Friday, August 7, 2009

Sen and Ghosh Vaudeville show

I could not believe my eyes when I read the article. I did not see the show on CNN IBN, but after reading the transcript I felt sad that I missed one great comedy show.

If you expect me to respect Amartya sen because he got Nobel, please go away. This piece is not intended to be nice to him.

He begins his argument with "Studies of torture across the world over the centuries have shown that people under torture would give any answer that they thought would be pleasing to the interrogator. So you do not get very much information. I know that there have been things like of water-boarding and other issues that have come up in public discussions.
There I take a position similar to that of US President Obama rather than that of the previous administration. The previous administration, especially Cheney said that certain things have to be done because they are necessary.
I think it is counter productive, unjust and ultimately stupid. But, the other issue is the big issue. Obviously, in some ways we would like to see to what extent public reasoning can actually prevent cases of terrorism. That's a long run engagement.

I am not a supporter of torture as a means of interrogation nor I would say that torture serves no purpose at all.

To claim that the intelligence gathered through torture is ineffective requires perhaps a Nobel prize. Intelligence is a dirty business; as long as we live in a material world we will need intelligence more or less the way it exists now. Imagine a potential bomb situation and you have a suspect in your hand, do you torture and extract the information, including water boarding and using truth serum and the like, or do you go on Amartya mode? "You do something because it is necessary", though it was said by someone as abominable as Cheney.

S Ghosh who has never ever looked qualified to be in prime time was hilarious. Go through the next question:

Sagarika Ghose: But in India, like in the Mumbai terror attack case which is very much in the public domain at the moment, there is the argument that fast track courts, summary sentencing is what you need to deal with terrorism and this is how justice must be delivered in terrorism.

Amartya Sen: I was trying to distinguish. I first began with general public, now we are dealing with sympathiser. Then I will have to deal with summary justice potential candidates.

Amartya Sen had clarified in the opening that he was not addressing the justice delivery mechanism but SG was watching the TRP perhaps. Not that she would have understood anything at all had she listened to Amartya. Talk about a bimbo in prime time.

Ok.. she asked a trade mark stupid question that had no relevance to the theme, but hey, the bimbo is Rajdeep's wife the reason she is there in Prime time. What did the trick was Amartya's answer. I never did understand what he meant by "summary justice potential candidate". May be he meant something, why could not he be comprehensible?

Another gem was "You have to deal with the sympathiser or those who become sympathisers"

He says that behind terrorism there are condoners who have to be challenged in a "public reasoning" and you start wondering if he has switched to VHP. What Amartya says is, in Gujarat though few people indulged in killing many more, perhaps 100 times more who have blood in their hands, because they condoned it, passively supported it and stood behind them. Why cannot Amartya talk about those passive ones behind the largest source of terrorism today? Perhaps he needs a "public reasoning"?

It gets hilarious. Sangarika somehow thinks that the book is actually meant to expose the Sena guys who wanted Kasab to be executed without trial and those who refused to sell a house to Hashmi. Nothing can distract her once she has her heart set on something. Had she interviewed a Bada-pav wala from Colaba, her questions would not have been any different or any more irrelevant. She is consistently poor quality.

Next questions and answers run like this.

Sagarika Ghose: So the idea is to bring them (Those who stood silent behind the Gujarat killers)into the public debate?

Amartya Sen: Challenge them, not bring them into the debate. The word I use is public reasoning. I am not assuming that the public is reasonable.

Sagarika Ghose: But who will reason on behalf of the public?

Amartya Sen: We have to reason. You may have a strong belief that there is an active God who is all the time present and that you can leave it in higher hands. But the truth is that there is no higher authority than us. So if you have to make a change, we have to make it ourselves.

Got it? Once you get a Nobel you think you are God. How does Amartya sen be so sure that he is right? That what he suggests will not harm the society more?

Has he read 'Shantaram'? Ever contemplated that most that we start with great good intention often deliver the opposite? Does he think that all things are completely knowable and the future controllable. A guy from science will not be able to show this kind of confidence about a possible outcome that has not been tested.

Is he really serious that the justice delivery system based on "public reasoning" will be through people like him and SG? Is this a sugar coated anarchy? God save me from these intellectuals who do not know their elbows from their ass.

Amartya sen talks bird poop, really. He goes on to say, "But I have not met any naxalite in my life and therefore to say that they will not listen to any amount of reasoning is not right either. "

This is the crux of his argument. Since he does not know any naxalite he is not sure if the naxalites will not listen to his kind of "reasoning". Does his ignorance prove that naxalites would listen to "public reasoning"? Amartya has deliberately chosen a Naxal example but not a Islamic terrorist. He would have had to tread a mine field which would have woken him up from his day dream.

What if his assumption is wrong? Sheesh, are you really sure this guy got a Nobel?

Then Sangarka crowns the show with a statement she could still have used in an interview with Bada-pav wala. It goes like this. "Secularism is a continuous dialog". What prompted her to say this cliche was Amartya's usage of the words 'secularism' and ' dialog' in one sentence.

Then the stars of vaudeville obviously were not in tune with each other.

Sagarika Ghose: So you are not saying talk to the enemy, do not lock him up.

Amartya Sen: No, I am not saying that.

Sagarika Ghose: But that's the kind of message I am getting from your book.

Amartya Sen: Are you sure you are not reading a different book?

This is Sangarika Ghosh for you. An incorrigible idiot who cannot be redeemed. I do not understand why she gets into, what she considers an "intellectual dialog" when she is only a bimbo. Can someone tell her that?

Who will weed out inefficiency in Press? Can these people be sued for intellectual fraud? She may escape by pleading that she has nothing intellectual about her, which is true.

Friday, February 20, 2009

Art Attack in Bangalore

This is what the Minister of Karnataka said "..a few artists, in the name of modern art, were insulting Indian culture and tradition. This is because of the perverted thinking of a few self-proclaimed intellectuals, who are heading various cultural and art institutions,” and brought upon himself the collective ire of the 'Artists'

An artist, M S Murthy, with the mandatory beard, shouted at the minister, interrupted his speech and in the end, was escorted away by the police. He said "You don’t know what is modern art. Better stop talking about it", according to a Newspaper. I saw many artists expressing similar view on the telly. Other responses from artists included "the minister has hurt the artist's sentiment", "Minister knows nothing about Art and should keep out of it" etc. Going by the same yardstick, if the Politicians say that the artists have no business criticizing those in Politics because the artists know nothing about Politics, is it acceptable?" Ambika Soni took this opportunity to score over BJP and said something equally irrelevant as Congress always does.

No single artist wanted to debate it. They all gave it an emotional color, as any self respecting fundamentalist would do under similar circumstances. If you do not know by know, I want it on record, these artists are the 'intellectuals' who unravel what is not obvious to us, mortal beings, through their art.

The minister did say 'few artists' and we all know that for the minister 'few' = M F Hussein. I would have expected the intelligent artists to debate this and put the facts before the public and defend their point of view. Not one did that. They all turned it into an emotional issue and if I am correct, the artists will also bring out a protest march to boot.

Lot of questions come up. Should only an artist ever make an observation about the artist and art? (Some artist had mentioned that the Minister does not know art and should not make any comment about it) Absurd, but an artist said so.

I am defending the Minister's right to say what he thinks is true. I do not think that what he said was absolute truth nor I am willing to accept that there is no evidence of truth at all. The fact lies, according to me, somewhere in between. M F Hussein has not come very clean on the subject of 'Nude Saraswati'. On the one hand, he is supposed to have said that he painted Hitler in the nude to insult him.

This is what Tejpal had to say about the MFH's painting. "Defending artistic freedom is easy, but defending Husain can be tricky. Recently I was on a television panel discussion on the Limits to Artistic Freedom, and most of the show revolved around Husain's painting of Sita and Hanuman, and the ensuing attack on him by the Bajrang Dal. As a die-hard liberal, I was expected to defend Husain, and I did, but with dampened enthusiasm, and that too merely the principle of it, and not as its practiced by Husain. For, a few minutes before the show began I had a chance to see a copy of the painting. I must admit it's an incredibly erotic one - unlike the nude Saraswati which can be seen as ethereal - and Husain must really love trouble to have let it out into the public domain. Whatever their artistic worth, such paintings have simply too much inflamatory potential to be sent out into the world. I'd be curious to know what Husian was thinking when he fired it off." [Outlook, June 8, 1998.]

Tejpal was being 'nice' to MFH out of a sense of decency.

The key word is 'few' artists.

Now the artist community will perhaps say that Tejpal is not an artist, hence he knows nothing.

I can understand if Lalit Modi responds to FIR filed in Jaipur against him for misappropriating funds as 'politically motivated'. Even the Marxists terming the Pinarai Vijayan case as 'politically mitivated'. Once you term it as politically motivated you do not have to explain anything. Very convenient. The artist community has joined the elite company of Lalit Modi, CPM and Mayavati, by emotionalizing the issue. Pray tell me, what is the difference between Maya and Murthy? I see one thing common, their refusal to face a decent debate.

It is a curse of India that we have these jokers going around in the name of Artists. There are good artists but they are not as good in other realms. I have not seen one Artist taking a moral stand. I have not heard of one Artist who would stand up and say that he/she does not mind being criticized. They all talk like a dyed in wool PCs. Is there an artist who does not want his art to be accepted? Do these cry babies think that they should be showered praise ( and $$$$) and criticism is a strict no no? Buddha is turning in his grave. So is Antoine de Saint Exupéry.

This is how another artist sang.

"Here is my song for the asking
Ask me and I will play
So sweetly, I'll make you smile

This is my tune for the taking
Take it, don't turn away

I've been waiting all my life

Thinking it over, I've been sad
Thinking it over, I'd be more than glad
To change my ways for the asking

Ask me and I will play
All the love that I hold inside"