The Dark Shadow Shrine

If u think u need extra coaching in General Paper/English/Literature at the 'O'/'A'/International Baccalaureate level, the gates of my shrine are always open.....Drop me a note at or wadsapp me at 91384570 for more Singapore only hor.... :-)

Tuesday, August 14, 2018

Only natural to see red over pink tax

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- the pun in this catchy title....
-the opening BANG using a quote by Mao Zedong: Women hold up half the sky.

-interesting example/info in closing BANG! A group of South Korean women has done this by deciding to stop spending money on the first Sunday of every month.

Qn: “Women and Men should always be regarded as equals.” Do you agree?

Thursday, August 09, 2018

Nooyi's PepsiCo exit means one fewer female CEO

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Some good examples of female CEOs, including one that just stepped down.

PepsiCo CEO Indra Nooyi, who announced on Monday that she will leave the post in October

After Ms Nooyi's departure, there will be just 23 female CEOs leading Fortune 500 companies, making up less than 5 per cent of all CEOs at these companies, down from 32 female CEOs last year.

Among the high-profile women who remain at the helm of Fortune 500 companies: Ms Mary Barra, CEO of General Motors, Mrs Ginni Rometty, CEO of IBM.....

Qn: “Women and Men should always be regarded as equals.” Do you agree?

Tuesday, August 07, 2018

Useful Quotation for Environmental Issues

Another colourful quotation on environmental issue.....note the imagery employed....

Terrorism by joystick: The growing threat of weaponised drones

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Some good examples on the dangers of sci and tech...useful for BANGs...note how the examples are used in the opening BANG of f the article:

A failed assassination attempt against Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro last Saturday was mounted with explosive-armed drones, according to news reports. Nine days earlier, and on the other side of the world, terrorists claimed to have sent an armed drone to attack the international airport in Abu Dhabi, the capital of the United Arab Emirates (UAE).

Qn: Does science and technology always improve the lives of the people?

Monday, August 06, 2018

Forgetting the child, in the marriage

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A good example to show how traditional practices can be harmful, and that certain harmful actions and practices are legitimized and sacntioned by traditions and cultures...Consider also traditional practices like the dowry practice in India, religious attitudes towards LGBT, cultural preference for sons instead of daughters, cultural practice of having women wear the niqab and the burqa.....

For qns concenring pros and cons of traditional practices and culture....

Melting of Swedish glacier builds up climate change fears

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good example for ur BANGs for climate change qns... Note how it is also used as an opening BANG in this article:

the rapid pace of climate change, after a glacier on Sweden's Kebnekaise mountain melted so much in sweltering Arctic temperatures that it is no longer the country's highest point.

Also, the fact that Sweden, a Scandinavian country right up there near the Arctic, is plagued by wildfires and high summer temperatures, is also a startling piece of info that makes for a good BAAANNNGGGG!!!!

Qn. Assess the view that attempts to control climate change can never be truly effective. (Cam. 2017)

E-waste is more pressing issue than plastics: Masagos

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note the solutions proposed by the govt....

Why are celebs going into politics?

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Note the role of social media in this....and the various examples of celebrities who dabbled in politics -- Trump being one of these....

Qn: "Politics and celebrity should not mix." Discuss.

Anger in Japan over bid by med school to keep women away

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Qn: “Women and Men should always be regarded as equals.” Do you agree?

Women see red over 'pink tax'

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excellent article! note some of the examples (esp the recent CareShield Life premiums saga: see HERE) and the valid justifications in some cases for the discrimination.....

Qn: “Women and Men should always be regarded as equals.” Do you agree?

Friday, August 03, 2018

Useful Quotations on the Environment

Some useful BANGs:

Man's attitude and treatment of Mother Nature has been seen as irresponsible...Trump even dismisses the whole climate change phenomenon as a 'Chinese hoax' and pulled the US out of the Paris Climate Agreement.
Some interesting metaphors have been used regarding man's treatment of Mother Nature, such as 'rape on Mother Nature' (in which case it becomes an unnatural act as it is incest!) as well as 'unfilial' since we are destroying the 'Mother' that feeds and sustains us -- biting the hand that feeds us....but we're not just 'biting', we causing her to develop 'fever' , dumping tonnes of wastes on her, depleting all her resources, and ultimately killing her

Note these beautiful imagery in these quotations...
1) the way man treats the environment is akin to setting the house on fire while he is still living within it.....


Thursday, August 02, 2018

New agency to oversee food security

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update yourself on the latest changes....
No more AVA (Agri-Food and Veterinary Authority?) AVA is in charge of food and animal issues.

Now the food-related issues will go to new organisation The Singapore Food Agency (SFA), whereas the animal-related issues like animal abuse and wild boars roaming around will go to the existing National Parks  Board.

Singaporeans take family, humour and fun seriously

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Useful characteristic features of Singapore for ur AQ and 'your society' qns...

Move to give Jews special status sparks controversy

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For those familiar with the example of the Palestinie issue, this makes for a good example of how the law/legislation actually legitimises discrimination by making it accpetable in the eyes of the law -- that is a very powerful statement!
To understand the gravity of the situation, just think how it would be like if Singapore passes a law that says only the majority Chinese can have a say in the decisions affecting the country, thereby excluding the rights of the Malays and Indians! Then look at how the Minority Representative Act in Singapore does the actual opposite by guaranteeing them a voice in Parliament under the law.

"we now have a law that confirms the Arab population as second-class citizens. It therefore is a very clear form of apartheid".....
Israel "has passed a law of Jewish supremacy and told us that we will always be second-class citizens".

Accordingly, the Nation State Law provides that only the Jewish people have the right of self-determination in Israel. No wonder the law has provoked a storm of protest in Israel, given that 1.8 million of its citizens are Arab.

1. Can discrimination ever be eliminated?
2. In your society, how far is equality for all a reality? (Cam. 2012)

Nostalgia has stolen the future

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Note how politicians harness nostalgia for political effect, esp in the Brexit Referendum and the US Presidential Election which saw Trump become President.....note his clarion call : Make America Great Again!

Qn: 'There is no value in nostalgia.' Comment. (ACJC Prleim 2011)

The deadly results of mistranslation

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Note the various useful examples, including the ones on "Satanic Verses" where translation issues gave the impression that the author was insinuating that the Koran/Quaran is written by Satan!

Note also how the Closing BANG echoes the Opening BANG!

For qns on the importance of clear communication, given that we live and interact with others in a world where we speak different languages, esp crucial in diplomacy btw coutnries....


1)     The pen is mightier than the sword. Can written language really be so powerful? (2007)

2)     The world would be a better place if everyone spoke the same language. Discuss. (2006)

China's battle with 'dark water armies'

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The Internet was meant to widen friendship circles and amass the wisdom of crowds. Although the tools are there, the trust is not.

Interesting and useful idea on how the internet generates distrust among people despite the wealth of info it makes available to us....

Lombok villagers face uncertain future

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For qns on the problems of tourism....

Qn: Should poorer countries develop their tourist industry when the basic needs of their own people are not being met? (Cam. 2007)

Recommended by Denmark ban on face veil takes effect

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In May, the Danish Parliament banned the wearing of face veils in public, joining France, Austria and other European countries to uphold what some politicians say are secular and democratic values.

"I see this as the government reaching into places it doesn't belong and as a cheap hit on an already stigmatised group to score cheap political points."

For qns on how multiculturalism or migration affects the integration and cohesion of a society, the forging of a common national identity...

Qn: To what extent should the state be allowed to interfere with the private lives of its people?

Woman jailed for killing pet parrot of stepdaughter

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Not the Singapore law against animal cruelty:
For animal cruelty, Hang could have been jailed for up to 18 months and fined up to $15,000.

Qn: To what extent are the rights of animals protected in your society? (Cam. 2012)

Supermarket chains see drop in use of plastic bags

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"It's encouraging that some supermarkets are reporting a drop in plastic bags used, but businesses have to take more responsibility to reduce demand. For example, a levy has been proven to work in many markets around the world.

Single-use supermarket plastic bags contributed 820 million to the 1.76 billion plastic items used yearly in Singapore

Qn: Is it realistic for businesses to be socially responsible when profits are their main concern? (NYJC MidYr J2 2018)

Thursday, July 26, 2018

A face Russia needs to show off more

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Note the Russian doll metaphor, which is good for ur BANGs!

Note the tytical negative image of Russia fed to us by the media before the advent of the World Cup....

Take note of how Russia uses the hosting of the World Cup to re-brand itself to the world, arguably to much success.....

Note also that the very media that causes the problem (i.e. giving us a slanted portrayal of Russia) is also the very same media that 'corrected' our negative perception of it, esp for those of us who have never been to Russia first-hand, as well as never had friends who had been to Russia whether before or after the recent World Cup. Recall a common chinese saying that the person who is needed to untie the bell, is also the very same person who tied the bell there in the first place.

Now do you see why certain govts want to control what the press report? esp if if's a widely circulated press read by its own people?
It becomes a bit more difficult to control the international press meant mainly for the international audience, so what govts try to do is to create postitive things that the international press find worthy of reporting....

1. To what extent does the media influence our perception of reality?
2. Hosting major sporting events creates more problems than benefits. Do you agree? (Cam. 2005)
3. Can the media ever be relied upon to convey the truth? (Cam. 2003)
4. Is regulation of the press desirable? (Cam. 2017)