waving to myself

i sat in the speeding train
and watched the platform go by
and fleetingly saw myself
watching the train flash by
waving to myself

Over $2 Billion – cost of electing a US President ?

Why does it take over $ 2 billion for the people of the US to decide who their next President will be ? Or conversely, is attention span so limited now, that people need to be bombarded by the media campaigns to constantly be reminded that Obama is a better candidate than McCain or Hilary Clinton ? Personally, I thought that Obama’s 30 minute spot on US TV was complete oversell. It undercuts his message of austerity in the coming decade for the American people.

The Politics of Hatred

Once again the people of India, the ordinary citizen, has suffered the politics of hatred. Whether it be the 60 people killed in the awful bomb blasts in Gawhati, or the innocent people attacked and killed in the trains in Mumbai. How do the politicians who provoke such actions to further their own selfish political ends sleep at night ? How can they look at their own families, their own children and not be consumed by the grief they have caused to so many other families ? How do they sleep at night ? I know that politicians did not cause the bombings, but in effect their actions or non actions led to them. Indian politicians are fast becoming self obsessed, self serving demons, who feed on the flesh of their own people.

Is the world heading to class struggle ?

Obama is being accused of being a socialist, and I think that is right, though I do not think of it as an accusation at all. For the people f the US actually are asking for a change towards a far more regulated capitalism, which is really the definition of socialism. What we are seeing in the US is not a struggle between races anymore but a struggle between the super rich and those that are now living in fear of their jobs and pensions. This is the beginings of a true class struggle within the US. And this struggle is showing itself everywhere in the world – not just in the obvious places. In Europe too, and between the rich and the poor economies in the fight over the World Trade Organizations. I even believe that the confrontation between Islam and Christianity too is a form of a class struggle between the rich and the poor, with poverty and lack of hope driving more and more young people into the arms of fundamentalism.
Is that one of the fall-outs of Globalization too ? ……

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Hyper Economy : a socialist veiw of capitalism

So is Capitalism inherently flawed ? Not inherently, but as all things it works very well in theory, but in practice Capitalism needs a lot of help ! One thing the theory of truly free market economies assumes is just that – a free market with equal access to information so that everyone is making considered decisions. Well, given the complexity of the financial world (which I know as a former chartered accountant is often a deliberately created complexity) it is an assumption that one just cannot make. But much more fundamentally, a true free market theory assumes a continuing flow of wealth back into the economy. Whether in form of saving or consumption, money/wealth by individuals or by organizations is pumped back into the economy. It does not matter whether the money is in form of debt or cash – Capitalism is essentially based on a free barter system, with means of negotiations being cash or credit.
However when large chunks of wealth are pulled out of the economy and put into the ‘hyper economy’ imbalances are created within the economic system……

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Diwali,Laxmi and the Global financial meltdown

First a very happy Diwali to everyone, and I thought that we should remind ourselves of why there is a tradition to gamble over this festive and religious season. It is so that we all understand the nature of wealth, the nature of the Goddess Laxmi, who cannot be owned/procured for ones own greed. Wealth has it’s own free will and will come and go beyond your own ability to control it. Like the Goddess, you may worship her, but you can never possess her !
So in the time of the Global financial crisis, it is good to think about the nature of wealth. Happy Diwali !

Dancing on the streets of Beunos Aires with Julia Stiles, Haley Bennett and Lily Cole

Sometimes filming can finish too soon. In the short time I have been in Buenos Aires, I have fallen in love with the city and it’s people. Yes it does remind me of home, but the poverty and the congestion is nowhere as intense as in Mumbai, and the city is actually rather beautiful with its wide streets and beautiful parks. But it’s really at night that the city comes alive, where life spills over into the streets of Buenos Aires. And into the Tango bars too.
This is the first time I have had a night shoot where the crew had their Ipods on and could not help dancing while they were working. This was a very happy crew ! Of course it helps that I have 3 very beautiful young women in the film too that got into the groove too. Julia Stiles (Bourne Identity), Haley Bennett (Music and Lyrics) and Lily Cole (one of the world’s biggest models) play one of the three Graces each.
This is the 2nd short film I have shot in the last few months and I must say I enjoy the experience. A short film does not have to conform to three act structure of a feature length film, and so can be much closer to personal artistic expression through film. I really enjoy that and for me this is a great exploration into pushing the boundaries of the art of film. In fact my approach to both the films have been that they do not HAVE to be about something in particular, nor do they have to tell a very specific story. My approach has been to explore the potential of the film and I work with the Actors, the Production Designer and the Director of Photography in discovering what the film is about as we make it. Rather like a painter who discovers his painting as he paints it.

India is over the moon !

India launches it’s first rocket to the moon and now joins the elite club of nations that have launched moon missions. Sitting in my hotel room in Buenos Aires watching TV, I could not help feeling a surge of pride. Because we have done this on our own with technology and parts developed mostly in India. Yes there will be many people that will say that India can ill afford such a mission when many of our people are living below the poverty line. I agree, but missions into space are not just a show of national pride, but extend technological knowledge and ultimately have huge benefit to society.
And I loved the understated way the Indian scientists reacted. Calm and collected, not with riotous applause like in some other countries. Congratulations and thank you for making us proud !

Noise

Amidst the noise
and the screaming
in my head
I finally found
the whisper
of my joy

What can Obama change ?

It now seems clear that Obama will win the US electons. But unfortunately for him, he is the right man come too late. As the financial empire goes bankrupt, and the US becomes embroiled in a war against an enemy it neither can see, nor can it comprehend, Obama and McCain both keep saying they will do the same thing, just that they will do it better. No wonder. For there is little choice for the US but to fight a battle for survival in the next 2 years.
But Barrack Obama has an added problem. He has promised too much. He has promised to lead the US out of the current crisis back to the the ‘greatness’ of the yesteryears. He may not be saying that, but like Mandela, Barrack Obama inspires the confidence that everything will be fine.
But everything will not be fine…….,

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