The weekend is when I spend time with family and friends, possibly rest and enjoy quality time. For me, the weekend is also the time to get great inspirations for future ideas and innovation.
This morning, I was picking up coffee, newspaper and bread at a bakery in Southampton, NY, when I glanced over the shoulder of another customer purchasing the newspaper. She was reading the headlines of the Wall Street Journal. Once I saw the title, I said “The Wall Street Journal puts you in a good mood?” She was puzzled and stared at me like if I was a little crazy.
Let me explain my train of thoughts:
The Wall Street Journal is the most popular newspaper in the USA with a circulation of over 2 million readers a day. This weekend's headline read: Push to expand US 'Kill-List'. The term Kill-List was created by the press and is associated to a fictional list of people that the US Government has allegedly the intention to kill. If you visit Wikipedia and search for Kill-List, it brings up the title of a 2011 horror movie. This gives you a measure of how unreal and deceiving that title is. Maybe the Kill-List can be a horror movie, but definitely not a political nor a diplomatic tool.
On the other hand, there is The Financial Times, the most popular international financial newspaper outside of the USA, with over 2 million readers per day worldwide. This weekend's headline read: Chinese New Year Slips into View. Chinese New Year is celebrated all over the world by over 1.4 billion people and its cultural meaning is deep and interesting.
One day, I would love to sit down with Gerard Baker, the new managing editor of The Wall Street Journal, and ask him what motivated his team to label the US Government with non existing policy terms and influence the perception of billions of people on what American stand for. I would also love to invite Gillian Tett, the US managing editor of The Financial Times and ask her why her team decided to publish the headline of a celebration, above death related terms that might have increased the FT sales for the weekend. Two competing managing editors, two competing financial newspapers, two very different perceptions and points of view about life.
Here at Film Annex, with the help of Roya Mahboob and her team of Afghan women, we built 8 Internet classrooms and one Women's Annex Learning Center in the last 9 months, connecting 35,000 young Afghan students to the World Wide Web. Today, our priority is also to identify role models and inspirations for the students. Maybe it is best to stay away from “daily” news and focus on Centennial wisdom and history, some concepts that have real fundamentals and last more than 24 hours!
Tow great books are Zarbul Masalha, 151 Afghan Dari Proverbs and Afghan Proverbs Illustrated, both written by US Navy Captain Edward Zellem, that are the real guidance to the world of Wisdom and History of Afghanistan, Central and South Asia. Captain Zellem is a real inspiration and role model.
Ideally, I would love to invite Captain Zellem at the meeting with Gerard Baker of the Wall Street Journal and Gillian Tett of The Financial Times, listen to their conversation about the values of being a role model and hear how they are planning to inspire the youth of developing countries like Afghanistan.