Thursday, May 31, 2007

Democracy or Demoilism(Democracy + Communilism)

The word Democracy derives from the classical Greek demokratia, formed from the roots "Demo" the mob, the many and "Kratos" rule. According to Wikipedia, there are so many forms of democracy and what they are in terms of the society where we live.

Likewise, the word communilism is an ideology that seeks to establish a classless, stateless social organization based on common ownership of the means of production. (According to Wikipedia). There were many successful and renowned leaders in their fields of interest who were quite famous and advocated Communism. China prospered immensely being a communist state.

Although the existence of each sort of ruling formula has it's own flip side. We all know how the ninth largest city in the world, Shangai in China came into being. How it was before and now is totally astounding and just goes to show the success of a communist state. If this was a success story, the failure of communism is best answered in the link. In turn, India practices Democracy and I think this society is something that is quite pulling the growth of the people and the country herself. Almost half a century has elapsed now that India practiced democracy. It is widely claimed that the practice of democratic system in India is a success. Superficially the claim seems sound since parliamentary government is at no time interrupted from its inception. But it is closer to objectivity when things are viewed from their practical perspectives and one prefers it. Has India become a failed state? Answer is Yes and a No.

After being spoon fed by the information I have gathered from the Internet, I think with the
heavy population and their growing demands PLUS the growth of the country on it's own needs a small re-definition of Democracy. There should be a need to have a basis on who rules the country, an independent council monitoring the finance books, a Council that provides quicker solution to any problem faced by the common man and many more. There is a group or a body that does it now in the present world but it takes it's own course. A rape case takes 2 years for a ruling, a hit and run civil case takes 4-5 years regardless of the stay orders. And what I am talking about is just a small percentage of many more long standing cases.This cannot be the solutions for the increasing growth. For instance, the idea to clear the 10 Billion Dollars land, Asia's biggest slum - Dharavi, to a residential apartment model is never to get off it's bottom in a Democractic society. I bet my bottom dollar on this. So many parties would get involved and so many money laundering acts and then we would be where we started after 5 years !

I think, Demoilism(Democracy + Communilism), should come into foray soon. Be communistic when needed and be Democractic when needed. I am not sure this would be much appreciated by all. But to win some you have to lose some. Beggars did come into existence because of lack of food. They came into existence because they thought this was an easy way to make a living. Occupying someone's land to make a business came into being because that again was an easy business. These entities are not needed in a society. They are leeches and are an impediment to the forward moving society.

Some one made a remark, "India's development in the current situation is despite the Government and Development in China is because of the Government". How we want to live is based on the decisions we enforce. A tablet may be bitter or sour or whatever, but the after effect makes us a happy camper.

I just hope Demoilism would soon be a reality. I hope......

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Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Walking ways to good health

I am not advocating for anything here. I am not forced to think about a routine here so that my health would be in good shape. Of all the forms of cardio exercises, walking they tell is the best of all.

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Monday, May 28, 2007

An inspirational speech by Infosys Founder Mr Narayana Moorthy.

N R Narayana Murthy, chief mentor and chairman of the board, Infosys Technologies, delivered a pre-commencement lecture at the New York University ( Stern School of Business) on May 9. It is a scintillating speech, Murthy speaks about the lessons he learnt from his life and career.

Dean Cooley, faculty, staff, distinguished guests, and, most importantly, the graduating class of 2007, it is a great privilege to speak at your commencement ceremonies.
I thank Dean Cooley and Prof Marti Subrahmanyam for their kind invitation. I am exhilarated to be part of such a joyous occasion. Congratulations to you, the class of 2007, on completing an important milestone in your life journey.
After some thought, I have decided to share with you some of my life lessons. I learned these lessons in the context of my early career struggles, a life lived under the influence of sometimes unplanned events which were the crucibles that tempered my character and reshaped my future.
I would like first to share some of these key life events with you, in the hope that these may help you understand my struggles and how chance events and unplanned encounters with influential persons shaped my life and career.
Later, I will share the deeper life lessons that I have learned. My sincere hope is that this sharing will help you see your own trials and tribulations for the hidden blessings they can be.
The first event occurred when I was a graduate student in Control Theory at IIT, Kanpur , in India . At breakfast on a bright Sunday morning in 1968, I had a chance encounter with a famous computer scientist on sabbatical from a well-known US university.
He was discussing exciting new developments in the field of computer science with a large group of students and how such developments would alter our future. He was articulate, passionate and quite convincing. I was hooked. I went straight from breakfast to the library, read four or five papers he had suggested, and left the library determined to study computer science.
Friends, when I look back today at that pivotal meeting, I marvel at how one role model can alter for the better the future of a young student. This experience taught me that valuable advice can sometimes come from an unexpected source, and chance events can sometimes open new doors.
The next event that left an indelible mark on me occurred in 1974. The location: Nis , a border town between former Yugoslavia , now Serbia , and Bulgaria . I was hitchhiking from Paris back to Mysore , India , my home town.
By the time a kind driver dropped me at Nis railway station at 9 p.m. on a Saturday night, the restaurant was closed. So was the bank the next morning, and I could not eat because I had no local money. I slept on the railway platform until 8.30 pm in the night when the Sofia Express pulled in.
The only passengers in my compartment were a girl and a boy. I struck a conversation in French with the young girl. She talked about the travails of living in an iron curtain country, until we were roughly interrupted by some policemen who, I later gathered, were summoned by the young man who thought we were criticising the communist government of Bulgaria .
The girl was led away; my backpack and sleeping bag were confiscated. I was dragged along the platform into a small 8x8 foot room with a cold stone floor and a hole in one corner by way of toilet facilities. I was held in that bitterly cold room without food or water for over 72 hours.
I had lost all hope of ever seeing the outside world again, when the door opened. I was again dragged out unceremoniously, locked up in the guard's compartment on a departing freight train and told that I would be released 20 hours later upon reaching Istanbul . The guard's final words still ring in my ears -- "You are from a friendly country called India and that is why we are letting you go!"
The journey to Istanbul was lonely, and I was starving. This long, lonely, cold journey forced me to deeply rethink my convictions about Communism. Early on a dark Thursday morning, after being hungry for 108 hours, I was purged of any last vestiges of affinity for the Left.
I concluded that entrepreneurship, resulting in large-scale job creation, was the only viable mechanism for eradicating poverty in societies.
Deep in my heart, I always thank the Bulgarian guards for transforming me from a confused Leftist into a determined, compassionate capitalist! Inevitably, this sequence of events led to the eventual founding of Infosys in 1981.
While these first two events were rather fortuitous, the next two, both concerning the Infosys journey, were more planned and profoundly influenced my career trajectory.
On a chilly Saturday morning in winter 1990, five of the seven founders of Infosys met in our small office in a leafy Bangalore suburb. The decision at hand was the possible sale of Infosys for the enticing sum of $1 million. After nine years of toil in the then business-unfriendly India , we were quite happy at the prospect of seeing at least some money.
I let my younger colleagues talk about their future plans. Discussions about the travails of our journey thus far and our future challenges went on for about four hours. I had not yet spoken a word.
Finally, it was my turn. I spoke about our journey from a small Mumbai apartment in 1981 that had been beset with many challenges, but also of how I believed we were at the darkest hour before the dawn. I then took an audacious step. If they were all bent upon selling the company, I said, I would buy out all my colleagues, though I did not have a cent in my pocket.
There was a stunned silence in the room. My colleagues wondered aloud about my foolhardiness. But I remained silent. However, after an hour of my arguments, my colleagues changed their minds to my way of thinking. I urged them that if we wanted to create a great company, we should be optimistic and confident. They have more than lived up to their promise of that day.
In the seventeen years since that day, Infosys has grown to revenues in excess of $3.0 billion, a net income of more than $800 million and a market capitalisation of more than $28 billion, 28,000 times richer than the offer of $1 million on that day.
In the process, Infosys has created more than 70,000 well-paying jobs, 2,000-plus dollar-millionaires and 20,000-plus rupee millionaires.
A final story: On a hot summer morning in 1995, a Fortune-10 corporation had sequestered all their Indian software vendors, including Infosys, in different rooms at the Taj Residency hotel in Bangalore so that the vendors could not communicate with one another. This customer's propensity for tough negotiations was well-known. Our team was very nervous.
First of all, with revenues of only around $5 million, we were minnows compared to the customer.
Second, this customer contributed fully 25% of our revenues. The loss of this business would potentially devastate our recently-listed company.
Third, the customer's negotiation style was very aggressive. The customer team would go from room to room, get the best terms out of each vendor and then pit one vendor against the other. This went on for several rounds. Our various arguments why a fair price -- one that allowed us to invest in good people, R&D, infrastructure, technology and training -- was actually in their interest failed to cut any ice with the customer.
By 5 p.m. on the last day, we had to make a decision right on the spot whether to accept the customer's terms or to walk out.
All eyes were on me as I mulled over the decision. I closed my eyes, and reflected upon our journey until then. Through many a tough call, we had always thought about the long-term interests of Infosys. I communicated clearly to the customer team that we could not accept their terms, since it could well lead us to letting them down later. But I promised a smooth, professional transition to a vendor of customer's choice.
This was a turning point for Infosys.
Subsequently, we created a Risk Mitigation Council which ensured that we would never again depend too much on any one client, technology, country, application area or key employee. The crisis was a blessing in disguise. Today, Infosys has a sound de-risking strategy that has stabilised its revenues and profits.
I want to share with you, next, the life lessons these events have taught me.
1. I will begin with the importance of learning from experience. It is less important, I believe, where you start. It is more important how and what you learn. If the quality of the learning is high, the development gradient is steep, and, given time, you can find yourself in a previously unattainable place. I believe the Infosys story is living proof of this.
Learning from experience, however, can be complicated. It can be much more difficult to learn from success than from failure. If we fail, we think carefully about the precise cause. Success can indiscriminately reinforce all our prior actions.
2. A second theme concerns the power of chance events. As I think across a wide variety of settings in my life, I am struck by the incredible role played by the interplay of chance events with intentional choices. While the turning points themselves are indeed often fortuitous, how we respond to them is anything but so. It is this very quality of how we respond systematically to chance events that is crucial.
3. Of course, the mindset one works with is also quite critical. As recent work by the psychologist, Carol Dweck, has shown, it matters greatly whether one believes in ability as inherent or that it can be developed. Put simply, the former view, a fixed mindset, creates a tendency to avoid challenges, to ignore useful negative feedback and leads such people to plateau early and not achieve their full potential.
The latter view, a growth mindset, leads to a tendency to embrace challenges, to learn from criticism and such people reach ever higher levels of achievement (Krakovsky, 2007: page 48).
4. The fourth theme is a cornerstone of the Indian spiritual tradition: self-knowledge. Indeed, the highest form of knowledge, it is said, is self-knowledge. I believe this greater awareness and knowledge of oneself is what ultimately helps develop a more grounded belief in oneself, courage, determination, and, above all, humility, all qualities which enable one to wear one's success with dignity and grace.
Based on my life experiences, I can assert that it is this belief in learning from experience, a growth mindset, the power of chance events, and self-reflection that have helped me grow to the present.
Back in the 1960s, the odds of my being in front of you today would have been zero. Yet here I stand before you! With every successive step, the odds kept changing in my favour, and it is these life lessons that made all the difference.
My young friends, I would like to end with some words of advice. Do you believe that your future is pre-ordained, and is already set? Or, do you believe that your future is yet to be written and that it will depend upon the sometimes fortuitous events?
Do you believe that these events can provide turning points to which you will respond with your energy and enthusiasm? Do you believe that you will learn from these events and that you will reflect on your setbacks? Do you believe that you will examine your successes with even greater care?
I hope you believe that the future will be shaped by several turning points with great learning opportunities. In fact, this is the path I have walked to much advantage.
A final word: When, one day, you have made your mark on the world, remember that, in the ultimate analysis, we are all mere temporary custodians of the wealth we generate, whether it be financial, intellectual, or emotional. The best use of all your wealth is to share it with those less fortunate.
I believe that we have all at some time eaten the fruit from trees that we did not plant. In the fullness of time, when it is our turn to give, it behooves us in turn to plant gardens that we may never eat the fruit of, which will largely benefit generations to come. I believe this is our sacred responsibility, one that I hope you will shoulder in time.
Thank you for your patience. Go forth and embrace your future with open arms, and pursue enthusiastically your own life journey of discovery!

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Friday, May 25, 2007

Funny Resignation post Employee vs Manager

The name is good, the brand is big
But the work I do is that of a pig
The work or the brand; what is my way?
I don’t know if I should stay.


To work, they have set their own way
Nobody will care to hear what I say
My will be NULL, they wont change their way
I don’t know if I should stay.

The project is in a critical stage
But to do good work, this is the age
This dilemma is killing me day by day
I don’t know if I should stay.


The money is good, the place is great
But the development is at a very small rate
Should I go for the work, or wait for pay
I don’t know if I should stay!


The managers don’t know what they talk
The team doesn’t know where they walk
That’s a bad situation, what say?
I don’t know if I should stay.
I can go to any other place
But what if I get the same disgrace
I can’t keep switching day by day
I don’t know if I should stay.


The -ves are more, the +ves are less
Then why have this unnecessary mess
No more will I walk their way,
It’s all done, I won’t stay.

Thanks & Regards
Employee


Manager Response

Reply: What I want to say? (Manager)


The decision is good or decision is bad
Only God knows still I am glad
Keep moving in life that is what I can say


If you feel right go in the same way
May god give you the work, the challenge you want
Anyway there is always a second chance
Chances are there, grab them snatch them
That is what I can say Keep on jumping companies to get more and more and more….
That will keep you always a fore (Even to me)
From my experience I can tell you
Working here is like taking hell out of you
You are frustrated since you have no quality work
And you were frustrated because you had quantity work


It’s always like that previous job was better than the current one
And expects the new job will be much better than this one
But what you get is a frustration level up to sun
Than you will again send the resignation like this one
This is all what I want to say Have you completed all the formalities?
Filled the form and got it signed from dept. humanities (HR)
Once done you can take all your cash
But don’t refer others as they will follow you’re a*s.
At last I appreciate your contribution to the company
Even though there was not any….


You will keep a copy of this with you for FYI
Don’t feel shy
As I also got it some time back from my old manger say Hi….
That is all what I want to say.

Thanks & Regards
Manager

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Thursday, May 24, 2007

Atlas Shrugged - Ayn Rand

The reason why I like her is because of her thoughts. Read the excerpts in the link below. Her view is the slap on the face types. Nakedly frank and nothing but brutal truth.

Fransisco's Money Speech by Ayn Rand

VR

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Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Don't flaunt riches - Prime Minister is watching ya.

I was reading a preposterous claim (probably best coupled as a best election stunt) by none other than the premier of India. The discussion purely started as a chance to best relive a few election spots which they once used to win comfortably. He says,”Lavish spending”, “Parties”, “Extravagant wedding” etc are “socially undesirable” and “environmentally unsustainable”. He further says “An area of great concern is the level of ostentatious expenditure on weddings and other family events. Such vulgarity insults the poverty of the less privileged, it is socially wasteful and it plants seeds of resentment in the minds of the have-nots. “

I think differently. I think the premier just forgot what democracy is and perhaps got a bit carried away towards dictatorship. I think firstly, no one has any right what so ever, don’t matter who you are and what you have done thus far, to decide how a person has to live and what is acceptable and what is not. This is one reason why India still remains backward in attitude because of all the “ungiven” right to comment on other person’s life style.

For records, India got 87,000 + crores as Tax returns alone last year. I am not including any other funds that they would have mobilized. Is this money not a small subset for instilling the “have nots” a sense of being part of the country? Should’nt it become the obligation of the ruling government to do something for the “have nots”. I am not against giving it back to the society. That is the only way you can say you care. I do that and every one does that from their best ability. People contribute to old age homes, people do give finances for animal care and what not. But my serious point is since when the government gets the right to say what a person can do and what they should’nt it even when it is legally and ethically bounded action.

The main problem with India at this juncture is – Population, great belief on the concept called “Free Food”, right to question other person’s life. What psyches me off big time is the fact that the so called growing billionaires club in India – 36 of them, they found their success because of sheer hard work. They found ways to proliferate their corporation’s growth through their own methods despite the government’s help. And yet when they hit the peak and they spend time “celebrating” their success, we have the audacity to say “Hey think about the poor”. Would we do that when every other guy celebrate their success around us? It is their god damn money and I am pretty sure they would have had to spend many a sleepless nights, stress and now when they want to hit off, we got a problem. So lame I think this.

The main concept I would like to vent out through this medium is that according to the NSO, there are about 22.15% of people living in poverty. What has the government done to alleviate this living standard? The poverty factor did not show up suddenly. It was very much here for a very long time since the India became sovereign and secular. We have labored through all this since then and the growth has happened between all this. Now my point, it is only here in India, a physically well to do man would take to begging and take to the concept of “free food” as his birth right. I say, “Nothing called free food exists now; it was once in the Dino era when T-Rex got its due”. Beggars just need to ask and they get free food. Stop that option, and then you will see the guy work for his food. The so called “celebrated spenders” worked their way for their food. Then why did we get so concerned they should not live their life.

And obviously let's not talk about the reservations for the castes around. I would end up making a living by writing pages against it !

At the end, I firmly think we should have to right to live and see how you want to live your life. We should give it back to the society, which will happen automatically as you grow up the career ladder. But to have a meter checking whether they “successful” people are living an extravagant life or not is NONE of our business or for that matter no one’s business.
Link to the Article

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Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Atleast this year !!

Happy bday to me. May god bless me with all the best (whatever that is left). And give me more energy to achieve more and keep going on and on(pretty much like the duracell battery) and finally give me the power to attract and make atleast one girl fall in love with me !!!

The women I know say, Today, about 28 years ago, I came to earth to rule the world called Bachelorwood.

In that high note am signing off

Vik
Since 1979.

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Sunday, May 20, 2007

How is it that such smart people can allow this to happen?

This is not a question that I ask anyone. This is something that the people in the west ask. They were quite interested to know about India particularly because they suddenly saw the rise of Indians in IT. When I was in America, the Americans always wondered why there existed poverty in a country like India when it has been doing so well. They used to say, "I am appalled by the nature of poverty. The sight of people living, eating and defecating on the streets they call home." I, used to wear my thinking cap and used to be mum for a while wondering why such a thing has happened to us.

I think we are to blame ourself for what we see around. The game of modernization sans planning is like a game of snake and ladder, has led us straight to the snake's mouth , a big one that too. Since the time the Britishers ruled us, we have taken to an easy and ingnominous life style, seek someone's help for survival. It started as an event for survival to the easiest way of life. My friend remarked " There is nothing called Free Food. It was once in the Dinosaur world, not anymore." How true? Today I can directly relate this to the people who are very able physically but they fall back on someone for the basic necessities eg food, water, shelter. India has been able to move forward largely because of the people who intend to work to make a living and the population that rely on the working class presents a different picture and pulls the development in a downward spiral. Right now it is a tug of war - the working class vs people relying on the working class for free food. Who is to be blamed for this? Why are the poor still poor in a democracy?

I may not have tangible answers to all. But I know deep down and so does everyone deep down that the population is the answer for this; The poor that knows to eek a living by seeking alms pass it to their generation and this continues. Unless this crowd is eliminated to start afresh things are not going to change. Neither I want to sound like a dictator nor am I saying this to pull a conversation point. The fact is we do it every where around us. If we need to set a few things right we have to follow a communist form of life. China did that. America did that. Most of the developed country did that. I am not saying they don't deserve to live but hey what are they trying to do. They are not making a progression. Don't blame it on the opportunities for god's sake. People by instinct are competitive. It is the place where they find themself that makes them non-competitive.

The government just can't eliminate poor people by creating job opportunities or providing education or anything. The feeling is so imbibed within them that they just would not change for good. But until then I think we will not be able to answer the question:

"How is it that such smart people can allow this to happen?"

Reference to the article:

Link to the Article

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Saturday, May 19, 2007

Pass me the culture !

I was wondering aimlessly today and that is when I started questioning myself about what is a culture to a person ,what is it for a group of people and what is it for an organization and finally what is it at a country level? The main thought here was not to state the general feeling by most is wrong or to muscle in my thought as a dictum of any sorts. It is just and solely my thought as such.

Well then as I say this, I cannot help compare this to the environ where I live, Madras, a fairly orthodox and conservative place and along with all that extremely Hippocratic place too. Hey which place in India is not Hypocratic? That would be something which I would reserve to write at length. For the time being, Madras can be safely assumed to be a no nonsense city, a metro of nice sorts as compared to other funnier places in India. I don't have anything against this place. But I wanted to pick a city to elaborate my thoughts. This city is extremely pivotal in shaping and building entertainment while generating great opportunities to the likes of cine world- Kollywood, Soap operas and what not. When we scan these components and look a bit more closely, not one movie gets away without a hot song (per Indian standards). Wet skin, inappreciable attire and total female exploitation err. Sometimes out of will too. These are acceptable and part of the culture and when this happens in the real life then it is the technology which has killed the culture.

Lets go back for a while. For a singleton community(defined before time of modern era), a culture to him/her is being nicely dressed with an ability to earn the bread in the most legitamate way PLUS the work ensures no physical contact or any communication with the opposite sex. The gains with this attitude were mostly the Arts, Music, Architecture and sports but all this started in the earlier times had hugely suppressed the involvement of women as such. Women were in the house literally 24 * 7 under the pretext of taking care of the house (primarily because they were not educated) and everything under the roof of the house. The men were the stronger ones. The men could do what they want but were justified with the rules of the society being defined and re-defined. Every family had a good 9-10 children. Women were child creating machines, which they did without much regret. This was the period when the Kama Sutra was created by a sage (supposedly) . A true display of what men thought of but were not sure if it was right to practice it. So I am pretty sure the creator of this would not have had the guts to propose anything like this. This was the culture then in those dark ages. "Keep it indoors" was the rule of the thumb which was passed on to another era as time changed.

Let's forward a bit, a progressive evolution, a common man in present world. Ask him/her what he/she thinks about the culture and the habits of existence. I bet my dollar, deep down the heart, nothing much has changed in the attitude of men in this neck of the woods. They still think women as weaker sex, providing the only opportunity to be scantly dressed in cinema in order to be successful and yet thump the heart fast and say "Culture" is close to the heart. The hypocrisy. Men with shorts are viewed differently once upon a time. He is "so cool". Spice it with an accent. When the same thing happened to women, men were the first ones to react differently. I don't blame them. Women were created beautiful but lets keep it at a decent intensity. If we had lived that way we would have had gotten every reason to say "My Culture" is good. What would people do in turn? We stalk them, we chase them, it becomes our birth right to harass them. And do we say anything to that? No, the solution to it is women should NOT be fashionable. Get back to the older ways of life - by being suppressed, then it is safe. Now do we say that as our culture? Would we dare to say that. No. Why? because this has a bad image to the the way we live our life. At the end should a women undergo unjust, then it is because they have been provocative. The problem was them and they are the solution as well.

That is the way the hypocratic society in which we live like to define the term "Culture". We have been the only culture that had taken so much pride in involving in something as cruel as "Female infanticide". Cruel us. And yet we are so proud. Damn ! And yes come to think about the most easy ways of extrapolating the term "Culture", the most prevalent, "Arranged Marriage". I, for one, think the people incubated here are the most blessed ones. Even the creatures in the lowest food chain, need to impress the partner to ensure that the strongest proliferate. Instead what do we do living high up in the food chain? Make a business outta it. The man clocks 30, the women strikes 22 and then we got a business on hand. Make a deal. Ask for tons of money, land - termed dowry, the women now gets to be a house partner and marriage is on the way. We say this is the highlight of the Indian culture. By doing this, we have successfully held the "Culture" together. How? I find it so strange to believe in the system. It is still a taboo to exhibit love or affection in public. This is so weird. You like someone, what would a hug got to do with the society? and apparently this is the no-no per the culture. There are so many pot holes in this sort of existence. We have so quickly gotten modernized at the same time the old, strong hypocratic life styles is holding our legs ever so tightly and pulling us. The people of this era are the most troubled because they can't look forward at the same time can't stay back and continue the older way of existence. Poor Us !!

The baton has been passed again to us - another era. Now, I think men should shed slowly the hypocrisy and selfish motives and women should be more independent and then hold things together. The baton that has been passed on for time immemorial has something that we should not follow anymore, something that we should take forward. With education now available to all and everyone should ensure that the good part of the legacy is chaffed from the bad. The term "Bad" and "Unacceptable" is something that is very very subjective to the year of existence. Few things that were unacceptable in 1850 cannot be blindly followed now in year 2007. You use contraception now means you don't bring any bad to anyone. You love someone you have not brought the full house down. It is just a way of moving forward.

I, for one, believe the term Culture is so losely used these days for everything. For me, it refers to patterns of human activity and the symbolic structures that give such activity significance. Different definitions of "culture" reflect different theoretical bases for understanding, or criteria for evaluating, human activity. In general, the term culture denotes the whole product of an individual, group or society of intelligent beings. It includes technology, art, science, as well as moral systems and the characteristic behaviors and habits of the selected intelligent entities. In particular, it is a mutual exchange of ideas for the survival. That is how so many eras have come into being and we remember them for what they offered us and what we learnt from that.

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Saturday, May 12, 2007

Manners - What and where is it these days?

What's with the world around us these days specifically in the 3rd world countries? We take so much of liberty with the fellow beings around to a large extend that we are totally mannerless.

I don't know what else to say about this. Especially when there were two guys who shouldered me to get into an elevator at work. All they had to do was just be patient. The elevator is not made for just two. Again to see that happen in a supposedly and claimed to be a MNC. I just don't have words to add on any more.

The same thing happened in Canada when I had to board a train and I saw a few Indian look alike get into the train and at the same time a big fat afro American was making her way out of the Train. You can guess what happened next. The lady bashed them for being so rude and the learning out of the experience was zero. Coz they just did not change inside the train.

Sometimes, Indians worst enemy abroad is none other than another Indian !


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Thursday, May 10, 2007

Is killing the solution?

I chanced upon a news article today about culling of stray dogs under the pretext of cleaning up the city and people acceding the action. I also know where the corporation folks are coming from. The eternal pressures are not only from the unfortunate family members whose children lost a part of their flesh to these crazy canines but also from the other community who fear this might happen to their family as well.

I am thinking may be there should be a more noble way of doing away the stray dogs and for that matter the animals on the road. They don't do it with intent. They are forced to do that because they find themselves in dire straits. I, for one, still think there should be a decent way to 'kill' them, should we think we have the 'right to decide' who lives around us and who should not. Poor animals is all I can say at this point of time. There are organizations which take care of the deserted animals and I think the government should have funding or something like that so that they can sustain their effort. Electrocuting or poisoning them is not the exact solution to the problem.

Ahem.. On the same note, give me the power and I would like to decide who should live around me coz I hate beggars, I hate the ones in huts and yes I hate animal killers too. I am waiting for a chance to have a swipe at them ! Mera Number Kab Ayega !! (When would I get my chance !)

Link to the Article

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Tuesday, May 08, 2007

The Billionaire Situation

The rise of ever more billionaires causes much anguish at growing inequalities. Forbes magazine says that India has produced 14 additional billionaires in the last year, taking its total to 36. This is more than the 24 billionaires in Japan, Asia’s richest country. The Left Front will gleefully declare that globalisation has made the rich richer and the poor poorer.

I too find it depressing that a billion people round the world remain mired in poverty. But I cheer those self-made men and women, from families of modest means, who have nevertheless clawed their way to the top of the wealth ladder through sheer talent, perseverance and guts. Forbes reports that no less than 60% of the world’s billionaires are self-made. This is not a sign of the rich getting richer. It is egalitarianism by other means. This is not socialist egalitarianism which seeks equality of outcome for all. But it is a step toward liberal egalitarianism, which seeks equality of opportunity.

We are seeing an explosion of billionaires in countries that traditionally had none, and from families of modest means. No longer is wealth limited to a handful of ultra-rich white families. The talented are now overtaking old wealth, both within their own countries and in the world. Forbes lists a record 946 billionaires in 2006. The list has 178 newcomers, including 19 Russians, 14 Indians, 13 Chinese and 10 Spaniards, as well as the first billionaires from Cyprus, Oman, Romania and Serbia. Forbes says that of its listed billionaires, 17% became poorer and 32 dropped below the billion-dollar mark. The rich don’t always get richer. The new billionaires have made money in everything from media to computer software, from real estate to coffee. They have converted their excellent human capital into financial capital. That represents progress towards a world of merit. Sadly, one billion people remain poor. They lack the access to education, capital, networks and infrastructure that are vital to convert talent into riches. In too many countries, the state has failed to provide the basic framework that will help talented people rise fast. No serious attempt has been made in India to reform the face of government that the villager sees. Reform all these areas, and we should see many more billionaires.

Of the self-made people in the list, Lakshmi Mittal does not really qualify. He was born in a business family. Yet by global standards he is self-made, since his family lacked the means to build or buy large steel plants. Instead, he used his managerial talent to take over sick steel mills for a song across the world, and turn them round. Once he gained critical mass, he went for big takeovers. Computer software has yielded a spate of Indian billionaires. Azim Premji of Wipro inherited a vegetable oil business but converted it into a software major. Three middle-class founders of Infosys have become billionaires - N R Narayana Murthy, Nandan Nilekani and Senapathy Gopalakrishnan. Ditto for Shiv Nadar of HCL.

The Left Front regards stock markets as casino capitalism. In fact the stock market boom has been crucial in converting human capital into financial capital. The world’s money is flooding into India to share in the wealth created by Indian entrepreneurs. The price of real estate (and realty shares) has gone through the roof. In consequence, many builders unknown to the general public five years ago now rank among the richest in the world..

Socialists will deplore the rise of so many billionaires in the midst of widespread poverty. But amiri hatao does not lead to garibi hatao, as Indira Gandhi demonstrated in the 1970s.

I say that 14 new billionaires is not enough. I would like to see a million new billionaires, based entirely on talent. That will be egalitarianism of opportunity. Particularly, that is the only way India can get back from the international society after everything that has happened sans globilization within the country.

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Saturday, May 05, 2007

Why House Wife and not House Husband?

That brought a smile did’nt it? The title was not carefully chosen to bring a smile on the readers face but it is how I think most times now. Now, a thought like this does not mean I am married or does not mean I am in an affair (DARN!). But, yes, ever wondered why the word “House Husband” is alien to us all? I don’t know why. When a few mates of mine and I were having a cuppa coffee, something came inline with the house wife thingy and I promptly said “House Husband” and every one started giggling (the common girl trait that I don’t like much). I was dead serious and yet they laughed like nuts when they heard that word.

Who coined the word House Wife and why did that same exact person forget to say House Husband? Why is it that most working woman with charming degrees give up work after marriage to become a House Wife? Why is it that a House Wife word seems so decorated and acceptable and not House Husband? Is it because we are trying to be genetically discriminative?Simpler solution is perhaps to make the House Husband word common and yet drive home the point that, if born as a male then you have to go out to work eternally and bring the money and ration home. That way a person like me would not be in grief and would rather be apathetic to the entire usage.


But seriously, am still mumbling, when can someone proudly say I am a House Husband as much as others do when they say "Am a House Wife"?

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Wednesday, May 02, 2007

Ayn Rand's Home page

One of the best authors of all times. Very truthful writing and I dont have to say more about her.

http://www.aynrand.org/site/PageServer

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