I said this in the past and I will say in again, there is a cut throat race for TRP’s among News Channels. Earlier we saw Ravish Kumar doing a blank screen against the Channel that is getting TRP’s and now we see Barkha Dutt doing the same.
I don’t like Barkha and Arnab equally hence I will try to remain unbiased in my analysis. Why Barkha Dutt wrote what she wrote. From the days of Nira Radia tapes, which Arnab have used time and again to hit at paid journalists, Barkha Dutt have not been able to hit back. Barkha Dutt was the most prominent journalist to have been named in those tapes. No other News Anchor apart from Arnab went against these people. The rivalry was sown that very moment.
Slowly Arnab ate away the TRP’s and hence the Advt. revenue of other News Channels. NDTV was a major casualty in this. Low TRP means less money. Therein lays the sudden outburst. It does not lie in Arnab shaming her for Radia tapes, it does not lie in pointing out Hafeez Saeed naming her as a well wisher, and it does not lie in calling her anti-national. It lies in the TRP and the money.
That Barkha Dutt has to write a blog to put forward he point of view is a sign enough as to how many people watch her show. Few years back she was the one who used to set the primetime news agenda. Nowadays hardly anyone watches her show. It is the frustration. Arnab would be grinning ear to ear. He likes any and all publicity. If people talk about his show, it is a win enough for him.
It’s sad to see a leading News Channel going down the barrel. But it happens with time. Some survive, some perish. I think Arnab’s success lies in the fact that he chooses topics based on what will get more TRP’s. NDTV and Barkha on the other hand have not been able to get out of anti-RSS, anti-BJP ideology and a lot of times end up losing TRP’s as they just can’t give prominence to News that goes against that ideology.
All said and done, the clash has the potential to bring out dirty laundry of media out in the open. And who would not relish it!
Recently Kejriwal claimed that BJP and Modi are conspiring to eliminate him. Felt déjà vu to me. A lot of leaders when in opposition have claimed the same against the Govt of the day. One of the most prominent politicians to do it was Narendra Modi. Now I see Kejriwal doing the same. People called Modi Drama Queen then; people call Kejriwal Drama Queen now. What is the truth?
I don’t agree they are Drama Queens, I believe they are sheer Genius. One of the best ways to gain public support and energize your supporters is to play the victim card. “I am working for you so they are trying to kill me”. The motive is to make other side look dirty. Believe me it works; Modi as PM and Kejriwal as CM are shining example of the same.
Feb 20 2014: Congress keeps looking for chances to kill me: Modi
Jul 27 2016: Arvind Kejriwal says PM Narendra Modi may try to get him killed
I remember Mayawati, Mulayam Singh, Jayalalita, Mamta Banerjee and most of the regional leaders have made this claim some time or the other. Below are few references to the same. You can find a lot more on web.
19 June 2013: Mamata Banerjee alleges CPM-Maoist plot to kill her
Aug 7 2004: SP conspiring to kill me: Mayawati
Jan 10 2008: Mayawati plots to kill Mulayam, alleges Amar Singh
Oct 31 2008: Jayalalitha claims ‘murderous attack’
My last week’s analysis of Ted Cruz’s speech would be incomplete without mentioning Bernie’s speech at DNC. Bernie Sanders has been one politician who has got a lot of love from a lot of people. In college campuses across US, he is a like a human cult. It was a change in American people who have been perceived around the world as capitalists. A socialist getting so much support in US showed the world that socialism as a phenomenon still packs a punch or two.
Quick to the comparison between the stance taken by Bernie and Cruz and it’s ramifications to the party nominee’s chances coming November. Ted Cruz was jeered off the stage and was regarded by overwhelming Republicans as selfish person preparing for his own 2020 bid. When he suggested ‘vote your conscience’, which had undertones of helping Hillary to win, it enraged Republicans, who have nothing but hatred for Hillary. His action solidified support behind Trump, who was the last man standing against Hillary Clinton. It looked like other elite Republicans were not repugnant to Hillary becoming President. This consolidated Republican base around Trump. Some suggest that this might even solidify anti-Hillary base around him. We know it includes pro-Bernie crowd.
Now to Bernie Sanders. Honorable man that he is, he decided to keep his pledge and support Hilary Clinton even when it became evident that Democratic Party worked in tandem with Hillary to rig the race. Chaos on convention floor suggested that his followers haven’t taken to this idea. They feel it’s a sellout. Supporting her without showing a ‘pinch of salt’ has been a setback to the young people who have been part of heated debates as to why Hillary is bad and Bernie is good. All those people are left as sitting ducks.
It seems Ted Cruz rejection was a better idea than Bernie’e endorsement. Maybe Bernie’s rejection would have helped Hillary as it would have solidified anti-Trump base behind her. For it to have happened Bernie should have come out as a bad and selfish person. However he came out as a weak leader who is too tired to fight and who is ready to abandon the ship.
Difference lies in the supporters. Cruz and Trump had two things in common. First they both wanted to defeat Hillary. Second they both were anti-establishment. Now that Cruz looks ‘not opposed’ to Hillary to keep his hope for 2020 bid intact, it’s easy for his supporters to move to Trump since Trump is also anti-establishment and is the only person who wants to defeat Hillary.
On the other hand Bernie and Hillary supporters were opposites. One were anti-establishment, other were pro-establishment. It’s right they both hated Trump, but Bernie hasn’t done a Cruz to give his supporters a reason to support Hillary. By endorsing Hillary so wholeheartedly, he has in fact endorsed the power of Big Money. It’s like a win for the establishment, what he fought against.
This has lost him a lot of fans just like Cruz lost a lot of his supporters. But the difference is Cruz people solidified against another anti-establishment Trump. It doesn’t seem to be happening for pro-establishment Hillary.
For those who have followed US Primaries, one name that would remember apart from Donald Trump would be Ted Cruz. He was a highly un-liked figure among the Elite Political circle and he called them ‘The Washington Cartel’. He was all hopeful to win the nomination with this anti-establishment pitch against Jeb Bush. That until Donald Trump happened and his dream was shattered.
Then there were personal clashes. Pro-Cruz Super PAC released a stormy pic of Trump’s wife with a snide caption. Trump responded by retweeting a bad tweet about Cruz’s wife. Cruz never apologized and neither did Trump. During the last leg of desperation, there were further vitriolic attacks. Trump called into question Cruz’s father to which Cruz responded by calling Trump a sniveling coward.
All said and done, Trump was nominated by voters with huge number of votes. Maybe he is good, maybe he is bad, but he did get the votes. And in democracy, it is the will of the people that matters. Pro-establishment contenders, who felt that their paradise was broken, broke the pledge and didn’t support Trump. And it was expected of Corrupt Washington Cartel, in Cruz’s own terms. But when Cruz attended the GOP convention, it was expected of him to honor his pledge and support Trump. But he never did. What he called from convention floor was for ‘vote of conscience’.
We all know what he meant. He gave his supporters a call to vote for Hillary. Not that most of Republicans will do that. By definition, their conscience is against Hillary Clinton. So that’s what they will do. But what Cruz did was he became one with Washington cartel that he said he so despised. He came out as a whiny loser and opportunistic person.
Even his staunch supporters and delegates opposed and whoo’ed him. Reason he gave later to his supporters was, “Pledge” was not a blanket approval to support someone who disrespected my wife and father. Well your supporting super PAC did the same to Trump’s wife. You spread rumors about Carson. The list can go on and on. It was the election time and it should have been left at that. People decided and anyone who calls himself, not a part of ‘Washington Cartel’ should have knows better than to insult the will of people.
There is one more reason that Cruz lost respect and support by his cute act. Everyone knows these politicians for what they really are in their personal life; the skeletons and the affairs. For Cruz to feign this holier than thou attitude now, makes people just shake their heads in disbelief. It’s what the Washington Cartel does. It’s what a Bush or a Romney or a Clinton would do. By his one single act, he destroyed all what he stood for. He became just anther one of Washington Cartel.
Supreme Court today stayed the demolition of Adarsh Society. The demolition was earlier ordered by High Court. I looked at this piece of news and gave a yawn. I am not able to recollect how long this has been going on. Seems like ages since this corruption issue came out. Since then what we have seen are hearing, orders for demolition, and orders for stay on demolition. I mean it never seems to reache to conclusion.
How many of you agree with me that, when you hear some strict judgement passed by HC, you know it will be stayed by SC? When you hear some big shot has been jailed (after years of courtroom lingering), you know that he will be out on bail next day? The process have gotten so repetitive and convoluted, it stinks. How many of you have no faith left in the time bound justice?
I for one am very much pessimistic about this. I don’t blame the judiciary per say. They are bound by the infrastructure and number of judges available. But such a mockery has taken away faith from the justice system. And it does not augur well for a nation.
I think majority of issues in the country would go away if we fix judiciary. Make the justice system fair and fast. Imagine you can get a hearing within week and next date, the very next day. From Lower court to High court to Supreme Court- all within a month. Over. Imagine you never have to wait for Dates. Will you see so much corruption and crime? Majority of issues India faces today can be linked to corruption, which I think follows directly from excruciatingly slow judiciary.
With all the judicial activism I see, it’s time for judiciary to act tough and pass a judgement on “right to swift justice” to all. Order (and not ask) Govt. to create more courts and induct more judges. If Govt. is not doing, take suo moto, create a panel of retired judges and do it yourself. When you can do it in the case of BCCI, why can’t you do it when it comes to swift justice?
I know it’s too much to ask of the judiciary, but what has been done in case of President’s rule in Arunachal and Uttrakhand; What has been done in BCCI case; these are landmark judgements. They go beyond what judiciary could have done say 10-15 years back. I say notch it up a little and go for the kill. Take suo moto and force Govt. provide “swift justice for all”. You have all the tricks up the sleeve. Attach it to one of the Fundamental rights or whatever. I beg of you, just do it!
Let’s agree on one thing, it’s not just the media, we all like controversies. Media likes it earn money, we like it for discussion and time pass. What else can explain why we have been discussing “Rahul Gandhi Napping” for last few days, when there are other pressing matters at hand.
I condemn people who create and propagate such worthless controversies. And paid accounts that flood social media with such bull crap. This takes away from the real issues and move towards absurdity. While we should be holding Rahul Gandhi accountable for the plight of Amethi or the disintegration of Congress party, we are stuck with this silly debate. That too a spilt mode pic.
Each and every politician will have a similar split second picture where he or she looks napping. Maybe he is, maybe he is not. The point is that discussion itself is useless. Mere slander. Also it takes the lime light away from serious and real issues.
I did a simple google and found out the collection of similar pics for the many leaders across party lines. Maybe they were napping. Or were just deeply in thought. Who cares. We should debate serious issues and leave the Parliament aside with such trivialities.
Those who follow elections closely would remember, in 2014, when BJP was riding high on Modi wave, it was perfect destination for people who wanted to change their party. From Disgruntled, sidelined people to those who saw pegging back on Modi wave was a winner, hopped on to the BJP train. BJP too accepted them with open arms. Some inductions were controversial, others less controversial. From Congress to AAP to JDU everyone was welcomed. It was in fact necessary as BJP, having not won elections for so long faced a dearth of faces. This was addressed by inductions from other parties.
The same trend I see for 2017 Punjab elections. Siddhu is the biggest catch. Names of Congress leaders are also coming up. It’s free for all. Again as party it is necessary as there are no faces, no leadership for AAP in Punjab other than Bhagwant Mann. Hence AAP seems to be going the BJP way. However Kejriwal hates Modi, this is one thing he has learnt from him fairly quickly.
I feel these inductions will help AAP, which is riding on a huge anti-incumbency wave. But AAP has to be careful while letting people in. IT has to have a food proof vetting process. One wrong move can harm bad. More than a face for CM’s post, AAP would need faces for MLA’s. This would be the biggest challenge. I assume a lot of people from other parties will contest on AAP ticket. This makes vetting process even more necessary.
Hope the good sense prevails.