Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Suhasini Mistry

Anita Pratap in Humanity Hospital was built by a woman whose husband died for want of medical help"Through her tears and fears, Subhashini made an oath that fateful day. No one should suffer her fate. Basic medical attention could easily have saved her husband who had nothing more than a bout of gastro enteritis.
But poverty and callous hospital staff had killed her husband. She vowed she would do what it takes to spare people of this nightmare. She would build a hospital for the poor......

But Subhashini did not have the luxury to indulge in either her dream or her despair. She had four hungry mouths to feed. She only knew housework, so she started working as a maid servant in five houses nearby, earning a total of Rs. 100 a month.
She recalls: “There is no work my hands have not done. I have cooked, mopped floors, washed utensils, cleaned gardens, polished shoes, concreted roofs.” Her son Ajoy was a good student. She sent him to an orphanage in Kolkata so he could get a decent education. The other three children helped with housework."

Monday, March 30, 2015

Links March 30, 2015

Robert .McNamara and the evolution of modern management:"In filmmaker Errol Morris’s Academy Award–winning documentary The Fog of War, McNamara summarized his approach with two principles: “Maximize efficiency” and “Get the data.”
Yet McNamara’s great strength had a dark side, which was exposed when the American involvement in Vietnam escalated. The single-minded emphasis on rational analysis based on quantifiable data led to grave errors. The problem was, data that were hard to quantify tended to be overlooked, and there was no way to measure intangibles like motivation, hope, resentment, or courage. ....Equally serious was a failure to insist that data be impartial. "
Distorting Putin's favorite philosophers:"For all the United States’ vaunted freedom, it exhibits surprisingly little freedom of maneuver when it comes to its foreign policy. Far from taking into consideration Russia’s vital security needs, to say nothing of Russia’s identity, U.S. ideologues have behaved as if both are either non-existent or fundamentally illegitimate. Such compulsive political behavior is the sure sign of ideological infection.
Brooks, Snegovaya and Galeotti apparently have all made use of the same basic logic when they examined the philosophical sources of Putin’s thinking. That logic went something like this: a) Washington considers Russia a problem, therefore, b) Vladimir Putin is a thug; and therefore, c) the Nineteen Century philosopher Vladimir Solovyov dreamed of restoring the Soviet Union to its former Christian glory and might.
Such sloppy thinking would not have happened were these three otherwise intelligent people not (one hopes temporarily) previously incapacitated by ideological blinders. Unfortunately, the same ideological thinking dominates nearly all of U.S. discourse vis-à-vis Russia, making a political settlement impossible."

My meeting with a dalit boy

from my Facebook wall :
"About two years ago, I visited a few villages in Guntur area (Veluru, Palaparru?, and along the way, we saw from a distance the famous Sowpadu) on a motorcycle. The final lap was a nearly 70 kilometre journey to Pedavadlapudi.One dalit boy rode a borrowed vehicle and after a while, the travel was tough for me and I started asking for rest breaks. During the breaks, we would chat. He just finished his B.Tech. He was looking for jobs and meanwhile doing day labor in the fields along with his parents. I suggested that it would not be so easy to find jobs and that he should inquire about specializations where the jobs are and take some coaching classes and courses in a place like Hyderabad. At another stop, he took me to a leafy campus where he studied and started telling me about the best time of his life there where he could study peacefully , learn and develop some interests. Then he suddenly told me about a brahmin girl that he met at the end of his studies. She said that she observed him during those four years, liked his ways and was wanted to marry him. But he felt that he should first alleviate the poverty of his parents before he settled down. She was one of the top students in the class and got a job immediately whereas he got the admission through reservations, struggled, just made it and found it hard to find a job. I tried to tell him that such girls are hard to find and he should keep in touch with her. He did not seem averse to the idea but seemed more concerned about his parents who were still laborers. I am still in touch with him, talk to him once in a while on the phone. He finally got a small job and now wants to pursue in spare time some of the topics he found interesting during his student days. I hope that there are relatively cheap information and advisory sites for such youngsters."

P.S. I contacted three face book friends with contacts in Bangalore where the boy is going to work from April 6. There were also enquiries about his skills. My response " His English is poor. He mumbles etc. and does not express himself very clearly. But he is sincere and will work hard. Probably too nice. He comes from a group of dalits I have been funding a bit. If he comes up he is likely to help others."
P.P.S.http://social.yourstory.com/2015/03/venkat-maroju/ "I had a rural background, I lacked English communication skills (I could not speak one full sentence in English properly when I joined college) and I was a‘reservation candidate’.” 

Two pieces from Keynes

Saturday, March 28, 2015

From 'Broadway melody of 1940'

And news from an empire that declined

How corrupt is Britain? by George Monbiot: " The UK, Switzerland, Singapore, Luxembourg and Germany are all ranked by Transparency International as among the least corrupt nations on earth. They are also listed by the Tax Justice Network as among the worst secrecy regimes and tax havens8. For some reason though, that doesn't count."
And may be some positive news: "Comedian Russell Brand has revealed his plans for a new chain of non-profit businesses which would boast their own currency."

There seem to have been some encouraging efforts in Marinaleda in Spain and Anarva in Greece.

Final stand of a declining Empire?

From Financial Times (some internet search if one does not have a subscription): "The participation of countries in the TPP has less to do with enthusiasm for importing the US economic model than a grudging acceptance that yet more tribute has to be paid in order to retain access to the US market. "
"Australia, for example, seems to have been rather bruised by its experience during the negotiation of the US-Australia trade deal. It conceded a fair amount and was asked to give up more – witness the pressure to rewrite the country’s public healthdrugs purchasing scheme at the behest of American Big Pharma. But it had few of its own demands met, including more access to the ludicrously-rigged US sugar and dairy markets. Australia has been surly about the TPP from the beginning, owing something to its previous experience."
(via Lambert Strether who has more links)
More by Yves Smith at Naked Capitalism

Monday, March 23, 2015

Links, 23 March 2015

Shakespeare in Teheran by Stephen Greenblatt: "He seems to have folded his most subversive perceptions about his particular time and place into a much larger vision of what his characters repeatedly and urgently term their life stories. We are assigned the task of keeping these stories alive, and in doing so we might a find a way, even in difficult circumstances, to be free, honest, and open in talking about our own lives."
Israel: The Stark Truth by David Shulman
Ahmedabad lesson for: RTE success story city at IIM resource cetnre (via Madhukar Shkla)
Philip Holden on Lee Kuan Yew "There is a sense of history about his passing. He was one of the last of the generation of political leaders at the time of decolonization. People are comparing him to Mandela, Nehru, and Nkrumah. In terms of experience, if not of age, he is of the same generation as them, part of a turning point in history.
But in another sense he was not like them at all...............
Paradoxically, LKY and his team delivered the goods of development as none of the other leaders were able to. For me, this is the paradox that we live with in Singapore: we, and others throughout the "developed" world, are variously privileged by a model of economic development that has succeeded through an almost willed inhumanity, lack of humility, and lack of empathy for others."

Extraordinary stuff

according to Rahul Siddharthan.
Biologists devise invasion plan for mutations:
"In the study, published online this week (http://scim.ag/VMGantz), Gantz and Bier report that the introduced mutation disabled both normal copies of a pigmentation gene on the fruit fly chromosomes, transmitting itself to the next generation with 97% efficiency—a near-complete invasion of the genome. The secret of its success: an increasingly popular gene-editing toolkit called CRISPR (Science, 23 August 2013, p.833), which Gantz and Bier adapted to give the mutation an overwhelming advantage. The technique is the latest—and some say, most impressive—example of gene drive: biasing inheritance to spread a gene rapidly through a population, or even an entire species. At this level of efficiency, a single mosquito equipped with a parasite-blocking gene could in theory spread malaria resistance through an entire breeding population in a single season "
More at ScinceDaily "The two biologists note in their paper that while applications of MCR offer potential solutions to important problems in health and human welfare, it could also pose serious potential risks in the wrong hands."

Jogan 1950

A review of the film: "The film's aesthetics, as we said, were hard to pin down. There were some cute, blunt symbols: such as when Nargis, after first meeting her admirer, escapes to her room and the picture of a fluttering, caged bird is superimposed over her. The director also favored incredibly tight close-ups coupled with minimalist composition, all contributing to the Zen look. Another really interesting thing: this might be the shortest Hindi film ever, clocking in at a mere 1hr 45min! Canst it be POSSible?! Just another thing to add to the list of Why Jogan Is So Unique."

Sunday, March 22, 2015

Lecture by Henrietta Moore

The end of development The lecture lasts about 22 minutes.

A quote

from "The superiority of economists" by Marion Fourcade, Etienne Ollion and Yann Algan:
" First, the theory of action that comes with economists’ analytical style is hardly compatible with the basic premise of much of the human sciences, namely that social processes shape individual preferences (rather than the other way round). In economics, by contrast, “degustibus non est disputandum” (Stigler/Becker 1977): the action begins mainly when preferences are set.
Second, the qualitative methods that underpin the work of many interpretive social scientists often do not square well with the formal aspirations of the vast majority of economists, with their views on causality and their predilection for methodological and theoretical precision over a search for real-world accuracy." 

Saturday, March 21, 2015

Stifling RTI?

(via Madhukar Shukla) When the haze takes over: "The NDA seems bent on subverting the RTI Act. Is the slow dismembering of the CIC part of the plan?"
"A far more sinister plot, however, is now unravelling. Through a March 11, 2015 letter, the PMO has for the first time seized control over the administration of the Central Information Commission (CIC)—delivering a decisive, fatal blow to the RTI Act. The damning letter sent by the department of personnel and training (DoPT)—which works directly under Prime Minister Narendra Modi—to the CIC, in three short paragraphs, delegates the financial powers of the commission, so far vested in its chief, to a government-app­ointed secretary of the CIC, a bureaucrat on a leash.
“The secretary is not a legal authority and finds no mention in the RTI Act. All financial and administrative powers of the CIC are by law vested only in the chief information commissioner,” says Wajahat Habibullah, who was the first ever chief information commissioner of the country. “This decision can be challenged in any court as there is no law allo­wing the government to take into its hands the functioning of the commission in the absence of the chief.
With the CIC being headless for seven months, for the first time in a decade, the delegation of the chief’s financial powers to the secretary is being read as a ploy to indefinitely defer the appointment.”

More on China Infrastructure Bank (AIIT) from Michael Hudson

interview posted in Naked Capitalism:
"The World Bank, under U.S. congressional pressure, has said, look, we’re not going to finance countries becoming independent of the United States; our function is to make them export more to the United States and to buy from the United States. So the funding of the World Bank has mainly been to fund infrastructure developments, vastly overpriced, to Third World countries to create money for American engineering firms; also to lend out dollars and to indebt countries to it; and worst of all, to promote privatization. And that’s really the big difference between the Chinese Development Bank’s philosophy and the World Bank."
"PERIES: Now, I have actually seen and witnessed what China’s impact has been in some of the Latin American countries where they have huge investments in infrastructure development projects, which often isn’t in the best interests of those countries. For example, China brings in a number of their labor, thousands of Chinese workers, to those sites to work, and they’re basically importing labor, not hiring the local labor for these projects. Now, that’s what I witnessed. How do we know that China is really going to be different, apart from the discussions they’re having with you? Is that reflected in any policy? Or are they trying to have these conversations in a more collaborative way with the southern countries?
HUDSON: Well, for almost any countries for the last few hundred years that has been putting it in infrastructure, it’s pretty much used its own labor and management. Certainly the World Bank has always promoted very expensive American management and American workers for this. Britain did in its countries. I think China wants to make sure that it has control. And, after all, it’s trying to do–it’s already trained its labor specifically for these projects. And the World Bank has been and the IMF have been very careful to prevent other countries from developing the kind of labor and developing the skills that would lead them to create this infrastructure, precisely in order to make them dependent on World Bank and U.S. leadership. And of course China is going to be using its own labor, but in principle, obviously, these countries need to develop the skills so that they can say, look, we have to have our own labor work here too."

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Europeans flocking to Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank?

"France, Germany and Italy have all agreed to follow Britain’s lead and join a China-led international development bank [AIIB], according to European officials, delivering a blow to US efforts to keep leading western countries out of the new institution." according to Financial Times article Europeans defy US to join China-led development bank (if the link does not work google search may find the article). The article goes on to say "The US Treasury said on Monday night that it recognised the need for greater infrastructure investment around the world. However, it said any new institution should “incorporate the high standards that the international community has collectively built”, and that new members of the AIIB should “push for the adoption of these same high standards”."
From the way IMF is dealing with Ukraine and Greece, it is not clear what these standards are.
P.S. Discussion at Naked Capitalism.

The great hedge of India

The story seems relatively unknown; I heard it a few years ago from Kalyan Mukherjea. From the Wikipedia:
"The Inland Customs Line which incorporated the Great Hedge of India (or Indian Salt Hedge[1]) was a customs barrier built by the British across India primarily to collect the salt tax. The customs line was begun while India was under the control of the East India Company but continued into the period of direct British rule. The line had its beginnings in a series of customs houses that were established in Bengal in 1803 to prevent the smuggling of salt to avoid the tax. These customs houses were eventually formed into a continuous barrier that was brought under the control of the Inland Customs Department in 1843..................
Despite its scale, the customs line and associated hedge were not widely known in either Britain or India, the standard histories of the period neglecting to mention them.[32] Roy Moxham, a conservator at the University of London library, wrote a book on the customs line and his search for its remains that was published in 2001."  A review by Dileep Chinchalker who met the author. Now the book "The Great Hedge of India" by Roy Moxhamis translated into Tamil.

Sunday, March 15, 2015

H.Allen Orr reviews David Sloan Wilson's new book

in New York Book Review of Books (via 3quarksdaily) The biology of being good to others. One of the best reviewers of science books writes a relatively gentle review and along the way explains group selection , Hamilton's kin selection etc.
"It’s also true that many evolutionary theorists now argue that multilevel selection and kin selection are generally equivalent mathematically and they yield the same numerical predictions about the extent of genetic change from one generation to the next. Though this view is not universal, the long and fierce debate over the proper way to frame social evolution shows at least some signs of simmering down.
Wilson’s more philosophical discussion of equivalence among scientific theories generally is also strong. The fact that a process occurs in some singular way in nature doesn’t mean that there is only one legitimate way to think about it as a scientist. So long as different perspectives on a process make the same predictions and, ideally, can be translated from the language of one theory to another, it would seem absurd to argue that scientists must choose among them.
Wilson comes up short, however, in not emphasizing forcefully enough that just because different perspectives might be equivalent formally, they aren’t necessarily equivalent in the actual practice of science. Some perspectives might well be more natural, more productive, or simply easier to use than others. Indeed in evolutionary biology, it’s often easier to think about evolution in terms of the relatedness of individuals (as in kin selection) than in terms of group structure (as in multilevel selection), particularly in species where the sharp demarcation of groups is less than obvious. And it would be hard to deny that many more insights into biology—some deeply surprising—have followed from gene-level thinking than from multilevel selection thinking. Wilson doesn’t quite deny all this but I doubt that the average reader of Does Altruism Exist? would guess it.
But it’s when Wilson turns to the social lives of human beings that his views become more problematic. There are several difficulties.
One is that Wilson’s multilevel selection theory is so broad, so causally inclusive, that it may well be able to explain nearly anything about people. When a theory allows genetic selection to act at any level in the biological hierarchy and cultural selection to act at any level in the social hierarchy, it’s hard to imagine many facts about people that might remain refractory to “explanation” by it. In science, a theory can be a little too pliant for its own good and Wilson may have found one. It would have been helpful had he listed some imaginable observations about people that would force him to seriously question his theory. "

The most beautiful equation in math

Saturday, March 14, 2015

Michael Hudson on Ukraine and Greece

Michael Hudson from 13:45 (via Naked Capitalism)https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WLM9PqxxRjQ&t=911

US not happy with UK

UK support for China-backed Asian Bank prompts US concern:
"The hope is that investment in the bank will give British companies an opportunity to invest in the world's fastest growing markets.
But the US sees the Chinese effort as a ploy to dilute US control of the banking system, and has persuaded regional allies such as Australia, South Korea and Japan to stay out of the bank."
Seems to me like hegemony problems. US also sees Venezuela "constitutes an unusual and gravest threat to the national security and foreign policy of the United States".

Greg Baum on Cricket World Cup 2015

This seems to be a fair assessment: Hot early, and hit often. It seems to me that Australia is the strongest team in the tournament but the final result will depend many things like the ground, weather, whether the intervening matches are day-night or day matches and of course some luck and captaincy.

Friday, March 13, 2015

Two marriage related stories from India

Thrashed for love: Bengaluru father beats up his daughter in public (via Rahul Siddharthan): "Stating that the father wanted to take her back to Madurai against the wishes of the adult daughter and forcibly marry her to someone of their choice, Chakraborty in her post says, “The mother, a teacher, kept blaming the girl for the shame that she has brought upon her family.”
“We called the police who came after 30 minutes and took the family away to Ulsoor police station,” she added.
Police said someone had called the control room and informed about the incident. “Our men had gone there, but the parents and daughter left saying they will sort out the issue. No complaint was registered.”"
"The bride and her cousins received a shock when the groom said 15+6 is 17 instead of 21. This angered the girl, who refused to marry the youth...."Any class I student must be able to solve the simple problem asked by us. The family of the groom had kept us in dark about the youth's qualification," Singh said. "It was a very embarrassing situation for all of us as we had come with all preparations and it was a matter of social prestige as well. We have been cheated," he added."

Links 3/13/2015

Thursday, March 12, 2015

Irwin Shaw's short stories.

Long ago, I read many of his short stories and liked many of them. Now I remember only "The Eighty Yard Run" and the title of the story which  Stephen Hsu describes. From an interview with Irwin Shaw:
"I remember "The Eighty Yard Run" well but only the title of this story. Steve Hsu at 'Information Processing' reminds us about Irwin Shaw "I wrote “The Girls in Their Summer Dresses” one morning while Marian was lying in bed and reading. And I knew I had something good there, but I didn’t want her to read it, knowing that the reaction would be violent, to say the least, because it’s about a man who tells his wife that he’s going to be unfaithful to her. So I turned it facedown, and I said, “Don’t read this yet. It’s not ready.” It was the only copy I had. Then I went out and took a walk, had a drink, and came back. She was raging around the room. She said, “It’s a lucky thing you came back just now, because I was going to open the window and throw it out.” Since then she’s become reconciled to it, and I think she reads it with pleasure, too." 
He also gave a link to the story which I read again after a long time.

Some evidence about microfinance

Chris Blattman links to a recent survey If you read one thing about microfinance, read this:
"The punchlines:
  1. Only about one in four or five households wanted a small loan.
  2. Some of them used the money to grow their very small businesses. But this rarely led to higher profits.
  3. None of the seven studies found a significant impact on household income.
  4. And there’s no evidence it empowered women or led more children to go to school.
  5. But the loans give a little freedom. People make the same money as before, but in different activities that they chose."

Khazanchi 1941 with English subtitles

posted by Tommydan on YouTube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=El3tNeoPQfQ (via Richard Singer). A short review at Cineplot and post about the clothes at VintageSareeblouse. From a review in Indian Baja "Ghulam Haider revolutionalized the face of the Hindi film songs and laid the foundation for the Hindi film as we know it today by combining popularragas with the rich verve and rhythm of Punjabi music. A huge hit, Khazanchi was one of the films that helped to establish the musical style of the Hindi film industry in subsequent years. The film also shot Shamshad Begum into the big league." The review has links to the songs.
P.S. (Links posted earlier http://gaddeswarup.blogspot.com.au/2012/05/hindi-film-songs-of-yesteryears.html ) More about the evolution of Hindi film music in this six part serieshttp://www.upperstall.com/…/evolution-hindi-film-song-part-6
and about Ghulam Haiderhttp://www.apnaorg.com/articles/sap16/index1.html

Monday, March 09, 2015

Drift in US and European opinions on Ukraine

Breedlove's Bellicosity: Berlin Alarmed by Aggressive NATO Stance on Ukraine from Spiegel International: "US President Obama supports Chancellor Merkel's efforts at finding a diplomatic solution to the Ukraine crisis. But hawks in Washington seem determined to torpedo Berlin's approach. And NATO's top commander in Europe hasn't been helping either."
via Moon of Alabama which says 
"Some Europeans, like the writers in the piece above, still see Obama as a reluctant warrior pushed to war by the hawks in his own government and the Republicans in Congress. But the surge in Afghanistan, the destruction of Libya, the war on Syria and the trouble in Ukraine have all been run by the same propaganda scheme: Obama does not want war, gets pushed and then reluctantly agrees to it. It is a false view. The buck stops at his desk and Nuland as well as General Breedlove and other official hawks concerned about their precious bodily fluids are under Obama's direct command. He can make them shut up or get them fired with a simple 30 second phone call. As he does not do so it is clear that he wants them to talk exactly as they do talk. Obama is the one driving the neocon lane."

Sunday, March 08, 2015

Gender inequality index

From Wikipedia  "The Gender Inequality Index (GII) is an index for measurement of gender disparity that was introduced in the 2010 Human Development Report 20th anniversary edition by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP). According to the UNDP, this index is a composite measure which captures the loss of achievement within a country due to gender inequality. It uses three dimensions to do so: reproductive healthempowerment, and labor market participation."
Relative ranks India 135th among 187.

War making and state making

Friday, March 06, 2015

Modi's office sees rape centres as a 'waste of money'

"Two rapes occur every hour in India, reveal National Crime Record Bureau statistics.

The statistics also show an 837% increase in rape cases in the last five decades with the police having registered over 250,000 cases.

Conviction rates, in contrast, remain at an abysmal 20% and sometimes lower.

Given this worrying scenario, Women and Child Development Minister Maneka Gandhi's proposal to start 660 Nirbhaya Centres -- one in each of the 640 districts and another 20 in the six metros -- was hailed by women activists as a positive step forward.
Shockingly, the Prime Minister's Office shot down Gandhi's proposal, describing it as a waste of money and suggesting that the centres be set up in existing government hospitals.

The PMO also slashed the budget for the rape crisis centres from Rs 245 crore (Rs 2.45 billion) to Rs 18 crore (Rs 180 million) and insisted that only 36 such centres would be set up -- one in each state -- with locations being decided by the state governments.
"The previous (United Progressive Alliance) government had held several rounds of discussions on starting these rape centres with activist groups who had helped prepare a blueprint for the scheme. Maneka Gandhi was only going to implement a project which had been discussed threadbare in the preceding years. The present government's move has, therefore, come as a great shock," she said." from Rediff.com

Dean Baker on over-valued dollar

"I will give a quick response to the argument by Yanis Varoufakis raised in the comments. I think Varoufakis is mistaken. They are no secret conspiracies here, everything is pretty much right on the table. There are segments of the elites that stand to gain from an over-valued dollar. This includes businesses that are outsourcing to get cheap labor and retailers like Walmart who undercut competitors by setting up low cost supply chains in the developing world. Finance also tends to be happier with a dollar that goes farther overseas and less inflationary pressure at home.
The economy as a whole does not in any way need an over-valued dollar, nor does the U.S. uniquely "benefit" from some special privilege as the world's reserve currency." according to Dean Baker. For future reference since I am not sure whether the US government wants it or not.
P.S. A long term view here.

Nehru on Nehru

"Men  like Jawaharlal, with all their capacity for great and good work, are unsafe in democracy," from Rashtrapati by Chanakya (pseudonym) in 1937, reproduced in  http://archiv.ub.uni-heidelberg.de/volltextserver/9977/2/AppendixDocuments600dpi.pdf

Two on 'sub judice'

On of the reasons given by the Indian Govt. to ban "India's dauhter" is that the case still sub judice. I looked the term. It seems mainly derived from the English practice ( it seems different in USA). From Sub judice  rule and contempt of court:
"This guide is based on UK law and was written in January 2009.....The sub judice rule regulates the publication of matters which are under consideration by the court. Matters are considered to be sub judice (Latin for 'under judgment') once legal proceedings become active.....
Both statutory and common law contempt of court are concerned with the possibility that a juror, witness or lay judge may be influenced by material which is published about active legal proceedings. Accordingly, any of the following activities could be considered to be contempt:
  • obtaining or publishing details of jury deliberations;
  • filming or recording within court buildings;
  • making payments to witnesses;
  • publishing information obtained from confidential court documents;
  • reporting on the defendant's previous convictions;
  • mounting an organized campaign to influence proceedings;
  • reporting on court proceedings in breach of a court order or reporting restriction;
  • breaching an injunction obtained against another party;
  • anticipating the course of a trial or predicting the outcome; or
  • revealing the identity of child defendants, witnesses or victims or victims of sexual offences.
However, it is acceptable to publish material as part of a discussion of public affairs or as a contemporary report of the day's legal proceedings."
The Indian version as reported in The Hoot seems a bit vague to me:
"3.      Can I interview possible witnesses and quote documents that are before the court while an issue is sub-judice?
Answer: Yes, at present there is no clear legal bar to journalists interviewing possible witnesses and quoting documents in a case which is sub-judice, however as per the Law Commission such acts may amount to interfering in the administration of justice and may amount to Contempt of Court.
Effect: Reporters, at present may interview possible witnesses and quote documents when the case is sub-judice however even in the absence of a clear bar, they risk being tried for contempt of court for prejudicing or interfering with the administration of justice."

Jinhen Naaz Hai Hind Par, from Pyaasa 1957

via Madhukar Shukla. Translation of the original poem

Thursday, March 05, 2015

Links 5/3/15

UN report says small-scale organic farming only way to feed the world I am not sure about this. It is one of methods along with others suggested earlier by various UN agencies. But I have not read this report.
Arming the immune system against cancer
Scientists have figured out what makes Indian food so delicious "Chefs in the West like to make dishes with ingredients that have overlapping flavors. But not all cuisines adhere to the same rule. Many Asian cuisines have been shown to belie the trend by favoring dishes with ingredients that don't overlap in flavor. And Indian food, in particular, is one of the most powerful counterexamples."
Signs of intelligent life in the economics profession says Dean Baker

Video "India's daughter"

Still available here https://vimeo.com/121374149
P.S. Rahul Banerjee has a dissenting letter from the co-producer

Wednesday, March 04, 2015

Paul Mason on the Greek European deal

Greek European deal:where are we?"\:
"The European deal done six days ago was supposed to stabilise the Greek debt crisis. In return for a bit of fiscal autonomy the Syriza government (a) recognised its debts as legitimate (b) gave its lenders a running veto on any measures taken that might impact on the economy, the banks or the budget balance. ......
I still think the most likely outcome is that the unresolved political battle at the centre of Europe goes on being unresolved. And time is Syriza’s main enemy. If, by June, the ECB council is still calling the shots on Greek debt, then the German government – facing a growing revolt in the CDU/CSU over the terms of Greek forgiveness – will force another, bigger showdown."

Tuesday, March 03, 2015

Jadav Molai Payeng

More about him here " The strange obsession of Jadav Payeng" Jadev Payeng on Facebook

Monday, March 02, 2015

Beware of nudge squads

"But what if the economists—both old-school and behavioral—are wrong? What if our illogical and economically erroneous thinking processes often lead to the best possible outcome? Perhaps our departures from economic orthodoxy are a feature, not a bug. If so, we’d need to throw out the assumption that our thinking is riddled with mistakes. The practice of sly manipulation, based on the idea that the affected party doesn’t or can’t know what’s going on, would need to be replaced with a rather different, and better, goal: self knowledge." from Yes you are irrational, and yes, that's OK by David Berreby (via MindHacks)

Interview with Ha-Joon Chang

by V.Sridhar for Frontline. Long but very readable Old economics, new strings

Colour Blue