So, have you been up to mischief?

This is interesting…

Adultery on the rise as women look for ‘love’

By : Minderjeet Kaur and Jennifer Gomez
KUALA LUMPUR: “Your cheating heart” could easily be the theme song for some couples these days.

It appears that more marriages are on the rocks because of extra-marital liaisons.

But here is the shocker: More women are now cheating on their husbands.

This has to be qualified, however, as they are usually the ones who were cheated first by their husbands.

Malaysian women are increasingly refusing to take being cheated lying down.
Marriage counsellors are noting a hike in the number of working women seeking professional help to sort out troubled marriages.

More here

What say you?

Sick nation: Non-communicable diseases affect 11.6m

It was a rainy Monday morning when I went to the mamak restaurant nearby my office for my usual roti kosong and nescafe ais. The shop owner accidentally spilled my morning coffee and dhal all over the plastic bag it was contained. I had to wait for another 10 minutes for them to replace my breakfast. To top it all off, I spotted the NST front page screaming that I may have NCD. Can Mondays get any worse?

(Actually I am sure it could.)

Sick nation: Non-communicable diseases affect 11.6m

KUALA LUMPUR: Seven out of 10 Malaysian adults suffer from at least one non-communicable disease like diabetes, hypertension or cancer.
Latest Health Ministry statistics show that 11.6 million of the 16 million adults nationwide are sick with an NCD.

And by all predictions, the numbers are going to get worse.

The ministry is predicting that the number of Malaysians with NCD is expected to increase to 13 million by 2015.

Health Ministry Deputy Disease Control Director (NCD) Dr Zainal Ariffin Omar blam-ed the situation on the lifestyle of Malaysians, which included higher use of tobacco, unhealthy diets and inactivity.

He said changes in the economic, social and demographic aspects of Malaysian life had led to a rise in NCD.

Raja Nazrin: Allow only honest officials to serve the nation

I’ve always liked the Raja Muda of Perak. So here’s another one of his inspirational speeches that perhaps could be… looked into?

KUALA LUMPUR: People without integrity, honesty and morality should be prevented from holding public office.

The Raja Muda of Perak Raja Dr Nazrin Shah said the fight against corruption should see good governance with figures in authority being qualified for such positions.

He said the corrupt should be held in contempt by society.

“Those with a chequered past or clear evidence of questionable morality should be prevented from taking office.

“There should be zero tolerance for corrupt practices,” he said in his lecture entitled “Towards a Decent Social Order for All Malaysians” at the Islamic Arts Museum yesterday. ( Story link )

Brief highlights from the First Malaysian Student Leaders Summit 2007

He’s at it again! This time the Raja Muda of Perak, Raja Dr Nazrin Shah says,

“The Constitution is the supreme law of the land. It guarantees the rights of every Malaysian. The integrity of that document must be protected at all cost.

The Constitution was a cleverly crafted document which clearly provided for adequate checks and balances against excesses through the separation of powers between the executive, the legislature and the judiciary, each protected from encroachment by the other, he said.

“It has often been said that many a misunderstanding may be avoided if principles embodied in the Constitution are adhered to strictly. Upholding the rule of law is paramount.” ( Story link )

Indeed, I have not heard consistent clear reasoning from any leaders for the longest time, on any topics. When was the last time you heard something that did not contain warnings, threats, name-callings, keluar dari negara ini, act of God, [you name it] ?

You can read the whole speech from this link. One good word of advise from his keynote address, “Let us not be naive in thinking it is all a rosy picture. There is still much room for improvement.”

Another ‘highlight’ is the following:

Students boo over remarks that they can freely express views

KUALA LUMPUR: Boos and catcalls greeted Datuk Rafiah Salim when she said public university students had the freedom to express their thoughts and ideas.
Several hundred dissenting voices rang out when the Universiti Malaya vice-chancellor, when taking a question from the floor, said there was “no such thing as students being unable to address their concerns”.

Hearing their disapproval, Rafiah retorted: “Behaviour like this is exactly what causes people not to respect you. You won’t even give me a hearing. And you won’t get respect.

Heh, I would have loved to be there.

Student may face music over ‘Negaraku’ rap video

If you are a savvy netizen, you may have been aware of the a blogger/ rapper who goes by the handle ‘namewee‘. He is a young Chinese boy from Muar, rather talented in my opinion, and his first video posted on YouTube was a rap song he created about ‘Muar Chinese’. You can view the video here.

While his first video gained attention from the media (he was featured in an article in The Star), his second more popular video (he also has a slew of other songs) is causing a ‘ruckus’ with the authorities.

PUTRAJAYA: The Malaysian student in Taiwan who used Negaraku in a Mandarin rap video clip may be in trouble.

Police are considering action under the Sedition Act against the 24-year-old man, who goes by the name of “Namewee”.

Deputy Internal Security Minister Datuk Johari Baharum said yesterday that police would study the six-minute video clip on YouTube.

“We will have to look at it first to determine whether he flouted the law. If he has, we will act against him under the Sedition Act.”

Namewee is said to be from Muar, Johor, and is studying at the Ming Chuan University. ( Story link )

Personally I thought that ‘namewee’ was merely voicing his dissatisfaction from his point of view, and I thought that the way he sang the ‘Negaraku’ in his video was beautiful. It was soulful, gospel-like, and the pure quality of his voice made me think better of our national anthem. In a way, the way he sang it made me think that he felt much love and pride for the country.

So do you think ‘namewee’ was being disrespectful? You be the judge.

2 held for spreading rumours

Apparently there’s a load of ‘rumours’ of violence in Pasir Gudang, Johor.

JOHOR BARU: Two men have been detained under the Internal Security Act on suspicion of spreading inflammatory text messages.

Johor acting police chief Datuk Mohd Mokhtar Mohd Shariff said the men, aged 25 and 29, were nabbed on Tuesday and have been remanded to help in the investigations.

The suspects are said to be private sector employees.

Mokhtar stressed that the allegations sent via text messages were all false. ( Story link )

Click here to read a blogger’s take on the issue.

Get well soon, Tun M!

It is difficult to imagine this legendary man of his stature falling ill and requiring surgery, but there you go.

KUALA LUMPUR: Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad will be in good hands when he undergoes his second coronary bypass today.

The team will be headed by Tan Sri Dr Yahya Awang, the cardiothoracic surgeon responsible for performing the first cardiac coronary bypass on the former prime minister in 1989.

An expert from the US, Professor Dr Hartzell V. Schaff, has also been flown in to be part of the surgical team at the National Heart Institute (IJN).

Dr Mahathir, 81, was admitted to the IJN on Sunday for the elective coronary bypass surgery. Tun Dr Siti Hasmah Mohamad Ali was by her husband’s side. ( Story link )

We wish you all the best in your surgery today, and hope that you get all the rest you need, and that you recover swift and well.

On a side note, what would you say if, or have said when you meet the Tun face-to-face? For me, it was “I was born in the year you took power.” Yes, I knocked myself in the head for a long time after that…

Tun Musa Hitam: Openness reflects people’s maturity and not cause for alarm

KUALA LUMPUR: The discussion of racial issues today reflects the openness of the government and the people’s maturity and does not indicate a breaking down of ties.

Former deputy prime minister Tun Musa Hitam said voices of concern warning that the country was facing a racial crisis were, therefore, baseless.

He was saddened that there were such alarmist views amid the celebration of 50 years of independence.

Musa said these views gave the impression that the historical bond between the races was being tested.

“It appears to give the impression that this country is facing a racial split. There are also indications that politics of fear like that before May 13, 1969 are starting to make their presence felt,” he said in his speech after receiving a honorary Doctor of Political Science degree from Universiti Malaya yesterday. ( Story link )

By the way I wrote a non-serious post on my personal blog. You can check it out if you want ;) : 13 Signs The General Elections Are Near.

OOXML is not (yet) an ISO standard, as Malaysia votes “No” … or did we?

(This post was first published at Open Malaysia on 5th September 2007, reproduced on Monsterblog with permission.)

OOXML is not (yet) an ISO standard, as Malaysia votes “No” … or did we?
by Yusseri Yusoff

After what seemed like an insane period of frenetic lobbying, with accusations of vote-buying, back pedalling, last minute changes, ekcetera, voting for the ratification of OOXML as ISO/IEC 29500 ended on Sunday, 02 September 2007. Two days later, it seemed that OOXML failed to garner enough “Yes” votes and has not been approved. For now. There’ll be a Ballot Resolution Meeting in February 2008, where apparently Microsoft Ecma will work towards resolving the comments raised by both the “No with comments” and “Yes with comments” votes. According to Brian Jones, there are only about 10,000 comments of which some are duplicated. So, roughly 6 months is enough to fix them, I suppose.

(By the way, what would “No with comments” really mean, exactly? I take it to be, “We don’t approve of this draft, and it should be fixed so that it might one day be agreeable to us.” As for “Yes with comments”, I take it to be, “We approve of this draft, but if you feel like it, can you make some changes? No, you won’t? Okay then.”)

Anyhow, as a Malaysian, I’m rather interested in how Malaysia as a P country voted. This is because we didn’t have any dramas in our Industry Standards Committee on Information Technology, Telecommunication and Multimedia, ISC-G (equivalent to the US’ INCITS) such as having some dude voting twice (beady eyes on you, Sweden), or have the committee so divided that the body decided to abstain (a hello to our neighbours, Indonesia), or having 2/3rds of the committee voting “Yes with comments” despite the strong and valid objections made (down the Causeway — yes, you Singapore), or running out of chairs for Sun and IBM (wahey, everyone say hi to Portugal).

Our committee, the ISC-G, voted “No with comments”. Unequivocably. Score was ten-nil (10-0), if I’m not mistaken. Or near enough, anyway. Whitewash. Walkover. Not because they didn’t like Microsoft. Not because ISC-G members thought that Microsoft was the devil incarnate. It was because there were obvious problems with the draft proposal for ISO/IEC 29500. Reasons for the “No” was laced with comments. The contradictions raised during the enquiry stage of the draft wasn’t even fixed, so it wasn’t like the committee had to take too much time to make the comments, to be honest. Recycle the earlier contradictions, add a few more found later.

As such, looking at that, I am proud to see that we have done our duty as a responsible nation in voting … “No with comments” … at … the … JTC1 … because … aaaah …. Wha…?

According to this document, Malaysia have decided to “Abstain“. When did that happen? Just as importantly, how did that happen? The Prime Minister of Malaysia endorsed it, is it? While he was launching some Halal Food thingy, was it?

To Microsoft Malaysia, I salute you, I really do. You managed to subvert due process in evaluating a technical specification for approval as an ISO standard into a circus. There were valid reasons for voting “No” at this point in time, and you know it. But you did it, anyway. The letters, the meetings, the phone calls … the cabinet. It is appalling, how deliberation on a file format can turn out this way.

I am ashamed. It doesn’t matter now that OOXML did not pass this round. I can no longer snicker at Sweden, shake my head at Indonesia or wiggle my finger at Singapore. Never mind buying some chairs for Portugal.

I am ashamed.

Budget 2008 to be revealed today

So, what do you think it’s going to be? Anyone watching TV for updates?

KUALA LUMPUR: The 2008 Budget, to be unveiled today by the prime minister with the celebratory mood of 50 years of Merdeka still in the air, promises goodies that will excite the man in the street.

“The rakyat can expect everything,” Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi said when asked what was in store for the people in the Budget, which he will table in the Dewan Rakyat at about 4pm.

For ordinary Malaysians, the budget is expected to include items to help them keep the cost of living manageable, enhance security to ensure safer streets and neighbourhoods and improve public transportation.

The police will likely receive extra allocations to beef up their numbers and equipment for deterring and fighting crime. ( Story link )

On a sad note, goodbye Pavarotti. Ci mancherai.