Satyajit Das on Brexit [also ECTA]

Odds and Ends
Another Fantastic article by Satyajit Das. Much of what he observes is probably applicable to ECTA. e.g. “The reality is that experts [and elite] no longer relate to ordinary people.“ or as EU Martin Schultz said: “It is not the EU philosophy that the crowd can decide its fate”. [also read How businesses refuse to spend a few cents more ...

US:Killing of 2 pregnant women: Tactical Mistake

Odds and Ends
Sometimes you wonder about the chutzpah of US.In February 2010 a night raid by special operations forces in Afghanistan killed seven civilians including two pregnant women and two children.Defense Department investigators concluded that “the amount of force utilized was necessary, proportional and applied at appropriate time.” The investigation did acknowledge that “tactical mistakes” were made.U.S. soldiers dug the bullets out ...

Iceland does not want foreign investors

Odds and Ends
A law passed on May 22 by Iceland's parliament is offering the foreign holders of about $2.3 billion worth of krona-denominated bonds a choice of either selling out in June at a below-market exchange rate, or have the money they receive upon maturity be impounded indefinitely in low interest bank accounts. In other words, Iceland is trying to kick out ...

Capitalism, Labor and the proposed Indo Lanka ECTA

Odds and Ends
Excerpts from a comment by Kieth on Income InequalityFeudalism – exploit the masses through land ownershipCapitalism – exploit the masses through wealth (Capital)Today this is done through the parasitic, rentier trickle up of Capitalism:a) Those with excess capital invest it and collect interest and rent.b) Those with insufficient capital borrow money and pay interest and rent.All this was much easier ...

Panama Papers: Most listed are Politicians

Odds and Ends
The most listed occupation in Panama Papers is Politician. One thing is very clear, as officials are hypocritically denouncing the strategies they practice themselves.I dont agree with much of the referencing article, but link given belowhttp://www.zerohedge.com/news/2016-05-22/guess-what-occupation-most-frequently-cited-panama-papers

UK Enclosure/Inclosure Acts and Land Reform in Sri Lanka.

Odds and Ends
A fantastic article on the Enclosure/Inclosure Acts in England which resulted 0.06 percent (40,000) owing half the land in the UK. Below are excerpts from the article and some comments comparisons with the Paddy Lands Act of 1958 and Land Reform Act of 1972. On reading the excerpts, please think abouta) Sri Lanka's decision to pursue a Agricultural Economy vs ...

Human Rights Watch: Prosecute US war criminals including George Bush

Odds and Ends
This week, Human Rights Watch (HRW) issued a 159-page report titled, “No More Excuses: A Roadmap to Justice for CIA Torture.” This detailed report sets forth a compelling legal case for the criminal prosecution of senior US officials for their roles as conspirators and accomplices in the illegal Central Intelligence Agency torture program (2001-2009).The report names names: “US officials who ...

Hypocritical Self-righteousness Power of Samantha

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And why beholdest thou the mote that is in thy brother's eye, but considerest not the beam that is in thine own eye?"Now is not the time for the U.S. to deprioritize the issues which could help heal a war-torn nation. Transitional justice, including accountability" writes Taylor DibbertFor a start Samantha Power could help heal war torn Libya. The invasion ...

Payback is a Bitch (Paris Massacre)

Odds and Ends
Indira Gandhi/India armed and trained the LTTE. They went on to assassinate Rajiv Gandhi.The July 83 riots allowed the LTTE become become stronger and better funded and resulted in a 30 year war.Europe and France were instrumental in overthrowing Gaddafi. Now Libya is a failed state and one of the gateways for migrants and refugees to enter Europe in the ...

Quartz to Semi Conductor Chips: Value Addition

Odds and Ends
Quartz is mined in Sri Lanka and exported mainly for the use in the micro chip/silicon wafers in the semi conductor industry. There is very little value addition even though some of the mining companies are BOI. Basically the women workers break the stone into little pieces and then it is crushed into powder and exported.Powdered Quartz is Rs. ...

For Domestic Agriculture Protection

Odds and Ends
Just a few hours ago Jack Point had an article against Tariffs that protect the local farmer. One of the arguments he uses are the Corn Laws of 1840''s that protected aristocrat large landowners in the UK. For a start there no comparison because Corn Laws refers to large aristocrat landowners in UK, whereas most agricultural land in Sri Lanka ...

Iraq to US: We dont need troops

Odds and Ends
Now Iraq (you know the country the US liberated/occupied 13 years ago) says to the US, " This is an Iraqi affair and the government did not ask the U.S. Department of Defense to be involved in direct operations," spokesman Sa'ad al-Hadithi told NBC News. "We have enough soldiers on the ground." Meanwhile the US has been considering sending more ...

US Hospital Boming because Taliban was using Civilians as Human Shield

Odds and Ends
Initially the US defended the bombing of the Afghan Hospital as "Collateral Damage". Now the latest justification is that “Taliban fighters are now hiding in ‘people’s houses, mosques and hospitals using civilians as human shields.'” Isn't that the very same thing Sri Lanka was accused of and considered a War Crime.U.S. military was predictable and familiar. It was all just ...

Kissinger and Nixon support 1971 Genocide in East Pakistan

Odds and Ends
Bangaladesh is still having issues 40 odd years later because of war in 1971 fueled by American weapons. Hope this stands as a warning to those who are looking for war crimes tribunals in Sri Lanka. This is not for our good, it is to destabilize our country. Nixon and Kissinger supported Pakistan’s (west) fiercely anti-communist military ruler President Yahya ...

International Olympiad in Informatics: Sri Lanka has 26 medalists

Odds and Ends
While reading about Coding Jocks got interested in checking out International Olympiad in Informatics (IOI). I was pleasantly surprised to see that Sri Lanka had won 26 medals since 1992, i.e 23 years (facebook and SL website). The IOI has been around for 28 years. Thats not bad for a country of 20 million, though you have small places like ...

Fox News: Iranian and Russian Military in Iraq

Odds and Ends
Fox News reports that "Russian, Syrian and Iranian military commanders have set up a coordination cell in Baghdad in recent days to try to begin working with Iranian-backed Shia militias fighting the Islamic State (ISIS). However, The Russian embassy in Iraq denies role in any anti-ISIS ‘coordination cell’ based in Baghdad.So far none of the Main Stream Media (MSM) such ...

$25 Ebola Test: Science Win for 16 year old

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Olivia Hallisey.16 yrs, from Greenwich Connecticut won the Google Science Fair. Her invention: a test for Ebola in 30 mins, even in patients not displaying symptoms . The test cost just $25 and does not need refrigeration. Previous tests took up to 12 hours and cost a few thousand dollars.Other finalists for the fair included Pranav Sivakumar, 15, from Aurora, ...

Chinese Military and Aerial Assets to Syria

Odds and Ends
Chinese PLA in YemenThings are becoming interesting, Game Changer ?. Apparently a pro Assad newspaper reports that Chinese Military personnel and Aerial assets are on the way to Syria. As far as I know this is the first time the Chinese have sent troops to a war zone. That is other than the rescue operation by the Chinese PLA in ...

Saudi Arabia: Head of UN Human Rights Council Panel

Odds and Ends
Saudi Arabia's Faisal bin Hassan Trad has been named as Chair of a panel of independent experts on the UN Human Rights Council. This panel is tasked with naming experts that determine global human rights standards.I guess Zeid Ra'ad Al Hussein from Jordan (another country with exemplary Human Rights Record) will be a nice fit with the Panel.Saudi Arabia is ...

US Stocks: Set for Crash ?

Odds and Ends
The Dow Jones Index lost 3.5% on Monday 24th Aug, after an initial plunge 6.4% in minutes in early trading. Since the 2015 Mid July peak of around 18,000 it has dropped to 16,000. That is a 16% drop in about 3 months. It is possible the peaks of 14,000 in 2008 are fast approaching.Some of us have been anticipating ...