Friday, February 9, 2018
Science is not God
Born of human quest, of curiosity, it is mere rationalization of thoughts
With persevering observation; all powerful at the hand of ignorant.
Human laws, theories, and hypothesis nothing permanent, none whatsoever.
Long live they may be, so long the learned believe in them.
What is true today, may not be tomorrow, the Truth is imperceptible.
God is unknowable, not with finite human brain.
God does not die the day we stop believing, we become inconsequential.
God doesn’t need us, we need God, to keep alive hope and our sanity
A little comfort, a little make-belief, from the wise to the unwise.
Time is illusion, life is surreal; dream is real, part we grasp, part we don’t.
There is but One God in you and me and the rest, our belief notwithstanding!
Science is the discovery of God
Peeling layers of onion, the layers of ignorance larger than ocean.
It’s the journey all encompassing, with ears open, mouth shut
And eyes all wide, the journey never ending, never resting.
Science is God at the end of journey, not to be seen, but experienced
Not to be described but embraced, not with brain, but heart.
Tuesday, February 6, 2018
Bengali Beauty tells the story of a demure Moyna, a medical student who falls in love with Afzal, a striking Radio deejay, while listening to his World Music show during the era of the 70s in Bangladesh. It was an interesting time when a new nation was taking birth, cultural boundaries were being redefined, and young people were rediscovering themselves, enjoying the spirit of new freedom and meanings of life. It is a nostalgic time for the people who were young at the time and will relive themselves through this captivating romance.
Mumtaheena Toya plays an enchanting role in the character of Moyna, and Rahsaan Noor is self-assured and notable in the lead role of the radio deejay. The riveting story spans through interesting sequences ably supported by Mita Rahman played by Sarah Alam, and Ashfique Rizwan in the role of Rafel. The movie is a treat for the eyes and souls of the spectators.
Bangladesh film world has never recovered the loss of the great stalwarts of yester years, and is still looking for bold film makers to fill their vacuum. The movie industry is in desperate search of personalities who can tread a happy medium between art and commercial movies. With Bengali Beauty Rahsaan Noor raises the hope that we are witnessing the bold arrival of a major creator in the Bangladesh movie arena.
The movie is soon to be released in Bangladesh, and in the USA by MovieMax Cinemas in Niles. The movie is also being released in NYC, Dallas, LA, Bay Area, and Virginia, the February 16th weekend.
Friday, January 5, 2018
Republican Party is the wholly owned subsidiary of Corporate America and Trump’s election victory has given the owners of the Republican Party the trophy that they had dreamt for ages in the shape of the Tax Scum of 2017.
But like everything else even the Corporate America is not monolithic, there are George Soros and the likes of him who realize the pitfalls of drastic wealth gap between the rich and poor can kill the golden goose.
Mankind has gone through these stages, king had all the gold and his rules were golden rules. We now have a couple of hundred kings who rule the world under the guise of democracy and capitalism. The feudal society of the middle ages is in its new incarnation and threatening to wipe out all economic progresses the world has made.
Tom Hartmann, the wisest of radio talk show hosts of America asserts that in every ages there are a group of people who love authoritarian leaders, these people need to be led and they find comfort in being told what to do. In time like this, when all experimental systems are failing, when communism has failed and capitalism is on the wane, when democracy has demonstrated its obvious weakness to maintain balance in large nation states, the extreme right has regained its popularity. It is the nineteenth and twentieth century all over again; it is Hitler and Mussolini in new garbs, just watch the trend in Europe again.
Unjust economic systems lead to violent social upheaval; this is the history of mankind. Ben Cohen understands this, Jerry Greenfield understands this and that is why they join hundreds of other wealth Americans to plead, “We urge you to oppose any legislation that further exacerbates inequality.” The letter further stated. “Tax reform should be, at a minimum, revenue neutral — without using gimmicks like dynamic scoring. We are deeply concerned that revenue loss would lead to deep cuts in critical services such as education, Medicare and Medicaid, and would hamper our nation’s ability to restore investments in our people and communities.”
Will anyone listen?
Not the current administration, the Koch brothers’ controlled Republicans are not smart enough to understand the long term dynamics, they can’t see anything beyond the next quarter. The current Administration sees this opportunity as their lifetime dream fulfillment. They are going to stack the high courts with extreme reactionary political hacks, they are dismantling every safety nets, they call social security and Medicare, in which every American pays into, as entitlements, and they want to destroy all entitlements.
This Administration is against every institution that protects people, they are destroying EPA, repealed water safety regulation, passed law against constitutional rights to sue, dismantling all regulations such as Dodd-Frank, opening up pristine lands to drilling for gas and oil, snatching lands from national parks and giving to their masters. In the short span of four years they are going to set back the nation decades and decades.
The extreme weather, snow storms in the east coast and south is a result of global warming, nevertheless, the current Republican led congress does not have the intelligence to understand this, their Leader openly mocked – we could do with some global warming! How much further damage will they do in the next four years? I shudder with that thought but Americans are in slumber, no one appears to be worried enough except for a few conscious persons such as Tom Hartmann.
I know this will pass, we will see a Democratic-led government in 2020, however, that is no guarantee of a bright future. If the corporate Democrats retain the control of the party, and they run the administration in 2020, we will only be on the fire pan in place of direct fire.
Friday, December 29, 2017
“Yes, my Lord?”
“Did you fight in the name of your Creator, when you saw injustice around you?”
“No, I did not. I was afraid. They were too strong.”
“Did you protest? Did you go out in the open and speak out?”
“No, I did not. I was afraid. Their army was everywhere.”
“Did you talk to your friends; did you tell them what you felt in your heart?”
“No, I did not. I was afraid. The walls had ears.”
“Then what did you do my child that you shall enter heaven?”
“For every oppressed brother, I went out in the wilderness, shed a drop of tear, and cried aloud, “I am too weak to speak out but my Lord, please give Your Power to them who are strong to do your work.”
The Lord Smiles, “Come, my child, Enter.”
Friday, December 22, 2017
Former CIA chief John Brennan blasted the President’s warning to cut off financial aid to countries that voted against the US as, “qualities usually found in narcissistic, vengeful autocrats.” Brennan called that behavior, “beyond outrageous.”
We are going through the worst period in the life of the nation when moral rectitude has taken a back seat and the base villainous traits have come to surface predominantly, and it’s not the fault of the current Administration alone. This nation has long forsaken the principles of democracy since the time money in politics have began playing lop sided role. For today’s situation Bill Clinton and Barrack Obama are as much responsible as the two Bushes and Reagan were. L B Johnson, despite his eccentricity and bizarre modus operandi was the last President who served American people, others served the aristocratic class.
Each subsequent President was worse than the other – just think of the financial crisis of 2008, the consequence of unbridled grid of the Wall Street, and not a single bankster went to jail! If you compare the S&L debacle at the time of Ronald Reagan, you have to accept that history shall accord more credit to him than the hero of the liberals, Barrack Obama.
We are so much enamored in the politics of left and right, argument over Democrats and Republicans, we have totally been blindsided to the reality that the Military Industrial complex President Eisenhower warned us about has totally taken over and we didn’t even realize. Nevertheless, we have the power to throw the scum bugs and bring people’s representatives to power.
When three hundred Republican Senators and Congressmen voted for the tax scam that would transfer $3 trillion from the poor to the rich, it is no longer sufficient to vote for the Democrats but what kind of Democrat. We may not like politics but politics likes us, envelops us, and all of us are affected. We need to open our eyes, be involved, recognize what and who serve our interest and bring change to the system with our conscious choice, peacefully, intelligently, and with empathy to other.
Thursday, December 21, 2017
Following an earlier Security Council resolution vetoed by the US, which stated that the status of Jerusalem must be resolved through negotiations; the United Nations General Assembly today passed a similar measure critical of President Donald Trump’s decision to recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel.
Prior to today’s United Nations General Assembly vote, Trump’s hand-picked US Ambassador Nikki Haley relayed President’s warning to cutoff aide to any country if they voted for the measure. The resolution passed by a vote of 128-9, notwithstanding.
Nikki Haley was blunt, “The United States will remember this day when it was singled out for attack in the General Assembly,” adding forcefully, “We will remember it when so many countries come calling on us, as they often do, to pay even more. This vote will be remembered.”
One hundred and twenty eight countries slapped Nikki and Donald on both cheeks, and thirty five other nations shared the fun by abstaining.
Before the voting began, Mevlut Cavusoglu, the Foreign Minister of Turkey said, “We were all asked to vote no or face the consequences. Some even threatened to cut development aid. This is bullying. It is unethical to think that the votes and dignity of member states are for sale.”
What does a bully do when his bluff is called?
He stops bullying, that’s what is expected from a reasonable person, though.
Tuesday, December 19, 2017
Apples are apples, aren’t they? Not so fast.
We love to hate the corporate world; grudgingly accept them as necessary evils with whom we must coexist, but never to love them – right? Not always. Not all corporations are the same, just like our own fingers are not, even in the same hand.
You had read part one of my experience with ViaSat and perhaps had thought, so that’s one of the gotcha company to stay away from. Yet, I am here to give you a complete contrary experience with this part two of my story.
When an officer of ViaSat unexpectedly contacted me learning my unpleasant experience and extended an apology, I took that as mere words and did not expect anything out of it. Nevertheless, I was pleasantly surprised when the company returned my money, unasked.
A company returning a charge that they were entitled to according to terms of the contract? And without any due pressure from any regulatory quarter? It made me rethink, did I prejudge this company? Am I the one here, with bias?
When we question ourselves unprovoked, when we are not defending against anyone, when all arguments are emanating from deep down, our visions are opened to a new horizon, not previously on our radar.
Satellite internet industry is in its nascent state. The signal travels from 22,000 miles above earth, technology is still evolving, research money is still being poured in, the young companies are still struggling to survive, yet they must compete with giants with cash cows such as Comcast and AT&T. Shall we look at this from a different perspective?
Should I have given a chance to ViaSat just because it was providing me with an alternative where there was none? Was I too harsh in criticizing ViaSat? Should I have reached out to their higher management with my complaint - instead of blurting out all that negativity in public?
A company that reaches out voluntarily to an irate customer to ameliorate, perhaps shall be treated differently?
The more I thought the more it seemed satellite companies such as ViaSat need our support to survive.
The DSL and Cable internet only provide service in the big cities, what about the people in rural areas? The satellite internet is the only option for those people. Granted, today the satellite internet has a finite bandwidth, and to become viable they must employ data restrictions, but with time the technology will improve and the cost will go down, only if we give them a chance. If we support the industry in its early stages of development, we will reap benefit at the end.
When solar cells were introduced, the cost was prohibitive, only with our tax money solar power has come to a stage where it is driving the coal power generation out of oblivion, and helping the planet reduce global warming. Shall satellite industry get similar support?
In a desperate attempt to save the coal industry Trump administration now is attempting to subsidize coal power, what a topsy turvy world we live in!
The satellite internet can become a viable option one day only if we give it a chance. We need this technology to survive in our own interest. Wasn’t I complaining of highhandedness of Comcast? That was the very reason I wanted another option, didn’t I?
Will I give ViaSat another chance? You bet. If the management of a corporation shows humane behavior, that company deserves a second chance.
It’s more than likely, I will try ViaSat again after my present contract with Comcast expires, and it will be in my own interest and yours as well.
Considering satellite internet? Or, plain inquisitive? Then, read on.
After being a loyal Comcast customer for over five years I got frustrated with their habit of raising fees every year, so when I saw an offer from Direct TV bundling with ATT for internet service at half the price, I decided to take the bait.
There was a catch however, when I called Direct TV, they said, ATT uverse high-speed internet service was not available at my address, nevertheless, they offered 25 mbps download speed, Viasat-Exede service in lieu.
Satellite internet? Wow! Don’t you love technology?
I am a heavy user of Internet, my phone and other entertainment devices run on it. With some deliberation I swallowed Direct TV’s persuasive sales pitch. They assured me that my devices shall run fine with that internet speed. Thus began my very first experience with satellite internet.
The first day was event free; a transition from 100 mbps to 25 mbps did not seem that bad. Sure the internet was slower, but only a tad, not earth shattering. The magic jack phones were still working, and Jadu was performing without any hiccups; life seemed good.
The next day was very different. Storm began building from the late morning and intensified as evening ensued. By early evening, we lost internet. Winter night brought darkness early, and that being a weekend night the gloom and doom multiplied many fold as the TV and phone took leave too.
Have you noticed how life comes to a standstill when internet stops? Anyone remembers how we lived before the age of internet?
I called Viasat customer service with my cell phone. After a long conversation with the Agent my despair deepened. I learnt that this was the nature of the satellite internet, and I better get used to it. When sky is clear and the sun is up, the satellite internet works fine, nonetheless, on a day wind blows hard, or sky pours snow, service interruption is the norm. That became my first disenchantment with satellite internet, albeit, I was not even slightly prepared for what would follow.
After a week of service I noticed that my moody internet, which ran anywhere between speed 10 and 23 mbps, was running extremely slow and the phone lost all civility, dropping calls at whim in the middle of conversations. I checked my internet speed and Walla (!) it was whopping 0.5 mbps! I called Exede customer service again and they investigated, placing me on a brief hold.
After what seemed like a good lunch break, they told me that my contract for a fee of $60 entitled me to receive 25 mbps download speed only up to 12 Gbits of data, since I had already reached that limit in the first four and ½ days they had slowed down my internet speed.
“When I placed service order the sales person didn’t tell me about data limit,” I protested.
“I am sorry to hear that,” the tone did not sound a bit sorry, “but the contract you signed had clearly stated the terms,” the Agent told me.
Hum.. the contract.. the signature that I placed on the dotted line on that tablet, in the fading light of the day! Of course! Of course!
Should we not read all contracts before we sign? And once we sign, shall we not bear the consequences of that give-life-away signature?
With that signature I had also given away the right to sue the company, and accept arbitration for any breach of contract. That’s the way all service contracts are written in the land of the brave, these days, if you noticed. The US constitution gives us the right to sue where dispute involves more than $15 worth, but who cares? What Santa giveth, Uncle Sam taketh away. The US Congress had just ended our right to sue, only last month or so. Ever wonder, who do these politicians work for?
“So, what’s my alternative?” I asked the Rep.
“Well, you can upgrade your service for $150, your speed will remain the same but your data will be unlimited, what you really need,” he emphasized the words “really need.”
“You want me to pay $150 for a service that does not work half the time?” I sounded distressed, “What other option do I have?”
“That’s pretty much it, in your case,” the voice was unruffled.
“I want to cancel my service.”
“You have to pay penalty for early termination.”
“How much is that?”
“You have a two-year contract, used it for one week, so if you terminate now it would be $330.”
$330 for not using your service?
As I heard him calculating, I run the figures in my head and the idea of $150 a month, with stormy days, snowy days, rainy days, and what-not days, didn’t seem really palatable, “Go ahead, disconnect my service, I will pay for my sin,” I said.
Thus I ended up paying $300 for a 4 and ½ days of satellite service at 25 mbps.
Aren’t we always wiser after the event? Hope my experience helps.
Thursday, May 25, 2017
Saturday, March 4, 2017
Sunday, February 26, 2017
Wednesday, February 15, 2017
Sunday, February 12, 2017
Saturday, January 14, 2017
Muslims on the other hand have community service ingrained in their religious diktat. Their religion encourages them to offer obligatory Friday prayer in a mosque. Purpose of this is to strengthen communal harmony, and extend bonding between members. After the prayer they are encouraged to mingle with their neighbors, find out if there are poor and needy among them, and then help those.