Friday, December 16, 2011

FOCUS: Protecting and Promoting Equality

FOCUS: Protecting and Promoting Equality: "By Elizabeth Warren, Blue Mass Group
16 December 11"

'via Blog this'

Sunday, November 20, 2011

The left in Decline: A Historical Perspective

16774.pdf (application/pdf Object)
(Left in Decline: A Historical Perspective by Arup Baisya)

Sunday, November 13, 2011

"Government Doesn't Create Jobs"

"Government Doesn't Create Jobs": ""Government Doesn't Create Jobs"
By Carl Gibson, Reader Supported News
09 November 11

'via Blog this'

Koch Family Empire Building

Koch Family Empire Building:
(Story of Harry Koch, Koch brother's grand father.)

'via Blog this'

Friday, November 04, 2011

AKRamanujan_ThreeHundredRamayanas.pdf (application/pdf Object)

AKRamanujan_ThreeHundredRamayanas.pdf (application/pdf Object)
This article was expunged from Delhi University syllabus in 2011 at the request of ABVP group of students.

Tuesday, November 01, 2011

The Path Not Taken -

The Path Not Taken -
(Paul Krugman writes about Iceland supporting people and allowing banks to go to Red)

Monday, October 31, 2011

Were U.S. Elections Sold to Corporations So Clarence Thomas Could Reward His Friends? | | AlterNet

Were U.S. Elections Sold to Corporations So Clarence Thomas Could Reward His Friends? | | AlterNet:
(the continuing presence of Clarence Thomas on the Supreme Court undermines the very underpinnings of democracy. It's time for him to go.)

Monday, October 24, 2011

The Gaddafi paradox | The Asian Age

The Gaddafi paradox | The Asian Age
by Surendra Kumar Indian Ex-Ambassador to Libya

U.S., India and Higher Ed | Inside Higher Ed

U.S., India and Higher Ed | Inside Higher Ed
(Collaboration between US & India in Education - by Kaustuv Basu)

‘Gujarat police has lost all interest in work’ | The CSF

‘Gujarat police has lost all interest in work’ | The CSF
(Interview with former police chief Julio F. Ribeiro )

Friday, October 14, 2011


Under A Dangerous Motto

By refusing to take bribes, the Madurai collector has earned 18
transfers in 20 years, a modest house and bank balance and lots of

On a hot summer afternoon, on Madurai’s busy main road, the district
collector, U. Sagayam, saw a young man talking on a cellphone while
riding a motorbike. He asked his driver to wave the man down, got down
from his car and meted out instant punishment: plant 10 saplings
within 24 hours. Somewhat unconventional justice, some might say. But
that’s how Sagayam works.

‘Lanjam Thavirtthu, Nenjam Namartthu’ (Reject bribes, hold your head
high), says a board hanging above Sagayam’s chair in his modest
office. That’s the code he lives by, even if politicians are incensed
they cannot bend him their way—he’s been transferred 18 times in the
last 20 years—and has made enemies of both superiors and subordinates.
“I know I sit under a dangerous slogan and probably alienate people,”
he says. “But I have been the same Sagayam from Day 1. Standing up
against corruption is not for a season. Nor is it a fad. It’s

Two years ago, as district collector of Namakkal, he voluntarily
declared his assets: a bank balance of Rs 7,172 and a house in
Madurai worth Rs 9 lakh. Once, when his baby daughter, Yalini, who had
breathing problems, was suddenly taken ill, he did not have the Rs
5,000 needed for admitting her to a private hospital. At that time he
was deputy commissioner (excise) in Coimbatore and there were 650
liquor licences to be given out. The going bribe for each was
rumoured to be Rs 10,000.

Sagayam started cleaning up Madurai the minute he landed here. The
main bus terminus at Mattuthavani looked more like a bazaar, with
shops all over the bus-shelters and no waiting place for passengers.
Even a police outpost had been turned into a shop. The system was
well-oiled with haftas to local politicians and policemen. Sagayam
quickly went through the rulebook, cited the relevant clauses and
cleaned up the entire area. But didn’t it hit poor shopkeepers who
lost their livelihood? “A violation is a violation,”
says Sagayam, “but we will help them rehabilitate.”

Nageshwaran, a taxi-driver and one of Sagayam’s many fans, says, “He’s
strict and hasn’t taken even ten paise in bribe during his career.
He’s like the upright collectors they show in some films, a real hero
with integrity.”

Sagayam’s masters degrees in social work and law come in useful in his
role as an administrator. He knows the rulebooks in detail and is not
afraid of using them, however powerful the opponent. No wonder then
that Sagayam’s career is marked with the scars of countless battles.

When errant village officers ganged up to get Sagayam transferred,
people protested and the order was rescinded.

When he was in Kanchipuram as revenue officer, he took on the sand
mafia, ordering them to stop dredging sand from the Palar riverbed.
Large-scale dredging had made the area flood-prone. The mafia sent
goons to assault Sagayam, but he did not budge and would not take back
the order. He also took on a mighty soft-drink mnc when a consumer
showed him a bottle with dirt floating in it. He sealed the bottling
unit and banned the sale of the soft drink in the city. In Chennai, he
locked horns with a restaurant chain and
recovered four acres valued at some Rs 200 crore.

Given such credentials, it wasn’t surprising for him to be picked by
the Election Commission to oversee elections in Madurai, as famous for
its temples as its political gods. During the last polls, Sagayam
took on M.K. Azhagiri, the local MP and son of former CM and DMK
supremo M. Karunanidhi. He conducted voter awareness campaigns in
colleges; the DMK petitioned the court twice, seeking to end what it
said was an attempt to influence voters, but the court demurred.
Sagayam’s wife Vimala has stood by him all these years but she was
rattled by some of the threats during the elections. “He always says
if you are right, nobody can hurt you,” she says. “But sometimes it
becomes difficult.”

Sagayam takes a hands-on approach to his work. He holds a Monday
‘durbar’, at which anyone can meet him with their complaints. During
tours of the district for review meetings and inspections, he will
suddenly stop a school bus to talk to children or duck into a school
to take a class. When students tell him they want to be IAS or IPS
officers, he asks, “It’s all well to say now that you’ll be honest,
but will you remain unbending about not taking bribes throughout your

Some months back, while driving to a village, he found a 92-year-old
woman cleaning rice. She said she had to work in order to eat. He
immediately sanctioned Rs 1,000 as old-age pension for her. When
60-year-old Vellamma met him during a tour of Uthappanaikkanoor
village this week and asked him to grant her a pension, he said, “I
can do that. But do you want me to send your son to jail too—for
abandoning you?” He said it with a smile, as a joke, but he has in
fact taken action against children who don’t take care of their aging

“I believe, as Mahatma Gandhi said, that India lives in her villages,”
says Sagayam, who also idolises Subhash Chandra Bose. His years as a
collector—he has slept overnight in village schools many times—have
convinced him to better the lot of villagers by strengthening the
village administrative officer (VAO) system. Many VAOs have never
visited villages and often stay miles away from where they should be,
in cities.

In Namakkal, his action against errant VAOs had them ganging up with
politicians to get him transferred. Over 5,000 villagers protested,
saying they wouldn’t let Sagayam go. The politicians had to retreat.

Sagayam says he learnt honesty on his mother’s knees. He is the
youngest of four sons of a farmer from Pudukottai. “Our adjoining
field had mango trees and my friends and I would pick the fallen
fruit,” he says. “But my mother made me throw the mangoes away, saying
I should enjoy only what is mine.” Now his daughter Yalini wants to
become a collector. When she has an argument with her brother Arun,
she asks her father, “Is he really your son? He just told a lie!”
Both of them are proud of their father. Recently, after a long time,
the Sagayam family went on a vacation to Kullu in Himachal Pradesh.
While visiting a gurudwara, a stranger came up to their father and
asked him, “Aren’t you IAS officer Mr Sagayam?” Yalini and Arun have
not stopped beaming.

You have not lived a perfect day even though you have earned your
money, unless you have done something for someone who will never be
able to repay you.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Monday, October 03, 2011

How Yoga Won the West -

How Yoga Won the West -
Reference to Swami Vivekananda's 1892 trip

'via Blog this'

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Monday, August 29, 2011

Fracking Could Have Caused East Coast Earthquake

Fracking Could Have Caused East Coast Earthquake:
"By Russia Today 25 August 11"

'via Blog this'

Pakistan’s only true living hero - The Washington Post

Pakistan’s only true living hero - The Washington Post: "Pamela Constable has reported frequently from Pakistan for The Post since 1998. This article is adapted from her new book, “Playing With Fire: Pakistan at War With Itself.”"

'via Blog this'

Monday, August 22, 2011

Monday, August 15, 2011

Chandrika's bombshell

Chandrika's bombshell: "Justice K. Palakidner commemorative lecture on July 24"

Sunday, August 07, 2011

I want to act with Salman Bhai: Harsh Mayar - Movies News - Bollywood - ibnlive

I want to act with Salman Bhai: Harsh Mayar - Movies News - Bollywood - ibnlive
Trailer of National Award winning: "I Am Kalam" by Nila Madhab Panda, a debut director.

How to forward e-mails? IMPORTANT READ!!!!! - Dushyant Mishra - NITR

Do you wonder why you get viruses or excessive amounts of junk mail (Spam)? Do you hate it?

Know how to forward e-mails? This was written by a System Administrator for a corporate system. It is an excellent message that ABSOLUTELY applies to ALL of us who send e-mails. Please read the short letter below ...

Do you really know how to forward e-mails? 50% of us do; 50% DO NOT!

Every time you forward an e-mail there is information left over from the people who received the message before you and sent it to you, namely their e-mail addresses and names. As the messages get forwarded along, the list of addresses builds, and builds, and builds. All it takes is for some poor sap to get a virus, and his or her computer can send that virus to every e-mail address that has come across their computer. Or, someone can take all of those addresses and send junk mail to them or sell the addresses to spammers in the hope that you will go to the site and they will make five cents for each hit that they sell. That's right, all of that inconvenience over a nickel and because someone included visible e-mail addresses in their Forwarded message!

How do you stop it? Well, there are two easy steps:

(1) When you Forward an e-mail, DELETE all of the other addresses that appear in the body of the message (at the top). That's right, DELETE them. Highlight them and delete them or backspace them or cut them -- whatever it is that you know how to do. It only takes a second. You MUST click the "Forward" button first though; then you will have full Editing capabilities for the body and headers of the message. If you don't click on "Forward" first, you won't be able to Edit the message at all.

(Incidentally, this is a great time to correct spelling and remove, those pesty "send this to 10 friends and your wish will come true" false promises. If the message is very messy, drop it into Word or Wordpad/Notepad or whatever word processor you use. Editing within a word processing program is much easier than performing editing operations within the body of an e-mail message.)

(2) Whenever you send an e-mail to more than one person, DO NOT use the To: or Cc: options for adding e-mail addresses. Always use the BCC: (Blind Carbon
Copy) option for listing the e-mail addresses of the folks you want to send the message to. This way the people you send to only see their own e-mail address
and no one else's. If you don't see your BCC: option, click on where it says To: and your address list will appear. Highlight the address and choose BCC: and that's it. It's that easy!!!

When you send to BCC: (and leave the To: line blank) your message will automatically say "Undisclosed Recipients" in the "To:" field of the people who receive it, providing extra security and privacy to all the people in your Address Book.

(3) Remove any "FW:" in the subject line. You can re-name the subject if you wish or even correct spelling.

(4) ALWAYS hit your Forward button from the actual e-mail you are reading. Ever get those e-mails that you have to open 10 or 15 or 20 FW: pages to read the one page with the information on it? By Forwarding from the actual final page you wish someone to view, prevent their having to open multiple e-mails just to see what you sent. (Many people will not open all those emails for fear of getting a virus; so your message may go unread.)

Have you ever received an email that is a petition? It states a position and asks you to add your name and address and to Forward it to a number of people or your entire Address Book. The email can be Forwarded on and on and can collect thousands of names and email addresses.

FACT: The completed petition is actually worth a couple of bucks to a professional spammer because of the wealth of valid names and email addresses contained therein. If you want to support the petition, send it as your own personal letter to the intended recipient(s). Your position may carry more weight as a personal letter than a laundry list of names and email address on a petition - and, again, you will protect the privacy of those in your Address Book and provide them additional security against viruses and spammers.

Regarding petitions: Be aware, that the government (Central, state, and local) and most legitimate organizations completely disregard email petitions. In order for a petition to have value and be acted upon, it is necessary to have LIVE, verifiable signatures, usually with the signer's legitimate mailing address. So please, in the future, let's stop the junk mail and the viruses by working together and respecting the privacy and security of one another.

Finally, here's an idea!!!

Let's send this to everyone we know (but PLEASE strip my address out first).This is something that SHOULD be forwarded.

Warm regards,

Wednesday, August 03, 2011

Friday, July 29, 2011

Swamy: Analysis: How to wipe out Islamic terror - Analysis - DNA

Analysis: How to wipe out Islamic terror - Analysis - DNA
By Subramanya Swami

La Morte D'Arthur - Poem "The old order changeth...

La Morte D'Arthur: "

' The old order changeth, yielding place to new,
And God fulfils Himself in many ways,
Lest one good custom should corrupt the world.
Comfort thyself: what comfort is in me?"

Monday, July 25, 2011

Raja Targets PM, Chidambaram, Tata in 2G probe

Mint ePaper - Article
Raja Targets PM, Chidambaram, Tata in 2G probe, court defense , July 23, 2011

The Chinese art of elegant bribery | openDemocracy

The Chinese art of elegant bribery | openDemocracy

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Time for Murdoch to go -

Time for Murdoch to go - "The long-cozy relationship between the press, police and government seems likely to unravel." - John Coffee

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Why My Father Hated India -

Why My Father Hated India - "Aatish Taseer, the son of an assassinated Pakistani leader, explains the history and hysteria behind a deadly relationship"

Thursday, July 07, 2011

Tehelka - India's Independent Weekly News Magazine


So why is Narendra Modi protecting Amit Shah?

‘The calls made by the minister are not part of official decorum. Their frequency is unnatural and uncommon in nature.’ — Gujarat CID report on Amit Shah’s calls to encounter cops

Rana Ayyub reports from Gujarat

imageimageCall Records from Gujarat
Click on image to enlarge

THE YEAR was 2007. Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi was beginning what was billed as his most crucial election campaign. He had won the 2002 election on the back of a post-Godhra polarisation but this, they said, was different. Modi had to prove he could make it on the development work he did for Gujarat. His first pitch would set the tone. “Sohrabuddin,” Modi began, using the name as a sort of magic word. “What do you want me and my men to do with a man like Sohrabuddin?” he asked. The Ahmedabad crowd roared, “Kill him.” Sohrabuddin. The name became a word and stuck on, in a state polarised on religion.


Sohrabuddin became Modi’s trump card, a Muslim name. A name that drew hatred on 26 November 2005, when he was gunned down for allegedly being an LeT hit squad member on his way to assassinate Modi. As Modi stepped off the dais, pumped up by the crowd response, I grabbed the opportunity to squeeze in a question. “Can you, Mr Modi, afford to call Sohrabuddin a terrorist when your own cops were in league with him?” I asked. Modi gave me a cold stare. He then walked away.

The year is 2010. Sohrabuddin’s name still has political value. But Modi is now handicapped by how events unraveled after Sohrabuddin’s killing. Sohrabuddin was shot dead in a fake encounter in November 2005. Tulsiram Prajapati, an extortionist, was the only witness to Sohrabuddin’s killing. Apparently he was travelling with Sohrabuddin but it hasn’t proven beyond doubt. Later, Prajapati was also killed in a fake encounter in December 2006.

TWO WEEKS ago, TEHELKA published details of phone calls between Gujarat Minister of State for Home Amit Shah and the policemen involved in the Prajapati killing. It was the first time such a link, between an important minister in the Modi government and the encounter policemen, has been established. The revelations set off a flurry of activity in Gandhinagar. Shah rushed to meet Modi and Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) veteran LK Advani, who was in Gujarat then. Shah was made to wait an hour before he was allowed into a meeting of the BJP leadership. Shah, persons in the know said, wanted protection. He didn’t get a commitment on that.

Shah made 20 calls to the killer cops on a day when a petition against the fake encounter was filed in the Supreme Court. He made 73 calls in January 2007, when a CID inquiry began

TEHELKA had published the details of the call records between Shah and the policemen, DIG Vanzara, SP Rajkumar Pandyan, Dinesh MN, and Vipul Agarwal, in December 2006, at the time of the Prajapati killing. On July 3, a day after the TEHELKA issue hit the stands, the Gujarat CID sought custody of the three police officers from the CBI, which was investigating the Sohrabuddin killing. The CID already had the call records with them. So, the CID’s delayed move to seek custody looked specious. Finally, on July 7, the CID took custody of Vanzara and Dinesh in the Prajapati case.

There was worse for Shah. Modi is understood to have told the state BJP seniors that Shah was not to be seen with him at any public event. There was an irony in this because Modi is a pariah in parts of India outside Gujarat, Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar in particular not wanting to be seen with Modi in public.

Trigger happy SP Rajkumar Pandyan being produced in court aer being arrested in the fake encounter killing of Sohrabuddin Sheikh

There is a reason why Modi is seeking to distance himself from Shah. TEHELKA now has more details of Shah’s calls, which are pointing to things worse than may have been imagined. Call records between September 2006 and January 2007 show that Shah was in constant touch with the three officers, making 155 phone calls to them. This implies that Shah was not merely talking with the policemen during the week of Prajapati’s killing, but he was doing it each time there were developments in the case.

For instance, Shah made 20 calls on 7 September 2006, when the first petition was filed in the Supreme Court. He made a staggering 73 calls to the police officers in January 2007, up from 28 in September and 42 in December of 2006. The raw data of 400 calls shows that the frequency of conversations also shot up in June and December 2006. This is the time former IGP, CID, Geeta Johri started inquiring into the Sohrabuddin encounter of November 2005. Since Prajapati was the only witness to Sohrabuddin’s killing, there may have been an urgency to do away with Prajapati.

In contrast, there were barely four to nine calls a month in July and August 2006, when there were no developments in the Sohrabuddin case. This is not all. There were 277 calls between Shah and SP Rajkumar Pandyan in five months between October 7, 2004 and March 7, 2005.

This was the time when Sohrabuddin and Prajapati fired shots at the office of Popular Builders to scare them and extort money. This incident put them in the spotlight and drew attention to the link between Sohrabuddin and DCP Abhay Chudasama. Chudasama was arrested and his alleged links with Shah were exposed.

The talk time between Shah and Pandyan, a man whose role has more or less been established as a key conspirator in the Sohrabuddin and Prajapati cases, is 331 minutes. Calls were made from Shah’s landline and cell phone, 9824010090, 9825049392, and 079-26404230. The calls were monitored in a case under the Official Secrets Act, 2005, being investigated by the Gujarat CID’s ND Solanki and Commissioner of Police PC Pande.

So astonishing were Shah’s call records that the case diary in the investigation says: “There have been phone calls exchanged between MoS Amit bhai Shah and SP Rajkumar Pandyan whose frequency is unnatural and uncommon in nature. The calls made by the MoS are not a part of official decorum.” Oddly, this case too was closed in 2009 without investigation. TEHELKA has accessed a copy of the case diary.

ALL OFFICERS who dared raise a voice against Shah or indicate the involvement of people close to him have been summarily transferred. Rajnish Rai, the officer in charge of the Sohrabuddin case before it was handed over to Geeta Johri, was transferred after he arrested Pandyan, Vanzara and Agarwal in an unexpected move in 2007. This, when he was brought into the case in the hope that he would save them.

Similarly, Kuldip Sharma, then CID chief, was transferred to the Goat and Sheep Department after he filed a case of corruption against Shah in 2005, the first of its kind against a minister in Gujarat. Given this history of victimising honest officers, it was not surprising that after Johri submitted an interim report on the Sohrabuddin killing, Shah told her and other officers in a meeting that they were making things difficult for him.

Shah complained because Vanzara called him to ask why the Sohrabuddin case was being investigated. Vanzara was alerted by his men who saw a CID team heading to the farmhouse where Sohrabuddin and his wife Kauserbi were kept before they were killed.

CONSEQUENTLY, THE CID went cold on the case and did not send its officers to question Prajapati who was in an Udaipur jail. The call records corroborate every link in this chain of events. This glaring evidence should make it easy for Modi to act against Shah. But that isn’t happening yet.

So what does the state fear? Investigating officers have reason to believe that there is a far deeper conspiracy in the Sohrabuddin and Prajapati encounters, which was kept hidden. “The larger political games in the two encounters have been ignored. There is no reason to kill Sohrabuddin merely because he was causing trouble for the marble lobby. Sohrabuddin and Prajapati knew something that could have been damning for the minister,” says an investigating officer.

Why then is the CBI not arresting Shah? Could it be that they are claiming they don’t have the call records? Or is it the bungling of the investigation, as an officer says who was involved with the case in the past? “Where is the CBI’s own investigation? Why did the CBI not search Chudasama’s house the day he was arrested? It does not have to rely on the Prajapati records to arrest Shah. There is enough in the Sohrabuddin case itself on the basis of which Shah can be arrested”.

Some are asking deeper questions. Why should Modi, who holds the Home portfolio, and who sanctioned the transfer of Vanzara to the Border Range in December 2006, not be arraigned? This was the posting that facilitated Vanzara’s participation in the Prajapati encounter. If indeed Pandyan’s involvement as prime mover of the encounters has been proved by the Gujarat Police, then why should Shah, with whom he was in constant touch for two years, be left free and not even questioned? Would Modi’s answer again be a cold stare?


Friday, June 24, 2011

Transparency in system - Kuldip Nayar

Transparency in system
(Kuldip Nayar on emergency & it's effects on it's 36th anniversary)

Wednesday, June 22, 2011


Special Appeal No.03 of 2011 - Illegal mining near Haradwar

Odia article: Rajendra Das

mail (1279×1169) Ajira dharmare nikhoj manabiyata

Odia article - death with dignity - Sailendra Dwibedy

Odia article - Pitiable life & death with dignity - Sailendra Dwibedy

Odia article: Rajendra Das

Odia article - Jogyata hela Anugatya: Rajendra Das

Odia article on problem of aged - Dr. Saraswati Swain

Odia article on problem of aged - Dr. Saraswati Swain

Monday, June 20, 2011

ORISSA TV | Premier News Channel of Orissa

ORISSA TV | Premier News Channel of Orissa
Interview with Pramila Mallick - on Dal Scam - Manoranjan Mishra

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Medicare Saves Money -

Medicare Saves Money -
Published: June 12, 2011"

Medicare Saves Money

Every once in a while a politician comes up with an idea that’s so bad, so wrongheaded, that you’re almost grateful. For really bad ideas can help illustrate the extent to which policy discourse has gone off the rails.

Fred R. Conrad/The New York Times

Paul Krugman


Readers' Comments

Readers shared their thoughts on this article.

And so it was with Senator Joseph Lieberman’s proposal, released last week, to raise the age for Medicare eligibility from 65 to 67.

Like Republicans who want to end Medicare as we know it and replace it with (grossly inadequate) insurance vouchers, Mr. Lieberman describes his proposal as a way to save Medicare. It wouldn’t actually do that. But more to the point, our goal shouldn’t be to “save Medicare,” whatever that means. It should be to ensure that Americans get the health care they need, at a cost the nation can afford.

And here’s what you need to know: Medicare actually saves money — a lot of money — compared with relying on private insurance companies. And this in turn means that pushing people out of Medicare, in addition to depriving many Americans of needed care, would almost surely end up increasing total health care costs.

The idea of Medicare as a money-saving program may seem hard to grasp. After all, hasn’t Medicare spending risen dramatically over time? Yes, it has: adjusting for overall inflation, Medicare spending per beneficiary rose more than 400 percent from 1969 to 2009.

But inflation-adjusted premiums on private health insurance rose more than 700 percent over the same period. So while it’s true that Medicare has done an inadequate job of controlling costs, the private sector has done much worse. And if we deny Medicare to 65- and 66-year-olds, we’ll be forcing them to get private insurance — if they can — that will cost much more than it would have cost to provide the same coverage through Medicare.

By the way, we have direct evidence about the higher costs of private insurance via the Medicare Advantage program, which allows Medicare beneficiaries to get their coverage through the private sector. This was supposed to save money; in fact, the program costs taxpayers substantially more per beneficiary than traditional Medicare.

And then there’s the international evidence. The United States has the most privatized health care system in the advanced world; it also has, by far, the most expensive care, without gaining any clear advantage in quality for all that spending. Health is one area in which the public sector consistently does a better job than the private sector at controlling costs.

Indeed, as the economist (and former Reagan adviser) Bruce Bartlett points out, high U.S. private spending on health care, compared with spending in other advanced countries, just about wipes out any benefit we might receive from our relatively low tax burden. So where’s the gain from pushing seniors out of an admittedly expensive system, Medicare, into even more expensive private health insurance?

Wait, it gets worse. Not every 65- or 66-year-old denied Medicare would be able to get private coverage — in fact, many would find themselves uninsured. So what would these seniors do?

Well, as the health economists Austin Frakt and Aaron Carroll document, right now Americans in their early 60s without health insurance routinely delay needed care, only to become very expensive Medicare recipients once they reach 65. This pattern would be even stronger and more destructive if Medicare eligibility were delayed. As a result, Mr. Frakt and Mr. Carroll suggest, Medicare spending might actually go up, not down, under Mr. Lieberman’s proposal.

O.K., the obvious question: If Medicare is so much better than private insurance, why didn’t the Affordable Care Act simply extend Medicare to cover everyone? The answer, of course, was interest-group politics: realistically, given the insurance industry’s power, Medicare for all wasn’t going to pass, so advocates of universal coverage, myself included, were willing to settle for half a loaf. But the fact that it seemed politically necessary to accept a second-best solution for younger Americans is no reason to start dismantling the superior system we already have for those 65 and over.

Now, none of what I have said should be taken as a reason to be complacent about rising health care costs. Both Medicare and private insurance will be unsustainable unless there are major cost-control efforts — the kinds of efforts that are actually in the Affordable Care Act, and which Republicans demagogued with cries of “death panels.”

The point, however, is that privatizing health insurance for seniors, which is what Mr. Lieberman is in effect proposing — and which is the essence of the G.O.P. plan — hurts rather than helps the cause of cost control. If we really want to hold down costs, we should be seeking to offer Medicare-type programs to as many Americans as possible.

Myanmar’s new ‘civilian’ government | East Asia Forum

Myanmar’s new ‘civilian’ government | East Asia Forum

Wednesday, June 08, 2011

Friday, June 03, 2011

The Mistake of 2010 -

The Mistake of 2010 - "By PAUL KRUGMAN
Published: June 2, 2011"

Trapped by the Euro, Yet Dependent on It | Truthout

Trapped by the Euro, Yet Dependent on It | Truthout: "Tuesday 24 May 2011
by: Paul Krugman, Krugman & Co."

Thursday, June 02, 2011

Arvind Gupta: Turning trash into toys for learning | Video on

Arvind Gupta: Turning trash into toys for learning | Video on
Wonderful toys made out of trash.

The Fakir Book Review By Yoginder Sikand

The Fakir Book Review By Yoginder Sikand
On Lalan Fakir - originally by Sunil Gangapadhaya translated to English by Monabi Mitra

Orissa Sambad News paperArticle by Bhagaban Prakash on timely departure of the politicians

Orissa Sambad News paper| Largest Circulated Odia Daily
Odia article by Bhagaban Prakash on timely departure of the politicians.

Wednesday, June 01, 2011

The Telegraph - Calcutta (Kolkata) | Nation | Bengal on farming tightrope

The Telegraph - Calcutta (Kolkata) | Nation | Bengal on farming tightrope: "Bengal on farming tightrope
BISWAJIT ROY" June 2, 2011

Not All Black Intellectuals Think Alike | News & Politics | AlterNet

Not All Black Intellectuals Think Alike | News & Politics | AlterNet: "The Nation / By Melissa Harris-Perry 33 COMMENTS
Not All Black Intellectuals Think Alike
The oft-repeated sentiment that African-Americans should avoid public disagreements and settle matters internally to present a united front is just plain wrong."

Saturday, May 21, 2011

The Hindu : Opinion / Lead : Celebrating Rabindranath Tagore's legacy

The Hindu : Opinion / Lead : Celebrating Rabindranath Tagore's legacy: "Bengali culture and collective psyche. His novels are also some of the best in"

Friday, May 20, 2011

Buddha to Stay and Battle with Karat | OPEN Magazine

Buddha to Stay and Battle with Karat | OPEN Magazine
CPM got 19.6 M votes in 2011 vs. 19.8 M in 2006. Seats 235 vs. 61. Alliance with congress was the reason.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Country of Scams

Country of scams

David Kolb: Once again out of the woodwork crawls the Torture Lobby |

David Kolb: Once again out of the woodwork crawls the Torture Lobby |
Chaney assigns credit for OBL take down - to enhanced interrogation(Torture) like water boarding introduced by Bush-Chaney admin- which have been since banned by Obama in ABC's "This Week" program.

Monday, May 09, 2011

The Billionaire Koch Brothers’ War Against Obama : The New Yorker

The Billionaire Koch Brothers’ War Against Obama : The New Yorker: "COVERT OPERATIONSThe billionaire brothers who are waging a war against Obama.
by Jane Mayer"

Sunday, April 24, 2011

P. Sainath: Cornell Professor Seeks to Legalize Bribe-Giving in India

P. Sainath: Cornell Professor Seeks to Legalize Bribe-Giving in India: - to allow perpetrators of harassment bribe to not be legally punished. Sainth argues why it is trash.

Monday, April 04, 2011

The Truth About Climate Change, Still Inconvenient -

The Truth About Climate Change, Still Inconvenient -
by Prof. Paul Krugman, op-ed N. Y. Times April 3, 2011
Climate skeptic (Prof Richand Muller of UC, Berkeley) blinks and joke ended up being on GOP, nay human race.

Saturday, April 02, 2011

Narendra Modi, a Divisive Indian Official Loved by Businesses -

Narendra Modi, a Divisive Indian Official Loved by Businesses - "A Divisive Indian Official Is Loved by Businesses
Published: February 8, 2011"

Friday, March 11, 2011

Rachel Maddow: You cant vote them out if you cant vote

Rachel Maddow: You cant vote them out if you cant vote
(Voter fraud - Republicans in 32 states are trying to register make registration difficult - for likely democratic voters)

Rachel Maddow: Connecting the dots from Wisconsin to D.C.

Rachel Maddow: Connecting the dots from Wisconsin to D.C.
(Fund raising by WI Senators)

Friday, March 04, 2011

Sunday, February 27, 2011

The Telegraph: Opinion | The world food crisis by Prabhat Patnaik

The Telegraph - Calcutta (Kolkata) | Opinion | The world food crisis

India v England, World Cup 2011: India have lost the favourites tag | Cricket Features | ICC Cricket World Cup 2011 | ESPN Cricinfo

India v England, World Cup 2011: India have lost the favourites tag | Cricket Features | ICC Cricket World Cup 2011 | ESPN Cricinfo (Draw with England at Bangalore)

Disabled student all set to graduate from IIT Madras « Inspire Minds

Disabled student all set to graduate from IIT Madras « Inspire Minds

Sex-and-Lies: Fox and Roger Ailes

Sex-and-Lies: Fox and Roger Ailes
(Fox Executive encourages journalist to lie under oath to Feds)

Amitava Kumar interviews Arundhati Roy:The Un-Victim

Amitava Kumar interviews Arundhati Roy:The Un-Victim

USW Blog » In a Democracy, Freedom of Assembly Trumps “Free Enterprise”

USW Blog » Blog Archive » In a Democracy, Freedom of Assembly Trumps “Free Enterprise”

In a Democracy, Freedom of Assembly Trumps “Free Enterprise”

Leo W. Gerard

By Leo W. Gerard
USW International President

It’s illegal in America now to buy or sell a human being, but a recorded telephone conversation between a Republican governor and a guy he thought was a billionaire benefactor shows that it’s still possible to own a politician.

Wisconsin’s Republican Gov. Scott Walker didn’t have time to talk to Democratic leaders or union officials about his anti-union legislation – a proposal that has incited protests by tens of thousands for more than a week in Madison. But he jumped on the phone for 20 minutes this week when told the caller was billionaire David Koch,who was Walker’s second largest campaign contributor, who provided $1 million to a GOP fund to attack Walker’s opponent and who bankrolls radical libertarian organizations and the Tea Party.

Republicans like Walker, owned by billionaires like Koch, are fulfilling demands from corporate interests that government “free” enterprise by slashing corporate taxes and regulation. Over the past three years, America has suffered the consequences of a government under-funded after tax breaks to the rich and under-performing after years of lax regulation. The result: a growing federal deficit, the Wall Street collapse, the BP oil spill and the deaths of 29 Upper Big Branch miners. Still, Republicans want more government atrophy. That would leave only one restraint on corporate control of the economy, environment and government.

That one restraint is labor unions. A union is workers using their constitutionally-guaranteed freedom to assemble, the right to get together as a group, in this case a labor organization, to negotiate collectively with employers for better wages, benefits and working conditions.

Workers who gathered together in unions over two centuries in this country have succeeded in raising their wages, as well as the wages of non-union workers in competing industries. Union workers secured improved working conditions so fewer were killed on the job. And they achieved creation of the federal Occupational Health and Safety Administration, which protects the safety of all workers. Over the decades, unions played a major role is obtaining legislation barring child labor, standardizing the 40-hour work week, and creating both Social Security and Medicare.

Similarly, studies show union successes enhance the lives of all workers in a state. In anti-union states, the average worker earns $5,333 less a year, the proportion of people without health insurance is 21 percent higher and the rate of workplace death is 51 percent higher. In addition, there’s evidence that union workers improve quality. Currently, after receiving an education from union teachers, Wisconsin youngsters collectively score second highest in the nation on the ACT/SAT college admission tests. By contrast, the five states barring teacher unions rank at the bottom of the pack: South Carolina dead last at 50th; North Carolina, second last at 49th; Georgia third from last at 47th; Texas fourth from last at 47th, and Virginia ever so slightly better at 44th.

Still, Wisconsin Gov. Walker wants to destroy his state’s teachers unions. Two studies determined that public workers, that is those employed by governments such as teachers, firefighters and police officers, earn less than their counterparts in the private sector when both benefits and education are factored into the calculation. It wasn’t union workers, in the public or the private sector, who caused states’ financial crises. That was gambling on Wall Street, which ravaged the economy. Still, Republican governors across the country are demanding that government workers pay.

The government workers in Wisconsin already agreed to accept Walker’s financial demands – that they pay more for their pensions and health care. This negates Walker’s contention that this dispute is about the budget. The governor is demanding more than those financial concessions. He wants the legislature to cripple the unions’ ability to bargain for improvements in the future. In his “budget repair bill,” he would strip government workers of their right to negotiate over working conditions and benefits. They’d be able to discuss wages but could never get an increase above inflation.

This is union busting. At the demand of corporate interests. And Walker is joined by Republicans in Ohio, Indiana, Oklahoma, Tennessee and others in attempting to do it, both to private and public sector workers.

This is not about money. It’s about controlling America. Corporations have bought Republicans, who now chant the corporate mantra that government coddles its citizens with the likes of mine and food safety rules.

Walker’s eagerness to talk to David Koch illustrates this. Koch and his brother Charles own the second largest privately-held company in America. Only the fortunes of Warren Buffett and Bill Gates exceed the Kochs’ $35 billion. They’ve used that money to finance the supposedly-grassroots Tea Party and conservative groups like theAmericans for Prosperity Foundation (APF) that have funneled money into anti-reform policies – including attempts to reverse environmental and health care legislation.

It’s a giant circle. Koch got Walker elected. The Koch-backed Tea Party now rallies in Madison against the public employees. The Koch-financed APF bought $320,000 in TV ads against the public workers. Other Koch-financed GOP governors are sending letters of support to Walker. In his few weeks as governor, Walker passed legislationto lower tax rates for and limit damage awards against businesses like the Kochs’. In addition, tucked into the anti-union bill is a provision that would enable Walker to sell the state’s power plants to the Kochs without bids or state agency review.

Corporations are accomplishing their goal of shriveling government to the point of ineffectiveness so “enterprise” is “free” to run rogue. Now with their purchased politicians, corporations are trying to do the same to unions – the only organization other than government that has traditionally effectively defended working Americans.

In the recorded conversation between Walker and a liberal blogger posing as Koch, Walker accepted an offer of a vacation trip from the “billionaire” if he “crushed” the public employee unions and said his effort was to get “our freedoms back.”

That’s exactly right. This is a contest between the excesses of “free” enterprise and the constitutionally-protected freedom of assembly. And getting “our freedoms back” means wresting them back from corporations.


Leo W. Gerard also is a member of the AFL-CIO Executive Committee and chairs the labor federation’s Public Policy Committee. President Barack Obama recently appointed him to the President’s Advisory Committee on Trade Policy and Negotiations. He serves as co-chairman of the BlueGreen Alliance and on the boards of the Apollo Alliance, Campaign for America’s Future and the Economic Policy Institute. He is a member of the IMF and ICEM global labor federations and was instrumental in creating Workers Uniting, the first global union.

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Arise Awake Stop not till the goal is reached. - Swami Vivekananda Swami ji is my inspiration, not as a monk but as a social reformer and for his universal-ism.