Friday, September 30, 2011

Wake Up And Smell The Lassi

Why does Europe point so inevitably towards decline? Is it because they are yet to appreciate the power of the lungi, the saag, and the bidi?

Problems beset the euro area at every front. The economy is weak, and the monetary experiment of the Eurozone is under attack. With an ageing population, there are fewer young people supporting more old people. Things would not be so bad if growth was strong. But there is no credit, and people are not buying enough things to keep the economy chugging along. No ready solution appears to be in sight.

That may be true. They still have to solve their problems of debt and lack of competitiveness. But there are ways in the medium term for Europe to get out of this mess. One step would be to look at the lessons of the past, even as they have typically applied only to poor countries thus far.

Monday, September 26, 2011

Goat Got My Vote

I read the news today, oh boy...

I study voting models for a living. So this week's UN vote on events in the Middle East got me racing to my books. Finally, I thought, here's a chance to see whether any of these models really work! But then I realised what I was saying and turned the TV on instead. Models. Work? Pshaw!

What is the vote about? Well, the Palestinians have requested that everybody henceforth call them Palestine. It's like the difference between being called Board President's XI and Haryana, except with more stroke play.