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Old 2011-08-25, 05:28   Link #16081
SaintessHeart
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MeoTwister5 View Post
As a Chinese I find that story absurd. Chinese burial customs dictates that, almost similarly to Egyptian burial rituals, you bury/cremate the dead with the items you'd wish them to have in the afterlife, albeit you burn representations. When my maternal grandfather died we burned a gigantic paper house, a small plastic corvette (he had one when he was younger), and the usual paper money for him to spend. I mean, better than burning an actual Corvette right?
I still remember that is what got me interested in international finance - I was 8 or 9 at that time and I asked my mum if we burned those notes with Zimbabwean numerations, won't hell be flooded with an unusually large money supply, thus reducing the value of the amount that we have burned. And if everyone burned a giant paper house or paper car, wouldn't the hellian streets be congested and the real estate be in total turmoil?

Up till today I still haven't got a proper answer, the reply I got then was a blast; my mum screamed her head off at me for "disrespect for elders" and making her lose face in front of the many other Chinese worshippers in my neighbourhood.
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Old 2011-08-25, 07:43   Link #16082
Haak
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SaintessHeart View Post
I still remember that is what got me interested in international finance - I was 8 or 9 at that time and I asked my mum if we burned those notes with Zimbabwean numerations, won't hell be flooded with an unusually large money supply, thus reducing the value of the amount that we have burned. And if everyone burned a giant paper house or paper car, wouldn't the hellian streets be congested and the real estate be in total turmoil?
Lol, I just imagined an eight year old version of you, using those exact words...
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Old 2011-08-25, 08:44   Link #16083
DonQuigleone
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Originally Posted by Tsuyoshi View Post
10 so long as people know what they're doing with the company at least, and so far it looks like Steve had full run over what was happening with Apple's activities. Without him, you can have the cult, but it'll risk running wild.
Steve will be Jesus, but will Apple have a Paul? Either way, Steve will return in the future to give us a new generation of advanced electronics, and lead us to the kingdom of electronic heaven. You read it here first kids.

Quote:
Originally Posted by SaintessHeart View Post
It doesn't really matter to me if my neighbouring countries practice racism or not, but the thing is that when they did, and the shit spilled over across the Causeway.
True, but you can't expect what goes in a neighbouring country to not affect you? Can you also begrudge Malaysians coming to Singapore (illegally or not) in search of prosperity?

My own opinion is that we can't build a wall around our countries and block out the troubles of the world... In the end it all forces us to look at the world in a more internationalist manner.

We're no more inherently deserving of prosperity then people of other countries, and we pay for that inequality by having that inequality brought downwards by the action of immigrants.

Of course, there's no easy solution to all this.
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Old 2011-08-25, 13:04   Link #16084
Vexx
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Aye, at this point in globalization the world is a sandbox and when someone pees in one corner it messes with the rest of the sandbox, like it or not.

The corporations have gone "transnational". Basically, the city-states now have the obligation of protecting the workers from their excesses and exploitation.... which is why the corporations try to "buy off" that representation.
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Old 2011-08-25, 14:06   Link #16085
TinyRedLeaf
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DonQuigleone View Post
True, but you can't expect what goes in a neighbouring country to not affect you? Can you also begrudge Malaysians coming to Singapore (illegally or not) in search of prosperity?

My own opinion is that we can't build a wall around our countries and block out the troubles of the world... In the end it all forces us to look at the world in a more internationalist manner.

We're no more inherently deserving of prosperity then people of other countries, and we pay for that inequality by having that inequality brought downwards by the action of immigrants.

Of course, there's no easy solution to all this.
Some clarifications are in order: Even though our two countries have grown quite far apart — politically, economically and socially — Singapore and Malaysia still share very close historical and personal links, to the extent that it's a bit absurd to talk in terms of "us" vs "them".

Case in point: Out of a resident population of 3.7 million in 2010, some 22.8% of people who live and work permanently in Singapore were born in Malaysia (source: Department of Statistics Singapore). My mother, a naturalised citizen, was from Malacca. I have relatives in Malaysia. I have colleagues from Malaysia. A couple of my best female friends are Malaysians.

As far as we're concerned, we're much more wary of recent immigrants than we are of each other. Heck, our accents and slang (and favourite foods) are so similar that, most of the time, we can't even tell each other apart. Sure, we seldom pass up a chance to poke fun at each other, but that's more a sign of affection than enmity, in my opinion.

The rivalries between our two countries stem from a variety of historical accidents, exacerbated by local politics no doubt. But, for the most part, close family and social ties continue to bind our peoples beyond politics (except when it comes to football, but that's another story).

By and large, if you ignore the politicians, our quarrels are no more venomous than those between, say, Scotland and England, or Canada and the United States. There aren't that many "barriers" per se. Malaysians love Singapore investors in Selangor, Malacca and Johor states, and they love the Singapore tourist dollar even more along the splendid beaches of the peninsular east coast. And though they aren't as cheap to hire as they once were, plenty of Malaysians continue to draw much better wages in Singapore than they would in Malaysia (especially if they are Chinese).
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Old 2011-08-25, 14:46   Link #16086
Kaioshin Sama
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TinyRedLeaf View Post
Chinatown funeral goods bring counterfeit charges


Romance rules Philippine book charts

^ That's interesting. Any of our Filipino friends care to verify or add further insights to this story?
Just sounds like the equivalent of Harlequin Romance novels albeit actually popular enough to top sales charts. Personally I'm not a huge fan of the seeming attempt to dumb down books (and not to mention western cultures seeming attempt to dumb itself down in general), but if that's what it takes to get people to read a book these days they might as well do it.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Vexx View Post
Aye, at this point in globalization the world is a sandbox and when someone pees in one corner it messes with the rest of the sandbox, like it or not.

The corporations have gone "transnational". Basically, the city-states now have the obligation of protecting the workers from their excesses and exploitation.... which is why the corporations try to "buy off" that representation.
You know, I figure that if the world hadn't been so focused on propping up a system based on predictive values and confidence (basically capitalism) that has proved time and again to not be self-sustaining let alone functional in an age of overwhelming greed that we'd probably have found something better by now. Like do people not see that they are basically playing a game of watching numbers see-saw back and forth and that everything rests on the tip of a pin where one small event is capable of causing it all to come crashing down. Is this really where we want to be right now? Is this really what should be considered normal? I still don't think so.
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Old 2011-08-25, 15:17   Link #16087
ChainLegacy
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kaioshin Sama View Post

You know, I figure that if the world hadn't been so focused on propping up a system based on predictive values and confidence (basically capitalism) that has proved time and again to not be self-sustaining let alone functional in an age of overwhelming greed that we'd probably have found something better by now. Like do people not see that they are basically playing a game of watching numbers see-saw back and forth and that everything rests on the tip of a pin where one small event is capable of causing it all to come crashing down. Is this really where we want to be right now? Is this really what should be considered normal? I still don't think so.
Nope, but I fear we may just live in a time of continual decline rather than the beginnings of revolution. It usually takes established political systems (or empires, some could argue in the US's case) a long time, sometimes several centuries to completely crumble.

Luckily though, we're in a point in history where we aren't necessarily bound to the fate of the system around us. Knowledge is power. Of course, struggles abound nonetheless, but I feel better off than a peasant in declining Rome.
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Old 2011-08-25, 15:49   Link #16088
Anh_Minh
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kaioshin Sama View Post
Just sounds like the equivalent of Harlequin Romance novels albeit actually popular enough to top sales charts. Personally I'm not a huge fan of the seeming attempt to dumb down books (and not to mention western cultures seeming attempt to dumb itself down in general), but if that's what it takes to get people to read a book these days they might as well do it.



You know, I figure that if the world hadn't been so focused on propping up a system based on predictive values and confidence (basically capitalism) that has proved time and again to not be self-sustaining let alone functional in an age of overwhelming greed that we'd probably have found something better by now. Like do people not see that they are basically playing a game of watching numbers see-saw back and forth and that everything rests on the tip of a pin where one small event is capable of causing it all to come crashing down. Is this really where we want to be right now? Is this really what should be considered normal? I still don't think so.
Dunno. For all that "all's come crashing down", we've still got enough food and electricity to bitch about it on the Internet. I don't believe capitalism's perfect or even the best system out there (which would involve me ruling the Earth with an iron fist), but we could certainly do worse. All in all it's quite bearable.
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Old 2011-08-25, 20:28   Link #16089
andyjay729
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http://start.toshiba.com/news/read.p...org%3E&ps=1011

Well, we've been wondering whether Americans and other Westerners would be as relatively calm and orderly during a major disaster as the Japanese were after their tsunami. This may provide the answer.

I have relatives in North Carolina and Connecticut. Fortunately, they're pretty sharp; I don't think they'll mess around if any official orders are given.
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Old 2011-08-25, 20:34   Link #16090
SaintessHeart
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DonQuigleone View Post
True, but you can't expect what goes in a neighbouring country to not affect you? Can you also begrudge Malaysians coming to Singapore (illegally or not) in search of prosperity?

My own opinion is that we can't build a wall around our countries and block out the troubles of the world... In the end it all forces us to look at the world in a more internationalist manner.

We're no more inherently deserving of prosperity then people of other countries, and we pay for that inequality by having that inequality brought downwards by the action of immigrants.

Of course, there's no easy solution to all this.
The problem isn't the wall, but rather that when problems spill across their government simply brushes it off.

The problem isn't with them coming over in search of prosperity, but rather that their government isn't opening up options to them. And how many jobs can Singapore offer in total? With the high CoL, earning less than 1500 per month makes suicide a better option.

Corporations don't care about Singaporeans first or what, they just want cheaper and cheaper labour. And how can a local subsist PLUS support his family when real wage continues to spiral downwards?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Haak View Post
Lol, I just imagined an eight year old version of you, using those exact words...
I didn't use those words. I simply asked if the numbers are so big, wouldn't hell be flooded with "cheap money" of no value.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kaioshin Sama View Post
You know, I figure that if the world hadn't been so focused on propping up a system based on predictive values and confidence (basically capitalism) that has proved time and again to not be self-sustaining let alone functional in an age of overwhelming greed that we'd probably have found something better by now. Like do people not see that they are basically playing a game of watching numbers see-saw back and forth and that everything rests on the tip of a pin where one small event is capable of causing it all to come crashing down. Is this really where we want to be right now? Is this really what should be considered normal? I still don't think so.
Those predictive values used to work and are rational, until so-called analysts started skewing perspectives by focusing only on certain numbers.

As for the "one small event causes all to crash down" - it is the herd mentality. Can't do much about a bunch of monkeys anyway.
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When three puppygirls named after pastries are on top of each other, it is called Eclair a'la menthe et Biscotti aux fraises avec beaucoup de Ricotta sur le dessus.
Most of all, you have to be disciplined and you have to save, even if you hate our current financial system. Because if you don't save, then you're guaranteed to end up with nothing.
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Old 2011-08-25, 22:23   Link #16091
ganbaru
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Join Date: Dec 2007
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Warren Buffett to invest $5 billion in Bank of America
http://www.reuters.com/article/2011/...77N4J420110826

What do he know than we don't ?
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Old 2011-08-25, 23:00   Link #16092
GDB
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He knows that looking at the long term is more beneficial than the short term. It may be doing poorly now, but it's a big bank with strong brand recognition. Keeping it alive to get stronger, while simultaneously protecting those who would be screwed if something happened to it, gives bigger profits in the long run.
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Old 2011-08-26, 05:05   Link #16093
Tom Bombadil
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TinyRedLeaf View Post
Some clarifications are in order: Even though our two countries have grown quite far apart politically, economically and socially Singapore and Malaysia still share very close historical and personal links, to the extent that it's a bit absurd to talk in terms of "us" vs "them".
If it is not too much trouble for you, could you explain a bit how Malaysia works? I found the wiki pages a bit too dry. Lots of things that I have heard about the nation are quite peculiar, such as two court system: a Muslim court and a civilian court, some segment of the population (based on their race) are bared from certain career options (like entering civil service or banking, etc.) I have also heard that marrying out of religion is frowned upon (which is certainly not limited to Muslim or Malaysia). Many of them can be misconceptions or nonproblems. It will be enlightening to know what it is really like. I also found that the fact they are keep the two regions that so far apart by ocean under the same rule pretty fascinating.
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Old 2011-08-26, 05:34   Link #16094
ganbaru
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Rebels send in special forces to hunt for Gaddafi
http://www.reuters.com/article/2011/...77A2Y920110826
What do they call special force?
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Old 2011-08-26, 05:43   Link #16095
Ithekro
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Specialized forces and/or ex-military special forces from they Libyan Army?
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Old 2011-08-26, 06:48   Link #16096
TinyRedLeaf
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Originally Posted by Tom Bombadil View Post
If it is not too much trouble for you, could you explain a bit how Malaysia works? I found the wiki pages a bit too dry. Lots of things that I have heard about the nation are quite peculiar, such as two court system: a Muslim court and a civilian court, some segment of the population (based on their race) are bared from certain career options (like entering civil service or banking, etc.) I have also heard that marrying out of religion is frowned upon (which is certainly not limited to Muslim or Malaysia). Many of them can be misconceptions or nonproblems. It will be enlightening to know what it is really like. I also found that the fact they are keep the two regions that so far apart by ocean under the same rule pretty fascinating.
The BBC article that SaintessHeart had linked to earlier is generally spot on, with regard to religion and race relations in Malaysia. I wasn't actually quibbling with the article, but was more concerned about what I felt was the misleading portrayal of relations between Singapore and Malaysia.

(1)
Malaysia is first and foremost the homeland of ethnic Malays (in itself a sensitive topic, because "Malay" can refer many different groups of people in South-east Asia, while Malaysian Malays have a separate identity of their own). Within Malaysia itself, Malays are defined, by Constitution, as someone born to a Malaysian citizen who 1) professes to be a Muslim, 2) habitually speaks the Malay language and 3) adheres to Malay customs (whatever that means).

In other words, by law, a Malaysian Malay must be a Muslim who is, among other things, obliged to obey Syriah law. Now, this could create problems in a multiracial, multicultural country, as the Chinese (mostly Buddhist, Taoist or Christian) and Indians (who are mostly Hindu) are obviously not going to submit to Muslim laws with regard to civil and family matters.

Hence, Malaysia has a two-court system: one for Malays (that is, Muslims) and another for non-Malays. I am not completely sure, but I believe this applies only to civil law. The criminal-justice system, I believe, applies equally to both Muslims and non-Muslims.

With regard to marriage, anyone — male or female — who marries a Muslim must convert to Islam. That is part of Syriah law. Refusal to comply makes one an apostate, which means you can be tried and punished by Syriah law. As far as I understand, outside of Islam, no restrictions apply to marriages between Buddhists, Taoists, Christians and Hindus.

(2)
As the BBC article noted, Malays in Malaysia have historically been economically disadvantaged, forming as they do the bulk of the country's rural community. This has led politicians there to formulate affirmative-action policies to give Malays a leg up. Back in the 1950s and 60s, at the height of the nationalist/independence movement, this was seen as a necessity, because of the perceived economic disparity between rural Malays and urban Chinese (who tended to be wealthier and better educated).

Unfortunately, over the years, these "bumiputera" (literally, "sons of the soil") policies got warped by corruption and cronyism. Even among the Malays, there is noticeable resentment, in that some politically well-connected Malays were clearly benefiting from pork-barrel politics more than the rest of their ethnic community.

(3)
I'm afraid I don't know much about the background behind the two mega states of Sarawak and Sabah in East Malaysia (which occupy the northern edge of Indonesia's Borneo island). They became part of the then-Malayan federation because of the Malaysia Agreement between Malaya and Britain, presumably because Sarawak and Sabah were British colonies at the time.

As was usually the case in other parts of their crumbling empire, the way the British handled decolonisation in Malaya/Malaysia proved frustrating at best, and infuriating at worst. In this case, it triggered the Indonesia-Malaysia Confrontation between 1962 and 1966. Obviously, Indonesia wasn't very pleased to see a part of its backyard ceded to a foreign government. As I recall, the tensions spilled over even into Singapore, which suffered bomb attacks at the time. The tussle ended only after Suharto took over as Indonesia's President from the ardent nationalist Sukarno.

Since then, Sarawak and Sabah have been electoral strongholds for Malaysia's ruling Barisan Nasional coalition. I don't know why. A lot of local politics is involved that I haven't studied.

(4)
Ultimately, what does all this mean for ordinary Malaysians today? I can't speak for them — there are more than enough Malaysians in AnimeSuki who can give their views if they so wish. I can speak only as an outsider looking in.

Racial and religious polarisation in Malaysia has become very worrying in recent years. The different ethnic and religious groups in Peninsular Malaysia have been coexisting more or less peacefully for years, though individuals are more than aware of the lines that cannot be crossed. In a sense, it's like a country of gated communities, with each ethnic/religious group agreeing to avoid doing and saying things to antagonise each other.

Unfortunately, politics has become very heated over the past decade since former leader Mahathir Mohamad stepped down. The loss of the northern state of Kelantan to the deeply conservative Pan-Malaysian Islamic Party forced Malay politicians in the ruling coalition to burnish their Muslim credentials in the attempt to win back votes.

This has in turn triggered a rising wave of tensions between Malays and non-Malays, contributing to alarming problems like attacks on churches and street protests with Muslims trampling on the severed head of a cow (considered sacred to Hindus).

Overall, though? These were largely isolated events. Malaysia as a whole remains a peaceful country, albeit somewhat troubled just under the surface. As I've said, for the most part, most of the problems are the result of brinkmanship between sabre-rattling politicians. Ignore the politics, and things are by and large fine.

Malaysia is far — very, very far — from being another Somalia or Rwanda in the making.
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Old 2011-08-26, 09:58   Link #16097
Tom Bombadil
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@TinyRedLeaf:

Thank you very much! It is a great read.

As for the Marriage within the religion, I read some poster (a Chinese Muslim) remarked that it is a loosely enforced custom/tradition, but I have no idea that's a religious law. I know some religious people in the US prefer to marry Christens, but making it part of the religious law is an entire different matter.

About affirmative action, while the idea is certainly a noble one, but it is very often exploited. In China for example, the minorities get some additional score for the notoriously competitive national college entrance exam, and lots of "fake minorities" are uncovered in recent years. In other words, a few parents who bribe officials to change their children's ethnicity from "han" to other minorities to get a unfair advantage. I heard from a friend that there is a similar policy in Taiwan and similarly exploited. Nowadays in taiwan those who apply for this privilege have to go through some native language test.

One other thing about certain proportion of population is granted special rights is that they are very hard to be wane off it. The privileged groups fights very hard against giving up even bits of it. With prolonged inequality of job opportunities, education level, etc., there is danger that an informal caste system is formed within the society, which is very hard to be undone and very detrimental to a modern society. Of course this is not the reality in Malaysia, since the BBC article mentioned that on average, the Malay people are still poorer, but in China, the separation of town folks from the rural people using the "hukou" system gets me worried.

Quote:
Malaysia is far — very, very far — from being another Somalia or Rwanda in the making.
No doubt, certainly. Indonesia seems to be more religious conservative, even then, it is still far from, say, Afghanistan.
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Old 2011-08-26, 11:59   Link #16098
Kamui4356
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http://www.cnn.com/2011/WORLD/americ...ack/index.html

Quote:
Dozens killed in Mexican casino fire attack

(CNN) -- At least 53 people were killed in a fiery attack at a casino in an upscale area of Monterrey, Mexico, government and emergency officials said.

Eight others were injured in the Thursday afternoon attack, the Red Cross said.

Witnesses have told investigators that up to six people entered the Casino Royale and asked for the manager, according Adrian de la Garza, the state attorney general for Nuevo Leon.

When the manager refused, they set the building on fire, he said.

It's believed a solvent was used to start the blaze, possibly gasoline, de la Garza said.

Earlier reports that a grenade attack caused the fire could not be verified, he said. An investigation is under way.

Between 20 and 30 people were trapped in the casino by debris, said Cmdr. Angel Flores with the Green Cross.

Video from the scene showed a burned-out building as firefighters made rescue attempts to break the wall of the facade of the casino to release the smoke inside the building.

Authorities suspended rescue efforts Thursday night for fear that the building could collapse.
This isn't the first such attack either. The situation there just keeps deteriorating. Video in the link.
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Old 2011-08-26, 12:02   Link #16099
Tom Bombadil
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Astronomers discover planet made of diamond

Will it be valuable enough to start a new space race?

hmm, you can calculate the mass by the gravitational force, and you can tell it is made of carbon by some spectrum analysis most likely. How do you tell the size of the thing to calculate the density?
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Old 2011-08-26, 12:33   Link #16100
Vexx
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tom Bombadil View Post
Astronomers discover planet made of diamond

Will it be valuable enough to start a new space race?

hmm, you can calculate the mass by the gravitational force, and you can tell it is made of carbon by some spectrum analysis most likely. How do you tell the size of the thing to calculate the density?
You can get a guess at the diameter in several ways but one way I can recall without looking it up is: transiting a background star (duration of the "blink" compared to the estimated velocity vector portion adjusted for our movements in the galaxy).

There's literally no way it would be worth enough to justify the funding of an interstellar mission much less a competition of more than one. The value of a diamond is almost completely imaginary - set by price-fixing and tight cartel controls. It has some industrial value but its cheaper to make them ourselves in high pressure equipment than to leap across light years, dig and return.
I also imagine at some point we'll extract all the available gold and it will be more needed for industrial use than baubles. And then we'll either have to play alchemist and make it, or mine the local planets for it.... long way down the road even for that (assuming the "Global Tech Civilization" doesn't collapse before then).
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