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Showing posts from May, 2003
Who Owns the News?

Dear Readers,

Please read the following attached document extracted from the Consumers Union web site. The link is the following: http://www.consumersunion.org/telecom/owns_news.htm

Regards,
Mahbubul Karim (Sohel)
May 28, 2003


If the federal government weakens the rules for media ownership, a few, powerful media companies could gain greater influence over the news

Americans depend on mass media -- such as television, newspapers, and radio -- to learn about the news, understand issues, and make informed political choices.

The United States has certain rules for owning American media. These rules put limits on how many media outlets a company can own. Media ownership rules are designed to ensure that one company does not have too much control over the media content available in any community.

The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) is currently reviewing the rules for media ownership. The FCC may decide to relax or eliminate the rules this year. For instance, the …
What is the Reality?

Dear Readers,

Religion is too complicated. Particularly, all the nifty-bitty rituals, the long frightening sermons of the Rabbis, Priests and Imams, the violent descriptions of hell-fire, and apparent heavy-handed approach toward progress and modernity by the overtly guarded religionists, are a big turn off. For many Jews, Christians, Muslims and Hindus and other religionists and non-believers, the experiences are similar. There are the mind-boggling rituals that have become the priority for many world-class religions over spirituality.

Recently, Islam has come under attack from various quarters. The political instability of our world, terrorism and war-guised-terrorism are making the tolerant groups become intolerant, polarized groups are quite common now.

Like all the other major religions, Islam has appeal that helped millions of people embrace it, and for many it may need reform, especially, regarding all those painstaking rituals. Islam’s reform perhaps will…
Trade Protectionism and Poverty?

By Mahbubul Karim (Sohel)

May 26, 2003

For the vast majority of our world populace, dire poverty is the reality. The day-by-day struggle to earn the bread, to provide sufficient food for all the family members proves to be daunting for too many poor people around the world. Indeed there are positive initiatives taken. World Bank and other international organizations are working to address this urgent issue. However, still there are more to do, more fair policy needs to be undertaken to establish fair trade among nations that certainly can help reducing poverty.

The poorer nations lack the resources to compete with the richer nations. And the individuals in these poor nations are in further dejected form. Their government can’t provide them subsidies that the richer nations are able to provide to their farmers, their producers, and their manufacturers of various kinds.

Ian Goldin is World Bank’s Vice President of External and UN Affairs. A few weeks ba…
Margaret Atwood’s Oryx and Crake: A Future of Hope or Despair?

By Mahbubul Karim (Sohel)
May 24, 2003


Pigoons and snats, wolvogs and chickienobs: man made creatures; manipulated, blended, genetically spliced and coalesced into caricature of darkest fantasia. What does humanity’s future hold in store?

There is no way that one can be certain where this world would be heeding to. Would it be a paradise that everyone dreams about where sustaining peace would reign over chaos? Or would it be total anarchy and war ravaged world full of despair? What would it be?

Margaret Atwood’s newest novel Oryx and Crake is based on this enigmatic subject.

Sometimes in the future, when the entire world is divided sharply between the have and have-nots, when the corporate culture are tucked in heavily “CorpSeCorps” protected compound from the dismayed ordinary folks in the “pleeblands”, a startlingly apocalyptic future is portrayed with all necessary bells and whistles splattered in this novel to m…
Series of Caskets

By Mahbubul Karim (Sohel)
May 14, 2003


Warning Message


There was a warning message.

“Some images in this gallery may be disturbing because of their violent or graphic nature.”

And the warning was well intentioned.

The gloomy images of funeral caskets, series of them, showing an entire family of eight members, from large to small bodies of corpses occupying the wooden boxes, can be “disturbing” to many.

“The family of Amir Madlul weeps as he is buried at the cemetery in Najaf”, another image shows the tears of an elderly man, father of Amir, his cringed skin washed with pain. The last shower of 19-year-old Hashim Jalil shows one more graphic nature of this mucky war. A man was pouring water over lifeless Hashim’s brownish naked body, while his relative was reciting prayers for the dead man’s “liberated” soul. Hashim was shot in the head in Baghdad for his spurious journey to “liberation”.

One U.S. soldier was straightforward in his observation, “For lack of a bette…
Middlesex by Jeffrey Eugenides: A Book Review

By Mahbubul Karim (Sohel)
May 14, 2003

As I was reading this beautifully written book, rummaging through various outrageously artistic nitty-gritty details of life’s normality and abnormality, I couldn’t but chuckle reminiscing Senator Rick Santorum’s huff and puff only a few weeks ago. What would Santorum do if he had had read this novel? What could be his reaction? Perhaps another “sacred” scripture filled “talks” could bamboozle us. Perhaps not.

Jeffrey Eugenides has guts for sure. He is courageous to the bone. Not many contemporary writers could write a story on a subject that is considered serious “no! no!” in our modern world. Any mention of “abnormal” folks with “dysfunctional” or “weird” procreation or no-procreation “tools” is considered a subject for the underground honk-bonk liberals. Jeffrey Eugenides is bold in his ventures. He does not hesitate to develop his character, Calliope, who is a hermaphrodite, with every bit of huma…
Life of Pi – a Perplexed Boy’s Inquisitive Journey

Dear Readers,

Canadian writer Yann Martel’s spectacular novel “Life of Pi” is about a boy and his perplexed inquisitive journey through life. He is a boy of Indian origin.

“Life of Pi” is a story of this amazing boy Piscine Molitol who due to the deliberate distortion of his first name to “pissing”, obviously likes to be called as Pi as the irrational number Pi is pronounced. This is the story of Pi and an elegant and monstrous Royal Bengal Tiger, both of them are entrapped in a lifeboat, the struggle for survival, outmaneuvering nature and clinging on the ingenuity of instinct and his steadfast belief in multiple faiths, namely, Hinduism, Christianity and Islam, makes this story a memorable one.

Along with its serious theme of life and death, this novel is quite funny as well. Pi’s earlier childhood was full of nostalgic memories in the middle of a zoo that his father owned. There was the atheist teacher who opens Pi’s eyes on natu…
Re: Dances of Wolves in Perpetual Wars

Replying to:
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/MuktoChinta/message/5502

Shaun: “Not pressing at the time? Not relevant? “

My Reply: These are called fictitious issues under a fictitious leader. Michael Moore is right about this. The neo-cons invent fictitious scenario as they did during the cold war. The same is true for the “evil” Russian empire. They invented fictitious enemies and kept fighting them for the spoils of war. Stalin did the same. As Hitler invented fictitious enemies among law abiding German and Polish Jews or among the faraway “impure” gentiles. And have you forgotten the “Gulf of Tonkin’s infamous history just before the bloodiest onslaught in Vietnam?

Shaun: “Increasing hostility towards the United States perpetrated with increasingly violent acts and increasingly dedicated members of violent groups acting with more effective communication. Sounds relevant to me. Sounds pretty current unless you've been reading different newsp…