Archive for February, 2010

George Carlins View on Ageing – A must read

February 26, 2010

A friend send me this piece by late American stand-up comedian, social critic, actor, and author, who won five Grammy Awards for his comedy albums. Enjoy!

George Carlin at age 102: (Absolutely Brilliant)

IF YOU DON’T READ THIS TO THE VERY END, YOU HAVE LOST A DAY IN YOUR LIFE. AND WHEN YOU HAVE FINISHED, DO AS I AM DOING AND SEND IT ON.

George Carlin’s Views on Ageing

Do you realise that the only time in our lives when we like to get old is when we’re kids? If you’re less than 10 years old, you’re so excited about ageing that you think in fractions.

‘How old are you?’ ‘I’m four and a half!’ You’re never thirty-six and a half. You’re four and a half, going on five! That’s the key

You get into your teens, now they can’t hold you back. You jump to the next number, or even a few ahead.

‘How old are you?’ ‘I’m gonna be 16!’ You could be 13, but hey, you’re gonna be 16! And then the greatest day of your life …. .. You become 21. Even the words sound like a ceremony. YOU BECOME 21. YESSSS!!!

But then you turn 30. Oooohh, what happened there? Makes you sound like bad milk! He TURNED; we had to throw him out. There’s no fun now, you’re Just a sour-dumpling. What’s wrong? What’s changed?

You BECOME 21, you TURN 30, then you’re PUSHING 40. Whoa! Put on the brakes, it’s all slipping away.. Before you know it, you REACH 50 and your dreams are gone.

But wait!!! You MAKE it to 60. You didn’t think you would!

So you BECOME 21, TURN 30, PUSH 40, REACH 50 and MAKE it to 60.

You’ve built up so much speed that you HIT 70! After that it’s a day-by-day thing; you HIT Wednesday!

You get into your 80’s and every day is a complete cycle; you HIT lunch; you TURN 4:30 ; you REACH bedtime. And it doesn’t end there Into the 90s, you start going backwards; ‘I Was JUST 92.’

Then a strange thing happens. If you make it over 100, you become a little kid again. ‘I’m 100 and a half!’
May you all make it to a healthy 100 and a half!!

HOW TO STAY YOUNG

1. Throw out nonessential numbers. This includes age, weight and height. Let the doctors worry about them. That is why you pay ‘them’

2. Keep only cheerful friends. The grouches pull you down.

3. Keep learning. Learn more about the computer, crafts, gardening, whatever. Never let the brain idle. ‘An idle mind is the devil’s workshop.’
And the devil’s name is Alzheimer’s.

4. Enjoy the simple things.

5. Laugh often, long and loud. Laugh until you gasp for breath.

6. The tears happen. Endure, grieve, and move on. The only person, who is with us our entire life, is ourselves. Be ALIVE while you are alive.

7. Surround yourself with what you love , whether it’s family, pets, keepsakes, music, plants, hobbies, whatever. Your home is your refuge.

8. Cherish your health: If it is good, preserve it. If it is unstable, improve it. If it is beyond what you can improve, get help.

9.. Don’t take guilt trips. Take a trip to the mall, even to the next country; to a foreign country but NOT to where the guilt is.

10. Tell the people you love that you love them, at every opportunity.

AND ALWAYS REMEMBER :
Life is not measured by the number of breaths we take, but by the moments that take our breath away..

And if you don’t send this to at least 8 people – who cares?
But do share this with someone. We all need to live life to its fullest each day!!

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Pensions for future generations

February 23, 2010

I was reading the Financial Times the other day and noticed many readers were asking questions about pension draw downs. It strikes me, that as more and more baby boomers retire, it will be difficult for market to go up as they start drawing from the pension pot. This left me wondering whether there is any merit in saving money in a pension if you are retiring in the next 10 to 15 years. It looks like another ponzi scheme to me.

Labour’s Legacy

February 23, 2010

I was watching The Big Questions hosted by Nicky Campbell last Sunday and they were discussing the policing of streets and communities. A lady from an estate defended the policing of council estates as they have been much improved with the Police post set up and adequately staffed. And also they have been involved with the local community in the estate. Also in my travels up and down the country, I see new schools, hospitals and urban/rural towns being regenerated. Britain has also become a tolerant country though some might argue too tolerant! On the other hand, the country has been unnecessarily dragged into costly and unwinnable war in Iraq and Afghanistan and public expenditure has been allowed to spiral unchecked. Whoever, win the next election has the unenviable task of carefully nurturing the public finances back to health while not damaging the progress made during the labour governments. I wonder who should we back, Brown or Cameron. Who will work on the positive and build on the legacy? My instinct says Brown though I may be wrong.

How to preside over the bankruptcy of a country and yet win the Presidential election

February 23, 2010

Corruption in Sri Lanka- No one is surprised!

4 YEARS RECORD OF THE SENSITIVE LEADER WITH 40 YEARS OF EXPERIENCE

• Hedging Deal – Petroleum Chairman – Asantha De Mel – Exam passed ‐ None– Cricketer‐ Shiranthi’s relation – losses to Sri Lanka Rs. 230 Billion ( Rs. 230,000 Million) Chairman lost his job by virtue of a supreme Court order. The S.C. order to sell petrol at Rs.100 not complied yet (current price of a Petrol liter is Rs 130/‐).

 • Loss on National Carrier Air Lanka for 2007‐2008Rs. 10,000 Million (10 Billion) – Chairman Nishantha Wicremasinghe (Shiranth Rajapaksha’s Brother) – Exam Passed GCE O/L

• Loss on Mihin Air for 2007‐2008 Rs. 4,000 Million (4 Billion) – Chief Executive Mahinda’s Sajin Vas Gunawardena – Exam passed GCE O/L

 • New 2008 Budget allocation for Mihin Air Rs. 1,000 Million (1 Billion)

• Air port project Weerawila cancelled. Initial cost on feasibility study Rs 500 Million.

• Mig Deal – through “King’s cousin” Udayanga Weeratunga (Exam passed – GCE O/L Sri Lankan Ambassador – Russia ‐ purchase of 4 Mig fighters which were not air worthy from Belimissa holdings at a price Rs. 400 Million more than the last published price.

• All defense purchases through Lanka Logistics ‐ Chief Executive Officer Jayantha Wicremasinghe – Exam passed GCE O/L– Mahinda’s Sister Gandhini’s Brother in Law the owner of ‘Akuressa Palace’ (also Chairman Bank of Ceylon Gamini Wicremasinghe’s Brother.)

• VAT Scam – Loss to the Country Rs. 35,000 Million. (Rs. 35 Billion) Inland Revenue Department – Minister of Finance – Mahinda Rajapaksha

• Hanbantota Man made Safari Park to be created at a cost of Rs. 16,000 Million (1.6 Billion) This makes no sense as the Natural Safari Park is next door in Yala.

• Kerawalapitiya power plant cost US $ 400 Million. Actual cost US $ 200 Million. Planned for 300 Mega Watts built for 200 mega watts.

• Kerawalapitiya power plant. (Additional Losses) Cost per day to CEB Rs 70 million. Per year Rs 25, 550 Million (25.5 Billion) Initial agreed purchasing price per unit Rs 18. Current purchasing price Rs 40/‐ Loss to the CEB from a unit Rs 22/‐

• Uma Oya Project.‐ projected value US$ 265 Million enhanced value US $ 545 Million. Increase of US$ 280 Million. Rs. 28 Billion ( Rs. 28,000 Million). Two reservoirs that are built have an extent of only 50 acres. Victoria project has an extent of 7,500 acres. Minister–Chamal Rajapaksha – President’s brother

 • Cabinet of Ministers have approved purchase of 35 Gantry Cranes at a price US $ 600,000 higher than the last purchase price. This purchase has not been effected yet. (Minister in Charge; Chamal Rajapaksa‐ President’s brother)

• Contract signed with Dilhan Wicremasinghe Shiranthi’s brother’s son (Chairman Air Lanka) to supply branded computers to all divisional Secretariats at a cost of US $ 16 Million (price per computer Rs. 150,000/=). He supplied all unbranded computers which are available at unity plaza at Rs. 50,000/=. Amount robbed Rs. 1,200 Million ROBBED AND WASTED AMOUNT SUMMARY

 • Hedging deal Robbed and wasted amount Rs. 230,000 M 230 B

• Air Lanka Wasted and robbed amount Rs. 10,000 M 10 B

• Mihin Air Wasted and robbed amount Rs. 5,000 M 5 B

• Mig Deal Robbed amount Rs 4,00M 0.4 B

• Weerawila Air Port Wasted amount Rs 500M 0.5 B

• VAT Scam Robbed amount Rs. 35,000 M 35 B

• Safari Park Wasted amount Rs. 16,000 M 16 B

•Kerawalapitiya Robbed amount Rs. 23,000 M 23 B

• Uma Oya project Robbed amount Rs. 28,000 M 28 B

• Computers for divisional Robbed amount Rs. 1,200 M 1.2 B

 • Purchase of Gantry Cranes total amount robbed Rs. 24,150 M 24 B

• Fly Over contracts Total amount robbed Rs. 3,500 M 3.5 B

• Kerawalapitiya (Additional Losses) Robbed amount Rs 25,550M 25.5B

• Road Development in North amount robbed Rs. 28,000 M 28 B Rs. 430,300 M 430.3 B

Remember that Gigantic Mahaweli Project with the construction of Victoria,Kothmale, Randenigala, Rantambe, and Maduru oya cost the Nation only Rs. 50,000 Million (50 Billion) when the US $ was equivalent to Rs. 35.

WHAT CAN WE DO WITH THIS MONEY?

  • To increase the monthly salary of all the government servants for one year Rs. 126 Billion. 
  • To pay the deposits of Golden Key depositors‐ Rs. 26 Billion. 
  • To pay the money of depositors of Sakvithi scam‐ Rs. 4 Billion. 
  • To pay the money of depositors of the other financial institutions Rs 10 Billion.
  • To double the pension of the pensioners Rs. 3 Billion.
  • To pay increased interests for government servants who have deposited their terminal benefits and are dependent on the interest‐ Rs. 10 Billion
  • To reduce Milk powder price for 1 year by 50% ‐ Rs. 10 Billion
  • To re‐introduce the school uniform to all children – Rs. 5 Billion.
  • To give electricity free to all places of worship‐ Rs. 1 Billion
  • To give a living allowance to all 100,000 who have lost jobs in the garment industry, and to all 500,000 who are expecting jobs, Rs. 36 Billion.
  • The number of Samurdhi grantees are 1427,322. To give Rs.2000 to each family per month, the cost is Rs.2850 million. The cost for one year is Rs. 34.2 Billion.
  • To give fertilizers to all farmers on a subsidiary rate Rs 10 Billion
  • To give fertilizers to all small tea cultivators on a subsidiary rate Rs 2 Billion TOTAL AMOUNT Rs 290.2 Billion Balance Amount Rs 140.1 Billion

A gift from a British oil company to an ex-President of Sri Lanka – Long live democracy

February 17, 2010

Gee! A mansion in Surrey.

Commission from an Anglo-Dutch Oil Company.

Just wondering how many regimes in failed states are nurtured by the multi-nationals.  Long live Globalisation!