Obama – the Outsider

The recent impasse over the debt ceiling blew up in our faces (exhibit 1: the stock market). The Republican hopefuls have begun their battles. And Obama sounds more and more desperate every day. The strategy he is using is not very reassuring… it is very much the “blame” game. WSJ caught on to it today. But this has been going on for a while. Obama seems to want us to believe that he has no role to play in the events that unfold in Washington… and in front of the Congress and Senate, he is helpless. While that may technically be true, this kind of leadership is not quite inspiring… I hope he adopts a more positive approach to his campaign, moving forward!

The Wall Street Journal

AUGUST 18, 2011

Campaigning as Mr. Outsider

President Obama, Touring the Midwest, Seeks to Portray Congress as the Problem

ATKINSON, Ill.—President Barack Obama pitched himself onto the political scene as a man who could rise above partisan politics, and despite presiding over a bitterly divided government, he is starting the 2012 campaign still casting himself as that guy.

On a three-day Midwestern bus trip, Mr. Obama tried to portray himself as an outsider. “The only thing that’s holding us back right now is our politics,” he said three times at a town-hall-style meeting here on Wednesday. “That’s the message we need to send to Washington,” he said, as if he wasn’t part of Washington.

The Tech Giant Talent Battle

July 8, 2011 1 comment

Here is an interesting graphic reported by the Wall Street Journal:

Tech's Talent War

Tech's Talent War

In the war for tech talent, today’s winner is Facebook, followed by LinkedIn, Google, Apple, Microsoft, and in the end, Yahoo. Would like to see Twitter on this list as well.. I’d venture to say it ranks near the top if not at the top. Social media and search are the top levers, cool technology next. The ranking is pretty much in the order of age of the company as well.. the only exception being Yahoo. Speaks to how Yahoo has failed to reinvent itself, despite being an internet era company. To some extent, even Microsoft has done a far better job at reinventing itself than Yahoo!

Atlantis – the last takeoff

The successful takeoff of Atlantis marked the end of space shuttle missions from the US – at least for the moment. It is a sad moment. The US space program was and is a good thing to be funding. If only the world was more rational… and people some how figured out that we really do not need to be fighting wars that costs billions a day – instead we are better off spending that money on interesting things such as figuring out what else lies in this universe. Till that happens, one can only hope that the private sector in the US rises to the challenge and develops some really innovative technology that can cost effectively address the space travel challenge. We have come a long way from discovering the wheel… and having figured out reasonably well what lies around the earth, it only seems natural to expand our boundaries and start exploring what lies beyond.

Obama’s Twitter Townhall

Yesterday was a historic moment for technology in politics: The President of the United States hosted the first ever townhall meeting on Twitter. This event is one of many minor things Obama is doing, on an ongoing basis, which helps him keep connected with a certain demographic which most other politicians miss – the demographic that was key to his election in the first place. Another good thing about a Twitter townhall, in principle at least, is that it keeps responses brief, just like the questions! Now – it is another matter that the President chose to keep answering in multiple tweets when necessary. The event is historic in that it marks a milestone in the evolution of discourse between the ruler [albeit democratic, a ruler nevertheless] and the subjects. Anonymity, lack of physical presence, brevity, multi-tasking – while at the same time creating engagement, dialogue, and the feeling that “I was being heard – I tweeted with the President!” were some of the hallmarks. If nothing else, this event will have a “monkey see, monkey do” effect – more and more politicians will probably host tweet-meets as they campaign for office!