The Sarah Palin chronicles – Part 2

Eve Ensler, the American playwright, performer, feminist and activist best known for ‘The Vagina Monologues’, wrote the following about Sarah Palin.


Drill, Drill, Drill

I am having Sarah Palin nightmares. I dreamt last night that she was a member of a club where they rode snowmobiles and wore the claws of drowned and starved polar bears around their necks. I have a particular thing for Polar Bears. Maybe it’s their snowy whiteness or their bigness or the fact that they live in the arctic or that I have never seen one in person or touched one. Maybe it is the fact that they live so comfortably on ice.Whatever it is, I need the polar bears.

I don’t like raging at women. I am a Feminist and have spent my life trying to build community, help empower women and stop violence against them. It is hard to write about Sarah Palin. This is why the Sarah Palin choice was all the more insidious and cynical. The people who made this choice count on the goodness and solidarity of Feminists.

But everything Sarah Palin believes in and practices is antithetical to Feminism which for me is part of one story — connected to saving the earth, ending racism, empowering women, giving young girls options, opening our minds, deepening tolerance, and ending violence and war.

I believe that the McCain/Palin ticket is one of the most dangerous choices of my lifetime, and should this country chose those candidates the fall-out may be so great, the destruction so vast in so many areas that America may never recover. But what is equally disturbing is the impact that duo would have on the rest of the world. Unfortunately, this is not a joke. In my lifetime I have seen the clownish, the inept, the bizarre be elected to the presidency with regularity.

Sarah Palin does not believe in evolution. I take this as a metaphor. In her world and the world of Fundamentalists nothing changes or gets better or evolves. She does not believe in global warming. The melting of the arctic, the storms that are destroying our cities, the pollution and rise of cancers, are all part of God’s plan. She is fighting to take the polar bears off the endangered species list. The earth, in Palin’s view, is here to be taken and plundered. The wolves and the bears are here to be shot and plundered. The oil is here to be taken and plundered. Iraq is here to be taken and plundered. As she said herself of the Iraqi war, ‘It was a task from God.’

Sarah Palin does not believe in abortion. She does not believe women who are raped and incested and ripped open against their will should have a right to determine whether they have their rapist’s baby or not.

She obviously does not believe in sex education or birth control. I imagine her daughter was practicing abstinence and we know how many babies that makes.

Sarah Palin does not much believe in thinking. From what I gather she has tried to ban books from the library, has a tendency to dispense with people who think independently. She cannot tolerate an environment of ambiguity and difference. This is a woman who could and might very well be the next president of the United States . She would govern one of the most diverse populations on the earth.

Sarah believes in guns. She has her own custom Austrian hunting rifle. She has been known to kill 40 caribou at a clip. She has shot hundreds of wolves from the air.

Sarah believes in God. That is of course her right, her private right. But when God and Guns come together in the public sector, when war is declared in God’s name, when the rights of women are denied in his name, that is the end of separation of church and state and the undoing of everything America has ever tried to be.

I write to my sisters. I write because I believe we hold this election in our hands. This vote is a vote that will determine the future not just of the U.S. , but of the planet. It will determine whether we create policies to save the earth or make it forever uninhabitable for humans. It will determine whether we move towards dialogue and diplomacy in the world or whether we escalate violence through invasion, undermining and attack. It will determine whether we go for oil, strip mining, coal burning or invest our money in alternatives that will free us from dependency and destruction.

It will determine if money gets spent on education and healthcare or whether we build more and more methods of killing. It will determine whether America is a free open tolerant society or a closed place of fear, fundamentalism and aggression.

If the Polar Bears don’t move you to go and do everything in your power to get Obama elected then consider the chant that filled the hall after Palin spoke at the RNC, ‘Drill Drill Drill.’ I think of teeth when I think of drills. I think of rape. I think of destruction. I think of domination. I think of military exercises that force mindless repetition, emptying the brain of analysis, doubt, ambiguity or dissent. I think of pain.

Do we want a future of drilling? More holes in the ozone, in the floor of the sea, more holes in our thinking, in the trust between nations and people, more holes in the fabric of this precious thing we call life?

Eve Ensler
September 5, 2008


To women all over the world,

Pass this around. Let’s start a Think.Think.Think movement and stop this ‘abberation to womanhood’ get in a position where she makes important decisions.







The Sarah Palin chronicles – Part 1

Palin’s Kind of Patriotism


Published: October 7, 2008

Criticizing Sarah Palin is truly shooting fish in a barrel. But given the huge attention she is getting, you can’t just ignore what she has to say. And there was one thing she said in the debate with Joe Biden that really sticks in my craw. It was when she turned to Biden and declared: “You said recently that higher taxes or asking for higher taxes or paying higher taxes is patriotic. In the middle class of America, which is where Todd and I have been all of our lives, that’s not patriotic.”

What an awful statement. Palin defended the government’s $700 billion rescue plan. She defended the surge in Iraq, where her own son is now serving. She defended sending more troops to Afghanistan. And yet, at the same time, she declared that Americans who pay their fair share of taxes to support all those government-led endeavors should not be considered patriotic.

I only wish she had been asked: “Governor Palin, if paying taxes is not considered patriotic in your neighborhood, who is going to pay for the body armor that will protect your son in Iraq? Who is going to pay for the bailout you endorsed? If it isn’t from tax revenues, there are only two ways to pay for those big projects — printing more money or borrowing more money. Do you think borrowing money from China is more patriotic than raising it in taxes from Americans?” That is not putting America first. That is selling America first.

Sorry, I grew up in a very middle-class family in a very middle-class suburb of Minneapolis, and my parents taught me that paying taxes, while certainly no fun, was how we paid for the police and the Army, our public universities and local schools, scientific research and Medicare for the elderly. No one said it better than Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes: “I like paying taxes. With them I buy civilization.”

I can understand someone saying that the government has no business bailing out the financial system, but I can’t understand someone arguing that we should do that but not pay for it with taxes. I can understand someone saying we have no business in Iraq, but I can’t understand someone who advocates staying in Iraq until “victory” declaring that paying taxes to fund that is not patriotic.

How in the world can conservative commentators write with a straight face that this woman should be vice president of the United States? Do these people understand what serious trouble our country is in right now?

We are in the middle of an economic perfect storm, and we don’t know how much worse it’s going to get. People all over the world are hoarding cash, and no bank feels that it can fully trust anyone it is doing business with anywhere in the world. Did you notice that the government of Iceland just seized the country’s second-largest bank and today is begging Russia for a $5 billion loan to stave off “national bankruptcy.” What does that say? It tells you that financial globalization has gone so much farther and faster than regulatory institutions could govern it. Our crisis could bankrupt Iceland! Who knew?

And we have not yet even felt the full economic brunt here. I fear we may be at that moment just before the tsunami hits — when the birds take flight and the insects stop chirping because their acute senses can feel what is coming before humans can. At this moment, only good governance can save us. I am not sure that this crisis will end without every government in every major economy guaranteeing the creditworthiness of every financial institution it regulates. That may be the only way to get lending going again. Organizing something that big and complex will take some really smart governance and seasoned leadership.

Whether or not I agree with John McCain, he is of presidential timber. But putting the country in the position where a total novice like Sarah Palin could be asked to steer us through possibly the most serious economic crisis of our lives is flat out reckless. It is the opposite of conservative.

And please don’t tell me she will hire smart advisers. What happens when her two smartest advisers disagree?

And please also don’t tell me she is an “energy expert.” She is an energy expert exactly the same way the king of Saudi Arabia is an energy expert — by accident of residence. Palin happens to be governor of the Saudi Arabia of America — Alaska — and the only energy expertise she has is the same as the king of Saudi Arabia’s. It’s about how the windfall profits from the oil in their respective kingdoms should be divided between the oil companies and the people.

At least the king of Saudi Arabia, in advocating “drill baby drill,” is serving his country’s interests — by prolonging America’s dependence on oil. My problem with Palin is that she is also serving his country’s interests — by prolonging America’s dependence on oil. That’s not patriotic. Patriotic is offering a plan to build our economy — not by tax cuts or punching more holes in the ground, but by empowering more Americans to work in productive and innovative jobs. If Palin has that kind of a plan, I haven’t heard it.

Politics : synonym for unethical and immoral?

This button was sold at one of the republican state conventions….DISGUSTING.

Just when you think the world is not so bad, you see and read such things which personifies everything immoral and unethical.

The source.

If you were a tree

What tree would you be if you were one? Here is an interpretation I came across in TIME. It’s just genius!


It takes it away from the fun of realizing the meaning yourself if I give a key note below explaining each tree and why it so perfectly fits the respective personalities. Contact me if you need an explaination!

Super Talent – Kanye West

Kanye West oozes talent and I hope he makes it this time around.


Stupid Idea #10


Ice-cream shaped like feces is ready to be served at the Modern Toilet diner in the Shilin district in Taipei . This Taipei restaurant might consider it a compliment to be called an outhouse as the Modern Toilet diner is one of chain of themed eateries appealing to largely young clientele with a toilet humor. All 100 seats in the crowded diner are made from toilet bowls, not chairs. Sink faucets and gender-coded “WC” signs appear throughout the three-storey facility, one of 12 in an island-wide chain of eateries with a toilet theme.Customers eat from mini plastic toilet bowls. They wipe their hands and mouths using toilet rolls hung above their tables, which may be glass-topped jumbo bathtubs.

“Most customers will bring their cameras in because the place is quite special, said Yang Chung-chi, a manager at the restaurant in north Taipei. Owner Wang Tzi-wei opened his first Modern Toilet in 2004 after being inspired by a Japanese cartoon featuring restroom images and the toilet themes run through the food and drinks menus.”


Wouldn’t you like to have this for dessert? Just reading about it makes me queasy and uncomfortable. In the name of uniqueness and creativity this is where and what we have to eat now! In a bathroom, eating out of the sink, sitting on a toilet seat and eating ice-cream out of dishes shaped like a toilet bowl and the ice cream itself is shaped like human feces. Go Figure!  Continue reading

A Breakthrough in Employee Satisfaction

We all have experienced this at work, a distinct organizational hierarchy, a boss-subordinate distinction and sometimes we’ve even dealt with some power play where bosses, supervisors & managers use the power trump card quite liberally.

Vineet Nayar, CEO of Indian outsourcer HCL technologies started idea of a public 360-degree feedback online, designed to hold managers accountable for correcting any professional faults their employees think they have. The first year, Nayar posted his own before asking his team and others to follow suit.  And he needed to work on his time management skills said the 3.6 out of 5 the 81 managers who rated him. And everybody at HCL now knows this thanks to his public online feedback system.

Nayar’s grades along with ratings for the top 20 managers at HCL are published on the company’s intranet for anyone who wants to see them. Employees also have the capability to see their own supervisor’s scores.

This is generating a lot of buzz, of course! In the exponentially fast-growing India there is a huge challenge of retaining workers especially in this field with a few other mammoth billion dollar companies in direct competition with HCL. This probably will help. HCL is the country’s fifth-largest infotech outsources. So far Nayar’s methods seems to have made a huge impact. They were once wearing down and reducing in numbers at the rate of 20.4% (reportedly among the highest in the industry) and since Nayar took over in 2005 thanks to his innovative ideas they are said to be at a 17.2% now.

Though still higher than few of the others in the industry, this is no small effort considering how in today’s culture jumping ship for more pay is a trend although it disregards corporate culture. Marketing Manager Krishnan Chatterjee says “It can sometimes be like coin-op machines”

Even though HCL employees are the primary beneficiaries of this  novel idea, they were initially skeptical for many reasons. One of them being how it would look if big bosses got negative ratings by their understudies or the relatively inexperienced. But slowly the workers learned to trust the system.  Nayar makes it clear this feedback is not used to determine bonuses or promotions.

There area lot of unidentified big guns who are supposedly studying this system and researching it. And in Harvard Business school this is a case study and is being included as a part of their executive education courses. It is also being considered for regular MBA courses.

I just find it unbelievable how far we’ve come from just 7-8 years ago when I was in India where I was very much subject to some strong power play be it my research advisor or any supervisor I have dealt with. Hats off to this effort and I truly hope this sticks on and creates a wave of change with the big picture being professional development, economical development and technological & infrastructure development and not about personal ego or power struggle.

This is based on a fantastic and eye-opening article “The Employee is always right” published in Business Week written by Jena McGregor.