Category Archives: India


So, in What’s up Lier News today, it turns out that one of the major pirate vampires of New Zealand, turns out to be a family of Australian piggy banks. Just kidding! But fancy that, and who would have thought?

Now if we can only get some paper aeroplane wings on these banks, they just might fly off with the whole country in their greedy dreams.

The chant, “Aussie, Aussie, Aussie. (reply:) Oink, oink, oink,” does spring to mind with this announcement:

According to Reuters, Westpac Bank is on track for a $25b profit. ANZ still managed to add another A$5.65 billion ($5.86 billion) to the nation’s record-high mountain of bank earnings this year. Unfortunately, New Zealand’s only Kiwi only bank, managed to turn a profit of $21 million, indicating that clearly it is time for Iwi Bank to kick in about now. Meanwhile, “ABA Defends Bank Profits
International Business Times AU – – Australian Bankers’ the common notion that Australian banks are enjoying excessive profits is being denied.”

I guess we have to ask Simon Bridges for the inside gossip on this scandal if we want an honest answer from anyone in NZ politics whose also in the banking industry of Australia.

Australia and India work closely together to expand their profits. Yet, what about the New Zealand people, whose majority bank with Australian owned banks? Are average joes in Kiwi communities seeing a return of profits. I know I have a sister whose paid by ASB Trust to run education programs, so in some way we are. But gosh, this really makes you think that maybe we should all be bankers too?! :)

Anyway, good on the fat cats at these banks. But what a scandal! Thank goodness Kiwi saver, reflects this growth – yeah right!

[Image courtesy of 123rf.Com]

~Posted by Horiwood.Com, Aotearoa New Zealand, Polynesia Asia-Pacific. 4.11.11~




Technology, information collecting off citizens while also having the power to educate, has taken off in India.

The Guardian Reports: “India‘s government has begun introducing a cheap British-built tablet computer to its schools and universities, saying its aim is to deliver modern technology to the countryside to help lift villagers out of poverty.

The computer, called Aakash, or “sky” in Hindi, is the latest in a series of “world’s cheapest” innovations in India that include a 750 rupee (£10) water purifier and 100,000 rupee (£1,300) compact Nano cars and open-heart surgery operations. Read the rest of this entry »



Fran O’Sullivan reports today:NZ Inc is getting ahead of the play with India.

New Zealand Inc is taking on board the lessons learned from the China free trade deal as it prepares to leverage a similar market opening with India.

There is general agreement that New Zealand businesses were slow off the mark to take advantage of the 2008 China FTA deal with an NZ Inc strategy not even formed until years after the ink was dry on the agreement. But this time round, both private and public players are putting in the spadework well ahead of the formal signing ceremonies.

Rather than say India is there “go and get it”, our view is more education is required upfront,” says David Green, ANZ Managing Director, Institutional.

“We also think there is an opportunity for New Zealand businesses to work together there.” Green instances the successful collaborations now being undertaken in China by companies in the wine and green mussel [kaimoana] sectors. Read the rest of this entry »



If you believe the IMF’s key growth indicators, you learn that China, India and Brazil are the three economies set to experience the most growth in the future. Of course, Germany is always up there too.

In fact, at a stretch, you’d have to go with the B.R.I.C.S acronyms of nations (as an alternative to P.I.I.G.S nations mega debtedness status) because the media loves to go, Team A vs Team B in storylines. It saves time when editing news to provide the contrast. BRICS = Brazil, Russia, India, China and remarkably South Africa. It must be noted that in the BRICS equation, it is only China that has 70% of surplus wealth up their sleaves while the BRIS nations pack around them in acronym land.

If there’s one question that’s providing uncertainty, to most people (other than The World Bank, or food growers and suppliers or oil, gas, energy, mineral stockpilers, precious metals and rare earth minerals brokers, or safe water suppliers too) is the question of – Where is the global economy heading?

Acting as The World Banks spokespeople (pretty much) the IMF is who many European nations turn to, to answer this question.

In Part II, of that same question being answered this week, the AP give their view with this following story. It must be noted though, that the normal Joe Bloggs person, is tired of hearing “dangerous new phase” regarding all and anything to do with “the economy.” Hasn’t the economy being dangerous for at least 3 years now! Albeit, the slight tinkering of news headlines changing out, the economy’s status? Did it ever, honestly move above “recession status?” during that 3 year period, it was supposed to have? Not really. Many nations have just borrowed more money during that period. Not reduced debt.

Anyway, the story update is: ”The world economy has entered a “dangerous new phase,” according to the chief
economist of the International Monetary Fund.

As a result, the international lending organisation has sharply downgraded
its economic outlook for the United States and Europe through the end of next

The IMF expects the US economy to grow just 1.5 per cent this year and 1.8
per cent in 2012.

That’s down from its June forecast of 2.5 per cent in 2011 and 2.7 per cent
next year.

To achieve even that still-low level of growth, the US economy would need to
expand at a much faster rate in the second half of the year than its 0.7 per
cent annual pace in the first six months.

Most economists expect growth of between 1.5 per cent and 2 per cent in the
final two quarters.

Though an improvement, it wouldn’t be enough to lower the unemployment rate.

The rate has been 9 per cent or higher in all but two months since the
recession officially ended more than two years ago.

“The global economy has entered a dangerous new phase,” said Olivier
Blanchard, the IMF’s chief economist. “The recovery has weakened considerably.

Strong policies are needed to improve the outlook and reduce the risks.”

The IMF has also lowered its outlook for the 17 countries that use the euro.

It predicts 1.6 per cent growth this year and 1.1 per cent next year, down
from its June projections of 2 per cent and 1.7 per cent, respectively.

[A Pakistani child is one of 1.8 million flood victims in need of support at this time - Photo, Unicef Stock Photos]

The gloomier forecast for Europe is based on worries that euro nations won’t
be able to contain their debt crisis and keep it from destabilizing the

“Markets have clearly become more skeptical about the ability of many
countries to stabilize their public debt,” Blanchard said. “Fear of the unknown
is high.”

Read the rest of this entry »



You are not friends, unless you trade guns for cash, oil, drugs, land together? Come on!

[Photo caption, AP Photo - A visitor to the fair meets a tank covered in an 'invisibility cloak', which can make a giant tank look like a simple car on enemy detection systems].

Stats:BOOMING INDUSTRY – * Britain has the world’s second- largest defence and security sector; only the United States sells more weapons and military hardware worldwide. The British share of the global market increased from 18 per cent to 20 per cent in the past year, says UK Trade and Investments.

* The industry was worth £22 billion to the British economy in 2010, the defence trade group ADS (Aerospace, Defence and Security) claims – £9.5 billion of which was in exports.

* Saudi Arabia is by far the biggest buyer of British weapons and also the largest importer of arms globally. Saudi contracts earned Britain about £300 million last year, according to arms trade analysts at the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute.

* Behind the Saudis, the US has the most defence contracts with British firms. India, which imports 70 per cent of its military equipment, represents Britain’s third-largest arms market.

* Bahrain, which was controversially invited to this week’s Defence Security and Equipment International exhibition after its regime crushed an uprising in February, signed contracts with British firms worth £2.4 million this year, say figures obtained by the Campaign Against the Arms Trade.”

Weapons and guns are a topic that fuel global sales into the trillions each year. If you live in Tuhoe or Northland, many people own guns to go piggs hunting etc. They put food on their family tables, when government policies and priorities of the day, don’t always feed their families or consider their grandchildren adequately. Read the rest of this entry »

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Posted by on September 15, 2011 in America, India, Russia, Saudi Arabia, UK



Many may not know this piece of historical information, but New Zealand was the very first nation in the world to give women the vote. Kiwi people are proud of our lady folk. Period.

I thought I’d get that in – heading into the Rugby World Cup build up. It’s going to be fun! :)

This is smart thing, simply because there’s 55% women in New Zealand. We have the reverse situation as China, where their are more men. Inevitably this will mean that Asian grooms are more and more on the cards for Kiwi girls. Unless of course, we have a speights downpour of twin Kiwi lads born in the next two decades.

In blogworld news, popstar Rihanna from Barbados and California takes the 2nd top spot, bumping Kim Kardashian from her [usual] perch from the upper two.

The top ten most voted posts today are:


2. Rihanna et Hawaii

3. Kim Kardashian vs Sarah Palin

4. Young Hollywood’s Olivia Wilde  

5. Lil Kim <3 Rihanna

6. Tatau – Dwayne Johnson is The Rock of Hollywood

7. Justin Bieber et Selena Gomez

8. Wikileaks cables & New Zealand

9. Tiger Woods

10. James Stunt & Petra Ecclestone

Next Top Ten most ranked and viewed blog posts are:

11. The Cook Islands beauty

12. LA Ink Art

13. Mila Kunis  

14. Johnny Depp et Vanessa Paradis

15. Megan Fox et Brian Austin Green

16. Knox et Vivienne Jolie-Pitt

17. Hybrid tennis players are a tall new breed of power players

18. Kerre Woodham is journalist

19. Bradley James – South Island Family holiday

20. Natalia Avseenko swims with Beluga Whales

Well… what an eclectic mixture. Congrats to all who made the cut. This is what democracy via an entertainment news blog, looks like from New Zealand today. As you voted. Peace!

Being posted from the shadow of Parahaki’s coastal community today, here’s Cindy Ruakere‘s song salut to the resilient people of Christchurch City. Sure to Rise. Kia Kaha.

~Posted by Horiwood.Com, Aotearoa New Zealand, Polynesia Asia-Pacific. 29.6.11~



Today at the local Himalayan Trading Post store, I couldn’t help noticing these woven bags, that sort of (at a stretch) resembled traditional Maori woven kite.

Irked by this fact that Indian and Maori people could somehow be related and no one had told me yet, I went into the store and inquired as to who made these products.

The lovely Dutch lady who works on the til at The Himalayan Trading Post store, told me very calmly that the ‘kite’ were made in Thailand.

“Most of the scarves out front, are made in India though” she said with a cheeky (fun) smile.

Too funny.  

My knowledge of what India does the best in the world as a leader, is their work in security industries electronic products. In the US, I met people who were working on retina scanning electronic equipment and touch pad finger tip recognition access systems.

India is making a lot more complex products (for American governments and other world governments) then this colorful store display suggests.


~Posted  by Horiwood.Com, Aotearoa New Zealand, Polynesia Asia-Pacific. 28.6.11~



When this pic greeted me from the local New Zealand newspaper today, I had to ask… Do these two Kiwis, ever kiss in private? or when not on tax payer’s dime travelling? Just kidding. The pic is a beauty. All married couples should have one of these at the Taj Mahal.

This epic love photograph via the NZPA sources was revealed from John Key and Bronagh Key, during the New Zealand prime minister’s latest visit to India. Mr Key had last visited India in 1995 as an investment banker.

His trip hopes to garner a trading deal with India, some say could rival, the ‘free’ trade agreement between New Zealand and China. Pundits have put the potential of India-Kiwi trading at $13 billion annually.

On the cards to trade with are coal and Bollywood film locations in New Zealand’s pristine Natural Heritage Parks and coastlines – owned by the New Zealand tax payer and Maori iwi (tribes) too -also tax payers.

This photo has almost Bollywood qualities to it, with its romantic theme. Cute. For more, go to stuff.

~Posted by Horiwood.Com. Aotearoa New Zealand, Polynesia Asia-Pacific.



According to Indian News via Bollywood, “On October 31, 2009, two days before she turned 36, Aishwarya Rai Bachchan said, “Being pregnant is not something one can conceal. When I am pregnant, the world will know. This is not the news that one can hide.” She laughed and added, “When I was on the Oprah Winfrey show, I even told her that every time there is even a bump, it is assumed that I’m with child.”

Around 10.15 pm on June 21, 2011, an ecstatic Amitabh Bachchan confirmed the news of his daughter-in-law’s pregnancy when he tweeted, “News News News!!! I am going to become grandfather. Aishwarya is expecting. So happy and thrilled!!!”

Cute story.

[Photo courtesy of Tribune.Com]

~Posted by Horiwood.Com, Aotearoa New Zealand, Polynesia Asia-Pacific. 27.6.11~



Anish Kapoor‘s Leviathan artwork at the Grand Palais in Paris, which he is dedicating to dissident Chinese artist Ai Weiwei. Photograph: Sarah Lee for the Guardian. The artwork is a truly enormous cathedral-like space made from inflated PVC – to the missing Chinese artist Ai Weiwei.

It captures the “Jonah in the Whale” era of a global economic crises for many. In a review by Mark Hudson, the artwork is described as so: “

While Kapoor has stated that the work’s title. ‘Leviathan’, was inspired by the 17th century philosopher Thomas Hobbes’s idea of the state as an unwieldy, inchoate monster, he has advised against over-literal interpretations. First and foremost the piece is a play of structure and scale that alludes to the idea of the cathedral: the body as living, breathing sacred space, inside a structure that is literally cathedral-like. If the scale is overwhelming and megalomanic, there’s a humour to the piece that feels very human. In the past I’ve never been entirely convinced by Kapoor’s work, feeling him to be more a planner of grandiose and rather soulless projects than an artist in the real sense, but in this instance he completely won me over.”

To view Ai Weiwei‘s was America’s Dan Rather‘s, just before he disappeared, click on his pic.

~Posted by Horiwood.Com, Aotearoa New Zealand, Polynesia Asia-Pacific. 14.5.11~




“Those lucky enough to receive a royal wedding invitation will also get a custom-made Centex scarf as a parting gift,” reports Cover Awards website via Us Weekly.

On this Wool matter, it appears that India got the call up to get weaving with quality craftpersonship. Hindustan Times reports “This is the wedding of fantasy and it becomes the major point for the Britishers to project their royalty. They are the force to reckon with today and when such a huge audience will get the live coverage (which is said to be around 2 billion), every small detail needs to be checked. So the royal family hired the service of third party Boden,” Vineet Sood, the Centex Exports managing director told IANS.

“The company went across China and South Korea in search of a supplier as they were looking at very fine quality of wool.

“They went across different brands but couldn’t get the desired result. And then since Centex are into manufacturing of scarves since 1969 and we happened to be working with top brands of the world like Burberry and Giorgio Armani, they asked us to make some some samples and were impressed. The designs were given by them,” he added.

~Posted by Horiwood.Com, Aotearoa New Zealand, Polynesia Asia-Pacific. 27.4.11~



“Unreasonable behavior” was all Liz Hurley would say about Arun Nayar and Liz announcing their divorce. Liz is beginning work in show biz again. This working mom will be busy. Sad news, but let’s hope these two find love once their hearts have had time to heal.

The divorce is believed to have had nothing to do with India’s recent win in the Cricket World Cup. :)

[Photograph - Pal Pillai for CBS]

~Posted by Horiwood.Com, Hollywood California USA. 4.3.11~

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Posted by on April 4, 2011 in Arun Nayar, Divorce, India, Liz Hurley, Splitsville, UK



The cool thing about Indian cuisine, is that it tastes the same in any country you’re in. Today, in order to celebrate India’s win in the Cricket World Cup, I decided to check out Star of India, on Melrose Ave in West Hollywood.

The food is delicious. The service is friendly. The artwork, a tad cheesy, but the warmth of spirit was outstanding too.

Best of all, an all you can eat daily lunch buffet was affordable. $9.95 all up.

Angelenos, put The Star of India on your list of things to do. And again… Namaste India… congratulations on a fine cricket sporting win.

Here’s two pics of the artwork today.

~Posted by Horiwood.Com, Hollywood California USA. 4.2.11~

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Posted by on April 2, 2011 in Cricket, India, West Hollywood



Writes Dashiell Bennett today for Business Insider, “India has won the 2011 Cricket World Cup by 6 wickets over Sri Lanka. MS Dhoni batted a six on the final ball for Indian to overtake Sri Lanka’s lead. He overcame a 274-run inning, despite losing his first two batsmen (including “the master” Sachin Tendulkar) in the opening overs.

Dashiell writes that the winning partnership between Dhoni and Gautam Gambhir led the comeback, as both came just shy of 188 runs between them. It’s India’s first World Cup championship in 28 years.

The internet is abuzz today that ESPN will be screening the next world cup here in the USA. What a fine effort from India, with a good bar set by Sri Lanka going in to bat first.

Cricket supporters are always a little batty, because the game is a fun one to watch and play. It takes all day, like tennis some times so watching cricket is always an occasion that guarantees spectators time out, while enjoying an exciting sport on the green. Cricket fans are as chilled out as they are passionate about their favorite sports stars of the game. Cricket is about anticipation and the art of some of the quickest reflexes you’ll ever see shared in a sports arena. Riveting stuff! Congratulations to both teams.

[Photograph courtesy of the Associated Press]

~Posted by Horiwood.Com, Hollywood California USA. 4.2.11~



ISLAMABAD: Disappointed Pakistani cricket fans on Wednesday blamed a sluggish Misbah-ul-Haq for defeat in the World Cup semifinal thriller with arch-rivals India. ( Click here for full coverage of India- Pakistan World Cup semifinal )

India defeated Pakistan by 29 runs in an action-packed match to set up a World Cup final showdown with Sri Lanka in Mumbai on Saturday, leaving fans across cricket-loving Pakistan dejected.

“We lost because of Misbah, as he did not score well when it was most required,” angry fan Awais Shakir said on Islamabad’s main Jinnah Avenue as thousands of disappointed viewers were leaving screenings of the match.

For more go here via India Times.


For a fact about India as a nation we are all warming to – via twitter comes this interesting statistic,

‎ India’s Population 1.21 Billion, 623.7 Million Males & 586.5 Million Females; Larger Than The Combined Pop Of Indonesia, Brazil, PAK, US, BD

Twitter - 


Why we should we watch cricket in the USA?: Sachin Tendulkar‘s sports profile is used by ESPN to get Americanos up to speed on the game. Go here to read that. A snippet of the interview, is so dramatic it’s like reading sportsnews that’s fused with Bollywood overtones. Hilarious. Here it is:

“Sachin is both the riddle and the answer. That’s what I’m told. You must understand India to understand Sachin, but you must understand Sachin to understand India. They created each other. They are the same.

This, obviously, makes no sense to me.

How could it? Just a few hours ago, on a mid-February morning, I landed in Dhaka. I came with a copy of “Cricket for Dummies.” The 2011 Cricket World Cup starts tomorrow, India at Bangladesh, and I know nothing about the sport, not even about the tremendous pressure on the Indian National Cricket team to win its second World Cup after a three-decade drought. How tremendous? The Hindustan Times’ logo for their cup coverage says, every day, in enormous letters: A Billion Dreams … 28 years of yearning.

I don’t understand that the sport itself is at a crossroads, in crisis even.

I don’t realize that Sachin Tendulkar is likely playing in his final World Cup, still searching for his first title. Tendulkar is probably the most famous man in India. He’s so famous that people who worked for him are famous: a well-known Bollywood movie character is based on his first agent, Mark Mascarenhas, who died in a car wreck.”

Blimey! Lay it on!

India know faces Sri Lanka who beat the Black Caps of New Zealand. Alright, go Sri Lanka!!!

Just kidding … may the best team win. Namaste India, congratulations!!!

~Posted by Horiwood.Com, Hollywood California USA. 3.30.11~



Here in the USA we all know who Sasha Fierce is, we know who Sasha Obama is… but do we know who Sachin Tendulkar is? That is the question in sports news today. Google is a big fan of this sportsman.

According to Mid-day.ComSachin Tendulkar is the most searched cricketer while Twitter and Facebook are flooded with messages and updates on the big game

While cricket enthusiasts from remote corners of the country are flocking to Mohali to grab a piece of the action from the India-Pakistan semi-final, on the internet, the game is on. According to Google Trends, before reaching Mohali, people have been searching for tickets for the semi-final, hotels to stay and travel ticket availability. Maximum searches are coming from Karnataka, followed by Delhi and Maharashtra. Surprisingly Punjab is not on the list of top three states searching for the big game.

[Photo caption - Hot favourite: Children cheer for Sachin Tendulkar and the Indian team
in New Delhi on Tuesday, before they take on Pakistan in the World Cup
semi-final match. PIC/Rajeev Tyagi

~Posted by Horiwood.Com, Hollywood Calfornia USA. 3.29.11~



Here’s an example of how social engineering creates a herd instinct, of good influencers, committed to making a difference for the good.

This story about Warren Buffet and Bill Gates rocking out to India recently to influence billionaires in India to join forces and give back to others in need shows how American leaders want to lead the pack of billionaires flow, in powerful ways.

Here’s highlights from the Just Means article on the topic.

“Both Bill Gates and Warren Buffet were in Delhi to urge Indian industrialists to join their . Buffett and Gates held breakfast and lunch meetings with the leader of Indian industry today. This included Adi Godrej of Godrej Industries and Max Group chairman Analjit Singh to discuss with them the scope of philanthropy.

“The Giving Pledge” is about investing in social development. So far, 59 wealthy US citizens have taken the pledge of bettering others. Getting some trickle down effect happening is the goal. India is growing at about 9% a year and has 55 billionaires with an average net worth of $4.5 billion, according to Forbes magazine.

“This makes the the third-largest pool of billionaires after the US and China. On the other hand, nearly 42% of Indians live on less than $1.50 a day, according to the World Bank. Gosh that sounds like an existence of slavery. Shocking. I wonder what the World Bank is doing for these people then? There is a lot of scope therefore, to fix this imbalance in wealth distribution.

Alright, Bill and Warren should move to India then, that’s over 420 million people right there, whose lives they could be devoted to, if they really wanted to fulfill the trust’s mission. Staggering stuff. Gates and Buffet inspire to do something about. To read about a man whose being doing this already for years in India, before Bill and Warren got the idea, go here.

Thanks to Akhila for the words. I wonder what the minimum wage laws, in India are. It’s heartening to see Bill and Warren visit in person (Melinda Gates too). We have so much to be thankful for in the USA.

[Photograph courtesy of California's Children Type Pad.Com]

~Posted by Horiwood.Com, Hollywood California USA. 3.27.11~



There’s nothing like a good cricket match to discuss what’s important in the world. India-Pakistan are set to discuss better security between their two nations, cracking down on drugs trade out of controlness with a view towards strengthening peace between both nations.

The BBC reports, ’India will raise what it describes as Pakistan’s “lack of sincerity” in cooperating with India in tackling terrorism. Correspondents say no-one is expecting swift progress on issues at the heart of the dispute between the two countries. As well as the main disputes over counter-terrorism and the Himalayan territory of Kashmir – which both countries claim – the two neighbours also differ over economic and smaller territorial issues.’

First up though, today, ‘Pakistani Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani accepted an invitation from his Indian counterpart, Manmohan Singh, to attend the Cricket World Cup semi-final.’

With cricket as a shared sport, expect relations between these two nations being blessed. Cricket is very community minded. It is more often than not about fair play too. Nice one.

~Posted by Horiwood.Com, Hollywood California USA. 3.27.11~



A religion that takes no account of practical affairs and does not help to solve them is no religion.–Mohandas Ghandi.

~Posted by Horiwood.Com, Hollywood California USA. 3.26.11~



When I was studying at film school in Auckland City, one of my favorite film papers was Third World Cinema – Bollywood and Films of The Middle East. I like this paper, because seeing films that weren’t on offer in local cinemas gave a diverse cultural view, I felt I needed as a global citizen and perpetual student of the world.

The thing that impressed me was that the Middle East and Bollywood has its own star system. One of my favorite (like most of Asia) stars was Shah Rukh Khan. The triple threat talent (most of Bollywood are) impressed with his humorous facial expressions more than anything. He’s sort of like a Maori in that regard. Funny. This report via THR, shows Australia’s Hugh Jackman wanting to do Bollywood films next.

NEW DELHI — Tough guys do dance. Hollywood and Bollywood literally shook a leg at the closing session of the Ficci Frames confab Friday in Mumbai, when Hugh Jackman and Bollywood superstar Shah Rukh Khan did a jig to a popular Hindi film song after participating in a panel on the Hollywood studio system and the growing impact of Bollywood on global cinema.

During the session, moderated by My Name is Kahn director Karan Johar, the Wolverine star revealed that he was actively seeking roles in Bollywood projects, ”I am looking forward to working in Bollywood films. I am meeting directors.”

“I am a huge fan of Shah Rukh Khan and I loved his film My Name is Khan. I want to do a sequel to this film and that will be called My Name is Jackman and I am not a tourist,” Jackman joked in a reference to the My Name Is Khan tag line, ”And I am not a terrorist.”

Lol! Good cross-over occurring in filmmaking circles around the world. Like that.

~Posted by Horiwood.Com, Hollywood California USA. 3.26.11~




Photographed today in West Hollywood. This is not what I call good surfing views on this billboard for the film, for Battle: LA. The film hit theaters 3.11.11. At the time of writing it’s sitting in the no.3 box office position, behind Limitless at no.1 and Rango at no.2. Ahead of The Lincoln Lawyer at no.4, Battle: LA has taken $16.4 million as of Saturday night at the weekend domestic box office.

The studio marketing for this flick says – “There are patterns that cannot be explained. There are warnings that cannot be ignored. In 2011, nothing can prepare you for what’s next. “–the trailer for this aliens invade the USA movie depicting war over America.

Our battle is economic. This movie billboard depicts surfers surfing while aeroplanes on fire fly overhead these lads on surfboards in the ocean. It’s a battle that occurs on coastlines. Where fuel is.

The movie’s website invites viewers to be more participatory than spectatorial. We are invited to Play The Game. That is, the video game, of course!

The Royal Gazette’s review of this movie goes like this: “Battle: Los Angeles” doesn’t rely as much as its genre brethren on the gleeful horror of seeing familiar landmarks burn. (We don’t even get a shot of the “Hollywood” sign in flames.) Instead, this West Coast version of alien invasion distinguishes itself as an urban warfare film and a patriotic advert for the Marines. Like so many of these films, “Battle: Los Angeles” opens on urgent news reports announcing that “the world is at war” CNN snippets are laced throughout the movie, and it’s easy to see their function in relaying exposition. But it’s rather terrifying to think that even extra-terrestrials can’t stop the 24/7 stream of cable news.

The date is August 12, 2011. Alien ships, first appearing like a cluster of meteors, “breach” the Earth and quickly make their violent intentions clear, shooting gun-like weapons and discharging flying mechanical droids. One of the 12 ships lands just off the shore of LA’s laid-back Santa Monica. All the hallmarks are here  [for a conventional war movie], with handheld cameras and rousing, “ooh-rah” solidarity just with the notable exception of enemy species.”

Military hierarchy is the ‘religion’ observed in the scripting of this film’s Hollywood cult-like propaganda. But Staff Sergeant Nantz keeps the group focused and grounded, much as the talented Aaron Eckhart (“The Dark Knight,” “Thank You For Smoking”), who plays Nantz does for the film.

Clearly the military are looking to recruit in Los Angeles, California with this film.

I write this on the last day, of the advised week where we have been on “earthquake watch” in Los Angeles (March 19th – 26th). Now this! We are meant to be in a continual state of spooked-out-ness. Clearly!

As I write this blog post in a Hollywood Starbucks, Scott, a 6’4 body builder and voice over talent (huskier in the base tone department than someone like Orson Welles was) introduces himself. “You’re the calmest person I’ve seen in a while. I’ve been watching you for an hour. What is about you? You’re like Ghandi man.”

We shake hands. “I’m from New Zealand. We value calmness of spirit” is all I say.

Chal, Scott’s mate, a chiropractor here in LA says “Keep that calmness, you Kiwi people are known for that.”

I guess Kiwis are. We get excited when our cricket team wins a match. The rest of the time, we’re quite calm people. Anyway, if you’re not scared enough, or, if you want a vision in special effects of what people may or may not be experiencing on the front lines of war (via this sci-fi film genre movie) you might like this film.

My Fishy Stuff, a YouTube subscriber has posted this trailer of the film. Press play below to listen to the film’s sound track. ‘The movie stays surprisingly close to the ground, bogged down in block-by-block combat. Los Angeles traffic triumphs again. (In reality, 90 percent of the film was shot in low-tax Louisiana.)’

~Posted by Horiwood.Com, Hollywood California USA. 3.26.11~



Microsoft founder and philanthropist Bill Gates and his wife, Melinda Gates, attend to a child as they meet with members of the Mushar community at Jamsot Village near Patna, India. Aftab Alam Siddiqui / AP

Photograph via Washington Post.

~Posted by Horiwood.Com, Hollywood California USA. 3.24.11~



Cricket fans witnessed Pakistan take Australia’s cricket title. The semi-final part 1, of crickets world cup is India Vs Pakistan.

Patel at the local 7-11 is so excited New Zealand is playing South Africa in semi final no.2 today. He was shocked that someone else living in Hollywood knew that as well. Lol!

Some useful links are Australia Dethroned… Now It’s India Vs Pak. And Australia v India: Yuvraj Singh sets up Pakistan showdown 

This news off the bat of an earthquake hitting Myanmar (Burma). To make a difference to Myanmar’s earthquake hit region, go here.


~Posted by Horiwood.Com, Hollywood California USA. 3.24.11~



Play in colored powder. India today. Associated Press photograph via The New Zealand Herald.

~Posted by Horiwood.Com, Hollywood California USA. 3.19.11~


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Posted by on March 20, 2011 in India



During her speech in New Delhi India, Alaskan Sarah Palin said that “America and India share many things similar, including religious tolerance, democratic traditions, a common struggle for freedom from the British empire, a commitment to “see terrorism defeated” and a concern over the rise of China.

“It is the largest democracies, not the world’s largest autocracy, [who] will lead the next century. I want peace on earth. That peacefulness and that prosperity comes with more freedoms,” Palin said.”

That report was from Daily India.

I think ‘Freedom’ is a very relative word. Discipline is a good word. That does not necessarily constitute certain definitions of ‘freedom.’ It’s about intelligent collaborative communities working together and sharing more, not being little piggies. I don’t think the US blaming the UK is mature. Getting out of debt is the friend of nations with a deficit. America’s biggest enemy at present, not the UK. Also when a nation borrows willingly from China, don’t bite the hand you borrowed from so hastily… blaming China as an enemy too, when you spent money that you owe China. If you buy Chinese products and consume them in a consumer nation, that’s the way you’re choosing your freedoms, don’t blame a supplier in a capitalistic system that the US is, for your choice of consumer purchases. Otherwise shut up and buy American made products. Somehow in all this, Sarah means well for the US. Maybe.

She just makes you want to ask, so where is Russia exactly again from Alaska? All over again, the way she’s being reported on many times.

One things for sure. This woman is here to stay for quite a while. Ironically Palin was invited to participate in a conference in India that according to the conference website, the theme of the 10th annual conference explores “The Changing Balance of Power” by bringing together the “best minds in politics, finance and business, military, technology, academia and the arts.

Add to that, the best spectacle glasses from Lenscrafters. What’s up with that conferences selection panel? I mean… okay?!

[Photo of Sarah Palin via Squatlo Rant blog]

~Posted by Horiwood.Com, Hollywood California USA. 3.19.11~

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Posted by on March 20, 2011 in Alaska, India, Sarah Palin




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Posted by on March 20, 2011 in India, Richard Chandler



MUMBAI: In what has been defined as a David vs Goliath clash at the Cricket World Cup, Canada managed a decent batting display in the match, but lost to a much stronger New Zealand side by 97 runs at the Wankhede Stadium on Sunday.

To date it has been Canada’s best batting performance in a World Cup match ever displayed, with the Canadians chasing a maniacal 358 (for 6) set by New Zealand who won the toss to bat first.

Canada went as far as 261 (for 9) with skipper Ashish Bagai‘s impressive 84 and middle-order batsman Jimmy Hansra’s unbeaten 70 (injury-ridden though) leading the way. However, it paled much in comparison to Brendon McCullum‘s effortless 101 and Ross Taylor‘s ruthless 74.

News story via Times of India.

I gotta say, to see Canada improve their cricket game like this, is the main point of this story. That’s awesome that Canada is doing better on the cricket pitch. Go Maples! New Zealand gets the opportunity now to enter the semi-finals of Cricket World Cup. A good effort. :)

Cricket is one of those sports where 15 players are in a team, yet the joy of cricket is in being a spectator. You sort of pack a picnic of… (beer mainly) and head out to the cricket all day with your mates to cheer your team on. It’s the best and India’s most treasured sport they love! If a billion people are nuts for cricket, it must be bloody good.

[Brendan McCullum is batting in this pic with wicket keeper Ashish Bagai looking on. Photo via Sydney Morning Herald].

~Posted by Horiwood.Com, Hollywood California USA. 3.13.11~




Replacement Rhetoric, is quite a popular trend today. Newsfeed at Time Magazine is reporting that The Dalai Lama will relinquish his political role in Tibet.

The revered leader says the Tibetan people need an elected leader. He is in favor of democracy for his followers.

The Dalai Lama released a statement on Thursday on his website that he plans to hand over his power as the head of the exiled spiritual movement.

“Tibetans need a leader, elected freely by the Tibetan people, to whom I can devolve power. Now, we have clearly reached the time to put this into effect.”

The announcement falls on the 52nd anniversary of the Tibetan uprising and the Dalai Lama’s subsequent escape to India. This month is also the 3rd anniversary of the anti-government protests that rocked western China in 2008.”

For more news on this man who speaks of Peace, go here.

~Posted by Horiwood.Com, Hollywood California USA. 3.9.11~

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Posted by on March 10, 2011 in China, Dalai Lama, Democracy, India, Leadership, Tibet



Wanna rate Julia Gillards speech to the US Congress? Go on… I know ya do!

First up though, America is NOT feeling unloved as this report claims. Secondly, the South Pacific is a Polynesian territory, richly diverse in many cultures living side-by-side along with Australia and Kiwis. Polynesian voices, and Polynesian leadership being allowed to shine is now paramount in terms of human rights conscious pathways forward to grow the South Pacific economically and with defense.

It is a fine opportunity for the South Pacific to lead by example in conjunction with China and India’s human rights records improving. Supporting Polynesian voices in key roles, is the only evidence that this will be occurring as we serve others with respect as much as our own ambitions in the world as intelligent people who care for others in healthy people-relationship and culturally-shared dialogue with landscapes and territories the founding people of these territories have tended for centuries, being held paramount in the development of these territories economic growth, simply because these people are the experts in these territories, from a scientific perspective of these societies well being. They know more about what this part of the world needs more than we do.

If we can achieve that kind of growth model, then we are being humane and human in our growth as people alongside each other and beside each other, not ‘lording over.’

Alright, here’s Julia wowing the US Congress in ‘the red on red’. What I like about Julia is her “to the point” delivery. She knows what she’s doing. She gets on with it. She’s refreshing. Thanks Aussie.

Phillip Coorey writes for SMH writes - “The US is feeling unloved at the moment and Ms Gillard was there to stress how important and needed it still is. More so given the rise of China, which in the US is perceived as a far more negative prospect tha[n] it is in Australia, be it economic or militarily.

“You were indispensable in the Cold War and you are indispensable in the new world too,” she said.

Ms Gillard received six standing ovations and 10 seated rounds of applause. She herself choked back tears as she neared the end of the speech and urged the US to be bold in order to get back on its feet.

“I firmly believe you are the same people who amazed me when I was a small girl by landing on the moon,” she stammered.

There were tears in the audience as well. The hardline Republican Speaker, John Boehner, welled up when Ms Gillard told the story of the New York firefighter, Kevin Dowdell, who died a decade ago on September 11. Like so many who died in the twin towers, no trace of his body was ever found.

Three years before, Mr Dowdell had helped train Australians in preparation for a terrorist attack on the Sydney Olympics.

He gave a battered FDNY helmet to one of the Australian firefighters, Rob Frey. When Mr Dowdell was killed, Mr Frey tracked down his two sons, Patrick, a solider in Afghanistan, and James, a New York fireman, and gave them their father’s helmet.

James Dowdell and Mr Frey were in the gallery this morning and rose, Mr Dowdell clutching the helmet, to an ovation that almost lifted the roof.

It was a magnificent piece of symbolism that surpassed words.

While the prime aim of the speech was to reinforce the alliance into the future, it was not all praise and effusion.

Ms Gillard cautioned the US lawmakers against reverting to protectionism in a bid to lift its economy out of the slump.

Free trade equalled jobs and growth, she said.

She also sought to soothe fears about China, saying there was room for everyone to benefit economically.

“My guiding principle is that prosperity can be shared,” she said. “The global economy is not a zero-sum game.”

This provoked spontaneous applause.

Underlying it all, however, was the observation that, with China and India on the rise, the Asia-Pacific would become the world’s most important region in economic and military terms.

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