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What the feminists want of me is something they haven’t examined because it comes from religion. They want me to bear witness. What they would really like me to say is, ‘Ha, sisters, I stand with you side by side in your struggle toward the golden dawn where all those beastly men are no more.’ Do they really want people to make oversimplified statements about men and women? In fact, they do. I’ve come with great regret to this conclusion.

                                                                                                                                                     Doris Lessing, NYT, 1982

 

 Regarded as the Grand Dame of Literature, Doris Lessing has been awarded the Nobel prize this year for literature. I haven’t read her.  But the good thing about these prizes is that you get to read  and know about such amazing authors and appreciate them. The Grass is Singing  and the Golden Notebook are my next literary purchases.

Is democracy a hard thing to achieve? Pakistan Preseident Pervez Musharaff surely knows how to get away with things in the name of democracy. This time, all the pieces fit in the puzzle.

When Nawaz Shariff wants to come back to his homeland, the moment he lands at the ariport he is packed off to political asylum.

Now Benazir Bhutto comes home and there is a blast with 136 dead and still counting. Solicited Pakistani media was quick to react and put the blame on Al- Qaida who allegedly don’t approve of Bhutto’s support for the US ‘War on Terrorism’. But that does not and should not remove the slight possibility that the President had a hand in this incident. And the motive; to keep his political rivals away in the coming elections.

What baffles me more is the utmost disregard to human life in the midst of political conflict. That democracy has turned out to be a notion of multiple political parties vying for power rather than concern for the people themselves. To be noted is that Pakistan is not the only playground for such antics and this seems to be observed everywhere, be it the USA or even Gujarat. Surely Modi’s supposed ‘Ram Rajya’ is a trick in this regard (To the english media he says its the Gandhian notion of a welfare state, but the common gujarati believes it to be a Hindu state).

I am certain that the coming pakistani elections would be an interesting event to read about.

How many of us know that Al Gore has won the Nobel Peace Prize for his contributions to the environment this year?

– All of us do. 🙂

How many of us know that he has shared that prize with the UN’s Intergovernmental Panel of Climate Change ?

– Most of us do.

Now how many of us know that the head of the IPCC is an Indian who was instrumental in the Panel getting the award ?

– Uhh ! well, not many of us I’m sure.

Dr. Rajendra Pachauri has, as the head of the IPCC become the seventh Indian to become a recipient of the Nobel Prize. Though I don’t know if officially the credit would go to him or the organisation, but it still is an achievement. 🙂 And yes, he formerly worked with the Tata Energy Research Institute, was born in Nainital and works out of New Delhi.

 “I am only a symbolic recipient but it is the organisation which has been awarded,” Dr Rajendra Pachauri says. But then, didn’t Tagore and Mother Teresa get the award for the achievements of Shanti Niketan and Missionaries of Charity?

….

Although Al Gore was reportedly unhappy with the choice of the Indian, who he feared would be a drag on the organisation because of his strident criticism of the United States, Pachauri won him over with his total dedication to the cause of ecology, which is dear to Gore as well.

 

Last night Wadhwa, Arunav and self were having this whole discussion about Atlas Shrugged and the character John Galt. For those who have read the book, they’d remember the question everywhere, “Who is John Galt?”. Well there is this beautiful line in the book that says something to the effect that ‘John Galt is Prometheus coming back to take the fire that he had given away.’ Wow!.

 

For me the very idea of stopping the motor of the world had been a fascination. Galt and Howard Roark used to my heroes at one point of time. Not to forget, Ive read the books twice. But while Ayn Rand’s idea and philosophy is something to admire, the bigger question is that should we really stick by it and follow it all through our lives? This question was a major part of the discussion that the three of us were having last night. Rand seems to be our heroine, but we ourselves are rational beings. We know what to borrow and what not? For example, the idea that man must do what he feels is right or as Wadhwa put is straight ‘He must do what gives him pleasure’.

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During my occasional blog surfing periods, I came across Amreekandesi’s post on kinds of Indians. I think it’s pretty amusing and reader’s should take the test.