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Is He Following Me?!

I see John Kerry in the news here a lot. He visited India in October during my last trip. He's here again. Is he stalking me?! :-)

I enjoy reading the paper at breakfast every morning. "The Hindu" is usually hanging on my door, once in a while it's a different one but most of the time The Hindu is delivered. They seem to like John Kerry. He's not front page material but he makes a big splash with the prime minister near the editorial pages. Today he's recommending that Pakistan form a democratic government.

I say with no sense of irony that he should recommend the same of Massachusetts. Instead of our judiciary grabbing power and proclaiming what shall and shall not be the law of the land, perhaps he should use his influence to persuade the powers-that-be to let the People Decide things once and a while, eh? Referendums are voted upon here in Massachusetts, passed and overruled by an overbearing judiciary. They've even made history by finding a way to redefine the millennial-old institution of marriage by judicial fiat against the will of the people. You call this a democracy?!

I suppose I should be proud that an American is so influential here in India. I just wish the junior senator from my home state would tend to business in his homeland first and make Massachusetts more of a priority.  I am proud of our influence abroad. Americans are treated with respect here.

The other day I was engaged in a very nice conversation with my enthusiastic and friendly housekeeper as he was cleaning the room. He's 23 and introduced himself as Senthil. He was glad to hear that I was American, he said he likes us and finds Americans to be very friendly. This surprised me and I told him so. I've always been treated well wherever I go but I've been warned that Americans aren't always thought highly of in various parts of the world. We had to tip-toe through Manila in the mid-90's because there was tension between us and the Filipinos at the time. They resented our heavy-handed presence represented by the two military bases. A lot of "ugly Americans" a.k.a. drunken sailors had soured their view of what was once a dramatic partnership during and after WWII.

Indians on the other hand might have good reason to be happy about the relationship with the U.S. We're sending a lot of business their way. It's the reason I'm here... I'm only getting one view from The Hindu which I can see is quite liberal in it's slant as are most newspapers these days. There's no Fox News in India that I've seen. :-) They're concerned about global warming and other environmental issues. They've outlawed wild animals in the circus and soon won't allow children to be employed in the acts. This will probably kill the circus. They do affirmative-action things with their government hiring practices with quotas, etc. They seem to be very liberal/Leftist. John Kerry fits right in. No wonder he's here so much. His philosophy of government seems to mesh nicely with the current Indian philosophy of government:

"Govern the people".

But I thought it was supposed to be "Government by the people."


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