Orwell BBC


JFK Press

To Orwell Today,

Dear Jackie Jura (I prefer calling you Justice Found)--

It's my pleasure to have visited your website. It is very interesting news at Orwell Today.

I am a news reporter in Rwanda but not as a profession. What brought me to your website is the search I was conducting on the Net about my recent published article in the New Times: Rwanda's daily (www.newtimes.co.rw)-- Beyond World Bank Ranking: Macroeconomic Challenges on the Ground.

Since I liked George Orwell novels back in my undergraduate years (especially Animal Farm), I wanted to have a look at what was going on at OrwellToday.com.

Well, I am very curious now to ask if you have software which helps you pull the news together? I was overwhelmed while reading in your Ministry of Peace (War). I know our time is limited, so how do you manage to put together all the stuff on your website and publish them?

Thank you for the great work you are doing to enlighten the world covered with darkness. As a person in academia, I absolutely appreciate your efforts. You are talking sense but too much stuff is published there.

-Nelson Mugarura

PS - I read at your website your discussion with a Rwandan university entrant about not knowing how to separate wheat from chaff, which I prefer calling millet from grass (icyatsi n'ururo)

Greetings Nelson,

It's always interesting to hear how readers discover "Orwell Today" - and often it's while searching for something seemingly unrelated. But there are so many issues raised by Orwell in "Animal Farm" and "1984" that he brings together people from all over the world researching its various topics.

No, I don't have any special software that helps pull the news together - just the regular search engines that are universally used. In the course of a day I read hard-copy newspapers and on-line newspapers and choose particular stories that stand out as having Orwellian parallels. Naturally, I have to practise discretion and choose only a few or otherwise I'd be at the computer 24/7 (24 hours a day, 7 days a week). In any event, I usually spend several hours a day on the website - either researching or writing - but that is to be expected by anyone doing a full time job in journalism (which in a sense is what this website is, except my ultimate boss is George Orwell who never shows up at the office and isn't very generous with giving time off).

My other invisible boss (who keeps me working very hard) is John Fitzgerald Kennedy (endearingly referred to by all as "JFK"). His definition of "happiness" explains how I feel about the reward for the work (which is a labour of love) that I put into the website. JFK said: "The definition of happiness is the full use of your powers along lines of excellence". That's what I aspire to do in creating "Orwell Today" and that's what makes me happy in this world covered with darkness.

Jackie Jura

PS - That email discussion you refer to - about separating the millet from the grass (icyatsi n'ururo) - took place when I first started writing about Rwanda in 2004 on the occasion of the 10th anniversary of the genocide. But in many ways, the term sums up what I attempt to do on "Orwell Today", ie separate the wheat from the chaff.

PPS - Thanks for that name "Justice Found". I guess you must know that JURA MEANS JUSTICE in Latin

1.Winston's Diary (...He wondered again for whom he was writing the diary. For the future, for the past - for an age that might be imaginary.... He was a lonely ghost uttering a truth that nobody would ever hear. But so long as he uttered it, in some obscure way the continuity was not broken. It was not by making yourself heard but by staying sane that you carried on the human heritage....)

15.Life in Oceania (...He felt as though he were wandering in the forests of the sea bottom, lost in a monstrous world where he himself was the monster. He was alone. The past was dead, the future was unimaginable. What certainty had he that a single human creature now living was on his side. And what way of knowing that the dominion of the Party would not endure for ever?...)

17.Falsification of Past (...History has stopped. Nothing exists except in an endless present in which the Party is always right. I know, of course, that the past is falsified, but it would never be possible for me to prove it, even when I did the falsification myself. After the thing is done, no evidence ever remains. The only evidence is inside my own mind, and I don't know with any certainty that any other human being shares my memories....)

28.Reality Control (...At one time it had been a sign of madness to believe that the earth goes round the sun. Being a minority, even a minority of one, did not make you mad. There was truth and there was untruth, and if you clung to the truth even against the whole world, you were not mad. The obvious, the silly, and the true had to be defended. Truisms are true, hold on to that! The solid world exists, its laws do not change. Stones are hard, water is wet, objects unsupported fall towards the earth's centre.... Freedom is the freedom to say that two plus two make four....)


Jackie Jura
~ an independent researcher monitoring local, national and international events ~

email: orwelltoday@gmail.com
website: www.orwelltoday.com