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Showing posts from April, 2007

VIRGINIA TECH SHOOTOUT . . . A NATURAL BYPRODUCT OF MINDLESS CAPITALISM

Capitalism is a great slave, but a pathetic master. This truth unfortunately gets lost in our chase for that elusive dream . . . especially in America, the land that has been marketed as the land of dreams – the great American dream. It’s the dream of being independent masters of our lives, the dream of making big bucks and the dream of being happy – even if that happiness is being bought by money which all of them chase out there. No doubt, the US, on its part, has been fairly successful in creating material comforts aplenty. It has upped the living standard of its average citizen to an extent that it stands amongst the highest – even if that is a result of more than 200 years of unbridled growth and exploitation. Thus, the shop window of Americanism looks lucidly attractive; you’ve got all of them standing there – from Bill Gates to Michael Dell – in Tommy Hilfigers and Ralph Laurens! And that is what has made the rest of the world mindlessly chase Americanism, not necessarily happin

THE ‘WALL’ HAS BEEN REINSTATED TO FURTHER DIVIDE THE TEAM BCCI: THE ENEMY WITHIN

India is a pot of crabs. Though blessed by the birth of brilliant individuals, India has forever been beset by insecure power brokers steeped in mediocrity who always feel threatened by these brilliant individuals. As a consequence, Indian history in every sphere has been witness to umpteen examples of heroic visionaries being pulled down by a system that felt threatened by the individual’s growth. Be it a Subhas or a Bhagat, an Ambani or a Bajaj, they were all forsaken by a system that should’ve nurtured them. In spite of this, they might’ve persevered and realised their visions in whatever measure possible, but that is besides the point. The point is that the same, irritatingly familiar phenomenon is painfully evident in the manner in which the BCCI is handling India’s World Cup debacle. First things first – Greg Chappell’s gone and thank god for small mercies. The high-handed Australian ruined every team he touched as a coach and it proved to be no different for the Indian team. He

THIS TIME AHMADINEJAD COULD AVERT THE IMPENDING WAR; BUT I WONDER FOR HOW LONG.

On 24 March when news started pouring in that Iran’s Revolutionary Guards have taken into custody 15 British marines (from the British frigate HMS Cornwal) off the Persian Gulf, it sent shivers across the world. The pandemonium peaked as neither Iran nor the United Kingdom was ready to budge. While on one hand, the Iranian authorities claimed that the marines in their speedboats had crossed over into Iranian territorial waters, the British authorities, on the other hand, as usual, had been strongly refuting this claim. Finally, Iran’s announcement of releasing the hostages eased the mounting tension, at least for now. Otherwise, it could have led to Gulf War III or, who knows, an eventual World War III. I wonder for how long can Iran avert the impending war. The most significant, yet unanswered, questions in this episode were – Was it mere coincidence that the British marines crossed over into Iranian territorial waters around this time? Or was it that this incident was made to happen

LONG WILL LIVE THE NAXALITE MOVEMENT… AND IT’S NOT THEM, BUT INDIA’S CRONY CAPITALISM, WHICH IS RESPONSIBLE FOR THE CHHATTISGARH MASSACRE . . .

If you have been following popular media, then you must by now be of the viewpoint that Naxalites are India’s largest growing menace; and you must be pitying the 60 plus people left dead in the Chhattisgarh massacre, thanks to the Naxalites. The truth, however, is not that simple. The Naxalite movement in India is growing; that’s a truth. They are a menace to the Centre; that’s a truth. But Naxalites a menace to India? Well, perhaps this is farthest from the truth. In cities where we lead a cushy life, Naxalites are far from a menace. In the interiors where they rule, they aren’t really considered a menace either. They rule the Indian villages and backward areas – well, that’s an understatement – they are the emperors of a third of Indian districts today. Yes, 200 out of the 600 odd districts in India are today under Naxalite rule. They rule there not because they are a menace. They rule there not just by force. They rule there because people in these places support them in a majority

A COLD-BLOODED HITLERIAN IN THE GUISE OF A BHADRALOK

Despite their unquestionably perfect ideology of an equitable State, unfortunately the communists world over have always been dictatorial. Dictatorship, though, is not the way Marx wanted his ideals to be propagated worldwide. However, for the communists, the typical formula has been to come to power by appealing to the humane instincts of mankind – by speaking of equality – and then retaining power through brutal force (though any good work done would’ve got every communist regime in the world back to power democratically as well). The story has been the same in West Bengal. Years ago, the great Maratha swadeshi leader Gopal Krishna Gokhale is believed to have said of this very State that “What Bengal thinks today India thinks tomorrow.” Yes, West Bengal boasts of the most intellectuals in this country thanks to years old tradition of literature, art and culture. She boasts of the three great Nobel laureates of India, Rabindranath Tagore, Mother Teresa and Amartya Sen as well as India