October 19th, 2005

krazy koati

Now I'm ten miles in the deep and mighty blue sea

The Seventh International Zen Conference was held in Singapore; it was a gathering of people who look vaguely like Arthur C Clarke from around the world. The goals are to raise awareness of what those in their community are doing, and to discuss ways to make more people aware of Buddhism in places like Las Vegas. I can't wait to see the con videos.

Coincidentally, this week is Singapore Fashion Week, designed to raise Singapore's cultural standing and, well, show off people in outrageous states of dress. I can only hope the signs to the two conventions are clearly labelled and there's a minimum of people who go to the wrong one. I don't think most Buddhist attire would be improved by rivers of sequins arranged at jaunty angles.

I missed the initial outbreak, but Jackson Tai, Chief Executive Officer of the DBS Bank of Singapore has apologized to the management of OCBC bank for comments Friday before the Asian Corporate Governance Association Conference (the name only seems redundant). While the bank wasn't named, actions it took in 2003, around the SARS crisis, were, and Tai says he is sorry if his statements, about how ``all of this [ activity ] defy (sic) industry logic'' and ``any sound business manager at that time'' would not have done what OCBC did, gave anyone the impression that he was accusing OCBC of being irresponsibly run or of having bad corporate management.

OCBC's Chairman Cheong Choong Kong had a two-page fact sheet detailing all its activities from early 2003 (which amounted to S$237 million in capital gains, which are money that non-accountant types like me can't understand) issued in rebuttal, and said he didn't mind criticism, but did mind the accusation of irresponsibility: ``I resent the insult to my Board of Directors.'' Boards of Directors are so sensitive. I love these sorts of spats. If I remember right Tai's had to apologize before, for saying the merger of UOB bank and OUB bank was a bad idea. He didn't want to give people the impression he thought that was be a bad idea. (On reflection it may have been the head of HSBC Singapore, but there was one bank head apologizing to others.)

Trivia: Harold Lloyd's Comedy Theater radio program lasted seven and a half months, from late 1944 to summer 1945. Source: On The Air: The Encyclopedia of Old-Time Radio, John Dunning.

Currently Reading: The Sputniks Crisis and Early United States Space Policy, Rip Bulkeley.