Synecdoche, New York

Starring: Philip Seymour Hoffman, Samantha Morton, Michelle Williams, Catherine Keener Director: Charlie Kaufman Category: IIB

Thursday, 3 December, 2009, 12:00am

Departure of officials is just business as usual

The recent resignation of tourism commissioner Margaret Fong Shun-man to become a deputy executive director of the Trade Development Council has stirred media speculation that senior administrative officers are leaving in droves, creating a talent shortage and having a serious impact on governance.

18 Nov 2009 - 12:00am

Pointless cross-border express link is a case of misplaced priorities

The government keeps telling us that the cross-border high-speed rail link must be built, otherwise we will be doomed.

1 Nov 2009 - 12:00am

Does desire make us suffer?

Anthea Wong, 18, Hong Kong International School

It is natural for people to set goals in life and to always be desiring things. But too much desire will lead to suffering.

28 Oct 2009 - 12:00am

liberal studies

Reading comprehension

Answer the following questions:

1 Circle the groups on which Michael Moore blames the financial meltdown.

a. big business

b. auto companies

c. finance houses

d. consumers

e. government

2 What were 19th century socialist intellectuals reacting to?

13 Oct 2009 - 12:00am

Can we end poverty if it can't even be defined?

The last century found that, willy-nilly, it had goals aplenty. There was always the social goal of ending unemployment, a purpose that fired people as varied as John Maynard Keynes and Adolf Hitler. There was the goal of spreading capitalism or building socialism, depending on which side of the fence you were on.

5 Oct 2009 - 12:00am

Chic or chi?

There are some interior designers who may be familiar with basic fung shui principles but the majority of fung shui masters are not acquainted with the doctrine behind interior design, which may lead to some discord if you hire one of each to help you lay out your home.

4 Oct 2009 - 12:00am

Urban Jungle

This being the final edition of Urban Jungle, I would like to thank all those people who have written to me and given me encouragement over the years. The column has been fun to write and has given me an opportunity to voice issues that I have found pressing and neglected elsewhere in the media.

2 Oct 2009 - 12:00am

A foil for the West without even trying

The world is obsessed with China, Chris Patten recently observed in a China Daily interview. But, despite routine critical reportage on the country, he has said it is in no one's interest to see its society or economy fail. Patten is no doubt correct.

1 Oct 2009 - 12:00am

liberal studies

Reading comprehension

Answer the following questions:

1 How did journalists uncover Andy Lau's marriage?

a. Surveillance

b. Hong Kong marriage records

c. US marriage records

d. Lau's marriage record

2 What was Lau's excuse for hiding the marriage?

a. To protect himself

29 Sep 2009 - 12:00am

The greed creed

Greed, like lust, is difficult to tame. I know of a Hong Kong landlord who is a priest. Whether his religious calling helps to subdue any temptations of lust, only he knows. But I do know this: he haggled for weeks with a prospective tenant for an extra HK$250 a month in rent. The property agent handling the negotiations told me the priest, who owns many flats, is a hard bargainer.

29 Sep 2009 - 12:00am

Long-term view

You may have seen the Wan Nian Li (Man Nien Lik in Cantonese) or Ten Thousand Year Calendar on sale in bookshops but be unclear as to what its purpose is.

27 Sep 2009 - 12:00am

Privatisation should never be seen as the panacea for all ills

I refer to the article by Nicole Alpert of The Lion Rock Institute ('When privatisation offers the best value', September 5).

Taking the shopping centres and car parks previously managed by the Housing Authority as an example, Ms Alpert said that due to the lack of incentive for 'profits', the authority's use of resources and facilities was inefficient.

12 Sep 2009 - 12:00am

Bringing up baby

With the trend of expecting mothers booking a Caesarian section months in advance, fung shui masters are increasingly being consulted as to when new additions to the family should be delivered. This involves consulting astrological birth charts for various dates then identifying the one that is most appropriate.

6 Sep 2009 - 12:00am

Schools can help put students on the road to ethical behaviour

I refer to the letter by Ryan Lai Shing-tat ('Ethics cannot be simply taught in class', July 24).

Mr Lai was concerned that I was suggesting the introduction of ethics as an examination subject for students.

30 Jul 2009 - 12:00am