18 Sep

Readabee 16th September 2019

1. President Trump Can’t Block Twitter Users, Federal Appeals Court Rules

America – Free Speech | Wall Street Journal

Tuesday’s ruling stems from a 2017 lawsuit filed by Columbia University’s Knight First Amendment Institute on behalf of seven people who had been blocked by the president’s @realDonaldTrump account. In an opinion for the three-judge panel, Judge Barrington D. Parker of the Second U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals wrote that a public official who uses a social-media account for official purposes can’t block users because he disagrees with their posts. “The First Amendment does not permit a public official who utilizes a social media account for all manner of official purposes to exclude persons from an otherwise‐open online dialogue because they expressed views with which the official disagrees,” wrote Judge Parker, who was nominated to the appeals court by President George W. Bush. (800 words)

2. Who Will Design the Future?

Artificial Intelligence | Nautilus | August 1th, 2019

Its developers should be, too. Ada Lovelace was an English mathematician who lived in the first half of the 19th century. (She was also the daughter of the poet Lord Byron, who invited Mary Shelley to his house in Geneva for a weekend of merriment and a challenge to write a ghost story, which would become Frankenstein.) In 1842, Lovelace was tasked with translating an article from French into English for Charles Babbage, the “Grandfather of the Computer.” Babbage’s piece was about his Analytical Engine, a revolutionary new automatic calculating machine. (5100 words)

3. Big data won’t build a better robot

Artificial Intelligence – Robots | The Straits Times | April 24th, 2019

Some enthusiastic computer scientists even think we will find a “master algorithm” that will fix our politics and make lives “longer, happier and more productive”. In the grandest of these visions, smart computing machines could automate all of scientific discovery. But many scientists think such promises are overblown, and even a little dangerous, naively creating false confidence in highly fallible technologies. And quite a few researchers now applying AI – in physics, biology, chemistry and finance – think machines will continue to depend on human intelligence for a very long time. (800 words)

4. A Duty to Shareholder Value

Business – CSR | New York Times | April 16th, 2015

Suppose the board of directors of a company is considering closing an obsolete plant. The closing will harm the plant’s workers and the local community, but it will benefit shareholders, creditors and new employees (and their surrounding community) at a more modern plant to which the work is transferred. Let’s further assume that the latter groups (the shareholders, creditors and new employees) cannot gain except at the former employees’ expense. By what standard should the board make the decision to close or keep the obsolete plant? (500 words)

5. Opinion | Can States Just Say No to Corporate Giveaways?

Business – CSR | New York Times | July 9th, 2019

More than 100 companies and more than 12,000 workers have moved to new offices, some headed east, some headed west. Missouri poached Swiss Re and Applebee’s; Kansas got JPMorgan Chase and AMC Entertainment.The net result? No increase in economic activity; no improvement in the lives of workers. Just a few more jobs in Kansas, a few less in Missouri — and a big loss of tax dollars. Corporate tax incentives are a dubious business. The giveaways frequently serve no higher purpose than rewarding businesses for moving where they already plan to move or creating jobs they already plan to create. (1200 words)

6. Schoolchildren in China work overnight to produce Amazon Alexa devices

Business – CSR | The Guardian | August 8th, 2019

Interviews with workers and leaked documents from Amazon’s supplier Foxconn show that many of the children have been required to work nights and overtime to produce the smart-speaker devices, in breach of Chinese labour laws. According to the documents, the teenagers – drafted in from schools and technical colleges in and around the central southern city of Hengyang – are classified as “interns”, and their teachers are paid by the factory to accompany them. Teachers are asked to encourage uncooperative pupils to accept overtime work on top of regular shifts. (1600 words)

7. Jack Ma is wrong: 12-hour days are no ‘blessing’

Capitalism – Labour | The Straits Times | April 23th, 2019

He recently praised China’s “996” practice, which refers to those who put in 12-hour days – 9am to 9pm – six days a week. This is not a problem, he said in a recent blog post, but a blessing. The response from others in China was swift. “If all enterprises enforce a 996 schedule, no one will have children,” one person argued on the same platform. “Did you ever think about the elderly at home who need care, the children who need company?” It even prompted a response from Chinese state media, which reminded everyone: “The mandatory enforcement of 996 overtime culture not only reflects the arrogance of business managers, but is also unfair and impractical.” (900 words)

8. China’s ‘Belt and Road’ Plan in Pakistan Takes a Military Turn

China – Belt And Road | New York Times | December 19th, 2018

The confidential plan, reviewed by The New York Times, would also deepen the cooperation between China and Pakistan in space, a frontier the Pentagon recently said Beijing was trying to militarize after decades of playing catch-up.All those military projects were designated as part of China’s Belt and Road Initiative, a $1 trillion chain of infrastructure development programs stretching across some 70 countries, built and financed by Beijing.Chinese officials have repeatedly said the Belt and Road is purely an economic project with peaceful intent. (2800 words)

9. China is thinking twice about lending to Africa

China – Corruption | The Economist | June 29th, 2019

Kenyans feigned concern on Twitter, using the hashtag #FindPresidentUhuru. A missing-person poster appealed for information on the whereabouts of a five-foot-eight African male last seen in Beijing. A government spokeswoman sought to reassure the public: Mr Kenyatta had been in his office “meditating”. But others speculate that the president was in a funk after his trip to China failed to yield a new loan for the next phase of Kenya’s ambitious $10bn railway.Mr Kenyatta could be forgiven for feeling piqued. (1000 words)

10. China is waging war on Western names for buildings and places

China – Culture | The Economist | June 29th, 2019

Posh resorts line the island’s shore. It is also on the front lines of a culture war. In June Hainan’s government published a list of 53 places and buildings, including many hotels, with names that “worship foreign things and toady to foreign powers”. It said these names must be “cleaned up and rectified”—ie, changed.Many of the offending names use Chinese characters that, put together, sound like foreign words: Kaisa for Caesar, for example (used in a hotel name), or Weiduoliya for Victoria (the name of a residential area in the capital, Haikou). (300 words)

11. How much is your education worth? Depends on how much you make

Education – Inequality | The Straits Times | April 6th, 2019

For years people have talked about the idea of selling shares in one’s own talent, in the hope of attracting funds and assistance from others. Now it seems that this idea is happening at scale, through the Lambda School in California. The Lambda School teaches information technology skills online, and it charges zero tuition and offers stipends to select students. The deal is that students pay back 17 per cent of their income from the first two years of work, if earnings exceed US$50,000 (S$67,700) a year, with a maximum payment of US$30,000. (700 words)

12. Shortages of rare earth elements could limit clean energy development

Environment – Smartphones | Salon | October 26th, 2018

There are even cancer treatments requiring rare earth elements. Contrary to their name, however, rare earth metals are not actually rare. Or at least, not exactly. On average, they’re about as common as copper or nickel in the Earth’s crust. But unlike copper or nickel, rare earth elements don’t occur in mine-able pockets, meaning that obtaining them is a lot more expensive and labor-intensive. On top of that, when you do find them in ores they’re all mixed together and separating them can be a challenge: they’re all about the same size, have similar melting points, and tend to form trivalent cations (meaning they also look identical electrochemically). (800 words)

13. Cambridge Analytica a year on: ‘a lesson in institutional failure’

Facebook – Cambridge | The Guardian | March 17th, 2019

It was a report that drew on hours of testimony from Cambridge Analytica directors, Facebook executives and dozens of expert witnesses: 73 in total, of whom MPs had asked 4,350 questions. And its conclusion? That Silicon Valley’s tech platforms were out of control, none more so than Facebook, which it said had treated parliament with “contempt”. And it’s a measure of how much hasn’t changed that this was a news story for just two hours on a Monday morning before the next Westminster drama – the launch of the Independent Group – knocked it off the headline slots. (4000 words)

14. The Cambridge Analytica scandal changed the world – but it didn’t change Facebook

Facebook – Privacy | The Guardian | March 18th, 2019

It took five full days for the founder and CEO of Facebook – the man with total control over the world’s largest communications platform – to emerge from his Menlo Park cloisters and address the public. When he finally did, he did so with gusto, taking a new set of talking points (“We have a responsibility to protect your data, and if we can’t then we don’t deserve to serve you”) on a seemingly unending roadshow, from his own Facebook page to the mainstream press to Congress and on to an oddly earnest discussion series he’s planning to subject us to at irregular intervals for the rest of 2019. (1400 words)

15. North Korea Accuses Expelled Australian Student of Spying

Geopolitics – North Korea | New York Times | July 6th, 2019

Sigley, 29, a graduate student in Korean literature at Kim Il-sung University in Pyongyang, was freed in North Korea on Thursday and deported on the same day. Until now, neither Mr. Sigley nor the North’s government had publicly explained why he had been detained.On Saturday, North Korea’s official Korean Central News Agency, using the initials for the North’s official name, the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, said Mr. Sigley was caught on Tuesday while “committing anti-D.P.R.K. incitement through the internet.”“He honestly admitted his spying acts of systematically collecting and offering data about the domestic situation of the D.P.R.K. (800 words)

16. The Gulf of Guinea is now the world’s worst piracy hotspot

Geopolitics – Piracy | The Economist | June 29th, 2019

Two layers of razor wire snake around its deck. Two life-sized human dummies in orange jumpsuits are perched on the ship’s bridge, posing as crew members keeping watch. Serving as a reminder that such precautions are prudent in Africa are the mangled steel and concrete remains of a jetty. It was blown up a decade ago by militants with a sideline in piracy.The Gulf of Guinea, on west Africa’s southern coast, is the world’s most pirate-infested sea. The International Maritime Bureau (IMB) reports 72 attacks last year on vessels at sea between Ivory Coast and Cameroon—up from 28 in 2014. (1800 words)

17. Opinion | A Hong Kong Protester’s Tactic: Get the Police to Hit You

Hong Kong – Protests | New York Times | June 30th, 2019

I took part in the two mass marches earlier this month, the June 12 protest that turned violent and the blockade of police headquarters on June 21. Today I am among the tens of thousands of protesters on the streets outside of the Legislative Council and I witnessed a group of them storm the building.I am not optimistic that we can get what we are asking for. The government’s response has been robotic, and it still refuses to completely withdraw, instead of just suspending, the extradition bill we oppose. (1300 words)

18. What Is Hong Kong’s Extradition Bill?

Hong Kong – Protests | New York Times | June 10th, 2019

Here’s the key background.Is Hong Kong part of China?Yes, but it’s not that simple.Hong Kong, a former British colony, was returned to China in 1997 under a policy known as “one country, two systems,” which promised the territory a high degree of autonomy. The policy has helped preserve Hong Kong’s civil service, independent courts, freewheeling press, open internet and other features that distinguish it from the Chinese mainland.Demonstrators marched on Sunday against a government proposal to allow extraditions to mainland China. (1000 words)

19. Why Hong Kong needs to press ahead with its extradition Bill

Hong Kong – Protests | The Straits Times | June 15th, 2019

They will enable Hong Kong to return fugitives, on a case-by-case basis, to other parts of China, as well as to over 170 countries with which it currently has no extradition agreements. Such case-based approaches are used in other jurisdictions, and are of obvious utility where long-term surrender arrangements are not yet in place. Given the existing vacuum, many fugitives from other places have obtained sanctuary in Hong Kong, some from elsewhere in China, others from around the globe. We know that over 300 fugitives from other parts of China are currently enjoying safe haven in Hong Kong, including at least one alleged murderer, as well as businessmen already convicted of corruption and money laundering. (2000 words)

20. How to fix the problem in Hong Kong

Hong Kong- Politics | The Straits Times | July 21th, 2019

Rental is high in Hong Kong and customers are obliged to share tables in small eateries like the one I was in. Once eagle-eyed restaurant owners spot the conclusion of a meal, patrons are swiftly handed their bills, subtly suggesting they leave the premises to make way for incoming customers. Otherwise, they’d earn short shrift from irate staff. Life is hard in Hong Kong and most residents feel that it has become much harder. Retired civil servants complain of promotions bypassing them because the top posts were reserved for whites under British colonial rule. (1300 words)

21. How to make people pay high taxes happily

Inequality – Taxes | The Straits Times | July 28th, 2019

The person I was having coffee with said he wasn’t just happy to do so, he had once called in to a British radio talk show years ago to explain why. That programme on air had been over what made people happy, and he responded when the host of the show had laughed off the idea that there were people who gave away half their salaries happily. He is from Denmark, where the top tax rate of 56 per cent kicks in at a relatively low annual income of US$77,000 (S$105,450). The Danes are also often ranked one of the happiest people in the world. (1100 words)

22. World’s eight richest people have same wealth as poorest 50%

Inequality – Wealth | The Guardian | January 15th, 2017

New information shows that poverty in China and India is worse than previously thought. In a report published to coincide with the start of the week-long World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, Oxfam said it was “beyond grotesque” that a handful of rich men headed by the Microsoft founder Bill Gates are worth $426bn (£350bn), equivalent to the wealth of 3.6 billion people. The development charity called for a new economic model to reverse an inequality trend that it said helped to explain Brexit and Donald Trump’s victory in the US presidential election. (1000 words)

23. World’s richest 0.1% have boosted their wealth by as much as poorest half

Inequality – Wealth | The Guardian | December 14th, 2017

The richest 1% of the global population captured 27% of the world’s wealth growth between 1980 and 2016. The World Inequality Report, published on Thursday by French economist Thomas Piketty, warned that inequality had ballooned to “extreme levels” in some countries and said the problem would only get worse unless governments took coordinated action to increase taxes and prevent tax avoidance. Share of global wealth by income groupsThe report, which drew on the work of more than 100 researchers around the world, found that the richest 1% of the global population “captured” 27% of the world’s wealth growth between 1980 and 2016. (800 words)

24. Opinion | Kill Section 230, You Kill the Internet

Internet – Free Speech | Wall Street Journal

Will it happen again? In October 1994, an anonymous poster on Money Talk, a bulletin board run by the early online service Prodigy, accused Long Island brokerage firm Stratton Oakmont of fraud. Yes, that Stratton Oakmont, of Leonardo DiCaprio and “Wolf of Wall Street” movie fame. Fraud central. But in 1995 Stratton Oakmont sued Prodigy for defamation. The firm claimed the online service was liable as a publisher because Prodigy posted content guidelines that human “board leaders” enforced and deployed software that screened for offensive language. (1000 words)

25. Prosecution calls for woman who scammed love scammer to get jail instead of treatment order

Singapore – Crime | Channel News Asia | July 16th, 2019

She then ignored the man who was trying to scam her, and transferred parts of the cash to help another scammer she was in love with, as well as a third scammer. For her actions, the prosecution on Tuesday (Jul 16) called for her to be sentenced to three months’ jail, despite a mandatory treatment order report recommending that she undergo treatment for 18 months. The defence urged the court to sentence 63-year-old Christina Cheong Yoke Lin to the recommended mandatory treatment order instead, saying that she did not go looking to commit fraud. (800 words)

26. Commentary: Singapore’s bold bet on seniors and valuable years of life experience

Singapore – Elderly | Channel News Asia | August 22th, 2019

While the retirement age will be raised from age 62 to 63 in 2022, and 65 by 2030, the re-employment age will be raised from 67 to 68 in 2022, and 70 by 2030. Manpower Minister Josephine Teo moved quickly to announce details of the changes to the Central Provident Fund (CPF) rates for older workers the following day, to help them build up their retirement nest egg. But the current CPF withdrawal ages remain unchanged. This has been warmly welcomed by most workers who want to continue to have the option of enjoying the fruits of their labour early. (1200 words)

27. The Big Read: Taking the climate fight beyond straws and tote bags — individual actions that matter

Singapore – Environment | Channel News Asia | September 8th, 2019

The 31-year-old civil servant practises what he calls a “minimalist lifestyle”. He rarely shops, and has only bought four items for himself this year – a water bottle, socks, lenses for his sunglasses and a motorcycle plate number. What sparked the decision? Mr Leow said it happened early last year when he was packing his belongings for his return to Singapore from Australia, where he had been living with his wife for two years because of work. I got a bit fed-up as I was packing … There were many boxes. (4200 words)

28. Media Literacy Council apologises for ‘confusion’ after labelling satire as an example of fake news

Singapore – Fake News | Channel News Asia | September 9th, 2019

“We acknowledge that the post and infographic gave the wrong impression that satire was fake news, which was not the intent. We are sorry for the confusion and will review our material,” MLC said. The Protection from Online Falsehoods and Manipulation Act Bill, which was passed earlier this year, does not cover opinion, criticism, satire or parody. In its initial Facebook post on Sep 5, MLC said that fake news could take many forms and includes: False context, imposter content, manipulated content, misleading content, clickbait and satire. (400 words)

29. Win, lose or draw: Analysing the extension of the two casinos’ duopoly

Singapore – Gambling | The Straits Times | April 20th, 2019

Several analysts, including Morgan Stanley’s, quickly declared the Government as the big winner; and JP Morgan decried the “unnecessary large investments” in the decision to extend the duopoly concession to 2030 in return for an additional investment of $9 billion by the two operators. Both casino operators – Las Vegas Sands and Genting – have cheered in reciprocal official statements about not having to worry about a third entrant into the Singapore casino market for the next 11 years, and about the increased allotment of hotel rooms, gaming machines and casino floor space. (1600 words)

30. Why Singapore won’t take chances in safeguarding social peace: Shanmugam

Singapore – Hate Speech | The Straits Times | April 3th, 2019

It can fall into different categories and be on different platforms. For example, religious hate speech can be very powerful. Political hate speech can be very powerful, especially if the politician is charismatic. It can be in general discourse, in the mass media. It can be as part of entertainment, like in music and theatre. This list is illustrative; it is not intended to be exhaustive. What impact can hate speech have? Hate speech leads to social divides. Repeated hate speech increases people’s prejudices, feelings of being threatened, and propensity to violence. (5600 words)

31. HIV-positive man who avoided taking test, possibly infecting others, gets jail

Singapore – Health | Channel News Asia | September 5th, 2019

The 35-year-old Malaysian started engaging in sexual activity with other men in Singapore in 2003, the court heard. Although he suspected that he could have been exposed to HIV or infected with it, he decided not to get tested after 2008, as he was afraid of losing his permanent residency status in Singapore if he tested positive for HIV. According to the person who reported him to the Ministry of Health (MOH), at least six other men who had sex with him were later diagnosed with the human immunodeficiency virus, which could lead to Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS). (900 words)

32. What can the US health system learn from Singapore?

Singapore – Healthcare | The Straits Times | April 24th, 2019

When we published the results of an Upshot tournament on which country had the world’s best health system, Singapore was eliminated in the first round, largely because most of the experts had a hard time believing much of what the nation seems to achieve. It does achieve a lot. Americans have spent the last decade arguing loudly about whether and how to provide insurance to a relatively small percentage of people who don’t have it. Singapore is way past that. It is perfecting how to deliver care to people, focusing on quality, efficiency and cost. (1800 words)

33. Commentary: How should maid abusers be punished?

Singapore – Justice | Channel News Asia | September 1th, 2019

A firm response to their acts – and similar acts by others – is entirely warranted. But in determining what our response is, we must not forget that “the only justice that can be attained by mortals, who are fallible and are not omniscient, is justice according to law; the justice which flows from the application of sure and settled principles to proved or admitted facts”, as English judge William Bagnall put it. Paradoxically, even as criminal law embodies society’s revulsion at certain crimes, it must do so in a dispassionate, principled manner. (1200 words)

34. Man fined for repositioning toy grenade near Istana to see public reaction

Singapore – Justice | Channel News Asia | July 23th, 2019

For his threatening behaviour, 59-year-old Elankovan Marimuthu was fined S$4,500 on Wednesday (Jul 24). The court heard that Elankovan’s work involved cleaning Istana Park and the surrounding areas. He was doing so at about 7am on Nov 3, 2017, when he came across a toy grenade lying on its side near a fire hydrant along Penang Lane. He decided to position the grenade in an upright manner, said Deputy Public Prosecutor Thiagesh Sukumaran, and used a pair of tongs to do so before leaving the scene. (700 words)

35. Preetipls video: Shanmugam acknowledges racism exists in Singapore, but says situation is improving

Singapore – Justice | Channel News Asia | August 4th, 2019

“You look at the regular discussions on race, issues – this is a basic fact. But the situation now is much better than before, improving over the years,” he said on the sidelines of a temple event in Woodlands. “We want to build a cohesive society, but racism corrodes and deepens the fault lines in society,” he said, adding that Singapore does “a lot” to counter it. In Singapore, racism is discussed “openly”, studied and reported in the media, he said, pointing to surveys done by the Institute of Policy Studies (IPS) as examples. (700 words)

36. Up to S$5,000 fine for those who flout PMD ban at void decks: PAP town councils

Singapore – PMDs | Channel News Asia | September 1th, 2019

The ban, which took effect on Sunday, prohibits PMDs like e-scooters and skateboards, as well as bicycles and e-bikes from void decks and all common areas of housing estates run by the 15 PAP town councils. Public paths where PMDs are allowed under the Active Mobility Act are exempted from the ban. Also exempted are personal mobility aids such as motorised wheelchairs and mobility scooters. During the two months, offenders will be issued a warning letter for the first offence. Thereafter, the town councils will take “strict enforcement action”, he said. (400 words)

37. How commuting times affect HDB flat prices

Singapore – Transport | The Straits Times | April 9th, 2019

A Commuting to work is often time-consuming, expensive and stressful, even on the good days. No wonder most people dread it. Economists dislike commuting as much as anyone and have studied how commuting patterns affect many economic outcomes, such as productivity, where businesses choose to locate and pollution. One particular area of interest has been the trade-off between choosing where to live and the price of housing. Many empirical studies have found that one of the reasons why housing farther away from employment centres such as the Central Business District (CBD) sells for a lower price is the long commutes that residents must endure. (700 words)

38. Bold moves in infrastructure: Thinking big pays off for Singapore planners

Singapore – Urban Planning | The Straits Times | February 4th, 2018

A natural reaction to that would be, “What Long Island Project?” Over time, it has become largely forgotten. But decades ago, urban planners envisioned building an island using reclaimed land off East Coast Park for recreation and with beautiful waterfront housing. But this plan – known as the Long Island Project – has since been put aside as there was little demand for it, reveals the Urban Redevelopment Authority’s (URA) chief planner, Ms Hwang Yu-Ning, in an interview with Insight. “People love East Coast Park, so do we really want to commit to the plan if we don’t need it? (2300 words)

39. Section 230 Was Supposed to Make the Internet a Better Place. It Failed

Tech – Regulation | Bloomberg | August 7th, 2019

A tiny federal statute in 1996 transformed the web into a wildly lucrative business, and became Big Tech’s favorite liability shield. It’s now under attack from all sides. By Felix Gillette @felixgilletteOne afternoon in July, Ted Cruz banged a gavel on the dais, calling to order a hearing of the U.S. Senate Judiciary Subcommittee on the Constitution. The day’s first witness was Karan Bhatia, a top policy adviser for Google. He gazed up at the panel of senators, alarm creeping into his expression, like a 10-point buck hearing the sudden crack of gunfire.When elected officials start appending the prefix “big” to the name of an industry, it’s never a good omen. (3000 words)

40. Playing Video Games Makes Us Fully Human

Video Games | Nautilus | June 27th, 2019

I have an agonizing decision to make. Should I save a governing body that has never done a thing for me? It doesn’t even contain a single person from my race. The aliens of the galactic Council decided long ago that my people should not be trusted, that we were aggressive, entitled, and short-sighted. I’m a soldier engaged in a fight to save the entire galaxy. And now the Council wants my help to destroy their assailants? My companion Ashley is against it. “You can’t sacrifice human lives to save the Council!” she yells. (2500 words)

18 Sep

Readabee 2nd September 2019

1. Two Economists Fuel Democratic Debate Over How Far Left to Go

America – Economics | Wall Street Journal

They criticized mainstream economists and politicians for failing to address racial inequality, and touted more radical remedies of their own. Now, with the 2020 presidential campaign under way and liberal Democrats ascendant, the two economists are in the spotlight, thrust into the middle of an intraparty debate over how much to embrace big government and a race-oriented message. Their signature ideas—guaranteed jobs for all adult Americans seeking them, government-backed trust funds for American babies and reparations for slave descendants—are being talked about on the campaign trail and, in the case of reparations, during a raucous congressional hearing in June. (2500 words)

2. Opinion | Can Ilhan Omar Overcome Her Prejudice?

America – Politics | Wall Street Journal

It was 2006 and I was a young native of Somalia who’d been elected to the Dutch Parliament. The American Jewish Committee was giving me its Moral Courage Award. I felt honored and humbled, but a little dishonest if I didn’t own up to my anti-Semitic past. So I told them how I’d learned to blame the Jews for everything. Fast-forward to 2019. A freshman congresswoman from Minnesota has been infuriating the Jewish community and discomfiting the Democratic leadership with her expressions of anti-Semitism. (2000 words)

3. Corporations Don’t Have to Maximize Profits

Business – Profit Maximization | New York Times | April 16th, 2015

But this belief is utterly false. To quote the U.S. Supreme Court opinion in the recent Hobby Lobby case: “Modern corporate law does not require for-profit corporations to pursue profit at the expense of everything else, and many do not.”The Hobby Lobby case dealt with a closely held company with controlling shareholders, but the Court’s statement on corporate purpose was not limited to such companies. State codes (including that of Delaware, the preeminent state for corporate law) similarly allow corporations to be formed for “any lawful business or purpose,” and the corporate charters of big public firms typically also define company purpose in these broad terms. (600 words)

4. The moral peril in the meritocratic race

Education – Meritocracy | The Straits Times | April 9th, 2019

They got out of school, began their career, started a family and identified the mountain they thought they were meant to climb – I’m going to be an entrepreneur, a doctor, a cop. They did the things society encourages us to do, like make a mark, become successful, buy a home, raise a family, pursue happiness. People on the first mountain spend a lot of time on reputation management. They ask: What do people think of me? Where do I rank? They’re trying to win the victories the ego enjoys. These hustling years are also powerfully shaped by our individualistic and meritocratic culture. (1600 words)

5. Opinion | The Problem With Greta Thunberg’s Climate Activism

Environment – Activism | New York Times | August 2th, 2019

Caldwell is the author of “Reflections on the Revolution in Europe: Immigration, Islam, and the West.”Climate activists in Western Europe had already been radicalizing for some time when record heat engulfed the Continent last month. The high reached 109 degrees in Paris two Thursdays ago. Yet many environmentalists have come to believe that extreme weather alone will never spur Europeans to give up fossil fuels. Nor will talking about it. Provocations and disruption are needed.The problem is not that Europeans think like Americans, 13 percent of whom say human activity is “not responsible at all” for global warming. (1300 words)

6. The Bill-Melinda Gates romance started with a rejection

Gender – Inequality | The Straits Times | April 26th, 2019

When she was still Melinda French and a young employee working at Microsoft in 1987, Bill Gates flirted with her in the carpark and asked if she would go out with him in two weeks. She turned him down. “That’s not spontaneous enough for me,” she told him. “Ask me out closer to the date.” An hour or two later, Bill Gates phoned her and invited her out for that evening. “Is this spontaneous enough for you?” he asked. And then they lived happily ever after. Actually, not exactly. Melinda Gates has written a smart new memoir, The Moment Of Lift, recounting how she ended up a feminist – and arguing that the American workplace needs a makeover. (800 words)

7. China’s Belt-and-Road Initiative Puts a Squeeze on Pakistan

Geopolitics – Belt And Road | Wall Street Journal

Instead, Pakistan is now enmeshed in an economic crisis, putting the brakes on new building, with less than half of $62 billion of Chinese projects carried out. The Chinese infrastructure, all built by Chinese state-owned companies, required the Pakistani government to guarantee repayments to Beijing. Pakistan is now asking China to step up with a different kind of initiative: some $1 billion in development aid and the establishment of factories from the Chinese private sector in the country. Pakistan also recently needed a $2.1 billion emergency loan from China—along with even more from Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates—to stave off a balance-of-payments crisis long enough to negotiate a bailout, expected within weeks, from the International Monetary Fund. (1100 words)

8. Xi Jinping’s China seeks to be rich and communist

Geopolitics – China | The Straits Times | April 11th, 2019

If China were to achieve this, it would transform a world in which all large, high-income countries are currently democratic. It would reshape the global balance of power, not just economically and militarily, but also politically and ideologically. This is what President Xi Jinping expects to happen. But how likely is it, in fact? Today, China is not quite exceptional. True, the number of countries ruled by a party that calls itself communist is far smaller than it was before 1991. Yet there remain a few others, notably Vietnam. (1000 words)

9. Breaking the nuclear deal ratchets up the conflict between Iran and America

Geopolitics – Nuclear | The Economist | June 29th, 2019

Only the anti-aircraft guns hint at what goes on eight metres (26 feet) underground. For over a decade Iranian scientists there have fed uranium hexafluoride into centrifuges that spin at twice the speed of sound so as to sift out uranium-235, the isotope capable of sustaining a chain reaction in a nuclear power plant or bomb. The “raw” uranium that goes in is 0.7% 235U; the stuff that comes out is 4% 235U.In 2015, as part of the nuclear deal between Iran, the permanent-five nations on the UN Security Council and Germany, Iran promised that it would not enrich any uranium beyond this 4% level, nor hold stocks of more than 300kg of such low-enriched uranium (LEU). (2500 words)

10. Ignore the fad diets – sugar in fruit doesn’t make it unhealthy

Health – Sugar | The Straits Times | April 21th, 2019

“What is going on?” one of them posted on a dietitian Internet mailing list. What is going on is that the current crop of fad diets, such as paleo, keto, carnivore and pegan – have persuaded a lot of people that fruit is a dietary taboo. There was a time when we did not question if fruit was good for us, when we more or less took “eat your fruits and veggies” to heart. Today, many people are worried that fruit is too high in carbohydrates, sugar and calories. One of my patients would not eat any fruit other than blueberries because she had bought into the myth – again, promoted by fad diets – that blueberries are the only “safe” fruit to eat because they are “low glycaemic” (in other words, they do not cause your blood sugar to spike). (900 words)

11. Opinion | Hong Kong Has Nothing Left to Lose

Hong Kong – Protests | New York Times | July 2th, 2019

Ms. Lim, the author of “The People’s Republic of Amnesia: Tiananmen Revisited,” is writing a book about Hong Kong.阅读简体中文版閱讀繁體中文版HONG KONG — After breaking into Hong Kong’s legislature, protesters left a message for Carrie Lam, the city’s top government official, spray-painted on a pillar: “It was you who taught me that peaceful protests are futile.”To the young activists, the storming of the Legislative Council was an act of desperation. Three times in the past month, tremendous numbers of Hong Kongers — at one point estimated to be more than two million — marched peacefully to protest against a controversial extradition bill with China, which they fear would undermine Hong Kong’s judiciary and its freedom. (1100 words)

12. Opinion | What the Hong Kong Protests Are Really About

Hong Kong – Protests | New York Times | July 1th, 2019

This gives moral force to our way of life. Mr. Lai is the founder and majority owner of Next Media, which publishes the Apple Daily newspaper and Next Magazine in Hong Kong and Taiwan.阅读简体中文版閱讀繁體中文版When hundreds of thousands of my fellow Hong Kongers took to the streets to demonstrate last month, most of the world saw people protesting provocative legislation that would allow extraditions to mainland China.But the Chinese government, which supported the extradition measure, had a much broader view of the protests. (900 words)

13. Disneyland and the fight for fairer pay in America

Inequality – Pay Gap | The Straits Times | April 25th, 2019

The thread went viral, partly because of my name. But I suspect it would be far harder to get that reaction if my last name were Procter or Gamble. That’s because the Disney brand occupies a special place in America’s economic landscape. Its profits are powered by emotion and sentiment and, yes, something as fundamental as the difference between right and wrong. I believe that Disney could well lead the way, if its leaders so chose, to a more decent, humane way of doing business. I had to speak out about the naked indecency of chief executive Robert Iger’s pay. (800 words)

14. Do we need an IMF to regulate the Internet?

Internet – Regulation | The Straits Times | April 19th, 2019

They assumed back then that monitoring money was crucial for fostering peace and building growth. No surprise there, perhaps: After the war there was an urgent need to restart the global economy, via institutions such as the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund (IMF). And, for all the bumps in subsequent decades, that is what happened. When the IMF and the World Bank held their spring meetings this month, downtown Washington was adorned with posters hailing “75 years of cooperation”. But amid the celebrations, it is worth asking: Is it time for the IMF to think beyond money? (1000 words)

15. The New Ways Your Boss Is Spying on You

Privacy – Work | Wall Street Journal

The tone of your voice in a meeting. How often you’re away from your desk. How quickly you respond to emails. Where you roam in the office. What’s on your computer screen. To be an employee of a large company in the U.S. now often means becoming a workforce data generator—from the first email sent from bed in the morning to the Wi-Fi hotspot used during lunch to the new business contact added before going home. Employers are parsing those interactions to learn who is influential, which teams are most productive and who is a flight risk. (2400 words)

16. Three Hours of Work a Day? You’re Not Fooling Anyone.

Privacy – Work | Wall Street Journal

Brian Dauer kicks off his by checking which websites his colleagues have browsed. Mr. Dauer works at Ship Sticks, a West Palm Beach, Fla., company that ships sports gear and other luggage, which last year installed software to monitor its workers. It tracks the websites employees visit minute-by-minute, and has the ability to take remote screenshots of workers’ computers. “We’re not the Big Brother type,” says Mr. Dauer, the director of operations. But as Ship Sticks has expanded rapidly—growing to about 80 employees since 2011—the software, ActivTrak, has been invaluable in helping boost productivity, he says. (1300 words)

17. Would You Return This Lost Wallet?

Psychology – Honesty | New York Times | June 20th, 2019

But according to a clever new study involving thousands of people in 40 countries, what most of us assume about human nature is wrong.The three-year study, possibly the largest real-world test of whether people behave honestly when given incentives not to, found they are actually more likely to return lost wallets containing money. And the more money, the better the chances people will return it.Experts say the study, published Thursday in the journal Science, suggests that policymakers and businesses might better prevent dishonest behaviors like lying on tax returns by using moral carrots instead of punitive sticks.“It shows that when we make a decision whether to be dishonest or not, it’s not only ‘What can I get out of it versus what’s the punishment, what’s the effort?’” said Nina Mazar, a behavioral scientist at Boston University who was not involved in the study. (1300 words)

18. The idea of reparations for slavery is morally appealing but flawed

Race – Politics | The Economist | June 29th, 2019

But when asked last week whether he thought African-Americans should receive restitution for slavery and the decades of lawful discrimination that followed it, the Republican Senate leader’s response was sound. He was against the idea, he said, in part for practical reasons—for how would the recipients of compensation be selected? He also objected in principle: if African-Americans received reparations, what about the other victims of discrimination, including America’s many “waves of immigrants”? (1000 words)

19. Singapore’s first on-demand driverless shuttle buses to ferry passengers around Sentosa from Aug 26

Singapore – AI | Channel News Asia | August 20th, 2019

The autonomous vehicles – comprising two minibuses and two smaller shuttles – will ply popular destinations along a 5.7km route, including Siloso Point, Beach Station, Palawan Beach, Tanjong Beach and Sentosa Golf Club. Passengers will be able to hail an autonomous shuttle via the “Ride Now Sentosa” mobile app or kiosks along the 5.7km route, said the Ministry of Transport (MOT), Sentosa Development Corporation (SDC) and ST Engineering in a joint release on Tuesday. The service will operate for four hours on weekdays, from 10am to 12pm and from 2pm to 4pm. (400 words)

20. 3 kittens found sedated, hidden under carpet in car at Woodlands Checkpoint

Singapore – Animal Rights | Channel News Asia | August 23th, 2019

During a vehicle check on Tuesday, ICA officers noticed that the vehicle’s passenger appeared “nervous and avoided eye contact”. The animals were observed to be have been sedated, ICA said. Two men – the 21-year-old Singaporean driver and his 20-year-old Singaporean passenger – were referred to the National Parks Board (NParks) for investigation. “The kittens are now under the care and quarantine of NParks, and will be rehomed,” ICA said in a Facebook post. “The poor conditions and manner under which animals are smuggled would cause them unnecessary suffering and even death,” ICA said. (200 words)

21. Commentary: Climate change in Singapore and what the future brings

Singapore – Climate | Channel News Asia | August 31th, 2019

Many Singaporeans who have paid only cursory attention to environmental issues may be surprised by the gravity of this message. Sure, there are the occasional flash floods and yes, we do remember the days when the island was shrouded in haze. But have we come to the point where the climate has turned into such a monstrosity that our city-state has to “go to war” against this gargantuan enemy for generations ahead? First, the observation and scientific understanding of climate change, especially how headline global trends compare in relation to Singapore. (1100 words)

22. Commentary: How effectively can Singapore adapt to sea level rise?

Singapore – Climate | Channel News Asia | August 25th, 2019

Several other coastal cities and small islands also face this hazard, and lessons can be drawn from how they plan for and adapt to it. Recent research shows three general approaches can be considered when dealing with the threat of sea level rise. First, accommodate the threat, which includes flood-proofing existing buildings and infrastructure, or designating areas that would be allowed to flood during high tide. Second, retreat from the threat, which includes the removal and reallocation of key infrastructure and assets to areas that the sea cannot inundate. (1300 words)

23. Engineering solutions to tackle rising sea levels important but more research vital: Experts

Singapore – Climate | Channel News Asia | August 19th, 2019

This follows Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong’s National Day Rally speech on Sunday (Aug 18), during which he highlighted that Singapore is susceptible to the effects of climate change and vulnerable to rising sea levels. As part of strengthening the Republic’s coastal defences, Mr Lee explained that one solution could be a reclamation method known as empoldering. Polders are created by first building a seawall in the water, before pumping out the water behind the seawall to create dry land. This land can be lower than the sea level, but water has to be continually pumped out. (900 words)

24. Commentary: Singapore’s ivory trade ban tackles elephant in room but work ahead a mammoth task

Singapore – Conservation | Channel News Asia | August 16th, 2019

Over the last six months, Singapore authorities seized an unprecedented amount of 38 tonnes of pangolin scales and almost 10 tonnes of elephant ivory worth more than S$170 million – with some close to the largest seizures the world has seen. Led by the National Parks Board (NParks), these acts of enforcement were a true testament of the country’s zero-tolerance to illegal wildlife trade. Just two days after the most recent seizure of 15 baskets containing 815 birds over the National Day weekend, Singapore announced the latest highlight of our fight against illegal wildlife trade: An ivory ban. (900 words)

25. Singapore police’s new anti-scam centre wants to hit scammers where it hurts

Singapore – Cybercrime | Channel News Asia | August 29th, 2019

That’s the message the Singapore Police Force (SPF) wants to convey as it introduced new tools such as a new dedicated “nerve centre” for scam-related crimes, as well as partnering industry players to more effectively stop stolen money from falling into the perpetrators’ hands. On Friday (Aug 30), the police revealed that the new Anti-Scam Centre (ASC) was set up within the Commercial Affairs Department on Jun 18 this year and its focus is to disrupt scammers’ operations and help mitigate victims’ losses. (1600 words)

26. Commentary: Careful with photos you post online. You may be putting your digital identity at risk

Singapore – Cybersecurity | Channel News Asia | August 22th, 2019

The photo filtering app which has been around since 2017, had only recently become the latest social media craze as photos with its filter that transform one’s look younger or older had gone viral. It was all good fun until users and experts began to notice the red flags. One point he alluded to is the potential criminal use of users’ personal data. In this incident, that data refers to images of users’ faces. But as more solutions leverage biometric data – which includes our facial features – for authorisation and authentication, careless sharing can put people at risk of identity-based attacks. (900 words)

27. Asia Times article on Shanmugam ‘spreading disinformation’ about drug policy is ‘quite inaccurate’: MHA

Singapore – Drugs | Channel News Asia | August 2th, 2019

In the article published on Jul 17, Ms Gen Sander wrote that Mr Shanmugam “continues to make poorly informed and inflammatory claims on drug policy”, despite Malaysia announcing plans to decriminalise drug addiction and drug possession for personal use. She also wrote that Singapore has failed to provide transparent data on the effectiveness of the death penalty as a deterrent. “Although officials have repeatedly affirmed that Singapore has one of the lowest rates of drug use in the world, the government has consistently failed to provide transparent data,” she said. (600 words)

28. Who guards the bodyguard? The ethics of care for older adults

Singapore – Elderly | The Straits Times | April 7th, 2019

Will the photographs survive the move to his new, but much smaller, residence? Once a bodyguard to Mr Lee Kuan Yew, 90-year-old Tong’s contributions to nation-building have not gone unnoticed. Together with more than 450,000 of his contemporaries born before 1950, he forms the Pioneer Generation currently entitled to additional healthcare subsidies. Tong, however, is struggling. His health is deteriorating, his mobility is limited. He has to borrow money just to buy food, which eats at his self-worth and dignity. (2400 words)

29. Allowing racist rap video could normalise offensive speech: Shanmugam

Singapore – Free Speech | Channel News Asia | August 22th, 2019

Speaking at the CNM Leaders Summit organised by the National University of Singapore on Thursday (Aug 22), Mr Shanmugam expanded on why the Government acted to remove the rap video by YouTuber Preetipls and her brother Subhas Nair, which came in response to a controversial “brownface” advertisement. In the advertisement, Chinese actor Dennis Chew appeared in “brownface” to portray an Indian man. He also cross-dressed as a Malay woman and a Chinese woman. The rap video by the Nair siblings was laced with vulgar language targeting the Chinese community. (600 words)

30. Commentary: What’s the problem with a cheer about ‘kukubirds’?

Singapore – Gender | Channel News Asia | August 28th, 2019

Tale number 1. About a week ago, a video of a group of students riotously chanting “kukubird” (a reference to the penis) while making thrusting hip gyrations was shared on Instagram. Believed to have been filmed during a freshman orientation camp at Nanyang Technological University, this sparked a significant amount of online censure, with blogger mrbrown aka Lee Kin Mun calling out this behaviour and netizens quickly joining in to express outrage. Ostensibly, such a crude cheer is offensive and unbecoming of university students. (1100 words)

31. Will China allow a different system in Hong Kong? Wishful thinking, says Singapore’s Shanmugam

Singapore – Hong Kong | Channel News Asia | August 11th, 2019

That is “wishful thinking replacing reality” by some protesters, said Singapore’s Home Affairs and Law Minister K Shanmugam. In an interview with South China Morning Post and Lianhe Zaobao – the transcript of which was released on the Ministry of Law’s website on Sunday (Aug 11) – Mr Shanmugam addressed questions about his views on the situation in Hong Kong. Solutions have to be found, both for the socio-economic and ideological issues that Hong Kong is facing, he said. To solve the problems, Hong Kong needs a supportive China, and the solutions need to work for both Hong Kong and China, he added. (700 words)

32. More HDB flats in the CBD?

Singapore – Housing | The Straits Times | April 11th, 2019

This question of whether new public housing flats will be built in the Central Business District (CBD) has emerged after the Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA) launched its Draft Master Plan last month. A key part of the plan were incentive schemes to nudge developers to turn ageing offices into homes and hotels. The URA revealed plans to add 20,000 homes in the Central Area, which the CBD is a part of. This is almost 40 per cent more than the current 51,706 homes there, which also includes the Outram, River Valley and Orchard areas. (1500 words)

33. Man charged with burning Singapore flag in Woodlands

Singapore – Nationalism | Channel News Asia | August 8th, 2019

Elson Ong Yong Liang is accused of using a lighter to burn a Singapore flag along the common corridor on the 13th floor of Block 774 Woodlands Crescent. The incident happened on Sunday at around 6am to 6.15am, according to court documents. This also resulted in seven other flags, which were tied vertically across seven floors, to be damaged. Ong, who is Singaporean, appeared in court via video link. His case will be mentioned again next Thursday. In a statement on Wednesday, the Singapore Police Force (SPF) said they were alerted to the incident at around 12.40pm on Sunday. (200 words)

34. PMDs: Give pedestrians right of way on paths

Singapore – PMDs | The Straits Times | July 18th, 2019

“The childcare centre is five minutes’ walk from our flat. The PMD came from nowhere. I didn’t see it coming. The next thing I knew, there was a loud piak (snapping sound) from my left knee and I was on the ground,” she said. When I visited her at her home last week, she called out to me to wait as she hobbled slowly to the door. She recounted how her family took her to the emergency department at Changi General Hospital the morning after the accident on May 3, when the pain from her fall set in and she could not get out of bed. (2100 words)

35. Ambulance driver who shared photo of hanged maid fined

Singapore – Social Media | Channel News Asia | September 10th, 2018

Shaik Haziq Fahmi Shaik Nasair Johar, 30, who has since lost his job, pleaded guilty to one charge under the Official Secrets Act. He was an emergency ambulance vehicle driver with Unistrong, a company contracted to respond to medical emergencies. On Feb 1 last year, Haziq was on duty at the Marine Parade Fire Post when he and his team were dispatched to a room where a maid was found hanging from a fan. His team members carried out the necessary procedures to search for signs of life. The co-accused, Nurizzah Afiqah Hussain, a 27-year-old Unistrong emergency ambulance paramedic, pronounced the woman dead. (500 words)

36. Technology can displace lawyers, warns Chief Justice as he urges profession to adapt to new reality

Singapore – Tech | Channel News Asia | August 27th, 2019

“The future of the legal profession, like that of our nation, hangs on the ability and willingness of its members to reskill and relearn,” he said. “Technology is already beginning to displace lawyers from areas of practice, especially those involving the more routine areas which are more susceptible to automation.” Speaking at the annual Mass Call at the Supreme Court auditorium, Chief Justice Menon gave the example of a free online service recently launched by OCBC that can generate a will in less than 10 minutes. (600 words)

37. 2 Singaporeans detained under ISA for intending to join Islamic State in Syria

Singapore – Terrorism | Channel News Asia | July 25th, 2019

The ministry’s full press release is reproduced below: In two separate cases, Singaporeans Kuthubdeen Haja Najumudeen (Haja) and Suderman bin Samikin (Suderman) were detained under the Internal Security Act (ISA) in May and July 2019 respectively. Investigations established that they were radicalised and had harboured the intention to make their way to Syria to join the terrorist group Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS). Kuthubdeen Haja NajumudeenHaja, a 36-year-old licensed money-changer, was a follower of Sri Lankan radical preacher Zahran Hashim (Zahran). (600 words)

38. Commentary: How the new Point-to-Point Transport Industry Bill levels the playing field for ride-hailing operators

Singapore – Transport | Channel News Asia | August 23th, 2019

Gone are the days of waiting for a taxi to come by and hoping no one in front of you flags the cab down first. More private-hire cars have spilled onto the scene as apps like Grab, Go-Jek and at one point, Uber, ignited demand. Although their arrival has been welcomed by commuters and drivers, the future of ride-hailing has sparked fresh concerns about competition, fairness and the protection of the public interest. In this context, Parliament’s recent passing of the Point-to-Point Passenger Transport Industry Bill will change how taxis and ride-hailing services are regulated in Singapore to the benefit of commuters and drivers. (1300 words)

39. Commentary: Road safety and the case for regulating private-hire car operators

Singapore – Transport | Channel News Asia | August 13th, 2019

Consumers generally want some level of protection, but businesses are wary of too much regulation stifling innovation and growth. However, the recently passed Point-to-Point (P2P) Passenger Transport Industry Bill that will take affect from June 2020 is long overdue. What started out as just a ride-sharing app, private-hire car companies have pretty much taken up many aspects of our daily lives from commuting, eating, shopping, and even banking. Should you do it? I remembered when Uber exited the Singapore market, the prices of Grab rides went up almost immediately. (1200 words)

40. Facebook, YouTube Overrun With Bogus Cancer-Treatment Claims

Social Media – Fake News | Wall Street Journal

Now, the companies say they are taking steps to curb such accounts. Facebook last month changed its News Feed algorithms to reduce promotion of posts promising miracle cures or flogging health services, a move that will reduce the number of times they pop up in user feeds, the company says. Some of the affected posts involve a supplement salesman who promotes baking-soda injections as part of cancer treatment. “Misleading health content is particularly bad for our community,” Facebook said in a blog post announcing the moves. (1500 words)

41. Where female athletes are more popular than male ones

Sports – Gender | The Economist | June 27th, 2019

This was no shock upset. The Stars and Stripes are the most successful side in the history of women’s football, having won the World Cup three times and Olympic gold four. This year they romped through the group stages with an aggregate score of 18-0, a total inflated by their record-breaking 13-0 drubbing of lowly Thailand.This on-pitch success, however, is marred by controversy in court. The members of the United States women’s team marked International Women’s Day on March 8th by filing a class-action suit against their employer, the United States Soccer Federation (USSF). (600 words)

19 Aug

Readabee 19th August 2019

1. What worries Zuckerberg more than online speech rules?

Facebook – Censorship | The Straits Times | April 16th, 2019

But that’s largely fine with the technology giants – because it distracts attention from a bigger problem that goes to the heart of their business model. The White Paper on online harms, published last week, is an effort to curb the online spread of dangerous content, such as incitement to terrorism. It proposed “substantial fines” on both companies and executives who have breached a “statutory duty of care” that would be enforced by a new regulator. As if that wasn’t enough, the regulator will “ensure the focus is on protecting users from harm – not judging what is true or not”. (800 words)

2. Europe heroically defends itself against veggie burgers

Food – Language | The Economist | June 29th, 2019

All right, it isn’t literally blasted with anti-aircraft fire, but you know what we mean. One ongoing battle (OK, nobody died) involves the use of words. Earlier this year, the European Parliament’s agriculture committee voted to prohibit the terms “burger”, “sausage”, “escalope” and “steak” to describe products that do not contain any meat. It was inspired by the European Court of Justice’s decision in 2017 to ban the use of “milk”, “butter” and “cream” for non-dairy products. Exceptions were made for “ice cream” and “almond milk”, but “soya milk” went down the drain, lest consumers assume it had been extracted from the soya udder of a soya cow. (600 words)

3. Opinion | Hong Kong Makes Its Stand

Hong Kong – Protests | Wall Street Journal

Several blocks away from the Legislative Council, my cheeks flush. Continuing west of Arsenal Street, my bare arms tingle and burn as I count at least 20 police vans and buses queued up. A block later, I pull on my swimming goggles, but my eyes water as the lenses fog. Ahead of me, tear gas lingers in the muggy air. Despite the danger, thousands of Hong Kongers protested near the Legislative Council building, or LegCo. Lawmakers are pushing forward a bill that would allow extradition to mainland China. (1100 words)

4. Is America becoming an oligarchy?

Inequality – Democracy | The Straits Times | April 16th, 2019

Of course I’m a capitalist, he said; America “is a capitalist society”. But, he continued: “It’s got to be democratic capitalism.” He said that when capitalism becomes unrestrained by democratic checks and impulses, that is no longer the kind of capitalism that once produced broad prosperity in the United States. “If you want to see what happens when you have capitalism without democracy, you can see it very clearly in Russia,” he said. “It turns into crony capitalism, and that turns into oligarchy.” (700 words)

5. Inequality and Globalization

Inequality – Globalisation | Foreign Affairs | Jan/Feb 2016

The average Frenchman, for example, probably does not care how many Chinese exceed his own standard of living, but that Frenchman surely would pay attention if he started lagging behind his fellow citizens. Yet when thinking about inequality, it also makes sense to approach the world as a single community: accounting, for example, not only for the differences in living standards within France but also for those between rich French people and poor Chinese (and poor French and rich Chinese). When looking at the world through this lens, some notable trends stand out. (1800 words)

6. The rise and rise of media streaming

Media – Streaming | The Straits Times | April 15th, 2019

Now, with the boom of over-the-top (OTT) subscription-based streaming services, people sitting in the same room can watch their own shows on their own screens. OTT services refer to media content delivered directly to a consumer over the Internet. Such services have made it easier for consumers to access the content directly, removing the dependence on pay-television operators who usually act as an intermediary to control or distribute content. As a result, there has been no let-up in consumers cutting the cord to pay-TV services. (1200 words)

7. Three cheers for Amazon’s human eavesdroppers

Privacy – Amazon | The Straits Times | April 13th, 2019

The revelation this week that a large team of Amazon employees listens to conversations recorded by the company’s digital assistant has exposed the contrast between the hype of artificial intelligence and the reality of the armies of underpaid humans that make the technology work in real life. It is these battalions that are leading Silicon Valley’s massive privacy invasion. AI is supposed to be good at pattern recognition and natural language processing. However, it is all but impossible to train a neural network to recognise speech or faces with certainty. (1000 words)

8. Commentary: An intense urge to hurt someone, when anger gets out of hand for some

Singapore – Anger | Channel News Asia | August 1th, 2019

Sessions with his psychologist soon uncovered that he felt upset with himself because he couldn’t regulate his emotions. He was not able to control his anger. Small things would trigger intense anger, and provoke him to throw objects he was holding, break items close to him, or yell loudly. His anger also made it impossible to maintain a romantic relationship for a long time. In fact, Jonathan shared there were many times when he came very close to getting into trouble with the law, as he had intense urges to hurt people because he felt that they had wronged him. (1500 words)

9. Commentary: Be concerned about unhealthy mindsets about dating and marriage, not fewer babies

Singapore – Babies | Channel News Asia | July 27th, 2019

The decline in birth numbers has been tied to the rise in the median age of first-time mothers, from 29.7 in 2009 to 30.6 last year, suggesting that more women are putting off childbearing. By contrast, a number of European countries witnessed a baby bump earlier this decade after the age at childbearing stopped climbing, as more women get around to having the children they had earlier postponed. Why hasn’t the age at childbearing stopped climbing in Singapore? Three factors are driving fertility delay: Inconsistent messaging, constraints and overconfidence. (1400 words)

10. 10 complaints made over Huawei’s S$54 phone promotion, says advertising body

Singapore – CSR | Channel News Asia | July 30th, 2019

Many left angry and frustrated when stocks for the S$54 Huawei Y6 Pro 2019 ran out. It normally sells for S$198. According to those in the queue, each store had fewer than 30 sets of the phone on offer. In response to CNA’s queries, the Advertising Standards Authority of Singapore (ASAS) said on Tuesday (Jul 30) that it received 10 feedback on the promotion, adding that it is engaging Huawei on the matter. “We would like to remind advertisers to ensure that their advertisements comply with the Singapore Code of Advertising Practice, which states that they must be legal, decent, honest and truthful,” said the chairman of ASAS, Professor Ang Peng Hwa. (300 words)

11. Anger, frustration as long queues form across Singapore for S$54 Huawei phone

Singapore – Consumerism | Channel News Asia | July 25th, 2019

The Chinese telecommunications firm had advertised the promotion for the Huawei Y6 Pro 2019 – which normally sells for S$198 – to mark Singapore’s 54th National Day. The promotion is applicable only to Singapore citizens and permanent residents aged 50 and above as of Dec 31 this year. Each customer was allowed to buy up to two phones and according to those in the queue, each store had less than 30 sets of the phone on offer. Queues outside Huawei outlets started forming as early as 4am, and stocks of the phone ran out even before the stores opened. (600 words)

12. Sephora data breach: 3.7m customer records up for sale on Dark Web, says cybersecurity firm

Singapore – Cybersecurity | Channel News Asia | August 1th, 2019

Russian company Group-IB said in a news release on Thursday (Aug 1) its threat intelligence team found two databases with customer data on underground forums, with the leak dating back to as early as February this year. According to the seller, the database consists of 500,000 records including the user names and hashed passwords from Sephora’s Indonesia and Thailand websites. The listing said the data was from February this year, he added. The second database surfaced on an underground forum on Jul 28 this year, a day before news of the breach broke. (600 words)

13. Pathlight School to open new campus for 500 primary level students in 2023

Singapore – Disability | Channel News Asia | July 26th, 2019

The new campus at Tampines Street 91 will be able to take in 500 primary level students, helping the Ministry of Education (MOE) meet demand for places in special education schools. Pathlight, which started operations in 2004 with just 41 students, now has about 1,400 primary, secondary and vocational-track students. The school currently has one permanent campus at Ang Mo Kio Ave 10 that caters to Primary 1 and 2 students, and an interim campus at Ang Mo Kio Stree 44 that caters to Primary 3 to 6 students. (700 words)

14. No bell curve grading in national exams, most universities

Singapore – Education | The Straits Times | June 17th, 2019

A spokesman for the ministry told The Straits Times: “School-based assessments and national examinations are standards-referenced, where the grades awarded reflect a candidate’s own level of mastery in the subject based on an absolute set of standards.” This means a student’s grades are not dependent on how well he performs in comparison with his peers. In a grading system based on a bell curve, fixed proportions of students attain the various grades. Of the six autonomous universities, only the National University of Singapore (NUS) and Nanyang Technological University (NTU) still moderate results using a bell curve for certain modules. (1400 words)

15. Commentary: These PSLE changes won’t fix our national obsession with academic achievement

Singapore – Education | Channel News Asia | July 29th, 2019

He was speaking in response to parental concerns that this new scoring model did not appear to bring significant changes as students would still be sorted and differentiated according to their examination results. Is the education system evolving fast enough in order to better equip our students for the future? The idea was that these students would then be better able to develop other non-academic attributes such as creativity and leadership. That same year, the Direct School Admission scheme was introduced to accord priority to non-academic talents during admission exercises for secondary schools and junior colleges, and subsequently, polytechnics too. (1300 words)

16. Next year’s Primary 5 students to get exam results based on new PSLE scoring system

Singapore – Education | Channel News Asia | July 25th, 2019

They will be graded based on an Achievement Level (AL) score ranging from 1 to 8, with 1 being the best score and 8 the lowest. In the following years, all P5 and P6 students will receive their results in that format, moving away from the T-score system which will be scrapped in 2021. This change will not affect students from Primary 1 to 4 who will continue to receive progress reports. The AL system will result in 29 possible scores, as opposed to the current T-score system, which has about 200 variations, according to MOE. (1200 words)

17. Could more be done to reduce plastic packaging waste in Singapore’s supermarkets?

Singapore – Environment | Channel News Asia | July 27th, 2019

Fruit and vegetables are often wrapped in plastic while meat and fish usually comes in a tray encased in clingwrap. There are also usually plenty of plastic bags on hand for those loose items that shoppers select before they’re weighed and priced. Such scenes are repeated at supermarkets around the world. But questions are starting to be raised about whether more should be done to reduce the reliance of supermarkets on plastic packaging, as the debate extends beyond cutting down on plastic shopping bags. (1400 words)

18. Myanmar citizens deported from Singapore over alleged insurgent ties remanded in custody

Singapore – Immigration | Channel News Asia | July 26th, 2019

“We issued another remand this morning for them,” Min Thant, an information officer at the Western District Court in the commercial capital of Yangon, told Reuters by telephone, without giving further details. They are being held in an undisclosed location along with two other people including a driver, according to relatives and a lawyer. Authorities in Myanmar have declined to provide details about the case or give the whereabouts of the detainees. Singapore’s home ministry said the group, members of the Rakhine Buddhist minority, had “organised and mobilised” some members of the Myanmar community in Singapore to support the Arakan Army (AA), an insurgent group fighting for greater autonomy in Rakhine and Chin states, and its political wing, the United League of Arakan. (600 words)

19. Beware ‘class warfare’ approach to taxes

Singapore – Inequality | The Straits Times | April 11th, 2019

Decades of strong growth produced economic convergence with rich nations in North America and Western Europe. Given how few nations have made that jump, this is a remarkable achievement. What’s even more noteworthy is that Singapore’s economy then continued to expand at a healthy pace. Based on measures such as per-capita economic output, residents of Singapore are now significantly better off than their counterparts in almost every nation in the so-called rich man’s club of the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD). (1000 words)

20. Prosecution calls for higher sentence in landmark maid abuse case, reversal of acquitted charge

Singapore – Justice | Channel News Asia | August 2th, 2019

Former IT manager Tay Wee Kiat, 41, had received two years’ jail for his part in the abuse of 31-year-old maid Moe Moe Than in 2012. His wife Chia Yun Ling, 43, was sentenced to three years and 11 months’ jail and fined S$4,000 for 15 charges. The maid from Myanmar had been force-fed a mixture of rice and sugar with a funnel after complaining of not having enough to eat. When she ran to the toilet choking, she was instructed to throw up inside a plastic bag and eat her vomit. The prosecution turned to the High Court to appeal for three years and two months’ jail for Tay, an increase of 14 months, and for his wife to be convicted of a charge that the district judge had acquitted her of. (1200 words)

21. 7 in 10 Singapore workers will take pay cut for one extra day of holiday: Survey

Singapore – Labour | Channel News Asia | July 25th, 2019

According to travel company Expedia’s latest Vacation Deprivation Survey, about six in 10 Singaporeans said they were deprived of vacations in 2018, up from 57 per cent in 2017 and 41 per cent in 2016. The survey placed Singapore as the sixth most vacation-deprived market in the world. Conducted with 11,000 full-time working adults across 19 countries, including 300 people in Singapore, the survey uncovered workers’ sentiments on whether the number of vacation days they received in 2018 was adequate. (400 words)

22. MOE, MSF ‘very concerned’ about spike in youth suicides; experts say more support and awareness necessary

Singapore – Mental Health | Channel News Asia | August 4th, 2019

“It is not yet a trend, but we must monitor this closely and take various measures to address it,” said spokespersons for the ministries in response to email queries from CNA. The number of suicides in Singapore rose 10 per cent last year, with suicides among boys aged 10 to 19 at a record high, the Samaritans of Singapore (SOS) said last week. A total of 94 people aged between 10 and 29 killed themselves last year, SOS said. Among boys aged between 10 and 19 years old, there were 19 suicides last year – the highest since it began keeping records in 1991 and almost triple the seven cases recorded in 2017. (1600 words)

23. Progress on race and religion occur when issues surface: Pritam Singh on ‘offensive’ rap video by Preetipls

Singapore – Race | Channel News Asia | July 31th, 2019

Mr Singh was commenting on the video by YouTube performer Preeti Nair, also known as Preetipls, featuring her and her brother Subhas Nair rapping a stream of vulgarities in response to a controversial advertisement. The ad by NETS to promote the E-Pay platform featured Mediacorp actor Dennis Chew, who is Chinese, portraying characters of different races. This sparked criticism over the use of “brownface”, the act of darkening one’s fair skin to mimic that of another race. “The announcement of an investigation against Preeti Nair and Subhas Nair for offensive speech against the Chinese community is a case in point.”Mr Singh noted that the status quo on race and religion in Singapore is the result of tolerance, compromise and give-and-take among different communities. (600 words)

24. Singapore’s religious harmony law to be updated: Shanmugam

Singapore – Race | Channel News Asia | July 24th, 2019

Mr Shanmugam, who was speaking at a forum on religion, extremism and identity politics, said that the MRHA, which was passed in Parliament in 1990 and came into force in 1992, needs to be refreshed. “The world has become a very different place, we now have Facebook, Twitter, Google. Hate can go viral in seconds,” he said at the forum organised by the Institute of Policy Studies and the Ministry of Home Affairs. “We are going to need to relook the MRHA, (and) need a more robust set of tools to make sure we can stop the spreading of hate and discord.” (800 words)

25. The Big Read: Dangers lurk in youth’s chase for social media ‘likes’

Singapore – Social Media | Channel News Asia | July 28th, 2019

This is a snapshot of a day in the life of 21-year-old full-time model Lukas Koshy, who has been losing sleep since he got sucked into the latest social media craze, TikTok, a video-sharing app filled with 15-second lip-syncing videos, memes, and all things amusing to a Generation Z’er like him. Five hours of sleep is all that he is mostly getting these days. “It’s unhealthy,” the Singaporean admits, but he doesn’t see a need to change his ways. He has over 13,600 followers and a “like” count of more than 95,000. (3200 words)

26. Monthly household income in Singapore rising faster than expenditure, survey shows

Singapore – Statistics | Channel News Asia | July 31th, 2019

Conducted by the Singapore Department of Statistics (SingStat), the Household Expenditure Survey 2017/18 also found improvements in the standard of living here. Resident households’ average monthly household income from all sources – defined as regular income from employment, business, investment and others, as well as regular government transfers such as the Workfare Income Supplement – was S$11,780, up from S$10,470 in 2012/13 when the survey was last conducted. This was an increase of 2.4 per cent per annum in nominal terms, or 2.2 per cent a year in real terms after factoring in inflation. (1000 words)

27. Subsidies helpful, but public education also needed to improve adult vaccination rates: Experts

Singapore – Vaccination | Channel News Asia | July 31th, 2019

Yet according to figures from the Ministry of Health (MOH) only 12 per cent of adults aged 65 to 74 in Singapore have been vaccinated against it. With the take-up rate for the influenza vaccine equally low at 14 per cent, experts find the numbers worrying given that it can be more difficult for seniors to fight off infections as their immune systems weaken. To improve the take-up rates, a multi-agency task force proposed on Sunday (Jul 28) that vaccination subsidies be given to Singaporean adults and Permanent Residents to protect themselves against vaccine-preventable diseases. (900 words)

28. Millions of Business Listings on Google Maps Are Fake—and Google Profits

Tech – Competition | Wall Street Journal

She ended the night wishing she hadn’t. Ms. Carter had pulled into her Falls Church, Va., driveway and saw the garage door was stuck. The 67-year-old searched Google and found the listing of a local repair service she had used before. She phoned in a house call. Google’s ubiquitous internet platform shapes what’s real and what isn’t for more than two billion monthly users. Yet Google Maps, triggered by such Google queries as the one Ms. Carter made, is overrun with millions of false business addresses and fake names, according to advertisers, search experts and current and former Google employees. (2800 words)

29. Fallible machines, fallible humans

Tech – Robots | The Straits Times | April 16th, 2019

A series of white plastic boxes stacked on top of one another, they look similar to other pumps in a hospital that control the flow of drugs and fluids into the bloodstream of critically ill patients. Yet there is one crucial difference: These pumps – which can be used for insulin, painkillers and many other medications – are set up to take over important, safety-critical tasks that were once undertaken only by doctors and nurses. Just as aircraft autopilots have improved overall airline safety by assuming control of tasks where human pilots can make errors, the pumps have been designed to conduct some of the arduous process of checking on dosage levels, patient identity and medical records that are required before any drug is administered. (2100 words)

22 Jul

Readabee 22nd July 2019

1. Why Afghanistan’s government is losing the war with the Taliban

Afghanistan – Corruption | The Economist | May 16th, 2019

Both groups take money from drivers on the road, says Muhammad Akram, leaning forward in a black kurta; both are violent. But when the Taliban stop him at a checkpoint, they write him a receipt. Waving a fistful of green papers, he explains how they ensure he won’t be charged twice: after he pays one group of Talibs, his receipt gets him through subsequent stops. Government soldiers, in contrast, rob him over and over. When he drives from Herat, a city near the Iranian border, to Kandahar, Mr Akram says, he will pay the Taliban once. (1500 words)

2. The Supreme Court blesses a cross-shaped war memorial in Maryland

America – Justice | The Economist | June 20th, 2019

To glance at the vote in American Legion v American Humanist Association, a 7-2 ruling handed down on June 20th, one might get the impression those differences have been largely ironed out over the 72 years since the court first addressed the meaning of the Establishment Clause in a school-bussing case from New Jersey. That impression is misleading. American Legion is no picture of judicial consensus: in additional to the plurality opinion six justices wrote separately to dissent or clarify their views. (1100 words)

3. Why some American states are locking up toddlers

America – Justice | The Economist | May 23th, 2019

In fact, when she sees one she tends to burst into tears—because, unlike most people in prison, she is ten months old. Natalie Myers, Ada Lynn’s 23-year-old mother, was pregnant when she was imprisoned for vehicular homicide. Washington is one of just a few states that offer residential nurseries for women who give birth while behind bars. Ms Myers loves the programme. “This is the best thing that has ever happened to me,” she says. “I always thought I’d never be a functional person because I dug myself into such a hole. (500 words)

4. American religion is starting to look less exceptional

America – Religion | The Economist | April 27th, 2019

About a quarter of the total population, and about a third of those who became adults in the new millennium, identify with no creed. Some new figures suggest the flight from organised religion is even quicker than previously thought.The share of Americans who acknowledge being members of a religious group is falling much faster than the proportion who, perhaps loosely, hew to one faith tradition or another. Comparing 2016-2018 with the last three years of the 20th century, declared participants in organised religion have plunged by nearly 20 points to 52%. (400 words)

5. China’s grand, gloomy sci-fi is going global

China – Sci-Fi | The Economist | June 20th, 2019

Billions die, as to turn the Earth into an effective mobile ark, its natural rotation must be halted. The resulting tsunamis wipe out entire continents, and with them all life not safely ensconced underground.This is the plot of “The Wandering Earth”, a Chinese film adapted from a short story of the same name by Liu Cixin, China’s leading writer of science fiction. After taking over $700m in cinemas, mostly in China, it launched on Netflix in May, making it the first Chinese sci-fi movie to go global. (1200 words)

6. Magic mushrooms, illegal in most places, may have therapeutic uses

Drugs – Psilocybin | The Economist | June 8th, 2019

“When I was under stress, I reacted with fear and anxiety. I always regretted my responses, but I couldn’t override them. After a mushroom journey, I found new ways to respond that included compassion and empathy.” That is why Mr Plazola joined Decriminalise Nature Oakland, a group which this week persuaded the council of the Californian city in effect to tolerate the consumption of magic mushrooms and other psychoactive plants and fungi. Last month Denver voted to do the same, but just for magic mushrooms. (2000 words)

7. The rising cost of education and health care is less troubling than believed

Economics – Inequality | The Economist | June 20th, 2019

Once upon a time a ticket to the cinema cost just five quid, and a hogshead of mead but a farthing. Of course, savvier youths know how to debunk such tales. Adjust for inflation and many things are cheaper than ever. Since 1950 the real cost of new vehicles has fallen by half, that of new clothing by 75% and that of household appliances by 90%, even as quality has got better. Tumbling prices reflect decades of improvements in technology and productivity. But the effect is not economy-wide. Cars are cheaper, but car maintenance is more expensive, and costs in education and health care have risen roughly fivefold since 1950. (900 words)

8. Phones and washing machines must be made to last, MPs say as Government launches inquiry into ‘Tsunami’ of e-waste

Environment – Waste | The Telegraph | July 26th, 2019

Mary Creagh, who is launching the enquiry, has said that while in the past technology was built to last, now it is built to degrade in order to produce profit for tech companies. The Labour MP told The Telegraph: “30 years ago, things were built to last, I had a dishwasher I gave to my sister that was 30 years old. Why is it that dishwashers that are built today break after 10 years? They are designed to break down because this creates profit for the companies. “Fridges, freezers, kettles and phones cause a tsunami of e-waste”. (600 words)

9. Struggling with style

Gender – Dress | The Economist | May 2th, 2019

What does a casual dress code mean in practice? The happy medium between looking like Kim Kardashian or Hagrid the giant is hard to pin down.Goldman Sachs has just implemented a “flexible dress code” although the executive memo noted gnomically that “casual dress is not appropriate every day”. Besuited corporate clients might not take kindly to investment-banking advice offered by someone wearing a tank top and ripped jeans.It makes sense that banking would be one of the last bastions to fall to the advance of casual workwear. (700 words)

10. Women’s football is flourishing, on the pitch and off it

Gender – Sports | The Economist | June 24th, 2019

Between 1921 and 1971 the Football Association (FA), which governs the sport in England, prohibited women from using the grounds of professional men’s teams, claiming that the sport was “quite unsuitable for females and ought not to be encouraged”. (Perhaps the men in suits had been irked by the enormous crowds, sometimes exceeding 50,000, that had flocked to women’s games during the first world war.) A similar ban in Germany was lifted in 1970. In 1972 the United States passed Title IX, a law that banned organisations that receive funds from the federal government from discriminating on the basis of sex. (1400 words)

11. Military spending around the world is booming

Geopolitics – Arms | The Economist | April 28th, 2019

Military spending as a share of global GDP has fallen in recent years, but that offers little reassurance in a world of rising geopolitical tension.The spending boom is driven, above all, by the contest between America and China for primacy in Asia. Start with America. In 2018 it raised its already-gargantuan defence budget for the first time in seven years, ending an era of belt-tightening imposed by Congress. The boost reflected the Trump administration’s embrace of what it calls “great power competition” with Russia and China—requiring fancier, pricier weapons—in place of the inconclusive guerilla wars it had fought since 2001.America’s military heft has no equal. (1000 words)

12. America is deploying a new economic arsenal to assert its power

Geopolitics – Trade | The Economist | June 6th, 2019

His method has turned out to be a wholesale weaponisation of economic tools. The world can now see the awesome force that a superpower can project when it is unconstrained by rules or allies. On May 30th the president threatened crippling tariffs on Mexico after a row over migration. Markets reeled, and a Mexican delegation rushed to Washington to sue for peace. A day later preferential trading rules for India were cancelled. Its usually macho government did not put up a fight and promised to preserve “strong ties”. (1100 words)

13. Big tech and the trade war

Geopolitics – Trade War | The Economist | May 23th, 2019

Most firms and investors are betting on a long struggle between the superpowers but not a sudden crisis or a financial panic. As the conflict over the tech industry escalates, however, that assumption looks suspect. On May 15th America’s Commerce Department said that companies would need a special licence to deal with Huawei, China’s hardware giant, which it deemed a threat to American interests (it later said the order would not take full effect for 90 days). Fears that other Chinese tech firms will be blacklisted have caused their shares to tumble. (800 words)

14. How the U.S. Could Lose a War With China

Geopolitics – War | The Atlantic | July 25th, 2019

And the United States could very well lose.That’s a concern among current and former defense officials and military analysts, one of whom told Breaking Defense earlier this year that in war games simulating great-power conflict in which the United States fights Russia and China, the United States “gets its ass handed to it.”Speaking at the Aspen Security Forum last week, Admiral Philip Davidson, who oversees U.S. military forces in Asia, called China “the greatest long-term strategic threat to the United States and the rules-based international order.” He described China’s rapid military buildup in nearly every domain—air, sea, land, space, and cyber—and said that while China’s capabilities don’t outnumber America’s in the region for now, it’s possible they could overtake the United States’ within the next five years.But the sheer number of ships, missiles, planes, and people doesn’t tell the whole story. (1400 words)

15. A policy U-turn puts Hong Kong’s leader in a precarious position

Hong Kong – Democracy | The Economist | June 20th, 2019

Organisers said 1.9m people joined the second of these demonstrations—a turnout that was all the more remarkable given that the government, less than a day earlier, had made a humiliating U-turn to placate the protesters. Critics of the Communist Party’s tightening grip on Hong Kong feel they have gained a rare advantage. The leadership in Beijing has suffered an embarrassing blow.Hong Kong’s embattled chief executive, Carrie Lam, says she will give up—at least until next year—her efforts to secure the passage of legislation that triggered the unrest: a bill to allow criminal suspects to be extradited to the Chinese mainland. (1700 words)

16. Why Japan’s Rail Workers Can’t Stop Pointing at Things

Japan – Trains | Atlas Obscura | March 29th, 2017

White-gloved employees in crisp uniforms pointing smartly down the platform and calling out—seemingly to no one—as trains glide in and out of the station. Onboard is much the same, with drivers and conductors performing almost ritual-like movements as they tend to an array of dials, buttons and screens. Japan’s rail system has a well-deserved reputation for being among the very best in the world. An extensive network of tracks moving an estimated 12 billion passengers each year with an on-time performance measured in the seconds makes Japanese rail a precise, highly reliable transportation marvel. (700 words)

17. Why Julian Assange should be extradited

Media – Censorship | The Economist | April 17th, 2019

Mr Assange was “no hero”, said Jeremy Hunt, Britain’s foreign secretary. Nonsense, retorted Jeremy Corbyn, leader of the opposition Labour Party, he “told us the truth about what was actually happening in Afghanistan and in Iraq”. Ecuador’s president complained that Mr Assange had repaid his country’s hospitality by smearing faeces on the embassy wall. These soundbites miss the point. America accuses Mr Assange of hacking Pentagon computers. Does that charge justify his extradition?To be sure, Mr Assange’s legacy deserves scrutiny. (800 words)

18. How ad hominem arguments can demolish appeals to authority

Philosophy – Logic | Aeon | June 5th, 2019

As a result, parents were encouraged to talk with their children about smoking. One of the Surgeon General’s tips for parents is to ‘set a positive example by being tobacco-free’. But what if parents are smokers, too? What if children respond to their parents’ plea to refrain from smoking by saying: ‘You use tobacco, so why shouldn’t I?’This retort is an example of ad hominem argumentation. Arguments against the person are attempts to undermine what someone says, not by engaging with what is said but by casting aspersions on the person who says it. (1300 words)

19. Huawei is at the centre of political controversy

Privacy – Cybersecurity | The Economist | April 27th, 2019

Like China, the firm, which was founded in 1987, began at the bottom of the value chain, reselling telephone-switching gear imported from Hong Kong. Also like China, it was not content to stay there. These days its products—from smartphones to solar panels—are sleek, high-tech and competitive with anything its rivals can produce. As a result its revenues have soared, hitting $105bn in 2018 (see chart 1). Huawei, and its mother country, have become technological pacesetters in their own right. The firm employs 80,000 people in research and development alone. (2600 words)

20. Online identification is getting more and more intrusive

Privacy – Cybersecurity | The Economist | May 23th, 2019

Passwords help. But many can be guessed or are jotted down imprudently. Newer phones, tablets, laptops and desktop computers often have beefed-up security with fingerprint and facial recognition. But these can be spoofed. To overcome these shortcomings, the next level of security is likely to identify people using things which are harder to copy, such as the way they walk.Many online security services already use a system called device fingerprinting. This employs software to note things like the model type of a gadget employed by a particular user; its hardware configuration; its operating system; the apps which have been downloaded onto it; and other features, including sometimes the Wi-Fi networks it regularly connects through and devices like headsets it plugs into.The results are sufficient to build a profile of both the device and its user’s habits. (900 words)

21. Knowledge for it’s own sake?

Science – Funding | Cognitive Edge | October 6th, 2007

CERN, you will recall, is where the Large Hadron Collider (LHC), a particle accelerator that is 27-kilometer in circumference, is being built in order to test for the existence of a tiny and elusive particle, the Higgs Boson. And also one of the most expensive. How does it do this? By emphasizing the value of knowledge for its own sake, of man’s understanding of the universe and of his place in it. By smashing particles into each other at speeds close to that of light, scientists at CERN, probe the innermost nature of matter, the origins of the universe, etc. (600 words)

22. What’s the point of theoretical physics?

Science – Funding | The Conversation | February 12th, 2016

Discoveries such as gravitational waves and the Higgs boson can inspire wonder at the complex beauty of the universe no matter how little you really understand them. But some people will always question why they should care about scientific advances that have no apparent impact on their daily life – and why we spend millions funding them. Sure, it’s amazing that we can study black holes thousands of light years away and that Einstein really was as much of a genius as we thought, but that won’t change the way most people live or work. (800 words)

23. Mandatory registration for drones by year-end as police investigate recent incursions

Singapore – Drones | Channel News Asia | July 8th, 2019

“This will ensure that drone operators are made aware of their responsibilities and undertake to conduct their activities in a responsible manner,” said Senior Minister of State for Transport Lam Pin Min in Parliament on Monday (Jul 8). The Government is also looking into increasing penalties for errant drone users, he said. Currently, offenders can be jailed for up to 12 months and fined up to S$20,000. Responding to questions filed by several Members of Parliament (MP) on the recent drone incursions near Changi Airport, Dr Lam said the police investigation is ongoing. (800 words)

24. Singapore minister spreading disinformation about drug policy

Singapore – Drugs | Asia Times | July 17th, 2019

In a country that pushes a zero-tolerance approach to drugs and still maintains the mandatory death penalty for some drug offenses, it’s high time this dangerous rejection of evidence be called out. The costs of drug law reformsShanmugam claims the social costs of decriminalization have been underplayed. For example, he asserts that drug mortality rates in Portugal increased 150% between 2001 and 2008, after drugs were decriminalized. It was impossible to find a source for this claim. In reality drug-related deaths in Portugal have actually drastically decreased from 80 per million in 2001 to 4 per million in 2017. (600 words)

25. MHA explains why Nigerian spared death sentence for importing about 2kg of ‘Ice’

Singapore – Law | Channel News Asia | July 8th, 2019

He was responding to a question from Member of Parliament for Holland-Bukit Timah GRC Christopher De Souza. Mr De Souza asked whether there was a need to review the provisions of the Misuse of Drugs Act in light of the Court of Appeal’s judgement in the case. He also asked how the presumptions in the Act will continue to function as “key legal tools to battle trafficking within, into or through Singapore”. Adili Chibuike Ejike, who was arrested at Changi Airport in November 2011 with methamphetamine – commonly known as Ice – concealed in the inner lining of his suitcase was acquitted in May after the Court of Appeal heard his case in the High Court. (700 words)

26. New jobs can be created through technology, but workers need help retraining for these positions: Chan Chun Sing

Singapore – Tech | Channel News Asia | July 9th, 2019

In an interview with Arnold Gay and Yasmin Jonkers on CNA938’s Asia First, Mr Chan said that the way to get these workers ready is to “retrain them as fast as possible”. He gave the example of how staff who previously worked as bank tellers have now been retrained to be customer relations officers, involved in selling insurance and wealth management products. “Their previous jobs have been displaced by technology, but they have been retrained by the banks, together with the Government, to take on new jobs, and it is very exciting to hear how people in their 40s, 50s are able to take on new roles,” he said. (800 words)

27. Pet-ownership is booming across the world

Society – Pets | The Economist | June 22th, 2019

As he watches the happy, free-running animals, he reflects on how dogs’ lives have changed. Mr Salomón, who was born in the northern state of Sonora, recalls that his grandmother had two dogs—a black one called Negro and a white one called Güero, meaning pale. They were seldom allowed in the house. And today? Recently he attended a birthday party for a friend’s dog, with a cake, candles and a party hat for the pooch.In South Korea, some people who keep cats refer to themselves not as “owners” or even “parents”—a more condescending term that appeared in America in the 1990s and has spread. (1800 words)

28. Pets have gained the upper paw over their so-called owners

Society – Pets | The Economist | June 22th, 2019

Opposable thumbs, cranial size, altruism and cooking all played a part, but central to the naked ape’s success was its ability to dominate other species. Bovids, equids and, in particular, canids, were put to work by H. sapiens; felids always took a slightly different view of the matter, but were indulged for their rodent-catching talents.As humanity has got richer, animals’ roles have changed. People need their services less than before. Fewer wolves and bandits meant less demand for dogs for protection; the internal-combustion engine made horses redundant; modern sanitation kept rats in check and made cats less useful. (600 words)

29. How the pursuit of leisure drives internet use

Tech – Economics | The Economist | June 8th, 2019

“Something about the internet,” Ms Sharma, a 40-year-old child-care worker, recalls. She had no particular interest in this internet thing. But she liked the idea of learning something new, so she went along. She and a handful of women from nearby villages were all given a smartphone and some basic lessons in how to use it.“First we had to learn how to turn it on and off,” says Santosh Sharma (no relation), a 24-year-old schoolteacher from the neighbouring village. Once they had mastered that, they got down to the essentials: “How to take a selfie, WhatsApp, Facebook, YouTube, how to search.”That was in September 2016, when nobody in the villages had a phone. (3700 words)

30. Will a robot really take your job?

Tech – Robots | The Economist | June 27th, 2019

No report or conference presentation on the future of work is complete without it. Think-tanks, consultancies, government agencies and news outlets have pointed to it as evidence of an imminent jobs apocalypse. The finding—that 47% of American jobs are at high risk of automation by the mid-2030s—comes from a paper published in 2013 by two Oxford academics, Carl Benedikt Frey and Michael Osborne. It has since been cited in more than 4,000 other academic articles. Meet Mr Frey, a Swedish economic historian, in person, however, and he seems no prophet of doom. (1000 words)

21 Mar

Readabee 18th March 2019

SUBJECT
TITLE
1
America – Gig Economy
The Atlantic
800 words | March 6th, 2019
Wall Street Journal
1200 words | N/A
New York Times
1000 words | January 31th, 2019
4
Artificial Intel – Philosophy
Financial Times
3300 words | January 10th, 2019
Financial Times
4200 words | February 14th, 2019
New York Times
900 words | February 4th, 2019
Channel News Asia
1200 words | N/A
National Review
1200 words | April 1th, 2013
The Economist
1000 words | December 22nd, 2018
10
Cybersecurity – Education
The Straits Times
1000 words | November 16th, 2018
Financial Times
800 words | N/A
New York Times
1000 words | January 17th, 2019
13
Environment – Recycling
The Atlantic
1000 words | March 5th, 2019
The Economist
700 words | January 5th, 2019
The Straits Times
600 words | November 26th, 2018
Financial Times
2400 words | September 21th, 2018
The Straits Times
1200 words | December 7th, 2018
Wall Street Journal
700 words | N/A
New York Times
2700 words | January 17th, 2019
Financial Times
1000 words | February 17th, 2019
New York Times
1100 words | January 20th, 2019
New York Times
1200 words | January 16th, 2019
23
Geopolitics – Liberalism
Foreign Affairs
5600 words | January 7th, 2019
New York Times
900 words | February 26th, 2019
25
History – Nationalism
Foreign Affairs
4700 words | February 26th, 2019
New York Times
900 words | February 16th, 2019
The Atlantic
1000 words | February 28th, 2019
28
Media – Journalism
The Straits Times
1200 words | November 3th, 2018
Channel News Asia
1000 words | March 12th, 2019
The Straits Times
1500 words | November 12th, 2018
Channel News Asia
800 words | March 11th, 2019
The Straits Times
600 words | January 15th, 2019
The Straits Times
1000 words | November 29th, 2018
The Straits Times
500 words | March 3th, 2019
Channel News Asia
1500 words | March 16th, 2019
Channel News Asia
900 words | March 5th, 2019
Channel News Asia
1100 words | March 5th, 2019
Channel News Asia
2700 words | March 11th, 2019
The Straits Times
800 words | September 12th, 2017
TODAY
2500 words | N/A
The Straits Times
1100 words | January 20th, 2019
The Straits Times
500 words | March 4th, 2019
The Straits Times
1400 words | November 22th, 2018
Channel News Asia
500 words | March 6th, 2019
The Straits Times
1200 words | November 27th, 2018
The Straits Times
900 words | November 30th, 2018
The Straits Times
1500 words | November 16th, 2018
The Straits Times
1000 words | November 16th, 2018
Channel News Asia
1100 words | March 3rd, 2019
Channel News Asia
600 words | March 9th, 2019
New York Times
1500 words | December 5th, 2018
The Straits Times
1000 words | December 6th, 2018
Narratively
3100 words | September 29th, 2016
The Straits Times
600 words | December 14th, 2018
Channel News Asia
3000 words | March 4th, 2019
New York Times
800 words | February 5th, 2019
The Straits Times
1300 words | November 19th, 2018
The Economist
1000 words | January 3rd, 2019
New York Times
1500 words | February 1th, 2019
21 Mar

Readabee 4th March 2019

SUBJECT
TITLE
The Atlantic
13600 words | May 16th, 2018
2
Art – Forgery
Aeon
3700 words | N/A
The Economist
2700 words | December 18th, 2018
4
Capitalism – Privacy
The Baffler
16000 words | February 4th, 2019
Aeon
1300 words | N/A
6
Culture – Marriage
Aeon
3200 words | N/A
Reason Magazine
4100 words | October 21st, 2017
The Atlantic
2900 words | February 24th, 2019
BBC
1300 words | February 26th, 2019
10
Economics – Finance
n+1
4600 words | February 26th, 2019
Lit Med Magazine
2500 words | N/A
The Atlantic
800 words | February 27th, 2019
13
Environment – Plastic
Undark
1100 words | N/A
The Economist
2500 words | December 22nd, 2018
The Atlantic
1400 words | February 27th, 2019
The Verge
1000 words | February 1st, 2019
The Atlantic
3300 words | February 26th, 2019
The Economist
5700 words | December 18th, 2018
Undark
1500 words | March 1th, 2019
20
Psychology – Psychopathy
The Atlantic
6900 words | May 16th, 2017
21
Science – Origami
The Economist
1900 words | December 18th, 2018
Channel News Asia
500 words | February 15th, 2019
Channel News Asia
1200 words | February 27th, 2019
Channel News Asia
600 words | February 18th, 2019
Channel News Asia
1000 words | February 19th, 2019
Channel News Asia
1000 words | February 28th, 2019
Channel News Asia
400 words | February 13th, 2019
Channel News Asia
1400 words | February 26th, 2019
Channel News Asia
400 words | February 20th, 2019
Channel News Asia
3000 words | February 25th, 2019
Channel News Asia
900 words | March 1st, 2019
Channel News Asia
1200 words | March 2nd, 2019
Channel News Asia
2100 words | February 16th, 2019
Channel News Asia
400 words | February 21st, 2019
Channel News Asia
1600 words | February 22nd, 2019
Channel News Asia
900 words | February 28th, 2019
Channel News Asia
1000 words | February 11th, 2019
Channel News Asia
800 words | February 26th, 2019
Channel News Asia
1300 words | February 19th, 2019
Channel News Asia
300 words | February 18th, 2019
41
Social Media – Extremism
Intel Wire
2900 words | August 31st, 2016
The Atlantic
1500 words | February 27th, 2019
The Economist
2700 words | December 18th, 2018
Narratively
3900 words | January 22nd, 2019
45
Tech – Artificial Intel
The Verge
1600 words | February 1st, 2019
The Guardian
600 words | October 24th, 2018
18 Feb

Readabee 18th Feb 2019

SUBJECT
TITLE
Bactra
1300 words | February 3rd, 2019
Vox
1000 words | February 4th, 2019
New York Times
1200 words | January 17th, 2019
Washington Post
800 words | February 1st, 2019
Quillette
1100 words | February 14th, 2019
6
Culture – Social Media
London Review of Books
6800 words | February 21st, 2019
The Straits Times
500 words | November 15th, 2018
Wall Street Journal
900 words | N/A
9
Economics – Humanities
Foreign Policy
1300 words | January 22nd, 2019
New York Times
800 words | August 13th, 2014
11
Education – Humanities
New York Times
800 words | April 16th, 2015
12
Education – Inequality
Aeon
3100 words | N/A
Quillette
1200 words | February 5th, 2019
The Straits Times
1300 words | November 19th, 2018
Financial Times
700 words | N/A
The Straits Times
1600 words | November 12th, 2018
The Straits Times
1200 words | November 14th, 2018
The Straits Times
1600 words | November 19th, 2018
Venture Beat
400 words | February 1st, 2019
The Guardian
1000 words | February 13th, 2019
The Guardian
1000 words | February 13th, 2019
The Guardian
3600 words | January 17th, 2019
23
History – Indoctrination
Quillette
2100 words | December 18th, 2018
Aeon
1400 words | N/A
25
Immigration – Crime
Vox
4100 words | February 26th, 2018
Venture Beat
1500 words | January 31st, 2019
The Atlantic
1200 words | February 6th, 2019
The Guardian
1100 words | January 6th, 2014
Aeon
1200 words | N/A
New York Times
1600 words | January 17th, 2019
Vox
2000 words | January 28th, 2019
Channel News Asia
900 words | February 13th, 2019
The Straits Times
1600 words | May 10th, 2016
The Straits Times
1500 words | December 1th, 2018
The Straits Times
1700 words | November 21th, 2018
Washington Post
600 words | February 1st, 2019
The Straits Times
1000 words | November 16th, 2018
The Guardian
1500 words | January 29th, 2019
Cato Institute
700 words | February 5th, 2019
Financial Times
800 words | N/A
The Guardian
800 words | February 13th, 2019
The Guardian
900 words | February 14th, 2019
Financial Times
700 words | N/A
New York Times
1300 words | January 27th, 2019
Wall Street Journal
900 words | N/A
Quillette
2000 words | February 9th, 2019
Wall Street Journal
800 words | N/A
The Paris Review
1800 words | February 1st, 2019
04 Feb

Readabee 4th Feb 2019

SUBJECT
TITLE
Wall Street Journal
700 words | N/A
The Straits Times
1000 words | December 2th, 2018
The Economist
1200 words | December 6th, 2018
The Atlantic
1200 words | January 19th, 2019
The Atlantic
5500 words | January 29th, 2019
The Economist
2700 words | December 8th, 2018
New York Times
1300 words | January 12th, 2019
The Straits Times
900 words | November 3th, 2018
Aeon
1300 words | N/A
Aeon
1200 words | N/A
The Atlantic
2500 words | January 23rd, 2019
The Economist
500 words | December 8th, 2018
New York Times
800 words | December 31th, 2018
NPR
700 words | December 1st, 2018
The Straits Times
800 words | November 5th, 2018
The Guardian
800 words | September 1st, 2018
The Atlantic
1900 words | January 23rd, 2019
18
Gender – South Korea
The Economist
1100 words | December 6th, 2018
19
Geopolitics – Genocide
The Economist
1800 words | December 8th, 2018
The Economist
900 words | November 22nd, 2018
The Economist
600 words | December 6th, 2018
22
Media – Journalism
The Straits Times
1200 words | November 3th, 2018
23
Media – Trump
The Economist
500 words | December 8th, 2018
The Atlantic
1900 words | January 19th, 2019
The Atlantic
1400 words | January 29th, 2019
26
Privacy – Shopping
The Atlantic
500 words | January 25th, 2019
The Economist
1200 words | December 8th, 2018
Bloomberg
800 words | January 10th, 2019
The Straits Times
900 words | November 7th, 2018
Channel News Asia
700 words | January 20th, 2019
Channel News Asia
1000 words | January 21st, 2019
Channel News Asia
1600 words | January 22nd, 2019
Channel News Asia
1600 words | January 25th, 2019
34
Singapore – Inequality
The Straits Times
1600 words | November 1th, 2018
The Straits Times
1400 words | December 4th, 2018
Channel News Asia
1700 words | February 2nd, 2019
The Straits Times
1200 words | November 1th, 2018
The Straits Times
2900 words | November 4th, 2018
39
Social Media – Facebook
The Straits Times
800 words | November 20th, 2018
The Straits Times
800 words | November 9th, 2018
The Straits Times
1000 words | December 6th, 2018
The Straits Times
1000 words | November 3th, 2018
The Straits Times
900 words | November 6th, 2018
44
Tech – Artificial Intel
The Economist
600 words | November 23rd, 2018
45
Tech – Autonomous Cars
The Straits Times
700 words | November 13th, 2018
The Atlantic
900 words | January 24th, 2019
New York Times
1400 words | January 12th, 2019
The Economist
400 words | December 6th, 2018
The Economist
2700 words | December 8th, 2018
The Straits Times
1100 words | November 4th, 2018
The Economist
1700 words | December 8th, 2018
21 Jan

Readabee 21st Jan 2019

SUBJECT
TITLE
1
America – Culture
The Atlantic
1200 words | December 3rd, 2018
Foreign Policy
1500 words | December 10th, 2018
The Atlantic
1200 words | January 10th, 2019
The Atlantic
2200 words | December 14th, 2018
5
America – Politics
The Atlantic
3700 words | November 9th, 2018
The Economist
4100 words | November 24th, 2018
The Economist
600 words | November 29th, 2018
The Economist
1000 words | November 22nd, 2018
Cato Institute
700 words | November 16th, 2018
The Economist
1300 words | November 22nd, 2018
The Economist
900 words | November 29th, 2018
Aeon
1300 words | June 5th, 2018
The Atlantic
4700 words | December 10th, 2018
14
Environment – Economics
Foreign Policy
2700 words | December 6th, 2018
BBC
800 words | January 9th, 2019
The Economist
400 words | November 29th, 2018
The Economist
600 words | October 27th, 2018
Foreign Policy
1100 words | May 5th, 2016
The Guardian
1300 words | December 13th, 2018
BBC
1000 words | December 2nd, 2018
The Atlantic
1200 words | December 3rd, 2018
22
Gender – MeToo
The Economist
500 words | November 29th, 2018
The Atlantic
900 words | December 3rd, 2018
Foreign Policy
2200 words | December 6th, 2018
Bloomberg
1000 words | November 29th, 2018
New Yorker
1800 words | November 24th, 2014
The Atlantic
1000 words | November 29th, 2018
Cato Institute
1300 words | November 29th, 2018
The Atlantic
1100 words | December 3rd, 2018
Foreign Policy
2100 words | December 13th, 2018
31
Geopolitics – Tech
Foreign Policy
1100 words | December 17th, 2018
The Economist
500 words | November 22nd, 2018
The Economist
900 words | November 24th, 2018
The Economist
700 words | November 22nd, 2018
The Economist
1000 words | November 29th, 2018
The Economist
1000 words | November 29th, 2018
Foreign Policy
5100 words | May 30th, 2013
The Atlantic
1600 words | December 14th, 2018
The Atlantic
1300 words | December 4th, 2018
BBC
800 words | December 2nd, 2018
The Atlantic
1400 words | January 10th, 2019
The Economist
1100 words | November 24th, 2018
43
Politics – Debate
The Outline
1300 words | N/A
44
Politics – Khashoggi
The Economist
1000 words | October 25th, 2018
The Economist
300 words | November 29th, 2018
The Economist
500 words | November 30th, 2018
Bloomberg
900 words | November 14th, 2018
Bloomberg
1100 words | May 24th, 2018
49
Religion – Blasphemy
Cato Institute
800 words | November 21st, 2018
The Atlantic
3100 words | December 3rd, 2018
Bloomberg
2100 words | January 10th, 2019
Cato Institute
600 words | November 27th, 2018
Channel News Asia
600 words | January 10th, 2019
Channel News Asia
1200 words | January 8th, 2019
Channel News Asia
1100 words | January 9th, 2019
Channel News Asia
800 words | January 15th, 2019
Channel News Asia
500 words | January 15th, 2019
Channel News Asia
1000 words | January 14th, 2019
Channel News Asia
900 words | January 13th, 2019
Channel News Asia
500 words | January 16th, 2019
Channel News Asia
1200 words | January 7th, 2019
Channel News Asia
400 words | January 14th, 2019
Channel News Asia
500 words | January 7th, 2019
Channel News Asia
700 words | January 18th, 2019
Channel News Asia
900 words | January 7th, 2019
Channel News Asia
800 words | January 14th, 2019
Channel News Asia
500 words | January 8th, 2019
Channel News Asia
1300 words | January 6th, 2019
The Economist
1500 words | November 22nd, 2018
The Economist
1400 words | October 23rd, 2018
The Economist
2600 words | December 1st, 2018
The Economist
900 words | August 16th, 2018
07 Jan

Readabee 7th Jan 2019

SUBJECT
TITLE
The Straits Times
800 words | December 19th, 2018
Wall Street Journal
1000 words | N/A
The Economist
800 words | November 22nd, 2018
Wall Street Journal
500 words | N/A
Wall Street Journal
2800 words | N/A
New York Times
1100 words | December 5th, 2018
The Straits Times
900 words | August 10th, 2018
Wall Street Journal
900 words | N/A
The Verge
400 words | October 18th, 2018
The Guardian
1200 words | November 14th, 2018
New York Times
900 words | November 28th, 2018
The Economist
1100 words | November 24th, 2018
The Straits Times
1100 words | August 10th, 2018
The Economist
400 words | October 27th, 2018
Financial Times
2200 words | N/A
New York Times
1000 words | November 23th, 2018
The Guardian
500 words | November 5th, 2018
18
Culture – Perfectionism
BBC
3500 words | February 21st, 2018
The Guardian
400 words | November 15th, 2018
New York Times
1200 words | December 4th, 2018
The Economist
1800 words | November 15th, 2018
Financial Times
700 words | December 3th, 2018
23
Environment – Climate Change
Financial Times
900 words | December 5th, 2018
BBC
700 words | November 5th, 2018
25
Environment – Limits
The Economist
2300 words | August 2nd, 2001
The Economist
600 words | April 19th, 2016
The Guardian
800 words | November 16th, 2018
28
Environment – Population
The Economist
800 words | October 22nd, 2011
The Guardian
900 words | November 6th, 2018
New York Times
5700 words | November 14th, 2018
The Atlantic
700 words | March 20th, 2015
New York Times
600 words | April 6th, 2015
The Atlantic
800 words | May 4th, 2012
The Atlantic
1800 words | May 9th, 2012
35
Fashion – Body Positivity
New York Times
900 words | May 29th, 2018
BBC
200 words | May 6th, 2017
Pacific Standard
600 words | June 14th, 2017
New York Times
2600 words | October 15th, 2016
The Straits Times
1700 words | August 10th, 2018
The Economist
600 words | November 8th, 2018
The Economist
500 words | November 17th, 2018
42
Geopolitics – Palestine
New York Times
1100 words | November 23th, 2018
Wall Street Journal
800 words | N/A
New York Times
900 words | November 22th, 2018
The Atlantic
2000 words | October 2nd, 2012
The Economist
1000 words | November 15th, 2018
Financial Times
600 words | N/A
Wall Street Journal
800 words | N/A
The Guardian
3600 words | November 20th, 2018
The Straits Times
1500 words | December 19th, 2018
Wall Street Journal
700 words | N/A
Washington Post
500 words | November 17th, 2018
Aeon
1200 words | N/A
New York Times
2100 words | March 21th, 2015
The Economist
1800 words | February 4th, 2017
The Economist
700 words | November 15th, 2018
The Economist
1400 words | November 15th, 2018
The Guardian
1900 words | November 18th, 2018
Channel News Asia
900 words | October 31st, 2018
Channel News Asia
1200 words | January 3rd, 2019
Channel News Asia
1500 words | January 5th, 2019
The Straits Times
1400 words | August 11th, 2018
The Straits Times
800 words | August 11th, 2018
Channel News Asia
1500 words | October 5th, 2018
Channel News Asia
2500 words | October 15th, 2018
Channel News Asia
300 words | January 1st, 2019
Channel News Asia
300 words | October 3rd, 2018
Channel News Asia
500 words | January 3rd, 2019
Channel News Asia
1400 words | November 4th, 2018
Channel News Asia
700 words | October 2nd, 2018
Channel News Asia
400 words | December 31st, 2018
72
Singapore – Politics
The Straits Times
1000 words | August 12th, 2018
Channel News Asia
500 words | October 3rd, 2018
Channel News Asia
700 words | October 31st, 2018
Channel News Asia
1500 words | December 31st, 2018
The Straits Times
2200 words | August 12th, 2018
Channel News Asia
1100 words | October 2nd, 2018
Medium
400 words | December 5th, 2014
New York Times
1100 words | December 5th, 2018
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