• The social media savvy Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong on Monday thanked his fans on Facebook and Twitter for their support, as he celebrates his third year anniversary of using the two platforms.

    Lee said in his latest post, published at about 10am, saying, “Today marks my third year on Facebook and Twitter. I hope you have enjoyed my posts. I’ve certainly had fun doing them, and hearing from you.” 

    The 63-year-old added, “Thanks especially to those who have shared your own stories, suggested places for my ‪#‎guesswhere and ‪#‎justforfun posts, and raised ideas on many issues.”

    The post was accompanied with a video showing highlights of his posts from the past year. The two-minute video was uploaded on YouTube on Sunday, which included photos taken at Redhill Food Centre, at a Ramadhan Bazaar, as well as a photo of his father, the late former Prime Minister Lee Kuan Yew, during last year’s National Day Celebration.

    The video, which was done by an Alex Qiu from the Prime Minister’s

    Read More »from PM Lee gives special shout-out to supporters after being on social media for three years
  • Kirsten Han is a Singaporean blogger, journalist and filmmaker. She is also involved in the We Believe in Second Chances campaign for the abolishment of the death penalty. A social media junkie, she tweets at @kixes. The views expressed are her own.

    I arrived at the State Courts on Friday just in time to see journalists pouring out of the courtroom, following a Deputy Public Prosecutor into a media huddle. He was going through the conditions of Amos Yee’s bail, now transferred from police to court bail. His parents had not yet decided whether they were going to post bail this time.

    Friends who had been in the courtroom told me that Amos had been whisked out of his closed pre-trial conference in handcuffs. The whole thing had been so quick that he hadn’t even had a chance to look up and see that people he knew were there for moral support.

    The major events have since been reported in the media. Amos is spending the weekend in remand. No one has yet come forward to bail him out. The bail

    Read More »from COMMENT: What Amos Yee is going through is far bigger than just one boy
  • An Oklahoma City restaurant owner’s note left for a dumpster-diver is going viral.

    Ashley Jiron, owner of the P.B. Jams sandwich shop told KFOR that she noticed someone had been rummaging through the food containers in her restaurant’s trash.

    “It hurt me that someone had to do that,” she said.

    So she posted a sign in her window, offering a free meal to the person who was scanvenging for food in the dumpster.

    “To the person going through our trash for their next meal, you’re a human being and worth more than a meal from the dumpster,” her note read.

    “Please come in during business hours for a classic Pb&j, fresh veggies, and a cup of water at no charge. No questions asked. – your friend, the owner.”

    A photo of Jiron’s sweet gesture went viral — and earned her plenty of new fans:

    “You are an AMAZING person. This story touched my heart in a way that most people have not been able to. The kind of love and altruism that you display radiates across the world. I hope that this inspires people

    Read More »from Oklahoma sandwich shop owner leaves sweet note for person rummaging through restaurant trash
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    Manchester United defender Marcos Rojo, 25, enjoyed a vacation in Portugal recently and posted a photo at the dinner table with his family and friends.

    Rojo went away during his club’s week off and shared a private jet with teammate Angel di Maria as their families headed for a short break after United’s 3-1 victory over Aston Villa on Saturday.

    This comes three days after an alleged affair with a fitness instructor was exposed, with the woman claiming she was offered money to keep quiet. 

    The fitness instructor and her friends were drinking cocktails in bar in Manchester when they were approached by a bouncer and invited to join Man United’s private Christmas party upstairs.

    The venue was packed with pretty young girls who were hand-picked by minders and told to leave their mobile phones in a bucket to prevent them from taking any embarrassing pictures.

    Sarah Watson, 34, the woman at the centre of the blackmail claims said Rojo offered her money to spend the night with him after the

    Read More »from Manchester United star Rojo in cheating scandal
  • Kirsten Han is a Singaporean blogger, journalist and filmmaker. She is also involved in the We Believe in Second Chances campaign for the abolishment of the death penalty. A social media junkie, she tweets at @kixes. The views expressed are her own.

    After decades of waiting, Singapore finally has two Malay full ministers in Cabinet.

    The recent Cabinet reshuffle saw Masagos Zulkifli promoted to Minister in the Prime Minister’s Office as well as Second Minister for Home Affairs and Foreign Affairs. It’s a step forward for Malay representation in local politics, but Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong’s comment on his promotion deserves more scrutiny:


    “I am promoting Masagos Zulkifli to full Minister. He has performed well, both in his ministries and as an MP in Tampines. It is the first time we are having two Malay full ministers, which reflects the progress of the Malay community.”


    There’s quite a bit here to unpack. Firstly, why has it taken so long to have two Malay full ministers? And

    Read More »from Representation in politics: Whose progress is it?
  • Children in a classroom. AFP file photoChildren in a classroom. AFP file photo

    Do you want to be a successful student? If you’re a parent, do you want that for your children?

    There’s no running away from hard work. But becoming a successful student isn’t only about doing more. It’s also about saying the right things.

    Here’s why.

    By being intentional about the things you say to yourself and others, you’ll cultivate a success mindset. Only then will you find the intrinsic motivation to take consistent, productive action.

    And that’s what leads to success.

    So, to be a successful student, here are the 10 things to say every day:

    1. “My goal is progress, not perfection.”

    Nobody’s perfect. It’s impossible to get perfect grades, to have the perfect body, or to have the perfect social life. If your goal is perfection, you’ll eventually be disappointed and disillusioned.

    I’ve worked with students who are perfectionists. Several of them cut their wrists, suffer from eating disorders, or have suicidal thoughts.

    That’s scary, I know.

    Not all perfectionists have such serious

    Read More »from Want to be a successful student? Say these 10 things every day
  • A little over a week after Lee Kuan Yew’s funeral, Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong shared a lighthearted story about finding an old telegram sent by his father to his mother back in 1958.

    While still a practicing lawyer, the elder Lee set a telegram from Sarawak to his law firm, Lee & Lee in 26 September 1958. The message intended for his wife read “ARRIVING TODAY BATTLESHIP = LEEKUANYEW”.

    Mrs Lee did not understand the message. A check with the British Naval Base indicated there was no battleship coming from Sarawak.

    “My father did arrive home that day, but not by battleship. He explained that he wanted steam boat for dinner, but as ‘steam boat’ was two words, and telegrams were charged by the word, he wrote ‘battleship’ instead, to save words and money!” explained PM Lee.

    Alas, that change in one word meant that there would be no steam boat for dinner at the Lee household.   

    The elder statesman passed away on 23 March after a long battle with pneumonia.

    The story and photo of the

    Read More »from Arriving home by battleship? PM Lee’s story about Lee Kuan Yew’s telegram

  • Kirsten Han is a Singaporean blogger, journalist and filmmaker. She is also involved in the We Believe in Second Chances campaign for the abolishment of the death penalty. A social media junkie, she tweets at @kixes. The views expressed are her own.

    Lee Kuan Yew built a Singapore that was free and strong and rich, and none of us were allowed to forget it during the mourning period. Immediately following the state funeral, though, Singapore appears to have become weak and fragile and fearful – so much so that a kid with a webcam and two individuals with placards are deemed dangerous enough to be worth arrest and court charges, lest everything falls apart.

    Amos Yee (pic above) was charged last week for his YouTube video, while two individuals were arrested on Saturday for standing outside the Istana holding placards saying “You can’t silence the people” and “Injustice”. The state presumably read the former sign and simply thought, “Challenge accepted.”

    One could say that this is simply a

    Read More »from COMMENT: Freedom of speech in Singapore: a matter of security, or of trust?
  • Grandmother’s hilarious real-estate photos go viral

    Yolie Ball and her husband are trying to sell their Florida home.

    When Ball’s daughter arrived to take some real-estate photos for the couple, 86-year-old Ball insisted on posing in some of them.

    Ball’s 15-year-old granddaughter, Makenzie Ball, found the photos so hilarious she posted them on Twitter where they went viral. (So far, the photos have been retweeted almost 25,000 times.)

    “I thought they were hilarious. I was almost crying because I was laughing so hard,” Makenzie told BuzzFeed News.

    “I didn’t expect them to get so popular. I thought like 40 RTs from my friends MAX,” she told ABC News in an email.

    Makenzie clarified that the photos weren’t actually used in the official real-estate listing, but that her aunt couldn’t resist letting Ball pose in a few of them for fun.

    “The first picture, the one where I have my head

    Read More »from Grandmother’s hilarious real-estate photos go viral
  • Taiwan came out as the top travel destinations for MPs — when it didn’t come out of their own pockets or the government’s coffers — in 2014.

    On Thursday ethics commissioner Mary Dawson released the annual list of sponsored travel for MPs. In total, 60 MPs raked up $442,524 in free travel over the past year. 

    Members of Parliament are required, as a rule under the conflict of interest act, to disclose to the ethics commissioner any travel that exceeds $500 in cost and that are not “wholly or substantially” paid from by a government revenue fund, their own personal funds or by any interparliamentary or friendship group.

    In the 2014 calendar year, there were 17 trips to Taiwan. The cost of most of these were covered by the Chinese International Economic Cooperation Association.

    MPs, including Russ Heibert, Bruce Hyer, Dominic LeBlanc, Bev Shipley and Peter Goldring, made trips to Taipei over the past year, either on parliamentary delegations or on trips to assess or learn about trade and

    Read More »from Taiwan ranks #1 for dishing out free trips to Canadian MPs


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