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Liberal versus Christian Charity

November 9, 2011 7 comments

NGOs – A “secular” alternative to “tainted” churches and sharing the church’s “burden” of “charitable” work.
This issue has been a headline issue in the USA - with a number of cartoons and posts on this incidents. (This cartoons appeared in Deccan Chronicle on 19th November, but with no background of commentary.).

This issue has been a headline material in the USA - with a number of cartoons and posts on this incidents. (This cartoons appeared in Deccan Chronicle on 19th November, but with no background of commentary.).

There have been several instances of young boys sexually abused by Roman Catholic priests.  It was considered “shocking” that someone doing such “noble” work and having so much “respect” could take advantage of their position to do not only abuse children, but practice something that the Bible forbids them to do.A by product of “christian charity.”

A “secular” alternative to these “tainted” churches have emerged called as NPOs or NGOs (non-profit in the US and Non-Government in India) – who have are sharing the church’s “burden” of “charitable” work.

For instance …

Second Mile, was founded by Jerry Sandusky, an assistant football (American football – not soccer) coach, who used his organization to find young boys from poor and broken families and sexually assaulted.

Second Mile, following the footsteps of other such institutions, was created to “help disadvantaged boys.”  Second Mile was in the news recently, for reasons similar to the Churches.  The following was a recent news story about its founder, Jerry Sandusky:

“…he’d seen the older assistant sexually assaulting a naked boy who appeared to be about 10 years old in the shower in Penn State’s Lasch Football Building. The former grad assistant told the grand jury that he’d caught Sandusky doing something of a sexual nature to a young boy.” (source)

An example of liberal charity.

PS

This post has been written by Galeo Rhinus – a regular reader and contributor in form of comments, to 2ndlook blogs.

Occupy Wall Street! Another spontaneous protest?

October 17, 2011 5 comments

From New York to New Delhi, the rage is being ‘used’ in a new form. Organizers are ‘behaving’ differently.

New Delhi or New York, the rage is bigger than the idea. (Cartoon by Nate Beeler |  On 7-10-2011  |  In The Washington Examiner, Washington, D.C.  |  Source and Courtesy - cagle.com. Click for larger source image.

New Delhi or New York, the rage is bigger than the idea. | Cartoon by Nate Beeler | On 7-10-2011 | In The Washington Examiner, Washington, D.C. | Source and Courtesy - cagle.com. Click for larger source image.

Activists scuffled with police in London and decried the wealthy in Hong Kong on Saturday as an unprecedented outcry against corporate greed and government cutbacks spread worldwide.

Inspired by America’s “Occupy Wall Street” and Spain’s “Indignants”, people took to the streets in a rolling action targeting 951 cities in 82 countries from Asia to Europe, Africa and the Americas.

It was the biggest show of power yet by a movement born on May 15 when a rally in Madrid’s central Puerta del Sol square sparked a protest that spread internationally.

Anger over unemployment and opposition to the financial elite hung over the protests, which coincided with a Paris meeting of G20 financial powers pre-occupied by the eurozone debt crisis. (via Occupy Wall St protests find echo around the world – Hindustan Times).

Creating dependence by employment, pushing consumerism by brands the Desert Bloc system of governance has reduced human free will. (Cartoon by Michael Ramirez, California  in Investors Business Daily; dated 10-10-2011; source and courtesy - cagle.com). Click for larger source image.

Creating dependence by employment, pushing consumerism by brands the Desert Bloc system of governance has reduced human free will. | Cartoon by Michael Ramirez, California in Investors Business Daily; dated 10-10-2011; source and courtesy - cagle.com | Click for larger source image.

Cairo, New Delhi, New York …

A few days ago, we had revelations that Anna’s ‘spontaneous’ movement had elements of choreography by Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS).

Why would people in Hong Kong be bothered by an American Protest? Were London protests really spontaneous?

Spreading doubts

Till it was limited to Wall Street, one was willing to believe that this was a protest movement.

When it ‘spread’ across the US, doubts also spread.

Now that it has spread across the world, there is no doubt in my mind. This is choreographed.

Soon, we will see, the Anna movement without RSS?

What then, Anna?

The authorities in New York and New Delhi dont know how to deal with these 'protests'. (Cartoon by Disha Virk; of Sep 2011; source and courtesy - indianfusion.aglasem.com). Click for larger image.

Authorities in New York and New Delhi don't know how to deal with these 'protests'. (Cartoon by Disha Virk; of Sep 2011; source and courtesy - indianfusion.aglasem.com). Click for larger image.

The U.S. Debt Limit

October 16, 2011 4 comments

Write-off the US at your own risk. They have been there and done that. For instance between 1995-2005, the tech boom pulled out the US from a deep slump.

See these cartoons as calls for action. (Debt Crisis ; Cartoon by By Bob Englehart, in The Hartford Courant  -  3/14/2008 12:00:00 AM; source and courtesy - caglecartoons.com). Click for larger image.

See these cartoons as calls for action. (Debt Crisis ; Cartoon by By Bob Englehart, in The Hartford Courant - 3/14/2008 12:00:00 AM; source and courtesy - caglecartoons.com). Click for larger image.

The Senate has signed off. The president’s borrowing power has been floated up to $10 trillion, which beats the AmEx black card. The president’s limit when he came into office in 2001 was $6 trillion. So it’s been hiked an average of $500 billion per year during his eight years of office.

Five Countries with the Highest External Debt, 2006

1. United States $10.0 trillion
2. United Kingdom, $8.3 trillion
3. Germany, $3.9 trillion
4. France, $3.5 trillion
5. Italy, $2.0 trillion
Source: CIA, The World Factbook, as of 9/20/07.

Five Countries with the Highest Current Account Deficits, 2006

1. United States, -$862.3 billion
2. Spain, -$98.6 billion
3. United Kingdom, -$57.7 billion
4. Australia, -$41.6 billion
5. France, -$38.0 billion
Source: CIA, The World Factbook, as of 9/20/07.

(via John Tepper Marlin: The U.S. 10-Trillion-Dollar Debt Limit).

Latest count

Now, an update on this status.

US Government debt has crossed US$14 trillion. That is equal to US GDP. It means that the US govt. alone owes as much money as what the entire USA earns each year (GDP). Corporate debt (150% of GDP) and individual household debt (150% of GDP) is on top of this. Since, finally household pay of all the debts, the US citizen is about 400% of income in debt.

Britain is about 500% in debt. The difference between exports and imports is current account deficit. All these countries are also running a huge current deficit.

What to do

In the medium term, control over oil may give the West the means to sustain the life-style that makes them ‘world-leaders’. No wonder the West is willing to kill millions in Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya. But all this killing is also an expensive affair. This killing of millions in Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Libya is costing US$ trillions.

After that …

Twitter / @dhume01: On Inept Indian Politicians

October 15, 2011 2 comments

Policy wonk Sadanand Dhume gives great ideas to Indian Government. Learn from China and Indonesia.

Nothing new

From masters of the world at the end of WWII, the US has recently seen its credit rating drop. UK is bankrupt. If you believe Dhume type commentary, Pakistan is a failed State.

Sure, Indian politicians are inept. After inheriting an India which was a ship-to-mouth economy, flat in its back, to become the fourth largest economy, is ineptitude, according to coconut-shell Dhume.

Indian Government gets a lot a lot of things wrong – like every other over-active State in the world does. But Dhume’s silly criticism shines.

Especially, when he proposes the alternatives. China, Indonesia as nations that India can learn from. China, Indonesia – Semi-dictatorships, where the public-sector-oligarchy is going from strong-to-worse. Hardly, any examples to hold up.

But then can anything get through Dhume’s coconut shell, that he calls brains.

From 25,000 tons of gold at the end of WWII to 8000 tons now. From Masters of The World to most indebted nation on Earth. And you call Indian Govt. inept.

From 25,000 tons of gold at the end of WWII to 8000 tons now. From Masters of The World to most indebted nation on Earth. And you call Indian Govt. inept.

Swami Vivekanand in the USA

October 2, 2011 74 comments

Swami Vivekananda to me has been slogans. Is there more to him?

A rarely seen photograph of Swami Vivekananda. (Vivekananda, who traveled widely to deliver his spiritual message, in Pasadena, Calif., in 1900. From the Vedanta Society of Southern California; source and courtesy - nytimes.com). Click for source.

A rarely seen photograph of Swami Vivekananda. (Vivekananda, who traveled widely to deliver his spiritual message, in Pasadena, Calif., in 1900. From the Vedanta Society of Southern California; source and courtesy - nytimes.com). Click for source.

So little to go on …

Do most Indians ‘admire’ him, because of the press he got during his US visit? And later?

But then, I must also admit, I have not quite been able to figure out this man. But then I have not tried hard enough.

Does the 2ndlook community have any answers?

The Taking of Iraq

September 19, 2011 1 comment

Iraqis discovered America’s meaning of War on Terror. Your life and your oil seems to be Desert Bloc style of warfare.

Some in the Free Press of the Free World, jumped head first into painting Saddam as the devil. (Cartoon by Bill Day, The Commercial Appeal, Memphis, Tennessee; source and courtesy - cagle.com). Click for larger image.

Some in the Free Press of the Free World, jumped head first into painting Saddam as the devil. (Cartoon by Bill Day, The Commercial Appeal, Memphis, Tennessee; source and courtesy - cagle.com). Click for larger image.

Saddam’s atrocities

Western sources have documented and estimated Saddam’s atrocities cost to nearly 600,000 Iraqi deaths. The most commonly used link leads to the Stanford University. A small web page belonging to Stanford University.

Turns out that Stanford was relying on data by a group called gbn.org. What do we get at gbn.org. A brick wall. A dead-end. No website. The Stanford University link, is a dead link. A who.is search tell us that gbn.org is an inactive website.

Faux Stanford

The citation mentions unnamed ‘other human rights organizations’ and The Documental Centre for Human Rights in Iraq. A google-search on nytimes.com reveals no such report in nytimes.com.

The same Saddam was a 'friend' of the US, till April Glaspie misunderstood him, till he was fighting a war with Iran. (Cartoon by Michael Ramirez; source and courtesy cagle.com). Click for larger image.

The same Saddam was a 'friend' of the US, till April Glaspie misunderstood him, till he was fighting a war with Iran. (Cartoon by Michael Ramirez; source and courtesy cagle.com). Click for larger image.

After hours of trawling the net, there is one report of such a centre – from theage.com.au, Australia. But the centre is based in Iran – specializing in human-rights’ records of Iraq.

Digging deeper

Between the new power-grabbers which controlled the Iraqi prosecution and the US, they could pin 50,000 ‘deaths’ on Saddam Hussein. Not that 50,000 is less, but 50,000 too many.

Max van der Stoel, the Dutch diplomat appointed by the UN to investigate and deal with Iraq, who released a dozen reports in 8 years, closed the issue at ‘thousands of people were in danger of being executed’ as reported by nytimes.com.

Clay Bennet's exceptional cartoon, dated Friday, October 8, 2004; illustrated the complete bankruptcy of the war. (Cartoon by Clay Bennett; source and courtesy  - ditorialcartoonists.org). Click for larger image.

Clay Bennet's exceptional cartoon, dated Friday, October 8, 2004; illustrated the complete bankruptcy of the war. (Cartoon by Clay Bennett; source and courtesy - editorialcartoonists.org). Click for larger image.

Was the number of victims in a few thousands, tens of thousands or hundreds of thousands, we are not told. And it is Stoel’s reports that GW Bush officially used to justify invasion of Iraq. Google search does deteriorate with age. Maybe I was unable to use the correct keywords.

Anyone? With any links to a report quantifying Saddam Hussein’s atrocities.

Shopping With Iraq’s $1.2 Trillion – What It Can Buy For The US

September 18, 2011 Leave a comment
Iraq was for US; Libya is for Europe. Spoils of War (Cartoon by Dave Brown; publication date - 26 August 2011; source - independent.co.uk). Click for larger image.

Iraq was for US; Libya is for Europe. Spoils of War (Cartoon by Dave Brown; publication date - 26 August 2011; source - independent.co.uk). Click for larger image.

Whatever number you use for the war’s total cost, it will tower over costs that normally seem prohibitive. Right now, including everything, the war is costing about $200 billion a year.

Treating heart disease and diabetes, by contrast, would probably cost about $50 billion a year. The remaining 9/11 Commission recommendations — held up in Congress partly because of their cost — might cost somewhat less. Universal preschool would be $35 billion. In Afghanistan, $10 billion could make a real difference. At the National Cancer Institute, annual budget is about $6 billion.

“This war has skewed our thinking about resources,” said Mr. Wallsten, a senior fellow at the Progress and Freedom Foundation, a conservative-leaning research group. “In the context of the war, $20 billion is nothing.”

As it happens, $20 billion is not a bad ballpark estimate for the added cost of Mr. Bush’s planned surge in troops. By itself, of course, that price tag doesn’t mean the surge is a bad idea. If it offers the best chance to stabilize Iraq, then it may well be the right option.

But the standard shouldn’t simply be whether a surge is better than the most popular alternative — a far-less-expensive political strategy that includes getting tough with the Iraqi government. The standard should be whether the surge would be better than the political strategy plus whatever else might be accomplished with the $20 billion.

This time, it would be nice to have that discussion before the troops reach Iraq. (via What $1.2 Trillion Can Buy – NYTimes.com).

Talk is not cheap

Discussion with whom, David?

I presume, not with the invadee nation? In this case, the Iraqi people. You are justifying discussions in the US Congress, between US political parties, by US bureaucrats, with the US President …

Right?

About the future of other people. People who have nothing to do with the US. In this case the Iraqi people.

Grave robbers

Coming to cost of this war. The primary education, the higher education, the medical research that you want funds for, will come from the graves of the Iraqi people. Like the Nordhaus report that you refer to, says,

Iraq’s oil resources could satisfy current U.S. oil imports for almost a century.

So, this money you want for primary or higher education, for medical research will come directly as a result of the nearly 1 million undocumented and estimated Iraqis dead or the documented 100,000 Iraqis dead. The number does not matter, because they are both huge numbers.

Or is it that Iraqis don’t count?

Altar of bones

I do hope that this education and this medical research benefits Americans. Otherwise, what would you tell those Iraqis who died? That they died in vain? That no one befitted from their death?

We cant have that, can we?

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