This is according to me, the world’s best unofficial music video. The song (Violet Hill by Coldplay) is quite alright, but the creator of this video has created a masterpiece unofficial video. Showcases modern day politics and the contemporary world.
While surfing through the plethora of news channels that we have today, or while flipping through the newspaper, one might have come across the terms- left, right and centre frequently. Well these terms have nothing to do with directions(although it originates from how political parties with various alliances use to arrange themselves in the 19th century French senate) but are more to do with the policies and principles a party is expected to operate upon.
The figure to the right of the text is called the Nolan Chart, which is a description of these terms figuratively by an American Libertarian, David Nolan. It consists of 2 axes, the vertical one, or the Y axis depicting Personal Freedom, while the horizontal axis, or the X axis depicts Economic Freedom.
So what does this imply? It simply means that a political party who’s principle is towards the top end of the figure, focuses more on the aspects related to personal freedom, while a party more towards the right of the figure would focus more on economic liberation. Parties towards one of the four corners would be extreme examples of either of the two policies. The Indian political map below would also help to asses what sort of a rule takes place in which state government.
LEFT-WING PARTIES, or Leftist Parties would focus more on the prosperity and the social well-being of the commoners rather than support a free market which would lead towards economic disparities. Examples of such parties in India would include, the CPI(M), the CPI and All India Forward Bloc are top examples. The Mulayam Singh led Samajwadi Party can also be classified under this category, although, they have never officially used the term left, because in India the usage of this term is a straight indication towards the CPI(M) (and sometimes CPI) which leads the state governments of West Bengal, Kerala and Tripura.
RIGHT-WING PARTIES, follow the belief system which preaches a hierarchical arrangement of individuals into divisions of power and wealth within a society, also known as social stratification. Such parties follow the order of preservation of social values. InIndia, right has come to be associated with Hindu nationalists and Hindutva preachers. This may largely be the case in India, but rightist parties may preach non-Hindi values as well. Such parties are in favour of Economic freedom, and free trade. Examples of rightist parties in India would be the Bhartiya Janata Party(BJP), the Shiv Sena and the Shiromani Akali Dal.
TOTALITARIAN: In such a government the major ruling power rests in the hands of an individual, a set of individuals or a group. Such a form of rule is not prominent anywhere in India, although certain democratic leaders can be compared in exaggerated ways to such a rule. Global examples of such a government would be those of Adolf Hitler and Joseph Stalin.
LIBERTARIAN: This idea of governance has generally been preached by a group of intellectual individuals and liberty/freedom activists. Such groups have wanted for personal freedom to an extent of being allowed to preach one’s own philosophies, and an overthrow of all government forms. Although there are many varieties of Libertarianism, most are in favour of economic freedom in addition to the personal freedom. Libertarian activists have gone on to the extent of making demands for Marijuana consumption to be made legal.
CENTRIST parties are those parties which generally operate as neutrals, and decide on their policies from time to time, by analysing the present situations,and atmospheric parties. Such parties would be found spot in the middle of the Nolan Chart. The prime Indian example of such a party would be the Indian National Congress.
And to find out your political stand, if you are having trouble taking one, try this quiz, which gives you an accurate measure of it.
This is a mondegreen of a Tamil song titled, Kalluri Vaanil. Mike Sutton who uses the internet screen name of buffalax is the man behind the video. I found myself laughing out really loud when I saw this one.
After the scorching success of this video(it has 17 million views on YouTube) Prabhu Deva has come to be known as Benny lava on Youtube. Earlier searching for Benny Lava used to redirect you to Prabhu Deva’s wikipedia page. Now someone has changed that, and now just a section on the Benny Lava episode exists on Prabhu Deva’s wikipedia page. If you were to scroll down to the list of films he has choreographed, you will find the name of the film which contains the song, with a slight note next to it. I believe all this to be the work of Mr. Sutton himself.
Try searching for other buffalaxed videos on YouTube. You might enjoy the Indian Thriller Song, or another one on Prabhu Deva(the Urvasi song) or perhaps the one which is known across the internet fraternity as the world’s most pathetic dance video.
This concept of buffalaxing is an internet phenomenon of sorts, and has sparked off numerous reaction videos. For two of the most famous ones, watch the two videos mentioned below.
–> BENNY LAVA CROATIAN STYLE
And this one here is related to the Election campaign of John McCain and Sarah Palin
This has got nothing to do with any Sergio Leno movie.
THE KILT : The Kilt was invented back in the early 18th century by an Englishman(yes my dear Scots, the kilt was invented by an Englishman :P) so as to offer a pocket friendly way for poorer Scotsmen, who could not afford pants to wear as bottoms. These kilts became an instant hit, and everyone started fashioning them. Somewhere around the midpoint of the century, the British Parliament all of a sudden decided to ban the kilt. It wouldn’t take much imagination to come up with an answer to the question as to why one would want to ban the kilt. But thats not it. The British Parliament had no objections to it being silly or the like, but they felt that this gave Scots their own way to dress, and form their own unique identity. This was according to the Englishmen in the Parliament of rebellious nature. Now, the kilt has become one of the most popular things one would associate Scotland with (probably in competition with the bagpipers and the Lochness monster) But who would have imagined that, it was once illegal to wear the kilt, in the country where it is currently the national dress.
THE BURQA: Around 260 years after the ban on the kilt was enforced, a ban on the burqa is being considerd. First Belgium, then France, now Britain. In fact, demands to ban the Burqa have found even more enthusiasm, with the French on their way to outlaw the clothing item. This is six years after they banned Sikh school students from wearing a turban to school. As people globally debate is it Just to ban the burqa, Islamic people in France have expressed their disappointment over the vote in one of the most Liberal countries of the world. When the government of a country starts fondling and issues diktats on the way one should dress, you know things must be surely messed up. When I founded out, that every neutral was divided on this issue, I was in for some relief, as I have been able to take my stand on this issue.
THE PARANOIA: On one hand, one would say, that it is the right of every individual to wear what ever one wishes to. However, this move can also be taken as a move to remove the uncomfortable elements that creep up in one’s minds around a burqa clad woman, especially in Europe. Even in India, one can quite clearly see men steering away from women dressed in burqas, which is very upsetting. Many of us might claim to be against religious intolerance, but very sadly, the fact remains that even in the minds of the most enlightened people of today, in this age of fear, it is not very uncommon to be unsettled by the slightest of displays of religious identities. Sadly we have to face the facts, one religion has been stereotyped to be ill-wishers of all except themselves. The identity of one religion has been maligned to such an extent, that some of us start fearing for our lives when we are nearby people of that religion. They are being separated out of the society, and a sense of insecurity is creeping in them. I feel very sad for my fellow men out there who have to face such hardships everyday. I seriously wish we could accept people of other religions, especially Muslims(if throwing the religion quotient out of the window seems irrational), I wish we could all live as one.
A football club is a privately owned sports team which primarily indulges in the game of football (or Soccer) and participates in various footballing competitions organised in the country. Professional Clubs are the owners of their own stadium(called a club’s home stadium), and are responsible for paying the fees of its players and staff. They are also expected to negotiate their own sponsorship deals and set their ticket prices.
NOTE: THE MODEL OF ENGLISH FOOTBALL WILL BE USED TO FURTHER ELABORATE ON THIS TOPIC
CUP COMPETITIONS: In English Football there exist many competitions. There are a few Cup competitions like the FA Cup(which is the oldest Football competition in the world) and the Carling Cup(also known as the Football league Cup). Both these cup competitions use the knockout round format to come down to a list of four semi finalists which in turn gives two finalists, with the finals for both the competitions contested for at the Wembley Stadium in London. Apart from these Cup Competitions there exists a league tournament as well, which takes place in various tires.
LEAGUE SYSTEM: The top 20 clubs of England participate in the Barclays Premier League. The Second tier teams take part in the nPower Championship, followed by the next set of teams in League One, then the League Two, then the Conference National(each of the aforementioned leagues consists of 24 teams each) follwed by two parallel leagues called the Conference North and the Conference South. These are followed by a few more parallel leagues like the Northern Premier League, the Southern Premier League and the Isthmian League.
MATCHES: Each team plays two matches with the remainder of the teams in the league. The schedule of all these matches is determined by the FA(the premier Footballing Body of England). One match with a particular opposition is played at the home ground of the club, and the second match is played at the home ground of the opposing club. 3 points are awarded for a win, and 1 to each of the teams for a draw, and 0 for a loss.
THE LEAGUE TABLE: After the completion of each set of matches, a table is computed which determines in descending order, the teams which have fared better. The teams with the most no. of points are at the top end of the table while those with lesser no. of points are at the bottom end. In case two teams have equal number of points, then a parameter called Goal Difference is used. Goal Difference (or GD) of a team is calculated by taking the total number of goals scored by a team and then subtracting the number of goals conceded by them. It is possible that this parameter is negative for a team. In case of equal goal difference, the team which has scored the more number of goals is placed higher in the table.
THE CHAMPIONS: The champions of a league are decided after the completion of all set of matches. The team on top of the league table at this point of time, are crowned the champions of the League.
RELEGATION/PROMOTION: A fixed set of teams from each of the leagues gets demoted to the league below it, and a fixed set of clubs from each of the leagues apart from the Premier League get promoted to the league above it at the end of the football season. They resume their new positions at the start of the next football season. All other clubs remain in their respective leagues. The bottom three clubs of the Premier League are demoted to the Championship, while the top two finishers in the Championship are promoted automatically to the Premier League, while the third vacant spot is contested for in a playoff tournament by the teams which finish 3rd-6th in the Championship. The winners of this tournament are promoted to the Premier League.
EUROPEAN FOOTBALL: There exist two European Footballing tournaments, the UEFA Champions league, and the UEFA Europa League. These tournaments run parallel to the English League and is contested between clubs of all member nations of Europe’s Premier football body, UEFA. These competitions carry an immense pride value in addition to the much greater match recepits, money generated from the television rights, and prize money associated with them in comparison to the National Leagues. Qualification to the UEFA Champions League for English Clubs is possible by finishing 1st-4th in the Premier League. The team finishing 4th would have to play an extra play off round to enter the group stages of the Champions League. It consists of 32 teams at the start of the group stages, and progresses in a fashion similar to the World Cup. The only exception is that two round of matches are played in the group stage and the knockout stages as well, one at the home ground of a club and the other at the opposing club’s home stadium. For Qualification to the Europa Leauge, teams have to finish either 5th or 6th in the Premier League. In addition to this two more spots are granted to the winners of the FA Cup and the winners of the Carling Cup. If the team winning the FA Cup has already qualified for one of the two tournaments, then the place is granted to the runners up of the tournament.
TRANSFERS: Club may compete in the transfer market for players of other clubs which is open during two periods of the footballing season. The summer transfer market is open before the start of the new season in July and runs into August. The winter transfer market opens mid season, in January. Clubs contact other players and agents for the players that they are interested in and pay a certain transfer fee to the club where he is still in contract. The fee is agreed upon between the two clubs, which may or may not be disclosed to the public. The player is then offered a new contract by his new club. This contract contains a pre agreed set of terms.
The top four clubs of England are as follows
- ARSENAL FC: Arsenal Football Club or the Gunners, based in the Emirates Stadium in London are the most successful club out of the national Capital. They are known in contemporary football as the icons of stylish football, with their neat passing and easy on the eye breezy football as its ornaments. Under the guidance of its manager, Arsene Wenger, who is currently the premier league’s second most experienced manager at his club have developed a side full of youth and energy. The Club, currently under a rebuilding phase have maintained respectable league positions over the last few years, with clubs in similar positions finding them in relegation battles, and some even a few leagues below them. The most successful moment of the club came when they finished 49 games unbeaten in a row, including a whole season unbeaten.
- CHELSEA FC: Chelsea, based in the West-London region of the same name are the most recent entrants to the league of big-boys in English Football. This was made possible by its take over by Russian Billionaire, Roman Abrahmovich, who showed to the footballing world that money can buy success. They have hence won 4 league titles, and have done well in Europe as well. Such policies adopted by the club, have led to the press jokingly naming it as the BANK OF ENGLAND. Chelsea FC are currently the Champions of England. They are known for an aggressive approach on the pitch, which may not necessarily be pleasant to the neutrals, but it does get the results for them.
- LIVERPOOL FC: Liverpool Football Club, based in the historic Anfield Stadium in Liverpool are perhaps the most successful club in England. But success has eluded them in recent years, with their last league title coming in the 1988 season. They are the only club out of the 4 mentioned who have not won the Premier League thus far. And they are right now in danger of loosing out their status as the member of the big four in England, after a seventh place finish in the table and ensuring that they will not be taking part in the Champions League, resulting into financial problems for the already cash stripped club. They are also perhaps the most boring team out of the big 4.
- MANCHESTER UNITED FC: MUFC, or the Red Devils are based at the Old Trafford Stadium in Manchester. Having won 18 league titles, they are by far the most successful team in the history of the Premier League. Sir Alex Ferguson is currently their manager, who has held that post since 1986(which makes him currently the most experienced manager at a club) are known for their attacking football. They are currently battling debt due to the loans taken in order to complete the purchase of the club by their new American owners.
ANY QUESTIONS MAY BE POSTED IN THE FORM OF COMMENTS, AND I AM SURE THAT THEY WILL BE ANSWERED AS SOON AS POSSIBLE.
10. This time for Africa: Finally as promised by Mr. Sepp Blatter, the World Cup went to Africa, to its southernmost nation, Republic of South Africa, who organised one of the most spectacular sporting festivals on the earth. The spirit of Africa was at showcase right from the opening ceremony through to the Closing ceremony. The vivid colours of Africa could be seen in the stadium, the Africans supporting their national teams had their own carnival going on. Dancing, singing, performing rituals and blowing their own custom designed claxons was one new experience for us Premier League watchers.
9. Poor to Average Commentary: The International Audience of the English commentary broadcast out of England was in for some irritating moments especially those that were following matches commentated upon by John Helm(including the Grand Finale). Errors ranging from Factual errors, that even Indian football fans could correct to mathematical errors you wouldn’t expect out of a dyslexic elementary school student. Fans could always be heard saying ” Dude Germany and now, Spain are not the only two nations to hold the Euro and the World Cup at the same time, remember France doing it in 2000?’ or “it is the 106th minute of the game, how can only 4 minutes be left”. Leave the errors, there were so many nerve cracking moments in the match, that we saw while wondering, where the hell the commentator was, or why he chose to remain mute on them. It appeared as if Helm was talking about the match watching from a television screen, while gladly wasting the superb seat he was given to witness the world cup action. You were sorely missed, Mr. Martin Tyler. Those lucky Americans!
8. Germany: No one in their senses outside of Germany was predicting them to reach the semi-finals, and after the news of the injury to Michael Ballack came out, their chances of making it to the second round were being questioned. But Germany silenced their critics, in style, by becoming only the first side to emulate Brazil’s performance of scoring 4 goals in 3 different games. Germany reminded everyone so much of Arsenal FC, a team full of youngsters, a team currently being rebuilt after the exodus of quite a few superstars, but when put in action, their teams have shown so much of flare, something that their teams from the past are not renowned for. And they found quite a few future superstars in the faces of Ozil, Muller, Trachowski and Khedira.
7. El Diego: Not Maradonna, but Forlan, the Golden Ball winner of the 2010 World Cup, deservedly so. Tied for first place in the Golden Boot competition(eventually losing out to Muller), the weight of Uruguayan expectations was on Diego Forlan’s humble shoulders, but they proved their might. Others may argue that they had an easy run in the knockout stages, but I’d say that reaching the semi-finals of a world cup is a very big achievement be it any team(with Ghana being no push overs). His finishing was something even the other Diego would be proud of, but what made him stand apart was his taming of the ball in dead ball situations. Hats off, for handling the pressure so well, Diego.
6. C. Ronaldo + Kaka + Rooney + Messi + van Persie = 1 Goal: Ask any person who follows European Club football to name a few top class strikers, and these would be the names that you would get. With three FIFA world player of the year titles between them, and a few golden boots from the leagues that they play in, all the hype turned into foul smelling fizz, which reeked of complacency and over expectations. Kaka and van Persie can be excused for being team men and contributing elsewhere on the field but the others simply had a dismal world cup, by their standards. Fatigue after scoring 30 odd goals for your club? Probably.
5. Fall of the Goliaths: There is a very popular group on Facebook titled, France and Italy met in the finals 0f the 2006 World Cup. In 2010 they met at the Airport. Some sinister minded England fan must’ve come up with that, but only to see his side bow out in the second round itself, along with Portugal. And what followed were the casualties of Brazil and Argentina. And probably apart from Spain, all of them were the top sides in any bookie’s list of probable world cup winners. Maybe animals know better!
4. Vuvuzelas: You got irritated at them first, you couldn’t hear the trashy commentary. You tried altering the volume to find a perfect level, some even tried downloading softwares from the internet to counter them. But all failed, you simply had to live with them. They have been labeled in two worded terms, with each of them including the name of an insect. These brightly coloured plastic trumpets were simply everywhere. I hear that they are mass producing them in China now, and are planning to make an entry into the the Premier league. Would someone from the Wimbledon’s list of authorities step in and ummm… ban them!
3. Paul: Not Gascoigne, or Scholes, and not even Masefield, but the Octopus. Bewildered? Watch the news silly, and you’ll know what I am talking about. An octopus from Germany that has been putting astrologers and bookies to shame, has been successfully predicting results of World Cup Games, and has amassed a world wide following!!! Strange!!! And last I heard, a Parrot from Singapore was giving him competition, but Paul won, by correctly predicting the result of the finals. Oh Paul!!!
2. Oranje: The jersey looks straight out of a Fanta commercial, but the team is not, they’ve got some skills. Attack wise and even defensively, they posses some of the best players in the world. The likes of van Bommel, Robben, van Persie, Sneijder, van Bronchorst in your starting line up and someone like Huntelaar to sit on your bench, then you have got a team. Probably a little cagey on occasions, but when they got going, they surely had the opposition in problems. But sadly, their fairy tale came to an end, in the finals. Their style of play wasn’t exactly reminiscent of the Total Football of the seventies exhibited by Cryuff and co.(although there were sparks of that in the semis against Uruguay) but the end result was the same, Loss in the finals. Having never won the holy grail of football, the Dutch would have to do with pot, and wait some more for the cup(no pun intended)
1. la Furia Roja: And finally, VIVA ESPANA was what the crowd was chanting, and was what banners read all over the Soccer City Stadium, and on status lines of followers of Spain on Facebook, simply because they were the the best team in the world cup, and they have a trophy to show for it, finally and have become the first team in history to win the trophy after loosing their first game. Having been labelled as the chokers of past world cups, Spain this time had probably the best shot at winning the World Cup. Having lifted the Euro Cup two years ago, this team boasted of some of the best players in the world. Villa, Torres and Pedro up front, assisted by Xavi, Iniesta, Alonso and Busquets in the midfield and Ramos, Puyol, Pique and Capdevilla making up the defence, you are sure to be in the list of pre-tournament favourites. Add to that the safe hands of arguable the best keeper in the world, Iker Casillas, and the guardian of the team as Vicente del Bosque there is more than flavour to your team. And Spain surely did live up to their expectations, and silence their critics world over. Their future is bright as well, with the likes of Fabregas and Jesus Navas who spent most of the World Cup, sitting on the bench. The only thing that wasn’t right about them was that they stood at the wrong place on the podium to receive the trophy from Sepp Blatter.
Other things we’d remember this world cup for: The Jabulani Ball, French in fights(despite not scoring a goal in 2002, and bowing out of the world cup in the first round itself, somehow this one turned out to be their worst world cup ever), the possible rise of USA, FC Barcelona, the Soccer City Stadium etc. etc.
Follow the aforementioned link, and watch the video that loads. This video is a part from the season 6 episode of South Park. Watch it, its a spoof on how the media and the television industry tries to full us entertainment hungry audiences! This a rip on John Edwards, who had his on TV show on air, in which he claimed that he could talk to dead people, and did so as shown in the above cartoon. This is just a call to all, just use your brain and discretion on what to believe, because its a capitalist world out there, and the television industry would be willing to go to all extents possible to attract more consumers towards it, even if it involves playing with your emotions or forging facts and presenting them as real ones.
A snippet from the episode, where the concept of John Edwards being called as the biggest douche in the universe evolves
Commentary by the creators of South Park, on how the idea of the episode, The biggest douche in the universe, came about