Wednesday, August 18, 2010

$26 million loss at the casino - hard to feel sorry.

Try as I may, it is very hard to feel sorry for the businessman who reportedly lost $26 million at the RSW casino. There is no accounting for stupidity. Yet the report is indicative of the size of the social problem the casino foists upon us.

Is this the kind of society we want? The kind of money we want to make?

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

The cyclist vs motorist debate..... why is the LTA silent?

Yesterday's ST carried a surprising and gracious letter from a Mr Damian Evans....apologizing for some bad behaviour as a cyclist. Surprising because apologizing is not something we have come to expect in Singapore society.

Today's ST then followed with a letter from a motorist who was responsible for the incident.

It was an interesting exchange of views, which highlighted one thing for me. Neither was out to cause grief. Yet their encounter on the road resulted in a potential for conflict....or worse, for physical danger to one of them.

A major reason for this I belief is the lack of clarity of what is expected of cyclists' behaviour on the roads. Motorists are generally confused by signals being sent about how cyclists should cycle..... or not cycle. I know cyclist s who firmly believe that when they are on the roads they should cycle in the middle of the left most lane. They believe that this increases their profile and reduces their risk of being forced to the kerb or being hit by a car. To me this is foolhardiness, but this is what they believe. If cycling in a group, I have heard of cyclists being told by their group leaders that they should cycle abreast for the same reason.

Yet this is blatant violation of the law, which is explicit in forbidding cyclists from cycling abreast.

In all this time, the Traffic Police and LTA have been pitifully and disappointingly silent. Should they not come out and say clearly what is allowed and what is not? What is allowable and what not? Why are they so coy about this?

Clarity preempts conflict.... and hopefully will prevent unnecessary accidents.

When they do break their silence, they should also be explicit about what stretches of roads are out of bounds to cyclists....e.g. expressways, semi-expressways, overhead passes etc.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Did Corrinne May's "Song for Singapore" do it?

Not for me it didn't.

Lovely girl with great vocals. But it was too much lounge music to connect emotionally too. And it just lacked the confidence that it could actually be a true Singapore song. So it just too easily went for treacly nationalistic imagery.... Brothers and sisters flying flags together....? Give me a break.

Nope. It just didn't work.

The Kit Chan/Dick Lee song "Home" still worked. Though far from perfect, it had the common sense to stay away from imagery associated with "peace, and prosperity and progress for our nation" kinda stuff. Just simple things about home and family, and what Singapore really meant to all of us. Yeah, home is where the heart is. And of course the river, that unfortunately had stopped flowing since Marina Barrage. Thanks Kit and Dick for that song - one that will I am sure eventually become a classic Singapore song.

Oh, and by the way....someone should arrest the fella who designed Corrinne May's dress that evening.