Heath care reform – thanks to Scott Brown.

Sen. Scott Brown

A couple of months ago I had written a harsh critique of the Democrats’ weak-kneed approach toward the health-care overhaul. I had held Obama and the Democratic leadership responsible for letting the national discourse degenerate to such levels that the American people had developed a distaste for the project itself.

While my criticism of democrats still holds true, it is time to give due credit and hail President Obama, Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senator Harry Reid for the extraordinary and monumental legislative victory that was accomplished yesterday.

However, as I reflect upon the developments over the last few months, one name deserves special mention and that is Sen. Scott Brown. The fact that we have a half-way decent health-care legislation is largely (and ironically) due to his electoral success.

Continue reading

Hindu and Muslim Taliban are first cousins

In numerous earlier posts, I have been scathing in my attack against Islamic extremism. Piqued by the unabashed critique, some have counseled a gentler tone so as to not alienate “moderates”.  I have previously debunked the validity of that proposition and hence I will not being doing that here. Still others have urged me to consider that Islam is not the ONLY violent game in town and that there are others who deserve similar condemnation.

Religion is fundamentally divisive because it promotes an Us vs. Them mentality.

Although I fully agree that Islamic militancy is not the only plague of our times, the subject of those posts were specifically Islamic terrorism / militancy and hence I did not feel the need to dilute the subject matter of my post by including references to its virulent brethren. However, this time I would like to show that fascism is NOT the sole preserve of any one religion or any one community. Religious chauvinism has a common formula that is adopted and exercised by different practitioners. In doing so, they tweak the superficial elements (color: Green v/s Saffron or name: Lashkar v/s Sena) – but the basic constructs are *exactly* the same.

Toward that end I have assembled a set of pictures and I invite you to join me in exploring the similarities. Continue reading

The Thackereys: Sewer Rats of Mumbai.

When Osama Bin Laden spouts his venom, he insinuates to speak for all Muslims. We (rightly) get frustrated by the fact that mainstream muslims do not do enough to repudiate him and yet claim that he is not representative of them. Well… it seems that Osama Bin Laden is not the only vicious dog in the pen. There are others like the Thackerey-trio who have made a career of operating in the sewers and expounding their gutter minds in public.

Supreme Dick with his 2 Testicles

Most of the time I have been content with treating them with a quiet disdain because I knew that the primary purpose of their fulminations is cheap publicity and I did not want to contribute to their goal of being the subject of conversation.  However, it seems that they are no longer satisfied with being in the gutters and are discovering new depths in the nether-reaches of public discourse. What makes this intolerable is their penchant for indiscriminate violence and bloodshed. Of late, they seem to be showing self-righteous outrage at Indians immigrants being harassed in Australia while conveniently overlooking the fact that they are practicing the same xenophobia themselves.

This is THE time to rise and denounce these vermin. Every thinking person – and more to the point – every thinking ‘Marathi Manoos’ needs to criticize and marginalize this filth of the sewers that claims to speak in their name. So here I am – a Mumbaikar and a Maharashtrian – unequivocally rejecting and repudiating the venom spouted by Bal Thackerey, Raj Thackerey and Uddhav Thackerey! Continue reading

Pissed off at Obama and the Democrats!

I'm pissed off at Obama and his crew of Democrats

Pissed.Off@Obama.gov

Pissed_Off@Obama.Gov

Its been over a week since the Massachusetts election results  punctured the Democrats’ 60-vote majority and deflated the already anemic health-care initiative. That night I was deluged with various emotions ranging from anger to anxiety to frustration. It took me a couple of days to clearly grasp what I felt and pen it down.

The title of this post *precisely* conveys what I feel in a nutshell. I will discuss my reasons in the rest of this post.

But first I want to make a clarification: I am NOT a Democrat but I voted for Mr. Obama because I sincerely admire his capacity for intellectual discipline and his ability to inspire. So, when I express my displeasure, it is as a sincere supporter who would like to see him succeed and not as one of the numerous right-wing nut-jobs that seem to have acquired more prominence than they deserve. Continue reading

Almost nobody truly believes in God!

When I started writing this article, I did not realize how loooong it would turn out. I toyed with the idea of splitting it into multiple posts but I’m unable to do it without fracturing the line of thought itself.  Consequently, I have put all of it in one post and I request your indulgence.

God - an all-knowing all-powerful Sky-Dude

God - an all-knowing all-powerful Sky-Dude that almost no one truly believes in

I’m given to understand (from all the polls) that America is full of religious folks (around 90%) and that atheists are a small minority. Even atheist books and blogs seem to carry the mentality of an outnumbered (though valiant) minority.

But I wonder if this is indeed true or are our cultural parameters for ascertaining “belief” misleading?  I would like to posit that most people DO NOT actually believe in God although they sincerely profess to.  And that’s what I’d like to explore in this post.

So – let’s start! I doubt any sane person actually believes in God. Not you, not your spouse, not your parents, not your devout cousin who is also a priest. Not even the Pope believes in God! Continue reading

Pakistan wants your money – No Strings Attached.

I had been working on another article for some days now. Its still taking shape as I mull over things – but this just cropped up and it is so patently absurd that I’m going to write and post it right away. If it sounds impulsive, its because it is.

How dare you tell what to do with your money

How dare you tell us what to do with your money. I'll protest by burnin my crotch!

I came across this article on the New York Times detailing the various heart-aches that regular Pakistanis are having about being told that there are conditions tied to the extraordinary aid (7.5 Billion dollars over 5 years) being doled out to them by the Kerry-Lugar bill. Apparently they feel entitled to an NSA (no-strings-attached) relationship worth $7.5B. They don’t just want your money. They want your love baby! Continue reading

The (poor) Case for God and Lisa Miller’s apologetics.

Out, Out, Damned Atheists (Sep 11 09)

Out, Out, Damned Atheists (Sep 11 09)

Its been a loooong while since I wrote on this blog (and yes… shame on me for that). I have little to offer by way of excuse or even an explanation.  It would be dishonest to say that I did not have time (although that would be partly true). But it would be more honest to say that nothing provoked me to sort out the threads of an argument and thus explore the truth content within them.

But that provocation has arrived. Albeit unexpectedly – but arrived nonetheless!

Lisa Miller recently wrote a Newsweek column raving about a book by Karen Armstrong called “The Case for God”. Frankly, the article is so full of bullshit that it took me a couple of days to ensure that my annoyance did not get in the way of my rebuttal.

Ms. Miller is effusive about Armstrong’s high-minded arguments in support of Religion and God.  However, it seemed to me that she was more thrilled at the prospect that a high-minded and noble-sounding answer had finally arisen to subdue (if not silence) the insolent atheists who ruthlessly flog religion and God.  It is NOT the strength of Ms. Armstrong’s arguments that seems to have swooned Miller but the tone of noble gallantry. In short, style over substance! I was particularly irritated by this segment :

Armstrong shows that for most of human history, “faith” and “reason” were not mutually exclusive and that even today all kinds people believe in a God that in no way resembles the God the atheists despise.

Faith and Reason are not mutually exclusive? What kind of drivel is this?? Faith is precisely the abandonment of reason! When you believe in something without evidence and despite contrary evidence – that is *faith*. What else does it mean to say that one has faith in a magic amulet or in the claim that world was created in 6 days? Continue reading

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