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Assorted stuff July 10, 2007

Posted by Sharath Rao in assorted, geo-politics, humor, politics, weird.

Here again now – with every passing day my ability to discern Onion-kinda news from real news is being lost. I don’t know if its Onion that is gotten that good or the world thats gotten that weird.

Consider these 2 gems :

Looks like the dogs, my last hope so far, have lost it 🙂

US military proposals over the decades. Incredibly funny, innovative.

I can’t imagine the once scientific advisor to the Vajpayee and now President and soon to be a former president Dr. Kalam presenting such suggestions. ( or his reactions on being presented such suggestions by his sub-ordinates )




This article underlines the now familiar theory that terrorism is a mostly educated/ruling class enterprise. The following part stands out :

There is also an argument that Asians who go in for a technical degree often don’t get oriented to any history or social science and so are more vulnerable to odd explanations of the world they may encounter later. Then the information explosion exposes young sharp minds to all kinds of propaganda…

‘Modernity’ in our societies is now limited to acquiring degrees and is just a way of enslaving one to the fruits of technology without imbibing the spirit that is central to ‘modernity’ — acknowledging the right of all citizens on this planet to co-exist as equals.

Of course this is just a theory, there is no data to support this yet. But if at some point some such relation is established, we will come back to rue our education system. Liberal arts education is a marathon, a long term investment – its hard to point out at the end of a history/sociology/psychology course and pin point at the end of it about the value added. It accrues over a period of time that few policy makers have a vision to comprehend or care enough to act on.


My understanding of politics ( which may be cast as naive given my claim ) is that almost every vote should be a conscience vote. I think the (faulty but for want of a better alternative) premise of democracy is that MPs are representatives of the people first, the party only later. I find it amusing that  politicians are criticizing the call for ‘conscience vote’ as being inappropriate. Does it imply that when MPs vote they are supposed to suppress their ideas and just toe the party line ? I know there is a problem with indiscriminate voting but so is the idea that someone can belong to a particular party – how can you find a handful of smart guys that agree ( not appear to agree) on every major issue ?

Meanwhile, I continue to think that Abhishek Manu Sanghvi has the worst job in the world. More BS from him from here :

Congress spokesperson, Abhishek Singhvi joined issue with Shekhawat and dismissed as “misapplied and inapposite” NDA’s plans to seek a conscience vote in favour of Vice-President Shekhawat in the presidential election as had happened in 1969. According to him, “1969 was a case when the ruling party was itself divided and conscience vote was sought because of the division.” To buttress his argument Singhvi claimed that this time the ruling UPA “was completely united and all constituents had signed the nomination papers for Pratibha Patil”.

Uh, so ? That argument is about as valid as saying :

1969 presidential election is different from 2007. That was the 20th century, we are now in a completely new century. So …

The problem is that either he has to be really stupid or has to make statements that make him look stupid anyway.



1. ChenZhen - July 11, 2007

Re: ‘gay bomb’

I suppose after Jasper Maskelyne, the military became pretty open to outside-the-box ideas for warfare.

2. Sharath Rao - July 11, 2007

I see, I wasnt aware of that one.

Found some info. here :

3. Deepak S Krishnan - July 12, 2007

Jasper was the first name of a Belgian character in a story i wrote for Vitruvian in 2004 😀

Jasper Malisse (shamelessley sharing the surname of Xavier Malisse), the commander of the anti-aircraft battery at Eben Emael…………….

4. Sharath Rao - July 12, 2007

btw Vitruvian no softcopy or what ?

5. Deepak S Krishnan - July 13, 2007

all softcopies with abhiram 😀

will start replying to comments on my blog… why wasn’t i doing it all these days?:

1) I can’t imagine anyone coming back to check up on replies to the comments they have left behind. THAT amount of user friendliness is not there on my blog; which is one of the nice features of ur blog… will learn some HTML and try to do something

2) Was going thru this phase where i lost pride in my own writing… regained the pride though 😀

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