Tuesday, October 30, 2007

What do you vote for?

This post is for all the readers across the world. What do you vote for in your elections?

Do you vote for essential services and development projects? Do you vote for honesty and integrity? Do you vote for the educational qualifications and the development work experience of your candidate? Do you ever read the manifesto of the party/candidate for which you vote?

Why am I asking this? Mid term polls in India were missed by a whisker lately. All this hullabaloo was over the US nuclear deal. As the drama stands, the deal is at least on the back burner. Avoiding the polls is more important than the agreement.

Yet, no one, and no one, not even the great media of this country, has gone to the Third Front, the Communists, to ask what their plan is for India’s nuclear program. I would like that answer very much. No one has asked the Congress exactly when the agreement becomes operational and when we start to reap the “benefits”.

The Indian public has been fed statements like this agreement will facilitate our peaceful nuclear program , or that India’s sovereignty is being compromised by the agreement. Yet, the draft/text of the agreement has not been released for public consumption. It is, of course, assumed that there aren’t enough educated people in India who can read the text and analyse it. India, you see, is still a country of snake charmers that can be galvanized into riots at the mere mention of the word “religion”.

When we vote in talent shows, we vote for the candidate from our region, or of our mother tongue, etc… whatever happened to the word “talent” in a talent show?

My guess is that things are not too different anywhere across the world.

So, in an election, what do you vote for?

Monday, October 29, 2007

Google Ad Sense anyone?

Has anyone used AdSense on their blog and can help me? No one i know in the physical world has tried it, and at the moment, it appears like Rocket Science to me!

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Commend and not Condemn

The book I am reading these days says in Chapter 1 – you cannot get anything done using criticism. Rule 1 of your life should be to never criticize. Therefore, in this post, one will commend rather than condemn.

It is extremely commendable that all protests against organized retail have started, not when Big Bazaar started, not when there was Pantaloons, Weekender, Spencer’s Hyper etc.,(Spencers and Food Bazaar sell fruits and vegetables too, as does Subhiksha) but against Reliance only. That people speak about Organised Retail and protest against Reliance outlets only. I love the collective amnesia surrounding other organized retail players.

I also think its stupendously wonderful that the day we lost 2 officers and several jawans after a 3 day cross fire in Kashmir, this news got one column space on the front page, and the news of the Blueline buses killing 1 person got about 5 column widths on the front page. The media is absolutely great! The day the Ajmer Sharif blast happened – a blast so low intensity that there were no casualties on the spot, there was also a suicidal attack on a CRPF post. But that was a postscript in the paper. You see, our armed forces are a nationally sponsored bunch of suicidically inclined people. Their deaths mean nothing. (I am not sure how much footage the soldiers who die in Iraq get at home. Anyone who knows? )

It is also fantastic that the media immediately drew parallels with the Mecca Masjid blast, as soon as the Ajmer blast happened, but forgot a simple point of concurrence – they were both extremely low intensity blasts. All other points of similarity – real or imaginary - were so well drawn out. Sensationalism is great! What you cannot exaggerate, you cannot report. I love that attitude! Anyone looking for matter of fact reporting is a dodo.

Saturday, October 06, 2007

You, the explorer
On the other side
of the magical river
Already across, and traveling away
Faster every minute.

Me, the vagabond
seeking love
in small change
and you
in full measure.