Welcome to Saturday's Potluck - 11-13-2021

“Learn the rules like a pro, so you can break them like an artist.”
Pablo Picasso

Singapore is one of the places I have followed in the press over the years. Business and societal changes seem to happen just a little bit before they reaches the rest of the world. It is one of my methods of guessing what the future may bring and pre-planning some options.

Singapore 1965 to 2020 (16.27 min)

Singapore Travel documentary from 1938 (11.20 min)
"Here on this tropical island which was once but an impenetrable jungle along the coast which ships of the past sailed with temerity England has built a great city and established for the trade of all nations a mighty guardian in the East."

Primarily a verbal presentation at a fast pace.

(0.21- 8.34) history up to 1937
ad for Square
(10.06- 19.43) 1937 to 1965
(19.44-24.49) 1966 to present

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Singapore street food added to Unesco heritage list

One of Singapore’s most-loved institutions has been given a timely boost, with the country’s hawker culture being added to the Unesco list of Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity.
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The food halls are considered the nation’s dining rooms, where people from all walks of life mingle and eat cheap, freshly cooked dishes from morning to night. Hawkers sell many things, from whole roasted ducks and steamed pork buns to pig’s trotters and fish-head curry. As Anthony Bourdain wrote during his 2017 visit: “The hawker centers are wonderlands of Chinese, Indian, and Malay specialties [sic]. It’s like shooting fish in a barrel making food porn in Singapore.”

Singapore's hawker culture: How did it all start? (48 min)

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A mockery of democracy in Singapore (2017)

The island state's recent presidential poll was baldly engineered in the ruling People's Action Party's favor and stirred the race-based politics it had long bid to suppress

-Halimah Yacob became the country’s first female head of state following sweeping constitutional changes made to ensure that an ethnic minority Malay would become the city-state’s eighth president.

Halimah’s rise to the largely ceremonial post was ushered by an uncontested poll that resulted in a walkover when a government-appointed committee disqualified two other candidates after they failed to meet newly enacted financial criteria required for eligibility.
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Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong, his deputies and other top PAP ministers have stridently defended the constitutional changes as a way to ensure racial harmony and strengthen Singapore’s multiracial political system.

“People think we may be going backwards, towards racial politics. But actually the reality is the opposite,” said the premier while acknowledging that the one-candidate election was unpopular and costly to the PAP’s reputation.

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'Chilling': Singapore's 'fake news’ law comes into effect (Oct 2019)

Singapore’s new law to combat “fake news” has come into effect despite criticism from tech giants and activists, who labelled the tough rules a “chilling” attempt to stifle dissent.

The law gives government ministers powers to order social media sites to put warnings next to posts authorities deem to be false, and in extreme cases get them taken down.

Facebook, Twitter and Google – who have their Asian headquarters in Singapore – were given temporary exemptions from a handful of provisions in the act to give them time to adapt.

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Unlawful assembly of one in Singapore (March 2021)

Police in Singapore are investigating whether a ruling party lawmaker broke a strict law barring virtually all forms of protest when he held up a placard encouraging support for local food businesses, a case that has sparked debate over the proportionality of the city-state’s broadly-defined public order legislation.

Louis Ng, a member of the People’s Action Party (PAP), posted four pictures on Facebook last June of himself with hawkers at a food center in his constituency. He held up a piece of paper that read “support them” alongside a smiley face. That act alone could be deemed an offense if found by courts to constitute an illegal public assembly.
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Shanmugam, one of Singapore’s top litigators and the public face upholding its strictest laws, argued for the bill’s tighter provisions at the time by saying the government’s focus should be on acts of assembly and not on the number of people involved.

Amendments to the law barring foreign nationals from assemblies entered force in 2017. Last March, Shanmugam cited protest-related unrest in Hong Kong throughout 2019 to suggest that Singapore’s approach to public order is justified and fair. “The actions of a disaffected few should not be allowed to threaten the rights of the majority to live in a stable, peaceful society,” he was reported as saying.

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Singapore curbs meddling but not everyone’s happy (Oct 2021)

Foreign Interference (Countermeasures) Act, or FICA, could negatively impact perceptions of Singapore as a global hub.
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Singapore’s powerful Law and Home Affairs Minister K. Shanmugam said in his parliamentary speech that FICA is part of a “comprehensive strategy to deal with foreign interference,” calling it a “calibrated piece of legislation to allow us to act surgically against threats” while describing the internet as a “powerful new medium for subversion.”

The law gives Singapore’s government sweeping powers over internet content and allows for authorities to force social media platforms and internet service providers to hand over user data, remove applications from app stores, and block access to online content that is deemed as being part of a hostile information campaign.

FICA allows the country’s home minister to order investigations into an individual or organization if foreign interference is suspected, provided that such directives serve “the public interest” by preventing activities that could result in “a diminution of public confidence” in the government or are “directed towards a political end.”

The legislation also enables the home affairs ministry to publicly designate individuals or organizations as “politically significant persons” if they are assessed to be at risk of becoming potential targets of foreign influence, and thereby made to abide by strict rules pertaining to political donations and declaration of their links to foreign entities.

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Harris tries to assure Southeast Asia of US support (Aug 2021)

Now, Washington hopes that Vice President Kamala Harris’ seven-day trip to Singapore and Vietnam this week will influence perceptions of America’s resolve and commitment following the administration’s slow start in engaging the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) and its members’ leaders.
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Harris fielded questions about the US withdrawal from Afghanistan during a joint press conference in Singapore with Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong, who was asked by a reporter about whether his “calculus” had changed about relying on Washington as a partner in the region as a result of the chaotic evacuation efforts.

Lee replied by saying that countries in Southeast Asia would pay close attention to how the US repositions itself and engages partners and allies in the region while keeping up efforts to fight terrorism, and offered the Republic of Singapore Air Force’s multi-role tanker transport aircraft to help assist in the evacuation of Afghan refugees.

The US and Singapore concluded a range of agreements on cybersecurity, climate, epidemic intelligence sharing, and economic cooperation during Harris’ visit. The vice president also took part in a supply chain resilience dialogue with private sector leaders that touched on issues such as production delays stemming from the ongoing global chip shortage.

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Apple quietly files patents for new unannounced product

Apple has filed multiple patents which describe a method of connecting small unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) to various wireless controllers – and has seemingly tried to keep its research project a secret.

The US Patent and Trademark Office published two patent applications from the Silicon Valley company on Thursday.
Read more
Apple makes sure you don’t take iCloud data to the grave Apple makes sure you don’t take iCloud data to the grave

In an apparent bid to keep the project secret, Apple initially filed its patents in Singapore, according to Patently Apple, a blog that tracks the firm’s IPs. One of the patents is titled ‘Unmanned Aerial Vehicle Tracking and Control’ and was filed in Singapore in March 2020.

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Now a look at possible high tech life in cities. Smart housing, food stability, water sustainability, finance, medicine, energy, tech education and enviormentalisn.

City of the Future: Singapore – Full Episode | National Geographic (44 min) 2018

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Why Singapore is rich and will remain rich (July 2021)
A combination of geography, government efficiency, and business friendliness has made Singapore a success story

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What is on your mind today? (Responses to Covid questions and dialog to be conducted at The Dose diary)

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Comments

QMS's picture

Thanks for posting this SOE.

Spent many months working in Singapore while we were building boats there.

An interesting admixture of Chinese, Malaysian, Indian and (mostly) Brit expats.

Found the place a bit too big-brotherish, but then I'm a rural yank.
Ever hear of their public caning punishments?
There is much obvious wealth there.
Absolutely loved the outdoor food courts. They were everywhere.
The MRT is very clean, efficient and inexpensive.

sgmrt-990x279.jpg

Located close to the equator, it is very warm and humid. Three shirts a day Wink

Singapore Airlines flew out of JFK, stopped over in Amsterdam, then touched down about a total
of 20 flight hours. Again, very efficient and friendly (not cheap). Tried the Delta version from Detroit
going over the pole into Japan for a layover, but it was a very long haul -- about 28 hours end to end.

Thanks again!

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studentofearth's picture

@QMS reality of punishment in 1993 when Micheal Fay was charged with crimes with possible caning as a punishment in Singapore. The subject was well covered as part of the political dialog of getting tough on crime. The Three Strikes laws were passed in multiple states during 1993 and 1994. A few months after Micheal received his 4 strikes (reduced from 6 via State Department involvement) the federal legislation was passed and signed into law.

August 21, 1994 The Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act of 1994, commonly referred to as the 1994 Crime Bill,[1] the Clinton Crime Bill,[2] or the Biden Crime Law,[3] is an Act of Congress dealing with crime and law enforcement; it became law in 1994.

Former President of Singapore, S.R. Nathan recollection of the incident and follow up.

Possibly the most memorable part of my stint as ambassador in Washington followed an unfortunate incident that took place in Singapore. An 18-year-old US citizen named Michael Fay was among a group of youths arrested by the Singapore police on suspicion of vandalising some cars.

On March 3, 1994, Fay was convicted in the Subordinate Courts on two charges of vandalism, two charges of mischief and one charge of dishonestly retaining stolen property. Sixteen other charges of vandalism and four other charges of mischief were taken into account. It emerged that at least 67 cars were affected. After pleading guilty, he was sentenced to four months’ jail, six strokes of the cane and a fine of $3,500.

News of the case quickly reached the United States, but initially there was no more public reaction than one would expect following the arrest of any young American offender overseas. US media interest was initially limited. Stories focused on the merits and demerits of corporal punishment and caning as a deterrent. This was against a backdrop of letters and polling data indicating that there was significant public support in the United States for Singapore’s contention that corporal punishment did indeed deter. In Lee Kuan Yew’s words, “It is not painless. It does what it is supposed to do, to remind the wrongdoer that he should never do it again.”

However, I sensed rough weather ahead.

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Still yourself, deep water can absorb many disturbances with minimal reaction.
--When the opening appears release yourself.

Lookout's picture

Quite cool at trade day this AM. High 30's. So it was quick and brisk.

Don't know much about Singapore. A buddy's brother works there as a trader for some house or the other. I think I would have difficulty in such a crowded place. Our little town of 600 suits me better. Though some thrive on the action and vitality of big cities, they are not really my cup of tea.

Hope all is well on your homestead!

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“Until justice rolls down like water and righteousness like a mighty stream.”

studentofearth's picture

@Lookout our society. Does it provide new ideas to have an impact? Does current technology provide the oversite capabilities in the rural area as Singapore does on its citizens? Questions I ponder.

This map imagines the US broken into ‘city-states’ rather than states

State boundaries don’t always accurately encapsulate the cultures that reside within the borders. Cities, however, and the metropolitan areas that orbit them, operate far more cohesively as political and economic units. Although city-states aren’t as prevalent today as they were several hundred years ago, analyzing geographic “city-states” in the US today can help us understand larger trends and power dynamics within states. States are undoubtedly the dominant political entities in modern America, but this map imagines what the country would look like if that wasn’t true. It paints a picture of the US with city-state boundaries, rather than just state borders, in an effort to show a more accurate political, cultural, and economic reality.

Weather is warm this week so busier outside than planned.

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Still yourself, deep water can absorb many disturbances with minimal reaction.
--When the opening appears release yourself.

enhydra lutris's picture

to mention Raffles at least once. Wink

be well and have a good one

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That, in its essence, is fascism--ownership of government by an individual, by a group, or by any other controlling private power. -- Franklin D. Roosevelt --

QMS's picture

@enhydra lutris

there is a semi-complicated continuous belt wrapping around the bases of the large rattan ceiling fans, maybe about 20 of them, driven by one motor thru out the rooms. The entire joint circulates in this slow overhead motion. Easy to get transfixed after a couple G & T's or a few Tiger beers Wink
White shirted waiters almost out number the patrons. Very civilized.

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enhydra lutris's picture

the information contained in wikipedia and WebMD and other top level search hits, does anybody here have experience or other significant knowledge concerning using Ashwagandha as a herbal folk remedy for stuff?

be well and have a good one

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That, in its essence, is fascism--ownership of government by an individual, by a group, or by any other controlling private power. -- Franklin D. Roosevelt --

studentofearth's picture

@enhydra lutris my list of herbals to grow in a container for winter protection when you first mentioned the herb a few weeks ago. It might be a year around outdoor plant in your area.

Medicinally there are articles on multiple potential treatments. Here are a few general articles. Less product promotion sites when using Indian Ginseng and Withania somnifera.

An Overview on Ashwagandha: A Rasayana (Rejuvenator) of Ayurveda

Safety and clinical effectiveness of Withania Somnifera (Linn.) Dunal root in human ailments

Possible benefit in current worldwide infection.

Growing Ashwagandha in Vermont.

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Still yourself, deep water can absorb many disturbances with minimal reaction.
--When the opening appears release yourself.

enhydra lutris's picture

@studentofearth

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That, in its essence, is fascism--ownership of government by an individual, by a group, or by any other controlling private power. -- Franklin D. Roosevelt --

zed2's picture

And has been since the 1600s. So is the City of London. which is incredibly powerful and controls a large slice of the wealth in the world.

The city as corporation is a popular idea, as is the concept of corporate suffrage. (Giving corporations votes like people) For most of the history of the British Empire, vote was not universal, only property owners or the unemployed men could vote. (it was thought that employed men would only vote for what their employers told them to so they were excluded.)

Or so I read in the Peoples History of England

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zed2's picture

Thats a saying about Singapore.

They have a high average income. Its another of many former British colonies. Many are tax havens or financial and banking secrecy hubs. They are where the rich put their money to protect it from the riffraff.

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studentofearth's picture

@zed2 As the years keep passing it is becoming easier to shelter wealth in this country. Less need to send it to other countries and run the risk of ordinary people gaining political power.

The United States of Tax Havens
Like our billionaires at home, foreign oligarchs and despots are sheltering untold sums from taxation across our country.

The Pandora Papers, released in October, show that the United States is second only to the Cayman Islands in facilitating illicit financial flows. But it's not a simple picture.

Each state and territory has its own laws and regulations about financial transactions used for tax evasion or money laundering. And both red states and blue states are destinations for those who seek to hide their money from tax collectors and public scrutiny.

President Biden's home state of Delaware has long been renowned for its use as a tax haven, beginning in the late 19th century. Reliably Democratic in national politics, Delaware still ranks at the top among U.S. states providing secrecy for corporations and ultra-high-wealth individuals, both domestic and foreign.

But the Pandora Papers cite ruby-red South Dakota as an attractive destination for billionaires and others seeking to avoid estate taxes.

full audiobook of Treasure Islands by Nicholas Shaxson

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Still yourself, deep water can absorb many disturbances with minimal reaction.
--When the opening appears release yourself.

zed2's picture

The global rich know how to keep their assets safe from greedy often corrupt governments.

Nicholas Shaxson has a lot to say about this global theft of the planet and concentration of wealth.

He's very good.

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Ukraine's Azov Battalion.

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Dawn's Meta's picture

@humphrey

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A society grows great when old men plant trees in whose shade they know they shall never sit. Allegedly Greek, but more possibly fairly modern quote.

Consider helping by donating using the button in the upper left hand corner. Thank you.

Brazil? Bolsonaro is their type of leader.

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most of the videos you posted yesterday morning and then started the N.Geographic one last night. I found them very interesting. Thanks for that line-up of vids and the informative essay. I don't know much about Singapore and sad to say, I even had to go to the Atlas to see exactly where the island is.

We had beautiful weather yesterday as well. It's not time for me to put everything under cover yet but it is time to harvest all the herbs. They had a great season, look to be very healthy, and hopefully nutritious. The lemongrass was first to be harvested as it is a tropical plant and we are getting down into the 40's at night. It would do better in Singapore, but it does really well here for at least eight months out of the year.

Anyway, I always enjoy your OT's so thank you.

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