Once in a blue moon is here! Check out the news report about the origin of “once in a blue moon” (which btw is today in the US!). It is supposed to be the second full moon in a calendar month.
If you are looking for a place to enjoy some snow, close to the bay area but not as far as Lake Tahoe, Bear Valley is a great option. It is not as crowded as Tahoe and is definitely more kid-friendly. If you are into wines there are quite a few wineries in the area too. The drive to Bear Valley is through Sonora, a quiet and pretty town.
India’s tour of Bangladesh is nothing to write home about as pointed out by the Indian skipper, Rahul Dravid. It just confirmed what was already known — that Bangladesh has a long way to go before becoming a team worthy of Test status.
- Dinesh Karthick once again proved himself to be a fighter. His real test will however be on the England tour. Hopefully, the electors won’t fall back on the hopelessly out of form Sehwag.
- Jaffer fought back after a pair in the first test, to ensure a berth on the tour of England.
- Tendulkar scored two centuries in a row. For now, his critics might take a break, but he won’t keep his detractors away until he can do something similar on the tour of England.
- Rajesh Pawar will hopefully get another tour to prove himself and won’t be dumped after being benched for the two Tests.
Overall, India lost a golden opportunity to unearth some young talent by continuing to play Sachin, Sourav and the like. Their centuries mean little besides helping beef up their averages to cover for failures on the tour of England!
The Yahoo acquisition is still very much a possibility for many reasons. (Not to mention, Yahoo now has a new CFO with deep ties in the banking industry).Yahoo is still the #2 player in the search space. With Panama, Yahoo has managed to ape Google’s Adwords to a great extent. Further, Yahoo still has a huge market of advertisers, second only to Google. If you disregard the overlap between Microsoft and Yahoo services, and look at only the search and advertising market, a Yahoo Microsoft marriage still seems a distinct possibility with plenty of synergy despite the aQuantive acquisition.
Mr. Wolfowitz had apparently rubbed many on the wrong side at the World Bank and to make matters worse had landed himself in a scandal. His opponents pounced on the opportunity and saw this as a way to get rid of him. They accused him of being “unethical” among other things.
Mr. Wolfowitz being a hand picked appointee of President Bush complicated the matter even more. His opponents were threatening to fire him and to find a replacement candidate. Historically, the US has had control of the top job of the World Bank which has been an appointee of the US President. In short, there was a conflict and three affected parties.
What followed was classic “win-win” politics. Mr. Wolfowitz agreed to quit provided the World Bank withdrew their accusations against him. The President agreed to the compromise, provided he could appoint his replacement. In short, it was time to for some seemingly friendly kisses, although of the goodbye kind! However, the World Bank Group Staff Association, issued a statement trashing both Mr. Wolfowitz and the Wold Bank Board!
While Mr. Wolfowitz has finally done the necessary thing by resigning, he has damaged the institution and continues to damage it every day that he remains as its President. He cannot continue to be the face of the World Bank. He has demeaned the Bank, insulted the staff, diminished its clients, and dragged this institution through the mud. He put his own interests before those of the institution. In making a statement of gratitude to Mr. Wolfowitz, the Board has done the same. They have attempted to save his face and in so doing have destroyed that of the institution that they are entrusted to protect.
The World Bank Group needs to rebuild its credibility immediately, regain its focus and devote its full attention to its clients. This cannot be done while Mr. Wolfowitz remains in his position as President. See all the related statements here.
Its a pity that similar political crisis resolution could not be achieved prior to the Iraq war, given that both President Bush and Mr. Wolfowitz were the key players at that time as well.
The lack of penetration of Indian bowlers is not new. So a five bowler combination would make a lot of sense. Ahead of upcoming tours it is important to test out Rajesh Pawar in particular at the international level. Romesh Powar meanwhile deserves a spot for his continued good performance at the domestic level. With Kumble being an automatic choice, this means going in with three spinners and two seamers. As for the seamers, Zaheer, who has been belted around enough by the Bangla boys, could use a break. Munaf has proven that he has the wicket-taking ability. On the other hand, VRV does generate a fair amount of pace, which could prove as a good combination along with Munaf. With five bowlers in the playing eleven that leaves room for five batsmen plus Dhoni as the keeper. If Dravid has the “guts” to experiment, he should make some tough calls and not hesitate to “rest” one or more of the veterans. However, in all likelihood, the same veterans will turn up and amass centuries while the younger folk sit out the match.
My Guess of India’s Likely 11 (packed with batsmen and just four bowlers): Jaffer, Ganguly, VVS, Sachin, Dravid, Yuvraj, Dhoni, Kumble, Powar, Zaheer, Munaf. Twelfth Man: Karthik
Title: The Caged Virgin — An Emancipation Proclamation for Women & Islam
Author: Ayaan Hirsi Ali
It’s almost impossible to argue with someone who has had first hand experiences of such extreme kind. At the same time one can’t help but notice the author’s impatience and a desire for quick, seemingly impractical, rapid fixes to the problem. Firstly, what is true of Somalian Muslim society might not necessarily hold true in the rest of the Muslim world. Besides, the author goes to wild extremes –“Name a single Muslim who had made a discovery in science or technology, or changed the world through artistic achievement. There is none.” She also blames Western Governments for not doing enough under the pretext of Multiculturalism. In general, there is a George Bush-like “thrust freedom and democracy down peoples’ throats” feel to the author’s stand and ideology, except that its directed towards Islam. It’s easy to offend a billion+ followers of a religion because of personal, traumatic life experiences, but to expect to fix it by taking it head on is no different from the failed US policy in Iraq.
I found the book quite repetitive. The same issues were alluded to over and over in different parts of the book. There are sections of the book that are are hard to appreciate fully without a better understanding of Dutch politics. Overall, I felt that the book could have been organized better with the two chapters mentioned above getting greater prominence in overall flow of the book. Maybe this had to do with the fact that the book was translated from Dutch.
There is no question that this book is a daring, life-risking effort by a woman who has lived through some very difficult experiences and yet managed to work her way up to a visible position. This in itself is commendable, and a book derived from such experiences, should make a worthwhile read. However, a word of caution before you read this book. If you are a progressive Muslim (one who can stand Islam taking more than a few hard punches), this is a must-read. If you are a Muslim who is easily offended, this book might be one to avoid. If you are a “Islamophobe” (I came across this term for the first time in this book!) you are sure to lap this up to further shore up your prejudices. If you are a non-Muslim, you’ll get a detailed exposure to the state of women in many Islamic cultures and a call to action from someone who has been through it all first hand.
Mongia’s addition seems to have definitely strengthened the bowling department. Powar despite being expensive, clearly has the ability to take wickets unlike Harbhajan Singh. Zaheer Khan does not seem to have recovered from the belting he received from Bangladesh in the World Cup. India would do well to give him a rest and try RP Singh for the next ODI. At a minimum in his current form, he might break a nose or two! 🙂
In the hot and oppressive weather in Bangladesh, it might be best to focus on spin. This could mean bringing in Piyush Chawla for the next ODI in place of one of the seamers, possibly Sreesanth, since Munaf is a safer bet.
India’s opening combination is still a problem and is unikely to end until Sehwag is given a long rest. Bringing in Uthappa for Sehwag would be a good step, but its unlikely to happen given that both Shastri and Dravid appear to have endless faith in Sehwag.
As India take on Bangladesh, the pressure will clearly be on India. New coach, minus Sachin and Ganguly, plenty of rumors about friction in the team, and the big loss in the World Cup, all combined, is bound to put Dravid and his boys under tremendous pressure. The Bangla boys on the other hand, have little to lose. If they win, they can claim that the world cup win was no fluke. On the other hand if they lose Bashar will attribute it to a poor show on the day, a slow start after a break etc.
With Shastri in charge, at a minimum, one can expect some reasonable control over the media and its endless speculation. But first, he and the rest of the team management will have to show some results. The pressure is going to be all around. An otherwise boring series might just turn out to be an interesting one!
Google is growing from strength to strength. A lucrative advertising industry is at stake. Yahoo’s Panama might have been an improvement over what Yahoo had before, but its in no way strong enough to pose a challenge to Google. Besides with the recent management exodus, the peanut butter memo-gate, the none to impressive quarterly results, and a shaky top management, Yahoo has hordes of challenges at hand.
As for Microsoft, their search and advertising strategy is simply way behind. It is struggling to get a foothold in this space and with each passing day, Google is expanding its presence and reach, thanks to its growing dominance of the search market. For an advertiser, the default choice is to advertise with the network that has the greatest audience. Moreover, once you start using Google Adwords and get familiar with it, you need something more compelling to change. It is almost like Microsoft’s hold over the desktop but certainly not there yet. But unless, the Yahoo-MS move fast, Google is going to be even harder to dislodge from a potentially huge advertising market.
So do two losers in the search and advertising market make a winner? Probably not. But at least it will pose a bigger challenge to Google, provided they can get over the integration issues that are likely to come with so much product/service overlap.