Wednesday, August 18, 2010

More links for August 18, 2010


Ben Bernanke: Wall Street's Servant – Dean Baker, Huffington Post

A ‘Fat Cat’ Strikes Back – Newsweek: For someone who benefitted from a lower-than-lax regulatory environment under Republican rule, its not surprising that Steve Schwarzman has declared war on Obama.

Mel Brooks and the bankers – VoxEU: Its not funny.

Central Bank Autonomy: the real reasons – Mark Thoma, Fiscal Times

Capitalist Myopia – Maxine Udall: Is there any way of avoiding it?

US National Universities Rankings – US News: For those of you who like to know.

A history of how we have fallen

Barry Ritholtz attributes the above to the industrial revolution. I attribute it to our inborn resistance to change. Coupled with high tolerance, its a killer…


  1. wouldnt you attribute atleast some of that the circumstances of biogeography and colonialism?
    the european powers destroyed indian textile exports first by terrorising them by high sea piracy (sanctioned by the queen -no less).there is also the gorilla in the room -free slave labor which helped.nobody wants to talk about them

    we have been taught that the brits were kind enough to bring the railways to india .truth is,the railways would have come -without the brits as well .as it occured in japan -a country lucky to escape colonialism.
    the adoption of the gold standard for a country which was on the silver standard was not a smooth transition -but thats relatively a later occurence.the fact remains that the Honorable East india company under the auspices of the british govt simply killed local industry by force.
    for a nation to suddenly become unreceptive to change after centuries of exporting mathematics and scientific ideas(wootz from vijayanagara) etc requires suspension of credulity.

  2. We could, but its also worth wondering why we were always the conquered and never the conquerers. Since before the British arrived on the scene. As an aside, if the queen was terrorizing us using high sea piracy, what were we doing to protect ourselves?

    Truth is that we are a very tolerant race. I'm sure these issues weren't even considered important when they were happening, which only encourages an aggressor.

    Till independence, we were always ruled. And this mindset reflects in a common man's view of current government as well. We don't hold government accountable to the people. We don't consider the possibility that we can bring about change. Except for a few islands of protest, most of them politically managed, we find a way of living within the system no matter how terrible it is.

    We were at the forefront of technological change and it doesn't need a suspension of credulity to see a departure. Most of the inventions you mention are either medieval or pre-medieval. Was our scientific prowess intact in the 18th and 19th century? Did we stop thinking after the British arrived? If that was the case, then why did they have better guns and better ships? Why did they come here instead of us going there? Blaming the British for everything that went wrong is escapism. I believe that there was a lot wrong before they arrived. They compounded it, no doubt, with their actions but the truth is, we let them. We let them in, we let them suck us dry, and while we would like to believe we kicked them out, I would think we were pretty much worthless to them when they left. Slavery had all but been abolished and after WWII, they saw little use for cannon fodder as well.

    We Indians have always been far too tolerant for our own good for many centuries now and we had lost our technological edge many many years before the British landed.