Pulling Pants Down….

The Other India (clearly the one which knows NOTHING about Economics) has a whole article on Foreign Exchange Reserves. The level of ignorance, intellectual laziness is astounding. They say never attribute to malice that which you can attribute to stupidity. But I’m sorry – this HAS to be malice.

The article paints foreign reserves as some sort of conspiracy by the West to keep the developing world poor. This concept is so laughable that I my stomach is still hurting.

 For the past 50 years, rich countries have steadily held reserves equivalent to about three months’ worth of their total imports. As money circulates more and more quickly in a globalized economy, however, many countries have felt the need to add to their reserves, mainly to head off investor panic, which can strike even well-managed economies. Since 1990, the world’s nonrich nations have increased their reserves, on average, from around three months’ worth of imports to more than eight months’ worth — or the equivalent of about 30 percent of their G.D.P

China and other countries maintain those reserves mainly in the form of supersecure U.S. Treasury bills; whenever they buy T-bills, they are in effect lending the United States money. This allows the U.S. to keep interest rates low and Washington to run up huge deficits with no apparent penalty.

All the money spent on T-bills — a very substantial sum — could be earning far better returns invested elsewhere, or could be used to pay teachers and build highways at home, activities that bring returns of a different type.

So let’s wee if we can summarize here.

  • Western countries hold only 3 months’ worth of imports, while “nonrich” countries, whatever those are, hold 8 months of imports – to avoid “investor panic”.
  •  And assuming these forex reserves are evil scum sent from those horrendous heretic capitalists with horns on their heads (ok – I am creating a small bhoosa-ka-aadmi here), then having them be 30% of your GDP is bad.
  • Further, all countries are apparently stupid enough to hold their reserves in US t-bills, and not a basket of currencies….

And finally, this means that America is being financed by the universe, and they are living it up like kings (partially true, but not in the tone that has been conveyed above)

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Not-First Post

So….

this post is an attempt to restart something I used to do in another life.

Firstly – let me apologise – to the other half of SplitMinds. Azure, I’m sorry for being away for so long. I will attempt, here, with your permission, to explain that absence. It will be a long story. And feel free to interrupt at any point.  And it may or may not be in chronological order. Or it might be.

I haven’t felt like blogging in a long, long time. And I think that for the most part…it was because I was…upset. Or depressed. Or something. I still am. But somehow, the urge to blog is back. Let’s see if it will stay this time…

So without further ado, I will jump into the first part of this long story.  (see the next post)

Fake gold

Hmmm…

It seems that sometimes, when one half of the mind goes silent, the other soon follows. Without the other half to spar with, I guess there’s little to be said. 🙂

I’m sorry I’ve been missing from action. I’ve emerged from my hell week at work, where the words “Anna Nicole Smith” are practically tattooed on sticky notes all over my work station. I know more about this woman’s life than what’s happening in Congress this week.

(This could so easily now turn into a blog on “why do we give a fudge about this woman?” but I’m not going to let it…)

Its been the week where my life is a group of pins neatly stacked, and someone keeps showing up to grab a ball, aim and let go… And at key moments this week, I’ve thought to myself – My life, as I know it, with its simplistic neatness is now about to be obliterated…

WHAM!

Other than work, I’ve also realized that I completely, utterly lack the motivation to get any studying done –

(mental note – write a blog about studying, working, and then trying to study again)

– is it like a… a… umm… a bowling ball? Once you’re in motion it’ll all come? But to get in motion you’ll have to crack a wrist first?

(I should really do some research actually and blog about the lack of the “math” gene in my DNA… Boo hoo hoo…)

Then there’s my hair. So, I’m now in the process of growing out my hair. What does this mean? It means no more sexy-Halle-Berry-look. No more sleek, took-me-less-than-2-mins-ha! kind of lavish living.

Instead my hairstyle these days looks more like a frat boy’s do. A frat boy who hasn’t combed his hair in years, and needs to constantly hide it under a hat. I hate hats. Hence I’m introducing the world to coiffure styles they didn’t even know existed.

(I should blog about… Never mind…)

Also the big apple has conveniently been dunked into the freezer for a couple months. Its great. There’s white shit everywhere — EVERYWHERE! And no one seems to want to clean it up. Don’t they pay people to do this anymore? The cold has a really adverse effect of my ability to do anything (it seems that the south indian genes of tolerating high heat but no cold came through just fine). ANYTHING.

I’m about as useless as a sack of door-knobs. Bah!

With that said, I’m intending on entertaining tomorrow night about the town, and I plan to hit every ‘favorite’ bar known to anyone I’ve ever met. That’s right — if we’ve met, and you mentioned you had a favorite bar you like to hang out at, guess what? I’m coooommmiiing..!!

Given that this city is full of ex-college friends, roomies, people-I’ve-met-through-online-dating, TV journalists I work with, trained with, don’t work with but wish I did… I actually have quite an extensive list.

So anyway. Yeah. That’s why I’ve been so incommunicado. I’m sorry. Are ya there, my other half? 🙂

Silence on blogsites, isn’t golden.

And just why not Chicken Curry eh?

Chicken Curry is an inside joke – Shilpa was blasted for undercooking the chicken, and also because of the famous Chicken Stock fight.

“I love chicken curry” was her parting shot.

Second, at least publicly, Shilpa never cried Racism, unless you have access to news reports that i don’t. This is because she wasn’t privy to the bitchy talk behind her back. What caused the controversy to erupt, was the fact that an x amount of viewers were being forced to be watch an act of bullying, whether it was racist or not – which it was. She did reply back. In a “dignified” way. Which just made it all look worse.

“Shilpa Poppadum, Shilpa Fuckawala or whatever her name is”

Anybody who has had to endure bullying in school would recognise the incidents, for they seemed to be just like any high school anywhere. Were these incidents manufactured? Sure, could be. In which case, none of these people deserve to be B-Grade stars, and should be promoted for their performances.

Either way, everybody was forced into watching a woman become increasingly isolated, and to top it off, there were all these allusions to her race.

Now that being said, does this mean that the show producers should be prosecuted? No.

Should the show have been taken off air or banned? Nope. If anything, it was a brilliant example of highlighting the plight of The Other. Anybody who has ever been the Odd One Out, in any situation would instantly empathise. Again, maybe all of this was manufactured. If it was, then kudos to those behind the manufacture because it looks like a textbook case of bullying that tends to occur in any place which has different races mixing.

As amusing as this may sound to people, I saw a little of myself in Shilpa, in the way that she was isolated and mistreated. You could do nothing right.

Again, all of this being said, this should all have been par for the course in Reality TV. But there’s just something about it all which makes the viewer feel like s/he was being forced into watching somebody being stabbed with a blunt knife. It was cringeworthy enough to evoke a response.

But there was no need for either the Government of India or of the UK to have gotten involved.

And then in the end, “Good” prevailed, and all is right with the world. So ends a storm in a teacup.

As this half of the Mind is a Northie, I’ll say this – I second Shilpa’s statement – Chicken Curry Rules 😛

Curried Chicken and other things..

So how can the shakahari half of SplitMinds not talk about this…

AND IN OTHER NEWS, A BIG WIN FOR SHILPA SHETTY… THE BOLLYWOOD ACTRESS FROM INDIA WAS VOTED THE WINNER OF THE CONTROVERSIAL BRITISH TELEVISION SHOW, ‘BIG BROTHER.’

UPON WINNING, SHETTY HAD THIS TO SAY –

“CHICKEN CURRY RULES.”

I’m hugely, terribly, royally offended.

How can the Indian winner of a TV show in London alienate more than a million people like that?

Did she not realize what she was saying? Was the spotlight that bright?

I don’t think its unfair to ask why she didn’t have a more politically correct answer to speak for all South Asian Brits. Infact, I think her lack of an appropriate response is why Channel 4 didn’t actually win the ratings hat for the night.

(That’s right. Her win wasn’t the most watched on British TV that night. I don’t know about you, but if I were EP for that show I’d sure be walking around… Well… Pretending it was).

But anyway — my point is, I’m offended. I wanted Shilpa to win. She did. And then this is how she thanks me? By siding with all the carnivores in the world? And wait, wait, wait… This is supposed to make her country proud?

I’m hurt. As is every other Gujju in London I’m sure. And every vegetarian in India too. Ironically the girl who cried racism is dividing her audience even more!

Pav bhaji rules too. So does Saag paneer. And how about dosas? Or idlees? Or bhel puri? What’s wrong with chapatis? She could have said, “Chapatis rule,” or even better –

“DHAAL RULES!”

I mean come on, what could possibly capture a country and its people better than dhaal? Its much more nutritious and healthier for you too. I worry about all those poor souls with animal-fat clogged arteries who after hearing Shilpa will undoubtedly reach for that last leg. Or breast.

And what about PETA? How do you think they feel with this whole, “lets attack the chickens” stance? Who’s being a bully now? Surely she would have learned from her time in that blasted house as to how wrong it is to alienate anyone- let alone an entire population who don’t consider “chicken” a food group.

Again. I’m offended.

 Okay, alright so the real real (real real) point is that Shetty scored *huge* with this whole “they’re all racist bullies” move resulting in massive amount of press coverage (apprently she’s now signed a Hollywood movie — honestly they should’ve given her a cooking show if she likes curry chicken that much). I’ve never seen the show so commenting beyond what I read is tough – but I wonder why no one from the British media has stepped forward to say, “hey – it’s a game. There’s money and a lucrative opportunity involved. I think we should all realize that if any of us were placed in a pressure cooker with bills dangling over our heads we’d all probably play rough too.”

I’m tempted to say, the girl who pulled the race card to win a game is on top (sounds too high-schoolish you say? Well, she went even further and called them “bullies…” What do you say to that?). I’m tempted to say, “well – why didn’t you just insult them back?” Oh, but then you probably wouldn’t have won…

Perhaps Shetty’s comments touched a nerve that was already throbbing – perhaps this is supposed to encapsulate all the stories of racism that we don’t hear about in the Indo-British community. Is that it?

And is the girl she called racist supposed to just disappear and hope no one notices her as she slinks away with no money or book offers? Did we (well, they) just ruin someone’s life to make a TV show? Okay granted, everyone knew going in what they were in for, but still…

Does it drive anyone else crazy that this story is getting so much press?

Azure/ SplitMinds.

PS.

There’s also vegetarian curry you know. Or she could’ve avoided this whole debacle and just said, “I love curry!”

Now, there’s a whole new meaning to the words, “curry muncher.” 🙂

Hmmm..

Okay. Now down to business:

We could also blog about “Water” now courting Uncle Oscar. I saw “Pan’s Labyrinth” this past weekend and absolutely loved it.

(Sidenote – Mehta’s apparently wearing a gold (or gold-ish) sari to the Oscars. I really want to say, “girl forget the colour of the sari — who’s doing your makeup? Specifically your eye-makeup?!”)

More importantly we could talk about why I don’t really want “Water” to win…

And yes – there’s Ash & AB baby. Its astounding how you can travel globe, pick up a newspaper or flip on the TV and its the same crap. Just a different language and a different channel. If its not Brangelina its Ash-Abhi.

Short of how many stairs they climb at each of these temples, I could probably recite everything else off my fingertips given the amount of press they’re given.

To that effect – The Shilpa Shetty debacle is overrated. Get a life. Move on.

Actually I can’t really complain about the media vultures given that I belong to the same club (but hey, I sit at a different table). You know what I should really blog about – how much more cynical and somewhat jaded and therefore more – Well you get the point – I’ve become since I started working in the media in the Big Apple.

(Phoenix – you could add on and tell us how much more fabulous you’ve become now that you’re coming out of B-school… Oooh la la… :))

Tonight for example, I couldn’t tell you the major headlines from around world but I know what time, what channel, who has the best previews, who’s covering the red carpet and who’s wearing who that SAG awards are happening.

(Ok, largely because it interferes with my programming but still… I should be able to rattle off the headlines to you… Isn’t this why I joined televison? (Actually no, but that’s a seperate story altogether)).

And I guarantee that its pretty much the same for every other American out there. Whats worse is we’ll REFERENCE the SAG awards tomorrow DURING NEWS COVERAGE… Like its a NEWS story…

Sigh.

BTW — Why did you stop blogging? 😉