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Hey Undecided Voter!

Come on…don’t embarrass me over here. I know I’m preaching to the choir, but just thought I’d throw out this little nugget in case you missed it:

“The Bushies’ campaign pitch follows their usual backward logic: Because we have failed to make you safe, you should re-elect us to make you safer. Because we haven’t caught Osama in three years, you need us to catch Osama in the next four years. Because we didn’t bother to secure explosives in Iraq, you can count on us to make sure those explosives aren’t used against you.” [NYT.com]

The people in India are on pins and needles about the election, so I can just imagine how anxious you must feel over there. The world is freaking out. I am freaking out. I’ve been grinding my teeth so hard at night over this that I’ve got something close to lockjaw right now.

Anyhow, it’s not up to me anymore. I’ve already sent in my absentee vote. As for the rest of you, for the love of god, please get out there and vote for Kerry.

India’s “Robin Hood” Dead at 52

The huge news over here today is the demise of Veerappan, one of India’s most-wanted bandits. His stock-in-trade was endangered animal byproducts and sandalwood. (Only in India would someone make a name for himself smuggling sandalwood–does anyone born after 1960 actually like the smell of that stuff?) And, though he murdered dozens of people over several decades, many of South India’s poor considered him a quasi Robin Hood.

I’d heard of him — and found his handlebar moustache laughable — but never knew too much about him. So, I’ll let the experts tell the story:

Bio and photo gallery of the ‘Tiger’s Footprints’ [Times of India]
“After Decades On the Run, Indian ‘Demon’ Killed” [Toronto Star]
“How Veerappan Walked Into the STF’s Trap” [ToI]
This article includes a photo of the dead Veerappan (world media is so much more graphic than in the U.S.) [NDTV.com]

If you really wanna know more, check out Veerappan: India’s Most Wanted Man.

A New Strategy to Win the Swing States

Maybe Kerry or Bush could learn a few things from the Gandhis. Humility and pacifism, sure. (And wouldn’t you pay money to see either of them in full lotus position?) But I’m just curious about how Rahul Gandhi, son of Sonia, is going about campaigning for his mother’s Congress party in India.

Today, according to Mid-Day, Rahul said that he will not campaign here in Maharashtra because his party’s “victory was not certain.” Hmmm…goes against the logic I’m used to. But I suppose when your father and grandmother have been assassinated, you are a bit more choosy of your public appearances.

At any rate, those state fairs in deep Midwest USA don’t seem half bad in comparison.

What’s News?

Hello. Mumbai really can be too much fun. We managed to find some clubs that the cops didn’t shut down at 1:30. Needless to say, I have a raging headache this morning.

But, I’m not too tired to read the news! First, a couple of very interesting India-related articles I read this week:

S. Asia struts on UN catwalk
Hitler’s Secret Indian Army

Good baseball news this week, too! Looks like DC might be getting a team (woohoo – deal with it, Angelos!) and the Yankees are doing their post-season thang again. Yay. I’m happy even though I haven’t seen a single baseball game in over a month.

Oh…and another baseball article I really enjoyed from George Vecsey:

A Myth That Should Not Be Perpetuated

I’ll write more about Mumbai later when my head stops aching – maybe between overs of today’s match-up between England and the West Indies in the ICC. Gotta love the cricket.