TJ on January 30th, 2013

I grew up at a time when men were not supposed to cry …… and certainly not to do so in a public setting. It really was somewhat absurd because the expectation was that it was not “manly” to show such emotions and the thing to do was to repress them. Perhaps it was British […]

Continue reading about The times are a changin’ ………..

TJ on November 30th, 2012

Some thoughts regarding the recent presidential election: The saying “If you’re not a liberal when you’re 20, you have no heart. If you’re not a conservative when you’re 40, you have no head” is widely and wrongly ascribed to Winston Churchill. In actual fact, the phrase originated with Francois Guisot, a French statesman who was […]

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The relationship between Americans and the British and how they view each other is complicated and interesting. For obvious reasons Americans feel they share a common heritage with the British more so than people from other countries. But I know from my days as a student in the UK, there is a mildly contemptuous attitude […]

Continue reading about Blimey! Is this really what we want in the US?

TJ on March 6th, 2012

I was shocked to hear about the death of Steve Bridges whose uncanny impressions of George W Bush were hilarious and always done without any malice. He was only 49 years old. As I watched one of his more memorable imitations of Bush at the White House Correspondents Association Dinner – an annual fixture of […]

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What are the odds of someone being born in the 18th century having grandchildren – yes, GRANDCHILDREN – who are alive in the 21st century? Pretty infinitesimal most people would say and they would be right. But a confluence of factors resulted in just such a thing happening with none other than the tenth president […]

Continue reading about More presidential trivia – but a truly remarkable fact

TJ on November 26th, 2011

Some interesting facts and trivia about US presidents: Eight presidents were born before the founding of the nation Every president was born in one of only nineteen (arguably twenty) of the fifty states: these states are Arkansas, California, Connecticut, Georgia, Hawaii, Illinois, Iowa, Kentucky, Massachusetts, Missouri, Nebraska, New Hampshire, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, […]

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TJ on November 10th, 2011

I am a political junkie and have been one since I was a teenager in Kenya during the height of the independence movement in that country. To give you a sense of how much of a political junkie I was even then, I attended a political gathering with my parents being addressed by Tom Mboya […]

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TJ on October 23rd, 2011

Part of my regular TV viewing is a show that airs on weekdays called “Morning Joe”. It focuses mainly on political events but also has a hodge podge of other issues. It is hosted by Joe Scarborough, a former Republican Congressman from Florida and Mika Brezinski, the daughter of Zbigniew Brezinski, the former National Security […]

Continue reading about From the sublime to the ridiculous

TJ on September 11th, 2011

The attack on 9/11 is one of those events similar to the assassination of JFK, the Challenger explosion and other significant events ………. it is one of those occasions that one remembers exactly where one was when the event occurred. I was at home when my step-daughter, Anu, who was then staying with us called […]

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Senator Everett Dirksen, the highly regarded former Republican senator from Illinois, is supposed to have said during a speech arguing for restraints in spending: “A billion here, a billion there, and pretty soon you’re talking about real money”. If Dirksen were alive today he would say the same thing but it would no longer be […]

Continue reading about “You can fool some of the people all of the time”

TJ on March 29th, 2010

They say that beauty is in the eye of the beholder – perhaps, the same can be said for health care reform. Barack Obama’s health care reform which goes under the title – H.R. 4872, The Health Care & Education Affordability Reconciliation Act of 2010 -‏ is now law. To describe it as “reform” is […]

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TJ on February 28th, 2010

The heading for this post is a well-known saying about how numbers can bolster a weak argument depending on how they are interpreted. Add to the mix the use of anecdotal information that can be cited to bolster a point of view and we get to a couple of issues that I have been involved […]

Continue reading about “Lies, damned lies and statistics”!

TJ on December 17th, 2009

I voted for Barack Obama in the presidential election – a vote that was predicated on the policy positions he enunciated as well as his charisma and his life history. The criticisms leveled at him by Republicans that he lacked the experience with a resume that was just too thin to be president had merit […]

Continue reading about Buyer’s remorse or unrealistic expectations?

TJ on November 22nd, 2009

When Sarah Palin was selected by John McCain as his running mate, I was intrigued by the choice. On a personal level, I felt that her decision to give birth to a baby with full knowledge that he had Down’s Syndrome, was an act of grace and courage – and I admired her for it. […]

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TJ on November 19th, 2009

In 1994, we were living in Southern California when the Northridge earthquake occurred. It was 6.8 on the Richter scale and took place in the early hours of the morning while we were asleep. Our house literally shook for what seemed an eternity but was actually less than a minute. It felt like King Kong […]

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TJ on October 31st, 2009

Barack Obama has probably appointed more Indian-Americans to positions in his administration than any former president. They range from Kal Penn whose role is as a liason to the Asian-American community to Vivek Kundra who is Federal Chief Information Officer. But there are several others and they are listed in this article in the Hindustan […]

Continue reading about Barack Obama & Vinay Thummalapally

Any insurance is, by definition, discriminatory since premiums are based on actuarial determinations of risk. For example, life insurance premiums are higher for men than for women because the life expectancy of the former is less than the latter. People who are engaged in high-risk activities such as mountain climbing are also subject to higher […]

Continue reading about Should a “fat tax” be part of health care reform?

Let me start by saying that I voted for Barack Obama but I feel the Nobel Peace prize award to President Obama was premature. He has not done enough during his nine months in office to justify the award. Sure, he has proclaimed some noble goals and has made a concerted attempt to integrate the […]

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TJ on October 3rd, 2009

It was Euripedes who said: “Those whom the Gods seek to destroy they first make mad.” It is a quotation that seems appropo as one sees the far right-wing in the US getting increasingly unhinged. Having lived in the US for almost 38 years, I have never come across a time when things were as […]

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There is a controversy in the US about where Barack Obama was born ie was he born in the US or in Kenya. If it were the latter, under the constitution, Obama would be precluded from the presidency. Obama has provided a birth certificate establishing his birth place as being Hawaii but it has not […]

Continue reading about “Birthers”, racism and the “dumbing down” of America

TJ on September 11th, 2009

“I want my country back” is the sometimes plaintive, occasionally frustrated and frequently angry cry of a fringe section of the Republican party. I never fully understood what these people meant until I read a couple of Patrick Buchanan’s columns Pat Buchanan has decidedly right wing views but he is one a handful of conservative […]

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