President: You all know there are lot of "Munafiqs" among us. Don’t be deceived by them. — Mahinda Rajapaksa (@PresRajapaksa) December 20, 2014 What is this world coming to. For those of you who don’t know, ‘Munafiq’ is arabic for hypocrite, and in Muslim communities around the world, the word has more of a religious bearing than it has ...

Its a question that the 2015 presidential election talk seems to avoid. Sri Lanka’s feudal politics is exciting. Economics is dull and dismal. In the minds of many economics has little to do with politics. The king always has money. We have all enjoyed his gifts. Come on, admit it. Even you, who grumble about […]

RESULTS: Online survey on Sri Lanka’s Presidential Election 2015 An online survey conducted by the Centre for Policy Alternatives asked five questions regarding the upcoming Presidential election. The objective of the survey was not to predict election results but to gather public opinion on the elections and contribute to ongoing discussions. As the survey was conducted online and not with a random sample, the findings presented below cannot ...

The TNA follows JVP strategy Image via Al Jazeera No less a person than the JHU’s General Secretary, Patali Champika Ranawaka, went on record over the past weekend, stating that every attempt at campaigning by the joint opposition is being violently and illegally suppressed by the Rajapakse regime. He stated that if democratic dissent and a genuine electoral process did not occur, the country ...

Editors’ Picks of the Year: Notable Reads on WordPress.com Our editors dove into the archives to resurface top posts published on WordPress.com this year, from personal essays to comics, and photography to fiction. Here’s a glimpse of what you published — and what the community especially loved — in 2014. “Ever Wished That Calvin and Hobbes Creator Bill Watterson Would Return to the Comics Page? Well, He Just Did,” Stephan ...

Photo via wx135 The announcement that Maithripala Sirisena, General Secretary of the Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP) and Minister of Health in the Rajapaksa regime is to be The Common Candidate of the Opposition to Mahinda Rajapaksa has turned the Presidential Election of 15th January 2015 into a contest. Moreover the electoral arithmetic, most popularly quoted, appears to favour ...

2014: Year in Review Groundviews published over 300 articles in 2014. Since it’s launch in 2006, the most amount of traffic to the website was generated over May this year, around the compelling content featured in the End of War: 5 Years On Special Edition. Selecting the most engaging content from this vast selection is impossible – all of the articles deal with issues often not ...

Longreads’ Best of WordPress, Vol. 9 Here’s more great reading for you: five stories we love from across all of WordPress. 1. Spaces of Freedom in Iran Jake Threadgould An account of one traveler’s stay in Iran: On my second night in Iran I was invited to a party in a middle-class area of Tehran. Since we were a mixed gendered group with a foreigner (yours ...

An unexpectedly detailed description of our big data session was included in the Day 3 highlights: Big data is usually in the headlines for the wrong reasons – surveillance, exploitation of personal data for commercial or governmental ends, intrusion of privacy – but can also serve a valid and immensely exciting social purpose for development. Kicking off a fascinating, packed ...

Much of what is discussed as “big data” does not include the poor, because smartphone penetration is still low, social media are not used by all classes and datafied records are rare in developing countries. Therefore, the session focused on research that has been/is being done on pseudonymized mobile network big data in developing countries. Instead the usual “battle of ...

IF the president looses the election will he peacefully give up power? Become an elder statesmanship on a pension of a sub 100,000 rupee salary? Will his family walk away from their control/influence over large parts of the economy and government? Would the defence secretary go quietly into life as a private citizen? I doubt […]

The Lost Opportunity to Tame the Tyrant; 17th Amendment to the Constitution of Sri Lanka The most controversial political office in the history of Sri Lankan politics is unarguably the post of Executive Presidency. It was established by the Second Republican Constitution in 1978. The mastermind in implementing that, President J.R.Jayawardena wanted a stable government with a firm executive free from the clutches of the legislature to rapidly develop the country. At least that was ...

I’ve been hearing some pretty interesting things about our Glorious Leader, Percy Mahendra Mahinda Rajapaksa. 1) Percy has cancer. Unfortunately, cancer does not vote SLFP, and therefore he’s having a hard time controlling it. 2) Percy has diabetes. 3) Either way, he flies to the US once a week for meds. Ironic, isn’t it? 4) Percy went to Nepal last ...

As I move from several productive conversations about big data for development in London to Doha where we will be exploring the potential of mobile network big data in the context of three presentations on research insights that have been drawn from big data, the question that preoccupies me is whether we can afford to let these data go waste, ...

Mahinda On The Backfoot This is Mahinda’s election to lose. However, he seems so confused by the defection of My3 that he’s just reacting, and reacting badly. Mahinda’s campaign thus far has been plastering his face on every pole and deploying one idiotic Minister after another. He’s got all the money, he’s got all the muscle and, honestly, he’s accomplished a lot, but in ...

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 ...

Presidential Election 2015: The Question of Being Elected for the Third Term Today, election fever has taken over the whole country. It is hard to find anyone not interested in upcoming presidential election. This presidential election is one of the most critical presidential elections in Sri Lanka only second to the 2005 election. This election was controversial even before it began. There were doubts about the authenticity of the election and the ...

I think this should be essential reading for the gurus who negotiate or issue bonds for the SL govt directly or indirectly. e.g. The Petroleum Corp, oil price hedge fiasco.How Russia outmanoeuvred the west in Ukrainian finance by John Dizard“F*** the EU!” Victoria Nuland, US assistant secretary of state, commenting on Ukrainian policy on her mobile phone, as recorded and ...

Sri Lanka’s game of thrones is nearing another season finale. A renegade lord has come out of the shadows. He gathers his troops against his former master, the king. Their manoeuvres thicken the air with talk of wild conspiracies. The traditional rumour pot froths madly. So here’s a really wild one from that pot. The […]

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