Tag Archives: Obama

Doomsday scenario: What could have been…

I saw the following news item today (26th October, 2012):

Guatemala’s Mayan people accused the government and tour groups on Wednesday of perpetuating the myth that their calendar foresees the imminent end of the world for monetary gain.

“We are speaking out against deceit, lies and twisting of the truth, and turning us into folklore-for-profit. They are not telling the truth about time cycles,” charged Felipe Gomez, leader of the Maya alliance Oxlaljuj Ajpop.

My first reaction was – “Et tu Mayans, then fall doomsday.”

But does one really need to be that pessimistic?

I fear one does. (Warning: Those who did not pay taxes this year, and those who have purchased costly Doomsday kits are not likely to find this article amusing.)

The doomsday is every-day, like mothers’ day, for we are dying every day – of cancer and pollution and terror and apathy. As on date, a one-off climax seems unlikely.

A shame really, for it could have ended a number of things at one go – like – religious hatred, dependence on petroleum, global warming, celebrity news, politicians in general and Obama-Romney election campaign in particular.

The suspicious characters snooping around my blog (see earlier posts on the subject), seem to have changed jobs. Or else they now know that I too am clueless, and are snooping around Assange now. If they are, they are wasting their time. All that they would get there would be clueless US officials exchanging cables (in times of internet) with their embassy staff around the world, discussing, confidentially, what is commonly known and openly written about in newspapers.

It doesn’t take ‘intellegence’ to know the kind of dope that Assange would give them:

“Top Secret: US Embassy at Tehran to Washington: Iran may be on to something. Our sources saw a masseur going into the Presidential compound. Kindly advise further action…..”

(A return cable from Washington, three days later) “Hire that masseur. Independent verification shows he is good. We hinted to NYT that Iran is on to something. The idiots read too much into the tip and published a front page scoop naming un-named sources in foreign office that Iran has already tested a nuclear device of unknown power. Try to limit the damage in your private talks with the authorities in Iran. Convey our private apologies. We will, however, not confirm or deny the reports here. Chio.”

This sort of intelligence gathering does not lead to world wars, even of the Saddam kind. In fact, with the Saddam fiasco, all dictators have lost appetite for stupid ‘satellite / cable / channel’ wars, where they are sure to lose, whatever they do. No one is likely to succeed where even masters like Comical Ali failed to win laughs or audience sympathy.

Doomsday would have had a salutary effect on World Economy, which seems to have become a problem child, always seeking attention. The cockroaches, the most likely survivors of any medium sized doomsday, would have cared two hoots for New York Exchange, or the right rate for the dollar. It would also have solved the dilemma over EU, which has been exercising the minds of Europeans since the time of Napoleon.

Meanwhile, the kids can be given following essay topics to keep them occupied: What I will do on the Doomsday, or, What I will tell God when I reach heaven on Doomsday. They just might come up with something remotely funny. As for me, I give up on this article, which seems to be going nowhere, just like our world.

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Doomsday Scenario: Be prepared for a letdown, guys

As we creep closer to December 21, the D-date, it is but natural that we keep a sharp lookout for the tell tale signs of a buildup. A doomsday is not an everyday affair – lots of planning and moving of furniture must go into the preparations, if it is to be successfully carried out. Instead, what do we see? A mildly disrupted weather, no big Tsunami or Typhoon. Mad gunmen shooting the innocents, no big 9-11. A few Peruvian gentlemen snooping around my blog (see earlier entries in this category), no kidnapping and imprisonment (of me) in the Sun Temple in the middle of the Andes.

I know what some of you are thinking – let’s get over with it. You are thinking of Sherlock Holmes, and what he said about the dog that did not bark. You feel that the calm is deceptive, even deliberate ploy to lull the people into complacency. Maybe. But I humbly submit that an event of the order of world destruction would leave some tell tale signs.

I hate to be a prophet of doom – and I will not profit by it – but the ending of Mayan calendar is, in my book, as significant as Nostradamus’ prophecies, if not more. I am not running down the good old Nostradamus, but even his best friend would agree that his verses mean nothing until an event has already taken place – and even then, his friends have to really work hard to fit it into facts. Compare this with the Mayans – they have actually stuck their head out, giving an actual date at which time would come to a full stop for the humans.

But the Mayans are running against time. Let us, once again see where we stand, scientifically:

  1. USA has not nominated any successor for Osama, or even Saddam, and so no one in the world today is sufficiently encouraged or has the confidence to plan something big. American Presidents used to find the evil incarnate pretty fast, but Obama is such a letdown. No wonder he is facing trouble in his reelection campaign. In any case the presidential race is probably the most boring one in American history, but that cannot be taken as an evidence for anything, other than the fact that Gore, Bush, Palin and Clinton are not contesting.
  2. No standoff looms large on the superpower front. The Dragon will take another ten years to put in its bid for being ‘the’ superpower, with a nuke standoff in the South China Sea or in Korea. We cannot look forward to China to provide the fireworks this time around.
  3. Many countries in the Middle East are grappling with civil movements for regime change. No one has time for the Arab-Israel serial wars. Even an ultra-right Isreali PM is not making the headlines, and the world has again forgotten the Palestinians. Post Yassir Arafat, Time has no one from the region to put on its cover (unfortunate development this for the Indian PM, who was dubbed as ‘the underachiever’, merely because Time did not have Arafat around to be called names.)
  4. No asteroid or comet is coming hurtling towards earth. Our satellites and observatories are not reading any solar flares of unusual ferocity or any other mysterious stellar phenomena to threaten earth. No viral outbreak, no sudden global warming. No, science is calm and disciplined, working hard in the laboratories from behind its horn glasses.

And therefore, after sifting through the available evidence, I would have to reluctantly put forward my latest theory on the Mayans. It is as follows: The Mayan wise men, the calendar makers, must have got tired of making useless and endless calendars, and may have bluffed their superiors by claiming an end of time itself. That must have rid them of the need of making more calendars.

(I hope their conscience would have pricked them at playing such a dirty game on the future generations. I can very well imagine the following scene at the Andes, that morning, thousands of years ago – “Oh, well, maybe we should not have said that,” said the chief calendar maker to his assistant, full of self loathing, to which the assistant said, “Do not fret so, sire. Maybe the world would end before that date itself and our ruse would not be discovered.” The wise old man nodded pensively, just to humor the young man, though he knew that that was not true.)

Sorry guys, be prepared for a letdown. The much hyped D day is not likely to strike. And, for once, I am not sorry for being let down.

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The underachievers: Top five contenders

Nobody knows why The Time chose Dr Manmohan Singh as the Underachiever of the year. True to our US-loving psyche, our very own Outlook magazine has paid back the compliment, most graciously, by featuring President Obama on its cover with a similar title.

Now there is so much heartburn in the country that one wonders whether it was an American ploy to sow seeds of disunity with this move. The opposition parties like BJP and CPM say that their record of the last few years speaks for itself, and that it is not the business of ‘outsiders’ to decide who is the underachiever-est of us all. Meanwhile the leaders of these parties sulk and plan a counter offensive that would prove, conclusively, that the tag rightfully belongs to them. Ms Mamata Bannerjee has, it is widely believed, a natural talent and a head-start in the race.

But I seriously feel that the true under-achievers are to be found elsewhere, and that they must be recognized. Generally, we all know that the common man in India is the rightful owner of this coveted title, but to be more specific, I would submit my top five contenders for your kind consideration.

 

  1. The Indian corporate: Taking manufacturing growth into negative territory at a time when there is a growing demand from the middle classes – can only be the work of a hard-working underachiever. Moreover, the image and political management of the Corporates is in tatters, and they have lost their grip over the polity. What sort of an aspiring capitalist society is this where the propaganda machine of the private sector cannot rule the mindscape?
  2. The Indian Voter: With a catchment area of over a billion people, the Indian voter is unable to choose a handful of good leaders for the Parliament and Assemblies! Their sheer dedication in choosing some of worst odd-balls from the society must be recognized as the handiwork of a dedicated underachiever.
  3. The Indian cricket team: At a time when the Indian captain M S Dhoni has the probably the most talented set of players in his team, it must have taken special strategy to lose series after series since our World Cup victory. For the consistency shown in under-performance, the team needs to be recognized.
  4. The Indian Geek: Blessed with brains and an IIT degree, the Geek has disappointed by being always the follower, never the leader, in the field of big ideas; an ideal worker rather than a conceptualizer, or a brand creator.
  5. The Indian Media: So much freedom, so little result. All the ideal settings going to waste, like the grains that are rotting in Indian go-downs. The pathetic performance of Indian media is recognized and commented-on by all, and they are definitely the top contenders for the title.

 

The competition is tough, and it is not likely that there will be a consensus. Therefore the lucky Dr Singh will continue to rule – and that is as it should be. If I missed out on a contender who is more worthy than the above five, do to submit the name/category, at least for the record. I have no doubt that history will judge them better.

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Top ten best / worst doomsday scenarios

 

Since the futurologists are laughing all the way to the bank, promising various doomsday dates, it flashed to me that I can also rake in with a few likes.

So here are the top ten best doomsday scenarios (you can add more, if you too are feeling doomsy):

10. Pakistan is on the verge of a Cricket World Cup Final win against India, when suddenly the doomsday strikes, cheating Pakistan of a famous victory.

9.  Doomsday strikes early morning when everyone is sleeping. People wake to find themselves already in the Garden of Heaven with all their near and dear ones.

8.  Doomsday strikes, but just in the nick of time small green Martians come in hundreds of spaceships for rescue. They are so impressed, that they decide to make Obama the President of United Peoples’ Republic of Mars.

7.  Doomsday is selective – it strikes through an unidentified AIDS-like virus that kills only the rapists.

6.  Doomsday strikes and neatly removes all material existence from earth, leaving behind conscious souls. In other words, we all are left here, fully conscious, but without the bodies that age and die. We also meet all souls, who had died earlier. Only those with Swiss Bank accounts are depressed.

5.  Doomsday is Buddhist in nature – there is a sudden and total oblivion or nirvana. No scope of a good or bad scenario here.

4.  Doomsday strikes, and it is revealed that our final destination would be as per our fantasies (it is a benevolent-liberal regime up there). Most people land up in harems, casinos, and luxury yachts – only a few end up in heaven. The lawyers reach a giant court-room where they will argue their cases brilliantly – till eternity. The super-beautiful girls land up in front of a mirror.

3.  The world is ruled by a council of Plato, Socrates, Aristotle, ancient Indian and Babylonian sages, Mahatma Gandhi, Mother Teresa and one hundred other chosen souls. Politics is banned.

2.  Doomsday strikes, and all the men dissapear from earth. Only women are left in the world…Need we say more?

1. Doomsday strikes. We all reach heaven. But due to the sudden catastrophe, all our Good-Evil record is lost (it was kept somewhere on earth). Due to the goof-up, everybody is allowed inside the pearly gates.

And now for the ten worst doomsday scenarios:

10.  The doomsday is Biblical. There shall be ten plagues in the world lasting for a hundred years, the land shall be full of frogs, and there shall be famine and misery lasting for another hundred years….. In short, a long drawn programme.

9.  Doomsday strikes, all reach the gates of Heaven, are queued up (in order of age), and the Judges at the gate are issuing entry passes strictly on basis on goodness record. There is no politician to bribe your way through. AND there is no money to bribe them with!! (There are no cell-phones to call anyone to pull strings.)

8.  A literary agent from New York calls me late in the night – he has just seen my blog, and is impressed. He is about to offer a fat package for my first novel, when the earth starts shaking, and he shouts in the phone – “That damn movie was right. It does start from New York…”

7.  Doomsday strikes, but it is not the way people anticipated. It is just the end of human dominance – Super intelligent cockroaches take over the world and make humans their slaves.

6.  Doomsday strikes. It is a ‘science-fictiony’ doomsday, where space-time is warped in such a way that all of us become infants again – we have to go through school, exams, growing up, pimples and heart-burns again.

5. Doomsday strikes. We all reach heaven. It is nothing like anyone had anticipated – Heaven is an exact replica of earth!!

4.  Doomsday strikes and it is a Matrix like scene. Geeks rule the Cyber-Heaven, and change all rules, everything, every fifteen days. There are frequent crashes, bugs and viral attacks. Cyber-Heaven is divided into two camps, and a Cold War is going on. The President of one faction is Bill Gates and the Chief Patron of the other is Steve Jobs.

3. Doomsday strikes. We all reach heaven. But there also they are experimenting with democracy. The doomsday only adds about hundred thousand more politicians to the already crowded heavenly Parliament. People grumble that things are not as they were earlier.

2.   Doomsday strikes only women. Only men are left in the world…Need we say more?

  1. Doomsday strikes. We all reach heaven. Heaven is being ruled by Osama bin Laden.

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