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Vinoth Ramachandra

Some have suggested that a cause of climate change is the poor having large families. In reality, however, climate change is becoming a major factor in perpetuating poverty in nations as much as in families. […] Read More

Racism and sexism are increasingly, and belatedly, being identified as big issues at North American, Western European and Australian universities and are not merely “developing country” phenomena. See, for instance, the recent report from a British task force. Racism and sexism manifest themselves not only in hiring practices, unequal pay, hate speech and acts of […] Read More

While hate crimes committed by and against Muslims in Europe receive increasing attention in the global media, the rise of Hindu vigilantism in India receives scant coverage. Yet, the loss of life and the levels of terror under which Muslim and other religious minorities in India now live far exceed anything experienced in the West. […] Read More

The United States has signed the biggest arms sale in its history (a staggering $100 billion) with Saudi Arabia. There is much irony here, not to mention moral revulsion. For consideration: 1. The Saudi Arabian air force (comprising predominantly American and British aircrafts) has indiscriminately and brutally ravaged the country of Yemen over the past […] Read More

Helen Zille, the former leader of South Africa’s main opposition party and the current premier of the Western Cape, recently tweeted, “For those claiming legacy of colonialism was ONLY negative, think of our independent judiciary, transport infrastructure, piped water.” In another post, she included “specialised healthcare and medication” as one of the benefits brought by […] Read More

We were invited to remember World Refugee Day, Father’s Day and International Yoga Day two weekends ago. No need to guess which was the most popular. Crass commercialism rules. And the greatest tragedy for me is the way it has engulfed so many affluent churches, reinforcing their inward focus and tendency to being mere pawns […] Read More

On my first visit to Nepal in 1989, I was appalled at the grinding poverty in which the vast majority of its citizens lived. At the same time, hundreds of thousands of tourists from all over the rich world came to trek, climb the Himalayas or seek some variation of private nirvana. None of this […] Read More

The tens of thousands of Hong Kong residents, prominent among them high school and university students, whom the world saw on the streets of the territory for two months since September, were reasonable and peaceful, even in the face of sometimes terrible provocation. Last week saw the police clearing away the barricades and the few […] Read More

The pictures of Israeli civilians watching and cheering from a hilltop at the heart-rending massacre of people in Gaza by tanks and aircraft are chilling. Gaza is neither a state nor a country. It has no army. Sandwiched between Egypt on one side and the Israeli army on the other, the mostly defenseless Palestinians have […] Read More

The French economist Thomas Piketty’s monumental “Capital in the Twenty-First Century” is being widely acclaimed as a classic on par with Marx’s “Capital” and Keynes’ “General Theory.” Paul Krugman summarizes Piketty’s thesis thus: “The big idea of ‘Capital in the Twenty-First Century’ is that we haven’t just gone back to nineteenth-century levels of income inequality […] Read More