The chameleonic changes happening in India are capable of reviving surrealist non-sequiturs. How can Information Technology (IT) be pitted against bread (Roti)? Such improbable opponents can only emerge from either the laboratories of Victor Frankenstein or economic scientists at the World Trade Organization.
Incessant repetitions have convinced the world, including the dying polar bears and penguins at the poles, that there is an IT revolution going on in India. Believe me, walking the streets of India outside of Bangalore or Gurgaon, it feels like a facetious rumor.
There are a lot of back-office, low-end jobs percolating down to India essentially because of the low wages our accent-trained English speaking young are willing to accept. The real human beings behind the pseudonyms of Mary Janes and Joe Smiths are not unaware of their exploitation. Living in a shortsighted culture that promotes the present, in the moment, instant gratification as the highest value, it is their only option for individual independence. In the pursuit of their individualism they are unwilling to question the greed of their employers. When their Government prostrates to the power of Corporations and legal due process is a farce (remember Bhopal) they are smart enough to shut up and show up for work at the stroke of the midnight hour.
Last month I'd written about the core issues around the US-Indo Nuclear deal. Yesterday the House of Representatives in the US Congress cleared the Nuclear Deal with 298 out of 415 members voting in favor. With only ten Republicans against it, most of the opposition (107 votes) came from the Democrats. It might be insightful to study the fund-raisers and contributions by the neo-conservative USINPAC to those who voted in favor. Even though the US Senate still has to clear it, after a 71% vote from Congress chances are that this is a done deal. And we are done for as Manmohan tells Bush:
“Mr. President, People of India deeply love you”.
In my initial rage I hurled abuses at both the huggers, especially the turbaned one for having the audacity to lick ass of a depraved criminal using our name, but soon returned to sanity. There is enough insanity going on. At least the turbaned one is displaying some emotion which is otherwise comparable to that of a paper-weight.
For those of you born in the nineties or later, unaware of the word "Krishi Darshan": it is a TV program started in 1966 on Doordarshan - the Indian State sponsored Television channel. It literally translates to "A look at Agriculture".
In the eighties, growing up as an urban kid, it was the most boring program one could imagine watching, but then there was nothing else to watch. The dullest anchors interviewed the dullest speakers on the nature of soil, various low and high productivity seeds and ways to improve crops using chemicals and fertilizers. The National Propaganda and our lie-infested school books harped about how successful the Green Revolution was.
The underlying theme of all propaganda was: hold your head and your cock high because socialist India is going great guns. Jai Jawan, Jai Kisan (Hail the Soldier, Hail the Farmer). And so the pseudo socialist spin went on till 1991 when we were informed by the then finance minister, Dr. Manmohan Singh, that India was about to go bankrupt!
Compared to today, some may remember that as a more innocent time. But that would be a romantic fallacy. Indira's India was as corrupt as today's India. The only difference being that there was a sense of shame in corruption (or maybe even that is my childhood imagination). Today, that shame, imagined or otherwise, has certainly gone away. Now we boldly proclaim our right to plunder and call it "Free Market". And of course a lot more have joined the orgy giving it a notion of democratic participation.
Over the last month, I have been struggling to understand the nuclear deal and its intricacies. It was all made more complex by the acronyms (NSG, ENR, 123, Hyde Act), the cacophony (The Left, the BJP), the babel (Laloo Prasad Yadav, the Indian Media) and then the crisis (The July no-confidence motion against the UPA government). Somewhere in this mayhem, we lost perspective on what this ruckus is all about. Most "expert" opinions seemed to be either following ideology or emotional dribble rather than offering any logical arguments.
To be for it or against it, it is first important to understand it. I will try to explain it as simply and clearly as possible. The Hyde Act is a good place to start. It is an act initiated by the late Republican Rep. Henry J. Hyde and passed by the US Congress in January 2006. Current US policy forbids dealing, in nuclear technology, with nations that are not part of the Nuclear Non-proliferation treaty. Currently India, Pakistan, Israel and North Korea are the only countries that are not part of it. The Hyde Act is an unusual exception made only for India. In fact, both Israel and Pakistan have demanded similar treaties but the US has refused.
While it may be of interest to think about why Uncle Sam is making this exception for India (after all, he's not really your Uncle), I think this line of thought opens up a hornet's nest of other political discussions (China, Afghanistan, India's anti-Iran vote, US hegemony, geopolitics etc.) and takes us away from the most moot question. One that we in India should really be asking.
India needs much more energy for its economy to grow and nuclear energy has been around for almost half a century. There are currently over 30 countries, including India, that are using nuclear power for energy purposes. None of these other nations have any special treaties with the US. So why does India need special permission? Once you ask yourself that question, the cacophonous din begins to die and the puzzle starts making sense.
As Indian mainstream media starts looking more and more like a bad Xerox copy of American media, viewers must equip themselves with the knowledge and vocabulary on how the media helps manufacture consent. This should be required viewing for you and your children, especially since they might be learning fascism at school.
Fans of Radiohead remember that this album was released earlier this year and was available DRM-free as a download at your own price from Radiohead's official website. I mean it was literally a donation based project. I remember having a long discussion with a friend when this album came out. This was also the time when the writers' strike was at its peak.
His position was that the Internet and its vast reach is diminishing artists' ability to create and disseminate their work and only enriching the Record companies. In fact, new kinds of media distribution outlets like Apple, Microsoft etc. were jumping in on the game to share the profits with Sony, Virgin, HMV etc. and artists were getting lesser and lesser than before.
My position was that it had never been easy for artists and from the days of playing local bard in penury to today was not a result of benign companies supporting or helping artists. It was an ever growing world wide access to their work which allowed them better economic success and a more direct relationship to their fans. But this kind of scenario required artists to adapt and problems arose when the change was coming too quickly for some.
In other words, all said and done, the Internet is not the culprit but a volatile catalyst for a different kind of world. Whether that world is good or bad... well that's a separate debate. Besides, there's really no going back.
Okay, just a small note today to inform all Piclens fans that Kalabaaz is now Cool Iris Piclens enabled. If you haven't started using this awesome looking plugin for your browser, then you're missing out on a whole other dimension of web-browsing. So go get it.
You should be able to view all images and video on this site in full-screen 3D with your Piclens plugin. Do let me know your experiences with it in your comments. :)
So when and why would you need it? You'd want to use the threaded type when retrieving any records that have a parent-child relationship. For example in forums or comments you may begin a topic based on subject and find all responses to that particular topic which would essentially be the children of the original topic. And that relationship could be recursive, in the sense, that you may have further children within the topic for a sub-topic. Most comment forums use these kinds of recursive threads.
As promised, we continue the discussion on how to use $model->find and its various types. Earlier we looked at getting neighbors so today let's look at the "list" type. Just like neighbors, we fetch the list using the following method:
But what is the purpose of list?. To understand that, let's look at the output from an actual find method with a "list" type.
There's a benefit to using CAKEPHP to handle all your SQL as opposed to you providing your own, even for complex SQL statements. First of all, you do not have to worry about SQL injection since Cake can sanitize and escape your data for you. You can use pagination with the results and its handled cleanly by the framework. Your program code is more portable and database independent since translation tables take care of specific database type differences such as BOOL vs. TINYTINT etc. Encapsulation is easier when you only have to deal with all your queries through one method - 'find'. And this method can handle most SQL type requests. It may easily be extended to handle more specific types of queries as well. Over the next few days I'll document various ways of building complex queries using pure CAKE and no SQL. Today we'll look at finding neighbors using CAKEPHP.