is it not obvious that this is purely a media spectacle, and it’s sudden appearance should ask people to look closer at why such spectacle is being promoted at this time suddenly, when there have been political engagements going on at all levels of society in the much-affected kashmir valley? it certainly gets my spidey-sense tingling. there’s a glitch in the matrix. if there is anything i have learned over my exposure to news lo these 10 years, it is that if the corporate (and govt. run) media is deliberately focussing on one particular issue, one can be sure that the actual issue is somewhere else. you do not have to be noam chomsky to figure that out.
anyways. regardless of the content or tone of her words, and discounting the fact that she is a minor celebrity since she a) won a booker prize a while back and b) articulates a radical left-of-center view in good prose, this sudden attention seems to me an obvious ploy to pre-emptively discredit any and all leftist thought and action on the issues faced by kashmiris by equating, rather falsely, any demands for justice(which are definitely warranted) as an act of sedition* and thus ending the possibility of any real dialogue by drowning the concerned populace in a sea of parochial nationalism branded as patriotism.
(^ = if you are wondering what the arundhati roy thing is, google news is your friend)
(* = as someone tending towards anarchism[in the language of calculus] , the concept of sedition does not fempute )
The Supreme Court of India has upheld legislation for dramatically increasing the affirmative-action quotas at institutes of higher learning. the legislation effectively takes the quota to 49% and encompasses all sections of society that belong to scheduled castes and tribes(22%) and other backward classes(OBC’s who get most of the new 27%). This does not include those who are economically well-off, for obvious reasons.
Given the treatment meted out to the so-called ‘lower’ castes in India over the past few centuries at least, this is a reasonable first step towards social justice. now if only they could bring the same attempted fairness into agricultural policy and foreign relations, we’d be well on our way to a just state. i’m not holding my breath on this front, however.
For all the furore raised by certain sections of the news media about the system in institutes of higher education in india, the fact remains that the government has rather consistently stated that this will not affect the ‘general’ category and that the quotas will be met through increased capacities rather than restricting entry. of course, whether the government is willing to spend the necessary amount to bring the same quality or pulls a u-turn on this, effectively crippling the quota system, will determine the final outcome of the legislation.
Nothing will be allowed to disrupt the games. Can’t drink the water, can’t breathe the air, can’t bathe in the water, can’t guarantee the purity of the food, can’t guarantee the safety or construction of the venues — Nothing can be allowed to disrupt the games. If they have to wipe out Tibetan and Urghurs and half the ethnic minorities to do it, nothing will be allowed to disrupt the games. Ah, so what will the world do? Boycott? China will bristle and NOTHING WILL BE ALLOWED TO DISRUPT THE GAMES! Economic sanctions? China has lots of reserves and makes the Soviets in 1980 look like Lichtenstein in terms of economic clout. NOTHING WILL BE ALLOWED to disrupt the games.
the levels of hysteria that are on show on the business news channels on TV regarding a relatively modest drop* in share prices over the past few months are getting ridiculous. to paraphrase a wise internet fish, it’s like no one has any medium term memory anymore.
that chart shows an approximate return of 33%. banks give a return on your mid-term deposits that are in the range of 9%.
if so-called ‘investors’ are not happy with a return of 33% for a year, there’s only one reason and that is pure unadulterated Greed. which is the primary reason that capitalism, in almost all shapes and forms, sucks like a black hole.
* the recent drop has been about 27-28%. however, this distaste should be quelled by long term graphs – check it out – 2yr graph here and even more emphatically with the 5yr figures here
similarly, one can have lots of fun with the ‘Nifty’ broad-based index as well
(Disclosure: Both my parents now work in Stock Market – related activities, and i’m really depressed about that)
so i am trying out this fancy schmancy new software from Adobe called Lightroom, since i just blew a wad on upgrading my aging computer’s memory(apparently old, slow memory costs 3 times as much as the latest stuff… WTF??).
back to lightroom… it’s amazing. things i would have to fiddle around in photoshop for hours to do are now just 2–3 clicks away. i never had a workflow before this, and now i guess i’m going to have to develop one. the interface is absolutely creamy, and the way it deals with files is quite smart, in that it stores all changes into it’s own database and only applies the changes when you export. i’m still learning the ropes, so i cant say too much about it.. but yeah. if you shoot large numbers of photos and are tired of iphoto, get it. it’s expensive, but completely and totally worth it.