Sbarrkum had put up a post comparing JR and MR. This is my take on the question.It is a tricky question, undoubtedly JRJ's regime was a turning point, he set the stage for autocracy and escalated the conflict to the level of a real war.But what of MR, the man who took the maximum use of JR's constitution and then ...

Some people, while acknowledging the shortcomings of the present administration are still doubtful about voting for the common opposition candidate. They wonder if there will be real change, the new man may not make the constitutional changes promised, so we end up with the same situation as before. They also worry that the infrastructure projects may stop. How can we ...

Putin and Mahinda: Strong leaders, their policies and our fate Some analysts, including the irrepressible Dayan Jayatilleka have a fascination with strong leaders. Strongmen, they believe will lead to strong nations. Vladimir Putin mesmerises such people, a man who they claim has taught the West a lesson in defiance and developed his country.Mahinda is compared favourably with Putin and people are urged that if this model is followed it will ...

The President has proclaimed that he has won the war and defeated terrorism. It is claimed to be the first and perhaps only victory against terrorism. Prabakharan is definitely dead, not even the looniest elements of the diaspora cling to the belief that he is alive, even his son and family were killed. In the minds of some the killing ...

Germany and Japan were militarised societies that glorified war and conquest, held human life to be cheap and regarded obedience to the state as the highest virtue.This quote is from The Economist's review of two books on the second world war. It made me wonder if all the world's dictators are playing from the same rule book.Years ago I listened ...

Cerno wondered who should pay Sri Lanka's loans. I'm not sure but I certainly don't want it to be me!I woke up from a dream the other night. I had been dreaming of Chinese loans and lying a awake in bed a solution to the problem came to me.The Chinese loans are mostly project-based therefore the logical thing to do ...

Groundviews had published an analysis on the election. I wrote this as a comment: The problem, which the business community and anyone else who argues for continuity has ignored is the state of the public finances.We have an unsustainable level of public expenditure, which is being funded largely by foreign borrowings. Thanks to a general slowness in the economies of ...

People dissatisfied with the choice of candidates at an election a may sometimes engage in wishful thinking speculating on an ideal leader. Someone of stature to whom we would unhesitatingly cast our vote. Nelson Mandela, for example or Lee Kuan Yew, a name that crops up frequently in Asia, or perhaps even Mahathir Mohamed.Dayan Jayatilleka wishes for Deng Xiaoping the ...

The Government has issued a menacing statement on the status of the privatised estate companies warning that "underpeforming" companies would be taken over by the Government.Taken at face value the statement seems innocuous - what is wrong with cancelling the lease and taking over something that is underperforming? The question is, what is defined as "underperforming" ? Returns below par? ...

Indi has written something more on the election, specifically on what appears to be the opposition's main platform-the abolishing of the executive presidency. He highlights an issue that also worries me "Nobody is going to put themselves out of a job to see some other mutton-chop get it. "This is a real danger. Power, once tasted is rarely given up. ...

Serendipity had put up a post endorsing the call by the BBS to grant voting rights to expatriate Sri Lankans.I think this is a very bad idea.Expatriates who live overseas have no stake in affairs here. The do not pay tax, their lives are unaffected by the standard of governance. Their jobs are not impacted by economic policy, the purchasing ...

Indi had written a post on the upcoming election and I was rather surprised by his assessment of the current regime. It was a relative assessment, in comparison to its predecessors but I find it difficult to believe that we have seen anything other than steady decline since the 1950's.Are they less racist?True, JRJ is one of the biggest ...

I don't often listen to the radio but a friend of mine rang me yesterday and told me to listen to 97.8 FM - he said it was a new Chinese station.I tuned in briefly today and it does seem to be manned by Chinese (judging by the accents) and it seemed to carry some news about Chine. According to ...

There is a discussion to be held next week on the need for an alternate government. It is worth posing the question: What do people expect from a government? Why do we need one in the first place?The nation state is something that evolved over time. At its most basic, the role of the state is to provide common services ...

There are many things that drive men: anger, greed, power, lust but surely power must rank at the forefront. Nothing illustrates this better than the assault on Sri Lanka's High Commissioner to the UK.The High Commissioner was apparently shouted at, slapped and then kicked by a senior politician at a party. A great public humiliation that no one under normal ...

According to a report in today's Sunday Times:The management of tourist resorts countrywide is now required to report to the Police Station in their area whenever bookings are made by local guests. Besides their names, the address, the date of arrival and departure are among the data sought.The report goes on to elaborate that: such data were often transmitted by ...

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