Friday, February 20, 2004

after two weeks of assiduous diet-pepsi-drinking i have yet to win a single iTune. but i have reinforced alex's hatred for diet pepsi (one wonders why he doesn't simply stop stealing my drink, since he knows very well he hates it -grin-). and perhaps ameliorated my harsh stance against pepsi -- though i must say that if it were Coke doing this deal with iTunes i would be much -perhaps infinitely- happier. even though diet pepsi and diet coke both taste equally weird and awful, so...

i need the caffeine. it's a three pm class on a thursday afternoon. thank god tomorrow is friday and my first class is at three.

anyway, the point of my blogging right here (i'm sitting in the middle of the Starbucks on campus) is to ask what the hell is going on with the Chief Justice back home. First he halves the jail term of the poor guy sent to jail for having this strange girl who really should be locked up for her own good perform oral sex on him, then he wanders over and halves the jail term of this guy who cheated an Iranian businessman out of more than 70,000 dollars. what? i would hope that cheating someone out of 70,000 dollars, as a case of criminal and deliberate fraud, certainly deserves the full penalty anyone can dish out; while sticking someone behind bars because (a) Singapore has ridiculous laws outlining what you may or may not do in the privacy of your own home and (b) some chick gets a kick out of performing oral sex then running to the police (and thereby making me want to shake her and say 'what the fuck, girl? what were you THINKING?') is stupid. very stupid.

rereading the articles, i have come to realise that the oral sex laws exist because 'some things are against Asian culture' and are therefore written into the penal code. 'carnal intercourse against the order of nature', i believe the phrase is. i am so enraged i come from a country where things like that can be said with a straight face. 'against Asian culture' indeed. tell that to the hundreds if not thousands of Asian men in the brothels of bangkok and geylang paying women to have sex with them, in whatever way they choose to imagine. 'it's against your Asian culture, guys, cut it out.'

combine that with this little gem in the ST today, about forced savings for children, and it makes me wonder what is going on in my country. what is happening? are we getting more stupid, more greedy, more vindictive, more stupid? what? do we seriously think that forced savings -this is essentially what we are telling our small, innocent, lost young lambs in Naval Base Primary School to do- is necessary? when i was eight years old, i got a daily allowance, like most other kids. i learned that if i didn't spend all my money on any given day, i could buy an ice cream -out of my reach becos it cost more than my daily allowance- at the end of the week. or, better yet, i could not have the ice cream on friday, put that money in my piggy bank, and at some indeterminate point in the future i could go into the bookstore and buy myself a shiny new mechanical pencil (i know, i know, i was a geek even then. silence.) or whatever. that was my incentive to save. isn't that the real incentive to save when you are seven or eight years old? who, at seven, can honestly say ' well, if i keep my ten cents a day for ten years, and then add my CPF, one day i will own an HDB flat/BMW/swimming pool/house in Cairns'?

yet by doing this ridiculous forced savings scheme, where children don't get the benefit of their putting away money in the short-to-medium term, where's the incentive to save? come on, think back to when you were eight: if someone had told you that part of your allowance would disappear into an account where you couldn't use it for a longlong time, if you didn't spend it today, what would you have done? i would've bought myself another white rabbit sweet, that's what i would have done. or one of those ridiculous flags-of-the-world erasers we used to play table-top pepsi-cola with. (i was good at that. oddly enough.)

my mac's batteries are running down, forcing me to stop now. but -shaking head- i still can't imagine where the singapore i remember from when i was ten years old has gone. the Singapore that seemed rational and kind and full of reasonably nice, smart people who worked hard but didn't go crazy when money was involved. i guess that was all a fantasy inside my seven-year-old, st. nicholas-trained enid-blyton-filled head.


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