24 August 2014

The 'un-retiring class' and other tidbits

'The 'un-retiring class'
Mahela Jayawardena retired from Test cricket.  He said his piece.  He talked of being privileged to play alongside great cricketers.  He showed class. And someone said 'class never retires'.  True.  There are classes and classes.  The working class may want to retire but can't. The privileged classes can retire but won't.  Men and women come and go, politicians and political parties have their days in the sun and days in the wilderness.  Through it all, class stays.  Put.  

The beauty of salons
There is a big scandal about beauty culture.  Apparently some unqualified and/or incompetent people are making big money selling 'beauty'.  They could be called 'beauty quacks' one supposes. And now the state is moving into regulating beauty-treatment facilities.  We need such facilities. Beauty is only skin deep, they say.  So if you get the skin right a lot of ugliness can be hidden. Works for people, works for cities too.  And if regulation can weed out quacks who claim they can undo ugliness, there should be regulations for people engaged in other kinds of beautification too.

What color is a refugee?
The court of appeal has put a halt to the deportation of Afghan, Pakistani and Iranian 'refugees' before their asylum claims are fully assessed.  There's a problem of definition here.  It seems that refugees are all brown people.  The truth is that refugees come in all colors.  We had lots of white refugees fleeing disease, religious and political persecution ending up in what's now called the USA.  We had 'undesirables' sent to 'colonies' -- convicts to Australia and bad eggs to South Asia and other parts of the world.  They all became quite respectable.  This has stopped.  But there are people who come to places like Sri Lanka who would never get noticed if they were back home.  Journalists, for example.  INGO personnel. UN workers.  They are all refugees, one might say.  No one is calling them that.  No one is asking them to leave.  They don't have to get stay orders from the courts.  White privilege?

What's wrong with Ranil?
The JVP has said that it will field a presidential candidate but only in the event that UNP leader Ranil Wickremesinghe decides to contest.  Strange decision for a self-proclaimed 'Marxist' party.  What's so special about Ranil, one might ask.  Is it that the JVP dreads a scenario where Ranil is President and would do its best to bring him down (by dividing the opposition vote, for example)?  Does the JVP think that a candidate fielded by the party would get more votes than Ranil (and even more than, say, Mahinda Rajapaksa)?  Is the JVP rooting for Sajith?  Is the JVP a pawn of the UPFA, in a convoluted kind of way?  Lots of questions for Comrade Anura to answer here, that much is evident.  

Kumar David's New Maths"I swear I am not a conspiracy theorist by inclination or habit, but this event to me was a probe, a first flying of the kite, an initial floating of a proposal to introduce Champika Ranawaka as presidential material. But for his chauvinist reputation – I don’t hold it against him that in 1970 or 1971 he belonged to a chauvinist student group that broke up our Vama Samasamajaya anti-JVP assembly in one of the campuses – he is more competent and credible than discredited Mahinda," says Kumar David who clearly doesn't know arithmetic (Champika would have been 5-6 in 1970/71), but then again when it comes to politics he consistently puts 2 and 2 together and ends up in the negative, even though one would expect more from an engineer and one with a doctorate!

Where were the 'boys'?
The TNA wants the UN to find out if human rights were violated by UNP and SLFP governments (or governments led by those parties) since 1974.  Now why is the TNA not asking the UN to check out the LTTE while they are at it?  Are Sampanthan, Sumanthiran and the leader-in-waiting Premachandran suffering from selective amnesia?  Is it that they are now slaves to pro-LTTE funders abroad just as they were slaves to Prabhakaran back in the day?