Saturday, July 30, 2011

Not Looking Good For NATO

1 billion euros! That’s the estimated cost NATO has incurred since their warplanes start bombing Libya 5 months ago. After more than 6,500 missions, the air-strikes have failed to force Moammar Gadhafi to give up power and now things are really not looking good.

This follow news that the top military commander of the Libyan rebels, Abdel-Fattah Younis, has been assassinated by his fellow rebels! General Younis and 2 of his aides, both of whom are colonels, were assassinated when they were ordered back from the front lines to the rebels' de facto capital of Benghazi. All 3 were shot along the way by other rebel forces who then burned their bodies.

So now not only has NATO spent 1 billion euros in this war, their allies on the ground are fighting among themselves! Wonderful news…for Moammar Gadhafi.

Friday, July 29, 2011

The Sellout

Ladies and Gentlemen; faithful readers of my humble blog; I am a sellout.

It’s true. After years of proud resistance, after ignoring tons of calls to join; I have been broken. Yes, I am now a member of the great unwashed. A member of the annoying mass who tout their membership in that most exclusive of clubs;

Yes Ladies and Gentlemen; I am now on Facebook.

Forgive me.

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Comics this week

X-Men: Schism #2- I felt that #1 failed because writer Jason Aaron failed to show the setup of the spilt between Cyclops and Wolverine. #2 is only slightly better. We see some of the problems between Cyclops and Wolverine as the duo have a disagreement over what to do with Quentin Quire however Idie seems to be the one who will play the big reason for the spilt. It’s obvious…too obvious! We don’t know what the problem between Cyclops and Wolverine is but it has something to do with Idie and I have a problem with that. Jason Aaron has been playing up the relationship between Wolverine and Idie to the point that any blind man can see Idie will play a big role in the coming event. Frankly, there’s no need to be so...obvious.

FF #7- After last issue’s front-to-back showcase about Black Bolt, writer Jonathan Hickman continues his story of Black Bolt’s return and I continue to have a problem with it. This series is supposed to be about the FF but now we have 2 issues where none of the FF even showed up once! I’m not impressed.

Brightest Day Aftermath: The Search for Swamp Thing #2- I was terribly disappointed with #1 and although this issue wasn’t great, it shows good potential. Issue #2 picks up with Constantine meeting up with Superman and the exchange between Constantine and Superman was the highlight of the series so far. I still can’t understand why they can’t pick someone else to replace Alec Holland as the “soul” of Swamp Thing, but hopefully that’s something that will be answered in the last issue.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

The Reasoning

Win now or win later? Should you send your very best to win competitions or should you send youths for them to gain experience? In sports, that’s the eternal question.

Not in Singapore! That seems to be the picture I am getting from the Singapore's National Olympic Council (SNOC). Currently, the SNOC is in a dispute with the Singapore Table Tennis Association (STTA) over who to send to compete in the South-east Asian (SEA) Games which will be held in November.

The STTA want to send young players as they believe a regional competition like the SEA Games is perfect for them to gain experience, but the SNOC is insisting that the STTA send its top 3 players (world No. 5 Feng Tianwei, world No. 10 Wang Yuegu and world No. 23 Li Jiawei) to the competition. The reasoning of the SNOC is that "the man in the street understands and expects Singapore to win gold." That reasoning is bogus.

You know why Singaporeans expect table tennis to win gold at the SEA Games? Cause all of the players are from China! Our nation's top three players are all imported from China so of course Singaporeans expect them to win. However if Singapore send 16-17 year old Singapore-born players to the SEA Games, who would expect them win? I mean that’s the concept of youth development right? They’ll lose but gain valuable experience by playing against stronger opponents.

As the parents of one of the players said, if the SNOC only want the best to be sent to all competitions and care little for youth development, no Singaporean parent will want his child to go into sports. When that happens, what would the SNOC do then? Import even more players from China to represent Singapore? Uh…oh!

Monday, July 25, 2011

Please, No Mass Effect Movie!


Has Hollywood not learnt anything from all the terrible, horrible game-to-film adaptations? From Street Fighter to Dungeon & Dragons to Mario Brothers; all of them have been outright disasters.

Have Hollywood learnt anything? No because now they plan to do a game-to-film adaptation of Mass Effect! Although the story of Mass Effect seems suited to a movie, history has clearly shown that this is a bad, bad idea.

Lucky, there’s no actor, director attach to the movie yet so this should be nothing but empty talk. As someone who had played Mass Effect 1 & 2, let me just say this; Please don’t make the movie!

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Too Much Hype

The "Star Wars: The Old Republic” MMORPG is supposed to be the biggest, baddest game release for years. So when EA announced that people can pre-order the Collector's Edition, I wasn’t surprised at the prices.

The prices for the pre-release range from US$59.99 to US$144.99 which are a little high but I guess are par for course. What really surprise me is that the pre-release are now sold out! Now I know there is a high level of demand for Star Wars: The Old Republic but there is such a thing as too much of a good thing!

EA hasn’t even give a release date yet for the game and it is already sold-out? I heard of feverish anticipation but this is insane. No one played the game yet, there had been no reviews of the game, what I’m trying to say is…what if the game fail? At the level of the hype of the game is at, it doesn’t need to tank to be considered a failure. If the game is anything less than a smash hit, there will be people who would say FAIL!

If I am Bioware or EA, I would seriously wind back the hype meter.

Friday, July 22, 2011

Comics this week

DC Universe Online: Legends #12- With the DC Online game being in trouble, it’s good to see that at least the comic series based on the game is doing well. On the face of things, not much happened in this issue but writers Marv Wolfman and Tony Bedard subtlety laid the groundwork for the future. Why was Superman not on Earth during the beginning of the hero/villain war? How did Brainiac managed to play Lex Luthor for a fool? This issue is ground zero for the answers to those questions.

Green Lantern: War of the Green Lantern Aftermath #1- On the whole, the “War of the Green Lanterns” was one of the better comic book events of the year. Things happened during the war that changes everything about the Green Lanterns so an aftermath issue or two is in order. There were a few scenes about all the new Green Lanterns as well as fallout from the death of Mogo at the hands of John Stewart. However the main point of interest in this issue is Sinestro. Neither Sinestro nor the rest of the GLs want him to be back as a Green Lantern but the Guardians (quite rightfully) want to take their time making the decision. And to think; we haven’t even reached the Hal Jordan issue yet.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Timing Is Everything

Normally Singaporeans would be pleased to be praised by a business titan of the world but as they say, “timing is everything!” That’s the feeling I had when Rupert Murdoch praised Singapore for paying its ministers top dollar to avoid corruption.

Murdoch, 80, was giving evidence to a British parliamentary committee where he was defending his media company, News Corp, over a phone hacking scandal when he praised Singapore as "the cleanest society" in the world because of the high salaries paid to its members of parliament. Our Prime Minister, Lee Hsien Loong, is the world's highest paid political leader with an annual salary of over S$3 million.

Damming with faint praise is something everyone had heard of before but Rupert Murdoch managed to damm with great praise! The hacking scandal in the U.K. is so toxic that it closed down the News of the World, claimed the jobs of two of Murdoch’s top aides, and forced two senior British policemen to resign. And this is the person who is “praising” Singapore for paying top dollars.

As I said earlier, normally the Singapore government would be pleased (we are a people who love to blow our own horn) but at this point of time is it any surprise that the government (and Singaporeans) has kept uncharacteristically quiet about Murdoch's praise.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

A Climb-Down

Let me be honest, I have never heard of “The Rogers Cup”. Evidently, it is Canada's biggest women's tennis tournament but I have never heard of it.

I do now.

The reason is because the organizers of the tournament were forced to change its tournament slogan this year after women’s group claim that the original slogan was sexist. The slogan in question? "Come for the ladies, stay for the legends."

The organizers for the tournament used the slogan because the event will also host a bonus four-man legends tournament featuring John McEnroe and Andre Agassi. The women's groups claim that the organizers were suggesting women can't be legends and protested against the use of the word "ladies" to describe female athletes.

Uh? I wonder if these women’s groups even know anything about tennis. I for one can’t understand what their problem with the slogan is. John McEnroe and Andre Agassi are tennis legends and female tennis players are called “ladies”. What’s wrong with it?

Of course since this happen in the West, the organizers back down and changed the slogan to, "making history, re-living history." Sigh; another typical climb-down in the face of unreasonable political correctness.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Fare Increase

Recently the two main public transport operators in Singapore, the SMRT and the SBS Transit, both applied to the National Transport Corporation (PTC) for a fare increase of 2.8%. Since no one seriously believes that the PTC will reject the applications, this means there will be another fare increase soon.

Singaporeans are angry with the increase because…well, the 2.8% increase is the maximum allowed by the law; last year there was a fare increase when Singapore went under the distance fare scheme; the increase comes shortly after the General Election; take your pick.

However I think what really get Singaporeans is the “explanation” for the fare increases. SMRT and SBS say that rising cost is the main reason behind their application for the fare increase. That is a reason no one in Singapore is buying.

In 2010, SBS Transit had a net profit of $54.278 million while SMRT’s net Profit was S$162.885 million. The companies made over $200 million in profit together and it seen that this is not enough.

Personally I feel this comes at a bad time for the ruling People’s Action Party (PAP). Wages remain stagnant in Singapore, property prices continue to climb and now a fare increase; not good for Tony Tan next month.

Monday, July 18, 2011

Japan Wins Women's World Cup

Japan won its first football World Cup today when they defeated U.S.A on penalty kicks after a 2-2 draw. With the victory Japan became the first Asian country to win a football World Cup and bought much needed cheer to their country.

With earthquake, tsunami and meltdown at a nuclear plant, it has been a bad year for Japan. For this reason, the Japanese team was the sentimental favorites for the tournament and the team delivered. They were the giant-killers of the tournament defeating Germany, Sweden and the U.S.A in a row to capture the title.

They came to play for their storm-ravaged country and left with the Women's World Cup trophy. In the world of football nowadays, feel-good stories like this are too rare. Japan; World Champions!

Friday, July 15, 2011

Comics this week

X-Men: Schism #1- Marvel has been promoting the hell out of this min-series because it is supposed to spilt the X-Men into two. The events of Schism will manage to drive a wedge between Cyclops and Wolverine that will spilt the team and mutant population into two groups much like the earlier generation between Xavier and Magneto. So what’s the event that will tear up the team? Your guess is as good as mine because this issue doesn't provide any definitive answer to that question. Writer Jason Aaron is more interested in showing the friendship/partnership between Cyclops and Wolverine. The friendship between Cyclops and Wolverine is well-written but the problem I have is that I still do not have any idea what the big spilt is about. Several villains like Kid Omega, Kade Kilgore and the Hellfire Club show up but the actions of Kid Omega created a political problem more than anything else. For a setup issue, this issue failed because it does not show the setup.

FF #6- When I saw the face of Black Bolt at the end of last issue, I thought he was a fake. Black Bolt is dead, died during the War of Kings, so this cannot be Black Blot right? Wrong because it seems that this is the real Black Bolt and this issue is the showcase of his return. Unfortunately writer Jonathan Hickman devoted the whole issue to his return and nothing else. Everything ground to a halt for the return of Black Bolt and I have a problem with that. Even if Hickman intend to have Black Bolt play a big role in the future of FF, there’s no reason for everything else to stop! On its own, this issue isn’t that bad but the change of gears from the previous issues is. This issue is just too different from the issues that came before.

Green Lantern #67- The War of the Green Lanterns reaches its epic conclusion in this status-changing issue of Green Lantern. The Green Lanterns make their stand against Krona, and the other mind-controlled Guardians of Oa. Writer Geoff Johns and artist Doug Mahnke made sure the conclusion is an epic issue that will change the Green Lantern mythos and landscape for some time. However, I found that parts of the issue are rushed. It’s as if Johns has a wanted ending and rushed through the issue to get to that ending. Overall, I still found the issue to be a solid finish to a great event that did that rarest thing; an event that changes things.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

What An Idiot!

No man in Singapore enjoys National Service (NS). That’s just a simple fact. For me personally, my 2 years of NS consist of doing what I need to, keep my head down and do my time.

Now I know that some people just “stand” NS. I don’t really understand why but to each his own. However I think even the most die-hard haters of NS has to laugh at the 18-year-old recruit who tried to “escape” from Pulau Tekong by swimming to the Singapore mainland.

The joker, who is from Raffles Institution, was doing his BMT (Basic Military Training) on Pulau Tekong when for some reason he decided to swim to Singapore. He was spotted and quickly picked up by the Police Coast Guard.

I couldn’t believe it when I read this and it seems I wasn’t the only one. Seriously; to swim from Tekong to Singapore? The guy has a better chance of reaching Malaysia than Singapore from Tekong! What an idiot.

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Review of Green Lantern

Of all the blockbusters coming out this year, this was the one I wanted to see. Green Lantern was one of those comic book characters that just can’t be done right in the past. He is an intergalactic space cop wielding one of the most powerful weapons in the universe; a power ring that could manifest anything its wielder can think of. A character like GL demanded a truckload of CGI and in the past, the technology just wasn’t there.

It is now. If they can do Avatar, surely they can do Green Lantern!

So I was really looking forward to the movie…then I read the reviews! 29 out of 100 on Rotten Tomato; 2 out of 5 on IGN; I haven’t seen a score above 3 out of 5 yet on any reviews! After watching the movie, I have to say my views are mixed.

First off, I have to say the movie is not as bad as the critics say. I can see the reason why critics hate the movie so much but there were parts of the movie that I truly enjoyed. The film stars Ryan Reynolds as Hal Jordan, and it was a choice that worked out surprising well for the movie. I’m not a big fan of the choice but Reynolds has the mixture of cockiness and doubt that is Hal Jordan.

I also enjoyed the CGI of the movie. When Hal first reached Oa, it was the highlight of the movie. The alien architecture of Oa was beautifully tendered and it was so filled with people that you can truly believe that it is a living, breathing place. Hal’s training (and his failure of the training) made a strong point that the Green Lanterns Corps is a tough group that has the hard job of policing the galaxy.

If only the movie would have stayed on Oa (or in space) longer!

That was the main problem I had with the movie. The best part of the movie (Oa, the space travel) was just too criminally short! Green Lantern is a space cop; the Green Lanterns Corps is a galactic police force; yet over 75% of the movie takes place on Earth! That’s like a Star Wars movie where the Jedi don’t hop from planet to planet or a Star Trek movie where they don’t boldly go where no man has gone before (like that crappy movie when Kirk and Spock when back in time to save whales). It was as if director Martin Campbell (or maybe the studio) couldn’t be sure the public will accept a movie about a superhero in space and had to move him back to Earth for a more “human” perspective. That to me was a cop-out.

However I cannot put all the blame on the director because the script didn’t help him. Now I don’t expect a great movie script from a superhero movie but the scriptwriters should at least make sure their work make some sense. There was a part when Hal went back to Oa to ask for help to protect Earth from a threat. When he reached Oa, the Corps leader Sinestro (Mark Strong) was making a yellow ring of fear to combat the same threat. Halfway through Hal’s speech about protecting Earth, the speech somehow became one about NOT using fear to protect the world. Uh?

The senselessness of the script even went beyond the film…into the cookie! Nowadays, movies add on a short scene after the credits end to “promote” the coming sequel of the film *cough* Kungfu Panda 2 *cough*. Green Lantern has without question the worst cookie I had ever seen in a movie. I mean why in the world would Sinestro put on the yellow ring at the end of the movie? The threat is over, the enemy has been defeated, and then he put on the ring of fear? If that scene had happened in the middle of the movie (when the enemy is still around), I can still understand it but at the end? After the defeat of the enemy? What sense does that makes?

That’s why I can see why critics hate the movie. All the ingredients of a great movie are there. The plot, the action, the CGI, all are there; but the movie was let down by a stupid script and some poor decisions by the director. That is too bad because Green Lantern could have been great but instead it became just another by-the-number summer movie let down by a poor script.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Talk About A Coincidence

For close to half a year now, NATO forces have been actively helping Libyan rebels against Muammar Gaddafi in Libya. With France and the United Kingdom leading the way, NATO has been saying for months that there is no way out for Gaddafi until he agrees to give up power.

However, Italy and France have now asked/ordered the rebels to speak to Gaddafi for an end to the conflict. Now some people would say that this is a sign of the growing impatience with the progress of the conflict; some others would argue that this is due to the strain the war is putting on the countries’ economy etc.

I disagree. Although it is true that there is no imminent end to the conflict in sight and money will be a problem as the war drags on, I think the main problem for European countries is that they are now in the line of fire.

After withstanding months of air-strikes, Gaddafi finally had enough and is now threatening to launch strikes in Europe against countries attacking him. Now, suddenly cracks are emerging inside the NATO alliance and some member states are now “telling” the rebels to speak to Gaddafi?

Coincidence? I don’t think so.

Monday, July 11, 2011

How To Make Things Worse

“How to turn a small protest into a worldwide incident that will be reported on CNN and BBC?”

If there is a lecture like that in any political studies course in any part of the world, the professor in charge will use the Malaysian government as the prime example of how to turn a small protest into a worldwide incident.

During the weekend, opposition parties and non-government groups had a rally in the capital Kuala Lumper which was broken up by the police. Tear gas was used and over 1,600 people were arrested. The Malaysian government is now under heavy criticism for “over-reacting” to a peaceful rally and even popular Malaysia Prime Minister Najib Razak has come under criticism for the crackdown.

Now the Malaysian authorities had dismissed the criticism, but it’s not helping their cause when members of the Malaysian establishment are joining in the criticism. The main reason is that days before the rally, when tension was at its highest, the King of Malaysia broker a deal between the Malaysian government and the opposition groups. Under the deal, the opposition would have their rally but only at a stadium. This deal greatly defused tension and it looked like the storm had passed. However, under pressure from his own party, Prime Minister Najib broke off the deal and ban the rally altogether.

Quite expectantly, the opposition groups ignored the ban and held the rally anyway. Only they did the rally in the streets, not at any stadium. This led to the crackdown during the weekend which was reported by news agencies throughout the world.

Talk about making things worse for yourself!

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Comics this week

DC Universe Online: Legends #11- One of the things I enjoyed most about this series was how the series bounced back and forth between present day and the apocalyptic Brainiac-controlled future. However for a number of issues now, writers Marv Wolfman and Tony Bedard had decided to focus strictly on the present day aspect of the conflict. This issue showed the downside of the decision. Although Lex Luthor has his time in the sun this issue, he really didn’t do anything special here. He formed his own super-powered team…so what? With his money, Lex had formed dozens of superteams over the years, what’s another one? The closing scene of this issue was much better, showing off the plans that would be put in motion, but this issue was a waste.

Secret Six #35– With next issue being the finale, writer Gail Simone seem to be setting up a big tragic finish for the Six. Bane decided to get back his fighting spirit by attacking Batman’s extended family. Most of the time, this plot would be insane but Simone could get away with it because the Secret Six has always been that kind of crazy book! In typical Gail Simone fashion, this issue was full of great witty moments and showed once again why the upcoming DC revamp is a travesty. Hopefully some of the new series will get cancel quickly and the Secret Six will be back soon.

X-23 #12- The introduction of Jubilee continued to be a pleasant surprise by writer Marjorie Liu. With Jubilee struggling with her vampirism, it made sense that these 2 outcasts bonded with each other. However there was a lot wrong with this issue. The confusing subway fight just didn’t work and I found the scenes between Wolverine and Gambit to be boring. Considering its Wolverine and Gambit; that’s not easy.

Friday, July 8, 2011

Private Education Act

Over the past few years, a number of private schools in Singapore had closed suddenly stranding students midway through their studies. Worse, the owners of these schools refused to pay back the school fees paid by the students.

Under pressure to maintain Singapore’s reputation as an education hub, the Ministry of Education (MOE) and the Council for Private Education (CPE) enacted the Private Education Act to monitor and control private schools in Singapore. After 2 fruitless years, the Act has finally had some affect.

Stricter rules under the Act have currently caused over 600 private schools in Singapore to shut their doors. This is almost two-thirds of the private schools in Singapore! Now there will be some people who say the CPE has went overboard with cleaning up the bad schools but I’m not one of them.

I fully approve the tough actions of the CPE and believe it should be maintained. In recent years, there had been many schools run by people whose sole motivation has been money. When two-thirds of the private schools in Singapore had to close because they were unable to meet the criteria of the Private Education Act, it tell me a lot about how well-run these schools are and how many bad schools there are in Singapore.

To people who feel sorry for the operators; please note that the CPE had given the private schools 18 months to meet the new requirements of the Private Education Act. They were given a chance, but they either fail or could not be bothered. No blame can be attached to the CPE or MOE on this. No one can say they don’t have enough time to meet the requirements.

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Questions About Tiger Airways' Grounding

On 2 July, Australia's Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA) grounded Tiger Airways due to safety concerns. At first, this seems like a minor hiccup as Tiger Airways was confident that the suspension would be a short one. However the CASA has now extended the grounding of Tiger Airways flights till 1 August and the grounding has become a major problem for Tiger Airways.

It has also become a PR problem for Singapore Airlines (SIA), the main backer of Tiger Airways. SIA is the pride of Singapore due to its position as the top airline in the world and yet Tiger was grounded due to "safety"?

The CASA first stepped in after Tiger flights flew too low on an approach to Avalon airport near Melbourne last week and they say this was not the first time it happened. The question I have is, “What actions were taken the other times it happened?” and "Did SIA even know about the problems at Tiger Airways?"

Thus far, there has been very very little info about what kind of concerns the CASA has about Tiger Airways. If the Avalon incident was not the first time it happened, as the CASA says, what other red flags were raised before and did Tiger or SIA do anything about them?

Like I said earlier, Singapore Airlines is the pride of Singapore and our country is linked to the airline. Now I’m not trying to defend Tiger Airways because Tiger Airways has not appeal against the grounding and the chief executive of its Australia operations, Crawford Rix, had “resigned” for his post due to this incident. So there must be a fire under all these smoke and as a Singaporean, I would like to know just how big the fire is?

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Is this the worst-ever NDP song?

Every year when Singapore’s National Day Parade (NDP) comes along, there will be a new Singapore song written for the event. Over the years, the new songs have been kind of hit-and-miss. This year’s song is called the "Fun Pack Song", and it is so bad even the Strait Times is asking if this is the worst NDP ever?

The answer is “Yes”.

Usually, I couldn’t care less about the NDP song. I mean there’s one every year, so who cares? However this song changed my mind. It is bad not only because of the nonsensical lyrics (I want Newater and I want a cold drink; You and me, let's share a bit) but also because the song is a rip-off of Lady Gaga's "Bad Romance".

Seriously, what were the organizers thinking? Even if you want to copy someone, surely there are better songwriters out there than Lady Gaga! I mean Singaporeans exactly prefer JJ Lin's Youth Olympic Games anthem "You are the One" to this song!

Yes, it’s that bad.

Monday, July 4, 2011

Bye-bye Pacific Ocean!

Last year, China caused a minor international incident when they announced that China will be severely decreasing the exports of rare earth minerals. This caused terror in the international scene as China account for about 90% of the rare earth minerals in the world market. Great pressure was exerted on China and an annoyed Chinese government basically told the world that if they are not happy with the decision, they can extract rare earths from their own countries.

Countries like the U.S. and Japan have been trying to get other countries like Mongolia to set up a rare earth mining industry but so far, there have been no takers. It seems that rare earths minerals aren’t actually rare but few countries mined it because the industry cause great pollution to the environment. It says a lot when even the China government, not a lover of the environment by any standard, are so worried about pollution that they intend to cut production of the minerals.

Well, the U.S. and Japan now have a lifeline as vast deposits of rare earth minerals have been found on the floor of the Pacific Ocean. Japanese scientists who found the site says that the world can readily extracted the minerals as the deposits sits in international waters. He can say that because as the deposits sits in international waters, no one will give a damn about pollution in the area!

And there goes the sea life of the Pacific Ocean.

Saturday, July 2, 2011

Mr. Tan Kin Lian’s Candidacy

With the Presidential Election due in August, there are now 3 serious candidates for the election. Former Deputy Prime Minister Dr Tony Tan, former Member of Parliament (MP) Tan Cheng Bock and former NTUC Income chief executive Tan Kin Lian, have all said they will run in the election.

Of the 3, Mr. Tan Kin Lian’s candidacy is the one which has intrigued Singaporeans the most. He is the only candidate who is not a (former) MP of the People’s Action Party (PAP) and the closest thing we have to an opposition candidate in this election. However I was never fully convinced of his candidacy and unfortunately recent events have proved that my doubts are right.

Mr. Tan is famous in Singapore for his fight on the behalf of small investors who lost money in the Lehman Brothers collapse a few years ago. In fact, you could argue that without him, the small investors might not had gotten any money back at all. Mr. Tan was the one who gathered the investors together and made it a political and social issue for Singaporeans.

Despite his great work in the Lehman Brothers affair, I had thought the Presidential Election was not for him. Mr. Tan is not a politician. In fact, I do not believe he had ever held a political post outside NTUC. (Yes, I know NTUC is a labor union not a political party but anyone who thinks there is no politics in NTUC don’t know Singapore politics very well.)

Simply put; I wonder about how Mr. Tan is going to handle the rough and tumble of the political world. The answer; he’s not handling it very well.

Recently, Mr. Tan has come out to rebut accusations made against him on the internet. Mr. Tan said that some have posted lies about him online and even said that he is “considering legal action”.

And the Presidential Election has even officially started yet!

The thing is this; the moment he threw his hat into the ring, Mr. Tan should have expected this. Every candidate will be bad-mouthed by someone; that is just a fact. Mr. Tan need to accept this and handle it with grace. I mean Tin Pei Ling had a much worse time than he had so far and I didn’t hear her threatening to sue anyone.

Personally I think Mr. Tan would make a good President. He is positive and courageous but that doesn’t change the fact he will be the underdog in the polls. He is already the underdog, there’s no need to make his position worse by threatening to sue people. Basically, Mr. Tan need to go above that and handle the situation with more grace. If he managed to do that, he might have a chance.

Friday, July 1, 2011

Comics this week

Artifacts #8- Artifacts #8 closes the second part of the series. At the end of this issue, our heroes are down and out, scattered to the winds with only a small chance of a fight back. Say what you want about the series but you have to hand it to writer Ron Marz for coming up with a 13 issues series that spilt the story into 3 parts. And you have to give it to Top Cow for allowing him the freedom to do it. Count me in for the whole ride!

Batman Incorporated #7- As Bruce Wayne goes around the world to recruit heroes for his Batman Inc.; the various heroes he selects had been sort of hit-and-miss with readers. Man-of-Bats and his son/sidekick, Raven, are clearly in the hit category. Man-of-Bats and Raven aren’t just superheroes who fight crime; they are their community’s heroes because they help out in the citizen’s daily life. Right from the front page, writer Grant Morrison's took a different tack with these two characters by showing off their community work and it work beautifully. Easily the best issue of Batman Inc. so far.

FF #5- The issue starts off with the first real fight we had in this series. I know, after 5 issues, and only now do we get a fight? Not only that but a fight where the heroes got their ass handed to them. That in short is what’s great about Jonathan Hickman's work in Future Foundation. Not only is it the best sci-fi series on the market, it is also highly unpredictable. The only part I do not like is The Thing’s visit with Alicia Master. I know they are boyfriend and girlfriend but this is the first time Alicia Master had showed up in FF and diving headfirst into a conversation between the two without any narration is confusing for readers who never read The Fantastic Four…readers like me! Overall however, this is another solid issue in the series.