Thursday, September 30, 2004
OSU campus is abuzz with interesting activity this time of the year.
Presidential debate tonight, being telecast on campus, to be followed by a discussion by various political science and public policy faculty, etc. I think. Ramki, I had sent you email about it.

Also, Wexner Center for the Arts will be screening this upcoming film on Mushy. It is one of a spate of recent films on Mush.

Movie on Musharraf : 'Golay' has a serious competitor
NSN, Lahore, Sep 28, 2004 Director Chaar-Ali Chappalein today announced that he had already completed the first part of his movie on Musharraf titled 'The great Dictator'. He hastened to announce this after the rumors that another movie 'Golay' may be given official encouragement. He showed several exerpts from the movie to a select group of tall and fair dignitaries.

All the dignitaries were full of praise for the movie. Musharraf has been shown very very fair and has a very dashing mouschtache in the movie. To show the relative superiority of Pakistanis, a hindu-bania barber has also been cast in the movie.

The great dictator has been shown to be doing everything in his uniform. He doesn't take off his uniform even in those situations where other lesser people would be tempted to. The viewers were impressed by this true depiction of Musharraf's undying love for Pakistan and its people. A strong beat and a chorus of "Pakistan First" echoes through whenever Musharraf's sacrifice of not removing his uniform is displayed on the screen.

The viewers especially liked the scene where an emotional Musharraf has a Gola (globe) in his hand and he says: "I just want peace". Then he starts dancing and singing "A piece of India, a piece of Afghanistan, A piece of Russia, a piece of Iran..." The audience were in 420% agreement with the sentiments expressed.

The viewers were a bit disturbed in seeing the likeness between the hindu-bania barber and the great dictator but the director blamed it on the wrong contrast and perspective in the movie frames. He said the final version will show the hindu-bania barber with the correct color and height. He further clarified that to show the color contrast between the great dictator and the bania-barber, the movie will be made completely in black and white.

There were rumors that the second part of the movie had already been shot, but Mr. Chappalein very apologetically clarified the confusion. He said "we had recorded some trial films, but the ending in those trials were not up to par. We decided that those kinds of endings would mean the end for this movie as well as people associated with this movie. So we have decided to end the movie in a different way. For this purpose we are auditioning some goats". At this announcement the audience rose to its feet and gave a long standing ovation.

General Musharraf has steered Pakistan like a modern Ataturk, and Pakistan is a staunch ally of the U.S. in hunting down Pakistani terrorists.

Monday, September 27, 2004
Slightly dated report.

Pakistan to give a fitting reply to India's fence
Islamabad Aug 1, 2004 (AST Media): Pakistan's Interior Minister Faisal Saleh Hayat announced that Pakistan is determined to give a tit-for-tat response to India on the latter's diabolical plot to build a strong fence on the Line of Control (LoC). In a press conference today Hayat declared that since India was not amenable to Pakistan's entreaties on stopping the fence work, Pakistan was going ahead full speed on building its own fence on its side of the LoC as a fitting reply to India's intransigence.

Mr. Hayat claimed that Pakistan requested India not to fence the LoC as it would be against the international norms and against the wishes of Kashmiri people. The minister said that the Pakistani Govt even offered to pay for the dismantling of the already finished portion of the LoC fence but India refused to play ball - instead India sent its cricket team to play ball with Pakistani cricket team. The two sides played a series of games that the Pakistani team lost resoundingly.

The minister said that this intransigence of India had left Pakistan with no option but to retaliate by building its own fence on its side of the LoC. He assured the reporters at the presss conference that Pakistani fence would be stronger and more hi-tech than India's and would become a symbol of Pakistani Science and Technology advancement and prowess. It would be ten times stronger and would carry ten times more electricity than Indian fence. He also thundered that this step was now irreversible and Pakistan would not dismantle its fence even if India begged it to or even if India dismantled its own fence.

The contract for building the fence is expected to be awarded to one of the Fauji Foundation subsidieries.

Friday, September 24, 2004
Rachit and I have been arguing about the effectiveness of Kerry as the candidate. While we do agree that the campaign is not what it should be to take the Bush machine, Rachit sees it as a function of Kerry's persona, while I think it is the effectiveness of the Bush spinmeisters. But here is an article summarizing why Kerry is trailing against such an inept president as Bush by one of my most favorite bloggers, Andrew Sullivan. It is vrey convincing. So, don't miss it.

Wednesday, September 22, 2004
Dissimilarity scores

I took this survey online (I swear I was not that free - it just happened while my code was grinding away at my data. Thanks again, Andrew).

At the end of it all, it outputs a measure of how dissimilar the respondent is from his/her own perception of the candidate. Here are my numbers:
Bush: 1.325
Kerry: 0.525

More on this later (when my code stops misbehaving).

Tuesday, September 21, 2004
This blog is full of stuff about elections and GOAT (Global Operation Against Terror). To relieve the tension, here's some cheerful news that we South Asians can be proud of.

Pakistan to launch low-orbiting robotic geostationary manned probe to Jupiter

Islamabad, 21st Sept 2004, (NSN/GoatNews) Pakistan's minister for spaceflight, fancy goods and trinkets, Brig. Fakhr announced at IDEASS-2004 today that Pakistan will soon launch a low-orbiting robotic geostationary manned probe to Jupiter.

This will highlight the best of Pakistani technology, which is world class and better than that of a neighbouring country which the minister declined to name. The vehicle is a completely new concept and is based on a radical departure from existing technology. It revolves around a reusable vehicle called the "Geostationary Orbiting Astral Tourer" (G.O.A.T.).

"This concept has been floating around for some time in our secret laboratories in the lush poppy fields near Wana", said the handsome, peach complexioned Pakistani Brig Fakhr. The normally reserved Brigadier appeared to be in a gay mood as he revealed further plans of PISRO - Pakistan's Indigenous Space Research Organization. The rear of the Astral tourer (G.O.A.T.) will be mated with a "Low Orbiting Velocity Enhanced Rocket" (L.O.V.E.R) and the twin complex will then be used for anything from education to delivery of conventional and unconventional warheads. Pakistan is a staunch ally of the US in the war of words against terror.

Pakistan President General Musharraf has warned many Al Quaeda terrorists to "Lay Off" and his job would be easier if he did not have to spend time and effort counting the 70 million Indian troops allegedly stationed in Kashmir.

Be Afraid - Be VERY Afraid

Iraq now qualifies for the Q word - quagmire. The presidential challenger, John Kerry, has in the clearest policy speech yet, clearly come out against continuation of the occupation - or owning up the pieces of the shattered state that Iraq is.

Meanwhile, the President's men are continuing with their secret plans safely away from the public knowledge. And what a surprise, they seem to agree with John Kerry! (Thanks Andrew for that tip.)

If the US cuts and runs now, Iraq would go down in one fiery mess. And if it does, a withdrawal by the US is going to be very bloody and messy. And the consequences of that would haunt the US for a long time to come. Iraq has a lot more population to contribute to terrorism than Saudi Arabia or Afghanistan.

Having opposed the stupid, audaciously idealistic ideas of the neo-cons all this while, I find myself now panicking that they are losing control. These guys piled us all into one huge car, revved it to 200 mph, and now are clueless on how to handle the steering. If they lose control, we all will be in for one bad careening disaster.

Be afraid, VERY afraid.

Friday, September 17, 2004
Salt Lake City Weekly - Money Talks

I do not understand one thing in this though - why should this boycott be limited to LGBT people? Why not have a more broad based call to everyone to exercise their economic rights to protest the social injustice that is perpetrated in the name of all in spite of the fact that this nation is vertically split on this question?


Says it all, doesn't it? Our prayers for those who are concerned abt Gene and Carl.

Tuesday, September 14, 2004
Why Americans love George W Bush

Current Electoral Vote Predictor 2004
This site predicts that Kerry-Bush contest is not even close, as widely believed. Or, so it seems at the first glance. But look closer: Bush has a lot many more votes in the "Barely Bush" column than does Kerry in barely Kerry column. Of the ties, Maine might not matter (it mostly would split its votes 3-1). Pennsylvania and Florida have both been listed as Bushlands (though under 'barely' category). Ultimately, this is the nightmare scenario for the Kerry camp.

This is understandable though, since a lot of these numbers are taken after the bump in GOP support after the convention showed up in the polls. Add to it the anniversary of Sept 11, and you have red splashed all over the map, so much so, you have Ohio listed as strong Bush state - it is, at best, a barely Bush state according to most (incl Rasmussen) polls.

When the bump slides (as it is bound to - it is just too steep to sustain), you will see more whites and blues popping up. Till then, it's okay if the map looks like a Bush budget.

Monday, September 13, 2004
Savarkar compromised with British: CPI-M

Haha... this is the greatest joke on earth. Is this the same CPI-M which steadfastly refused to recognize the Chinese invasion of 1962 as an act of aggression, and defended it as an attack of a Proletarian society against an imperialist India that is speaking now?! Geee... too bad people do not have memories that live as long as the Commie patriarchs.

Left to Cong, Rahul's girlfriend will be PM: Uma

Okay, I do not get this. First, they accepted that the campaign against the Gandhi clan in UP had failed, and had even created a backlash. And now, they send out the shrillest of the shrill voices to attack them again? Heck, even I feel this attack stinks (and I am no empathiser of the G clan). BJP is committing a blunder, possibly harakiri, with this Tiranga yatra. By not focussing on development, and returning to emotive issues, they are going to lose Maharashtra.

Monday, September 06, 2004

Okay.... I concede - it's not as if I was gone somewhere. Was just busy - as a Doctoral Candidate (yeah, I like capitalizing it!), I think I could validly claim so. Incidentally, the other bloggers out here were busy too - Rachit starting a new job, and Webasura, well.... doing something. Anyways, we are back now.

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