August 11th – International News Round-Up (Part II)

Right Wing

Mother Jones

McMaster apparently fired some kind of member of the White House who wrote a memo that Trump read that detailed the deadly nexus of Islam, Cultural Marxism and Corporate interests that were aligning in the war against Trump. I wish I had access to the full memo. This is starting to seem more and more like the Red Scare from back in the day.

North Korea


Fascinating history of the North Korean nuclear program, the geo-politics of the Korean Peninsula and how the world got to where we are now.

Op Ed News

Pepe Escobar on the current stand-off between the United States and North Korea, the various players involved and what they hope to gain from this.


The Wire

PM and VP comment on the outgoing VP. Class act.



On corruption and co-operation.

Data and Advertising


In the US, you can’t collect data from mobile applications that are designed for children. Disney is in trouble for doing just that. They’re still denying the charges. This also isn’t the first time that Disney has got in trouble for this. Sticky ethical situation.



Bibi is facing corruption charge upon corruption charge. In rhetoric that sounds familiar to most people in the world at this point of time, he’s blaming the media and left-wing politicians of engineering all of this against him.

Benjamin Netanyahu (Image Source: Wiki Commons)
Benjamin Netanyahu (Image Source: Wiki Commons)

August 5th – International News Round-Up (Part II)



Great article on the constraints that physical processes place on the computational power of various organism. Hypothetical and otherwise.

The Wire

Article on life extending technologies and the fact that we need to think about them more, going forward. I think it’s put in a very interesting way. Also, some of the facts that he mentions are absolutely shocking. I mean, just intra-country wise, the fact that rich and poor counties in the United States can have a gap of 15 years in terms of life experience. If this argument is taken to its logical extreme, if we could create life extending technologies which could work, and were expensive, we would in essence create two strata of society. One would just be struggling and dying, and the other would be able to survive for a much longer period of time and would accumulate more wealth than they otherwise would have. This would then provide their offspring with the chance to do the same. I feel like life extending technologies would have a kind of multiplicative effect on an already unequal world.


The Wire

Article on the recent fuss about Karnataka (a state) that wanted a state flag. States in the US have flags. Some of them do at the very least, if not all. I agree with the author on a couple of things. What are we creating this unitary sense of being for? Why do we feel this fear when it comes to how we identify?


The Imaginative Conservative

Thoughts on the show about William Shakespeare. It’s called Will, I believe. Might be wrong. Article points out that he was a catholic and the show takes his faith as forming part of the narrative of his life.

William Shakespeare (Image Source: Wiki Commons)
William Shakespeare (Image Source: Wiki Commons)

July 30th – International News Round-Up (Part II)


Fair Observer

Alternative media sources are getting bigger and bigger. People aren’t going to the same big newspapers to get opinions on how to view the world. I get that you’re going to have a fair amount of skepticism about that statement, because alternative news is mostly alt-right. Which is true. This article though speaks of non-profit newspapers and smaller publications that have alternative business models and stay up and running through a combination of factors, which are not related to advertising income.

Slate Star Codex

On twitter practices and feuds. The ethics of signal boosting a person’s awful/embarrassing comment.



Almost 2, 000 people have been died in Yemen due to Cholera. Red Cross estimates that there will be 600, 000 cases by the end of 201.



On the issue of a right-wing organization asking for Tagore to be removed from NCERT text books. I don’t think anyone can really deny that there has been an obvious attempt to color society and the national narrative a certain way, over the past 3 years. The one thing that surprised me was the fact that the author mentions that the RSS is not a registered organization. That’s literally the first time I’m hearing this. That’s quite a shocker.

The Wire

A wealth increase of 300% for Amit Shah, and articles being pulled off the TOI website. Looks bad.

Amit Shah (Source: Wiki Commons)
Amit Shah (Source: Wiki Commons)

July 26th – National News Round-Up

Kovind Presidency

Kovind’s aides were allegedly all appointed by the PMO. I’m not sure if this is without precedent and I don’t want to make the mistake of saying that the office has gone to the dogs. We’re going to have to wait and see how this turns out. The article also points out that Pranab Mukherjee was also a long serving politician and was able to talk to MPs through the stranger parts of politics.


The NEET exam that was conducted for post-graduate admissions in August of 2016 was compromised. Apparently, the National Board of Examinations (NBE) hired Prometric (an American company that conducts a lot of the standardized tests that are taken in India) without floating a tender and inviting offers from other companies. This is either complacency or corruption. I doubt anybody can tell which it is. Yet.

DD is getting a facelift

DD is looking for a new logo and is organizing a design contest. The last date for submission is August 13th. I think that centralized broadcasting networks can do a lot for creating a general awareness among people. In India, a lot of the outreach that the government does is still over radio, but I think eventually DD will have to come up with more robust offerings on their channel, one television reaches the more remote parts of the country. I mean, I assume It will eventually. Right?

Doordasrshan (Image Source: DD India)
Doordasrshan (Image Source: DD India)

Our President?

Modi claims another victory. This one is about the fact that Kovind is the first BJP affiliated president that the country has ever had. Kalam was president during their last tenure, but he was decidedly apolitical.

Aadhar and Privacy

The AG and a 9-judge constitutional bench of the Supreme Court are going at it over the issue of Aadhar. After initially declaring that the right to privacy was a fundamental right, the bench has seemingly backtracked a little bit. The article goes into the details of the argument and they are pretty interesting. Something that is mentioned in the article is the debate on whether this idea of privacy is an “elitist” construct.

Yechury: a third term?

Yechury might not stay a third time in the upper house. The Bengal unit of the CPI(M) wants him, and the Congress is willing to support him, but apparently the Kerala unit of his party might not be willing to send him for a third term.