Strategies to Slow Down Population Explosion

Recently,  in this forum  here this headline caught my attention:

Billionaires Meet in Secret to Discuss Population Reduction Strategies – “Don’t Want to be Seen as a Global Cabal”

The report said that Bill Gates initiated a meeting between billionaires like David Rockefeller Jr, Warren Buffett, George Soros, Ted Turner, Oprah Winfrey,  Sir Paul  Nurse, a British Nobel Laureate (Bio Chemist) and Michael Bloomberg to discuss strategies to  slow down population growth.

aldhelm 1 pointif(reddit) reddit.vl[‘t1_c09tifo’] = [‘0 points’, ‘1 point’, ‘2 points’ ]; 5 minutes ago[+] (0 children)
Numbers do matter. Affects every aspect of life, distribution to welfare to governance to nurture to sustenance.
The key to it all probably is education and awareness and empowerment of women.
If this news be true and these guys are really interested in doing something about SLOWING down the population growth, I wish they would:
CHANGE NATURE OF FUNDING. FUND EMPOWERMENT. STOP CHARITY.
It pushes a country  deeper into hell of  shit: never ending debt and corruption.
  • Stop rural funding in countries like India. It has led to severe  corruption and scams.  Where it  benefitted, it has benefitted only a very few in superficial ways.
  • Fund and nurture private enterprise.
  • Start funding education in countries like India, China, Africa systematically.
  • Fund private curriculum development projects that would empower its citizens to get actively involved in developmental work.
  • AggressivelyMonitor Progress, audit fund management at the receiver’s end.  Get involved.  The Bill Gates Foundation had funded computer literacy in a school in Kolkata 7 years back.  Did anyone go check what happened and why?
  • Fund projects that initiate Women’s empowerment, her social rights to Health, to Reproductive choices, to Financial independence, to Wage equality and Resistance to abuse. Often a woman in India is forced to continue until she produces a male child
  • Fund support groups to engage women in developmental work.
  • Help build/ sustain Women Empowerment bodies that would help protect women that choose to stay single in countries like India Indian situation was just not designed to sustain single women  or even single men.
The real drivers of social developement are WOMEN.  Let’s face this : these  creatures  create and then  rear children that run the country one day.  No matter how good a school is,  if the child has been mothered badly, there usually is little hope of getting a high quality man with high quality brains and a heart to run things well.
In  countries like India  it is the mother that does most of the critical parenting – she is the one that instills  and builds the value system that would run the individual’s learning, development from then on. What the mum did would have become the primary operating system. Scripting.
Men rarely participate in child rearing in ordinary middle class homes.  They merely are content to play the supervisory  and the role  of principal bread earner.
Educating and empowering  one half- educated,  resistant urban Indian housewife  would help 2o women through her and  5 men and  2 future citizens.  Roughly  27 people.
Fund  one  Teacher and –  you help 200 future decision makers through him/her.
  • Support Gay Marriage. Gay marriage would lead to lifestyle changes that might curb rate of reproduction, cause more adoptions, bring down divorce rates.
  • Support single parenthood.   Support adoption.
  • Fund initiative to curb teenage pregnancy in developed countries.
  • Fund literacy programs, language teaching enterprise  (that is the key to inseminating  information about rights, know hows to stoke population control behavior) R&D in this field,  content creation.
More than money, in countries like India, what is more essential is skill-building efforts:  Management skills,  project development skills, entrepreneurship skills,  campaigning skills,  outreach program manning  skills,  administrating skills.
Here in India,  half the  brainy middle class able population is left out of quality skill building education systems because every selection here is marks/score based.  Most failing in academic examinations have no other way but to drop out of every training, education program forever.
One  could continue to  make money:  NOT through drug or weapon sale  or scams and engineering economic disasters.
If the quality of population improves  and the numbers  stabilize,  one could make money  through sale of  SAFER  stuff – that are safer for the rich and the poor alike.
See, everyone knows and has seen that  if the rich sell a gun, the poor  might use it to destroy them.
Instead, if they had enough and were less angry,  they might want to buy more  cars or iPods or software or services perhaps and land in the moon too.
But of course  this is far more complex and  till the time the idea of “resource” is equated to power and control,  development  would always be about money.  Never about people or real social development perhaps.
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Behalaey shedin

A Lazy Weekend at Home

this is particularly about nothing in particular. just a journal entry about a lazy summer afternoon spent at home.

family gathering at Thakurpukur

I met a long lost sister and brother in law on Friday. I cried the previous night before I actually met them, when I did, it was a happy tearless union. Bro-in-law cooked a delectable lunch and we ate together with another friend called Nini, on the bed with rain drenched afternoon sunlight bathing the space with light and good cheer. Maybe the good cheer and light actually flowed from our hearts. But then the other half of the great room looked so dark, we had to arrange to eat near the window on the bed. No Bengali in their right minds would ever allow rice to be eaten on the bed.

But we decided to break some rules that day. Like everybody started drinking right after 11 a.m. I was given my pineapple sherbet. But I put it back in the fridge as I was talking so much. I had it later with lunch while they had by then switched to rum.   After they have had vodka, which is what didi prefers. (Me, my mum and Anupam do not drink, most others in the family do).

That, and chilled sweet fresh summer Himshagor mangoes. I like to have sweet fruits with my rice and dal and fish curry. As usual Bapida’s dal was fragrant – I nearly always manage to kill the fragrance of the masala (spices while saute-ing, he always does it right). Many of their twenty six cats and kittens are dead.

There are seventeen now excluding the two tiny ones that are minuscule in size and doesn’t leave the wedge in the sofa where their mum hides them from the house-tease Khatash. They are about five days old. The house filled up with nauseating fish smell when five kilos of fish got cooked in large pressure cookers that are used only to cook their meal. And then Bapida had the bright idea to lift the lid to let it cool so the army could eat first.

This is the only household I know where cats get preference over human guests. Bapida Sutapadidi rock, Nini…

It has been a long time. Everybody said it at least twice. Including Nini who is otherwise Prof  Nivedita in her college where she teaches Bangla with one of my nephews. She said she had heard all the stories about me in the course of the morning, before I arrived around mid-day. How long now? Four and a half years since I left town.

Later, they filled me up with news about how Abraham Majumdar and Ranjan Ghoshal organized the Mohin after Thirty Three Years show without Bapida who used to be the singer in all of their old EPs and one the very first three original members of the group. He is very hurt. While we were eating this girl from the TOI called and he almost turned her down. We frowned in unison.

I suggested he follow his friends’ advise and meet The Times of India girl to clear things up. He finally relented and the appointment was fixed up.

Stuck

The whole morning I spent hours on the net trying to figure out a way to get out of Kolkata to my workplace. All trains are booked to limit till June 6th! I looked up all possible break journey routes: via New Delhi, Jaipur, Mumbai. No luck.

The Director called up and said, fly out, she would loan me the money. Well, wish I could. But I have too much baggage. I wish to carry some of my stuff this time, books, utensils, clothes. And a stove. When I went there, I had gone there with a backpack. And stayed on for over two years. Cant come again soon as it takes two nights and a day for a one way trip in an express train. Nearly four hours on a plane. Agents are no help.

Partha suggested I but some ticket and later he would see if he can get it approved under the VIP quota, provided no VIP is travelling that day. Am not sure I like the idea. What if someone does? I will not be allowed to board and I forfeit refund, lose money, as it is one cannot cancel a Tatkal ticket. The extra 300 bucks you pay for that would also be wasted….. would try again tomorrow…..

Missing Link and Prachir

Tonight I watched young Shubho of Lokkhichhara interview these two bands on his Star Jalsha Gaan Bhalobeshey Gaan. The title by the way is a line from an album of the band Chandrabindoo. I had known Missing Link in it’s formative stage five years back. Later, they made waves winning the Bandemataram contest. This evening listening to the rendition of their songs I could not make out why they had won back then, the songs were that vague and sugar sweet and so totally unlike what they are known to do on stage.

Prachir surprisingly seemed more open to ideas and all the three songs including Bharatbarsho indicated considerable thought. I liked the sound of and lyrics of the song “Deher khonjey, Dhangshostoopey, Raatri naamey“.

However,  rolling the R too much isn’t the way Bengalis speak. Also, as they spoke while answering Shubho”s questions,  their English influenced stilted, corrupted,  broken Bangla shocked me.

Shoumya Prachir in Star Jalsha with Shubho in blue in the BG

Shoumya Prachir in Star Jalsha with Shubho in blue in the BG

A song is never truly of a language and culture unless you also capture the cadence of that language and stay true to the typical diction in your verses. If you wish to be angry you cannot use the English diction and mixx it up with Bangla.

Speak Bangla the way Bongs do for Gossake! What the kids ought to realize is Bongs do get angry and they laugh and cry. It all can be done in Bangla using the rhythm and tone and pitch and modulation that Bongs would typically use.

Till that happens,  you are not rocking in Bangla, kidos. But good to know Star is now interested. Bangla alternative music is at last getting the attention that has been long due to it, I guess.

raining here in Kolkata

summer rain, vacation time, am at my own table, with my favourite old computer blogsurfing. the window was open so the wet wind could play with my hair and I could see the trees swaying lightly and the street below

here it is

Summer Rain in Kolkata - beginnning

Summer Rain in Kolkata - beginnning

Rains harder now,  the street lights are on

Rains harder now, the street lights are on

Thats on my right side

Thats on my right side

While I waited for the pictures to upload, this is what I was reading:

3. Marc S. Lewis, clinical psychology professor, University of Texas Austin, 2000.

There are times when you are going to do well, and times when you’re going to fail. But neither the doing well, nor the failure is the measure of success. The measure of success is what you think about what you’ve done. Let me put that another way: The way to be happy is to like yourself and the way to like yourself is to do only things that make you proud.

I thought you might like it.

spooky stats, unreliable stats or meddling?

This is about stats on this blog. Am not an avid blogger. And am not that concerned about statistics either. Generally I do not even notice the counter to check the number of hits this site gets.

But today, because I had written something that I had reason to believe is controversial, I had checked when I opened my browser window. Usually with Firefox you have the option of saving tabs as they are when you log off and are closing the window. Next time you log in it opens exactly at the same page and state that you left it earlier.

So what I had seen at first was the hit counter showing a number that was like 9743 or  9763.

Suddenly when I went to a different page of the blog and came back the number had changed to 9277! 500 short of what there was almost.

I have a vague impression that I had seen this at other times but because I had never consciously wanted to know is why I always thought it must be my mistake and in any case what does it matter?

But tonight I had checked and therefore was surprised to see this aberration.

It is spooky – is someone playing tricks with this site? I often a huge number of bad spam written in bad Russian which is also quite surprising. Never anything else but that.

It is eerie, scary. Disturbing. I hope am wrong and everything is fine and that this would stop.

O even as I finished this went back and see the 9277 is gone and it is back where it was 9747 in the hit counter….this is scary…..

Donald Trump, Ms California Carrie Prejean and her comments on Gay Marriage

Trump says Miss California USA can retain crown By Marcus Franklin, AP, Wednesday, 13 May 2009

First_pic_173241b

Now then, why did she win in the first place? What was the contest about, the one in which Ms Prejean won a crown at? From the furrore at first I thought must have been a contest about upholding social values, rational thought and great minds… it was just a beauty pageant for God’s sake not a contest for the Booker Prize or a Magsaysay! So what the hell?!

Seriously, though, let us see why she won that crown in the first place. She won it for physical beauty: sex appeal, and a nice face and figure (or at least a physical form, a shape, colour, texture, weight etc that according to some people, most people might think to be appealing and therefore can be used to sell products or campaign for causes or whatever).

Who deserves the crown? She does. Along with her though, her creators do too,  by which I mean both God and her biological parents, and then her creators would the ones that gave her the look and her dresses – make up artists, dress designers, her mentors… and perhaps the JUDGES,  who gave her a chance, they might have chosen not to … there are hundreds of thousands of pretty faces out there after all.

So when you take away her crown do you realize it is not just she who loses it, it is all of you who made it possible in the first place – in terms of the idea behind, the process,the method, the entire system.

Ms Prejean did not create the system, she didn’t ask to be photographed in the nude, she would not be the one to enjoy her own nude photos, she doesn’t have an investment in the industry, she was just fortunately born with a body and a face that make people want to see her in the nude. Period.

So why should she lose her crown?

She wasn’t competing for the Nobel or the Pulitzer – it is just a Beauty contest the very premise of it is far from anything intellectual – the very premise of that is sex appeal, the body, the body, the body and nothing else at all.

So if she has been naturally endowed with one that is considered d3esirable, why can’t she use that as she pleases? Why can’t she show off – ALL of it if it doesn’t bother HER sense of propriety?

She feeds it, clothes it, takes care of it, works hard to keep it in shape, she wins a prize for showing glimpses of it to the world and she can’t show ALL of it if it pleases her or if it brings her some money?

Why? Because we decided to sell her – we are the powerful corporate with the guns and the money and therefore exclusive rights?

It is absolutely funny that this controversy should be happening in the West where it is OK to kiss in the streets, lie naked on the beach, hold hands in public. And to think we look up to them for being progressive! And rational and sensible and individual’s right conscious.

I think this is pretentious and absurd.

If anyone should lose that crown it should be the people who created the Pageant in the first place, people who designed sophisticated ways of dealing in the human flesh, playing God in other people’s lives, exploiting beautiful women in the name of giving them something.

Double standards are hateful. Lack of respect for her is abominable.

…it had launched a new advertisement against gay marriage featuring footage of her at the pageant. The ad also features video of Hilton referring to Prejean with a profanity.

So who is taking advantage of whom? Who is right here and who is wrong – is it so hard to see? Is Ms Prejean responsible how other people use what she holds to be her private view?

Ms Prejean is entitled to her views whether you like it or not, she didn’t contest for the sagacity of her views regarding social norms. If she THINKS Gay marriage is something she doesn’t approve of – so be it. What bloody hell does it matter? I support Gay marriage. So there is someone who does, therefore it is ok if another one doesn’t – why put her on the stake ? She is too young, under exposed to the realities of life at her age anyway to know what is what. The young lady is only twenty something!!!

Trump should stay firm and not give in to dogmatic pressure and persecution of the poor girl. If she had violated clauses in her contract which says after win she can’t do certain things, then at least there would have been a case. But even then letting someone feel she is beautiful, having her show herself to win the prize and then telling her she can only show this much is hypocrisy.

As long as she isn’t harming anyone, stealing, cheating, being adulterous (even then it is still her choice, her body, her life, her responsibility) or a bigot, she has the right to her title and her hard earned crown. The US is not India so let US be the US and not turn retro. Please.

If we are really so concerned about “highest ethical and moral standards” we should not be having such pageants in the first place. 1) It undermines the importance of one’s mind, celebrates the flesh. 2) In effect such pageant says, all those of you other women out there, you are not beautiful by these standards, you should ASPIRE to be like THIS! O yes,  the subversive message is precisely that.

Women are beautiful, sexually desirable to men and women, and equally importantly conscious of their own sexual beings – it is ok if she decides to be her self at all times.  As good citizens that love our fellow beings, we need to learn to respect and revere that.

Pic sourced from the site that is linked here.

Love for Sale

Dilruba Dilnashin is a song that Ahmedabad FM broadcasts all the time.

watch?v=MCWTpLJZkJw

It reminds me of home, of Kolkata every time I listen to it.

The reason is –  the tune in a part of this song resembles one of my favourite Bangla songs.

The song is called Bhabtey Badha Nei* (translated in English it could either mean: As You Like It or You Could think Anything).

It was written, composed, set to tune by the Bangla Band ABHILASHA.

The “Tera Mera Pyar Jo Hain, Pyar yeh Zordar Hain” part of the song Dilruba Dilnashin from film Namastey London,  bears exact resemblance to the Bangla song I mentioned.

Manish Gajjar, BBC Film Correspondent, in his review writes, “Himmesh Reshamiya’s music in the movie is truly excellent”. The movie he refers to is Namastey London.

It  was directed by Vipul Shah. Music in the movie was directed by Himmesh Reshamiya. The song title is : Dilruba Dilnashin. Singers : Zubin Garg, Alisha Chinai

I have no idea whether Himesh had a chance to interact with Bangla musicians at any point in his life, whether they introduced him to the band culture.

However, considering that he listens to variety of music and looks everywhere for inspiration, he may have heard it somewhere.

The lyricist of the band Sumit Samadder has had a very brief stint at working in Mumbai.

Now, Mumbai music stores are extremely limited in their stock of pan India contemporary music. Even Planet M Mumbai or Crossword Mumbai or Landmark Mumbai is actually quite impoverished in this matter. But Sumit has been in Mumbai, maybe his music travelled too somehow.

Sumit continues to write for the band although it has now been regrouped with only the original singer Kutty still remaining in the band. Sumit writes music for other singers (than his own band ABHILASHA), jingles, scripts for TV shows, ad copies etc for a living. He is well known also for his TV show “Pathher Panchali”  in Bangla. He has worked extensively with Debojyoti Misra, one of the ace Music Directors of Kolkata.

Point of mentioning the song here is to drive home the point that artists are free to adapt and adopt. It is their prerogative.

But are they also not responsible for upholding each other’s interests and talents? Aren’t music and arts people expected to be more than salesmen with high standards of ethics and morality? Can they afford to be ordinary baniyas when society looka up to them for upholding values that nurture, enable, empower the community?

Sumit Samadder lyricist of Abhilasha, writer of Bhabtey Badha Nei

Sumit Samadder lyricist of Abhilasha, writer of Bhabtey Badha Nei

*Wanted to upload the song,  it is in my computer but as a cda file, if someone tells me how to do it, I would.

I could not Vote

it was polling day today at Kolkata for the general elections this year. It happens every five years in this country if things are fine.

I traveled a thousand km to cast my vote, exercise my right. Was I able to?No.

My name was on the voters’ list, my mum’s name too and my dead father’s name and my brother’s. My mum stood right beside me and so many others that have lived as neighbours for twenty years of our lives in this neighbourhood.

I had the Ration Card issued by the State government to prove I reside in this State (how else did my name show up on their list anyway?)

I did not flash my PAN card. I forgot to bring it with me to Kolkata it is somewhere in Ahmedabad where I have been for the last two years for work.
I also didn’t get my passport as it has Gujarat address on it. I could have shown them my bank debit card which had a picture of me. But I didn’t.

I felt hurt and rather like an outcast – after all I did for this city…I didn’t even get to vote.

Is it my fault they failed to issue my voter’s ID card? In our family in 1995 we all went together for the pictures and only my mother’s arrived later with her name spelled wrongly as “Nug” instead of “Nag”. She was wise and did not send it for correction – so she has the VID, she could vote, I could not!

All because they thought only if I showed a photo they could be sure it was me. The fact that I had produced another document that Banks would accept to open an account for you in this country, was not enough.

It has been years since I submitted my photo, documents etc to get my voter’s ID card. Did they apologize for not being able to issue my card on time for me to be able to vote? No.

Strange times.