I never thought I would type these words but Trump, the insult comic with a distinctive hairstyle, is the Republican nominee after his win in yesterday’s Indiana primary. We all knew this moment was coming but were hoping against hope that sanity would prevail among the insane. No such luck for us. We are stuck with the bastard child of the GOP and the so-called liberal media, at least until November. I believe congratulations are in order to the proud parents.
First of all congratulations to the Republican party. Your party’s descent into hell is now complete. You are now the party of Trump. No longer can you hide behind the fig leaf of plausible deniability. Your eight years of relentless Obama hate has reached its logical conclusion. You built it and now there is no running away from it. He embodies your demonization of the Obama coalition in flesh. Good job!
Also congratulations are in order to the brave defenders of truth in the press, especially the both-sides-do-it Pundit class. After grading Bush II on a curve and giving him a pass on all his fuck-ups till a major American city drowned on his watch, you descended like a pack of hyenas on President Obama, 5 minutes after he was sworn in. You gave Trump a platform for his noxious birther nonsense against the President. You aired his every noxious combustible utterance. You must be as proud as Prof. Frankenstein of your creation, now that he has gone on to win the nomination of the Republican party.
Party of Lincoln now the Party of Trump
Just one week after giving a woman sporting white power tattoos a forum, PBS News Hour gave a platform to the known credentialed bigot and author of the Bell Curve, Charles Murray in its weekly segment on economics, Making Sense. This segment usually makes little sense since it is hosted by the economic illiterate and sneering doofus Paul Solman. Solman introduced Murray, as an economist. Murray’s training is in political science not economics.
The topic at hand was the rise of Trump. According to Murray, people support Trump because elites are mean to them. Examples of elites were people in the media, a conservative boogeyman. The grievances of people who support Trump may be legitimate but supporting Trump is going to do zero to alleviate them. Murray’s analysis is plain wrong, Hollywood or the “liberal” media did not create their problems but the 1% favoring policies of tax cutting, deregulation and union busting favored by most Republicans are the cause of their woes, which Murray was mum about.
By the way where can I find this mythical beast of the liberal media? What passes for liberal media on TV these days is nothing more than conventional wisdom soaked, Republican friendly claptrap and PBS (Pure Bull Shit) News Hour is no exception to this trend.
Happy Holi, the festival of colors, that marks the beginning of spring. Holi is the day to let your hair down and have some fun playing with colors, drinking bhang and eating puranpoli. A day when adults have the social sanction to act like kids again. Holi is also the favorite of Hindi movie makers, there seem to be more Holi songs in Hindi movies than that of any of other holiday. Here are some of my favorites.
Lahu Munh Lag Gaya from the 2013 Ramleela: What’s better than seeing Ranveer Singh in a song? Seeing him dance!
Holi Ke Din Dil Khil Jate Hai : Hearts blossom on Holi, from Sholay (Embers). This star studded mid 70s feature directed by Ramesh Sippy, rewrote the rules about how Hindi movies were made. It’s a Western with a masala twist and holds up pretty well after all these years. The look Amitabh’s character gives Jaya’s characters dressed in widow’s whites, watching the festivities from afar just slays me.
Arre Jare Natkhat Na Chule Mera Gunghat from Navrang (Nine Colors) made in 1959. Sandhya’s performance, playing both the male and female parts, makes me wish that I could dance like her.
There are many more which I haven’t included. If you have any suggestions, or other favorites that I have missed, leave it in the comments.
No one can accuse mainstream Hindi movies of being progressive regarding matters concerning gender. We regularly have had fifty year old heroes romancing women in their twenties and mostly interchangeable female stock characters. There is your long suffering mother, your flirtatious but coy virginal heroine, sometimes a hero’s sister or a gangster’s moll. Fully realized female characters with their own motivations that did not fit in these neat boxes have been rare in Hindi cinema. So I am pleasantly surprised with the slate of new movies with fully realized female characters. I would like to see both these movies.
First there is the no nonsense Abha Mathur, the chief police officer in a lawless fictional district in Bihar, where there is little distinction between the elected representatives and the mob. Priyanka Chopra kicks butt both literally and figuratively in Prakash Jha’s Jai Gangajal.
Then there is Neerja, a biopic based on Neerja Bhanot,a flight attendant on the ill fated Pan-Am flight 73. directed by Ram Madhvani . Her presence of mind saved the lives of passengers on board. She died shielding children from bullets, days short of her 23 birthday. She also was a survivor of a bad arranged marriage and familiar face advertising chocolate and crackers on TV. A short life but a consequential one and an inspiration to us all.
Last but not the least, Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s Bajirao Mastani deserves a shout out. The women of Bajirao Mastani, whether it was the dutiful wife Kashi (Priyanka Chopra) or the doting mother Radhabai (Tanvi Azmi) , they were no pushovers and had no problems either speaking their mind or acting on their own agendas. My quick review here.
This trend warms the cockles of my cold cynical heart. Any other women centric movies you have seen lately or would like to see?
So far I have only seen one of the nominees for the Best Picture, was glad to see it get the best picture award. Spotlight was a brilliant movie, I was riveted from start to finish. Excellent story, I was rooting for Mark Ruffalo to win the best supporting actor Oscar.On my list to see next, Bridge of Spies, Brooklyn and Mad Max: Fury Road. Here is the complete list of winners and now for the more important things!
Chris Rock was funnier and more biting than last few Oscar hosts.
Best Dressed Winner : Brie Larson
Best Dressed Presenter: Tina Fey
Best Acceptance Speech : Mark Rylance, the winner of the supporting actor award. British actors give really good speeches don’t they? I wonder what their secret is, elocution competitions in school?
Best Presenter: Sasha Baron Cohen in his Ali G persona. Question: Has he ever interviewed Trump as Ali G?
Best Musical Performance: Lady Gaga, Till it Happens to You. I loved the song, first time that I had ever heard it.
BTW Do you like my outfit?
I Can Has Gravity?
Gravity Kitteh made it to the first page of ICHC/lolcats this morning just like Soviet kitteh did a couple of weeks ago. Don’t know why but Soviet kittehs has a funny. I especially love the pissed off expression of the feline! Other FP lols here
Canary Got the Cat
Lawyers or people dressed as lawyers attacked the Jawaharlal Nehru University student Kanhaiya Kumar in court and manhandled him before his court appearance. First they tell you what to eat, then they tell you what to think, if you don’t comply they beat you up and jail you on spurious charges. This is happening in India’s capital Delhi. This is what Delhi’s police commissioner had to say about yesterday’s scuffle.
There are allegations that certain press reporters, and some students belonging to JNU, were roughed up. We are looking into it. Excesses were committed from all sides, but they have been extremely minor in nature. To my knowledge, nobody has received serious injuries. They are more in the shape of scuffles,”
Perhaps it is time to change India’s motto from Satyameva Jayate (Truth alone Wins) to Ham Satya nahin Sahen Kar Sakte ( We can’t handle the truth).
This JNU fracas is the latest in ongoing effort by RSS-BJP combine to discredit the left leaning student organizations and its leaders in India’s institutes of higher learning and install its own stooges wherever possible. Its the latest in the trend that started at Indian Institute of Technology-Madras when a student organization critical of Mr. Modi was banned, or the overtly political appointment of BJP stooge and a small time actor, Gajendra Chauhan to head India’s premier creative institute or the targeting of student leader Rohith Vemula, which lead to his suicide, earlier this year.
Has the Modi Sarkar (government) declared a war against it students?
Credit : Telegraph Calcutta
The campus of the Jawaharlal Nehru University is roiled with protests. Protests against the arrest of student leader Kanhaiya Kumar who has been charged with sedition for a speech in which he criticized Rashtriya Swayam Sevak Sangh, the parent organization of the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party,
They are the ones who burnt the Tricolour. They are followers of Savarkar who apologised to the British.
They were British stooges. I dare them to file a defamation case against me. I say that the RSS’s history is of siding with the British. These traitors today are distributing certificates of nationalism.
Full translated text of the speech here.
The photograph above is outside the court house complex of Patiala House, eye witness testimony by Telegraph’s journalist here. A BJP state legislator from Delhi, has been caught on camera as one of the perpetrators in the assault photographed above. The person on the ground was later identified as Ameeque Jamai of the Communist Party of India. Several journalists were also attacked.
Credit: Indian Express
More photos here.