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World Earth day?…. Do we really need it?

Remembering Mother Nature

Remembering Mother Nature

Today is not just another day! On this day, throughout the globe, nature conscious people will celebrate “World Earth Day”. An important day to remember and to spread awareness on preserving our mother nature for ourselves and for our future generations.

On 22nd April 1970, US Senator Gaylord Nelson staged a protest against environmental degradation that was happening in US to get the attention of callous political leaders and bigwigs. He also wanted to create a strong awareness among masses that he believed would bring this ecological issue onto the national agenda. Though the campaign was started in U.S, it grew like wild fire and in the year of 1990, it became a global phenomenon.

Earth Day Facts:

* On an average, we use 6,278 watts of power every year. It is a great wastage and if we prudently use it, we will be saving a good amount of power.

* Canada loses one-third of its sea ice every year and it worsens global warming.

* Each person throws away approximately four pounds of garbage every day.

* More than one third of all energy is used by people at home

* 1/3 of all water is used to flush the toilet.

* Nearly 90 percent of all household waste can be recycled.

Activities:

* East Sussex County Council of UK, in an effort to make its environment green, is providing grants to nature-friendly projects. Ideas and suggestions are invited for community projects that consist of promoting recycling or composting, planting trees, starting an environment club or setting up an EcoSchools project.

* Earth day is being celebrated in Marietta as ‘Green Fest’ wherein hands-on activities are organized. The motive behind it is to bring “earth-friendly” displays and activities to the US community.

* Keep Phoenix Beautiful is organising a program at Cesar Chavez Plaza Downtown Phoenix that highlights recycling and “green” options for the US business community of Phoenix.

* Maricopa County and Phoenix city employees have organized a scenic four-mile cruise through the Willo and Roosevelt Historic District to celebrate bicycle travel.

Have fun on Earth Day

Have fun on Earth Day

Fun activities:

* Colour any ecology related picture with crayons

* Send Earth cards to your near and dear.

* Take a quick puzzle on ecology.

* Make papier mache handicrafts, kites, and party hats.

Have a look at this site for cool earth games and activities: http://www.ecokids.ca/pub/games_activities/index.cfm

Some interesting quotes:

* “I’m not an environmentalist.  I’m an Earth warrior” – Darryl Cherney

* “Only when the last tree has died and the last river been poisoned and the last fish been caught will we realise we cannot eat money” – Cree Indian Proverb

* “Thank God men cannot fly, and lay waste the sky as well as the earth” – Henry David Thoreau.

What can you do to save nature?

* Get an eco-poster from your neighbourhood

* Plant a tree in your home.

* By giving brochures on environmental conservation.

* Wear T-shirts that are stamped with earth conscious pics.

* Buy a pair of Earth mugs and help save the nature by reducing the usage of disposable cups.

* Keep recycling bins at your house.

* Wrap around ice cream to keep frozen.

* Reduce the usage of plastic covers and opt for paper bags.

* Cut down leather usage. Instead check out for plastic sandals.

In short, what we can do to nature is to Reduce, Reuse and Recycle.

PS: Apart from celebrating this day, I also believe in action. How about you? Post your comments here!

April 22, 2009 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Is waterboarding, a torment? Can’t we do away with it after 9/11?

When will it cease to exist?

When will it cease to exist?

What is waterboarding? A kind of torture that has become a huge outcry after CIA agents used it against Al Qaeda terrorists. On April 16, President Obama pardoned the CIA torturers who used waterboarding and rude interrogation techniques. Under the previous Bush administration, they tormented two Al Qaeda prisoners for about 266 times and it is no surprise that the actual times may be higher than the reported. Before that Khalid Sheikh, accused in Sep 11, 2001 attacks was subjected to waterboarding 183 times.

This kind of punishment is executed by immobilizing the victim by tying his hands backwards and pouring water over his lowered face and breathing passages. By thrusting him for suffocation, the victim is made to feel as if he is drowning and he is about to die. Even though the method does not cause physical damage, it can give way to extreme pain, damage to lungs and brain. Sometimes it leads to physical injuries like broken bones due to choking against restraints or ultimately, death. The fear of being killed is a terrifying experience, a traumatised victim recalls.

Acknowledged by politicians, legal experts and war veterans, it was practised way back from the period of Spanish Inquisition and was used widely in Cambodian prisons during Khmer Rouge regime.

Waterboarding for 9/11 attacks:

U.S in 2003 and 2004, in a pair of secret memos to CIA gave permission to use interrogation techniques against Al-Qaeda suspects. Later, the government distanced itself from CIA when the information about mistreatment of detainees at the Abu Ghraib prison leaked out to the public. A growing rift between the CIA and the government was felt that the agency officials wanted more tangible support from the latter. In the agency’s view, it was like this: “We don’t want to continue unless you tell us in writing that it’s not only legal but is the policy of the administration.” By November 2005, CIA put water boarding on their list of authorised “enhanced interrogation techniques” that can be used against high ranked terror suspects. The then-national security adviser Condoleezza Rice openly disclosed that waterboarding was used for interrogating top Al-Qaeda suspects.

Who has given the right to torment victims with no well-formulated guidelines? Of late it has been found out that these interrogation methods can not be considered feasible for scouting information from the detainees. Several White House officials in early 2002 wondered whether such horrendous measures were “effective or necessary… and lawful” and believed that it is a poor interrogation method as it scares the prisoner so much that you can not believe his statement altogether. Human activists feel that freedom from torture is a human right and every human being should be given fair trial.

Senator John McCain, who was tortured as a POW during the Vietnam War, says water boarding is definitely a form of torture and human rights’ group acknowledge to it. It is to be noted that in 1947, a Japanese soldier who used water boarding against a U.S. citizen during World War II was sentenced to 15 years in U.S. prison for committing a war crime.

In September 2006, Bush administration confronted widespread criticism as it refused to sign a Congressional bill that illegalize the use of torture techniques against all U.S. prisoners. Ironically, CIA and its agents were untouched by that new policy, as CIA is not a division of the U.S military.

History will not judge us kindly” asserts Ashcroft. What do you think about it? Post your comments.

April 21, 2009 Posted by | Global Politics | , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

HALLMARK Irena sendler – a force to be reckoned

Movie Poster

Movie Poster

This is not just another “Hallmark Hall of Fame” flick. On April 20, 2009 CBS aired brilliantly crafted made-for-tv movie “The Courageous Heart of Irena Sendler”. It tells the story of a Polish Catholic social worker, who with the help of volunteers rescued around 2,500 Jewish children in the depressing times of World War II. Academy Award winning actress Anna Paquin donned the role of Irena Sendler and is based on the book “The Mother of the Holocaust Children” written by Anna Mieszkowska. Have a look at the official TV site: http://www.cbs.com/specials/courageous_heart

The story begins with the gloomy Warsaw ghetto with some 4,50,000 packed Jews in squalid conditions. And outside the ghetto, Irena Sendler and her compatriots disguised as nurses and social workers visit the emaciated and dying children for service. As chief organizer of secret movement called Zegota – Council for Assistance to the Jews, she started her rescue operations for ailing Jewish children. Prior to working with Zegota, she assisted hundreds of Jews of all ages with fake documents to hide at places outside the ghetto.

She maintained a secret document of birth names of the children and had had the hope that on one day they will reunite with their families. Sadly, many of the relatives died in the Holocaust. When Nazis found the Sendler’s courageous ruse they arrested and tortured her and on the day of execution, she was rescued by “Zegota”. It is to be noted that not a single rescued child of hers was ever discovered or betrayed by the Nazis. A spine-chilling moment of the movie is that when she finds one of the toughest task to accomplish – to convince the families to handover the children to unknown Christian rescuers and the relatives fear the pain of separation. The children were then emptied at a place called Treblinka- a camp solely raised to execute Jewish people.

Irena in Action

Irena in Action

For many years her altruistic story was relatively unknown, even though she was given due credit from Yad Vashem in 1965 and recognition from the Jewish Foundation for the Righteous in New York City. Her story was buried in her own country by haughty communists.

Anna Paquin’s performance as selfless Irena is exceedingly well and the rest of the cast consists of Nathaniel Parker as Dr. Majkowski, head of Warsaw’s Department of Health and Marcia Gay Harden, who portrayed as Irena’s mother, Janina.

In addition to the movie, her selfless story was recently taken up by four high school students from Kansas and they did some research into her life and works. Finally, they came up with a play, “Life in a Jar”. You can have a look at their project and the play at: http://www.irenasendler.org/default.asp

Talmud said, “He who saves one life, saves the whole world”. Irena is the best example for that. She was nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize after some hundred years – yet disheartening to note that NPP committee failed to recognise her outstanding service for the mankind. At a time when saving a children penalizes immediate death, her bold attempt to save 2,500 children did not deserve any credit from them.

Real Irena!

Real Irena!

Irena left us on May 12, 2008. Still her determination and valour will remain in our hearts forever. Her story as a play ‘Life in a Jar’ retains her legacy for years to come.

Sendler recalled her Ghetto trauma, “Did the World help me when I was saving these children? I walked the streets, crying over my helplessness”. Shortly before her death in 2008, she said, “The world has learned nothing from the lessons of World War II and the Shoah”. Wasn’t her comment justifiable?

Post your comments here!

April 20, 2009 Posted by | Global Politics | , , , , , , , , , | 16 Comments

Wanna know more about Indian Polls? Ask your queries here

who is going to win?

who is going to win?

The initial phase ended peacefully despite attacks from Maoist rebels that took a toll of 20 people. Deputy Election Commissioner Balakrishnan said, “Considering the complexities and difficulties, the polling was by and large peaceful in the country and the average turnout has come around 58% to 62%”. Polling in states like Maharashtra, Arunachal Pradesh, Mizoram, Meghalaya, Kerala and Nagaland went off peacefully with no untoward incident, he added.

The Republic of India with its parliamentary democracy, depends solely on the voting system. The apt phrase “Unity in Diversity” projects the India’s different castes, languages and customs and that is the reason why it was considered by our founding fathers to have a Universal suffrage.

People in India exercise their franchise in both state level elections and seats for Parliament that consists of 543 seats.  The Indian Parliament consists of Rajya Sabha (also called upper house) and Lok Sabha, (also called lower house) that houses the representatives of the people. Even though President is the constitutional head, Prime Minister is the prime decision maker in the country with the help of his council of ministers.

Will they again come to power?

Will they again come to power?

The Lok Sabha elections of 2004 witnessed the formation of United Progressive Alliance (UPA) government at the centre. Led by Indian National Congress, this single largest alliance got the support of leftist parties and others who did not favour BJP.

In this election, around 714 million voters elect their leaders to Lok Sabha from 828,804 polling centers on 23rd and 30th April, and on 7th and 13th of  May apart from the just now ended initial phase.

The following is the Election Schedule for Lok Sabha (2009)

Election Dates No. of Seats List of States
Apr 16 124 AP, Arunachal, Assam. Bihar, J&K, Kerala, Maharashtra, Manipur, Meghalaya, Mizoram, Nagaland, Orissa, UP, Chhattisgarh, Jharkhand, Andaman, Lakshadweep
Apr 23 141 AP, Assam, Bihar, Goa, J&K, Karnataka, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Manipur, Orissa, Tripura, Uttar Pradesh, Jharkhand
Apr 30 107 Bihar, Gujarat, J&K, Karnataka, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Sikkim, UP, West Bengal, Dadra & Nagar Haveli, Daman & Diu
May 07 85 Bihar, Haryana, Jammu and Kashmir, Punjab, Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh, West Bengal, Delhi
May 13 86 Himachal Pradesh, Jammu & Kashmir, Punjab, Tamil Nadu, Uttar Pradesh, West Bengal, Uttarakhand, Chhattisgarh, Puducherry

The counting of votes will begin on 16th May 09 and the next Lok Sabha has to convene before 2nd June 09. Courtesy: http://www.indian-elections.com

Let us all vote without fail.

April 18, 2009 Posted by | National Politics | , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Would u like playing online games? Check this league cricket

Great way to play online cricket

Great way to play online cricket

If you are bored by watching games in TV as passive audience, then Fantasy Sport is the thing for you. It vents your discontent – you can choose a specific team and line up for a particular match at this fantasy games website – http://www.indianfantasyleague.com and Voila! Watch your team score based on actual performance in real tournaments.

Get in touch with your pals and colleagues and compete in a fantasy squad. Also most fantasy leagues have a grand list of prizes to be given out at the end of each tournament.

The website has wide variety of games like Fantasy Football, Fantasy Tennis and Fantasy Golf apart from Fantasy Cricket. It gives the reason why devout sports lovers enjoy playing games at Fantasy league.

Indian Fantasy League is distributing prizes only within India at the moment. People looking for hard cash may feel let down as there are no monetary prizes in this game. The prizes given out are 25 dishtv connections, 10 Plasma TVs, 10 Laptops, 2 FZ-S, 100 Mobile Phones, 3 MPV cars and so on.

April 18, 2009 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , | 2 Comments

What is happening in IPL 2009– Season 2 Match Schedule is here

ipl-logo

Cricket Extravaganza

Indian Premier league (IPL) began on 18th April 2009. It was founded last year by Indian Cricket board and features Indian cricketers and the world’s top players in eight teams. The squads are owned by Bollywood film stars and the country’s wealthiest businessmen.

In the opening game of the IPL 2009 Season 2, Sachin Tendulkar’s Mumbai Indians, take on IPL 2008 finalists, the Chennai Super Kings, at Newlands in Cape Town. This 59-match extravaganza will be played in South Africa and majority of Indians and cricket lovers can enjoy them live through TV, web or in the stadium.

Ready to grab the action?

Ready to grab the action?

The following is the time table for the first five matches:

1st match: Chennai Super Kings v Mumbai Indians at Cape Town – Match scheduled to begin at 12:30 local time (10:30 GMT)

2nd match: Bangalore Royal Challengers v Rajasthan Royals at Cape Town – Apr 18, 2009 – Match scheduled to begin at 16:30 local time (14:30 GMT)

3rd match: Delhi Daredevils v Kings XI Punjab at Cape Town – Apr 19, 2009 (12:30 local, 10:30 GMT)

4th match: Deccan Chargers v Kolkata Knight Riders at Cape Town – Apr 19, 2009 (16:30 local, 14:30 GMT)

5th match: Bangalore Royal Challengers v Chennai Super Kings at Port Elizabeth – Apr 20, 2009 (16:30 local, 14:30 GMT)

To get the complete schedule of IPL matches, check this out:

http://www.allindians.com/blogs/sports/cricket/4527/ipl-20-20-schedule-ipl-2009

Let us take a look at teams one by one:

Rajasthan Royals:

Emerging Media Group owns this team. The Pink City of Jaipur is represented by the Rajasthan Royals. Astute coach-cum-captain Shane Warne and the top order Graeme Smith can lead the team with their best performance. In the lower order, Ravindra Jadeja can prove helpful. India’s all-rounder Mohammad Kaif and Munaf Patel will rub shoulders with the likes of Justin Langer and Younus Khan. The team will reflect the values of courageous Rajputs and is predicted that they will make it to the semi-finals but will find it difficult to repeat the last year’s outstanding performance.

Kings XI Punjab:

This Lion-hearted team with skipper Yuvraj Singh has made its mission clear, “To be the most entertaining and successful franchise in the league”. The team has the best players owned by Bollywood’s Preity Zinta, and famous industrialists Mohit Burman, Karan Paul and Ness Wadia. Veterans like Mahela Jayawardene, Kumar Sangakkara and Ramnaresh Sarwan are expected to deliver alongside bravo Brett Lee, Sree Santh and Irfan Pathan who will spearhead the bowling attack. It seems the team is worst hit by injuries for pacers like Brett Lee and Sreesanth. With few big names, it will find difficult to make it to the final stage.

Mumbai Indians:

Owned by Reliance Industries, it has the most expensive and extraordinary cricketer, Sachin Tendulkar. The team has the right balance of youthful vigour and best talent by having players like Harbhajan Singh, Zaheer Khan, Sanath Jayasuriya, Pinal Shah and Yogesh Takawale. It seems the fans will get to watch glittering performances of the top players. Yet, the team doesn’t have a dashing wicketkeeper-cum-batsman. It is predicted that if the team plays well to their potential, it deserves to reach the semi-finals.

Delhi Daredevils:

Led by the celebrated player Virender Sehwag – the Nawab of Najafgarh, the team takes pride in having solid batsmen like Gautam Gambhir and Shoaib Malik, and bowlers like Glenn McGrath, Daniel Vettori and Mohammad Asif. GMR Group owns the team and Bollywood icon Akshay Kumar is the designated brand ambassador. Check out for this team’s brilliant performance when they play with unceasing vigour. The team relies heavily on their top order and the middle order is below par at some times. Yet they will remain the hot favourites of the season.

Chennai Super Kings:

Owned by India cements, it is led by highest paid and ranked star Mahendra Singh Dhoni. It has added glamour to its kitty by former cricketer Kris Srikkanth and South Indian actors Vijay and Nayantara as brand ambassadors. Coached by former South African cricketer Kepler Wessels, the team is packed by stalwarts like Matthew Hayden, Stephen Fleming, Michael Hussey, Jacob Oram, Makhaya Ntini and Muttiah Muralidharan lending their participation to the Super Kings. The team’s name was selected as a tribute to the rulers of the golden era of Tamil culture. Even though, their bowling order is at present weak with L. Balaji and suave Muralitharan it appears they will win the hearts of cricket lovers.

Kolkata Knight Riders:

The star studded team consists of some renowned cricket players like Aussie Skipper Ricky Ponting, Kolkata Prince Sourav Ganguly, Brendan McCullum of New Zealand and Chris Gayle of the West Indies. Owned by the Bollywood Badshah Shah Rukh Khan, the franchise has done everything to promote the team. Kolkata has probably the most explosive opening combination in Chris Gayle and Brendon McCullum. With the Pakistan fast bowlers Shoaib Akhtar and Umar Gul backing out, the team’s bowling order look feeble. The ongoing tension between the coach John Buchanan and the captain over the multiple-captain theory can endanger the morale of the team. It seems that in IPL 2009, they may finish at the lowest order.

Bangalore Royal Challengers:

Business magnate Dr. Vijay Mallya owns the team, named after one of his top brands. Rahul Dravid, the darling of Bangalore, is the captain and the formidable line up of players like Anil kumble, Praveen Kumar, Zaheer Khan, Mark Boucher will bring laurels to the team. The Youth force is headed by Under 19 World cup captain Virat kohli, Arun Kumar and Shreevats Goswami among others. Coached by Former Indian fast bowler Venkatesh Prasad, it is expected to shine in the IPL matches with their endurance, determination and team spirit. It seems it could upset the fans in few matches.

Deccan Chargers:

Media house Deccan chronicle owns this team. It has the local favourites like VVS Laxman and international players like Adam Gilchrist, Andrew Symonds, Herschelle

Gibbs and Shahid Afridi to its roster. RP Singh, Chaminda Vaas and Nuwan Zoysa were also the pick of the bowlers. Skipper Adam Gilchrist with his rearranged team, the fortunes of the team has risen to a new level. The Deccan Chargers mascot represents a charging bull signifying strength, power and aggression. The bowling order does not have the strength to give sleepless nights to opposing teams. Even though Fidel Edwards has been inducted into the team, he may not be a significant threat in this 20-20 format. Apart from this, the middle order is reasonably weak in its aggression.

Kasi Viswanathan, secretary of the Tamil Nadu Cricket Association and Head of Operations of the Super Kings assured the reporters that they would come back with the trophy this time.

Web links to enjoy the IPL games:

a) Official website of the Indian Premier League: http://www.iplt20.com/home.html andyoutube channel of IPL is www.youtube.com/ipl

b) Get info on every team from here: http://aandavan.info/Watch-IPL-Live-Streaming/index.php

c) Free commentary and live scores: cricinfo.com, cricketnext.com and others.

April 17, 2009 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , | 2 Comments

Texas Could Secede: Rick Perry Moots

Secession Likely?

Secession Likely?

Texans are tired of federal tax policies and might decide to secede from U.S federation, Governor Rick Perry informed reporters. He also warned that the financial breakdown might cause the U. S to dismantle like the USSR and made a declaration of Texas’ Sovereignty after he attended an anti-tax party rally in Austin.

When Texas acceded to the union in 1845 it was with the understanding it could pull out.However, according to the Texas State Library and Archives Commission, Texas negotiated the power to divide into four additional states at any future time but not the right to secede.

Mr. Perry said, “I believe that our federal government has become oppressive.” He also added that Texas does pay a greater amount of federal income tax than it receives in services when compared with other states and for that case, Washington shall not mortgage its future. He is profoundly concerned over the swelling tax burden that is levied on all Texans.

US FED Crisis

US FED Crisis

South Carolina Gov. Mark Sanford and Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal, also Republicans, have been candid against the economic stimulus expenditure and encouraged tea parties in their states. The protests were being held throughout the country on federal income tax deadline day to imitate the original Boston Tea Party of American revolutionary times.

At the Texas Capitol, Perry joined state lawmakers in pushing a resolution that supports states’ rights protected in the 10th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. The Tenth Amendment gives those powers not expressly granted to the federal government nor prohibited by the Constitution. There are many ways the Constitution limits state powers – the supremacy clause, the dormant commerce clause, the privileges and immunities clause, the 14th Amendment, etc.

As Mr. Perry is racing for re-election, it is hard to find whether this is a legitimate threat or an election stunt. His anti-Washington remarks have become more strident in the past few weeks as that 2010 race gets going and since Perry rejected $550 million in federal economic stimulus money slated to help Texas’ unemployment trust fund, mooting the stimulus money would come with strings attached.

April 16, 2009 Posted by | Global Politics | , , , , | Leave a comment

Voters List (Electoral Roll) in Andhra Pradesh – Ask your questions here!

indianelectionaskmeany1

As a democratic country, India exercises universal adult franchise. By our right to vote in elections, we have the ultimate power to shape the destiny of the country.

Andhra Pradesh is going to polls in two phases on 16th and 23rd of April for both Andhra Pradesh Legislative Assembly and Parliament elections.  On April 16th, the following 22 constituencies go to polls. Adilabad, Peddapalle, Karimnagar, Nizamabad, Zahirabad, Medak, Malkajgiri, Secunderabad, Hyderabad, Chevella, Mahbubnagar, Nagarkurnool, Nalgonda, Bhongir, Warangal, Mahabubabad, Khammam, Araku, Srikakulam, Vizianagaram, Anakapalle and Visakhapatnam. Like wise on April 23rd, Kakinada, Amalapuram, Rajahmundry, Narsapuram, Eluru, Machilipatnam, Vijayawada, Guntur, Narasaraopet, Bapatla, Ongole, Nandyal, Kurnool, Anantapur, Hindupur, Kadapa, Nellore, Tirupati, Rajampet and Chittoor.

Electoral roll (also called voter list) is the official document of all the citizens who are entitled to vote. The list is generally revised every year to add the names of those who have turned 18 or have moved to another constituency or to delete the names of those who have expired. The updating of the Voter’s list stops only when there is an election campaign or when the nominations for candidates have closed. When you receive the Voter’s Identity card for assembly elections, it is used for Parliamentary elections too.

Even if your name is not listed in the voter’s list, you can furnish documents like driving license, passport, Ration Card and State/Central Government ID card in the voting booth. To include your name in the voter list, fill the form 6 and for any correction of entries fill the form 8.

Election commission has taken great measures to enroll legitimate voters in the voter list.  The office of the Chief Electoral Officer, AP operates under the full control of the Election Commission of India and conducts General Elections and Bye- Elections to the state. Their work also includes preparation and updation of Electoral Rolls, issue of Photo Identity Cards to Electors and Re-organization of Polling Stations.

Please don’t ask questions on this Blog – No one checks this blog regularly, please use the links below for more information.

Check out the official Website www.ceoandhra.nic.in and voters can check their names at http://ceoaperms.ap.gov.in/TS_status/search.aspx

Let us all vote without fail!.

April 15, 2009 Posted by | National Politics | , , , | 118 Comments

Rosa Brooks – New Mouthpiece For Pentagon

Flack representer

Flack representer

Rosa Brooks, Los Angeles columnist is to advise Undersecretary of Defense for Policy, Michele Fluornoy. She is currently in a position where she has considerable access to Armed services and Defense policies and lightheartedly refers the shift from journalism to politics as her “personal government bailout”.

She used to advise Harold Koh at the State Department during Clinton administration, when Koh was assistant secretary for human rights.

A former law school professor, in her last column for the Los Angeles Times on April 9 wrote that it is time for a state owned press, as our society depends on that profession for its survival. Apart from that she calls for an industry wide financial bailout for her ex-colleagues. She expressed, “A decimated, demoralized and under-resourced press corps hardly questioned the Bush administration’s flimsy case for war in Iraq – and the price for that failure will be paid for generations. It’s time for a government bailout of journalism.” In short, she wants the government to subsidize the ailing journalism.

The lack of revenue is what is killing newspapers. She added, “They continue their death spiral, with dwindling circulations and thousands of layoffs. I’ve only lasted this long because as a freelancer – with no benefits and minimal pay – I’m just too cheap to be worth firing.” She points out that other democratic governments patronize media better than U.S. Canada spends 16 times as much per capita and Britain spends 60 times as much.

She suggests that tax dollars can be fully utilized and licenses can be granted in ways to promote independent and robust reporting and commentary.

In an article in April 6 Nation, John Nichols and Robert McChesney offer some ideas on how to bail out the news industry. They suggest, for instance, eliminating postal rates for periodicals that get less than 20% of their revenues from advertising, a tax credit for the first $200 taxpayers spend on newspaper subscriptions and a significant expansion of funding for public broadcasting.

Subsidies in France have forced the newspapers to succumb to political pressures, that is why, readers don’t trust their writing. To add insult to injury, investigative reporters are forced to quit their jobs first before they can publish their work, as books.

It must also be kept in mind that when government holds the strings, government will dictate the actions and the product. In fact, that’s why most of us value an independent media over a Ministry of Information.

April 15, 2009 Posted by | Global Politics | , , , | Leave a comment

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April 15, 2009 Posted by | Uncategorized | 1 Comment