Seeing the positives from the negatives

“Singapore has one of the highest per capita GDPs in the world, a low employment rate and an enviable education system yet is home to the world’s least positive-minded population.” (TIME Magazine, page 80, July 8-15, 2013) Read this piece a day after when I had started planning this blog.

We are more aware of unhappiness and all things negative but less mindful of minor contentment that arises every now and then. We tend to be oblivious of them.

Seeing positive from negative – 5 recent incidents

A fortnight ago, Singapore had to endure Pollutant Standard Index (PSI) of 401 due to haze brought on from the Sumatra forest/plantation fire. Thankfully, the haze cleared considerably into the second week. We had a bad case of unhealthy haze for about two weeks, but think about the other 350 days (95%) of good air in a year.

The anxieties of parents rise over the coming Primary One registration. Getting to a school of choice may be elusive for some. Think about Malala Yousufza who fights for rights of female students in Pakistan to an education. Not so here. Primary school education in Singapore is made compulsory.

One report puts 500,000 as the number of protestors in Tahrir Square, demonstrating against President Mohamed Morsi, demanding for his resignation. His party supporters came out to support President Morsi and clashed with them. This is truly frightening. In Singapore, we get to see political fight over the cleaning of two blocks of hawker centers under the purview of the opposition-held ward of Aljunied GRC.

Some people went crazy over limited-edition of Hello Kitty “Singing Bone”. They queued overnight to get one from McDonald’s. Tempers flared. On the other hand, the queuing that is important was to enter unemployment registry office for jobless people in Spain. 27% unemployment rate is scary.

703,200 tonnes of food were thrown away last year, a 26% spike from 2007 figure. We in Singapore have so much food wastage. Yet in the world, there are 870 million hungry people. (Source: Food and Agriculture Organization)

In conclusion, we have a lot to be thankful for. Just see beyond the negatives. We need not remain as a nation who is rich economically but least-positive minded people.

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