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Wednesday, October 24, 2007

vincentism makes sense!

I said this the other day, but allow me to repeat myself. One year ago, if you asked me to make a wish, I would have asked for a hundred billion dollars. Recently, I've come to realise that it wasn't the money that I craved - it was the power that came along with it. So today, if I had one wish, I want to be God.

Remember my take on the whole God issue? Well, to be fair, it isn't exactly the WHOLE issue, but just a portion of it. See, here's the thing. With religion, there is always the age old argument of scientific proof versus unexplained believes. I am stuck half-way between the two because I am an engineer and an annoyingly inquisitive prick who cannot accept things without proper scientific proof or at least a logical theory to back up events. On the other hand, I also believe in things like Karma.

Introducing Vincentism!

Okay granted this doesn't quite explain everything, but it does explain a couple of points. In any how, I don't expect to be Grand Master until I am 50 years old (old people are seemingly more credible) so I have a lot of time to work out how many other things work.


In the beginning...

In simple terms which you will understand, think of God the Creator (if need be, I'll decide on his name later) as a blacksmith of sorts. He creates stuff. He created our solar system and our planet and he created life as we know it. Think of yourself as nothing but robots in built with an Artificial Intelligence system. This is how we can think for ourselves and ensure our constant survival. We are Frankenstein monsters that God created and is now powerless to control, unless of course he sends an asteroid flying our way.

Scientifically, it makes sense. We are trying to put AI into robots and our machines, but being narcisstic little twats, we never thought of ourselves as God's AI robots. There is a big bloke somewhere around, but of course we can't see him because he is that damn fucking huge. I mean, he created our solar system as we know, so of course he is a big as hell. If you are asking why we can't see him even though he is so huge, well ask yourself if you think a mosquito 100 metres away from you can see you. One day, if we do actually develop a rocket that could travel all that far, maybe we will get to see Him, after which he will swat us down like how we would the mosquito.


Karma

The good thing about religion is that it keeps people in line with the norms of society. Can't go around raping people, killing people, etc... It uses fear as a powerful weapon to keep people in check. Do this, and you won't get to sit on God's lap in the afterlife. Do that, and God will reward you aplenty. The thought of a spirit residing in us that gets to travel to a heaven and hell when we die is pretty far-fetched and scientifically impossible to prove.

Vincentism doesn't believe that the Almighty God gives a shit about you and I the same way you wouldn't give a shit about the paramecium in your drain. When you die, you just die. You cease to exist, just like the broken alarm clock you threw away last week. But with no afterlife concept, it would be pretty difficult to keep people from being assholes.

So, there about comes the concept of Karma. It's not exactly a new concept, but it makes sense, scientifically and mathematically. It is the circle of life, or balance of power - you do something good and you collect brownie points in which you are rewarded later by the workings of nature. Similarly, if you choose to be an asshole and collect demerit points, you would find yourself royally fucked sooner or later.

Newton's 3rd Law states that for every action, there is an equal but opposite reaction. Simply put, in any mathematical equation, the left side must equate to the right side for perfect harmony to occur. This is the law in which every natural entity must obey. TWO equals TWO. When you do something good to the factor of two brownie points, then you can expect to be rewarded with something of an equal magnitude somewhere along the way.

But that is not to say that if you give someone an iPod today, you will get one for yourself tomorrow. For instance, the act of giving might be worth two points, which also equates to FIVE plus NEGATIVE THREE. So you get a pay rise (5), but meet an accident on the way home (-3). Nature has it's way of evening itself out, so us puny humans have to be on our toes all the time. And by keeping us on our toes all the time, that is how our species will eventually rise to the top and reign supreme over the universe (in hope that we can build that rocket to see God, just before it is squished like a pesky housefly)



Okay, like I said I haven't figured everything out, but I have another 25 years or so to do so. The good thing here is, unlike other religions which always seem to have answers for everything or tries to have an answer for everything (which then makes people annoyed when they cannot accept inconclusive answers), Vincentism which is very much based on scientific and mathematical theories can always say, "Oh, dunno lah. Need to research more," instead of giving people dodgy answers.

What other major religious debate have I not covered? Any questions, my children?

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Tuesday, October 23, 2007

planet killer

Al Gore wouldn't be pleased!


Muahahaha! If everybody lived like me, we would need 4.1 planets!

But see, that's the thing. Not everybody lives like me. So, a big shout out and thanks to the dudes who are doing what they are doing to enable me to live like that. In case you are too silly to understand that, let me blow your mind away with my awesome logic.

In the past, when I heard that people cycled to work because they didn't want to burn fuel, I laughed at them for being dumb and told them to take the bus or carpool if they were so worried about the environment. I was totally against Greenpeace and crap like that for being so pretentiously dumb. These days, I realised that they are doing us a big favour by cutting down consumption so that the rest of us can continue living the way we do. So instead of scorning them, I thank their valiant sacrifice.

So yes, please stop eating sharks, because if you guys continue eating sharks and they become extinct, then where the hell am I supposed to get my shark's fin supply? Same goes for terrapins too, okay? Stop eating them. If they go extinct how are my future kids going to taste their meat?

Take this 3 minute quiz to see how badly you are fucking up our planet! After that, tell me if you beat my score!

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Sunday, October 21, 2007

you don't like our angkasawan?

Our astronaut touched down back on Earth a few hours ago. I have been meaning to say this a long time ago, but I had more important things to do, like improve my golf swing and weeding my garden. Now, I know many people are not fans of our space programme and have been slagging it off from Day One as a waste of money. Today would be a good day to buy some lottery tickets, because it is a rare occasion that I actually agree with that sentiment.

I have never been a fan of space programmes. Not just ours, but I am talking about space programmes in general. I believe many other scientific frontiers can be more affordably breached than space. I have written about space and appropriate technology here and here. I fail to see how the Mars Rover and Beagle (assuming that it wasn't really crushed by Starscream) projects were significantly beneficial enough to mankind to warrant such a high cost when the amount spent on it could easily wipe out the debts of many African nations.

But back to our space programme - allow me to play Devil's Advocate, because that is something I do really well. Critics have slammed it as 'a waste of money' and 'money spent could be given to the poor'. Supporters say it goes a long way in encouraging our kids to take up Science and Technology.

Whateverlah.

The thing is, the critics said it was a waste of money and then the government responded that the cost of the programme was totally absorbed by the Russians when we bought some fighter jets from them. Kinda like when you buy loads of groceries from the kedai runcit and you bargain for a discount but the shopkeeper is reluctant to slash the price. But he wants you to come back in the future, so he throws in a pack of chewing gum free of charge to sweeten the deal. So, cost is not an issue here.

But I hear you shouting, "I don't believelah!"

Have you guys already decided who to vote for in the next general elections? Quite simply, if you believe that the cost of the space programme was free, then you would be a Barisan National supporter. If you don't believe a single word of it, then you are an Opposition supporter. In both cases, nothing else I say will make a difference to you, so I won't even bother trying to convince you otherwise (because I have better things to do than to argue with morons on the Internet).

But if you don't know what to believe, well then jump into my boat. We can still talk about the cost and whether it is prudent to spend all that money either on the space programme or on the fighter jets when the money could be used to help the poor, build more schools, develop the East Coast, employ more policemen, bla bla bla bla...

Okies..

So who gets to decide how the extra cash is spent? Surely helping the poor should take precedence? Or should they? How about disabled groups? Are they more in need of the extra cash than the poor? Then where on the list of priorities do fuel subsidies sit? (Ironically, the people who complained the most about the space programme and demanded that the money be spent on the poor were the same people who complained about the reduction of fuel subsidies) .

This argument is as ridiculous as is tedious. Which one of you thinks you have the right to decide if we should uild more roads or employ more policemen? If you say that the poor should take precedence over everything else, how about our sports programmes? Should we still continue funding our badminton team or shall we slash all the sports budgets because surely sports isn't is as important as feeding the poor? And what more performing arts? Why should we build more theatres and give grants to production companies. Who cares about pretentious people watching an orchestra when there are people living below the poverty line?

Shall we now start a debate on the merits of funding our national sportsmen? Arguments like these are pointless because at the end of it, it all depends on your area of interest AND more importantly, your political affiliations. If you are going to be hypocritical and wish to debate something, then debate your political ideologies, because in this very immature Malaysian society, your political affiliations decide whether you support something or not. The government's job is to do something and the opposition's job is to oppose it, no matter what the circumstances are. The supporters' role is to support, and support blindly.

Grow a spine, people. And more importantly, start forming your own opinions.

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Friday, October 19, 2007

just wondering...

It seems that the latest bright idea in the news is that the government is going to establish a registry of sex offenders and pedophiles. It is proposed that the names of these maniacs along with their offenses be made public in newspapers and on the Internet to ensure that this list is accessible to a wide audience.

Now this is nothing new and is being practiced in many countries around the world. Some proposals have even called for these perverts' address to be made public so that we would know if one of them is lurking around our neighbourhood. In the wake of the brutal Nurin murder, nobody in the right mind is going to oppose such a move. Heck, you can tell that even the opposition and socio-political *ahem* morons *ahem* bloggers approve of this move on the count that they haven't written anything about it.

However, I was just wondering...

If you pick up the newspapers on any given day, a good number of the sexual offenses against kids are incest cases. Father raping daughter. Grandfather raping granddaughter. Uncle raping niece.

So, if you come up with a sex offenders registrar, how do you protect the identity of these victims and their family members?

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Monday, October 15, 2007

con job


I swear, there is no better eviler way to make money than to con unsuspecting kampung folk. Or at least, err...katak-di-bawah-tempurung folk.

Look dad! Flat TV!
What's so good about it?
Dunno...my friend at school says its the latest technology!
Oh, okay. Let's buy it! So cheap summore!

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Thursday, October 11, 2007

jean valjean

In Victor Hugo's Les Miserables, the main character Jean Valjean was put in jail because he commited a crime - he stole a loaf of bread to feed his sister and her 7 children. We could argue all day about social injustices, not just in this country but throughout the world. We could talk about the hypocrisy of 'making poverty history' while pouring in billions to send a probe to Mars.

But those are arguments best left to people whose job would be to sit and argue about things like this, because there will never be a solution so as long as we remain humans, intact with our selfish nature. Still, it would not change the fact that poverty and desperation often leads people to do undesirable things. Undesirable to you, and you would be surprised - but just as undesirable to themselves.

For the purpose of this story, and for my not-so-regular readers who might not already know, I have a mentally disabled brother. The politically correct term these days is 'learning disabled'
but I am not one for political correctness, so you are free to call him whatever you wish just as long as you treat him good. Words versus actions, you know.

It should come as no surprise to you that despite what you are taught in schools, disabled people are bullied on a daily basis. It is the unfortunate truth that while an idiot at Pizza Hut cannot serve soup correctly, she has a job, while for a lot of disabled people, making a much smaller mistake would mean that you are out of the job. But I am not one to complain about the injustices of life, believing instead that karma would take its course.

In his latest job, my brother finds himself working in a restaurant as a waiter. The job is not without its usual problems, both with the employer and with my brother's own inability to work well. However, at this new job, he befriends many of the Les Miserables of this society and in turn many Jean Valjeans.

This particular chap, one that we (I say 'we' because if you are sitting in front of a computer reading this, then you are fairly well-off) would ride off as a kutu of society, approached my brother and asked to borrow 10 bucks so that he could take the bus home. And so, my brother lent him the money. My mum immediately smelled a rat and told my brother to make sure he got the money back as soon as possible because no bus ride costs 10 bucks. But, as is the case with my brother, we were left banging our heads on the wall the next day when he told us the guy needed an extra 20 bucks - which my dear brother so kindly obliged.

That was not the end of it, for this little con game went on and on until my brother came home one day and told us that the kutu owes him RM60 and we finally managed to convinced my simple minded brother that the guy did not forget to bring his wallet for the 6th time in a week and that the guy was actually cheating him. One week after that ordeal, my brother came home with the news that the kutu had resigned and balik kampung to his hometown in Kuala Terengganu. I know it sounds really silly, but so do the weekly stories of people paying RM20,000 to a bomoh for a magical stone. Things like this do happen.

The normal reaction to the proud new owner of the magical stone is to say 'padan muka' for being so dumb, and I agree. But when the person who was conned turns out to be a mentally disabled guy, people tend to get outraged. None more so than my mum who went around telling anybody who would listen, how there exists animals who actually have the heart to cheat handicapped people. Lowlife, I believe was the term of the day. Personally, I shrugged it off. RM60 is a lot of money to some people, but we weren't exactly going to starve. On one hand, it was good because we used that as a lesson to my brother that he cannot be so trusting of random idiots in the future.

One week later, my brother was told by another of the waiters that the kutu had just sms-ed to say that his father finally passed away after a long illness and that he had to stay in Kuala Terengganu to help his mother look after the other siblings.

Sure, cheating the money out of a mentally disabled bloke probably wasn't the proudest moment of his life. This is one case in which the ends do not justify the means. I kept wondering how he could look himself in the mirror, or how he was going to try to keep a straight face when he went back to the kampung and gave his siblings their weekly pocket money.

I guess when you are desperate, you would be surprised by the things you could do...

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Tuesday, October 02, 2007

story of the day

Vincent has the scruffy look again.

The last time I had the scruffy look was somewhere around this time last year when our Muslim friends were in their fasting month. This woman at the chap fan stall stared at me real hard before she served me. Only when I uttered a word of Cantonese did she reply back in Cantonese, "Oh I thought you were Malay." The woman at the McDonalds drive through also frowned at me before serving me.

Still, today's story beats the other two hands down.

I went to KFC for lunch. When it came to my turn and I stepped forward the cashier greeted me with the coldest greeting ever:

"Take away, ke?"
"Dok, nak makang"
"Orang Melayu tidak dibenarkan makan di sini!"
"Tau, tapi aku owang Cina"
Still not visibly pleased, she stared at me real hard before finally deciding it wasn't wise to lose a customer. As she served me, there was a little Malay kid at the next counter with his mum who was ordering food at the same time. Before I could grab my tray and take a seat, the kid looked up to me and asked, "Abang makan sini ke?" His mother dragged him off before I could reply, so I flashed him a smile.

Every other person I know has told me to shave off the caveman goatee and do away with the Malay accent (and speak in broken Malay), but I think useful for getting me into hilarious in situations like this!

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