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Expository – Social (the disabled, lower-income groups etc.)

-The hearing-impaired dancers from Redeafination have impressed others with their grit and courage. Their disability is no hindrance to them in pursuing their craft

-only altruistic motives should govern one’s desire to volunteer

Narcissism: a very positive and inflated view of self


Expository – Health

-A laudable 6% of the total government expenditure is spent on health.

-Stroke is Singapore’s 3th leading cause of death and among the top 10 causes of hospitalisation.

-Hospice care for acute stroke: US$5000 (in Singapore)

-The list of subsidised medicine is reviewed every year by a panel of medical experts.

-MOH subsidises about 1000 drugs dispensed at public hospitals and polyclinics.

-Over the last two years (2009 and 2010) KK (Kandang Kerbau) Women’s and Children’s Hospital (KKH) Women’s Pain Clinic has observed a rise of at least 30% to 40% in patients seeking treatment from chronic pain.

-plagued by body aches for a decade-pain sufferers need not suffer in silence

-more women suffered from aches and pains due to sedentary lifestyles caused by clock-bound jobs

-increased awareness-exercise is one avenue of prevention

-38% of the planet’s ice-free land is now devoted to agriculture

-The runoff from fertilised fields is trigerring life-throttling blooms of algae at river mouths all over the world.

Expository – the Elderly

-these Singaporeans have spent a lifetime working hard to build Singapore up, whether as coolies or managers, and should be looked after during their sunset years, many believe.

-By 2030, one out of five Singaporeans are 65 years or older. Today, one out of twelve Singaporeans are 65 or older.

Only 27% of Singaporeans between 25 and 75 said they have sufficient funds to retire, compared with 61% of Thais and 47% of Malaysians, according to an insurance company survey

-Singapore life expectancy is 81.7 years, the world’s third highest, even ahead of Japan (81.25 years)

-… the well-funded ComCare Fund – now holding $800 million – may be enhanced to provide more buffer for the needy

-The government’s new $1 billion Community Silver Trust, a dollar-for-dollar matching scheme to boost funding to volunteer welfare organisations (VWOs) that provide long term care to the elderly.

SMRT will raise its support for BWOs, through its own Silver Tribute Fund, which raised some $3 million for more than 10000 needy elderly people and their caregivers since 2006.

-Mr Wee Lin, chairman of Sunlove Abode for Intellectually Infirmed, noted that charities for children tend to get more attention than those for the mentally ill or the elderly, for children are the future.

-According to a new Active Ageing Index, the elderly in Singapore fall short in three areas: health, financial security and community engagement, defined by the WHO. The majority, about 80% achieved a medium level of active ageing.

Chronic conditions that occur more commonly in the elderly are hypertension, diabetes mellitus, hypercholesterolemia (high blood cholesterol and triglycerides), heart disease, hearing loss and arthritis. An often forgotten aspect is that of nutrition (underweight/overweight).

-The elderly often under-report hearing loss. They also frequently do not report defective hearing aids and furthermore, underuse hearing aids when prescribed. The oral cavity and dentures, if any, should be looked at. Ill-fitting dentures are not an uncommon cause of poor nutrition.

-One often missed clinical sign is that of postural hypotension (feel giddy after standing up from squatting).

-Between now and 2030, Singapore will witness an unprecedented profound age shift. The number of residents aged 65 years old and above will increase 3 times from current 300000 to 900000 in 2010. By then, one out of every 5 residents will be a senior, The coming surge of seniors, which starts when the first batch of baby boomers reach 65 years of age in 2012, will have tremendous effect on all parts of our society – individual, community, businesses and the government.

-All new buses should be low-floor, step-free and wheelchair accessible. This will benefit not just seniors but also other groups such as young parents with children in prams and those with physical disabilities.

-We need to ensure that elderly has access to a seamless continuum(range) of healthcare and eldercare services which should maintain dignity and quality of life for seniors and avoid institutionalisation as far as possible.

-The government should top up Medisave account of less well-off Singaporeans when there are budget surpluses to help defray healthcare costs as Singaporeans depend on Medisave to meet healthcare needs in old age.

Expository – Famous People

-In the face of Myanmar’s oppressive regime, Aung San Suu Kyi has consistently campaigned for democracy, her efforts winning the Nobel Prize in 1991.

-Tiger Woods is an inspiration to all of those who are trying to become professional golfers, but had caused an outrage by spitting into a hole during a world championship, and has been fined for spitting during another tournaments.

Expo – Technology

– A blog is a page or site on the Internet which is updated with materials of various topics with a certain degree of being personalised, usually on a regular basis, by a single writer (‘blogger’).

-Airing your thoughts on the Net means that anyone might stumble across them ,including your employer. In 2004, a flight attendant Ellen Simonetti was initally suspened and then fired from her job at American airline Delta. A photo posted on her blog showed her dressed in uniform, with the company logo visible, which prompted the airline to take action. Similarly, a secretary was sacked in 2006 for posting her photo online, which identified her and thus her company.

-According to a report in 2010 by the Kaiser Family foundation, US children aged 8 to 18 are now spending more than 53 hours a week using entertainment media. Ten years ago, that figure was 43 hours/week. Children spend an average of 38 minutes a day reading a print publication, compared to 43 minutes a day 10 years ago. The only media they are not soaking up are newspapers, magazines and other print publications.

Expository – The Environment

-The new sobriety could give more space to a third stream of climate politics between those who see warming as an unmitigated catastrophe that must be stopped at all costs, and those who reject global warming as a hoax.

-The snag (obstacle) was that once in place, these lofty goals (of cutting CO2 emissions) would require countries to get on with the harsh and costly business of reengineering entire economics, without which the numbers could not be reached.

-Burma (Myanmar) is no stranger to natural disasters. … In may 2008, 130,000 people died in Cyclone Nargis, which also left hundreds of thousands homeless. In the aftermath of the cyclone, Burma’s government were criticised for their handling of the crisis and stubbornness in refusing to accpet international aid.-The little red dot is green, too.

-An inaugural study commissioned by European technology company Siemens has found Singapore to be the greenest city in Asia. Singapore came up tops in its management of waste & water resources. It also scored consistently above average in the other categories, such as sanitation and environmental governance. Singapore fared well thanks to the government’s emphasis on long-term sustainability.

-The Singapore government raised its target to recycle rubbish from 56% in 2008 to 65% by 2020.

-Singapore fared well in its plans for green transport systems, e.g. investing in doubling the rail network by 2020 and installing new cycling paths in neighbourhoods.

-Singapore raked up carbon emissions on a par with cities like London, and higher than any of the other cities in a study conducted by Siemens.

-During Qing Ming, I had a lingering eco-guilt over the wastefulness of the practice. All the poor trees chopped down – to make paper to be burnt.

-During the Japan crisis, some stores have been stripped bare of essentials… The Japanese are bracing themselves for further losses.

-In the wake of last Friday’s disaster,…

-In Northern Japan’s disaster zone, an estimated 440000 people were living in makeshift shelters or evacuation centres, officials said. Bitterly cold and windy weather compounded (made worse) the misery of the survivors as they endured shortages of food, fuel and water.

-If we do not take adequate measures to tackle the twin problems of environment deterioration and rapidly expanding population, we will be putting an ominous burden on our future. Technology should not lead us to stretch the limits of the world’s resources.

More efficient and nutritious crops like soya beans and potatoes which introduce nitrogen into the soil and supply protein are to be planted. Agroforestry, the mixing of trees with crops, is to be encouraged.  Crop rotation and multiple cropping techniques will prevent soil exhaustion. Our early form of biotechnology of using natural fertilisers of recycled organic nutrients should not be abandoned, for chemical fertilisers can harm cropland. The use of bio-pesticides instead of chemical pesticides is crucial to the development of a healthy relationship with our environment.

-500 billion plastic bags are consumed on this planet every year.

-More than a million seabirds and 100,000 marine mammals die every year from ingestion of or entanglement in plastics.

-Dubbed “The Great Green Wall,” a human-made ecological barrier designed to stop rapidly encroaching deserts and combat climate change is coming up across China. By 2050, the artificial forest is to stretch 400 million hectares – covering more than 42 percent of China’s landmass.

Expository – Sports

-pugilistic sports e.g. taekwondo, wushu -a growing camaraderie and esprit de corps

-Tiger Woods, despite being an inspiration to other golfers, has been fined for spitting during a game.

-bowed out of the tournament -aired frustrations -The NBA fined Kobe Bryant US$100,000 (S$125,000) for using an anti-gay slur (just write “vulgarity” in essay) after he was slapped with a technical foul in LA Lakers’ 102-93 victory over San Antonio.