Saturday, July 29, 2006

Gizoogle-it yo

I've been around online for a while now, and this just has got to be one of the coolest things i've ever come accorss, ive discovered it like a few hours ago, and cant seem to stop playin' with it.. scrap google dawgs, enter gizoogle..

gizoogle is google, and therefore da web turned snoop-doggy speak. it connverts any webpage into what it calls 'jive' it's probably not new, but for those of you who didnt know it, go check it out, you'd have a blast.

This is part of my last post gizoogled..

Mobbin' tha GOP

"I don’t really like Republizzle Two years of B-to-tha-izzush presidency has seen tha United States playa on most th'n ‘American’. From tha war in Iraqta spy'n on its citizens President Bush has done a pretty lousy job. But this isn’t `bout Biznush, Cheney or Schwarzenegga this pizzy is `bout our own Grand Ol Party – tha UNP . Drop it like its hot."

Here's the link to the whole site gizoogled (got to add a permanent link )

and the CNN headlines :

# srael sez 100 Hezbollah targets hit before diznawn
# Rockets shizzot back fizzy Lebanon, po-po say
# Haifa now like ghost ghetto baller Hezbollah attacks
# Tony Blair seeks U.S. support fo` U.N. resolizzles

they do have, a images page but if they jive tha images, heres wizzle dat red-jinglin boi t-ilvin wud look like.

i cud go on, but hell go C-H-to-tha-izzeck it out. pez out.


Wednesday, July 12, 2006

Reforming the GOP

I don’t really like Republicans; Two years of Bush presidency has seen the United States falter on most things ‘American’. From the war in Iraq to spying on its citizens President Bush has done a pretty lousy job. But this isn’t about Bush, Cheney or Schwarzenegger this post is about our own Grand Old Party – the UNP.

It has been almost eight months since the loss of the last presidential elections, and the promised reforms for the party are still to be seen. From then and now the UNP has lost yet another election, lost a few key members, made a joke out of the Colombo Municipality and now the good President is poaching away more of its MPs almost at will.

Ranil Wickramasinghe, for his part seem to adopt a rather unique philosophy of problem solving - ‘Do-Nothing’; this philosophy seemed to have worked for him in varying degrees, especially in the recent leadership crisis where he seemed to have ridden the storm with only minor injuries, the victory in 2001 general election too seem to adhere to this philosophy of ‘let them strangle themselves while I do nothing’, which is an eventuality in all forms of socialist and populist administrations. But if ever the UNP has any designs of regaining power then party reforms are a necessity. These reforms should be based on objective analysis of the political atmosphere and not brought on to accommodate certain people or groups of people.

There seems to be (or was) a ‘dissident group’ within the UNP, who call for a change of leadership; Presenting Karu Jayasuriya, the current deputy leader as the replacement for Wickramasinghe. Although a fair enough substitution, I really don’t see how anyone can expect this to solve UNP’s problems. Karu is much like Ranil, a principled man with adequate skills and vision but like Wickramasinghe hardly a good orator, and his waving and clapping seems as awkward as his incumbent leader. But one thing I can agree on is there should be changes.

I would propose reforms somewhere along the lines of creating an executive chairman who would have to be elected by the members for a set period of time. The chairmen will be in charge of all party activities including appointments and nominations at all levels, fund raising, promoting party policies, election strategy, and grassroots organization. A good person for the post would be S.B. Dissanayake, the fact that he’s popular, organized, and not in parliament are definite advantages. The ‘party leader’ can be someone else who will be in charge of policy and direction of the Party, Ranil himself is a good choice for this position. Both chairmen leader and other front liners could be in a central committee where their inputs can be taken for both policy and strategy.

More immediately, the UNP should get official spokespersons for specifically for Defense and Economic issues so as to stop the mixed signals they seem to be sending, they must be having someone better than Tissa Attanayake in sirikotha, Also the debaters, especially in TV must be asked to be a bit more focused and strategic in their arguments, currently the UNPers seems to be engaged in a verbal fights with the JVP/JHU while the government politicos are sitting pretty.

The UNP must learn to focus on its strengths, rather than trying to minimize its weaknesses. It’s credited for having the better people, so much so that even the current government is almost run by former UNPers - Rohitha Bogollagama, Keheliya Rambukwella, Tyronne Fernando, Ajith Nivard Cabral combined are almost both the engine and the face of the government. But the people still on the UNP side of the fence (albeit ‘on’ the fence) seems to be hiding away for some unknown reason. They have got to come out, and get some logic and credibility going in the UNP noises. They should also de-demonize things the UNP stands for: from free-market economics, to specific policies of privatization, to their rather liberal stand on the ethnic conflict.

Finally, the UNP should take advantage of the multicultural support base. I frankly think Ranil should have run as the ‘Sri Lankan president’ because he was truly the only leader who could reach out to all communities, that was his strength - Didn’t use it. Besides, really -how many Sinhalese Buddhists with the superiority complex would vote for him any way.

What’s done is done, UNP has lost elections it should and could have won. But with the right people in the right places and with a coherent strategy coupled with the self-destructive nature of socialist-inspired governments the grand old party could be restored to its former glory. If reforms are not pushed, however, I’m afraid the UNP will remain as it is: Grand, Old and Obsolete.

Saturday, July 01, 2006


The post entitled ‘Enough’ by a certain Mala in Moju may symbolize the beginning of known form of Internet Activism in Sri Lanka. If all goes well, there should be a group of people sipping expensive coffee at approximately 1700 LKT at Barista’s in Colombo 03 with the purpose of doing ‘something’.

While initially I was a strong proponent of defining the ‘something’ in which we were supposed to meet, I have increasingly come to accept the fact that meeting for something is better than no meeting at all, and hopefully there WILL be a meeting.

The various types of things any activist or a group of activists can ‘do’ are limited only by their individual and collective imagination. What is important though is to clearly define what any such group seeks to achieve- in clear, specific, unambiguous terms. Broad, generic desires such as say, ‘peace’ are very hard to not only achieve but to measure success, no matter how sincere that desire may be.

On the subject of ‘what-to-do’, it is justifiable to say that Blogging itself, especially on issues that matter, is a form of activism. In the current context of course, impact of blogs are rather subdued, mainly because of comparatively poor internet penetration in Sri Lanka and because many people, even online, are not aware of this phenomenon. That is not to say that the internet is useless as a form of activist campaigning, it is estimated that there are approximately close to 300,000 Internet users in Sri Lanka (without of course the SL expatriates) , those numbers are only going to up in the coming months and years.

The problem is those users - at least the ‘active’ ones, are currently segmented into various ‘online spheres’. There is of course the SL blogosphere, which most who would come to contact with this post should be familiar with, then there are these various communities, or forums most notably ClubLK which boasts a respectable 24,000 members. Then there are social networking sites such as Hi5 where there seems to be quite literally tens of thousands of Sri Lankans networking, sharing kinky comments and the likes. This structure of social networking, which is very similar to real-world social networks have huge potential to be transformed into viral marketing initiatives especially if the cause is good enough, and is sold properly.

There is already a presence of politics these forums and in Social networking groups more on that later, in another post.