Monday, February 22, 2016

About some recent events in India

Goon's Justice, Mob's Democracy by Rajeev Dhavan (via Akshay Reulagedda)

The Age of Fracture

by Daniel T.Rodgers was mentioned in favourable terms by David Warsh recently. Here is a summary by L.D.Burnett. One passage from the summary "I glean three important points that are crucial to understanding Rodgers’s text as a whole:
1. “Intellectual history” or “the history of ideas” not only can, but must, look beyond the writings and lives of those who considered themselves to be intellectuals, or who were considered as such by others. Ronald Reagan, an actor-turned-politician, and Peggy Noonan, a political hack writer, are just as important to understanding American thought as Noam Chomsky or Judith Butler."
P{art of a review by Corey Robin is discussed at CT.

An old favourite

I have been watching videos of this performance since 1970 but did not know the background. From Rolling Stone:
"[Richie] Havens wasn't supposed to be the first act to open the festival; that slot originally was intended for the band Sweetwater, but that band wound up being stuck in traffic. Backstage, co-organizer Michael Lang approached Havens and practically begged him to go on instead. "It had to be Richie – I knew he could handle it," Lang later wrote.
After performing a half-dozen songs, Havens ran out of material – until, he later said, he remembered "that word I kept hearing while I looked over the crowd in my first moments onstage. The word was: freedom." Havens began chanting that word over and over, backed by his second guitarist and conga player, and eventually segued into the gospel song "Sometimes I Feel Like a Motherless Child," which he had heard in church as a child. The combined, surging medley wasn't just a crowd-pleaser; it later became a highlight of the Woodstock movie, which also immortalized Havens' orange dashiki. (What many didn't know at the time was that Havens wore dentures, which also gave his singing voice a unique tone.) "My fondest memory was realizing that I was seeing something I never thought I'd ever see in my lifetime – an assemblage of such numbers of people who had the same spirit and consciousness," he later recalled of Woodstock to Rolling Stone."

Good Bye to Pure Mathematics

Hopefully I do not have to do any more research in pure mathematics. The remaining difficulties in the last paper seem to be sorted out. The collaborators will complete writing it and I doubt whether I will even read it. Good Bye to pure mathematics before I complete 75. Back to Price Equation.

Saturday, February 20, 2016

Religion and the secular left

"My hope is that the analysis presented here may help us better understand one of the crucial paradoxes of the contemporary world. This is the question of why the decline of radical left wing secular movements is so often accompanied by the flourishing of religious movements that can be harnessed by extreme right wing forces." says Alpa Shaw in Religion and the secular left: Subaltern studies Birsa Munda and the Maists Apprently Birsa Munda story will come out in a new book by Synil Khilnani.
Report on a recent paper 'Moralistic gods, supernatural punishment and the expansion of human sociality' (behind a firewall) in Washington Post and a discussion by Razib Khan who quotes from the paper "Our results support the hypothesis that beliefs in moralistic, punitive and knowing gods increase impartial behaviour towards distant co-religionists, and therefore can contribute to the expansion of prosociality."

The problems here are social as much as everything. You are seen as weak if you don’t steal.

Post-war Iraq:'Everybody is corrupt from top to bottom. including me' says iraq's anti-corrption chief.
I heard similar thins in India. In dowry negotiation 'The salary is 5000 rupees but extra earnins are 20000 rupees foe month'.

Thursday, February 18, 2016

A nation which can't cope with a few anti-national slogans isn't much of a nation.

Wednesday, February 17, 2016

Tuesday, February 16, 2016

During Azuri 1980 visit to india

An interesting article for filmi buffs via a comment by SK in Richard Singer's post

One of the ways that NRIs can help rural India

with a few phone calls. But think of JagLAG group and their current status

Mathematics seems to be hard

I have been trying to do mathematics again with a collaborator after a long gap. It takes long to understand even the stuff one used to know and longer to sort out simple mistakes. After a few days with a lot of help from Peter, I got into thinking mathematics. But it was difficult to put those things on paper and when I tried they kept changing. Finally after a month, I have been able to write six pages which may help. The ability to keep a problem in front and thinking about a problem for days which I acquired late in life still seems to be there and strangely it seems to make me feel physically better. At the moment I can walk longer and work more than before in the garden if there is enough time. What is surprising is that it takes so long to get some thing sensible. If it is like this in mathematics (for me) I wonder how much I goof outside mathematics. One guess is that many ideas and words are not precise in one's thinking and there is a sort of band width to them. In a subject like mathematics, there are mechanisms of proof which helps sorting things out and fitting them together. It is not so clear cut in many other areas.

Monday, February 08, 2016

Some Irish writers

I am not a literary person but read some stuff off and on for no particular reason. Once I read J.M. Synge plays like 'Riders to the sea' which I found moving. Apparently there is anothergood Irish writer who is not so well know. 3quarks daily links to this article about James Stephens. May be the clue is as Marianne Moore says 
"The Irish say that your trouble is their
trouble and your joy their joy?
I wish I could believe it;
I am troubled, dissatisfied, I am Irish."
Wikipedia article about 'Riders to the sea' and it has a link to the play.

Saturday, February 06, 2016

Dietrich Vollarth remembers a paper of Greg Clark

I have read this very peripherally and am posting this for future reference since I am busy with other things now.
Why is not the whole world developed?

Friday, February 05, 2016

Maryland's Route 40 role in Civil rights Movement

The Junction:The Cold War, and the African Diplomats of Maryland's Route 40 by Nicholaqs Murray Vachon via J.K.Mohana Rao:
"But the significance of the Route 40 incidents does not stem from the success or failure of the campaign for civil rights legislation it produced. Rather, it lies in the fact that such a campaign occurred, born on a Maryland highway out of the collision between foreign and domestic forces. In their attempts to end discrimination against African diplomats, civil rights organizations and the Kennedy administration alike enacted strategies that revealed the difficulties of comprehending the various forces at work on Route 40. Both groups made missteps as they tried to navigate simultaneously the politics of Cold War, Civil Rights, and colonial Africa, and ultimately addressed the uniqueness of the Route 40 incidents with uncharacteristic actions. The Kennedy administration, having vowed not to pursue civil rights legislation during its first year in the White House, led a campaign for public accommodations legislation in Maryland. And civil rights organizations, having removed themselves from the international sphere since the 1940s, promoted a policy that would benefit the United States’ global struggle against the Soviet Union. The Route 40 incidents, therefore, serve as a window to the issues of the 1960s, a lens through which to observe the uncertainties created in the context of a changing world."
Pedro Sanjuan's obituary

Tuesday, February 02, 2016

Monday, February 01, 2016

Doing mathematics again

since January 13 after a gap of at least two years. Even before, after retirement in 2015, it was only off and on work when Peter Scott wrote to me on older joint projects.It is a bit strange.but because a collaborator was in constant contact, it was not difficult to start working. First it was difficult to understand the statements and more difficult to understand proofs. After a little while I could start seeing some things in the particular topic. But when I started writing down arguments what I thought that I have seen did not work out the same way and after several attempts, the proofs were nothing like what I imagined first. Finally I was able to get some traction on the topic and it is looking progressivly clearer. This is in a topic where I supposedly developed expertise over years since the early 1960s and with an active mathematician constantly answering my questions.I wonder why one so easily responds on social topics with opinions and comments, partcularly on Facebook. I wonder whether Facebook is trivializing discussions.

Review of a biography of Michael Harrinton, the author of 'The Other America'

The (still) relevant Socialistby Harold Meyerson reviews The Other American by Maurice Isserman.
An article on Michael Harrington by Maurice Isserman