Sunday, August 30, 2009

Ram aur Laxman...

The Indian history has been forever demonstrating specimens of brotherly love... Right from the unity in the Pandava brothers, to the love between Ram and Laxman, and  to the so on and so forths. 

However, we see things at the the other end of the spectrum today. Where two brothers, Senior and Junior, undisputed czars of the corporate arena, indulge in scarring each others reputation. For what? For oil! They're desperately trying to dilapidate each other - either silently or brashly. Not realizing that the outcome will result in nothing but mutual weakening. And that it will lead to paths for others to take over their untouched B-Crowns.

Anyway, who the hell is/are gaining; The lawyers, politicians, the et ceteras of our system who're pocketed by these warring brothers and the stock traders who're making money out of the predictable volatility in these stocks, and the so ons? 
But, what difference does this war make to India? Clearly - as opposed to what Junior suggests - none.

And is it the money that Junior is fighting for? With a wealth way more than what will be earned at this oil-field in over 17 years.... what has Junior got to cry so much about? Or is it the inflated ego that moguls generally roam around with? At then end of the day, why our we giving so much importance to sensationalism created by this Senior-Junior duo? Why the hell should we waste our time over whose ego prevails?

So today's contemporary Ram aur Laxman are a class apart from their ancient namesakes.  Instead of Laxman carving a deity of Ram and worshiping it with all his heart and soul, we have an inflamed Laxman who is doing all in his might to strip Ram apart... The subdued Ram is patiently waiting for Laxman to run out of steam, while Laxman strives to weather that patience... 

What my point is that we all get something to learn from this saga of brothers eagerly wanting to rape each other's reputation. Never let outsiders' into one's own personal family matters. No matter how intense things get. The public is devoid of hearty things to talk about, and getting into family issues of another - especially another this rich - gives them just about some intriguing gossip to pass their time...
I'm sure families of the likes of the Birlas and the Tatas have indulged in infighting over personal-business conflicts... but they kept it to INfighting... which is why they've held the  mantle of respect-worthy families for generations...

So what should have been an ideal Ram-Laxman jodi, has turned out to be the bitterer Kaurav-Pandav war.. here the only difference being that instead of a marathon spat between two cousins, real brothers blood-bathe in the same...

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

A Small Introduction with Some Food for Thought

Well hello. I am a “new addition” to this already pretty interesting blog. I’m Soumya Iyer- and I guess I’ll be giving in some of my viewpoints here too.
We write differently- Anand and I. While he will be discussing more of global issues which affect us directly or indirectly, I can discuss things which affect us more personally.

Well- to start with- I received a pretty bad result in a Physics exam today (not that I blame anyone….). That got me round to thinking about examinations themselves. WHOA! Who even came up with this bizarre idea to test knowledge?!

Be it LKG or PG class, there is no escape from the tyranny of examinations. As Winston Churchill has summed up, “The pupil would be pleased to display his knowledge, but the examiners are always inclined to expose his ignorance”. This clearly explains the dual purpose of examinations doesn’t it?
Learning is a continuous process which needs consolidation at regular intervals. Hence the periodical tests and exams. When a number of credits are earned, the student is elated; while the record maintained shows the progress he has made. If on the other hand, enough number of credits are not earned, the student is frustrated, and finally he/she may drop out or fail to get the degree or qualification. Easy-peasy what?
There are of course- other examinations which aim at filtering away as many as possible and selecting only a cream of candidates that suit their special needs. (IIT-JEE would be a brilliant example of that!) They are- in my eyes- like the merciless cut-throat (literally and figuratively!) knives of a butcher!
Whatever be their purpose, examinations are- as a not-really-passed but widely accepted rule, a bitter pill for students to swallow. But until and unless we find an alternative, they have got to stay and assess students’ performances. The student community of course, does not look upon exams as as essential component of the scheme. This develops phobia and THIS manifests in many highly amusing and pretty hilarious forms like MALPRACTICES (in layman’s terms: CHEATING!). The duty of the examining bodies here- is to make the exams less frequent and more agreeable; and the evaluation less subjective and more unbiased.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

The Suisse fallacy

Little can be tracked about the estimated $1,500,000,000,000  (1.5 trilllion) of Indian black money stashed away in Swiss banks. Political parties - especially the ones sitting in the opposition - use this as keypoints in their election rally agendas. And keeping the hypocritic nature of politicians in mind.. I'm sure most of the opposition leaders have all their lives' - black, of course - savings stocked in Switzerland cause they're pretty sure that the Swiss won't bulge from their laws.. so the task of retrieving black money will be left to nothing but an infinitely long game of Ping-Pong. 

1.5 trillion dollars is a lot of money, which is an understatement. Which is why perhaps, Switzerland has one of the highest GDP rates in Europe and one the most stable currencies in the world. Little do we, or rather our very ingenious politicians and businessmen, realize that the money we store there results in their economic progress, not ours! They benefit from our "namak-halali". All these thousands of billions of dollars are utilized in the development of Switzerland and Europe. Ever wondered how the Swiss have been able to advance so dramatically? Despite meager natural resources? Well, it is this stashed money that they utilize for their growth! So what is happening is- The blood-suckers of our country are sucking away its wealth and at the end of it all are helping another continent progress. But... keeping the history of this rich yet cursed land, where people have done nothing but stolen and raped her wealth... well, we couldn't expect much patriotism anyway.

It is a known fact that all the world's black-money combined in Switzerland is one-third the amount of the Indian black-money stored there. 

This is the kind of a legalized scam where everyone - the opposition and the government - is involved. The opposition makes noise. The governement follows into the noise-making. At the end of the day we all know that these are nothing but empty vessels making noise. But ironically we're fooled - or atleast we pretend to be - by such fallacies.
Democracies never existed; they only did as a formality on paper. Some say that the war against black-money isn't over yet.. Little do such people know that their supposed righteous fighters are the ones who're the most heavily invested in off-shore black markets!

I don't know how to conclude this one here... whether optimistically , in ideal words, or in blunt pessimism. But I surely would like to put forward this rhetoric... Why would/should the Swiss reveal bank-account data when their laws do not bind them to? Neither is Switzerland obligated to India... And lets face it - it is this 1.5 trillion dollars of question-mark money that in fact runs the Swiss economy!

Monday, August 24, 2009

The BJP-Jaswant Singh Splitsville

I have been an ardent Bhartiya Janta Party supporter for ever since I began understanding politics. However, not even a BJP honcho like Narendra Modi can deny that his party is plagued with several problems... Right from the embarassing land-slide defeat at the Lok Sabha polls to the Vasundhara Raje ache in Rajasthan to the in-fighting on who-will-take-up-the-mantle-after-Advani and to the so on and so forths... In such anxious times, the BJP has created a much hyped controversy by expelling a devout BJP strong man, Jaswant Singh on accounts of one book... This just doesn't make much sense, does it? I'm sure the BJP cabinet was sensible enough to keep into consideration Jaswant's thirty years of devotional work towards the Party. Still, they sack him!?

Hmm... Maybe, all this controversy has been an ingenious detour, to distract critics. And perhaps, give the party some much needed privacy to think and work a way out this quagmire?

Otherwise, it doesn't make sense to me.. In times of deep-crisis, the BJP and Jaswant Singh are volleying insignificant cannons at each other.. where the BJP is giving press-statements after press-statements on why they felt cracking the whip on Singh was justifiable... whereas Singh is lobbying with Vajpayee getting key party members to put in their resignations...
The State-poll season is coming up, and I'm sure, the party would have been sensible enough to stay away from such a worthless controversy... however, they're heavily indulging in the same...
If the BJP says that it would lose its vote-bank due to the apparent pro-Pakistan expressions used in the book, that is a fallacy. Bal Thackeray did raise concern over Jaswant Singh, however the Shiv Sainiks would have continued to show their fidelity in Shiv Sena. As about the BJP vote-bank, most of the voters are illiterate! So it doesn't make much of a difference.. most of the voters are from catchment areas where they care about BJP supplying water and electricity more than a Mr.Jinnah... and the educated class, well, i doubt they would have turned disloyal because of the free-views expressed by one man...

Politics has had a mean history, be it Indian, Italian or Antarctican politics! Two-faced people, issues, and controversies are to politics as air is to lungs. Deceiving is an art which has ancient origins. The Chinese mis-guided the Huns as to their organization was a chaotic mess and their resources were meager. The Huns fell into the trap, inevitably staring at the face of defeat.  So, why not this apparent break-up in the BJP be a planned scheme?

In the times to come, we'll see if this whole event has been staged by the BJP..

Sunday, August 23, 2009

How did metal-music begin?

I was reading a book penned by the pet-dog of the Dennis Stratton, former member of the heavy-metal band, Iron MadeIn.

The book, "Life in noise", elicits emotions of pity for the poor dog. Dogs are creatures with sensitive ears... and the explosive sounds that damaged the hearing-power of Pittu, the dog... arouse nothing but wonder at the joy whacked people get by smashing metallic objects.

Pittu  goes into a deep philosophical trance as observed in his 'Life in noise'. He sends facebook messages and tweets to God, asking Him the origination of this pathetic form of noise-making... God tweeted - isn't much of an avid facebooker - back saying.....
" Dear Pittu, I had once gone deep into Satan's caves... only to find that the cave-dwellers were entirely deaf! However, they were music enthusiasts back in their days on Earth... and with that inherent fighting spirit, they did not quit on music just because they couldn't hear... and therefore they devised - what mortals call - Heavy Metal sounds... Where they clanked unbreakable objects as hard as they could and thus could hear faint rhythmic sounds... This was beatific salvation for these dwellers deprived of the power of hearing. However, one day... two of the masters of these cave-men, fell into black holes which led them to Britain and North America respectively (as far as my memory remains, it was the 1960 era then). And these men of Satan - not realising their cosmic positions... continued with their art of metal-clanking. Consequently this form became popular with the stoned people of those regions. These satanic beings were lucky to land in the misery-stricken areas of the West, where drug addicts had sex in the open.. where the Hippie culture had conquered Teens. If those cave-men had landed somewhere in the Indian subcontinent... they would have perhaps been crucified by the ascetics and maulanas!
So my dear Pittu, was the origination of Heavy-metal music on Earth. Take Care, I(God) Bless and keep in touch.. Twitter rocks! \m/"

Pittu - as he writes in his memoir - was gripped by the intense desire to eradicate this form of noise pollution... However, without the power of intellect (wonder how he wrote his autobiography then! hmmm) his mission didn't progressl... 

But he does describe the positives of this painful form of art... He writes - and rightly so - that it led to the growth of the American and British economies. The doctors made a lot of money from metal-head patients who frequented them complaining about head-aches, stomach upsets, eyesight problems, deafness, poor-memory and so on... So did the makers of Aspirin.. they sold aspirin at the rate of a million tablets a day .. And the taxes raised by these activities went into the very Trillion Dollars... making superpowers out of them! And did many professionists such as Psychologists, Graffiti artists, Junk-yard owners enjoy much of this economic boom... the success amongst such un-tried careers urged people to opt for diverse professions which brought about inevitable economic success!

Pittu prophesied that the third-world countries during his years - the 1970s - would adopt this blue-print in the 21st century to attain the superpowerial levels of the WestWorld... Which is why WallStreet analysts observe a rise in the followers of such music in places like India...

Saturday, August 22, 2009

The Twist!

I'm sure everybody is well updated with the progression of the Swine - or more popularly - Piggy/Dukar Flu.

But, just to give another imaginative dimension to this epidemic, what if it is a monopoly of some pharmaceutical company(ies) or a band of evil doctors who want to enhance their importance in the world of men? Silly to think, sure is... but lets put it this way:

What if, some firm already has a vaccine in place.. a vaccine almost impossible to duplicate..
According to a WHO report, if a vaccine doesn't come out in the markets by 2011, 2 billion people will have suffered the wrath of the virus. So what if this Pharma company launches its vaccine after 2011. It'd cater to the needs of 2 billion people! And - being as conservative as possible - even if it were priced at a dollar... that would be a $2 billion dollar business! Whereas price it at a somewhat conservative 10 dollars.. it would mean a $20 billion dollar enterprise! Which is a lot of moolah!

And the money hospitals and doctors would have made would be phenomenal too! Just try imagining this to be the ploy of the entire medical community. Right from the Pharma co., to the doctors, to the nurses, to the hospitals, to the canteens in those hospitals, to the so on and so forth! Like how there was a secret 'Illuminati' in Dan Brown's Angels and Demons, would there be the 'Blood Cross' for the world of medicine... And this wicked coterie would have construed the entire Swine Flu right from inventing it, to destroying it; while its members made money all the way long...!

Dany, the Blood Cross boss was a frustrated man. He lost a law-suit to a Pig-farmer, who claimed the doctor robbed her of the dairy products in her farm (Pigs and dairy products?)
So Dany called upon a Blood Cross web conference... where the entire medical community joined him... and not to forget, he made a million dollars of the Google Ads he put on his Video-Conference Client!
It was here that the blue-print of the swine was worked out. An ayurvedic veteran from Ukraine suggested some of the bone-marrow be taken from the pigs of the region of Chernobyl, the famous site of the nuclear-tragedy. Thus, the formula was prepared. A much more sophisticated strain of the influenza was created, much more hazardous than the strain of the 1976 Outbreak. And since, the Mexican high-commissioner to the Blood Cross had absconded the conference, as reported by Dany's assistant at the Video Conference client, Blood Cross decided that Mexico be scarred as the originating land of the virus.

So it happened. March 18th, first swine-flu case reported in Mexico. And it took the route of geometric progression wildly infecting mankind. And two years later, when the Blood Cross became the only organization with a richer treasure chest than that of the US Federal reserve, did it launch its much-awaited vaccine.. again, raking up further tens of billions of dollars!
And what was initially an vengeful venture against some pig-farmer, lead to the formation of a new world order. Where doctors took over Parliaments. Nurses took over the bureaucracy. And Pharma companies took over the world economy!

The preceding work is fictional. Any resemblance to persons/organizations living or dead is purely coincidental!

Hope you'll had a nice time! :D
Keep coming for more! ;)

What is needed @Copenhagen!

Just the other day, I was speaking to a garderener in my society. The poor fellow seemed rattled about life. Despite being in times of de-flation.. he has to pay Rs 100 for a kilo of Dal (which was Rs 40 a month back!).. He has to pay for water and His electricity bills have shot over the roof - enough to rattle the life out of a lower-middle class man in India. So basically, he is bearing the brunt of - Climate Change (No monsoons, no food, higher prices.. Shortage of electricity.. and shortage of drinking water)

He isn't bothered if the US Congress signs Sen. Kerry's Climate Change Bill. He doesn't give a damn if India asks developed nations to bear responsibility for Global Warming. He doesn't give a damn about anything political. What he wants is prices coming down. What he wants is availability of water. Even so, this is on the wish-list of almost every ordinary human.

So what do we need @Copenhagen? The proposals tabled so far - briefly - include reducing CO2 emission levels. Now whats so hilarious about this is, that most of the participating countries will pledge to reduce CO2 emission levels and thats it! What we fail to understand - keeping aside all complex stats - is that we don't have much time! What we fail to understand is that Nature will move on.. we will be the ones to suffer.. Nature has endured change countless times over its billion year life-span. It is our civilisation- as quoted in the 11th hour - that will perish.

So lets get on with this - What do we need as a unified race to come up with @Copenhagen? Keeping in mind, that one thing we're short on is Time!
We should have incentives for families/individuals practicing green-habits. Like, tax-incentives, carbon points and so on. Again, what we need to understand is that governements are not solely responsible for the world's shape right now, and are not solely responsible for fixing it either. All of us has to come together. And there needs to be something common for such a unity - incentives! Only until the common man saves money on taxes, earns carbon points or gains any such incentive, will he start living a green life. Until then, we can give great lectures, write great dossiers and so on. But the implementation at grass-root levels won't occur.

A little more elaboration on my part here.. Tax-benefits if a family uses solar power, drives an electric car, or so on. Carbon points for planting trees in the thousands. Large-scale institutes/firms should switch to using green energy and gain massive tax-benefits.
Also, aforestation is an effective way of combating climate change. But it is easier said than done. For every tree uprooted, we need to plant seven trees to bring about equilibrium. Nonetheless, even if each individual plants a single tree and maintains it, it could work well for our survival. If a family maintains a garden, it should be awarded certain carbon points. Carbon points are usually for green-works at higher magnitudes. However, we need to device another system here. Where carbon points can be considered an equivalent for money!

Unless the common man doesn't have a strong practical - not ideal - reason to join the war against climate change, why would he be a part of it?