What do Birth control and Literacy have to do with Climate Change

The Pioneer plaque.
Image via Wikipedia

Now that you’ve fallen prey to my catchy title, don’t be fooled – the connections are not so remote as they appear at first glance. For those who have guessed, don’t spoil the fun.

Going by all known accounts, research information and the seemingly urgent political summits on the horizon – no points for guessing – climate change is being caused and accelerated only by one single species, humankind. So if stricter birth laws could be enforced, less human beings would be allowed to come into our planet and therefore would do less damage. (This would not hold if you included investment bankers and Nobel economists as being a part of humankind).

Here’s a sample from my proposed enactment
“The Birth Control and Literacy for Climate Change Act, 2009”.

Article 12: Whereas the minority religions of the world seek to remove all obstacles (including, but not limited to, the outdated institution of marriage) for bringing into this world;
(a) by conscious,  unconscious or accidental act of momental ecstasy, and

(b) performed between two or more persons of same (Section 377 of IPC) or opposite sexes; and  

(c) through physical or artifical means,

such an occurence may be permitted a maximum of 2 times in the lifetime of each of the persons involved, jointly or severally without exception.

And as for my literacy angle, it’s simple enuff … really! Continue reading “What do Birth control and Literacy have to do with Climate Change”

Paulo Coelho’s Counterpoint to my take on Climate change

Over the weekend, my wife was reading my last blog post [Climate Change Bollywood Ishtyle] and, at the same time, Paulo Coelho‘s – The Winner Stands Alone. I suspect she may have been hoping against hope that his literary talent will rub off on me through her! And guess what, she suddenly found herself reading about his take on climate change. Synchronicity? Disbelievingly I listened as she read out the following lines that, Coelho – through one of the central characters [Hamid] – professes. His take is quite the antithesis [counterpoint] of my view. It cannot be too good for my ego to even consider such a course but there’s something in there that’s worth a closer look. I have reproduced the lines here …

Paulo Coelho's latest book

Saving the earth? How can we be so arrogant? The planet is, was, and always will be stronger than us. We can’t destroy it; if we overstep the mark, THE PLANET WILL SIMPLY ERASE US from its surface and carry on existing. Why don’t they start talking about not letting the planet destroy us?

Hamid Hussein, The Winner Stands Alone

I know this sounds crazy guys, but I can’t help agreeing with him. Sorry Mr. Ego, you’ll have to eat humble pie this time!!

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Climate Change Bollywood ishtyle

Kyoto Protocol
Image via Wikipedia

Let’s use the standard Hindi movie formula of circa 1980 to script our earth’s climate story. Enter Superstar  US. The virtuous, street smart, Robin Hood inspired protagonist of our story, replete with his coterie of jazz dancers. And then there’s the poor guy, India. Always trying to emulate the “hero” and competing with him for the “herione’s” attention in college settings. Let’s throw in some masala – subplots, love triangles and the very popular song and dance sequences – with the extras doing their own thing while they dance in the third row.

Quick Gun Murugan

Now compare this with whatever we’ve been seeing in the Climate Change discussions. See the script accurately playing itself out? (Nobody seems to want to ask mother Earth for her point of view). Call it clairvoyance or just plain sensitivity, some of us have been seeing it coming since the mid nineties. Even we couldn’t have guessed the speed of deterioration, although fully knowing the bounty hunter tendencies of the US, we should have been able to. Easily. Shame on us!

Some simple facts from Prem Shankar Jha’s Tehelka article, An Earth On Edge.

1. Till as recently as five years ago, abrupt climate change was on the unthinkable fringe of possibilities predicted by climate scientists. In March 2009, 2,500 scientists from 80 countries assembled at the International Scientific Congress on Climate Change in Copenhagen. The congress concluded that the findings of the IPCC were out of date. The evidence collected since its fourth report was compiled showed that global warming was ceasing to be human-induced and was becoming self-reinforcing. Continue reading “Climate Change Bollywood ishtyle”

Tech things for granted.

I met a classmate a couple of weeks ago after 20-odd years. He’s doing stuff at the leading edges of – you guessed it  – IPTV. The passion with which he explained the potential of the technology, and what it could do, sucked me into a discussion of fancy features; about how we could provide seamless interactivity with the back ends of Amazon, Walmart, Nike, D&G, etc. and how people could order pizzas from the comfort of their TV couches without as much as lifting a finger (after all, you’d only have to press a couple of buttons on the remote handset to achieve the impossible).

Whoa! Not so fast folks. The next time you are relaxing and watching your favorite TV program — think!

Continue reading “Tech things for granted.”