Sunday, March 12, 2006

Netroots and mangoes

Two op-eds in NYTimes today:

First, what do you get when you combine grassroots mobilization and and the democratizing power potential of blogs? Netroots.

The netroots' power comes from the same network effect that made eBay a retailing phenomenon. Far-flung political activists now join together on sites like, and inject themselves into matters that used to be settled behind closed doors. ...

Next, Madhur Jaffrey educates the Americans about the charms of the King of Fruit.

The one attempt I made [to smuggle mangoes into the US] was quite unsuccessful. A customs inspector, possibly noting my shifty eyes, asked me quite directly, "Are you carrying any mangoes?" Unable to lie, I had to reply in the affirmative. The mangoes were confiscated.

This would have been bearable had I not been able to peep through a slight crack in the customs office door, a few moments later. The officers were cutting up the mangoes and eating them. That hurt.