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Friday, December 22, 2006

Unclear on the concept...

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There are few things more entertaining than watching people making a fool of themselves. And the more prominent the people, the funnier it gets. Ok, Walski does draw the line when in the process of making fools of themselves, they get physically hurt, or worse, die - these cases are definitely not funny. Most of the time.

But Walski digresses...

So, in keeping with the spirit of the season - 'tis the season of giving, after all - Walski gives one back. A few of them, actually.

People Unclear on the concept of...

Lord Zam (as The Malaysian calls him) is an enigma. And enigma in dire need of an enema - you know, being anal and all that.

One day he'll say the most sensible of things, then BAMM! - the next day he comes up with the most ludicrous of assinuations. The latest idiotic thing the Dark Lord said is that the MPAJA (Malayan People's Anti-Japanese Army) are a bunch of communists. Every single one of them.

Image hosting by PhotobucketLord Zam - still afraid of the Berlin Wall after all these years
(PDF copy of article)

You see, our ill-informed Minister of Information has taken offense to the private (as in, not on public property) monuments to honor the MPAJA fallen, claiming that these monuments are an afront to the memory of those who fought the Communists. An interesting statement, however, made by Lord Zam in the article above:

"As information minister, I am part of history, I bear witness to history, I understand history. Therefore I definitely haven't made a mistake or misunderstood history," he said.

True, perhaps - Lord Zam merely wants to change history - despite the fact that Prof Emeritus Dr. Khoo Kay Kim - a real historian - asserted (in the same article) that "it is important for everyone to remember that one should not equate anti-Japanese fighters with communists".

Which makes sense. Otherwise it would also be true that all Malays are racists, solely based on the antics shown at the recent UMNO General Assembly.

What the Dark Lord forgets is that while there may be some things in our country's history which may be unpalattable to him, they are part of history nevertheless. The CPM did play a role in fighting British occupation after the war, and therefore are a valid part of Malaysian history.

When obvious lack of common sense gets a dose of moralistic overtones, the resulting cocktail can be a hilarious mixture. Dangerous, but hilarious.

Image hosting by PhotobucketGreat design - really stupid message
(click on image to view source)

Walski reckons that marrige here refers to a special kind of matrimonial arrangement that doesn't involve sex. Because apart from sharing needles and blood transfusion (which Walski hopes is not part of most Malaysian marriages), unprotected sex is definitely a way for HIV to get spread. Plus, marriage is no guarantee of not screwing around. Maybe marrige is... who knows.

According to Politics 101 Malaysia's Alphabet Soup, the poster above supposedly was, at some point, proudly put up on the web page of The Section of AIDS/STD, a part of the Division of Disease Control, which in turn is a division of the Department of Public Health, Ministry of Health.

Phew! Kinda deeply buried in bureacracy for focusing on something so life-threatening as AIDS, don't you thnk? The web page, which by the way, Marina M thinks is a sorry excuse for a web page (that's Walski paraphrasing - she didn't actually say that), and it's really long description of how far down the food chain it belongs, really reminded Walski of this famous dialog:

"But look, you found the notice didn't you?"
"Yes," said Arthur, "yes I did. It was on display in the bottom of a locked filing cabinet stuck in a disused lavatory with a sign on the door saying 'Beware of The Leopard'."

- Arthur Dent and the town council guy (Hithchiker's Guide to The Galaxy by Douglas Adams)

The webpage is so unimpressive, and really doesn't give the person on the street any useful information, that it's "[no] wonder everyone runs to NGOs for quality information" on HIV and AIDS.
(more fuzzy conceptualization in the full post)

Real-World Architecture
There was a news article in The Star a few days ago (December 19, 2006), which no one else seems to have picked up on. In it, Natural Resources and Environment Minister Datuk Seri Azmi Khalid, had this to offer as a solution to flooding.

It is time to look into the traditional ways of construction. In the old days, houses were built on stilts, not only to prevent wild animals from entering the house but also to avoid flooding. It is not impossible for buildings to be built this way today?” he told newsmen after chairing the commission’s meeting yesterday.
from The Star (PDF version here)

Okay... Unfortunately, Walski doesn't have the time to create a doctored image to illustrate this, but you should get the general idea, without straining your imagination too much. Walski thinks that this may be taking the traditional route a little wee bit too far. But in all honesty, the concept of buildings on stilts actually isn't all that far-fetched. Expensive, maybe, but definitely within the realm of possibility.

Image taken from Satan's Laundromat, hosting by PhotobucketBuildings on stilts actually exist - this one's from Connecticut, USA
(click on image to view source)

Better yet, why not put Malaysia's millions invested in the spaceman program to good use, and investigate how we could have entire cities levitate in the skies (what with real estate prices going thru the roof and all that). Sorta like Cloud City - the one we saw hovering over planet Bespin in Star Wars Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back.

Image taken from Wookiepedia, hosting by PhotobucketLet's see them flood waters get to this baby...
(click on image to view source)

Or nevermind the rocket science stuff... How about actually planning and constructing better and larger storm drainage handling systems? Probably more cost effective, and more, er, down to earth?

-----O O O O O-----

Well, kiddies, that's about all the time Walski has for this installment of "Unclear on the concept..." but there definitely are a whole lot of fuzzily conceptualized ideas to comment on. Like being unclear on the concept of airport security checks. Or maybe even you, the reader, might have some suggestions?