G C Lichtenberg: “It is as if our languages were confounded: when we want a thought, they bring us a word; when we ask for a word, they give us a dash; and when we expect a dash, there comes a piece of bawdy.”

H. P. Lovecraft: "What a man does for pay is of little significance. What he is, as a sensitive instrument responsive to the world's beauty, is everything!"

Martin Amis: “Gogol is funny, Tolstoy in his merciless clarity is funny, and Dostoyevsky, funnily enough, is very funny indeed; moreover, the final generation of Russian literature, before it was destroyed by Lenin and Stalin, remained emphatically comic — Bunin, Bely, Bulgakov, Zamyatin. The novel is comic because life is comic (until the inevitable tragedy of the fifth act);...”

Werner Herzog: “We are surrounded by worn-out, banal, useless and exhausted images, limping and dragging themselves behind the rest of our cultural evolution.”

John Gray: "Unlike Schopenhauer, who lamented the human lot, Leopardi believed that the best response to life is laughter. What fascinated Schopenhauer, along with many later writers, was Leopardi’s insistence that illusion is necessary to human happiness."

Justin E.H. Smith: “One should of course take seriously serious efforts to improve society. But when these efforts fail, in whole or in part, it is only humor that offers redemption. So far, human expectations have always been strained, and have always come, give or take a bit, to nothing. In this respect reality itself has the form of a joke, and humor the force of truth.”

विलास सारंग: "… . . 1000 नंतर ज्या प्रकारची संस्कृती रुढ झाली , त्यामध्ये साधारणत्व विश्वात्मकता हे गुण प्राय: लुप्त झाले...आपली संस्कृती अकाली विश्वात्मक साधारणतेला मुकली आहे."

Saturday, December 18, 2010

What will be the legacy of Dr. M Singh?

T N Ninan: So the country is in a mess, our institutions stand tarnished in the public eye, and the government faces a credibility crisis. People are right to be both disillusioned and worried about where matters are headed. The transition from unreal optimism to cynical gloom in just a few weeks is breathtaking. (Business Standard, December 18 2010)

I am afraid Dr. Singh is going to go down in history as just another ruler of India and she has had many so far.

He is no Ashoka, no Akbar, no Krishnadevaraya, no Shivaji, no Ranjit Singh, no Shahu Maharaj IV, no J L Nehru. Not even close.

His final months in the top office are being marked by rampant corruption and crony capitalism all around us.

This easily is one of the darkest periods in India's history since her partition. On par with Mahatma Gandhi's assasination, Chinese invasion, the Emergency and the Babri Masjid demolition.

It will be hard to teach our young about ethics again.

I have no sympathy for Dr. Singh. He himself is squeaky clean sounds more and more like Nero on the fiddle.

In many ways, this is much like the journey of his mentor the late P. V. Narasimha Rao. Mr. Rao- who now has become persona non grata to the Congress* and Dr. Singh has stopped being grateful to him in public- could have done a lot more to prevent the destruction of the mosque or atleast should have quit the office taking the full responsibility.

* p.s. December 31 2010

The Times of India on Dec 30 2010:

"In a rare move in politics, the Congress party has published its own history...Through it, the party for the first time officially acknowledges P V Narasimha Rao's political courage in enabling the economic reforms that gave India a new lease of life and transformed our lives..."



Artist: Hemant Morparia