Wednesday, June 30, 2010
France is feeling the pain of rising quota-ism, reports the New York Times.
I have a solution - ship Arjun Singh to France! (That would be bad for France, but at least he'd be out of our hair.)
PVNR was the best PM after Vajpayee, in my opinion. Sure, Rao wasn't perfect, but not due to the fake allegations made by Mani Shankar Aiyar.
What a vile little toady he is - really makes my skin crawl.
Tuesday, June 29, 2010
'Bharat as the last great civilisational defence'
Dr. Vijaya Rajiva (Haindava Keralam 20/06/2010)
India continues to show amazing creativity in the face of great
odds. A colonised nation that suffered the night of two long
Occupations, the Islamic and the British, it is still contending
with a dangerous neighbourhood, and as well internal enemies.
Hence, even small initiatives, can make a difference. In what
has been called the 'Maoist' problem, the Congress government
has only mouthed platitudes such as they are our own people.
The main leaders of the Maoist struggle should be dealt with
as much force as is suitable under the circumstances, and it
might not be inappropriate to try the cowardly wringers of
chicken necks(target practice for the coming bloody revolution!)
such as Kobad Ghandy and mete out the appropriate punishment.
Regarding the Tribals themselves, the Centre needs to do much
more than pay lip service to 'development'. There is no quesion
that land rights must be seriously granted to the Vanavasis. And
the mining corporations must be reined in.
Meanwhile, the West Bengal government,which has bungled many
other issues, has for once shown a creative Gandhian approach
to the Tribals who are incarcerated for participating in the Maoist
struggle against the Indian state. Many young tribals continue to
be killed by the might of the Indian state, even while benighted
activists,sitting in their comfortable homes in the metropolises,
continue to send them to an early death with misleading propaganda.
Hence, the West Bengal initiative to rehabilitate the prisoners is
to be commended both because it is the civilised thing to do and
the Bharatiya thing to do.The prisoners are divided into two groups,
those who are educated and those who are not. The former are
encouraged to develop their prior skills in art and literature,
while the latter are given training in vocational skills. An article
by Dola Mitra outlines the activities ('Working Class for the Maoists,
Both the author and Outlookindia are to be congratulated for
reporting on this important event.
Why is this the Bharatiya thing to do ? There are two main reaons. . . . .
From: sri venkat <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Sun, Jun 27, 2010 at 5:28 AM
Subject: Newsweek, brought to you by...China?
Newsweek, brought to you by...China?
FORTUNE -- China is no longer content to merely be covered by American media. It now wants to own it.
China-based Southern Media Group confirmed last week that it partnered with Chengdu B-Ray Media for a bid to buy Newsweek magazine from its owner, the Washington Post Co. Perhaps not surprisingly, the offer was roundly rejected.
After losing nearly $30 million in print advertising revenues during the past two years and experiencing a 31% plummet in its first quarter revenue this year, the 77-year-old magazine was put on the auction block in early May. Washington Post CEO Donald Graham said Newsweek had no clear path to profitability.
Washington Post Co.'s (WPO, Fortune 500) reason for rejecting the Chinese media group's bid remains undisclosed. Since the deadline for Newsweek bids on June 2, no other serious suitors have announced they've been rejected. A Washington Post spokeswoman declined to comment.
Afghanistan withdrawal before 2015, says David Cameron
Prime minister indicates that he wants all British soldiers to return home before next general election
Asked in Canada at the Toronto G8 summit if he wanted UK forces home before the 2015 general election, he said: "I want that to happen, make no mistake about it. We can't be there for another five years, having been there for nine years already."
From: Michel Danino
----- Forwarded Message ----
From: Ben Wikler - Avaaz.org <email@example.com>
Sent: Thu, June 17, 2010 2:02:30 PM
Subject: Whales hunting ban - final vote
Avaaz.org - The World in Action Dear friends,
The final vote on commercial whale hunting is just days away. 650,000 of us have signed the petition to protect whales, and an Avaaz team is on the ground to make sure we're heard -- let's super-charge this campaign by hitting 1 million signatures! Add your name and then forward this message:
In a few days, the International Whaling Commission will hold its final vote on whether to legalize commercial whale hunting.
Pro-whaling forces are pushing hard to get their way. But we'll be out in force too. Already, more than 650,000 of us have signed the petition to protect whales -- let's reach 1 million!
Thanks to donations from thousands of Avaaz members, an Avaaz team is now headed to the whale summit to coordinate billboards, front-page newspaper ads, and a giant, constantly-updating petition counter ... so that delegates can't ignore the resounding call to protect whales from slaughter.
Our power is in our numbers -- click to sign the petition, and forward this email to everyone:
Thanks to the worldwide outcry, many governments have already pledged to oppose the proposal. Each time the Avaaz whale petition added 100,000 signatures, it was sent again to the IWC and key governments. Some, like New Zealand, thanked all of us who had signed on.
But pressure from the other side has been relentless. Now other governments, especially in Europe and Latin America, may abstain... or even support the proposal. The vote could go either way.
Citizen pressure is our best hope. After all, it was an explosive worldwide social movement in the 1980s that led to the commercial whaling ban we're now trying to protect. As the International Whaling Commission meets in Morocco -- starting this Thursday, the 17th, with the crucial vote less than a week away -- let's make sure the world's voices are there to greet them:
After the global ban was first implemented on commercial whaling, the number of whales killed each year plummeted from 38,000 per year to just a couple of thousand. It's a testament to the power of humanity to move forward. As we move to confront the other crises of the modern age, let's cherish this legacy of progress -- by joining together now to protect our majestic and intelligent neighbors on this fragile planet.
Ben, Ben M, Maria Paz, Ricken, Benjamin, David, Graziela, Luis, and the whole Avaaz team
P.S.: Despite the ban, Japan, Norway, and Iceland have continued whaling -- and are now pushing to make the IWC proposal as lenient as possible. Expecting permission to catch more whales than ever, Japan is reportedly planning to buy its largest whaling ship yet. Click here to sign the petition against commercial whaling!
IWC Voting on Whale Hunting Moratorium Next Week
"IWC whaling proposal 'offensive'", New Zealand Herald
"Flights, girls and cash buy Japan whaling votes" - a new exposé by the Times of London
The other side: IWC Chairman defends whaling proposal
"Nations Push To Develop New Whale-based Products" - anticipating the end of the whaling ban, whaling nations planning whale-based products including golf balls and detergent
Monday, June 28, 2010
Losing the new Great Game in Afghanistan
America has gotten itself into an unholy mess thanks to Pakistani duplicity
The news from Afghanistan is not good for the US, nor for India. US President Obama dismissed the commander of his troops in Afghanistan, General Stanley McChrystal, ostensibly because of rude comments he made in a magazine article, but in reality because a scapegoat was needed for the increasingly inept war efforts there. The same fate befell his predecessor too.
The facts on the ground indicate that Obama's announced plan – surge, bribe, declare victory, and run like hell – is not working. The current thinking is no longer about winning, but about spinning a face-saving retreat. Says the Washington Post, "[the] administration is looking for a decent, negotiated exit. The Pakistani intelligence service would act as a surrogate (and guarantor) for the Taliban… The deal might leave the Taliban in control of large parts of Afghanistan... "
In other words, Obama is explicitly outsourcing the war to Pakistan's ISI. This would be a questionable choice anyway. But given that the Taliban are basically ISI in baggy pants and beards, an instance of diplomatic theater (after all, it is astonishing that these alleged theology students suddenly started driving tanks and flying planes), the policy is suicidal. A recent report from the London School of Economics and Harvard University emphasized the links between Pakistan's government, ISI and the Taliban.
This report, "The Sun in the Sky: The relationship between Pakistan's ISI and Afghan insurgents", indicts the ISI, which, it says, "orchestrates, supports and strongly influences" insurgents. It "provides huge support in training, funding, munitions and supplies", which is "official ISI policy", not the work of some rogue elements. Furthermore, it claims Pakistani president Asif Ali Zardari promised to release jailed Taliban leaders if they kept quiet about it. This amounts to "collusion with the Taliban by an enemy state [Pakistan]".
A New York Times report suggests further that "Pakistan is presenting itself as the new viable partner for Afghanistan to President Hamid Karzai, who has soured on the Americans. Pakistani officials say they can deliver the network of Sirajuddin Haqqani, an ally of Al Qaeda who runs a major part of the insurgency in Afghanistan, into a power-sharing arrangement."
The Haqqani network and the warlord Gulbuddin Hekmatyar are among the ISI's assets. Ironically, Hekmatyar, now a sworn enemy of the US, received over half of the billions that the CIA lavished on the war against the Soviets, thanks to his friends in the ISI.
Saturday, June 26, 2010