Though he may come from an English background family, he was very Chinese. There is nothing off being Chinese. In fact going in the opposite direction to be non Chinese would. He sent all his three children to Chinese medium schools, which are current SAP(Special Assistant Plan) schools that practice bilingualism in English and Mandarin Chinese. His strong will to master the Chinese language and his work to foster strong ties with China shows his belief and direction. He was never wrong in crafting his way out of a problem. His views widely sought after. And though he was aggressive and clobber off his enemies, the one thing I’d admire was he actually let the offsprings of his rivals go. -@karen_fu

The Giant who transformed Singapore Lee Kuan Yew (换天的巨人李光耀). Quick reflections March 28, 2015

Posted by @Karen_Fu in Leadership, life challenges, Singapore.
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The hardest part to build a nation is from scrap. The thing I admire about him and his first generation of ministers was they start from scrap. Actually the smaller the country the harder it is to build a nation ’cause defence is a problem, credibility is another. The problem we are facing now is a different set of problems. The type that we could collapse in a other way if our leaders do not have the kind of qualities like them. That’s another set of issues. The thought if this makes my heart heavy ’cause I think there is no one like him to lead. We have a good set of social problems that stem out from when we had very little of them then. I don’t know if we have the tenacity ’cause the motivation now is very different from last era.

We don’t have anyone like Lee Kuan Yew, and I see that a real problem. The foundations he had set prosper us. But if we were not as wise, as smart with the perspectives and the character he had; I doubt the prosperity will sustain. You need leadership, loyalty, some punches, and a pretty good number of stellar qualities to handle people, tasks, politics with a steely personality that is also easy-going —— Easy on the commoners and the needy, though on the people who would ruin the system to common prosperity. That’s what he was to get where we are today. He had his misgivings but the contributions to the nation far outweigh the misgivings. No ones perfect. And commoners only care about a peaceful and prosperous life that is healthy and sustainable. Commoners do not bother about power and politics. I believe most don’t care about politics.

In any case, I’ve already thrown my SG50 calendar of events into the bin when founding Prime Minister was critically ill. I knew he couldn’t pull through because the love of his life went before him five years ago. There was nothing important to hold on.

I don’t think anyone has the mind to think about the celebrations. I embrace trouble ahead, but I hope my thinking is totally wrong. We do not have any one like Lee Kuan Yew and I doubt there is anyone like him in the near future. If we can have rising social problems like addicted gambling etc with interrupted public transport, we have the right to have real concerns how the post Lee Kuan Yew era would be.

Though I do not like his handling of matters on a staunch domineering force but his contributions in the earlier years were, if not, far more then exemplary. He gathered his team to set up what others do not have the world. Public housing was like no other. An education system that rivals with the best in the world but I would never agree that we are not the intellectual class because we came from the southern parts of China where peasantry was dominant. Afterall, aren’t many successful people themselves come from the so called peasantry class?

I don’t believe in social classes. I may have some belief in genetics but at times even genetics could wrong where smart parents could have retards. Both nature and nurture can only have probabilities. There are not absolutes, only estimates and predictions.

The mind of Lee Kuan yew is unmatched by many and that includes his own children. We must be fair on his achievements and not criticize because we do not agree. I admire his brains, his witty astute sense of words and his strategic use of people like the late Goh Keng Swee, Hon Sui Sen and the likes. Which country in the world, this small, could go this far? And which country in the world this tiny could come up from the dead? This country.

Why?

’cause we had the brains and the guts with the right people. But question is: do we still have them now?

Do we have a future? – when gambling problems are along with rising marital problems. And not to forget petty street crimes and shoplifting to bigger crimes like murder.

Do we have fine minds that do not hold regard to money before the people, the people before self ?

Do we have people who will stand before justice ? Where people do not have to worry about retirement, making ends meet and money to lean and to grow ?

Do we have people to bring the old people who need to pick carton boxes for a living to a comfort level?

I am worried that we might be regressing. We used to have first class transport but now it’s hiccups every now and then. Why?

And how come students are so selfish these days and love to differentiate amongst themselves in terms of academic streams and schools? Why?

I buy thee not the pukes that we seem to see in recent years. We dearly need people who are multiculturally inclined, extremely impartial, and very innovative for the world today is no longer relying on strict fundamentals in a linear fashion. Current affairs in social economics has changed to become a problem that seeks sustainable measures in the goods and services we choose and the policies we embark on to stay alive. It is only with lateral thinking that we can grow and depend on our own to be our own CEOs. If our education is so rightly cool, then the best leaders, in at least most of the industries, should be us. There is no need to hire foreign talent at all.

I long for a Nobel prize from this country, a might that is like Great Britain which is physically small but undeniably huge in influence. Like our demised founding PM Lee Kuan Yew, who came in small, and walk out big where leaders from other countries would even come here to pay respects before him. Don’t say Singapore is easy to manage cos the smaller you are, the less credibility and might to get others to even look at you. You must feel super confident and motivated with a special character that exudes original substance to win hearts. He had it, will we have it too?

Founding PM Lee once said if anything goes wrong, he would get up even if he was in the grave. That is the eagle eye that people are weary and to some hate him for it. I’d say, if there is an impending problem going to sprout, let him come up and save us.

After thinking apart from memorials, I seriously think we should wear mourning (戴孝) for founding PM Lee Kuan Yew. But I think this is a little too late to suggest it.

No longer are the days where a resounding ‘merdeka’ would do. We need someone more original and more impressive cos the new era has set in. – @Karen Fu.

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(Image credit: China.org.cn on Twitter)

Legendary giant, Founding PM, Lee Kuan Yew Dies. March 23, 2015

Posted by @Karen_Fu in Singapore.
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Just knew this would happen. Then again, I think it is a relief for the legendary giant. SG50 becomes a mourning event. Year 2015 is black year for all Singaporeans. The founding fundamentals he set forth with his first generation ministers were stellar. It acknowledged the poor and the under privileged. His acuteness and foresight saved us from the period when we were thrown out in the waters during the Malaya merger. He has misgivings as well as fine contributions to the nation that we all Singaporeans should remember. No one’s like Lee Kuan Yew. I doubt there is one that is like his intelligence at the moment, and we are not in good shape now as a nation. Mourning is in. National reflection should come in.

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(Image credit: yahoo.com)

Leaders, future and the running education. November 23, 2014

Posted by @Karen_Fu in Character, education, Leadership, Singapore.
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Reading this article, ‘Accident, financial woes only make two PSLE students stronger’, I can’t help but to think of the many sprouting troubles that are stemming out from the current education system- or rather the new education environment. The type that seems to groom an unhealthy mindset about intellectual capacity and academic abilities. The truth is education should bring up fine characters who has genuine empathy, real curiosity for knowledge and all these should come with humanity values and a very tough character. The kind that is devoid of jealousy, unhealthy competition, egoism and the most dreaded hierarchy that determines who is better than who and all the sort of rubbish. The kind that knows how to suffer and to fight and win from the wrong to the right path of humanity.

The students in the above mentioned article are exactly the type of students the country should be grooming, not the ones who are already come from prestigious and well off family backgrounds. Students who go through these hardship and survived are the real talents we ought to keep. 

Many, if not most, students do not know what is hardship and life woes. Students these days seem to have formed hierarchy within themselves. The ranking of gifteds, special, express, and normal class students are strongly embedded in the system, where the better streamed students tend to think very well of themselves to the point of egoism and downright snobbishness on people whom they think are less intellectual.

The rampant hurry to stuff students all the advanced information for national examinations like the PSLE (Primary School Leaving Examinations) or the Cambridge ‘O’ and ‘A’ levels examination are common. The wealthier families send kids to top schools and take them to various niche classes in the private sector, spending thousands of dollars on just subject of learning. In my opinion, these are unnecessary. Then again, perhaps in a rat race here in Singapore, maybe these are a must. If they were a must, then the education style in public schools must have been inadequate in some ways.  Why else would parents want to pay and send kids for more tonnes of homework when the public school load is already heavy? One reason could just be the desire to scramble after the prestigious scholarships and the kind of prestige that holds for the kids if they manage to get into top schools here. But then again, have the parents understood what is education and how intellectual development is different from student to student? Everyone’s got their individual strengths, why force them into one standard mould?

Education is about learning how to think and master skills that are innovative as it is informative in a healthy way, that does not harbour jealousy or any other ill hatred mindset. But I always question myself if the current learning culture in public schools and beyond school premises are exactly healthy. If school education standards were even, then why are there so many students like to compete with one another on the schools they go to and how prestigious the schools are?

The current atmosphere appears to favour the well off and the economically advantaged families who are able to afford thousands of dollars to groom their kids that set them ahead in school. Then question is, how come public schools are not adequate to provide these knowledge and abilities? Why are students heading to private schools to get all that? It used to be that school teachers were enough, and tuition was reserved for those who had a real problem of assimilating what they had been taught in public schools. Now this is not the case. Even Gifteds go private tuition, and they go to heaps of different classes. Small surprise they are over stressed and PSLE spells horror and hell to most students here. A 12-year-old should enjoy their childhood as they learn in an enriched academic environment.

The less advantaged ones usually end up behind these kids who can afford the lessons beyond the public classroom. But to tell the truth, I think these kids are the real ‘Gifteds’ as they are able to find solutions on their own. And by doing so, they see different ways of doing up the answers, which is exactly what education should be about when it comes to discovering knowledge.

Most students, typically those who come from advantaged families usually fail to genuinely sympathise with the poor and the disadvantaged. To some, being poor means one hasn’t work hard enough. Though that is partially true, they usually fail to see that some people may not be fortunate to a smooth sailing life and thus have setbacks that are beyond their control. Such as the examples given in the above article, where one student had a poor financial background and the other who met up with a serious accident.

We need future leaders who are not only intelligent and wise, but to be able to know life’s hardship of different kinds and be able to use their knowledge to offer solutions. We do not need leaders who are short of genuine empathy, and even stratify people into different social classes to despise them. I have the most unfortunate luck to come across a couple of such kids who have given me a really bad impression on both themselves and their parents. It set me thinking and I know if we dwell on these people, we will eventually fail as a society. We need to use public money to help disadvantaged students whose financial background are inferior. We do not need to give scholarships that contain thousands to those who are already well off. We need students who are original, not parroting  from many private classes they have gone to. That’s not going to make innovative minds that can think originally. And for all the discriminating rubbish, we may well finish our hard founded prosperity and peace sooner than we think. All in one go, @karen_fu

That Lying Beggar Auntie August 22, 2014

Posted by @Karen_Fu in change, ethics, faith, human quality, Singapore.
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Decided to reblog this over at my blog as I saw her too. The over emphasis on material gains seemed to have come to a dire point that even an old lady would feign pity to make so much money. Anyway, here is my quick comments:’I saw her too. But in front of St. Andrews cathedral. I gave her only $6 and took the time to hear her out. At first I had doubts but believed her as it was in front of the church and if she so daringly lied, she would be in her dear conscience to take up the consequences. Nonetheless, she told me another story. She said she was extorted for money and if she didn’t bring home enough, she would be in trouble and someone’s life would be in trouble. Or something like that as she was sobbing very badly and talked in bits. If this were a real lie, she made it very convincing at her senior age. And that makes it all scary, cos if people here can become so hideous and dishonest, what would become of our society? I did ask her why she didn’t resort to the church for help. And that was when my next doubt came in. Then I thought perhaps the people there weren’t sympathetic. She also added saying that she knew begging for money is wrong. And when I gave her the money, she kept saying,’God Bless You’ quite a number of times. I even wanted to pass her my mobile contact and said that if she ever wanted any help, she could call me or SMS me anytime. Though I had little pockets of doubts here and there, I didn’t think she was a liar this big because of her old age. She even told me she nearly died from a fall and that god bless that she was alive. Anyway, I gave her the spare change I had. Now after reading this, I don’t know if I could really trust anyone now. I even spent time hearing her out. Honestly I think that our society has become over materialisitic and very money and power centric. If this goes on, we are going to done for. ‘ (edited a little on minor typos from the original post.)

Signs of Struggle

So there is finally a newspaper report about her scams. Wanbao followed up on a lead through STOMP and discovered that this auntie makes over a thousand dollars a night begging, lying and scamming. She has asked me for $500 before, but then I uncovered her scam over 45 minutes once I bought her tea.

She cries, lies, and makes more money on one weekend than you do in a month. Photo linked from STOMP http://goo.gl/6RIqLZ

I first met her in front of Red Dot Building in Tanjong Pagar on a weekday afternoon, maybe in 2012. She was sobbing and crying to a bunch of young office workers as I walked past on an errand. On the way back I saw she was still there sobbing by the pavement and stopped to try and help. She said she was hungry and I offered to take her to Maxwell Market…

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Robin Williams’ good will hunting. We will miss you. August 12, 2014

Posted by @Karen_Fu in ethics, faith, human quality, Quick thoughts.
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Robin Williams has died. His ethics consciousness for life paid through his acts of honorable acting in movies like ‘Patch Adams’ and ‘Dead Poets’ Society’. Ironically as he gave the world humour and hope, he died of depression.

Good will hunting,we shall always remember the movies he played in that etched in our minds despite the long passage of time. Robin Williams’ death is ironical. The rules of life gathers as to why a nice person could live a life of depression. As more findings will be discovered, I am thinking why life is recycled in these mishaps. Should kind people like him be perished in suicide? Some would say its ‘karma’ but I seriously think there are fundamental laws to life.

There are some very evil people who seemed to be able to sustain life comfortably. Or are they? I believe that whilst there is this existence of karma, we also need to protect ourselves through constant learning from life itself. Self protection is one. By keen learning from life and nature, we will garner the wisdom and knowledge needed to survive well. Moral ethics becomes the upmost importance to withholding peaceful, happy and meaning lives. However, how many would spare their time I search for wealth and status to give passion and compassion to others who genuinely need it? At worst, hypocrisy comes to the scene where charitable tasks are done not because genuine donations from the heart but acts of will to push oneself to the open for the gain of status or tax reduction benefits.

Robin Williams had played some of the most thought provoking films. One of the most profound impact on me is on education and medicine. He gave us wisdom through witty acts of humor that teaches us wisdom. Such acting should be highly valued and honored over unwanted violent and meaningless movies that we often see at theatres, cinemas and on television. His unexpected early demise from suicide is a huge loss to all of us. But I hope his demise will teach all of us good lessons that fine ethics is the root of peace and prosperity in life and beyond. – @Karen_Fu, quick typing in the late morning of 12 August 2014, Singapore.

Dead Poets Society morals: To learn under peer pressure for materialism is to kill creativity and humanity in the worst form. #in #education. To force on a child whose interest may not be of utmost prestige in society is to hinder the rights of the child and god’s gift to that child. – @karen_fu

Picture credit Photo By Tiziana Fabi

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Are Vitamins Useless? July 16, 2014

Posted by @Karen_Fu in change, Health, Quick thoughts, real power.
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Vitamins, in the artificial form, can never replace organic food. But when in times of urgency, we would definitely need the supplements to temporarily boost our immune systems. But ultimately, as we recover, food will be the main and only source of nutrition. I have been reading about nutrition because I do not believe that medicine can heal a body. It can ease the symptoms but eventually it’s the body that is fighting the disease. So healthy intake of nutirients from clean food sources is actually a long term solution to health. Not the vitamins in the synthetic form. A healthy happy mind also gives the body and soul a brilliant tone. Studies have shown that being kind and happy actually makes the body more alkaline, hence less prone to diseases which thrive in acidic biological environments. Medicine and other pharmaceutical products actually cannot solve problems permanently and in singularity. It must be accompanied by a healthy mind and body that is derived from organic forms and clean physical surroundings. It can ease your pain in order for the body to recuperate. But it is ultimately your immune system that counts. -@karen_fu

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Are Vitamins Useless? Are Vitamins Useless?

Are Vitamins Useless?

Are vitamin pills even necessary? – The Week

A recent long-term study of more than 400,000 people concluded that “most vitamin supplements [have] no clear benefit” and warned that excess vitamin E and beta-carotene may actually weaken the immune system’s ability to kill cancer cells. “The case is closed,” the study authors wrote. “Enough is enough.”

via Are vitamin pills even necessary? – The Week.

Is it ethical to sell a product which is in general a simple placebo?

In the Wizard of Oz, the fake wizard gives the Cowardly Lion, a horrible tasting concoction. He tells the lion that this “formula” will give him courage. The lion drinks the horrible drink and the wizard asks him how he feels. The lion replies, “Full of courage.”

So, we who spend from a few to hundreds of dollars on vitamins may also be said…

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A new trust – PreU Sem 2014 June 7, 2014

Posted by @Karen_Fu in change.
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Part of the notion of trust, very well delivered in this blog post which I want to share. – Karen Fu

Signs of Struggle

Pre-U Sem 2014 was attended by about 500 students from JC, Poly and IP schools and I had the privilege of speaking on a panel to about 100 of these students alongside former NMP Claire Chiang, VP of Banyan Tree, and Martin Tan, Co-Founder of Halogen Foundation.

We were mostly fielded questions throughout the session on the afternoon of the 6th of June, but I was able to answer from nearly all of my prepared speech. My speech text is below:

Ladies and gentlemen,

Thank you for the opportunity to address you. I’d like to talk to you about trust and how it will play a huge part all our futures.

Trust is a key element in every human relationship. How you, I, we, view each other. Without it, relationships break down. Without it, conflict rules.

Trust is also a key part of the relationship between the Government and its…

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A Change of Times – Trust is the root of Power. June 7, 2014

Posted by @Karen_Fu in change, faith, Singapore.
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Catherine Lim is a very gutsy lady. She has just penned in the change of times. Her open letter to the #Singapore prime minister, BG Lee Hsien Loong could be found here

http://catherinelim.sg/2014/06/07/an-open-letter-to-the-prime-minster/

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I have been tied to my own problems pretty badly at home to be really far behind in what is happening now. But fortunately the internet is able to help me record and do the catch up later, though quite late, thinking of the problems and solutions we have here. Just this year alone, we have quite a bit of happenings from the ground. I doubt it will stop from all these telling signs. If they aren’t acknowledged positively, I can see a storm arising. Lessons? Trust is loosing ground. Solution? Should we retain the hard handed style? My answer is NO. I have also attended the Buddhist convention last month end which Venerable Jing Kong had come to visit Singapore for an hour. The teachings of love and peace came in at the right time. But one needs to truly listen and put it to practice. Shaking hands with the venerable is only the start, the actions are more important. Trust comes in the form of sincerity. The harder the hammer hits, the larger the cracks will be. – Karen Fu.

Why Daring To Change. February 3, 2014

Posted by @Karen_Fu in change, faith, human quality, life challenges, real power.
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Why Daring To Change in Chinese – a note to a friend, which I think it’s worth the share. Hopefully in the year of the Horse, we could come to terms to certain issues that aren’t hard to solve if we would just change ourselves even by the little everyday:

‘刚才翻照片,看到以前刚买的平板电脑时试用软件所写的字。

I was just flipping through the photos and saw a finger written piece of Chinese words that was written I had just bought my mobile device.

字句不是很好,不过,我喜欢用手指写的字体。随手寄过去给你。

The lines aren’t fantastic but I enjoy using my finger to write them. Sending one off for your perusal.

我很相信博爱。它是一种需要双重交通,互相联系,心连心的精神才

I genuinely believe about universal compassion. It is a spirit that requires a two way traffic, a heartfelt sincerity to

可以源远流长,发扬光大。每个人如果会这么想,

promote such spirit of love to as far as possible and as long as possible, if not eternity. If everyone had a mind to do so,

世界将会简化很多不必要的烦恼,这世界也会有真正的和平。

the world would definitely be a simpler place sans the complicated troubles, this world would also have a true peace.

相信博爱的人,爱人与物,有宽宏大量的心。有爱心的人才有幸福。

Those who believe in universal compassion, fraternity and love, love people and objects around them; bearing a generous heart and mind. People who such love are ones who truly blessed.

即使是有人欺人害,另一端也会有人善仁爱之志士前来相助。

Even though when people may bully and harm, on the other end there will be gracious and gallantly kind people who would come to the rescue.

烂字一篇,不过希望自己的中文可以逐渐提升。没有胆子,没有希望。

Unrefined Chinese characters on this page, but hopefully my Chinese will gradually improve to a greater height. No guts, no hope.

没有希望,没有成功。真面有爱心的人,往往能创奇迹。这也是为什么我立下那片英文的博客.

No hope, no success. True face of love is always capable of miracles. That is why I set up an English blog of my own.’ – @Karen_Fu

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Chinese New Year Greetings! February 1, 2014

Posted by @Karen_Fu in Chinese New Year, New Year, Quick thoughts, Singapore.
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金马贺岁,博爱团年,甲午擢升,康泰吉祥。愿新加坡国运昌隆,国泰民安!~ @karen_fu
Translate:
The Golden Horse greets on the Lunar New Year,
We reunite with Universal (com)passion ,
In Jiawu (Chinese new year of the horse) we arise,
With Peace, health coming auspiciously.
May Singapore prosper with peace and wealth! – @Karen_fu

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A World Of Love. New Year Wish 1. January 26, 2014

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When Martin Luther King said he had a dream, his dream was a liberal world of love, fairness and sheer kindness. The same came from Gandhi, Dr Sun Yat Sen and the likes. But what has always been perplexing to me is that people chose to bend rules to be so hypocritical. I don’t know about others, but I feel it is high time we start picking the best leaders like our forefathers in history. The kind who will love, and cherish till we part kind of leaders. Those who will dutifully marry with us, the commoners and keep such special matrimonial intact like they have for their spouses. I think it’s only through this kind of unyielding ‘LOVE’ shall they be dedicated to put their lives in without the matter of money and status. Wouldn’t that be so nice for all of us?

Venerable Jing Kong has also made his Chinese New Year Wish ahead for humanity which is so damn true. He cites the earnesty, sincerity, compassion in the relationships with people. When in the changing world of people with multi faceted characters whose minds are focused on power mongering, the real love and passion for people diminishes without shame. Sharing his words in an picture here.- @Karen_Fu

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Quick wishes for the New Year of the Horse January 15, 2014

Posted by @Karen_Fu in Chinese New Year, faith, human quality, Justice, life challenges, New Year, real power, Singapore.
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Although there are efforts to curb foreigners, I think we need to focus on curbing those who are creating trouble here. That distinction is far more important than just curbing any foreign nationals. Trouble such as ostracizing the locals via means of bullying. If we fail to do this, the social make up of this country will go into a very rough one which is currently in the process of negative change. Regaining ground for what we had — a fully integrated, national identity revived, cohesive and very kind society of many came to envy us. It is this essence that we are one of the safest countries to live in and the most peaceful and harmonious one. I hope in the year of the Horse we will gain hold and achieve this. No citizen will gain from social enclaves and an overtly materialistic society where money and status controls the righteous mind. Be sure that such negative social change will see us all in gradual doom with social breakdown between people for various kinds of positive relationships, like those at home, school and work. I could romp on with examples but I hope I don’t need to. We need leaders with guts to spit the dirt out honestly and dare to flip very mercenary people whose intentions are for self greed. Hopefully in the next two years we will find them. – @Karen_Fu.

Keen curiosity is also a means to original study. December 12, 2013

Posted by @Karen_Fu in education, Quick thoughts, real power, social media.
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‘I am only a layman economist whose knowledge is gathered from ‘on the ground’ experience.’ – quote myself from a private reply via Facebook,asking me to share my views on the social behaviors of people to form the base of successful foreign trade agreements, of which I was surprised. In fact most of my knowledge is gained from curiosity. I am happy so far of my observation and hope these senses will be sharpened further before I can formally contribute. For now, it’s still keen studying. This is more important than merely reading off books, and quoting other source references that could sometimes hinder original thinking. Personal opinion. Have a nice day studying! – Karen Fu

Let not the spirit of Mandela be gone. December 7, 2013

Posted by @Karen_Fu in change, ethics, human quality, Justice, life challenges, Quick thoughts.
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Sharing a post that I have just made in Facebook :

‘Nelson Mandela has died. But I hope humanity and real educated people have truly grown as a result of his sacrifice. Don’t preach what he had said, but do what he had done and pass on the torch of hope to generations of people to come. Then, the sacrifice of Mandela will not be in vain. And so are our forefathers whose sacrifice is to ensure we live better because we have grown a genuine heart for peoples around the globe. That’s the ultimate peace. Papers about peace don’t work, but actions of peace do.-@karen_fu’

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Revisiting Nelson Mandela’s time in prison – Africa – Al Jazeera English December 7, 2013

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Revisiting Nelson Mandela’s time in prison – Africa – Al Jazeera English.

What Mandela meant to me:

Nelson Mandela was a man of sheer conviction, courage and compassion. He was a man of great stubbornness in his manner to bring love, justice and order to his people and in many ways to the world. A man whose life has several ups and downs, suffered most of his life in fight for truth and liberty. His life is a heartbreaking aspiration to all of us wherever we are, of someone who had fought relentlessly for a blessed life under a very politically wronged name of being a ‘terrorist.’ – @Karen_Fu, Daring To Change.

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(Image credit: Aljazeera.com)

Why Our World Collapses November 29, 2013

Posted by @Karen_Fu in change, climate change, environment, environmental pollution, ethics, human quality, life challenges, man made calamity, Quick thoughts, real power.
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I thought I was going to bed early until I saw this post on Facebook by Venerable Jing Kong. What he had said really echoed my thoughts about why we are having a decaying world. He placed in all the complex reasons in very concise points that shoot the demon out of the chaos, which we are all suffering now. The very reason of human ethical decay is the main reason why our world collapses, and why justice can can take such a long time to come. Technology can rectify the problems but for a permanent solution, a human change in character for the good must be achieved. I am pasting a screenshot of what the Venerable has said, and hopefully this will open eyes for more people to come forth for a stronger voice for environmental conservation and humanity.

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DYING TO HAVE KNOWN by Steve Kroschel November 27, 2013

Posted by @Karen_Fu in ethics, faith, human quality, life challenges, real power.
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Quote the following from an excerpt from “Dying to Have
Known,” by Steve Kroschel. Very meaningful and I thought its worth the post. – Karen Fu

DYING TO HAVE KNOWN

For each of us eventually, whether we’re ready or not,
someday, it will come to an end.

There will be no more sunrises, no minutes, hours or days.

All the things you collected, whether treasured or forgotten,
will pass to someone else.

Your wealth, fame, and temporal power will shrivel to
irrelevance.

It will not matter what you owned or owed. Your grudges,
resentments, frustrations and jealousies will finally disappear.

So too your hopes, ambitions, plans and to-do list will expire.

The wins and losses that once seemed so important will fade
away.

It won’t matter where you came from, or on what side of the
tracks you lived at the end.

It won’t matter if you’re beautiful or brilliant, even your gender
and skin color will be irrelevant.

So what will matter? How will the value of your days be
measured?

What will matter is not what you bought, but what you built,
not what you got, but what you gave.

What will matter is not your success, but your significance.

What will matter is not what you learned, but what you
taught.

What will matter is every act of integrity, compassion, courage,
or sacrifice that enriched, empowered or encouraged others to
emulate your example.

What will matter is not your competence, but your character.

What will matter is not how many people you knew, but how
many will feel a lasting loss when you’re gone.

What will matter is not your memories, but the memories that
live in those who loved you.

What will matter is how long you will be remembered by
whom, and for what.

A life lived that matters is not of circumstance, but of choice

.

***

Beware of Greeks Bearing Standardized Tests! November 27, 2013

Posted by @Karen_Fu in education, Quick thoughts.
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No one’s exactly the same. Different people have different strengths and their individual ways of learning. The cultural differences should be taken into consideration. To produce a common mould is always wrong but systems, not only educational ones, tend to make do with one. Makes you wonder the many reasons why such ideas exist. – Karen Fu

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006thBeware of Greeks Bearing Standardized Tests

Foundations, charities but mainly for-profit groups claim to have all the answers to “fix” education in the United States. Their principal tool is the standardized test, and not just any standardized tests, the ones they have created. It’s funny they always talk about accountability but what harm does it do to millions of students to be rated by tests that make little sense and measure only a small part of the results we expect our schools to produce?

As as society, it should be a matter of some concern that tax free foundations are the weapons of choice in the battle to replace public education with a neo-liberal set up where you get what you pay for. Essentially, the taxpayers are substituting anti-democratic initiatives across the country.

It’s bizarre that the United States is one of the pioneers in creating public schools is the…

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Nature and Fairness – When Worlds Collide November 25, 2013

Posted by @Karen_Fu in ethics, faith, human quality, Justice, Quick thoughts, real power.
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Quick post from my facebook comment. History tells us that the strongest and the most impartial dynasties last. It may take the meanest to stay, but it doesn’t last. The most partial and selfish dynasties die from revolution set by the people. The most unfair businesses fail flat and are never liked. People’s support is the basis of power. Try double standards, and even the Mandate of Heaven will have you out without the people’s revolt. Historical references are aplenty. The will power of goodness can never be underestimated. Why do you think people have so much aspirations when it comes to unconditional passion of all kinds? Because people believe in peace and common love for mankind.

I can only post this much for now. It is something that great people like Dr Sun Yat Sen, Mahatma Gandhi, Mother Theresa and our own humble Teresa Hsu would pay strong belief in — Human fairness, compassion, and love. Very simple principles, but seemingly to some people, it can be so difficult to do. – Karen Fu

Ilo Ilo, Singapore’s pride. November 24, 2013

Posted by @Karen_Fu in creativity, Quick thoughts, Singapore.
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Singapore wins big at Golden Horse Awards for best supporting actress, best new director, best screenplay and best feature film. It has also recently won at the Cannes festival earlier. Antony Chen really does anything for his films. In most ways, its good. In a few ways, it isn’t. His education background is an example of someone who makes it big on his own style. In my opinion, the substance IS the style. There’s no need to debate on that. This film wins big without a degree proves that anything such as intelligence and gift cannot be measured by an archaic system of egoism. A big lesson to elitist people and for all of us to think that education fits all, when education should be tailored made to fit the individual. No ones exactly the same. Whilst education can give and take away skills, it can never take away real substance such as talent and gift. The list is non conclusive but I think you get the idea. – Karen Fu.

Inserting this picture of the winning team. I think they’d never thought a humble background could win this big. I bet they’d cried for having the guts all thrown in for a fine bet. Best wishes!

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(Image credit: hollywoodreporter.com)

Don’t Blow Up For Greed. November 15, 2013

Posted by @Karen_Fu in change, environment, environmental pollution, ethics, faith, Innovation, life challenges, Quick thoughts.
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A fine and very creative example to use renewable resources. After Fukushima, I think the Japanese are adamant to stray away from nuclear and out in their research efforts in other renewable sources for energy. Not only does this solar plant is aesthetically pleasing but it is as beautiful on the inside as far as the intentions are. I hope more innovations and implementations of this kind will eventually replace nuclear energy. I suppose it takes a good blast to learn the lessons up. But I do hope we don’t need to do another one to master the real lessons of self destruction. There are many ways to power. Don’t blow it up because of stupidity and greed. – Karen Fu

Reference :
1. CNet – Kyocera launches 70 Megawatt solar plant.

Material consumption could be as bad as nuclear waste November 15, 2013

Posted by @Karen_Fu in environment, environmental pollution, Pictures, Quick thoughts.
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We are what we do. I doubt we are heading in the right environmental conservation direction if our material consumption doesn’t reduce. The break down of these materials can be as long as nuclear decomposition. Thrift is of essence. A change of life views on material attainment has got to be revised. I often wonder how much waste we have been producing and trying the bury them somewhere. Can we really thrash unwanted goods after their shelf life is gone? Design to last or design to sustain would be the way to go. But I doubt money mongers will like the idea. Its more convenient to create fashion and let consumers keep on to it to spin them money. Then again, if we could wittily remind them that we may all perished or damaged by various pollutants around; per chance they might just have their sanity back in to agree with real change. – Karen Fu

Change by Design – Invisible Helmet November 13, 2013

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Invisible Helmet

Quick paste of this video above  to share via Facebook from ‘Irene Emerita’. We can never underestimate the technical and design innovation done by women, which is usually expected in men. Watch it to see its ingenuity. – Karen Fu

 

Common Law Of Justice – who gets to set it November 12, 2013

Posted by @Karen_Fu in environment, ethics, human quality, real power.
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In reply to Penny Ramsden about who is going to set the common law of justice, which I will share in a short paragraph:

‘That’s a hard question. I would say as long as people are doing the law, you will definitely not get a perfect system because people by nature are somewhat bias despite how impartial they can appear to be. So no common law system will be perfect. But it should at least satisfy common logic of fairness, which sometimes is strangely absent. Nature is by far the fairest when it comes of common justice. You put rubbish in, it will find a way to give it all back to you regardless race, language or religion; social status or financial solvency. Very very fair…..’

What I would like to add quickly is that it should always be noted that no one will be perfectly impartial and fair. As such the group of people in charge should always be under constant check by the people and that the system is always opened to change. And that includes an overthrow of the corrupted one without red tape. – Karen Fu

A short Life Tweet. November 11, 2013

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The world doesn’t operate on evil intentions. It will retaliate with natural vengeance. #in #life #sustainability – Karen Fu

Saturday morning rise to read a fall in human justice…. November 9, 2013

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Not a big matter by certain people who think they are huge. Not a small matter to ignore it either as common folks. Supposedly, the freedom of thought and speech were struck down due to the huge dislike of a certain said or written clause. Or be it the kind of character that one cannot seem to understand or rather choose not to understand, and henceforth chose to force a banishment out of nowhere. (Prof Nick Chater’s point on how one could form an inventory of reasons to justify their decisions in the ‘The mind is flat’ video)Will that be a sign of unfairness? Let truth be told that where there is injustice, there will be reprecussions. You need to ask why such people are at the helm of leadership and are so blind and foolish to do stupid reasons just to put down a harmless and peaceful expression. The rules set by some usually the helm of the most pocessive will do the enforcement on people and to put a downright system in their might. Would we be foolish to use the egg to hit a rock? (A Chinese Saying 以卵击石) what I could say is it is foolish to use hard force in a time when liberty of rights are floating globally. the management of people our subordinates can never come from brut force. How can one be a leader when you are running out of followers? – Karen Fu, little thought on something not that little.

Are the principles of justice and the nature of values under threat? November 8, 2013

Posted by @Karen_Fu in environment, ethics, faith, human quality, Justice, life challenges.
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This is a question Penny Ramsden is pressing to know. Though I am not asked to reply, I feel obliged to make a comment though I honestly think it needs a good draft before publishing it. It’s a difficult subject area to write. But it is definitely a very relevant question to ask. My reply was done in context to a video called ‘The Mind is Flat’ <video is found in the previous reblogged post.>

I will paste my reply here for crit:

‘Firstly, I don’t totally agree that the mind is flat to begin with.
The Prof mentions the mind is flat because there is no mental depth and the mind is unable to hide inner feelings. Something that goes against what I have always been thinking that the mind has a 4th dimension. However, I do agree with the points that People’s minds are unstable and are always inferring mental states by looking at their own behaviour, inventing a perceived preference. The mind is considered flat despite its infinite depth.
I could see how value perception works. Value is perceived by the buyer or the consumer. It is fixed by the product image set by the seller (or the product designer). If I have a perceived set of value, I would decide how much I would pay despite the amount of money I have. Value is of essence here. What is added to the dimension is the amount of money the consumer or the buyer has in order to determine how much to pay.
Policies are national and regional based. To be flatly honest, even if we chose to set a guide, any entity that is huge enough and powerful enough can ignore by simply jumping out of the set guides. That’s where the behavioural psychology comes in. People ‘will cook up’ their reasons for doing so. Especially so when issues have extremities. That I can agree with. I can see why the Prof says the mind is flat because the depths are unreal. Then again, I could say that the mind is multidimensional which is why there are so many facets of deceit and lies, over textured by different contexts. The mind is as difficult as it can be called cunning.
Bentham’s aspiration for human freedom and justice is admirable. Quote from his’ The Principles of Morals and Legislation’ via wiki,
‘Nature has placed mankind under the governance of two sovereign masters, pain and pleasure. It is for them alone to point out what we ought to do, as well as to determine what we shall do. On the one hand the standard of right and wrong, on the other the chain of causes and effects, are fastened to their throne. They govern us in all we do, in all we say, in all we think ‘
I thought his choice to preserve his corpse was itself a pain more than a pleasure. Something I cannot quite understand why people could do something that is contradicting to what they preach (?) unless they don’t see that as a pain like I do.
IMHO, in search of happiness, pain must be experienced and understood. The lives of the poor and the destitute must be empathised. The mind isn’t flat as i think it has complex dimensions. The triangularity concept sounds convincing but there are certainly hidden parts of the mind that cannot be seen.
Can justice be totally done? I think the scary answer could be no. But we can mitigate it the situations to make the world a peaceful place.
So the principles of justice and the nature of values cannot be fully practiced due to the negative nature of human behavior of many people. But with knowledge of such situations, we can adjust the situations. And rest assured that justice be done by Mother Nature if we still refuse to heed her calls.
Small little thoughts from a non psychology major grad.’
to add, triangularity is 2D, hence it is said to be flat. However, to me, the mind is a tetrahedron — a 3D. A 4th dimension comes in or even a 5th because I believe the mind is Highly mutatable and morphable. Hence the high complexity that cannot be resolved. A 2D one is a far simpler configuration to solve. Perhaps I have misunderstood the video. It’s 2:30 am here, and I haven’t managed to return to complete reading the online comments….- Karen
add note 9/11/2013: the alpha version will be good to see the whole picture by Prof Nick Chater. The mind is shallow for people who are small and short of intelligence. I doubt the mind is that shallow in general. So many permutations talking about. Then again, I am just rambling as a layperson having my own mind….. – Karen Fu

The Justice Principle and Values November 8, 2013

Posted by @Karen_Fu in change, human quality, real power.
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Can’t resist reblogging. I love poetry and this is beautiful. Rushing my lines here again whilst I share my comments,’Lovely poem! For one to understand kindness, one must first learn to suffer/experience the pain, persevere and continue to learn positively. In that respect, the nurture of a great compassionate leader. Not many in the world can achieve that. Quite the contrary, many more people tend to turn to the negative because of the pain. I see it as a form of self protection, which society as a whole must learn to accommodate. However, one must not be forgotten that there are some truly evil people whose minds are never going to change. In lieu of such character, we must defend what is justice. Great post!’

Nature and Fairness: When Worlds collide November 8, 2013

Posted by @Karen_Fu in ethics, human quality, Justice.
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Sharing a snappy quick thought on justice:’I have a thought on your last line:’everything has a place’. To me, people who have abused the rights of decent beings have no place in the world. However, law made by man has failed to sort justice out. It’s prevalent in the news that we read. And it does make one wonder of the several shades of grey present in our human civilisation. So who gets to set the ultimate law to maintain justice?’

add on the 8 November: haven’t put in detailed thinking from the principles. Would have to rush back to form. But I often find it strange to base on the exsiting laws. To me, certain solutions cannot wait. I have to rush off for there’s only 5% of battery remaining…

Singapore’s first tidal energy generator launched off Sentosa November 8, 2013

Posted by @Karen_Fu in environment, Singapore.
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http://www.straitstimes.com/breaking-news/singapore/story/singapores-first-tidal-energy-generator-launched-sentosa-20131106

Quickie post as I caught my eye on the energy issues. The link above gives a quick news on Singapore’s use on tidal energy. What is also interesting is the comments that follow beneath the post on the website. Do take a quick look. No one wants nuclear which is a relief to me. Solar is what I have been keen in. More time and energy should be directed to solar energy which we have in abundance during most of the daytime. Another source would be water. – Karen Fu

Fukushima readies for dangerous fuel rod removal – Precautionary lesson. November 8, 2013

Posted by @Karen_Fu in environment, environmental pollution, man made calamity, Quick thoughts.
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http://www.channelnewsasia.com/news/asiapacific/fukushima-plant-readies/877878.html

I can never fully understand why some people somewhere could still insist on nuclear energy. The link above tells us part of the aftermath of its radioactive contamination in Fukushima. Honestly, the people who insist on nuclear should really go to Fukushima themselves and clean up the contamination instead of talking about why and how else it should be managed to ensure safety for future generations to come. The reality is: unless one knows how to contain nuclear energy risks, no one under our current socio-political-economic situation should ever use nuclear energy as a prime source of energy production. The nuclear fallout should be used as a warning on how justice should be done on any other source of energy used in a similar large scale as a precautionary measure. Any tool given in the wrong hands can be a weapon. And nuclear is by far the worst tool to use. Why tempt it? Just dump it. – Karen Fu

Finding life after academia November 7, 2013

Posted by @Karen_Fu in education, Quick thoughts.
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Quote New York Times:’The Repurposed Ph.D.
The past few years have seen a surge in efforts to connect Ph.D.’s with gratifying employment outside the ivory tower, and even to rethink doctoral education itself.’

http://www.nytimes.com/2013/11/03/education/edlife/finding-life-after-academia-and-not-feeling-bad-about-it.html?smid=pl-share

(Article source found via Arvind Lodaya
Design + Innovation Consulting
Bangalore, India from PhD-Design forum)

Short note:
Probably not good coming from me, but this article accentuates my thought about a PhD. Many of the best policy makers/business owners do not hold a PhD. If you were to talk about jobs, this may not be the way to go. If you were to focus on another truth, many PhD holders do think they know it all. Not many are truly modest and at times using their academic credentials to put down on those who do not have one. Could go on, but I think let real life facts speak for themselves. There are much more to life than a PhD and you do need time to teach you this. And I am one of them. In all, a great education comes from a gracious school with fine professors whose minds are as open as the universe.- Karen Fu

Who’s going to pay for a greener, global future? November 7, 2013

Posted by @Karen_Fu in climate change, environment, environmental pollution, ethics, faith, Justice, man made calamity, Quick thoughts.
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Who's going to pay for a greener, global future?.

Sharing a commentary reply that I think I should ‘pay it forward’… :’Everyone’s learning. I’m too. I think one of my best decisions in life so far is to have my tertiary education done in the UK. The countryside itself has taught me a lot. Without nature, there is no nurture. Without our biodiversity, we have no future. Hence I could say we are all stakeholders of a dying globe. For the price of man made destruction, we shall all pay dearly through poorer health and economic well being. Its all related. All of us need to pay for a greener global future only differing in extent and capacity. Or perhaps such establishments or countries who do not heed nature’s call are already beginning to pay the price they have put in. Nature has its uncanny ways of evening out with unfairness. I call that,’the Nature’s Law of Justice’. Cheers from the equator.’- Karen Fu

South Korea and Nuclear Safety November 6, 2013

Posted by @Karen_Fu in environment, ethics, human quality, Justice, man made calamity.
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When you have people who lack integrity, anything can become a disaster. And when you let such people manage highly combustible nuclear energy, you are courting suicide. The economic attractiveness of using the fuel is often the main lure for using such energy. Ironically, it is that efficiency of using very little to produce that much that fuels potential safety threats both to heath and to the environment. The main issue with all these problems often do not come from the technology itself, but from the people who are behind these technologies. Man can be his own enemy or ally depending on the kind of belief he has. With wisdom intact, nuclear energy should be best scrapped at the current way social politics/ social economics is run. For all you know a nuclear plant run for power energy lines may well be used for nuclear weapons of mass destruction.- Karen Fu

Pilant's Business Ethics Blog

South Korea and Nuclear Safety

South Korea has become the center of a nuclear corruption scandal. Basically, parts that meet the safety requirements of a nuclear plant are expensive. Sub standard parts can save a plant operator millions upon millions of dollars. So, they faked the required documents and used sub standard parts on what appears to be a gigantic scale.

Now, I’m one of those foolish people who keep pointing at the record of problems with nuclear safety. I have the perception regarded by many, even some modern environmentalists as foolish, that nuclear power has been distinguished by lies, exaggerations, safety violations and the occasional complete disaster during all of the history of its use.

Isn’t this a cautionary tale when many reactors in the fourth most powerful economic power in Asia are found to be using parts that in an emergency will fail?

What worries me is the…

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(Thorium) Nuclear Reactors / Social Responsibility issue November 5, 2013

Posted by @Karen_Fu in change, environment, ethics, human quality.
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The title should read : (Thorium) Nuclear Reactors-Social Responsibility Issue

Sharing a comment post on the topic here. Long time no post on my blog so here’s one to start off : ‘Just fallen ill from too much obligations and am off for now to play Devils’ advocate after Bethan… Hopefully in a fun way with twice the plastic toy horns post Halloween… But this really reminds me of a heated debate on the phd forum a few years back. So, what makes a change in lifestyle to conserve energy so wrong without a slightest explanation? And what makes using nuclear so right when its half life decomposition is so long? Compare its impact with other renewable sources like sun and even water, and consider the pending danger of nuclear war ; these are serious implications to be precautioned. Why promote exuberant waste by adopting say a disposable lifestyle when we could promote improvisation? I am not a materials engineer but in simple logic, any matter that takes a long time to fully decomposed is a danger to human health. Any idea that promotes unlimited wants with no end perishes our dying natural resources. Even if we chose Prof Nocera’s idea of generating unlimited energy using just a swimming pool size of water (personalized energy) , with greed in hand you’ll never know how a negatively creative and selfish mind could come up with. Some traditional ideas of thrift, industriousness, honesty and modesty are dying in an era of pure lust for extravagant and almost heartless lifestyle. Everyone likes to live well. That includes me, who wants a cute gigantic house with plenty creative inventions and ecuational play. But we need to control and watch our wants before our wants kill us. Hope this is taken in good candour….perhaps only the far poorer countries should use nuclear energy because they really need it. then again, who says a non radioactive source may not offer a far livable and healthier solution? In any case, nuclear seems to pose a lot of threat at the moment. Life can be engaging, fun, knowledgeable and with plenty of peace. That includes the way of life for the same set of things. If one could obtain the same or even better quality of living by adopting a seemly less high tech source after weighing out the pros and cons, then one should take the option. Our lives aren’t that long to make wrong decisions. Happy Tuesday! ‘

ADDITION | thoughts on why nuclear energy should be avoided–

As much as learning more about thorium as an added knowledge under nuclear energy is appreciated, I believe that Fukushima and Chernobyl mishaps are real. Personally I am strongly against it. Our local government had wanted the nuclear energy to power our lines. Thankfully it is thrown off after the Fukushima incident. I wouldn’t think a bigger country should play the risk though it is in much better position to do so. Then again, thats me being careful. As responsible policy makers, the people’s physical well being is most important.
Perhaps this link from Physicians for social responsibilty which won a Nobel Peace Prize (PSR.org) would offer a more convincing overview of a nuclear fallout: the costs and consequences of the Fukushima daiichi disaster:

jon Lovett

Now that the first trial of the ‘When Worlds Collide’ MOOC is complete, I’ll try and keep this blog up dated with thoughts and information. I’ll also be going back through the many thousands of discussion comments in the MOOC, and I plan to compile an ebook we can use for the ‘alpha’ launch of the course in March.

I’ll use the blog to post parts of the ebook for comment and reflection. I’ll also be using the blog as an aide memoir and will be posting links to research articles, unless you are in a University it’s likely that you won’t be able to access the full texts of the articles, but you should be able to see the abstracts.

Civil nuclear power is clearly an area where science could potentially be of great benefit to society, particularly with an energy crisis and global climate chaos looming.  In the…

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Short Haze – Life thoughts June 27, 2013

Posted by @Karen_Fu in ethics, human quality, Justice, life challenges, real power.
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When you have the money, the world talks to you. But that doesn’t mean everyone is genuinely wanting to be real friends to you. Try haze, any kind of haze, and see how many will truly come to the rescue instead of planning to leave the moment your contaminants grow beyond their interests. It’s the emphasis of genuine friendship that is hard to make. So is the make of a society – one, that is dependent on nothing much beyond material needs, is never a great place of humanity and justice which will garner the truest and the best of friends. And do not undermine such loyal friends, whom some may not be as seen as the so-called wealthy; they may well be your founding blocks of success for sustainable peace and prosperity. – two cents from the equator at the sight of haze, Karen Fu

It’s the haze that we will see clearer. June 26, 2013

Posted by @Karen_Fu in change, climate change, environment, environmental pollution, Singapore.
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Its the haze that we will see clearer.

 

This shall spell a change-like the haze, the rain and the winds. When human intervention is absent, hopefully the winds and the rain will continue to be on our side. We need it. There seems to be a lingering burnt smell that comes into the atmosphere somehow. Despite improved readings on both The PSI and AQIs, I think we need to standby our masks. The atmosphere doesn’t feel totally right when I see hazy areas on my train ride. Hailstones were seen in the western part of Singapore yesterday. Climate has surely changed. And that spells a lot on our land that we need to be careful about how we do city planning too.

When there’s thunder, there is rain. After the rain, there’s sunshine. When the intervention of the sun in the rain, we get rainbow.

Haze has ironically allowed us to see things better. As I quickly finished this short blog post, I should add:
‘it’s the haze that we have seen things better’ – cheers, Karen Fu.

Quick visual check on AQI June 23, 2013

Posted by @Karen_Fu in China, environmental pollution, Singapore.
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Quick snappy look at AQI. Looks like our air quality is similar to China’s
Have a thought looking at these pictures. – Karen Fu

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20130623-171547.jpg

Haze Hell in Malaysia and Singapore June 23, 2013

Posted by @Karen_Fu in environment, environmental pollution, malaysia, man made calamity, Singapore.
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I think AQI 746 is probably about the same as PSI at 400. Maur and Ledang are now declared as states of emergency. Which ever pollution index is being used, pollution levels are considered hazardous. Malaysia declared state of emergency without a second thought. On our front, we have no state of emergency even when the thick haze almost swallowed up the entire city state.

Construction workers still work. People bare the noxious smoke to get their masks and work done. I don’t think this is right. While it is crucial to go forth on international terms to seek consensus on a macro level to end the fires, I thought the basics should have put in place along with the diplomatic mission. The haze is temporarily off for now, but if winds don’t blow like these two days, the haze will return. Who knows what would happen next, but as far as the ground is like for masks and all things about the haze are concerned; it’s quite a civilised panic here. – Karen Fu

Reference
1. ABC News ABCNews.com: Worst of Haze Shifts From Singapore to Malaysia http://abcnews.go.com/International/wireStory/worst-haze-shifts-singapore-malaysia-19466046

Life Saving Masks June 23, 2013

Posted by @Karen_Fu in environment, environmental pollution, Singapore.
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I read they are distributing N95 masks now. Better now than never. It seems that the life saving/health saving masks are made available for nation wide distribution only today. For a short while, I was not happy. Reason? It should really be there almost immediately. At least as promised two days ago.

The 9 million masks should have been at least there two days ago. The sale of masks should be made opened at non commercial spots. Different places appear to sell the masks differently. Some by the box, some by the pair. Actually it should be rationed. When you go out and buy them, you will know how it feels like. It is just not right. I have only managed to get the masks after travelling half the country underground. I chose underground to avoid the open air. Even air conditioned air smells smokey. In lieu of this, you cannot depend on surgical masks at all. In fact, everyone should have the N95 masks.This should have come in as immediate and the most logical thing to do at the count of measurement that says ‘hazardous’. We are not under any way to wait like some countries need to. We could do things straight. In light of this respect, the response for basic life / heath saving masks is not good. Thankfully the haze situation is far better now. But that doesn’t guarantee smoke will not be in the air. This may not be as big a task as negotiating with concerned countries, but it is certainly the most vital task to do. – Karen Fu

Reference:
1. Other posts on haze on DTC: https://daringtochange.wordpress.com/tag/haze/
2. Relevant link to this article: https://daringtochange.wordpress.com/2013/06/22/can-you-smell-the-haze-today/

Alternative Air Index June 23, 2013

Posted by @Karen_Fu in environment, environmental pollution, Singapore.
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20130623-093632.jpg

It seems that API is usually a notch away from PSI. In any case, the readings are bad. In any reading, PSI readings makes you feel better. The skies are now blue, but the readings aren’t. OSI (aka Our Sensorial Index) maybe put into good use. Innately, it feels wrong; visually it may look right. Whatever it is, I hope the winds could first blow the haze away before a rain comes to wash up the air. NEA (National Environment Agency) site seems to be off on the *three day weather forecast as I am surfing now.

20130623-101927.jpg

So I googled to get this^:

20130623-094846.jpg

As it looks, rain may be coming as I read via google.

Checking out at ^^NEA weather for today

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I hope to have thunderstorm but after the winds blow the haze off first. If human intervention takes so long to make a real effort, than pray hope weather will be on our side. The last few days of hazardous haze were like a historical experience. You can have air cons, air purifiers, humidifiers, aroma lamps and all; but nothing beats genuine natural fresh air. The grey ominous overcast looks worrying enough to question and to think about several issues. Should this lesson be left unlearnt, the next disaster will see us perished. We are merely 710 sq km big. A huge shroud is all you need to murder the entire city state. Those companies, whoever they are, must pay for this. Local companies included. – Karen Fu

Reference link:

1. AQI (Air Quality Index): http://aqicn.org/?city=Singapore/North&size=xlarge&wamap
2. *NEA three day weather forecast : http://app2.nea.gov.sg/redirection-page?aspxerrorpath=/weather_3day.aspx
3. ^Weather forecast via google search: http://www.google.com.sg/search?q=singapore+weather&ie=UTF-8&oe=UTF-8&hl=en&client=safari#client=safari&hl=en&q=singapore+weather+today&revid=821918756&sa=X&ei=olPGUeu0C4rqrAfejIDQAw&ved=0CEIQ1QIoAA&bav=on.2,or.&bvm=bv.48293060,d.bmk&fp=4cfa504b83eae4a&biw=1024&bih=672
4. ^^NEA weather for today 23-6-2013 : http://weather.nea.gov.sg/ForecastToday.aspx

You Can Smell The Haze Today. It’s People’s Party time. June 22, 2013

Posted by @Karen_Fu in change, human quality, man made calamity, real power, Singapore.
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Wrote this on Facebook that I want to share. It’s just a simple line:
Without the People, any Party’s useless’
Beat this for a haze lesson learnt.

Hope the skies could be blue soon. It’s good for the people and the people do deserve fine skies. – Karen Fu

Can You Smell The Haze Today part 2 – miracle June 22, 2013

Posted by @Karen_Fu in environment, man made calamity.
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20130622-160356.jpg

Just after I posted the earlier blog post, the skies got cleared all of a sudden. Wonder why and how, but I hope it stays that way. It’s a little bluish grey from my perspective here though largely blue skies with some fluttering clouds. I hope it rains. That will help clean up the air. I call this a miracle from what we see a few hours before and now. The image above shows yesterday and today. But really, a few hours ago, PSI was around 300. It’s around 120 now as of this message. I think it’s below 100 now. Cheers! Karen Fu

Can You Smell the Haze Today?~ June 22, 2013

Posted by @Karen_Fu in environment, man made calamity, Singapore.
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‘Can you smell Haze/Hazel today? He/She smells acidic …
Not the best boyfriends/girlfriends you can have.
Damned joke, but when you are stuck indoors.
Apart from planning the next steps, you joke.
Even if it’s a DRY one.’-made it up today by me.

Posted to both my Facebook and Twitter sites. I suppose I can’t tell anyone off? Or maybe I CAN.

I forgot which song it was, as well as its lyrics; but the melody was definitely so sing-song. As I hummed the tune, I drafted the stanza. Honestly, the smell is horrible. I have slight headaches despite the measures taken indoors. Guess I am more sensitive. If that’s the case, I can’t get out at the current PSI of around 300. I am also blowing my nose too.

I am still waiting for the haze to reside to a less dangerous level as I write. Not that I fancy semi-invisibility, I haven’t manage to see the mummy exhibit at the ArtScience museum. It’s technically shrouded. I would be impressed if gamblers would still insist on playing bets in this kind of weather. Honestly, in my opinion, this is a now a nation in distress. But life still goes on as usual. Just that you see plenty of people with half covered faces- horizontally across the bottom half of their faces– the Phantom of the Opera would be amused to see us on a similar stage. He sings throughout the night, while we ring in for our rights. Our rights to know when we can have the masks.

I don’t seem to catch hold of N95 3M masks wherever I go. Apart from Giant, I have been to hospitals, Guardian, Watsons, Unity and DIY stores and even toy shops to get masks. Why toy shops? Cos on the way to get proper masks, I saw people wearing cartoon patterned ones that fit the chin and nose very well. ‘ALL SOLD OUT’ was the usual message to me. No definite reply on restocks. I persisted. And I decided not to romp around. I stay put. Where? In front of two stores as I heard someone said the stocks would arrive yesterday evening. There was quite a crowd waiting. Just as I moved slightly away to the ladies and returned, there were queues with people holding glorious white shinny boxes of 3M masks waiting. They were brimming at me…They are like GOLD then. I dashed to the counter only to be told by the pharmacist on duty that it was again ‘ALL SOLD OUT’. I asked why she sold them in boxes of 15 when she could take them out and sold them individually? She told me if she did that, people will just grab as many as they want. They will give many reasons why they want that many. In boxes, she claimed, they would take only one BOX.

A few of us who missed the stock, went around to ask if anyone would sell just one piece of their box purchase. Few relented. In fact to be down to the point, only two people were kind enough to sell. One sold hers to another lady. I was lucky enough to be given one. It was not a 3M mask, but another brand called BIOmask. She gave to me free as she has bought her 3M. I cannot blame them for keeping all the masks because no one can tell when the haze will stop. At hazardous levels, the best action is to play safe. In that sense, I was grateful for that one piece. I don’t think I can ask for more. One piece of good mask is better than five pieces of surgical masks; and those five pieces of surgical masks were better than no mask…

20130622-130917.jpg

I came home with one BIOMASK(see picture above). You can imagine how I felt. But can I say more? There are definitely no praises for this national calamity. I usually praise my country in any light i can. But not for this one. You see queues everywhere. Either people physically standing or writing lined up names on paper to order. Online purchases sales are rampant despite the week’s wait. It seems like we are waiting for Indonesia to do the cloud seeding and do the right thing to clear up the peat fire dusts. But time waits for no one. How to wait for 9 million masks to come in when haze is often at hazardous levels for the past few days? I thought 9 million masks were ready like it was said? But even when we have to go out and breathe in sick air before we get the masks, we can’t get them. It’s a common complaint. And a fitting one. It is not like it is being said that most people would not need a mask and that only the weak ones will need those masks. The hard truth is: We don’t have iron lungs. And these air particles, without purifiers, could seep deep into the lungs permanently. We cannot wait for reports to tell us the poison we take in. Who cares if there is no scientific studies done on short term exposure? To me and I believe many others as well, is that when logically there is poison, it is poison. Regardless how short the exposure is, it is unhealthy.

This is worse then dengue where you can at least prevent it by putting in repellents. This one terror is smoke. And smoke goes into everywhere where air is.

You can live without water longer than you can without air. To me, this is serious. It is not in the case where most of could live by without masks or with flimsy surgical masks. It’s a case where if you don’t protect your respiratory systems, your health will be compromised. Not only the vulnerable ones are at risks, the healthy ones too.

As cool as we can keep it, we need the urgent steps done. The most fundamental one being providing enough masks. The main problem now is that people like us can’t buy direct from the company. They don’t take orders for just a few pieces. They sell it by the boxes. Neither do they deliver all to the public at defined times. So we can either line up beforehand, or we go in at random. The best is to target at the estimated times and prepare to stand there for hours. For sensitive people like me, we cannot afford to wait that long without proper masks. Not to mention the sickly ones. Apart from improvising what we have, make adjustments indoors and how to go about when outdoors, a lot are beyond us.

The Haze now we have is a national calamity. It will have consequences. It’s just plain logic that it will. How much impact? We will see it in its aftermath. It is definitely holding a place in Singapore history. And an unforgettable one on many lessons learnt.

For now, the immediate action is to get more preparation done for the haze – Karen Fu

PS the skies look far clearer now. Need to act before it gets hazy again.

Enclosed NASA image of the great haze.

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