Plasma vs LCD

{Why? Because in the last few months, I bought a big fat LCD tv (Samsung), a network blu-ray player (Samsung), a big fat internet-ready 7.2 receiver (Onkyo), a big fat sub-woofer and other assorted speakers (Polk Audio), and other bits of electronics. TVs and receivers are awesomely complicated these days. Just figuring out what all the receiver can do is going to take a week’s worth of full time work. That’s why.}

The Poor and their Poverty

In a Foreign Policy magazine article, “More than 1 billion people are hungry in the world“, Abhijit Banerjee and Esther Duflo ask what if its really true. It is an extract from their book, “Poor Economics: A Radical Rethinking of the Way to Fight Global Poverty.” The article is long and well worth reading to get an idea of how some people think how some other people behave. Much of that thinking of even superficially wrong but there is a significant part where the thinking is plausible at first glance but wrong nonetheless.
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Inequality in America

The title of this post echoes the title of Alexis de Tocqueville’s two-volume “Democracy in America” (1835 and 1840). Inequality in America is the subject of Joseph Stiglitz’ piece in Vanity Fair (May 2011), “Of the 1%, by the 1%, for the 1%.” Fittingly, in the concluding bit of the essay, Stiglitz quotes Tocqueville.
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Happy Birthday, Mr William Shakespeare

I know, I know. I am suffering from writers’ block. I wonder if William Shakespeare ever stumbled upon a writer’s block. Probably. Or probably not. Anyway, it’s his birthday today and I am glad that he was born. Or at least those who wrote what is attributed to him were born. Francis Bacon, for instance. Be that as it may, I am sorry that I have been incommunicado. I wish I could use the excuse that I had a visitor from my India office to chaperon around California for the past 10 days. But really, who would buy that? Not you, I am sure. But ’nuff is ’nuff. Let bygones be bygones and get on with this post.
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Shubho Nobo Borsho

Wishing you all a Happy Bengali New Year!!

I am visiting Irvine, CA, for a couple of days. Drove down from SF Bay area, part of the way on highway 1. The Pacific coast if fabulous. Then had to double back because 1 was closed a little south of Monterey. Then took 101 South, followed by I-405. Ended up driving for nearly 10 hours.

I will post pictures in a bit.

What Joseph Lelyveld Said About Gandhi

I have not read Joseph Lelyveld’s book on Gandhi. Of course, neither have any of those who are heaping invective upon Lelyveld’s head for having written the book. I will probably borrow the book from the library one of these days but for now, it is good to hear the man himself explain what he attempted to do in the book. Michael Krasny’s Forum on KQED had him on in the second hour of the show today. It was enlightening, as Forum almost always is. Check it out.
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Anna Hazare Has Painted Himself into a Corner

Anna Hazare in the context of rural development praised the work of chief ministers Nitish Kumar and — here’s where he slipped up and deviated from the script — Narendra Modi. That’s going to cost him. But Narendrabhai is a master strategist. He promptly — at 5 AM in the morning — wrote an open letter to Anna Hazare.
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