Tuesday, December 22, 2009

The Best Books I Read This Year...The Best Movies I watched..

Yeah as if you cared.

Best Books: It is hard to choose but the "Oligarchs" and "Are We Rome?" do figure highly. They were very different books, but were equally were researched about subjects that I had distant interests. If I were forced to choose base on interest, bets measured  by my inability to put a book down, then the Oligarchs with its 600 pages yet well read and quickly for that matter too, must be tops.

Best Movies? Okay perhaps I suffer a time gap bias. I think "Investus" just recently released movie starring Morgan Freeman was by far the best.

Still working very much on my Book List for 2010. I will be reading the Singapore Story on my way to Nigeria. Probably complete listening to 7 Habits of Effective People. Am on the last disc and it has been an enjoyable listening.

Musician of the year by far is Drake..I like is collection. Trey, my boy Wayne and Koko Master all did their thing. Baba Suwe here is a shout out for you from your youtube fans! Oh the graciousness of creativity!

P.S: Okay on these Iran-Iraq bound American hikers that Diane Sawyer wants us to feel pity for, do any one really believe their story? I mean save me. The media is just bought (hey, now majority owned by the banks), and the secret agencies must know one or two things about these lads. There stories make no sense. 

Hiking my feet. Of all places in the world, the place to Hike is Iran??? Very laughable! Water falls in the desert is even more laughable! CIA and NSA is written all over this.

It amazes me how Americans cry over these prisoners and no one checks out the prisons here at home that destroy the lives of our young men. About time, Dianne do something about those too.

Moreover, the fact is Iran is seeking nuclear weapons because of US stupidity in starting Iraq war. Iran took a cue, and knew the only way to prevent such global gangsterism from the neocons was to get nukes. Is anyone messing with North Korea? You bet no one will. Nukes are deterrence for global gangsters that the American public routinely elects to the White House. I really can't blame any country for wanting them.

Monday, December 14, 2009

Obama's Afghan Strategy- The Left & Right Piles On...

It is a great day when the right and left beat you up. I actually think Obama has actually defined a new political center for America...how he did it, I don't know.

Here, I think Arianna is factually wrong when she says the President did not state the threat Afghanistan poses. Well, how about that if Afghanistan redact back into the hands of Taliban, their Al Qaeda buddies will be back there cooking the same attacks that happened on 9-11. That threat is not phantom, it is real. The sooner the liberal wing of the democratic party realizes this...the better for the country. 

Personally, I fault the President's tactics. I am more firmly in Biden's camp. I would have loved a decrease in America's footprint, an increased use of Special Force Operations and Drones to bludgeon the Taliban and Al Qaeda in the Af-Pak border and a use of financial incentives to boost the Afghanistan Central Government while holding the Ace of Spade to decapitate the Karzai regime if it does not perform. Basically, I feel strongly that the Kabul central government cannot be built on nothing..it must be seen to dispense favors to engender loyalty to tribal clans/warlords whom I think cannot be ignored.

Obama thinks otherwise, and has decided to take a shot at history...and bypass the Kabul government by providing security to Afghans in return for their support. He said it worked in Iraq, so it will work in Afghanistan. Well we shall see in 18 months. Guess, he can always fall back to my option if his option fails. Saying all that, it is insane as the Liberals suggest that leaving Afghanistan pronto is a reasonable solution (much as staying forever like the Neo-Con demand is pure madness!). That is murder, and in fact immoral! Think Afghan women slipping back to Taliban days. Where is the humanitarian, civil rights face of the left that advocated Bosnia intervention? Guess the limousine liberals only think their European cousins are worth saving!

Wednesday, December 02, 2009

She is a Girl!

Welcome our girl, Ezeba (He who delights the Lord); Oluwademiladeogo (God Crowned me with the crown of glory) ;Ayodelemi (Joy Arrived in My House); Oluwasayomi (God created my joy); Morenike (I have found someone to adore); Abigail ;Ajoke ( Collectively Adorable) CONTEH

In the words I wrote to her father:

May God Protect and Guide our Daughter Ajoke as she embarks on the journey called life. When she stumbles, she shall rise and be greater. When she cries, she will be comforted and thereafter overjoyed. She will be greater than we; she will be famous than us and she will serve the Lord. Amen

Congrats to Habs and Motun as well on their baby boy and girl respectively born within 4 and 7 days of my niece. Eilieen you are next! Whatever is in the water? 

Monday, November 16, 2009

Recession Economics, Sports & Numbness...

Okay, are these business writers going overboard with all these recession correlated lifetstyle statistics. While the age long wisdom that people become sweet toothed (or actually, poverty makes cheap sugar filled confectioneries appealing) is well..age long. Here are some other correlation giving me headache..
More on the way..whatever, people die less during recession?


Am liking the new PVAMU stadium as proposed (See slide show below)..am glad finally something is being done with that Athletic fee passed during our term in the SGA Senate. Go Panthers!

And the Cougs did lose an unlikely one..am mad as hell, and can't take it ! By the way, to my Kenyan brothers and sisters..peace; thanks for the gift. South Africa, here the Eagles come!

An Update on Me..
Have been trying to get up to date on my periodicals (Fortune and Spectrum) lately, but the bits of work related travelling is beginning to to take its tool. I enjoyed visiting Omaha however; my friends over in the heartland made it worthwhile. It is Houma, LA this weekend, hopefully we can get that JV Partnership and do something worthwhile in Ghana. The VC firm in Nigeria is making rapid progress and so is the family company..so much to do in 24 hours..and I am just one person..oh well..I am not even feeling right now..just doing; may be next time I will write what I feel about Africa Rising..the book.

To my favorite elder sister in the world..wishing you the best on your birthday! Girl..u getting old.enjoy this music

Saturday, November 07, 2009

Doing what you do best…Geek-Speak

Coat of Paint: Artist Ricardo Richey, commissioned by Fortune, spray-paints a street-smartversion of Microsoft'sname and Window's logo on a San Francisco wall

Reading Microsoft Reboots, in Fortune Mag, about how Microsoft is remaking itself by the launch of the Windows 7 (much acclaimed) product, I am beginning to wonder if the same mantra of sticking to what you do best is not the way to go for companies: especially matured established ones.

Of course, MBA classes teach executives that diversification, broad product lunch, growth strategies through acquisition and entering new business lines is the way to go when trying to sustain growth as a mature company. Proponents point at GE; but for every GE there is three or more Westinghouse. That is, there is always that company that loses it bearing in an attempt to be everything and end up being nothing.

Am always intrigued by ways companies handle their mid-age crisis; like Microsoft is undergoing right now. For some, the stage of maturation and just handling the concept of not being the wonder kid on the block can be humbling if not torturing. Apple had to go through that phase in the 90s, and my argument is that it took Apple to refocus on what it does best to get back on its feet. Trust me, the Ipod/I-Phone was Apple doing what it does best: melding software and hardware to make products users are ready to pay a lot of mullah to have i.e. a cult following.

Perhaps, it is the tendency of consumers to generally isolate iconic product effectiveness with the companies that spawn them. Today, there are arguably four technology global titans (sorry Sony & RIMM), and speaking with American bias they are: Google, Apple, Microsoft and Oracle. This of course has nothing to do with innovation, but everything to do with iconic status achieved via utilitarian & ubiquitous presence and staying power.

Well, for the four, one can argue that they are really excellent at just one thing (with these products driven by specific strategies), and that consumers associate one or few products with each. Hence, they are better off improving than diversifying. Or at least, these companies better don’t screw up that  one thing they do best (like MS screwed up Vista) and expect to get bailed out by one of your new fancy pet projects that are more so ego massage tantrums at the competitor (like Zune or Bing- Save me Steve Ballmer!)

What do consumers think of the big four?

  • Apple: making sleek hardware-software combo devices that adherents can shell good money on; for most Mac users, theirs is more than a machine; it is a device that elicits passion, envy and love. (Title: King of Super Consumer Electronics).
  • Google: useful and mostly free products. Wanna bet away your search engine, free web apps, you-tube and the goodies that come from the G-House?  (Title: King of the Free Web & Search)
  • Microsoft: Expensive utility products that consumers will have to use either at home or work to make their PCs functional. But they pay indirectly, so who cares? Windows & Office is here to stay. (Title: King of the Desktop)
  • Oracle: Software and applications for business users. You don’t pay for their product, but their product run your life.(Title: King of Business Software/Apps)

In summary, Steve Jobs can lay off that dream of conquering the desktop and Steve Ballmer can smoke the pipe crack on beating Google on the web; while Google should dream about its cloud thing being used by my grand-pa (ain’t gonna happen). Moreover, none of them can take on Ellison in the business world; and they all are better off just being who they are! That is also true for the rest of us too…business or personal?

P.S: Just to illustrate. I am sitting in the company truck on a bare field (proposed pump station) in Rock County, Kansas typing this away on Office, because I have no net connection here. I hope to copy and past this to Blogger (owned by Google) tonight when I get to Omaha- 6 hours away. My Apple I-Pod will keep me entertained during those 6 hours drive across Center America, and just before I retire to bed, I need to turn in the field construction reports for the work my crew is doing outside right now on an Oracle driven application, on my laptop (okay, it is not a Mac!) 

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

On Stolen African Art & Old Europe's 'Curative' Affront

Looted Ife Terracotta Sculpture on Display in British Museum
Let me vent today...I read this on NY Times few moments ago..
“There was a complete understanding about what would remain in Egypt and what would be taken to Germany,” Mrs. Grutters said by telephone. “Maybe there is a bit of jealousy on the part of Egypt over Nefertiti. In any event, I am not so sure Egypt has the best conditions for this statue,” she added. “And because it is so fragile, I am not sure the statue can even be flown. We have excellent conditions here in Germany.”  NY Times
What arrogance right? Excellent conditions in Germany for Egyptian Art so much to justify stealing and outright banditry by your forefathers? I guess if it were Jewish Art looted by the Nazis we might be writing a different headline for this story; but this is Africa. Yeah, the same Egypt with not so excellent conditions is home to millions of other artifacts that I am not seeing this snub complaining about. The great museums in Alexandria are not good enough for Egyptian Art, but punishing European climate is just about okay.

For far too long, European looters have hidden beyond this smokescreen of "having better conditions" for art works they literally stole. It is insulting to the thousands of African artists that still ply their trade in the motherland. If Africa is such a bad place for her own art works, why are these European snubs not offering express Visas and residency to all African artists? **Immigration alert! 

Yeah, African Art is so great we had to steal it and keep it in "better" Europe. After looting African resources, it is her art work we so brazenly stole that we will so brazenly try to keep! Yeah..take that snub. To me I say rubbish. The original Benin Bronze and Ife head still lies in British Museum as testimonies to British thievery! The Owo door and thousands of other stolen artifacts are brazenly displayed in European cities, attracting billions of tourists revenues annually while Europe remit chicken change in aid and IMF grants to African states. Of course it makes sense that Europe will continue to make this case, while African leaders can't get their act together. Kudos to Egypt for trying though; it is about time someone call out these folks. 

However the minimum is that the successors to the legacy of banditry should shut up and stop rubbing salt on Africa's wound with such silly comments. Of course, their age long insistence on using their judicial systems to legalize stealing won't cut it either.

read further here and here

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Putin- The True Russian Oligarch

Was it not the other day when Putin made a comment about his wealth? He said in his usual terse manner that he was the wealthiest man in Russia. In his own words, "It is true. I am the richest man not only in Europe, but in the world: I amass emotions and am rich in the sense that the Russian people twice put the trust in me to rule such a great country as Russia. I count this as my biggest wealth. What concerns various rumours concerning my financial situation, I have seen some documents on this issue. This is simply gossip, which there is no reason to discuss - mere nonsense."

Of course he is rich..I mean rich in use of his macho strong man image to strong arm otherwise recalsistrant gongo capitalists that seized the Russian economy after the fall of the Soviet Union, and rendered his once powerful and equally popular predecessor(Boris Yeltsin) a political impotent. Putin refused to play this game with the Oligarchs, otherwise called the "Seven Bankers" i.e. Berezovsky, Gusinsky, Khordorkovsky, Potanin, Vinogradov, Smolensky and Friedman-Aven (pp. 328, The Oligarchs, Wealth & Power in the New Russia (2001;2003)). There will be an eight, who will be an ultimate winner in Putin's chess power play i.e. Chelsea FC owner Roman Abramovich. But this Yeltsin inside man was hardly the focus of David H. Hoffman's tale. They all nearly had something in common: rare ambition, uncommon courage, and feeling of being outsiders at the onset. Untold greed also characterize their voracious appetite for both financial and political control which ultimately became their undoing in Putin's Russia sans the new millennium when Yeltsin left town. Indeed, of the original seven, five had one or more Jewish parents (less Potanin & Vinogradov. See pp. 359) . What a coincidence? Well, it is notable! In this set up, one of them was always prefect: Berezovksy 

In his book, Hoffman a journalist in the post-Soviet Russia traces the rise of the intellectual heft (read Anatoly Chubais) and the inner city machine (read Luzkhov) as well as a natural politician (read Boris Yeltsin) and how the intersection of their passion for Economics, Politics & Power shaped the emerging Russian Federation. By Exploring the exploits and power plays of these three men, and their insistence on destroying the old Soviet Union structures and from the ashes of that union create a new liberal democracy of Russia while quickly undoing the vestiges of the old sets a telling tale of betrayal, scuffle, gerrymandering , posturing, intrigues and ultimately unlikely triumph. 

In this tale, the Oligarchs are not power brokers as they are often made to be, they are mere players. That is my conclusion. Today, one is in Jail. Two are in exile. One is virtually unheard of (though not bankrupt, but definitely nearly as rich and definitely powerless), while 3 of the original thrive in less fashion while the potential eight learned quickly and cow-towered to the new Sherriff in town i.e. Vladmir Putin; the true successor to the combined legacy of Luzkhov, Chubais and Yeltsin. Hoffman focused on 2 power players as character witnesses (Luzkov and Chubais) and 4 capitalists. He explored less the impact Putin had on the entire complex, which came in the last half of the last chapter and is largely uncelebrated. The fact that Putin will let Roman thrive is no coincidence, or even the fact that the media empire that Berezovsky and Gusinsky had no impact on his electoral ambition is the tell tale sign of the political astuteness of the man. He will not betray yeltsin, he had dirt through his FSB years on the Oligarchs and clearly intended not to share power and play hard ball with them to clearly get the message. Gusinsky was made an example of, Berezovsky quickly took a page from that drama (the stripping of NTV from Gusinksy); but Khordo..of Yukos fame learned the wrong lessons and is today cooling his feet in a Serbian jail for tax evasion charges- Nobody messes with Putin! 

To the author's credit, the book is focused, engaging and hard to put down. However, the less curious justice done to Putin's character, and the two major winners in this rule of the jungle capitalism i.e. Potanin and Abramovich, probably calls for a book two hundred pages longer, and probably four years published earlier than it should. In Putin's Russia where he is still Prime Minister, and President in waiting, no other center of political power will be tolerated. In Putin's Russia, his rule demands and espouses the grandiosity of Chubais vision of a developed economy, the "doer" view of Luzkhov political machine in Moscow, and the Yeltsinoistic appetite for political gamesmanship and brinkmanship on the national stage as well as a near astute feel for the political temperature on the street and how to use the security services to keep the lid on the ambitious new capitalists. 

In 2009, perhaps the last paragraph of this tale is yet to be written. Will the dog bite, or will the fox haunt? Will his pawn, President Medvedev play ball? I remise to say in Russia, things never appear as they seem. Perhaps a second revised edition, or a third is necessary;  because in Putin's Russia the question the then newly elected President asked Berezovsky in 2000 is prescient, "You, you were one of those who asked me to be president. So how can you complain?"

Classically Oligarchical...it was a joyful read. I give is a four star. 

The Putin Era Oligarchs..gone awry
Suggested Read:

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

The Power & Limitation of a Single Story

This was the theme of a public lecture by Nigeria's and perhaps Africa's brightest burning young literary star, Novelist Chimamanda Adichie. The writer of the groundbreaking work, Purple Hibiscus and Half of a Yellow Sun, and winner of the Commonwealth and Orange Prizes for literature, explores the danger of stereotyping using a single narrative. She explores the African literary experience from the perspective of a story teller, and her audience. The Danger of building off a story, and the power of the powerful (sans the not so "other") to choose the instance from which stories are told to shape perspectives about the "other". Chimamanda's imagination has not changed since I last heard her few years ago, but she has grown. The parameters hewned by this public discourse is worth exploring, and need I say, worth sharing...I will let her do the talking..below.

Is this Nigeria's next Nobel Prize winner? Well, there is the early evidence of something beautiful. Below is an interview she did recently with CNN...this her story, I hope it is not a single story (no pun intended)- at least her perspective below on the institution of marriage which some of my buddies on another blog are clearly running with..(laughs)

Monday, September 28, 2009

Six Degrees of Separation...

Human relationships is a peculiar study. If you are a good student of human behavior, the interactions of supposed stranger is something that stands out. First the introduction, next the background information, then the unsaid body languages and reaction- assumptions made of intentions, personality types, and even match. I think this process takes often less than three minutes at most...and then the unraveling begins. Locations are pin pointed, memories are exchanged, familiar names drop in conversation, details are shared- and boom- they find common ground (or they don't). It can be explained perhaps by the theory of six degrees of separation. 

Six degrees of separation (also referred to as the "Human Web") refers to the idea that, if a person is one step away from each person they know and two steps away from each person who is known by one of the people they know, then everyone is at most six steps away from any other person on Earth (source Wikipedia)

Of peculiar application of this theory is just a mental note of what connects you to the next person you sight on a busy street. A cologne? Perhaps a recent visit to a common shop? May be you are from Thailand,and he is wearing a made in Thailand shirt? Perhaps is music taste. Something, something very unique is the six degrees between you and the next, or the before..or the in between. It is this six degrees of separation in our unconscious that we explore when we argue for healthcare for all, when we insist that our fellow country men deserve a decent meal, good roads and basic education. This six degrees is what drives the child of a noble family to the dingiest streets of the third world volunteering time, money and resources to rid the world of poverty that he/she could otherwise ignore. The six degrees of separation is a space explored by the comfortable worker driven by a desire to change the world thereby forcing a change in ambition: from busy bee to researcher. 

How many degrees are we separated? Six? Perhaps two? May be even one...Ponder on that. 

P.S: Hey, and a shout out to the Coogs for delivering a earth shattering 29-28 victory against top ranked Texas Tech...now we move up 12th ranked in the country? Go Coogs!

To the other sports team that made my weekend, even though I am not a fan, may you live long! I speak of Wigan for delivering the death warrant to proud Chelsea. The record will stand, and Chelsea is not even close to being a good football team as much as the gunners. You can see it, but you cannot make it. Go GUNNERS! 

Monday, September 21, 2009

Soundtracks of Our Life

Soundtracks..yeah, that one too. I have soundtracks for everything important I guess...everything worth remembering. I often associate music with important milestones, places and above all trips. Whenever I travel, the music that pops up the most (usually) ends up being the soundtrack for that trip. Also sometimes, the place, the music and perhaps the person(s) all just intersect and makes the music.

However, how about a soundtrack for life? Some music that encapsulates everything life is about. Something that is like the said all, tell all of your lifetime..the yet to be lived, already lived and living all in one. May be a Beatles, Jackson 5 and Commodores super mix? Something just present..constant..fresh..refreshing..okay, may be just focusing. Something resplendent, conforming, or perhaps rebellious? A music of life..a soundtrack for life's journey...

I have one such music..100 years by Five For Fighting...

May be it is my fascination with numbers, or the just prophetic attribute of the song, but the track sure sounds good. On this day, when the calls and the wishes reminds one of how far we have come, how far one is yet to go...and the different tiny bits of the web of human relationships one has formed come together, one can only wish for a hundred years...may be more..but 100 will do.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Noam Choamsky's Hypothesis

This was quite an interesting read; I will suggest you save some brain power for thinking if you decide to pick up Noam's submission of American Imperialism. A suggested read from Hugo Chavez at the UN convention where he identified Bush as the 'Great Satan', I finally read the piece in my summer exploration of foreign affairs (Confessions of an Economic Hit man being a companion read). Well, below is the book in Noam's word.

Background on Noam Chomsky

Chomsky's thought as usual is provoking. But am reminded of a scribble I had scrawled behind the book in conclusion that  "No nation should apologize for using her foreign policy to self advantage; that is the point!; In the same breadth, no country should complain about the disastrous consequences of its selfish diplomacy" 

Fall Reading List

1. I intend to spend September- October reading on developmental politics...two books to explore: Oligarchs (a book on the Russian Lords of Capitalism) and From third world to First (The Singapore Story) by the former long time PM. Am also exploring Blink on audio book...should be good company on my adventures out West.

2. Towards thanksgiving I'll kickstart my proper winter list...hopefully an exploration of world history, starting from home. Two books, a History of the Yorubas by the Legendary Bishop Samuel Johnson & History of Nigeria written by some UT professors should come in handy. On audio, I hope to explore the Gun, Germs  & Steel by Jarred Diamond, if I can lay my hands on it.

Friday, September 11, 2009

Losing My Mind

I wonder what to scribble
A poem or a prose?
Perhaps from the jungle of my mind
Some mumble jumble will flow
Confused? NO
I am in the know of what is going on
A strange feeling courses through my heart
But it is not strange because it is new
To the contrary,
I have felt this way before
Even as much as I hate to admit it
But I never knew

I never knew I will fell this way again
The weight of true feeling heavy on my heart
This feeling that I thought I have lock for eternity
In that innocent corner of my heart
With feelings of youthful vigor,
With feelings of youthful indiscretions,
No despair, no dissapointment,
Willing to forbid, and forbade none,
I thought these feelings had dissipated for good
With the wrongs of the past,
With the pain of the endings thereof,

Wrong it now seems
For the withering carcasses of this boar has risen
The star of dimming constellation
Born in the revelation of its own glory

I make no pretense
Make no pretensions as to having control over this feeling
This? To be controlled?
It seems absurd to write control and mind in one word
But I feel perturbed in the inward realization of its power
Fear? May be..Fear of what?
That I might lose it? Lose my Mind? No
That I might lose this feeling

How can I be sure,
That she feels the same way,
That this feeling will endure,
That this is not just some fleeting madness,
That this is for real since I had not known one lately,
That what I see is the real thing,
That my understanding will not diminish,
My sight may not falter,
My steps may not come to a halt,
My hands may steer clear of danger..

Admiration? Yes..that one too
I felt it before.
Respect? Perhaps, for one or two
Sensuality? All the time
Collegiality? A real starter
Conviviality? May the spirit of our ancestors endure
But all rolled in one,
That calls for a green light,
Perhaps a champagne,
Perhaps something more real,
More enduring, More Encompassing
Something to lose my mind for

Perhaps if she only knows...

Tuesday, September 08, 2009

Life as a Journey & Impact as a Factor of Immersion

2009 will remain a memorable summer for me; the joys of nature, the geniality of family and friends, the triviality of adventures all come together into a truly amazing piece of self discovery. As the summer gives away to Fall, I have been pondering (may be way too much), the essence of life's journey. 6.8 billion people we are told: differing aspirations, sometimes even conflicting energy levels: yet same apparent goal! i.e. success.

Life's journey confounds the simple, and amazes the complex. One thing I have discovered though is that the friendships, and companionship we make along the way on this road determines the mileage we get out of the trip. This summer, friendships have been made or marred. Those that held back, have given away. Those that blossomed have been all the way confounding. It has been a productive one however. My life journey has been resoundingly re-focused. I have truly for the first time ever defined what truly makes me happy. Granted that I might have toyed with the idea, but it all comes together now more than ever. My passion for starting things have not gone away. I sold a company, and started three new ones. I re-entered the stock market, and made some resounding life decisions. I cleared my head, and reconnected the missing dots. Such are the blessings of this life's journey and perhaps my favorite season of all.

As I turn to Fall, I am reminded of how how environment impacts us: by Osmosis or by Immersion. This reminds me of one of that little remembered affiliations I have had in the past. It was to this Bible Study movement while I was on the campus of PVAMU. It was called Impact Movement. One of the most enriching college experience for me. There we had young adults meet once a week to share the struggles of college life, as Christians with some real pressures in college. More than a form of therapy, it gave me profound insight as an immigrant to the window of the American society as none other interaction as- and for which I am still deeply grateful. Countless dinners, couple of walks and important such road trips introduced me to America the Beautiful (Land and People) that I still capriciously consume to this day.

Some friendships I made there have in wonderful ways endured to this day. I remembered visiting DC for the first time, and traveling any where in the US for the first due to an Impact conference held at the Hilton Hotel in DC. During that trip, I was opportune to visit the White House grounds courtesy of a Secret Service agent that obliged me on that cold wintry December evening. The profound influence of that generosity still draws me to DC as magnet draws pure iron.

To those who make an impact on lives they will never know how much it means to, I say you do such a magnificent work that the world will most definitely stop spinning if you don't get going. To those who do a horrible job at it, what are you waiting on? I am personally convinced that life's journey however starts with self introspection- a lonely life journey, perhaps an experience that only you can recount but which you transmit by osmosis or DISpersion as you mount that sometimes lonely campaign to pave the journey road of life for those coming after you...

Book Review: Confessions of an Economic Hit Man by John Perkins was my summer favorite. Half way through its cousin written by Renowned Linguist and Father of Modern Linguistics and Anarchist Movement, Noam Chomsky i.e. Hegemony or Survival: America's Quest for Global Dominance. These books on International Global power Play lays a good ground work for my fall book list that will be dominated by History readings on Nigeria, and her peoples..may be add two books each on Africa and Human Civilization Issues. Got 2 recommendations on such exploration of collective Human civilization...I am considering that..full list shortly. And yeah..someone just made me discover audio book..shout out!

Friday, August 14, 2009

Seven Wonders of Nigeria

It think Lady T asked an interesting question on UpNaira what we considered the 7 wonders of Nigeria...the natural wonders of our beautiful country. Good question at an important juncture in our nation where strife, distress seem to be pulling us apart. We seem to forget what beautiful country we are blessed with irrespective of our differences and the bankrupt leadership we seem to logger around our necks as we take tentative steps forward towards true development..well, here is my list:

I have been to some..but have heard of others...

1. Ikogosi Warms Springs, Ekiti: Yes I am biased, but you have to feel it to believe it.

2. Obudu Cattle Ranch & Cable Rail cum Presidential retreat: You should not die without seeing this paradise. Visit Tinapa also if you can

3. Erin Ijesha Water Fall..may be not as panoramic as Niagara or Lake Victoria, but found in the jungle without any seeming source of great river; this is a sight to behold

4. Badagry Beach and Slave Resorts- These strings of beach (not one) is a refreshingly familiar at least until you reach the grim end of no return where slaves departed the coast of Lagos

5. Nigeria Conservation Foundation Lekki Conservatory and adjacent Alpha and Lekki Beach..if you have time also go to Lagos Marina..go at night, get a jet ski..surf..the best thing ever.

6. Yankari Game Reserve...So I heard..the rare collection of wild life makes this a place to go..the decaying infrastructure is a contrast to Obudu however. Also houses a Presidential Retreat..

7. Mambilla Plateau..I will skip any other high ground for this..

Of course, I have included a video of the Architectural Wonder in the little sleepy town of Ilupeju Ekiti..in Ekiti State Nigeria..enjoy

Thursday, July 30, 2009

A Whirlwind Summer Tour...In Toronto, CA

I guess I am coming to the end of a journeylicous summer, but it is far from over. Sitting right now in the hotel room in downtown Toronto. The Weather couldn't be more perfect for the Caribana (Carribean Festival) festivities that will resume in few hours. The flight from Houston to Bufallo went well, even though my buddy who sat at the wing section of the plane said otherwise. I got a good sit with legroom in from on the Southewest Airlines. The immigration protocol at the border at Niagara Falls went well; I look forward to taking Niagara Falls pics on our way back..from the Canadian side. Hopefully in good time to catch our flight back.

We hit a upscale lounge yesterday..gorgeous board walk here. I still think Vancouver is more beautiful, but Toronto got soul it seems. Will be headed to do some MBA Grad School ground work at University of Toronto and York University today, and perhaps visit Toronto Island. A Jet Skii ride is not a bad idea...we do have a rental drop top- perfect for this weather. I have been able to do quite a few work, even though those of my surbodinates calling me from work will find it funny I am sending them a flurry of tasks via mail but won't pick my phone..thanks to Rogers roaming..sorry dad. Toronto is a change from Texoma and East Texas (Cooper) that I was out working last two weekends. Not so fast since Nebraska and South Dakota are slowly creepingon my as this project escalates.

But I am determined to enjoy this. I enjoyed London, Aberdeen, New York and yes now Toronto. Lest I forget DC, San Antonio and Vancouver. Couldn't have been a more whirlwind Summer unh?

Sunday, June 14, 2009

This Bridge to London is not Burning..Just Yet

Been in London for barely 72 hrs and I must admit I am having a blast. I had so much fun, I needed a 10 hrs marathon sleep this morning. I should be headed out to Scotland (edinburgh) specifically on thursday. My impression of London, same old same old..but Londoners know how to have fun, the weather has been cooperative but it remains one of the most expensive places to visit in the world.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Eko O ni Baje!

Physical development of Lagos has been outstanding in the past few years...this blog documents its all.


I have some few pictures to share for those who mind..of course, surf to my picasa folder called Lagos of 2006 to see the difference...it is a new Lagos. Eko o ni baje!

One has to be impressed by the vision of the state leadership. It is an oasis in the desert of rampant corruption called Nigeria. One has to even be more impressed by the influx of investors and their vote of confidence. The proposed mall of Africa pictured above will be the largest mall in the continent at 120k sq ft. 2010 is construction take off date proposed. Nyce!

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Ekiti Rerun Results As they Come In

Notes: Ijero and Ikole experiences widespread irregularity..documented at 4pm Ekiti Time
Elections in Oye Cancelled..due to thuggery. Postponed till Sunday
Ekiti Rerun Results- BUSANGA.COM- Results from INEC From E8


Grand Total- Post Appeal 78091 65743

Gbonyin 2871 1925

Irepodun/Ifelodun 5702 4087

Ekiti SW 423 351

Ekiti East 3829 4711

Ise Orun 4221 3861

Ijero 1881 5121

TOTAL 97018 85799

Rerun Total 18927 20056


Ikole 3639 4491

Ido Osi


Ekiti West

3639 4491

Update at 4.46 pm CST...Ijero result is kind of tentative..but very reliable.

Update at 9.53 PM CST...Ido-Osi where all wards are voting and Ekiti West with 4 wards being contested will determine the results of the election- they are both toss ups with Ekiti West determinably close. Oye is also pending but is an AC stronghold . These determinations were made based on valid results upheld by the Appeal Courts as determined by this tabulation.

Update at 2.56 pm Sunday: Oye's election postponed indefinitely.
Ekiti Inec commissioner Ayoka Adebayo to resign in the next few days and state her full reasons. She stated her intentions after resisting official (read, PDP and FG) pressure to announce fake Ekiti election results in Ido-Osi Lga and others.

Ekiti Rerun Results As they Come In

For Updates Visit http://twitter.com/ekitirr

First Post: 2.53 CST
First Update: 4.06 CST

Ekiti Rerun Results- BUSANGA.COM- Results from INEC From E8


Gbonyin 1693 1245

Irepodun/Ifelodun 5702 4087

Ekiti SW 423 351

Ekiti East 3829 4711

TOTAL 11647 10394


Ikole 3639 4491

Ijero 1881 5121

5520 9612

NOTES: PDP has apparently built a 4000 vote advantages in these two problem areas I highlighted previously- ON NVS [@ 9.11 AM CST "Appears to me that Ikole and Ijero are experiencing the most problems at the moment. Only few wards in Ikole (includes nearby Usi and adjacent Oye) are voting, I don't see this changing the elections. If the deciding ballot comes from Ijero, then this could be dangerous. But Ilawe, Omuo, and Ifaki all taken together should guarantee victory for AC"]. I fully expect these results to be challenged and nullified if Fayemi did his homework and given the web evidence that have been collated thankfully by monitors on ground.

NOTE: Oye election holds tmrw. Election canceled due to violence

Update 2:

Ekiti Rerun Results- BUSANGA.COM- Results from INEC From E8


Gbonyin 2871 1925

Irepodun/Ifelodun 5702 4087

Ekiti SW 423 351

Ekiti East 3829 4711

TOTAL 12825 11074


Ikole 3639 4491

Ijero 1881 5121

5520 9612

* Gbonyin announced results differs...note


Gbonyin 2871 1925

Irepodun/Ifelodun 5702 4087

Ekiti SW 423 351

Ekiti East 3829 4711

Ise Orun 4221 3861

TOTAL 17046 14935


Ikole 3639 4491

Ijero 1881 5121

5520 9612

Those local governments in Red is as announced by INE Collation Officer at Ado Ekiti

Monday, April 20, 2009

Relationship, Men, their Women and Unmarried Friends

People often inquire why I hardly write about relationships on this blog...may be,..I guess we will never know. I think it is because of what this blog represents. It is somewhat a part of my three facet persona- the serious side. The introspective, playful side that can come out once in a while is reserved for the relationship discourse and that hardly comes through on here. Perhaps it is because virtually all my family (parentals included) and my committee of admirers (read past present and future exs' - joking!) also know of this not so secret rant place. In any case, for the sake of simplicity, I have decided not to complicate my life...and take the "relationship out of the blog" as some friend of mine said.

But I am about to break that code...

I am often fascinated by the balance of power in human relationships especially between opposite sexes. At first instance, the balance of power tend to reside in the women-dom. During the period of wooing, most men will roll on the floor to avoid embarrassment. Kick in the the dating, and it starts getting iffy. Initially the lady generally always hold the upper hand, but the unspoken rule is that as the dating couples get more used to one another, the male usually emerge as a far stronger party in the game such that the longer he prolongs doing the do, the stronger his hand remains. In so far as he stays away from the altar, he enjoys and holds strategic advantage on when, how or even if he is going to ultimately commit. Simply said, women generally without much ado become slaves of "being the one", or "wasting valuable time and getting nothing for it". The law of diminishing returns ladies!

If Ms. Lady gets her man to the altar, this balance again shifts gradually. Advantage woman. The longer she stays married, the stronger her hand gets: with her husband, in her home, with her in-laws . From my observation, the peak and optimum point is about the tenth year of marriage when the man becomes the slave of societal perception of him being a reliable provider, father and responsible husband. It is in this gear the gear gets stuck at- and then the variable is how much provider the man becomes. A man that emerge successful will emerge a stronger over time of course and achieve some kind of parity but this again is dependent on the woman yielding that inherent power of staying married...so does divorce really strenghten the hand of a woman? I think not... sometimes.

A BBC Wild Documentary on Birds, draws an interesting analogy...

Why? What is it with women who can't stand their man's friends? Especially the single ones? Threat? What?


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