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Showing posts from June, 2003
Orwell And Me -- By Margaret Atwood


"As Orwell taught, it isn't the labels - Christianity, Socialism, Islam,
Democracy, Two Legs Bad, Four Legs Good, the works - that are definitive,
but the acts done in their name."


Orwell And Me

by Margaret Atwood ; The Guardian; June 16, 2003

I grew up with George Orwell. I was born in 1939, and Animal Farm was
published in 1945. Thus, I was able to read it at the age of nine. It was
lying around the house, and I mistook it for a book about talking animals,
sort of like Wind in the Willows. I knew nothing about the kind of politics
in the book - the child's version of politics then, just after the war,
consisted of the simple notion that Hitler was bad but dead.

So I gobbled up the adventures of Napoleon and Snowball, the smart, greedy,
upwardly mobile pigs, and Squealer the spin-doctor, and Boxer the noble but
thick-witted horse, and the easily led, slogan-chanting sheep, without
making any connection with historical events.

To sa…
Four Poems of Emily Dickinson (1830–86).


Poem 1:

PAIN has an element of blank;
It cannot recollect
When it began, or if there were
A day when it was not.

It has no future but itself,
Its infinite realms contain
Its past, enlightened to perceive
New periods of pain.

--------

Poem 2:

HE ate and drank the precious words,
His spirit grew robust;
He knew no more that he was poor,
Nor that his frame was dust.
He danced along the dingy days, 5
And this bequest of wings
Was but a book. What liberty
A loosened spirit brings!

-------

Poem 3:

EACH life converges to some centre
Expressed or still;
Exists in every human nature
A goal,

Admitted scarcely to itself, it may be, 5
Too fair
For credibility’s temerity
To dare.

Adored with caution, as a brittle heaven,
To reach 10
Were hopeless as the rainbow’s raiment
To touch,

Yet persevered toward, surer for the distance;
How high
Unto the saints’ slow diligence 15
The sky!

Ungained, it may be, by a life’s low venture,
But then,
Eternity enables the en…
The Infallibility
By Mahbubul Karim (Sohel)
June 10, 2003


Martha Stewart’s indictment, Sammy Sosa’s corked bat and Hilary Rodham Clinton’s tell-all book are getting lots of coverage in the media. Last month Jason Blair, the condemned journalist and his editors of The New York Times were on the front pages. Punditry was there; opinions were there. But collectively what do they mean? Why are we seemingly attracted to read or hear these stories? At the same time we feel that we are betrayed by our ideologues, our heroes. Why?

James Carroll, the Boston Globe columnist provides a possible answer: “Human beings, implicitly aware of their own flaws, seem to have a constitutional urge to attribute flawlessness to a chosen elite. That urge explains the political submission to monarchs and oligarchs. It explains religious deference to priests. It explains the bourgeois assumption that, in F. Scott Fitzgerald's phrase, the rich ''are different from you and me.'' It explains t…
America's Global Role

Dear Readers,

I had read the attached article by George Soros while I was writing an article earlier this evening. Mr. Soros has done commendable job in describing the relevant issue of our time in accessible language.

Regards,
Mahbubul Karim (Sohel)
June 10, 2003


America's Global Role

Why the fight for a worldwide open society begins at home
By George Soros

On May 27, 1999, at the invitation of then-Dean Paul Wolfowitz, I delivered a commencement address at the Paul H. Nitze School of Advanced International Studies in Washington. I spoke about my vision for a global open society and Wolfowitz, now deputy secretary of defense, seemed to be on the same wavelength. We had both participated in a small group called The Action Council for the Balkans, which was agitating for a more muscular policy against Slobodan Milosevic. We advocated military intervention in Bosnia much sooner than it happened. I remember a lively exchange with Colin Powell when I que…
Arsenic Poisoning in Bangladesh: The Clear and Present Danger

By Mahbubul Karim (Sohel)
June 8, 2003


The World Health Organization (WHO) calls it the “biggest mass poisoning of a population in history”. There are millions of Bangladeshis exposed to poisonous arsenic from drinking water. Even rice and other crops irrigated with toxic water are in question. The rise of cancer, ulcers, gangrene, and painful warts are reported from various corners of Bangladesh those are directly linked to arsenic poisoning. WHO says that within the next decade one-tenth of all deaths in southern Bangladesh will be due to this arsenic crisis. That is about 20,000 deaths per year.

Will anyone be held responsible for this?


Arsenic, Microbes and Tragedy of Turtle Pace

Scientists observe that the arsenic poisoning in water is a natural phenomenon. Many of them believe that arsenic has been eroded naturally from the Himalayas by the Ganges over thousands of years and deposited amid silt in the river’s del…
Spinning Away Trust

Dear Readers,

Senator Robert Byrd, that man with gold heart and enviable guts that many in the political arena are apparently lacking right this moment, pronounced with great solemnity last month, “Truth will emerge”. And truth has ways to emerge. It may takes months or years, but historical truths do come out of the magic bags.

The neocons are not the quitter. They are repeating their infallible mantra, but the mantra sounds tiresome and perhaps not much energy in it anymore. William Kristol, one of the neocon gurus, was explaining other day Wolfwitz’s “explaining” regarding WMD statement. But this time, it was not the same feisty Kristol talking, as if, the neocons are all kind of scared, at least right this moment, anyway.

And they must be afraid. Their deception might get completely exposed to the patient Americans. Even Senator Biden, who was the Iraq war supporter said, “"I think that unless they find what was documented before, or something in addition…
Douse That Killer Puff
By Mahbubul Karim (Sohel)
June 3, 2003


“Come on buddy! Have a puff.”

“I don’t smoke.”

“What’s the matter with you?”

“Nothing. I just don’t like smoking.”

“Hey guys! Listen! He doesn’t like smoking. Ha! Ha! Ha! Are you a chicken?”

“Please stop laughing at me.”

“If you are man enough you must smoke with us. Just a puff, please, please, please.”

“Didn’t you see that movie with the dashing hero, the Marlboro man, smoking his cigarettes, and all the girls, the prettiest ones, were dying to get his love?”

“That’s just a movie.”

“Well, smoking is cool. And if you want to be our friend, you must smoke with us.”

“Okay, just one puff, not more.”

“All righty! Just a puff.”




Thus begins the addiction of smoking. The one puff becomes the second one, then the third one, and what you know? You are addicted to the hypnotic nicotine for the rest of your life.

The billion dollar global smoking industries spend enormous amount of their investment in attracting kids, teens; the allu…
Douse That Killer Puff
By Mahbubul Karim (Sohel)

June 3, 2003

“Come on buddy! Have a puff.”

“I don’t smoke.”

“What’s the matter with you?”

“Nothing. I just don’t like smoking.”

“Hey guys! Listen! He doesn’t like smoking. Ha! Ha! Ha! Are you a chicken?”

“Please stop laughing at me.”

“If you are man enough you must smoke with us. Just a puff, please, please, please.”

“Didn’t you see that movie with the dashing hero, the Marlboro man, smoking his cigarettes, and all the girls, the prettiest ones, were dying to get his love?”

“That’s just a movie.”

“Well, smoking is cool. And if you want to be our friend, you must smoke with us.”

“Okay, just one puff, not more.”

“All righty! Just a puff.”


Thus begins the addiction of smoking. The one puff becomes the second one, then the third one, and what you know? You are addicted to the hypnotic nicotine for the rest of your life.

The billion dollar global smoking industries spend enormous amount of their investment in attracting kids, teens; the allusi…
Beat Cancer

Dear Readers,

Yahoo has done commendable job in promoting Cancer Prevention theme in its home page. June 1st was the National Cancer Survival Day. The following inspiring quotations of leaders and celebrities provide hopeful messages beating Cancer, the big C. Cancer is one fight that human species must win, and this is a winnable battle. Early detection is one of the keys beating cancer now, but there are tremendous amount of scientific research going on around the globe. Hopefully, with combined efforts, the ingenuity of men and women will make cancer the defeated disease for our and future generations.

Regards,
Mahbubul Karim (Sohel)
June 2, 2003

Source of the following quotations is: http://health.yahoo.com/health/centers/bone_health/6661.html


"Like so many others, I became more intimately involved with the fight against breast cancer when my mother, Carol, was stricken by this terrible disease in the late 80's. What I found to be particularly troubling was t…