Shock and Awe

Oh yes, that is how I descibe it. After contemplating a lot on what and how to write this news, I just got down to writing it. Shock and awe indeed. And awe in the bad sense. How could the Nobel committee be so stupid! They are supposed to be the smartest people on earth. Cmon, they judge the world and give the award to the smartest people. People of the likes of Nelson Mandela (who fought for racial injustice) and Mother Theresa (who did so much to the City of Joy) deserve the Nobel Peace Prize. I am not saying Obama will not. He has the right intentions. He has the right plans. But what the heck, he has not even started implementing them! And will he actually implement them? God knows.

Hypothetical scenario — Lets say 3 years down the line, towards the end of his first term,

(1) he gets the entire army out of Iraq – meaning there are no more insurgencies, and a peaceful democratic government is ruling there;

(2) he gets the entire army out of Afghanistan, where a similar situation prevails;

(3) Peace prevails in Israel;

(4) He solves the 100 yr old border problem between India and Pakistan ;

(5) Tibet becomes an autonomous governing body either within China or within India, or a separate nation state like Bhutan.

Even if he does 3 out of the above 5, I will say that, he can deserve the Nobel Peace Prize. For some reason, within myself, I will never see the Nobel Peace Prize the same way again. It is diluted.

If he had even the slightest bit of honor in him, he would have declined it, and said, I will take it when I deserve it. His statement of “I do not deserve it, but I will take it”, brought more anger to me. This is not a Cadbury Bournville Chocolate bar for heavens sake, it is a Nobel Peace Prize. Ok. now that I have gotten it out of my system, I will stop.

Obama – smooth talker !


Mr. Obama is continuing to make waves as the ‘uber-cool’, ‘I-am-completely-in-control’ President of the US of A. I read the following two paragraphs in the NYTimes. 


When I asked him if there was any reason to believe that the G.O.P. had made a good-faith effort at bipartisanship, given the fact that only three Republicans voted for the stimulus plan in the Senate and none in the House, he said he did not want to question the motives or sincerity of those who opposed the plan.

But he made a point of adding, “Now, I have to say that given that they were running the show for a pretty long time prior to me getting there, and that their theory was tested pretty thoroughly and it’s landed us in the situation where we’ve got over a trillion-dollars’ worth of debt and the biggest economic crisis since the Great Depression, I think I have a better argument in terms of economic thinking.”

Wow. I am impressed. Smooth talker indeed. He starts off with ‘damning with faint praise’ and then lands the blow right on the head ! This was in an hour-long interview with some press people on Airforce One.

Obama’s diverse family


pic courtesy: nytimes



Was reading the NYtimes, and the portrait of the Obama family is pretty diverse. Very interesting mixture.

The president’s elderly stepgrandmother brought him an oxtail fly whisk, a mark of power at home in Kenya. Cousins journeyed from the South Carolina town where the first lady’s great-great-grandfather was born into slavery, while the rabbi in the family came from the synagogue where he had been commemoratingMartin Luther King’s Birthday. The president and first lady’s siblings were there, too, of course: his Indonesian-American half-sister, who brought her Chinese-Canadian husband, and her brother, a black man with a white wife.

Whether Obama will change the US of A or not, I think this mixture is definitely a change to the hypocritical ‘ruling class’ of the US of A ; which has predominantly been white protestants. The NYTimes say that, there were several thousands of people who came to the Inauguration, not for witnessing the event, but for making sure – they would not believe that they would have a black president, until they see one taking the oath. Wow. That is shocking. – tech savvy Obama ?

Hm. I just read on lifehacker that the tech savvy Obama administration has unvealed a whitehouse blog. Infact, the whitehouse site itself looks pretty neat. Has a lot of facts about the white house. It has clear links (at the bottom of the page) to Briefing room (PR), administration, the government charter etc. Looks like a well designed corporate company website. And I see that, Obama is planning to go one-up on Bush, by providing a weekly video talk (every saturday). I believe Bush used to just ‘talk’ on NPR once a week.