Thursday, December 28, 2006

Ending 2006

As the year ends, You'd think I'd be reflecting, perhaps making resolutions in an effort to better or improve myself. Nope. Maybe due to arrogance, ah who am I kidding, largely due to arrogance but really simply because I don't believe that too much matters to most people anymore. Instead I'm involving myself in other people's lives. Fiction especially. I have caught up with movies I haven't had time to see plus managed to catch some blockbusters within their first few days of release. And I'm completely and perfectly happy. So there 2006, if I have had the last laugh, then I guess I win.

As for Pursuit of Happyness, the misspell is relevant to the story, kinda. And Jaden Christopher Syre Smith received no favors to earn his role in the movie. That kid is one of the best child actors ever seen on any screen. Sweet genes! Plus he is so cute. And for a story based on real events, it gets you. Especially because almost everyone can relate, no matter how vaguely, to this man's trials.

Blood diamond. First and foremost, is this racism or am I super sensitive? So may recognized and small people shows keep up talking Leonardo diCaprio and ignoring Djimonou Hounsou despite his stellar performance? And some of them even show clips of an interview with him and neglect to even mention his name. I feel so insulted every time this happens. The movie critics were very fair to him however. So for that, thank you. This movie is worth your time for shizzo. I also verified the general events from a friend of mine who is from Sierra Leone. I do this always, movies tend to distort truth too much for it to be considered based on facts. But this one is pretty accurate. The blood diamonds continue to seep in through Liberia. This is one trade that was established by Charles Taylor. A diamond that passes through Liberia is probably dirty. So if you spend too much on diamonds or have bought into the hype, you may wanna rethink this. For starters diamonds are not rare. Never were. If you ever wanted to argue with that, just recall that the lead in your pencil and a diamond are one chemical compound link apart but are actually similar in composition. Next, if to preserve a facade, there has been so much blood shed, why support the idiosyncrasy? Food for thought.

Caught up with plenty of other older movies. Dream girls' will have to wait for the dvd release. Anyone who casts Beyonce in an acting role after having seen her previous movies does not deserve my money at the AMC or Cinemark counters. I know the reviews are raving, but hello, I'm not one of blind faith to those. There's Apocalypto, that's for tonight. I might see "We're Marshall", maybe not. Don Cheadle's and Adam Sandler's coming soon, forgot the name of that, watch out for that. The previews indicate a really good movie in the making.

Well, that's it. Have a happy 2007. Happy. Pursuit of it or whatever. That should always be the ultimate goal.


Reel Fanatic said...

I haven't seen Blood Diamond, but you're certainly not off-base in asserting racism in the attentions of film critics during awards season .. what makes me even more sick is when they make one exception, like Denzel and Halle Berry in one year, and than spend the next 10 patting themselves on the back

Anonymous said...

This Economic Recovery Strategy for Wealth and Employment Creation aims at giving Kenyans
a better deal in our lives and in our struggle to build a modern and prosperous nation. It aims to
empower Kenyans and to provide them with a democratic political atmosphere under which all
citizens can be free to work hard and engage in productive activities to improve their standards of
living. In this regard, this strategy is focused on implementing the promises in the Manifesto of
the National Rainbow Coalition (NARC), our ruling party, which are based on two concepts:
democracy and empowerment.
During the past two decades, we have seen Kenya slide systematically into the abyss of
underdevelopment and hopelessness. Poverty has increased, unemployment has become rampant,
insecurity has visited almost every homestead, hunger is prevalent among the poor, the health
condition of the people has declined significantly, while corruption and bad governance became
entrenched as political oppression weighed heavily on the people. The oppression went for long
by dividing the people along ethnic lines, nurturing hatred and suspicion among the people and
creating a huge divide between the governors and the governed. Many Kenyans almost lost hope
in their own nation.
Thus the gains of the first two decades of independence have actually been halted or reversed
during the last thirty years. Kenya can get no better deal than recapture the initiative we had at
independence with the aim of climbing to greater heights in development with the view of
becoming part of the First World in the next twenty five years. This is the only worthwhile
ambition we can have for ourselves in the twenty first century. We must rekindle faith in
ourselves. We must work hard to become a nation of proud people, “a working nation”. That is
the vision the President gave us on Madaraka Day, first of June 2003.
In order to live up to this vision, however, we must have a good and clear road map for the future.
We must plan and plan well. We must make sound choices on what we are doing. We must get
our priorities right. We must then implement what we choose to do in order to get the results that
will improve our lives and not those that will set us back several years. In this Recovery Strategy,
a road map is provided for taking specific actions during the next five years to put Kenya on the
path to economic prosperity. Some of these actions may, in the short run, be painful and difficult
to accomplish. In the long run, however, they are bound to pay dividends.
The Economic Recovery Strategy for Wealth and Employment Creation recognizes that we have
actually experienced negative growth over the last ten years in the majority of sectors of our
economy. We have not only stagnated in terms of economic growth; we have unfortunately lost
even the ground we had covered. So, in order to begin the serious business of economic growth,
we must recover the lost ground. This means undertaking radical reforms that will drive our
recovery process.
As we moved from a state-controlled economy to a more market-oriented economy in the
nineteen nineties, we undertook macro-economic reforms which should have served us well were
we not bogged down by corruption, mismanagement, unmanageable borrowing in the domestic
market, poorly conceived public investments, wastefulness and general bad governance in
government and the public sector. We now realize that the unfinished business of reforming the
state and its operations so that good governance can prevail under democracy and the rule of
law is vital to the recovery process. This requires our own political resolve and commitment
before we even tackle the issues of institutional reforms and the enacting of new good governance
laws. While maintaining a sound macro-economic framework, this Recovery Program gives
priority to good governance and the rule of law as the foundation of our economic growth. In
this regard, reforms are proposed that will deepen and institutionalize growth with macroeconomic
stability, good governance, the rule of law, public security and social solidarity.
Although we realized at independence that both physical and social infrastructure are extremely
vital for the creation of wealth and development in general, and that they are the arteries of our
economy, we have, over the years, ignored or run down both. Kenya, given her economic
potential, has one of the lowest connectivity per capita among the Sub-Saharan African
countries in terms of physical infrastructure, i.e. telephony, roads, air and maritime transport,
railways, electrical power, financial services and internet provision. In terms of education and
health—social infrastructure—the momentum built soon after independence was lost twenty years
ago as services deteriorated through corruption and poor governance.
Firstly, by providing compulsory and free primary school education, we have set the stage for
recovering this lost ground. Secondly, by initiating a National Social Health Insurance Scheme,
we shall endeavor to see that all our citizens have access to proper and sustainable health care
system. Thirdly, to create the environment for wealth and job creation, the government intends to
rehabilitate, expand and properly maintain physical and social infrastructure sectors. These
initiatives are intended to achieve the Milleneum Development Goals within the coming decade.
In undertaking these and other key development initiatives that this Recovery Plan identifies as
priorities, the government would like to appeal to civil society, labor, the private sector and all our
development partners to join us in the mobilization of needed resources for our Recovery
Program. We are also faced by such emergency issues like the HIV/AIDS pandemic, the adverse
effects of unpredictable weather, the terrorism menace and political instability in neighboring
countries. The government will be proactive in dealing with these issues and committing needed
resources at its disposal. It will strengthen domestic and international partnerships in achieving
our goals. In this regard, we are establishing the National Economic and Social Council (NESC)
to provide an arena for partnership for the making, monitoring and evaluation of public policy.
The NESC, in line with our active participation in the New Partnership for African Development
(NEPAD), will go a long way towards improving public-private partnership in Kenya’s
development process under the NARC government. Our diplomatic policy in the context of
NEPAD should move away from the benign “good neighborliness” stance to more productive
economic diplomacy.
With the improvement in our infrastructure and given our commitment to good governance and
the rule of law, we are determined to create a friendly and affordable environment for investment
and doing business in Kenya. This will lead to improved efficiency and productivity in the
productive sectors: agriculture, trade, industry, tourism, mining and other services so that more
and more of our people can be productively employed and hence live better.
Whether we are talking of the smallholder farmer, the medium enterprise owner or the captains of
industry, government must ensure that all receive good services so as to produce and create
wealth for our nation. The government will, in turn, find the basis for getting its revenue through
taxation. It must not be forgotten that a good tax regime is that one which is user-friendly and not
that which is punitive and invites calculated evasion by the taxpayers. The government invites
Kenyans to pay their taxes while feeling perfectly at home in doing so. During the next five years,
the government will take urgent measures to enhance public savings and reduce public
consumption so that substantial resources can be availed for domestic capital formation. In line
with this policy, the government will seek to enhance the confidence of the public to participate in
the Nairobi Stock Exchange (NSE). After six months in office, the government is encouraged by
the confidence of Kenyans in the way public affairs are being managed. This should be
underscored by sustainable macro-economic stability, increased investments and rapid growth.
The process of producing this Recovery Strategy started with our campaign to change Kenya for
the better and our election Manifesto on democracy and empowerment. I would like to thank all
those people who worked hard to establish the National Rainbow Coalition and all those who
prepared and produced the Manifesto. I would also like to thank the young men and women who
worked on our Post-Election Action Program. But more profoundly, I would like to thank the
people of Kenya who gave us the mandate to govern this country by voting for NARC
overwhelmingly in the last general elections.
There have been a series of consultations with various stakeholders in putting together this
Recovery Program. In February 2003, a three-day seminar was held in Mombasa to discuss the
basic analysis proposals that the Ministry was advancing on strategies for economic recovery. We
used the Poverty Reduction Strategy Paper (PRSP), the Government Action Plan, the NARC
Manifesto and the Post-Election Action Plan (PEAP) in preparing the basic document. The
seminar triggered off a series of consultations with employers, manufacturers, labor unions,
professionals, civil society organizations, organizations and ministries dealing with the global
commons and people from Arid and Semi-Arid Lands. More recently, in preparing for the July
Economic Summit, the views incorporated into the Strategy have been discussed with smaller
audiences from these stakeholders so that the Ministry can arrive at a realistic framework for
The government must now express this national solidarity in a development process that is allinclusive
and that will promote nationhood in Kenya. That is why, in the program of action
integral to this Recovery Strategy, specific attention has been paid to the Arid And Semi Arid
Lands (ASALS) to move away from the benign neglect of the past, and to fully develop the
potentials of these areas.
I would like to thank all the Cabinet Ministers, Members of Parliament, Government officials,
consultants, professionals, civil society organizations, development partners and friends of Kenya
with whom the Ministry consulted and discussed to produce this Recovery Program. I would also
like to thank the staff of the Ministry of Planning and National Development for the hard and
steadfast work they have performed.
Finally, I would like to express my gratitude to His Excellency the President for having supported
this process with commitment and dedication. The President has given Kenyans confidence that
change for the better is possible, and its fruits can be reaped in our lifetime. In July this year, the
President will be launching the Blue Print for long-term economic development in Kenya. This
Strategy for Economic Recovery over the next five years lays down the foundations for this longterm
perspective plan to be published as a Sessional Paper.
If we dedicate ourselves as a hard working nation, a truly unbwogable people, we shall definitely
transform this nation from a third world nation to a prosperous and modern nation in the next
twenty-five years. There is work to be done: let us all do it.
Hon. P. Anyang’ Nyong’o
Minister for Planning and National Development
June 2003.

3N said...

I hope you haven't already watched apocalypto, everyone I know has been dissapointed.
and whoever came up with the scam of diamonds as rare is a genius