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Just Shoot Me

Bala, 28, Gordon Gekko in the making, pseudo-intellectual, cynic, bibliophile, obsessive compulsive ranter...

Vallavan Trilogy

January 29, 2009

If you like masala movies, these are the three films you ought to watch :

1) Vallavanukku Vallavan
2) Iru Vallavargal
3) Vallavan oruvan

All three films were released between 1965 and 1967. All were Modern Theatres productions and are great masala movies. I dont believe there is a single original idea in these three but they do have tight screenplays. Way better than over hyped crap like villu or padikkadhavan (seriously who in the right mind pays 100 rs to watch vijay?)


posted by Bala, 8:56 PM | link | 0 comments |

Bye-Election Blues or How i never worried about Thirumangalam

January 27, 2009

In Tamil Nadu Bye Elections are (almost) always won by the ruling party. The reason is simple - the electorate is not stupid enough to antogonize the party in power. A snub to the "AaLum Katchi" means inviting payback through neglect and non allocation of funds. Hence they pocket whatever money that is doled out and elect the ruling party candidate.

How good is the above "analysis"?. The relevant data is here to investigate. There have been 67 bye elections in Tamil Nadu since 1952 (68 if you count Thirumangalam). Of those only 8 have been lost by the ruling party (or its alliance partners). And off those 8, there are a lot of "special cases":

1) 2004 - Mangalore was lost by ADMK due to the election being held together with the parliamentary elections. ADMK lost all 40 parliamentary seats and along with them mangalore
2)1999 - Natham was lost by DMK due to the four way split of the vote after TMC parted ways with DMK.
3)1991 - Harbour was lost by ADMK/Congress, as the bye election was held immediately after the assembly elections. Karunanidhi initially won in Harbour, but resigned the seat instead of going to the assembly.
4)1984 - Mayuram. DMK won the seat in a bye election in a squeaker
5)1980 - Anna Nagar. Same as case no 3. MK resigned after a assembly election rout and DMK retained the seat
6)1980 - Usilampatti. ADMK lost the seat to Forward Block.
7)1957 - Mudukulathoor. Congress loses to Muthuramalinga Thevar backed independent
8)1952 - Kangeyam. Congress loses to independent.

So that makes a meagre 12% success rate for "Edhir Katchis" in bye elections. And for 10000 (give or take a few thousand) rupees for a vote, ADMK had no chance with Thirumangalam.


posted by Bala, 9:00 PM | link | 0 comments |

The futility of culture conservatives

January 26, 2009

Kalachara Kavalars are hilarious. Enjoy a letter from one such circa 1949..

ஆபாசம் அகலுமா?

நானும் என் மனைவியுமாக, தமிழ்ப் படங்கள் பார்க்கச் சென்றதின் விளைவு இன்று எனக்கு படம் பார்க்க 144 - மனைவியால்!!..... காரணம் படங்களில் வரும் ஆபாசக் காட்சி தான்.

படங்கள் ஒவ்வ்வொன்றிலும் நம் நடிகையர் 'மல்லாந்து படுக்கும்' கட்டங்கள் வந்தே தீருகின்றன. என்ன எண்ணத்துடன் இவ்வாறு காட்சிகள் அமைக்கப்படுகின்றனவோ கடவுளுக்குத்தான் வெளிச்சம்! அவ்வாறு எல்லையாகக் கருதப்படும்போது, அத்துடன் நின்று விட்டால் ஆபாசத்தின் அளவுகோல் நீண்டு விடாது. ஆனால் அவர்கள் மல்லாந்து படுத்த பின்னர் இரு கைகளையும் தலைப்ப்றமாக நீட்டிக் கொள்ளுகிறார்கள் அப்போது தான் நீண்ட பெருமூச்சு விடுகிறார்கள். ஆபாசத்தின் எல்லை இங்கேதான் அளவு மீறுகின்றது. மக்களின் கீழ்த்தர உணர்ச்சி கிண்டி விடப்படுகின்றது. படம் பார்க்கும் பெண்மணிகளின் கண்கள் வெறுப்புடன் வேறு திசையை நோக்குகின்றன. அறிஞர்களும் கணவான்களும் இதை எக்கண் கொண்டு பார்க்கிறார்களோ? இந்த கோரக் காட்சி வாலிபர்கள் மனதைப் பெரிதும் கவர்கிறது. இதனால் அவர்கள் தவறான வழிகளில் செல்லவும் நேரிடும். இந்த நிலை மாறாவிடில் 'கலை' என்ற பதத்திற்கே சினிமா உலகில் இடமிருக்காமற் போய் விடக் கூடும். 'மிகவும் கீழ்த்தர உணர்ச்சிகளைப் பரப்பும் சாதனமல்ல சினிமா - கலையை வளர்க்கும் அருங்கலை'. என்ற உண்மையை படத் தயாரிப்பாளர்கள் மனதில் கொண்டாலன்றி கதிமோட்சமில்லை.

பாலசுப்ரமணியன் (பெரும்பன்னியூர்)
"பொதுஜனம் பேசுகிறார்" பகுதி; குண்டூசி இதழ்
டிசம்பர், 1949

Source : தியடோர் பாஸ்கரனின் சித்திரம் பேசுதடி
posted by Bala, 10:02 AM | link | 10 comments |

The last laugh

January 22, 2009

You know it is bad, when you get the fucking Economist arguing for nationalizing banks..


posted by Bala, 9:48 PM | link | 0 comments |

Meanwhile, in Iceland...

There is Rioting... Let me see, They got into trouble, basically because they spent money they didnt have and now they are rioting. Enna idhu, sinna piLLathanama irukku!!!.

My suggestion for them is this : catch all "free market" types you can find and sacrifice them to appease market gods. I know a few who deserve to get their heads chopped.

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posted by Bala, 1:08 PM | link | 0 comments |

The poor bearded guy..

January 19, 2009

Old-fashioned voodoo economics — the belief in tax-cut magic — has been banished from civilized discourse. The supply-side cult has shrunk to the point that it contains only cranks, charlatans, and Republicans.

so says the one my mother calls "the poor bearded guy"(dhadi vachuttu paakka paavama irukkararu). I wasn't aware that she regularly reads his syndicated column in The Hindu and she wasn't aware that he got the Economics Nobel this year. I was trying to discredit supply siders / Ayn Rand acolytes to her and was having a hard time until i mentioned Krugman's name. She is the ultimate utilitarian/moral relativist and hence very difficult to convince about the evil banality of anything. But having "the poor bearded guy" in your corner goes a long way in convincing people about the havoc wreaked by supply siders on the world.


posted by Bala, 7:40 PM | link | 0 comments |

idhukku pichai edukkalam

January 15, 2009

I know someone from college who is now employed in a Financial company. Today morning i wander over to this guy's blog and guess what he is writing?. He is writing about how everyone in the US congress should read Atlas Shrugged and follow Ayn Rand. Thats right.. Tax cuts - that miraculous Ayn Randian magik potion which along with doing away with regulation was supposed to usher in the john galtian utopia.. or whatever. It is particularly funny, considering the fact that this guy is now getting a salary because of bailouts (ie. "taxpayer money"). There are congressional sessions in which the American Fed Vice Chairman is categorically refusing to state how much TARP funds they have lent to that particular company (i aint kidding).

As South India's leading philosopher kavundamani once said " பிச்சை எடுத்து திங்கற நாய்க்கு லொள்ளப் பாரு, எகத்தாளத்தப் பாரு"

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posted by Bala, 7:52 AM | link | 1 comments |

Inverse ETFs

January 14, 2009

This is for people who live in America and who have a 401(k) plan. If you are thinking that there are ways to make your 401(k) earn money in a Bear Market by buying Inverse ETFs, you need to remember they are "Path Dependant". Read this carefully to find out how you could end up with a compounding error. It is a simple mistake even someone like Marc Faber has made.


posted by Bala, 7:01 PM | link | 0 comments |

Calvin kicks ass..

January 12, 2009

I saw this somewhere and saved it. Click on the picture to enlarge it..


posted by Bala, 9:53 PM | link | 1 comments |

PuraNaanooru II

I have been trying to write my own "urai" for புறநானூறு. Haven't got much work done so far, but here is another try:

புறநானூறு 246
பாடியவர் : கபிலர்

"நாள் கள் உண்டு நாள் மகிழ் மகிழின்
யார்க்கும் எளிதே, தேர் ஈதல்லே
தொலையா நல் இசை விளங்கு மலையன்
மகிழாது ஈத்த இழை அணி நெடுந் தேர்
பயன் கெழு முள்ளூர் மீமிசைப்
பட்ட மாரி உறையினும் பலவே"

(மலையமான் திருமுடிக்காரியைப் பாடியது)

உரை: டாஸ்மாக்கில் ரெண்டு ரவுண்டு இறக்கனதுக்கப்புறம், "இன்னைக்கு சைட் டிஷ் என் செலவுன்னு" சொல்றது ஈஸி, ஆனா மச்சான் மலயமான், நீ ஸ்டெடியா இருக்கப்பியே "இன்னிக்கு ஃபுல் செலவு என்னுதுன்னு" எத்தினி தபா சொல்லிருக்க!.. மச்சி, உண்மையிலே நீ கிரேட் டா..

English உரை: Its easy for anyone to pickup the bar tab, after getting sloshed.. but offering to pay the bill, when one is stone cold sober, that is the trait Malayaman has; and thats why he is such a great bloke.


posted by Bala, 7:37 AM | link | 6 comments |

The perils of creative accounting

January 09, 2009

Ayyan Valluvar commenting on Minskian Ponzi schemes, sez:

களவினால் ஆகிய ஆக்கம் அளவு இறந்து
ஆவது போலக் கெடும்.

Loose Translation : The more the number of quarters one fudges the results, the harder one falls..

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posted by Bala, 11:46 PM | link | 0 comments |

Asatyameva Jayate

January 07, 2009

We all believed it was Satyam bailing out Maytas, but as it turns out it was the other way around. Instead of the 7200 odd Crore Rs that was supposed to be in the balance sheet, there is actually a 2000 odd Crore Rs hole. So Raju was not paying himself that 7000 Crores, he was paying himself nothing to hide the fact that the money didnt exist!

Put simply the company is gone - kaputt - poye poyindhi. There is no cash to pay the next month's salary. And it has 53000(!!) employees. Thats about 5% of the total Indian IT work force. I hope they have some savings to ride out the tough times ahead.

And for those of you who hate regulations - i hope you work for someone like Ramalinga Raju.

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posted by Bala, 9:17 PM | link | 1 comments |

A TV deathmatch..

January 06, 2009

I would like to see a death match between the Tamil Taliban and the Murdoch underlings. It ought to be fun.


posted by Bala, 6:51 PM | link | 3 comments |

Fantastic voyage

January 05, 2009

Over the weekend, i journeyed through places named red enclave, inn of spies, the mistress's abode, the adamant tooth, place of virgins, flock of female thieves!!. No i wasn't playing any fantasy role playing game, i was just going home to Coimbatore. These are translations of the names of the towns on the Madurai-Coimbatore route.
posted by Bala, 6:54 PM | link | 0 comments |