Tuesday, 3 April 2012

Watz Buzzing - 3 Apr 2012

The legal plight of 60 immoral men....

"The men include a senior banker, a company director, a senior vice-president of a private company, lawyers, a senior police officer, a primary school principal who is married with a child as well as a scholarship recipient." - The New Paper Report[Link]

According to The New Paper, 60 men may be charge in court soon for engaging the services of an underage girl. The sleazy details which I won't be covering in my posting can be found the Saturday and Sunday edition of The New Paper. These men engaged the services of a girl who was advertised as above legal age but turned out to be underage.

According to reports, these men had no intention, no idea and no clue that they had broken the law until the police called them up. In Singapore, engaging such services is not illegal but it is illegal to solicit (advertised) and live off the immoral earnings (pimp).

However, the law was revised in 2008 to make the procuring services of those under 18 illegal (Section 376B). The funny thing is underage sex that involve no money is set at 16 yrs of age( 14 yrs under Section 376A and 16 yrs old under Women's Charter ).

Lucky Tan

A Matter Of Expectations

The Bukit Brown saga proved a new paradigm for "consultative governance" is in place. The man at the centre of the cemetery engagement effort, Tan Chuan-Jin, says he has no regrets about reaching out to interest groups on various policies. He attributed the disappointment of the soured interested parties to a "mismatch in expectations". "Everyone came in with their own expectations," he wrote, implying that everyone should have realised that the government's expectation comes first. Always have, always will be.

Following the Woodlands group who objected to the building of an elder-care centre at the void deck of their HDB blocks, residents at Toh Yi estate voiced their grouses on 8 February against similar intentions for a plot of land at the junction of Toh Yi Road and Toh Yi Drive.

On 5 March, HDB officials distributed a circular to all the 1,600 residents in the area confirming it will stick to its original plan to build a block of 130 studio apartments, despite howls of protest and a signed petition. It rejected alternative sites suggested by 230 residents in the estate,including one just 20m away near Block 17 instead. MP for Holland-Bukit Timah GRC Sim Ann described HDB's decision as "a reasonable outcome that addresses the overall interests of residents in our estate".

On 1 April, the signboard is already is in place. Notice the dateline for application is 3 April - gives you the feeling that the plan was in place all along. The writing is literally on the wall. Sim Ann's "reasonable outcome" is not too dissimilar from BG Tan's. When Irving C. Johnson, who started the save Bukit Brown petition, called on the government to conserve what little is left of local history, the reply was a simplistic “Bukit Brown is needed in the future for housing." Quite likely the alternate sites for the Toh Yi project are also "needed for housing", as in more money to be made from private development instead of public housing requirements.

Singapore Notes

No need to call the police every time

The recent cases of offensive online comments will not be the last. But society's response cannot be to demand arrest and prosecution or keep seeking new curbs on the Internet

In the search for solutions for overcrowded MRT trains, a prize for out-of-the-box thinking must go to the 19-year-old Singaporean who proposed separate cars for Indians.

Her expletive-laden tweet last week was a reminder that Singapore's race relations are not always as harmonious as those sentimental National Day videos.

Many Singaporeans have expressed outrage at such racist thinking. Others are more alarmed that a tertiary student could be stupid enough to show it.

On one prominent political website, comments have been divided. Some readers have defended the girl, with one even calling for scientific research to uncover why Indians smell (seriously).

If Only Singaporeans Stopped to Think

My eye brows rose thrice

It was a strange choice of a word, and it jumped out at me. People’s Action Party member of parliament Vikram Nair (right) said he found it “hurtful” that Chen Show Mao (Workers’ Party) had implied that the PAP government had not done enough for vulnerable groups.

In my mind’s eye, I instantly saw a picture of a grown man running to a corner to cry. His feelings had been hurt.

What never-never-land does the ruling party live in? Do PAP members of parliament seriously expect opposition members to concede that the government had done ENOUGH for whatever section of the population they happen to be discussing at that moment? Is that the opposition’s role in politics?

yawning bread

Children getting maimed by escalators

From ’4-year-old’s hand torn after being pushed down MRT escalator’, 31 March 2012, article in asiaone.com

A four-year-old boy was pushed down the escalator at Ang Mo Kio MRT station, causing his left hand to get caught in the escalator and badly injuring it. The news first broke when Ms Visa Lee, who put up a Facebook post showing a photograph of the boy’s hand torn and bloody, called for help sharing the picture to locate witnesses for the accident.
According to reports, Lucas Xie was with his brother and maid going down the escalator when he was shoved from behind. He lost his footing and landed on his left hand, which subsequently got caught when the steps of the escalator went beneath the floor, The Straits Times reported.
Escalators are public limb-guillotines, things we take so often on a regular basis that we forget what lethal slice-and-dice contraptions these can turn out to be, epitomised by one of the more gruesome deaths from the Final Destination series.

Everything Also Complain

Dear professor Tommy Koh,

I refer to your 20 Mar 2012 Straits Times article “Should Petain Road be renamed?”

You said the French Army had been progressively degraded after the First World War due to budgetary cuts. But between 1920 and 1938, French military spending was 4.3% of GDP, higher than Germany’s 3.3% over the same period [1]. Between 1920 and roughly 1934, French real military expenditure exceeded that of the German’s [2]. French military spending started to increase in 1930 whereas German military spending started to increase in 1933 [3].

In the second half of 1936 French premier Leon Blum launched the biggest arms programme ever attempted by a French government in peacetime [4-1]. The army and national defence minister Daladier spoke compellingly for accelerated arming because the French already knew from their secret service that the Germans were preparing for total war [4-2]. When Germany doubled its standing army in Aug 1936, France replied with a plan for a 21 billion franc army, navy and air force [4-3] and the cabinet authorised a 14 billion franc army programme on 7 Sept 1936.

Yours Truly Singapore