Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Neolite - The Next Generation in CFL Lighting

What are Neolites?
Simply put, Neolites are an improvement on an improvement. What I mean is — compact florescent lighting (CFL) is an improvement over traditional incandescent lighting, which has been in homes for years.

We see incandescent lighting in light bulbs and lamps everyday. They are in our homes and in our workplace. Neolites are an improvement on CFL technology, bringing us an even safer, longer lasting alternative to standard CFLs.

The problem with incandescent lighting is that it produces a harsh unnatural light that can contribute to glare and eyestrain. Not to mention far more costly energy consumption and short life cycles for the traditional light bulbs which has resulted in after-life disposal issues.

Compact Fluorescent Lighting

An improvement on incandescence came with the invention of compact florescent lighting (CFLs), which employs a cleaner, energy efficient light source. CFLs are compact versions of the larger florescent light bulbs used in commercial and business establishments.

The CFL technology helps to make the bulbs much smaller, which has allowed individuals to expand their usage into the home and small office. Compact fluorescents are now being used as common light bulbs and other lamp lighting sources in the home. They are taking the place of incandescent bulbs on the shelves in stores as well.
The Downside to CFL

With any kind of improvement, there are usually some drawbacks. A major concern is the existence of mercury in florescent lighting. This has always been the case with lamps of this kind, although compact fluorescents decreased this concern by using far less mercury than older standard fluorescent lighting.

In the past, being in a commercial setting, the danger from fluorescent lighting was much less as people typically did not have direct interaction with those bulbs. When CFLs expanded to home use, homeowners were immediately concerned about the mercury eventually getting into the environment. Today, this is the biggest detractor to CFL sales for home use.
Neolite Improvements

Now we get into the improvement upon the improvement: Neolite!

Neolite features lower mercury usage than traditional CFLs. In fact, the average Neolite contains 1 milligram of mercury or less, compared to the 4-6 milligrams contained in typical CFLs. This makes Neolite low mercury CFLs safer for home use, and safer for the environment when they are disposed of at end of life.

In addition to the environmentally friendly features, Neolites uses up to 75% less energy than incandescent lamps. A true winner right? Well, there are still some concerns and disadvantages even with Neolite.
Disadvantages of Neolite
Neolite still contains mercury, even though less of it. Being in the home, this would immediately create an environmental hazard if a simple light bulb were to break or shatter over the floor.
There are still concerns about the afterlife disposal of millions of mercury-laden bulbs and lamps in the environment if these are used on a mass-market consumption.
There is the real downside to the possible shut down of many incandescent manufactures. With the Neolites being the new standard, thus resulting in layoffs and closures of 100s if not more, of traditional lighting manufacturing companies not rendered obsolete.

Are there enough advantages to outweigh those disadvantages?
Advantages of Neolite
You have the obvious advantages of Neolite being the tremendous cost saving in energy and money over traditional lambs and bulbs.
Not to mention the tremendous longer life of Neolites, there will be fewer of them in the environment to deal with.
The elimination of some of the risk of mercury poisoning in the home and in the environment with the lower levels of mercury.
Less chance of the bulbs breaking since they are manufactured to be much tougher than incandescent bulbs.
When new improvements come along, more than anything else it signals a changing of the guard so to speak in the industry. Technology has moved society forward, we much advance with it.
The Future of Neolites

Of course we must wonder, will there someday be Neolite CFLs with absolutely no mercury in them? That would be a wonderful development. Given the level of technological evolution in the marketplace today, it would not be surprising if mercury-free compact fluorescent lighting was a reality in the near future. For now we should support every step in the right direction by switching to Neolite solutions.

Given the advantages and disadvantages of Neolite technology, I think can see the future of lighting following in the footsteps of Neolites. Slowly, CFL manufacturers will continue to increase the quality of the bulbs and decrease safety concerns, thereby presenting us with the ultimate light bulb. Neolite is the next step in this evolution.

The Energy Superstore sells Neolite CFLs in 3 flavors:
Neolite Warm White CFLs
Neolite Cool White CFLs
Neolite Full Spectrum CFLs

Choose your favorite light and take a step into the future of home lighting efficiency today!
Written by Fluorescent Efficiency
Energy Efficient Compact Fluorescent Lighting

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Next generation Smart LED lighting

Next generation Smart LED lighting

When I was growing up, Dufferin Street in Toronto was lined with factories producing incandescent light bulbs by GE. Those factories are long abandoned or turned into lofts or condos.

The city and the federal government should be looking at attracting the next wave of lighting manufacturers ie the ones that will be producing smarter lighting with light emitting diodes (LED) and organic light emitting diode (OLED) systems. Consumers are already getting their first taste of LED technology...those outdoor solar-powered Christmas lights

The figure above comparses the luminous efficacy (source efficacy) of conventional lighting technologies with the potential of light-emitting diode technology. (N.B. Log scale)

If all the world was to switch over to LED there would be a tremendous savings in energy costs and an increase in energy security ( 280 fewer power plants on the globe and billions of barrels of oils)

Researchers conclude:

"LEDs are more rugged, resembling something closer to hard plastic than thin glass. They are also more environmentally sound, since their manufacture does not require toxic substances such as mercury.

As an alternative to the traditional incandescent light bulb, LED lights provide significant energy savings. They can be 2,000 percent more efficient than conventional light bulbs and 500 percent more efficient than compact fluorescent bulbs. Engineers and scientists predict that widespread use of LEDs over the course of 10 years would save more than $1 trillion in energy costs, eliminate the need for nearly a billion barrels of oil over 10 years, and lead to a substantial reduction in emissions of carbon dioxide, the most common greenhouse gas. "

Smart LED's should not be seen as just a replacment technology for compact fluorescent lamps (CFL's) and Incandescent lamps but as a serious disruptive technology. Regular bulbs can only be turned on or off, where as LED's can be tuned like a radio. LEDs have novel capabilities that make them extremely useful when going beyond the replacement paradigm. In contrast to conventional light sources, a number of new dimensions are opened up by the unique controllability of LEDs. These include control over the emission spectrum, color temperature, polarization, temporal modulation, hue and spatial emission pattern. These controllable LED sources, called smart lighting sources will result in tremendous benefits to society and humankind, including:

· Biology and imaging: Leapfrog advances in quantitative biology, particularly the rapid identification and counting of biological cells through adaptive and fully tunable reflectance and fluorescence imaging.

· Display systems: Liquid-crystal-displays and projectors with unprecedented efficiency and brilliancy (huge color gamut) through polarization-controlled lighting sources.

· Transportation: Enhanced visibility (less glare) and safety through polarization controlled headlights, temporal-controlled communicating headlights/brake lights/traffic lights, and interactive roadways.

· Communications: Fundamentally new modes of broadcasting, communications, and sensing through temporal control of solid-state-light sources.

· Human factors: Reduced dependency on sleep-inducing pharmaceuticals, higher productivity, prevention of certain cancers, and higher quality of life.

· Agriculture: Efficient plant growth in non-native regions (including space) and non-native seasons. Revolutionize indoor agriculture and Urban indoor Vertical Farming or skyfarming

Source: "Transcending the Replacement Paradigm of Solid-State Lighting," E. Fred Schubert and Jong Kyu Kim, Optics Express, Vol. 16, Issue 6, December 22, 2008, Focus Issue on Solar Energy

Abstract:

The field of photonics starts with the efficient generation of light. The generation of efficient yet highly controllable light can indeed be accomplished with light-emitting diodes (LEDs), which are, in principle, capable of generating white light with a 20 times greater efficiency than conventional light bulbs. Deployed on a global scale to replace conventional sources, such solid-state light sources will result in enormous benefits that, over a period of 10 years, include (1) gigantic energy savings of 1.9 x 10*20 joule, (2) a very substantial reduction in global-warming CO2 emissions, (3) a strong reduction in the emission of pollutants such as acid-rain-causing SO2, mercury (Hg), and uranium (U), and (4) financial savings exceeding a trillion (10*12) US$. These benefits can be accomplished by the “replacement paradigm” in which conventional light sources are replaced by more energy efficient, more durable, and non-toxic light sources. However, it will be shown that solid-state light sources can go beyond the replacement paradigm, by providing new capabilities including the control of spectrum, color temperature, polarization, temporal modulation, and spatial emission pattern. We will show that such future, “smart” light sources, can harness the huge potential of LEDs by offering multi-dimensional controllability that will enhance the functionality and performance of light sources in a wide range of applications. These applications include optical microscopy, imaging, display technologies, communications, networking, and transportation systems.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Stylish New LED Watch



Negative is the latest addition to the steadily growing stream of stylish timepieces from the famous Japanese watch importer. This new model is described as “one of the most sophisticated designs available from Tokyoflash.”


Available in polished silver or polished black, Negative’s LCD screen is always displaying the time, allowing the wearer to read it with a quick glance. What really brings this design to life is its multi color LED light guide. At the touch of a button, the display can be backlit with one of seven user selectable colors, a feature which is most impressive at night.



With the additional style and luxury of a solid stainless steel band, Negative also has an abundance of features, including a vertical or horizontal display option, several alarm functions, 12/24 hour mode and multi-color mode, sending all LED colors into a frenzy when the backlight is activated.

The display presents the time in negative space, the unlit squares on the screen showing digital numbers, highlighted by the bright squares around them. This creates a subtle optical illusion effect, giving the watch a unusual mystique, unlike those using standard digital displays.

Candle Light Dinner with LED



This USB aroma diffuser simulates the flickering candle light effect using light-emitting-diodes, and can be filled with fragrance oil that is said to make you feel more relaxed.


Features:
It brings the way to enhance your living environment
LED candle illumination simulates the candle light effect
Built-in LED lights that flicker and glow just like real candle wicks
Natural fragrance design bringing Passion, Romance and Relaxation
No wax wasted; smoke free dispersing and environmental friendly
Powered by USB or 2 x AA batteries (not included)
Dimension: 87 x 84 x 75mm (approx.)
Weight: 121g

Amazing Led runs on Mud




Dutch designer Marieke Staps has built a lamp with the LEDs powered by soil. She writes:
"Free and environmentally friendly energy forever and ever. The lamp runs on mud. The metabolism of biological life produces enough electricity to keep an LED lamp burning. The mud is enclosed in various cells. These cells contain copper and zinc that conduct the electricity. The more cells there are , the more electricity they generate. This technique offers a wealth of possibilities. The only thing the lamp needs is a splash of water every now and then."

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Practical and Valuable Ceiling LED Lights

Practical and Valuable Ceiling LED Lights
Ceiling LED lights are used as modern interior lighting to brighten up any room. Whether it is kitchen, bathroom or bedroom, these lights or LED bulbs can change the whole look of a room. They are designed as directional bulbs; which means they can be turned to focus on an object or locale. This way a number of bulbs in all kinds of angles can be used to lighten up an entire area or corridor. It has been discovered that LED bulbs produce a light which is very similar to daylight and therefore these bulbs are very practical and useful.

Ceiling LED bulbs can also be easily fitted into a wooden decking. They can be used to decorate the interior of a house. Nowadays people use all kinds of LED lights to gain maximum advantages. They are used as flash lights, architectural and medical lights, portable lights and kitchen lights. Since they produce more brightness than ordinary bulbs and tube lights, they are perfect for reading. Most of the energy consumed by these lights is converted into light and therefore they do not heat up very quickly.

LED lights are also known as power saving lights as they consume very little power. Many types of lights can be found in this category including LED recessed lights, marker lights, Swarovski crystal LED lighting systems, glass LED panels, etc. All these lights have their own features and they all look attractive. Designer LED lights are a bit expensive but they last for a long time. Recessed lights come in different colors like green, blue, yellow, white and red. These lights are mostly used as walk-over lights in floors and look very stylish. Similarly, marker lights can be used for the same purpose.

Popular ceiling lights are placed in aluminum housing and are usually small in size. Some of these lights are used as bathroom night lights, such as Moonglow which consists of only one white LED. Others are made by using a number of LEDs to provide more light. Other than ceiling bulbs, these lights are also available as under-cabinet lighting bars, strip lights, rope lights and party bulbs. All these types of lights are very easy to install. They are available in the price range of $20 to $200 depending on their size and material. This is quite affordable as these lights last for a long time and prove to be very cost effective in the long run.

Bi-color ceiling LED lights are also becoming increasingly popular because of their improved look. White is often combined with red, blue or green. LED lamps come in cool colors including amber and warm white and their luminous flux is 30 - 60 lumens. Renowned producers of LED lighting also provide floodlights or wall washer lights for prolonged operation and extreme power saving. Other than these, spot lights with operating power of up to 50,000 hours and optimized heat dissipation are also available in this category.

If you are looking for excellent lights to decorate the interior of your house, look no further. Ceiling LED lights are designed to provide all the advantages of modern and state-of-the-art lighting. They consume very little power and have a long life. People use these LED lights for all kinds of purposes. They are also quite easy to install and can be removed effortlessly. Since they don't heat up very quickly they are excellent to be used as under-cabinet lights and decorative lights. LED bulbs with high brightness, LED lighting bars, and high-power LEDs with remote controller, all can be used as ceiling lights in rooms and corridors.

Chandrayaan-1 Successfully Enters Lunar Orbit

Chandrayaan-1 Successfully Enters Lunar Orbit
Chandrayaan-1, India’s first unmanned spacecraft mission to moon, entered lunar orbit today (November 8, 2008). This is the first time that an Indian built spacecraft has broken away from the Earth’s gravitational field and reached the moon. This historic event occurred following the firing of Chandrayaan-1 spacecraft’s liquid engine at 16:51 IST for a duration of 817 seconds. The highly complex ‘lunar orbit insertion manoeuvre’ was performed from Chandrayaan-1 Spacecraft Control Centre of ISRO Telemetry, Tracking and Command Network at Bangalore.

Indian Deep Space Network (IDSN) at Byalalu supported the crucial task of transmitting commands and continuously monitoring this vital event with two dish antennas, one measuring 18 m and the other 32 m.

Chandrayaan-1’s liquid engine was fired when the spacecraft passed at a distance of about 500 km from the moon to reduce its velocity to enable lunar gravity to capture it into an orbit around the moon. The spacecraft is now orbiting the moon in an elliptical orbit that passes over the polar regions of the moon. The nearest point of this orbit (periselene) lies at a distance of about 504 km from the moon’s surface while the farthest point (aposelene) lies at about 7502 km. Chandrayaan-1 takes about 11 hours to go round the moon once in this orbit.

The performance of all the systems onboard Chandrayaan-1 is normal. In the coming days, the height of Chandrayaan-1 spacecraft’s orbit around the moon will be carefully reduced in steps to achieve a final polar orbit of about 100 km height from the moon’s surface. Following this, the Moon Impact Probe (MIP) of the spacecraft will be released to hit the lunar surface. Later, the other scientific instruments will be turned ON sequentially leading to the normal phase of the mission.


It may be recalled that Chandrayaan-1 spacecraft was launched on October 22, 2008 by PSLV-C11 from India’s spaceport at Satish Dhawan Space Centre (SDSC) SHAR, Sriharikota. As intended, PSLV placed the spacecraft in a highly oval shaped orbit with a perigee (nearest point to Earth) of 255 km and an apogee (farthest point to Earth) of 22,860 km. In the past two weeks, the liquid engine of Chandrayaan-1 has been successfully fired five times at opportune moments to increase the apogee height, first to 37,900 km, then to 74,715 km, later to 164,600 km, after that to 267,000 km and finally to 380,000km, as planned. During this period, the Terrain Mapping Camera (TMC), one of the eleven payloads (scientific instruments) of the spacecraft, was successfully operated twice to take the pictures, first of the Earth, and then moon.

With today’s successful manoeuvre, India becomes the fifth country to send a spacecraft to Moon. The other countries, which have sent spacecraft to Moon, are the United States, former Soviet Union, Japan and China. Besides, the European Space Agency (ESA), a consortium of 17 countries, has also sent a spacecraft to moon.

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Thursday, November 6, 2008

True story of TAJMAHAL - The Great Wonder -( Part -I )

The True Story of the Taj Mahal

By P. N. Oak




The story of the Taj Mahal that most of us have known about may not be the real truth. Herein Mr. P. N. Oak presents an interesting set of proofs that show a completely different story. Contrary to what visitors are made to believe the Tajmahal is not a Islamic mausoleum but an ancient Shiva Temple known as Tejo Mahalaya which the 5th generation Moghul emperor Shahjahan commandeered from the then Maharaja of Jaipur. The Taj Mahal, should therefore, be viewed as a temple palace and not as a tomb. That makes a vast difference. You miss the details of its size, grandeur, majesty and beauty when you take it to be a mere tomb. When told that you are visiting a temple palace you wont fail to notice its annexes, ruined defensive walls, hillocks, moats, cascades, fountains, majestic garden, hundreds of rooms archaded verendahs, terraces, multi stored towers, secret sealed chambers, guest rooms, stables, the trident (Trishul) pinnacle on the dome and the sacred, esoteric Hindu letter "OM" carved on the exterior of the wall of the sanctum sanctorum now occupied by the cenotaphs. For detailed proof of this breath taking discovery, you may read the well known historian Shri. P. N. Oak's celebrated book titled " Tajmahal : The True Story". But let us place before you, for the time being an exhaustive summary of the massive evidence ranging over hundred points:



NAME

1.The term Tajmahal itself never occurs in any mogul court paper or chronicle even in Aurangzeb's time. The attempt to explain it away as Taj-i-mahal is therefore, ridiculous.

2.The ending "Mahal"is never muslim because in none of the muslim countries around the world from Afghanistan to Algeria is there a building known as "Mahal".

3.The unusual explanation of the term Tajmahal derives from Mumtaz Mahal, who is buried in it, is illogical in at least two respects viz., firstly her name was never Mumtaj Mahal but Mumtaz-ul-Zamani and secondly one cannot omit the first three letters "Mum" from a woman's name to derive the remainder as the name of the building.

4.Since the lady's name was Mumtaz (ending with 'Z') the name of the building derived from her should have been Taz Mahal, if at all, and not Taj (spelled with a 'J').

5.Several European visitors of Shahjahan's time allude to the building as Taj-e-Mahal is almost the correct tradition, age old Sanskrit name Tej-o-Mahalaya, signifying a Shiva temple. Contrarily Shahjahan and Aurangzeb scrupulously avoid using the Sanskrit term and call it just a holy grave.

6.The tomb should be understood to signify NOT A BUILDING but only the grave or centotaph inside it. This would help people to realize that all dead muslim courtiers and royalty including Humayun, Akbar, Mumtaz, Etmad-ud-Daula and Safdarjang have been buried in capture Hindu mansions and temples.

7.Moreover, if the Taj is believed to be a burial place, how can the term Mahal, i.e., mansion apply to it?

8.Since the term Taj Mahal does not occur in mogul courts it is absurd to search for any mogul explanation for it. Both its components namely, 'Taj' and' Mahal' are of Sanskrit origin.



TEMPLE TRADITION


9.The term Taj Mahal is a corrupt form of the sanskrit term TejoMahalay signifying a Shiva Temple. Agreshwar Mahadev i.e., The Lord of Agra was consecrated in it.

10.The tradition of removing the shoes before climbing the marble platform originates from pre Shahjahan times when the Taj was a Shiva Temple. Had the Taj originated as a tomb, shoes need not have to be removed because shoes are a necessity in a cemetery.

11.Visitors may notice that the base slab of the centotaph is the marble basement in plain white while its superstructure and the other three centotaphs on the two floors are covered with inlaid creeper designs. This indicates that the marble pedestal of the Shiva idol is still in place and Mumtaz's centotaphs are fake.

12.The pitchers carved inside the upper border of the marble lattice plus those mounted on it number 108-a number sacred in Hindu Temple tradition.

13.There are persons who are connected with the repair and the maintainance of the Taj who have seen the ancient sacred Shiva Linga and other idols sealed in the thick walls and in chambers in the secret, sealed red stone stories below the marble basement. The Archaeological Survey of India is keeping discretely, politely and diplomatically silent about it to the point of dereliction of its own duty to probe into hidden historical evidence.

14.In India there are 12 Jyotirlingas i.e., the outstanding Shiva Temples. The Tejomahalaya alias The Tajmahal appears to be one of them known as Nagnatheshwar since its parapet is girdled with Naga, i.e., Cobra figures. Ever since Shahjahan's capture of it the sacred temple has lost its Hindudom.

15.The famous Hindu treatise on architecture titled Vishwakarma Vastushastra mentions the 'Tej-Linga' amongst the Shivalingas i.e., the stone emblems of Lord Shiva, the Hindu deity. Such a Tej Linga was consecrated in the Taj Mahal, hence the term Taj Mahal alias Tejo Mahalaya.

16.Agra city, in which the Taj Mahal is located, is an ancient centre of Shiva worship. Its orthodox residents have through ages continued the tradition of worshipping at five Shiva shrines before taking the last meal every night especially during the month of Shravan. During the last few centuries the residents of Agra had to be content with worshipping at only four prominent Shiva temples viz., Balkeshwar, Prithvinath, Manakameshwar and Rajarajeshwar. They had lost track of the fifth Shiva deity which their forefathers worshipped. Apparently the fifth was Agreshwar Mahadev Nagnatheshwar i.e., The Lord Great God of Agra, The Deity of the King of Cobras, consecrated in the Tejomahalay alias Tajmahal.

17.The people who dominate the Agra region are Jats. Their name of Shiva is Tejaji. The Jat special issue of The Illustrated Weekly of India (June 28,1971) mentions that the Jats have the Teja Mandirs i.e., Teja Temples. This is because Teja-Linga is among the several names of the Shiva Lingas. From this it is apparent that the Taj-Mahal is Tejo-Mahalaya, The Great Abode of Tej.



DOCUMENTARY EVIDENCE

18. Shahjahan's own court chronicle, the Badshahnama, admits (page 403, vol 1) that a grand mansion of unique splendor, capped with a dome (Imaarat-a-Alishan wa Gumbaze) was taken from the Jaipur Maharaja Jaisigh for Mumtaz's burial, and the building was known as Raja Mansingh's palace.

19. The plaque put the archealogy department outside the Tajmahal describes the edifice as a mausoleum built by Shahjahan for his wife Mumtaz Mahal , over 22 years from 1631 to 1653. That plaque is a specimen of historical bungling. Firstly, the plaque sites no authority for its claim. Secondly the lady's name was Mumtaz-ulZamani and not Mumtazmahal. Thirdly, the period of 22 years is taken from some mumbo jumbo noting by an unreliable French visitor Tavernier, to the exclusion of all muslim versions, which is an absurdity.

20. Prince Aurangzeb's letter to his father,emperor Shahjahan,is recorded in atleast three chronicles titled `Aadaab-e-Alamgiri' , `Yadgarnama' , and the `Muruqqa-i-Akbaraba di' (edited by Said Ahmed, Agra, 1931, page 43, footnote 2). In that letter Aurangzeb records in 1652 A.D itself that the several buildings in the fancied burial place of Mumtaz were seven storeyed and were so old that they were all leaking, while the dome had developed a crack on the northern side.Aurangzeb, therefore, ordered immediate repairs to the buildings at his own expense while recommending to the emperor that more elaborate repairs be carried out later. This is the proof that during Shahjahan's reign itself that the Taj complex was so old as to need immediate repairs.

21. The ex-Maharaja of Jaipur retains in his secret personal `KapadDwara' collection two orders from Shahjahan dated Dec 18, 1633 (bearing modern nos. R.176 and 177) requestioning the Taj building complex. That was so blatant a usurpation that the then ruler of Jaipur was ashamed to make the document public.

22. The Rajasthan State archives at Bikaner preserve three other firmans addressed by Shahjahan to the Jaipur's ruler Jaising ordering the latter to supply marble (for Mumtaz's grave and koranic grafts) from his Makranna quarris, and stone cutters. Jaisingh was apparently so enraged at the blatant seizure of the Tajmahal that he refused to oblige Shahjahan by providing marble for grafting koranic engravings and fake centotaphs for further desecration of the Tajmahal. Jaising looked at Shahjahan's demand for marble and stone cutters, as an insult added to injury. Therefore, he refused to send any marble and instead detained the stone cutters in his protective custody.

23. The three firmans demanding marble were sent to Jaisingh within about two years of Mumtaz's death. Had Shahjahan really built the Tajmahal over a period of 22 years, the marble would have needed only after 15 or 20 years not immediately after Mumtaz's death.

24. Moreover, the three mention neither the Tajmahal, nor Mumtaz, nor the burial. The cost and the quantity of the stone also are not mentioned. This proves that an insignificant quantity of marble was needed just for some supercial tinkering and tampering with the Tajmahal. Even otherwise Shahjahan could never hope to build a fabulous Tajmahal by abject dependence for marble on a non cooperative Jaisingh.



EUROPEAN VISITOR'S ACCOUNTS

25. Tavernier, a French jeweller has recorded in his travel memoirs that Shahjahan purposely buried Mumtaz near the Taz-i-Makan (i.e.,`The Taj building') where foriegners used to come as they do even today so that the world may admire. He also adds that the cost of the scaffolding was more than that of the entire work. The work that Shahjahan commissioned in the Tejomahalaya Shiva temple was plundering at the costly fixtures inside it, uprooting the Shiva idols, planting the centotaphs in their place on two stories, inscribing the koran along the arches and walling up six of the seven stories of the Taj. It was this plunder, desecrating and plunderring of the rooms which took 22 years.

26. Peter Mundy, an English visitor to Agra recorded in 1632 (within only a year of Mumtaz's death) that `the places of note in and around Agra, included Taj-e-Mahal' s tomb, gardens and bazaars'.He, therefore, confirms that that the Tajmahal had been a noteworthy building even before Shahjahan.

27. De Laet, a Dutch official has listed Mansingh's palace about a mile from Agra fort, as an outstanding building of pre shahjahan's time. Shahjahan's court chronicle, the Badshahnama records, Mumtaz's burial in the same Mansingh's palace.

28. Bernier, a contemporary French visitor has noted that non muslim's were barred entry into the basement (at the time when Shahjahan requisitioned Mansingh's palace) which contained a dazzling light. Obviously, he reffered to the silver doors, gold railing, the gem studded lattice and strings of pearl hanging over Shiva's idol. Shahjahan comandeered the building to grab all the wealth, making Mumtaz's death a convineant pretext.

29. Johan Albert Mandelslo, who describes life in agra in 1638 (only 7 years after mumtaz's death) in detail (in his `Voyages and Travels to West-Indies' , published by John Starkey and John Basset, London), makes no mention of the Tajmahal being under constuction though it is commonly erringly asserted or assumed that the Taj was being built from 1631 to 1653.



SANSKIRT INSCRIPTION

30. A Sanskrit inscription too supports the conclusion that the Taj originated as a Shiva temple. Wrongly termed as the Bateshwar inscription (currently preserved on the top floor of the Lucknow museum), it refers to the raising of a "crystal white Shiva temple so alluring that Lord Shiva once enshrined in it decided never to return to Mount Kailash his usual abode". That inscription dated 1155 A.D. was removed from the Tajmahal garden at Shahjahan's orders. Historicians and Archeaologists have blundered in terming the insription the `Bateshwar inscription' when the record doesn't say that it was found by Bateshwar. It ought, in fact, to be called `The Tejomahalaya inscription' because it was originally installed in the Taj garden before it was uprooted and cast away at Shahjahan's command.

A clue to the tampering by Shahjahan is found on pages 216-217, vol. 4, of Archealogiical Survey of India Reports (published 1874) stating that a "great square black balistic pillar which, with the base and capital of another pillar....now in the grounds of Agra,...it is well known, once stood in the garden of Tajmahal".



MISSING ELEPHANTS

31. Far from the building of the Taj, Shahjahan disfigured it with black koranic lettering and heavily robbed it of its Sanskrit inscription, several idols and two huge stone elephants extending their trunks in a welcome arch over the gateway where visitors these days buy entry tickets. An Englishman, Thomas Twinning, records (pg.191 of his book "Travels in India A Hundred Years ago") that in November 1794 "I arrived at the high walls which enclose the Taj-e-Mahal and its circumjacent buildings. I here got out of the palanquine and.....mounted a short flight of steps leading to a beautiful portal which formed the centre of this side of the `COURT OF ELEPHANTS" as the great area was called."



KORANIC PATCHES

32. The Taj Mahal is scrawled over with 14 chapters of the Koran but nowhere is there even the slightest or the remotest allusion in that Islamic overwriting to Shahjahan's authorship of the Taj. Had Shahjahan been the builder he would have said so in so many words before beginning to quote Koran.

33. That Shahjahan, far from building the marble Taj, only disfigured it with black lettering is mentioned by the inscriber Amanat Khan Shirazi himself in an inscription on the building. A close scrutiny of the Koranic lettering reveals that they are grafts patched up with bits of variegated stone on an ancient Shiva temple.



CARBON 14 TEST


34. A wooden piece from the riverside doorway of the Taj subjected to the carbon 14 test by an American Laboratory, has revealed that the door to be 300 years older than Shahjahan,since the doors of the Taj, broken open by Muslim invaders repeatedly from the 11th century onwards, had to b replaced from time to time. The Taj edifice is much more older. It belongs to 1155 A.D, i.e., almost 500 years anterior to Shahjahan.



ARCHITECHTURAL EVIDENCE

35. Well known Western authorities on architechture like E.B.Havell, Mrs.Kenoyer and Sir W.W.Hunterhave gone on record to say that the TajMahal is built in the Hindu temple style. Havell points out the ground plan of the ancient Hindu Chandi Seva Temple in Java is identical with that of the Taj.

36. A central dome with cupolas at its four corners is a universal feature of Hindu temples.

37. The four marble pillars at the plinth corners are of the Hindu style. They are used as lamp towers during night and watch towers during the day. Such towers serve to demarcate the holy precincts. Hindu wedding altars and the altar set up for God Satyanarayan worship have pillars raised at the four corners.

38. The octagonal shape of the Tajmahal has a special Hindu significance because Hindus alone have special names for the eight directions, and celestial guards assigned to them. The pinnacle points to the heaven while the foundation signifies to the nether world. Hindu forts, cities, palaces and temples genrally have an octagonal layout or some octagonal features so that together with the pinnacle and the foundation they cover all the ten directions in which the king or God holds sway, according to Hindu belief.

39. The Tajmahal has a trident pinncle over the dome. A full scale of the trident pinnacle is inlaid in the red stone courtyard to the east of the Taj. The central shaft of the trident depicts a "Kalash" (sacred pot) holding two bent mango leaves and a coconut. This is a sacred Hindu motif. Identical pinnacles have been seen over Hindu and Buddhist temples in the Himalayan region. Tridents are also depicted against a red lotus background at the apex of the stately marble arched entrances on all four sides of the Taj. People fondly but mistakenly believed all these centuries that the Taj pinnacle depicts a Islamic cresent and star was a lighting conductor installed by the British rulers in India. Contrarily, the pinnacle is a marvel of Hindu metallurgy since the pinnacle made of non rusting alloy, is also perhaps a lightning deflector. That the pinnacle of the replica is drawn in the eastern courtyard is significant because the east is of special importance to the Hindus, as the direction in which the sun rises. The pinnacle on the dome has the word `Allah' on it after capture. The pinnacle figure on the ground does not have the word Allah.



INCONSISTENCIES

40. The two buildings which face the marble Taj from the east and west are identical in design, size and shape and yet the eastern building is explained away by Islamic tradition, as a community hall while the western building is claimed to be a mosque. How could buildings meant for radically different purposes be identical? This proves that the western building was put to use as a mosque after seizure of the Taj property by Shahjahan. Curiously enough the building being explained away as a mosque has no minaret. They form a pair af reception pavilions of the Tejomahalaya temple palace.

41. A few yards away from the same flank is the Nakkar Khana alias DrumHouse which is a intolerable incongruity for Islam. The proximity of the Drum House indicates that the western annex was not originally a mosque. Contrarily a drum house is a neccesity in a Hindu temple or palace because Hindu chores,in the morning and evening, begin to the sweet strains of music.

42. The embossed patterns on the marble exterior of the centotaph chamber wall are foilage of the conch shell design and the Hindu letter "OM". The octagonally laid marble lattices inside the centotaph chamber depict pink lotuses on their top railing. The Lotus, the conch and the OM are the sacred motifs associated with the Hindu deities and temples.

43. The spot occupied by Mumtaz's centotaph was formerly occupied by the Hindu Teja Linga a lithic representation of Lord Shiva. Around it are five perambulatory passages. Perambulation could be done around the marble lattice or through the spacious marble chambers surrounding the centotaph chamber, and in the open over the marble platform. It is also customary for the Hindus to have apertures along the perambulatory passage, overlooking the deity. Such apertures exist in the perambulatories in the Tajmahal.

44. The sanctom sanctorum in the Taj has silver doors and gold railings as Hindu temples have. It also had nets of pearl and gems stuffed in the marble lattices. It was the lure of this wealth which made Shahjahan commandeer the Taj from a helpless vassal Jaisingh, the then ruler of Jaipur.

45. Peter Mundy, a Englishman records (in 1632, within a year of Mumtaz's death) having seen a gem studded gold railing around her tomb. Had the Taj been under construction for 22 years, a costly gold railing would not have been noticed by Peter mundy within a year of Mumtaz's death. Such costl fixtures are installed in a building only after it is ready for use. This indicates that Mumtaz's centotaph was grafted in place of the Shivalinga in the centre of the gold railings. Subsequently the gold railings, silver doors, nets of pearls, gem fillings etc. were all carried away to Shahjahan's treasury. The seizure of the Taj thus constituted an act of highhanded Moghul robery causing a big row between Shahjahan and Jaisingh.

46. In the marble flooring around Mumtaz's centotaph may be seen tiny mosaic patches. Those patches indicate the spots where the support for the gold railings were embedded in the floor. They indicate a rectangular fencing.

47. Above Mumtaz's centotaph hangs a chain by which now hangs a lamp. Before capture by Shahjahan the chain used to hold a water pitcher from which water used to drip on the Shivalinga.

48. It is this earlier Hindu tradition in the Tajmahal which gave the Islamic myth of Shahjahan's love tear dropping on Mumtaz's tomb on the full moon day of the winter eve.



TREASURY WELL

49. Between the so-called mosque and the drum house is a multistoried octagonal well with a flight of stairs reaching down to the water level. This is a traditional treasury well in Hindu temple palaces. Treasure chests used to be kept in the lower apartments while treasury personnel had their offices in the upper chambers. The circular stairs made it difficult for intruders to reach down to the treasury or to escape with it undetected or unpursued. In case the premises had to be surrendered to a besieging enemy the treasure could be pushed into the well to remain hidden from the conquerer and remain safe for salvaging if the place was reconquered. Such an elaborate multistoried well is superflous for a mere mausoleum. Such a grand, gigantic well is unneccesary for a tomb.



BURIAL DATE UNKNOWN

50. Had Shahjahan really built the Taj Mahal as a wonder mausoleum, history would have recorded a specific date on which she was ceremoniously buried in the Taj Mahal. No such date is ever mentioned. This important missing detail decisively exposes the falsity of the Tajmahal legend.

51. Even the year of Mumtaz's death is unknown. It is variously speculated to be 1629, 1630, 1631 or 1632. Had she deserved a fabulous burial, as is claimed, the date of her death had not been a matter of much speculation. In an harem teeming with 5000 women it was difficult to keep track of dates of death. Apparently the date of Mumtaz's death was so insignificant an event, as not to merit any special notice. Who would then build a Taj for her burial?



BASELESS LOVE STORIES

52. Stories of Shahjahan's exclusive infatuation for Mumtaz's are concoctions. They have no basis in history nor has any book ever written on their fancied love affairs. Those stories have been invented as an afterthought to make Shahjahan's authorship of the Taj look plausible.



COST

53. The cost of the Taj is nowhere recorded in Shahjahan's court papers because Shahjahan never built the Tajmahal. That is why wild estimates of the cost by gullible writers have ranged from 4 million to 91.7 million rupees.



PERIOD OF CONSTRUCTION

54. Likewise the period of construction has been guessed to be anywhere between 10 years and 22 years. There would have not been any scope for guesswork had the building construction been on record in the court papers.



ARCHITECTS


55. The designer of the Tajmahal is also variously mentioned as Essa Effendy, a Persian or Turk, or Ahmed Mehendis or a Frenchman, Austin deBordeaux, or Geronimo Veroneo, an Italian, or Shahjahan himself.



RECORDS DON'T EXIST

56. Twenty thousand labourers are supposed to have worked for 22 years during Shahjahan's reign in building the Tajmahal. Had this been true, there should have been available in Shahjahan's court papers design drawings, heaps of labour muster rolls, daily expenditure sheets, bills and receipts of material ordered, and commisioning orders. There is not even a scrap of paper of this kind.

57. It is, therefore, court flatterers,blunderi ng historians, somnolent archeologists, fiction writers, senile poets, careless tourists officials and erring guides who are responsible for hustling the world into believing in Shahjahan's mythical authorship of the Taj.

58. Description of the gardens around the Taj of Shahjahan's time mention Ketaki, Jai, Jui, Champa, Maulashree, Harshringar and Bel. All these are plants whose flowers or leaves are used in the worship of Hindu deities. Bel leaves are exclusively used in Lord Shiva's worship. A graveyard is planted only with shady trees because the idea of using fruit and flower from plants in a cemetary is abhorrent to human conscience. The presence of Bel and other flower plants in the Taj garden is proof of its having been a Shiva temple before seizure by Shahjahan.

59. Hindu temples are often built on river banks and sea beaches. The Taj is one such built on the bank of the Yamuna river an ideal location for a Shiva temple.

60. Prophet Mohammad has ordained that the burial spot of a muslim should be inconspicous and must not be marked by even a single tombstone. In flagrant violation of this, the Tajamhal has one grave in the basement and another in the first floor chamber both ascribed to Mumtaz. Those two centotaphs were infact erected by Shahjahan to bury the two tier Shivalingas that were consecrated in the Taj. It is customary for Hindus to install two Shivalingas one over the other in two stories as may be seen in the Mahankaleshwar temple in Ujjain and the Somnath temple raised by Ahilyabai in Somnath Pattan.

61. The Tajmahal has identical entrance arches on all four sides. This is a typical Hindu building style known as Chaturmukhi, i.e.,four faced.



THE HINDU DOME

62. The Tajmahal has a reverberating dome. Such a dome is an absurdity for a tomb which must ensure peace and silence. Contrarily reverberating domes are a neccesity in Hindu temples because they create an ecstatic dinmultiplying and magnifying the sound of bells, drums and pipes accompanying the worship of Hindu deities.

63. The Tajmahal dome bears a lotus cap. Original Islamic domes have a bald top as is exemplified by the Pakistan Embassy in Chanakyapuri, New Delhi, and the domes in the Pakistan's newly built capital Islamabad.

64. The Tajmahal entrance faces south. Had the Taj been an Islamic building it should have faced the west.



TOMB IS THE GRAVE, NOT THE BUILDING

65. A widespread misunderstanding has resulted in mistaking the building for the grave.Invading Islam raised graves in captured buildings in every country it overran. Therefore, hereafter people must learn not to confound the building with the grave mounds which are grafts in conquered buildings. This is true of the Tajmahal too. One may therefore admit (for arguments sake) that Mumtaz lies buried inside the Taj. But that should not be construed to mean that the Taj was raised over Mumtaz's grave.

66. The Taj is a seven storied building. Prince Aurangzeb also mentions this in his letter to Shahjahan. The marble edifice comprises four stories including the lone, tall circular hall inside the top, and the lone chamber in the basement. In between are two floors each containing 12 to 15 palatial rooms. Below the marble plinth reaching down to the river at the rear are two more stories in red stone. They may be seen from the river bank. The seventh storey must be below the ground (river) level since every ancient Hindu building had a subterranian storey.

67. Immediately bellow the marble plinth on the river flank are 22 rooms in red stone with their ventilators all walled up by Shahjahan. Those rooms, made uninhibitably by Shahjahan, are kept locked by Archealogy Department of India. The lay visitor is kept in the dark about them. Those 22 rooms still bear ancient Hindu paint on their walls and ceilings. On their side is a nearly 33 feet long corridor. There are two door frames one at either end ofthe corridor. But those doors are intriguingly sealed with brick and lime.

68. Apparently those doorways originally sealed by Shahjahan have been since unsealed and again walled up several times. In 1934 a resident of Delhi took a peep inside from an opening in the upper part of the doorway. To his dismay he saw huge hall inside. It contained many statues huddled around a central beheaded image of Lord Shiva. It could be that, in there, are Sanskrit inscriptions too. All the seven stories of the Tajmahal need to be unsealed and scoured to ascertain what evidence they may be hiding in the form of Hindu images, Sanskrit inscriptions, scriptures, coins and utensils.

69. Apart from Hindu images hidden in the sealed stories it is also learnt that Hindu images are also stored in the massive walls of the Taj. Between 1959 and 1962 when Mr. S.R. Rao was the Archealogical Superintendent in Agra, he happened to notice a deep and wide crack in the wall of the central octagonal chamber of the Taj. When a part of the wall was dismantled to study the crack out popped two or three marble images. The matter was hushed up and the images were reburied where they had been embedded at Shahjahan's behest. Confirmation of this has been obtained from several sources. It was only when I began my investigation into the antecedents of the Taj I came across the above information which had remained a forgotten secret. What better proof is needed of the Temple origin of the Tajmahal? Its walls and sealed chambers still hide in Hindu idols that were consecrated in it before Shahjahan's seizure of the Taj.



PRE-SHAHJAHAN REFERENCES TO THE TAJ

70. Apparently the Taj as a central palace seems to have an chequered history. The Taj was perhaps desecrated and looted by every Muslim invader from Mohammad Ghazni onwards but passing into Hindu hands off and on, the sanctity of the Taj as a Shiva temple continued to be revived after every muslim onslaught. Shahjahan was the last muslim to desecrate the Tajmahal alias Tejomahalay.

71. Vincent Smith records in his book titled `Akbar the Great Moghul' that `Babur's turbulent life came to an end in his garden palace in Agra in 1630'. That palace was none other than the Tajmahal. 72. Babur's daughter Gulbadan Begum in her chronicle titled `Humayun Nama' refers to the Taj as the Mystic House.

73. Babur himself refers to the Taj in his memoirs as the palace captured by Ibrahim Lodi containing a central octagonal chamber and having pillars on the four sides. All these historical references allude to the Taj 100 years before Shahjahan.

74. The Tajmahal precincts extend to several hundred yards in all directions. Across the river are ruins of the annexes of the Taj, the bathing ghats and a jetty for the ferry boat. In the Victoria gardens outside covered with creepers is the long spur of the ancient outer wall ending in a octagonal red stone tower. Such extensive grounds all magnificently done up, are a superfluity for a grave.

75. Had the Taj been specially built to bury Mumtaz, it should not have been cluttered with other graves. But the Taj premises contain several graves atleast in its eastern and southern pavilions.

76. In the southern flank, on the other side of the Tajganj gate are buried in identical pavilions queens Sarhandi Begum, and Fatehpuri Begum and a maid Satunnisa Khanum. Such parity burial can be justified only if the queens had been demoted or the maid promoted. But since Shahjahan had commandeered (not built) the Taj, he reduced it general to a muslim cemetary as was the habit of all his Islamic predeccssors, and buried a queen in a vacant pavillion and a maid in another idenitcal pavilion.

77. Shahjahan was married to several other women before and after Mumtaz. She, therefore, deserved no special consideration in having a wonder mausoleum built for her.

78. Mumtaz was a commoner by birth and so she did not qualify for a fairyland burial.

79. Mumtaz died in Burhanpur which is about 600 miles from Agra. Her grave there is intact. Therefore ,the centotaphs raised in stories of the Taj in her name seem to be fakes hiding in Hindu Shiva emblems.

80. Shahjahan seems to have simulated Mumtaz's burial in Agra to find a pretext to surround the temple palace with his fierce and fanatic troops and remove all the costly fixtures in his treasury. This finds confirmation in the vague noting in the Badshahnama which says that the Mumtaz's (exhumed) body was brought to Agra from Burhanpur and buried `next year'. An official term would not use a nebulous term unless it is to hide some thing.

81. A pertinent consideration is that a Shahjahan who did not build any palaces for Mumtaz while she was alive, would not build a fabulous mausoleum for a corpse which was no longer kicking or clicking.

82. Another factor is that Mumtaz died within two or three years of Shahjahan becoming an emperor. Could he amass so much superflous wealth in that short span as to squander it on a wonder mausoleum?

83. While Shahjahan's special attachment to Mumtaz is nowhere recorded in history his amorous affairs with many other ladies from maids to mannequins including his own daughter Jahanara, find special attention in accounts of Shahjahan's reign. Would Shahjahan shower his hard earned wealth on Mumtaz's corpse?

84. Shahjahan was a stingy, usurious monarch. He came to throne murdering all his rivals. He was not therefore, the doting spendthrift that he is made out to be.

85. A Shahjahan disconsolate on Mumtaz's death is suddenly credited with a resolve to build the Taj. This is a psychological incongruity. Grief is a disabling, incapacitating emotion.

86. A infatuated Shahjahan is supposed to have raised the Taj over the dead Mumtaz, but carnal, physical sexual love is again a incapacitating emotion. A womaniser is ipso facto incapable of any constructive activity. When carnal love becomes uncontrollable the person either murders somebody or commits suicide. He cannot raise a Tajmahal. A building like the Taj invariably originates in an ennobling emotion like devotion to God, to one's mother and mother country or power and glory.

87. Early in the year 1973, chance digging in the garden in front of the Taj revealed another set of fountains about six feet below the present fountains. This proved two things. Firstly, the subterranean fountains were there before Shahjahan laid the surface fountains. And secondly that those fountains are aligned to the Taj that edifice too is of pre Shahjahan origin. Apparently the garden and its fountains had sunk from annual monsoon flooding and lack of maintenance for centuries during the Islamic rule.

89. The stately rooms on the upper floor of the Tajmahal have been striped of their marble mosaic by Shahjahan to obtain matching marble for raising fake tomb stones inside the Taj premises at several places. Contrasting with the rich finished marble ground floor rooms the striping of the marble mosaic covering the lower half of the walls and flooring of the upper storey have given those rooms a naked, robbed look. Since no visitors are allowed entry to the upper storey this despoilation by Shahjahan has remained a well guarded secret. There is no reason why Shahjahan's loot of the upper floor marble should continue to be hidden from the public even after 200 years of termination of Moghul rule.

90. Bernier, the French traveller has recorded that no non muslim was allowed entry into the secret nether chambers of the Taj because there are some dazzling fixtures there. Had those been installed by Shahjahan they should have been shown the public as a matter of pride. But since it was commandeered Hindu wealth which Shahjahan wanted to remove to his treasury, he didn't want the public to know about it.

91. The approach to Taj is dotted with hillocks raised with earth dugout from foundation trenches. The hillocks served as outer defences of the Taj building complex. Raising such hillocks from foundation earth, is a common Hindu device of hoary origin. Nearby Bharatpur provides a graphic parallel.

Peter Mundy has recorded that Shahjahan employed thousands of labourers to level some of those hillocks. This is a graphic proof of the Tajmahal existing before Shahjahan.

93. At the backside of the river bank is a Hindu crematorium, several palaces, Shiva temples and bathings of ancient origin. Had Shahjahan built the Tajmahal, he would have destroyed the Hindu features.

94. The story that Shahjahan wanted to build a Black marble Taj across the river, is another motivated myth. The ruins dotting the other side of the river are those of Hindu structures demolished during muslim invasions and not the plinth of another Tajmahal. Shahjahan who did not even build the white Tajmahal would hardly ever think of building a black marble Taj. He was so miserly that he forced labourers to work gratis even in the superficial tampering neccesary to make a Hindu temple serve as a Muslim tomb.

95. The marble that Shahjahan used for grafting Koranic lettering in the Taj is of a pale white shade while the rest of the Taj is built of a marble with rich yellow tint. This disparity is proof of the Koranic extracts being a superimposition.

96. Though imaginative attempts have been made by some historians to foist some fictitious name on history as the designer of the Taj others more imaginative have credited Shajahan himself with superb architechtural proficiency and artistic talent which could easily conceive and plan the Taj even in acute bereavement. Such people betray gross ignorance of history in as much as Shajahan was a cruel tyrant ,a great womaniser and a drug and drink addict.

97. Fanciful accounts about Shahjahan commisioning the Taj are all confused. Some asserted that Shahjahan ordered building drawing from all over the world and chose one from among them. Others assert that a man at hand was ordered to design a mausoleum and his design was approved. Had any of those versions been true Shahjahan's court papers should have had thousands of drawings concerning the Taj. But there is not even a single drawing. This is yet another clinching proof that Shahjahan did not commision the Taj.

98. The Tajmahal is surrounded by huge mansions which indicate that several battles have been waged around the Taj several times.

99. At the south east corner of the Taj is an ancient royal cattle house. Cows attached to the Tejomahalay temple used to reared there. A cowshed is an incongruity in an Islamic tomb.

100. Over the western flank of the Taj are several stately red stone annexes. These are superflous for a mausoleum.

101. The entire Taj complex comprises of 400 to 500 rooms. Residential accomodation on such a stupendous scale is unthinkable in a mausoleum.

102. The neighbouring Tajganj township's massive protective wall also encloses the Tajmahal temple palace complex. This is a clear indication that the Tejomahalay temple palace was part and parcel of the township. A street of that township leads straight into the Tajmahal. The Tajganj gate is aligned in a perfect straight line to the octagonal red stone garden gate and the stately entrance arch of the Tajmahal. The Tajganj gate besides being central to the Taj temple complex, is also put on a pedestal. The western gate by which the visitors enter the Taj complex is a camparatively minor gateway. It has become the entry gate for most visitors today because the railway station and the bus station are on that side.

103. The Tajmahal has pleasure pavilions which a tomb would never have.

104. A tiny mirror glass in a gallery of the Red Fort in Agra reflects the Taj mahal. Shahjahan is said to have spent his last eight years of life as a prisoner in that gallery peering at the reflected Tajmahal and sighing in the name of Mumtaz. This myth is a blend of many falsehoods. Firstly,old Shajahan was held prisoner by his son Aurangzeb in the basement storey in the Fort and not in an open,fashionable upper storey. Secondly, the glass piece was fixed in the 1930's by Insha Allah Khan, a peon of the archaelogy dept.just to illustrate to the visitors how in ancient times the entire apartment used to scintillate with tiny mirror pieces reflecting the Tejomahalay temple a thousand fold. Thirdly, a old decrepit Shahjahan with pain in his joints and cataract in his eyes, would not spend his day craning his neck at an awkward angle to peer into a tiny glass piece with bedimmed eyesight when he could as well his face around and have full,direct view of the Tjamahal itself. But the general public is so gullible as to gulp all such prattle of wily, unscrupulous guides.

105. That the Tajmahal dome has hundreds of iron rings sticking out of its exterior is a feature rarely noticed. These are made to hold Hindu earthen oil lamps for temple illumination.

106. Those putting implicit faith in Shahjahan authorship of the Taj have been imagining Shahjahan-Mumtaz to be a soft hearted romantic pair like Romeo and Juliet. But contemporary accounts speak of Shahjahan as a hard hearted ruler who was constantly egged on to acts of tyranny and cruelty, by Mumtaz.

107. School and College history carry the myth that Shahjahan reign was a golden period in which there was peace and plenty and that Shahjahan commisioned many buildings and patronized literature. This is pure fabrication. Shahjahan did not commision even a single building as we have illustrated by a detailed analysis of the Tajmahal legend. Shahjahn had to enrage in 48 military campaigns during a reign of nearly 30 years which proves that his was not a era of peace and plenty.

108. The interior of the dome rising over Mumtaz's centotaph has a representation of Sun and cobras drawn in gold. Hindu warriors trace their origin to the Sun. For an Islamic mausoleum the Sun is redundant. Cobras are always associated with Lord Shiva.



FORGED DOCUMENTS

109. The Muslim caretakers of the tomb in the Tajmahal used to possess a document which they styled as "Tarikh-i-Tajmahal". Historian H.G. Keene has branded it as `a document of doubtful authenticity' . Keene was uncannily right since we have seen that Shahjahan not being the creator of the Tajmahal any document which credits Shahjahn with the Tajmahal, must be an outright forgery. Even that forged document is reported to have been smuggled out of Pakistan. Besides such forged documents there are whole chronicles on the Taj which are pure concoctions.

110. There is lot of sophistry and casuistry or atleast confused thinking associated with the Taj even in the minds of proffesional historians, archaelogists and architects. At the outset they assert that the Taj is entirely Muslim in design. But when it is pointed out that its lotus capped dome and the four corner pillars etc. are all entirely Hindu those worthies shift ground and argue that that was probably because the workmen were Hindu and were to introduce their own patterns. Both these arguments are wrong because Muslim accounts claim the designers to be Muslim,and the workers invariably carry out the employer's dictates.

The Taj is only a typical illustration of how all historic buildings and townships from Kashmir to Cape Comorin though of Hindu origin have been ascribed to this or that Muslim ruler or courtier.

It is hoped that people the world over who study Indian history will awaken to this new finding and revise their erstwhile beliefs.

Those interested in an indepth study of the above and many other revolutionary rebuttals may read this author's other research books.



Tajmahal The True Story authored by Shri P.N. Oak can be ordered from :
A. Ghosh Publisher, 5720 W. Little York # 216, Houston, Texas 77091

http://www.stephen- knapp.com/ true_story_ of_the_taj_ mahal.htm

Obama and His plans

Analysis of the Policies of President-Elect Obama

Senator Barack Obama’s electoral victory, complete with expanded
majorities in the House and Senate, gives the Democrats control over the
legislative and administrative processes for the first time since 1994. This
has significant ramifications for the new Administration’s policies to deal
with the economic crisis, as well as domestic priorities on taxes, health care,
energy, the environment, labor relations, and trade.
Today, President-Elect Barack Obama will shift to presidential transition following
many months of campaigning. He will have just 77 days to assemble a cabinet, set
critical priorities, and prepare a federal budget (which must be submitted to congress
by February). Though he has not discussed it publicly, these plans are well underway.
The Obama team is actively discussing potential Cabinet selections and will soon
begin vetting resumes for the estimated 7,800 presidential appointee jobs which
must be filled – 1,177 require Senate confirmation – and finalizing a comprehensive
blueprint which will guide the incoming president through the transition.
While it is certain that the Obama presidency will mark a stark contrast from the Bush
years, what remains to be seen is how much external factors like the economic crisis will
impact his first 100 days and beyond. The following examines what we are likely to see
under an Obama administration on an array of pressing issues.
Tax Policy: Storm on the Horizon
A fundamental component of the federal budget is the level of revenues or taxes,
a finite resource that has implications on individuals, business and the broader
economy. Historically, tax revenue as a percent of GDP has averaged around 18.1
percent. Under current projections by the Congressional Budget Office, revenues
will grow to about 20 percent of GDP by 2012, the end of the next administration,
absent additional action. A key issue before the next administration will be the
appropriate level and composition of federal taxation. An examination of the ideas
presented during the campaign by Senator Obama provides insight into the answer.
(continued on next page)
Analysis of the Policies of President-Elect Obama
2 |
There are two key drivers that will greatly impact the tax debate – the
federal budget deficit and the expiration of the 2001 and 2003 tax
cuts. Federal budget scorekeepers estimate the deficit for this year
will be about $450 billion and could exceed $750 billion next year,
after factoring in the recent cost of the economic rescue plan recently
enacted. In addition, as the economy slows, predictions of future
revenue collections will be revised downward, putting further pressure
on the deficit and the level of revenues to run the government.
Against this backdrop is the fact that the current structure of the
tax code is set to change dramatically as a long list of tax rates and
tax credits will automatically expire December 31, 2010, creating
a large built-in tax increase. Beginning in 2011, the following
changes are set to occur:
• The top marginal tax rate for individuals increases from
35% to 39.6%
• The maximum long-term capital gains rate increases from
15% to 20%
• The top tax rate on dividend income increases from
15% to 39.6%
• The estate tax will be repealed in 2010 and then reappear in
2011 at pre-2001 high tax rates and low exemption levels
• Tax credits for children, education, and other incentives will
expire or be reduced
Given these built-in changes, President Obama and Congress
will face significant tax policy decisions. Underlying the decision
process will be two competing philosophical views on the coming
2010 changes. Proponents of extending the 2001 and 2003 tax
cuts argue that failure to act will “allow” a $1.5 trillion tax increase
to occur. From a competing perspective, extending the 2001 and
2003 tax cuts would “cost” $1.5 trillion in lost revenue to the
Treasury, highlighting the budgetary challenge of continuing the
current tax structure into the future.
Faced with the reality of the current and projected fiscal pressures,
Congress and President Obama are unlikely to agree on extending
all of the expiring tax relief. Thus, the debate will center on
prioritizing tax policies and engaging in a give-and-take exercise to
find a tax structure that fits within the current fiscal and economic
environment. Looking ahead, two overarching pressures will put
opposing constraints on the outcomes – (1) the size of the deficit
will limit the size and duration of any tax extensions or tax cuts
and (2) a stagnant or recessionary economy in 2009 and 2010 will
make it diffi cult to raise taxes too high or too quickly for fear of
making the economy worse.
Tax Proposals
According to the Tax Policy Center, Obama’s tax plan would cost
$2.9 trillion over 10 years. Hidden within these numbers are
proposals to raise taxes on business by either eliminating “corporate
welfare,” ending “incentives for companies to ship jobs overseas” or
using “tax havens,” and/or raising payroll taxes.
The incoming Obama Administration will need to decide which
proposals to enact and which proposals to put aside as a new
budget is crafted. One theme that is prevalent in the Obama plan
is the clear distinction between tax reductions for lower- and
middle-income Americans and tax increases for individuals making
$200,000 or more and couples earning $250,000 or more. For
these taxpayers, the Bush tax cuts would generally expire and they
would see higher taxes in the form of additional payroll taxes and
the phase-out of certain deductions.
The following chart outlines the various tax proposals Barack
Obama announced during the campaign:
Barak Obama’s Tax Plan
Business Provisions
Corporate Tax Rates
• No specific proposal to lower corporate tax rate
• Provide a tax credit to employers that increase the number of employees in the United States;
maintain U.S. headquarters; and provide certain benefits to employees
R&D • Make permanent R&D tax credit
Health Care
• Provide a refundable tax credit of up to 50 percent of health insurance premiums paid by a small
employer for health care for employees
Renewable Energy Production Tax Credits • Make permanent the current tax credit for the production of electricity from renewable sources
Revenue Raisers/Tax Increases
• Tax offshore income and “tax haven abuse”
• Codify economic substance doctrine
• Tax publicly traded partnerships as corporations
• Tax the “carried interest” income from investment partnerships as ordinary income rather than
capital gain
• Tighten rules on tax deductibility of executive compensation
Analysis of the Policies of President-Elect Obama
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Barak Obama’s Tax Plan (cont’d)
Capital Gains
• Raise capital gains rate to 20% (from 15%) for individuals earning $200,000 or more
($250,000 for couples)
• Eliminate capital gains for certain investments in a small business or start-up business
Dividends
• Raise tax rate on dividend income – from a top rate of 15% to top rate of 20%—for individuals
earning $200,000 or more ($250,000 for couples)
Individual Provisions
Marginal Tax Rates
• Make permanent lower income tax rates (10/15/25/28% rates)
• Restore top rates of 36% and 39.6% (unclear what income level threshold new rates apply)
Phase out of Personal Exemption and
Itemized Deductions
• Restore phase-out of personal exemptions and itemized deductions in 2009 and beyond (taxpayer
earning $200,000 (single) or $250,000 (couple))
AMT • Extend and index AMT exemption at 2008 levels (i.e., maintain current patch)
Savers Tax Credit
• Make the Saver’s Credit refundable and change credit to provide a 50 percent match of the first
$1,000 saved in a retirement plan
Tax Benefits for Families
• Make permanent $1,000 per child tax credit and marriage penalty relief
• Expand Earned Income Tax Credit
• Expand child and dependent tax credit
Seniors/Retirees • Exempt from the first $50,000 of income received by a senior/retiree
Mortgage Tax Credit
• Provide a refundable “universal mortgage credit” equal to 10 percent of mortgage interest paid up to
a maximum credit of $800 for taxpayers who do not itemize
Worker Tax Credit • Provide a refundable tax credit of 6.2% of the first $8,100 in wages to offset the current payroll tax
Estate Tax
Rates and Exemption Amount • Freeze 2009 estate tax exemption and tax rate levels—$3.5 million exemption and 45% tax rate
Payroll Tax
• Subject incomes above $250,000 to payroll taxes. (The new payroll tax would be between 2% and
4% and paid by both the employee and the employer like the current Social Security tax. All income
is already subject to the 1.45% Medicare tax)
Temporary Proposals to Address
Economic Slowdown
• Eliminate the tax on unemployment insurance for 2008 and 2009
• Allow penalty free withdrawals from retirement accounts (limited to the lesser of 15 percent
account balance or $10,000)
• Provide employer tax credit of $3,000 per employee hired in 2009 or 2010 (credit would
be refundable)
Observations on the Consequences of Obama’s
Tax Proposals
As with most policy decisions, there are winners and losers from
changes to existing tax policy. An examination of the details of the
tax proposal can provide some insight into who may benefit and
who may see tax increases under the different tax policy changes
outlined above.
• Corporate versus Pass-Through Entities – The current top
corporate tax rate is 35%. Under the Obama plan, the top
tax rate on pass-through income would increase to 39.6%
or higher. Although corporate income is taxed twice (again
when distributed as capital gain or dividend) the annual
tax for pass-through entities could increase above that
for corporations.
• Domestic over International Businesses – Senator Obama has
proposed to “tax corporations that ship jobs overseas.” Details
of the proposal have not been provided, but multinational
corporations could see a tightening or repeal of the current
rules that allow tax on foreign earnings to be deferred until
repatriated to the United States. This change would only
impact U.S. multinational corporations that have earnings
from foreign operations.
Analysis of the Policies of President-Elect Obama
4 |
• Cost of Capital – Senator Obama would allow the capital
gains rate to return to 20% and the top rate on dividend
income to increase to 20%. Thus, the after tax cost of
investments would increase. The shift to more and higher
corporate dividend payouts would likely end with the
increased tax on qualified dividends.
• Cost of Labor – Senator Obama would impose a new payroll
tax (between 2% and 4%) on incomes above $250,000.
The tax would be imposed on both the employee and the
employer, increasing the cost of labor. However, some
employers would qualify for the new worker tax credit (up
to $3,000 per employee) for firms that are increasing their
number of employees.
• Housing Subsidy – The proposed new universal mortgage tax
credit of up to $800 for non-itemizers would further expand
the various subsidies in the tax code for housing.
Financial Crisis/Economic Rescue
Obama envisions fiscal policy as a central tool for spurring the
economy and blunting the coming recession. To build upon the
first economic stimulus package passed in February 2008, Obama
supports passage of a second stimulus bill to inject infrastructure
and benefits-related spending into the economic engine (Obama
did not vote on the final version of the first stimulus package).
Obama has proposed a two-year, $175 billion total package, with:
• $25 billion in state relief, via a State Growth Fund designed to
prevent cuts in state and local housing, education, health care,
and heating assistance;
• $25 billion in infrastructure spending in the form of a Jobs and
Growth Fund to prevent spending cuts in road maintenance
and school repair; the Obama team estimates that this will save
one million jobs;
• Extension of unemployment benefits, and a suspension of taxes
on unemployment benefits;
• Tax credit of $3,000 per new worker hired, to stimulate
employment;
• 90-day moratorium on foreclosures for homeowners making a
good faith effort to pay off their mortgage;
• Bankruptcy reform to allow judges to modify a borrower’s
mortgage terms to make the loan affordable;
• For struggling families, permissible withdrawal of up to 15
percent of an individual’s retirement account without early
withdrawal penalty; and
• A program to lend federal money to cash-strapped state and
local governments, in the model of the Treasury Department’s
Capital Purchase Program to troubled banks.
Obama proposes to pay for these expenditures with tax increases
on families that earn over $250,000 per year and individuals
earning over $200,000 (see taxation discussion above). He will
also look to impose a windfall tax on oil companies and close
certain corporate tax loopholes to offset the stimulus’ price tag.
Should Congress not act on a stimulus in a lame-duck session
this fall, Obama will make his package one of his first priorities
in 2009.
On housing reform, Obama seeks tighter regulation of mortgage
lenders, greater transparency in the mortgage process and
stricter enforcement of mortgage-related abuses. In 2007,
Obama introduced the STOP FRAUD Act to increase penalties
for mortgage fraud and provide additional protections for lowincome
homebuyers. Going forward, he will look to increase
funding for federal and state enforcement programs, create
additional criminal penalties for mortgage fraud, hold industry
to greater reporting requirements, and expand disclosures to
borrowers under existing mortgage laws. He also hopes to create
a Home Obligation Made Explicit (HOME) score, to provide
borrowers with a simplified, standardized metric to more
easily compare mortgage products. Obama’s mortgage reform
approach will be decidedly more consumer protection-oriented
than McCain’s would have been, and would also include a 10
percent tax credit for 10 million mortgage borrowers who do
not itemize
With respect to Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, Obama has
said very little as to what his plan is for these entities and
how he might look to restructure them to bring them out of
government conservatorship. Given their current condition
and the other economic and financial regulatory problems the
new Administration and Congress currently face, there is little
expectation that the Obama Administration will look to take any
aggressive action to change the present status of Fannie and Freddie
any time soon.
Regulatory Reform
With seismic shifts in the federal government’s approach to
market intervention in recent months, the financial services
regulatory landscape will be reshaped significantly in 2009 and
beyond. Congress has clearly announced its intention to review
the regulatory structure for the industry, and with Obama, it has a
President with like-minded goals.
Obama’s record on financial services regulation is rather limited,
as his committee assignments during his senatorial tenure focused
his sights elsewhere. However, Obama has echoed his colleagues’
call for restructuring, announcing plans for expanded oversight of
financial institutions that borrow from the federal government,
transferring jurisdictional responsibilities, and improving
transparency of investment firms.
Obama will also seek to streamline federal regulatory agencies,
establish a financial market advisory group, and crack down on
trading activities that he deems are manipulating the markets.
Analysis of the Policies of President-Elect Obama
| 5
Regulatory reform will dominate the congressional banking agenda
in 2009 and 2010, and large-scale regulatory changes are expected.
The Treasury Department postulated its ideas for financial reform
in March 2008 with its Blueprint for a Modernized Financial
Regulatory Structure. This only set the table. The events of the past
several months – market turmoil blamed in part on regulatory
lapses, the federal government drastically increasing taxpayer
risk with direct and indirect investments in troubled financial
institutions, and the Federal Reserve significantly expanding access
to its lending facilities – have radically altered the regulatory debate
in Washington.
At a minimum, the Federal Reserve stands to augment its
regulatory jurisdiction markedly. Whether through the Fed or
another agency, Congress is likely to establish a systemic risk
regulator to police the markets, and Obama has endorsed this
approach. Other fundamental questions will be considered,
including: how best to allocate responsibility for prudential/
market stability/enforcement regulation of the markets; how best
to regulate the activities of hedge funds and other investment firms
that are largely unregulated today; how to regulate investment
banking activities within commercial banking regulatory
structures; and whether certain federal agencies should be merged
in the interest of regulatory effi ciency (e.g., SEC and Commodities
Futures Trading Commission, or the Offi ce of the Comptroller of
the Currency and the Offi ce of Thrift Supervision). The answers to
these and related questions will go a long way in determining what
our financial markets regulatory structure looks like for the next
decade and beyond.
Credit Derivatives
In the wake of the Federal Reserve’s intervention in AIG, and
after the credit market seizure created by the Lehman Brothers
collapse, Congress and the federal agencies are focusing on
credit derivatives more so than ever before. This scrutiny will
undoubtedly grow as we enter 2009.
Congress has held several hearings on credit default swaps during
the subprime crisis, and leadership has indicated its interest in
legislating a stricter approach to CDS in the 111th Congress. The
bipartisan critique has largely centered on: how to improve CDS
market transparency; how best to mitigate counterparty risk and
systemic risk posed by outstanding CDS positions; how best to
establish a clearinghouse(s) to facilitate clearing and settlement
of CDS; whether CDS should be traded on-exchange; whether
CDS contracts should be standardized; and whether CDS can and
should be regulated as insurance products.
As with regulatory restructuring, neither the Obama nor the
McCain campaigns had clearly articulated their positions on
credit derivatives aside from sharpening their rhetoric as the
election approached and the economy spiraled. Accordingly,
Obama is largely a clean slate with respect to credit derivatives,
although it can be expected that he will endorse aggressive action
to increase transparency, at a minimum, and likely more aggressive
efforts to enhance the infrastructure of, and place limits on, the
CDS market.
Miscellaneous Business, Labor and Manufacturing
A handful of other commercial issues currently dominate the
attention of lawmakers and federal offi cials – payday lending reform,
credit card abuse, union elections, infrastructure improvements – and
Obama has identified each as a priority in 2009.
In general, Obama supports a more consumer protectionoriented
approach than McCain would have. A good example
was the Obama campaign’s focus on payday lending abuses.
To protect lower-income individuals, Obama has announced
his intention to cap interest rates on payday loans at 36
percent, while seeking to provide borrowers with clearer,
simplified disclosures on loan fees, payments and penalties. He
would encourage banks and credit unions to increase smalldenomination,
short-term consumer loans.
On credit card reform, Obama would look to create a rating
system to enable consumers to evaluate the risk and benefits
on every credit card, as well as a Credit Card Bill of Rights to
deter unfair practices. He seeks to ban unilateral changes to
card terms, prohibit interest on fees, require prompt crediting
of payments, and to mandate that rate increases only apply to
future debt. Obama has well-placed Democrat allies who have
already laid the groundwork on this issue in the 110th Congress,
so reform is likely.
Organized labor will see a significantly more receptive White
House under Obama than in past years under President Bush. To
wit, Obama has received grades of 100 percent from the AFLCIO
and 94 percent from the Service Employees International
Union for his labor efforts in the Senate. Increasing the minimum
wage has been and will remain an Obama priority. In the 110th
Congress, Obama voted in favor of increasing the minimum wage
to $7.25/hour. He has announced his intention to continue to
seek minimum wage increases and will look to index the minimum
wage to inflation.
To reverse the waning influence of unions in American business
(union participation has declined from 24 percent of American
workers in 1970 to 12 percent in 2006), Obama will look to enact
the Employee Free Choice Act, a bill to make union organizing
easier by eliminating the secret ballot from union elections.
Most businesses have opposed the concept and other efforts to
increase the role of unions. If successful, Obama’s labor policies
will drastically change the dynamic of labor relations that has
characterized the past several decades in American commerce.
Obama will also look to create jobs and stimulate the economy
through expanded manufacturing and infrastructure spending in
Analysis of the Policies of President-Elect Obama
6 |
2009 and beyond. He would double funding to the Manufacturing
Extension Partnership, which works with manufacturers to develop
and implement new technologies that improve manufacturing
effi ciency. On transportation, Obama has said that “it is
critically important for the United States to rebuild its national
transportation infrastructure,” including our roads, bridges, ports,
airports and rail. He envisages a National Reinvestment Bank
to expand federal transportation investments, paid for with $60
billion in federal funds over 10 years.
Trade
It is a well-established maxim that what candidates say about trade
policy is not always what they do when elected, and this year is
no different. It is obviously too early to tell how President Obama
will carry himself on the world stage. Trade, however, is not likely
to top the agenda for the first couple of years due to the urgency
of other issues and the growing ranks of trade critics on Capitol
Hill. Given the strong anti-trade mood in Congress, Obama is
unlikely to initiate any sweeping trade liberalizing moves, especially
considering that many incoming freshmen Democrats ran on antitrade
platforms.
More specifically, during the Democratic primaries, Obama called
for a renegotiation of NAFTA with Canada and Mexico. There
would be little, if any, pressure on Obama to keep this campaign
promise since renegotiation is not a top priority for his supporters.
Indeed, it is unclear how a settled NAFTA treaty could even be
re-opened. He also opposed the Colombia FTA and South Korea
FTA, so progress is unlikely next year, especially considering the
expanded Democratic congressional majority.
Buttressing this theory, Obama softened his anti-trade rhetoric
considerably once he secured the Democratic nomination. In
recent months he has said he favors free trade in general, but
that such agreements must include strong protections for labor
and environment and that trade must be “free and fair for all.”
Importantly, such conditions are also critical for attracting more
support in Congress. A top trade adviser to Obama and likely
pick for the top job at USTR, Dan Tarullo, has stated that
President Obama could be expected to devote more attention
and resources to enforcing existing trade agreements. Democrats
in Congress have been deeply critical of the Bush Administration
for failing to enforce existing trade agreements, bringing less than
half the number of cases to the WTO compared to the Clinton
Administration. Tarullo has stated that Obama would consult
closely with Congress on trade issues.
President-elect Obama has also expressed support for the
successful conclusion of the Doha Round of multi-lateral trade
negotiations, but the Obama campaign stated that the agreement
must include benefits to workers and the poorest countries.
Negotiations collapsed in July. While efforts are underway to
revive them, hope for a breakthrough rests with China and India,
which so far at least, do not appear to want a deal. Obama has also
spoken about the importance of helping workers who lose their
jobs as result of overseas competition, a shared priority of many
members of Congress.
The bright spot on the trade agenda is that despite the recent
slowdown in the global economy, US exports have been growing,
which has cushioned the blow of job losses in other sectors of the
economy. Policymakers on both sides of the aisle will be cautious
about any proposals that threaten the benefits of free trade.
Energy
This past year, energy issues dominated much of the policy agenda
as oil touched $150 per barrel and gas prices soared past $4.00 per
gallon across the country. With both oil and gas prices in retreat as
the economy hits the brakes, energy policy has lost its urgency. The
new Obama administration will have many ideas and proposals in
the energy arena, and the issue is sure to generate attention, but
not much sweeping action.
We expect the Obama administration and new Congress to
push for additional or more favorable incentives for renewable
energy. In tandem with this effort will be moves to repeal or
lessen incentives for oil companies as a means to shift from an
oil based dependency to a renewable-focused economy. This
transition is under way with long-term extensions of several tax
credits and incentives for renewable energy. Further action could
be accomplished through attempts to make these tax incentives
permanent (such as a permanent extension of the production tax
credit) or an expansion of direct subsidies for renewable energy
through the Department of Energy.
Undoubtedly, the biggest issue will be climate change and a
debate around enacting a “cap-and-trade” regime to deal with
the problem. In 2008, the Senate debated cap-and-trade without
passing a final bill. Given the state of the economy, next year
will likely yield more talk without action. Under most iterations
of a cap and trade regime, the cost of the system will fall on
manufacturing and utility companies required to pay for carbon
allocations. This cost will be too difficult to bear during a recession
or fragile economy, regardless of the environmental benefits. Thus,
until the economy recovers, it is unlikely that Congress will be able
to enact a cap-and-trade regime.
Health Care
As polls suggested for months preceding the election, a primary
concern on the minds of the American public is health care. This
was another issue that painted a deep contrast between Obama and
McCain. As a senator, Obama has voted several times to expand
funding for health care programs, including the State Children’s
Healthcare Insurance Program (SCHIP), which Obama would use
to increase health care funding for both children and certain adults,
using proceeds from tax increases in other areas. In 2007, he voted
Analysis of the Policies of President-Elect Obama
| 7
in favor of allowing seniors to purchase cheaper prescription drugs
from Canada and other developed countries.
Obama has given health care a central position in his domestic
agenda for 2009. Seeking to expand coverage to many of the 47
million uninsured Americans, the Obama campaign trumpeted
its health care plan that “provides affordable, accessible health
care for all Americans, builds on the existing health care system,
and uses existing providers, doctors and plans to implement.”
Central to the plan is a requirement that all children be covered
(coverage would not be mandatory for adults), paid for with
aforementioned tax increases on households making over
$250,000. He would require employers to pay at least some of
employees’ health care costs.
Obama would require insurance companies to cover pre-existing
conditions; seek to lower costs for business by creating a small
business tax credit to help them provide insurance to employees;
prevent insurers from overcharge doctors for malpractice
insurance; establish a national insurance exchange that includes
a range of private insurance options; and establish a tax credit
program to allow low-income families to afford premiums. He
continues to support lowering the cost of prescription drugs by
allowing importation from other countries and by encouraging
the use of generics.
Some of the highlights of Obama’s Healthcare proposals include:
Expanding Access to Coverage
• Require all children, but not adults, to have health insurance
• Require employers to offer health benefits or to pay into a
national insurance fund
• Expand Medicare and the State Children’s Health Insurance
Program
• Create a national health insurance exchange through which
individuals and small companies could buy coverage from
private insurance plans or a new government insurance option
• Provide people who are currently uninsured an unspecified tax
credit to help buy insurance
Coverage for People With Existing Illnesses
• Require “guaranteed issue,” prohibiting insurance companies
from denying coverage or charging higher premiums to people
who are sick
Controlling Costs
• Aim to improve prevention and management of chronic diseases
• Devote $50 million to promote health information technology
• Promote the use of generic drugs, instead of more expensive
brand-name ones
• Reduce payments to private Medicare health plans
Improving Quality
Support research into medical effectiveness and promotion of •
the best practices
Foster more reporting of quality and price data •
Address health disparities for different racial and ethnic groups •
Obama should get a quick and early victory in the health care
area by expanding those covered by the SCHIP program. He also
will look to bring down the eligible coverage age for Medicare
to 55, expanding this program from the top down. The federal
government’s swelling balance sheet and focus on the credit
crunch, however, will likely exhaust the actual and political capital
that Obama will need to pursue his more ambitious health care
plans. Although Congress will be generally sympathetic, it may be
somewhat constrained by the realities of economic turmoil in the
short to medium term.
Analysis
Obama’s domestic agenda is clearly ambitious and will
undoubtedly be an aggressive repudiation of the policies of the
past eight years. It is an agenda heavily dependent on tax increases
from higher-income earners, which should be supported by a
like-minded Congress (see taxation discussion above). However,
Obama’s aspirations may be constrained by external factors
beyond his control. Even with expanded Democratic majorities in
Congress, the political reality is that the financial crisis will likely
dominate his playing field, hampering to some degree his ability to
tackle the other pillars of his domestic agenda.
As the federal government responds to the credit crunch and
growing recessionary pressure, Obama will need to dedicate
significant federal funding to expedite recovery, thereby
siphoning money from other priorities and increasing pressure
on the national deficit and debt. The final 100 days of the Bush
administration have been a churning cauldron for the President
and the markets, and Obama will quickly learn what it is like to go
from the frying pan into the fire.